Some people are just easy to fool


Matt Stoller:

The Source of Barack Obama’s Power to Trick Us Comes from Our Willingness to Be Tricked

Politicians play hardball all the time. They lie on a regular basis, it’s one of the tricks of the trade. But Obama’s politics, and his career, are built on an exquisitely and brilliantly constructed narrative of integrity and progress. He is the outsider become the insider, the multi-racial meritocrat whose black and white heritage came together into the ultimate conciliator and political leader. His is the story of America, that of a brilliant Harvard Law school educated striver with roots in community organizing, who became a powerful orator, and then America’s first black President. Progressive in spirit, cautious in temperament, he first and foremost understands the challenges facing the nation, the powerful injustice of slavery’s heritage, even though he ultimately finds solace in his belief in America, in American institutions, and in the ultimate goodness of the American way of life.

But there is another narrative, a real narrative about Barack Obama and his administration. Obama is the ultimate cynic, a dishonest, highly reactionary social and corporate ladder climbing con artist. Obama is the guy who calls a female reporter “sweety”, who plays poker with the guys, and who thinks that his senior advisor’s decision to cash out after making a “modest” salary of $172,000 at the White House is just natural. He’s the guy who used the rationale that he’s a father of two girls as to why he doesn’t want young women to have access to Plan B. He was in favor of gay marriage in 1996, flip flopped for political reasons, and then pretended to change his mind as a matter of conscience. He runs on populism with a worse record than George W. Bush on income inequality. His narcissism, and the post-modern ironic sense of self-awareness of how his narrative is put together and tended, is his defining character trait. It’s not just that he’s a liar. Lyndon Johnson was a liar, but LBJ lied us into a war in Vietnam as well as a war on poverty. FDR lied all the time, for good and ill. Obama’s entire edifice is based on lying almost entirely to help sustain his image, with almost no interest in sound policy-making. Obama understands the threat of climate change, but like the exceptional con artist he is, what happens to others he does not know, or what happens in the future, is irrelevant to him. He understands banking, and war, and women’s issues, and corruption and Citizens United. Like a great con artist, he has studied his mark, the American voter, and specifically the Democratic voter, and he undersands which buttons to push.

Many criticize Obama, with the idea that he doesn’t understand, and if only he understood, he would change his mind. This is part of his false narrative of hope and change. But Obama reads Paul Krugman – he studied the left intensely and spent years as a community organizer. He understands his opposition, those crying out for justice against the powerful, and finds them laughable, finds in them weakness at best, a punchline at worst. He reads his left-wing opponents so he can absorb the talking points, and rebut them. Some think that Obama can be appealed to around the better angels of nature, that he’s naturally with “the left” but must be gently praised. But again, this is more of the false hope and change narrative. Obama understands Saul Alinsky. He gets left-wing ideas. But he hates the left, with the passion of any bully towards his victims. To him, they are chumps, weak, pathetic, losers. They are such pathetic losers, in fact, that they will believe anything he tells them. And Obama has no better nature, he is what he’s done in office, someone who murders children with drone strikes and then jokes about it to his rich friends.

Yves wrote about this narrative a few weeks ago, when she pointed out his career in the Illinois state Senate was based on working for billionaire developers to destroy poor neighborhoods. Few really gets who he is, at his core, and almost no one is willing to publicly point it out. There are some who went to law school with him, who saw his enormous grasping social climbing tendencies, his eager corporate good old boy persona, his narcissistic calculations. But they are drowned out by the institutional left-wing voices, the fanboy reporters, the sycophantic labor leaders, the slavishly worshipful foundations, and the voters who cannot hear any alternative to the hope and change they know and love. The only mainstream narrative challenging hope and change is the stupid right-wing storyline that he’s a Kenyan Muslim socialist. That’s just racist idiocy. But there are those on the right who understand Obama’s narcissism, and they may just make that their electoral narrative.


Gee Matt, welcome to the party. Where were you four years ago? We were running around with our hair on fire trying to warn people but we were dismissed as racists.

Obama is actually a really bad liar. Some people are just easily fooled. We weren’t fooled. Were you fooled, Matt?

As for that “Kenyan Muslim” thingamajig, the left talks about that way more than the right does. Oh, there’s a few fringe lunatics who seem to believe it, but the mainstream right just ignores them.

They do call Obama a socialist though, but in Wingnut-speak “socialist” means “Democrat.” Just like in Progressive-speak “racist” means “Republican.”


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84 Responses to Some people are just easy to fool

  1. they are falling like flies these days, those koolaid drinkers. What’s in the koolaid these days?

  2. Lola-at-Large says:

    I left my comment:

    PUMAs knew, but they were ridiculed endlessly by people on the left now parroting the exact same talking points they were using in 2008. Stoller & Taylor Marsh both come to mind as examples.

    PUMAs still know, and they’ve been working quietly behind the scenes to upend Obamas narrative. Looks like it’s working.

    • Lola, maybe you should have added: PUMAS — and those with a modicum of common sense, who have been around the political block more than once — all KNEW.

  3. yttik says:

    “He gets left-wing ideas. But he hates the left, with the passion of any bully towards his victims. To him, they are chumps, weak, pathetic, losers. They are such pathetic losers, in fact, that they will believe anything he tells them.”

    Sad but true.

    I think he also hates black people. I remember when he lectured black folks about not being lazy and feeding their kids Popeye’s fried chicken for breakfast. I remember his fake black accents. He mocks, ridicules, and stereotypes, but few people seem to hear the disrespect in his voice.

    • HELENK says:

      he hates the whole American way of life. He is the biggest enemy of my country in my lifetime. installed in a position to do the most harm by the democrats

      • cj says:

        “He is the biggest enemy of my country in my lifetime”

        Agree. If he’s willing to leak national security secrets for a little resume padding, there’s not much he won’t do.

    • gxm17 says:

      Amen to that. I remember the first time I heard his fake preacher speechifying voice and couldn’t believe it. I was disgusted, dumbfounded, and aghast. More so that people were actually swooning over that shit.

      And don’t forget women. They’re close to the top of his hate list. When I found out he didn’t go to his dying mother’s bedside that’s all I needed to know about the man. Speaks volumes more than his fake black man routine.

  4. HELENK says:

    CONFIRMED: #House scheduled to vote THURSDAY to hold AG Eric Holder in contempt of Congress, GOP aides say

    do not make any plans for Thursday. Between this and the supreme court ruling on obamacare it will be a busy day

  5. HELENK says:

    US Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. is taking a medical leave of absence because of “exhaustion,” his office announced Monday – Chicago Sun Times

    timing?????????

  6. Lulu says:

    All of this is to save their own asses and crummy little careers that depend on their penetrative analytical skills. All of these smucks now seeing the light are one of two sorts. They are go along to get along types who go with the flow and hop on any fad or bandwagon going by, or they are lazy idiots who are too dim to actually look. I do not want to hear their mea culpas and I do not give a flip why they are just now figuring out what most adults figured out four years ago. I want them to do something they have the mental and probative ability to do such as dig ditches although I am sure they could screw that up too by not bothering to determine where the natural gas lines are located.

    • angienc says:

      Word.

    • Lulu, either they are too smart to look up the lines, or they can naturally intuit where they are. That’s how self-congratulatory at their natural brilliance they are. The fact that Obama believes, as they do, that he’s the smartest man in the room, just underscores what’s wrong with them.

  7. Oswald says:

    Wow:

    Ok, this is where I think it would help for Krugman and Wells to visit Central PA. I don’t doubt that the Republican voters in the South (and Arizona) are very concerned with brown people. It is an irrational fear with some historical roots in segregation in that part of the country. But the irrational Republican leaning voters that *I* have to put up with aren’t bothered by immigration or african Americans. Noooo, they’ve got their knickers in a twist over the degradation of the culture from loose women and gay people. They’re concerned that the Christians are losing their edge and immigrants are probably a lot more religious than the young’uns who believe in evolution that they pick up in those satanic public schools.

    I appreciate Robin Wells’ perspective on the south and racial tensions that linger and I’m not denying that this is what is motivating nuts in Alabama to turn school kids into the INS. But it’s not the South everywhere and the operatives in the Republican party are very good at picking at the fears of an older generation that sees itself besieged. It watches way too much Fox News than is good for it and is scared to death of death. They’re consumed with stories of pedophiles, violence, rape, murder, burgled houses. They’ve lost the ability to connect cause with effect. The world is mysterious and chaotic. The Republican party is worried about losing its numbers because these older, easy to manipulate voters are dying off and the new American voters that are rising to replace them are Internet babies who aren’t particularly religious, are open to gays getting married, like their contraceptives, thank you very much, and are pretty comfortable with diversity. If it were only white people, they’d still have time, but it’s all this modernity that’s creeping in with the information superhighway that is dooming the Republican party.

    It’s not that the Republican party is becoming a refuge of white voters. The problem is that the Republican party becoming the party of the id. Every phobia, prejudice or dark archetype that lurks in the human soul is being given permission to run free without any inhibitions.

    • Lulu says:

      If some people do not have their sanctimony, classism, and disdain they really don’t have anything at all. It must be a terrible burden to be so much better than everyone else and not be doing so great in this society.

      • Lola-at-Large says:

        Not to mention, have you seen what the interwebophiles are surfing and believing? I’ve got news for her. Here in Indianapolis, the bustling urban center of 2 million people, the 11th largest city in the US, I read an essay today written by an 18 year old black man with the manners of Prince Charles (he was raised by his granny) that completely ripped gays as immoral goats who are forbidden in the Bible and should be killed or jailed. As an experiment, I had him read his essay out loud to the class. Not one person out of 20 disagreed with him. So she can take her urban supremacy and….

        Yeah, I’m not gonna finish that. I’m still sore from the bigotry I was exposed to today.

        • Erica says:

          I can see why you’re sore. That’s a terrible thing to have happen in a classroom, and especially when no-one has the guts to speak up. Take good care of yourself.

      • angienc says:

        Thinking you are smarter than everyone else is classic sociopathic behavior. I’ve been saying, in all seriousness, for a long time now — even before 2008 and the Obama debacle — that we are raising a nation of sociopaths. The helicopter parents coddling their children & teaching them they are special little snowflakes with participation trophies for all and no grades, have failed to teach responsibility for actions and empathy. We’re fucked.

        • Lola-at-Large says:

          Thinking you are smarter than everyone else is classic sociopathic behavior.

          Bingo.

      • Fact. Gov Walker in WI made huge gains with college-educate people during the recall election. How is that accounted for?

    • What the fuck? If she was in the room with me I would slap some sense into her. First of all- how dare that little sanctimonious spoiled elitist BITCH call older voters easily manipulated? EXCUSE ME? Is she speaking of the generation that sent Americans to the moon? Or is she speaking of MY generation- boomers coming up on what was supposed to be our retirements? It was overwhelmingly NOT the older generation that destroyed the Dem party and rejected the experienced qualified candidate. I live in NW PA- and we have a lot more in common with Central PA than with Pittsburgh, Philly or State College.
      Sorry- but the Republicans I know (and there are many of them here in bitter clinger country) do not have their panties in a was about “loose women and gays.” Puhlease! They are worried about the same damn things we are worried about- a corrupted government, bought and paid for by shadow players. They are worried that America is losing her preeminence in the world as innovator, producer, protector.
      They are worried we are losing the foundations that gave rise to corny sayings like “Truth, justice and the American way.” They are worried that the young people of our country no longer are well educated and that nobody instills a sense of right and wrong in their heads and they can see with their own eyes that so many young people have no manners and no work ethic- and-
      No respect for their elders or for authority. Or for America.
      Perhaps she should get out of her family circle and talk to some regular people. Given what I have read about her feelings about her family- could be some pretty twisted personalities there. Probably not at all representative of central PA and other bitter clinging strongholds.

      • Oswald says:

        Every time I think she is regaining her sanity she takes a sharp left turn into paranoia.

    • In a previous article, she revealed her disdain for the South- something about a childhood vacation to the south, and a tour of slave quarters – from a century and a half ago. As a Southerner, I am painfully aware of our shameful past with regard to race. I’m also aware of the progress made in terms of race relations – due to efforts of concerned blacks and whites. How comforting it must be to believe that racism (or any other ism) occurs only in the South or Middle America. It also reflects a failure to dwell in reality that borders on psychosis. No racists among the sophisticated urban dwellers?! Right!

      This kind of condescending drivel reveals a lot more about the writer than about the target of her insults. The erroneous assumptions made in this article reflect a deep well of ignorance. Unfortunately, in order to learn and grow, one must have the sense to recognize the need to do so.

      BTW – as someone who works with victims of pedophiles, I can tell you they don’t just exist in the delusions of Fox News – as implied in the article. The damage they do is real. They are most often not random crazy strangers – but adults, known and trusted the victims’ families.

      For someone who apparently considers herself to have her finger on the pulse of America (even the parts inhabited by us cretins), she is sadly misinformed and uneducated.

    • So she obviously lives with brown people (the only illegal immigrants) and knows that undocumented immigrants are only taking jobs that no American wants to do, right?

  8. carol haka says:

    Obama – Traitor!

    Gutless Congress! Makes me puke to constantly hear them using exactly Sarah Palin’s words to rebuke Obama when they inch towards the truth about this creep!

  9. angienc says:

    Some of them want to use you
    Some of them want to get used by you
    Some of them want to abuse you
    Some of them want to be abused

  10. carol haka says:

    And, Hillary is in some kind of trance or she would have taken matters into her own hands by now to save this nation.

  11. carol haka says:

    200+ rockets and mortar shells fired into Israel in the last week.

    What does the LSM report?

    Obama offers some fans ice cream on his campaign stop.

  12. Oswald says:

    Has the left lost its collective mind?

    Ian Welsh:

    Greek election consequences and the shape of the developed world’s future

    will be more years of austerity, people winding up on the street, suicides and outright starvation. In this fertile ground, the neo-nazi right will rise. The left will most likely not compete, because they will refuse to create an enforcer class to protect their own people. The police in Greece voted about 50% for the Golden Dawn, they will not protect the left, either, but will enable the rise of the Golden Dawn.

    Under these circumstances a coup of some variety, whether military or otherwise (remember, Hitler never won a majority) is very likely to occur. By blocking the rise of the left so that Greece can be looted, the oligarchs have created their own doom.

    In general terms, we are in a pre-revolutionary period. The supreme court coup in Egypt, the outright refusal to obey even the letter of the law let alone the spirit in the case of Wikileaks and Assange, the reign of Obama, are teaching an entire generation that you cannot fix the system from within, through the mechanisms of the old system or through even semi-peaceful protest. The Pacific free trade deal will enshrine even more draconian IP laws and will extend NAFTA style takings regulations which give multinational companies sovereignty over governments.

    This will not stand. There will be global war, and there will be global revolution. We are on track for it. The question is when and how. I would guess in less than 20 years the world will fully convulse. Many of the current generation of oligarchs will be dead by then and will win the death bet, but their heirs will reap the whirlwind. As for the population, I expect a billion deaths or so over the next 25 years from famine, disease, war and environmental issues.

    I thought I was a pessimist.

    • Oswald says:

      Godwin Award Winner:

      Here in the U.S., the Republican party has become, all but explicitly, a fascist movement. Sure, they may talk about radical individualism, but that’s just libertarian rhetoric. These “individualists” are also the guys who keep telling each other that “There is no I in team.” They may pretend to despise the concept of collectivism, but they know how to march in step. The term fascism derives from the fasces, a bundle of sticks — weak individually, strong when held together.

      The other defining features of fascism (both old are new) are unreason, superstition, paranoia, conspiracism, a willingness to rewrite history, disdain for the law, the scapegoating of perceived enemies, eliminationist rhetoric, militarism, nationalism, brutish appeals to anger and fear, and incessant propaganda. Can anyone deny that these terms describe our national culture as never before?

      The only difference between Fox News and the Völkischer Beobachter is that the latter was subtler.

    • angienc says:

      I left a comment, of course, because I am so sick of the improper descriptions of the Greek parties. I’m in moderation there (and probably will never be freed) so I’ll repeat here (note, I use my “company manners” so no f-words and I think I was really nice about it):

      Mr. Welsh, do you speak Greek? Because I do & I even have the Greek channels on my TV here in the states. I have family in Greece whom I visit every year. So, I dare say I’ve been following things more closely — and more accurately — than most non-Greek speakers. Thus, I have to tell you that you — and your brethren in the blogging community & the US MSM at large — seem to have a huge problem understanding the various political parties in Greece, which is understandable being used to what is, for all intents & purposes, a 2 party system where the 2 parties really aren’t that different from each other. So take this as constructive criticism — the Golden Dawn party, despite what you read in the US press, are anarchists — that’s their core philosophy — anarchy. They even wear the Guy Fawkes masks at rallies & they are the ones seen destroying property & setting fires during protests. To describe them as “right wing” is inaccurate. Are they fascist a–holes? Why yes, but they are extreme left-wing fascist a–holes.
      But again, even using the term left-wing & right-wing to describe Greek parties for an American audience is misleading because of the connotations those terms have here. The New Democracy party is called “right wing” here in the US, but they are only “right wing” compared to the communist parties SYRIZA (oh, and btw, it is an acronym, so all capital letters, not “Syriza” — I see that all the time too) and KKE. (Yes, there are two communist parties in Greece — again, hard concept to understand for American readers, but true nonetheless — SYRIZA can be understood as “soft communist” and KKE as “hard communist”). PASOK, the socialist party, is the *center* in Greece. So, as you can see, to be center-right (New Democracy) in Greece is *not* the same thing as being center-right in the US.
      You certainly have the right to opine on what the elections in Greece means for the future of the world, but you really should describe the parties correctly & in context.

      • Lola-at-Large says:

        Great comment. I learned a lot from it.

        • angienc says:

          Thanks! I should have said that Golden Dawn is to the left of even the communist parties, but I think that is pretty clear, right? I mean, everyone knows that anarchists are to the left of even communists.
          I’m also sick of the MSM here describing SYRIZA as socialist — they aren’t; they’re communist (soft). Almost as sick as seeing it written “Syriza” as if it’s a word, not an acronym. 🙂

          The bottom line is, the majority of Greek people chose the least terrible of the choices available to them (New Democracy) but even that isn’t going to save the Euro in Greece — it just bought a little time. What is going on now in Greece is inevitable after the decision to change from the Drachma to the Euro — the difference in value in the two caused havoc on the cost of living in Greece & tied the government’s hands in its ability to devalue the currency; couple that with more than 50% of the work force in the public sector, and there could be no different outcome. (FTR, I was against Greece joining the EU). I’m not a particular fan of ND (which is definitely, by American standards, more left than, say, moderate Dems), but this ballyhooing of SYRIZA by the American left is a bunch of bullshit — I’d rather have ND than communists. No matter the outcome of the election, the Greek people are the ones who are going to suffer as a result of the decisions of the corrupt politicians who have been selling the country out since WW2.* It’s just like I told my mom when she complained that now that ND was in power it was going to mean an additional $1500 in taxes on our house in Greece (we just paid an increase in taxes earlier this year) — I said “Better another $1500 in taxes than the house being confiscated by the communists.” She laughed & said I was right because
          don’t think that is exactly what SYRIZA would have done with property belonging to “part-time” owners like us. The only reason the disgusting Golden Dawn morons got the support it did was (outside of the hard core believers themselves — was more “protest” votes at how much they other choices suck — remember the earlier election this year, Golden Dawn only got 6% of the vote; that accounts for the hard core believers). Also, from my mother — Greek people are *not* communists — they only talk like communists. But when it comes down to it, the Greek spirit is in direct opposition to the rules that are part & parcel with the communist philosophy.

          *I’m not making excuses for the problems facing Greece prior to its joining the EU, like the fact that more than 50% of the Greek work force is in the public sector. Greece made huge mistakes in failing to properly industrialize after WW2 –of course, there was a civil war going on in Greece after WW2, which was started by the damned communist — KKE — who, btw, were a cruel bunch of assholes (if you want to read about their reign on terror I recommend the book Elena by Nicholas Gage). Even though KKE was eventually defeated (with a lot of help from America — thank God), the King was deposed & Greece was still in turmoil for a long time & failed to industrialize Greece properly to the extent that today the main industry in Greece is tourism. And there are lots of natural resources in Greece that could have & should have been in the hands of Greek private enterprise, like natural gas, especially in Crete, but are not as the result of the corrupt politicians selling the rights to foreign companies. This was the short sighted “easy money” route to put money in the pockets of corrupt politicians.

          Also, since I’m on a rant, my first husband is from Oslo, Norway (and we are still friends, we married young when we met in college — he was on a shot putting scholarship & we both realized after graduation we should have just been “first boyfriend/girlfriend” not eloped & gotten married). But I’ve seen a lot of American lefties saying “Fuck Austerity, Adopt the policies of Norway. Free healthcare; $25 minimum wage” etc. OK, first of all there is no such thing as “free” healthcare. Today, the minimum wage in Norway is $25 an hour, but Norway also has the highest taxes — both direct & indirect — in Europe. More than 40% of Norway’s GDP is from taxes. Further, Norway has the largest oil industry in Europe (that means, they drill) and the government gets something like $68 million in year from that. And, Norway did not join the EU, instead keeping the Norwegian Krone & thus the power over their currency. Additionally, Norway is a very small country — not just by American standards, but even compared to Greece — Norway has about 5 million people to Greece’s 11 million. Most importantly, the “policies” of Norway have always been “austerity” in that the government *never* spends more than it takes in — they not only never borrow, they always have a surplus (from taxes & the oil industry). These differences make Norway inapplicable to Greece (and the US).

          As to the hysterics in the Welsh piece about little Greek old ladies committing suicide — I want to see those statistics. Because (1) the statistics I’ve seen places Norway’s rate of suicide higher than Greece’s (34th in the world & 84th, respectively — the US comes in at 41st) and (2) the vast majority of Greeks belong to the Greek Orthodox Church which forbids suicide and anyone who knows the Greek people knows that the “little Greek old ladies” are the *most* religious of all. I don’t buy for a second that suicide is on the rise in Greece — it certainly isn’t being reported by the Greek news channels. Further, in modern times, Greece has always been a relatively poor country, but the people lead “rich” lives — not materialistically, but socially, spiritually, strong family support systems, etc. That also belies the “increase in suicides” stories in the US press. Now, the Greek people are certainly hurting — I don’t want to make light of that — but it isn’t exactly the dire straights being presented, especially given the social networks existing in Greece. Just recently, for example, the farmers in Greece donated huge amounts of produce to the people in Athens (the largest city in Greece, where approximately half of the entire population of the country lives). The story in the UK Guardian says the people “were starving” but you can see in the pictures, they aren’t *starving” — hurting, yes; starving, no. From what I know of the Greek people, I find it very difficult to believe extended families are going to allow family members — no matter how distant — to actually “starve.” There certainly was much worse conditions in Greece during WW2 & the civil war that followed when, according to my grandmother, not one stray cat could be found in all of Athens.

          • myiq2xu says:

            Thanks for the back ground info.

            I rarely comment on the politics of other countries because as an outsider I don’t know what is really happening or who to believe.

            Imagine if you were a foreigner and you relied on our media to know what is happening here. Why would you trust them on what is happening elsewhere?

      • leslie says:

        Nice, angienc. Thanks for that lesson. I honestly would not ever have known that.

        • angienc says:

          You are welcome leslie. And yes, you never would have known that from the US press. Fortunately, my ability to speak Greek — which usually is of *no* help whatsoever, outside my trips to Greece & among the Greek side of my family, is helping me here. 🙂

      • angienc says:

        Ha! He actually responded to me in a condescending “I speak to Greek people who are actually in Greece” and “I’m Canadian, I don’t care about the American political scale and my long term readers no that” kind of way. Of course he denied what I said about Golden Dawn *and* had the nerve to tell me PASOK is “neo-liberal” (bullshit — PASOK is socialist). Anyway, I responded — again, I think very, very politely so major props to me:

        Dear Ian, (he started “Dear Angie” to me)
        Well, it seems to me that from your sentence here: “both the US parties are so far to the right in a global context or any 20th century historical context that only in America could someone call a Democrat a left winger, or even a liberal” that you and & I are in agreement about my main point, so I don’t see why you take issue with my asking you to present the Greek parties in context. By virtue of your writing this blog on the internet, as opposed to, say a Canadian print newspaper, you most certainly are writing with the possibility of reaching an American audience (and I think you know that), so my point that you should present your descriptions of the Greek parties in context is valid, unless you are saying you don’t want “new readers” and are satisfied with the ones you have. If new visitors are frowned on, than I’m so sorry I bothered you. Finally, I am a Greek who is speaking to you — I was born in Athens to a Greek mother (American father); own property in Athens; I spend approximately 1/4 of the year there; the entire maternal side of my extended family lives in Athens & I too speak to them on a daily basis. Obviously, you are going to rely more on the people you “know” rather than on me — a stranger on the internet — but trying to dismiss my description of Golden Dawn — and they are anarchists & as I said, fascists — so again, where is the disagreement, unless you think that fascism can only arise from the “right” — as not being “valuable” is just plain old condescending, as is your pointing to “long term readers” not needing you to clarify party descriptions (unless, again, new readers are not welcome here). (Also, just a side note — I looked at your “About” section before writing that response to you, and while it notes you reside in Toronto, it also notes that you write for Firedoglake & HuffingtonPost, which I know are geared to American audiences about American politics and it certainly does not describe basic assumptions about your writing that new readers should be aware of before commenting. Just FYI).
        As I said, while it wasn’t the issues I had with your post (all of which, btw, I stand by re: the Greek political parties), you certainly can opine on whether the Greek people did the right thing or the wrong thing in your view as a person who has Greek friends and “knows about economics,” but who doesn’t actually have family & property in Greece & who doesn’t actually speak Greek (btw, that would be me, again, the person whom you dismiss) but the fact is, as I have known from the moment that Greece decided to join the EU, that there was no “good” outcome for Greece — and that not only had to do with the disparity in the value between the drachma and the euro, but also with the civil war after the end of WW2 & Greece’s consequential failure to industrialize properly (but that’s another discussion). You are right, however, that with the state that Greece is in now, ND & austerity isn’t going to save Greece, but you are fooling yourself if you think SYRIZA & more borrowing would have done any better. The people of Greece made what they felt was the best choice among a bunch of really, really bad choices (SYRIZA included) and while it is easy to opine based on what all your Greek friends tell you on what the “right thing” would have been for the Greek people to do, the bottom line is this: No one is going to be able to save Greece. It’s done. And I say that as someone who actually cares about the country & the people in more than an abstract “I know about economics & like to give my opinion on the internet” way.
        Thanks for your time & your response.

  13. HELENK says:

    after the supreme court ruling, backtrack and big sis, say we are not sending any immigration officers to pick up illegals that are stopped in Arizona.
    They just told the drug cartels ” bring it on over baby” we won’t stop you. Just go through Arizona and you have a free pass. To the people smugglers don’t let us stop you, bring those young people for prostitution and to be used as slaves. Hell we welcome and terrorist to come through Arizona, I need a reason to get re elected and a terrorist action in the US might help.

  14. HELENK says:

    Iowa Hawk

    Subscribing to HBO to get @billmaher is like cheering for Penn State because you like Jerry Sandusky.

  15. myiq2xu says:

    Matt Stoller on 5/7/08:

    All I’ll add is that it’s time to think through the consequences of a party where there is a new chief with massive amounts of power. I’ve been in the wilderness all my political life, as have most of us. The Clintonistas haven’t, and they know what it’s like to be part of the inside crew. We have a leader, and he’s not a partisan and he can now end fractious intraparty fights with a word and/or a nod. His opinion really matters in a way that even Nancy Pelosi’s just did not. He has control of the party apparatus, the grassroots, the money, and the messaging environment. He is also, and this is fundamental, someone that millions of people believe in as a moral force. When you disagree with Obama, you are saying to these people ‘your favorite band sucks’.

    Like many of us, I endorsed Obama, gave him money, and I intend to work to get him elected. He is attempting to completely rewrite the rules of politics, and we should try to figure out what that means for where we take our meager work. Obama is now the party leader. And he has ensured and we have given him the mandate that when he speaks, he speaks for all of us. I hope he’s a vibrant progressive when he gets into office, and we should begin figuring out how to put ourselves in a position to help him take the country in a progressive direction.

    • leslie says:

      They’re too busy groping cardboard people and playing beer pong to know anything about America.
      And let me just say that Obama know effing NOTHING about the White Sox. He became a Sox “fan” to appease the South Siders where he was “organizing”.

      F*#%ing phony.

    • Lola-at-Large says:

      Ha! First comment was priceless:

      Call the bus Terminator One.

    • angienc says:

      Call me pedantic (’cause I am) but the “bus taunts Obama supporters” thing is really pissing me off (that’s the 2nd time I’ve read it like that). A bus can’t “taunt” unless it is one of those Transformer buses. The driver can use the bus to taunt Obama supporters, or even the Romney Team can use the bus to taunt Obama supporters, but the bus itself, as an inanimate object — cannot “taunt” anyone or anything. I wouldn’t care if it was said in casual conversation, but so-called “journalists” should be more precise with their words (the first story I saw with the headline “Romney bus taunts Obama supporters” was on Buzzfeed & those blowhards do try to present themselves as “journalists.” I even twitted the author — Andrew Kazjiski (whatever his name is) correcting him. He got all huffy responding to me “I thought that was obvious if you read the article.” I responded “I thought it was obvious that inanimate objects can’t “taunt.”

      • myiq2xu says:

        Michelle! That bus is looking at me! Make it stop looking at me!

        • trixta says:

          Hey, I hear ya, when it comes to the grammatically incorrect use of attributing personification to inanimate objects. But when facing the following scenario, I’m left with a conundrum:

          If my middle finger (which has developed a life of its own since 2008) taunts BO everyday, is it an inanimate object doing the taunting or would it be me (my personhood) doing the taunting? I’d hope either way, the message would be the same: “F#$%K YOU, OBAMA!!

      • leslie says:

        It’s kinda likewhen people say “I tripped on that stupid crack in the sidewalk” or “I failed that stupid test”. That one used to really get me going. 😉

  16. HELENK says:

    http://washingtonexaminer.com/holder-will-closely-monitor-arizona-law-enforcement-for-racial-profiling/article/2500555

    holder will be busy monitoring Arizona for racial profiling, but somehow or other just can not find the time to investigate black panther public threats to kill whites.
    racist much???????

  17. myiq2xu says:

  18. myiq2xu says:

    John Smart stole my AM post:

  19. myiq2xu says:

    SF Giants crush Dodgers 8-0

  20. “But there are those on the right who understand Obama’s narcissism, and they may just make that their electoral narrative.”

    well, duh!~

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