I would suggest that the Beckys of the world certainly are oriented to women’s issues. I don’t see that as being negative since people have to start somewhere. The however is simply is that there is a plethora of issues that affect all genders. The Neoliberal mindset separates by issues rather than unite people. As long as women advocate birth control, abortion and breaking the glass ceiling they are “warriors.” Let anti-war, civil rights and economic issues of the poor into advocacy and then all of sudden people become #demexit or anti-uniters…This has been the theme of the HRC wing of the Democrats since well before the primaries and is the one big reason I could never vote for HRC. I cannot tell you how many pro-HRC called me Republican lite for advocating Bernie over HRC. Until the Democratic Party is purged of neoliberals, by exposing their pedophilia or sexual harassment or whatever, the Democrats will continue to be a one trick pony as a haven for upscale petty bourgeois willing to sell the futures of those less fortunate for “a handful of dimes” as Jim Morrison of the Doors sang years ago…
Franklin Roosevelt is considered one of America’s greatest presidents for good reason. On the surface he saved America from the worse economic failure in history and guided America’s policies during WWII. What is overlooked was his ability as the ultimate politician of his time and of America’s existence. Sure he made mistakes as anyone who is bold enough to go against the grain but ultimately he was proven right on so many policies that even his critics could only attack him personally.
Two books by the same author- “The Mantle of Command: FDR at War, 1941-1942” and “Commander in Chief: FDR at War, 1943” by Nigel Hamilton shows the depth of which the president controlled his own military, congress and the American people as well as the allies, Great Britain and Soviet Russia.
In “The Mantle of Command” Nigel Hamilton starts by documenting his first meeting with Winston Churchill and how masterful his performance with the “Bulldog.” Churchill was hell bent on getting the United States into WWII at a time when America was not ready militarily nor politically. His mandate, from the American people, was to keep the United States out of the conflict as long as possible and still supply Britain and Russia with the war supplies they needed to fight the Axis.
“Moreover, far from abandoning their hold on the Middle East— as American military observers were still advising the British to do, but the President was not— the British were holding General Erwin Rommel at bay in North Africa. British forces, in fact, had successfully driven into Iraq and Syria to deter Vichy French assistance to Hitler. As a result, neither Turkey nor Portugal, nor Spain, had moved a finger to help Hitler. Even Marshal Pétain’s egregious puppet government in Vichy had refused to alter the terms of its 1940 surrender to Hitler and permit French military cooperation with the Nazis. Hitler, the President was convinced, was not going to have things his own way.”
The United States military in fact was advising the president to cede to Germany, Italy and Japan much more of the tremendous gains the Axis had made in the earlier years of war, which would have been much more costly to eventually win back. How Roosevelt handled the sure defeatist attitude of all those who surrounded him should be a lesson to us all and all the politicians who have come and gone up to modern times.
“Life and Fate” is a Mini-Russian TV series based on the novel of the same name. Although I don’t care much for subtitles this one is much easier to read as it is blacked with white lettering.
The characterizations are pretty slick Hollywood-type in what westerners would call typical Russian stereotypes and icons. Still it is an enjoyable production that could have never been done in the Soviet era. “‘Life and Fate’ is an epic tale of World War II and a reckoning with dark forces emerging, including Stalinism. With Hitler and the Nazi army looming on the Front, the series takes us deep into the hearts and minds of citizens and soldiers struggling to cope with the ravages of war” as one reviewer succinctly wrote.
Still if you want to understand more about Russia and even understand the mindset of a nation that many think is still an adversary today, this drama may shed some light on a complicated dog and pony show of modern times.
If I was going to give any advice to the younger generation, I would try to save as much as you can if nothing more than a dollar a day. That doesn’t mean necessarily investing in something- I’d only do any investment if it was “safe” or the alternative would be- prepare yourself to lose it all. The fallacy of “amateurs” in investing is they get too nervous like in a Wall Street stock when it goes down- they sell off too quickly. Mutual funds with a track record of more than 20 years to me is a good safe investment. There’s plenty of funds that are either environment friendly or progressive. But you have to do some research. I would ask myself what would the future bring? I’d say solar, power companies, perhaps a few startups if they are involved in some sort of futuristic endeavor. Organic Farming would appear to me to be a pretty safe thing. Of course if you had the equity, land in the right location on the fringes of cities will pay off in 20 years or so. Even though things look bleak for many folks these days, investing and finding the right career will do more to lift one out of the lower classes. Don’t get me wrong, it’s tougher today to find a good paying job. Anything having to do with technology and the ability to learn new skills will enhance prospects. No matter how much automation the future will bring there will be a need for folks who can service the technology. Did i leave anything out of course- if you can add anything positive to this please do- save your criticism for when you get old and you know a lot more about the world…
“On their way to a justice of the peace to get married, a couple has a fatal car accident. The couple is sitting outside heaven’s gate waiting on St. Peter to do the paperwork so they can enter. While waiting, they wonder if they could possibly get married in Heaven. St. Peter finally shows up and they ask him.
St. Peter says, ‘I don’t know, this is the first time anyone has ever asked. Let me go find out,’ and he leaves.
The couple sit for a couple of months and begin to wonder if they really should get married in Heaven, what with the eternal aspect of it all. ‘What if it doesn’t work out?’ they wonder, “Are we stuck together forever?”
St. Peter returns after yet another month, looking somewhat bedraggled. ‘Yes, he informs the couple, you can get married in Heaven.’
Great,’ says the couple, ‘but what if things don’t work out? Could we also get a divorce in Heaven?’
St. Peter, red-faced, slams his clipboard onto the ground.
What’s wrong?’ exclaims the frightened couple.
Geez!’ St. Peter exclaims, ‘It took me three months to find a priest up here! Do you have any idea how long it’s going to take for me to find a lawyer?”
This is the way the elites keep common folks at each other’s throats. Elites don’t want folks see all the things we have in common. Race and sexuality are such superficial bias that it shows the intelligence levels of most people. I do think there is an innate bias built into folks but of course we have a media and bigots ready to exploit it every step of the way- the only way obviously is to establish a dialogue and make it continually run all the time. Younger folks will be battling this for the rest of their lives so if you want change be prepared for the long run. Some joker from one of the pro-Trump groups posted a video of black folks humping each other fully clothed with a caption something like “you wonder why so many blacks get AIDS” and I commented something like “you wonder how long racists and bigots will keep posting the same old videos.” None of us can ever do an adequate job of policing bigotry because it’s all over the place except to either make fun of it or point out how silly this stuff is when we will in the now and future have more problems caused by our lack of unity. I gave up on trying to get my family to see that because it falls on deaf ears- the only person i could get any of this across to was my dad and now he’s dead. It’s a constant battle but what you can do is when you see a person of another race acknowledge them even if only to smile and say “hi.” That goes a long way to establishing some sort of sanity…
WWII was unique compared to previous wars in the sense that civilians became much more part of the retaliatory destruction than previous wars. That’s not to say that civilians were not caught in between invading armies and defending armies before but rather it became the policy of the armies to actually go after civilian populations. The precedent seems to have started with the Japanese invasion of Manchuria in the early thirties. The Japanese were hell bent on expanding their territory because of their homeland perceived as being much too crowded.
That escalated even more so and with more furor when the Nazis invaded Poland and the Soviet Union. The Nazis sent SS troops behind the army to genocide the civilian populations to clear the way for the expansion of German peoples to take over the conquered land. To ramp it up even more the Nazis decided to bomb London and other cities primarily in civilian and non-military targets.
Churchill in retaliation decided to bomb German cities during the night and when America entered the war they bombed during the day. This policy was extended in the Asian theater by the Americans primarily in the Japanese homeland. Besides the obvious intent to intimidate the Soviet Union, the dropping of two nuclear bombs on Japan, which ended WWII, were also in a revenge treatment for atrocities committed against prisoners of war.
Atrocities against both civilians and even disarmed military on both sides increasingly was policy for the remainder of the war resulting in civilian casualties overwhelmingly outnumbering military injured and dead.
By the time of Korea and Vietnam, millions of civilians were killed, injured and wounded and the destruction of homes and property was just “collateral damage.”
Modern wars in the Middle East have added civilian casualties as the price for insuring the world was safe for the oil industry.
Today it is “normal” for civilian casualties and our policy makers no longer bat an eye for millions who have become cannon fodder for policies that should be reprehensible to any sane person…
Bernie is coming under some heavy criticism as if he rigged the primaries all by himself.
So what would have the narrative have been if Bernie hadn’t run? We would have had “token” Democrats such as Biden, Warren or O’Malley running who would have lost to the superior politician, HRC, and would have their endorsements flying like toilet paper on Halloween night.
The primary debates would have been like an Emmy or Academy Awards show and the sycophants would have been purring how wonderful and thoughtful HRC would be for embracing difficult positions on fracking, Wall Street and perpetual war for the good of the country. Healthcare would have focused on how great Obamacare was instead of Medicare for All and college loans discussions would have been whether loans should be six or maybe five percent interest and how our young people would be so lucky to attend our great institutions and taken one for the good of America. Everybody would have been touting Clinton’s record on feminism and civil rights- all the while ignoring the reality.
The Democratic Party convention would have been a big Kumbaya party with Bill Clinton kissing cheeks, whispering to the women “meet me later, we’re having a feminism test in the broom closet.”
Yea, good old Sheep herder Bernie would have made no difference at all and we’d all be saluting HRC as our commander-in-chief…Wasserman Schultz would be leading us to the next glorious election in 2018…and we’d all be dancing down the Yellow Brick Road seeing what the Wizard had in store for our people…
The future is dependent on the past in ways which folks are realizing more and more. At one time from the 30s to the 60s, common folks could depend on the Democratic Party to represent their needs and stand up for their interests- at least on domestic policy. After WWII, sentiment was high that a new era of peace was on the horizon. Pax Americana swept across the globe since essentially America saved the world from fascism. However, even in those giddy times, Democrats were in lockstep with Republicans, Wall Street and the military industrial complex on foreign policy, especially on war. In the years after WWII, starting with Korea, the United States used the good will equity earned to involve the huge war machine in the affairs of other nations.
In the eyes of corporatists, communism was a threat to the free market, defined as elites have the right to exploit common folks. That may well be a correct assessment since communists wanted to corner part of the world to suit their own form of exploitation. Essentially, there were two equally abhorrent systems, much like the duopoly of Democrats and Republicans of today, with no alternative except to throw support to one or the other- the lesser of two evils, depending on who controlled their part of the world.
With the exception of a few years, the United States has either been in a war state for some 70 years, both overt and covert against communism, terrorism and countries who saw both communists and capitalists as equally evil. With the right wing coup in Russia in the 1990s and the lip service communists in power in China, the world is ruled by fascist despots.
The point of this review is to make stock on the world we are facing today. In the meantime in light of the foreign disasters by the American government, domestically the political parties have become the evil twins of a Kubrick movie nightmare, standing hand in hand in the doorway dismantling the social safety net of a compliant populace oblivious to the world around them, struggling to put food on their tables.
Throw in the role of social media and Internet in exposing all of this to people around the world. A difficult task lies ahead to distinguish the wheat from the chaff, to distinguish lies, propaganda and distortions to present a true picture of what is right, to set that moral compass on the correct pole. Everything that is recognized should come with a filter composed of who, how, when and what. The criteria for any assessment should be begin with who benefits the most, how do they benefit, when do they benefit and what do they benefit?
The recent Hollywood revelations revealed much about our actors and actresses and even musicians and artists in ways I hadn’t really thought about- and it was in front of our eyes all the time. Ambition is pretty much a blinding experience. Look at actors and consider what they do. They play other peoples’ lives whether non-fictional or fictional. They may not even like the roles they play but they consider themselves as “neutral.” That basically means that in order to advance they have to put aside their personal feelings and concentrate on their “role.” It’s not much of a stretch then to see even “non-consensual” sexuality as being part of their persona. It’s an open secret for decades that actors audition on the directors’ or producers’ “couch.” We common folks are not exposed to the personal habits of the elite as we rarely ever see them except at an event. Having money blinds folks to the worst foibles in our society because to advance in a capitalist society one must step over bodies to get ahead. This is not to absolve sexual predators- it is to gain an understanding of the microcosm of Hollywood culture that reflects the larger culture of our society. We as a people are subservient to the whims of our “elite betters.” We are brainwashed into believing we are “serving” our own interests when we don’t assert our humanity. And that is a horrid lesson.