Sunday, June 16, 2024


Speaking of Which

I picked up a couple new projects this week, which has put me in a dither, but I got up Sunday morning and stuck with this, making my usual rounds (though not much time on X), and figure I've collected and written enough. (Would be nice to add some more music mid-year lists, but I may add them in a Monday update.)

I'm reading Steve Hahn's Illiberal America: A History, well into the chapter on neoliberals who proved their "neo" by going "il" -- quite a bit of Bill Clinton there, but not so much Buchanan/Perot, who pop up in a book review toward the end here. No doubt there's still a lot of Trump to come.

PS: Laura Tillem reposted a poem she wrote for "a poetry slam, for international day of peace celebration in Wichita."


Initial count: 202 links, 9,929 words.

Local tags (these can be linked to directly): on music.


Top story threads:

Israel: This remains, as it has since the Hamas revolt on Oct. 7, 2023, our top story, both in terms of its overall impact and the extent and volatility of news coverage. After going through several permutations, I've found it useful to break the stories up into three groups. This one covers the political concerns and the conflicts within Israel (including Gaza, and neighboring areas like Lebanon that Israel is in direct conflict with). We should be clear that what the IDF is doing in Gaza is genocide, and is intended as such. We should also be clear that Israel practices systematic discrimination and sporadic terror against Palestinians outside of Gaza which, while not rising to the intensity of genocide, should be universally condemned.

The most common word for these policies and practices is "apartheid" -- a word used by South Africa to describe their peculiar implementation of racist segregation, drawn largely on the American example. While there are subtle differences in Israel's implementation, the word is good enough for practical use. One major problem with genocide in Gaza is that it provides cover for increasing violence in the broader practice of apartheid.

The second section concerns diplomatic relations between Israel and the US, and political directives regarding Israel within the US. Israel's ability to carry out genocide in Gaza is directly related to US military, political, and diplomatic support, and this extends to efforts to suppress free speech and to influence elections within the US. (It is, for instance, impossible to see AIPAC as an American interest group given that it operates in lockstep with Israeli foreign policy.)

Student demonstrations, on the other hand, fall into a third subject grouping, "Israel vs. world opinion." This also includes the ICC/ICJ genocide cases, world diplomatic activity aside from that by Israel and the US, and more general discussions of what charges of genocide and antisemitism mean.

America's Israel (and Israel's America):

  • As'ad AbuKhalil: [06-11] Biden's Saudi deal.

  • Michael Arria:

  • Ramzy Baroud: [06-15] America crawls further into global isolation by backing Gaza genocide.

  • Jonathan Chait: [06-08] Why on Earth is Chuck Schumer inviting Netanyahu to address Congress? "It's hard for me to think of an explanation for Schumer's action other than sheer spinelessness."

  • Isaac Chotiner: [06-11] Is Biden's Israel policy cynical or nave? "Evaluating eight months of the President's attempt to moderate Netanyahu's bombing campaign in Gaza." Interview with Matt Duss, of the Center for International Policy, former chief foreign-policy adviser to Bernie Sanders. Worth quoting at length when asked "what can you imagine a different Democratic Administration doing?":

    Well, I think a different Democratic Administration could have taken this issue more seriously before October 7th. That's not to say we needed another round of the usual peace process. But there have been alarms sounded about Gaza for many, many years by international N.G.O.s; certainly by Palestinians, constantly; by Israeli security officials; by members of Congress, including my former boss. The idea that we could just kind of kick the Palestinians into the corner and manage the problem without any real consequences -- that was revealed as a fantasy on October 7th.

    After October 7th, I hope and think any Democratic Administration would've done immediately what President Biden did: show full support, full solidarity, and really spend time with what occurred on October 7th in all its horror, and stand by Israel as it defended its people.

    At some point though, and fairly quickly, it became clear that what was going to be carried out in Gaza was not just self-defense. It became clear very quickly that this was a war of revenge. We have countless statements from Israeli government officials, many of which have been collected in South Africa's case in the International Court of Justice, which includes accusations of genocide. And we can see with our own eyes the kind of tactics that are being used on densely populated civilian areas in Gaza. A different Democratic Administration might've taken that much more seriously and acted with much more urgency much sooner.

    It's hard to imagine what a different Democrat could have done pre-October 7th. Obama, who almost certainly knew better, managed next to nothing helpful in eight years. There have been ways for an American president to impress upon Israel the need to take some constructive steps, but there has been little political urgency to do so, especially given the influence of pro-Israel donors in our oligarchic political system. While Sanders certainly knows better, I doubt he would have risked whatever political capital he had to bang his head against against a very recalcitrant Netanyahu.

    The next two paragraphs fairly describe what Sanders did, but ineffectively without the portfolio of the presidency. The rush to rally to Israel's defense was nearly universal in Washington, although what was really needed was to lean hard -- starting in private -- against Israel's armed response, as it was instantly clear that the intent would be genocidal, and that would lock Israel into a disastrous public relations spiral while doing virtually nothing for Israel's long-term security.

    One more point to stress here: Biden's failure to anticipate and correct for Israel's horrific response -- indeed, his failure to comprehend the problem despite following Israel closely for over fifty years -- is not simply attributable to the corrupt influence of the Israel lobby. It is deeply ingrained in America's own habitual response to security issues, which especially with the neocons under Clinton and Bush took Israel as the model for managing the threat of terrorism.

  • Zachary Cohen/Katrie Bo Lillis: [06-07] CIA assessment concludes Netanyahu is likely to defy US pressure to set a post-war plan for Gaza.

  • Juan Cole: [06-15] How Netanyahu and fascists in his coalition shot down the Biden peace plan.

  • Joshua Keating: [06-12] The perplexing state of Gaza ceasefire negotiations, explained: "The problem is that it's not clear either side wants a ceasefire." Beware of explanations that start off with a patently false subhed. Literally every single Palestinian, even ones claiming to represent whatever's left of Hamas, want a ceasefire, and have been pleading for one ever since the rupture on Oct. 7 was closed. It's Israel that doesn't want a ceasefire, which is due to three factors: the first is that they're doing well over 99% of the firing, and they like those odds; they also think that the more Palestinians they kill, and the more of Gaza they destroy and render uninhabitable, the closer they'll be to their goal, which is the complete the removal of Palestinians from Eretz Israel; and as long as the US is willing to provide ammo and run diplomatic cover, they see no need for restraint, let alone for disengagement. Much of Netanyahu's power in Israel is tied to the reputation he's built as someone who can cower American presidents, and in that regard, Biden has been a very dependable ally.

    The "negotiations" also involve hostages, but this, too, is very asymmetrical. Hamas took 250 during the Oct. 7 attacks, not so much to exchange them for Palestinians imprisoned by Israel (thousands of them, a number which has increased rapidly since Oct. 7) as to inhibit Israel's attacks. In short, their value was to press for a truce (Hamas likes the term "hudna"), but trades for temporary ceasefires and prisoners offer little respite and diminished protection. And now, after eight months, with half of the hostages exchanged, and many more killed by Israeli fire, the remaining hostages are down to about 80. And at this point, Netanyahu is unwilling to give up his war just to get hostages back. If anything, the hostages do Netanyahu more good if "Hamas" keeps them, as they give him an excuse to keep attacking. At this point, Palestinians would be better off just freeing the hostages, in the probably vain hope that doing so might generate some good will. But that's hard for "Hamas" to do, because without the hostages, do they even exist any more?

    More on Biden's proposal and the "negotiations":

    • Dave DeCamp:

    • Adam Hanieh: [06-14] Why the fight for Palestine is the fight against US imperialism in the region: There is a lot of useful history in this piece, but I don't particularly subscribe to its thesis and drift. US imperialism was real enough but has become increasingly incoherent, especially once it lost its Cold War compass in the 1990s, so that these days it's mostly a sleazy game of graft, with a hugely expensive logistics network but no coherent vision, at least beyond nursing a few old grudges (like Iran and North Korea). British colonialism is even more of a ghost. That you can find echoes and innuendos in Israel is no surprise, but these days it's the Israelis who are pulling American and British strings, for their own purposes, with hardly any regard for whatever the West may want. The article claims that Israel and the Gulf monarchies are "two pillars [that] remain the crux of American power in the region today." But they're really just playing their own games, as likely to trip the US up as to help it.

    • David Hearst: [06-14] Blinken is dragging the US ever deeper into Israel's quagmire.

    • Adam Johnson: [06-11] Media keeps playing along with fiction there is an "Israel ceasefire deal" "Don't squint too hard, one may notice Israel is clear they have no intention to 'end the war.'" By the way, Johnson also published an interesting piece by "a Palestinian-American quantitative researcher focusing on disinformation and censorship in mass media," under the pseudonym "Otto": [2023-11-15] "Massacred" vs "Left to Die": Documenting media bias against Palestinians Oct 7-Nov 7: "A quantitative analysis of the first month of conflict, reveals how dehumanization is baked into the ideoogical cake of cable news."

    • Fred Kaplan:

      • [06-12] Why there's so much confusion about the Israeli peace plan: Uh, because as articulated it's not actually an Israeli plan. Because there is no Israeli plan -- not for peace, anyway. And since permanent conflict with periodic acts of war doesn't much need forethought, there's no plan for that either.

      • [06-13] Hamas's counteroffer is neither realistic nor serious. But only if you start from the assumption that Israel's demands -- which, though never clearly articulated, are roughly: Hamas frees all the hostages, gives up its struggle for Palestinian rights, and surrenders its leader for summary execution -- are the very definition of serious and realistic. In any normal world, the argument that Israel should withdraw its military from Gaza and refrain from further attacks would be completely reasonable.

    • MEE Staff: [06-13] Hamas demands Israel end Gaza blockade as part of ceasefire deal.

    • Mitchell Plitnick: [06-15] Blinken's lies about Hamas rejecting a ceasefire reveal the Biden administration's true intentions: "The Biden administration is playing a shell game with the Gaza ceasefire that aims to trick the Democratic base into thinking meaningful action is taking place to end fighting while still allowing Israel to continue its genocidal campaign."

    • Ishaan Tharoor: [06-12] Israel shrugs at Palestinian civilian casualties. So does Hamas. "In new report, Hamas's leader in Gaza is said to describe Palestinian civilian deaths as 'necessary sacrifices.'" I'm inclined to dismiss anything attributed to Hamas, as I regard them as a spent force, one at present only being propped up by Israel in their need to identify an enemy not quite as inclusive as every Palestinian. But the idea that martyrdom is preferable to subjection and slavery runs deep in the human psyche, so we shouldn't be surprised to find it articulated by Hamas speakers (especially ones removed from the fray). We should reject such sentiments, of course, but also be clear that the blame for them, and for the sacrifices they demand, belongs squarely on those whose power has made only those choices seem possible.

    • Spencer Ackerman: [06-03] 'Phase 2': The shape of Israeli rejectionism to come: "Biden has declared that Israel's reasonable war aims have been achieved. Netanyahu is in no position to agree."

  • Jim Lobe: [06-12] That stinks: Global opinion of US goes down the toilet.

  • Blaise Malley: [06-14] GOP trying to drive wedge between Dems with Israel votes.

  • Stephen Semler: [06-12] Washington is not telling truth about the Gaza pier: "They say food is 'flowing' to the people, but data shows the opposite."

    • Tareq S Hajjaj: [06-14] The story of the US 'floating dock' built from the rubble of Gaza's homes: "The U.S. said it was constructing a floating pier off Gaza's coast to deliver humanitarian aid to the people of Gaza. However, the real reason it exists is to protect American interests in the region."

    • Ahmed Omar: [06-11] Gaza resistance sources say fear is rising US pier will be used for forced displacement of Palestinians: "Critics warn the U.S.-constructed pier off Gaza's coast is being used for military purposes. Now a source in the Gaza resistance says there are indications it will be used to facilitate the forced displacement of Palestinians." They have good reason to be fearful. Most of the Palestinian refugees in Beirut were stampeded onto British ships in Jaffa, as they fled the indiscriminate shelling by the Irgun in 1948, the Israelis having their preference for killing all Palestinians at Deir Yassin. With Egypt resisting their efforts to drive Gazans out through the Sinai, the pier and the ever-obliging Americans will increasingly look like some kind of final solution.

  • Emily Tamkin:

  • Prem Thakker: House votes to block US funding to rebuild Gaza.

Israel vs. world opinion:

Election notes:

Trump:

And other Republicans:

Biden and/or the Democrats:

  • Yasmeen Abutaleb: [06-16] Biden, Obama warn of Trump dangers in star-studded L.A. fundraiser.

  • David Atkins: [06-07] Democrats should run against the Supreme Court: "And they should take on more than the overturning of Roe v. Wade. They ought to campaign against the whole Trump-enabled, rights-stealing, gift-taking conservative supermajority." Of course they should, and to some extent they clearly are, although their message hasn't been fully articulated yet. But it shouldn't be: if we win, we're going to pack the Court. It should be to win big in Congress and the Presidency, then pass popular laws, daring the Court to strike them down. Either the Court will back down, or discredit itself. Either way, win more elections, and appoint better judges. Eventually, like FDR, you will win.

  • Zachary D Carter: [06-10] Inflation is not destroying Joe Biden.

  • David Dayen:

  • Chauncey DeVega:

  • Pramila Jayapal: [06-03] The Congressional Progressive Caucus agenda for 2025.

  • Eric Levitz: [06-13] Biden is on track to beat inflation and lose the presidency: "The data on prices is getting better, but the public's disapproval of the president remains unchanged."

  • David Masciotra: [06-14] Hillary Clinton, truth teller: "Republicans, the media, and plenty of Democrats were shocked -- shocked! -- to hear her say anti-Israel protestors don't know Middle Eastern history and to suggest prejudice might animate a large swatch of Trump voters." As soon as I saw this title, my mind offered a quick edit to the title: "truth teller for sale." Of course, that's not totally accurate: she is so attuned to the whims and wishes of her donors that she doesn't have to wait for the checks to clear. But is what she says about those who protest against Israeli policies true? I don't doubt that she's a very smart person who has been thoroughly schooled in the fine arts of hasbara, but I'm pretty sure I know a lot more Middle Eastern history than she does, and for good measure I'd drop American history into the mix. (Actually, her quote seems to be "that most 'young people' don't know the history of 'many area of the world, including our own country.'")

    Or at least, I understand what I know a lot better than she does. Not for a minute did I ever think invading Iraq would be a good idea. As for other protestors, some may be less knowledgeable, but some know even more than I do: for instance, the author picks on Juan Cole ("an academic popular with the hard left who consistently defends the brutality of Iran and flirts with antisemitism" -- link on Iran, which actually goes to a 2006 article by neocon-convert Christopher Hitchens, but not on antisemitism), who has written many useful books on the region and who runs a website that has consistently earned its "Informed Comment" moniker for more than 20 years.

    While understanding history can help you sort out arguments, which side you take depends more on how you respond to one very simple question: does the sympathy/respect you feel for Jews in Israel allow for or deny sympathy/respect for Palestinians? Or you can reverse the question either way (swap the people, or swap the sentiment to "disdain/disinterest"). Any way you slice it, people who respect all others as people will recoil from the treatment of Israelis against Palestinians, and therefore be critical of the current Israeli regime. History may help you to understand why this particular state happened, and maybe even how it might be changed. It will certainly suggest much about what happens if the current hatreds are allowed to continue and fester. But whether you care depends more on what kind of person you are. And Hillary Clinton's insensitivity and arrogance tells you much about what kind of person she is, which is someone whose only guiding principle is the pursuit of power. The willingness to say unpleasant things in that cause doesn't make you an oracle. It may just mean you're an asshole.

    By the way, Masciotra doesn't stop with Clinton's shilling for the Israel lobby. He still wants to defend her 2016 campaign "basket of deplorables" gaffe, which even she apologized for at the time. He seems to think that if she hadn't spilled the beans, nobody would have realized that lots of racists supported Trump because they recognized in him a fellow racist. (Clinton didn't put it that precisely. She said "deplorable" instead of racist, a code that her fellow liberals recognized while it just seemed snobby to the racists. And by saying "many" she got taken for "most," leaving the rest free to take umbrage over the generalization.) He also bothers to quote and defend Clinton's "truth" about Bernie Sanders: "Nobody likes him, nobody wants to work with him. He got nothing done." You'd think that a truther would be more concerned with what Sanders was proven right about than with how much lobby-backed legislation he lent his name to, but evidently not. What did Clinton ever accomplish that wasn't in the service to well-heeled lobbyists? I mean, aside from losing an election to Donald Trump?

  • Nicole Narea: [06-11] Biden's overlooked campaign to protect Americans from Big Business: "Many Americans are focused on inflation, but from Big Tech to junk fees, Biden is advancing a pro-consumer agenda." I think this sort of thing is very important, and a very stark contrast to the Trump embrace of kleptocracy, fraud, and business criminality (which, as should be clear by now, he not only enables and excuses, but has vast experience engaging in).

  • Christian Paz: [06-12] Are LGBTQ voters about to abandon Biden? One of those things I refuse to worry about. If Democrats could ever figure out how to get most of the votes from all the people who would be better served by Democrats rather than Republicans winning, they wouldn't have to subdivide their message into constituent identity groups, many of which don't want to hear about each other, let alone what they perceive as pandering to others. On the other hand, if you do identify as a member of a group Republicans are orchestrating hate against, are you really going to hurt yourself just so you can spite Biden? At some point between now and November, you're going to have to wake up and smell the sewer, and decide whether drown in it or escape. Then do the grown up thing and vote.

  • Stephen Prager:

  • Michael Tomasky: [06-14] There's a new "silent majority" out there -- and it is not conservative: "Ever since Richard Nixon used the phrase, it's been a Republican thing. But the Republicans are the extremists now, and the Silent Majority isn't what it was in 1969." I think there's a lot to be said for this point, but it's hard to figure out how to use it.

  • Dylan Wells: [06-15] Meet the 24-year-old trying to solve Biden's problems with young voters: "Eve Levenson, the Biden campaign's national youth engagement director, may have one of the hardest jobs in American politics." Maybe because it's defined by a meaningless artifact of polling?

Hunter Biden: The jury convicted him on all three counts, with a possible maximum sentence of 25 years in jail. I'm surprised that I find this as disturbing as I do. I never liked the father, and find the son to be nothing but nepotistic scum. But he was charged with a crime that shouldn't be illegal, and convicted on evidence that shouldn't be admissable, only because Republicans in Congress (and the Special Prosecutor's office, and evidently the courts) through a hissy fit when he agreed to plead the charge down to near-nothing (more of a compromise than he should have had to do). That the jury went along with this sham is just more evidence of how rigged the system is against defendants. Moreover, because the defendant isn't Trump, Democrats are biting their tongues and expressing their pride in a very corrupt justice system, while Biden won't consider a pardon because he believes that would look bad (like he's playing politics with justice) -- totally the opposite of what Trump has done all along.

Legal matters and other crimes:

Climate and environment:

Economic matters:

  • American Prospect: Their June 2024 issue promises to expose: "How Pricing Really Works: The many innovations corporations have devised to get you to pay more." Here are some articles:

    • [06-14] The underbelly of the grocery store: "Nothing you see on the shelves is there by accident." How "junk fees, price-fixing, shrinkflation, personalization, and data collection -- come together at the grocery store. Every product's placement, every advertisement, every coupon is a function of marketing wizardry and hardball tactics, in a bid for the eyes and wallets of consumers."

    • [06-14] Lina Khan: Extraction exterminator: "The Federal Trade Commission chair plays a key role in preventing exploitative pricing schemes from taking root." An interview.

    • Bilal Baydoun: [06-14] Taming the pricing beast: "The government has a variety of strategies to protect the public from price-gouging and information advantages over the consumer."

    • David Dayen: [06-04] One person one price: "Digital surveillance and customer isolation are individualizing the prices we pay."

    • David Dayen/Lindsay Owens: [06-03] The age of recoupment: "How power, technology, and opportunity have come together to gouge consumers."

    • Jarod Facundo: [06-12] War in the aisles: "Monopolies across the grocery supply chain squeeze consumers and small-business owners alike. Big Data will only entrench those dynamics further."

    • Luke Goldstein: [06-05] Three algorithms in a room: "A growing number of industries are using software to fix prices. Law enforces are beginning to fight back."

    • Sarah Jaffe: [06-07] The urge to surge: "Businesses are hiking prices to take advantage of consumers. They learned it from Uber."

    • Hassan Ali Kanu: [06-06] Loaded up with junk: "Extra profits are the only explanation for many fees businesses charge."

    • Robert Kuttner: [06-13] Fantasyland general: "Hospital pricing is impenetrable to consumers and regulators alike. The result: increased costs and profits, and wasteful reliance on armies of middlemen."

    • Joanna Marsh: [06-10] The one-click economy: "Digital subscriptions are here to stay. What should we do about that?"

    • Kalena Thomhave: [06-11] What we owe: "The big banks behind the rising cost of credit."

Ukraine War and Russia:

America's empire and the world:

  • Jess Craig: [06-12] We're in a new era of conflict and crisis. Can humanitarian aid keep up? "Utter neglect of displaced people has become the new normal."

    Last year, more than 360 million people worldwide needed humanitarian assistance. To cover the costs of aid, the United Nations appealed to global donors -- primarily governments but also philanthropic individuals and institutes -- for a record $56 billion.

    But even as humanitarian needs peaked, funding for aid dwindled to its lowest levels since 2019. Less than half of that $56 billion was raised. As a result, the gap between global humanitarian funding needs and donor contributions reached its highest level in more than 20 years.

    And that's not the worst part. What funding was available was not allocated equitably across the world's crises. Conflicts in the Global South went vastly underfunded. Last week, the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC), a major humanitarian organization, published its annual ranking of the world's most neglected displacement crises. Nine of 10 were in Africa.

  • Ellen Ioanes:

    • [06-10] Why Europe is lurching to the right: "Far-right parties made big gains in EU Parliament elections -- and that's already having an effect." One thing I'll admit is that I've never had the slightest understanding of how the EU Parliament works or what, if anything, it is capable of doing. As near as I've been able to figure out, the EU seems to be a cloistered bureaucracy mostly concerned with economic matters, tightly controlled by a neoliberal oligarchy that is very well insulated against possible encroachments from the Democratic left -- who when they do manage to win elections, get beat down like Syriza in Greece. It is similarly unclear whether the right can have any real impact in the EU Parliament, although I suppose it might afford them an arena the one thing they specialize in, which is irritable gesticulating. Also on the EU elections:

    • [06-13] The fracturing of South African politics, explained: "What the defeat of the party that ended apartheid means for South Africa."

  • Hafsa Kanjwal: [06-13] How India is implementing the 'Israel model' in Kashmir.

  • Peter Oborne: [06-11] Tory Britain is about to fall. But what follows could be far worse: "The Conservatives have traditionally acted as a buffer against fascist forces. But after the impending electoral defeat, Farage and the far right are poised to win control of the party."

  • Vijay Prashad: [06-07] Migrating workers provide wealth for the world.


Other stories:

Erin Blakemore: [06-08] Tens of millions of acres of cropland lie abandoned, study shows: "The biggest changes took place around the Ogallala Aquifer, whose groundwater irrigates parts of numerous states, including Colorado, Texas and Wyoming."

Vivian Gornick: [06-06] Orgasm isn't my bag: A review of Trish Romano: The Freaks Came Out to Write: The Definitive History of the Village Voice, the Radical Paper That Changed American Culture. If it seems like I'm collecting reviews of this book, perhaps that means I should write my own. I read it, and perhaps more importantly, I lived it -- starting as a clueless subscriber in the 1960s.

Balaji Ravichandran: [06-12] Imperialilsm isn't in the past. Neither is the damage it did. A review of Charlotte Lydia Riley: Imperial Island: An Alternative History of the British Empire. Few subjects are more deserving of "a withering indictment" than the British Empire. The "damage done" to the rest of the world has been extensively documented, although little of it has sunk into the Churchill-worshipping cliques in the US and UK. What's far less well understood are the lingering distortions within British politics, and not just for the feedback immigration, which has become conspicuous of late.

Nathan J Robinson: [2018-12-07] Lessons from Chomsky: "Some things I've learned from his writings . . ."

Becca Rothfeld: [06-13] Donald Trump didn't spark out current political chaos. The '90s did. Review of John Ganz: When the Clock Broke: Con Men, Conspiracists, and How America Cracked Up in the Early 1990s. Histories of 1990s US politics tend to feature the main event of Gingrich vs. Clinton, but I can see where focusing on fringe-crazy might offer some insights. Also on Ganz:

Music and other arts:

David Hajdu: [06-11] Seeing ourselves in Joni Mitchell: Review of Ann Powers' "deeply personal biography of Joni Mitchell": Traveling: On the Path of Joni Mitchell. For another review:

Brad Luen: [06-16] Semipop Life: A very high shelf.

Michael Tatum: Books read (and not read): June 2024: I jumped straight to Trish Romano's The Freaks Came Out to Write, as that's the one I've actually read.

Midyear reports: I've been factoring these into my metacritic file.


A friend posted this on Facebook:

I am super critical of Biden's kneejerk support for Netanyahu but I agree 100% with my friend Linda L. Gebert who write this . . . "Please anyone, tell a young person that not voting or voting for a third-party candidate will only help Trump win -- we have to vote for Biden if we want to preserve women's health rights, our healthy economy, good relations with leaders of other countries, etc. . . ."

I offered this comment:

Rather than trying to weigh out positives and negatives on issues, or pondering the curse of lesser-evilism, another way to approach this is to accept that whoever wins is going to do lots of things that you oppose, so ask yourself who would you rather protest against? Biden's not so great on anything you mentioned, but at least with him, you don't have to start with arguments that even Biden agrees with.

I also added a link to Nathan J Robinson: No Leftist Wants a Trump Presidency.

Ask a question, or send a comment.