Home / General / Sad

Sad

Comments
/
/
/
1312 Views

Greenwald and Carlson, having established to their mutual satisfaction that reports of Russian interference in the election should be viewed with extreme suspicion, moved on to the question of just why it was that the Post would publish such a scurrilous report. “It is so weird that Russia is the focus … ” mused Carlson, “and yet, all of a sudden, Russia seems to be villain number one. Why is that? It seems strange.” The obvious response —Russia is the focus because it interfered with an American presidential election — had already been dismissed, so Greenwald supplied a different explanation for why Russia was suddenly the object of tough coverage in the media. Greenwald explained that Democrats ginned up hostility to Russia entirely for political reasons:

“One of the really interesting things is, in 2012, when Mitt Romney ran against Barack Obama, the Democrats mocked Romney mercilessly for depicting Russia as the number one geopolitical threat […] And throughout the Obama presidency, he tried accommodating Putin, he didn’t arm anti-Russian factions in Ukraine, he tried cooperating with him in Syria, it was really an election-year political theme that the Democrats manufactured out of whole cloth, that the Russian, that Putin posed some existential threat to the United States, that they’re our enemy […]”

It is true that, in 2012, the Republican Party had staked out a more hawkish stance on Russia than the Democrats. But the Democrats were hardly praising Putin’s regime. The dispute between Obama and Romney was a relatively narrow one centering on whether Russia was literally America’s number-one enemy, or whether that distinction belonged to Al Qaeda. In his 2012 convention speech, Obama said, “You don’t call Russia our number-one enemy — not Al Qaeda, Russia [Laughter.] — unless you’re still stuck in a Cold War mind warp.”

Greenwald presents Obama’s chilly relationship with Russia as nothing but an election-year ploy. He omits any mention of the event that changed the tenor of U.S.-Russia relations: the Russian attack on Ukraine. Obama responded to the invasion by imposing sanctions on Russia in 2014. That event, not some election-year need to gin up a foreign bogeyman, is what generated tension between Obama and Putin. For Greenwald to depict the administration’s chilly stance toward Russia as “an election-year political theme that the Democrats manufactured out of whole cloth” is a complete fantasy.

Carlson agreed that there was “only a political motivation” to explain Obama’s criticisms of Russia.

After this point was agreed upon, Greenwald went beyond merely questioning the certainty of the Post’s reporting and denounced “wild, elaborate conspiracy theories.” “To sit here and sort of suggest that Vladimir Putin lurks behind every American problem, to concoct these wild, elaborate conspiracy theories, to try and convince Americans that Russia is this grave threat to the United States … ” he explained, “I think it’s incredibly dangerous.”

Note that, at the beginning of the segment, Greenwald was just asking questions about how solid this reporting really was, and by the end of it, had described the Post’s reporting of a finding shared by the CIA and FBI as “conspiracy theories.”

“That’s the way it seems to me!” agreed Carlson. “So, it’s great to hear you say that, it makes me feel less crazy.” And the creatures outside looked from pig to man, and from man to pig, and from pig to man again; but already, it was impossible to say which was which.

Asked for his opinion of Breitbart News, acclaimed journalist Glenn Greenwald praised the news site’s editorial integrity and said the site was “very impressive in terms of the impact they’ve been able to have.”

While Greenwald was clear that Breitbart contains content he “sometimes find repellant” and Breitbart writers and articles he’s highly critical of “just on political grounds,” he gave Breitbart News high marks for “giving voice to people who are otherwise excluded.”

Note that second link is to Breitbart.

FacebookTwitterGoogle+Share
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Google+
  • Linkedin
  • Pinterest
  • Morse Code for J

    If Obama can do nothing else for us on his way out (and it seems he’s going to be awfully busy these next three weeks), he can declassify this CIA report on Russian interference in the election.

    We got to read all about Clinton’s emails. Now I want to read about what help Russia offered the Trump campaign, and whether there was ever an explicit quid pro quo.

  • Grumpy

    Every bit of praise he’s giving Breitbart is equally applicable to its less-popular relatives (Stormfront, Der Sturmer).

    “What do you think of Stalin?”

    “Say what you will about his methods, but the man had gumption.”

    • humanoid.panda

      The logic of “at least they are giving voice to exluded group” literally can apply to anyone: Nazis, cannibals, pedophiles,flat earthers, admirers of the theoretical works of Leonid Il’ich Brezhnev.

      • CP

        Leonid Il’ich Brezhnev wrote theoretical works?

        • rea

          He won the Lenin Prize for Literature!

        • J. Otto Pohl

          Or had ghostwritten for him. You see them in academic libraries throughout the world. A friend of mine once rented a flat in Bishkek from a former CP bigwig and his study had all of Brezhnev’s alleged works. I am not sure if anybody reads him still, but Stephen Cohen was a big fan of Brezhnev.

          • humanoid.panda

            Yeah, the ghostwritten part was implied in the joke. And Cohen while Cohen was in the “USSR has a semi-pluralist political system” camp, he was hardly a fan of Brezhnev.

            • J. Otto Pohl

              I remember Cohen on Charlie Rose in the early 1990s specifically praising the Brezhnev era in the same terms I hear old communists in Bishkek speak about it. The difference is that Cohen was supposed to be a US citizen not a Soviet one.

              • humanoid.panda

                I am in the weird position of defending Cohen, whose work I don’t like, but knowing that his general position in the 1990s was “the reforms are a sham for a massive theft, and institutions that people that people are dependent on are being destroyed without replacement” I am going to guess this is not a fair description of what he said.

                • J. Otto Pohl

                  His exact words were “the Brezhnev era was a golden age for the people of the Soviet Union.” He then went on to compare it favorably to the US and Western Europe.

  • searcher

    This is your weekly service announcement.

    People who do a thing you like are not necessarily paragons of virtue who can do no wrong. They may be morons, cads, or outright assholes who got lucky or whose interests temporarily align with yours.

    People who do a thing you don’t like are not necessarily mustache-twirling villains. They may be otherwise-good people who made a mistake, got backed into a corner, or who simply disagree with you on some points.

    People are complex, multi-faceted actors who need to be continually judged on the full range of their actions over time, and not just binned as “friend” or “enemy” based on the first or last action they have taken.

    This has been your weekly service announcement.

    • Origami Isopod

      Indeed, Glenn Greenwald has never, ever done or said anything before that was worthy of a side-eye. Writing off Russian’s interference in our election? Praising Breitbart? Silly mistakes, surely, perhaps those of youth.

      I thank you so much for your concern in this matter.

      • Yankee

        I thought the remark was about the race traitor Obama and his foolish youthful attempts to make friends with the rabid dogs you meat in the Halls of Power. He can still be a friend.

        ETA: “meat”, yeah, that’s what I meant.

    • random

      Some of us from the very start have always considered him to be squarely in the ‘enemy/horrible person’ column, written on the same line where you itemize your Ron Pauls and Pat Buchanans and Peter Thiels.

      He’s not really complex, he’s just a shitty person.

      • FlipYrWhig

        IIRC a Balloon Juice comment-section regular went to law school with him and remembers him constantly glowering in the corner.

        • CP

          Really? I’m a regular at that blog but I don’t remember that. Cool.

    • tsam

      k

    • veleda_k

      That’s nice, dear.

    • Stag Party Palin

      “Searcher”? Gosh, I hope someday you find your ass.

    • JMP

      Yes, Greenwald has proven time and time again that those of us who thought he was a decent guy during the Bush years were foolish as he is fact an egocentric piece of shit.

      • Manny Kant

        I’m pretty proud of myself for more or less always thinking Greenwald was awful.

      • Simple Desultory Philip

        i actually used to really admire the guy. sigh.

    • muddy

      Shut up Glenn, you’re a liar.

      • efgoldman

        I ask the same question I do, every time Glennie or Freddie’s name comes up: Does either actually have any real influence, anywhere, with anyone who matters?

        They’re just each an ego wrapped in an irrelevancy layer, like raisinets or malted milk balls.

        • (((Malaclypse)))

          Except malted milk balls are wonderful.

        • Redwood Rhiadra

          Greenwald has a LOT more influence than Freddie. Hell, his involvement in the Snowden dumps *alone* makes him more influential than Freddie. And he’s a favorite of the Bernie-or-Busters, while few of them have heard of de Boer.

        • rm

          Freddie was slightly blog-famous for a year or so of his grad school career. Greenwald has had a pretty large platform and been involved in consequential stuff.

  • humanoid.panda

    “giving voice to people who are otherwise excluded.”

    I just can’t process this. Is the guy mentally ill? So consumed with hatred for bourgeouis democracy he thinks only by having fascists run over it can we have a new start? Annoyed the Democrats haven’t crowned him as king? What possible motivation can someone to say something so blitheringly stupid?

    • ThrottleJockey

      Crack is a helluva drug.

      • efgoldman

        Crack is a helluva drug

        So is ego

    • FlipYrWhig

      On one level, Greenwald is reminiscent of Michael Berube’s line “I used to consider myself a Democrat, but thanks to 9/11, I’m outraged by Chappaquiddick.” Except it wasn’t 9/11, it was the election of Obama after his apparently unforgivable trespasses against civil liberties. And except that Greenwald was never a Democrat but some sort of Nat Hentoff-esque civil libertarian with an extreme myopic focus on state power that first arose under Bush II. But that’s the general sense: once he soured on Democrats, he’s now outraged at everything Democrats and liberals do, punctuated with moments of flirty slumming about populism.

      On another level, he’s absolutely incapable of backing down on anything. And if Russia and hackers are at fault for bad acts his career-making protege Snowden suddenly looks like part of the problem. And Glenn Greenwald can’t have that, because he’s the self-styled king of righteous integritude. So the only alternative is throwing in full force with the opposite of that.

      Also, he’s a troll who gets off on upsetting people.

      • howard

        It’s also hard to believe he doesn’t enjoy being on TV and seeing his name in print, and he has honed his shtick to maximize that.

        • Origami Isopod

          Yep. It’s all about Glenn. He wants attention, he wants adulation, he wants validation, he wants 100% agreement, and he wants everybody to think that verbosity equals brilliance.

          • Snarki, child of Loki

            Anybody ever see Greenwald and Trump together? Just asking.

          • rm

            It’s always interesting when he changes his mind on something, yet still demands 100% agreement or else you are a dishonest tool of evil.

      • On another level, he’s absolutely incapable of backing down on anything. And if Russia and hackers are at fault for bad acts his career-making protege Snowden suddenly looks like part of the problem. And Glenn Greenwald can’t have that, because he’s the self-styled king of righteous integritude. So the only alternative is throwing in full force with the opposite of that.

        Also, he’s a troll who gets off on upsetting people.

        Are these the only characteristics that Greenwald shares with Donald Trump?

        • FlipYrWhig

          They definitely both have a very long memory for slights.

          ETA: But Trump has a more positive view of Barack Obama.

      • LeeEsq

        There is apparently some science on why people who end up disagreeing with their partybon one big issue tend to go over to the other side completely and passionately. Tablet had an article about it a few years ago with Middle East politics rather than 9/11 as the example.

        • humanoid.panda

          It’s even deeper than that: a huge swath of American Christianity rewrote its theology when it joined the GOP..

          • rm

            Literally. Changed the Bible. And y’know, there’s a Bible verse cursing anyone who would change the Bible.

          • JonH

            For example, the Christian ethics book which, in a 1970-ish edition, said abortion was not significant, but a few years later, was updated to hew to the post-Roe GOP party line.

        • CP

          There is apparently some science on why people who end up disagreeing with their partybon one big issue tend to go over to the other side completely and passionately. Tablet had an article about it a few years ago with Middle East politics rather than 9/11 as the example.

          It’s funny to me because, having started out my political awareness as a Republican in my teenage years before, well, growing up, transitioning to the Democrats actually didn’t involve completely and passionately reversing all my previous positions. Quite the opposite. A huge part of it was the realization that all the values Republicans trumpet loud and proud are just well represented (often better represented, in fact) among Democrats. Believe in capitalism? Most Democrats believe in capitalism (which isn’t the same as Yeltsin-era-Russia level anarchy, mind you). Believe in a strong national defense? Most Democrats believe in a strong national defense (which isn’t the same as randomly invading a country that did nothing to us, mind you). Support the troops and value military service? Most Democrats support the troops (as opposed to Republicans who use “support the troops” as code for “support the war”) and value military service (as opposed to Republicans, who when push comes to shove always prefer draft-dodging cowards who talk tough to people who actually served). Heck, are you Christian – you’re in luck! So are most Democrats! (Just not theocratic religious supremacist assholes). Etc. You could change parties without giving up any of the things Republicans claimed to value, and often while finding these things much better valued on the other side. That made the switch vastly easier.

          • LeeEsq

            A big chunk of Republican political strategy since the New Deal consists of painting the Democratic Party as much more radical than it actually is or at least as a gateway drug to Further Leftism.

            • CP

              A recurring theme in the Republican-to-Democrat transition was the realization that the stereotypes Republicans held about Democrats were, for the most part, bullshit, and that the stereotypes Democrats held about Republicans were, for the most part… true.

              (Yes, I’m aware of the Adlai Stevenson quote).

              • nemdam

                Yup, you basically nailed my transition story down. But with the added bonus that once I realized my values were actually aligned with the left, I reexamined them and became more liberal.

          • efgoldman

            You could change parties without giving up any of the things Republicans claimed to value

            Not true. You’d have to give up your Fox-based fantasy universe – everything from lower taxes = boom economy; government doesn’t create jobs; minorities and illegal immigrants all get all the government benefits; get the gummint out my medicare; Obamacare sucks rotten eggs, but KYNECT is wonderful….
            And this doesn’t even count real bullshit, like Jade Helm and chemtrails.

            • rm

              That’s the problem today. Sounds like CP switched parties in a less surreal age.

              I am really freaked out by this epistemic closure problem. If their pocket universe weren’t so insanely false I would be less worried.

              • Simple Desultory Philip

                yeah. and the baked-in distrust of the “lamestream media” serves to further insulate them and make it virtually impossible to penetrate the bubble, too. if the only sources they trust are fox and breitbart, it’s hard to combat their misconceptions.

      • Murc

        And if Russia and hackers are at fault for bad acts his career-making protege Snowden suddenly looks like part of the problem.

        … how on earth does this logic work?

        • FlipYrWhig

          Snowden is a hacker who took off to Russia. If people develop further bad feelings about hackers with Russian affiliations, classifying them as bad for democracy, that’s not good for Greenwald/Snowden/Assange, who subscribe to the Anonymous-ish idea that hackers are speaking truth to power and challenging empires.

          • Murc

            This seems… somewhat unfair. Snowden fled to Russia not because of some affinity for the Russians, but because he needed a country that wouldn’t hand him over to the US to get the same sort of torture Chelsea Manning has been subjected to.

            I also don’t know how you get from “hackers in the employ of the Russians for the purpose of electing fascists = bad” to “all hackers = bad.”

            • FlipYrWhig

              I dunno, it seems to me that part of the reason why Greenwald is adamant that hackers do shit independent of Russia is that he’s a confidant of the world’s most famous hacker, whose ties to Russia are also suspicious.

              • random

                Snowden’s a conservative Republican who started hoarding classified info in early 2009, solely because the Republicans didn’t win the Presidency.

                He started leaking them to journalists immediately after the election in 2012, again solely because the Republicans didn’t win the election.

                Last I heard from him, he was living in Russia at their permission and encouraging his online followers to vote third party.

                Nah, totally not suspicious.

                • Murc

                  Snowden’s a conservative Republican who started hoarding classified info in early 2009, solely because the Republicans didn’t win the Presidency.

                  He started leaking them to journalists immediately after the election in 2012, again solely because the Republicans didn’t win the election.

                  You’ve got no evidence for these motivations in any way, and even did you, it would not change the actual substance of his leaks.

            • nemdam

              But doesn’t it make you wonder why the Russians of all people decided to grant him asylum? Doesn’t it make you question whether Snowden was being used by Russia and if so, whether or not his revelations were actually whistle blowing or leaks designed to hurt the country? If he was being used by the Russians, that turns Greenwald from a bold truth teller to a unwitting Putin stooge.

              • FlipYrWhig

                That’s clearer than what I was trying to say — this, Murc.

              • urd

                Sure he was being used by Russia. To frustrate and piss the US off primarily. And to distract from their own awful human rights record.

                Anything further than that is speculation, and bad speculation at that. It fails to address Murc’s point or fix the broken logic of FlipYrWhig’s statement.

                • random

                  When you say ‘broken logic’, I have to point out that FlipYrWhig’s is making an assertion about public perception, not trying to prove Euler’s Theorem. His reasoning is pretty sound here.

              • Murc

                But doesn’t it make you wonder why the Russians of all people decided to grant him asylum?

                Not at all. The reasoning for that seems straightforward: Snowden’s leaks caused the US government difficulty and embarrassment. The Russians heartily approve of such things and so were happy to grant him asylum so he could continue to do so by his presence.

                Doesn’t it make you question whether Snowden was being used by Russia and if so, whether or not his revelations were actually whistle blowing or leaks designed to hurt the country?

                Of course Snowden is being used by Russia.

                But I think what you’re actually asking is “was Snowden a Russian agent from the beginning?” And there’s no evidence of that at all.

                “Designed to hurt the country” begs the question, of course. How are we defining “hurts the country?” Many people argue openly that anything that embarrasses the US government or hinders it in its goals falls into that category, regardless of whether we brought that embarrassment on ourselves by acting shittily or whether those goals are good ones or not. There are also many who would argue that any action that has any downside for us is illegitimate regardless of the potential upside. Snowden’s revelations, for example, almost certainly damaged our intelligence-gathering capabilities, and I’m 100% okay with that because the upside massively outweighs that downside.

                I’ve seen no real evidence that Snowden’s actions were motivated by “boy howdy, I sure do hate me the US. Imma gonna damage it however I can regardless of the efficacy of my actions or whether they involve truth-telling or not.” He seems to have a great deal of loathing and contempt for the national security state apparatus he was part of… which is a contempt I wholly approve of, as I want to see said apparatus destroyed utterly.

                • humanoid.panda

                  …as I want to see said apparatus destroyed utterly.

                  Here is a serious question: and then what? How do you see the US managing a complex world on the day after that destruction?

                • witlesschum

                  Agree with all of this.

                • Murc

                  How do you see the US managing a complex world on the day after that destruction?

                  I don’t understand the nature of this question. The world is complex. It has always been complex. What’s that got to do with anything?

                  One would hope that we’re clever enough as a people to deal with these complexities without, you know, selling our souls. Or is your argument that the national security state is necessary in some way despite the manifest and grotesque evils it perpetrates and we should just tolerate that?

                  Because that just seems wrong. The CIA alone has been basically a constant failure since its inception; it isn’t even good at being evil or at intelligence-gathering, which is just sad. And that’s just the CIA, to say nothing of what the other Hydra-headed parts of our Orwellian surveillance and security apparatus have got up to.

                • FlipYrWhig

                  I don’t know what motivated Snowden. But I still think that Greenwald has a lot invested in upholding the existence of a certain type of hacktivist. Hence he prefers to read the Russian hackers in the DNC and Podesta cases _as hacktivists like Snowden_. He thinks he groks people like that. Admitting the existence of Russian hackers working on Putin’s orders starts to make these categories collapse, and starts to make the (metaphorical) company Snowden keeps look a lot sketchier.

                • Murc

                  But I still think that Greenwald has a lot invested in upholding the existence of a certain type of hacktivist. Hence he prefers to read the Russian hackers in the DNC and Podesta cases _as hacktivists like Snowden_.

                  Ah, I see.

                  That makes a large degree of sense.

                • random

                  I’ve seen no real evidence that Snowden’s actions were motivated by “boy howdy, I sure do hate me the US. Imma gonna damage it however I can regardless of the efficacy of my actions or whether they involve truth-telling or not.”

                  The actual timeline says otherwise. He would still be working here in the US as a contractor if McCain or Romney had won either election.

                  There’s also no question that Snowden lies and exaggerates for effect. And it’s not really all that likely that he wasn’t expecting some kind of payday when he fled to Libertarian Paradise with a trove of classified info either.

                • nemdam

                  Hm. I guess we have to agree to disagree on whether or not it bothers us that Snowden is being used by the Russians. I feel that if an adversary happily embraces someone that purports to be doing something in the public interest, I question if it really is in the public interest or not. For example, Daniel Ellsberg didn’t seek asylum in the Soviet Union so I have less question about if his actions were in the public interest or not.

                  For the record, I do not think Snowden is a Russian agent as the evidence for this is basically nonexistent.

                  So I guess it comes down to our personal judgment as to whether the benefits to the country outweighed the costs, and it’s clear that our judgments differ. I had been torn on this until the Russian interference, but given that one of the costs has been to allow Russia to use Snowden to create propaganda that weakens our country, I think Snowden’s revelations have done more harm than good.

                  And yes, I do think Snowden was motivated in part by hating the US. If he did it purely as a whistle blower, why did he also steal information that had nothing to do with his issue? Any why did he not stay in the US and instead flee to an adversary? These do not seem like the actions of someone purely motivated by love of country.

                • I think you (Murc) vastly overestimate the power of said apparatus.

                • Murc

                  I feel that if an adversary happily embraces someone that purports to be doing something in the public interest, I question if it really is in the public interest or not.

                  Why?

                  Something either is or is not in the public interest regardless of whether our political adversaries embrace it or not.

                  For example, Daniel Ellsberg didn’t seek asylum in the Soviet Union so I have less question about if his actions were in the public interest or not.

                  Ellsberg wasn’t going to be locked up and tortured for what he did. Or are you saying that if Snowden had stayed in the US, he wouldn’t have been subjected to the same shit Chelsea Manning has been?

                  I had been torn on this until the Russian interference, but given that one of the costs has been to allow Russia to use Snowden to create propaganda that weakens our country, I think Snowden’s revelations have done more harm than good.

                  This is wrongheaded at best. It was the actions of the US government that created the circumstances for propaganda to be deployed against us. All Snowden did was bring those actions to light. All the government had to do was not grotesquely violate our civil liberties and everything would have been just fine.

                  If we don’t want to give our enemies PR to deploy against us, the solution is not “stop them from finding out bad shit.” It is “stop doing bad shit.”

                  Any why did he not stay in the US and instead flee to an adversary?

                  Because, again, if he’d stayed in the US we’d have thrown him in a hole.

                • nemdam

                  Let’s not forget that what Snowden stole wasn’t all indisputably in the public interest. He also stole classified information that had nothing to do with exposing civil liberties abuses. But I’m also not sure the legit stuff he did reveal was worth it when weighed against the cost to national security. Given this is where I stand, when an adversary has eagerly weaponized these leaks against us, it adds to my suspicion of whether it was worth it or not. Weighing the damage that a leak does to an organization that is benefiting us against the benefit of exposing the perceived wrongdoing to the public is a factor I consider.

                  Daniel Ellsberg was absolutely exposing himself to prison. He went to trial for it! His trial further reinforced the goodness of what he did by showing what how far the government went to try and lock him up. If Snowden stayed in the US he would either expose further corruption of the government and strengthen his case, or he would show that the US does indeed respect whistle blowers. Please note I am not saying Snowden is wrong because he fled the country. I’m simply saying that staying would strengthen his case.

    • Origami Isopod

      Is the guy mentally ill?

      Character flaws are not mental illness.

      The guy is a selfish, solipsistic asshole. That’s it.

      • humanoid.panda

        Stand corrected.

        • Origami Isopod

          Thank you; much appreciated.

          • humanoid.panda

            My wife is a therapist, so I really,really should know better.

            • efgoldman

              My wife is a therapist

              Cheetoh Combover must be driving her crazy…
              …so to speak.

            • Simple Desultory Philip

              i suffer from mental illness and even *i* still do the thing where i say something is “crazy” or “insane” if it’s illogical or disagreeable. idiomatic expressions like these are hard to shake and we have a lot of them in our culture. all we can do is apologize and try to do better :)

    • CP

      So consumed with hatred for bourgeouis democracy he thinks only by having fascists run over it can we have a new start?

      I think that’s a good bet, yes. I think in the same way that there’s such a thing as a generic RWA mindset that gravitates to authoritarians regardless of creed, there’s a generic anti-establishment mentality out there that works basically the way you think and will align with anyone proposing to overthrow the system regardless of who they are and what they want to do next. Or, at least, will continue trashing the system as The Focus Of Evil In The Modern World even when it’s quite obvious that there are bigger fish to fry.

      My favorite example is Carlos the Jackal, the former most-wanted-terrorist in the world, who converted from leftist to jihadist with little explanation other than generic anti-imperialism. A less blatant but probably more Greenwaldesque example would be a certain class of British intellectual that used to drive George Orwell nuts:

      The average intellectual of the Left believed, for instance, that the war was lost in 1940, that the Germans were bound to overrun Egypt in 1942, that the Japanese would never be driven out of the lands they had conquered, and that the Anglo-American bombing offensive was making no impression on Germany. He could believe these things because his hatred for the British ruling class forbade him to admit that British plans could succeed. There is no limit to the follies that can be swallowed if one is under the influence of feelings of this kind. I have heard it confidently stated, for instance, that the American troops had been brought to Europe not to fight the Germans but to crush an English revolution. One has to belong to the intelligentsia to believe things like that: no ordinary man could be such a fool.

      Reading Greenwald and his defenders’ insistence that Trump isn’t a big deal, that Trump is at least shaking up the corrupt decadent plutocratic bourgeois elites, that Russian interference is just a conspiracy theory and a smokescreen by the upper class elites to try to maintain power and discredit the populists, it’s hard not to sympathize with Orwell.

      • Origami Isopod

        I think in the same way that there’s such a thing as a generic RWA mindset that gravitates to authoritarians regardless of creed, there’s a generic anti-establishment mentality out there that works basically the way you think and will align with anyone proposing to overthrow the system regardless of who they are and what they want to do next.

        “Some men just want to watch the world burn.”

        • CP

          I wondered how long it would be before that quote came up :D

          • Origami Isopod

            To Be Scrupulously Fair, veleda_k beat me to the punch by 17 minutes, but I hadn’t read that far into the thread yet.

        • cpinva

          “Some men just want to watch the world burn.”

          fine. let them set the example, and jump in the flames first.

      • econoclast

        After this election, nobody can say something like this with a straight face again:

        One has to belong to the intelligentsia to believe things like that: no ordinary man could be such a fool.

        And people say there’s no progress.

        • CP

          Yes, that did occur to me when I was copy-pasting it, though I chose to reproduce the full quote anyway.

          Of course, most wingnut voters style themselves brilliant minds, so make of that what you will.

      • LeeEsq

        The less deadly version of this is the generic subversive that always has to go against majority opinion and mock it regardless of what the majority opinion is. To some people, this is usually on the Left rather than the Right, being subversive is a good in itself rather than a method for achieving change.

        • This is the mistake, though, that leads people who don’t read the volume introductions to assume H.L. Mencken was a leftist.

          • LeeEsq

            No question but very few people read deeply. Mencken’s writing has a lot to it that is attractive to a certain type of liberal or leftist, mainly his mocking of provincials and is subversiveness.

    • The Great God Pan

      This isn’t new. His affinity for white supremacists has been a recurring, if sporadic, theme. His idea of an appropriate adjective to describe neo-Nazi views is, no joke, “unconventional.” He represented neo-Nazi leader Matt Hale, for free, when the Illinois Bar wouldn’t grant Hale a license for reasons of character and fitness.

      • LeeEsq

        He always was a self-hating Jew.

        • ExpatJK

          He is Jewish? Bah, how embarrassing for us.

          • LeeEsq

            He never said so one way or another but his family name and appearance and some statements lead me to conclude he is.

            • ExpatJK

              Ugh, it appears you are right.

              http://www.haaretz.com/jewish/news/1.590894

              • LeeEsq

                My hatred of him was always at a more visceral level than other bloggers I disagree with.

              • Here’s a cretinous quote from G.G. in Haaretz (my bolding):

                “I don’t really like aggressive atheists who are so convinced they know the answers to questions that they don’t actually know the answers to. Like, that level of hubris and certainty bothers me. They think they’re so scientific, and yet they’re asserting things that they don’t actually know without evidence. And I do believe in the spiritual and mystical part of the world. Like, obviously yoga is like a bridge into that, like a window into it. I think other things are as well. But my moral precepts aren’t informed in any way by religious doctrine or, like, organized religion or anything.”

                • ColBatGuano

                  Like, that level of hubris and certainty bothers me.

                  This came from Glenn Greenwald?!?!?! As the kids say, LOL.

            • He has said so many times.

        • J. Otto Pohl

          Not to get into the argument about “who is a Jew?” but, does Greenwald consider himself by religion or practiced culture to be Jewish? Or is this “identity” only because of genealogy? Because somebody totally assimilated isn’t really hating himself so much as other people that shared a religion and culture with his ancestors.

          • MDrew

            !

        • Gator90

          “Self-hating Jew” — a term that should really be retired, or at least used far more judiciously than would appear to be the case here. On what, if anything, do you base your diagnosis besides Greenwald’s legal representation of a deservedly unpopular person?

          • LeeEsq

            A Jew that would side with a person or group that would kill Jews for simply being Jews or who ignores obvious Jew hatred can safely be called self-hating or st least incredibly stupid. It’s like an African-American siding with the KKK against other African-Americans.

            • Gator90

              If you could furnish one or more examples of GG siding with those who would kill Jews simply for being Jews, or ignoring obvious Jew-hatred, I’d be interested.

            • Please let’s be clear, though, that you aren’t saying someone would be “self-hating” because they marry a non-Jew, don’t observe all 613 Orthodox-prescribed commandments, or speak and behave in a “scandalous” manner.

              • LeeEsq

                I’m no where close to Orthodox myself, although I admit to some sympathy towards their arguments and some warm fuzzies for the Hasidim. What I mean by self-hating Jews are simply Jews that passively or actively side with people who hate us and will do us harm in a variety of methods. Greenwald fighting for a Nazis right to a bar license for free is an example.

                • The history of the term is not one any liberal should want to be associated with.

                  I’ve even run into Christians online who use it for Jews who don’t conform to the kind of religion they think Jews ought to practice.

                  It’s better left alone.

                • Gator90

                  I was under the impression that your “self-hating Jew” pejorative was based on more than Greenwald’s representation of Matthew Hale. If it was based solely on that, I’d have to disagree with you, as I don’t think representing a repellent person in his or her pursuit of a license to practice law in any way constitutes an endorsement of the person’s repellent views. Now, to be fair, I don’t think I as a Jewish lawyer would feel comfortable representing Mr. Hale. But I wouldn’t throw stones at another Jewish lawyer for doing it.

      • divadab

        What you consider fair game for a slur and an insult is actually a principled stand. Everyone is entitled to representation in court, even people you disapprove of. Good for Greenwald; bad on you.

        • The Great God Pan

          LOL! I have to admit that the principle that everyone is entitled to free representation as a plaintiff is a new one to me.

          • Simple Desultory Philip

            wow i have to admit i always thought greenwald represented the kkk dude as a defender. that’s a new one on me.

        • L2P

          Tell that to the hundreds of people I’ve put into bankruptcy for failing to pay their tax bills…

      • He may think, I guess, that the system works better when the worst of the worst get adequate representation. This is an attitude that works better when their victims are also well-represented. By choosing the state as his constant opponent, this dilemma might seem to be evaded.

      • Manny Kant

        Also soft on Nazis: the ACLU.

        I find Greenwald to be pretty uniformly terrible, but I’m not going to hold providing legal representation to an unsavory person against him.

        • tsam

          Yeah–if we lose that, we’ve lost the entire idea of due process and justice.

          That’s certainly not the same as sympathizing or making excuses for nazis, but they deserve due process just like everyone else and OH IT PAINS ME TO SAY THAT BECAUSE FUCK THOSE ASSHOLES.

          • This seems to be the meat of the complaint:

            3. Independent of the denial of Hale’s specific application, both the substance and procedure of the Rules governing the admissions process are plainly unconstitutional on their face. Specifically, those Rules:

            * bar an applicant from receiving a law license who, in his/her private life, racially discriminates — a clear violation of the First Amendment’s freedom of association;

            * bar an applicant who advocates racial discrimination from practicing law — a clear violation of the First Amendment guarantee of free statement;

            * permit an applicant to be denied a license to practice law without providing the applicant an opportunity to have constitutional challenges to that denial be actually heard or adjudicated by a court that has jurisdiction to do so — a clear violation of the Fourteenth Amendment’s guarantee of due process of law.

            So basically the Illinois Bar has a “no Nazis” rule and Hale sued on the basis that that rule was unconstitutional.

            Ethically I am not opposed to prohibiting Nazis from the practice of law, but I am not a lawyer, and cannot speak to what the Constitution permits or forbids.

            • Hogan

              Odd that Hale’s criminal record doesn’t seem to have come up in the discussion.

              • Just_Dropping_By

                Conventional wisdom is that, as long as someone completely discloses their criminal record and it doesn’t involve fraud or financial crimes, state bars generally don’t care that applicants have criminal records.

                • cpinva

                  so I could murder someone, but as long as I didn’t defraud them or broker bogus securities, I’m good to go with the bar? interesting.

                • L2P

                  Conventional wisdom is absolutely wrong. A friend of mine needed to appeal for a year to get his license because he was ACCUSED of a DUI.

                  Anything other than a minor misdemeanor can be enough to stop you from being admitted.

                • dl

                  utah or something?

        • Here’s the complaint if law-talking people want to hash it out. It seems to be a First Amendment argument. The lawsuit failed.

        • The Great God Pan

          Good lord. There’s a difference between a soup kitchen that will feed a Nazi and a soup kitchen that seems to only feed Nazis and other scumbags.

          Glenn Greenwald is not the ACLU. He didn’t represent Neo-Nazis and victims of racial discrimination. In one case, he described the plaintiffs who were suing his client–two Jewish teenagers who had been shot by a rampaging white supremacist–as “odious and repugnant.” If any decent people were having their civil liberties violated during those years and could have used free representation, I guess Glenn–unlike the ACLU–didn’t hear about it.

          • LeeEsq

            He really is a self-hating Jew if he defended a freaking white supremacist who was being prosecuted for hurting Jews. Especially with that defense.

            • The Great God Pan

              To be clear: He was defending Matt Hale (again), whose friend/protégé went on a shooting spree after Hale was denied a law degree. Two of the victims were suing Hale (similar to the SPLC suing people who encouraged violence against abortion providers).

              PS: Later, Hale himself was convicted of taking out a hit on the judge who ruled against him on the state Bar matter. Greenwald told the NYC that Hale, who was caught red-handed, was wrongfully convicted. Maybe taking out hits is also a First Amendment issue in Glenn’s mind.

              • The Great God Pan

                Greenwald told the NYT I mean, not the NYC.

          • cpinva

            if “odious and repugnant.” are now legitimate grounds for shooting people, the entire republican party is at risk.

  • Tom in BK

    Jesus Christ. I just wish Snowden had gone to someone else with the NSA leaks, because I now have to deal with Greenwald’s tripe for the rest of my life.

    • Simple Desultory Philip

      yeah, this. jeez.

  • ThrottleJockey

    All I want for Christmas is 1 drone strike for Greenwald!

    He’s such a tool Home Depot probably sells him!

    • Drone strikes are expensive, and I wouldn’t waste one validating his opinion of America. I hope he chokes on a peach pit.

      • cpinva

        “I hope he chokes on a peach pit.”

        that would give peach pits an undeserved bad rap (albeit, in a good cause), and I like peaches. you know where peaches come from? they come from peach trees. you know where peach trees come from? they come from the seeds in the peach pits. some idiot will want all peach pits destroyed, and no more peach trees. I like peaches, all ways, fresh to pie and beyond.

        save the peach pits!

    • LeeEsq

      Heh.

    • tsam

      DON’T BUY THAT TOOL–IT SAWS OFF YOUR FINGERS

  • Downpuppy

    That time Tucker Carlson ran into a real journalist?

    Much more fun

    • That woman did metaphorically what I hope a wood chipper does to him literally someday.

    • vic rattlehead

      I soured a bit on Stewart over the years, but he really pwned Carlson in 04.

    • tsam

      That WAS great, but I feel kind of sad knowing that the audience just muttered “jeez, what a bitch!” to themselves, probably pondered where she is in her menstrual cycled and learned fucking NOTHING. Those motherfuckers are the worst.

    • I thought she did really well for someone facing a hostile host on one of these shouting-heads shows, and it’s easy to armchair quarterback these things, but I wish she’d hammered on the point that Ivanka campaigned for her father on the explicit claim that he was a friend of women. She even said he was a feminist! I think that’s an unbeatable counter to Carlson’s “mew mew mew, are you saying she shouldn’t have supported her OWN FATHER, mew mew” routine.

      It was great to see the Bowtie sputter and smirk helplessly, though.

      • cpinva

        “It was great to see the Bowtie sputter and smirk helplessly, though.”

        that’s not really a high bar to hurdle, the guy is as dumb as a sack of rocks. the bowtie is (I suppose) an affectation made to give him the appearance of, um, hmmmmmmmm, not sure actually. of gravitus! that’s it, the “George Will, I am a serious person thinking deeply serious thoughts” look. it doesn’t work, he still looks and sounds like a ne’er do well, upper class twit.

        • efgoldman

          he still looks and sounds like a ne’er do well, upper class twit.

          Maybe because he is.

  • BLB from Frenchieland

    Jump, shark, JUMP! HIGHER! HIGHER!

    Nonetheless, it’s true that the only “proof” has been the administration saying “we have proof”, but when asked to produce it, all they’re saying “trust us!”. Why, of course, dear leader, why not?

    So the administration’s “proof” should also be taken with a large grain of salt…

    • Domino

      I mean, there’s also the fact that all of our intelligence agencies agree with the findings, universal agreement from every single Senator, and majority agreement from House members.

      So either a thousand people are lying and covering it up, or they all have seen the same evidence and come to the same conclusion.

      There are times to be skeptical of the government. This isn’t one of them.

      • humanoid.panda

        And the thing is, anyone who knows anything about Kremlin communications knows that they are not even denying it!

        • Domino

          I actually fear the Kremlin has another lackey close to Trump, one we don’t know, and knows to always be the last person who talks to Trump before having to make a decision. Considering there’s a well-documented history of people worrying about that aspect of him, it seems pretty easy to get him to take your side.

          • Manny Kant

            “Always agrees with the last person he speaks to” is a pretty good candidate for “top reason someone should never be a decision-maker”. It’s a characteristic Trump shares in common with such fine leaders as Tsar Nicholas II.

            • Hob

              Ronald Reagan, too. I’ve read about how, once enough people in Washington became familiar with this feature of Reagan’s mind, the ability to arrange a later time for your meeting became a major power advantage.

              • I’ve read that this applied to Pres. Clinton as well.

                Dunno about the two Shrubs, but could it have something to do w/ Presidential information overload?

      • divadab

        “there’s also the fact that all of our intelligence agencies agree with the findings”

        Not a fact. The FBI, for example, did not reach the same conclusion.

        It’s always a good time to be skeptical of the government. You seem to be believing it when it suits your partisan purpose.

        • Domino

          Out of curiosity – who the hell do you think the CIA, everyone other intelligence agency, every single US Senator, most US House of Representatives member, and everyone in the Executive branch is covering for?

          Who did it, that all these people are willing to try and fool the world?

          • humanoid.panda

            Not a fact. The FBI, for example, did not reach the same conclusion.

            That’s just a straight up lie.

            • Domino

              I was willing to let that stand, because it’s not like it really helps their point in any way. But thanks for the correction.

              • Scott Lemieux

                Refusing to distinguish between “The FBI didn’t think the Russians were involved” and “James Comey didn’t want to publicly say the Russians were involved until after the election because he is a massive Republican hack” is pretty much peak divadab.

        • elm

          The FBI did reach the same conclusion, it just took them slightly longer.

          • addicted44

            Yup.

            The FBI has extremely high standards of evidence before they state their conclusions (with notably rare exceptions such as a laptop that they don’t even have a warrant for).

            • Yup. The C.I.A. doesn’t have to prove many cases in court. The F.B.I. does. The two agencies obviously work differently.

              And yet came to the same eventual conclusion.

              • farin

                Though the FBI seems to have gotten into the business of providing material support coups recently.

          • Manny Kant

            They dragged their feet about it because they wanted to be able to bullshit the NY Times.

        • The FBI’s only point of disagreement — now resolved — was about whether Russia was interfering with the specific goal of assisting Trump/impeding Clinton, or with the intention of just generally sowing chaos and decreasing civic trust. There was no disagreement on whether the Russians were interfering.

      • cpinva

        “So either a thousand people are lying and covering it up, or they all have seen the same evidence and come to the same conclusion.”

        bolding mine.

        um, I think I’m a tad confused. if they were trying to cover it up, wouldn’t they not be saying anything about it? I mean, I kind of thought that’s how cover ups worked, am I mistaken?

    • JMP

      Yeah, I have no idea why the administration won’t release the proof that the CIA has secretly gathered from their own spying on the Russians that they interfered with the election, I mean it’s not like that would compromise ongoing intelligence efforts or anything, and it’s not like the Obama administration has constantly proven themselves to be highly honest and trustworthy and so deserve the benefit of the doubt.

      But yeah, keep insisting that vaccines cause autism, the moon landing was fake and JFK was killed by someone who wasn’t Lee Harvey Oswald.

      • divadab

        “interfered with the election” – what does this mean? Did they assassinate the President like the CIA did in CHile? Rig the election like the CIA did in IRan? Provide arms to jihadists like the Obama administration did in Syria?

        The hypocrisy is astounding.

        • ExpatJK

          The last one is connected to elections how???

          • JMP

            They needed to try and come up with something to blame on the best President in my lifetime who they irrationally hate for not being the 100% pure impossible figure of their imagination.

        • JMP

          did the CIa learn hOw to PROPerly use the SHift button? Not to mention that asking questions to which everyone already knows the answer is about as ridiculous as the giant shifting of the goalposts -not to mention bringing up events that occurred a very, very ling time ago, so that most of the people involved are dead now.

        • Ah, yes, the “two wrongs make a right” argument, a classic of the same caliber as “I know you are, but what am I?”

        • Did they assassinate the President like the CIA did in CHile– in 1973

          Rig the election like the CIA did in IRan?- When did this happen? The CIA removed Mossedeq in 1953. That wasn’t “rigging” an election.

          Provide arms to jihadists like the Obama administration did in Syria?
          – How this qualifies as “interfering in an election” is unclear.

          Charges of hypocrisy, when made in bad faith, are very much a double-edged sword. So, for example, if someone says how horrible it was that the US has interfered in other countries’ elections but then says “nothing to see here!” when evidence emerges of another country interfering in a U.S. election, who is actually guilty of the greater hypocrisy, especially when no one here is defending the Pinochet coup or the CIA’s ouster of Mossadeq?

          True, there are people here who support intervention in Syria. Whether that is hypocritical is debatable, since one does not have to believe that foreign interventions are always bad to agree that interfering in another country’s elections is never OK.

          Sometimes the greatest hypocrite is the one who cries “hypocrite!” at others.

        • econoclast

          Putin interfered Ukrainian elections by poisoning one of the candidates with polonium. I can see why you’re a big fan.

          • Morbo

            That is a vile and odious lie.

            .
            .
            .

            It was dioxin.

            • efgoldman

              It was dioxin.

              Polonium was the guy in London, wasn’t it?

        • cpinva

          “interfered with the election” – what does this mean?”

          i’ll accept this as a legitimate question, though I know it’s not.

          “interfered with the election” = involved themselves in our presidential election process, specifically to the benefit of one of the candidates. they did this by hacking into the computers of several parties: HRC campaign/DNC/Trump campaign that I’m aware of. they then selectively leaked what they believed would be seen by many in the electorate as “sketchy” emails, but only those of HRC and the Democrats.

          I can’t make it much simpler than that.

    • The DNC also had a private security firm come to the same conclusion.

  • LWA

    I recall reading once that in the 1930s there was a group of French Communists who so hated the bourgeois that they ended up endorsing the Nazi Party.

    Not enough of a historian to know the accuracy of the story, but I’ve seen this, plenty.

    • humanoid.panda

      Not exactly. Basically, in the early 1930s, the Comintern decided that social democrats and other non-fascists were the greater enemy, so the PCF behaved appropriately (and, more tragically, the KPD had a tactical alliance with the Nazi- both sides for example passed amnesties for people arrested for political violence). Then in 1936-1939, the Comintern supported a Popular Front. And then, after USSR signed the Ribbbentrop-Molotov Treaty, the PCF tried to sabotage the war effort, and after the conquest and before Nazi invasion, there were persistent rumors its members were encouraged to snitch on resisters.

      • LeeEsq

        The Communists always hated the Social Democrats for trying to work within the system rather than going for violent revolutionary overthrow. It’s why the socialist parties started to split in the late 19th century.

    • ploeg

      The French Communist Party followed the direction of the Comintern, which meant that they endorsed the Nazi-Soviet Non-Aggression Pact in 1939 and worked against the French war effort. They flipped back when the Nazis attacked the Soviet Union. So it wasn’t personal, it was strictly business.

      • cpinva

        “So it wasn’t personal, it was strictly business.”

        good to know, makes all the difference. unless, of course, you happened to be killed/wounded as a result.

  • XTPD

    Related question: Have there been ANY Salon foreign affairs columnists who didn’t suck shit-smeared Satan sandwiches? ‘Cause the closest I can come up with is Jeffrey Tayler, and he spent most of his time there making William Maher, SUPERGENIUS look like Reza Aslan.

  • (((Malaclypse)))

    repellant

    Gah.

  • aturner339

    One thing I think Marx had right was that the phenomenon of alienation is central to political dynamics. Maybe this wasn’t simply due industrialization and class but a more general tendency for people who feels a loss of autonomy to lash out. Conspiracy theories. The belief in an impenetrable “establishment” feeds into this.

    It’s not (chiefly) the economy. It’s the alienation.

    • FlipYrWhig

      Eh. More to the point: a lot of people are assholes, like being assholes, and practice asshole identity politics.

      • efgoldman

        a lot of people are assholes, like being assholes, and practice asshole identity politics.

        True, but most of us don’t think of ourselves as assholes, and are sure we aren’t.
        Whereas I just admit it and go with the flow.

        • cpinva

          “True, but most of us don’t think of ourselves as assholes, and are sure we aren’t.
          Whereas I just admit it and go with the flow.”

          that would be me. a loveable asshole, but an asshole nonetheless. no point in denying the obvious.

    • Origami Isopod

      What Flip said. Most of the people lashing out are feeling loss of privilege, not loss of autonomy. The alt-right recruited heavily from the ranks of GamerGaters, MRAs, and other 4chan/Reddit losers.

    • efgoldman

      One thing I think Marx had right…..

      … was that there’s no Sanity Clause.

  • I missed the moment in American history when violent white thugs didn’t have a voice. Thank goodness Breitbart was there while they searched for cough drops.

    • N__B

      I think the violent white thugs are still butthurt about Washington’s* reaction to the Whiskey Rebellion.

      *The man, not the city, the state, or the quarter of Rushmore.

      • cpinva

        you’re thinking of the Libertarians, the violent white thugs could always get their whiskey, didn’t matter to them where it came from.

  • witlesschum

    There’s a kernel of truth in what Greenwald points out about overheated rhetoric about the Russians and Putin and, yeah, intelligence agencies are not the people I will ever put my trust in, but it takes way too much sorting through shit to find that piece of corn.

    The Breitbart comment, egad. I guess you have to remember Greenwald’s a first amendment, free speech absolutist first and foremost, but I wish he would say “Well, I’m a free speech absolutist, so I’m glad Nazis have a voice, too.” I guess that doesn’t get you invited back to Fox.

    • humanoid.panda

      The Breitbart comment, egad. I guess you have to remember Greenwald’s a first amendment, free speech absolutist first and foremost, but I wish he would say “Well, I’m a free speech absolutist, so I’m glad Nazis have a voice, too.” I guess that doesn’t get you invited back to Fox.

      I’ll give you the first point, but the second is just silly. No one proposes to censure Breitbart, so the First Amendment stuff is idiotic. It’s just Glenn joining the fight against PC POLICE.

      • witlesschum

        Silly it is, but I think Greenwald actually looks at it as being a good thing, on balance, that Breitbart is there because a wide diversity of views and blah, blah, blah. I figure that grows out of his first amendment lawyering even though I’m sure he realizes the factual difference between censorship and decent people just not listening to Nazis.

        I think he’s kind of a silly person, even though I’m still willing to appreciate his work with Snowden to publicize and monkeywrench the NSA’s spying on Americans.

        • efgoldman

          I think he’s kind of a silly person

          No, he takes himself much, much too seriously to be a silly person. A twit? Absolutely.

        • cpinva

          “Silly it is, but I think Greenwald actually looks at it as being a good thing, on balance, that Breitbart is there because a wide diversity of views and blah, blah, blah.”

          last time I checked, assholes are hardly reticent to let their (usually) scummy views be known to a wider public.

    • FlipYrWhig

      One constant in his career is that he cares a lot about the well-being of Nazis.

      • divadab

        cheap and stupid smear not even accurate

        • Ahuitzotl

          cheap and stupid divadab never even accurate

          ftfy

    • JMP

      If he’s a free speech absolutist, then it really doesn’t make much sense to praise a site that heavily supported the anti-free-speech hate movement GamerGate designed to intimidate feminists involved in video games or games criticism into silence, though.

      • FlipYrWhig

        Hate, like information, wants to be free.

  • CrunchyFrog

    Greenwald is a Republican – always has been, probably always will be. He became prominent in the early 2000s because of his opposition to the Bush administration regarding civil rights. That, and the fact that he lived outside the country because he’s gay and his partner could not migrate to the US with him, endeared him to the left, as on both issues he was firmly with Democrats and against Republicans. Indeed, I have one or two of his first books.

    But over the years he’s slowly revealed more and more of what he believes and where he sees himself in the world. An “I got mine, screw the rest of you” log cabin Republican who happened to disagree with his party on a key issue at the time. (And note that it was a very narrow key issue – his definition of civil rights is centered around courtroom-related rights like free speech, indefinite detection, etc. And of course, because it affects him, gay civil rights.) But at this point, thrilled with Trump’s victory, he’s gone completely into the deep end for the GOP.

    What’s going to be interesting – in both and academic and Chinese curse sense – is how he’ll react when the Trump appointees implement anti-civil rights policies to a much more massive scale that Obama’s team even imagined. Which will win, his GOP tribalist instincts or his civil rights lawyer instincts? I don’t know the answer, but I sense that he’s become so hostile to his critics from the left that this will drive his thinking for quite a while. I look forward to lots more Fox News appearances and reports of “even the liberal Glenn Greenwald thinks Obama’s actions were far worse than the Muslim internment camps the SCOTUS just approved.”

    • FlipYrWhig

      My take on him is that he’s a small-r republican whose animating issues are civil liberties and official secrets: in essence, tyranny. And because he first gave these issues any thought when Bush II was in power, he thought that made him a liberal, because Bush was a conservative and he took exception to Bush, so he must be the opposite of Bush. And then when Obama succeeded Bush and did things that violated his sense of what’s right, he decided that Obama was betraying liberal ideals. And when he got flak for calling out Obama, he decided that _he_ was about the only principled person around, and everyone else was a hypocrite and/or sellout, which is why he’s combative by default and entirely lacking in self-doubt.

      • I think he’s decided that because the US isn’t perfect enough, it (a) can never be improved and (b) is actively evil and must be destroyed. And he’s realized that Trump, Breitbart, and Fox News — and of course, his beloved Russia — have a truly excellent chance of destroying America for good. So he’s throwing his lot in with them.

        • Origami Isopod

          Agreed. It’s where purity-pony politics winds up if you follow it to its logical conclusion.

    • humanoid.panda

      Eh, I don’t think that’s quite as simple. Greenwald is also pretty big on the “corporatism and neoliberalism have taken over the Democrats” so I think coding him as a gay republican is unfair. I think he simply occupies the same confused spot on the political horizon as Assange: that liberals are more dangerous than conservatives, because they coopt us into the system.

      • FlipYrWhig

        He’s big on “Democrats aren’t liberals when you evaluate ‘liberal’ on the one axis I care about, they’re just fooling you, WAKE UP SHEEPLE!”

        Has Greenwald ever met deBoer? I can’t tell whether they’d be best buds or sworn enemies.

        • Definitely sworn enemies. Egos that massive can’t help but clash, especially since one of their main points of belief is that they and only they are the greatest geniuses of all time.

          • N__B

            Douchelanders. If only there could only be one.

          • cpinva

            yes, but Greenwald makes a decent living at being a jerk, while deBoer wishes he could do that. definitely be a jealousy thing going on there.

        • The Great God Pan

          IIRC, Greenwald has approvingly retweeted DeBoer in the not-too-distant past.

      • (((Malaclypse)))

        I think coding him as a gay republican is unfair.

        That’s true. He’s a libertarian who sides with Republicans on every issue other than civil rights, where bothsidesdoit.

        • humanoid.panda

          But again, anti-corporatism is a big part of his political identity.

          • FlipYrWhig

            Meh, that’s mostly retcon. His political identity is that Democrats are hypocrites, from Obama on down, and he settled on “corporate”/”neoliberal” rhetoric as the explanation for why they’re so hypocritical: it’s because they’re paid to be.

            • humanoid.panda

              Maybe. But in general, I think most people actually hold the views they have, and not running a long crypto-republican con.

              • FlipYrWhig

                Oh, it’s not a con, I think he genuinely believes that things he says and that he’s genuinely confused about where he fits on the American political spectrum.

            • JMP

              Hell, Greenwald’s one of the main reasons “neoliberal” has gone from being a word with an actual meaning to being the leftist equivalent of R.I.N.O., a completely meaningless insult against any and all liberal political figures the purity ponies don’t think are pure enough, including those like Obama and Hillary Clinton who are extremely far from the actual definition of neoliberal.

      • veleda_k

        he simply occupies the same confused spot on the political horizon as Assange

        Happy to see the world burn as long as he gets to hold the matches?

    • Funkhauser

      FWIW, Greenwald’s husband is a Rio de Janeiro city councilman(-elect) for the PSOL, which is a minor leftist party.

  • divadab

    You losing Dems are so hilarious – thrashing around trying to find someone to blame for your rout when a look in the mirror is indicated. You have allowed your party to be taken over by usurers and grifters, to insult and ignore and sell out the working class, and now when you rig the game to produce the worst two-time loser candidate (who loses, natch), you restart the cold war for the shallowest and stupidest of losing political reasons.

    I gave up on the Dems in 2004 when it became clear they would rather sell out their base and pander to oligarchy than truly be a party of the people. And you all, parroting the party line like trained monkeys, attacking rather than engaging in reasoned discourse, appear to me to be part of the problem. Here’s a clue – when you engage in the politics of exclusion, this is divisive – and you will have a hard time getting back the excluded.

    You want a concrete example of what ails the Dem party? Diane Feinstein. Adding a rider to a water bill that essentially negates the bill’s purpose in favor of big ag money interests. Corruption, disrespect for the environment, disrespect for process – it’s a Feinstein trifecta!

    • witlesschum

      I guess a reasoned discourse would involve calling people “trained monkeys,” pretending the white nationalist candidate winning by 80,000 votes in three stateswhile most voters rejected him nationally constituted a “rout” and pretending the working class didn’t vote Democrat as it always does? Somehow I don’t think we’ve been missing you.

      Yeah, Diane Feinstein is terrible and has always been terrible but she’s not exactly the future of the Democratic Party. It is not, in fact, 2004 anymore Rip Van Divadab.

      • divadab

        Just in case you missed the civics class: Presidents are not elected by popular vote. They are elected State by State.

        The rout I’m talking about is the loss of most State Houses and Governorships, loss of the House, loss of the Senate, loss of the Presidency. I mean, how bad does it have to be for you to admit to a rout?

        And most of the posts here today consist of poo-throwing at bad bad Glenn Greenwald and bad bad Breitbart. That’s monkey stuff. Do you see much reasoned discourse happening on this thread? really?

        • (((Malaclypse)))

          Do you see much reasoned discourse happening on this thread?

          Not since you showed up to complain about usurers.

          • divadab

            well no reasoned discourse from you anyway. You’re all about the insult. And the exclusion. How did that work for you in the last election?

            • Hogan

              You’re all about the insult.

              Hilarious.

        • FlipYrWhig

          Were the formerly Democratic-held statehouses and governorships in the hands of liberals beloved by the liberal base? Or were they held by people like Phil Bredesen, Dave Freudenthal, and Dinosaur Steve Beshear?

          • humanoid.panda

            And Beshear, while his was awful in many ways ,went all in on the ACA. And not just the neoliberal-gift-to-insurance part, the Medicaid expansion too.

            • FlipYrWhig

              Surely you don’t mean that even flawed and ideologically illiberal Democrats can do things that help people!

              • ExpatJK

                NONSENSE THEY ARE TRAITORS ALL. SEE, BESHEAR JUST MADE A BUNCH OF “AMERICANS” BUY INTO CORPORATISM. IF HE HAD HELD OUT JUST A LITTLE LONGER, KENTUCKY WOULD HAVE SINGLE PAYER. AND PONIES. AND KITTIES AND DOGGIES IN EVERY HOUSE.

                //sarcasm again
                (I think I am enjoying this a bit too much…)

          • divadab

            Just continue defining away parts of your party and soon you won;t have a party at all.

            • FlipYrWhig

              Dude, YOU were the one doing that. You claimed that the Democrats lost seats by selling out their base. AFAICT the Democrats who held those lost seats were neither liberals nor populists. So how could it be that the reason the seats were lost was that the party wasn’t sufficiently liberal and/or populist?

              • divadab

                “liberal” and “populist” are useless labels, unless you mean by liberal “someone who thinks for themselves”. I mean Dems should advocate and implement policies which advance their constituency – how has repealing Glass-Steagall, making student loans undischargeable in bankruptcy, and tripling the prison population do anything but help the oligarchs?

                Your use of terms and hence your thinking is meaningless. POlicies count. Dems have voted for policies, including invading Iraq, which are actively harmful and wrong. But their bribers wanted them to do it and so they did. WHo cares what the people think?

                • FlipYrWhig

                  Why did Democrats who didn’t believe in any of those things hold governorships and statehouses as recently as 2010? You kind of need to explain that, seeing as your theory is that there USED TO BE a time when Democrats supported their “base,” and had power, but then for some reason they stopped supporting the base and lost power accordingly. Hence the Democrats who had power had nothing to do with the politics you identify with the party’s base. How can that be? Maybe you’re just making shit up.

            • humanoid.panda

              So, is it a good thing or a bad thing that Democrats used to have a strong conservative wing?

              • ExpatJK

                BAD OBVIOUSLY, THEY ARE IMPURE!!! THUS THEY MUST LOSE, WE CANNOT TOLERATE THEIR IMPURITIES!!!
                //sarcasm

                • witlesschum

                  BUT IF WE DON”T WIN CONSERVATIVE STATES THE DEMS ARE TERRIBLE! AND DIANE FEINSTEIN! REASONED DISOURSE! EURON, EURON KING!!!!

                • FlipYrWhig

                  THE WAY TO WIN CONSERVATIVE STATES IS OBVIOUSLY MORE LIBERALISM

                • tsam

                  ANY CANDIDATE EXCEPT KILLARY WOULDA WON TEH FUCK OUT OF THIS ELECTION

                • efgoldman

                  AND ROBERT BYRD WUZ IN THE KKKLAN!!!

                  Oh, and George Wallace, Orval Faubus, Ross Barnett, Lester Maddox, James Eastland, John Stennis… wuz all Demmycrats, too.

                  OTOH, Sam Ervin did a pretty damned good job on the Watergate committee

              • FlipYrWhig

                In an article written in April 2010 for Governing magazine, the author observes:

                Democrats actually have reasonably popular governors in a whole bunch of the states where the party is least popular right now: Oklahoma, Tennessee, Kansas, West Virginia and Arkansas.

                The people divadab is talking about, without really thinking about it, are names like Dave Freudenthal in WY, Brad Henry in OK, Phil Bredesen in TN, Mark Parkinson in KS, and Mike Beebe in AR. They weren’t elected on the strength of their liberal populist social democracy in the first place, so their having been replaced by Republicans says nothing about the status of liberal populist social democracy.

                • Domino

                  Shh, don’t bring facts and logic to this discussion – you’ll scare away the straw men.

                • divadab

                  Party has to be a big tent by definition. there has to be room for capitalists in the party. whatever the fuck “liberal populist social democracy” is it ain’t happening in america anytime soon. And the Dem party doesn;t even consider it to be an ideal worth striving for.

                  MIxed economy – Swedish style – capitalists do their thing, socialists do their thing (education, public health and public safety). The problem with the dems is they have swallowed the neoliberal bs that the market will magically solve all problems.

                • there has to be room for capitalists in the party…

                  whatever the fuck “liberal populist social democracy” is it ain’t happening in america anytime soon…

                  MIxed economy – Swedish style – capitalists do their thing, socialists do their thing…

                  The problem with the dems is they have swallowed the neoliberal bs…

                  So the Democrats need to be a big tent that includes capitalists, and European-style social democracy isn’t viable in the US, so we need a European-style social democracy like Sweden, and the problem with the Democrats is that they believe in capitalism.

                  Got it.

              • divadab

                depends what you mean by conservative. If it means preserving the New Deal, keeping jobs in AMerica, and keeping the banks in line, then it’s good. But I don;t see people who support any of these in the Dem party because they have totally sold out.

                Dang you people just don;t get it, do you?

                • FlipYrWhig

                  When was this halcyon era of the Democratic Party, the moment before the Great Selling Out? And were there Democrats being elected to senate seats and statehouses in places like Alabama and Mississippi then? And were they really strong on bank regulation?

                • ExpatJK

                  Obviously it was in the 1940s-1960s, when the Democrats never sold anyone out!*

                  *except Black people specifically, in re the New Deal. But despite this it was a Golden Age, really. If you were white. And a man. Etc.

                • FlipYrWhig

                  There’s a much simpler interpretation to the decline of the status of the Democratic Party since 2008, which is that the kinds of people who used to vote for center-right Democrats in local races and Republicans for president no longer vote for Democrats locally because they’re tainted by association with Obama’s liberalism and/or pluralism. If that’s true, there is very little reason to think that being more social-democratic or whatever divadab professes to want BECAUSE LABELS ARE BAD would bring those people back into the fold.

                  It still might be a good idea to have more social-democratic Democrats around, but the starting point for this whole brouhaha was to find a way to account for “Democratic losses since 2008,” and there’s extremely little reason to suspect that Tennessee is voting for Republicans instead of Democrats because the Tennessee Dem circa 2016 is too much of a neoliberal sellout by comparison to the Tennesse Dem circa 2008. That’s just preposterous.

        • witlesschum

          O rly? Thank you for new and relevant information.

          It’s certainly a bad situation caused by this country’s garbage political system (and yes I’ve considered it garbage since I could think, not since November) but I can’t help but notice the fact that more actual people in an allegedly democratic the country prefer the Dems. That doesn’t translate into as much political power as it should, because the political system heavily favors rural white racists. But I view that as a tactical problem, not a philosophical one, which I think is important in how we think about solutions.

          I think Greenwald’s receiving the level of reasoned discourse he’s earned, frankly. Though I can’t help but notice that I aired my dissents from the prevailing opinion on the post in a reasoned manner, didn’t call anyone a monkey and didn’t receive any shit flung my way.

          • divadab

            if you think a parade of posts calling Greenwald a “self-hating jew” and a white supremecist is reasoned discourse, I have a Trump rally for you to attend.

            SO ya whatever – the Dem grieving process seems to be interminable – just doing my little bit to aid the catharsis. We’re in for a rough four years with the carny-in-chief – the sooner the Dems purge the neoliberals and the neocons the sooner they will be a credible party instead of a whining joke “The Russians ate my homework! It’s not my fault! It’s not my fault!”

            • brad

              Do you really have to masturbate in public like this?

              • Oh, that explains “AMerica” and “don;t”. Keyboard is sticky.

            • witlesschum

              Again, the level of reasoned discourse Greenwald has earned through the way he conducts himself. I saw one guy call him “self-hating Jew” and I must have missed the idea that he’s a white supremecist.

              The fact that you think noticing that the Russians probably helped Trump win the election should be opposed because it might make some unpleasant elements in the Democratic Party feel better about themselves is mystifying. Seems to me that it’s a.) true and b.) good politics for those who oppose Trump is more important than your imaginings about what unnamed Democrats who are too conservative on economics and global military empire might think.

              Lots of things contributed to Trump winning the election. Some of them were mistakes by Democrats, some of them weren’t. Neither erases the other. Walk—and chew gum!

            • ColBatGuano

              – the sooner the Dems purge the neoliberals and the neocons the sooner they will be a credible party

              So, have only 40 seats in the Senate?

    • Steve LaBonne

      People like you are about to find out the hard way just how badly heightening the contradictions actually works.

      • divadab

        “People like you” – what box of identity are you trying to shove me into?

        The shitshow is about to start – perhaps the Dems will find new purpose or buy a clue or something because I think the TEa PArty has been more effective than the bought and paid for clowns inhabiting the DNC.

        • Steve LaBonne

          People like you are among other things people who can’t read election returns. “Progressive” heroes like Feingold ran well behind Clinton.

          • divadab

            Feingold and Clinton both lost in Wisconsin. CLinton lost to Trump, for fucks sake. I would hope she would do better than Feingold against Johnson, who is a popular incumbent.

            • humanoid.panda

              No he isn’t (popular). To the very end, Johnson had lower name recognition that Feingold.

              • FlipYrWhig

                WISCONSIN PEOPLE ARE MAD AT CORPORATIONS AND THE ESTABLISHMENT AND THATS WHY THEY VOTED FOR RON JOHNSON INCUMBENT AND WEALTHY INDUSTRIALIST

                • ExpatJK

                  THEY JUST WANTED SOME HEIGHTENED CONTRADICTIONS, WHY IS THAT SO HARD TO UNDERSTAND YOU LIBERAL DUM DUMS

              • divadab

                Then why did Feingold lose?

                • Hogan

                  You tell us. After all, you’re the one arguing that Democrats lose by not going left.

        • You are about to get what Trump promised you and good and hard and without lubrication or even the courtesy of a reach around.

          • divadab

            Speak for yourself – as a practical matter it doesn’t affect my personal life.

            • Jay B

              Awesome. Finally, a truthful statement.

            • You should include this as a disclaimer on all your posts.

            • tonycpsu

              It’s rare that accelerationists are so candid about their relative privilege and indifference to the people who will suffer, so thanks for that, at least.

            • q-tip

              Less talky, more listeny – trust me, it’ll change your life.

            • Jordan

              lol, anyone else remember that troll from way back in the day who flounced after a thread on gay marriage (saying he didn’t care about it because it didn’t affect him, or something to that extent)?

              Hmmmmm.

    • Scott Lemieux

      You have allowed your party to be taken over by usurers and grifters

      When has the Democratic Party been more liberal than it is now?

      rig the game

      LOL

      two-time loser candidate

      ?

      you restart the cold war for the shallowest and stupidest of losing political reasons.

      Yes, “intervening to throw the election to an authoritarian white nationalist” certainly does seem trivial. If you’re not actually on the left at all.

      • divadab

        “intervening to throw the election to an authoritarian white nationalist”. Assumes facts not in evidence. From a source not known for honesty. But it does provide a convenient excuse for losing the election.

        “If you’re not actually on the left at all.” – If the Democratic Party of Diane Feinstein and Bill Clinton is on the left I’m decidedly not on the left.

        IN any event, I reject the left-right pigeonhole as meaningless in a country dominated by two corporatist parties that both pander to the oligarchy.

        • witlesschum

          Sure, it’s gonna be meaningless if the Trump Administration appoints judges who throw out Roe V. Wade, does to public sector unionism what has already happened to the private sector, finishes gutting the Voting Rights Act, gets rid of all restrictions on the financial industry, replaces the ACA with the Fuck You, Go Die Act, stops enforcement of civil rights law on the federal level and just gives up on workplace safety enforcement. And I could go on.

          Good idea, lets throw that away because some Dems are too cozy with capital and it makes you upset. You’re offering Reasoned discourse only if you mean as in the magazine.

          • Jay B

            Pfft. Those are all just things that help people in service to the oligarchy, which hates those things, which simply proves my point that Democrats are worse because the whole left/right thing in this country is a lie. Ipso fatso.

            I mean, in all seriousness, that the “I was a Demmycrat in 2004 but not now!” to be one of the weirdest possible critiques of the Democratic Party. They are WAY to the left now of what they were then. Instead of honesty, it points to what amounts to Trump-curious cover. That really, ol’ diva is excited by Trump so HE won’t have to hide behind giving a shit about people whom he clearly detests — all the people who will be hurt by what Trump brings to the table. Even the white crackers whom we are supposed to be so concerned about now who will go further down into the opioid hole when Trump doesn’t bring any jobs back. But for “there is no difference” types, it’s so obviously a lie that it seems that the real agenda is to support the white nationalist without getting one’s hands dirty.

            • divadab

              Sure, Jay, how are the Dems to the left of where they were in 2004? Be specific. To me, rather, they have segued into the party of war and assassination, of usury and rent-seeking, of pandering to the politics of identity and division.

              Sure right – I’m a nazi Trump fanboy because I want the Democratic party to represent actual, you know, people, and policies that are good for people. Not much in evidence – have you had to buy health insurance through an exchange? It’s a shitty experience, and it just keeps on being shitty with high deductibles and copays and endless paperwork. And this is your signature accomplishment? Fucking pathetic.

              • Scott Lemieux

                Sure, Jay, how are the Dems to the left of where they were in 2004? Be specific.

                I’m sure you have the links of John Kerry running on a big minimum wage increase, expanded Social Security benefits, and repealing the Hyde Amendment. I’ll keep waiting.

              • Jay B

                My signature accomplishment? No. Maybe Obama’s though. Or one of them.

                Maybe you actually haven’t had health insurance before, but “paperwork” “deductibles” and “copays” aren’t inventions of the Democrats, no matter how much you pretend otherwise. Again — what would you have passed instead of the ACA, which can be as frustrating as every other health care system, with certain important improvements which you are too obtuse to notice.

                Other signature achievements might also include: saving the American auto industry. Saving the economy. Presiding over tax increases on the ultra-rich. Empowering a civil rights division. Not going to massive, un-winnable wars, Lilly Ledbetter, et. al.

                I liked John Kerry, but his coalition wasn’t as left as Obama’s was. This really isn’t difficult.

            • brewmn

              Well, even 2004 makes no sense. What was so corporatist and or neoliberal about Kerry’s platform/campaign that year?

          • divadab

            These are your examples of “leftist” positions? The ACA? The insurance companies’ version of universal healthcare? I admit it’s better than what we had before (nothing) – but if the ACA is your definition of a leftist policy then corporatist = leftist in your book, no?

            AN actual leftist position would be Medicare For All. That the Democratic Party would not allow this to be considered or even discussed speaks volumes about why it lost everything in 2016. The problem is the Dems. We know the Republican policies are evil. Being less evil is not enough. You have to actually have policies that benefit people. Not confuse and belittle and impoverish them.

            • tonycpsu

              OK, now you’re just arguing in bad faith, because neither witlesschum nor Lemieux used the word “leftist” to describe the ACA, which was just one of the policies mentioned.

            • Jay B

              So, by cherry picking the ACA — which is flawed but better than what came before — you’ve laid it all on the table. You don’t give a shit about unions, you don’t give a shit about women, minorities, gays. You are, in short, a white nationalist who, above, said you won’t be affected by Trump’s policies.

              Your single rationalization for hating the Democrats is that they weren’t able to pass Medicare for all, which was on the table during the ACA fight, but the Democrats — who were the only ones who voted for ANY kind of reform — weren’t able to get enough votes for it.

              You are a shallow thinker with no solutions to political reality. Where do you start? You dismissed the Democrats in 2004, so you have exactly nothing to add to what they can do. You don’t understand anything about modern politics. You wonder why Feingold lost, thinking it’s because Johnson is a POPULAR INCUMBENT. I mean you literally have nothing to work off of. It’s white privilege and willful ignorance all the way down.

            • witlesschum

              You said the distinction between left and right is meaningless, I provided a list of examples where it is very much not meaningless. Not a list of my ideal policy prescriptions for the country or the Democratic platform committee.

              My preferred policy would be the left of almost everyone on almost everything, but that’s me. I’m not at all sure the Dems running to the left with a different candidate do better. This may be a country where white supremacy is more popular than social democracy. I don’t like that, but I don’t get the world I like I get this one.

              The ACA is a great example in that it actually helped actual people, not as much as I’d have liked or in the manner I’d have liked, but it put a bunch of people on Medicaid who weren’t before and put some restrictions on insurance companies. I never saw it as an end, but a step. Getting to Medicare for all isn’t going to be easier after Trump lights everything on fire, it’ll be harder. The idea that you’re telling me what leftist policy is just amuses me.

            • ExpatJK

              We know the Republican policies are evil. Being less evil is not enough. You have to actually have policies that benefit people.

              I’m just going to leave this here. So, being less evil means no benefits. We should just go full bore evil then. Good news, things are happening as desired!

            • Scott Lemieux

              The insurance companies’ version of universal healthcare?

              Insurance companies spent huge amounts of money to try to defeat the ACA, but keep fucking that chicken!

              • Domino

                I’ll give him some help – the Pharma companies were totally for the ACA. Doctors and hospitals really weren’t, due to the Medicare finance changes, but would take it because that money was (supposed to be) offset by new “customers”. Insurance companies by far opposed the law the most.

              • witlesschum

                You fell for that old trick!

                /sarcasm tags obviously needed with some of the people around today.

        • (((Malaclypse)))

          IN any event, I reject the left-right pigeonhole as meaningless in a country dominated by two corporatist parties that both pander to the oligarchy.

          That sentence fills my purity-troll bingo card.

          • N__B

            Your prize is…a Trump presidency.

            • (((Malaclypse)))

              I never said it was a good prize, just that it was the one diva gave us.

              • tsam

                You prize the prizes you have, not the prizes you prize.

              • divadab

                Jesus – now Trump is my fault? I give up…..

                • (((Malaclypse)))

                  You, and anybody stupid enough to think that both parties are somehow the same, yes. Your fault. Own it, cupcake.

        • tsam

          You’re REALLY going with “BOTH PARTIES ARE THE SAME!!”? Seriously? I mean, if that’s your assessment of US politics, then you’re pretty hopeless. That statement is a clear indicator of someone who hasn’t taken the time to actually pay attention and critically analyze anything other than US UNCUT posts on Facebook. The left-right divide is larger now than it has been in decades, and the idea that all us Americans are being manipulated into taking a side in the debate in order to draw attention away from being fleeced by Wall Street is fucking stupid. In fact it’s what every comfy white guy who wants to establish liberal bona fides while expressing dismay at the idea of calling out the right on their bigotry because WHAT ABT WALL STREET YOUR ALL PAWNS IN THE BIG GAME QUIT PLAYING THE RACE CARD.

          • divadab

            never said that. Republican policies are evil; Dem policies less evil. That’s your price point, right? Well, you need to make your policies a bit more “less evil” because it didn’t work this time.

            Dems could have won the Senate and the Presidency with a couple of policies – 1) medicare for all
            2) postal savings bank
            But their sponsors (bribers) would never allow it, so we have the kind of shitty policies like the ACA instead. And then you get dumbass accusations of bigotry – and all that does is lose votes. Try providing something people, not corporate sponsors want for a change.

            • (((Malaclypse)))

              He has a point, guys. Nothing would have brought out the undecideds quite like advocating a postal banking system. There’s no way the press could have ignored that the way they ignored all the progressive policies diva just knows Clinton didn’t really have.

              • tonycpsu

                It’s the pundit’s fallacy all the way down.

                • witlesschum

                  How you can be a leftist in the this country and think your ideas are universally beloved is, well, it’s not been my personal experience.

                • (((Malaclypse)))

                  How you can be a leftist in the this country and think your ideas are universally beloved is, well, it’s not been my personal experience.

                  It makes more sense when you remember that divadab is a well-off white dude, and not an actual leftist at all.

                • FlipYrWhig

                  Srsly. Talk to your neighbors. Keep a tally of how many of them think the problem with the Democratic Party in the era of Obama is that it’s not liberal _enough_. I can live a life where I interact with many more people who think Democrats are too conservative than the reverse, which I do like doing, but it takes a helluva lot of work. In the course of everyday life, being on the receiving end of impromptu anecdotes about black people who use EBT cards even though they have fancy nails VASTLY OUTNUMBER laments about neoliberalism, much less the lost opportunities of postal banking.

                • veleda_k

                  How you can be a leftist in the this country and think your ideas are universally beloved is, well, it’s not been my personal experience.

                  This has been a problem with the American Left since at least the mid-20th century communists, who always seemed to think that the glorious workers’ revolution would happen just as soon as enough people heard their ideas, ignoring that Communism was never popular, even without the red scare.

              • q-tip

                Nothing would have brought out the undecideds quite like advocating a postal banking system.

                I have to admit that I am a little sad I didn’t get to see the debate over this policy proposal. I’m sure KDrum and MattY and the like woulda each devoted at least two blog posts to it. And Trump woulda tweeted some turdish quip about standing in line at the post office that every male local news anchor woulda found hilarious.

            • tsam

              That’s exactly what this says:

              IN any event, I reject the left-right pigeonhole as meaningless in a country dominated by two corporatist parties that both pander to the oligarchy.

              I don’t know where you guys keep getting this crap. Medicare for all is a great idea, but Midwestern senators didn’t share our enthusiasm for the idea. In fact, it logically follows that their vote being contingent on the removal of the public option means they were having exactly none of government health insurance. So we ended up with a big Medicaid expansion, which is miles ahead of what had before. You keep trying to make all the Democrats out to be Holy Joe or Ben Nelson. That’s dumb and I’m pretty sure you actually know better.

              • ExpatJK

                Also, I sincerely do not understand the left wing obsession with Medicare for all. I agree it would be preferable to the ACA. But so would a system of more strongly regulated insurance, which is used in many European countries (Netherlands, Germany, etc). It is just bizarre to me, particularly because the latter is far more achievable in the US (albeit not in the next four years).

                • tsam

                  As far as I’m concerned, if health CARE is available and affordable to EVERYONE, I haven’t even the smallest fuck to give how we get there.

                  I think going to Medicare for all has some merit as an idea because the infrastructure is in place and would just require expansion, which the government could contract insurance corporations to handle and administrate. But that’s certainly not the only way to skin a horse.

                • Jordan

                  The push i’d make for a medicare-for-all type system over some of the common regulated-and-subsidize euro systems for the US is that big, public and universal programs that stick around for a while become pretty politically entrenched as opposed to more segmented/targeted ones that rely on effective continuous regulatory enforcement and more piece-meal funding.

              • efgoldman

                I’m pretty sure you actually know better

                Asserts facts not in evidence, your honor.

        • If the Democratic Party of Diane Feinstein and Bill Clinton is on the left I’m decidedly not on the left.

          Party has to be a big tent by definition. there has to be room for capitalists in the party.

          ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

          • tsam

            Ha!

          • FlipYrWhig

            He didn’t say he’d _belong_ to the big tent party. It should be a big tent party with capitalists and leftists in it, and he’ll be just outside. To find him, follow the sound of whimpering.

            • Hogan

              Or the stream of urine.

          • What keys do you use to get that image, by the way?

        • Scott Lemieux

          “intervening to throw the election to an authoritarian white nationalist”. Assumes facts not in evidence. From a source not known for honesty. But it does provide a convenient excuse for losing the election.

          You were arguing that the Russians intervening to throw the election to Trump wasn’t important even if it was true. I can understand why you don’t want to defend that.

    • (((Malaclypse)))

      You have allowed your party to be taken over by usurers

      Nice dogwhistle.

      • divadab

        Payday lenders – you know, the fine fellows that charge the poorest and most desperate, the unbanked, 435% interest, just had to call the head of the DNC to get legislation changed in their favor.

        Instead of addressing the issue, you choose to insult. Are you therefore in favor of usury? Are you therefore in favor of allowing the usury industry to control your party? Because that’s the current situation and that you think its aok shouts volumes.

        • FlipYrWhig

          When the legislation was _not_ changed in their favor, did that lead you to change your mind about who controls what? Did you notice that part of the story?

          Moving Left, Debbie Wasserman Schultz Drops Opposition to Payday Loan Regulations (Newsweek, 6/3/16)

          • Jay B

            No. Diva goes with his gut. Facts don’t matter.

            • (((Malaclypse)))

              He just knows he doesn’t like usurers. I’m the real anti-semite for pointing the dogwhistle out.

              • divadab

                Usury is still legal in this country. WHat have the Dems done about that? I suppose wanting legislation to limit interest rates to 24% is anti-semitic somehow?

                Dang it must be tough to go through life thinking everyone who criticises usurers is an anti-semite. Get help.

                • witlesschum

                  “The CFPB’s proposed rule presents a staggering blow to consumers as it will cut off access to credit for millions of Americans who use small-dollar loans to manage a budget shortfall or unexpected expense,” says Dennis Shaul, CEO of the payday lending industry group, the Community Financial Services Association.

                  According to the garbage payday lenders garbage spokesgarbage, too much. According to me, too little and too late.

                  I could be wrong, but I bet nobody’s going to think I was talking about the Jews because I didn’t use any arcane terms associated with antisemitism in a time a rising fascism.

                • Moving the Goalposts: A Play in One Scene

                  divadab: You have allowed your party to be taken over by usurers

                  Malaclypse:: Nice dogwhistle.

                  divadab: Payday lenders – you know, the fine fellows that charge the poorest and most desperate, the unbanked, 435% interest, just had to call the head of the DNC to get legislation changed in their favor.

                  FlipYrWhig: When the legislation was _not_ changed in their favor, did that lead you to change your mind about who controls what? Did you notice that part of the story?

                  divadab: Usury is still legal in this country. WHat have the Dems done about that?

        • Taters

          Y

          ou have allowed your party to be taken over by usurers and grifters…

          I stopped reading after that. We all know that Trump is the true, pure, non-grifting working class hero who only has the good of the little guy at heart.
          How can anyone take you seriously when you say this?

      • Origami Isopod

        You noticed that too, huh?

    • Origami Isopod

      Well, thank you for finally revealing yourself as a troll, I guess. Not like you didn’t drop clues along the way.

      • divadab

        I prefer catalyst. You fucking people need help. Now I’m stuck with a carny of a President. The best fucking carny in the world, mind you, man can he call in the rubes, but a carny all the same.

        • Origami Isopod

          You “abandoned the Democrats in 2004,” so you didn’t do shit to keep Trump out of the White House, either. I bet you didn’t even vote for Clinton.

          • divadab

            Clinton won my State and I voted third party. I was one of three who set up a Democratic PArty club in the (right wing) central valley in 2004. We signed up over 1500 voters. Then I figured out what it was about in the Dem party. Now I’m an independent.

            • (((Malaclypse)))

              Clinton won my State and I voted third party.

              So, you relied on other people voting in a reasonable manner while you wanted to vote ineffectually. You are completely worthless, and not part of any actual leftist coalition.

              I thought you would want to know.

            • FlipYrWhig

              See, in state government, the Democratic Party circa 2004 had people like Gary Locke, Mike Easley, Brad Henry, and Ed Rendell. O where o where did that party go? Somehow they started to become “neoliberal”!

            • Origami Isopod

              Clinton won my State and I voted third party.

              So you’re free-riding scum, like an anti-vaxxer relying on herd immunity.

        • phrenological

          “You fucking people need help.”

          Concern troll to the rescue!

          Smug, solution-free snark will save the day.

          • divadab

            1) Medicare for All
            2) POstal Savings bank

            With just these 2 policies, the Dems coulda won. But neither is acceptable to the corporate bribers who control the party.

            You fucking people do need help. And you don’t even recognize it when you get it.

            • tsam

              We do need help. We’ve been asking people like you for help for years and getting sanctimonious bullshit in response.

            • dr. fancypants

              With just these 2 policies, the Dems coulda won.

              Of course! If only the Democrats would have advocated for postal banking, the press would have turned their attention away from Trump’s antics and reported on policy! Nothing stirs up populist sentiment in this country quite like advocating for postal banking.

            • “You people” is a phrase with a particular resonance, for sure, especially when it is coupled with accusations of ingratitude to the Benefactor currently speaking. But let’s move right along to the substance: you claim that with just two policies (Medicare for All, POstal Savings bank), the Dems “coulda won”.

              First of all, what are you actually saying? The Dems “coulda” won with the $15 minimum and all the other progressive planks that were in the actual platform. They didn’t, but they could have. Are you claiming that those two policies would have given them a slightly better chance, or that it would have made victory a dead cert? Either way, you provide no evidence to support this claim.

              So I think the particular brand of “help” you are offering is considerably less than helpful.

            • efgoldman

              I’m married to an operatic soprano. Believe me, I know divas.
              You don’t even do that well.

            • efgoldman

              1) Medicare for All
              2) POstal Savings bank

              Like most of you young, white, privileged Berniebots, you have no fucking idea how politics works.
              There are these things called “laws.” They are created in a place called “congress.” They are decided upon, and crafted, by things called “votes.” Whoever gets the most votes in each “house” of “congress” gets to write the law. Simple arithmetic.
              THERE WERE NOT ENOUGH VOTES FOR EITHER OF THOSE “IDEAS” TO BECOME “LAWS” YOU IGNORANT DIPSHIT.

            • Origami Isopod

              Bernouts aren’t offering “help.” They’re offering out-of-their-asshole suggestions that may or may not have any bearing on reality.

              If you aren’t doing GOTV or phonebanking, if you’re not contacting your representatives regularly and putting pressure on them, you’re not doing shit.

    • tsam

      What’s this you’ve said to me, my good friend? Ill have you know I graduated top of my class in conflict resolution, and Ive been involved in numerous friendly discussions, and I have over 300 confirmed friends. I am trained in polite discussions and I’m the top mediator in the entire neighborhood. You are worth more to me than just another target. I hope we will come to have a friendship never before seen on this Earth. Don’t you think you might be hurting someone’s feelings saying that over the internet? Think about it, my friend. As we speak I am contacting my good friends across the USA and your P.O. box is being traced right now so you better prepare for the greeting cards, friend. The greeting cards that help you with your hate. You should look forward to it, friend. I can be anywhere, anytime for you, and I can calm you in over seven hundred ways, and that’s just with my chess set. Not only am I extensively trained in conflict resolution, but I have access to the entire group of my friends and I will use them to their full extent to start our new friendship. If only you could have known what kindness and love your little comment was about to bring you, maybe you would have reached out sooner. But you couldn’t, you didn’t, and now we get to start a new friendship, you unique person. I will give you gifts and you might have a hard time keeping up. You’re finally living, friend.

      • ExpatJK

        haha, this is definitely a worthy contribution of copy/pasta. Although the military one is still #1 in my view.

        • Origami Isopod

          The original Navy SEALS copypasta is funny but it’s way overdone.

          • N__B

            The pirate version makes me giggle in an unseemly manner.

            • tsam

              Me too. It’s definitely the best one.

        • tsam

          It’s my favorite too, but this one made me laugh, so I’ve been carrying it in my pocket for just such an occasion…

          • ExpatJK

            Oh, it was perfect for this occasion. Hat doffed.

          • efgoldman

            I’ve been carrying it in my pocket for just such an occasion…

            How do you copy/paste out of your pocket?

            • tsam

              Trade secret!

      • divadab

        Good one! Although I prefer active to passive aggression, being something of a simpleton.

        • tsam

          I don’t even know how to respond to this, since you’ve been refuted with facts about 10 times already and you’re standing behind your specious little rant. So there’s some copypasta, which I feel is responding to your post in kind.

          • divadab

            some facts here and there but a lot of insult. (I’m an anti-semite, apparently, and a white nationalist Trump jock-sniffer.) Thought I’d weigh in and stir things up a bit. Glad to see the denizens still are here but sorry to see still delusional and resistant to accepting the patently obvious reasons why their party is in the dumps.

            Just remember – no party that championed the ACA and suppressed any discussion of medicare for all (single payer) is NOT a left ist party. Bought and paid for corporatists, rather. Change that, and win! Sanders showed you the fucking roadmap.

            • tonycpsu

              suppressed any discussion of medicare for all

              Citation fucking needed.

            • (((Malaclypse)))

              Sanders showed you the fucking roadmap.

              And then you refused to listen to him, and voted for the anti-vax kook who pretends to be a leftist.

            • witlesschum

              Obama showed Sanders a road map for beating Hillary Clinton in the Democratic primary and Sanders made no serious attempts to follow it. Lots of people fucked up to get us where we are.

              Postal banking and single payer are great ideas in my opinion, but the evidence they’re popular outside of people like me is ????????????????

              • dr. fancypants

                When you’re a narcissist like divadab, the things you care about are obviously the things everyone cares about.

                • humanoid.panda

                  There might be an argument that Medicare for all could be used as a central theme for a campaign. But postal banking??

                  Like I think that regional infrastracture banks are a great idea and could serve as a really good counter-cyclical device. But I don’t go around screaming that they are the key for Democrats winning the House anytime soon.

                • econoclast

                  Right? I think postal banking is great idea on the merits, but how many votes would it gain? 6, maybe 7, nationwide?

                • tonycpsu

                  Gotta go after all of those single-issue postal banking voters!

    • The Great God Pan

      You have allowed your party to be taken over by usurers and grifters, to insult and ignore and sell out the working class,

      Hey, it works for the Republicans.

      BTW, do these “usurers” you speak of have any particular kind of nose shape?

      • phrenological

        He’s just talking about “international bankers”, surely.

        • (((Malaclypse)))

          Rootless cosmopolitans, I think.

          • LeeEsq

            I’m a root beer cosmopolitan myself.

      • divadab

        That putative democrats would insult a critic of usury in the most crass and gross manner speaks volumes. You are effectively defending scum who charge the poorest and most desperate over 400% interest rates.

        Are there any principles in the Dem party or is it just about taking money from whoever gives it and making policies that work for them? Oh ya – and then insulting anyone who criticizes as an anti-semite.

        Just fucking disgraceful.

        • That putative democrats would insult a critic of usury in the most crass and gross manner speaks volumes.

          Have we called you a turkey buggerer? ‘Cause word on the street says you fuck turkeys.

          Word on the streets also says the turkeys are less than satisfied with your performance.

          • efgoldman

            ‘Cause word on the street says you fuck turkeys.

            Turkeys? Bullshit. I heard goats.

            • Origami Isopod

              It would be irresponsible not to speculate.

        • (((Malaclypse)))

          That putative democrats would insult a critic of usury

          On the vanishingly small chance that you write this in good faith – the word is an anti-semitic dog whistle. The second you use it, you fall into Trotsky’s “anti-semitism is socialism for the stupid” camp.

          • Hogan

            The well-known saying “Anti-Semitism is the socialism of fools” (“Der Antisemitismus ist der Sozialismus der dummen Kerle”) is frequently attributed to [August] Bebel, but probably originated with the Austrian democrat Ferdinand Kronawetter; it was in general use among German Social Democrats by the 1890s.

            • (((Malaclypse)))

              Well dammit. Doesn’t change the fact of the dogwhistle though.

              • Hogan

                No it doesn’t, nor does it change the applicability of the quote here.

              • Origami Isopod

                Like I said, I’ve seen her around here before. I do not recall her having used antisemitic language. My impression is that, like pretty much all leftier-than-thou types, she isn’t interested in knowing that she might be unwittingly issuing a dogwhistle, because communication is a one-way street with her.

                So, not intentional antisemitism, but no pass on it.

    • brad

      Please, white man, save us.

    • JMP

      Grow up.

    • econoclast

      What’s the point in arguing with someone like divadab? He’s an obvious psychopath who is cheering on the Republicans while they destroy the welfare state, just because it teaches the Democrats a lesson. “The people” are going to lose everything they’ve built up since the New Deal, and he doesn’t care because he doesn’t care about policy. He cares about his cheesy little morality play.

    • You losing Dems are so hilarious

      Well, I’m glad you at least are getting a kick out of the situation we’re all in. The world may be doomed, but at least divadub here gets to laugh smugly at those who annoy him.

      thrashing around trying to find someone to blame for your rout when a look in the mirror is indicated

      An election result in which Clinton won the popular vote by 2% and 3 million votes doesn’t exactly fit my everyday definition of “rout”, but no doubt divadab is using some specialized definition that I’m unfamiliar with.

      Most importantly, this is just another tired variation on the argument GhostShip and others have been using here, which is, never mind if X is true or not, I say it isn’t because….shhhh, don’t talk about x when you should be talking about y.. That is utterly spurious logic. Even if it were true that the Democrats sold out blah blah blah and would have done better had they been truer to divalab’s principles (whatever those are), it would not follow that the allegations of Russian hacking are either untrue or irrelevant. This is a complete red herring on divadab’s part.

      Finally, the really ironic thing is that divadab claims to have such insight and wisdom on what wins over American voters, but I’m not sure what this chap’s track record is of actually convincing other people to support his preferred policies is. Probably not high at all if this is typical of his persuasive tactics. But note how scornful he is of the Democrats, a party “he abandoned in 2004” for failing to do his job for him. It seems to me that those who want to promote leftist solutions to our problems should be doing that, not lambasting more centrist liberals for failing to do it for him. If he actually wanted the Democrats to move to the left, what has he actually done to make that happen? Nothing save sulking, as far as I can tell.

      • efgoldman

        Nothing save sulking, as far as I can tell.

        Well, he posted on a blog, didn’t he?

      • Taters

        As far as I can tell, dd voted for Stein who I assume shared his perfect pony platform and… she didn’t win. In fact, she was usually listed a s “other” below that libertarian guy. Ergo, the platform dd supports is not a “winning” platform. He voted his conscience such as it is. I don’t see why he should be griefing Democrats about his choices.

        • Yeah, talk about a “rout”- Stein got, what, 1% of the vote and no EC votes at all.

  • fleekon

    Greenwald’s world: official, unusually clear statements by the 17 assembled intelligence services, laying out something even along the way Greenwald himself admits changes US posture toward Russia somewhat radically–are “conspiracy theory,” but calling the CIA etc findings “conspiracy theory” simply because they appear to resemble something else from the past–that is, they accuse Russia of doing anything negative–iis being objective. Remember the Cold War, when “conspiracy theory” meant saying anything that came out of US govt was a CIA-sponsored lie? Or when the US President-elect didn’t have a weird litany of commercial and political alignments with the Russian leader? Or when the Russian leader didn’t respond to US sanctions by saying “we’re doing nothing pending the next President taking office”? Or when progressive activists didn’t approvingly appear on Fox News? Or when progressive activists had an alternative explanation for things and not just “it’s conspiracy theory” so no explanation is needed? Does Greenwald even believe the WikiLeaks memos he routinely misinterpreted actually exist, and if so, how and why are the 17 intelligence agencies, including the Democrat-hostile FBI, going along with the story that Russian hacking is how they were obtained? And why is nobody at FBI leaking the “real” story of how the material was obtained? Why isn’t Greenwald giving us the real, much-more-credible story of how the emails were obtained–like the dead DNC staffer WikiLeaks falsely hinted was murdered by the DNC for providing access? Does Greenwald actually believe all 17 intelligence agencies are secretly working together to concoct a false story just to–what, make Trump look bad? and that’s not a conspiracy theory.

    • divadab

      No “17 intelligence agencies” signed on to the Russian hacking allegations – at least not in evidence – your screed is based on facts not in evidence as no intelligence has been released, only carefully parsed speculation. Perhaps the evidence exists, but it has not been made public – essentially you are putting blind trust in a government that lies as a matter of habit.

      Instead of believing this incredibly obvious diversion, you might try a bit of skepticism. But that might force some self-examination on why it is that the Dem party sold out it base and lost power. Here’s a hint – it wasn’t the Russians that did that.

      • FlipYrWhig

        I’m with you! In 2016, the Democrats ran Evan Bayh for a Senate seat. What a betrayal! They should have run the kind of strong candidate who could win even in a Republican wave year like 2004.

      • fleekon

        “at least not in evidence,” meaning that you think the 17 intelligence agencies are credible if and only if they release raw intelligence publicly? Which they have done when in the past? and what are you going to say when they release the official evidence report in a few weeks, carefully scrubbed of sources and methods they obviously can’t reveal? Why do I suspect I already know the answer will be that it too is “no evidence” or “not enough evidence”? In fact, the comments made by the DNI etc are already unusually detailed for a matter like this.

        Your comments, like Greenwald’s, don’t even rise to the level of conspiracy theory, while using that word as a get out of jail free card. Of course you should be skeptical about what the government says. But skepticism should also impel you to have some kind of plausible answers to these questions:

        1) WHY are the 17 IC agencies choosing to come together to lie about this, including agencies that have overtly acted against the Dems in the recent past?
        2) What is a reasonable alternative explanation for how the emails were obtained?
        3) Why is the IC, FBI, etc., refusing to go after the “real” perpetrator?
        4) How do we explain the many other, separate from this entirely, overt, public, repeated, pro-Russia, pro-Putin statements that Trump has made and continues to make, while maintaining that there is nothing at all odd about the relationship between Trump and Putin? Such as Trump operatives intervening to take the Crimea position off of the RNC platform, & then lying about it, and getting caught doing so?

        • divadab

          You are doubling down on the fantasy – 17 agencies did not endorse this finding – the FBI, for example, does not support it. And – who cares how the emails were obtained? They show the machinery of a corrupt party that rigged its own process, even cheated in the debates, to anoint its preferred (terrible) candidate. They would rather lose with Clinton than win with Sanders.

          I’d rather the President be on speaking terms with the Russian President than throwing accusations and shit for purely domestic political reasons, which is what the losing Dem candidate and Party are doing IMHO. SO irresponsible. SO wrong. SO fucking useless. And now we have Trump when we could have had Sanders.

          • brad

            I'll bet they even were the ones behind Wellstone's plane crashing. Just so he couldn't run in 04.

            • efgoldman

              The problem with all major conspiracy theories is, they require literally thousands of people to be in on them and keep the secrets.
              Methinks yon divadab has read too many Robert Ludlum books and thinks they’re actually history.

              Oh he’s also sure that Saint Bernie, who couldn’t explain even an outline of how to accomplish his signature issue, and who was going to somehow green lantern a way to get congress to do his bidding, actually would have won.

              Talk about facts not in evidence.

          • Russian hacking can’t melt steal beams!!!!!!!

            • Domino

              I laughed really hard at this one.

            • efgoldman

              Russian hacking can’t melt steal beams!!!!!!!

              Can it leap tall buildings in a single bound?

          • Jay B

            Your beloved FBI did, in fact, sign on to the finding that the Russians hacked the election for the GOP. Here, in fact, just yesterday, they released a report about it.

            Seriously. Are you lying or are you clueless? You are wrong about “usury”, you are wrong about the FBI, the only thing I’m wondering is why.

            • Hogan

              That can’t be right. The FBI hates Clinton just as much as divadab does!

            • divadab

              Did you actually read the report? They concluded no such thing. They only concluded that POlitical PArty data had been compromised and likely released to the press.

              That’s it. The rest of your assertions are your own, and unsupported by the evidence, of which very little has been disclosed.

              You should really answer your own question – are you lying or clueless? Because you, for probabaly emotional reasons, are presenting as fact something not in the report you cite.

              And “usury” is still legal in this country – what have the Dems done about that, or about the Carried interest loophole? Goose egg

              • Scott Lemieux

                Did you actually read the report? They concluded no such thing. They only concluded that POlitical PArty data had been compromised and likely released to the press.

                That sound you hear is the goalposts entering the orbit of Saturn.

      • Dr. Ronnie James, DO

        From that noted liberal rag, USA Today (actual headline: “Yes, 17 intelligence agencies really did say Russia was behind hacking”):

        “But Clinton is correct. On Oct. 7, the Department of Homeland Security and Office of the Director of National Intelligence issued a joint statement on behalf of the U.S. Intelligence Community. The USIC is made up of 16 agencies, in addition to the Office of the Director of National Intelligence.”

        Direct quote:
        “The U.S. Intelligence Community (USIC) is confident that the Russian Government directed the recent compromises of e-mails from US persons and institutions, including from US political organizations. The recent disclosures of alleged hacked e-mails on sites like DCLeaks.com and WikiLeaks and by the Guccifer 2.0 online persona are consistent with the methods and motivations of Russian-directed efforts. These thefts and disclosures are intended to interfere with the US election process. Such activity is not new to Moscow—the Russians have used similar tactics and techniques across Europe and Eurasia, for example, to influence public opinion there. We believe, based on the scope and sensitivity of these efforts, that only Russia’s senior-most officials could have authorized these activities.”

        Or you can go right to Politifact:
        http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2016/oct/19/hillary-clinton/hillary-clinton-blames-russia-putin-wikileaks-rele/

        • divadab

          Again, the USAtoday article makes conclusions well beyond what is in the report. There is no evidence to support the bald assertion “These thefts and disclosures are intended to interfere with the US ELection process”. Unless you consider getting intelligence to be “interfering”.

          • ColBatGuano

            Yell “lalalalalalalalla” louder.

      • L2P

        Just FYI, people saying things are true is, indeed evidence. In fact, it’s often the only evidence we have!

        I’ve won many trials on stuff a lot less speculative than this.

    • ExpatJK

      Well, I think the hard part is that the past CAN give one reason to doubt intelligence findings. The runup to the Iraq War is a good example of this. Now, I am not saying the agencies are necessarily doing the same thing, but I can understand why someone would doubt the veracity of their claims.

      The Trump/Putin bromance is weird, although progressives are not covering themselves in glory when they try to claim Trump is Putin’s poodle, or a secret Russian mole, or whatever. I think it’s more likely that Trump enjoys the ego boosting of Putin’s praise, they have similar views as oligarchic/wannabe oligarchic types, etc.

      • brad

        As has been frequently mentioned when Trump tried the same false equivalence, it was Cheney’s stovepiping and the heads of a few agencies going along that was wrong about WMDs, not the actual intelligence gathered by the agencies.
        When your only response is “lol, CIA”, you don’t have a response.

        • ExpatJK

          Right, I get that, but I am saying that given past issues (regardless of Cheney’s role, the WMD stuff was presented as the results of intelligence agency work, which hurt the names of those agencies) I can understand why someone would not automatically think “intelligence agency statement”=”something I should believe.” I am not saying I personally think this, just that I get where the sentiment is coming from.

          Additionally, the claims of Trump as mole/poodle come across as silly, and don’t help the progressive cause in my view.

          • humanoid.panda

            Additionally, the claims of Trump as mole/poodle come across as silly, and don’t help the progressive cause in my view.

            This is a really hard balance to strike. On the one hand, I’ve seen stuff like the KGB recruited Trump in 1987 when he visited the USSR circulate, which is Glenn Beck level nuts. On the other hand, hard to deny that the Trump camp has real connections to Russia across the board.

            • ExpatJK

              On the one hand, I’ve seen stuff like the KGB recruited Trump in 1987 when he visited the USSR circulate, which is Glenn Beck level nuts.

              I agree. I used to read a lot of Sarah Kendzior, but I couldn’t keep it up when I started reading that sort of stuff from her.

              The connections to Russia are certainly real. I was almost surprised by how quickly many in the GOP, which was a fairly anti-Russia party, were OK with it. On the other hand, given Putin’s anti-LGBT stances and decidedly non-Communist attitudes, it kind of makes sense.

              • humanoid.panda

                I can’t decide if Kendzior is a lunatic, or if she wants a slice of the emerging paranoid conspiracy theory of the left market..

                • ExpatJK

                  Both perhaps? Although her work in other areas is solid, so maybe it’s option 2.

              • J. Otto Pohl

                Ouch! I haven’t read her in a while until I saw this comment. I thought Kendzior’s early stuff on Uzbekistan and Central Asian studies was really good. I had not realized she had gone Alex Jones. That happened to another promising scholar dealing with the Caucasus. Irma Kreiten had done some really good work on Circassians in the 19th C. before she brought wholesale into the fantasy conspiracy world of the Turkish Far Left.

                • ExpatJK

                  Yeah, it was disappointing because she is a good writer in so many other ways. But this was just over the top.

              • brad

                I just looked at twitter and saw this

                I never said Trump was a KGB agent, counter to what news is reporting. Said he was influenced, probably compromised, should investigate.

                There does seem to be a bit of a Chicken Little aspect to her work, but she’s not quite the extreme figure that she seems to be coming to be defined as.

                eta: She has further tweets since directly debunking reporting about this supposed claim by her.

                • humanoid.panda

                  What she did was to tweet copies of a Larouchite pamphlet about KGB being groomed by Kremlin in 1987, and saying “isn’t it interesting?” In my book that’s unforgiveable, especially for someone who used to do a solid academic work. And now, she is performing the “just asking questions” shtick.

                • brad

                  Alright. I’m not saying I take her as an unbiased or trustworthy source, by any means.

              • efgoldman

                I was almost surprised by how quickly many in the GOP, which was a fairly anti-Russia party, were OK with it.

                Republiklowns always, always follow the leader.

          • brad

            Taking it as a given may be overblown, but the simple fact that he acts like a stooge and refuses to do anything that could prove he isn’t one, like the release of tax returns demonstrating that theories of his being propped up by Russian money aren’t true, is kinda a serious issue when we’re talking about the President-Elect. It’s not silly, it’s pointing to an abundance of smoke and mentioning there might just be a fire.

            • humanoid.panda

              This is a question for accountants and lawyers, but would his personal tax returns prove or disprove anything re: Russian money?

              • Hogan

                Almost certainly not.

      • petesh

        The past gives us reasons to doubt political interpretations of intelligence findings, which is by no means the same thing. The run up to the Iraq War is indeed an excellent example — all nuance and qualification was stripped out of the reports and the edits were presented as the CIA view. The Pentagon Papers revealed much the same. Now, the operations department (the trick-cigar rubbish and the like), that were dumb; but the intelligence-gathering, not so much.

        • ExpatJK

          The past gives us reasons to doubt political interpretations of intelligence findings, which is by no means the same thing.

          Yes, this is what I was getting at. But I think that kind of nuance is probably hard to get for many people, particularly when you have very clearly expressed political divisions around those findings. Eg Trump and many in the GOP vs the Dems. This makes it look like a political interpretation and can sow further doubt. (I don’t think it actually is, but I am talking about perception and how that influences belief for people).

    • phrenological

      “official, unusually clear statements by the 17 assembled intelligence services”

      Possibly because there’s unusually clear evidence.

      But no, that is impossible.

    • econoclast

      What I don’t get is this: what’s the intelligence community’s angle, here? What’s in it for the CIA to do this? It’s usually the Democrats who restrain the CIA, and the Republicans who unleash it, so it’s not anti-Republican bias. The US has lots of genuine threats, so there’s no need to drum up a new one. Plus you’re picking a fight with the Republican President-elect. The most parsimonious explanation is that the Russian hacking story is actually true.

      • humanoid.panda

        Even leaving aside the historical affinity of the IC and the GOP, and the president-elect thing (the charges were levied before the election), there is the simple reality that the GOP controls both houses of Congress, and the relevant committees, and the purse strings. There was never any incentive for the IC to blame Russia for the hacks- unless those hacks were perpetrated by Russia.

  • tsam

    “One of the really interesting things is, in 2012, when Mitt Romney ran against Barack Obama, the Democrats mocked Romney mercilessly for depicting Russia as the number one geopolitical threat […]

    I’LL TAKE NON-SEQUITURS FOR 1000, ALEXSH!

    • humanoid.panda

      It’s especially funny because “Russia had interfered in our elections” and “Russia is not our number 1 geopolitical threat” are not mutually exlusive statements. Putin has an adversarial stance towards the liberal world order, and is very good at asymmetric warfare. That makes him dangerous, but in the long term, the two top geopolitical threats to the US are how to accomodate the rise of China, and how to manage the implications of climate change.

      • tsam

        Funny thing about guys like Greenwald–your cue to run like hell appears here:

        “One of the really interesting things is

        That’s, um…not interesting, chief.

      • witlesschum

        Well said.

        Also not mutually exclusive, before Doug Henwood* shows up, are “I realize and do not like how the U.S. has behaved badly in the past by interfering in other country’s elections” and “I do not like how Russia behaved badly by interfering in the U.S. election.”

        *Henwood he probably won’t show up and start commenting like a parody of himself at LGM unlike certain Glenn Greenwalds I could name.

      • It’s a lawyer’s way of arguing. Throw out a bunch of absolute statements and let the judge sort them out.

        Anyone can do it. “One of the really interesting things is that Greenwald takes something like Corey Robin’s criticism of “politics of fear” and takes it so far as to discredit it.” OK, interesting suggestion, but so what?

        Plus, everyone knows the solution to China is to do lots of business with them so they become respectable Christian businessmen like us.

        • Origami Isopod

          It’s a lawyer’s way of arguing. Throw out a bunch of absolute statements and let the judge sort them out.

          So, a cousin to the Gish Gallop. “Proof by verbosity” certainly describes Greenwald’s modus arguendi.

      • My recollection was that Romney was mocked because one of his chief military advisers referred to the “Soviets” in the present tense, and because he advocated for a massive military buildup to counter Russia.

        • tsam

          That and Syria was falling apart and ISIS was rising, also North Korea, Iran…

          The idea that Russia (let alone the defunct USSR) was the biggest geopolitical threat in the world was pretty silly. It sure looked like a lack of understanding of the complications of foreign policy.

  • The Great God Pan

    I am shocked to learn that the lawyer who spent years representing neo-Nazi leader Matt Hale pro bono (*) has nice things to say about Breitbart.

    Dave Emory’s kooky theory that Greenwald is a right-wing mole on a mission to

    alienate younger and more idealistic voters from Obama [Democrats] in order to permit the GOP to grab the White House and both houses of Congress

    is looking less kooky than ever.

    (*) No, these were not ACLU/Skokie type situations.

    • What mole? He’s a libertarian. He uses the rhetoric of idealism to criticize the party in power and paint them as too immoral to abide. He criticized GWB just enough to make it seem like he was in the center. Now it looks like he’s actually even farther to the right than that. Either that or he’s such a radical or nihilist that he’s convinced Russia and Putin are just rational exercisers of easily justifiable, legitimate power. (Against the “liberal” bogeyman that’s simply what every under-50 centrist knows is the enemy these days.)

      • The Great God Pan

        I’ve never seen him admit to being a libertarian. I’ve seen him get quite irate when he’s been accused of being one, though. He pretty clearly wants to be viewed as being somewhere on the Left and is, in fact, viewed that way by a lot of people on the Left.

        • That article is very clear!

          His only real political concern is to challenge the power of the state. That makes him essentially libertarian, in my view. He accepts the legitimacy of the state’s exercise of power in various traditional (both conservative and liberal) ways, which makes him not an anarchist. But anyone who challenges the state is someone he wants to align himself with, and those people are mostly libertarians. Some “Rawlsian” leftists, I guess, these days–we’ll have to wait and see who they turn out to be. Some people on the left who have enough power or privilege to have a voice loud enough that they’re impossible to ignore. But he’s not going out and looking for traditionally left groups to defend. He’s waiting for them to agree to latch onto his own reflexive anti-state shtick.

          • L2P

            The “power of the state” means vastly different things, though. A vast number of people believer that the “power of the state” INCLUDES the use of economic and social power, which in the end exist only because of the “power of the state.” Those are “libertarians,” in that they believe in the maximization of personal liberty and don’t draw arbitrary distinctions between the direct use of government power and the indirect use of government power.

            Greenwald is much more like a properterian, in that the only guiding principle seems to be “this is the sort of government that seems good to Greenwald.” For propertarians, it’s a government that protects radical versions of property rights. For Greenwald, it’s a government that imposes no restrictions on free association and speech, but any sort of restriction on economic activity is apparently OK.

            Whatever he is, he’s not a “libertarian.”

    • Dr. Acula

      Dave Emory? He’s still around? I hadn’t seen that name in years.

  • Slothrop2

    OMG – the Russians are, like, so powerful. We never run interference in Russian elections.

    I suppose the repetition of this meme is mollifying, for some. On the other hand, much easier to say that HRC completely sucked, and if you voted for her in the primaries, you also completely suck.

    • Origami Isopod

      You promised us you were going to do yourself in. Everyone gave you helpful tips, even. Is this how you show your gratitude, by continuing to exist and to annoy us?

      • What, did he really? I would’ve loved to offer my own suggestions. Or even volunteer to help skin the corpse…

        • Origami Isopod
          • tsam

            That was Ghostship, the other ignorant narcissist. This one is even worse.

            • Origami Isopod

              Shit. I have to admit I have trouble telling them apart.

              • Kathleen

                Seriously. Has anyone ever seen them in the same comments section at the same time?

      • efgoldman

        You promised us you were going to do yourself in.

        I thought that was Ghostshit, but either would be fine.

    • brad

      You voted for her.

    • humanoid.panda

      OMG – the Russians are, like, so powerful.

      This line annoys me so much. Sure, if liberals were claiming that Trump is a Russian agent (and some do!) that would be silly, as would a claim that Putin changed the voter tally, or that he helped Trump in the primary or that he is blackmailing Ryan to keep him in line with Trump. However, the claim people make is very simple: Russia hacked the DNC and Podesta, and then released the information. For fuck’s sake, that action doesn’t require any super-human capacities, and the Kremlin is not even denying it all that hard.

      • divadab

        right and all the hot air about “the Russians ate my homework!” serves to distract from the interesting things IN the emails. Like the DNC rigging the primaries for their candidate. Like DOnna Brazile cheating and getting debate questions to her candidate.

        That kind of shitty stuff.

        ANd it helps to focus attention away from the parties guilty of running the shittiest campaign in history and losing to Donald Fucking Trump.

        • Hogan

          Like the DNC rigging the primaries for their candidate.

          Mm hmm.

          You know what? I have a ball. Perhaps you’d like to bounce it.

          • efgoldman

            I have a ball. Perhaps you’d like to bounce it.

            He’s already taken it and gone home.

        • Scott Lemieux

          serves to distract from the interesting things IN the emails.

          You would have to be the most egregious country-fried naif to find anything in those emails interesting.

          But, sure, Donna Brazile letting Hillary Clinton know about a transparently obvious debate question was totally worth at least 3 million votes for Clinton.

          • humanoid.panda

            What’s especially cute is that at the time Donna Brazile was not the DNC chairwoman.

            • Hogan

              It makes sense if you think of “the DNC” as a synecdoche for “every Democrat I hate,” which is becoming the standard usage on The Leff.

          • efgoldman

            You would have to be the most egregious country-fried naif to find anything in those emails interesting.

            I dunno’. I really like risotto.

            • tsam

              DAMMIT NOW IM HUNGRY

    • witlesschum

      You’re wrong. I completely suck and I have cast only one single solitary vote for Hillary Clinton ever.

    • EliHawk

      Yeah, political consultants having overseas clients is totally the same thing as a covert operation that explicitly steals documents and targets a specific political party for a mass disinformation campaign. That time Axelrod and Messina worked for the Labour and Tory parties, respectively, in 2015, was just the US being unable to figure out which side to run interference for. Troll. Funny that someone leftier than thou is linking to anarcho-capitalists (who like Russia now, for one reason) though.

    • veleda_k

      On the other hand, much easier to say that HRC completely sucked, and if you voted for her in the primaries, you also completely suck.

      Indeed, much easier. And there will always be people who do whatever’s easiest.

    • phrenological

      “On the other hand, much easier to say that HRC completely sucked, and if you voted for her in the primaries, you also completely suck.”

      Purity pledges don’t win elections.

    • econoclast

      If only we had allowed the Communists to come back into power in Russia in the 90s. Nothing bad ever resulted from the Communist Party ruling Russia.

    • Exactly how the claim that the US interfered in Russian elections disproves the claim that Russia interfered in the last U.S. election is unclear.

      much easier to say that HRC completely sucked, and if you voted for her in the primaries, you also completely suck.

      Speak for yourself, Slothrop2. I know it’s much easier for you to do that than to actually address any of the other issues and implications of this election, but most of us do have to live our lives outside of the bubble you appear to inhabit.

  • burnspbesq

    Oooh! Somkin’ hot charlatan-on-charlatan action!

    We have petabytes of this stuff on our secure servers.

    Subscribe for only $7.99 per month.

    • petesh

      First month free?

      • Better than that! We pay you for the first month, in easily-redeemable coupons for Free Thumb Drives Loaded With Secret Tips That THEY Don’t Want You To Have! (postage and handling not included; USB-3 port optional; for best performance, unload any so-called “anti-virus” software that The Man has infected your computer with in order to keep tabs on you).

  • Yankee

    Glenn also thinks The Guardian has been horribly, horribly unfair to Dear Julian. https://theintercept.com/2016/12/29/the-guardians-summary-of-julian-assanges-interview-went-viral-and-was-completely-false/ (He doesn’t bring up the consent issues.)

    The lead is “false news” (later usage is the plebeian “fake”), which is quickly become the favored mud to sling, merely pejorative. It has been remarkable how the recent political process reduces any opinion to slingable mud. Likewise “people who are otherwise excluded” is pure PC stuff. And yes, child molesters are indeed an excluded group. For perfectly good and acceptable reasons, but it isn’t at all obvious how to make the necessary distinction in a principled way. Except ye shall love one another.

    • petesh

      Hmpf. I guess the Guardian isn’t paying Greenwald any more. Instead, they have learned from him and are doing to Assange exactly what Greenwald does to his bête noire du jour. How entertaining!

  • Jay B

    It really is amazing and shocking why they are handwaving it all away. I can only assume that Greenwald is bought off by Russia Today, it’s the only thing that really makes sense. I mean, I guess he could be doing it for free too, but it makes even less sense. It’s utterly unremarkable to mistrust the US Intelligence community. I get that. But to give Putin the benefit of the doubt? Why, I’m old enough to remember when Greenwald used to call out regimes that assassinated or imprisoned journalists! You know, regimes like Putin’s.

    Or sure, if you, like Glenn, think that killing and imprisoning journalists is just water under the bridge, you could actually read one of several hundred stories about how Putin has committed a considerable amount of resources to undermine the NATO alliance by supporting party/causes like the UKIP, the Le Pens, the Populist Party in Austria — here’s a look at it from 2015 from the Economisthere’s one from the Guardian about a little tell from the UKIP.

    We also know, without ANY CONSPIRACY AT ALL about how several members of Trump’s campaign team have deep and significant ties to Putin and his oligarch allies. Plus there’s the dozens of erratic statements Trump himself has made about the Russian President, while refusing to release his taxes where it’s entirely possible that he’s hiding the kind of loan from a Russian bank that Le Pen enjoyed — which is certainly at least POSSIBLE, since, again, we know he can’t get loans from almost any global bank.

    So, yeah, it’s easy to dismiss the entire US Intelligence community because of the Gulf of Tonkin or Iraq, but it takes a real commitment to ignore everything else that’s been part of this story from the start. Unless, of course, that’s the plan.

    • Hogan

      I mean, I guess he could be doing it for free too, but it makes even less sense.

      The US is the greatest force for evil in the world today. Putin is an opponent of the US. Therefore Putin must be and deserves to be supported.

      It makes the same kind of sense as International ANSWER regarding Milosevic and Saddam as heroes of the working class in the early ’90s.

      • Jay B

        Sounds right to me. Still baffling.

      • Always fun to see how short a jump it is from “the enemy of my enemy is my friend” to supporting knee-jerk authoritarianism.

    • kped

      I actually don’t think Glenn is bought by the Russians. This whole thing is really not a shock, it fits his M.O. completely. He feels that all liberals are hypocrites (because most stopped listening to him when Obama won…i stopped during the Bush years, saw through him pretty quick), and that makes them worse then…anything. He misses liberals posting to him and calling him “Glenzilla”, and feels he has to dedicate everything to taking “us” down. Really, he’s a useful idiot more than anything for the right now.

      Really, I knew Putin was behind the hacks when I saw a clip of Putin on Russian TV. This was early on during the DNC hack, and he was on some Russian TV show, saying “of course we had nothing to do with it…but the DNC has been very unfair to Bernie Sanders from these emails”. It was hilarious, like Putin would give a single fuck about DWS and debate questions or whatever nonsense those emails even revealed. His answer could have been written on any Bernie Bro blog, or any lefty twitter account.

  • Lord Jesus Perm

    Can’t think of a better pair than Tucker Carlson and True Avatar of Truth Glenn.

    Also, your daily reminder that Julian Assange is a goddamn rapist, and it speaks volumes about Glenn that he’s been so willing to carry water for him.

    • Origami Isopod

      Bitches ain’t shit in leftier-than-thou circles. See also: “ProgressiveLiberal” whining one thread down about how we need Alan Grayson more than ever but he’s “not the right kind of Democrat” (i.e., he beat his wife and stiffed his kids for child support).

    • ExpatJK

      Assange may also not mind Trump’s white nationalism too much. When the Wikileaks party ran in Australia (it has since been deregistered, because it stopped running candidates iirc), they made some…interesting preference choices.

      Fun fact: the head of the Australia First party is a former member of the now-defunct Australia National Socialist party. YES, that kind of National Socialist. Australia First recently made some remarks about how they supported David Duke’s Senate candidacy.

      Shooters and Fishers is a pro-gun-rights party, as the name suggests.

      The key bits:

      Julian Assange’s Wikileaks Party has come under fire for directing its preferences to the Shooters and Fishers Party and the white nationalist Australia First Party ahead of both major parties and the Greens in the NSW Senate race.

      Australia First’s policies include reducing and limiting immigration and ”abolishing multiculturalism”.

      The chairman of Australia First, Jim Saleam, is a former neo-Nazi who was convicted in the late 1980s of organising a shotgun attack on the home of an Australian representative of the African National Congress. WikiLeaks candidates in NSW include human rights activist Kellie Tranter.

      In a statement issued on Sunday, the WikiLeaks Party said its National Coucil decided the Shooters and Fishers and the Australia First party should have been below Greens, Labor and Liberal but administrative problems were to blame.

      http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/federal-election-2013/wikileaks-attacked-for-directing-preferences-to-rightwing-parties-20130818-2s5ng.html

      • Origami Isopod

        Fascism of all sorts is deeply misogynist, so no wonder Assange is cool with it.

  • Dilan Esper

    The sad thing is that Obama really did fuck up our Russia policy (we should have done absolutely nothing about the Ukraine, which is literally none of our business, and the dumb Crimea sanctions were ultimately going to have to be reversed and the annexation of Crimea recognized).

    But none of that matters after the election hack. A sovereign country simply has to respond to such things, even though we do that shit too (we shouldn’t). And the performance of much of the Republican Party has been shameful.

    • humanoid.panda

      The sad thing is that Obama really did fuck up our Russia policy (we should have done absolutely nothing about the Ukraine, which is literally none of our business, and the dumb Crimea sanctions were ultimately going to have to be reversed and the annexation of Crimea recognized).

      The first violent change border change in Europe since 1945? No biggie!

      • Dilan Esper

        So what? How many border changes through violence were there before that? And what’s so special about the far eastern part of Europe, as opposed to the rest of the world where border changes have happened?

        And what business is it of the Americans? We aren’t even IN Europe. We are thousands of miles away. If the Poles, for instance, want to fight (and lose) a war against Russia over this, that’s one thing I suppose. It has nothing to do with us.

        Finally, it’s permanent. We get into all sorts of stupid situations “refusing to recognize” things that aren’t changing (see, e.g. pretending Taiwan is part of China, and before that pretending the KMT still ruled China). So are we going to have permanent sanctions against Russia for not leaving Crimea? Maybe we should be permanently sanctioned for not giving land back to the Indians!

        Meanwhile, Russia has nuclear weapons so I would prefer we have a good relationship with them.

        • ExpatJK

          We get into all sorts of stupid situations “refusing to recognize” things that aren’t changing (see, e.g. pretending Taiwan is part of China

          Meanwhile, Russia has nuclear weapons so I would prefer we have a good relationship with them

          So, being quiet while Russia’s annexing Crimea is fine because Russia has nukes, but pissing off China over Taiwan is also fine because China has nukes? This logic makes no sense.

          I mean, if I apply your views on Crimea to Taiwan: We aren’t in Asia, if Taiwan wants to fight China over this it’s their business, etc. So why the different outcome?

        • Dalai Rasta

          In annexing the Crimea, Russia violated the Budapest Memorandum it cosigned along with the U.S. and the U.K.; among the other provisions, the memorandum included a promise to respect the existing borders of Ukraine. That made it our business.

        • Dalai Rasta

          And what business is it of the Americans? We aren’t even IN Europe.

          America isn’t in Antarctica, either. What do we care if the ice cap melts?

        • Origami Isopod

          And what business is it of the Americans? We aren’t even IN Europe. We are thousands of miles away.

          Well, Dilan, you see, there’s this thing called NATO…

      • Just_Dropping_By

        I can’t recall where I read it (one of the TAC bloggers?), but the best observation I saw about the situation in Ukraine went something like this, “For roughly the first 215 years of the United States’ existence, it had precisely zero influence over any aspect of the governance of Ukraine. People who now claim that American national interests are seriously threatened by Russia’s actions in Ukraine should have the burden of very clearly and specifically explaining what American national interests are threatened and how.”

        • humanoid.panda

          Here is my attempt of explanation of why we should care.
          1. Since 1991, Ukraine is part of an international order the US had shaped and led. That order accrued enormous benefits to the US, both economically and geopolitically. It is worth preserving.
          2. Ukraine is one of the few countries who gave up on nuclear weapons. It being dismembered 15 years later is going to set a terrible precedent.
          3. Crimea in itself was swallowable. But we also should keep in mind the civil war in Eastern Ukraine- in the days after Crimea, “People’s Republics” popped up in Odessa and Kharkiv and Dnepropetrovsk. Providing assistance to the Ukrainian government and pressure on Putin probably forestalled massive wave of civil strife and and ethnic cleansing.

        • L2P

          WTF?

          That MIGHT be interesting if it wasn’t a complete lie. Right after WWI we sent thousands of troops in Russia to fight Bolshevik rule, including rule over the Ukraine. We’ve been muddling with Ukrainian politics for 100 years.

          But in any event, things change. For the first 150 years America cared diddly squat about who ruled Germany. I think we care quite a bit now, don’t we?

        • FlipYrWhig

          “National interests” is such a problematic concept to me — it’s kind of like “material interests” in electoral politics. It seems like it reduces everything to military basing, international commerce, and resource extraction, none of which seems like a sound basis for a liberal-to-left approach to foreign policy.

          • veleda_k

            I feel like I should leave a comment that’s more than just, “this” but, well, this.

  • President Putinfluffer

    I’m tellin ya, this Greenvault guy knows what he’s talkin about!

  • Murc

    Isn’t divadab one of the Crooked Timber comment section crazies? Like whatsisface, Bob McManus?

    I would like to note that, while I sympathize with his disgust for the corporatist wing of the Democratic Party, and think it ought to have offered the policies he proposes, his central argument kind of falls down the same way these arguments always fall down: it is formulated as “The Democrats didn’t offer a sufficiently left-wing platform, and so the people who were upset about that voted hard, hard right instead.”

    That’s self-refuting.

    Also precious: his repeated calls for both the Democratic Party being a big tent that doesn’t practice a politics of identity and exclusion, while also calling for it to be purged of those whose ideology he disapproves of.

    If he’s a troll he’s a good one.

    • Origami Isopod

      I’m pretty sure Divadab is a woman. AFAIK I have never seen her at Bent Woodies. Similar mentality but without the academic inclinations.

    • farin

      Terribly, terribly unfair to McManus, an actual dedicated kook rather than an opportunistic troll.

      • Origami Isopod

        Agreed. Say what you want about mcmAnus, he works at being a complete fucking loon. This one here’s a lazy shit-flinger and a filthy casual at that.

        • efgoldman

          Say what you want about mcmAnus, he works at being a complete fucking loon.

          Does he have an alter ego as “Bob in Portland”?

  • tonycpsu

    Welp.

    @realDonaldTrump: Great move on delay (by V. Putin) – I always knew he was very smart!

    I think that’s the ballgame.

    • humanoid.panda

      That pretty much leaves 3 options
      1. Trump is basically in love with Putin. .
      2. Trump is throwing the gauntlet to McCain/Graham- if they back down and stop talking about this, they are his slaves.
      3. Trump is indeed compromised by the Russians.

      And the terrifying part is that option 3 might be less scary of all. (Irrational love will become irrational hatred, and option 2 implies he is much shrewder than it seems).

      • tonycpsu

        I don’t think any of them are mutually-exclusive. Not that you were saying they were, but useful to consider because #1 is basically a certainty, but should not be seen as casting doubt on 2, 3, or any other possibilities. His Putin love is certainly going to make him at least a useful idiot for Russia.

        • humanoid.panda

          Right. But there is major difference between useful idiot and compromised asset. Among other things, if Trump is a useful idiot, there is a significant risk one day he will understand that Putin is the alpha, and will freak out. This keeps me up at night, and makes me think I’d prefer it if he was a compromised asset.

      • ExpatJK

        I’m thinking #1 and #2, though of course #3 is possible.

        I don’t see #2 as Trump’s shrewdness per se. He hates Graham, who has been pretty opposed to him since the beginning, and also dislikes McCain even though McCain came around to him in the end. Throwing the gauntlet down to them and then fucking them over would probably please him from a “haha, screwed over those assholes” view, in line with how he humiliated Romney with his bogus Secretary of State offer. This would be pretty consistent with Trump’s past actions, so I could see this as a motivator.

        Also, #4: Another opportunity to stick it to Obama/Democrats, i.e. slapping the LOSERS around some more.

        • humanoid.panda

          I don’t see #2 as Trump’s shrewdness per se. He hates Graham, who has been pretty opposed to him since the beginning, and also dislikes McCain even though McCain came around to him in the end. Throwing the gauntlet down to them and then fucking them over would probably please him from a “haha, screwed over those assholes” view, in line with how he humiliated Romney with his bogus Secretary of State offer. This would be pretty consistent with Trump’s past actions, so I could see this as a motivator.

          But the issue here is not so much hatred, but whether those guys get to keep their relative independence as DC players, or become wholly owned assets of Trump INC. And in a way, throwing the gauntlet like that is shrewd: if they swallow it, any pretense they have any power is gone.

          • ExpatJK

            Hm, that’s one way of looking at it. That would be a shrewd approach, but I envision him seeing it more along the lines of “these jackasses who said bad things about me want X? ha, take that!”. In other words, it’s more about embarrassing/humiliating them in some way, rather than letting them be independent. I mean, I could see this happening if they both lined up on something unrelated to Russia; he would want to slap them around in public anyway.

      • Murc

        The problem with #3 is, what could the Russians POSSIBLY have on Trump that’s worse than what we already know about him?

        • (((Malaclypse)))

          As the saying goes, dead girl or live boy.

          • econoclast

            It’s the 21st century: dead girl and live boy.

          • farin

            But Ivanka seems to be alive and well, so…?

        • humanoid.panda

          Details of his finances? Not that they would lead to any impeachment or anything, but Trump clearly is VERY uninterested in them becoming public.

          Mind you, I don’t think this is plausible at all. But at this point, we are faced with “if all impossible is removed” situation.

          • Murc

            What possible financial dirt on him could be worse than what we already know? I mean… Trump could have financial interests in literal human slaving operations and it would probably only help him among his actual constituencies.

            • humanoid.panda

              What we know about him is very hazy. Having documents showing he got X,Y,Z sums of money from Saudi Arabia, and China and Russia is different. Alternatively, he could be revealed to not have much money at all.

              At the very least, he surely thinks there is something damaging behind the screen, as he is very big on NDAs, didn’t disclose his tax returns, sues people left and right, and never even thought about going public with his companies.

              • ExpatJK

                Alternatively, he could be revealed to not have much money at all.

                I think it’s this one. It would be publicly embarrassing to him and to his image.

            • Gizmo

              The tax returns probably show that he’s not a billionaire. He wouldn’t care about any of the other things.

              There’s also the Josh Marshall theory – his net worth is zero or maybe even negative. That one sort of fits – why else would he have such a fondness for penny-ante grifting and self-dealing? He’s trying to pay his bills by skimming.

          • efgoldman

            Not that they would lead to any impeachment or anything

            There will be NO impeachment of a [nominally] Republiklown president as long as Republiklowns control congress.

      • FlipYrWhig

        1a. Trump is obsessed with displaying strength.
        1b. Trump is a troll.

        1a and 1b happen to be attached to Vladimir Putin right now, but they could also be attached to some other tinpot potentate as necessary. The important thing is that the object of his affection doesn’t give a fuck, and that conventional wisdom would be appalled, because a willingness to appall is one of Trump’s favorite ways to display strength.

        • witlesschum

          This seems rightest to me.

    • tonycpsu

      Yglesias: 30 years ago, Trump proposed allying with the USSR against France and Pakistan

      Trump’s unique contribution to the debate as it stood in the late-’80s was that this was all misframed. The Reagan administration, he argued, should worry less about competing with the Soviet Union and more about teaming up with the USSR to get nukes out of everyone else’s hands.

      We don’t know if these ideas still guide Trump’s thinking, or if he’s totally forgotten ever giving this interview. But either way, it provides a fascinating window in the president-elect’s views on nuclear proliferation and the relationship between Moscow and Washington.

      […]

      Does Donald Trump have a secret, long-held plan to overturn decades of American foreign policy, forge an alliance with Russia, and deliver a one-two punch to force other countries — including NATO allies like France — to give up their nuclear programs?

      I have no idea. Trump has said a lot of things over the years, including that he favors a government guarantee of health insurance and legal abortion in all circumstances, that he appears to no longer believe. He’s had a lot of opportunities over the course of the past year to try to explain in clearer terms what it is that draws him to Vladimir Putin’s Russia, and he’s never offered this as a reason.

      On the other hand, he clearly does have some kind of interest in a geopolitical rapprochement with Moscow, and he’s never really made it clear what it is he thinks he can get in exchange for making concessions to Russia on Syria and Ukraine. Maybe this scheme to turn the screws on France and Pakistan is the intended endgame. Or maybe Trump has entirely forgotten that this interview ever happened.

      • ExpatJK

        Does Donald Trump have a secret, long-held plan to overturn decades of American foreign policy, forge an alliance with Russia, and deliver a one-two punch to force other countries — including NATO allies like France — to give up their nuclear programs?

        This kind of stuff just seems unrealistic to me. To the extent he has a plan, it consists of 1) $$$$ 2) publicity/adoration.

        Trump has said a lot of things over the years, including that he favors a government guarantee of health insurance and legal abortion in all circumstances, that he appears to no longer believe.

        Yes, because he’s a bullshitter and will just vomit up words if he thinks it will get the right reaction from the crowd. Does he believe what he says? Maybe in the moment.

        On the other hand, he clearly does have some kind of interest in a geopolitical rapprochement with Moscow, and he’s never really made it clear what it is he thinks he can get in exchange for making concessions to Russia on Syria and Ukraine.

        I doubt he sees it as concessions, more like buddying up with someone he likes. I very much doubt he cares about Syria or Ukraine.

        Maybe this scheme to turn the screws on France and Pakistan is the intended endgame.

        This seems unrealistic, and this sort of long-term strategic thinking is inconsistent with a lot of his prior behaviour.

        Or maybe Trump has entirely forgotten that this interview ever happened.

        Highly likely, also likely is that he just bullshitted and rambled as per usual.

        • efgoldman

          I very much doubt he cares about Syria or Ukraine.

          I very much doubt that he can find either on a map.

      • liberalrob

        …teaming up with the USSR to get nukes out of everyone else’s hands.

        Sounds similar to Jerry Pournelle’s CoDominium scenario:

        The CoDominium (CD) is a supranational alliance of the United States of America and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. This alliance eventually becomes a de facto planetary government, and later, an interstellar empire. Despite this, no other nations on Earth are given representation or membership. Other major powers become mere client states. It is governed by a “Grand Senate”, which is composed of Senators chosen from the two superpowers. A CoDominium Council exists and appears to function as a judicial branch. It should be noted that the CD did not unify the United States and the USSR, who appear to retain their separate identities and mutual distrust. The CD was only created for the shared benefit of the two member states. It does not govern either nation, and each state has been allowed to retain their government structures, nationalities, militaries, and to run their own internal affairs.

  • kped

    Paul, you really should have used the same photo Chait did, that side by side hearty laughing by two like minded assholes really told the story.

  • liberalrob

    Wow. I like Greenwald but I have to draw the line at praising Breitbart. And appearing on Carlson’s show. Very sad indeed.

  • Richard Gadsden

    Tucker Carlson with a normal tie!

It is main inner container footer text