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The American System

28
Feb

February 27, 2017

White House Policies Colliding With Reality on Numerous Fronts; After Rep. Issa (R-CA) Urges Special Prosecutor for Russiagate, Spicer and Nunes Insist Investigations Are Already Finished; $54 Billion Hike In Pentagon Spending Seen As Attempt to Regain Momentum, But Will Medicare and Social Security Remain Intact?; Governors Turning Against Obamacare Repeal After Report Shows Millions Could be Stripped of Health Care; DHS Anti-Terrorism Report Proves Futility of Banning Immigrants and Refugees By Country of Origin; Bad News for Betsy DeVos As Studies From Ohio, Indiana, and Louisiana Link Declines in Academic Performance With School Vouchers

26
Feb

February 25, 2017 WCR

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White House Reportedly Pushing FBI and Congress to “Knock Down” Russiagate; At CPAC, White House Ideologue Bannon Touts Three “Verticals”: Dismantling Multilateral Cooperation, Hobbesian Economic “Nationalism,” and “Deconstruction of the Administrative State”; Assails “Corporatist, Globalist, Media”; “Strategic Initiatives Group” Emerging as Parallel to National Security Council; Anti-Immigrant Parties Suffer More Reverses in Netherlands, Germany, Italy, and France; UK Independence Party Defeated in Pro-Brexit Citadel of Stoke-On-Trent; Recalling Julius Evola, Anti-American Misogynist and Alt-Right Guru

24
Feb

February 23, 2017

Congressional Republicans Have No Answer for Americans of Modest Means Who Must Have Health Care to Stay Alive; In Town Hall Meetings, Life or Death Issues Posed by Obamacare Repeal Show Absurdity of GOP’s Plutocratic Ideology; Speaker Ryan’s Promise of Post-ACA “Freedom” a Cruel Hoax; Medicare for All Paid for by Wall Street is the Answer; Half a Dozen Goldman Sachs Alumni Slated for Top Jobs in Cabinet and Executive Branch; Democratic National Committee Needs a Leader Free of Wall Street and Free Trade Taint To Weld Identity Politics Groups Into A National Movement for Economic Recovery

23
Feb

February 22, 2017

As Mass Protests Against Republican Misrule Continue, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell Is Slammed by Rural Voters for His Cynical Failure to Deliver Promised Coal Jobs and His Plan to Destroy Obamacare; Critics Are All Outside Agitators, GOP Claims; Is H.R. McMaster a Tactical Thinker in a Strategic Job?; New Polling Shows 66% of Americans Fear Major War Over the Next Four Years; Deep State or Shadow Government Does Exist, and it Backed the Republicans in 2016, Starting with Comey and the New York FBI Field Office

22
Feb

February 21, 2017

Immigration Crackdown Announced by Memos From Gen. Kelly of DHS is Ominous Sign For Bill of Rights; Fifth Amendment Guarantee of Due Process in Danger in Many Cases; Who Is Gen. H.R. McMaster, and Will He Keep Bannon as Part of NSC Principals’ Committee?; In Questionable Geopolitics, Administration Tilting Against Iran and In Favor of Saudi Arabia on Yemen; Feb. 25 Democratic Party Protests Must Transcend Identity Politics to Offer Unified Platform on Health Care, Immigration, Women, Job Creation, and Economic Recovery

21
Feb

February 20, 2017

Protest Demonstrations Continue, With an Effective Program of Anti-Austerity Demands Emerging as an Urgent Necessity; OMB Boss Mulvaney’s Budget Hit List Targets Export-Import Bank and Overseas Private Investment Corporation, Two Agencies That Foster Jobs and Exports While Making a Profit for U.S. Treasury; Office of National Drug Control Policy Also on Chopping Block; Recalling the Death of Rasputin as Prelude to the February Revolution in St. Petersburg, Russia A Century Ago; C-SPAN Presidential Rankings Confirm Lincoln, Washington FDR, LBJ, and Kennedy, But Overrate Jefferson, Teddy Roosevelt, Truman, and Reagan Among Top Ten

17
Feb

February 16, 2017

Trump Condemns Leaks to Press as “Real Problem,” Arguing That Such Leaks Are Real But Media Reports About Them Are “Very Fake News”; Says He Did Not Tell Flynn to Contact Russian Embassy, and Claims to Have “Nothing to Do” With Moscow; In Rambling Comments, Asserts He “Inherited a Mess” But Has Built “Fine-Tuned Machine”; Revised Draft of Immigration and Refugee Ban to Be Issued Shortly; Alito Law Clerk Alexander Acosta is New Nominee for Secretary of Labor, Replacing Puzder

16
Feb

February 15, 2017

Trump Rails Against Leaks from U.S. Intelligence Community, Presaging More Conflict; Two-State Solution for Israel and Palestine Is No Longer American Policy; White House Candidate for Secretary of Labor Andrew Puzder Forced to Withdraw in Face of a Dozen GOP Defections as Senate Lockstep Crumbles; Nunes of House Intelligence Committee Wants to Investigate Leaks, Not Allegations Against Flynn; Schumer Calls on Sessions To Recuse Himself from Russiagate Probe of Trump Campaign; Republican Mythology Clearly Views Lois Lerner as More Dangerous Than FSB and GRU Combined

15
Feb

February 14, 2017

National Security Council Chief Gen. Michael Flynn Resigns; FBI Had Interrogated Flynn on Russian Contacts Early in New Administration; Acting Attorney General Sally Yates Told White House Counsel on Jan. 26 That Flynn Was Subject to Blackmail, But He Remained in His Post; Administration Thus Loses Its Most Aggressive Opponent of Iran; Fables Portraying Flynn as Adversary of “Deep State” Are Absurd; Democrats Demand Independent Investigation on Whether Flynn Was Off the Reservation, or If His Activities Were Authorized by Superiors

14
Feb

February 13, 2017

Sanders and Schumer Call for Nationwide Healthcare Demonstrations on Saturday, February 25; Congress in Recess from Feb. 17 to Feb. 26, With Many Town Hall Meetings Scheduled; Tax Wall Street Party Urges Mass Traction Program of Medicare for All, Free College, $15 Minimum Wage, 40 Million New Jobs, All Paid for by Wall Street and the Federal Reserve, Not Regressive Taxes; CBS News Poll Sees 22% Dedicated Trump Backers, 22% Softer Supporters Who Are Waiting to See the Jobs, 21% Critical Onlookers With Mixed Views, and 35% Strongly Opposed; Did Mattis Come Close to Clash With Iran Last Week?

10
Feb

February 9, 2017

Is U.S. Headed Toward Strategic Confrontation With Iran? Tehran Placed “On Notice,” But Can Deploy Formidable Array of Conventional Ballistic Missiles; YPG Kurds Need Better Weaponry to Liberate ISIS Capital of Raqqa, But Turkey Says No; Outcome of Yemen Raid Stirs Controversy--

Breaking: Affirming Judicial Reviewability of Executive Decisions and Citing Due Process, Ninth Circuit Declines to Reinstate Immigration Ban

9
Feb

February 8, 2017

In Arguments on Immigration Ban Before Three-Judge Panel of Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, Administration Comes Close to Suggesting That Presidential Actions Are Not Subject to Judicial Review by the Courts; If Upheld, This Would Overturn Vital Tradition of Jurisprudence Going Back to Chief Justice John Marshall’s Landmark Opinion in Marbury v. Madison (1803); Early Example of Checks and Balances Found in Tribunes of the People in the Roman Republic Starting c. 500 BC, a Key Precedent for Machiavelli and John Adams; Nativist-Populist Politicians Running Into Big Problems in Europe, with Polls Showing Marine LePen As Probable Loser of Second Round of French Presidential Election Despite Her Russian Support and the Beppe Grillo City Government in Rome Reeling From Corruption Charges

8
Feb

February 7, 2017

Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals Hears Oral Arguments on Immigration Order; Further Appeal to Supreme Court Likely; After Women’s March, Mass Traction Anti-Austerity Economic Demands Are Urgently Needed As Protests Continue; Democratic Party Leaders Not Reliable; Attempts to Maintain Identity Politics Template Cannot Be Successful; Martin Luther King’s Non-Violence is Best Antidote to Anger Generated by Social Crisis; In Post-Superbowl Wrap-Up, Recalling Dante’s Portrayal of the Wrathful in the Middle Inferno

7
Feb

February 6, 2017

U.S. System of Checks and Balances Is Getting a Chance to Work, as Judge Robart’s Federal District Court in Seattle and the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals Block Dismantling of Traditional Immigration Policies; Decision by Three-Judge Appellate Panel Expected Tuesday-Wednesday; Our Enormous Debt to Supreme Court Chief Justice John Marshall, Who Developed the Practice of Judicial Review to Foster Legality Over Arbitrary Rule; Three Branches of Government Built on John Adams’ Reading of Machiavelli as Reflected in Massachusetts Constitution; If Ancient Rome Had Bread and Circuses, Modern America Has Pro Football, But Now This Key Shock Absorber of the System Is Becoming Less Effective

5
Feb

February 4, 2017

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After Half a Century of Relative Quiescence, Renewed Politics of Protest Are Transforming Democratic Party and American Life in General; Brooklyn Crowd Gives Schumer C- Grade on His Performance as Senate Minority Leader; Issue of Immigration Ban May Be Decided by Three-Judge Panel of Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco; Does U.S. Face “Fourth Turning”?; Balancing Spontaneity vs. Organization and Program in Ebbs and Flows Ahead

2
Feb

February 2, 2017

How Venice Used Apocalyptic Religious Movements to Destabilize Its Adversaries: From the War of Ferrara (1482) and Savonarola in Florence to the post-1509 Venetian Promotion of Martin Luther During the War of the League of Cambrai, Triggering 130 Years of Confessional Warfare in Germany

2
Feb

February 1, 2017

The Present as History: Comparing the Current Wave of Self-Destructive Anti-Establishment Politics With The Crisis of the Florentine Renaissance Under Savonarola at the End of the 1400s; Will American Civilization Join End Up on the Bonfire of the Vanities?

1
Feb

January 31, 2017

Midnight Tonight is Deadline to Sign Up for Obamacare; Ouster of Acting Attorney General Sally Yates Brings Increased Turbulence For White House; Senate Democrats Boycott Committee Votes for Mnuchin and Price to Keep Up with Mass Protests; Media Anoint Steve Bannon of NSC Principals’ Committee as Emerging Power Center of New Administration, But He Does Not Qualify as a Nationalist; His Fascination With Military History Noted; Trump Picks Gorsuch as Supreme Court Nominee