Democrats Chase Red Herring of Russia-gate

The Democrats’ demagogic use of Russia-gate to “resist” President Trump is putting progressives in league with warmongers and war contractors while postponing a serious assessment of the party’s political problems, warns Norman Solomon.

By Norman Solomon

The Trump administration has already done enormous harm to the United States and the planet. Along the way, President Trump has also caused many prominent progressives to degrade their own political discourse. It’s up to us to challenge the corrosive effects of routine hyperbole and outright demagoguery.

Russian President Vladimir Putin, following his address to the UN General Assembly on Sept. 28, 2015. (UN Photo)

Consider the rhetoric from one of the most promising new House members, Democrat Jamie Raskin, at a rally near the Washington Monument over the weekend. Reading from a prepared text, Raskin warmed up by declaring that “Donald Trump is the hoax perpetrated on the Americans by the Russians.”

Soon the congressman named such varied countries as Hungary, the Philippines, Syria and Venezuela, and immediately proclaimed: “All the despots, dictators and kleptocrats have found each other, and Vladimir Putin is the ringleader of the unfree world.”

Later, asked about factual errors in his speech, Raskin floundered during a filmed interview with The Real News. What is now boilerplate Democratic Party bombast about Russia has little to do with confirmed facts and much to do with partisan talking points.

The same day that Raskin spoke, the progressive former Labor Secretary Robert Reich featured at the top of his website an article he’d written with the headline “The Art of the Trump-Putin Deal.” The piece had striking similarities to what progressives have detested over the years when coming from right-wing commentators and witch-hunters. The timeworn technique was dual track, in effect: I can’t prove it’s true, but let’s proceed as though it is.

The lead of Reich’s piece was clever. Way too clever: “Say you’re Vladimir Putin, and you did a deal with Trump last year. I’m not suggesting there was any such deal, mind you. But if you are Putin and you did do a deal, what did Trump agree to do?” From there, Reich’s piece was off to the conjectural races.

Propaganda Techniques

Progressives routinely deplore such propaganda techniques from right-wingers, not only because the Left is being targeted but also because we seek a political culture based on facts and fairness rather than innuendos and smears. It’s painful now to see numerous progressives engaging in hollow propaganda.

CIA seal in lobby of the spy agency’s headquarters. (U.S. government photo)

Likewise, it’s sad to see so much eagerness to trust in the absolute credibility of institutions like the Central Intelligence Agency and the National Security Agency — institutions that previously earned wise distrust. Over the last few decades, millions of Americans have gained keen awareness of the power of media manipulation and deception by the U.S. foreign-policy establishment. Yet now, faced with an ascendant extreme right wing, some progressives have yielded to the temptation of blaming our political predicament more on a foreign “enemy” than on powerful corporate forces at home.

The over-the-top scapegoating of Russia serves many purposes for the military-industrial complex, Republican neocons, and kindred “liberal interventionist” Democrats. Along the way, the blame-Russia-first rhetoric is of enormous help to the Clinton wing of the Democratic Party — a huge diversion lest its elitism and entwinement with corporate power come under greater scrutiny and stronger challenge from the grassroots.

In this context, the inducements and encouragements to buy into an extreme anti-Russia frenzy have become pervasive. A remarkable number of people claim certainty about hacking and even “collusion” — events that they cannot, at this time, truly be certain about. In part that’s because of deceptive claims endlessly repeated by Democratic politicians and news media.

One example is the rote and highly misleading claim that “17 U.S. intelligence agencies” reached the same conclusion about Russian hacking of the Democratic National Committee — a claim that journalist Robert Parry effectively debunked in an article last week.

What Americans Want

During a recent appearance on CNN, former Ohio State Senator Nina Turner offered a badly needed perspective on the subject of Russia’s alleged intrusion into the U.S. election. People in Flint, Michigan, “wouldn’t ask you about Russia and Jared Kushner,” she said. “They want to know how they’re gonna get some clean water and why 8,000 people are about to lose their homes.”

White House adviser Jared Kushner, who is also President Trump’s son-in-law.

Turner noted that “we definitely have to deal with” allegations of Russian interference in the election, “it’s on the minds of American people, but if you want to know what people in Ohio — they want to know about jobs, they want to know about their children.” As for Russia, she said, “We are preoccupied with this, it’s not that this is not important, but every day Americans are being left behind because it’s Russia, Russia, Russia.”

Like corporate CEOs whose vision extends only to the next quarter or two, many Democratic politicians have been willing to inject their toxic discourse into the body politic on the theory that it will be politically profitable in the next election or two. But even on its own terms, the approach is apt to fail. Most Americans are far more worried about their economic futures than about the Kremlin. A party that makes itself more known as anti-Russian than pro-working-people has a problematic future.

Today, 15 years after George W. Bush’s “axis of evil” oratory set the stage for ongoing military carnage, politicians who traffic in unhinged rhetoric like “Putin is the ringleader of the unfree world” are helping to fuel the warfare state — and, in the process, increasing the chances of direct military conflict between the United States and Russia that could go nuclear and destroy us all.

But such concerns can seem like abstractions compared to possibly winning some short-term political gains. That’s the difference between leadership and demagoguery.

Norman Solomon is the coordinator of the online activist group RootsAction.org and the executive director of the Institute for Public Accuracy. He is the author of a dozen books including War Made Easy: How Presidents and Pundits Keep Spinning Us to Death.

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55 comments for “Democrats Chase Red Herring of Russia-gate

  1. John Dhoe
    June 5, 2017 at 10:39 am

    Only proves that the Liberal and Conservative parties are dying. Good!! Unfortunately they are taking the country down with them unless the Liberals and Conservatives wake up and stop being Liberals and Conservatives!

    Less and less people respect you parties.

    https://therulingclassobserver.com/2017/04/18/force-and-power-fear-and-respect/

  2. Nancy
    June 5, 2017 at 11:43 am

    It’s sad that you would call a tool like Jamie Raskin a “promising” progressive. Give it up.

    • exiled off mainstreet
      June 5, 2017 at 11:49 am

      His actions prove his status as a tool or establishment lackey rather than a promising anything other than party stooge.

    • Paul G.
      June 5, 2017 at 12:08 pm

      I think he is referring to the popular view of him or is image; which if Raskin keeps spouting dissembling word salads (see the interview, it is priceless) will fast undermine such a myth. Also see my comment later about him, he is a disgrace to his father Marcus’s career and progressive heritage.

    • John
      June 6, 2017 at 5:10 pm

      Good for you Nancy! Personally I am getting sick and tired of the political terminology in this country constantly shifting rightward with the Overton window. A progressive is a person who believes in Jill Stein’ s 2016 presidential platform (http://www.Jill2016.com/platform). PERIOD. Full stop. It’s not rocket science. Read the section labelled “Peace and Human Rights.” Progressives are NOT warmongers. Progressives are NOT neoliberals. Hillary Clinton is NOT a progressive. Several years ago conservatives were idiots creating their own reality and liberals were the “fact-based” community. Now liberals are as bad as conservatives an the fact-based community had to abandon its liberal label an call ourselves progressives. Now we are expected to come up with a new label for ourselves again because the talking heads have decided that progressives are also conservative idiots. What do we have to do to explain ourselves to thick-headed idiots, call ourselves JillSteinians????? Will the next step be trying to convince idiots that JillSteinians are not also warmongers, that in order to understand us you need to learn to READ??? As it is now apparent that no one in Washington or in the mainstream media is Capable of reading the Bill of Rights this is probably a hopeless expectation. Apologies for the rant here guys but this idiocy is getting to be a bit much.

      • Jeremy
        June 7, 2017 at 12:13 pm

        Haha! Thanks John…there is a lot to be disgusted with. I used to judge hippies for wanting to “tune out and turn on”…these days this looks like a tempting path to take. I can understand why opioid overdose is now the leading cause of death for Americans under 50. Not to make light of that somber reflection on “the single greatest country in the world” as many often declare.

  3. Sally Snyder
    June 5, 2017 at 11:44 am

    Here is an interesting look at Russia’s new ultra low-tech weapon:

    http://viableopposition.blogspot.ca/2017/05/maskirovka-russias-military-masquerade.html

    Once again, the Russians are proving that they can protect the Motherland and spend far less on defense than the United States.

    • Stiv
      June 5, 2017 at 2:22 pm

      Interesting, but I wonder how an inflatable will fool a IR mapping or anything beyond visual ID. The rail mounted iCBM is brilliant..if you like that stuff.

  4. exiled off mainstreet
    June 5, 2017 at 11:47 am

    The latest British terrorism incidents reveal the blowback from the power structure supporting jihadi barbarians for their own purposes. Meanwhile, evidence of the real source of wikileaks documentation having been murdered, is suppressed even by those who know better. Those supporting this anti-Russian narrative are betraying history, decency and themselves. I don’t see how they can recover legitimacy after this and I see it being a permanent source of absolute division analogous, for example, to that of people having being found out as informers, between those who propagated the phony narrative and those who didn’t.

    • Brad Owen
      June 5, 2017 at 2:01 pm

      The power structure might also wish to use the terrorists upon the British population (and Europe in general), on the principle that terror prepares the people for the “Law & Order” of tyranny. That’s how Napoleon became Emperor/Tyrant of Europe; the World’s first fascist. That’s how the soon-to-become Synarchists poisoned France’s Revolution; first with a deliberate & provocative Reign of Terror… then comes the terrible beast-man Tyrant to “restore order”…a one-two punch.

    • myles
      June 5, 2017 at 4:14 pm

      The recent incidents in London show that massive surveillance, soldiers patrolling the streets, lock down mentality is not working at all to protect people domestically. The post 9/11 system must be thrown out and reversed. Of course, this system is clearly complicit in allowing these ‘attacks’ and continuing the war policy which guarantees more to come. PM May blames the internet. Nice excuse to shut it down.

      • Gregory Herr
        June 5, 2017 at 7:29 pm

        Brad and myles, I’d say you’re right.

  5. irina
    June 5, 2017 at 11:49 am

    Megan Kelly repeated the “17 Intelligence Agencies” claim in front of 4,000 participants at the Economic Forum in St. Petersburg,
    where she was supposedly ‘moderating’ the panel discussion. The clip aired on her new show did not reveal any ‘moderating’ but
    instead showed her grilling Putin (introduced in the lead-up as “Russia’s Strongman”) about ‘hacking the election’. Very bizarre.

    • irina
      June 5, 2017 at 1:51 pm

      Here is a link to Yahoo’s take on Megan’s one-on-one interview with Putin
      (after she ‘moderated’ the Economic Forum with 4,000 attendees):

      https://www.yahoo.com/tv/megyn-kelly-putin-interview-nbc-review-014642646.html

      The choice of words and presentation style speaks for itself. But this is what the
      average person will read and then consider themselves ‘informed’. . . Most people
      have neither the time nor the inclination to delve further into what is being said (and
      how).

      • bobzz
        June 5, 2017 at 3:12 pm

        I did note one interesting exchange from the trailer (I did not watch the whole interview). Putin made the point that America was the nation that most interfered in other nations affairs. Kelly came back with an insinuation: “that sounds like a justification,” i.e., for what Putin supposedly did, and I agree with the people here. Until I see some real evidence, Putin didn’t do it. Kelly’s retort was a way of avoiding answering Putin’s well made point. What she missed was Putin’s deeper point. He accused the US of “projection.” America projects its own evil on to others, in this case Putin. Kelly either missed that or ignored it. My guess is that she missed. Or I could be like a lot of experts: my opinion IS evidence.

        • D5-5
          June 5, 2017 at 8:56 pm

          Maybe Clapper got it wrong with his Russians genetically inclined to do mayhem to America whereas it’s Americans genetically inclined to paranoia–by the example of Kelly here. To retort to a fact with an accusation that is a wild-assed leap based on nothing but her speculative tendencies (groomed as they are for her audience) is flaming paranoia, seems to me. Hand me my little steel balls.

        • Nancy
          June 6, 2017 at 10:08 am

          In response to her snarky “justification” remark, Putin slapped her down good. He calmly stated, “It’s a statement of fact.” He made her look like the silly tool that she is and if she had any self respect, she would have turned purple with embarrassment.

          • Rob Roy
            June 6, 2017 at 7:42 pm

            She thought she was doing a “tough-questions” interview; you could see her mentally patting herself on the back. She was after a preconceived answer, and interviewers like that never really listen to the guest. Putin was great; he shredded her (even if she didn’t know it) and was disgusted and showed the contempt some of us felt with him. I don’t think he’s used to being interviewed by an idiot (I must see his interviews with Oliver Stone). If you take all the leaders in the world and put them in one spot, Putin will be the smartest one in the room.

  6. John wilson
    June 5, 2017 at 11:50 am

    He who controls the message controls everything. Whether its the state, religion, government or anything else, those who disseminate, manipulate information will always be the rulers of mankind.

  7. Josh O'Bryant
    June 5, 2017 at 11:56 am

    Raskin and Reich are “progressives” not progressives. An actual progressive cannot advocate voting for a Neoliberal warmonger or be pushing for a nuclear war over a lie. Progressives know that Russia had nothing to do with Seth Rich giving those emails to Wikileaks and hate the “democratic” party for trying to play the victims of their own crimes.

    • BannanaBoat
      June 5, 2017 at 2:17 pm

      Hannity runs Seth’s story, within 24 hours Ailies dies from a blow to the head, Fox news retracts the Seth Rich account.

      • D5-5
        June 5, 2017 at 9:07 pm

        few days back someone came forward claiming to have evidence, requesting a secure hearing. I’ve heard nothing since–Zero Hedge was running it. Reddit.com has posted what it calls “evidence” showing inside job plus a useful time line in the last few days.

  8. Paul G.
    June 5, 2017 at 12:02 pm

    The interview with Raskin is very telling and well worth the watch. The Real News reporter is
    sharp and showed what real journalism is like, exposing the complete factual vacuum that
    informs the Congressman’s descent into contemporary McCarthyism.
    It is shocking to realize Jamie Raskin is the son of the highly respected and well known-at least
    to my generation-progressive activist Marcus Raskin. Wonder what his father thinks of this. I can
    only guess that nine years at Harvard ruined the boy.

    Excellent article though I differ with his description of Robert Reich as a “progressive”. Reich
    was Slick Willy’s labor secretary, and though further to the left than most administration
    apparatchiks, is best characterized as a liberal. His role in the contemporary scene fits Phil Ochs’
    definition of a liberal perfectly, “one step to the left in good times, two steps to the right when it
    affects them personally”. He has always leaned toward the Clinton/Obama gang of prevaricators
    in his thought processes. It is unfortunate because his experience in the Carter, Ford and Clinton
    administrations could inform some much more profound critiques.
    It is important to add that the Russia hysteria follows what I called the Goebbels theory, or maybe
    it was Goering’s, which goes like “if you tell a lie often enough it becomes true.

    • Bob Van Noy
      June 5, 2017 at 12:28 pm
      • Bill Bodden
        June 5, 2017 at 3:44 pm

        Thank you for the link, Bob. I suspect Raskin has been watching too many Woody Allen movies. He comes across as a clown, but then, I’m an independent. The Democrats will probably be happy with him.

    • Rob Roy
      June 6, 2017 at 7:51 pm

      If the reporter was Max Bluementhal, he’s brilliant, the real deal. Read his “The 51-Day War” and the Israeli brutal attack on Gaza. M.B. was there. It’s the best thing written on that horrible attack of which Gaza has not recovered (and the Israelis are making sure they can’t).

  9. D5-5
    June 5, 2017 at 12:23 pm

    I agree Norman needs to check his use of “progressive” as a straight term to mean progressive as it once was understood–to stand against current reactionary politics serving the plutocracy, and favor moving the country towards a real democracy. If Reich is or was one the word has seriously pejorated to the right. Last fall Reich kept up an aggressive campaign, article after article, asserting we’d better vote for Hillary Clinton, or doom was on the horizon. His pieces typically ended: “You stand warned.” If these people are progressive as characterized by Norman that would appear to make CN commenters and those to the left of this category “radical” and probably due for “rioting” charges for expressing dissenting opinions before long.

    • Dave P.
      June 5, 2017 at 2:41 pm

      D5-5: thanks, very accurate comments.

      • D5-5
        June 5, 2017 at 8:59 pm

        Cheers Dave!

  10. Bill Bodden
    June 5, 2017 at 12:35 pm

    The Democratic (?) and Republican parties need to be dumped in history’s trash can. It would be next to impossible for them to be rehabilitated by forces within those parties. Bernie Sanders had a chance to form a new party to replace the sclerotic Dems, but he passed on the chance to do America the big favor it needs – but may not deserve.

    • Enels
      June 5, 2017 at 2:00 pm

      …[ ”need to be dumped in history’s trash can.”

      These two sides of the party system are fine, they are what the population deserves! See what they did to the message, what Bernie Sanders said pretty good… Bernie put out a lot of good points that resonated with so many.

      So they killed off Bernie… it was the main ”take away” of the whole 2016 election in that they trounced the populist who most adhered to Democratic conventional thinking. But that was the ”end” of all that old stuff! Now they don’t have anything left but to tap dance off into lala land, pretend to be McCarthyites or stir up the pissed off ”special interest”… party centric menagery of malcontent… femenatzis and fruits, and WTF’s.

      • Nancy
        June 6, 2017 at 9:53 am

        Bernie is alive and kicking and singing the Democrats tune of impeachment and Russian “meddling.” He’s another phony trying to confuse the easily confused American public.

        • Enels
          June 6, 2017 at 11:59 am

          Agreed he just another ”tool”. But I sort of resented that most of his messaging was the kind of thing that I also think. like about preserving many of the remnants of and remains of the New Deal social ”safety nets”, and concerns about growing disparity of wealth between 99%ers, and 1%.

          And since now it’s all about looting the countries and dispossessing the peeps through ”Austerity”, well, what a terrible time to, (for one thing… ): skimp on Health Care! Because the projection of the need for health care must be expanded when the population is hammered down hard, and will be in financial trouble, and that will increase sickness. So if the 1% don’t seem to care, then what is the plan then?

          Bernie wasn’t serious of course not… how ’bout that for stagecraft, now the Trumpster can play Caligula/Fauntlory to his hearts delight, see how he runs… (Privatize Air Control!! one up on the Gipper!)

  11. turk151
    June 5, 2017 at 1:39 pm

    I wonder if our rulers are intentionally using Russia-gate to destroy the Democratic party as the last refuge for progressive change. They aren’t being hoodwinked by the Clinton’s at all, but are encouraging her scorched earth policy to eliminate the long term threat to oligarchy that the Democrats once galvanized.

  12. Stiv
    June 5, 2017 at 2:05 pm

    Well, if the “Get Trump movement” is getting in bed with the war mongers and defense contractors, they’re going to find Trump is already there….so move over! Check the proposed “defense” budget and war profiteering with the Saudi’s new “deal”. Can it be any more evident?

    Found this over the weekend from a G. Orwell essay. More to the point than anything here at CN.

    “There is no use in multiplying examples. The point is that we are all capable of believing things which we know to be untrue, and then, when we are finally proved wrong, impudently twisting the facts so as to show that we were right. Intellectually, it is possible to carry on this process for an indefinite time: the only check on it is that sooner or later a false belief bumps up against solid reality, usually on a battlefield.

    When one looks at the all-prevailing schizophrenia of democratic societies, the lies that have to be told for vote-catching purposes, the silence about major issues, the distortions of the press, it is tempting to believe that in totalitarian countries there is less humbug, more facing of the facts. There, at least, the ruling groups are not dependent on popular favour and can utter the truth crudely and brutally. Goering could say ‘Guns before butter’, while his democratic opposite numbers had to wrap the same sentiment up in hundreds of hypocritical words.

    Actually, however, the avoidance of reality is much the same everywhere, and has much the same consequences. The Russian people were taught for years that they were better off than everybody else, and propaganda posters showed Russian families sitting down to abundant meal while the proletariat of other countries starved in the gutter. Meanwhile the workers in the western countries were so much better off than those of the U.S.S.R. that non-contact between Soviet citizens and outsiders had to be a guiding principle of policy. Then, as a result of the war, millions of ordinary Russians penetrated far into Europe, and when they return home the original avoidance of reality will inevitably be paid for in frictions of various kinds. The Germans and the Japanese lost the war quite largely because their rulers were unable to see facts which were plain to any dispassionate eye.

    To see what is in front of one’s nose needs a constant struggle. One thing that helps toward it is to keep a diary, or, at any rate, to keep some kind of record of one’s opinions about important events. Otherwise, when some particularly absurd belief is exploded by events, one may simply forget that one ever held it. Political predictions are usually wrong. But even when one makes a correct one, to discover why one was right can be very illuminating. In general, one is only right when either wish or fear coincides with reality. If one recognizes this, one cannot, of course, get rid of one’s subjective feelings, but one can to some extent insulate them from one’s thinking and make predictions cold-bloodedly, by the book of arithmetic. In private life most people are fairly realistic. When one is making out one’s weekly budget, two and two invariably make four. Politics, on the other hand, is a sort of sub-atomic or non-Euclidean word where it is quite easy for the part to be greater than the whole or for two objects to be in the same place simultaneously. Hence the contradictions and absurdities I have chronicled above, all finally traceable to a secret belief that one’s political opinions, unlike the weekly budget, will not have to be tested against solid reality.”

    • D5-5
      June 5, 2017 at 8:48 pm

      IMV it’s the Amerikan proletariat that’s starving in the gutter nowadays. As to his presumption that everyone’s brain operates as George’s does I’ll leave that for another time.

  13. BannanaBoat
    June 5, 2017 at 2:25 pm

    Most presidents become more bellicose more they are domestically cornered. Hillary wrote Podesta that the Saudi’s and Qatar were finacing ISIS before she sold $300 billion in arms to Saudi’s to destroy Yemen ( and Iran?) and receive her $50 million Saudi kickback to Clinton Foundation. T would be freiendly with Russia if the DemoNeoCon’s allowed it, would that not be beneficial for all of Humanity and Nature?

  14. Realist
    June 5, 2017 at 2:48 pm

    All these unhinged Dems ought to simply resign from the political arena if they truly believe that Vladimir Putin can analyse and influence our elections better than highly paid professional American campaign managers using the virtually unlimited money of corporate oligarchs. If Putin is, in fact, the main reason why Hillary Clinton lost the election to the most disliked, obnoxious and naive candidate in the history of American presidential elections, then one has to wonder how many previous glib-tongued demagogues like Barack Obama were really his puppets. If Putin is truly such a maestro at manipulating the American voters, you’d think he would have been a bit more subtle in choosing his Manchurian candidate, especially since having his way was so darned easy: all he supposedly had to do was reveal a few simple truths about Hillary’s beliefs and actions.

    Or, could it be that Dan Quayle was really the prescient genius political analyst decades ago when he basically sized up the current Democratic mind set: “What a waste it is to lose one’s mind. Or not to have a mind is being very wasteful. How true that is.” Dems should heed the words of caution delivered up by this veritable Nostradamus of American politics: “I believe we are on an irreversible trend toward more freedom and democracy – but that could change.” The New McCarthyism is indeed change you’d better believe in, right Barack?

    • Nancy
      June 6, 2017 at 9:57 am

      Tell it!

    • Enels
      June 6, 2017 at 12:07 pm

      No, “A Mind is a terrible thing to waste… Especially if you never had one” D. Quayle, (Mr. Potato Head,) and he aught to know, or

  15. evelync
    June 5, 2017 at 3:58 pm

    Thank you Norman! The oligarchs’ self interest machine has succeeded, once again, in changing the subject.

    As you may have see if you visit the Bernie-friendly web site TheProgressiveWing.com, Bernie’s book tour through Europe has focused in part on pointing out that the Oligarchs are relentlessly encroaching on the survival of working people. And, for some reason, he says, that’s a subject that people shy away from discussing. It’s common practice, he says, to speak out against racism, homophobia, sexism, etc but the trend to increasing divisions of wealth is leaving millions behind and it’s not generally talked about. Bernie, when asked, praises Jeremy Corbin for actually addressing this critical issue for the vast majority of people across the globe as billionaires accumulate more and more wealth and have more and more economic and political power over the rest of us.
    As a result their right wing agendas threaten our ability to deal with the existential threat of climate change and all the rest….

    re:
    “Turner noted that “we definitely have to deal with” allegations of Russian interference in the election, “it’s on the minds of American people, but if you want to know what people in Ohio — they want to know about jobs, they want to know about their children.” “

    From what I have seen so far, Nina Turner is one of the very few woman/people in politics who, like a point guard in basketball, truly has her eye on the ball.

    Re: “Democrats Chase Red Herring of Russia-gate”
    I’m unable to fathom how Russia, which Andrew Bacevich tells us does not even belong in the evolving quadro-polar group of super powers (U.S.A., Europe, India and China with Russia on a lower tier. – how Russia has become the center of a night and day media obsession, having the “power” to “destabilize” our elections. It is disrespectful to the intelligence of the voter. It is a distraction, IMO, from something Bernie is highlighting in his speeches across Europe – the increasing divisions of wealth and the suffering thereof for working people,

    e.g. his talk at the Cambridge Union where he and his wife, Jane O’Meara Sanders, were given a vivacious welcome.
    https://youtu.be/mZ6CJuHPFOE?t=3954

  16. June 5, 2017 at 5:47 pm

    Unfortunately, the intelligence of far too many voters is not out front, but masked behind emotional attachments. That, to me, is why I believe “Russiagate” has worked a number on American’s minds, the old saying about repeating a lie enough times and people will believe it. The Indian philosopher, Krishnamurti, made the point over and over about how the human mind is conditioned, interfering with clear perception of reality.

  17. Steve
    June 5, 2017 at 9:47 pm

    Reich a weasly worm speaks with forked tongue. AAn academic of less than robust proportions he did little for Labor while Labor Secretary. Now he lies blatantly abut Russia without facts. His students deserve a refund and he should be kicked out of his job for being so stupid.

  18. Sleepless In Mars
    June 6, 2017 at 5:12 am

    Anarky 66: Tomorrow Belongs to Us

    Come like shadows, so depart!

    William Shakespeare, Macbeth (1605), Act IV, scene 1, line 111.

    Look at the bright side. The Surprise Party is gaining popularity. Everything popular is bad and we’re bad company.

    “Running dog lackey of the capitalist conspiracy? Victim of socio-economic forces beyond your control? Whatever—sleep it off!”

  19. June 6, 2017 at 7:03 am

    The gas lighting and the switch and bait techniques that are being used today be it in the US or the occidental world in general are disturbing to say the least. Like Mr Solomon so rightly eluded to about the warfare state. This all began under Bush Jr. and is continuing to this day.
    The elite have been exposed in spades. Clinton regime of the 90’s foreign policy with regards to Saddam’s Iraq was devastating to the point of being a war crime in it self. Few people know that the Clinton regime not only had sanctions imposed on them ,just like they are doing today against the sovereign state of Syria but the US was performing bombing raids on a weekly bases until the end of his Presidency.
    The 9/11 fiasco and the outcome of it proves many a conspiracist that their agenda was always to prepare the west for war and continuous war. Hence here is where Russia , North Korea and Iran so nicely fit in. How can The US maintain its industrial capacity if it does not have war. Not many citizens realise that the land of the free pax=americana’s industrial capacity is well over 60 percent related to the military industrial complex. Let us look at the LBJ years following the well orchestrated assassination of JFK, military industrial capacity was growing at an exorbitant rate. Why? Well we had the Vietnam war. Prior to that we had the Korean War. Which many a citizen does not have any idea the devastating effect and the devastation that was placed on the poor souls of Korea. North Korea was bombed to the point of no return. The vast majority of the people were living in caves.If It wasn’t for the Chinese and the Soviets their would have not been any North Koreans left.
    In conclusion I will state the obvious to some and to others be labelled a conspiracy theorist but above mentioned events did happen .
    So we are being prepped for the next big event. Some say it will be North Korea next some others suspect Iran. In the end it’s pax-amaericana that is trying to divide and conquer. Russia has been a big thorn in the west for the simple reason that it considers it’s sovereignty as a nation sate above all else . China well they are the natural global capital contenders with pax-amaericana and all their corporate cronies. We are living in dangerous times and the western elite are leading us to hell. If they think Russia ,China or Iran are going to be extorted to they will be in one hell of surprise when be it the Russian, Iranians or Chinese stand up and be counted for
    mark my words the aforementioned countries will be labelled as the new axis of evil and will be compared to the second world war axis of Japan,Italy and Germany.
    Post Scriptum: History has a weird way in repeating itself and we are living similar times to the beginning of the first world war when imperial powers were veering for supremacy and the western bankers colluded with Lenin and Trotsky to bring down the Russian Czar.

    • Skip Scott
      June 6, 2017 at 10:07 am

      Actually this all began long before Bush Jr. I read an excellent article at Information Clearing House yesterday that summarizes the “Deep State” manipulations all the way back to FDR. As George Carlin said ” It’s a big club, and you ain’t in it.”

      http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/47183.htm

  20. Zhu
    June 6, 2017 at 8:27 am

    Sounds about right.

  21. SteveK9
    June 6, 2017 at 1:12 pm

    Nina Turner is wrong about one thing: “We are preoccupied with this, it’s not that this is not important, but every day Americans are being left behind because it’s Russia, Russia, Russia.”

    Actually it is not important at all.

  22. Watchdog
    June 6, 2017 at 1:32 pm

    Norman Solomon knows who is responsible for the neo-McCarthyism of the Dems and progressives. Is it Congress? Is it the various crazed Dem mouthpieces like Maddow, Moore, MSNBC, CNN, Etc.?
    No!
    Solomon tells us at the very opening:
    “The Trump administration has already done enormous harm …. Along the way, President Trump has also caused many prominent progressives to degrade their own political discourse.”
    It is President Trump who has “caused many prominent progressives to degrade their own political discourse.”
    Amazing! It would be funny were it not so pathetic.
    When it comes to Trump even apparently sane progressives like Solomon have gone bonkers.
    Norm S. has raised blaming the victim to a whole new level.

  23. rosemerry
    June 6, 2017 at 4:47 pm

    “one of the most promising new House members, Democrat Jamie Raskin, ”
    WHAT, that dingbat “progressive” is elected?
    I saw Max Blumenthal’s interview- if that is the quality of new “reps”, and fossils like Sen. McNasty are the old ones, why bother with democracy at all?
    Maybe we should follow the old criticism of government “throw out the electorate and bring in a new one”-what is wrong with the half of the American population which votes? Or is there no choice of competent candidates?

  24. George Hoffman
    June 6, 2017 at 9:11 pm

    I’ve been a loyal Democrat all my life. But I’ve given up on the party. I voted for Senator Bernie Sanders in the Ohio primary even though I knew he probably didn’t have a chance of winning against Hillary Clinton though I actually felt good about going to my local polling station. And I have felt that way in a long time. I wished Sanders would have run as an independent in thd presidential election. Then he went on the campaign trail and stumped for Hillary. I found that amazing. He should have known better and he probably did. l The working class, which the Democrats abandoned long ago, could care less how we the people are suffering in the Rust Belt as former Ohio State Senator Nina Turner accurately pointed out in Norman’s article. And this “Russiagate” hysteria reminds me of the Red Scare tactics of Senator Joe McCarthy when I was going up in the fifties practicing “duck and cover” in elementary school. And all I learned in Vietnam was: Never trust the brass and even mor so the suits that sent us there. So I stopped taking the CIA, the military and the federal bureaucracy seriously long ago. What we need is an independent Progressive Party with candidates such as Nina Turner running for office. The duopoly of the major parties have a stranglehold over the democratic process in this country. Both political parties are morally and intellectually bankrupt. We now have what amounts to a “banana republic” serving the corporate interests of the oligarchs who are the puppet masters running this country.

  25. l kay
    June 7, 2017 at 2:32 am

    This article misuses the term “progressives” in the corrupt corporate Democrat propaganda sense that they are the progressives. When referring to corrupt corporate Democrats please do that by their accurate title or by their former label – “liberal.”

  26. bob
    June 9, 2017 at 10:36 am

    “When they go low, we go high” was a lie meant to play to progressives’ sense of moral superiority. You’re lamenting that progressives are sinking to the extreme right-wing’s level, when what is really happening is you’re seeing the truth: that you’ve been played.

  27. June 13, 2017 at 4:32 pm

    Democrats are destroying their party with the Russian nonsense. Even lifelong democrats are leaving the party because they believe it has been taken over by the looting, burning, foul mouthed, intolerant, low IQ liberals.

  28. tom
    June 18, 2017 at 12:13 pm

    I have heard every reason under the Sun for ‘the election’!
    The Democrats, which I’ve been a former voter since 1980.
    have gone off the rails.
    The DNC had more of a ‘leak’ than a ‘hack’, but I voted for Trump
    because of his candor, and the idea of a man who serves without the
    need of kickbacks after he leaves office.

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