One Year of Trump – when will we start blaming the Democrats for this orange fascist?

By   /   January 28, 2018  /   75 Comments

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By putting the Identity Politics of being the first Woman to win the Presidency over the economic needs of the poor, the Democrats handed the election to a liar like Trump.   

Last week, the anniversary of the one year madness of King Trump came and went.

There was much snarling and rolling of eyes at the absurd level of scumbaggery and insult that this tiny handed orange fascist has managed to create in a mere 12 months. That he has proved to be so much worse than predicted and that he is nothing more than a distracted dog chasing every car he gets angry at is as terrifying a reality as the violent revenge fantasies he peddles to a white working class who have been left behind by globalisation.

It’s great to feel disgusted, terrified, angered, furious, pissed off, defiant, vindicated and belligerent about this horror clown’s first anniversary in power, but without understanding how this cancer was visited upon us, we are doomed to repeat this mistake.

Opponents of Trump like to point to the Russian interference in the election to explain Trump winning, but I think blaming Russia for ‘hacking’ the US Election is deeply counter productive.

Firstly, it’s just outrageous that the American’s who have committed coups, electoral fraud and mass deceptions on 81 other nations over the years are in any position to lecture or complain about interfering in other peoples elections.

Secondly, it allows the Democrats off the hook. Instead of acknowledging they ran a terrible candidate and fielded neoliberal policies that hurt the very workers they had simply assumed would vote for them, the Democrats can avoid scrutiny of their own rigged primary process, the manner in which Bernie Sanders was unfairly treated and their hollow policies by blaming it all on Russia.

Newsflash to the Democrats – Trump didn’t win because of Russia, he won because you failed to appreciate how your embrace of neoliberal globalisation hurt the very voters you needed the most.

One estimate puts the budget of Russian interference in the election via social media advertising at $250 000. With all due respect for American Democracy, if you can influence an election with a mere $250 000, you have way bigger problems than Putin.

We can scream racist and sexist as much as we like at Trump voters, but when Trump wooed Union families, women and the working poor in such huge numbers, something else needs to be examined as the reason this malignant tumour of a human being has been forced upon us all.

The free market globalisation that the Democrats embraced has robbed the domestic working classes of their dignity and economic ability to survive. Bernie Sanders understood this which is why he would have been able to woo those voters Trump needed back to the Democrats and beat Trump, but the vile corruption within the Democrats (who played to the elites within the Party) robbed Sanders of his nomination in a rigged system set up to prevent a populist left winger ever winning the candidacy.

By putting the Identity Politics of being the first Woman to win the Presidency over the economic needs of the poor, the Democrats handed the election to a snake oil merchant like Trump.

Refusing to acknowledge failed economic policy and corruption within the Democrats in allowing Trump to win makes the chances of him winning again more likely, not less likely.

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75 Comments

  1. Mark says:

    Bernie Sanders was the right choice, but alas the rich Democrats wanted Hillary and Bernie got less and less media attention.

    • Cassie says:

      Bernie Sanders the “right “choice?
      Didn’t you check his background? He’s a Communist.

      • Strypey says:

        I wish. Bernie isn’t even a socialist, as we use the term here (a marxist revolutionary of either an anarchist or leninist/ maoist/ trotskyist variety. The policies he champions make the Greens look like Marx on steroids by comparison. Only because the centre of US politics has swung so far to the right do we find people making using a term like “communist” to describe a moderate, centre-left politician.

      • D'Esterre says:

        Cassie: “He’s a Communist.”

        Haha, very funny! You’re taking the mickey, aren’t you? I’m sure I recall you trying this one out some time back.

      • Bernie Sanders is a “communist”?!

        Really, Cassie?

        Please tell us what marxist-leninist policies he has. I’m curious to know.

  2. Alan Vallis says:

    Plenty of people pointed this out even before the election. Unfortunately the average dim-witted voter didn’t get it.

    Some figure that the DNC were in the pockets of big business and the banksters.

    Several polls before the primaries showed Bernie beating Trump, and Hillary getting thumped.

  3. David Stone says:

    When did you stop blaming the democrats for the orange fascist Martyn? You’ve outlined the events clearly enough!
    But it remains that he is doing everything he argued against during his election campaign as far as foreign policy is concerned, except re the Iran nuclear deal. We don’t know yet whether that is because he lied about what he intended , or has found he can’t oppose the deep state neocons that run America and is doing what he has to to stay alive.
    What is happening for those who stray occasionally from the MSM is that his impetuosity and belligerence , for which he gets no criticism from the US MSM or establishment is demolishing the US’s moral authority in the world. They are going too far in their gunboat diplomacy for friends or foes and are becoming isolated and ridiculed.
    In the circumstances that people like Paul Craig Roberts of The Information Clearing House view his situation it would be the only way he can drain the swamp; To give the neocons enough rope to hang themselves with.
    It will be another interesting year. Nice to be able to watch from way down in lil ol NZ.
    D J S

    • D'Esterre says:

      David Stone: “We don’t know yet whether that is because he lied about what he intended , or has found he can’t oppose the deep state neocons that run America and is doing what he has to to stay alive.”

      I think it is the latter. It is what every incumbent of the White House must do, and each has done so in my lifetime. The individuals who attempted to kick against the system have been assassinated.

  4. “The free market globalisation that the Democrats embraced has robbed the domestic working classes of their dignity and economic ability to survive. Bernie Sanders understood this which is why he would have been able to woo those voters Trump needed back to the Democrats and beat Trump…”

    And while the US election was going on, Obama was struggling to get the TPPA enacted by Congress. He failed, of course.

    But the point is that the TPPA was globalisation with a readily understood label slapped on it.

    When the Left (which is what the Democrats are supposedly championing in the US) fails to heed concerns of workers (jobs exported to developing nations; corporations making vast profits and returns to shareholders whilst wages stagnate); and Washington is a planet many lightyears removed from the lives of ordinary Americans – then that vacuum will be filled.

    And as history has shown us time and time and time and time and time and time and time and time and time… again, demagogues will fill a political vacuum faster than thought possible by a complacent mass media.

    A healthy political environment demands a strong Left and Right ( hate to say that, but it’s true) to facilitate healthy debate and healthy options for people to choose from. When one of those options is neutered, or perceived to be no different to it’s opposing ideological rival, then a demagogue will fill that vacuum.

    It happened here, in New Zealand, in 1996, when voters opted for NZ First as an alternative to Labour – which still carried the stench of Rogernomic “reforms”.

    Unfortunately, Peters didn’t understand, at the time, that a vote for NZ First was not a vote for a National-led government. National lost popular support, as did Labour.

    Only NZ First, the Alliance, and ACT gained in support. Which indicates that voters were already looking for alternatives to the neo-liberal paradigm. (ACT being the exception.)

    Back in the US, real, popular reforms (not the neo-liberal variety) comes at glacial speed with an antiquated electoral system; the buying of party influence by rich backers; and entrenched power-structures in the Republican and Democrat parties. Voters see little difference between the two.

    Trump came along and offered something different. As Peters did in 1996.

    If the Democrats don’t choose wisely for good candidates (Sanders and Warren spring to mind), then they’ve handed the Republicans another presidency. (Not Trump, he’ll be in jail most likely by then.)

    • David Stone says:

      I wouldn’t count on Trump being off the ticket by then Frank. Offensive as he is the republicans put up lots of alternatives that were all just as horrible. The fact that nothing has been found to hang him with yet after a year of intensive, determined and innovative searching doesn’t bode well for them finding much. And the witch-hunt is starting to bore the American electorate. If they don’t dream up something pretty convincing soon it won’t have any impact when they do. The way it’s going at the moment he may come out of it looking like a rather repulsive hero.
      D J S
      sorry to sound such a depressing note

      • D'Esterre says:

        David Stone: “I wouldn’t count on Trump being off the ticket by then”

        Indeed. And the experience of previous White House incumbents suggests that he’ll win the next election. Obama did, as did GW Bush and Clinton. And all those preceding. Except Ford and Nixon; and their truncated terms are explained by Events….

  5. CLEANGREEN says:

    All very true that is Martyn, frank and co,

    We all smelt the rotten stench coming from the Hillary Clinton campaign that drove everyone away from the dem’s.

    Anyone who stood against her would’ve won with his/her’s hands tied behind their backs as Donald trump admitted he didn’t think he had any chance of winning then.

    Even when we all learned that Hillary conspired to defeat her incumbent “better choice of Bernie Sanders” with all the “dirty tricks” political policies to get her secured place as her being the only democratic front runnier was a shocking event in itself, so it was not surprising that trump won as the voters really had very little choice.

    Labour had better remember all this come 2020, and pull some well placed winning policies real meaningful changes going forward, rather than following the tired old road of “labour lite” as has been the case in many past faulted elections.

    The recent “truck wreck of restoring the TPP and
    by ‘just essentially changing the name to fool us all’ was their first big mistake.

    We already now have the same bad smells feeling about this same “tom foolery” being levelled at us all by MfAT/Parker and co” which will shave some electoral losses from the labour camp, come election time in 2020.

    So to balance that rot we smell here needs to be ‘arrested’ with new policies from the new Labour coalition Government to “negate those losses they have already posted against themselves” coming to the next election, by them flipping on TPP’ or whatever it is called for now’.

    One bid win here must be used;

    The regional rail restoration is a big election winner for them as billions of dollars should be now taken from the extremely costly publicly subsidised road building programming national had instigated and put back into rail restoration, because after many years of “Deferred rail repairs” were made since Bolger’s National Government had sold the NZ Rail Corporation during John Keys early involvement in the 1990’s over the scandal of allowing it sold cheap to Fay/Richwhite in 1992 with no ‘sunset’ condition of retaining maintenance levels, thus causing rail’s slow demise from then.

    So now it is morally so wrong that today National are still calling on labour not to use any public funding for our Kiwi rail at all, and use public money for truck roads instead, which represents a subsidy to private freight companies???????

    Labour; – Fix all our Regional rail again labour; – ” Lets do this”

    Use the new study you found last month that National hid called “The Value of rail in NZ”

    http://www.kiwirail.co.nz/news/506/78/Study-highlights-rail-s-value-to-New-Zealand.html

    This Kiwirail/NZTA funded study which proves that rail every year even at the severely reduced levels as now saved us $1.5 billion Dollars a year.

    So this is a big win as Phil Tywford is so correctly saying (no more only money only for nationals road mad binge) – for their “roads of national significance” which was only for more truck traffic routes essentially.

    Lets do this labour.

  6. Siobhan says:

    I sure as eggs don’t make a habit of referencing Time Magazine, but this article by Allan Lichtman makes some valid points about how the “Democrats are making the mistake of counting on anti-Trumpism to carry the party to victory in the 2018 midterm elections and the presidential contest of 2020”
    and includes a few interesting poll results around the stagnation of DNC support and affiliation …poll results also being something I don’t quote …unless they happen to gel with my firmly held world view…

    http://time.com/5120377/anti-trump-democrats-2018-midterms/

    • David Stone says:

      If Mueller doesn’t com up with something good and soon; and if the Hillary/ Dems/ FBI / CIA intrigue doesn’t go away they are diging a hole they may never climb out of.
      D J S

      • Historian Pete says:

        Its hard to argue with what anyone is saying. The Dems are doubling down on a losing formula.The Oligarch faction controlling the Democratic Party made sure that Bernie’s followers got zero positions after the election.The rise of the Green Party? An insurrection among disgruntled leftist Democrats? Its hard to pick the way forward!

        • Unfortunately, disgruntled leftist democrats moving to the US Green Party would simply be a reply of the 1993 election in New Zealand, where the Alliance split the Left vote. The US still operates under First Past the Post so until their electoral system is reformed (unlikely), reform will have to take place within the Democrat Party (more likely).

      • Ike says:

        Ain’t that the truth.
        http://theduran.com/us-congressman-matt-gaetz-tells-alex-jones-that-the-clintons-may-be-facing-justice-very-soon/

        Say didn’t NZ under john Key give money to the Clinton Foundation?

        • Funny how when Trump is criticised or challenged, the automatic default response is to point to the Clintons. “Whataboutism” seems to be the only way (for some) to defend Trump.

          Whether you agree with AndrewO or not, at least he pointed to Trump’s stand-alone record of supposed “achievements” (January 30, 2018 at 3:56 pm). No need for the ‘crutch’ of a bogeyman (or bogeywoman, in this case).

          • Francesca says:

            Not necessarily Frank. It may be a deflection, but it may also be pointing out selective morality, or the politicisation of morality if you like
            If you give a free pass to the Clintons because they’re Democrats,but pile on Trump for similar issues, you’re not really opposing corruption or misgovernance, you’re just being partisan

            • “Selective morality”? Not at all. Clinton has been scrutinised and investigated to the nth degree. In fact, Comey’s announcement to re-open the investigation into her emails last year thoroughly wrecked her chances to win the presidency. (And Trump considered Comey as his “bestie” at the time). So any suggestion that the FBI has given Clinton a “free pass” is ludicrous and a twisting of events.

              In fact, I pointed out the eerie similarity between Comey’s undermining of Clinton, and then-SIS Director, Warren Tucker’s bogus intelligence briefing damaging Phil Goff’s election chances in 2014: https://thedailyblog.co.nz/2016/11/01/black-ops-from-the-sis-and-fbi/

              Clinton has been investigated to the nth degree. Now it’s Trump’s turn. Pointing to other politicians as some kind of “mitigating factor” undermines holding all elected representatives to account.

              • Francesca says:

                Here’s an example, if an old one
                When Bill Clinton was being accused of rape and all manner of sexual violence and exploitation, the investigation was said to be motivated by the puritanical right wing fanatical Republicans, and a political setup
                Hillary “Stood By Her Man”, and this was a jolly good thing.She didn’t have to attack the women involved, but this too was tolerated
                I don’t see any of the prominent journos asking her about this now.
                Whereas Trump is being dragged through the mud without question
                I have no doubt his opinions of //actions toward ,women are vile,but isn’t it the behaviour we should be challenging.?
                Across the board, not just our political enemies.

              • Historian Pete says:

                “Clinton has been investigated to the 9th degree”. I doubt it. She has been given a complete hospital pass. Where is the investigation of the Clinton Foundation and the corruption of the “PAY TO PLAY?”.Where is the investigation into the hacking of the DNC computer? The FBI hasn’t to this day examined the computer, and has allowed the DNC to refuse to hand it over, all the while claiming it had been hacked by Russia! Has there been an investigation into the corrupt manipulation of the election procedure between Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton which has asurped Democracy in the Democratic Party?These are instances that you won’t find in the Washington Post or New York times , so the Neo- Liberals will be blithely unaware of them!!!

            • D'Esterre says:

              Francesca: “Not necessarily Frank. It may be a deflection, but it may also be pointing out selective morality, or the politicisation of morality if you like”

              Some time back, Historian Pete pointed out to me that any attempt by any commenters to proffer any sort of nuanced perspective on Trump would cause Frank to accuse said commenters of being Trump apologists or supporters.

              And sure enough, there he is up above, trotting out the “whataboutism” as if it weren’t a furphy. And never mind that the comparison with the Clintons is valid. It doesn’t matter a toss what you say in your own defence, he’ll just persist with his accusations. It’s a lost cause, really…

            • Priss says:

              Francesca, please let us know when it will be appropriate to discuss the REAL president of the US, and not the straw(wo)man you and others continually bring up to shield the fascist currently sitting in the White House.

              • Francesca says:

                Oh Priss, I do wish you would read more closely!
                Please, when will it be appropriate to discuss the utterly broken down nature of US politics, of which Trump and Clinton are the latest vile incarnations?
                How on earth do you think Trump got to be where he is?
                Decades of corrupt political operatives who act as mouthpieces and enablers for the unelected wielders of true power and influence.
                Simplistic thinking that believes if we just get rid of Trump, all will be well with the world helps to keep the Democrats from facing up to their deficits and total stagnation
                The awfulness of Trump is not going to be enough to get them elected in 2020
                Really, this binary thinking that can’t explore beyond personality is seriously depressing
                Martyn has got it 100% right in this post

      • Priss says:

        Ironically, it may be the FBI that prevents the US from sliding full-scale into fascism. The US is bad enough as it is now under the Washing Concensus. Imagine if that takes a wider step to the Right!

        If Trump has done nothing wrong, he has nothing to fear. (And I don’t include his ‘dalliances’ with porn stars with that. Those are irrelevant distractions. I say that as someone who loathes the orange fascist!!!)

        • Francesca says:

          Oh Priss, I do wish you would read more closely!
          Please, when will it be appropriate to discuss the utterly broken down nature of US politics, of which Trump and Clinton are the latest vile incarnations?
          How on earth do you think Trump got to be where he is?
          Decades of corrupt political operatives who act as mouthpieces and enablers for the unelected wielders of true power and influence.
          Simplistic thinking that believes if we just get rid of Trump, all will be well with the world helps to keep the Democrats from facing up to their deficits and total stagnation
          The awfulness of Trump is not going to be enough to get them elected in 2020
          Really, this binary thinking that can’t explore beyond specific personality is seriously depressing
          Martyn has got it 100% right in this post
          I’m not sure about your “Washing Concencus” Priss

          • D'Esterre says:

            Francesca:

            “Please, when will it be appropriate to discuss the utterly broken down nature of US politics, of which Trump and Clinton are the latest vile incarnations?”

            Precisely. Trump and Clinton are a consequence of a wrecked political system, not the cause thereof. Some ordinary Americans are well-aware of this, and willing to discuss it. But the political Establishment isn’t listening.

            “The awfulness of Trump is not going to be enough to get them elected in 2020”

            Exactly. In addition, people such as Priss appear either to be unaware, or to have forgotten what Trump’s predecessors were like. Remember GW Bush? Crikey! Nevertheless, he got two terms.

            As did the ghastly Obama. He might have been smooth-tongued and able to give a good speech, but in other respects he was just as bad as Bush and all his predecessors.With Obama, it’s best to remember the biblical adjuration (more or less): By their works shall ye know them.” Matthew 7:16

  7. Francesca says:

    I was interested to hear Kim Hill’s interviews with authors Luke Harding”Collusion” and Michael Wollfe “Fire and Fury”
    She seemed to accept both of their theses(or perhaps faeces) without question.
    So, Trump really didn’t want to win , it was all a stunt, and yet he went to extraordinary lengths, at great risk,
    to collude with the Russians to win the election.
    So which one is it?
    Maybe neither.
    Bloody disappointing

    • Aaron says:

      The story that Russia colluded with Trump to win the election is the most astoundlingly successful lie the US media-government complex has thrust upon us. No where in mainstream media is anyone who has noticed there is no actual evidence to support this and yet it is now an accepted fact in the western world.

      I agree with everything Martin says but when you’ve got a system this messed up I’m not sure where you turn.

      *Yes, I know there was an attempt to get a piece of dirt on Hilary from the Russians by the Trump team but that is normal electoral behaviour in the US where smearing your opponent is the safest road to success.

    • Siobhan says:

      Have you seen this…I sent a link to Kim, but shes been a lost cause since the well before US elections.

      http://theduran.com/russia-paranoid-guardian-reporter-gets-demolished-in-real-news-interview-video/

      Recommended viewing, an excellent interview conducted by ex Democracy Nows Aaron Maté. (and there are very good reasons for hin no longer being on DN, but thats another story)

      • Francesca says:

        I’m wondering if whatever your career is, you become “captured”
        by it.
        And if the media of which you depend for your living is very selective in its approved sources, the “facts” presented become your facts.
        The more successful you become, the less critical of those “facts”
        Yes, I have seen that interview.Kim would no doubt not even bother as its a “pro Kremlin “site.

        • D'Esterre says:

          Francesca: “Yes, I have seen that interview.Kim would no doubt not even bother as its a “pro Kremlin “site.”

          Like most of the msm – both here and elsewhere in the world – she has a bee in her bonnet about Russia and Putin. These people have been propagandised, to the point that they simply cannot hear a countervailing view, or countenance the thought that they might just have hold of the wrong end of the stick.

          Of course, it isn’t just journalists similarly afflicted….

          • Perhaps critics have a “bee in her bonnet about Russia and Putin” because that country is once again in the grip of ultra-wealthy Oligarchs. The banning of Alexei Navalny from contesting the election under bogus charges is an indication that democracy is a facade in that country.

            I understand you support Putin. I do not share that support.

            • Francesca says:

              Oh c’mon Frank
              Grudinin is far more of a credible threat to Putin.I think I’d vote for him .He’s a really interesting character with a lot of support.
              Putin should be worried
              At least 3 other parties are polling way higher than Navalny.
              In fact its nice to know that his brand of nationalism and racism is not popular in Russia.
              I think he should run myself , but Russian law is Russian law.Maybe if the US embassy(his greatest fans) could vote , he might get over 2%

              • D'Esterre says:

                Francesca: “At least 3 other parties are polling way higher than Navalny.
                In fact its nice to know that his brand of nationalism and racism is not popular in Russia.
                I think he should run myself , but Russian law is Russian law.Maybe if the US embassy(his greatest fans) could vote , he might get over 2%”

                Nice!

                When I said up above “Of course, it isn’t just journalists similarly afflicted….” it was Frank I had in mind. He has a bee in his bonnet about Russia. He accuses me of being a Putin supporter: this is of course nonsense, given that I’m not a Russian citizen, so can’t vote for him.

                Though I certainly think he’s a formidable leader, well-educated and with a sophisticated approach to foreign policy. The US could do with such a person as president. Especially right now.

                But the chances of that appear to be zero. Well, the Yanks would need a good education system in the first place……

            • David Stone says:

              About 90% of Russians do however Frank.
              I don’t think he has any need to eliminate rivals by corrupt use of the law or law enforcement. The news always seems to need a rationality test to check if it makes sense . Who would benefit from a report and who would be disadvantaged.
              D J S

            • D'Esterre says:

              Frank Macskasy: “that country is once again in the grip of ultra-wealthy Oligarchs.”

              Just like the US and the UK, you mean? And ours too, when the last government was in power; who do you think was funding the National party?

              “The banning of Alexei Navalny from contesting the election under bogus charges….”

              As Francesca has pointed out, that’s the law in Russia. She’s also pointed out how very little voter support he actually has.

              I don’t remember whether Navalny was dumb enough to hire Mark Feygin as his lawyer, but he certainly spent a lot of the trial claiming the justice system had no right to try him, and you’ll-all-pay-for-this-when-I’m-president and so on. So: not planning on being a bleeding heart liberal incumbent of the Kremlin, in the unlikely event of his being elected, then.

              During the Maidan madness, a Ukrainian judge who had passed sentence on rioters was murdered (whether anyone was ever punished I have no idea). Navalny cited it as a warning to the Russian legal system. Christ… no wonder his electoral support is minuscule.

              From memory, Navalny and his buddy strongarmed the head of the Kirovles lumber concern into selling timber to their own company, VLK, instead of selling it directly to the customers.

              The idea behind the scam was that Navalny and his buddy would use their business expertise and connections to generate more business. In reality, they just sold the product to the same customers as before, but with a markup.

              This happened when Navalny was attached to the staff of Nikita Belykh, a liberal who had been appointed regional governor of Kirov.

              Navalny and his mate (Ofitserov I think) knew sod-all about the timber industry, so what they were going to do that Kirovles wasn’t already doing is a mystery. However, as scams go, it was not a very good one. His current one, of campaigning for president and collecting donations while not being allowed to run, is a much better scam.

              TV news here describes every Navalny protest as a Russian revolution; journalists never remember anything for more than a day or two, so they never suffer any ill effects from their predictions being wrong.

              What is a bit interesting is how Navalny’s support base has shifted. Back in 2012 or so, his followers were what have been (unkindly) described as office plankton. Now he’s lost that crowd and the people at his rallies are all teenagers. Only a political genius would hit on the idea of appealing to people who aren’t old enough to vote.

              Most of these kids will have grown out of it in a year or two, and will be so embarrassed at themselves, they’ll be begging Roskomnadzor to delete their protest snaps from the internet.

      • Francesca says:

        And I was astounded to hear Kim suggest that Trumps military reaction to the uninvestigated Khan Shaykoun incident showed empathy!
        Civilians were killed in the illegal attack on that airfield

    • D'Esterre says:

      Francesca: “I was interested to hear Kim Hill’s interviews with authors Luke Harding”Collusion” and Michael Wollfe “Fire and Fury”
      She seemed to accept both of their theses(or perhaps faeces) without question.”

      I heard the promos for those interviews, and decided that life was too short to waste any of it on yet more of Hill’s uncritical acceptance of any old bollix coming from her interviewees. Sounds as if I was right…

      Kim Hill isn’t a foreign affairs/policy journalist: in fact, there’s no tradition of foreign affairs journalism in NZ. Michael Field makes that point in this article:

      http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/HL1612/S00104/background-to-how-israel-nearly-went-to-war-with-new-zealand.htm

      From the article:
      “As one New Zealand diplomat put it, commenting on this issue, New Zealand ” diplomacy is still conducted very much in secret, indeed much more so than in other democracies”. The diplomat added the New Zealand media didnt have the specialists to pursue international issues”. Using the Official Information Act to find out what happens is no longer effective as it had been “gamed by ministers and comprehensive PR has been a hall mark of the Key regime.””

      On the other hand, this man was the real deal; would that we had journos of his quality here!
      https://consortiumnews.com/2018/01/28/robert-parrys-legacy-and-the-future-of-consortiumnews/
      His untimely death is a tragic loss to all of us.

      • Francesca says:

        I was so sad to hear of his death.
        An old school investigative journalist
        Nowadays investigative journalism has been replaced by “long reads” which go to great lengths to show the official narrative is right all along

      • Kim Hill isn’t a foreign affairs/policy journalist: in fact, there’s no tradition of foreign affairs journalism in NZ.

        Neither are you, D’esterre. Kim Hill has decades of journalistic experience and is one of the best we have in this country. So your criticism of her is unfounded.

        It seems your main ‘beef’ with her is that she has interviewed someone critical of Trump and for some reason that conflicts with your own views. Luckily we are still permitted to criticise our political representatives without fear of fear of being carted away or suffering a “mysterious” fate.

        Though even that has come into question recently, with Martyn being harassed by Police surveillance: https://thedailyblog.co.nz/2018/01/24/exclusive-human-rights-review-tribunal-dont-have-the-budget-to-hear-my-case-against-the-nz-police/

        • D'Esterre says:

          Frank Macskasy: “Kim Hill has decades of journalistic experience and is one of the best we have in this country. So your criticism of her is unfounded.”

          Regardless of how much experience she has, my point stands. She isn’t a foreign affairs specialist: we don’t have any tradition of that in NZ. Did you actually read Michael Field’s article? Though of course, anyone paying attention to news reporting here would know that there aren’t any foreign affairs journalists, Field excepted. And he’s retired, I believe.

          I’ve been listening to Kim Hill since she first started on RNZ. With regard to her interviewing abilities, I speak as I find; once upon a time, she was appointment listening, but no longer. I’m choosy as to which of her interviews I listen to; she used to be the best, but in my view, that’s no longer the case.

        • D'Esterre says:

          Frank Macskasy: “It seems your main ‘beef’ with her is that she has interviewed someone critical of Trump and for some reason that conflicts with your own views.”

          What? Are you still on your “Trump supporter” hobbyhorse? Do you not get it? She does interviews without, nowadays, questioning or challenging her interviewee’s thesis. That’s what Francesca said. Go back and read her comment: that’s what I was responding to.

          The Saturday Morning programme is lifestyle-focused, it seems to me. I assume that’s the direction RNZ bosses wish to take, and she’ll be obliged to follow directives, I’m guessing. In the days of Nine to Noon, she did many more political interviews than she does now. But even on Saturday Morning, she used to be much more probing with her questions than she has been lately.

          “Luckily we are still permitted to criticise our political representatives without fear of fear of being carted away or suffering a “mysterious” fate.”

          What on earth has this got to do with anything preceding? Ohhh…I get it: you’re back on your Russia hobbyhorse, aren’t you. Get all that information from the hated MSM, do you? From those outlets that coudn’t lie straight in bed? Unless they’re talking about Russia, of course.

          • Priss says:

            D’Esterre, if you’re not a closet Trump sympathizer, you’re certainly devoting many words defending the orange fascist.

            I tend to agree with Frank. Kim Hill is a professional. You are not. I consider her investigative, probing journalism more than your sympathizing with certain autocratic rulers. So stop with the outrage, already. We can read your words.

            Trump is a fascist. Agree of disagree?

            • D'Esterre says:

              Priss:

              ” if you’re not a closet Trump sympathizer, you’re certainly devoting many words defending the orange fascist.”

              For goodness’ sake, Priss, please read properly what commenters write! Most of my commentary here has been devoted to topics other than Trump.

              Like Francesca, I’d like to see discussion of the broken-down US political system, of which the current president is a consequence, not a cause. There are also ordinary Americans – who knows how many – who would like to have the same discussion.

              “Kim Hill is a professional……. I consider her investigative, probing journalism….’

              You’re entitled to your opinion of Kim Hill. As am I. And I don’t share your view. I’d be delighted if she did investigative, probing journalism: she does not, hasn’t done it for a long time. And – which is the point I made earlier – she isn’t a foreign affairs specialist, and hasn’t been for as long as I’ve been listening to her. In NZ, we don’t have foreign affairs specialists among our journalists: there’s no tradition of it. Read the link I posted above, from Michael Field.

              “Trump is a fascist.”

              Oh for god’s sake, Priss! Do you have any idea at all what constitutes fascism? Or are you just repeating what you read in the msm?

              Did you know that Trump used to be a Democrat, until he switched parties some years ago?

              No US pollies are fascist: it’s completely inconsistent with the US as a liberal free market democracy.

              • I’d be delighted if she did investigative, probing journalism: she does not, hasn’t done it for a long time. And – which is the point I made earlier – she isn’t a foreign affairs specialist, and hasn’t been for as long as I’ve been listening to her.

                Rubbish. What conceit!

                So are you telling us that unless a journo is a “foreign affairs specialist”, they’re not allowed to interview someone? Really? No, of course not. That’s not the subtext of your criticism, is it?

                You’re only derisory of Kim Hill because she dared interview someone critical of that orange fascist in the Oval Office. Until now I cannot recall you ever making a single criticism of Ms Hill. It’s only now coming out because of that one interview with Michael Wolff.

                If it had been a “soft interview” with the likes of Sarah Huckabee Sanders your response would be different, I suspect.

                • D'Esterre says:

                  Frank Macskasy: “So are you telling us that unless a journo is a “foreign affairs specialist”, they’re not allowed to interview someone? Really? No, of course not. That’s not the subtext of your criticism, is it?”

                  I repeat: read what I’ve actually written. Don’t bore the rest of us with your gloss of my comments. You can do better than that.

  8. John Stowell says:

    This all goes to show that elections are too easily influenced by money, lies, gerrymandered electoral districts and so on. Time we all moved on and gave a go to more genuinely democratic methods of selecting governments, gradually saying goodbye to politicians, political parties, and the influence of big money, and hello to citizens selected by lot. Not all in one go of course. Give citizens’ assemblies a number of trial runs in an advisory capacity to show how well they work, and then get stuck in to make politicians give up some of their power to the people to whom it properly belongs.

    • David Stone says:

      I recon one third of government appointed so every year. Serving a 3 yr term. There are plenty of civil servant advisors available.
      D J S

      • David Stone says:

        They should on agreement have the power to co-opt the advice for a fair fee of anyone in the country they choose.

  9. savenz says:

    Absolutely 100% percent right! And NZ Labour and NZ First need to learn a lesson from it too. Forcing globalisation and free trade agreements on a public that does not want them or does not benefit from them and makes them compete for low wage jobs, conditions and an overworked welfare system filled to the brim with skilled and indebted people left on the scrap heap by globalisation, is not an election strategy.

    Jacinda needs to wake up, being the ‘nice one’ and letting the old Labour ideologs lose on policy is repeating the mistakes of David Lange and will end up destroying the Labour Party.

    Poor decision making of important and long term issues to pursue, is already taking a toll on the Green Party.

    The fucking right wingers are winning by default as the lefties eat themselves and get bogged down in senseless decision making that appeals to few.

    • David Stone says:

      It’s a pattern that in the US as Hillary would have exemplified, The leader is a figurehead only, is completely the representative of the established unelected financial power and has not the slightest wish or intention to oppose that power or the interests of it. Is completely at one with it. And has no ideology of their own to implement, only to go through the motions of the ceremonial functions of the head of state. So the qualities needed are the gift of the gab , a reasonable presentation, and occasionally some entertainment value.
      I would say John Key was more politically functional than this norm but all in the wrong direction.
      Where does Jacinda fit?
      D J S

      • Priss says:

        David, Hillary is not the President. Maybe in another alternate reality, but not here not now.

        It’s Trump. He’s the one who is the president. As such, it’s his words and policies that count. His actions that may lead us into WW3. His decisions to bomb Syria. His decisions to recognise Jerusalem as Israel’s “capital”. His tax cuts for the rich. His paring back of social services. His repudiation of climate change. His possible corruption by Russian/mafia money.

        the president is Trump. Focus on that please.

        • Francesca says:

          Priss, you seem to have totally missed the point of what David is saying!
          It matters little who is the President, its the unelected interests behind the throne that wield the true power.
          Trumps just a puppet, rude, crude, coarse and loathsome, truly reflecting all the ugliness of American Power without the pretensions
          .

  10. Afewknowthetruth says:

    A good starting point for discussing the rot that took over America is the murderous attacks on socialists that occurred in the 1870s…..literally murderous.

    By the 1880s corporations were starting to claim the same rights as humans, and by 1913 (establishment of the Fed) banks and corporations had bought, and were owners of, the president and most of congress.

    Since 1913 it has essentially been more of the same -though there some short-term attempts to rein in corporations, such as Glass-Stegall etc. when things went drastically wrong in the 1930s.

    It was Bill Clinton, of course, who gave the cheats and liars free rein by removing Glass-Stegall (and he promoted the bombing of civilians in places like the then dismembered Yugoslavia…..all that socialism was just too bad!!!)

    Democrat-Republican: is there any difference? All the evidence points to both being members of the same ‘big club’, as George Carlin put it…..the big club they use to tell you what to eat, what to wear, what to believe, who to vote for.

  11. The Masked Moa says:

    Bloody Hell Martin you actually get the politics of it all and called a spade a spade – Big Up To You! Except for the fact Trump only won because CIA/Mossad rigged key states voting machines to help him win more for their purposes than his because he is their puppet not Putins i.e. Zionism Uber Alles: https://www.veteranstoday.com/2018/01/28/trumps-ties-to-mossad-cia-pedophile-ring/

  12. Cassie says:

    CHILDREN,
    … CHILDREN DO YOU HEAR ME?

    STOP GETTING SIDE TRACKED WITH “PARTIES”, eg Labour, National, “it’s (their) fault,…. No- it’s (THEIRS)
    …etc etc
    They are ALL . BOUGHT. ( AS WELL AS/INCLUDING “our” MEDIA)

    They all believe they’re doing a “good job”, INDIVIDUALLY. But they are cogs in a GIANT Machine.
    A deadly MACHINE (called Globalisation/Communism/One World Govt.
    ******
    “Voting Time ” comes along, every 3 years
    BUT THE GENERAL DOWNHILL TRENDS DO. NOT. CHANGE!!

    HOW CAN YOU FAIL TO NOTICE?????

    WAKE UP.

    This SAME stuff is happening in EVERY WESTERN NATION.
    The problem of DEGRADATION/EROSION of all standards we worked so hard to achieve
    and once had, is ongoing , and WILL NOT CHANGE, but it will CONTINUE .

    BECAUSE (((“SOMEONE ELSE”))) , (((Certain PARTY)))
    OUTSIDE of nations
    is calling
    ALL THE SHOTS.

    T H I N K.

    (means UNPLUG) from your dependency on usual “provided for” / conveniently – preprocessed-
    “News”
    sources.

    • Afewknowthetruth says:

      ‘They are ALL . BOUGHT. ( AS WELL AS/INCLUDING “our” MEDIA)
      They all believe they’re doing a “good job”, INDIVIDUALLY. But they are cogs in a GIANT Machine.
      A deadly MACHINE (called Globalisation/Communism/One World Govt.
      ******
      “Voting Time ” comes along, every 3 years
      BUT THE GENERAL DOWNHILL TRENDS DO. NOT. CHANGE!!’

      I’m not so sure ‘they all believe they are doing a good job individually’: I more than suspect that a large portion of those who orchestrate our collective demise know perfectly well they are not doing a ‘good job’ as far as the welfare of the people or the future of humanity are concerned but they just keep doing the opposite of what is actually required because they get paid extremely well to do the opposite of what is required, or in the commercial sector they can make lots of money doing the opposite of what is required.

      Another aspect is that the vast majority of those who make the decisions that ruin everyone’s future at the local level are scientifically and financially illiterate (and highly resistant to any form of education concerning aspects they are highly defective in). It is almost as though they need to be illiterate in order to do what they do…….and if they acknowledged their activities were highly destructive they would have to desist.

      Globalisation -yes.

      One world government -yes.

      But communism? I don’t think so. How can acquisition of power, money and resources, and rule of the many by a by a tiny clique of unelected few be described as communism?

      We can use words like

      to¦tali|tar¦ian
      [ˌtəʊtalɪˈtɛːrɪən, təˌtalɪˈtɛːrɪən]

      ADJECTIVE
      relating to a system of government that is centralized and dictatorial and requires complete subservience to the state:

      to describe what we have been enduring under the international banking cartels and their phony ‘economists’, who drive much of what has been happening.

      Their prime philosophy is TINA -There Is No Alternative- famously announced by Margaret Thatcher, as she put Britain on a path to faster self-destruction than it was already on.

      And it’s all fraud! Every bit of it….from the creation of money out of thin air to the phony measurement of economic activity via GDP. It’s all Ponzi. And it’s all highly destructive of the biosphere.

      The only interesting question short term are theses:

      How long can the international bankers maintain their Ponzi scheme via sacrificing the future (sacrificing the global environment and sacrificing the petroleum reserves that drive everything but are rapidly depleting)?

      Will the international bankers orchestrate World War Three in order to collapse the system?

      How vicious will the bankers and the other psychotic sociopaths that run the western world be after it all collapses?

      And the only longer term question of much interest is this:

      How long have the next generation got before planetary overheating -a natural consequence of the insane system which is operated throughout most of the world- renders life intolerable or impossible?

    • D'Esterre says:

      Cassie: if you wish your comments to be taken seriously, it’s vitally important that you a) stop with the ellipsis, and b) abandon upper case, except as capital letters beginning sentences, or for proper names.

      At present, nobody has a clue what you’re talking about.

  13. Kim dandy says:

    Clearly something up with the dems right from the start of us elections – when an early poll showing Bernie the prefered favourite over Hillary by some large margin – was removed very quickly off the screens – never to be seen again.
    Dems had picked their winner right from the start.
    Demockery.

  14. Castro says:

    Probably around the same time we stop applauding the largest authoritarian dictatorship on the planet? Around the time that the war kicks off, most likely.

  15. Helena says:

    Nice try, Cassie, but those gathered are determined to analyse an illusion.

  16. G.A.P. says:

    What more can you say about a country of approximately three hundred and twenty five million exceptional people who can have there whole democratic system completely overturned by the evil RUSSIANS spending two hundred thousand on farce book????
    (Information obtained from secret, unverified sources and rnz national radio and guests, most usually having just released a book.) I really do despair as national radio was once somewhere you could get a reasonably balanced reporting of world affairs. Lately i can not help but wonder if they have a direct line to the edifice at the top of fitzherbert terrace wellington, (us embassy)

    • D'Esterre says:

      G.A.P.: “a country of approximately three hundred and twenty five million exceptional people who can have there whole democratic system completely overturned by the evil RUSSIANS spending two hundred thousand on farce book?”

      Heh: very good! A succinct assessment of the sheer blinding stupidity of the Russia-dunnit furphy.

      “I really do despair as national radio was once somewhere you could get a reasonably balanced reporting of world affairs.”

      Yup. my sentiments exactly. RNZ is not what it once was.

  17. Andrewo says:

    So while the Democrat party tears itself apart, Trump is delivering on his promises:

    1. Conservative supreme court judges appointed

    2. Slashing red tape that was holding back growth and employment

    3. A clearer, stronger military posture than Obama.

    4. Moving the US embassy to Jerusalem

    5. Lower unemployment and historic low black unemployment

    6. A booming stock market and a flood of cash coming back to the USA thanks to tax cuts.

    You may not like his policies, but these are what he was elected for and he’s delivering them.

    If things carry on like this he’s a shoo-in for 2020. I’m not saying they will, but exactly who have the Democrats got as a viable alternative?

    • Cemetery Jones says:

      In my opinion, the Democrats have two options: Tulsi Gabbard or lose.

      Overall, I liked this blog post from Bradbury, but this stuff is unnecessary:

      “It’s great to feel disgusted, terrified, angered, furious, pissed off, defiant, vindicated and belligerent about this horror clown’s first anniversary in power, but without understanding how this cancer was visited upon us, we are doomed to repeat this mistake.”

      I’m more concerned about the things right wing politicians do than the things they say. Trump says things which often make me laugh, often make me cringe. But in terms of seeing a right winger in power from the left, I haven’t much to complain about. He fired missiles at Syria to get 5 minutes of praise from CNN, that pissed me off. But other than that, take away what he’s said, and what he’s done is hard to be bothered with given the alternatives.

      His tax cuts might mean more debt? Big deal after the Obama years. Social spending is pretty crap? Prospects weren’t great from Hillary, she was committed to pretending the Affordable Care Act is some kind of viable substitute for social healthcare and Bernie nailed her to the wall on it – as well anyone on the left should have.

      He killed the TPPA, Obama didn’t and Hillary wouldn’t have – Tim Kaine gaffed that one within 5 minutes of his veep candidacy being announced. Her position on it was as phoney as the ever shifting sands of the desert that is her moral viewpoint on marriage equality.

      In short, I just wish the left would stop using Trump as the punchbag by which we collectively exercise the cognitive dissonance brought about by the Democrats being situated in about as left wing a position as the starboard engine of a Heinkel bomber.

      I always said, anything Trump wants to actually do which may prove to be unconstitutional will be challenged as such. So far it has, win or lose.

      • Sam Sam says:

        Hi JONES. Long time no speak, how’s the family… Good? Good. Yeah mine too. Now that’s out the way…

        New 1040’s (U.S individual income tax return) are out! >question 4 reads as follows: “Trump is not your President. Check here if you want to pay taxes at Obama Administration rate…” 😀

        Says it all really. Powerful forces in the U.S. want to see America destabilized & burnt to the ground Create the problem then offer the “solution.” Obamanomics, Clintonomics, Deep State Politics 101, Trumpism, Bushism, WMDism. How many times can this blatantly obvious agenda be exposed? Antidote is simple, for the people.

        But if Oprah runs for president and has some one like Gabbard as her running mate then please, strap the fuck up because we ain’t playing. Oprah + Gabbard = revenue. I can already see the people in the comments section getting there nigga hunt eyes on. That just creates work for lots of law enforcement, and internal debate. Any way more work is good right?

        Us here on The Daily Blog don’t just come out and comment for nothing. We like to be a little bit ahead of the average. The O network alone reaches 50mln people casually, like on a Monday or Sunday super bowl. We are out here dropping jewels for y’all, just trying to give y’all a solid, bunch of information so you can go back to your work place lunch break or were ever you do and get one over your work mates, regularly.

        • Cemetery Jones says:

          Mrs. Jones is well, pepe Jones is well, I’m the same as always. I trust it’s much the same with your good self!

          I fear “create problem, provide solution” is the m.o. behind most of it right now – terrorism, mass immigration, growing unemployment, climate change, ‘muh-thar Russia’, you name it. This is especially so with the EU, but also the war crime oligarchy of the USA. I get the feeling the US marines and a good deal of LEO aren’t into it, but many more can’t wait.

          • Sam Sam says:

            https://www.iiss.org/en/iiss%20voices/blogsections/iiss-voices-2017-adeb/august-2b48/north-korea-icbm-success-3abb <<< Fairly long but technically accessible article. The tl;dr version is basically, this British Think Tank makes a good case for the theory that the DPRK finally got their new ICBM engines, based on the Soviet RD-250 engine family, either through Russia's Energomash or Ukraine's KB Yuzhnoye. The KB Yuzhnoye theory is more likely, considering that

            I) Ukraine is a chaotic mess and KB Yuzhnoye is in a shitty state
            II) Russia isn't great but it isn't a chaotic mess and Energomash is doing much better than one would have to be doing before considering illicit business with the DPRK
            III) DPRK agents were already caught trying to illegally acquire missile hardware from KB Yuzhnoye back in 2012

            IV) KB Yuzhnoye has been on the brink of financial collapse since 2015
            So I mean, considering that the DPRK did something like 8 intermediate missile tests in 2016 and almost all of them failed, and now, half a year later, they've shown to the world a functional ICBM, what the fuck else is the explanation? Either their engineers and industrial base are at a superpower level, or they've bought their new ICBM engines from abroad, in which case, they either bought them from the Russians or the Ukrainians and it's almost definitely not the Russians.

            Ideologues rarely care about the fine inconvenient details when they want to create their fairy tale narrative.

            The U.S. Government and military are kind of the go to villains or antagonists for good chunk of Hollywood action movies. As it taps into Americas distrust and fear of it's own government. And Fallout portrays the US military and government – especially the GOP – as literal cartoon evil Space Nazis.

            Corrupt police is more or less a default villain right after corrupt businessmen and officials. There are quite a few Rambo (first one) remakes in Russian setting.
            There are quite a lot of movies/TV series which portrays Soviet military in WW2 in less than favorable light too. Modern Russian military in the media is rarely evil but usually corrupt, ineffective or useless.

            As far as Mana goes. How would a RSM like it if his army were portrayed as evil, corrupt and inefficient super villains, and the government he's payed to protect is giving Hollywood tax relief on the side… This last bit isn't so hypothetical. We are governed by our lesser peers.

            • Cemetery Jones says:

              Yeah totally. Treat them like scum and then expect them to back your moves? Not gonna happen…

              I’ve read the KB Yuzhnoye theory too (Saker, Strategic Culture, Zerohedge or some combination of one or two of the three) and I agree it’s compelling and makes far more sense. Putin’s far too into stability to give that kind of hardware to the Norks.

              As much of a pantomime villain as the western lugenpresse wants to make him, he thinks far more moves ahead than the satisfaction of upsetting SJWs.

              • Sam Sam says:

                Ah yes, Stephanie Rogers wrote about politics and the balance of power. If your like Cemetery Jones and me you like to find historical analogies such as Athens vs Sparta or Germany at the end of the 19th century and so on. But we should be couscous of historical analogies because of the weight of China in the international system in the next decade because the system has never dealt with a player of this size (1.3bln) ever, so we should be cautious about historical analogies when applied to Asia. But this is classic balance of power stuff and in the Napoleonic times believing in balance of power had no frame work attached to it. It was a series of ideas about how nations in there natural state reacted with one and other. And it didn’t react to moral judgment except among the Russian Czars from time to time about the organisation and implementation of the balance of power.

                IMO the balance of power is the best optic with which to look through Asia rite large for the foreseeable future. And in that Concept the U.S, China, Russian roles in Asia is critical to technology and logistics dominance. And I would say don’t expect China to balance there own power when we would expect less of ourselves and others. So I make no moral Judgments about China or North Korea (DPRK) only to say that with out this over arching hegemonic framework it would be impossible to restrict the use of weapons of mass destruction.

                My upbringing in an 8 generation family made me bias. The bias seeps into you that society works best when every man aims to be a gentlemen. The underlying philosophy is that society works best when society takes priority over the interests of individuals. This is a fundamental difference with the primary rights of neoliberalism.

                Needless to say I have zero ideology so clearly there would be no place for me in Wellington. We may have put a business card in space but we have not conquered our own primeval instincts of motions that was necessary for survival during colonisation and before. But it is no longer necessary in the space age. I’v always believed that we are not much different from our ancestors a thousand years ago but my bias believes that we can be improved. I’m not sure it can be improved but people can be trained and disciplined. You can take a fluent Māori population and convince them of the merits of foreign languages. But you can not really change his or her natural born instincts.

                I never new until I started school that colonisers conquered Aotearoa and pushed my people up into hills. They did and brutalised us including me many decades later. I was 5 years old when I realised this and on a tour years latter of the fortifications around AUT I learned about the balance of power long before SJWs started scribbling about John key pulling ponytails. The colonisers taught me this in the 1980’s. Colonisation is the single biggest education of my life because for 22 years I saw the meaning of power and how power and politics went together. And I also understood how people trapped in a power situation responded because they have to live.