Recent Articles

Can A Mobbed-Up Trumpkin Stop Mueller’s Russia Investigation? Yes, But . . .

If there is anything surprising about Donald Trump's interim appointment as attorney general of Matthew Whitaker, a mobbed-up conservative loyalist openly hostile to Robert Mueller's Russia scandal investigation, it is that the president barely waited until the midterm election polls had closed to lower the boom on Jeff Sessions and accelerate the slow-motion constitutional crisis that has engulfed his presidency from the beginning.   "So I Continue Reading...

Trump Paradox: He Promotes CO2 even as Climate Emergency Impels Emigration from Guatemala

Trump’s fear-mongering about Central American asylum-seekers (they aren’t intending to become undocumented immigrants) is unethical on many levels. But perhaps worst of all, Trump is promoting burning of coal and other fossil fuels that cause global heating and climate change, but can’t connect that dirty energy policy to the crises in central America. The weather in Guatemala has become, residents say, unpredictable. In some years and in some Continue Reading...

How The Largest Air Evacuation in History Unfolded

On 2nd August 1990, Iraqi President Saddam Hussein decided to have a ‘picnic’ in Kuwait by sending in his army across the border. He had massed troops at the border for weeks, and on 25th July 1990, the US Ambassador April Glaspie encouraged him to have the picnic, wittingly or unwittingly, by declaring that her instructions were to strengthen relations with Iraq; the US did not want to take any side in ‘intra-Arab’ disputes, a clear reference to Continue Reading...

Jamal Khashoggi, Drone Missiles, and Us

The murder of Jamal Khashoggi, from what we know so far, is a goddamned nightmare. Lured to the Saudi embassy in Turkey, he was captured and tortured, brutally, by psychopaths under the direction of the leader of Saudi Arabia, Crown Prince (and, you know, fuck you if in this day and age you're still getting to lead a country because some inbred jizzed you out) Mohammed bin Salman. His fingers were cut off with a bone saw while he was awake. Continue Reading...

Film Review: First Man

The Wrong Stuff: From Claustrophobia to the Cosmos Director Damien Chazelle has had a meteoric rise in the Hollywood firmament. His 2014 hit Whiplash had a $3.3 million production budget and earned more than $13 million at the box office, while 2016’s La La Land cost $30 million. Presumably because that musical scored five times its costs, Chazelle’s latest movie, First Man, almost doubled La La Land’s budget. I usually don’t dwell on film Continue Reading...

We Blew That: The Biggest Reason Kavanaugh Should Not Have Been Confirmed

In the final analysis, it was painfully simple and should have been obvious to any clear-eyed observer, which my preternaturally hopeful self was not: The forces that were able to lie the most, be the most deceitful and the most underhanded would control the confirmation "process" to determine whether Brett Kavanaugh would slither into a lifetime appointment to the Supreme Court.   And so they did and so he has despite an extraordinary outpouring Continue Reading...

Film Review: Making Montgomery Clift

Clift Notes: The Full-er Monty Making Montgomery Clift - the four time Oscar nominee for classics such as 1953’s From Here to Eternity - is one of the most singular nonfiction films this movie historian has ever seen. Like many others it is a biopic, but one with a unique take on its reputedly “troubled” subject, who was as renowned for his beauty as for his prodigious talent. Co-directed/co-produced by the actor’s nephew Robert Clift with his Continue Reading...

How Rosenstein’s Firing Could lead to Trumpian Martial Law and Blood in the Streets

The New York Times reports that deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein talked about wearing a wire to record Trump’s insane prattering, and spoke ofinvoking the 25th amendment, which allows the cabinet to remove the president if he is incapacitated. Rosenstein’s office says that the remarks were facetious. They were recorded in memos by former FBI deputy director Andrew McCabe, that somehow came into the possession of NYT reporters. Trump has Continue Reading...

Best of Web

Trump, McConnell, Putin, and the Triumph of the Will to Power

At a critical moment in the 2016 presidential campaign, President Obama met with Republican congressional leaders and, after presenting them with evidence of Russian tampering, asked that they uniformly condemn it.  GOP Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and others refused.  The evidence just wasn’t there.  But it was.  And many of the same lawmakers eagerly condemned Hillary Clinton’s perceived misdeed, as reported by the FBI.  So much for love of country.

Russia and the Threat to Liberal Democracy

Liberal democracy faces grave dangers, most significantly, perhaps, from rapacious capitalism that unremittingly concentrates wealth.  Putin is another threat.  After consolidating his own power in Russia, he has stepped up a campaign against liberalism abroad, first in Russia’s “near abroad” in Eastern Europe, and now the US.  Is Trump his latest trophy?

The Victory of ‘No’

For eight years, the GOP employed strategic obstructionism to stymie Obama’s mildly progressive agenda, even when his proposals, such as the Affordable Care Act or the stimulus, closely aligned with their own.  Putting country first?  Nope.  This was pure partisanship in the service of partisanship.  And it worked!

Dangerous idiots: how the liberal media elite failed working-class Americans

Is the so-called “liberal,” “elite” media really as cosseted and cloistered as its critics suggest?  Actually, yes.  Like the Democracy Party, the media – defined here as the mainstream variety – largely comprises well-educated, coastal types who have little in common (and often disdain) middle-America, working class whites.  Little wonder it has earned the latter’s ire.

Hillary Clinton and the Populist Revolt

What happens when the purported party of the working class abandons its proletarian roots, while the other major party pushes crazed conspiracy theories, paranoia, and racism as an obfuscatory tactic to conceal its plutocratic agenda?  A virulent populism that threatens the republic.  Whose to blame for Trump?  We all are.

In ‘Hitler,’ an Ascent From ‘Dunderhead’ to Demagogue

How did a clownish buffoon rise from obscurity to lead one of the world’s great civilizations that produced soaring art and culture?  Historians have been asking the question since the demise of the Third Reich.  Hitler confounds.  Here are some clues: cunning exploitation of nativist fears, exploitation of irresistible propaganda, and “bottomless mendacity.”  Found familiar.  It should.