406 Comments

Very helpful and timely. Thank you!

Now we all need to vote blue to keep the train of freedom/truth/prosperity running!!!

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Agreed 100%!! Thank you, Heather.

A very interesting point that I had missed somewhere along the line is that: “Saudi Arabia has suddenly offered Ukraine $400 million in humanitarian aid, evidently trying to regain the goodwill of Europe and the U.S., since it imports almost all of its weapons from that bloc.”

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Rowshan Saudi Arabia’s offer of $400 million in humanitarian aid to Ukraine is far less than the $billion plus that the Saudis (MBS) are investing in their mercenary golf venture. Bleeding hearts the Saudis ain’t.

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Keith, of course the Saudis aren't bleeding hearts. I doubt that any of Heather's followers think for a minute that MBS can in any way be described as anything but a cold-blooded despot. We all are fully aware of Jamal Khashoggi's ghastly murder and dismemberment. His "humanitarian aid" for Ukraine can be likened to his loosening of restrictions on Saudi women and other liberalizations offered during his control, which are designed to calm the waters while he tightens the screws elsewhere.

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And tightening the spigot on crude oil is not exactly a "We Are the World" type behavior, either.

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Thought this might interest you.

'More than 500 retired U.S. military personnel — including scores of generals and admirals — have taken lucrative jobs since 2015 working for foreign governments, mostly in countries known for human rights abuses and political repression, according to a Washington Post investigation.'

'In Saudi Arabia, for example, 15 retired U.S. generals and admirals have worked as paid consultants for the Defense Ministry since 2016. The ministry is led by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the kingdom’s de facto ruler, who U.S. intelligence agencies say approved the 2018 killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, a Washington Post contributing columnist, as part of a brutal crackdown on dissent.]

'Saudi Arabia’s paid advisers have included retired Marine Gen. James L. Jones, a national security adviser to President Barack Obama, and retired Army Gen. Keith Alexander, who led the National Security Agency under Obama and President George W. Bush, according to documents obtained under the Freedom of Information Act.'

'Others who have worked as consultants for the Saudis since Khashoggi’s murder include a retired four-star Air Force general and a former commanding general of U.S. troops in Afghanistan.' (WAPO) Ungifted Link below.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/investigations/interactive/2022/veterans-us-foreign-jobs-saudi-arabia/

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Fern I had read the article and was appalled by the secrecy that shrouded all of this. Lots of ex-military in Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and elsewhere. Wonder how this related to the Yemen war? I would yank them all back immediately.

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I know you would, even now if you could.

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I think they are just marking time with a few million $$ until their friend ..... what was his name? .... gets re-elected to our presidency. I'm still waiting for someone to explain to me what that $2 billion to ... what's his names'? .... son-in law actually was for.

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As Hitler (and chump) said. I paraphrase, If you win you don’t have to explain. That’s the plan, man. Why the billionaires have jumped on the chump express. Just think, if they can punch a hole in our social safety nets (which Dems seem loathe to mention) they will have a combination to the vault. Wake up Dems. I rarely see a mention in the bull Schitt political emails I get buried under. That is something that even old MAGAts care about.

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Oct 16, 2022·edited Oct 16, 2022

Yes. I wish the campaign ads would focus more on what the Dems are protecting for you the individual. Make it personal.

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I don’t know Jeri. The second dumbest guy in congress, Ron Johnson, has said SS and Medicare should be voted on every year and he still may be reelected. I don’t get the folks who so robotically vote against their own interests, except he’s white.

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Grace…you make an excellent point! It speaks volumes to the intelligence, or the lack thereof, of many American voters! As evidenced in the last election where a large percentage of voters although tired of tRump…failed to vote in a majority level of support for the new president simply because they couldn’t or wouldn’t vote for a non-republican or, they just didn’t know or understand the Process! As an example, recently a Woman in line at our local Grocery Store sporting a pin that said, “If you don’t like what’s happening vote Republican!” Was over heard telling someone, “if people don’t vote Republican…they’re going to lose their Social Security and Medicare!” Apparently she hadn’t heard or understood, comments from individuals such as Ron Johnson and others like him

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These dopes visit sites which lie and scare them and then they are all "experts" and spread the nonsense. If you don't agree with them, you should "dig deeper" and believe sites like Judicial Watch. I was looking at an ad (I had it muted) from the wing nut running in Washington's third district and the audience was all older and all white. But they are worried about all those tents and all that crime and probably that people kneel during the national anthem. His opponent is a young woman who owns an auto repair shop with her husband and also had a miscarriage when women could go to the hospital and get treatment.

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White, and tells them it is OK to hate the "other". Allows them to express their "sincerely held beliefs."

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Oct 17, 2022·edited Oct 17, 2022

Their sincerely held beliefs would turn on a dime when that Social Security check is gone. And most of them would be shocked. The hate for the other blinds them to what their manipulators want to take from them.

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“Whiteness is a hell of a drug.”

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Yes, and it can make you fight to maintain your privilege especially when you're white, not so rich, and believe you are in danger of losing your superior position in society to "those people".

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For many people "Whiteness" is what makes them better than "those people" and the threat of losing that can trump (pun intended) everything else.

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I don't believe that emphasizing the GOP's wish to end Social Security and Medicare will not get more votes for us.

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It’s just getting knuckleheads to believe it.

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Oct 16, 2022·edited Oct 16, 2022

Joan, MBS is destined to be sorely disappointed. TFG will, at the very least, be rendered bankrupt over the next few years. As for Jared, the entitled little jerk and his wife will need to budget well, because I suspect their grifting is coming to an end, and they might also be wearing orange if Leticia James has her way.

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Joan, It's simple. It was a payoff. "Nice little kingdom you have there, it would be a shame if something happened to it"

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I think it's a payoff to Jared for several things:

1 - The list of MBS enemies, which he swiftly acted on by killing or imprisoning them;

2- The weapons sales; and

3 - (although we don't know yet), possibly some nuclear information from the documents Trump stole.

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I am sure that if the documents have not already been compromised, that was the plan.

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I hope you’re wrong, but fear that you may be right, Joan.

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Exactly, what was that money for and why was it given to Jared Kuschner??? And what has he done with it?.??

So cut those low life Arabians off from any US support

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He is going to have to do a lot better than that as far as I am concerned. Those numbers are pennies compared to the financial trouble he has caused. Is he a complete and total idiot, or does he think the USA president is? Biden has just hinted at retribution for his bad actions and he has done this. Well, did he think there was going to be no response? Seriously. What planet is he living on?

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Yes! The US must end all military equipment and parts sales to the backstabbing Saudis💥. Do it now!

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Does Biden have the power in our country to pull that off. Our government is teetering on the brink and the barbarians are not only at the door, some are in Congress.

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MANY are in Congress. 😞

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The lunatic fringe

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Slavering to TAKE Congress...

Then, REVENGE.

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That is indeed interesting. Has the prince looked into that famous crystal ball and seen Putin's aura diminishing?

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Oct 16, 2022·edited Oct 16, 2022

I fear that he is just biding his time til repubs and the orange menace gain ground. So many have no clue what is at stake. In my family deliberate ignorance seems to rule. Stupidity would be preferable, but cult crap is hard to bare

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Those in my family who believe everything they hear via Fox -- and nothing else -- give me chills, Jeri.

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They wait for fox to tell them all they need to know, and how to feel about the info that is too big for fox to control. Fox is their Messiah

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In China and Japan, the Fox is a trickster deity...

In America, too. But folks aren't wise to that.

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Cult crap is a small congregation compared to the people who are seemingly really stupid! How many times do they need to read something like

https://www.msnbc.com/rachel-maddow-show/maddowblog/gop-plan-cut-social-security-medicare-2023-comes-view-rcna51865

How do these stupids plan to survive?

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Don't assume that they read.

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Our elections have global consequences. How many Americans realize this?

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Not enough, I fear, Rachel.

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😂😂Possibly, Anne-Louise, very possibly!

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Rowshan, I had intended to mention your point. I have not heard a word of the Saudi "humanitarian aid" to Ukraine development, although I pay attention. Heather invariably offers nuggets of information that we just don't get anywhere else.

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She does, indeed, Nancy!

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I had not read it either. Here is the Kiev take on it. https://www.kyivpost.com/ukraine-politics/saudi-arabia-to-allocate-400m-for-humanitarian-aid-to-ukraine.html I had forgotten the brokering of the prisoners. Here is the take from French publication RFI

https://www.rfi.fr/en/international/20221015-saudi-arabia-to-give-ukraine-over-%E2%82%AC400million-in-humanitarian-aid

Here is the Saudi Embassy take on it https://www.saudiembassy.net/news/hrh-crown-prince-announces-400-million-humanitarian-aid-ukraine-during-call-president-zelenskyy

However, I found that last March it was reported that Saudi Prince chose Putin over Biden when it came to Oil, and now he is doing it again. So, I think we can be clear where he stands and will stand. The question is where will we stand. I would like us to stand away.

https://www.wilsoncenter.org/article/saudi-arabia-chooses-putin-over-biden-ukraine-keep-oil-prices-high I would like us to pull out of Saudi Arabia and stop selling them weapons.

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Linda, I agree. Hit them where it hurts. I do think, though, that we are faced with reassessing our approach to numerous countries as strategies are changing world-wide.

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In the early 1980s Reagan was told by scientists about global warming and that we should get off of fossil fuels. His answer was to ignore that, just as the fossil fuel industry was willing to invest in other sources of energy. He told the industry let the people of the future solve the problems, so they agreed and continued to make money as they had without a backward glance. Well, I cannot help but feel that if Reagan had not done this, and we had already gone in another direction we would not have given funding to despotic regimes like Iran, Saudi Arabia, and Russia and we could perhaps be facing a very different situation in these three countries. At this point the countries that can (USA, EU) should get themselves off of fossil fuels as quickly as possible so that they do not give money to these regimes. Our own fossil fuel industry is no better. It is corrupt to the core!

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Linda, I totally agree. Although no mention was made of Reagan (I can think of no Republican president who was not a slave to our oligarchs other than Eisenhower), Fareed Zakaria made this same point on his show yesterday, saying that our country, in concert with other democracies, must begin to become independent in all things - microchips, as Biden is already doing, oil, where we could produce our own from our abundant natural resources, while making a serious step to create green energy, etc. We can't remain dependent upon OPEC, Russia, and others, when we already know that they will capitalize on our weaknesses.

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Yes, I also missed this point.

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Oct 16, 2022·edited Oct 16, 2022

In the elections on November 8, we have the choice between Democrats' building on our rights to self-determination through rule of law, or Republicans' power grabs to further erode our rights and freedoms under their autocracy. As David Pepper writes in Laboratories of Autocracy, these Republican power grabs and draconian laws start in the state legislatures.

We have 3 weeks to Get Out The Vote. It's up to each and every one of us to speak up, talk to our friends and family, take action to influence others to show up for this election. Postcarding, door knocking, voter registration, drivers, election workers, poll watchers--take your pick.

https://www.mobilize.us/

This is also the time to work smart with our donations. If you haven't already checked out The States Project, they have researched which are the most critically flippable state legislatures. Funds to the good candidates' campaigns free the candidates to meet their voters, the most effective means of getting their votes. Deadline is this coming Monday, October 17. Donations between now and then will be matched up to $60,000! Double your money, double your impact to help save democracy!

https://www.grapevine.org/giving-circle/1XQhnyD/Tending-to-Democracy

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To save democracy!

Absolutely.

*

But to save far more than that...

To save us all from something awful.

A vote for what still calls itself the G.O.P. is a vote for Putin.

He is waiting for that vote to save him...

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Peter,

Actually I think he's already gone around the bend. Did you see the Tajikistan president basically bitch slap Putin in public?

https://www.businessinsider.com/putin-endures-long-rant-close-ally-complaining-lack-of-respect-2022-10

He's lost it with little bitty Tajikistan can call him. out WITH the cameras rolling.

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Everywhere in the former Soviet republics are the restive minorities that now outnumber the Russians. The population of Russia has not risen in more than 100 years. There weren’t enough Russians to hold the ussr together, and now they can barely make an army. Meanwhile, Russian leaders routinely remove the most capable generals from leadership positions because they are a threat. The shootings at the training camp appear to have been the work of recruits from eastern Siberia, perhaps Choochka, the butt of many Russian jokes, descendants of those (we are told) who first walked across the Bering straight to North America and became the first native Americans.

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Very good point about the demographics. A lot of officers will be shot in the back on the front lines. 3...2...1...

The "Russian Federation" will cease to functionally exist within 12 months. Then we can get on to doing UN Release 2.0

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Angela Merkle was asked how she dealt with Putin, whose foreign language is German and who was head of the kgb office in Berlin when the wall came down. She said that you just have to wait until he oversteps and gets into trouble. In American lingo, give him enough rope and he will hang himself. Wouldn’t want Russia herself as a failed state, tho.

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Oct 16, 2022·edited Oct 16, 2022

He lost it a long time ago.

But now those chickens are coming in to roost.

Yet the man seems blissfully sure of himself. What have his black shamans been telling him? What did they tell the man whom I strongly suspect of being his glove-puppet?

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Thank you so much, Ellie, for this information.

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👋 👋 👋 👋 👋 👋 👋

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Just donated!

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Thank you, Barbara!

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Thanks for the reminder - I donated this morning before I left for work 🙂

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Thank you, Karen!

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Yep. HCR hits the nail on the head with a strong, unerring hammer-blow.

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What's so great about HCR is that she constantly reminds us of what's at stake: "The world is at an inflection point that will determine the security and prosperity of the American people for generations to come.” I believe that with all my heart. It's going to take a very large village of ethical Democrats to turn back the awful demagogic and authoritarian wave Trump has unleashed. We each need to find a place in the struggle––and push forward every day.

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Right!!! And we all need to encourage the Young, Especially First Time Voters to VOTE!!!

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Here’s a tool:

SwipeBlue is an app to text Democratic friends and family with a reminder to vote.

(Sorry Substack is not processing my attempt to paste the link.)

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Gayle, your comment came into my email inbox just as I updated a page on my Substack about a book of quotations about democracy I recently completed. The biggest need for education and inspiration––and get out the vote, as you say––is students and young adults. That is what I emphasize. Check it out if interested: https://elimerritt.substack.com/p/global-words-on-democracy-wisdom. Stay well, Eli

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A truly remarkable post, because it highlights the lengths to which The Former Guy went to try and destroy this country, and his love of autocrats (mainly because he desperately wants to be one).

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Yes - that account of his actions aimed at destroying the world order in the days immediately following his defeat is stunning, and alarmingly clear. Now, who could have been on the phone to him with strategic advice?

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I hope investigations continue on this egregious act. Treason is an offense punishable by death I think. What about attempted treason? I think that is what that is.

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F*ing scary. Why isn't this in the headlines of every major newspaper, and the lead story on the TV news programs?!

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They are owned by billionaires

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Are there any honest billionaires?

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Why indeed, Ellen. The answer to that question is key.

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Why? Because they own the media.

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Yeah that was new info to me. MOF, alot of new info in the last hearing, including news that SS and FBI were to a certain extent complicit. I can see that investigations are going to continue a long time by DOJ. As for attempting to ruin the country on the way out, I believe a version of that is playing out with the economy. I suspect certain things are being done, or not done, among some of our large and powerful corporations and billionaires, to sabotage the economy. They know that the dumb and dumber American voters are going to mindlessly blame the current administration for anything that isn't right in the near term (inflation, war). So why lift a finger to help? "Let's do some price gouging too - win win. We get windfall profits, the public votes out those damn Democrats." Just yesterday I saw a FB post from a friend/acquaintance blaming the current administration (and party in power) for the state of the economy (e.g. inflation), and the Ukraine war. Yup - the war. Biden's fault. I think millions think same. Look how easy it is to mold the American people. God I hope there are enough of us to see through it. The alternative is going to be very very bad.

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The most chilling part of what we heard from the Committee was how there were issues surrounding "some" members of the FBI and Secret Service acting in concert and communicating with the insurrectionists (Proud Boys, Oath Keepers, etc). It's not difficult to imagine these people become part of a privately controlled, elite force acting to quash all supporters for democracy, aided by the regime's propaganda that "otherizes" anyone who dares to speak out.

- The Third Reich had its People's Commissariat for Internal Affairs, the Geheime Staatspolizei

(Gestapo).

- Mussolini had his Milizia Voluntaria per la Sicurezza Nazionale, the MSVN (translation Voluntary Militia for National Security).

- Stalin after WWII created the People's Commissariat for Internal Affairs (NKVD).

- China's Ministry of State Security (MSS) created in 1983 by merging of the Central Investigation Department (CID) and the counterintelligence elements of the Ministry of Public Security (MPS).

And the US has had the FBI, the NSA, the CIA, DHS, and the SS charged with investigating people and events ever since Charles Bonaparte, the grandnephew of the French emperor, approved the FBI in 1908.

It's been a gathering force since then, with few checks on their powers.

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Well if the Republican version of Brown Shirts, or the Gestapo come to pass, I am in some real trouble, as are many who frequent LFAA.

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Yes - I agree that major corporations are trying to help unseat the Democratic party by keeping prices high or even higher -- but do they think that they will do well in an autocracy? maybe a few --but many will certainly not.

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It's not that they think the corporations will do well in an autocracy -- it's all about the executives and owners at the top of the heap believing that they will effectively be enriched personally, becoming oligarchs under the new authoritarian regime.

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Corporations are ruled by the shareholders. Most big corporations state clearly in their goals and mission statements that shareholder value is their top objective. That means get that stock price up and up and up. it is also a win for the CEO's and other top level corporate brass. And do everything necessary for that all-important upcoming quarterly report. To them, often that means fighting regulation, taxes, or any expense that tends to act against tomorrow's stock price. And that my friends means to fight against the Biden administration and bring a return to the good old days of Rethuglican rule where they just left them alone to do their bidding at the expense of the planet and people in need. It's a broken and corrupt system we have here.

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Yes. I fear that the important implications of Kinzinger's presentation on Trump's orders to withdraw was lost in all of the other information that was presented. As this HCR post indicates, Trump attempted to give Putin everything he wanted by creating a power vacuum by taking the US out of any meaningful role in international affairs, creating the space for authoritarians to expand their power. That action alone should be seen as an act of treason against the US.

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But do you think tfg was capable of swift and objective thought at that moment of truth? it looks to me like Plan B of the mastermind at the other end of the telephone. The whole world knew the election result in real time.

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But also note that the process got stopped when the DoD/Pentagon said, "are you f%$cking kidding me." That gives me hope.

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Oct 16, 2022·edited Oct 16, 2022

This KAL cartoon has haunted me since it was published in May 2016. https://twitter.com/theeconomist/status/733940468917080064?s=46&t=8vhOMsYX3BTyKDWKwfrJkg

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It's very good. As is this one, when we didn't know about the worse to come:

:https://www.snopes.com/tachyon/2017/01/trump-cartoon-banned.jpg

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How appropriate.

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👍🏼

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... and tfg is still at it

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How many Americans understand what happened when we left Syria? Unrestrained, when our military presence left, it was Russian bombers and artillery that destroyed Hommes, Aleppo, Chobani, and other Syrian cities. The carpet bombing created a refugee crisis for Europe and especially for Germany, as Merkel promised to take in Syrian refugees. Russia created more than Germany could absorb. All the while stoking fear and hate of Muslims through Europe via SM in its Active Measures/destabilizations campaigns. It is different from the Cold War, some call it a ‘hot peace’, but it’s not. Whether we accept we are in a cyber war, indirect war, or hybrid war with Russia is moot. They are at war with us and all the West. The sooner we accept this fact, the better chance we have at winning.

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Believe me, I understand this! This is true of Yemeni refugees too. It is crazy that Italians are turning on Refugees who were able to come into their dying villages and help revitalize them.

https://archive.thinkprogress.org/these-four-italian-towns-are-thriving-thanks-to-refugees-d6051585f352/ I can see the work of the White supremacist movement and the Russian Hate Bots in stirring up trouble to turn people against their self interests. By promoting this anti replacement theory, the European countries that have aging populations which they are not really replacing are benefitting from having immigrants of younger people who are helping to fill huge job vacancies, who then also pay taxes which support the elderly population. Still, the people do not seem to understand how that works.

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It’s not just in Italy, sad to say. Hate the other is so convenient and requires no thought whatsoever.

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Sometimes I think that Putin---with his ever-manipulating mind---has a hand in encouraging immigration and refugee crises. Look how European nations with a willingness to welcome immigrants are "facing off" internally. Look how the right wing in the US gains voters who want our borders closed. Sometimes I think Putin is Batman's Joker writ very, very large.

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Couldn’t agree more, with the orange menace blathering Putin bull Schitt with every breathe (by way of Fox and Rupert, who is still the prime mover of MAGAts)

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Russia also created more than Sweden could absorb. Per capita Sweden was taking in more refugees than Germany, and we are now sitting with the aftermath: far right, racist party with influence on the government. Actually also far more refugees than Turkey could absorb. The European refugee crisis was from Turkey opening the gates to Europe for a fraction of the refugees it had received.

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I do not know whether Sweden has a worker shortage, but Germany does, and it is being solved by taking in refugees when they can get it together to process people through incredibly inefficient bureaucracy to be able to work. According to the links below both countries have big employment gaps.

https://www.swedishimmigration.se/all-topics/working-in-sweden/job-shortage-list-in-sweden-2022/#:~:text=In%20Sweden%20there%20are%20many,a%20short%20supply%20of%20workers.

https://www.ifo.de/en/press-release/2022-08-02/shortage-skilled-workers-germany-reaches-all-time-high

Germany also has an aging population who is drawing on pension, so who is paying into that pension is the younger workers that are needed, which are increasingly coming from the refugees. Of the refugees who are Muslim you will have culture clashes. I think European countries need to work a lot more on religious harmony and non discrimination against people based on their color. They need to understand color as color and and not race. Also, both Christianity and Islam are too sexist. Right now the racist radicalized White Supremacist "Christian" violent Europeans are no more appealing than the radicalized "Islamists". Both are claiming a religiosity that they are not practicing. For Germany there is a housing shortage but not a job shortage. Germany is committed to building the housing that is needed. However, it is going to take time. I am a big proponent of tiny houses for at least short term purposes.

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Well said. You've captured a rant of mine and distilled it into a couple paragraphs. The one that really gets me (and I am ashamedly US centric since my knowledge of other regions of the world is embarrassingly tiny) is how close the "Sharia Law" reported in Islam is to what today's US white Christian nationalists want, and they cannot see the parallels.

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Ally, Bottom line - white man control. Period, Full stop.

https://www.shutterstock.com/search/caveman-drag-women

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Thanks for your reply Linda, and your effort to find a link. I think the problems in Germany and Sweden are similar. Sweden also has a housing problem, primarily in the cities, where tiny houses are clearly not the solution. It has been possible to hire people from abroad for a long time, particularly from EU countries, but this has created problems with importing workers also in professions where there is not a shortage, subcontractors evading laws and regulations, which has pushed for a backlash. Restrictions on non EU nationals have temporarily even targeted Indian AI engineers, crucial to development.

Labour market for refugees and long time unemployed has improved according to the last report. In general it takes more time for refugees to establish themselves on the labour market. The health care sector is largely saved by doctors and nurses with education from abroad, even if there is still severe shortage of nurses. Resources for trauma therapy I think is lacking, along with a general lack of understanding for what some of these people have gone through.

Clan based criminality, primarily from Somalia and the Middle East and branches all over Europe, where criminal and ordinary businesses are covered up by tight solidarity and refusal of Swedish judicial system, is getting more attention, but very few solutions.

Primary schools, owned by Saudi Arabia and UAE, are clearly aiming at increasing the 10% of salafist muslims in Sweden, where 90% are considered moderate or indifferent to islam. Religious practices and teaching is not allowed in public schools, but controlling authorities are insufficient.

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Thank you, Olof, for the explanation. My great grandfather emigrated in 1846. I still have family there. I hope to visit in the next few years.

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I’m for tiny houses, long term, McMansions are insanity, but tell that to rich money.

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"Heart," Jeri. Me too. It's no coincidence that the rise in cost of housing is a means for the wealthy to "not see" increasing homelessness, or impoverishment by high rents, or the de facto segregation that is especially keen among Blacks and Latinx people. Here's a new rant that I have: The Uber wealthy...Bezos, Musk, Peter Thiel, et al (all white males with peculiar personalities) are so deliberately ignorant of the rest of the world. They are influencing fascism and think nothing of it.

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“Both are claiming a religiosity that they are not practicing.” Indeed, Linda.

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I "heart" tiny houses. Our little city just put in a few dozen "pods" (even smaller than tiny houses) which are heated and have electricity. They're for unsheltered folks during the winter ahead.

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Hi Linda, it's pallet shelter. Exactly. Thanks for the research. I watched Finland's solutions, too.

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so many excellent points here, Linda ... thank you!

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Thank you for your knowledge, Linda.

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How right you are, I remember and cringe at the thought of how much more damage he can do.

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👍🏼

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Exactly. Let's face it, the planet needs a new operating system. The post WWII system no longer functions to make life affirming policies, nor respect for our environment. It's like running Windows 85 on your desktop machine.

And may I suggest that Gen Z is now rising up in such diverse places as China (yes that one), Russia and most recently in Iran.

It's started. Actually the shift in consciousness has happened we are only now seeing in systemic impact. Buckle up buttercup, a VERY interesting year ahead. See https://www.amazon.com/Fourth-Turning-American-Prophecy-Rendezvous/ for details.

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Trying another link, Charlie. If these guys are correct, it’s prophetic and very well buckle up time.

The Fourth Turning: An American Prophecy - What the Cycles of History Tell Us About America's Next Rendezvous with Destiny https://a.co/d/eVUuVKs

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Christine,

Thanks for the other link. I do think these guys have got it right. The point is that this change is part of a larger cycle. Trying to keep it from occurring is a fool's errand like shoveling sand against an incoming tide.

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Totally correct. I’m feeling our younger gen response.

They are in the lead.

Unita! 🗽

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Charlie and Christine, thank you both. I’ve been trying to chase down these ideas since our Unitarian minister included them in a sermon before the pandemic. I couldn’t remember the terminology. Pandemic brain.

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Wow ... "The Pentagon considered Trump’s November 11 instructions “a rogue order,” since they had not gone through any of the appropriate channels, and disregarded them."

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Per www.npr.org Doha report, "US Deal with Taliban [Trump at Doha in 2020 without Kabul ] Destroyed Afghan Military Morale...." Supplemented: Trumps "deal" was with the "Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan". The Kabul government was not even in Doha much less at the Table. The Afghan exodus began shortly thereafter.

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It blows my mind that I missed that May 2021 Axios information and that so many of us news junkies gathered here apparently did also. The first thing that leaps to mind is the question of how even a guy dumb enough to seriously ask who owns Greenland and if it's up for sale could possibly miss the immense geopolitical significance of an abrupt US withdrawal of all troops from Somalia, Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, Africa and Germany and try to do it anyway in a fit of pique. Even Trump isn't that stupid and evil. (Is he?) If this isn't clear if circumstantial evidence that Putin has been pulling Trumps strings all along, what is? The second question that frightens the hell out of me is why this information hasn't been mainstream headline news? Was I sleeping through that portion of the Pandemic? Who in government and/or the media has been tamping this down? My god, have I finally been driven to conspiracy theories, or is the ground actually shaking beneath my feet?

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Oct 16, 2022·edited Oct 16, 2022

Trump IS that stupid and evil. Though Putin was also likely pulling his strings.

Remember, Trump, and all authoritarians, love chaos. It opens their door to power.

And yes, we have a huge media problem! The billionaire owners find authoritarian regimes suit them nicely.

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How did we as ordinary Americans EVER let this happen, i.e. let tfg get to be in the highest position of this beautiful country? How did we not stop him after his almost daily unpresidential behavior? His denial to follow protocol, his indecent advertisement of his daughter at official state visits, Ivanka - who sneaked past security clearance to become one of his advisors, having NO political experience whatsoever. How is it possible that the MSM still covers every single heartbeat of this traitor and criminal, and how are people, including LAWYERS (!!!) prepared and ready to create delays, excuses, defenses, and make allowances for a crook who, with all his actions, has clearly shown that he is GUILTY of everything he has been accused of! Nobody else would go to this extent to wind himself out of the claw of law! And he must NOT be above the law!

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Marli, I guess it's because we humans are a little on the lazy side. In retrospect, the basically good people of Nazi Germany were probably asking themselves similar questions in 1940. But I'm with you - I sincerely hope we have the good sense to punish Trump's behavior after all the damage he's inflicted, and particularly, we need to punish his craven enablers.

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Thank goodness!!

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This time there were adults in the room. Can't risk it again.

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I remember much of this, Fox doesn’t

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If only the media would spend time on President Biden's and Secretary Blinken's superb work in bringing NATO countries together and strengthening our relationships with Indo-Pacific countries. It is so refreshing to see U.S. leadership putting together such a comprehensive National Security Strategy with the goal of strengthened democracy around the world for the well-being of all. Freedom is precious and we all need to treasure it and protect it for every person in every community throughout the world. We, the People, all of us this time!

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I respectfully disagree. NATO is the U.S. militarily. We are the main military power that our “ allies” depend. We stand with weakened allies that have all hidden behind our nuclear shield. Call it a one button defense but it may no longer fit in a geopolitical world that is no longer defined by the cold war. Do we and our allies have the fortitude and treasure to fight a non nuclear war with Russia, China and its allies? Can German for one help us? Europe? Britain? Japan? NATO? Will our creditors continue to finance our dreams when they may no longer be our friends? This is the position we find ourselves, like it or not. If our creditors pull in our loans can we make the margin call? We are now in a position both financially and geopolitically where we may just find out.

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David, I would contend, as a global community, we have multiple non-nuclear options capable of restoring deterrence and not compounding a nuclear strike, were one to occur, by answering in kind. Admittedly, the alliance would be substantially stronger if we could bank on China and India (the latter appearing increasingly persuadable) to join.

Said alliance could instate crippling measures that include 1) diplomatic isolation, 2) economic isolation, 3) removing Russia from the international banking system, 4) declining to buy Russian oil and gas, 5) freezing Putin’s Zurich bank accounts, 6) increasing our conventional military support to Ukraine, with both air defenses and weaponry to inactivate Russian military installations, 7) unleashing cyber options that literally could turn Russia dark, and 8) deploying conventional military options capable of destroying the Russian army in a matter of days.

In short, I believe we have every reason to expect the global community to act as rational agents to restore deterrence, were the need to arise, to prevent a first strike from spiraling out of control.

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And you believe Russia will not retaliate and cut off energy to Europe or launch targeted Nuclear strikes? It’s ally, China May sell our debt and move on Taiwan the largest fabricator of chips in the world? Did you know Apple makes 90% of its products in... China. At the same time we are massively in debt and projections are that our debt will only get worse. Our balance sheet has never been worse. Ever. Certainly war would be ugly for all. That said the cards we hold are not as strong as you might think. It’s a further reason both Russia and China are now on the move now. They perceive the West to be weak.

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David, Because I contend we never use nuclear weapons under any circumstances, I stand by the proposals I outlined, whose crippling affect I believe would restore deterrence.

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Good to hear from you, David. I think our strength is in defending democracy, the freedom of people to determine their own destiny, rather than have a bunch of narcissistic autocrats who think they can feed their greed by taking away the rights of the People. I'd like to see more countries adopt a Well Being Index where all legislation and policies of their governments must show how those laws and policies benefit the well being of all their citizens. As you know, I agree with John Adams on the two party system would be/is the worst evil to befall the Constitution. One party's President messes things up and then that Party blames the other party's President the minute he takes office rather than understand it takes time to turn the ship of state around from the abuses of the previous President. R's added a trillion dollars to the debt with their tax cut for the richest corporations and now are blaming the current President for only reducing that debt by $300B in his first two years in office. Let's give him some credit for moving things in the right direction! We are at an inflection point on whether democracy or autocracy will win in the United States and across the world. I'm livid that the Extreme Court is taking away my rights and are embrazoned to take away more from all of us not because they have legitimate arguments but just because they can impose their warped anachronistic view of patriarchy and white supremacy. So, I'm holding the entire GOP accountable for allowing the MAGA Rs to steal the party of Lincoln. I have vowed to not vote for any R at all levels of the upcoming election - local, state and federal offices. And, by the way, I liked President Obama's approach to the nuclear problem by working to control access to Plutonium. Your egalitarian friend hopes you will consider some positive solutions to the problems we clearly have. We, the People, ALL OF US THIS TIME including you, David!

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Well said again.

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I agree. We the people of the United States. Our debt has increased by $3 trillion since Biden took over. Trump was too a crazy spendthrift. Our National debt is $31 Trillion and projections are it will increase by another $4.5 trillion. We cannot afford the crazy we have been sold the last eight years. We cannot afford a World War. https://www.miamiherald.com/news/nation-world/national/article266851596.html

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David , this is a frightening scenario you’re describing. It may we’ll come to pass, but who knows how any of this will play out. Our creditors (many of whom are Chinese, as I think you’ve left unstated but I believe you’re implying) are dependent on the US, as much as we are dependent on them. They don’t want us to default. What will happen if we did default? Global economic chaos and recession would ensue. And how would the creditors recover the amounts owed? Levying on our assets in federal court? You seem to view the world as a two part quantum state: we’re at peace or at war, nothing in between; everything is good with our creditors or they’re all squeezing us.

I may be misreading what you’re saying, but it seems you’re expressing a pessimism that is based on a Manichean outlook. Although you see a possibility that is real and perhaps more probable than I understand, I can’t subscribe to the sense of dread you described in your comment.

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Thank you, Howlin, for clearly underscoring the economic calamity that would ensue were the U.S. to default on its national debt.

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Good points, but give Dems credit for a Herculean effort

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And Cathy is right - they are doing superb work. Secretary Blinken's portrait is on my fridge door, right where Harrison Ford used to be.

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❤️

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Sounds fabulous, but there's one ginormous flaw in that plan. We are so far from truly being the "united" States, that in just over 4 weeks, a majority of Americans who bother to vote can undo all those possible goals. I hope I'm wrong like never before.

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Well, we could all start to throw our hijabs in street fires to begin with,,,if you know what I mean. For one thing civil rights and women's rights will be decimated.

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It is a scary thought and I hope we survive.

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My nightmare, does Joe have the majority or even a sane government at his behest.

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No, Jeri, Joe won’t unless there is a gawwwd damn miracle that occurs in a few weeks. I am sadly not counting on it.

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That was my thought. We are hamstrung by our insane right wing. They view any effort to imrove the lot of anyone besides their “tribe” as something to violently oppose, literally and figuratively.

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Oct 16, 2022·edited Oct 16, 2022

This is largely Ronald Reagan’s fault for doubling down on fossil fuels. We should have shifted to alternative fuels in the 1990s and destroyed the outsized influence of autocracies like Saudi Arabia and Russia.

Think of all the wars we would have avoided.

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100%, As Meese reportedly said, the goal of Reagan republicans was to make his policies outlast his presidency, no matter who was president.

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Meese also said that you wouldn’t be a suspect if you hadn’t committed a crime. He would have fit right in with the last administration.

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👍🏼

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Less charitably, our predicament is the short-sighted fault of liberals not bothering to vote.

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I think that’s more short-term and still a valid point.

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How I wish that were true. We had the highest voter turnout *ever* for the 2020 election - a whopping 2/3. and with post-Roe a likely scenario, only 68.4% of registered women voters showed up - also a record. The GQP can only dream of voter suppression as effective as our self-sabotage. I think I understand why you might think this is a short-term problem, as I too cannot fathom why so many Americans are so disengaged, with so much on the line. So accurately said by others, Republicans can't win without cheating, and Democrats can't win without voting.

https://cawp.rutgers.edu/facts/voters/gender-differences-voter-turnout

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I had to read this twice. There is so much information packed in here. Thank you Heather. It outlines rump’s attempts to suck up to the world’s autocrats without a thought for the cost to anyone, only how it benefits him. We are so fortunate to have President Biden as our leader. So important to vote Democratic this midterm. Our democracy depends on it.

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I had to read it twice too. So lucky to have found this forum. Yes we are very fortunate to have Biden. He was not my choice in the primaries. He has done yeomans work. Thank God he is our president

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Joe Biden is a calm, steady presence in a chaotic country, trying to navigate in a chaotic world. Donald tRump is a toxic presence, who literally endangers everything he touches. Our national situation might improve some if tRump's voice were no longer heard in our land.

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You mean deport Rupert Murdoch, the power behind the chaos.

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Deport him - back to Australia? Thanks - we like him as much as you do.

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Oct 16, 2022·edited Oct 16, 2022

Susan. When people were conflicted on this forum as to Biden’s ability to govern before his election I stated emphatically that he was exactly who we needed at exactly this time in our history. And not to crow, but to drive a point home, I and other supporters were exactly right. The logical pathway now is for the real Democrat lights, the so called independents, to grow a pair and stand up and become who they exactly are. Democrats. We will slaughter the jackals at the polls. Let me say that again. We will slaughter the jackals at the polls. Again and repeat after me this time. We will……

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…slaughter the jackals at the polls.

Unita, Pat. 🗽

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Exactly right about Joe Biden having been the best candidate with his deep knowledge and experience. There were lots of candidates with impressive strengths but he was and still is the total package.

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It does, Karen. They are literally desperate to get control of the Senate by whatever means. And as that manly young thinker Eric has said, it's no longer the Republican Party, it's the ...

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... the Fascist strain in Amerrican polity & policy going back decades, anti-FDR, "America First", pro-Musolini after 1922, overt support for the Third Reich before, during & after WWII, the pro KKK in US, the pro-KKK Drumps in New York & continuing to 2022

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I wish we were as noble as this essay makes us out to be.

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Mark, Seeing that this morning’s LFAA presented a rather bifurcated foreign policy agenda that discriminated between MAGA’s destructive policy interests and the more congenial goals pursued by Democratic leadership, I would be most interested, if time permits, were you to elaborate on your statement. My thanks either way.

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Need no further explanation for me. Been in on the seesaw for decades

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Trump’s ultimate goal was to create chaos so that everything could be blamed on Biden and his administration. In the interim, he helped himself to thousands of classified documents which he more than likely, sold to the Saudis and to Russia. He may have gone so far as talking to Iran. I believe Jared was one of his emissaries. He did, after all, receive a handsome sum of money from the Saudi Prince. Jared said it was for a new business he was starting. A likely story! The new business is a shell to hide laundered money and perhaps our missing documents. These dealings have been going on for quite some time. I mean what was Mnuchin doing in Saudi Arabia in 2018? Oh, he too met with Prince MBS for a handout. The Saudis and Putin’s puppets have infiltrated our Congress and they all (Tulsi Gabbard included) are Republicans. Imagine that!

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So Marlene, I think you and Heather are being extremely generous to Trump on this one. An intent to spread chaos for the incoming administration is certainly one possible motive, but there is another one, that is far most sinister in its implications.

An alternate explanation would be one in which Putin demanded that Trump try to do this, and that Trump tried to comply because of all of the stuff Putin has on him. A fair analysis of the real estate dealings of the Trump Organization strongly suggests that the primary business of the company was, and possibly still is, the laundering of money for the Russian oligarchs. There may be other things as well, such as video of his trysts (a generous word that) in Russian and other east European hotels.

The guy has acted like Putin's stooge in every way possible. I think we are fools to not put that right out there for consideration as plausible explanation for all of his actions that have helped Russian interests at the expense of the democracies of the world. Admittedly, Trump is a mean vindictive guy who goes out of his way to harm others for what he perceives as his own benefit, however minor that benefit might be. But, he may also be treasonous as well. Where is the space between Trump and Aaron Burr?

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Craig, I gathered what you have expressed from HCR's Letter today. It was a callout for us to recognize how the world is on brink destabilization and among the players is Trump as Putin's puppet.

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Craig, just to be clear, I will never EVER be nice about Trump! I agree with you that he is scoundrel and not even devious about it, especially after his little coup he cooked up. He is almost identical to his pilot, Putin, in his demeanor and hatefulness. They are two bros from different mos.

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Useful idiot is the term. Cultivated by the KGB and exploited by Putin. Follow the money. Read Catherine Belton’s Putins People

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Thank you for this point, Craig. We need an investigation into ТЯцм₽'s scheming with Putin.

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Zip

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So glad Tulsi has rebranded herself. Who didn’t know her sentiments??!

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Saudi Arabia can be brought to heel in 30 days. Pass a law that removes OPEC's exemption from US antit-trust laws. Announce an embargo on spare parts for their Army, Navy and air Force. Announce the withdrawal of US troops and then initiate the move. Then announce the defense of Saudi Arabia is no longer a US interest. Tell MBS to ask Putin to arm him and defend him and his collection of Seventh Century camel fornicators. We won't have to abrogate any defense treaties since we have never had a treaty with Saudi Arabia about anything ever.

Hopefully the Shia who do all the work in the country will then rise and kill every Wahhabi desert nomad barbarian in the country.

One correction about Belarus: the noise about Putin wanting Belarus to join he war is just that. Noise. The Belarusian army is close to worthless, nothing but a force for domestic oppression. And the Russians have no troops to move west into Belarus to start a second Kyiv offensive. It's just noise to try and put the Ukrainians off-balance.

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I really wish you'd run for office, TC. But I could understand why you would not wish to--I have often wondered why anyone would. It seems that if you are a decent person, you, your family and friends are attacked.

I think we all appreciate your expert analysis on the military issues.

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Have get my old ward book out from Chicago days to see how we can vote absentee for TC from our respective summer homes. 😎

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I actually Laughed Out Loud.

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I would be such a failure at doing that. I had a hard time holding my tongue when all I was was a campaign worker. :-)

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I think we need more Democrats to do a Dark Brandon and call the other group (semi) fascists. You certainly exhibit great ways with words.

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As Michael Steele pointed out this morning on Jonathan Capehart's show, Democrats keep bringing "good government" arguments to knife fights, and other races in blue states where Republicans are getting close are showing that abortion is not so big because voters think all is OK in states Republicans don't control, so voter turnout in blue states may not be as good as expected.

Democrats need to ditch the Earth Shoes for steel-toed cowboy boots (good for kicking), pour out the Chardonnay and ditch the Volvos.

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👋 👋 👋 👋 👋 👋 👋 for your suggestion about Saudi Arabia.

Thanks for reiterating the point about Belarus.

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Love your knowledge about specifics, they are the devil in the details.

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Well TC, while I’m wondering what the U.S. can do to about Saudi Arabia, you jump in with the options. Thank you.

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Sizzlin’ griddle, TC.

🗽

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But would that present the opening that China wants to arm Saudi’s Arabia?

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With their lack of microchips now, they're going to have a hard time keeping their own armed forces in shape.

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Has anyone thought about how Israel could play a constructive role in this Saudi betrayal of the U.S.? (I don't have an answer, but power and threat of force obtains there.)

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They could promise not to funnel parts to the Saudis from what they get from us for the IDF.

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Wow. What extraordinary times we live in!

And - The J6 Committee absolutely nailed DJT. Now comes the big test for the Constitution. Can the good actors protect it? Will it hold? Will the experiment succeed? Can it defeat anti-democratic forces?

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The Biden Administration's policies are for the most part indicative of a coming to consensus through reasoned analysis of empirical evidence. Even in the context of rapidly changing circumstances, honoring of the American constitution and human decency are kept in play. And even with the reality that it is necessary to sit at the table with very bad actors.

By contrast, Republicans embrace irrationality, espouse dirty tricks, and engender chaos. Elevating media star Donald Trump center stage and professional Catholic Leonard Leo behind the scenes, in the entire right wing apparatus there is barely a pretense - and only a pretense - of regular order and the rule of law. Rogue orders and injustice are the business of the day. Because We Can is the operating principal. Apocalypse now is in play. It is why we must do all we can to keep a Democratic majority in our national and state governments.

The position of the Russian Federation and the Russian people, as was the position of Nazi Germany and the German people, is an example of what happens when an electorate gives over its responsibilities and power to perverse obsessions and delusions personified as 'strong men' and their enablers - who represent people's worst impulses 'wrapped in a flag and waving a cross.'

"A 1936 edition of The Christian Century notes: James Waterman Wise, Jr., in a recent address here before the liberal John Reed club said that [media mogul] Hearst and [and professional Catholic] Coughlin are the two chief exponents of fascism in America. If fascism comes, he added, it will not be identified with any “shirt” movement, nor with an “insignia,” but it will probably be “wrapped up in the American flag and heralded as a plea for liberty and preservation of the constitution.”

"in 1976, Geisel [Dr. Seuss] wrote a note responding to an interview request from Dartmouth College, saying, “I believed the USA would go down the drain if we listened to the America-First-isms of Charles Lindbergh and Senators Wheeler and Nye, and the rotten rot that the Fascist priest Father Coughlin was spewing out on radio."

https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/sinclair-lewis-on-fascism/

https://www.nytimes.com/1983/11/30/obituaries/james-w-wise-81-author-and-lecturer-warned-of-the-nazis.html

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

https://www.theatlantic.com/entertainment/archive/2017/01/dr-seuss-protest-icon/515031/

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lin, if you haven't done so already, please listen to Rachel Maddow's first two Ultra podcasts. Fr. Coughlin is heavily featured in the second one.

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"professional Catholic Leonard Leo"

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Love it, so many Pharisees. Isn’t that the same??

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Bravo for all that. Thanks.

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Oct 16, 2022·edited Oct 16, 2022

Heather’s highlighting of how Bone Spur Donald, knowing that he lost to Biden, sought precipitously to withdraw our military from Germany (a NATO linchpin), Iraq, and Afghanistan, underscores his narcissistic disregard for responsible governing.

Indeed, his on again, off again threat to withdraw the United States from NATO could have been prelude to Putin’s successful invasion and brutal takeover of Ukraine. In stunning contrast, President Biden spearheaded a remarkable coalition and massive armaments program that has preserved Ukrainian independence and shattered Trump’s bromance buddy Putin’s draconian attempt to blackmail the West and establish Russian dominance over much of Eastern Europe.

With all of Trump’s presidential and ex-presidential calumnies, I find this attempted military bug out attempt to greatly weaken America’s global military commitments ranks among the most treacherous and self serving of all.

I hope that hundreds of retired generals and admirals, in a bipartisan communique, highlight their professional opinion of the implications of our former Commander in Chief’s personal pique.

‘Veterans for Trump’ indeed.

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Indeed, I thought veterans would not be fooled by a coward of his ilk. Wrong was I…

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Oct 17, 2022·edited Oct 17, 2022

This veteran, Jeri, was just a draftee from the deep red state of Montana. Bathed in the, blood of our soldiers in battle. Confused yes. Hold the line for freedom yes. Leadership none. Run home to the wilderness and try to make it all make sense yes. There is no question in this veteran’s heart and most of those I served with as to how badly we would like to see a military end to Trump et all. Firing squad yes.

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Keith, I suspect that this may be the most treacherous overt thing that fpotus did; his theft of documents and his presumed distribution of the information therein may well be the most treacherous of all.

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