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Displaying 25821-25830 of 25838 results.
ID: 153974
Uid: 4699
Author: 4
Category: 0
Title: The Surprisingly Glamorous History of New Jersey Presidential Vacations
Source: The Daily Beast
Body: <p style="line-height: 29.5px; margin: 0px 0px 15px; font-size: 17px; color: rgb(2, 20, 31); font-family: Georgia, Cambria, 'Times New Roman', Times, serif; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">Donald Trump’s 17-day “Working Vacation” at the Trump National Gulf Club in Bedminster, New Jersey, has resurrected the tradition of New Jersey Summer White Houses.</p><p style="line-height: 29.5px; margin: 0px 0px 15px; font-size: 17px; color: rgb(2, 20, 31); font-family: Georgia, Cambria, 'Times New Roman', Times, serif; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">The first president to enjoy an extended summer vacation in New Jersey, Franklin Pierce, spent ten days in Cape May in 1855—back when the words “New Jersey” evoked fresh sea breezes not industrial (and political) sludge. &nbsp;Two American traditions marred the visit. First, Americans’ over-enthusiasm for visiting celebrities had the locals firing a cannon honoring Pierce. The shot was too early in the morning and too close to Congress Hall where the President and his First Lady Jane were sleeping. Their sleep-in ended, abruptly.</p><p style="line-height: 29.5px; margin: 0px 0px 15px; font-size: 17px; color: rgb(2, 20, 31); font-family: Georgia, Cambria, 'Times New Roman', Times, serif; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">More disturbing–and quite familiar–was the&nbsp;New York Times&nbsp;complaint that the “country” at this “critical moment” has “lost its president.”&nbsp;“President Pierce is at Cape May,” the editors sniffed. “For practical purposes he might as well be at Cape Horn” in Africa. The president’s supporters responded indignantly because Jane Pierce was suffering in Washington’s&nbsp;un-airconditioned 99 degree heat.&nbsp;“Has it come to this,” asked the&nbsp;<a href="http://www.shorenewstoday.com/cape_may/history/history-was-franklin-pierce-the-rodney-dangerfield-of-american-presidents/article_25cfc794-fdda-5c40-82ef-61599fcb5b0e.html%2520http://www.shorenewstoday.com/cape_may/history/history-was-franklin-pierce-t" style="transition: color 0.15s ease; background-color: transparent;">Washington Evening Star</a>, “that a president of the United States cannot visit the seaside with a member of his family, to whom the fresh and invigorating ocean air is essential to recovery of health, without incurring the malignant mendacity of partisan newspapers?”...</p><p style="line-height: 29.5px; margin: 0px 0px 15px; font-size: 17px; color: rgb(2, 20, 31); font-family: Georgia, Cambria, 'Times New Roman', Times, serif; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);"><a href="http://www.thedailybeast.com/when-new-jersey-was-the-vacation-of-choice-for-presidents">Read whole article on The Daily Beast</a>.</p>
ID: 153975
Uid: 78581
Author: 39
Category: 0
Title: The Right Words
Source:
Body: <center> <iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/MygDhClxKrY" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen=""></iframe> </center><p></p><p> <i>Mark S. Byrnes is Chair and Professor of History at Wofford College in Spartanburg, SC.</i><br><br></p><p>I wanted him to say the right words. </p> <p>I was under no illusions that he would believe them. I know far too well who he is to think that. But I wanted him to say the right words.</p> <p>On Saturday, someone wrote for him words that were, if not right, at least good enough. He started to read them. But he couldn't help himself. He had to ad lib, the way he always does when someone tries to get him to say the right and decent thing. "On many sides, on many sides," he added. With those very few words, he undermined all that was right in his prepared remarks. </p> <p>And that is why he said them.</p> <p>Even after that, as I read others commenting that it was too late to undo what he had done, that the right words would be worthless now, I still found myself wanting him to say the right words. </p> <p>So when on Monday he finally said the right words, even though I knew he didn't mean them, there was still a part of me that was glad they had finally been said. It was better than nothing (so far down has the bar now been lowered).</p> <p>And then came the Tuesday press conference. That was not Trump "going rogue." It was Trump showing who he is. He planned to do that. He planned to defend his original remarks. He pulled the printed comments from his pocket, because he intended to say what he said. He planned to undermine the right words he had spoken the day before. He had been browbeaten into saying the right words, and he hated it. Once again, he could not help himself. He had to say all parties were to blame.</p> <p>I was not surprised, but I was still horrified. And I wondered why.</p> <p>"Hypocrisy is the tribute that vice pays to virtue." That line by La Rochefoucauld came to me. I realized that what most offended me about "on many sides" was that Trump was failing a basic obligation of leadership. He did not pay tribute to virtue.</p> <p>A leader's job is to challenge people to do better, to remind them of the nation’s ideals and challenge them to get closer to living them. He should have said, clearly and unequivocally, “there is no place for white supremacy and bigotry in this country,” even though we know there has often been not just a place for those things, but a large and dominant one. Even though he has shown repeatedly that he is a bigot, even though he does not believe them, he had a responsibility to say the right words. It was his job. It would be hypocritical, yes, but he needed to pay that tribute to virtue. No president ever has or ever will be perfect. Every president still has an obligation to urge us to be more perfect than we are. At such times, the job of the president is not to tell us how things really are. The job is to hold up as a goal that virtuous ideal that none of us fully reach, to challenge us to be better.</p> <p>As Republican strategist Rick Wilson is fond of saying, there is no better Trump. But there can be a better America. We can go in many different directions, and which path we take depends in part on leadership. But no, there is no better Trump. His overwhelming narcissism means he cannot conceive of people better than himself. His cynicism, his vulgarity, his base nature are universal traits in his mind. His entire campaign was based on the idea that while he was, of course, perfectly awful, so was everyone else. They were “lyin’,” they were “crooked,” they were “little,” they were “low energy.” So what if he was all that and more? He at least admitted how base he was. That was his thoroughly phony claim to authenticity.</p> <p>Of course he had to say everyone is to blame—because then no one is truly to blame. He reflexively sides with awful people because he is an awful person who wants to believe everyone else is as awful as he is. He never takes responsibility for his awfulness, so why should he assign responsibility to them—particularly when they support him?</p> <p>In the end, he simply would not pay vice’s tribute to virtue. He does not really believe there IS virtue, so he cannot sincerely challenge us to be virtuous.</p> <p>The whole world to him is merely a reflection of himself—self-interested and self-serving, doing whatever it takes to get some advantage over one’s enemies, winning at all costs. He has shown repeatedly that he defines what is “right” as whatever gets results. Success is right, failure is wrong. (The only “right” words to him are the ones that get people off his back, so of course he complained on Twitter when he didn’t get enough pats on the head from the press for Monday’s comments.) </p> <p>His belief is that might makes right. He has told us many times that he actually admires those who inflict violence to get their way. He encouraged violence against protesters at his rallies. When confronted with Putin’s reported responsibility for murders of his political opponents, he said “you think we’re so innocent?” I know too much of our history to think that. But I also know that for a nation to give in to his nihilistic cynicism—the kind willing to brush away political murder with a blithe “everybody does it”—is a recipe for national spiritual death.</p> <p>In the end, that’s why I have found these past few days to be so awful. I know there are awful people in this country who believe awful things, who will emulate Nazis and spew hate. I’ve known that for a long time. To know that we have a leader so spiritually bankrupt that he sees those people as indistinguishable from people who denounce hatred is something else altogether. Every day he remains in that office, he debases this country, he drags it further and further down to his base and vulgar level. That is truly awful. It will only end when he leaves the White House for good.<br></p>
ID: 153976
Uid: 31615
Author: 19
Category: 0
Title: I Am An Antifa
Source:
Body: <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">An unfamiliar word is suddenly appearing in our public conversations – antifa, short for anti-fascist. It’s not a new word – opposition to fascism is as old as fascism itself. And so is the discomfort that the American political establishment feels about people who strongly oppose fascism. </span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">The white supremacy movement that showed itself openly in Charlottesville criticizes anti-fascists for, of all things, violence, always trying </span><a href="http://thefederalist.com/2017/08/14/white-supremacists-not-thugs-tearing-charlottesville/"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">to distract attention</span></a><span style="font-size:12.0pt"> from their own violence. Now the mainstream is helping to make antifa a cursed label. The “</span><a href="https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2017/09/the-rise-of-the-violent-left/534192/"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Atlantic</span></a><span style="font-size:12.0pt">” equates antifa with “the violent left” alongside a photo of a burning fire extinguisher, and </span><a href="http://www.cnn.com/2017/08/18/us/unmasking-antifa-anti-fascists-hard-left/index.html"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">CNN</span></a><span style="font-size:12.0pt"> congratulates itself on “unmasking the leftist Antifa movement”.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">The real history of fascism and anti-fascism takes a beating. Fascism as political idea originated in Italy in the early 20<sup>th</sup> century, and </span><a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_fascist_movements_by_country"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">hundreds of fascist movements</span></a><span style="font-size:12.0pt"> sprang up across the world in the 1930s. German National Socialism became the most powerful, but fascists also took control in </span><a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Falangism"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Spain under Franco</span></a><span style="font-size:12.0pt"> and in </span><a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Estado_Novo_(Portugal)"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Portugal under Salazar</span></a><span style="font-size:12.0pt">. As Nazi Germany occupied most of Europe after 1939, fascist movements in </span><a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Government_of_National_Unity_(Hungary)"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Hungary</span></a><span style="font-size:12.0pt">, the </span><a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Socialist_Movement_in_the_Netherlands"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Netherlands</span></a><span style="font-size:12.0pt">, </span><a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nasjonal_Samling"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Norway</span></a><span style="font-size:12.0pt">, and </span><a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Albanian_Fascist_Party"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Albania</span></a><span style="font-size:12.0pt"> exercised power under German domination. Excited fascists created parties in the oldest democracies in </span><a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_Union_of_Fascists"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Great Britain</span></a><span style="font-size:12.0pt"> and the </span><a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Silver_Legion_of_America"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">US</span></a><span style="font-size:12.0pt">.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Fascism is much more than white supremacy, antisemitism, waving swastikas and giving the Hitler salute. It is a theory of society and government that disdains democracy for dictatorship, crushes labor unions in favor of corporate capitalism under full government control of the economy, espouses militant nationalism and male power.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Although the abhorrent qualities of fascism were abundantly clear in the ideas and actions of Mussolini and Hitler in the 1920s, opposing fascism made one suspect in America. Leaders of the American Legion, the Daughters of the American Revolution, and the resurgent KKK, and national leaders like </span><a href="https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/religion/the-dark-legacy-of-henry-fords-anti-semitism-commentary/2014/10/10/c95b7df2-509d-11e4-877c-335b53ffe736_story.html?utm_term=.49a6f10e1ad6"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Henry Ford</span></a><span style="font-size:12.0pt"> and </span><a href="http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer/2016/11/charles-lindbergh-is-a-cautionary-tale-for-republicans.html"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Charles Lindbergh</span></a><span style="font-size: 12.0pt"> attacked Jews and sympathized with Nazi ideas.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">When Nazi Germany and Fascist Italy attacked democratic Spain in 1936, the US and Great Britain remained neutral. Many Americans did not – thousands, mainly from the left, took up </span><a href="http://www.historylearningsite.co.uk/modern-world-history-1918-to-1980/the-spanish-civil-war/the-international-brigade/"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">the banner of anti-fascism</span></a><span style="font-size:12.0pt"> and volunteered to defend the Spanish Republic. They were then tormented by the American establishment in the anti-communist rage of the 1950s. It was impossible to hate “red” too much, but hating American manifestations of brown racist violence was suspect.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Today there are very few real fascists in the US. Our home-grown far-right fringe movements combine white supremacy with extreme individualism against government control, wild interpretations of America’s founding documents, but not one-man rule.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Unlike the proud fascists of the 1930s, </span><a href="http://www.wnd.com/2017/08/rise-of-fascism-its-already-entrenched-on-left/"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">right-wing ideologues</span></a><span style="font-size:12.0pt"> today use “fascism” as a pejorative to attack liberals, fantasizing links between Nazis and Americans. When </span><a href="http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2017/04/27/sean-hannity-ann-coulter-just-latest-target-fascist-media.html"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Sean Hannity</span></a><span style="font-size:12.0pt"> characterizes the mainstream media as “fascist”, it is clear that the word has lost any clear meaning.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">When American racism was confronted in the 1960s, American historians, some of whom went into the streets, too, began to challenge the sanitized version of our bloody and brutal history of white suprematacy that had become official history, universally taught to American schoolchildren, like me. They wrote a better history in the last 50 years, closer to what Americans experienced, freer of partisan politics, more attentive to the lives of average Americans. At the same time, conservatives promoted even more public veneration of Confederate leaders and their slave state, a second wave of Confederate monument building.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">This better history corrects the image of American protesters that was so convenient for the conservative establishment. Instead of glorifying the KKK as true, if extreme, Americans, while striking workers, pacifists, and opponents of racism were dangerous law-breakers with foreign beliefs, the responsibility for violence in the service of anti-American ideas is laid where it belongs. </span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">But it took Dylann Roof’s demonstration about the connection among </span><a href="http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/nationworld/ct-fbi-dylann-roof-sentencing-trial-20170106-story.html"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Confederacy, racism, and murder</span></a><span style="font-size:12.0pt"> to end the run of Hollywood’s and the FBI’s and conservatives’ Passion Play about the Lost Cause and bring this new history into public discussion. In just two years, universities, cities, organizations, corporations, legislatures, and political leaders have taken big steps toward facing their own histories.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">There are </span><a href="http://Www.splcenter.org/sites/default/files/whoseheritage_splc.pdf"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">700 monuments and statues</span></a><span style="font-size:12.0pt"> to the Confederacy, 100 schools, countless license plates, many </span><a href="http://yellowhammernews.com/politics-2/pentagon-wont-rename-alabamas-ft-rucker-named-after-confederate-officer/"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">military bases</span></a><span style="font-size:12.0pt">, county and city names. North Carolina has built </span><a href="https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2017/05/22/confederate-monuments-new-orleans-charlottesville-removal-race-civil-war/101870418/"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">35 new ones</span></a><span style="font-size:12.0pt"> since 2000.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">The beginning of real change has brought out the howls of the far right, echoed too often in the mainstream. Some antifas are looking for violence. So are some Republican politicians, like Montana’s </span><a href="https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2017/05/25/fox-news-crew-watched-in-disbelief-as-gianforte-slammed-and-punched-reporter/?utm_term=.e1c1fcaad689"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Greg Gianforte</span></a><span style="font-size:12.0pt">. But neither Republicans as a whole nor antifas in general promote or participate in violence.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">The antifas merely let their principles direct their bodies, stopping normal life to oppose our home-grown version of right-wing extremism, saying as loud as they can that the Lost Cause and the KKK and the defense of slavery were un-American.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">It was dangerous when my father and father-in-law and their whole generation went off to fight fascism on opposite sides of the globe. It was dangerous when young Americans volunteered to fight Jim Crow in the South in the 1960s. The defenders of American fascism and their fellow travelers want to make that dangerous now.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">But I am proud to stand with the antifas. How about you?</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Steve Hochstadt</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Springbrook WI</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Published in the Jacksonville Journal-Courier, August 22, 2017</span></p> <!--[if gte mso 9]><xml> <w:WordDocument> <w:View>Normal</w:View> <w:Zoom>0</w:Zoom> <w:TrackMoves/> <w:TrackFormatting/> <w:PunctuationKerning/> <w:ValidateAgainstSchemas/> <w:SaveIfXMLInvalid>false</w:SaveIfXMLInvalid> <w:IgnoreMixedContent>false</w:IgnoreMixedContent> <w:AlwaysShowPlaceholderText>false</w:AlwaysShowPlaceholderText> <w:DoNotPromoteQF/> <w:LidThemeOther>EN-US</w:LidThemeOther> <w:LidThemeAsian>X-NONE</w:LidThemeAsian> <w:LidThemeComplexScript>X-NONE</w:LidThemeComplexScript> <w:Compatibility> <w:BreakWrappedTables/> <w:SnapToGridInCell/> <w:WrapTextWithPunct/> <w:UseAsianBreakRules/> 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<w:LsdException Locked="false" SemiHidden="true" UnhideWhenUsed="true" Name="Date"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" SemiHidden="true" UnhideWhenUsed="true" Name="Body Text First Indent"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" SemiHidden="true" UnhideWhenUsed="true" Name="Body Text First Indent 2"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" SemiHidden="true" UnhideWhenUsed="true" Name="Note Heading"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" SemiHidden="true" UnhideWhenUsed="true" Name="Body Text 2"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" SemiHidden="true" UnhideWhenUsed="true" Name="Body Text 3"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" SemiHidden="true" UnhideWhenUsed="true" Name="Body Text Indent 2"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" SemiHidden="true" UnhideWhenUsed="true" Name="Body Text Indent 3"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" SemiHidden="true" UnhideWhenUsed="true" Name="Block Text"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" SemiHidden="true" UnhideWhenUsed="true" Name="Hyperlink"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" SemiHidden="true" 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SemiHidden="true" UnhideWhenUsed="true" Name="HTML Cite"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" SemiHidden="true" UnhideWhenUsed="true" Name="HTML Code"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" SemiHidden="true" UnhideWhenUsed="true" Name="HTML Definition"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" SemiHidden="true" UnhideWhenUsed="true" Name="HTML Keyboard"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" SemiHidden="true" UnhideWhenUsed="true" Name="HTML Preformatted"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" SemiHidden="true" UnhideWhenUsed="true" Name="HTML Sample"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" SemiHidden="true" UnhideWhenUsed="true" Name="HTML Typewriter"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" SemiHidden="true" UnhideWhenUsed="true" Name="HTML Variable"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" SemiHidden="true" UnhideWhenUsed="true" Name="Normal Table"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" SemiHidden="true" UnhideWhenUsed="true" Name="annotation subject"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" SemiHidden="true" UnhideWhenUsed="true" Name="No List"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" SemiHidden="true" UnhideWhenUsed="true" Name="Outline List 1"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" SemiHidden="true" UnhideWhenUsed="true" Name="Outline List 2"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" SemiHidden="true" UnhideWhenUsed="true" Name="Outline List 3"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" SemiHidden="true" UnhideWhenUsed="true" Name="Table Simple 1"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" SemiHidden="true" UnhideWhenUsed="true" Name="Table Simple 2"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" SemiHidden="true" UnhideWhenUsed="true" Name="Table Simple 3"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" SemiHidden="true" UnhideWhenUsed="true" Name="Table Classic 1"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" SemiHidden="true" UnhideWhenUsed="true" Name="Table Classic 2"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" SemiHidden="true" UnhideWhenUsed="true" Name="Table Classic 3"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" SemiHidden="true" UnhideWhenUsed="true" Name="Table Classic 4"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" 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Name="Medium Shading 2 Accent 1"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="65" Name="Medium List 1 Accent 1"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" SemiHidden="true" Name="Revision"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="34" QFormat="true" Name="List Paragraph"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="29" QFormat="true" Name="Quote"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="30" QFormat="true" Name="Intense Quote"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="66" Name="Medium List 2 Accent 1"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="67" Name="Medium Grid 1 Accent 1"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="68" Name="Medium Grid 2 Accent 1"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="69" Name="Medium Grid 3 Accent 1"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="70" Name="Dark List Accent 1"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="71" Name="Colorful Shading Accent 1"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="72" Name="Colorful List Accent 1"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" 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ID: 153977
Uid: 341
Author: 40
Category: 0
Title: Hush,Hush, Silent Democrats
Source:
Body: <p><i>"Every senator in this chamber is partly responsible for sending 50,000 young Americans to an early grave. This chamber reeks of blood. Every Senator here is partly responsible for that human wreckage at Walter Reed and Bethesda Naval and all across our land-- young men without legs, or arms, or genitals, or faces or hopes."--Senator George McGovern's denunciation of senators of both parties who refused to condemn the Vietnam War. 9/1/70.</i></p> <p>I've been reading Thomas Knock's new biography of George McGovern, "The Rise of a Prairie Statesman." Yes, the same George McGovern who was a real life WWII war hero who earned the Distinguished Flying Cross as well as the super-dove who was overwhelmingly rejected by voters &nbsp;in his run for the presidency in 1972. And for decades before and after, McGovern and McGovernism were dismissed by Democratic Party VIPs upset by his efforts to develop a seriously restrained foreign policy and maintain limits on our military empire and its unwinnable wars. It was the hallowed era of our celebrated "bipartisan foreign policy," whose basic principles were rarely challenged and those who tried to do so were often denounced as irrelevant, even dangerous, by a sycophantic press and politicians. &nbsp;All the same, before the invasion of Iraq in 2003 McGovern warned about America's latest brainstorm on WABC's "John Batchelor Show":&nbsp; "Mark my words: this is a tragic error that will haunt us." And still does.</p> <p>Years later, in 2015, three think tanks,&nbsp; the Atlantic Council, Brookings Institution and the Chicago Council on Global Affairs &nbsp;turned to Ukraine and &nbsp;issued a report, "Preserving Ukraine's Independence, Resisting Russian Aggression: What the United States and NATO Must Do," after Putin's Russia annexed Crimea. It urged the sending of "lethal defensive arms --- so that Ukraine is better able to defend itself" and concluded, "The West has the capacity of stop Russia. The question is whether it has the will." Somehow they failed to mention Moscow's thousand-plus nukes, even as it reminded me of Mark Danner's obliging, classic phrase, "Marooned in the Cold War."</p> <p>McGovern's long-term legacy is that the party which rejected his views needs an alternative approach to war and peace and not another Hillary trying to show they're tougher than the Republicans.&nbsp; </p> <p>&nbsp;After all, our generals haven't won much since their heroic victories over mighty Grenada and Panama. &nbsp;And, incredibly, the Democratic primary campaign in 2016 had little or nothing to say about foreign policy, neither from Hillary the Hawk nor Bernie the Dove. Since then hardly a word from Democrats about NATO threatening nuclear Russia by provocatively moving ever closer to its borders with planes, ships and troops. Not a word about Yemen where a vicious civil war is armed by the U.S. and bombed by its Saudi and its Middle Eastern friends. There is a quietness from prominent Democrats about exploring &nbsp;possible diplomatic solutions with North Korea, or Trump committing us to yet another generation of war in Afghanistan, or our empire's 80 or so military bases, and of course little or nothing said about the soaring profits earned by weapons makers hard at work turning out killing machines. </p> <p>If George McGovern was too radical for Vietnam-era Democrats, I hope some present-day Senator will echo him on the floor of the Senate and remind his colleagues about the anti-Nazi martyr Dietrich Bonhoeffer who warned his fellow Germans that "Silence in the face of evil is itself evil" and that "Not to speak is to speak and not to act is to act."</p>
ID: 153978
Uid: 31615
Author: 19
Category: 0
Title: The Character Test Is Dead
Source:
Body: <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">In 2016, Donald Trump confounded every informed opinion about his campaign’s chances for success. The same question kept returning: why didn’t this particular outrageous display of personal character sink his ship? Trump was confident that his personal morality would make <a href="http://www.cnn.com/2016/01/23/politics/donald-trump-shoot-somebody-support/index.html">little difference</a>: “I could stand in the middle of 5th Avenue and shoot somebody and I wouldn’t lose voters.” That was in January 2016.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">A report on <a href="https://www.aol.com/article/news/2017/08/23/trump-approval-rating-base-hit-new-low-after-botched-charlottesville-respose/23158793/">new poll</a> results says “only 73% of Republicans” approve his performance. Why “only”? The great majority approve of what he has done, and presumably are looking forward to more of the same.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">This keeps surprising the media. In February, CNN tried to explain <a href="http://www.cnn.com/2017/02/19/opinions/why-trump-supporters-love-him-not-the-media-stanley/index.html">what puzzled them</a>: “Why Trump’s supporters still love him.” In April, the Huffington Post <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/at-100-days-why-do-most-of-his-voters-still-love-trump_us_5901d90fe4b0768c2682e33b">asked</a>, “At 100 Days, Why Do Most Of Trump’s Voters Still Love Him?” Now it’s August and little has changed. Trump bet that character doesn’t matter, and he keeps winning.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">A sea change has swept over the public consciousness of our country since the 1950s. In the America that Trump’s supporters believe was great, character mattered. You might be a jerk in business, in academia, in politics and get ahead. You might be a jerk in town, and still get elected to important local positions. You might be jerk at home and abuse your family, but still parade as a family man. </span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">But being a jerk didn’t help. Those who got caught cooking the books or cheating their customers or beating weaker people up could lose everything. Failing the character test in a public way meant disaster.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Passing the character test depended a lot on what the media were willing to make public. <a href="http://militaryhistorynow.com/2015/11/20/baby-you-can-drive-my-car-the-curious-relationship-between-general-eisenhower-and-kay-summersby/">Dwight Eisenhower’s</a> affair with Kay Summersby and <a href="http://channel.nationalgeographic.com/killing-kennedy/articles/the-sex-life-of-jfk/">JFK’s</a> liaisons with many women were known, but <a href="http://www.independent.co.uk/voices/all-the-presidents-unreported-women-jfk-never-had-problems-like-bill-clintons-recalls-nick-bryant-1438663.html">treated gingerly</a> by the press. Searching for the personal scandals of powerful men was considered sleazy.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Nixon’s enormous character failure, and the long-running national scandal that dominated the media in 1972-1974, changed the character test. Journalists and publishers grew more attuned to the use of <a href="http://watergate.info/">character flaws as news</a>. But adultery was not yet enough to sink an important politician. Arkansas Congressman Wilbur Mills was caught with a stripper, Fanne Fox, in 1974, but was <a href="https://www.washingtonpost.com/archive/politics/2002/06/05/capitol-offenses-dcs-long-unhappy-history-of-sin/1f50fda1-fbc2-4044-972b-9b3936717e81/?utm_term=.59bdacc861ee">reelected</a> the next month. As the media embraced a new sexual ethic of visual exploitation in the 1970s and 1980s, it also embraced the virtues of sensationalized print. Gary Hart’s extramarital affair while he was running for President in 1988 showed that <a href="https://www.nytimes.com/2014/09/21/magazine/how-gary-harts-downfall-forever-changed-american-politics.html?_r=0">adultery</a> had become a major element in the character test.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt"><span style="mso-tab-count: 13">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span></span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Other questions on the character test assumed conservative ideology was moral character. That has long been true. In the postwar decades, made-up accusations of “Communism” were sufficient to attribute severe moral failings to crusaders for labor and civil rights. 1950s gender rules were clearly represented in the character test: gay was sick, dominance was manly, ambition was unwomanly. Blackness was itself considered as a moral failing. The character test often functioned to weed out liberals by turning emotion into a flaw. Ed Muskie failed the character test in 1972 by tearing up in a New Hampshire snowstorm as he defended his wife against <a href="https://www.usnews.com/news/articles/2008/01/17/72-front-runners-tears-hurt">scurrilous lies planted</a> by the Nixon White House.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">These politicized claims about character have lost their persuasiveness. People, a lot of whom suffered personally from these ideas about character, have changed the test by challenging its premises. Race may always be a failing of our union, but the certainty that black skin is a character flaw is gone. Homosexuality no longer needs to be hidden from view for political success.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">I have no statistics, but I believe that Republicans have adopted better to a media hungry for sensationalized scandal and contributed much to its triumph. Republicans tried during Bill Clinton’s entire presidency to make his sex life the key test of character. They impeached him for <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Impeachment_of_Bill_Clinton">lying</a>, an almost amusing idea in the Trump era. The <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Swift_Vets_and_POWs_for_Truth">character assassination</a> of John Kerry in 2004 became the birther controversy for Obama.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">That brings us back to Trump, who demonstrates that the character test is dead. His abuse of women, his cheating of people he hired, his personal nastiness, his lying and bragging, seem to have contributed to rather than hurt his appeal. Trump fails every test of character, but it makes no difference.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Even as personal behavior has become important in the careers of <a href="https://www.lipstickandpolitics.com/politics/in-sports-in-politics-in-life-does-character-even-matter-anymore">NFL players and TV personalities</a>, it seems to have lost its relevance in politics. The careers of Adrian Peterson and Ray Rice were damaged by evidence of domestic violence, but Mark Sanford could have an affair, <a href="http://articles.latimes.com/2009/jun/25/nation/na-mark-sanford25">lie about it</a>, use public funds to finance his adultery, and then get elected to Congress.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">In fact, the character test may have been turned on its head. Trump appeals to a surprisingly large segment of Americans who like nastiness, who applaud insults, who cheer bloodshed, and who hate liberals and liberal ideas. When he grabs women and laughs about it, when he tells lies about good people, when he calls journalists “sick”, when he mocks the handicapped, and when he winks at white supremacists, his supporters are happy. Criticize what look like his character flaws and you’ll get nowhere with them.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">But do it anyway. The character test is dead only if we let it die.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Steve Hochstadt</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Springbrook WI</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Published in the Jacksonville Journal-Courier, August 29, 2017</span></p>
ID: 153979
Uid: 4699
Author: 4
Category: 0
Title: The Preacher Whose Statue Was Booted for Reagan
Source: The Daily Beast
Body: <p style="line-height: 29.5px; margin: 0px 0px 15px; font-size: 17px; color: rgb(2, 20, 31); font-family: Georgia, Cambria, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, Times, serif; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">Although many patriots die on battlefields, the Reverend Thomas Starr King may be the rare patriot who died on the speaker’s circuit.</p><p style="line-height: 29.5px; margin: 0px 0px 15px; font-size: 17px; color: rgb(2, 20, 31); font-family: Georgia, Cambria, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, Times, serif; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">President Abraham Lincoln considered King the man most responsible for keeping&nbsp;<a href="https://books.google.co.il/books?id=q8JdcXNyz00C&amp;pg=PA468&amp;lpg=PA468&amp;dq=%2522peace+what+it+would+cost+us%2522+king&amp;source=bl&amp;ots=7fOeLnrWOV&amp;sig=DW4CYYbcwHalC8R6ZOroJ_PK6QI&amp;hl=en&amp;sa=X&amp;ved=0ahUKEwiQ8t72mIDWAhVFOBQKHT78BwoQ6AEIPDAG#v=onepage&amp;q=Thomas%2520starr%2520king&amp;f=false" style="transition: color 0.15s ease; background-color: transparent;">California in the Union.</a>&nbsp;King also helped keep California free and united defying pro-slavery Southern Californians threatening to bolt. Giving the small, sickly King an audience and a cause roused him. “<a href="https://books.google.co.il/books?id=2-smDwAAQBAJ&amp;pg=PA50&amp;lpg=PA50&amp;dq=thomas+starr+king+Though+I+weigh+only+120+pounds&amp;source=bl&amp;ots=5vyhaEq8Cl&amp;sig=v4UIHCMejrQwpQD64UzAlDuEltg&amp;hl=en&amp;sa=X&amp;ved=0ahUKEwiswrik2oLWAhUH2RoKHaoZAs8Q6AEIPjAF#v=onepage&amp;q=thomas%2520starr%2520king%2520Though%2520I%2520weigh%2520only%2520120%2520pounds&amp;f=false" style="transition: color 0.15s ease; background-color: transparent;">Though I weigh only 120 pounds</a>,” he acknowledged, “when I’m mad, I weigh a ton.”</p><p style="line-height: 29.5px; margin: 0px 0px 15px; font-size: 17px; color: rgb(2, 20, 31); font-family: Georgia, Cambria, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, Times, serif; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">Amid America’s ugly brawl over slavery, King never let his patriotism turn harsh, defensive, pinched, or xenophobic. His patriotism was lyrical, expansive, idealistic, charitable and redemptive. Just 10 years ago, Ronald Reagan’s statue replaced King’s in the Capitol’s National Statuary Hall. In this age of Monumental musical chairs, let’s move the marbleized figure of this big-hearted patriot into Donald Trump’s Oval Office—immediately...</p><p style="line-height: 29.5px; margin: 0px 0px 15px; font-size: 17px; color: rgb(2, 20, 31); font-family: Georgia, Cambria, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, Times, serif; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);"><a href="http://www.thedailybeast.com/the-preacher-whose-statue-was-booted-for-reagan">Read whole article on the Daily Beast.&nbsp;</a></p>
ID: 153980
Uid: 31615
Author: 19
Category: 0
Title: Payng for Big Storms
Source:
Body: <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size: 12.0pt">Paying for Big Storms</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Hurricane Katrina cost our country, our people, over $100 billion. Hurricane Sandy cost $75 billion. Hurricane Harvey will also be in that range, and may become the </span><a href="https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2017/09/01/upshot/cost-of-hurricane-harvey-only-one-storm-comes-close.html?_r=0"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">most expensive storm</span></a><span style="font-size: 12.0pt"> in American history. Each one of those storms cost the US more than any storm before. </span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Between 1980 and 2012 there were 5 storms a year that did </span><a href="https://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/billions/overview"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">$1 billion in damage</span></a><span style="font-size:12.0pt"> in the US. From 2013 to 2016, the average was a bit more than 10. Through 8 months </span><a href="http://www.businessinsider.com/the-us-has-already-been-hit-with-9-other-billion-dollar-natural-disasters-in-2017-so-far-2017-8"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">this year</span></a><span style="font-size:12.0pt">, there have already been 10. Ten of the 11 costliest Atlantic hurricanes have occurred </span><a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_costliest_Atlantic_hurricanes"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">since 2004</span></a><span style="font-size:12.0pt">. Smaller storms are also becoming </span><a href="http://nca2014.globalchange.gov/highlights/report-findings/extreme-weather#intro-section-2"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">much more frequent</span></a><span style="font-size: 12.0pt">. Compared to the average for 1900-1960, there were 20% more “heavy precipitation events” in the 1980s, 35% more in the 1990s, and 40% more in the 2000s.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Lives, livelihoods, possessions and homes have been lost. One million housing units were damaged or destroyed by </span><a href="http://www.datacenterresearch.org/data-resources/katrina/facts-for-impact/"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Katrina</span></a><span style="font-size:12.0pt">, 650,000 by </span><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/10/29/hurricane-sandy-impact-infographic_n_4171243.html"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Sandy</span></a><span style="font-size:12.0pt">, and at least 100,000 by </span><a href="https://www.nbcnews.com/storyline/hurricane-harvey/harvey-threatens-tip-houston-s-working-poor-destitution-n798321"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Harvey</span></a><span style="font-size:12.0pt">. Harvey destroyed about a </span><a href="https://www.cnbc.com/2017/08/29/a-half-million-flooded-cars-and-trucks-could-be-scrapped.html"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">half a million cars</span></a><span style="font-size: 12.0pt">. Most of these losses are not covered by insurance. Standard homeowners policies </span><a href="http://money.cnn.com/2017/09/01/news/hurricane-harvey-cost-damage-homes-flood/index.html"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">do not cover damage</span></a><span style="font-size: 12.0pt"> from rain or flood waters.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">You don’t have to be listening very carefully or paying much attention to know that something is changing. Climate scientists have been saying for years that warming will probably mean </span><a href="http://www.climatecentral.org/news/bill-downpours-texas-future-19116"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">more and bigger storms</span></a><span style="font-size:12.0pt">. The “probably” is important: they are not as sure as about the fact of warming itself, but the evidence points strongly in that direction. In the case of </span><a href="https://www.vox.com/energy-and-environment/2017/8/28/16213268/harvey-climate-change"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Harvey</span></a><span style="font-size:12.0pt">, warming has raised sea levels (meaning higher storm surges) and raised air temperature (meaning more water in the air and more rain).</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Harvey washed away whole neighborhoods. It is also pushing aside the curtain on the politics of storms. As the costs of big storms have risen sharply, Republicans have been trying to cut federal funds for disaster relief. After Katrina and Sandy, Republicans in Congress were </span><a href="https://www.washingtonpost.com/powerpost/cost-of-cleaning-up-harvey-will-bring-new-test-of-governance-for-trump-and-gop/2017/08/27/9ce55456-8b95-11e7-84c0-02cc069f2c37_story.html?utm_term=.8374488a2932"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">reluctant to send aid</span></a><span style="font-size:12.0pt"> to New Orleans and New York. In both cases, they insisted that any new funds for relief be offset by cuts in programs they don’t like, such as Amtrak funding and Medicare. Texas Senators and Representatives opposed legislation to provide relief after Hurricane Sandy, as did current White House budget director Mick Mulvaney, then a Representative from South Carolina, and Paul Ryan, delaying relief funding for months.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Republican leaders in the House have now proposed a budget that </span><a href="https://www.bostonglobe.com/news/nation/2017/08/30/house-republicans-spending-bill-includes-fema-cuts-fund-trump-border-wall/VSf07WfdiwyhOFOoOKZ7pL/story.html"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">cuts FEMA disaster funds</span></a><span style="font-size:12.0pt"> by $876 million. This amount is instead intended to begin building Trump’s wall. Trump’s own budget blueprint calls for cuts of $667 million, mostly from the </span><a href="http://www.newsweek.com/harvey-trump-fema-budget-disaster-preparedness-hurricane-657237"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Pre-Disaster Mitigation Grant Program</span></a><span style="font-size:12.0pt">, which spends money now to reduce future expenditures. His budget eliminates the National Flood Insurance Program, which provides affordable flood insurance that private insurers won’t offer.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Trump’s proposed budget makes big cuts to research about the climate changes which are connected to these increasingly big and expensive storms. Budget director Mulvaney said, “We’re not spending money on that any more. We consider that to be a </span><a href="https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/post-politics/wp/2017/03/16/mulvaney-defends-proposed-cuts-to-climate-research-poverty-programs-deeming-them-wasteful-or-ineffective/?utm_term=.28d9577e41f7"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">waste of your money</span></a><span style="font-size: 12.0pt">.”</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">In their broad attack on all kinds of “regulations”, the Trump administration just eliminated an Obama-era regulation that required federally funded housing rebuilt after disasters to be able to </span><a href="http://jalopnik.com/trump-rolled-back-flood-protection-regulations-for-infr-1798515551"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">withstand these critical flood events</span></a><span style="font-size:12.0pt">. For an additional 1% in building costs, many times that would be saved in the future.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">At the state level, Republican ideology also makes disaster recovery more difficult for the most vulnerable Americans. A new law passed by Texas Republicans makes it easier for insurance companies to </span><a href="https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/posteverything/wp/2017/08/31/poor-texans-are-going-to-suffer-the-most-in-harvey-thanks-to-state-politics/?utm_term=.8ee179e3aa3e"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">avoid paying off</span></a><span style="font-size: 12.0pt"> on their policies and harder for homeowners to get paid.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Those are the facts. Not fake: everything above can be found in hundreds of places. Not really news: mostly old stories or back page reports.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Only an ideologically immovable force like the current Republican Party could ignore the mounting crises caused by our changing weather systems. In their rigid insistence that big government is America’s biggest problem, Republicans consistently ignore the human costs of the crises, where only big government can provide solutions. In their refusal to acknowledge the basic facts of climate change, Republicans in Congress and the White House put Americans at risk of losing everything.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Right now, Republicans like Senator Ted Cruz, who didn’t want to pay for the damage done by Sandy, are rushing to promise money for Texans. Let’s see whether they also acknowledge that increasing weather crises are the greatest danger to American life.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Steve Hochstadt</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Springbrook WI</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Published in the Jacksonville Journal-Courier, September 5, 2017</span></p> <!--[if gte mso 9]><xml> <w:WordDocument> <w:View>Normal</w:View> <w:Zoom>0</w:Zoom> <w:TrackMoves/> <w:TrackFormatting/> <w:PunctuationKerning/> <w:ValidateAgainstSchemas/> <w:SaveIfXMLInvalid>false</w:SaveIfXMLInvalid> <w:IgnoreMixedContent>false</w:IgnoreMixedContent> <w:AlwaysShowPlaceholderText>false</w:AlwaysShowPlaceholderText> <w:DoNotPromoteQF/> <w:LidThemeOther>EN-US</w:LidThemeOther> <w:LidThemeAsian>X-NONE</w:LidThemeAsian> <w:LidThemeComplexScript>X-NONE</w:LidThemeComplexScript> <w:Compatibility> 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ID: 153981
Uid: 341
Author: 40
Category: 0
Title: Baseball, the Brooklyn Dodgers and Me
Source:
Body: <p style="text-align: center;"><a href="https://www.amazon.com/Branch-Rickey-biography-Murray-Polner/dp/0451123867/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&amp;ie=UTF8&amp;qid=1504726912&amp;sr=1-1&amp;keywords=Murray+Polner.+Branch+Rickey.+A+Biography"><img src=" /sites/default/files/153981-book.png"></a></p><p><i>Murray Polner is an HNN blogger and the author of "Rabbi: The American Experience," "Branch Rickey: A Biography" and co-author of "Disarmed &amp; Dangerous," a dual bio of the Berrigan brothers.</i></p><p>"Surely God must have been with me when I picked Jackie," Branch Rickey said after he looked back at his unprecedented signing of Jackie Robinson to a baseball contract in 1947.</p> <p>When Robinson died in 1972 of diabetes and hypertension, some white sports columnists wrote that his coming was no big thing and would have happened sooner or later.&nbsp; 0thers, more cynical, described Rickey's motive as greed.&nbsp; But the fact is that before Rickey no one had done it or even seriously proposed doing it.&nbsp; That's his legacy. </p> <p>And I guess it's mine too since when I received a publisher's contract to write a <a href="https://www.amazon.com/Branch-Rickey-biography-Murray-Polner/dp/0451123867/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&amp;ie=UTF8&amp;qid=1504726912&amp;sr=1-1&amp;keywords=Murray+Polner.+Branch+Rickey.+A+Biography">biography of Rickey</a> I knew I had to find out why&nbsp; so believing and trusting a Christian conservative and Republican supporter of Cold War policies would dare to change the game he revered forever. Very quickly I understood the central role his religious faith played. And for most of his post-Jackie life he peppered his speeches with references to the absence of fairness and justice for Black people and other minorities.</p> <p>"Why is there an epidemic of racism in the world today"? he began a talk on one steamy summer day in the late fifties in Buffalo to stomping, cheering NAACP delegates. &nbsp;When visited by Rutgers University philosophy professor Houston Peterson in his suburban Pittsburgh home, he called out "Let's go to church."&nbsp; They then drove to a black church and when the 76 year old Rickey entered, cane in hand, congregants stood and shouted "God Bless you, Mr. Rickey," while Peterson told me the minister shouted 'Amen.'" </p> <p>I was born in Brooklyn, NY. When I entered my early teenage years little mattered but baseball, the Brooklyn Dodgers, and Ebbets Field, which opened in 1913 and drew scores of unique and unusual fans like Hilda Chester ringing her cowbell (immortalized in SABR by Rob Edelman's first-rate portrait of her), a harebrained and annoying fan constantly yelling "Cooookie," for third baseman Lavagetto, and the atonal, amateurish Dodger Sym-phony, which paraded around the lower stands between innings. A few priests occasionally blessed the team, even though their prayers went unheeded for years and the Catholic Church pressured baseball in 1947 to ban Durocher for a year for his supposed immoral behavior.</p> <p>Actually, we lived a myth, namely that Brooklyn was an ethnic paradise of mutually tolerant Irish, Jews, Italians, Scandinavians, Blacks. In reality, we lived separate lives but still it was a community of Dodger-obsessed fans who happily accepted Robinson's arrival if not their sons' infatuation with baseball. In Peter Levine's "Ellis Island to Ebbets Field,” he quotes Abraham Cahan, a Jewish immigrant from Russia and editor of the Yiddish language Jewish Daily Forward newspaper answering a question from a father complaining about his son playing ball. 'I want my boy to grow up to be a mensch, not a wild American runner," the father wrote. To which Cahan, an assimilationist and dedicated American patriot, replied: &nbsp;"Let us not raise the children that they should grow up foreigners in their own place."</p> <p>Until then, Ebbets Field was my cathedral and passion for the Dodgers my faith. One thing about Rickey was that he understood the extraordinary hold the team had on its fans. When he was forced out by Walter O'Malley --he who kidnapped the team and fled to LA (0ld joke: An armed Brooklyn man enters a bar and sees Hitler, Stalin and 0'Malley: Who does he shoot?) -- he wrote about his years in Brooklyn.</p> <p>"They were wonderful years. A community of over three million people, proud, hurt, jealous, seeking geographical, social, emotional status as a city apart and alone and sufficient. 0ne could not live for eight years in Brooklyn and not catch its spirit of devotion to its baseball club, such as no other city equaled. Call it loyalty and it was." </p> <p>He was referring to a tradition where speed and technology could never quite supplant his ingrained nineteenth century deep-seated belief that baseball, and the profound city-loyalties it fostered, symbolized continuity in a world fractured by irreparable disruption and unforgivable high crimes. How, he once asked in a speech, can anyone explain the murders of one and a half million Jewish children by the Nazis and their allies?</p> <p>In 1936 I saw my first Brooklyn Dodger game with my Hebrew school class, shepherded by our rabbi's brother, sadly a Yankee fan. Bucky Walters, a Philly third baseman converted into a pitcher with a windmill motion faced my favorite, Fred Frankhouse, the idol of Port Royal, PA. After the game I broke loose from my classmates and planted myself near the door to the Dodger clubhouse and cornered Frankhouse for his autograph. He signed my scorecard and told me I was a nice boy. In 1989 when I read he had died I sent his family a sympathy card and audaciously signed it, "a loyal Brooklyn and Frankhouse fan since 1936." </p> <p>By the next year or so, with money I had earned as a delivery boy for a delicatessen and a Garment Center company, and regularly fortified with a sandwich and banana provided by my mother who had somehow begun to understand what baseball meant to me, I took the subway to Ebbets Field and sat alone in the bleachers. &nbsp;</p> <p>I've never forgotten certain special players now ancient history like Gene Hermanski, the first Dodger to welcome Robinson and whose photo appears with Rickey on the cover of my hardcover book and who tried unsuccessfully &nbsp;to get all the players to wear Robinson's number 42 because of threats against his life; slugger and Hall of Famer Joe Medwick who came from the Cardinals in a trade pushed by cheapskate Cardinal owner Sam Breadon and executed by cheapskate Cardinal GM Branch Rickey and was promptly accidentally beamed by Cardinal pitcher Bob Bowman; third baseman Joe Stripp, dubbed without imagination by a sportswriter "Jersey Joe" because he came from New Jersey and whose major contribution was being traded for four players for Durocher; catcher Babe Phelps who was afraid to fly and preferred trains and buses; Luis 0lmo, the team's first Puerto Rican position player; Ralph Branca, who surrendered the infamous homerun to the Giant's Bobby Thomson in 1951 (the Giants stole the Dodger catcher's signal by telescope, as the Wall Street Journal reported a half century later), and was an early supporter of Jackie Robinson; Canadian outfielder Goody Rosen and Brooklyn-born pitcher Harry Eisenstat, my favorite Jewish players (there weren't many but Branca later revealed he had a Jewish mother) and Chris Hartje, an obscure backup catcher in 1939, who hit a double before leaving baseball forever, drafted into the Army preparing for WWII. </p> <p>To keep up on all their doings I was a voracious reader of two gossip, scandal-drenched and loud-mouthed tabloids, the NY Daily News owned by the New Deal &amp; FDR- hating Joseph Medill Patterson, and the other Hearst's Daily Mirror, sketchy and shallow, which- featured Walter Winchell, who I admired until he became Joe McCarthy's ugly echo. Both papers though were blessed with opinionated columnists, as did the Brooklyn Eagle, which to its everlasting credit hired Walt Whitman for a two-year stint as its editor in 1846.</p> <p>When the Dodgers won the pennant for the first time in 20 years in 1941, the Eagle spread a 12 pt."WE WIN" across Page 0ne and Peewee Rosen and I played hooky to cheer on the players as they were driven by in open cars in downtown Brooklyn.</p> <p>&nbsp;And then there was the Daily Worker, perpetually blind to Stalin's monstrous crimes while falsely claiming that its Party and sports writers had played an important role in persuading Rickey to sign Robinson. That Rickey, an inveterate anti-Communist and Cold Warrior paid any attention to Communists is not believable and there is no evidence that he ever listened to them. Then, too, he would never have accepted what a non-Communist writer, the late leftist Jules Tygiel, erroneously wrote, namely that the Party and especially the Daily Worker "had played a major role in elevating the issue of baseball's racial policies to the level of public consciousness," a deeply flawed conclusion with little or no supporting confirmation.</p> <p>In my opinion, the best article on the subject &nbsp;disputing Tygiel's inaccurate judgment remains Henry D. Fetter's definitive study, "The Party Line and the Color Line: The American Communist Party and the Daily Worker and Jackie Robinson," which puts the alleged contribution of the Communists to rest. In truth, as I also found long before, was that Rickey's faith-driven dream and Robinson's great courage led the way to the historic end of racial segregation in baseball.</p><p>My baseball. A bucolic game, endless and timeless. Slow, unchangeable and reactionary even as it struggles nowadays to absorb the challenge of analytics and sabermetrics. I know: It's excessively commercial, subservient to corporate control, silent about pointless American wars and gravely harmed by an inexcusable imbalance between the haves and have-nots. I know, I know. But it's still baseball, my baseball. And now, it's my Mets too.</p><b></b>
ID: 153982
Uid: 341
Author: 40
Category: 0
Title: The Vietnam War: An American Crime
Source:
Body: <i>Here I reprint my 2008 article in anticipation of Ken Burns's forthcoming multi-series TV documentary about the Vietnam War. I hope he and his collaborator will not whitewash the American role. </i><p><i>“Our government has no right to send American boys to their death in any battlefield in the absence of a declaration of war…and no war has been declared in Southeast Asia, and until a war is declared, it is unconstitutional to send American boy to their death in South Vietnam or anywhere else in Southeast Asia. I don’t know why we think, just because we’re mighty, that we have the right to substitute might for right. And that’s the American policy in Southeast Asia.”</i></p> <p>--Senator Wayne Morse, who with Senator Ernest Gruening, were the only two senators who voted against the Gulf of Tonkin</p><p>&nbsp;resolution, which gave the U.S. and President Lyndon B. Johnson a free hand to wage war.</p> <p>More than a half a million U.S. troops were sent to serve in what was in reality a civil war. B-52s dropped as many or more bombs on rural North Vietnam than they did on Nazi Germany.&nbsp; 58,209 American servicemen and women were killed, a disproportionate number of them conscripts, and 153,303 were wounded, many forever damaged in body and mind.&nbsp; Millions of Southeast Asians died or suffered grievous wounds. </p> <p>The U.S. was defeated by a largely guerilla force. </p> <p>Historian Robert Schulzinger’s shrewd judgment in his book <i>A Time for War: The United States and Vietnam, 1941-1975 </i>cannot be easily dismissed:“Had all American leaders not thought that all international events were connected to the Cold War, there would have been no American war in Vietnam” And no Vietnam Memorial.</p> <p>The U.S. supported post-WWII France as it sought to retain its Southeast Asian colonies. That is, until 1954, when the French occupiers, having been badly defeated by the Germans and everyone else since the Napoleonic wars, were just as badly beaten by the North Vietnamese at Dien Bien Phu. They quickly abandoned their colony, leaving in their wake the U.S. as its imperial successor. A conference at Geneva divided North and South Vietnam at the 17th parallel and a pledge by the conferees to hold elections. The southern ruling circles, many of whose leaders had served in the French army, and Eisenhower’s pugnacious Secretary of State, John Foster Dulles, balked at any election, leaving their erstwhile allies in the south to shape a viable government, which they never could. </p> <p>Still, in May 1961, Vice-President Lyndon B. Johnson, as most American politicians who traveled to Saigon would do—that is, until the final American defeat in 1975-- chatted with US Generals living in air-conditioned comfort, and then pontificate to the press and the nation that victory was just around the corner. Most Americans and the mass media agreed with him. For them, ignorant and indifferent, the war was justified. LBJ also came away praising Ngo Dinh Diem, the American puppet, as the “Winston Churchill of Asia” though this ersatz version of Churchill would be assassinated in 1963 in a CIA-supported coup. By the time President John F. Kennedy was killed in November 1963, he had dispatched 16,000 U.S. military “advisors” to Vietnam and a few more to Laos. After 1965 more and more American troops poured in while, with very few exceptions virtually all VIPs, congressmen and the Capital’s pro-war hawks saw to it that their draft-eligible sons avoided active military duty. During Dick Cheney’s 1989 confirmation hearings as Secretary of Defense he was asked why he had requested five draft deferments, which kept him safely at home. “I had other priorities in the ‘60s than military service,” he answered.&nbsp; “I don’t regret the decision I made…Was it [the war] a noble cause? Yes, indeed, I think it was.” </p> <p>In the Congress, political courage was rare. The post-World War II rise of anti-colonialism was drowned out by the obsessive and paranoid anti-Communism of every U.S. President and nearly every politician. Kennedy’s gift to his successors in the White House was Vietnam, where as early as 1963, the North had virtually won the war.</p> <p>One year later the House of Representatives voted unanimously to approve the Tonkin Resolution, which allegedly resulted from two North Korean torpedo boat attacks against two U.S. destroyers near the North Vietnamese coast.&nbsp; Before too long this dubious incident—much like the sinking of the Maine in 1898 and the post- 9/11 fabrication about Saddam Hussein’s Iraq having weapons of mass destruction -was used by Johnson Administration hawks to urge on a somewhat reluctant President what they avidly desired: a land war on the Asian mainland, against which many military experts had long warned.&nbsp; It was also used to persuade—and frighten-- the American people that distant, insignificant, and rural North Vietnam posed a major threat to their country and the western world. </p> <p>Even so, two Senatorial dissenters emerged: Wayne Morse of Oregon and Alaska’s brave and principled Ernest Gruening, who would always vote against spending for a war he detested. And in the White House circle, senior advisor and Under Secretary of State George Ball stood alone as he warned against going to war, accurately predicting that a disaster lay ahead, only to be overwhelmed by Johnson’s inner circle and the capital’s foreign policy “elite” panting for war.</p> <p>Cheered on by most Americans and the media who had been schooled to believe that the Soviets were out to conquer all and only the U.S. stood in their way, the Domino Theory was dreamed up by American theorists (that all of Southeast Asia and more would fall if Hanoi wasn’t stopped; of course, no dominoes ever fell) and &nbsp;became the unquestioned mantra until 1967-68, when at last a growing and articulate antiwar movement began taking shape, especially after Johnson’s pro-war Republican presidential successor, Richard Nixon, and his principle advisor Henry Kissinger arrived. </p> <p>By 1968, popular opposition to the war at home was widespread and it seemed as if the nation was undergoing a nervous breakdown, especially after the murders of Martin Luther King, Jr. and Robert Kennedy and later, in 1970, the killing of Kent State and Jackson State students.&nbsp; When the Vietnam Memorial was dedicated and became a sacred shrine to the dead, no one in political authority who had helped dream up this colossal bloodletting were ever held legally accountable, thereby insuring that few if any lessons would be learned in the decades ahead as we charged into Iraq and the Greater Middle East. </p> <p>“Now I hate every Memorial Day, no matter which president presides over it,” wrote Philip D. Beidler, a Vietnam combat vet and lieutenant of armored cavalry and now a professor of English at the University of Alabama, in his unflinching book <i>American Wars, American Peace:</i> “I’m fed up with hearing speeches from people who don’t know any better, profaning the memory of people who most always, at least as I remember it in the decades since I came home, died scared and alone holding their wounds, or with piss and shit running down their legs, or with chunks of them blown off—or even drowned in an overturned tank.”</p> <p>Vietnam was, to paraphrase General Omar Bradley when he famously criticized America’s decision to go to war in Korea in 1950, “the wrong war in the wrong place at the wrong time.” It was yet another defeat after Korea, which however, granted more Americans in the years ahead the courage and independence of mind to publicly question whether there are limits to American military power. Should such an admirable skepticism ever take hold our children and grandchildren will never again be mere cannon fodder, playthings for home front warriors. </p> <p>-</p>
ID: 153983
Uid: 4699
Author: 4
Category: 0
Title: The One-Armed Orphan Who Brought Human Rights To The World
Source: The Daily Beast
Body: <p style="line-height: 29.5px; margin: 0px 0px 15px; font-size: 17px; color: rgb(2, 20, 31); font-family: Georgia, Cambria, 'Times New Roman', Times, serif;">The human wrongs many experienced during the twentieth century—individually and collectively—spawned today’s human rights movement.</p><p style="line-height: 29.5px; margin: 0px 0px 15px; font-size: 17px; color: rgb(2, 20, 31); font-family: Georgia, Cambria, 'Times New Roman', Times, serif;">Even the Thomas Jefferson of human rights, John Peters Humphrey, was a one-armed orphan bullied in private school. After working in the United Nations for twenty years, he concluded that this hope of humanity had become an “organization of shame.” His greatest achievement, drafting the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights, was ignored for decades as the movement’s George Washington—Rene Cassin—won the Noble Prize and its Paul Revere—Eleanor Roosevelt—became America’s liberal saint.&nbsp;</p><div class="teads-inread" style="overflow: hidden; height: 0px; transition: height 0.5s; box-sizing: content-box; color: rgb(2, 20, 31); font-family: Georgia, Cambria, 'Times New Roman', Times, serif;"><div style="margin-bottom: 0px !important; position: relative;"><div class="teads-ui-components-label" style="color: rgb(170, 170, 170); margin-bottom: 0px !important; font-family: Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif !important; font-size: 11.5px !important; text-align: center !important; text-transform: uppercase !important; height: 21px !important; line-height: 21px !important; letter-spacing: 0.3px !important;"></div><div class="teads-player" id="teads0" style="margin-bottom: 0px !important;"></div></div></div><p style="line-height: 29.5px; margin: 0px 0px 15px; font-size: 17px; color: rgb(2, 20, 31); font-family: Georgia, Cambria, 'Times New Roman', Times, serif;">The origins of John Peters Humphrey’s commitment to human rights are so cinematic, even Hollywood would fear constructing such obvious psychological motives. Born in New Brunswick, Canada in 1905, Humphrey had the kind of childhood that could have produced a criminal—or a do-gooder. His father died before he turned one.&nbsp;Doctors amputated his left arm, after his clothing caught fire, when he was six. Then, his mother died, when he was eleven...</p><p style="line-height: 29.5px; margin: 0px 0px 15px; font-size: 17px; color: rgb(2, 20, 31); font-family: Georgia, Cambria, 'Times New Roman', Times, serif;"><a href="http://www.thedailybeast.com/the-one-armed-orphan-who-brought-human-rights-to-the-world">Read whole article on The Daily Beast</a></p>