Hillary Clinton’s ‘Exceptionalist’ Warpath

Exclusive: Democrats and Hillary Clinton are delighting in attacking Donald Trump from the right, employing McCarthyistic tactics and embracing the imperialist notion of “American exceptionalism,” says Daniel Lazare.

By Daniel Lazare

Mirror, mirror, on the wall, who’s the most right-wing presidential candidate of all?

The answer used to be Donald Trump, famous for his naked bigotry toward Mexicans and Muslims. But that was before Hillary Clinton supporters took a page from the old Joe McCarthy handbook and began denouncing their Republican opponent as “an unwitting agent of the Russian Federation” or arguing that criticism of Clinton and NATO somehow emanates out of Moscow.

Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump and Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton. (Photos by Gage Skidmore and derivative by Krassotkin, Wikipedia)

Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump and Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton. (Photos by Gage Skidmore and derivative by Krassotkin, Wikipedia)

Now comes Clinton’s speech at an American Legion convention in Cincinnati, her most bellicose to date, in which she savages Trump for failing to embrace the ultra-imperialist doctrine of “American exceptionalism.”

“My opponent in this race has said very clearly that he thinks American exceptionalism is insulting to the rest of the world,” she said Wednesday. “In fact, when Vladimir Putin, of all people, criticized American exceptionalism, my opponent agreed with him, saying, and I quote, ‘if you’re in Russia, you don’t want to hear that America is exceptional.’ Well maybe you don’t want to hear it, but that doesn’t mean it’s not true.”

Good people, she went on, do not take exception to the doctrine – only enemies do:

“When we say America is exceptional, it doesn’t mean that people from other places don’t feel deep national pride, just like we do. It means that we recognize America’s unique and unparalleled ability to be a force for peace and progress, a champion for freedom and opportunity. Our power comes with a responsibility to lead, humbly, thoughtfully, and with a fierce commitment to our values. Because, when America fails to lead, we leave a vacuum that either causes chaos or other countries or networks rush in to fill the void.”

It’s either American tutelage or Armageddon, in other words, which is why countries that are smart and sensible know better than to resist. To round out her pro-war package, Clinton also promised to respond to foreign cyberattacks with military means – perhaps sending out drones to bomb Wikileaks? – and promised to deal with the world’s bullies as well.

“I know that we can’t cozy up to dictators,” she said. “We have to stand up to them.”

All this from a woman whose family foundation has received up to $25 million from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, perhaps the most repressive government on earth, plus up to $50 million from other Persian Gulf sources. (The Saudis also donated $10-million to the construction of the Bill Clinton presidential library.)

American Legion’s Dubious History

Moreover, it was before an organization, born amid the post-World War I Red Scare that:

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton meets with Saudi King Abdullah in Riyadh on March 30, 2012. [State Department photo]

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton meets with Saudi King Abdullah in Riyadh on March 30, 2012. [State Department photo]

–So admired Mussolini that it invited him to address its annual convention in 1923.

–Proclaimed to the world that “the Fascisti are to Italy what the American Legion is the United States,” in the words of founder Alvin Owsley.

–Took part in the notorious Centralia massacre in Washington State in which Wesley Everest, a member of the Industrial Workers of the World, or Wobblies, was lynched from a railway trestle and then shot for good measure.

–Called for Communists to be tried for treason in the 1950s and pushed for a constitutional amendment to ban flag burning in the 1990s.

Although Salon.com, yet another member of the mighty Clinton propaganda Wurlitzer, recently described Trump as a latter-day Mussolini, it’s actually Clinton who is pandering to the Black Shirts. Somehow she has gotten it into her head that the best way to attack Trump is to bash him from the right. Hence her Cincinnati speech lambasting him not for being too extreme on the question of America’s foreign policy, but for not being extreme enough.

“American exceptionalism” has become a battle cry because it neatly sums up the imperial ideal of a global hegemon that is so unchallengeable that it supersedes law and morality.

Ironically, none other than Joseph Stalin coined the phrase in 1927 to describe a thesis advanced by U.S. Communist leader Jay Lovestone – later to become a close collaborator with the CIA – that American capitalism was so youthful and vigorous as to be exempt from the usual Marxist laws of crisis and decay.

The term went into hibernation following the Crash of 1929 for obvious reasons. But it re-surfaced half a century later among neoconservatives, many of them ex-Marxists who still remembered the old party controversies. But now it was used to describe a country that was not only exempt economically, but morally and politically.

In classic political terms, the U.S. was now the global sovereign, a supreme authority that imposes law on others but not on itself. Whatever the U.S. does is legal because it decides what’s legal and what’s not. The actions, whatever they are and however they seem to violate legal and ethical boundaries, are moral because the U.S. sets the moral rules.

Bashing the ‘Anti-Exceptionalists’

Clinton is in love with the phrase because it allows her to draw the line against enemies near and far. On one side are those countries that submit to U.S. sovereignty because they know it is “a force for peace and progress” and thus exist on the good side of the moral-legal boundary, while on the other are those that balk at American control and, as a result, are beyond the pale.

Donald Trump speaking with supporters at a campaign rally at Veterans Memorial Coliseum at the Arizona State Fairgrounds in Phoenix, Arizona. June 18, 2016. (Photo by Gage Skidmore)

Donald Trump speaking with supporters at a campaign rally at Veterans Memorial Coliseum at the Arizona State Fairgrounds in Phoenix, Arizona. June 18, 2016. (Photo by Gage Skidmore)

Domestically, it allows her to draw a bright red line as well between “patriotic” Americans who embrace the doctrine and a few naysayers who don’t.

Among the latter, remarkably enough, is Trump. At a Texas Tea Party event in April 2015, Trump confessed that he didn’t “like the term.”  As he put it:

“People say, ‘Oh, he’s not patriotic.’ Look, if I’m a Russian, or I’m a German, or I’m a person we do business with, why, you know, I don’t think it’s a very nice term. We’re exceptional; you’re not. First of all, Germany is eating our lunch. So they say, ‘Why are you exceptional? We’re doing better than you.’ I never liked the term. And that’s because I don’t have a very big ego and I don’t need terms like that. Honestly.”

For Clinton, this is pure heresy. Since “defending American exceptionalism should always be above politics,” as she put it in Cincinnati, Trump is plainly at odds with the new U.S. consensus.

Since another person who rejects American exceptionalism is Russian President Vladimir Putin – “It is extremely dangerous to encourage people to see themselves as exceptional, whatever the motivation,” he declared in 2013 – the two men must somehow be in league.

None of this is to let Trump off the hook. His neo-isolationism is hardly less pugnacious than Clinton’s interventionism since it sees the world as ganging up on the U.S. in order to rob its wealth and weaken its economy.

As he also told the Texas Tea Party gathering: “I want to take everything back from the world that we’ve given them. We’ve given them so much.”

Thus, he also draws a bright red line – not between the American empire and its enemies, but between America and the entire outside world, all of which is seen in its entirety as hostile and ungrateful.

It’s an echo of the “Little Englander” movement of the Nineteenth Century, one that held that Britain had no need of faraway colonies filled with unappreciative black and brown people and that it should therefore withdraw into the cozy little world of yesteryear. It’s an insular and conservative viewpoint.

But those who opposed it did so not because they were less racist, but because they were more. The upshot was a new explosion of imperialism that culminated in the “scramble for Africa” in which 90 percent of the continent came under European domination, the “great game” for control of Central Asia, and so on.

The competing sides were caught up in a dialectic of destruction that culminated in the bloody debacle of 1914 in which the Great Powers, running out of places to plunder, fell to plundering among themselves.

A Dangerous Tipping Point?

Is America at a similar inflexion point? Evidence is growing that it is. Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter’s successful push for U.S. bombing operations against ISIS in the coastal city of Sirte is one indication that the tide is now turning in the neocons’ favor.

U.S. Defense Secretary Ashton Carter.

U.S. Defense Secretary Ashton Carter.

A second was the Pentagon’s establishment of a de-facto no-fly zone in the northeastern Syrian city of Hasakah where U.S.-backed Kurdish nationalists were seeking to oust pro-government forces. [See Consortiumnews.com’s “US Hawks Advance a War Agenda in Syria.”]

A third was Vice President Joe Biden’s enthusiastic endorsement of Turkey’s recent Syrian incursion, an act so flagrantly at odds with international law that long-time liberal interventionists like The Guardian’s Martin Chulov were left aghast.

A fourth, finally, is the Russophobic propaganda barrage led by The New York Times, with The Guardian and Washington Post pulling up the rear. Putin is out to steal the November election! He’s taken over Wikileaks and is using it to his own advantage!

No Putin-bashing story is too thinly-sourced, unlikely, or one-sided to be disbelieved. The result is a hysterical atmosphere reminiscent of the 1950s in which dodgy doctrines like American exceptionalism go down all the more easily.

Of course, the fact that Trump is indeed a bigoted, sexist know-nothing makes Clinton’s job all the easier. If the anti-exceptionalists are so awful, then her argument that law and morality are all on the side of U.S. imperialism becomes slightly more plausible.

But it shouldn’t. The U.S. has helped destroy at least four Middle Eastern nations – Afghanistan, Iraq, Yemen and Libya – while it is now busily reducing a fifth, i.e. Syria, to smithereens.

Perhaps the most important line in Clinton’s Cincinnati speech referred to U.S. troops reductions in the Middle East: “We have redeployed well over 100,000 troops from Iraq and Afghanistan so they can go home, rest, and train for future contingencies.”

What might those contingencies be? Another round of intervention in Syria is the likeliest, although neocons no doubt have their eyes on other targets as well: the eastern Ukraine, Poland and the Baltics, and the Pacific as well. The more Clinton’s election prospects brighten, the bolder the neocons’ ambitions will grow.

[For more on this topic, see Consortiumnews.com’s “Yes, Hillary Clinton Is a Neocon.”]

Daniel Lazare is the author of several books including The Frozen Republic: How the Constitution Is Paralyzing Democracy (Harcourt Brace).

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68 comments for “Hillary Clinton’s ‘Exceptionalist’ Warpath

  1. TellTheTruth-2
    September 6, 2016 at 8:22 am

    Study the REAL CROOKED Hillary … FROM RUSSIA WITH MONEY Hillary Clinton, the Russian Reset, and Cronyism … (right click) .. http://www.g-a-i.org/u/2016/08/Report-Skolkvovo-08012016.pdf

  2. Candace
    September 5, 2016 at 3:42 pm

    whoops the comment I wrote up there somewhere wasnt meant to be a reply.

  3. Pace
    September 5, 2016 at 12:49 am

    Its hard to see the difference between a nation that says its an ‘exceptional people’ that must rule the world, and a race that says it is the ‘master race’ that must rule the world.

    In both cases, its the ‘must rule the world’ part that is dangerous, and this time around everyone has nuclear weapons.

  4. John
    September 4, 2016 at 6:59 pm

    The dog and pony show continues…..The USA is like a night on the town driving a big body Benz on 2 dollars worth of gas….exceptional ??…… Why doesn’t consortium news print a “real story” that exposes the “real economics” for the everyday citizen …lol……..I think we may have central banks across the globe propping up stocks….. maybe help some every day folks out of a bad situation……..

  5. orwell
    September 4, 2016 at 1:28 pm

    Orwell’s Dictionary: Hellaryspeak:
    Leading “Humbly”= Viciously and Obscenely(Hellary Pal Vicky Nuland:”Fuck Europe!”)
    Leading “Thoughtfully”=Psychotically(“We came, we saw, he died! Ha Ha Ha!”)
    “with fierce commitment to our values” = Committing War Crimes (Iraq, Libya,etc.)
    “Exceptional” = Fascist

  6. Curious
    September 4, 2016 at 10:54 am

    As Mr Lazare points out in this article, one need not be a linguist to see through this diatribe of the language of ‘Clintonisms’. What has made her or the US exceptional? Honduras, Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Syria, Yemen are only a few of her choice of words, saying, the US a “force for peace and progress, a champion for freedom and opportunity”. She continues with “our power comes with a responsibility to lead, humbly, thoughtfully and with a fierce commitment to our values”. One can only wonder what she meant with the followup of a “vacuum” left when we don’t lead. Libya anyone? And to use the word “humble” of all possible words?

    This previous paragraph should be read to any first grade critical thinking class, as they try to keep their lunch down in their digestive system instead of spewing it on their co-students. And this is all said with a smile, I’m sure on her face. Remember when Obama, in talking about Putin said ” at least we politicians smile more”. Maybe Putin is a bit more serious than Obama and sees the hypocrisy of the US more vividly than others.

    I do like the line “we can’t cozy up to dictators” unless they are the Shah of Iran, or giving Saddam our biological stock if he is willing to go after Iran of course (to name but two) and to use a quote from Stalin to drive the point home is just icing for the ignorant.

    Also, is she implying one who doesn’t subscribe to the “Exceptionalist” model is an enemy? Putin and Trump now are enemies, as are many readers, and commentators here on this site. How does it feel to be an enemy of Clinton?

    I can only presume, when she said “defending American exceptionalism should always be above politics” she meant to say ‘it is never above the military and our desire to bomb into oblivion anyone who does not consider the US to be exceptional’.

    Hillary Clinton is a dangerous woman and her use of language should prove this to the world.

    If our “values” mean to degrade and bomb into submission anyone who doesn’t think we are exceptional, we are in trouble indeed. She is proof gender does not discriminate if one has the same filthy objectives as all warmongers.

    If she can only define “values” to the public that would be priceless in itself, and I would presume she can’t.

    Please remind as many people as you can Mr Lazare the outright lies touted constantly from this person for whom wars seem to be the only answer, and all are enemies.

    • D5-5
      September 4, 2016 at 11:18 am

      The first grade critical thinking class needs to be reminded that qualifiers are needed with “the greatest nation on earth” talk. As in in what way(s). Are we talking military might? Interfering with global affairs in general? Free education and health care? Discrimination against minorities? Welcoming victims and refugees from within and abroad? Humans being what they are, all nations, no matter how small, can probably put up a claim on “greatest” in some way. This language, especially coming from a person seeking top leadership, is self-flattering egotism suggesting mental illness. I do not believe it represents the mainstream of the American public, and I hope I’m right.

      • Meg
        September 5, 2016 at 12:54 am

        I still like the opening bit from Newsroom …. We are first in the number of adults who believe in angels.

  7. September 4, 2016 at 8:52 am

    i have thought of t-rump as a buffoon and con artist for decades, BUT the truly hysterical, non-stop, one-sided, AND -ultimately- unfair bashing of t-rump in -among others- the huffpoo and saloon has me SYMPATHETIC to him personally…
    i have actually stopped to look at some of his positions on issues which SUPERFICIALLY are more aligned to progressive stands than the would-be Empress…
    i will NOT be voting for either of them, i will vote how i did last time: writing in snowden/manning… as a lifelong voter, i feel that voting has become meaningless on several levels: the field of candidates is so limited and proscribed to the two faces of the same Korporate Money Party as to make meaningful choice of candidates a joke; computer-based voting systems are INTRINSICALLY UNTRUSTWORTHY AS IMPLEMENTED; and -at this point- even the election of an ideal candidate is pissing against the wind…
    the system is broken, it is broken intentionally, and it will NOT be repaired by those who purposefully broke it and control it…
    power never devolves voluntarily…
    where does that leave us ? ? ?

    • Ralph
      September 5, 2016 at 1:02 am

      I’m voting for Jill Stein (G). I’m sure she could use your vote as well …. if it means so little to you, why not vote for an actual candidate who’s running?

      But, I do acknowledge that I live in a ‘battleground state’ that could possibly be razor-thin in its margin. So, I will vote for Trump if the polls show that its really coming down that close.

      I believe a vote for Hillary is a vote for nuclear war. And, while I’m used to the Democrats trying to claim my green vote on the basis of they’re being less evil …. well, it turns out that a nuclear war that ends all human civilization is about as bad a result as an election can have. So, if necessary, I will vote for Trump to stop Hillary and stop a nuclear war.

      There are candidates out there I agree with, like Jill Stein, so I’ll vote for them. If nothing else, they’ve put a huge amount of time and effort into their campaigns, so it seems like the least that people who agree with them should do is to take the time and effort to vote for them.

      On the radioactive ruins left by the Hillary Presidency, they should put up a plague. “Here lie the remains that followed a nuclear war. It was only wanted by a minority of one nation. But the majority of that nation could not be bothered to vote for the candidates who would have stopped the war.”

  8. Peter Loeb
    September 4, 2016 at 7:36 am

    BUT THE FACT IS…

    Daniel Lazare’s article above is incisive and helpful.

    For most of his readers, however, the fact is that either H R C
    or Trump will be the next President. I personally will vote
    for neither of them (I will vote for
    Jill Stein who will lose, of course). It is imperative that we
    all focus NOW on the realities which we as critics/left observers
    are going to face.

    My own strategy has been again and again to various organizations
    is 1. to pick a lawyer/legislative expert (or more?) and 2) to bite
    of chunks on levels lower than US President. This is a long-term
    effort and not as “sexy” as running big, big, big “revolutions”
    which ultimately will (must) fail.

    I would even suggest (pending advice) to go down below
    Congress to local officials. This worked well for the far right.
    It takes patience and grit.

    No organization which I have contacted over the years has
    responded to my suggestion. Instead they make headlines, not
    headway.

    Do we have the strength to lose and try again and again and again?

    —-Peter Loeb, Boston, MA, USA

    • Sam
      September 5, 2016 at 1:05 am

      So, does this mean that voters in Boston can find your name as a candidate for City Council? If so, I wish you luck. If not, well, you can’t win if you don’t run.

  9. Realist
    September 4, 2016 at 4:19 am

    These speeches by Hillary are just the kind of jingoistic rants by Hitler that got him elected chancellor in 1933. Die Deutsch Menschen über alles. Alle anderen sind Untermenschen. Wir sollten regieren… Gott will, für 1000 Jahre. All Americans are exceptional. We should lead (rule) the world… for ever and all time, thanks be to God.

    It’s a campaign strategy that works every time. All voters want to feel special, that their government is all powerful, does only that which is right, and that they have made the correct and moral choice with their vote (which God himself has sanctioned). Fortunately, most candidates are not as shameless as Hillary to employ such a con.

    • D5-5
      September 4, 2016 at 11:00 am

      It seems to me this dance to the right by Hillary as the counterpoint to her dancing to the left when Sanders was still a possibility indicates her desperation. She is besieged by problems in emails, DNC manipulations, and the Clinton Foundation, and it must be comforting for her to fall back on the exceptionalist platitudes delivered to a comforting audience of Foreign Legion people (who apparently were not that impressed). Again, I’m reminded of Goldwater’s stuff so long ago with his excusing the word “extremism” and what that brought–a surprising thumping and rejection (in 1964). The hostilities in that time, hard upon McCarthyism and the attempt to get a loyalty oath at U of CAL were still profound, I remember them vividly. No athletes were standing up in protest of the national anthem. The other side of the gloom is a possible awakening in this country that may cost Hillary the election. And as I’ve argued in here previously, Trump may turn out NOT to be the greater evil but instead a stymied incompetent continuing his now this now that and overall fuck up routine. (BTW I won’t vote for Trump; Stein’s my candidate.)

      • Sonny
        September 5, 2016 at 1:10 am

        One thing we’ve known about Hillary for three decades is that whatever she says in an election campaign is a lie. She says whatever she says to get elected. Its the election stupid. After that she’ll do whatever she’s bribed to do. We know that. Once in power, she serves money and doesn’t give a dang about either the people of this nation nor what she said in the last campaign.

        There’s no point in listening to a single word she says, because we know its all a pack of lies. But she’ll have Goldman Sachs on speed dial. Right now, she’s refusing to talk with ordinary Americans or with voters, but she’s having fund-raisers every day where the rich can buy a little time to talk with her. That’s exactly what a Hillary presidency will look like.

  10. Tristan
    September 4, 2016 at 12:14 am

    When we start to consider the implications of this stance, “Exceptionalism”, “Indispensable”, we can clearly see the unmistakable hallmarks of true fascism. Yes, the jack boots are there, just around the corner, to enforce the “free speech zones”, yet consumed with paying the bills for subscriptions to Comcast or Xbox, many are too deeply apart of that which is destroying them. It is the power of human nature provoked by lizard brain desires that have been harnessed to the profit engine. We are indeed the engine of our own destruction.

  11. Tristan
    September 4, 2016 at 12:05 am

    I’m sorry, actually I’m not. Here’s a link to Elvis Costello, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KCGlwx3L-Xk What’s so funny about peace love and understanding.

  12. Tristan
    September 3, 2016 at 11:52 pm

    It appears that the system in the West is starting to function as expected under the conditions of unregulated free market globalized corporate oversight. This master of capitalism, globalized, beholden to no nation state, empowered with the muscle of a corrupt and blind nation led by politicians drunk on hubris and self enrichment, complete with12 aircraft carrier fleets, occupational forces around the globe, nuclear weapons always “on the table”, a bully who also is charged with the protection of the global US dollar financial system (also the mechanism by which inequity is perpetuated), will not be satisfied by less than total domination. This is not fantasy, we can read or hear of it daily.

    I reflect upon things I learned when studying history. When I had the chance to travel to those lands which were the subjects of another nations victory, I found that what I had been taught was in fact not true at all. So then today we are these subjects, the targets, the collateral damaged, of free market capitalism brought by the barrel of a gun or the buzz of a drone (note:
    I have a great distaste for the phrase “Drone”, it is inaccurate and misleading).

    We poor saps, the world over, are paying the oligarchs behind the present system of usury, legalized (for their profit) mind you, for the privilege of dying. Ought one to think that it is a distant thing? No, we are now upon the razors edge, unbeknownst to even we who reflect in thought. August 1914, and the leaves had yet to fall, all the gallant boys would be home by Christmas. Yet, now, I do think that something wicked this way blows.

  13. Joe Tedesky
    September 3, 2016 at 10:50 pm

    The other day when I heard about Hillary’s use of the words exceptional and indispensable, I thought, oh boy here we go. I mean hearing a speech like Hillary’s, coming from Hillary, is a mighty dangerous thing.

    Take for instance, how with all of her email and computer scandals, how easily it is for our probable next president Hillary to point her blaming finger towards Putin and Russia. In what context of smart foreign diplomacy could this type of slime ball politics lead to her having good relationships with other nations, for when she enters the Oval Office? None, absolutely none. Although, I doubt Hillary’s foreign policy will center around making lots of foreign friends.

    The Putin Russia bashing in this country is way too far out of hand. I have been trying to enlighten some of my family and friends. It’s mostly the gay relatives, who are the ones buying up big time Hillary’s lies about Russia. Thank goodness for one of this sites commenters shared with me a link to the subject of Russian gays, and what a report it turned out to be. I forwarded the report to my relatives, and this included the Russian hating gay relatives, as well. According to this report gays in Russia have it far much better than the American gay has it in America.

    Here’s the link, use it well…

    http://static.prisonplanet.com/p/images/february2014/white_paper.pdf

  14. John
    September 3, 2016 at 9:18 pm

    Unfortunately the only thing that can bail out the financially bankrupt USA is a massive world war. Clinton will push for war with Russia or Trump will push for war with Iran….Both sides of the same coin equal war. The US dollar cannot take a hit in market share. Long gone are the days of the US dollar claiming dominance world wide because of being tied to oil…..The jig is up ! Accept it ! Plan for it ! War is at the door…….

    • Joe Tedesky
      September 3, 2016 at 10:28 pm

      John, I’m leaving a link to a June 2016 Inspector General for the Department of Defense, who states in his reports findings, how the DOD is missing 6.5 trillion dollars. On 9/10/01 Defense Sectary Donald Rumsfeld stood on a podium, and reported how the DOD couldn’t account for a missing 2.5 trillion dollars. Probably what happened next, was just a coincidence I guess, but 911 was just what the doctor ordered to relieve an aching cash strapped Pentagon. So John, your prognosis of war soon to come, may be well founded…let’s both hope you are wrong.

      http://www.dodig.mil/pubs/documents/DODIG-2016-113.pdf

      • Erik
        September 5, 2016 at 4:11 pm

        Joe, I checked the USG DOD report of $6.5 trillion, as well as the 2015 defense budget of $585 billion, and not being an accountant, do not see how these are squared. The error is eleven times the total annual budget for the whole DOD.

        The DODIG report says the 6.5 trillion is unaccountable “year end JV adjustments made to AGF data during FY 2015 financial statement compilation” where JV is “journal voucher” adjustments to correct “errors identified during financial statement compilation; record accounting entries that…have not been otherwise recorded; and are used for month and year end closing purposes.” In other words, they’re not supposed to be fudging, let alone funds missing altogether.

        It is a spectacular figure. In my charity accounting I have never been more than a few percent off, even with little attention paid to accounting during the year. So this certainly would mean vast theft, incompetence, and dishonesty regardless of the causes, if the figure are true. The figure is about $50,000 per US household for 2015 alone.

        I would be good to have a lot more information soon. I had to check the source, but it appears to be DOD itself. Are they just granting themselves grand fortunes and pretending that it’s all a strange secret error?

        Maybe we should invite Erdogan to purge our military.

        • Erik
          September 5, 2016 at 4:28 pm

          The figure is actually twice the federal budget and a third of the US GDP. Awful lot of errors for the Army budget alone. Maybe the figure is a typo or yet another accounting error.

          Maybe we should export the Inspector General or the accountants as malware to some naughty nation.

    • Realist
      September 4, 2016 at 6:23 am

      Give me what’s behind door number two, even if it is another massive recession, rather the war door. Federal bankruptcy will basically mean we will have to give up our empire propped up by the largest military ever assembled in the history of the planet, and that will save billions of lives. Meanwhile, a starving population will rebel and nationalize the wealth of the country for the survival of its people, beyond just the top 1%.

      • John
        September 4, 2016 at 6:04 pm

        “The Hawk’s Ambition”……coming to a theater near you…..summer 2017

        • Joe Tedesky
          September 4, 2016 at 10:58 pm

          John if by your saying ‘the Hawks Ambition’ you are suggesting that a devastating American bankruptcy may bring on a war, well then I agree. War will, as it usually does, start up the money printing presses to load up the Pentagon with more fiat war dollars to no end. The public will be so pumped up on the terribleness of whatever false flag that will more than likely occur, that they won’t even notice to what depth our country has gone more into debt. Nothing will matter, but sweet revenge. Duct tape, and yellow ribbon sales will go through the roof. America will be great again.

      • Joe Tedesky
        September 4, 2016 at 10:41 pm

        Realist, a bankruptcy which would be so devastating that the American public would storm the Bastille could be on the horizon, but then again would that revolution happen? We Americans get mad as hell, and then we do what good red blooded Americans do, we forget about it. Rumsfeld on 9/10/01 came to the microphone, and stated how the Pentagon had loss 2.5 trillion dollars. All was forgotten on 9/11/01, and the Pentagon was revived like it had never been revived before. The TARP bailout was an upsetting thing, but for the most part Americans went on about with their lives. If you can’t feel it then apparently there is no pain. Besides that, the financial crisis was brought about by a lot of minority people who don’t know how to pay down a loan, or at least that was the popular thought. The famous Tea Party kind of displayed the anger over the financial crisis, except they aimed their arrows on the new incoming president instead. This of course changed the focus enough, that the Tea Party ended up representing disenfranchised white people. What happen to investigating the Fed, or breaking up the to big to fail banks? Nothing, because we Americans are subject to a corporate run media who literally are good at changing the tune right in the middle of the song. Americans sometimes seem to be waking up, like when they move towards voting for an antiestablishment candidate, but that’s where it all ends.

        The problem as I see it, is most Americans continue to believe that nothing bad can happen since, after all we are a democracy. Bad things happen in other places, but not here in America. I will stand for the National Anthem, because we are the good guys, right? If our American media proclaims that Putin, or anyone for that matter is bad, then they must be. Why, because we are the shinning city on that hill, we like to refer to all the time. Where exactly is that hill, and who turned out the light? Is what should be asked, but it’s not, because we and we alone are the exceptional and indispensable ones…and that’s as American as apple pie.

        • Realist
          September 5, 2016 at 12:33 am

          People so frequently say that a world war will stave off federal bankruptcy (presumably through goosed spending, i.e., creating ever more debt), or at least distract from it by creating a more serious problem that calls for collective action. That assumes war of the kind we fought during the first and second world wars: limited wars on other countries’ turf with our European allies taking the brunt of the losses.

          A world war today would mean total annihilation through thermonuclear exchanges. Such an outcome is practically guaranteed, the way these tiffs mindlessly escalate, fueled by hormones rather than reason. Besides, after all the shooting stopped, I don’t think either Germany or the Soviet Union considered WWII to be the economic shot-in-the-arm that it seemed to be for the United States. It was utter catastrophe for 90% of the participants. Today that will be the case for 100% of them. Any economic stimulus will be amongst the Morlock population living underground in deep bunkers. That is why I consider a financial collapse to be eminently preferable to a world war.

          Must a market collapse reflexively lead to a world war, as you seem to think, Joe? I know some historians think an ultimate cause of WWII was the great depressions experienced across the developed world from Germany to the United States. But only Germany purposely chose the path to war. America was inclined towards isolationism. Too bad it’s not now.

          I am hopeful that any violent response in the wake of collapse would be limited to internal revolutions or rebellions within nation states, including the U.S. I would hope that a lack of real funds (other than what any country can create from nothing using its printing presses–which just exacerbates the problem because that money is worthless) would put the kibosh on launching an unwinnable war against other powers. Consider it a rare useful application of “starving the beast.” Sure, the government and its army can seize whatever property it wants from its citizens to prosecute its wars, but that would only give even greater motivation for an internal revolution.

          What I am envisioning here is something akin to the French Revolution. When you get down to cases, wasn’t Bernie hinting at something like a French Revolution Lite, with egalitarian economic reforms but not all the bloodletting, of course. With all the wealth now concentrated in the hands of the 1%, most of it definitely needs to be fairly redistributed. The Bolshevik Revolution was directly preceded (and arguably caused) by a world war, but one that didn’t leave the country a green glass parking lot. Perhaps it would not have been so radical and accepting of lethal solutions had that world war not preceded or caused it. So, seems to me, you want your revolution before any world war. The trick is seeing a revolution through to a new state that is not run by a strongman like Robespierre or Stalin. Bottom line for me is any change short of a world war is preferable because it allows survival, and, as they say, where there is life there is hope. There will be further, hopefully more constructive, change down the road… but only if humanity is still here.

          • Joe Tedesky
            September 5, 2016 at 1:23 am

            Realist, I think if WWII were to be blamed on the Depression the war would have started in 1930. I think what started WWII was WWI and historians are still debating to what or whom may have started that one. The missing DOD 6.5 trillion has me worried to an escalation of false flags leading to wider and taller defensive spending requirements. The size of whatever terrible events impact will be what establishes the size of the spending the DOD will do. I think in a very real way that the bankruptcy occurred, and you and I weren’t addressed a memo…we are out off the loop. Although, I do agree there is something coming, and let’s both hope it will let enough of air out of the tires to go under the overpass. No one wants war.

            I was thinking today how the ‘Marshall Plan’ probably did more good for the America economy than did both world wars combined. Consider all the farm tractors which help create all the new farms worldwide, which in turn fed and allowed people to make a living. Like Ike said for every bomb you could have built 10 Trump Casinos. There is a side to the U.S. which sometimes can be exceptional and indispensable, and America should use that good side more often. I hope the new come of age voters, citizens will know how to correct what’s when wrong in our great land, and one should always hold out hope.,

          • Realist
            September 5, 2016 at 3:43 am

            There is a chain of causality that links everything, Joe. Yes, as you say, many find the origins of WWII in WWI, specifically in the onerous reparations imposed upon Germany at Versailles which led to the massive depression suffered there. Without the suffering from the depression and hyperinflation, Hitler quite possibly does not come to power. The Depression led to Hitler which led to extreme nationalism and the military build up, much in violation of the Versailles treaty without enforcement. There was, of course, the gradual push-back by Germany against what was considered an unfair treaty, in various contested borderlands, ending with full-blown war in Poland, in 1939. The war didn’t emerge overnight. Most don’t. The coming one hasn’t yet.

            You mention the Marshall Plan and what a great deal that was for both war-torn Western Europe and the United States. In contrast, the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe got not a penny from the US, and its war damage, especially the number of dead and maimed, the scorched earth left behind by the Nazis, far surpassed what was visited upon Germany and the West. In spite of that, the USSR rebuilt their entire infrastructure, developed nuclear weapons even faster than did the US, developed missile technology without kidnapping most of the German scientists as we did, and were first into space (first satellite, first man in space, first unmanned probes to the Moon, etc). And, all the while they were being impeded to the utmost by Uncle Sam. You’ve got to admire a people as resilient and resolute as they have been. They are often put down for having an economy smaller than Britain, France, Germany, etc, etc… yet none of those other countries have developed a space program or done anything without the express written consent of the President of the United States of America. Just think how advanced the Human Race could be if we had cooperated with those people for the past 70 years (hell, for the past 100 years) instead of trying to impede them at every turn. We would probably have cures to many more diseases, colonies on Mars, AND flying cars by now. Every college kid could earn a Ph.D., if so inclined, at no cost. If only we hadn’t squandered our fortune on needless competition and so much open warfare. The Cold War was started by the U.S., not the USSR. I’ve heard directly from academic Russian scholars (not my field, and not my ancestral people) that the Soviets wanted more than anything to continue as our allies after WWII. America said nyet. I’d call myself “Rationalist” rather than”Realist” but too many people don’t think there really is such a thing (and, if there is, they would claim the title).

          • Joe Tedesky
            September 5, 2016 at 11:19 am

            Well said, Realist …& you are a realist.

  15. wobblie
    September 3, 2016 at 7:22 pm

    America IS exceptional — exceptionally ignorant and suicidal.

    https://therulingclassobserver.com/2016/08/16/the-individual-among-us-part-i/

  16. F. G. Sanford
    September 3, 2016 at 6:55 pm

    Consortium readers, listen to me. The human world, it’s a mess. Life in America is better than anything they got over there. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fkusy4ylhiY

    The Empire is always lawful, Exceptions are paramount.
    We subjugate for justice, Increasing the body count.
    The world has immense resources, Extraction is so much fun:
    Corporate greed endorses, Bomb dropping by the ton!

    Democracy, Democracy-
    We’re not a debtor, We got it better
    Take it from me!
    We got the FED that prints the bucks,
    That keeps the Wall Street crooks in flux-
    While we’re arranging, More regime changing,
    Over the sea!

    American folks is happy, The empire is on a roll-
    The folks overseas ain’t happy, They sad ’cause they pay the toll.
    But they may reject the plunder, The Asian investment bank,
    May steal all the dollar’s thunder- Then we gon’ be in the tank!
    (Uh-oh)
    Democracy, Democracy-
    We’re an exception, That’s no deception,
    Why can’t you you see?
    We got a twenty trillion debt, It’s a safe imperial bet-
    We got no trouble, Turning to rubble,
    Our enemies, Our enemies-
    We get to kill them, That’s how we thrill them:
    Quite shamelessly!
    We taught Iraqis how we play, And then we made the Syrians pay-
    We got a drone war, That we can’t pay for
    Over the sea

    Bombs dropped by Ash, Jack Lew prints the cash,
    Then Valerie pouts, When John Kerry shouts,
    Joe Biden gropes, They all know the ropes,
    Victoria calls the shots-
    (Yeah)
    Samantha rants, The girls wear the pants,
    When Rice is nice, Michelle pays the price-
    Penny’s a hack, She works for AIPAC:
    It’s hell to be Barack!

    (Instrumental Interlude, Step Modulation)

    Democracy, Democracy-
    Hill escalates, But Trump hesitates,
    The Russians can see-
    They got the Nazis in Ukraine, The NATO leaders are insane:
    They’re placing missiles, Blowing dog whistles,
    Over the sea-
    They think that Putin Won’t think of shootin’
    Over the sea-
    He might rebuke us, But he could nuke us,
    That’s why it’s hotter, Across the water
    American clucks here, Are sitting ducks here-
    Just wait and see!

    • Enels
      September 4, 2016 at 7:38 pm

      There are some poets out there, and that was very fun to read! You made it enjoyable to read the terrible truth, I thought there would be a bunch of literate mfr’s jumpin’ to say so, but let me say you hit a home run Sandy!

      Keep ’em coming please…

      Ed.

  17. Minnesota Mary
    September 3, 2016 at 6:42 pm

    “American Exceptionalism” is really National Narcissism.

    • Bob Loblaw
      September 3, 2016 at 7:38 pm

      So true, this is a great bumpersticker

    • September 4, 2016 at 2:56 pm

      If America truly believes in its “exceptionalism,” then it should, with supreme confidence, enter the world as an active participant, and not as a spoiled “bully in the school yard.”

      Now that former National Security Advisor Zbigniew Brzezinski has openly declared that the United States of America should abandon their quest for global hegemony, American leadership should take heed and amend their foreign policy objectives accordingly.

      http://www.veteransnewsnow.com/2016/09/04/the-importance-for-the-usa-to-join-hands-with-the-world/

  18. Bob Loblaw
    September 3, 2016 at 6:42 pm

    Thank you Daniel,
    You spell out how I’ve been convinced to vote Trump. I hate it but logic demands that I take Hillary for her word and by jingo, America will have her new American Century.

    She even helped me choose her rival with her promises that you kindly provided here, thanks again.

    Now the nitty gritty is convincing fellow citizens to see that America is not exceptional.

  19. Cass
    September 3, 2016 at 6:05 pm

    It might be the publications I read lately but I get the sickening feeling that we* might be much better off if Trump becomes President.
    (* by “we” I mean that not so small part of the world that is not the US, i.e. the rest of the world)

    I know, I know..He’s a racist and a narcissistic bigot (add your description of choice here) but if HRC is able to to pull off only half of what she and her current and soon to be boot-lickers threaten to do…Well I’d give us maybe half a year after her election until the next big conflict erupts and I very much doubt that this one will be locally containable.

    Somehow I have the fading hope that all this aggressive rhetoric is just that, rhetoric. But if it’s not we’d need something truly drastic** to happen in order to avoid that glow-in-the-dark part.

    (** Yellowstone caldera drastic, for example)

  20. rosemerry
    September 3, 2016 at 4:33 pm

    “It means that we recognize America’s unique and unparalleled ability to be a force for peace and progress, a champion for freedom and opportunity. Our power comes with a responsibility to lead, humbly, thoughtfully, and with a fierce commitment to our values”

    This cannot be considered more than a not very funny joke; peace is a concept to be avoided at all costs by H.Clinton, and her Russophobic excesses are really dangerous and could lead to nuclear war.

    • Idiotland
      September 4, 2016 at 12:04 pm

      “It means that we recognize America’s unique and unparalleled ability to be a force for peace and progress, a champion for freedom and opportunity. Our power comes with a responsibility to lead, humbly, thoughtfully, and with a fierce commitment to our values”

      Only a complete psychopath like Killary could make such a statement and keep a straight face.

    • September 4, 2016 at 2:13 pm

      Glenn Greenwald: Obama Has Bombed 7 Nations, But (Killary) Clinton Claims He Has Not Been Militaristic Enough… she is itching to get US directly involved in Syria.

    • Gregory Kruse
      September 5, 2016 at 9:06 am

      “Humbly”. Ha ha ha.

  21. evelync
    September 3, 2016 at 3:28 pm

    Historian Hajimu Masuda published a book last year titled “Cold War Crucible: the Korean Conflict and the Postwar World”. It is a very timely book, given that the Democratic candidate for president has embraced to the hilt the “lies and illusions” of Cold War ideology.

    If you haven’t read Masuda’s book yet, here’s an article he published in the Harvard Press in February of last year that summarizes his thinking:

    http://harvardpress.typepad.com/hup_publicity/2015/02/social-politics-imagined-realities-masuda-hajimu.html

    There is also a CSPAN video from last year where he presents his ideas to American historians who critique his work although they don’t seem to comprehend the relevance and importance of what he is saying.
    https://www.c-span.org/video/?326782-1/postwar-society-cold-war

  22. Nancy
    September 3, 2016 at 3:20 pm

    Where is the sanity aside from the pages of Consortiumnews, UN Peace Council and a very few others? We are truely in hot water.

    • Enels
      September 3, 2016 at 3:50 pm

      Main media is consolodated, news, commantary, culure, what, etc. all of the things that would promote a good, great America, are done… now it is all bs.

      Back to the point of consolodation… of sources of info for the average joe are just done from some desk at some place…

      Your not in hot water yet if you can feel the heet, but your better not be a frog in a kettle either!

  23. John Puma
    September 3, 2016 at 3:03 pm

    Our meticulously promulgated “exceptionalism” claim puts us at the very (dubious) top of the international list (hypothetical) that measures the gap between a country’s PR image as opposed to the truth of its actions in the world.
    —————————–
    But lets’ have fun with it while we can since HRC, and her neo-con ghouls, will have us in a war with Russia sooner rather than later. So, fill in the blank:

    >>> Exceptionalism = OUR *** don’t stink !!! <<<

    (*** fill in the blank from choices below or use your favorite "unflattering" American characteristic. Then have t-shirts made!)

    a) monumental hypocrisy
    b) poverty
    c) police state
    d) surveillance state
    e) plutocracy
    f) perpetual war
    g) corporatocracy
    h) totalitarianism
    i) genocide
    j) racism
    k) mysogyny
    l) global internet meddling
    m) crumbling infrastructure

  24. leo
    September 3, 2016 at 2:15 pm

    soviet union 1972 – congrats

  25. Steve
    September 3, 2016 at 2:10 pm

    It’s more like American deceptionalism.

    • Enels
      September 3, 2016 at 3:40 pm

      That’s a good one!

    • frederike
      September 3, 2016 at 8:18 pm

      hah!

    • September 4, 2016 at 1:43 pm

      True Steve.

      Apparently, according to Hillary supporters. the Donald does not have enough blood on his hands to be President.

      Donald Trump is a “politically incorrect” racist, bigot ? A false label that is beginning to lose its edge like the fake anti-semitism label that is used to silence truth tellers.The Enemy according to Trump is unemployment, outsourcing, “illegal” immigration, wars abroad, neocons and free-wheeling allies like Saudi Arabia and Israel.

      Hillary Clinton chose, Russia as the enemy. Hillary is “a proven” corrupt, cheating, lying, warmonger, destroying millions of lives for the gain of a few billionaire allies who have the Clintons embedded deep in their pockets. Shame on Americans who support the personal greed and ambitions of the Clinton business and endless wars. Arlington National cemetery and other cemeteries are choked with graves of fallen soldiers.

      Vote for Killary, Vote for more body bags!

      http://www.veteransnewsnow.com/2016/09/03/1008921the-neocon-in-the-oval-office/

      • Roger Kallen
        September 4, 2016 at 8:44 pm

        When did he ever say that Israel was an enemy? He is as much a captive of AIPAC as Hillary is.

        • Steven A
          September 5, 2016 at 10:58 am

          I’m sure he never said that Israel is an enemy. By all appearances, he has fawned over AIPAC like the rest of them, and pro-Israeli bias is no doubt also an undercurrent in his disturbing demagoguery regarding Iran. But there is some evidence that the Israeli lobby does not regard him as being “as much a captive of AIPAC as Hillary is.”

          Below I copy a slightly amended version of an email I sent out to a few family and friends about a week ago, followed by a couple of additional references. The very last reference (the one by The Saker) contains a couple of links relevant to what I have just said regarding your point. But I think the longer set should be of great interest to persons reading this thread. Together they point to the nub of why I’ve come to believe that Hillary Clinton is by far the more dangerous of the two major-party candidates, while Donald Trump has at least some potential to surprise on the up-side.

          ———————————————————–
          Original message (amended):

          I certainly don’t like Trump’s promotion of red meat demagoguery regarding Iran (calling them the world’s number-one terrorist state, etc.) and where that might lead – though it must be noted that during the primaries Trump was the only Republican contender other than Jeb Bush who said he would uphold what he considered a bad deal with Iran. (Scott Horton’s commentary, linked below, is a good prophylactic against having unrealistically high hopes for a President Trump reining in the empire.) But the starkest contrast between the two major party candidates is in their respective positions regarding the policy of regime change in Moscow. By any rational calculus this would be an issue of utmost importance in the choice we face this coming November.

          -Steve

          Evgenia Gurevich et al. “A Russian Warning,” ClubOrlov.com May 31, 2016
          http://cluborlov.blogspot.com/2016/05/a-russian-warning.html

          Paul Craig Roberts, “Trump vs. Hillary: A summation,” The Unz Review, August 25, 2016
          http://www.unz.com/proberts/trump-vs-hillary-a-summation/

          Robert Parry, “The danger of excessive Trump bashing,” CommonDreams, August 4, 2016
          http://www.commondreams.org/views/2016/08/04/danger-excessive-trump-bashing

          James Petras, “Obama versus Trump, Putin and Erdogan: Can coups defeat elected governments?” The James Petras Website, August 9, 2016
          http://petras.lahaine.org/?p=2096

          John Pilger, “Provoking nuclear war by media,” Counterpunch, August 24, 2016
          http://www.counterpunch.org/2016/08/24/provoking-nuclear-war-by-media/

          Jon Basil Utley, “Trump and Washington’s wars,” The American Conservative, June 22, 2016
          http://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/trump-and-washingtons-wars/

          Eric Zuesse, “Why Sanders supporters should vote for Trump,” The Unz Review, August 16, 2016
          http://www.unz.com/article/why-sanders-supporters-should-vote-for-trump/

          Joanna Graham, “Missing Alexander Cockburn during the craziest election season ever,” Counterpunch, June 6, 2016
          http://www.counterpunch.org/2016/06/06/missing-alexander-cockburn-during-the-craziest-election-season-ever/

          The Scott Horton Show, April 26, 2016
          http://scotthorton.org/show/2016/04/26/42616-show/

          Eamonn Fingleton, “The press’s vendetta against Trump is real and unscrupulous,” The Unz Review, August 19, 2016
          http://www.unz.com/efingleton/the-presss-vendetta-against-trump-is-real-and-unscrupulous/
          (The media-promoted charge against Trump’s character seemingly having had the highest impact is the charge that he deliberately made fun of a reporter’s disability – and in the standard spin disabled people in general. But as Catholics 4 Trump has documented, the fact is that the Washington Post deliberately suppressed key exonerating evidence – shown by their deletion of links to those facts from comments under one of their hit-pieces. The Fingleton piece puts this episode in its wider context of evading substantive issues.)
          ————————————————————————-

          Additions:

          Justin Raimondo, “The other speech: Hillary the Hawk spreads her wings; Did she threaten to attack Russia?” Antiwar.com September 2, 2016
          http://original.antiwar.com/justin/2016/09/01/speech-hillary-hawk-spreads-wings/
          (Another good take on Hillary’s American Legion speech, this one focusing more on the phrase “the indispensable nation” – millions of dead and maimed in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Yemen, Syria being a good index of the meaning of “not-indispensable” (i.e. dispensable) as an implication of the rhetoric regarding the rest of the world. Of course, the Rebublican platform also formally includes this phrase “the indispensable nation”.)

          The Saker, “The next presidential election,” The Unz Review, March 10, 2016
          http://www.unz.com/tsaker/the-next-presidential-election-a-meaningful-choice-for-the-first-time/

          (“The Saker” (after a breed of falcon) is a Swiss-born second-or-third generation Russian emigre living in Florida with a background in U.S. military studies. I have found his analyses to be highly informative.)

          • Candace
            September 5, 2016 at 3:40 pm

            Is an exceptionalist warpath the way of a democratic empire or does it fall into an old fashioned category?

            If Hillary is more right wing than Donald, then the Republicans should have no problem accepting her as POTUS.
            What a relief huh. America can unite at last.

          • Candace
            September 5, 2016 at 3:46 pm

            The comment at 3:40pm was for the author.
            what I wanted to say to you was in regard to what you said about Israel and Donald.

            Donald shows white nationalist sympathies. They hate just about everyone but they really can’t stand Jews.

      • Steven A
        September 5, 2016 at 9:50 am

        I agree with Debbie Menon that the bigot label applied to Trump, including its obligatory invocation in critical articles such as Lazare’s, is much overdrawn, and mainly a device to divert and silence. Another huge one is the obligatory charge of ‘misogyny’ – the really important story being the use of misogyny mongery to funnel billions to establishment feminism, staffing a system which, for example, disenfranchises non-custodial parents (usually fathers) and erodes due process. Aside from the way in which Trump has been stuck with the label, this larger issue is not so much relevant to the present election campaigns, but if any are interested I highly recommend looking at videos featuring Karen Straughan or Janice Fiamengo.

        I also second many of the other sentiments, viz. that a “Vote for Killary” is tantamount to a “Vote for more body bags.” Aside from the major, clear difference in the policies of the two major party candidates regarding policies that will predictably lead to a nuclear conflict with Russia (which alone should force any sane person of any political hue to vote for Trump), a President Trump might only somewhat less warlike than a President Clinton. But along the way candidate Trump has also expressed some anti-war sentiments that evidently resonate with his much-maligned “base” while at the same time scandalizing the neocons and mainstream media. That certainly provides some basis to hope that he might surprise on the up-side.

        P.S. As I was reading the transcript of his immigration policy speech this morning I noticed that he once used the phrase “peace dividend”. It was in the context of discussing the costs of illegal immigration. But still, one might want to file it away.

  26. D5-5
    September 3, 2016 at 2:01 pm

    This was not a commentary to a small private group, a talking of personal hubris and sick nationalism, to which a listener might have had to fight down a personal nausea. This was a speech to an organization guarding the pack-dog mentality our country right or wrong, plus flowing out to a globe already sickened with American arrogance. And this person purports to represent this country as its president in the near future. My question is how far gone into McCarthyist raving the country is becoming in general so as to affect her electability, which all this sort of flag-waving talk seems targeted at. She is still a Goldwater girl and probably loved his: “Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice.” That line did him no good in 1964 and he lost badly. I think this strategy is not going to work. She’s blowing it.

    • Gregory Kruse
      September 5, 2016 at 9:03 am

      I’m sorry to say that I think she is already President.

  27. Afraid
    September 3, 2016 at 1:10 pm

    Clinton or Trump for President is definitely not exceptional.

    • Tannenhouser
      September 3, 2016 at 1:40 pm

      Agreed, they aren’t even in the same Universe as exceptional. They both conjure visions of Bizzaro World from the old Superman Daily strips.

    • Idiotland
      September 4, 2016 at 4:12 am

      Except our constitution is now dead letter law.

    • Chris Chuba
      September 4, 2016 at 12:31 pm

      Our Constitution is exceptional. that is what it means

      No it doesn’t. When you listen to Marco Rubio or Hillary Clinton or Putin it is obviously referring to the U.S.’s interaction to the rest of the world. The Constitution refers to our system of self-government.

      • Pat Ferrara
        September 5, 2016 at 2:25 am

        Our constitution is exceptional because it has so many amendments, and a bill of “rights”. Nonetheless, every administration in the past 16 years has violated some aspect. It may be exceptional but government has been pathetic, all 3 branches.

        • Chris Chuba
          September 5, 2016 at 8:33 am

          Our Constitution IS exceptional but ‘American Exceptionalism’ refers to something other than the Constitution.
          I do not see why this is so hard to grasp.

          Go to Ted Cruz’s, Rubio’s, or even Ben Carson’s website and you will see a description of American Exceptionalism that is referring specifically to U.S. global leadership, NOT the U.S. Constitution. The U.S. Constitution does not obligate us to lead NATO or fight the Chinese. If it does then show me where.

    • art vandelay
      September 4, 2016 at 6:40 pm

      her really worrying statement was regarding her “russian hacker” claims and how she’d deal with them once in the oo.

      if that psycho is elected, she’ll scream for the military because everyone can read her emails. she’s got no clue what the confidential markings are but accuses another country simply to divert from her cluelessness. that’s how the rest of the world sees “american exceptionalism.”

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