So much for the Separation of Powers and Contempt of Court (ODT)
Looking at The man who tried to market a miracle (ODT
Looking back over the last few years, I would sum it up like this:
We have a prime Minister who is not interested in honesty, does not seek the best for the Australian people, and has a single focus which is keeping his party – and himself – in power.
Suitability for office? Absolutely none!
Once more – this is my 2020 new Year Resolution:
“I will do everything in my power to enable Australia to be restored to responsible government.”
The US Senate, long the lap dog of the man who would be king, President Donald Trump, appears to have finally remembered its proper constitutional role.
Last week, the Senate voted 55/45 for a new bipartisan War Powers Act to constrain military action against Iran. The Congress voted a similar act. Both are designed to start returning the right to make war to Congress, as the Constitution clearly intended. The president is not the Warlord-in-chief in spite of what he thinks.
Israel against American Jews (ODT)
The American Israel Public Affairs Committee is helping to fund a Super PAC launching attack ads against Sen. Bernie Sanders in Nevada on Saturday, according to two sources with knowledge of the arrangement. The ads are being run by a group called Democratic Majority for Israel, founded by longtime AIPAC strategist Mark Mellman.
The Nevada attack ads, which will air in media markets in Reno and Las Vegas, follow a similar spending blitz by DMFI ahead of the Iowa caucuses. Like the ads that aired in Iowa, the Nevada ads will attack Sanders on the idea that he’s not electable, Mediaite reported.
The state of Israeli, its ruling authorities, and military officials have been and continue to be guilty of the highest of high crimes against Palestinians, Syrians, Lebanese, Iranians, and other innocent victims of their lawlessness.
It goes to show just how American we have become. (ODT)
The worst of the worst is here (ODT)
Not content merely to smite the poor, immigrants, his political enemies, constitutional checks and balances and the rule of law at home and abroad, the president seems dedicated to bringing forth the collapse of a decent and organized human existence — and indeed the downfall of life on Earth. It’s no wonder Chomsky calls Trump “the most dangerous criminal in human history.”
Hitler’s goal, Chomsky notes, “was to rid the German-run world of Jews, Roma, homosexuals and other ‘deviants,’ along with tens of millions of Slav ‘Untermenschen.’ But Hitler was not dedicated with fervor to destroying the prospects of organized human life on Earth in the not-distant future [along with millions of other species].”
The president seeks the total sublimation of the Justice Department and the whole US government to his will. THE MAKING OF THE SWAMP
By now, you know the basics: After the Justice Department requested a seven-to-nine years sentence for Roger Stone, a longtime Trump intimate who was convicted of lying to Congress and witness-tampering (to protect Trump in the Russia scandal), Trump tweet-whined that this sentence would be too harsh, and the DoJ dutifully rescinded it. Four federal prosecutors, apparently in protest, withdrew from the Stone case, with one quitting the department. Then Trump attacked the federal judge handling the case. Still on the rampage the next day, Trump—again in a tweet—threatened to withhold assistance for New York State if it did not smother investigations related to Trump.
He sacked impeachment witnesses Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman and Ambassador Gordon Sondland. Next he moved onto the Justice Department and the judiciary. At the same time, Barr set up a special “intake” channel at the department for Trump’s henchman Rudy Giuliani to feed rumors, dirt, and supposed leads about Trump’s rivals.
All this is crooked and horrific. Trump is rigging the justice system, trashing norms that have been in place for decades, and attacking the notion that the rule of law is essential for democratic governance. Early in his presidency, facing the Russia investigation being run by the FBI, Trump exclaimed, “Where is my Roy Cohn?” He was referring to the thuggish mob lawyer who had been red-baiting Sen. Joe McCarthy’s chief hatchet-man years before becoming a mentor and consigliere for the young Trump. Though Trump placed Barr, his own lapdog, in charge of the Justice Department last year, Trump has become his own Roy Cohn, consolidating power and seeking vengeance. And extracting revenge has long been one of Trump’s primary psychological motivations, as I first explained before he was elected president.
Goodbye Separation of Powers in America. Hello a Despotic Fascist State. He’s dictating who he wants pardoned and who he wants charged (ODT)
Conservative media and many Republican officials have championed Flynn, calling for Trump to pardon him. On Tuesday, Trump retweeted a pro-Trump Twitter account suggesting that he grant both Stone and Flynn full pardons.
Suggest a correction
It doesn’t bear contemplating, now they’re gone, what they might have thought about a country that allowed its entire store of gas to be flogged off without first setting aside enough of the stuff to ensure the nation’s power grid continued humming and that consumers could afford to turn on a light switch.
Most jurisdictions in Australia have an independent body that investigates apparent corruption in politics and government. The Federal Government doesn’t. Taylor has questions to answer over the water rights dealings noted above, as well as the apparent falsifying of data for political ends. McKenzie only ‘resigned’ once she became a political liability to Morrison.
In addition, it is currently being reported that Infrastructure Minister (and Deputy Prime Minister) McCormack awarded 94% of infrastructure grants to areas represented by the coalition political parties.
And they keep refusing to consider legislation for a ‘Federal ICAC’.
What do you think?
Marles refused even to offer a position on the inherent desirability of new coal-fired power stations, leaving Anthony Albanese to clean it up the next day by saying “I don’t think there’s a place for coal-fired power plants in Australia, full stop”. Now we learn of a group of some 20 pro-coal Labor MPs (including nine frontbenchers), calling themselves the OTIS group, meeting in secret without Albanese and with the aim of bringing Labor to a more coal-friendly position.
Whether this is merely an informal gathering or a more concerted lobbying attempt, it underscores Labor’s limitations on climate politics. This is a fifth of the party who probably see far greater political peril for Labor in distancing itself from coal than in making peace with it.
Coal-fired generation in the EU declined by a quarter, helped by a drop in gas prices and higher carbon costs under the EU’s emission trading system.
Super giants funnel billions into fossil fuels, vote down climate push
So, politically, what exactly has this summer changed? The Coalition is still split on the issue, meaning that a serious climate policy is not an option because it will tear the government apart from within. Meanwhile, it’s unclear precisely where the current policy vacuum will hurt them electorally.
And Labor seems to agree enough with that assessment to continue to be spooked by the damage it sustained last year in coal-mining seats. It’s worth monitoring how this evolves from here, because right now, the signs are that this is the summer that changed everything in politics, except what really counts.
The massive Home Affairs Department, with a remit for “emergency management”, was entirely absent during the bushfire crisis and yet between 2016 and 2020, $9 billion of taxpayers’ money was spent on indefinite mandatory detention of men, women and children identified as refugees. Has a quarter or even a third of that amount been allocated as the Federal response package to the bushfire crisis?
Meanwhile, in the Coalition party room, even as nations around the world are committed to getting rid of the internal combustion engine – including Boris Johnson’s Britain – the commitment to coal has been reaffirmed. Like all regimes which place their own personal interests above all else, it is always the country, the nation, the majority of the people, the land, the water systems, the very air itself which are all weakened, polluted and made ill, often irretrievably.
Welcome to Australia’s own version of a new Easter Island story.
In the aftermath of the worst bushfire crisis in Australia’s history, Whitehaven Coal and the NSW Mineral lobby are trying to push a new coal mine through the Independent Planning Commission. This is one of dozens of new coal projects. Nestled on the banks of the Namoi River in the Northern Tablelands, on a property which was the inspiration for much of Dorothea McKellar’s poetry (author of the famous line, I Love a Sunburnt Country), farmers and the local council are fighting to stop Whitehaven’s Vickery coal mine. Callum Foote reports.
Hang the names out so we can see them (ODT)
We don’t want another party vying for a centre that keeps moving further to the right. We want people with integrity who make decisions based on expert advice about the best interests of the nation, not on how to appeal to people who will never vote for you.
Listen to Tim Murphy describe Bernie Sanders’ journey to frontrunner status, from inside the roaring Sanders celebration party, on this special New Hampshire primary edition of the Mother Jones Podcast:
Trumpster comes out swinging for Billionaires
Senator Bernie Sanders has proposed a wealth tax on the richest Americans, blasted big businesses for turning huge profits while paying little in taxes and said he believed billionaires should not exist.
After his win in Tuesday’s Democratic primary in New Hampshire solidified Sanders’ status as a contender for the nomination, one Wall Street billionaire fired back.
Former Goldman Sachs chief Lloyd Blankfein has lashed out at Bernie Sanders.
Former Goldman Sachs chief Lloyd Blankfein has lashed out at Bernie Sanders.Credit:Bloomberg
Lloyd Blankfein, the former Goldman Sachs chief executive, took aim at Sanders on Twitter, saying the Vermont senator would “ruin our economy” if elected president.
He added that Sanders did not care about the military and was just as polarising as President Donald Trump.
America’s Economy is WAR (ODT)
There has been a deal made (ODT)
Right-wing media outlets, led by Trump allies at Infowars and Fox News, have waged a months-long campaign to interfere with criminal proceedings against Roger Stone. Now that Stone has been convicted of seven felonies and is facing the possibility of significant jail time, his conservative and far-right media defenders are drumming up support for President Donald Trump to pardon him.
Unregulated insanity self-gratification and legalised theft. (ODT)
Declares 20% of Americans as “Deplorables” surplus to the economy (ODT)
Trump Abandoned the Kurds and supported Turkey and the terrorists
Throughout nine years of preemptive US war in Syria, Turkey supported ISIS other jihadists, pretending otherwise.
Earlier in the war, Ankara colluded with ISIS in transporting, refining and selling stolen Syrian oil – Erdogan and other regime officials profiting hugely.
Evidence supplied by Kurdish sources in northern Syria showed “detailed invoices used by IS to calculate daily revenues from their oil fields and refineries, as well as the amount of oil extracted there,” adding:
“All the documents had Islamic State’s symbol at the top.” They showed ISIS “kept very professional records of their oil business.”