Citizen Action Monitor

America has lost its freedom to “a collection of anti-science whack jobs straight out of the middle ages”

And things have gotten much worse with the arrival of “Herr Trump”, says author John Atcheson.

No 2080 Posted by fw, October 19, 2017

John Atcheson

“It’s not news to most people that the US in no longer a true Democracy. … It’s one thing to lose our freedoms; it’s quite another to lose them to a collection of anti-science whack jobs straight out of the middle ages. And of course, with Herr Trump doing his best to neutralize the already eviscerated press, scare the hell out of us, keep us distracted from real issues, and govern by tweets, things have only gotten worse. … The fact that a mere 26.1 percent of the eligible voters could put this ignoramus in office is directly a result of Democratic malfeasance.”John Atcheson, Common Dreams

John Atcheson is author of a book on the 2016 elections titled, WTF, America? How the US Went Off the Rails and How to Get It Back On Track

Atcheson wastes no time — or words — trashing “pathological liar “Trump, railing against his “whack jobs” supporters, damning the mainstream media for not holding anyone to account for the “complete insanity passed off as an ‘alternative viewpoint’, and blaming the Democrats for malfeasance that helped 26.1% of eligible voters elect “this ignoramus”.

Atcheson closes his article with this depressing thought:

“That’s why “no-show” [voters] has been the biggest cohort in our elections for decades now.  While Democrats troll the ‘center’ for a few more votes, they are hemorrhaging voters on the left. And that’s the other reason we have an idiot for President, and why he may win a second term.”

Below is a repost of John’s article, with my added subheadings and highlighted text. Or read his piece on Common Dreams’ website by clicking on the following linked title.

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How the Deranged Took Over America: and why they may be here to stay, by John Atcheson, Common Dreams, October 19, 2017

The fact the US is no longer a true Democracy is old news

It’s not news to most people that the US in no longer a true Democracy.  Gilens and Page proved it in 2014, using hard data.  More recently, the Economist’s Democracy Index, dropped the US down to a “flawed democracy,” in 2016, and when the firmly neoliberal Economist thinks you have issues with freedom – you’ve got issues.

America has lost its freedom to “a collection of anti-science whack jobs straight out of the middle ages”

It’s one thing to lose our freedoms; it’s quite another to lose them to a collection of anti-science whack jobs straight out of the middle ages.

And things have gotten much worse with the arrival of “Herr Trump”

And of course, with Herr Trump doing his best to neutralize the already eviscerated press, scare the hell out of us, keep us distracted from real issues, and govern by tweets, things have only gotten worse. 

How did the inmates take over the revolt of a “right wing de facto coup”?

What’s not as well understood is precisely how a right wing de facto coup caused the US to move from a democracy to an oligarchy, and how the inmates took over the revolt.

Trump is the logical endpoint of the coup’s reliance on “fear, distraction, hate, anger and xenophobia”

Trump, of course, has added a whole new dimension to the coup.  No longer are we simply living in an oligarchy, we’ve become a nation suffering from full on psychosis, and Trump is the logical endpoint of the coup’s reliance on fear, distraction, hate, anger and xenophobia. What makes it possible for an abomination like Trump to gain power is that the institutions we used to rely upon to confront the oligarchy have been taken over by it in the last four decades.  Two in particular have contributed to the tragedy that is Trump.

A press that fails to hold anyone accountable

The press acts as if “alternative viewpoints” are valid and not the lies they really are

Day-after-day, complete insanity is passed off as an “alternative viewpoint” by the mainstream media.  Case in point: the Republican’s claim that their tax “reform” is good for the middle class.  In reality, it’s simply another reincarnation of the same old tax-cuts-for-the-rich scheme they’ve been pushing since Reagan. And while the MSM quotes institutions like the Tax Policy Center to show that nearly 80 percent of the benefits go to the uber rich, and point out that these cuts are funded by gutting programs that benefit the middle class and working poor, most of the press still acts as if this were some debate between two legitimate perspectives.  It’s not. Their assertions about their budget and tax programs are bald-faced lies, knowingly told, and meant to hide the fact that they are paid servants of the oligarchy. And that’s the real story here. But you won’t hear that.

Lying is one thing, but Trump “is a pathological liar, who lies randomly and with no purpose”

And now Trump. Sure, the entire Party has been lying for decades, but at least it followed a plan (laid out by James Powell in 1971) with a purpose—to serve the oligarchy that provides campaign funds.  But now, their leader —our President—is a pathological liar, who lies randomly and with no purpose.  Yet still, the press treats his inchoate ramblings as if they were  “another perspective.”  Not only are his rants not “another perspective” they are idiotic and dangerous and so obviously unhinged that his own people refer to him as a “fucking moron” and try to contain his tsunami of idiocy as the nation drifts into disaster on all fronts.

Let us assess the harm this “emotionally, mentally and morally unfit” man has done since taking office

He has taken us closer to a nuclear confrontation than at any time since the Cuban missile crisis. He has sabotaged the Affordable Care Act, raising health care costs and risking the health of millions.  He has taken us out of the Paris Climate Agreement at a time when record-breaking fires and hurricanes are ripping across our continent and the world, and temperature records are falling like autumn leaves.  He has undermined scientific research and belief in the scientific method. He is scuttling the Iran agreement, risking the rise of yet another hostile nuclear power. He has botched the Puerto Rican rescue, leaving millions without power, water, and food. He has demonstrated that he knows nothing about how laws are made … or any other of the skills and knowledge required to run government.

Finally, he has shown that he is emotionally, mentally and morally unfit for the office he holds, and he regularly feeds the worst among us with a steady diet of hate, fear, blame, and jingoism.

It should be news that this incompetent man is driving America toward oblivion

This is the news that everyone knows but no one talks about; certainly not the press.  But this man’s gross incompetence and moral bankruptcy are the most important reality facing the country if not the world. It should be news when a destructive, emotionally ill incompetent is allowed to take the reins of our government into his tiny hands and drive us toward oblivion. It should be reported as the dire reality it is, not as “an alternative viewpoint.”  Viewpoint? With his mercurial stances on every issue, there is no viewpoint.  Only today’s idiocy bubbling up from his id, and out into the nation’s rapidly deteriorating consciousness.

The press’s devotion to “balanced” reporting have paved the way for Trump’s assault on the media

The press’s decades long devotion to balanced, as opposed to accurate reporting is why Trump’s assault on the press has been successful. Today, nearly half of all Americans believe the press makes up stories about him.

And no thanks to Reagan and Clinton who eviscerated the FCC’s watchdog authority over the media

But “fair and balanced” reporting was enabled by the oligarch’s coup, and Reagan and Clinton eviscerated the Federal Communications Commission – the only authority capable of assuring accuracy and responsibility in the media.

In 2018 and 2020, if the press does not do its job, we can expect a fresh round of right wing whack jobs running and winning. But it won’t be just the fault of the media.

Democrats – partners in crime

How Democratic malfeasance helped 26.1% of eligible voters to elect “this ignoramus”

The fact that a mere 26.1 percent of the eligible voters could put this ignoramus in office is directly a result of Democratic malfeasance. How?  Well, if you read Clinton’s latest book, or the misguided ramblings of neoliberals like Doug Schoen the neoliberal mafia that controls the Democratic Party still seems to have no clue that they enabled his victory by refusing to stand for the vast majority of Americans who are – and have been for some time now – getting screwed by decades long allegiance to the uber wealthy and elitist interests in lieu of the people’s interests.  Their cynical centrist-one-day, faux-left the next, center-right the next, while pandering to economic elites and corporate America has shrunk the base of the Party from 50 percent of Americans back in the late sixties to less than 30 percent today.   

Neoliberal Democrats just don’t get it – Americans want candidates for a progressive agenda

This rudderless, amoral approach to governance is why just 37 percent believe the Democratic Party stands for something.  And what the neoliberals just don’t get, is that what Americans want are candidates who back a progressive agenda.  Oh, yes, the terms liberal and progressive have been smeared by the Oligarch’s skillful use of branding to make them unpopular terms, but on an issue-by-issue basis, Americans are overwhelmingly progressive.  The only reason the oligarch’s branding effort worked is because no one countered it.  In fact, the Clintonites’ neoliberal embrace of free markets, trade agreements, deregulation, and militarism reinforced the conservatives’ narrative.

With 2018 just a little over a year away, the Democratic Party is still engaged in a civil war in which the old guard—the one’s whose policies caused the Party to become a minority Party with little influence—refuse to let go of the reins.

That’s why “no-show” has been the biggest cohort in our elections for decades now.  While Democrats troll the “center” for a few more votes, they are hemorrhaging voters on the left. And that’s the other reason we have an idiot for President, and why he may win a second term.

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