657 Comments
Apr 12Liked by Robert Reich

"He deprived voters of information that might have affected their votes." the flipside of that is providing disinformation that is affecting peoples votes. Why is that not equally illegal? The Robo call that the Republicans sent out with the message that the 2020 election was massively fraudulent? Why are all these lies allowed to continue when it's known that if you repeat lies enough people start believing them. Isn't that also election interference?

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Apr 12Liked by Robert Reich

Great point, Karen, which brings up a point that infuriates both my husband and me. When companies advertise a tube of toothpaste, they can only make verified claims about its benefits and effectiveness (puffery aside). But there are no such rules about political advertising. We certainly wish there were.

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Bill, I think we’ve been duped into believing “truth in advertising” is enforced. During the Obama administration Kellogg was required to remove the “heart healthy” claim from its advertising. Trump gets elected and the claim is back. Cascade advertises using your dishwasher nightly to save water/energy claiming dishwashers use only “4 gallons per cycle” while omitting there are two cycles (wash and rinse) and require electricity. And who doesn’t rinse their dishes before loading them into the dishwasher? SECRET has developed a ‘body spray’ to convince women we STINK in more places (our crotch) than our armpits, claiming 4 out of 5 gynecologists endorse the product! What reputable woman’s doctor would recommend using such a product? And I’ll bet it’s very expensive to investigate those false claims, and, when proved and removed, what are the penalties to deter the behavior? I could name many others. My point is it’s up to us to keep from being bamboozled by politicians and advertisers.

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I was an art director in advertising many years ago. Before anything went past the concept stage it went directly to the lawyers and they went over every word, every visual, and point size in the ad with a fine tooth comb.

We are now living in a time of magical thinking. Say something loud enough or often enough and it’s suddenly true. The internet was Pandora’s box. Trump was the monster lurking inside of it.

Instead of regulating women’s reproductive rights Congress should be regulating the tsunami of lies put forth by politicians and Fox News.

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Yes. I worked in product development and brand maintenance for a home product manufacturer. We did a lot of testing for product claims to be used in advertising. We attended photo and video shoots for advertising to make sure any new ideas from the creatives could be supported by laboratory data. We also tested competitor’s products to assure they could support any advertising claims they made. Manufacturers of competing products had legal departments ready to contest any claims that could not be supported by data. The glass cleaner market alone is worth over 3 BILLION per year, so this isn’t about petty squabbles over chump change.

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It’s not magical thinking, it’s an adage: “If you keep saying the way things are, eventually your word becomes law.”

If a voting machine company can win a lawsuit against a lying “news network” are we prohibited from suing the co-conspirators in the “big lie?” Can we continue to bankrupt trump and Giuliani and all the other co-conspirators by suing them? Of course we could if we could just find a law firm willing to take the case.

Meanwhile, I have to wonder what’s really going on? Are they trying to do other nefarious deeds while the news is totally absorbed with Roe v Wade and trump? Is there a plot to overturn our government that is alleged by some to have been going on since George H W? I can’t help wondering what the next surprise will be. I know, I know… just sayin’, we got blindsided once which means ‘shame on them’ but twice, shame on us.

BTW, I thought Lawrence O’Donnell’s editorial last night on MSNBC was particularly compelling.

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Fox losing the suit to Dominion, hasn't changed Fox at all. They consider 3/4 of a billion dollars as the cost of doing business., and since they settled, Fox as part of the settlement, could and probably did, have it written into the settlement that the penalty was tax deductible, including lawyer fees and court costs.

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Sadly, that’s the undisputed truth.

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Being an older person, I can remember Wonder Bread's slogan, "Builds strong bodies 12 ways." The FTC asked them to enumerate the 12 ways. They couldn't do it, so they had to stop using the slogan. Honestly, I think I would have locked the marketing department in a room for the weekend, bought them pizza, and had them come up with something.

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I’m 75 and remember that ad very well. Back then were there many options to Wonder Bread? Makes one “wonder” why they felt the need to falsely advertise. 😉

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Because they actually had competition back then. That's why they had to compare their product to "Brand X". Remember that? Then, suddenly, they started comparing it to actual brand names. Why? Because with the conglomerates all merged together so all the brands are under their umbrella. They're comparing one of their products to another. That way, whichever you buy, the money is still going into their pockets. It's a con.

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It is the same with so many. Take TV and Radio. I did some research and most stations and corporations are owned, ultimately by Black Rock, Vanguard, First State, and they own each other.

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I have a feeling that somebody in the dim, remote past came up with 12 ways that may even have made sense at the time.

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this is my thinking also!

The "12 ways" campaign is based in reality

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There used to be a product called FDS, Feminine Deodorant Spray. Turns out doctors recommended AGAINST that product as it damaged vaginal pH. These new products are the same old crap in a new package. The public is being lied to.

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I recall using FDS. Thanks for the information..

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Thank you for that additional information, Jenn.

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I agree! Is anything "private" anymore?

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Yep. The Secret commercial is really offensive. But it's only out there because that new Lume product is being relentlessly flogged on every possible outlet. Escalating bamboozlement.

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I live in Southern California, drought country. The department of water and power monitors water usage and they recommend using a dishwasher as opposed to hand washing dishes. We are far beyond the “if customers use more water we will make more money” stage, so that particular bit of advice is more than likely true.

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Thank you for your correct English: "infuriates both my husband and me."

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Thanks, Sandra! Twelve years of Catholic school made me the grammar police. :-)

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Yes, we language cops have to stay busy. Mine came from my public school Jewish jr. high English teacher plus 20 years a university publications editor.

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You come by it honestly!

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Dear Robert Reich and Bill,

Bill "brings up a point that infuriates both my husband and me..."... when a state college recommends all students join a cult....

Isn't it a violation of Freedom of Religion when a state college recommends all students join a cult?

Isn't it a violation of Freedom of Religion when a state licenses cultists?

IMHO, Any debate over gullibility should include the clear limit of Freedom of Religion:

https://feelinggood.com/therapist-error-6-joining-a-school-of-psychotherapy/

"Question:

I am a psychology graduate student and I need some advice. One of my professors urged all the students in our class to find the school of therapy that ‘fit us.’ How can I select the school of therapy that would provide the best fit for me? And what is considered to be the best school of psychotherapy?” --Harold

Dr. David’s Answer:

Thanks for your question, Harold. These are important issues! Right now there are hundreds of schools of psychotherapy in the United States, and more evolve almost on a weekly basis. We’ve got Adlerian Therapy, Psychodynamic Therapy, Psychoanalytic Therapy, Jungian Therapy, Humanistic Therapy, Existential Therapy, Interpersonal and Transpersonal Therapy, Supportive – Emotive Therapy, Rogerian therapy, Behavior Therapy, ACT, CBT, DBT, EMDR, REBT, TFT, Motivational Interviewing, and more.

It can be very appealing to join one of these schools of therapy, and there are some definite advantages. Once you’ve joined a school of therapy, it will provide you with a sense of security and confidence and give you a sense of belonging. You can tell your colleagues and patients that you are an “EMDR therapist” or a “psychodynamic therapist,” or whatever. We all want something to believe in, and we all like and benefit from the support of like-minded colleagues. But here’s my recommendation, Harold—don’t sign up for any of them.

Why would I take this position? After all, many of the schools of therapy have provided helpful perspectives on human nature along with a number of useful treatment techniques. I have personally been involved in the development and popularization of one of the most widely practiced and researched forms of therapy in the world—cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). However, if you’ve attended any of my workshops, you know that I’m not a fan of any school of therapy for many reasons, such as:

The schools of therapy tend to compete like cults, or religions, fostering competitive feelings and unwarranted feelings of superiority. In addition, many have narcissistic founders who demand strong allegiance to their theories and treatment methods, rather than encouraging objective, systematic research.Nearly all schools of therapy promote unproven theories about the causes of psychological problems like depression and anxiety.Most make fairly bold and unjustified claims about their effectiveness. In fact, the effects of practically every school of therapy can be shown to be modest at best, and barely better than treatment with a placebo, if at all.The practitioners of all the schools of therapy are usually convinced that their therapeutic techniques have highly specific treatment effects, whereas their effectiveness in most cases derives from non-specific effects that are common to all schools of therapy, such as the beneficial effects of the therapeutic relationship, or the patient’s belief that the therapy will help.Most schools of therapy tend to treat all disorders with the same techniques, as if they had one cure-all or panacea all for all emotional problems.I’m going to expand on some of these problems, so if you’re interested you can click here to read more. I want you to know that I share these concerns with apprehension. I don’t want to sound arrogant or overly critical of colleagues. My goal is not to insist that my own point of view is the “right” one, but simply to stir up some critical thinking and dialogue. I also want to emphasize the enormous contributions that most schools of therapy have made, and I want to encourage young practitioners to study them and learn from them. But when it comes time to sign on the dotted line, and become a follower, that’s where I draw the line.

I also want to emphasize that I sometimes hold views that turn out to be wrong. So feel free to criticize me, to comment on this article and to share you own point of view. I have no doubt that if we can all check our egos at the door, we can learn a lot from each other. But of course, that’s not always an easy thing to do.

The Schools of Therapy Have a Lot in Common with Cults

This first topic is perhaps the most sensitive, and I was sorely tempted to delete this section. But I’ll take a stab at it and hope for the best.

You might wonder what in the world schools of psychotherapy have in common with cults like Jim Jones and his Peoples Temple in Guyana, Marshall Applewhite and his Heavens’ Gate cult in San Diego, or David Koresh and his ‎Branch Davidians in Waco Texas. If you look up the definitions of a cult online, you’ll see they have a number of common features, including: 1. A grandiose leader who insists that his or her followers believe things that simply aren’t true. 2. A non-scientific treatment or ritual claimed by the followers to have exceptional healing powers. 3. Potentially harmful effects on the followers. 4. A belief that the cult has discovered some type of absolute “truth” and intense feelings of rivalry with competing cults."

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Don't sweat it folks, Republicans are doing smart, strategic stuff like sponsoring the HOOHAA* act.

*H.R.6192 - Hands Off Our Home Appliances Act

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Right! I mean, we can't go around making efficiency standards for appliances. The horror! The injustice!

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😂 Perfect!

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Wow! Thank you for this deep dive in to the world of psychology and it’s connection to cult thinking and behavior. I’m going to chew on this for a while!

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In 2018 there were plans to kill 6 million Americans by suicide. The top Cognitive Behavioral scientist found:"... one of the most common causes of suicide--the therapist... "

Why are journalists denying these plans for"Annual American Holocausts?"

Since 18 countries have criminalized Holocaust Denial... maybe we should have them extradited...along with their"beloved Quack Shrink Freedom of Religion Violating Cultists?"😁😁😁

Maybe a few days in jail with their beloved cultist would strengthen our faith in Freedom of Religion and the the press will appreciate their special protection when their freedom is taken away ( especially their Freedom of the Press)?😁😁😁

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The scientific method is the only reliable "rock" on which to build a house.

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Power: " If you look up the definitions of a cult online, you’ll see they have a number of common features, including: 1. A grandiose leader who insists that his or her followers believe things that simply aren’t true. 2. A non-scientific treatment or ritual claimed by the followers to have exceptional healing powers. 3. Potentially harmful effects on the followers. 4. A belief that the cult has discovered some type of absolute “truth” and intense feelings of rivalry with competing cults."

That defines every religion known to man.

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Not true of Unitarian-Universalists or Buddhists.

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True; the only claims at the conclusion of political ads is a candidates' endorsement as "my name is....and I approve this message." Like who cares? How about political ads in which the candidate voices the facts concerning what he/she will actually do in office?

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I think that was to prevent people faking ads for politicians, putting words in their mouths. And a candidate doesn't know what he or she will do in office -- they know what they will TRY to do.

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Speaking of toothpaste have you noticed how tubes of toothpaste are about two thirds the size of what they used to be?

When I was in school in a marketing class we were given an example of a marketing guy who told a toothpaste company that he could increase their sales by 30%. How? By making the tube opening 30% larger. It worked. Another way of manipulating the masses.

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Trump can’t afford to lose in November. The Big Lie is nothing compared to what he and the Republicans will do to win in November. He’s already trying to change the way electoral votes are counted in Nebraska.

Trump is a threat to democracy... we've seen it with our own eyes and ears.

This "isn't it past your jail time?" T will NEVER get old: t.co/mtZXE00EFj

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Actually, the Electoral College is a threat to our democracy. It gave us "Duh-bya" Bush and 45, both of whom lost the "popular" vote. Popular = Democracy.

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The Electoria College should be eliminated! They elect the President, and not the voters!

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And let’s not forget that un democratic filibuster.

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The Supreme Court installed W Bush

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Yes, but long before that the federal government allowed Florida and other racist states to manipulate the electoral process.

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I’m referring specifically to the comment about W Bush. We all know electoral college was put in place for racist reasons.

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True, but only made possible by Ralph Nader, who took votes from Gore.

We are headed down the same road with RFK Jr and Cornell West who are closet Trump Humpers, by default if not by design.

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Gore achieved popular win AND electoral win. The Supreme Court stepped in and stopped the re-count. It was later followed through by Washington Post & a FL newspaper investigative team to confirm this. He won. Period. Our mistake was not storming the streets when Rescumlicons pulled this.

RFK Jr will not pull votes from Democrats. Something put out by the right wingers. RFK Jr is as batshit crazy as trump. Doesn’t believe in vaccinations! Zero draw from Dems. Cornell West simply does not have enough support but it’s unfortunate to have anyone use the ticket the way West is…as a protest vote. That's an ignorant thing for him to do when we are facing right wing news, and fascism-creep already advancing in the US.

What does it take for people to understand the stakes. This is one time when Democrats need to be like Republicans in terms of pulling together.

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We know after the fact, that Gore achieved the popular vote, but at the time of the recount Bush was ahead, and the recount was showing that Gore was ahead. The electoral vote count, depended on the popular vote, but SCOTUS jumping in and stopping it, gave he electoral vote to Bush.

Now I agree with your comment, that our mistake was not storming the streets, but Dem's unlike Republicans are always submissive and law abiding, and that is whey we will not lose

All third party votes will draw votes away from Biden, and give Trump the win.. that is a fact.

RFKjr is not going to draw away any Trump or Trump leaning voters, he and Cornell West will draw away fence sitters, the uninformed (which is the majority of non committed voters)

Jill Stein sucked up enough independents in swing states to give Trump a win.

If the two parties were, as they were when I first voted in 1960, two sides of the same coin, it would not make a difference, but they aren't, not any more.

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Also the founders did not think popular = democracy. They believed that the minority should not rule the minority

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Yes the electoral college. We should just allow New York and California decide our elections. As we know Michigan is actually a red state, but because of Grand Rapids and Detroit it’s a blue state. Texas would be a blue state if it was not so large. Thank goodness it is a large state

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Comically, he seems to be unaware that a SITTING PRESIDENT can EASILY BE BEHIND BARS!

There are no laws preventing a prisoner from being president . . . which I imagine will lead to hilarious consequences when he has to grab a pocket his first 10 minutes in the Georgian State prison. (If you do not get the reference, stronger prisoners in the show "Prison Break" would have a pet that would hold onto their pocket 24/7. That would be dumdum donny!)

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Forgive me for asking a stupid question. If a sitting president can be behind bars, for example, Trump could be elected while in prison, what does that mean? If he's convicted and then elected what the hell happens then? Do we have to have a new amendment to prevent this happening again or is it simply impossible?

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Yes he could be convicted and elected. I doubt anyone knows just how that would work out. https://www.cnn.com/politics/live-news/trump-indictment-election-interference-08-04-23/h_10d9105f86c13e298c6d00ae2cd1df74

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In the terrible event this happened, congress would meet and overturn the election or the person elected to vice president would serve. Which leads me to another point, the vice president takes over if the president can not serve, why do the presidential candidates chose their running mate. Should not the people do that!!!

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Under the original system, each member of the Electoral College voted for two persons for president, with the candidate receiving the most electoral votes (and at least a majority) becoming president and the candidate receiving the second highest number of votes becoming vice president.

The 12th Amendment changed that in 1804, where they were elected together.

Lincoln a Republican chose Andrew Johnson, a Democrat, to run on a unity ticket.

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Daniel H Laemmerhirt : but whare would the "lifetime security detail " be in this scenario!?

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They would be right outside of his cell, sharing all of the things he does, including using the toilet, and carrying his dirty diapers away. Oh, those lucky secret servicemen.

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Tough duty!

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If they have to

carry his diapers, they deserve hazardous duty pay!

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Good point. Will security have to sit next to him in the cell?

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Apr 12·edited Apr 12

Lower bunk for security detail. Rotating watch.

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Mar a lago would be reclassified as a federal prison.

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Maybe name It after Donald tRUMP!

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He would have to be on the lower bunk: otherwise, how would he get up top?

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I guess the "great athlete" would be Incapable of climbing a ladder!

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States have no jurisdiction over federal offices.

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The state of New York can and will dole out punishment to Trump. He can get up to four years in prison, but with 34 counts against him, will that be per count or all inclusive?

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Do you mean a live pet like gerbil?

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Apr 12·edited Apr 12

It's that stupid 1A problem. It didn't complete the thought. It should have another paragraph that says that the government can't stop you from saying whatever you want, but if you lie to get elected, or lie to the public while in office, consequences are not only allowed, but required, including getting booted from office and being disqualified from running again.

We do have some exceptions to 1A (threats, inciting violence, slander, libel, etc) so why do we have to accept lying by politicians? Someone who lies to get into office is probably (almost certainly) not going to act in the interest of the people.

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George Santos

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Bob Menendez

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Republicans. Need I say more?

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Democrats need I say more

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Exactly. We also have digital footage of tRump calling up a murderous mob and sending them with a home-made gallows to the Capitol Building to HANG PENCE on 1/6/21 after giving out false information regarding the actual outcome of the 2020 election. The Constitution either EXISTS or it does not. tRump doesn't get to continue his criminal activities any more than any OTHER criminal living in the USA.

I suppose if the number of House of Representative members hadn't been frozen back in 1929 the Electoral College would work as it SHOULD and average American Citizens could have benefitted from BETTER representation for the past century. Especially after adding Alaska and Hawaii as states during the interim. Oh well, keeping the House membership frozen @ 435 helps Oligarchs, (both foreign and domestic), to keep the amount of bribery money they have to dish out to buy Presidential elections down to a minimum - doesn't it. Must be nice for Oligarchs who support authoritarian dictatorship around the world to be too rich to tax, too rich to have to follow the Rule of Law and too rich to care about ANY consequences for their criminal actions.

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They’ll get around to bringing that up in a few years from now…,

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Here in Baghdad By the Sea, corruption and voter fraud BY REPUBLICANS is finally coming to light.

"For the first time, the lead consultant to Florida Senate Republicans has admitted to hiring a disgraced ex-senator and approving a dirty trick to recruit a third-party candidate to siphon votes from a South Florida Democrat. The scheme succeeded. In 2020, Jose Javier Rodriguez, the Democrat targeted by the GOP and by Florida Power & Light, lost by 32 votes to Ileana Garcia, the founder of Latinas for Trump. A third-party candidate who didn’t campaign and who shared the same last name as Rodriguez drew over 6,000 votes."

Read more at: https://www.miamiherald.com/news/local/community/miami-dade/article287575310.html#storylink=cpy

https://www.fieldteam6.org/actions

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The abortion debacle is backfiring on trumpliCons too and they are attempting to backpedal. The dominoes are leaning left & ready to fall. But the battle against the right wing media continues. It is helped along by letting trump spew dangerous lies daily to his armed mafia.

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Gag orders are the biggest GAG ever!

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Rethuglicans.

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After the damage is done!

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And we have NO recourse!!

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The "BeLuved UnEds" being particularly susceptible . . ..

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oops, forgot . . He wuz Just Kidding . . .

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History is no mystery. Authoritarian Governments and Religions have both learned throughout the centuries that ignorant people are easier to govern. Why? Because Fascism never sleeps. And suspiciously enough, the last time I looked, less than 50% of average Americans read above the 6th grade level today I suppose unregulated digital media has contributed to the dumbing down of America. What would YOU say?

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Shooter drills and Teachers oughta carry . . .ain't helping . . Nor is book banning . ..

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What's happened to every single library of any conquered nation since the invention of writing? They're destroyed. Burnt to a crisp. These days, when books are printed by increasingly monopolized publishing companies, are they being printed on paper for individual sales and sent to libraries for Reference or are they just sold and/or streamed on digital media? If there's no original for reference, who says that digital books can't be re-written at any moment by just going in and changing the original text to suit any oligarch's fancy after successfully conquering and obliterating yet another Democracy? So much for real information, essential knowledge and a populace organizing a rebellion against an authoritarian takeover to regain their FREEDOM.

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IMO the "Cold War" and it's "duck and cover drills" are responsible for the rise of the right. Propaganda equated communism to socialism, and socialism to anti American values, and American values to hearth, home and religion, and the preachers, priests and press did the rest.

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Indeed. Imagine growing up with Ground Zero dreams . .and books, movies, like On The Beach and Alas Babylon. I don't have to imagine. And you're right, the Enemy wasn't just Communism, it was Godless Communism! . . (tho as one grows older, the realization dawns that Religion is a bit of an Opiate for many . . .

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I know all too well. I was raised on that bilge, and a yearly subscription to the Readers Digest, courtesy my mothers god mother.

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I wonder what the definition of "Beloved UnEds" is? Must be the Uneducated...susceptibility! Butt: there are things the Stable' genius' does not know, too. See if he finds these things out.

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The Reliably Mag Hat Unread . .. Even tho himself a Class Valedictorian! . . .

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The blind leads the blinder!

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We need legislation making deliberate disinfo about an election issue a felony. But, republicans would

challenge it in court.

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Good point, but the irony may be that to Evangelicals sex matters more than elections. The Bible does not mention the US Constitution.

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Because the law doesn't apply to Republicans.

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It is up to journalists to call out BS every time - like real bull poop if spread it will fertilize and promote growth.

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Mind blooms...

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It is illegal, and that is why that i ok ne is being pursued as well. What we should be upset about is that occurred in 2022, 6 years after this case, and those individuals are already facing convictions.

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I agree with you, Karen

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The lies in the Republican robocalls may be unethical, but they are protected free speech and consequently not illegal.

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Sadly

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Apr 12Liked by Robert Reich

Too bad Comey didn't reveal this when he felt "obligated" to make a big deal about Clinton's e-mails (which turned out to be a nothing-burger).

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That "nothing burger" flipped PA, MI & WI and WE lost. base

Expand the base and we win. https://www.fieldteam6.org/actions

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Exactly! I’m still burning about Comeys stunt. I just read that there were a lot of voters who hadn’t decided who they were going to vote for until 7days before the election, Timing is everything. Just imagine how much better off the country would be if trump had never been elected.

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Just imagine how much better off the country would be if trump had never been born.

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Just imagine what the country would be like if Bush and Cheney didn't get elected... another case of Republican election fraud. Probably no 911 no Iraq Afghanistan war and our lives would be completely different today for the better

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One of the saddest realities of all time … What would life have been like if LBJ had signed a Peace Treaty in Paris in 1968 and ENDED the Vietnam war! And Nixon was never elected, and no Watergate…and MAYBE our scientists would have begun to address the changing climate sooner, even … Oh, that’s is a sad thing, to think of the “what ifs”….

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Apr 12·edited Apr 12

Pat: my mind just played an unlikely cartoon. In it, there was a Perry Mason Moment, where an honest Supreme Court Justice, who can see where things are going, decided to 'rat out' the corrupt justices and tell the world what she heard the corrupt 6 say , incriminating them. The End.

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OR....JFK had lived, de-escalated in Vietnam, as he'd planned to do, and....perhaps this country would have been set on a better course. Especially if Bobby and MLK had also survived. Imagine! But then, John didn't make it, either....

OK, I 'm just depressing myself.

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Yes! What is interesting to me, and this applies to myself too, is how wonderful some things that "might have been" can look retrospectively.

Maybe call them "forks in the road" that were rightly, or wrongly, taken?

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And. BTW, no tRump either. Also it everyone thinks that after he loses in November he will just go away quietly... Yeah right! Unless of course he is in jail as he should be.

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Tom Walsh : yes, this country Is being killed slowly by the "Republicans" : 'Death by a thousand cuts"!

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🥺. And that message needs to go out, too. So much to get done!!

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I often think, as you said, of how "our lives would be completely different today for the better" if in the 2000 election Al Gore had become president. Less war, better environment. More people alive today to breathe cleaner air. That election outcome was, in my opinion, a national tragedy involving the Supreme Court.

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Well Tom ,

You certainly identified the real porn stars -

Cheney & Bush .

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Apr 12·edited Apr 12

Don't forget the golden showers of tfg.

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I am afraid that if it hadn't been Trump, it would have been some other demagogue who wasn't quite so much an idiot.

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You may be right, and I tend to agree. A demagogue seems to be what many American people seem to want right now. Why, I do not know.

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H.L. Mencken said, "For every complex human problem, there is a solution that is neat, simple and wrong." Give such an answer to desperate people and they will bite. That is one of the most despicable things about Trump: the false hope that he gave to people who had lost their manufacturing jobs in the Mahoning Valley and elsewhere.

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No thinking or decision making required. Someone will take care of all that for them.

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Disgruntled, disillusioned losers with low self-esteem need a pushy boss to show them the way because they can't find it themselves.

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BUT, Trump’s celebrity and theatricality give him a huge boost with the less-than-aware electorate … We have a horrid cult of celebrity where elections are concerned in this country.

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A demagogue is someone who tells people what they want to hear, who voices their anger and fans their fears.

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Poor education system produces poor thinkers.

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Just imagine Trump back in power.

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Very painful thought. I worry for this nation and our Allies if TFG wins.

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Think about how much better the country would be without the last Republican presidents, i.e. Reagan, W, tRump.

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There's that time machine mention again. I don't suppose it would do any good to say "Hurry up!" ?

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Imagine if Al Gore who was fully warning us of climate change had been elected. I doubt he would have let these semi monopolies form in part because they are so bad for the environment as well as workers and customers. We need to change our election rules to make it a true people’s choice.

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Don't forget why Gore lost: in the minds of many he was "tainted" by his association with Clinton. "Vote your conscience," a noted environmentalist advised them. So they voted for Nader....

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I can’t imagine that because it makes me cry.

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And think how good our country would have been under Clinton's leadership. She would have made a great president. Instead, we got that lying POS who worked to destroy our country.

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Oh, that is one painful daydream!! Both Trump and Dubya … OMG!

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Pat : it's a serial nightmare!

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This is how emotions rule the world: Comey was investigating Trump at the time, and he was afraid that he might be perceived as partial towards Clinton, so he reopened the preposterous case about the emails. People voted for Trump because they were angry at Clinton. Fear and anger decided the outcome of the election. People who don't use their brains get punished.

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Even Trump would have been better off if Trump had never run for President!

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Daniel, While I appreciate you repeatedly calling for expanding the base and posting the Field Team 6 site, I’m deeply concerned we’re not paying enough attention to the fact Biden is hemorrhaging African American support. In battleground states, for example, polling currently shows that 30% of black males and 11% of black females (mostly young voters) don’t support the current Administration.

In my view, Biden’s messaging is not landing as squarely as he would want because he’s been reluctant to acknowledge the swath of African Americans who have voted for generations for the Democratic Party and have not seen substantial changes taking place in their communities. I would add I understand that these folks would be receptive to plain speaking that not only looked forward but that amplified what’s going to be different in a way they expressly could relate.

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That's based on misreporting...as usual. "...he’s been reluctant to acknowledge the swath of African Americans" is BS.

. https://democrats.org/who-we-are/who-we-serve/african-americans/

Also check out :Working America" which conducts large-scale listening projects in key states across the country. Front Porch Focus Group reports are the result of thousands of conversations with voters, asked about everything from how they voted in in the past to how they feel about the economic future of their community. Thanks to our unique blend of data analysis and anecdotes from in-person conversations, these reports offer the breadth of polling alongside the depth of a focus group., https://workingamerica.org/research/

It's also a non sequitur. When we register Democrats, we expand the base and all down ballot candidates, many who happen to be black, benefit .FT6 has software to counter arguments like that. Lat night I took the course on texting -- please check it out.

Field Team 6 is a machine that mints Democrats. Our dollars are the fuel. Those new voters will win key races for school boards, state legislatures, the US House, Senate and White House – pass voting rights and abortion rights – and crush Trump fascism once and for all.

I'm also involved with Forgotten Democrats, Focus for Democracy, etc.

At $1 per new voter, our support can literally swing elections.

For 2024, the goal is to raise $3M to deliver 3M new Democrats and independents – in the battlegrounds where we need them the most.

YOUR HELP COULD WIN IT ALL

Please partner with us today to save the democracy, and

make as meaningful a contribution as you can. And let’s win!

Need more info or a Zoom call? Contact: contributions@fieldteam6.org

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Daniel, I would note I’ve already signed on with Field Team 6. As for your references, I will check them out. Still, I would urge we not discount the findings, on which I based my comment, of Trymaine Lee and Charles Coleman, Jr. as reported in their recent special “Black Men in America: Road to 2024.”

Additionally, given you raised the issue of democracy, I encourage we bear in mind that for those for whom democracy has not actually worked or those who do not believe that democracy has protected them, losing it without discovering what’s going to be different in its preservation does not matter to them in the same way as it does for you and me.

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I saw it. It sucked.

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If these men really think they will benefit from trump they are truly ….. Their mothers need to exercise some guidance.

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I saw it also. Ridiculous.

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On this matter, I suppose we have no choice but to agree to disagree.

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Daniel: People vote perceptions, not fact, And it is a fact that young blacks, especially males, take for granted the struggles and history of their elders.

I have seen focus groups on MSNBC of young blacks discuss how they are disappointed with Democrats, because here has no been progress or enough progress in their complaints, and like the Muslims they are going to use the election to punish Democrats and teach them a lesson.

Problem being is that if Trump wins, there will be no 2028 opportunity, Trump will be running for a third time, and our elections will be as phony as Hungary and Russia's.

Blacks can expect an erosion or set back in civil rights, and Muslims deported back to Iran and the Mid east. The cult has no use for either.

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Those MSNBC programs are arbitrary and aberrant. The whole concept of "focus groups" is suspicious.

I have training in picking juries. Some schools have an entire department devoted to it. I didn't use it in decision making but BS is evident.

I made cold calls for Biden in 2020. The callers weren't trained how to be persuasive. Check this out. https://playbook.galvanizeaction.org/

Also see workingman above.

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I know, focus groups are used to influence opinions,when the results are broadcast over the air and in the media...the bandwagon effect is very effective among fence sitters, the ignorant and unengaged.

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I do not know exactly how many black voters are leaving the Democratic Party and turning to Trump ( Trump ???) but I do know that many young people at my publicly funded college,with students of every color and nationality,identify with the Palestinians and protest loudly. Will they vote for Trump ? Seethe in protest ? Solving this humanitarian crisis may be beyond the talents of one man but at least President Biden is trying and I hope people understand that. All the other candidates are just mouthing off.

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Joan, I imagine the students from your college who stand for Palestinian rights, if they don’t vote for Biden, are more likely to sit out the election or vote for a third-party candidate than vote for Trump.

However, considering any vote not cast for Biden is a vote for Trump, I haven’t hesitated to write regularly to the Biden Administration conveying my view that Netanyahu will continue to defy the U.S. unless the Biden Administration ceases to provide both military aid for this war and diplomatic protection at the UN, the ICJ (International Court of Justice), and other international forums.

Additionally, while I welcome recent minor shifts, the over-arching policy has not changed. The U.S. not only continues to fast-track massive amounts of weapons to Israel but also has failed fully to use its leverage to insist that aid gets in through ground routes. I understand a plane can carry 2 to 3 tons of aid while a single truck (hundreds of which still are waiting at the border) can carry 20 tons each.

Frankly, I have concerns about an Administration claiming it wants to reestablish America’s moral leadership in the world and uphold the rule of law while, at the same time, failing to support U.S. laws against providing weapons to governments that commit gross violations of human rights and that block U.S. humanitarian aid.

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You are so right, Barbara. I will still vote for Biden, but in addition to not utilizing our leverage to force Bibi's hand, it does leave a bitter taste in my mouth knowing that such restraint is being used while children (and others) are dying a painful death of starvation. Yes, the US has always been Israel's staunchest allie, but when it's leadership is intent on destroying an entire population, that policy must be reevaluated. There is no excuse for sending more weapons when Netanyahu is blatantly ignoring internationally established rules of conduct and when we can see the destruction and suffering of the Gazans with our own two eyes. We have the power to change that, and Biden should not allow our decades of support to Israel to be more important than dealing with the realities of their genocidal conduct.

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Lisa, Thank you for your thoughtful reply. I simply would add, given the threat of MAGA here in the States, I fear for all of us if Biden doesn’t act promptly to condition all military aid on an immediate and permanent ceasefire.

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I generally agree with you, but I have heard from an old friend who is now living in Israel, and he says that if the US cut off what they are sending to Israel, it wouldn't make any difference, because Israel can make their own stuff now.

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Lisa, you are assuming without evidence that Israeli leadership is bent on eliminating the entire population of Gaza. That my dear is the propaganda line of HAMAS. Interesting how you resist right wing propaganda and home an swallow, whole cloth, right wing Muslim propaganda..

Stop and think about it, HAMAS and Bibi's coalition are two right wing ideologies fighting it out.

One would have to be cold hearted not to feel for the Gazan children that are suffering and who have died, but there is a solution, and the solution is the same as the blame? HAMAS, they brought this upon themselves and the people whom they claim to represent, but don't, Because HAMAS is engaged in a real genocidal war against the Jews, it is in their charter and the words of their leadership, the goal is the obliteration of the state of Israel, meaning the Jews. Also the motto of "Free Palestine from the river (Jordan) to the sea (Mediterranean). Pull up a map and see what lies between the river and the sea..IOW genocide of the Jews, and the Jews have had their experience with that already.

Every child's death, every woman's death in Gaza can be laid square in the lap of HAMAS. They started it and are using civilians and hostages as human shields.

I would be surprised if there were any hostages left alive. HAMAS already set up front that they execute the hostages if Israel retaliates.

HAMAS are cowards, they won't forgeit their own lives, but do so with total aplomb the people whom they supposedly govern, claiming them to be martyrs, And in Islam martyrs are not mourned but celebrated.

HAMAS declared that they are a nation of martyr's and will keep coming back again and again, so what chances of any kind of peace with people like that.

For HAMAS there will be no peace until the region is Juden Frei.. in a word genocide.

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Barbara Jo, you could not be more right. You have explained where so very many of us live this very day. I was 8 when Israel was created, living in the Bronx I was very cognizant of the Holocaust, and I have been a supporter of Israel ever since. But today I am conflicted - the Hamas attack was dreadful but the Israeli response is more and more troubling with every day. Have I been deluding myself all this time ?

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Joan, Regrettably, the establishment of the state of Israel was akin to the quintessential conflict between right and right—the rights of one group to a homeland and the rights of the other to oppose dispossession.

Fast-forwarding to today, for me there is no question that Israel’s retaliatory response to Hamas’s savage October 7th attack, as barbaric as it was, nonetheless has been disproportional beyond measure.

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I trust Biden in this situation. I think there are a lot of factors we are not considering, but Biden is. I am guessing, but I suspect one factor is the munitions manufacturers. Another is that my Israeli friend tells me there is no leverage there anymore -- Israel can do without our stuff. There is a long-standing relationship with Israel where we send our less than perfect stuff to them and they figure out how to fix it. (It may be that we need them more than they need us?) Another thing is that Netanyahu is Israel's Trump -- he is as unreasonable and bloodthirsty and cruel as Trump, just a bit more sophisticated. He is far right wing. Remember Trump saying that when someone hits you, you hit them back but much harder? Netanyahu is probably on the same page with that heavy retribution philosophy. Biden may be having trouble with that, like most people just can't imagine a sociopath -- someone with no conscience at all --and how they can think like that. I'm sure Biden thinks that if he cuts off all communication with Netanyahu, it would be worse, not better. You can't influence him if you aren't talking to him.

And I say; revenge is the curse of humankind.

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Kim, In my view, the issue is a matter of complicity, not revenge. To clarify, when the ICJ (International Court of Justice) delivered its interregnum report, it portrayed Israel’s actions in Gaza as “plausible genocide.” Accordingly, it is not unreasonable to conclude, given Netanyahu’s persistent defiance of the U.S., that our continuing unconditionally to provide U.S. military aid to Israel is akin to our complicity in the genocide.

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The MAGAs are useless in that regard. They don't seem to care at all, about Palestinians or anyone, except maybe themselves. But they don't get that the direction their fearless leader is taking them is perilous! No freedom there!

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Joan the campus idiots who will vote for Trump, are idiots. The brain is not fully developed until around age 25, and this is proof. If Trump wins because of them, they will rue the day. He has promised to deport Muslims, even 2nd Generation Muslims, and with a Trump congress and judiciary he can damn well do as he pleases.

These fools actually believe that they can set things aright in 2028.

Michigan and Pennsylvania are key swing states, well toss in Wisconsin, but Michigan Muslims can swing the state with 15 electoral votes, Pennsylvania with Muslim and black votes in Philadelphia is 19 electoral votes, Wisconsin which has a large Muslim population is 10 electoral votes.

There are only five swing states in 2023, AZ, NV, MI, PA, WI. There are 235 electoral votes in red and red leaning states. MI and PA have 34, if they go Trump because of Muslims and Blacks, then the election goes to Congress and each state has one vote, and there are more red states than blue states and Trump becomes President.

If Trump is elected, 2024 will be the last truly free democratic election, and the blame goes to the Muslims and Blacks, though they won't accept it, they will try to blame Biden because he backed Israel.

However the blame game will be a waste of time and energy, because as Bugs always said in Looney Tunes,, That's all Folks. Game over.

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If reason could prevail over gut feelings.....

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Barbara, I have the same concerns. If Trump wins, it in part will be because of them, and in larger part because of Muslims, and both will wake up on Day 1 with a massive hangover, thinking "WTF did I do". The Islamic Ummah is pissed because Biden supported Israel, that is nothing compared to what Trump and the fascist right will be doing to Muslims and people of color.

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William, First, my apologies for my delayed response. As for my reply, despite the vast distinctions between Biden’s lapses and the massive atrocities MAGA fascists would unleash on Muslims and people of color, I maintain we must continue to press the current Administration to be more self-critical of its messaging to help ensure its reelection.

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I totally agree Barbara. The "establishment", the beltway insiders, keep insisting that it is all about the economy, because the economy is what is important to the donor class, and the donor class is fellated by the RNC and DNC.

However if you take a long hard look at the voter class, you might notice that foremost in their mind is the culture war. The rust belt, aka swing states are both, Bill Clinton with his NAFTA and GAAT created the rust belt, and they haven't forgot, and the demagogues of the right moved in and married the culture war to unemployment,

Big AG, RR monopolies, the petro chemical cabal, and financial instittions have decimated rural America, but the Dem's get the blame, and again demagogic preachers and publishers have married their plight to the Democrats via the culture war.

Democrat messaging sucks because they are afraid of alienating the donors, whereas the Republicans terrorize the donors into emptying their wallets

The Republicans use the carrot and stick, effectively

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My only consolation to a Trump win will be that these idiots will suffer under the White Christian Nationalism that will be ushered in.

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Ken, Given the costs of a Trump presidency for all of us both at home and abroad, the thought of Trump returning to the White House terrifies me. Hence the reason for doing everything possible to contributing to his (and to MAGA’s) crushing defeat.

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Agreed

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Ken, Due to constraints beyond my control, this is the first time I had an opportunity to note your reply.

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Comey was one of a several examples of how the Reds have abused the Judicial Department for political purpose, with the recent special prosecutor's report echoing the problem, and Trump's plans to use the Department for a Stalinist purge of his enemies highlighting the urgency. We need to craft legislation to specifically outlaw such behavior, and when the Reds prevent its passage, cast the election in terms of freedom and despotism in order to flip the House.

The Judicial Act of 1870 placing the Judiciary under the Executive Branch resulted from a distrust of the Judiciary that resulted, in part, from the Dred Scott decision that took away the civil rights of Blacks that a more recent Supreme Court gave to corporations (which recent Supreme Court we are now finding to be tainted with corruption).

The 1870 Judicial Act was probably unconstitutional. The legislative fix could help to fix that as well, and also include creating the position of the Grand Foreman of the Juries to lead the Judicial Branch of Government as the only person directly elected by all of the American people on 2 years after a Presidential election.

But the problem of how to fight Putin’s “House Divided” strategy remains.

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And she lost the election. Comey went against the election rules bringing the Clinton emails forward right before the election. Did he get into trouble? No

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Talk about election interference!!

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Maureen : Gee, I wonder why he felt "obligated?" Who would put That in his mind?!

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Can't possibly imagine.

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Apr 12Liked by Robert Reich

“The mainstream media keeps referring to Trump’s upcoming trial as based on “charges that he covered up a sex scandal.” That’s exactly how Trump wants it characterized. So it looks like the district attorney is tarring Trump with having had an extramarital affair with a porn star — a form of character assassination, not a crime.”

Agreed! Trump is in big trouble. It’s not just trying to coverup a payment to a porn star for political purposes, it’s the way in which he did so that was ultimately illegal.

Two points clarify this fact:

First, he set up limited liability companies to hide and avoid paying taxes on the payout; writing them off as legal expenses, when clearly they were payments to silence his victims; a clear case of tax fraud.

Secondly, Stormy Daniel’s own attorney is on the record and under oath, testifying that Trump had an agreement signed before the Access Hollywood tape became public, and missed the deadline to make payments to Daniel’s in order to keep her silent.

And only after the tape became public did Trump decide to actually pay her in the “Catch and Kill” scandal. This is a clear FEC election violation and illegal; revealing his true intent of using the payout for his political survival; not to hide the affair from his wife.

Oh, and by the way, has it dawned on anyone that Trump slept with a porn star? He cheated on all his wive’s, including Melania when she was pregnant. And this is the family values guy, who according to evangelicals is the next messiah? UGH!!!!!!!!!!

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I know, Robert!! It absolutely boggles the mind!! How and why does this man keep getting away with all of this???

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Apr 12·edited Apr 12

Peggy ; because he 'salted' his sycophants here and there throughout government, where they remain to work for him! Even in the 'Supreme' Court!

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He keeps calling the judges’ bluffs on the gag orders.

And what’s with the MSM’s “bothsidesism”? That’s not journalism. Seems there’s more truth in the National Enquirer of old.

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Lee, at this point, you might as well read and believe The National Enquirer!! I don't believe anything media has to say about anything!!! I go to 1440 for my news and follow Professor Reich on his substack. There are very few true journalist of integrity that I would listen to. Unfortunately, Walter Cronkite and Huntley and Brinkley are dead now.

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Agreed!…:)

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FOX—24/7

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G.P. Baltimore : "Butt it's only entertainment!".

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You have the details correct. Family values what a dumb phrase.

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Yes, 'Hush' money! : how quaint!

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Robert, I would note, that while the hypocrisy wreaks, for those whose issues largely have been marginalized, who now perceive said issues elevated to front and center, we can expect efforts at rationalizing and blocking Trump’s detestable behaviors to continue unabated. Hence, the reason for remaining laser-focused on gettable votes, and as Reich states, on driving home the point that the election interference allegations that will be tried next week mark the first in a trend that culminate in January 6th and the Georgia racketeering case.

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Well said…:)

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Robert, I appreciate the affirming reply, particularly from you, whose comments I closely follow.

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Thank you…:)

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I think 2 things are going on with the media, late night hosts, etc. using the phrase "hush money" case. The 1st comes down to sexing up the case reference (esp. media) to get the clicks. The 2nd, to the perception that illegal bookkeeping practices committed to keep something likely damaging in the campaign in the 11th hour before the election would be too wordy, too complex, and sadly, but very likely, too "who cares".

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As a commenter on another substack noted: "Democracy dies in the darkness, why is the paper (NYT) turning off the lights?

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For me, right now, it just does not seem to matter that the little orange man committed criminal acts and is allowed to walk free AND run for the highest office in our land!!! What has happened to my country? Why are we giving oxygen to this tired, ridiculous man? Why won't our laws which I have respected my entire life apply to him? It is ludicrous to act like this is all normal. It is NOT to me!!! He broke laws!! He happily skates away from all of them using the courts against everyone!!! I am so damn sick of this crap!! I want this orange menace to be dealt with the way every other citizen is dealt with. If you break the law, you are tried, convicted and put in jail. Why is that so hard with this man?? It is so very aggravating!! I wouldn't vote for him for any office at all let alone the president!! Has our country gone mad? America, vote blue so that we can get our country back on track. Otherwise, we will hand it over to the likes of trump and have to learn to live in a dictatorship!!! Please, vote Blue!!!

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Because the US Republican Party supports Trump.

The Republican Party roadmap, Project 2025,

https://www.nytimes.com/2024/04/10/opinion/trump-donors-project-2025.html

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Apr 12Liked by Robert Reich

Maryk, I have studied Project 2025 and it chilled me to the bone!! I urge everyone I talk to to read it and then decide on who to vote for!!

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If implemented, it will be the last vote anyone makes.

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I know!! That's what terrifies me!!!

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Help get out the vote

Register Democrats.

https://www.fieldteam6.org/

Everyone's doing it!

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I am, Maryk!! Vote Blue, America!!

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Project 2025 is a direct copy of the plan that Viktor Orban used to take over the Hungarian government in 2010.

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Hungary must be an amnesiac nation - first invaded by Hitler, then invaded by Stalin. Maybe they are used to living under a dictator.

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As Robert Reich has written prior, Trumpty is the icing on the cake of US Oligarchy. Watch. theCon.tv To view the free 5 part series on how he erupted from US oligarchal conditions. The role of the 2008 mortgage scandal, targeting of lower income folks fraudulently to steal their equity via corrupt mortgages using banks as pass through to Wall Street packaging these fraudulent, often stolen monies into investments for Unions and cities to buy, then failure of the paper loans resulting in folks expected pensions halved. The film, The Big Short was a piece of it. This film series captures far more of the Fraud through deregulation, desupervision then, decriminalization of the Corrupt bankers, wall , politicians etc. It is important and heartbreaking. We have seen dribs and drabs over decades but this series conveys the entirety.

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Then they were "invaded" by refugees fleeing from wars, and then Orban told them that they were being "invaded" by the Jew Soros. The Republicans are telling us that we are being invaded by "vermin" with the encouragement of "the elites" who rule over us.

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Apr 12·edited Apr 12

Peggy Freeman ; Why are those three 'justices' he stacked the Court with allowed to remain on the court when they clearly allowed him to stay on the ballot? They not only ignored the 14th amendment section 3, but they disabled it so that the sycophants he planted throughout government could not be removed from their seats in Congress, and, of course, the Supreme Court itself! Those 'Justices' disqualified themselves by not upholding the Constitution's separation of church and state! Reversing Roe was a religious 'law' they made! They removed the remedy given to US to keep the disqualified from getting into office, or being removed from office for violations. On MSNBC' Deadline Whitehouse, this week, another 'expert' said that "lifetime tenure ' allowed the Supreme Court judges to get away with things. There is no such thing in the Constitution allowing them lifetime 'tenure'. Something vague about "good behavior"? I think they violated that! More than once! I wish there was a 'ratings' , or feedback page to post opinions about the 'shows' on MSNBC ; the 'better' network'! What a Farce!

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I know, Laurie, nothing seems to be working the way it is supposed to!! It is like the MAGAs have somehow managed to pull us into their alternate world and we are stuck there!! I am so worried about the future and feel so helpless right now!!!

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the big money is achieving their goals. It would be a miracle to see that turned around!

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Yes, Peggy ; Laws on the book are clearly ignored, and there does not seem to be a snowball's chance in hell to enforce them, or even notice them! the constitution is a cruel joke!

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