Wednesday, January 27, 2016


My blog has gone silent over the last six weeks. My energy has been sapped by a succession of heavy colds. Nothing complicated, but giving into lethargy seems to help me keep more comfortable.

Of course, relaxation has its limits in this crazy world. I thrill to the great awakening that Bernie Sanders and the movement around him is bringing to the political scene.  In contrast, what happened to Flint tears at the heart of human decency; how can monsters like Governor Snyder escape just retribution? Then there is the rare piece of great news, the grand jury indictment of of the criminals who tried to frame Planned Parenthood.

In the primaries of the 2016 election, two things have already been proven beyond reasonable doubt: 1) the GOP has moved so far to the right that election of a Republican president could bring us to the threshold of an American style fascism; 2) there is a vast potential for a popular democratic left that can assure defeat of the GOP and shift the balance of power in favor of a new political generation bent on economic equality and full social justice.

The coming months of the electoral contest will produce many shifts and challenges. Tom Hayden has written a thoughtful analysis that's worth keeping in mind as the excitement rises. The crucial challenge is to stay bold in advancing the movement sparked by Sanders and inspired also by "Black Lives Matter", combined with commitment to unity and cooperation despite differences among all who seek to turn the tide against a GOP ultra-right takeover.

Before returning to hibernation with my lingering cold, a word about Times columnist, David Brooks. Along with many who have served the "old guard" GOP establishment, he's in a panic. He pleads Stay Sane America, Please! Worried that Trump and Cruz may be sinking the ship, he first uses the dishonest media ploy of lumping them as "extremists" with Bernie Sanders. That's like equating Flint's poisoned river with a fresh water spring. It's par for the course for "journalism" that uses "radical", "socialist" and sometimes even "liberal" as dirty words.

But, David. You own this GOP. You helped make it what it is. You wrote all those supportive words for Bush and Cheney and their wars. You had kind words for Newt Gingrich and even flirted with the notion of a Rick Perry presidency only days before his bid flamed out. And did you ever complain when the racists ganged up on Obama and openly pledged to undermine his presidency, or when "Black Lives Matter" and Planned Parenthood came under indecent assault? Were you alarmed by the Supreme Court's "Citizens United" decision, or by the money and actions of the Koch Brothers and the Adelsons?

Your desperate wish for Rubio to win the GOP nomination wouldn't change what the GOP has become. Rubio's hope is that he can pick up supporters from Trump and Cruz, carry their outrageous programs forward while making them seem less outrageous to people who follow David Brooks.

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