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VulgarPoet's Journal
VulgarPoet's Journal
March 27, 2016

Just saw an utterly reprehensible post in GD-P

that asserted Hillary should stick with "aggressive foreign policy".

How in the holy fuck do these people sleep at night? How can they say they care about the world at large and then assert some fuck-backwards shit like this?

"Killing for peace is like fucking for chastity." That's what's been on my mind, all fuckin' weekend so far. I just-- I don't understand. Liberals shouldn't be supporting "interventions". Shouldn't be making excuses for fucking Blackwater. They say that it's disingenuous to assume Hillary's a PNAC neocon, well, how the fuck am I supposed to believe that seeing people who claim to be Democrats say that we need "aggressive foreign policy"? Isn't that EXACTLY what PNAC's architects said?

March 26, 2016

Tomorrow is Eostara.

Blessed be, and give your families my blessings. It's already been a long year, and it just feels like it's gonna get longer.

March 26, 2016

Just a reminder for the coming weeks.

Never before have I seen a politician more deserving of the colloquialism "The Man".

They told us in the 60's and 70's, The Man is coming, and It's coming to take us for everything we've got, till not even crumbs fall out of our pockets when they shake us. Well, The Man is here, and Hillary is It's chosen avatar. So what do we do? Do we supplicate and submit, or do we fight?
March 25, 2016

If any of this counts as "progressive", I'll eat my hat.

The Third Way has proven to me that the mantra of "By the people, for the people" where democracy is considered is long dead. Oligarchy; corporate bribery and graft running rampant-- and you want us to support this. I present to you "the real progressive candidate"-- read as immense doubt placed on the entirety of that quote; considering I never knew warmongering and corporatist kowtowing counted for progressivism. The Third Way is not about "by the people, for the people", it's about "from the people, to the corporations". I didn't enlist to fight for a bunch of coprophilic plutocrats. And that is what you want to deliver us to.

Foreign Policy


"Hillary has now apologized for her Iraq War vote. But even her apology feels more like political calculation than genuine contrition. A meaningful apology would be directed to the Iraq war vets and Iraqi civilians who lost life or limb, to the American taxpayer for wasting over a trillion dollars, and to the rest of the world for making it less safe.

Hillary Clinton lost the 2008 Democratic nomination to Barack Obama in large part because of her Iraq vote so she must now try to immunize herself with her weak apology in the hopes that 8 years later, Democratic caucus and primary voters have short memories.

Moreover, none of her apologies give any indication of what she learned from her supposedly mistaken vote. Has she learned that using American military power to instigate regime change in the Middle East leads more often than not to chaos, anarchy, increased terrorist threats, refugee crises, and even the destabilization of Europe?"

"Hillary Clinton distanced herself from Barack Obama’s strategy for defeating Islamic State extremists on Thursday in a sweeping foreign policy speech that called for greater use of American ground troops and an intensified air campaign.

Though ruling out deploying the tens of thousands of US troops seen in Iraq and Afghanistan, the former of secretary of state made clear she would take a notably more hawkish approach than the current administration if she is elected president."

"This is the story of how a woman whose Senate vote for the Iraq war may have doomed her first presidential campaign nonetheless doubled down and pushed for military action in another Muslim country. As she once again seeks the White House, campaigning in part on her experience as the nation's chief diplomat, an examination of the intervention she championed shows her at what was arguably her moment of greatest influence as secretary state."

"Libya's descent into chaos began with a rushed decision to go to war, made in what one top official called a "shadow of uncertainty" as to Colonel Qaddafi's intentions. The mission inexorably evolved even as Mrs. Clinton foresaw some of the hazards of toppling another Middle Eastern strongman. She pressed for a secret American program that supplied arms to rebel militias, an effort never before confirmed."

Saudi Arabia [y'know, the people who made ISIS's brand of Islam]
“It’s tough to call her comments anything except ‘the pot calling the kettle black,’” John Miranda said in an interview with Press TV.

The Clinton Foundation and Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign have enjoyed “numerous donations from Saudi Arabia and Saudi Arabia’s various corporations and princes that have dealings with the United States,” he noted.

“For her to say that we need to talk to them [Saudis] about this; she honestly could care less,” he added.

Miranda said that Saudi Arabia is committing the same crimes that the American people associate with the Daesh (ISIL) terrorist group rather than a long-time US ally in the Middle East.

“Everything that’s happening with the unrest in northern Iraq and Syria, they are doing the same exact things that happen in Saudi Arabia,” he said.

“Saudi Arabia is also one of the countries that is funding the terrorists in Syria and northern Iraq, so obviously they are practicing the same type of things,” the analyst added.

“Hillary Clinton is a complete hypocrite. That is the only way I can describe her,” Miranda stressed.

Though it’s less sexy than Benghazi, the crisis following a coup in Honduras in 2009 has Hillary Clinton’s fingerprints all over it, and her alleged cooperation with oligarchic elites during the affair does much to expose Clinton’s newfound, campaign-season progressive rhetoric as hollow. Moreover, the Honduran coup is something of a radioactive issue with fallout that touches many on Team Clinton, including husband Bill, once put into a full context.

"One of the 2011 emails from Clinton to U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman and Clinton aide Robert Hormats has a subject line “Sandy Levin” — a reference to the Democratic congressman who serves on the House Ways and Means Committee, which oversees U.S. trade policy. In the email detailing her call with Levin, she said the Michigan lawmaker “appreciates the changes that have been made, the national security arguments and Santos's reforms” -- the latter presumably a reference to Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos. She concludes the message about the call with Levin by saying, “I told him that at the rate we were going, Columbian [sic] workers were going to end up w the same or better rights than workers in Wisconsin and Indiana and, maybe even, Michigan.”

Froman — a former Citigroup executive who as trade representative was lobbying for passage of the deal — responded by thanking Clinton for her "help and support.” Hormats, a former vice chairman of Goldman Sachs who subsequently was hired by Clinton at the State Department, later chimed in, telling her “terrific job” and “GREAT line on Columbian [sic] workers!!!!!”

Offering federal contracts to Blackwater of all people (Y'know, those people that Chelsea Manning, God help her, leaked had been involved with child sex trafficking)

What began as an investigation into Prince’s attempts to sell defense services in Libya and other countries in Africa has widened to a probe of allegations that Prince received assistance from Chinese intelligence to set up an account for his Libya operations through the Bank of China.

. . .

“You push the buttons on the company, but the main bad guy gets away and does it again,” said an official who tried to prosecute Prince.

Prince has run up against ITAR in the past. In 2010, Prince sold most of his equity in the companies that fell under the Blackwater umbrella. Claiming that left-wing activists, Democratic politicians, and lawsuits had destroyed his companies, he left the United States and became a resident of Abu Dhabi. The remnant of his network was renamed Academi LLC. Federal prosecutors eventually attempted to prosecute Prince’s former companies, culminating in a 2012 deferred prosecution agreement to settle a lengthy list of U.S. legal and regulatory violations committed from 2005 through 2008 when Prince was in charge, including ITAR violations.


A senior official involved with the Blackwater-related litigation, who has since left the government, told The Intercept that the Obama administration’s continued willingness to award contracts to former Blackwater entities while the case was active was a fatal impediment to a successful prosecution. The official, comparing the former Blackwater empire to a drug syndicate, added that prosecutors could not get anyone under Prince to testify against him personally. “This is very much the concern,” the former official told The Intercept. “You push the buttons on the company, but the main bad guy gets away and does it again.”
No criminal charges were filed against Prince.

In federal court filings, Prince’s former companies admitted to providing — on numerous occasions during Prince’s tenure — defense goods and services to foreign governments without the required State Department licensing. In some cases, they admitted to providing services even after failing to obtain a license from the State Department.

As part of their settlement with the government, Prince’s companies ultimately agreed to pay nearly $50 million in fines and other penalties and to implement compliance procedures to ensure such illegal activities did not continue. In September 2015, the deferred charges were dismissed after the U.S. government certified that the companies had “fully complied” with all of its conditions.

At that point, Prince was already deep into creating new companies registered outside of the United States and appeared poised to return to the conduct that had marked his time at the helm of Blackwater.

Social Policy
TPP Support
Isn't politics just great? Politicians aren't exactly known for their honesty on things, often saying things to voters just to get elected. But Hillary Clinton's views on the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement have received quite a lot of scrutiny. After all, while she was at the State Department, she was a strong supporter of the TPP, and so it was a bit of a surprise last October when she came out against it. Of course, the fact that the deal is fairly unpopular with the Democratic Party base probably contributed quite a lot to that decision -- and Clinton's weak attempt at revisionist history to pretend she never really supported it.

But, of course, when you do a pandering flip flop like that just to get votes, you have to remember that plenty of people will see right through it, and some of those people might reveal the strategy. Like, for instance, the head of the US Chamber of Commerce, the world's largest lobbying organization, who is leading the charge in support of the TPP. Its top lobbyist, Tom Donohue, flat out admitted recently that he knows that if she actually got elected, she'll revert back to supporting the TPP, because of course she will:
The Chamber president said he expected Hillary Clinton would ultimately support the TPP if she becomes the Democratic nominee for president and is elected. He argued that she has publicly opposed the deal chiefly because her main challenger, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), has also done so. "If she were to get nominated, if she were to be elected, I have a hunch that what runs in the family is you get a little practical if you ever get the job," he said.

Destruction of internet freedom
What Hillary Clinton is condemning here is exactly that which not only the administration in which she serves, but also she herself, has done in one of the most important Internet freedom cases of the last decade: WikiLeaks. And beyond that case, both Clinton specifically and the Obama administration generally have waged a multi-front war on Internet freedom.

First, let us recall that many of WikiLeaks’ disclosures over the last 18 months have directly involved improprieties, bad acts and even illegalities on the part of Clinton’s own State Department. As part of WikiLeaks’ disclosures, she was caught ordering her diplomats at the U.N. to engage in extensive espionage on other diplomats and U.N. officials; in a classified memo, she demanded “forensic technical details about the communications systems used by top UN officials, including passwords and personal encryption keys used in private and commercial networks for official communications” as well as “credit card numbers, email addresses, phone, fax and pager numbers and even frequent-flyer account numbers” for a whole slew of diplomats, actions previously condemned by the U.S. as illegal. WikiLeaks also revealed that the State Department — very early on in the Obama administration — oversaw a joint effort between its diplomats and GOP officials to pressure and coerce Spain to block independent judicial investigations into the torture policies of Bush officials: a direct violation of then-candidate Obama’s pledge to allow investigations to proceed as well being at odds with the White House’s dismissal of questions about the Spanish investigation as merely “hypothetical.” WikiLeaks disclosures also revealed that public denials from Clinton’s State Department about the U.S. role in Yemen were at best deeply misleading. And, of course, those disclosures revealed a litany of other truly bad acts by the U.S. Government generally.

Manhattan Project against encryption
Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton has called for a "Manhattan-like project" to help law enforcement break into encrypted communications. This is in reference to the Manhattan Project, the top-secret concentrated research effort which resulted in the US developing nuclear weapons during World War II.

At Saturday's Democratic debate (transcript here), moderator Martha Raddatz asked Clinton about Apple CEO Tim Cook's statements that any effort to break encryption would harm law-abiding citizens.

PATRIOT Act support
Clinton voted in support of HR 3162 - USA Patriot Act of 2001. The bill passed on October 25, 2001, by a vote of 98-1. The bill allowed law enforcement more authority in searching homes, tapping phone lines and tracking internet information while searching for suspected terrorists

Secure Fence Act
Clinton voted in support of HR 6061 - Secure Fence Act of 2006. The bill passed on September 29, 2006, by a vote of 80-19. The bill authorized the construction of 700 miles of additional fencing along the United States-Mexico border. The Democratic Party split on the vote.

H-1B Visa support

Corporatist Tax Loopholes


The analysis reveals that the biggest names in corporate America are boycotting the U.S. tax system, en masse. Top offenders include giants from high-tech (Microsoft, $76 billion); Big Pharma (Pfizer, $69 billion); Big Oil (Exxon­Mobil, $47 billion); investment banks (Goldman Sachs, $22 billion); Big Tobacco (Philip Morris, $20 billion); discount retailers (Wal-Mart, $19 billion); fast-food chains (McDonald's, $16 billion) – even heavy machinery (Caterpillar, $17 billion). General Electric has $110 billion stashed offshore, and enjoys an effective tax rate of four percent – 31 points lower than its statutory obligation to the IRS.

The Kennedy-era reforms kept corporate tax avoidance substantially in check through both Democratic and Republican administrations. Even Reagan cracked down on multinational tax dodgers with the tax reform of 1986. But changes in recent years – including one in 1997 and another in 2006 – have, according to a recent Senate investigation, "nearly completely undercut" the ability of the Treasury to tax the paperwork profits of multinationals. The original sin was committed by the Clinton Treasury – then led by Robert Rubin, later a top executive at Citigroup and a major player in the subprime mortgage crisis. In 1997, Treasury changed regulations to permit corporations to decide for themselves which subsidiaries were relevant for tax purposes, simply by ticking off a box on a tax form. But these changes, intended to simplify the tax code, also opened a colossal loophole.

By telling the IRS to treat certain offshore subsidiaries as "disregarded entities" – a.k.a. "tax nothings" – corporate accountants could divert and mask passive income, making it untaxable abroad. "I don't think they realized how much check-the-box would lubricate international tax avoidance," says Kleinbard.

For a brief moment, Treasury sought to reverse course. But lobbyists from firms including Monsanto, Morgan Stanley, IBM and Philip Morris locked arms to defend their de facto tax cut. The Clinton Treasury backed down. Soon, some administration officials took a spin through the revolving door – raising troubling questions about the relationship between corporate America and its regulators. William Morris, who became the Clinton Treasury's associate international tax counsel around the time the regulations were enacted, jumped to GE, where today he orchestrates the firm's global tax policy.

This is the so called pre-ordained candidate for the Democratic Party. And when candidates like this are being fielded, and an Independent who is more democratic than the whole DNC put together has to come in and save the fuckin' party, the establishment has some serious soul searching to engage in, that is, if they still have souls to search.

If the Democratic party wants my vote, then they can nominate a candidate who deserves it.
March 24, 2016

"Supporters" has become the new Godwin's Law on DU.

Maybe we can call it the Hillary Corollary:

"As a DUer supports Hillary further and further, the probability of a wide-brush tarring of Bernie supporters approaches 1."

Seriously, even just looking at GD-P brings up about three or four different posts that do this.




I'd say that's more than enough evidence to comprise a theory here.

March 2, 2016

Congrats are in order for Hillary's wins.

I've got good feelings about the sixth on for Sanders, however. Let the lamp affix its beam, and all that.

March 1, 2016

"Though Imperfect".

This probably... Will not wind up seen by a handful of people. And yeah, I accept and own up to that. I've gone straight down to the bone trying to collate and wrap up and prettify all of the reasons I couldn't countenance the idea of pulling the lever for Clinton if it came down to it; and to be fair, I deserve my amount of flak for it. But honestly, I don't know what spurred today's events. Maybe I was experiencing drunkenness across the space-time continuum-- or maybe it was just the exhaustion of mindless tedium at work, but I decided I'd do two things today. The first one doesn't hold any relevance to this, but the second does-- I went and pm'd someone who I'd previously thought was the very picture of everything I stood against.

I'd thought that, because we have at least three-quarters common ground between us, I'd be able to talk with this person, frankly, without worry for repercussions. As a lot of you have seen, I have a bad habit of becoming very quickly abrasive. And he said something today that honestly-- it's been a good... Ten, fifteen, twenty minutes-- I've lost track-- but I'm still sitting here thinking about it, my drink all but forgotten next to the laptop I'm writing this from.

"But, even still, our history as Black people in this nation has taught us that the "government", though imperfect, has been our guardians, from protecting the Freedman during Reconstruction, to integration and anti-discrimination enforcement."

"Though imperfect". In all the time I'd spent angry, absolutely incensed by both Hillary's supporters-- who till about 45 minutes or so ago, I'd thought were either misguided or ignorant-- and Bernie's supporters who said they'd hold their nose and vote for Hillary in the GE if that's what it boiled down to, those two words never occurred to me. Wouldn't have occurred to me. "Though imperfect". That has a lot to do with how I was raised, but that doesn't matter right now; what matters is that we're not going to be able to get perfect. Would it be nice? You bet your ass. But we have have to make do at the end of the day.

After the GE, sure, we can crucify each other all we want. Something tells me there'll be no shortage of crosses, but a dearth of bodies in the DNC if things go down the way my cards are saying they will. But as for right now, we need to at least get along with each other, at least until the day after Election Day. Where the primaries are concerned-- I'm not giving congratulations out until all the data's in, but... So far, both sides have looked nasty. I'm certain that for every insufferable Clinton supporter, there's an absolutely infuriating Sanders supporter, and vice versa. Is it too much to ask to at least... Remain somewhat civil?

Because a lot of posters here, as much as it sticks in my craw to admit it-- a lot of 'em are right. Yes, I still unequivocally believe that Clinton will be Hell solidified over high water if she gets 1600. But that's nothing compared to what the republican nominee will do to us. At this point, it's not fear-- to crib another(albeit this time, slightly mangled) quote from the person I talked to-- it's about survival, dumbasses. Survive to be dealt into the next hand, and hope to bluff our way to the pot. After Election Day, free for all, anything goes; but till then, we're kind of stuck with each other. And right now, I'd say both sides will desperately need to cross the aisle at some point, no matter who wins the nomination.
March 1, 2016


Half of Hillary's supporters aren't even trying to bait their hooks anymore. I forgot how clean GD-P used to look with a 50-deep ignore list.

But in good news, I'm actually having some pretty decent conversations so far via privmail, so they're not all insufferable.

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Purely disgusted.

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