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TBF's Journal
TBF's Journal
October 1, 2015

Bernie Sandersís Campaign, Hitting Fund-Raising Milestone, Broadens Focus

Front page of the NY Times!!

“Bernie has done very, very well without having to spend much money at all, relative to Hillary,” said David Axelrod, a Democratic strategist who was a top adviser on Mr. Obama’s campaigns. “His campaign recognizes, rightly, that you have to navigate through the early contests and then, to win on Super Tuesday, you have to spend a boatload. They’ve now proven they’re capable of doing that.”


BURLINGTON, Vt. — Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont still flies coach to his campaign events, sometimes taking the middle seat. He has not run any commercials, instead saving his money for a media blitz this winter in Iowa, New Hampshire and the Super Tuesday states. His aides are only now preparing to conduct polls, to the consternation of some Sanders advisers who have hungered for data on his political challenges, like courting black and Hispanic voters.

And rather than benefit from million-dollar contributions through a “super PAC,” Mr. Sanders — who has called such fund-raising groups corrupt — has amassed a million online donations over the past five months, faster than Barack Obama did in his first, digitally groundbreaking, campaign for president.

Mr. Sanders reached a turning point on Wednesday night, when his campaign said that it had raised about $26 million since July — more than Mr. Obama took in for the comparable period in 2007 — and that it had saved enough since the spring to have more than $26 million in cash.

Mr. Sanders was initially dismissed by political insiders as a fringe candidate running only to push Hillary Rodham Clinton to the left. But he has now demonstrated that he has the resources and the supporters, whom he has only begun to tap financially, to compete for the Democratic presidential nomination ...

More here: http://www.nytimes.com/

Adding exact link in case they move it off the front page: http://www.nytimes.com/2015/10/02/us/politics/bernie-sanders-election-campaign.html?hp&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&module=second-column-region&region=top-news&WT.nav=top-news

September 30, 2015

We did it DU - 1 million contributions!

"TBF" -

I wanted you to hear it from me first: a short while ago, we flew past our goal of 1 million online contributions to our campaign.


From Jeff Weaver - will be sending another update later in the day. FEC fundraising deadline tonight.

September 27, 2015

The Meaning of Pope Francis

"Religious suffering is, at one and the same time, the expression of real suffering and a protest against real suffering. Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, and the soul of soulless conditions. It is the opium of the people. The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is the demand for their real happiness. To call on them to give up their illusions about their condition is to call on them to give up a condition that requires illusions. The criticism of religion is, therefore, in embryo, the criticism of that vale of tears of which religion is the halo. Criticism has plucked the imaginary flowers on the chain not in order that man shall continue to bear that chain without fantasy or consolation, but so that he shall throw off the chain and pluck the living flower " Works of Karl Marx 1843 - A Contribution to the Critique of Hegel’s Philosophy of Right - Written: December 1843-January 1844

A force for both reaction and social justice, Pope Francis embodies the ambiguities of the Catholic Church.
by Colin Wilson 9-26-15

What do we think of Pope Francis? It all seems a bit complicated. One minute he’s telling the US Congress that “we, the people of this continent, are not fearful of foreigners, because most of us were once foreigners” and that they have to take climate change seriously. Speaking in Bolivia in July, he called unfettered capitalism “the dung of the devil.” Since he arrived in America, right-wingers have described him as “anticapitalist pope.”

On the other hand, the Catholic Church still continues to oppose marriage equality at every opportunity. Back in February, Francis compared any account of gender which “does not recognize the order of creation” — such as those which validate the lives of trans people — to the use of nuclear weapons. On Thursday, the pope canonized the missionary Junípero Serra, who oversaw a regime of horrific brutality against Native Americans in California, where colonization and conversion went, as so often, hand in hand.

It was so much easier to have an opinion about Francis’s predecessor — Benedict XVI was simply, everyone could agree, a reactionary, and not even a very effective reactionary. Doing nothing much about such issues as priestly child sex abuse, he seemed much more concerned about reviving the more obscure bits of the papal costume — a fluffy little shawl called the mozetta, a Santa-Claus-style hat called the camauro, and hand-made red leather shoes ...

Much more here: https://www.jacobinmag.com/2015/09/pope-francis-united-states-visit-congress-united-nations/

September 27, 2015

Shakira - Imagine

Published on Sep 25, 2015

Shakira, before the Pope at the UN in NYC, dedicates her performance of John Lennon's Imagine to Aylan and Galip Kurdi and all the children turned refugees due to the Syrian war / Shakira, frente al Papa en la ONU, dedica su actuación a los hermanos Aylan y Galip Kurdi y a los niños refugiados por la guerra.

September 26, 2015

The Missing 43

To date, nobody knows exactly what happened on the night of September 26, 2014, when the students disappeared while traveling from Ayotzinapa to the nearby city of Iguala. Video footage that surfaced late last year shows a violent clash between the students and what appear to be local police officers. Six students were killed during the confrontation, and the 43 others vanished in an assumed mass kidnapping.

MEXICO CITY—Exactly one year ago, 43 students from a rural teachers college in the Mexican state of Guerrero disappeared after a violent confrontation with authorities. Over the past 12 months, Mexico City residents have made it clear that they won’t forget the incident until the government comes clean about what happened—or the students return alive, whatever comes first.

Wander the streets of Mexico’s capital and you’ll undoubtedly encounter the number 43 scrawled across statues and scribbled on the sides of buildings. Sometimes, the 43 is accompanied by the phrase “todos somos Ayotzi” (we are all Ayotzi, short for Ayotzinapa, the name of the school the students attended), or “vivos se los llevaron, con vida los queremos” (alive they took them, alive we want them).

For months, dozens of activists have been living in an encampment on a sidewalk along one of the city’s main thoroughfares, Paseo de la Reforma. Decorated on all sides with portraits of each of the missing students and signage denouncing the country’s leadership, inhabitants vow not to leave until the students are located and the current regime is dismantled. They sleep in tents, and volunteers bring food, blankets and other supplies on a daily basis ...

More here: http://qz.com/511463/one-year-later-mexico-city-refuses-to-let-memory-of-the-43-missing-students-die/

September 26, 2015

Awfully Big Crowds ...

... for a county NOT INTERESTED in an old democratic socialist! I don't know who all these people are ... must have snuck in from other countries and took over the arenas

Bernie in Maine

Bernie in Phoenix

Bernie in Houston

Bernie in North Carolina

Bernie in Vermont

Bernie in Madison

Bernie in Portland

September 22, 2015

History Doesnít Go In a Straight Line

Noam Chomsky on Bernie Sanders, Jeremy Corbyn, and the potential for ordinary people to make radical change.
by Noam Chomsky ~ 9/22/15

For radicals, progress requires puncturing the bubble of inevitability: austerity, for instance, “is a policy decision undertaken by the designers for their own purposes.” It is not implemented, Chomsky says, “because of any economic laws.” American capitalism also benefits from ideological obfuscation: despite its association with free markets, capitalism is shot through with subsidies for some of the most powerful private actors. This bubble needs popping too.

In an interview a couple of years ago, you said that the Occupy Wall Street movement had created a rare sentiment of solidarity in the US. September 17 was the fourth anniversary of the OWS movement. What is your evaluation of social movements such as OWS over the last twenty years? Have they been effective in bringing about change? How could they improve?

They’ve had an impact; they have not coalesced into persistent and ongoing movements. It’s a very atomized society. There are very few continuing organizations which have institutional memory, that know how to move to the next step and so on.

This is partly due to the destruction of the labor movement, which used to offer a kind of fixed basis for many activities; by now, practically the only persistent institutions are the churches. So many things are church-based.

It’s hard for a movement to take hold. There are often movements of young people, which tend to be transitory; on the other hand there’s a cumulative effect, and you never know when something will spark into a major movement. It’s happened time and again: civil rights movement, women’s movement. So keep trying until something takes off ...

The neoliberal policies are certainly a regression. For the majority of the population in the US, there’s been pretty much stagnation and decline in the last generation. And not because of any economic laws. These are policies. Just as austerity in Europe is not an economic necessity — in fact, it’s economic nonsense. But it’s a policy decision undertaken by the designers for their own purposes. I think basically it’s a kind of class war, and it can be resisted, but it’s not easy. History doesn’t go in a straight line.

Much more here: https://www.jacobinmag.com/2015/09/noam-chomsky-bernie-sanders-greece-tsipras-grexit-austerity-neoliberalism-protest/

September 18, 2015

Donald Trump: American Psycho

One thing is clear after last night’s debate: Donald Trump is the rotten fruit of the American ruling class. By Harrison Fluss ~ 9-17-15

As Ishay Landa and others have pointed out, there is an anti-democratic and elitist nature of both liberal and authoritarian modes of politics, rooted in their shared defense of private property. Liberalism can be amorphous as a term, but in a sense it means a commitment to abstract ideas like equality and freedom, while taking for granted the economic system of capitalism.

After yesterday’s debate, Trump is the story again. But for all its fascination with Donald Trump, the media rarely bothers to explain the social context of his rise to prominence.

After all, doing so would debunk all the posturing we see in Trump’s campaign blitz as a self-made billionaire (or as a kitsch kind of American Ubermensch) and reveal how much he is the rotten fruit of the American ruling class as a whole. However frightening or undesirable Trump may be to the establishment, he is in perfect harmony with its gross reality.

Superficially, Trump has evolved with the times. He leaned towards liberalism and the Democratic Party in the ‘80s and ‘90s. Indeed, some of his political positions in the past parallel those of the Democratic Party today, since Trump used to be pro-choice, advocated a single-payer health care system and legalizing drugs, a “massive one-time 14.25 percent tax on the wealthy,” and various forms of economic nationalism (which he still does to some degree) ...

But even more than policies, Trump’s wealth is itself the product of the gross inequalities and stratified society both Democrats and Republicans have helped to maintain and reinforce decade to decade, while Trump has returned the favor to both Democratic and Republican politicians with his donations.

Behind all the abstractions of multiculturalism and equal opportunity is the very real process of capital accumulation. This process of accumulation is not without its strategies of dispossession and exploitation. These strategies help to marginalize and oppress entire sets of people ...

A very good article - much more here: https://www.jacobinmag.com/2015/09/trump-republican-primary-presidential-candidate-debate/

September 12, 2015

Britainís Labour Party Takes a Hard Left Turn

With Jeremy Corbyn Elected as New Leader, Britain’s Labour Party Takes a Hard Left Turn

Among those supporting the new leader was Sean Maher, a telecom executive from London, who said he had lost interest in the party during the 1990s because of the policies pursued by Mr. Blair, whom he likened to a Conservative.
“What’s the point of winning elections by being Conservative?” he said. By contrast, Mr. Corbyn, “offers a great deal of hope, and it has been a long time coming.”

LONDON — After three decades as a political outsider and clarion of the left, Jeremy Corbyn on Saturday won the leadership of Britain’s opposition Labour Party with an emphatic victory and a program that includes expanding the economy, scrapping nuclear missiles and dismantling the centrist policies of his predecessors, including former Prime Minister Tony Blair.

Mr. Corbyn, 66, won the Labour leadership overwhelmingly with the backing of thousands of newly recruited supporters, and in doing so delivered one of the biggest upsets in modern British politics.

His success underlines the extent to which European political structures have been destabilized by the aftershocks of the financial crisis in 2008, with voters increasingly attracted away from the political center ground, either to the socialist left or the nationalist right ...

More here: http://www.nytimes.com/2015/09/13/world/europe/labour-party-election-jeremy-corbyn.html?hp&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&module=second-column-region®ion=top-news&WT.nav=top-news

September 8, 2015

The specter that still haunts capitalism

" ... the opening words of the Manifesto still resonate because we too are haunted. Unlike the European upper crust that Marx taunted
for being frightened of a socialist future, today it's ordinary people who are scared of the future that capitalism seems to promise."

The specter that still haunts capitalism
September 8, 2015

Despite being declared dead and buried for decades, recent opinion polls show that almost a third of Americans prefer socialism to capitalism. Socialism beats capitalism outright among people in their 20s, low-income people of all ages, and especially among African Americans and Latinos. But while the idea of socialism is in the air, what it means is vague to most people, and how to achieve it even more so.

SocialistWorker.org journalist Danny Katch is the author of a new book that is an entertaining and insightful introduction to what the socialist tradition has to say about democracy, economics and the potential of human beings to be something more than being bomb-dropping, planet-destroying racist fools. Here, we print an excerpt from "Ghost Stories," one of the opening chapters of Socialism...Seriously: A Brief Guide to Human Liberation ...

More here: http://socialistworker.org/2015/09/08/the-specter-that-still-haunts-capitalism

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Gender: Female
Hometown: Wisconsin
Current location: Tejas
Member since: Thu Jan 17, 2008, 01:44 PM
Number of posts: 32,652

About TBF

The most violent element in society is ignorance. Emma Goldman
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