1. The New Slave Revolt
Unleashes at Debate, Tells Clinton She'll "Be in
Jail" If He Wins
3. Sex, Lies and America’s Deplorable Democracy
4. In Second Debate, Donald Trump Showcases His Dark
This is a Nederlog of Monday, October 10, 2016.
is a crisis log with 4 items and 4 dotted links: Item 1
is about the latest column by Chris Hedges, which is about the -
extremely unfair - American prison system: I like it (with some
criticisms); item 2 is about the Clinton - Trump
debate and makes clear that ini the last debate Trump said he will imprison
Hillary Clinton if he wins: Trump is insane; item 3 is one of extremely
pieces I have seen on this election and these "debates"; while item 4 is an example of a (considerably more rare)
more or less rational response.
Meanwhile, I have given up criticizing Donald Trump, and merely
repeat what I think for seven months now, and as a psychologist: Trump is insane. I am not going to debate the points an
insane person makes. I merely say what is my honest
opinion: Trump is insane. And it would be major folly to let
him win the presidency.
And there is an earlier file of today: Autobio 1992: Woning St. Antonies- breestr, Verhuizing, Jolanda Onredelijk, Landsmeer that is part of my Dutch autobiography.
part, for the moment --
In case you visit my
Dutch site: I do not know, but it may be you need
to click/reload twice or more
to see any changes I have made. This certainly held for
possible this was caused by the fact that I am also writing it from my
In any case, I am now (again) updating
the opening of my site with the last day it was updated.
(And I am very sorry if you have to click/reload several times
last update: It is not what I wish, nor how it was. 
C. In case you visit my Danish site: It now
works again (!), but I do not know how long it will keep working.
I am very sorry, and none of it is due to me. I
am simply doing the same things as I did for 20 or for 12 years, that
also went well for 20 or for 12 years.
I will keep this introduction until I get three successive days (!!!)
in which both providers work correctly. I have not seen that
for many months now.
1. The New Slave Revolt
The first item today is Chris Hedges on Truthdig:
This starts as follows:
A nationwide prison work stoppage and
hunger strike, begun on Sept. 9, the 45th anniversary of the Attica
uprising, have seen over 20,000 prisoners in about 30 prisons do what
we on the outside should do—refuse to cooperate. “We will not only
demand the end to prison slavery, we will end it ourselves by ceasing
to be slaves,” prisoners of the Free Alabama Movement, the Free Ohio
Movement and the IWW Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee wrote
in a communique.
This round of prison strikes—there will
be more—has had little outside support and press coverage. There have
been few protests outside prison walls. Prison authorities—unlike
1971 Attica uprising when the press was allowed into the yard to
interview the rebellious prisoners—have shut out a compliant media.
They have identified strike leaders and placed them in isolation. Whole
prisons in states such as Texas were put on lockdown on the eve of the
strike. It is hard to know how many prisoners are still on strike, just
as it is hard to know how many stopped work or started to fast on Sept.
I say. I have three remarks:
First, I agree with the "prison work stoppage and hunger strike"
- and I note that both strikes must have been going on for a month
Second, I much doubt that the
prisoners who are both on strike and on hunger strike will succeed in
ending "prison slavery".
(I agree their fates are horrible and mostly unfair. But "ending
slavery" while you are imprisoned, discriminated and risk being locked
up in isolation seems ... well: very unlikely to me.)
And third, Chris Hedges is quite right
that the present round of prison strikes "has
had little outside support and press coverage"
and indeed - while the strike now is in its second month - and he is
quite correct that "[i]t is hard to know how
many prisoners are still on strike, just as it is hard to know how many
stopped work or started to fast on Sept. 9".
Here is some more, which I think is a bit exaggerated:
These prison strike leaders put no hope
in a “national conversation” about race and mass incarceration. They
know that corporations, the courts and politicians will never halt the
lethal police violence against unarmed men and women of color or
dismantle the vast gulags for the poor that dot the country. The
mechanisms of repression are by design. They are the logical
consequence of deindustrialization. The corporate state uses fear,
police violence and huge networks of jails and prisons to keep hundreds
of millions of underemployed and unemployed poor people from revolting.
What is exaggerated is not Hedges'
imputation that America's prison system is "the
logical consequence of deindustrialization": I
think he may be (and probably is) quite right about that. But
since there are in 2016 nearly 325 million Americans, to speak of "hundreds of millions of underemployed and unemployed poor
people" (implying at least 200 milion of
such persons) simply is exaggerated. (And note there are in all
about 40 milion blacks in the USA.)
The same applies to this:
These striking prisoners are far more
effective, and far more threatening to the corporate state, than the
outside multitudes entranced and manipulated by the Donald Trump and
Hillary Clinton Goon Show. Denied the right to employment, to vote and
to public assistance because of felony convictions, denied the right to
justice because they are poor, and denied a voice because they have
been silenced by state censorship and a bankrupt media, these prisoners
were some of the first to understand the totalitarian nature of the
I have two remarks:
First, to say that these "striking prisoners are far more effective" "than the outside multitudes
entranced and manipulated by the Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton Goon
Show" is quite irrealistic: The prison
strikes - which I support - are hardly reported in the news,
and not even Chris Hedges, who is quite well placed to know these
things, knows "how many prisoners are still on
strike" nor does he know "how many stopped work
or started to fast on Sept. 9."
It would have been a lot better if a lot
more attention had been paid to the strike, but this simply did not
Second, it simply is false to say
that "these prisoners" - in 2016, mind
you - "were some of the first to understand the totalitarian nature of
the corporate state." No. Totalitarianism
was not discovered nor first understood by American
prisoners in 2016: it was discovered and analyzed at least 75 years ago
by journalists like George Orwell,
and intellectuals like Karl Popper and J.L. Talmon and
some (quite a few) others.
Then again, all of the following seems quite correct to
The 2.3 million human beings, most of
them poor people of color, who are locked in cages across the country
provide billions in salaries and other revenues for depressed rural
towns with large prisons. They provide billions more in profits to
phone card companies, money transfer companies, food service companies,
merchandise vendors, construction companies, laundry services, uniform
companies, prison equipment vendors and the manufacturers of pepper
spray, body armor and the many other medieval instruments used for the
physical restraint of prisoners. They also make billions for
corporations—Whole Foods, Verizon, Starbucks, McDonald’s, Sprint,
Victoria’s Secret, American Airlines, J.C. Penney, Sears, Wal-Mart,
Kmart, Eddie Bauer, Wendy’s, Procter & Gamble, Johnson &
Johnson, Fruit of the Loom, Motorola, Caterpillar and dozens of
others—that collectively exploit 1 million prison laborers.
Why pay workers outside the walls the
minimum wage when you can pay workers behind walls only a couple of
dollars a day? Why exploit sweatshop workers in countries like
Bangladesh when you can exploit sweatshop workers in U.S. prisons? Why
permit prison reform that would impede profits? Why not expand a
system that reduces labor costs to slave wages?
I do have an answer to one
question: "Why exploit sweatshop workers in
countries like Bangladesh when you can exploit sweatshop workers in
The answer is that there are some 2
million Americans who may be exploited in prison for a couple of
dollars a day, while there is "a capitalist need" - so to speak - for hundreds
of millions of workers who don't get paid more than a couple of dollars
a day (and also do not need imprison- ment in expensive
Here is the last bit that I'll quote. It
explains the system of exploitation American prisoners are
Prisoners are the ideal workers in
corporate America. They earn from 8 cents to about 44 cents an hour. In
some states, such as Alabama, they earn nothing. They receive no Social
Security, pensions or other benefits. They do not get paid overtime.
They are prohibited from organizing or carrying out strikes. They
always show up on time. They are not paid for sick days or granted
vacations. They cannot complain about poor working conditions or safety
hazards. If they protest their meager wages or working conditions they
instantly lose their jobs and are placed in isolation cells. They live
in an environment where they daily face the possibility of torture,
beatings, prolonged isolation, sensory deprivation, racial profiling,
rancid food, inadequate medical care, little or no heating and
ventilation, and rape. In short, they are slaves.
Quite so. And while this is
technically/judicially not slavery, it is very much like it.
Trump Unleashes at Debate,
Tells Clinton She'll "Be in Jail" If He Wins
The second item is by Common Dreams staff on Common Dreams:
This starts as follows:
In what was
dubbed by numerous commentators as a nearly unbearable spectacle to
witness—with Politico describing
it as the "ugliest debate ever" and Rolling Stone's Matt
that "having a railroad spike driven through my foot would be more
enjoyable than watching this"—Democrat Hillary Clinton and Republican
Donald Trump debated in a town hall-style event Sunday night.
culminated a weekend of ongoing controversy
and chaos after revelations on Friday that Trump—who has previously
of sexual harassment and assault—was caught on tape bragging to a
TV host about his freedom to kiss and grope women without their
I did not
watch it (and indeed I very rarely watch videos of long
debates: Too slow, too boring), and I seem to have done myself a
Here is another
piece of insanity Trump let loose, this time in the debate:
In perhaps the
most acrimonious and eye-popping exchange between the two candidates,
Trump announced that if elected he would appoint a special prosecutor
to investigate Clinton for misdeeds and later echoed a popular chant of
his supporters—who frequently tell "Lock her up" during his campaign
rallies—by saying she'd "be
in jail" when he is president.
As I have said many
times by now: I am a psychologist and I think Donald Trump is insane:
3. Sex, Lies and America’s
The third item is by Peter Bloom on Common Dreams:
starts as follows (and seems a fair indication of the great amounts of baloney
I am seeing served by "journalists" and "intellectuals" ):
Only a little more than a month before
the November election, both Trump and Clinton were rocked by new
scandals. Headlines around the country and world reported on secretly
recorded tapes and speech that reaffirm the public’s worst suspicions
of each of them. In an already in many ways unprecedented election, the
contest for the American President has perhaps hit a modern low.
Trump’s crimes are the most salacious
and obviously morally troubling. In a just released hidden audio recording he casually brags about his penchant for sexually
assaulting women. Further, he openly declares that his celebrity gives
him full license to do so.
While Trump grabbed most of the media
attention – perhaps for once completely unwanted – slightly under the
radar was Clinton’s Wikileaks released speeches
from Goldman Sachs. In them she admits her support for Wall Street and
her intentional attempts to hide this from the public.
These scandals expose the moral
bankruptcy of both candidates. The respective actions of Trump and
Clinton should seriously challenge their legitimacy as presidential
candidates. More fundamentally these revelations reveal just how
morally unacceptable American democracy has become.
the last paragraph is typical: Bloom does not even seem to have
reasoned himself to the conviction that he must choose between Clinton
and Trump or throw his vote away on a candidate who certainly will not
win, while what he means by "just how morally
unacceptable American democracy has become" also
is (and remains) completely vague.
4. In Second Debate, Donald
Trump Showcases His Dark Soul
The fourth and last item today is by David Corn on Mother Jones:
This is from near the beginning and is a bit better
than the previous item:
But one matter loomed larger than
all of that: what's inside Trump?
Throughout the 100-minute-long face-off,
Trump did not change his style. He was combative, angry, and mean, as
he stalked about the stage during the town hall-style event. He said
that were he to win the White House, he would prosecute Clinton and
promised to toss her in jail. This was throwing a blood-dripping bone
to his "lock her up" base. Were this anything like a normal election,
this Trump vow—which undermines democratic rule—would be the screaming
headline out of the debate. This year, it's just another thing Trump
said. He also declared of Clinton, "She has tremendous hate in her
heart." As if threatening to imprison your political opponent is not a
thuggish act of demagoguery and hatred.
Yes. And Donald Trump is insane.
This may be a correct analysis:
Ultimately, this creepy move was born of
frustration. Much of the Republican Party had finally dumped Trump,
and, as one former Trump adviser told me, Trump and his inner circle
believed he had only one play: go nuclear. It was a crude step,
debasing this campaign further, but one in sync with Trump's pettiness
Indeed. And Donald
Trump is insane. There is this - brief - analysis of Trump's insanities:
It was Trump who attacked Judge Curiel
in a racist manner. It was Trump who assailed Khizr and Ghazala Khan.
It was Trump who mocked a reporter with a disability. It was Trump
who called a POW a loser. It was Trump who encouraged violence at his
campaign rallies. It was Trump who attempted to turn tragic attacks
against Americans into proof he ought to be president. It was Trump who
proposed to ban Muslims from the United States. It was Trump who
derided the looks of Carly Fiorina and Heidi Cruz. It was Trump who
made the crack about Megyn Kelly. It was Trump who defended calling
women pigs and who body-shamed a former Miss Universe.
He did this because Donald
Trump is insane. This raises the following question:
Not for me: "Trump's
ability to function as a sane, rational, deliberate, and decent person" = 0. Th reason is that Donald
Trump is insane. He is also irrational and indecent.
At this stage, there is little need for
a debate on anything but Trump's ability to function as a sane,
rational, deliberate, and decent person. The video showed that his
misogyny runs deep—after this race had already produced much evidence casting Trump as a lewd, crude, and cruel
man. During the debate, he did little to challenge this impression. He
really is that asshole on the bus.
But I will not discuss Trump's debating points: He is insane.
this is precisely as I said it does, and it goes on for
months now. I
do not know who does it, and I refuse to call the liars of
(really: the KPN), simply because these have been lying to me from
2002-2009, and I do not trust anything they say I cannot control
myself: They have treated me for seven years as a liar because
"you complain about things other people do not complain about" (which
is the perfect excuse never to do anything
 One of the (many) reasons for quoting
terms (as in "journalists" and "intellectuals") is to suggest that an
"X" may say he is an "X" (lying is very easy, after all) but
that one doubts this.
Well... most journalists I know of seem more like "journalists"
(people who claim to be journalists but don't do much or any real
journalism), and the same applies to the vast majority of
"intellectuals" I have known.
But OK... I am merely reminding you of my terminology.