Democracy Gone Astray

Democracy, being a human construct, needs to be thought of as directionality rather than an object. As such, to understand it requires not so much a description of existing structures and/or other related phenomena but a declaration of intentionality.
This blog aims at creating labeled lists of published infringements of such intentionality, of points in time where democracy strays from its intended directionality. In addition to outright infringements, this blog also collects important contemporary information and/or discussions that impact our socio-political landscape.

All the posts here were published in the electronic media – main-stream as well as fringe, and maintain links to the original texts.

[NOTE: Due to changes I haven't caught on time in the blogging software, all of the 'Original Article' links were nullified between September 11, 2012 and December 11, 2012. My apologies.]

Wednesday, January 04, 2017

Republican Congresswoman Discovers Her Followers Love Obamacare

With Republicans convinced they need to repeal Obamacare ASAP but unsure of how they want to replace it, Rep. Marsha Blackburn issued a public plea for help on Tuesday. The Tennessee Republican—and member of President-elect Donald Trump's transition team—asked the Twitter masses to take a poll on whether they like the law. Turns out Blackburn's followers are pretty big fans of the Affordable Care Act, with 84 percent of the 7,968 votes opposing a repeal of Obamacare.

GOP Bill Would Slash Diplomatic Security Funds Unless Trump Moves U.S. Embassy To Jerusalem

WASHINGTON ― Three Republican senators — including two former presidential candidates who’ve long criticized former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton for the attack on the U.S. diplomatic compound in Benghazi — introduced a bill on Tuesday that would halve funds for embassy security, construction and maintenance until the next president moves the U.S. Embassy in Israel to the disputed city of Jerusalem.

Mitch McConnell Says Americans Won’t Tolerate Democrats Blocking Supreme Court Nominations

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) issued a warning to Democrats on Wednesday, one day after the Supreme Court nomination of Merrick Garland expired without any Senate action: Don’t consider staging a similar blockade on any of President-elect Donald Trump’s high court nominees.

Republicans’ Obamacare repeal plan will add $9 trillion to national debt, but that may not bother them

If Republicans use budget reconciliation to fast-track their repeal of the Affordable Care Act (colloquially known as Obamacare), they will have to accept a $9 trillion increase in the national deficit by 2026. By then, the national debt would reach $29 trillion.

Kansas Sen. Rand Paul, a Republican with libertarian leanings, has already vowed to oppose the reconciliation plan on the grounds that the budget resolution will add so much to the deficit.

Sarah Palin, Sean Hannity and Republicans in general have become Julian Assange fans and CIA doubters

It seems that hatred of Hillary Clinton can unite conservative Republicans such as Sean Hannity and Sarah Palin with WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, the man whose website posted thousands of Clinton emails in the months leading up to the November elections.

When discussing the Joint Analysis Report that claimed to prove Russia was responsible for the hacking, Assange said that “on the top, there is a disclaimer saying nothing — there is no guarantee that any of this information is accurate.” When Hannity led Assange with the comment that “it’s a guess,” Assange shook his head and said, “I used to be a computer security expert. What they have is what they call indicators. So, a way to recognize if these tools, these alleged Russian tools, have been used on your system.”

Obama Urges Democrats To Stand Tall Against Assault On Obamacare

WASHINGTON ― Barack Obama paid what’s likely to be his last visit to Capitol Hill as president on Wednesday and beseeched congressional Democrats to fight to protect the Affordable Care Act from Republican efforts to unravel it.

With President-elect Donald Trump set to assume office in little more than two weeks, the GOP-led Congress is already moving forward with Republicans’ longstanding desire to repeal the Affordable Care Act. Obama sought to rally his party to do whatever it can to thwart them, despite the terrible odds.

Why Is Trump Siding With Assange Over the CIA?

We are through the looking glass now.

The next president of the United States is siding with Julian Assange, a man who wears his anti-Americanism proudly and acts like the textbook definition of a Russian asset, over the U.S. intelligence community – thousands of smart, patriotic people who work long hours for middling pay, some risking their lives to keep the rest of us safe.

Globalization Isn’t Doomed. It’s Evolving, With China As A Leader.

The worldwide debate about globalization has been upended by “the Trump phenomenon,” which has spread like wildfire across Europe and elsewhere. The two separate camps of “deglobalization” versus “reglobalization” are pitted against each other in a tug of war with no clear winner.

From a historical perspective, globalization has not been linear in its progress. There have been ups and downs and twists and turns. With several decades of fast growth of globalization, the world has reaped unprecedented benefits, but we have also seen a widening gap between the rich and the poor and a deeper division between capital and labor, as predicted by Karl Marx.

Keith Ellison Vows To Ban Lobbyist Contributions To The DNC

In a new video interview with The Huffington Post, Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.) pledged to ban contributions from lobbyists to the Democratic Party if he’s elected as its next chairman.

“Yeah, I would,” Ellison told HuffPost when asked about banning lobbyist donations. “I think it’s important that people feel that the party is their party … There is a pragmatic, perhaps too pragmatic step that you can say, ‘We’ll just take whatever money from whatever source in whatever amount.’ But once you do that, I think you cross a line where people do not feel that the party is really theirs.”

Donald Trump backs Julian Assange over Russia hacking claim

President-elect Donald Trump has backed Wikileaks founder Julian Assange in casting doubt on intelligence alleging Russian meddling in the US election.

Mr Assange said Russia was not the source for the site's mass leak of emails from the Democratic Party.

Mr Trump has now backed that view in a tweet. He wrote: "Assange... said Russians did not give him the info!"

Blue States Must Become Even Bluer

For the past 20 years, the Republican Party has perversely rewritten former Supreme Court Louis Brandeis’s notion that states could be “laboratories of democracy.” Where Brandeis imagined state governments pushing liberal and progressive ideas beyond the national consensus, drawing the nation forward, Republicans have worked to preserve a dwindling white majority through gerrymandering and have used state governments not merely to slow down liberalism, but to turn it to dust and ash in the broad center of the country. In the so-called red states, liberalism is now often relegated to a kind of folklore-ish local practice in college towns and mid-sized cities, while formal, statewide policy is strictly and stridently conservative.

Law Enforcement on IDF soldiers suspected of harming Palestinians

In 2015, the MPCID opened 186 criminal investigations into alleged offenses committed by Israeli soldiers against Palestinians. Of these, 120 investigation files have been closed and 7 resulted in disciplinary measures. Over the course of the year, 15 indictments were served for harm caused to Palestinians, including for four incidents that took place in 2015.