May 2018 Archives

BE the Trump Resistance

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"I'll never forgive Trump and I won't stop talking about it," says Mike Mills, founding member of the alternative rock band R.E.M. "It's not just who he is and what he represents... It's what he's done to the American political process. He has allowed stupidity to be the coin of the realm, he has allowed thinking that has been and should always be marginalised and on the edges to become almost part of the mainstream...

"So it's not just his policies, it's not just his stupidity - it's what he's done and what he's allowed to happen."

As opinion columnists like Thomas Friedman capitulate to the Democratic Party for relief from "trumpence" in a wistful fit of magical thinking, people of conscience confront the failed policy of "lesser evil" politics that strangle any meaningful resistance to the outrageous crimes of their government.

Congressional endorsement of state-sponsored terror, most recently demonstrated by approval of a torture advocate to head the Central Intelligence Agency, confirms what we already knew: the tripartite system of U.S. governance is not going to be reformed from within. Gina Haspel's commitment to defending the unlawful actions of her colleagues guarantees a repeat of the U.S. prisoner abuse exported to Guantanamo and beyond.    

CIA veterans lobbied for the nominee, calling Haspel a competent, experienced and highly qualified intelligence professional. "That's why she's a terrible choice," said John Feffer at the Institute for Policy Studies. But unscrupulous, unquestioning obedience to criminal directives is a highly regarded quality in the fascist circle attending the White House. President Trump chose the C.I.A. director precisely because of her past, celebrating Haspel's role in the "enhanced interrogation" program that included the controlled drowning of detainees.  

Haspel's confirmation by the U.S. Senate in no way absolves CIA complicity in America's wars of terror. Nor does it relieve congressional oversight responsibility to hold public officials accountable for criminal actions. But it should compel the rest of us to take up the call to stop the crimes of our increasingly fascistic government, before it is too late.  

This week, Franklin Graham, son of the late Billy Graham, brings his "Decision America" tour to Berkeley to take a stand against California's "blue wall." Billed as religious "revivals", Graham's campaign-style rallies across California and the Pacific Northwest advance opposition to abortion and same-sex marriage. 

 

fgtourprotest2-1.jpgJoin Refuse Fascism  
Friday June 1, 6:00 pm
University Ave & Sixth Street 
Berkeley

Graham's sponsorship of Donald Trump's program of white supremacy, misogyny and xenophobia is billed as a religious revival, but make no mistake: "Decision America" is about mobilizing a blind, obedient, and fervent fascist base for the Trump/Pence regime.

Trump's call to "Make America Great Again" gets misrepresented as regression to an earlier, less compassionate America, warns The American Prospect columnist Adele Stan. But what we're facing is much more than a pendulum swing of American values. "Taken together... these assaults... add up to groundwork laid for the imposition of a much harder form of authoritarianism likely planned for the near future. You just have to step back far enough from the onslaught of outrageous actions to view the pattern."

White evangelical support was essential to the election of Donald Trump in 2016, and continues to facilitate expansion of the organized repression and terror characteristic of his rule. By no means monolithic (endorsement of the president occasions much discord among religious groups), Trump's "Make America Great Again" program represents a particularly American version of fascism, substantiated in modern day application of Manifest Destiny and End Times theology.

"It would be a mistake to be dismissive of End Times believers," says humanist David Niose, "because their influence in American policymaking is far from marginal." "End times," or "end of days" eschatology is embraced by numerous employees of the Trump/Pence regime, including secretary of state Mike Pompeo. Donald Trump's evangelical Christian Cabinet threatens to "bring an unsettlingly theocratic attitude to America's foreign policy," warns Vox staff writer Tara Isabella Burton. 

"For many evangelicals, apocalyptic 'good versus evil' battles, particularly centered over the 'Holy Land' of the Middle East, are signs that the longed-for end may be at hand," adds Burton. The widespread fixation among evangelicals with the end times helps to explain their outspoken defense of a president who holds little regard for the future of humanity -- or the planet.

L-OPSM-Opening-Blessing-720x540.jpgFreelance art critic Christian Frock demands exposure of Israeli Apartheid:

"American media needs to be held accountable for reporting on what happened in Gaza and on what is happening to Palestinians every day.

"Americans also need to understand our complicity in this violence and to do our part, as consumers, to lift up journalism that tells the truth about rising fascism worldwide and to crowd-correct journalism that avoids ugly truths...

"Arts coverage is not life or death, but it can hold a mirror up to much larger systemic abuses."

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This page is an archive of entries from May 2018 listed from newest to oldest.

April 2018 is the previous archive.

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