1. Why All
Progressives Must Vote For Hillary
The Hidden Trillions
3. Big Pharma Spending Big to Defeat Drug
4. U.S. and U.K. Continue to Actively Participate in Saudi
War Crimes, Targeting of
5. All the President’s Misogynists: Why It Took So Long to
Derail the Trump Train
This is a Nederlog of Wednesday, October 12, 2016.
is a crisis log with 5 items and 5 dotted links: Item 1
is about a
Robert Reich article, that I review because I think he is mostly
correct (but far too optmistic about Hillary Clinton); item
2 is about
a long article by Alan Rusbridger on the Panama Papers, that also is
the first of two articles; item 3 is about the
attempts by Big Pharma
to deceive and delude California's voters (so far without success); item 4 is about a Glenn Greenwald article
on Saudi Arabia, the U.S. and
the U.K. each of which are terrorizing and murdering very many
civilians; and item 5 is about an interesting
reason why the GOP - at long last - may be dropping Trump: He
threatened to grab their wives and daughters by the pussy.
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. The
Dutch site still is a mess.
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.
All Progressives Must Vote For Hillary
The first item today is by Robert Reich on his site:
This starts as follows:
I continue to hear from many people who
call themselves progressives or liberals, but tell me they won’t vote
for Hillary Clinton in the upcoming election.
With due respect, I believe they’re
I agree, and this article is reviewed
because it is by Robert Reich. I agree mostly with him, but not
completely, and specifically not about his first argument:
Donald Trump is a dangerous, bigoted,
misogynistic, narcissistic megalomaniac with fascist tendencies. If
elected president he could wreak irreparable damage on America and the
Hillary isn’t perfect but she’s able and
experienced. I’ve known her for almost fifty years and worked with her
closely in her husband’s administration. She will make a good president.
I agree with the first paragraph. In fact,
I liked it when Reich called Trump a fascist, although I corrected him
by saying he is a neofascist.  I think I was
right, but the difference doesn't matter much, at least not for
But I doubt very much that Hillary
Clinton will make a good president. I agree with Reich she is "able and
experienced", but since she and her husband got about $120 million
dollars (it seems) from the bankers whose interests they so very
well defended, which happened in Bill's case by deregulation after deregulation, which allowed the rich to transport their industries to
Third World countries - as they were known - where the wages are very
much lower, which makes the profits very much higher, and also
allows CEOs of multi-billion companies like Apple not to pay
taxes. None of that was any good.
Then again, I haven't known
Hillary "for almost fifty years", and I also never worked for
The second argument is OK:
Others claim that even if she’s better
than Trump, she’s still corrupt, and they won’t vote for the “lesser of
But even if you see Hillary Clinton as
the “lesser of two evils,” the greater of two evils in this case is
Yes. I do see Hillary Clinton as the “lesser of two evils”, and not as a candidate for a good
presidency, but she is much less evil than her mad and neofascist
Also - though this argument is not given
by Reich - the voters who insist that their vote is too precious to
give to “lesser of two evils” are guilty of at
least three confusions:
First, they exaggerate their own
importance. Second, they engage in a false equivalency. And third, they
have no real appreciation the dangers of a Trumpian presidency. 
But I leave that to a footnote. Reich's
final argument is also mostly correct:
I supported Bernie Sanders in the
primaries and share people’s frustration with the Democratic Party. I
also sympathize with their feeling that a vote for Hillary Clinton
would somehow exonerate the Party for the perceived unfairness of its
But anything disgruntled Democrats may
do that increases the odds of a Trump presidency – say, making a
“protest” vote for a third-party candidate, or not voting at all –
doesn’t just penalize the Democratic Party. It also jeopardizes our
future, and that of our children and their children.
Yes. I think it is very likely
expect very much less of Hillary Clinton than Reich does, and I
probably also see her as considerably more negative than Reich does -
but even so: Their remain enormous differences between a sane
Hillary Clinton, who supports the bankers and the rich, but is not a
neofascist, and the insane neofascist that is Donald Trump.
And when you have to choose
insane neofascist, and a sane supporter of the rich bankers, for it
will be the one or the other, you really have
to vote for Clinton,
though I agree she is not good.
The Hidden Trillions
The second item is by Alan Rusbridger
(<- Wikipedia) on the New York Review of Books:
This starts as follows, and in fact is in part a review of
five books about the Panama Papers, while it also is Part I of a
two-part series about the Panama Papers.
The reason they are quite important is this:
In a seminar room in Oxford, one
of the reporters who worked on the Panama Papers is describing the main
conclusion he drew from his months of delving into millions of leaked
documents about tax evasion. “Basically, we’re the dupes in this
story,” he says. “Previously, we thought that the offshore world was a
shadowy, but minor, part of our economic system. What we learned from
the Panama Papers is that it is the economic system.”
Yes and no, though mostly yes.
As to the first paragraph:
“The economic system is, basically, that
the rich and the powerful exited long ago from the messy business of
paying tax,” Harding told an audience of academics and research
students. “They don’t pay tax anymore, and they haven’t paid tax for
quite a long time. We pay tax, but they don’t pay tax. The burden of
taxation has moved inexorably away from multinational companies and
rich people to ordinary people.”
I think the Panama Papers are quite important and do
tell a lot about the illegal manipulations of the very rich, but to say
that (bolding added) "the Panama
Papers is the economic system" simply is journalistic exaggeration.
And something similar seems true about the second paragraph:
What is true about "the rich and
the powerful" is - rather - that
they pay a lot less taxes than they used to pay; that
they pay a lot less than they ought to pay (for - as
Justice Holmes said: "Taxes is what we pay for civilization"); and
probably also that most of the rich are trying to pay even
less taxes than the little they these days should pay, but Harding
seems to exaggerate a little (again), at least.
But then the Panama Papers are quite important, and they are
huge. There is this:
It’s doubtful that any one news
organization could have gathered together the amount of expertise
needed to work on the material, still less have the language skills,
legal resources, and local knowledge to grasp the significance of the
characters and defend the stories that emerged. The kinds of
collaborative journalism that began with WikiLeaks, Snowden, and the
offshore leaks stories found new expression with the Panama Papers and
are a pointer to future partnerships.
And there is the information that the Panama
Papers consists of approximately 11.5 million documents, which
it would take - it was estimated - one individual some twenty-seven
years to read all of them. (The Pentagon Papers
(<- Wikipedia) that Daniel
Ellsberg released in the early 70ies consisted of seven thousand pages.)
What can be learned from the Panama Papers is - for example - this:
A sorry parade of arms smugglers,
oligarchs, defense contractors, mafia dons, drug dealers, gambling
fraudsters, sanctions breakers, and kleptocrats emerge from the papers.
And then there are the eye-catching names. They include the richest man
in Syria, a Uruguayan presidential candidate, three current prime
ministers, a well-known film director, a former Iraqi vice-president, a
top soccer player, a clutch of Arab heads of state, the brother-in-law
of the Chinese president. We get glimpses into billions siphoned out of
Africa, China, Libya, and Russia—all from a single law firm. How many
others have kept their work on tax avoidance secret?
Rusbridger is right in stressing that this is
(bolding added) "all from a single law
firm", for there are more law firms that
do the same for
other very rich men.
There is also this on (it seems) English bankers:
Harding was fascinated by the
pristine respectability of the London offshore enablers: “I think the
kind of big reveal for me was the role played by the West, and law
firms, and banks, and so on,” he told his Oxford seminar. “It’s easy to
think kleptocracy is a problem of faraway, nasty countries, about which
we don’t want to inquire too deeply, but it turned out that we’re the
biggest crooks of all, actually, in that we facilitate this.”
I suppose so, but - I have to admit - I do
not like Harding, for I have read him on Snowden, and
he is too much of
an ordinary journalist, in my opinion. In any case, while the quoted
passage is probably true, as stated it is nothing but sensation.
Finally, the last bit that I will quote from this article sketches the
growth of thefts from the taxes, through 55 years:
By the end of 1959 about $200
million was on deposit abroad. By 1961 the total had hit $3 billion, by
which time offshore financial engineering “was spreading to Zurich, the
Caribbean, and beyond” as jurisdiction after jurisdiction got in on the
game. Today, the economist Gabriel Zucman estimates that there is $7.6
trillion of household wealth in tax havens globally—around 8 percent of
the world’s wealth.
This means that tax evasion grew close to a million
times as much as it was in 1959, while it currently takes around 1 in
every 12 dolllars of "the world’s wealth".
This is a recommended paper that contains a lot more than I quoted, and
that also is the first of two parts.
3. Big Pharma Spending Big to Defeat Drug Price Measure
The third item is by Nika Knight on Common Dreams:
starts as follows:
The battle over a California ballot
measure to put a stop to pharmaceutical price gouging is heating up as
the election draws near, with Big Pharma pitting itself against
consumer watchdogs, parents of sick children, and nurses.
Big Pharma has spent
nearly $90 million to defeat Proposition 61, which "would require all
prescription drugs purchased by the state of California to be priced at
or below the price paid by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs
(VA), which pays the lowest price of any federal agency," as the Los
Angeles Daily News writes.
The battle takes place just as Mylan,
the producer of the life-saving epinephrine injectors known as EpiPens,
hundreds of millions of dollars by the Justice Department for
overcharging Medicaid for the devices. Mylan infamously raised
EpiPen prices by over 500 percent.
I say. Here are two precisifications:
First, it is true "Big Pharma" is evil and
only interested in maximum profits, but - since I am now ill for 37
years (starting in the first year of my studies, that I
also very brilliantly finished, and without having ever visited any
I was not legally forced to, simply because I was and am ill), without
even as much as that being admitted by any Dutch bureaucrat and
by most Dutch doctors (for 37 years now!) - I do want to add the
majority of American and Dutch medical people:
They simply are each and all fairly
men (and women) who are mostly interested in their own
riches, and do not
and did not protest most or any of the very many worsenings
been introduced by Big Pharma since 1980, which now also include lying
about medical drugs and medical experiments.
Second, about the EpiPens: They may have been fined, but they did not
admit doing any harm (asking five times as much apparently is no
and they also contest the rulings of the Justice Department.
Here is a bit about the enormous
profits that Big Pharma made lately:
Consumer Watchdog published a scathing report
(pdf) Monday that detailed the billions in profits made by the top
eight corporate contributors to the effort to defeat Proposition 61.
"[E]ight of the top ten pharmaceutical
industry donors fighting Proposition 61 have increased their profits by
a combined $37 billion, or 20 percent, over the last decade," the group
"reaching a total of $214 billion in gross profits in 2015. All the
while, these companies have increased the prices of prescription drugs
by as much as 1000 percent."
For as I said: "Big
Pharma" is evil
and only interested in maximum profits. And they
collaborate with most medical doctors, who prescribe
their products and often (in the USA at least) seem to get a
Here is the last bit that I quote from the
article, and this time it is a bit of good news:
Thus far, despite Big Pharma's efforts
it appears that California's parents, consumer advocates, and nurses
are coming out ahead: the most recent poll found
that 66 percent of state voters are in favor of Proposition 61.
real voting has not been done yet.
This starts as follows:
4. U.S. and U.K. Continue to Actively Participate in Saudi War
Crimes, Targeting of Yemeni Civilians
The fourth item today is by Glenn Greenwald on The Intercept:
I say, which I mostly do because of the
financial news about Obama: First, he "sold
billion more in weapons than President Bush did
during his entire eight years as commander in chief" and second, he also is busy with renovating and
extending the USA's atomic weapons for about a trillion
From the start of the hideous
Saudi bombing campaign against Yemen 18 months ago, two countries
have played active, vital roles in enabling the carnage: the U.S.
and U.K. The atrocities committed by the Saudis would have been
impossible without their steadfast, aggressive support.
The Obama administration “has offered to
sell $115 billion worth of weapons to Saudi Arabia over its eight years
in office, more than any previous U.S. administration,” as The
Guardian reported this week, and also provides
extensive surveillance technology. As The Intercept documented in
April, “In his first five years as president, Obama sold $30
billion more in weapons than President Bush did
during his entire eight years as commander in chief.”
Most important, according
to the Saudi foreign minister, although it is the Saudis
who have ultimate authority to choose targets, “British and
American military officials are in the command and control center for
Saudi airstrikes on Yemen” and “have access to lists of targets.”
In sum, while this bombing campaign is invariably described in
Western media outlets as “Saudi-led,” the U.S. and U.K. are both
central, indispensable participants.
Then there is this:
From the start, the U.S.- and
U.K.-backed Saudis have indiscriminately and at times deliberately
bombed civilians, killing thousands of innocent people. From
Yemen, Iona Craig and Alex Potter have reported
extensively for The Intercept on the widespread
civilian deaths caused by this
bombing campaign. As the Saudis continued to recklessly and
intentionally bomb civilians, the American and British weapons kept
pouring into Riyadh, ensuring that the civilian massacres continued.
Every once and awhile, when a particularly gruesome mass killing made
its way into the news, Obama and various British officials would issue cursory,
obligatory statements expressing “concern,” then go right back
to fueling the attacks.
I merely remark that the murderings of
innocent civilians = terrorism,
indeed on a large scale.
Here is a final bit:
The U.S. and U.K. are the two
leading countries when it comes to cynically exploiting human rights
concerns and the laws of war to attack their adversaries. They and
their leading columnists love to issue pretty, self-righteous speeches
about how other nations — those primitive, evil ones over there —
target civilians and commit war crimes. Yet here they both are,
standing firmly behind one of the planet’s most brutal and repressive
regimes, arming it to the teeth with the full and undeniable knowledge
that they are enabling massacres that recklessly, and in many cases,
deliberately, target civilians.
Yes, indeed. And as I pointed out, the U.S.
and the U.K. behave as large scale, military, state supported terrorists (as
I have been saying since 2005 (in
All the President’s Misogynists: Why It
Took So Long to Derail the Trump Train
The fifth and last item today is by Jodi Jacobson on Rewire :
For well over a year, Donald Trump has
been running a campaign based on blatant racism, sexism, anti-immigrant
tirades, and fear-mongering. He has incited violence and encouraged
vigilantism. He’s mocked people with disabilities. He has disrespected
veterans, former prisoners of war, Gold Star families, the sitting
president, and federal judges. He’s equated all refugees
with terrorists and called for surveillance of mosques. He’s called
women “pigs,” persistently criticized and objectified women for their
groped and harassed women who worked with him, and repeatedly
even made suggestive comments about his own daughter.
Through all this time, the GOP
establishment has continued to support him both explicitly and
implicitly. On Friday, the dam finally broke with the release of
what I would call Donald Trump’s “sex tape,” in which Trump brags about
his ability to sexually assault women with impunity because of his
so-called star power. The tape has brought condemnation by national and
state level party leaders across the country, some of whom are calling
on him to withdraw from the race.
And many of us are left asking: “What
took so long?”
Yes, indeed: Both the sum-up and the
question are good. Here is more on the strategy of the GOP:
Because their dominance is under threat,
these corporate and religious forces seek to win and maintain power by
diverting voters’ attention from real problems—access to education,
health care, clean water, living wages, affordable housing, and
accountable financial institutions among them—and instead rallying a
base of increasingly ill-informed and angry white voters who feel their
political dominance slipping away. Until now, they’ve used a strategy
that began with the
Powell Memo in the ’70s, and continued through the time of Lee
Atwater and then Karl Rove to create and manage what they hoped
would be a “controlled burn” of anger among their base, thus enabling
the passage of laws—such as those stripping voters, women, and people
of color of their rights—and installing judges who support their agenda
to establish a foundation of control strong enough to withstand an
inexorable tide of demographic change that is making the United States
ever more diverse.
I agree, except for the very first bit: I
do not think that the "corporate and
religious forces" are "under threat". They
probably were in the late 1960ies and in the 1970ies, when
did trigger the
Powell Memo, but I am quite certain
that since Thatcher and Reagan were nominated around 1980 the "corporate and religious forces" (and especially the corporate ones) have won
all the battles they were involved in.
My evidence is or should be clear, and
here it is, once more (and this is one of quite a few graphics I could
have chosen to make my point):
That is: From 1980 onwards the top 10%
have - for 36 years now - increased and increased the incomes
of the rich, while the bottom 90% have earned less and less.
This also completely overturned the opposite tendency towards more
equality, that ruled from 1949 till 1980.
Finally, there is this answer of Jodi
Jacobson to her question:
I think that may well be right. I also think that the crudeness
of Trump's sexual bragging ...
So why was the sex tape the end? It has
nothing to do with “locker-room talk,” to which I am sure even Mike
Pence is no stranger.
Instead, Trump violated a key tenet of
the GOP’s Madonna-Whore complex: “Hands off married white women.”
now-infamous tape, in which Trump is heard bragging about an
attempt—when he was newly married to Melania Trump—to pressure
also-married NBC television personality Nancy O’Dell into
sex—established Trump as a sexual predator of married white women, and
ultimately of the “wives, mothers, daughters, sisters” of a male GOP
lawmakers that sees such women as their charges, and who Trump
threatened through “legitimate rape.”
The man who called Mexicans rapists is himself an admitted predator,
but now it’s a problem because those women are the property of white
men, and dominion over property is at the heart of the GOP agenda.
... plays a role but I agree Jodi Jacobson may have seen this
correctly, which I do because only this kind of crudeness
(after many months of earlier crudenesses about very
many other things) seems to have touched the leaders of the GOP:
Trump may very well try to grab the pussies of their wives or
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
 In fact, the following is a repeat of
note I wrote on April 25, 2016:
mean what the American Heritage Dictionary defines as follows:
is defined as "A system of government that exercises a
dictatorship of the extreme right, typically through the merging of
state and business leadership, together with belligerent nationalism."
By neo-fascism I
- here - a fascism that does not occur through "the merging of
state and business leadership"
but that occurs through the subjection of state leadership to (external)
business leadership, e.g. as foreseen by the TTIP's ISDSs (see Note 1).
The "(external)" is motivated by the fact that multi-national
corporations that wish to attack a state over some of its decisions
that caused a lowering of the expected profits of their CEOs, usually
do not belong to the state they attack.
 They exaggerate their own importance because voting
is absolutely nothing special; they falsely suggest Clinton is as bad
as Trump; and they seem to have no understanding of either Trump's
madness or his neofascism.
 Both Jacobson and Rewire are new for
me. I owe their discovery to Democracy Now!