1. Trump Supporters
Flooded Me With Anti-Semitic Death
Threats, But I Won't Be
2. Will Hillary Clinton Flip-Flop Again on TPP After Election
Day? We Ask Her Adviser Joseph
3. The Next President Will Likely Appoint 4 Supreme
4. Parade of Speakers at DNC Paint Trump as Unfit for
Presidency in Every Way
5. Greenwald Explains What Out-of-Touch Media Doesn't
Get About Trump, Russia, and
This is a Nederlog of Friday, July 29, 2016.
is a crisis log. There are 5 items with 5 dotted links: Item
1 is about quite crude anti-semitism that the sister of Sarah
Silverman was exposed to, after criticizing Trump; item
2 is about Stiglitz about Trump and the TPP; item 3
is about the - important - fact that the next president probably will
nominate four Supreme Court judges; item 4 is about
quite a few speakers at the DNC who did strongly criticize Trump (and I
selected Bloomberg from 5 more); and item 5 is
about Glenn Greenwald, with whom I generally tend to agree, but who is too
kind to the many stupid and ignorant Americans who may vote Trump:
their stupidity and ignorance does play an important role - and
maybe I can say so because I have always been poorer
than the poorest Dutch, but I am quite capable of understanding
Trump and his dangers.
Supporters Flooded Me With Anti-Semitic Death Threats, But I Won't Be
first item today is by Laura Silverman
(<-Wikipedia) on The Huffington Post:
This starts as follows - and Laura Silverman
is the sister of Sarah Silverman
wasn’t ignorant. I knew the atrocities of the past, knew Jews were
still targets of many, but I never experienced it. I grew up in a
wealthy suburb of Atlanta. There were three to five Jewish kids in all
of my public school classes, so not only did I never experience
anti-Semitism, but I also never experienced the unsettling feeling of
being “the other.”
grew up surrounded by a thriving and supportive community of Jews who
mixed in without any discord with the religious majorities of our city.
Literally, the most disconcerting thing to happen to me up until
yesterday was when a girl in my dorm at the University of Georgia asked
completely innocently if I “spoke Jewish.” She wasn’t being
hateful — she just didn’t know. She was embarrassed and apologetic when
I said the language was called Hebrew.
say. Actually, while I agree with Silverman that the girl at the University of Georgia was quite ignorant, it is also
true that there is Yiddish, which
originated in the 9th Century from what was then Middle High German,
while "[in] the late 19th and into the 20th century the language was
more commonly called "Jewish", especially in non-Jewish contexts" (as the Wikipedia says). (For more see the Wikipedia.)
Silverman was quite lucky in that she did "never
experience anti- Semitism" - that is, until a
few weeks ago, when she criticized Trump in some Tweets, which were met
with extremely racistic replies from Trump supporters.
like tweets; I don't like Twitter; and I don't like
social media, and I will not reproduce tweets on my site, but
they were very racist, and if you want to check them out, use
the above dotted link.
is Laura Silverman's reply (in part):
There is considerably more in the
article, which ends as follows:
first instinct was terror: block, report, put account on private. But
after a few minutes, I remembered the words of the man who passed away
last night, Holocaust Survivor & Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Elie
Wiesel: “Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the
victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented.”
I understand why many have to put their
accounts on private. It’s triggering. Terrifying. Decades ago, our
families were slaughtered by the millions for their religion, and now
that rhetoric is coming back.
As to the "lot of people" who "say Trump isn’t
really racist": I don't believe
them, for (i) very many people have been saying, for a very
long time also, that he is a racist, while (ii) those who
affirm he "isn’t really racist" pretend a knowledge of his motives and character
they really do not have.
A lot of
people say Trump isn’t
A lot of people say he’s just doing it to get votes. A lot of people
don’t understand that’s just as dangerous — he’s created a toxic
atmosphere where death threats from white supremacists are the new norm.
So I ask
again — I plead again — take a step back and look at what you’re voting
for before you accidentally vote against yourself.
And there is this, by Ariana Huffington, that is printed below most or
all articles in the Huffington Post that are about Trump, and that I like
because it seems quite true to me, and because it's gutsy:
In case you believe that "Trump isn’t
really racist", you should check out
the above "racist" link. Racism is deeply despicable, and I repeat
the closing words of Laura Silverman, because quite a few still
don't seem to get it:
note: Donald Trump regularly incites political violence and
is a serial liar, rampant xenophobe, racist, misogynist and birther who has repeatedly
pledged to ban all Muslims ― 1.6 billion members of an entire religion
― from entering the U.S.
Incidentally, here is a statement by someone
else (not in the article, but relevant), about real politics:
So I ask
again — I
plead again — take a step back and look at what you’re voting for
before you accidentally vote against yourself.
And I agree that it is necessary to
vote for the unpalatable Clinton in order to avoid the horribly
"Politics is the art of choosing between
the disastrous and the unpalatable."
-- John Kenneth Galbraith
Will Hillary Clinton Flip-Flop Again on TPP After Election Day? We Ask
Her Adviser Joseph Stiglitz
The second item is by Amy Goodman on Democracy Now!:
This starts as follows:
As President Obama addressed the
Democratic National Convention last night, delegates held up signs
denouncing the sweeping trade deal called the Trans-Pacific
Partnership. Obama has been pushing through the TPP,
which encompasses 12 Pacific Rim nations, including the United States,
and 40 percent of the world’s economy. Both Hillary Clinton and Donald
Trump have come out opposing the deal amid a wave of public protest by
those who say it benefits corporations at the expense of health and
environmental regulations. This week, Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe
told Politico that he believes Hillary Clinton would support the TPP if she were elected president. The trade
agreement will be one of the main economic issues the incoming
president will have to address. Others include unprecedented levels of
inequality, mounting student debt and financial sector reforms. We
speak with Joseph Stiglitz, Nobel Prize-winning economist, Columbia
University professor and chief economist for the Roosevelt Institute.
That was the introduction. Here is Amy
Goodman asking a good question:
I am much against the TTP, the TTIP
and the TISA, and this is good news.
AMY GOODMAN: It’s great to have you with us.
So, you know, I was there on the convention floor yesterday, each day,
hundreds of anti-TPP signs. You advise
Hillary Clinton. What is her position on the TPP?
STIGLITZ: She’s against
it. And she’s against bringing it up to a vote in the lame-duck
session, which was allegedly part of the Obama strategy, you know, that
they’re not going to present it to Congress until they—the idea was not
to do it until the lame-duck. Everybody has come out against the
lame-duck. And so, I think it’s dead for Obama’s administration.
AMY GOODMAN: And what will that mean for the
JOSEPH STIGLITZ: I think it makes it very clear
that if there is ever to be a TPP, it has to
be totally renegotiated.
More precisely, it is good news that Obama's strategy to push
TTP seems to have failed, but I feel less sure that Hillary Clinton is really
against the TTP, and I don't know whether to believe Stiglitz
on that point,
not so much because I doubt Stiglitz's convictions, but because I am
certain that (i) Hillary Clinton will say almost anything that
will help her gain
the presidency, and "forget" most of these things as soon as she has
gained her end, while (ii) she has been for the TTP for
a long time.
I agree with all of that, but Stiglitz
doesn't quite answer Goodman's questions (and indeed I don't
know anything about the personal relations between
Clinton and Stiglitz).
AMY GOODMAN: You advise Hillary Clinton. What
is the best way to hold her accountable? Since you don’t agree on a
number of issues, what does she respond to?
JOSEPH STIGLITZ: Well, I think, partly, she’s a
policy wonk. And so, she does respond to arguments. And, you know, over
the last couple years, I’ve been trying to make strong arguments about
why TPP is bad, not only in terms of the
trade issues, the GDP, but access to health,
regulation. I’ve been trying to say it’s not an issue of just dealing
with the shadow banking system. It’s not an issue of just dealing with
the "too big to fail" banks, the too big to regulate, the too big—we’ve
got to do both.
Here is the last bit I'll quote from this article, about Trump's
chances of winning:
STIGLITZ: He could win.
And it’s not just the polls. Remember, Bush did not get a majority of
votes; Gore got many more votes than Bush. But the way our electoral
system works is that you can become the president even with a minority
of votes. So, when we say could Trump be the president, he doesn’t even
have to win the majority of votes. He could win in the Electoral
College. So, yes, I am very worried. And one of the things that I’ve
been writing recently is, he’s already done an enormous amount of
damage to the United States.
Stiglitz is quite right, and there are more
ways in which Trump could win, e.g. by falsifying the votes in key
states, which is also quite possible, as I have pointed out
several times in Nederlog.
3. The Next President Will Likely
Appoint 4 Supreme Court Justices: Which President Do You Want Picking
The third item is by David Morris on AlterNet:
This has a subtitle that is worth quoting,
simply because it is quite true (bold in the orginal):
This election is all about the
Supreme Court that will shape our lives for the next 30 years.
And the article starts as follows (and is very
well worth reading in full):
Yes, indeed. Also, Supreme Court judges do
tend to remain Supreme Court judges for some 25 years, which
shows that the subtitle is correct.
Many progressives disagree with Hillary
Clinton on a number of issues, in some cases intensely. But there is
one overarching reason we should be vigorously supporting her election:
The future of the Supreme Court is at stake.
We know the numbers. The death of Scalia
split the Supreme Court between four conservative justices appointed by
Republican presidents (Roberts, Alito, Thomas and Kennedy) and four
liberal justices appointed by Democratic presidents (Ginsburg, Breyer,
Kagan and Sotomayor). The Republican Senate, in an unprecedented
stance, has refused to call a vote on President Obama’s nominee to
During the next four years, the new
president will likely nominate not only Scalia’s replacement but also
an additional 3 new justices. Since 1971, the average age of
retirement for a Supreme Court justice has been just under 79 years.
Ginsburg is 83, Kennedy is 80, and Breyer will be 78 in mid-August.
Here is some about the role of the Supreme Court:
The Supreme Court can enable or
disable our work. In the last decade the justices have made it much
harder to challenge wealth and power, to nurture the weak and assist
the poor, to extend social justice to minorities, to reduce violence,
stop discrimination, and defend the right to vote.
Which is to say that in the last decade
generally the conservative judges have outvoted the others.
There is this on Citizens United (which was a ridiculous
decision by the Supreme Court):
There is much talk about the need
to reverse Citizens United, but that can’t be done through Congress.
Only a constitutional amendment or a Supreme Court reversal can. The
chances of the former are infinitesimal. If Hillary Clinton wins the
chances of the latter are quite good.
Next, there is a lot more that I leave to
your interests, but all of it demonstrates quite convincingly how important
the Supreme Court is.
The article ends as follows:
In this election, removing the
Supreme Court as a key obstacle in the way of achieving a fair and just
future should be the goal that spurs our activism and our ballot choice.
Yes, I agree - and even if you
hate Hillary Clinton like the plague, when it is the case that voters
now have to do real politics - and:
"Politics is the art of choosing between
the disastrous and the unpalatable."
-- John Kenneth Galbraith
- they should vote for Clinton,
because voting for Trump is likely to upset the next 25 to 30 years,
if indeed a Trumpian presidency does not imply the destruction of the
USA - as it well may, for he is mad and irresponsible.
And as to that last point, there is the following item, that shows I am
far from alone in thinking these things:
Parade of Speakers at DNC, From Billionaire Bloomberg to Ex-CIA
Director, Paint Trump as Unfit for Presidency in Every Way
This starts as follows:
The fourth item
today is by Steven Rosenfeld on AlterNet:
A parade of speakers at the
Democratic Convention painted a devastating picture of Donald Trump as
the most unqualified, inexperienced and unpredictable nominee in
anyone’s memory, urging Americans—including independents—to vote for
Hillary Clinton or face dire consequences.
To start with, Michael Bloomberg is far
richer than Donald Trump (who claims to be a billionaire, but refuses
to hand over his taxes to the public), for Bloomberg owns $46 billion
dollars, and is the eighth richest person in the world (and the sixth
in the USA). Also, he made his fortune from nothing: he did not
have a father who started him on a million dollars.
The most unexpected and strongest critiques
came from Michael Bloomberg, the former New York City mayor and
self-made billionaire, who took the stage and explained why “it is
imperative we elect Hillary Clinton as the next president of the United
States,” and the former CIA director and secretary of defense Leon
Panetta, who said Trump was not stable enough to be anywhere near the
helm of military power.
Here is some of Bloomberg's criticism:
Bloomberg dismantled Trump’s
record as a successful businessman.
He did mean what he said, at least. And
Bloomberg also said this:
“Throughout his career, Trump has
left behind a well-documented record of bankruptcies, thousands of
lawsuits, angry shareholders, and contractors who feel cheated, and
disillusioned customers who feel ripped off. Trump says he wants to run
the nation like he's run his business. God help us,” he said. “I am a
New Yorker and I know a con when I see one… The richest thing about
Donald Trump is his hypocrisy."
Bloomberg's critique of Trump was unprecedented thus far in the
campaign—the specter of another billionaire who himself flirted with an
independent run for the White House in 2016 discrediting the candidate
of the major party that has long been associated with business.
“I say to my fellow independents,
your votes matter now,” Bloomberg concluded. “I am asking you to join
with me, not out of party loyalty… let’s elect a sane, competent person
Quite so. As I see the difference
between Trump and Clinton in somewhat similar terms: I think both
are bad (with which Bloomberg may not agree),
though indeed Trump is far worse, but I quite agree
that one major difference between Clinton and Trump is that Hillary
Clinton is both sane and competent, and Donald Trump is neither
sane nor competent.
There is considerably more in the article, for it also discusses Leon
Panetta's and Barack Obama's contributions, but I don't like them and
won't review them (though both are strongly against Trump), but you can
read them in the article, which is recommended.
Explains What Out-of-Touch Media Doesn't Get About Trump, Russia, and
The fifth and last
today is by Deirdre Fulton on Common Dreams:
This starts as follows:
Donald Trump poses "extreme
dangers" to the United States and the world, journalist and co-founding
editor of The Intercept Glenn Greenwald says in a
new interview published at Slate.
I did read the interview at Slate, which is
well worth reading, but I will not quote from it because I
can't copy it (as with the Guardian), at least not without trouble that I am not
willing to indulge in.
Here is one quote on Common Dreams from that interview, and the speaker
is Glenn Greenwald:
One of the things that is
bothering me and bothered me about the Brexit debate, and is bothering
me a huge amount about the Trump debate, is that there is zero elite
reckoning with their own responsibility in creating the situation that
led to both Brexit and Trump and then the broader collapse of elite
authority. The reason why Brexit resonated and Trump resonated isn’t
that people are too stupid to understand the arguments. The reason they
resonated is that people have been so fucked by the prevailing order in
such deep and fundamental and enduring ways that they can't imagine
that anything is worse than preservation of the status quo. You have
this huge portion of the populace in both the U.K. and the U.S. that is
so angry and so helpless that they view exploding things without any
idea of what the resulting debris is going to be to be preferable to
having things continue, and the people they view as having done this to
them to continue in power. That is a really serious and dangerous and
not completely invalid perception that a lot of people who spend their
days scorning Trump and his supporters or Brexit played a great deal in
Hm. I don't quite agree, and I can point out
precisely where I disagree:
The reason why Brexit resonated
and Trump resonated isn’t that people are too stupid to understand the
arguments. The reason they resonated is that people have been so fucked
by the prevailing order in such deep and fundamental and enduring ways
that they can't imagine that anything is worse than preservation of the
I'm sorry, but I have never in my 66
years earned as much as the legal minimum income in Holland, for either
I worked only part time in order to study, or I got a study loan which
was less than the dole which is less than the legal minimum income, or
I got dole (from which I had to repay debts), and when at long last I
got a minimum pension I still received no more than 96% of the
minimum pension because I had lived for two years in Norway.
But I am quite capable of understanding Trump and Brexit; I
also got one of the best psychology M.A.'s ever awarded and a
very good philosophy B.A. after which my right to take the M.A. was
denied to me (as the only person in Holland this happened to
since the Nazis were beaten), all without following
almost any lectures, since I was simply too ill for that, and
for these reasons I say that I am quite convinced that most low
income low education persons I have heard or read both have
been "fucked by the prevailing order" and often are too stupid and ignorant to see
that very much they agree to in fact are plain propaganda,
plain lies or
that they could have seen through if they were more intelligent
and more knowledgeable.
And since I also had a very poor very proletarian education
in which I did meet a whole lot of very poor proletarians, I
think I am quite justified in saying what I think.
Finally, you can think what you please, but I think
are very real and very dangerous; I will keep saying
that till the end of my life; and at present most of my worries
about Trump are less about Trump than about the talents of
the American population who may be so stupid and ignorant
that they cannot see through the propaganda and the lies that deceive them.