162 Matching Annotations
  1. Aug 2023
    1. What if, early in the morning on Election Day in 2016, Mark Zuckerberg had used Facebook to broadcast “go-out-and-vote” reminders just to supporters of Hillary Clinton? Extrapolating from Facebook’s own published data, that might have given Mrs. Clinton a boost of 450,000 votes or more, with no one but Mr. Zuckerberg and a few cronies knowing about the manipulation.
      • for: Hiliary Clinton could have won, voting, democracy, voting - social media, democracy - social media, election - social media, facebook - election, 2016 US elections, 2016 Trump election, 2016 US election, 2016 US election - different results, 2016 election - social media
      • interesting fact
        • If Facebook had sent a "Go out and vote" message on election day of 2016 election, Clinton may have had a boost of 450,000 additional votes
          • and the outcome of the election might have been different
  2. Jul 2021
    1. The 2016 presidential race had signaled as much. Donald Trump carried 2,584 counties across the country, but calculations by scholars at the Brookings Institution showed that the 472 counties Hillary Clinton carried accounted for nearly two-thirds of U.S. economic output.

      Hillary Clinton: 472 counties = 64% US GDP

      Donald Trump: 2584 counties = 36% US GDP


  3. Oct 2020
    1. “every courageous and incisive measure to solve internal problems of our own society, to improve self-confidence, discipline, morale and community spirit of our own people, is a diplomatic victory over Moscow worth a thousand diplomatic notes and joint communiqués. If we cannot abandon fatalism and indifference in the face of deficiencies of our own society, Moscow will profit.”

      Perhaps the best defense against active measures is a little bit of activism of our own

  4. May 2020
  5. Apr 2018
  6. May 2017
    1. Michael Flynn and other advisers to Donald Trump’s campaign were in contact with Russian officials and others with Kremlin ties in at least 18 calls and emails during the last seven months of the 2016 presidential race, current and former U.S. officials familiar with the exchanges told Reuters.

  7. Jan 2017
    1. One of the most alarming aspects of the rise of Trump is (or should have been) his embrace of the Orwellian lie.<br> ...<br> we are not talking about garden variety lying here — we are talking about the totalitarian lie: lies told, repeatedly, loudly and insistently, in direct confrontation with the indisputable truth. Lies purposefully designed to undermine the very capacity to make truth claims.<br> ...<br> It is a plain fact that our political system is compromised. Nowhere is this more evident than in the financial sector and its (non-) oversight, a bipartisan catastrophe two decades in the making<br> ...<br> It is simply not possible to shy away from the ugly fact that racism was an essential ingredient to his election.<br> ...<br> the playing field has changed, empowering some actors at the expense of others. Or put another way: no internet, no Trump.<br> ...<br> The internet is exponentially more pernicious: entry is free, accountability is absent, and — here we are more stupid — the ability of people to distinguish between fact and fiction has virtually vanished. We are living in a post-fact, post-rationalist, post-deliberative society, in which people believe what they want to believe, as if they were selecting items from different columns of a take-out menu.<br> ...<br> from this point forward we will always be the country that elected Donald Trump as President. And as Albert Finney knew all too well in Under the Volcano, “some things, you just can’t apologize for.” This will be felt most acutely on the world stage.

    1. Rep. Jason Chaffetz, who was eager to launch new investigations of Hillary Clinton, doesn't care about Donald Trump's huge, glaring, absurd conflicts of interest. He's even trying to intimidate the director of the Office of Government Ethics for commenting about it.

    1. Jim Arkedis, formerly an intelligence analyst with the DoD.

      Below is how I would assess the credibility of the sources and allegations detailed in Buzzfeed’s recently-released dossier and an explanation of why I believe its two main allegations should be judged on their individual merits as credible with moderate-to-high confidence.

      No, that’s not the same as saying the allegations are 100 percent guaranteed to be true, but I think there’s enough evidence there that it would be irresponsible not to consider how this could impact our nation’s security and what, if anything, can be done to mitigate those potential impacts.

    1. Donald Trump's insane conflicts of interest.

      A report this afternoon from the Wall Street Journal, however, revealed that Trump’s disclosure was the tip of the iceberg. The FEC required Trump only to report debt from entities he fully controls. The disclosure left out “more than $1.5 billion lent to partnerships that are 30%-owned by him.” That debt has been securitized and is owed to at least 150 financial entities.

      These financial institutions include many firms that are under the scrutiny of the federal agencies that Trump will soon control. Wells Fargo, for example, which services over $900 million in loans connected to Trump, “is currently facing scrutiny from federal regulators surrounding its fraudulent sales practices and other issues.”

  8. Dec 2016
    1. On the thinking of Trump supporters, particularly in Louisiana. Similar to what I've read elsewhere, they tend to view wealth as a virtue. Those who still belong to the vanishing middle class look down on "big-government handouts". But those in the struggling working class are willing to accept needed assistance -- as long as it is only going to "real Americans".

    1. From 15 Nov 2016, an insightful and entertaining rant about the 2016 election campaign and its outcome.

      "Hillary Clinton didn't fail us, we failed Hillary Clinton."

      • Putin's hackers stole emails. Wikileaks published them.
      • News media covered the emails like a breaking scandal, while giving little attention to how and why the emails were stolen.
      • Before that, Republicans made as much noise as they could about Benghazi, and Clinton using a private email server. News media could hardly have been more helpful to them if they were all owned outright by the Republican party.
      • News media treated Trump like a serious candidate, rather than the lying, idiot lowlife that he is.
      • Days before election day, James Comey announces, maybe possibly kind of, more emails from Clinton's private server discovered on Anthony Weiner's laptop. News media covers it enthusiastically. In a few days, Comey announces there was nothing new. How about that.

      Dave Pell's main point here is that news media wouldn't produce crap if people didn't eat it up.

      But we aren't all eating the crap. I don't think there's much we can do about the people who do. Many of them aren't being fooled by the lies and sensationalism. They're just choosing to "believe" what they want to "believe". (Though the number actually fooled was probably far more than enough to win the election for Trump.)

      We need to give as much support as we can to responsible journalism and commentary. And maybe we can collectively discourage media from producing crap by making sure they know that millions of us are angered by it. Maybe there should be independent journalists as a branch of government, tasked with choosing what the people should know, and granted privileges similar to those that members of Congress have.

    1. A personal appeal from Michael Moore to the Republican members of the Electoral College.

    1. Alexander Hamilton’s writing in Federalist Paper No. 68, which states that the meeting of the electoral college “affords a moral certainty, that the office of President will never fall to the lot of any man who is not in an eminent degree endowed with the requisite qualifications.”

      Yes, and Alexander Hamilton was in favor of property requirements for voting, which prevented a large majority of people from voting. Here we have the Democrats saying we should make our selection of the U.S. President less democratic, less responsive to voters -- not more democratic.

      I have fears Trump will be a bad President. But I don't like the incredible hypocrisy of those who slandered Trump for not agreeing to accept the results of the election, not only refusing to accept the result, but try to do so by -- not only overturning a tradition that is over a hundred years old -- but doing so in a manner that would make our selection of a president much less responsive to voters.

    1. For most of my friends on the Left, the argument against Trump is about fitness: Trump, they say, is not fit to be President. I agree with this claim.

      But that claim has been rendered democratically irrelevant. 62 million Americans heard that argument, and disagreed with it. That doesn’t make the claim “Donald Trump is unfit” false. But it does render it unusable by an elector as a reason not to vote for Trump. Whatever they were meant to be originally, we cannot now see electors as democratic guardians of our Republic. They cannot be entitled to second guess the judgment of the people with respect to an issue the people can reasonably be said to have considered.

      I disagree with this. The very purpose of the Electoral College is to judge the candidate. That can mean telling the majority that their choice was stupid. (And depending on how many Electors think so, the House is still likely to consider the issue yet again.)

    1. Nine Lessons of Russian Propaganda<br> Roman Skaskiw (an American who moved to Ukraine in 2012)<br> [I liked this article enough to google the author. First, I looked at Twitter -- and thought it was either an imposter, or his account had been hacked. But then I went looking at other sites, which are registered to someone using the same name. They shift between reasonable and crackpot.]

      From 27 March 2016.<br> But gosh... This shit is strangely familiar.

      • Use and abuse all factions.
      • Destroy and ridicule the idea of truth.
      • Headlines are more important than reality. They stick.
      • Demoralize, and terrorize.
      • Distract and misdirect.
      • Pollute the information space.
      • Accuse the enemy of doing what you're doing.
    1. Lawrence Lessig on the legal constraints and ethical obligations of the Electors. (First published in The Daily Beast, 13 Dec 2016.)

      In my opinion, if the Electors don't reject Donald Trump, they have failed to do the only duty for which the Electoral College was created. (Putting aside the fact that the actual majority voted for Hillary Clinton...) The majority can make a stupid decision. It should be the sworn duty of the Electors to judge the candidate.

    1. Trump claims nobody brought up Russian hacking before the election. It was already made public on October 7. And he had been personally briefed about it before denying Russian involvement during the debates.


      (On Google Chrome, hypothesis fails to open for me on that nbcnews page.)

    1. From 26 July 2016, Lawrence Lessig says it isn't the time to refuse to vote for "the lesser of two evils". Then he agrees with Robert Reich that people are angry about corrupt government, and Trump is likely to win unless Hillary Clinton makes it a central issue.

      Now Trump is already working on using the presidency to line his pockets. His cabinet is basically ExxonMobil and Goldman Sachs -- and a few lesser Nazis.

      I wonder how many Trump voters are paying attention to this. How many notice they've been scammed? How many are busy rationalizing it? How many notice that they just voted to destroy democracy?

    1. Video messages to members of the Electoral College asking them to vote for someone qualified to be President of the United States of America.

    1. A volunteer observer for the Michigan recount describes his experience -- an army of Republican lawyers doing whatever they could to keep votes from being counted.

    1. "We told them it was BS and what they were doing with a public platform was incredibly reckless and dangerous," wrote Coby of the back-and-forth between the Trump operation and Twitter.

      Twitter may be a platform that mostly lives in the public, but it isn't a public platform. It's also one of the reasons I have my own site.

    1. Nine Democratic Senators call for a National Intelligence Estimate on the extent of Russian intervention in the 2016 presidential election, and ask the DOJ to confirm that a criminal investigation is ongoing, or to begin one.

    1. Trump's character and America's recent political climate are familiar to people who have lived in or studied authoritarian states. Russia is using the same tactics on us that they've used, and continue to use, in Europe.

    1. Karoli Kuns lists things we need to do:

      • forensic investigation of voting machines
      • full accounting for any breaches of voter databases
      • investigation of RNC hacks
      • investigation of Paul Manafort
      • testimony from Roger Stone
      • testimony from James Comey
      • testimony from Mitch McConnell
    1. Trump is trying to prohibit protest.

      That’s because the National Park Service, on behalf of the Presidential Inauguration Committee, filed documents securing large swaths of the national mall and Pennsylvania Avenue, the Washington Monument and the Lincoln Memorial for the inauguration festivities. None of these spots will be open for protesters.

      The NPS filed a “massive omnibus blocking permit” for many of Washington DC’s most famous political locations for days and weeks before and after the inauguration on 20 January,

    1. This is particularly difficult when a simple conspiracy theory is offered as an explanation for a complex phenomenon. Sometimes the world is messy, and ― Occam’s Razor notwithstanding ― simple explanations can be a cop-out.

      Ironically, dismissal of Trump's ties to Putin strikes me as an instance of gaslighting -- while demonstrating that it's not always intentional. ("Oh, that's just a conspiracy theory." "There's no evidence of that at all." "What do you think this is, a James Bond novel?")

      There are very close ties between Trump and Putin.<br> They need to be thoroughly investigated.

      Another instance of gaslighting is the suggestion that those who want the election audited are merely sore losers, or paranoid. Never mind the probing of voter registration databases. Never mind the vulnerable voting machines. Never mind the mismatch between exit polls and counts. Never mind that Republicans brazenly conspire to disenfranchise minorities.

    1. From 27 July 2016, Masha Gessen recognizes Donald Trump as a dangerous fascist. She also recognizes that Trump is "a thoroughly American creation that poses an existential threat to American democracy."

      But the top point of the article is to dismiss the idea of connections between Trump and Putin. Bullshit.

      Putin assisted the Trump campaign with hacking and propaganda. The only questions are exactly how much the Russians did, and whether they actually hacked the election itself. We need to investigate ties between Trump, his associates, and Putin, and we need a thorough audit of the election.

    1. Leading up to Ms. Tolokonnikova’s trial, Russian news reports carried suggestions that she and her bandmates were pawns of Hillary Clinton’s State Department or witches working with a global satanic conspiracy — perhaps linked to the one that was behind the Sept. 11 attacks, as lawyers for one of their offended accusers put it. This is what we now call “fake news.”

      Pussy Riot became an international symbol of Mr. Putin’s crackdown on free speech; of how his regime uses falsehood and deflection to sow confusion and undermine critics.

      Now that the political-media environment that we smugly thought to be “over there” seems to be arriving over here, Ms. Tolokonnikova has a message: “It’s important not to say to yourself, ‘Oh, it’s O.K.,’” she told me. “It’s important to remember that, for example, in Russia, for the first year of when Vladimir Putin came to power, everybody was thinking that it will be O.K.”

    1. A legal argument that winner-take-all allocation of Electors is a violation of the rights of the voters in the minority.

      1. In summary, a winner-take-all system of allocating Electors by the states denies the minority of voters within each state any representation whatsoever within the Electoral College and ultimately in the case of the 2000 and 2016 elections, denies the plurality of voters nationwide their choice for President under circumstances in which the constitutionally established small state advantage made part of the Electoral College wouldnot. This is neither a reasonable nor a rational result in a representative democracy. This result was dictated by the winner-take-all method of allocating Electors used by the states. It is this state law method of allocating Electors that is an unconstitutional violation of the equal protection clause of the 14th Amendment and its bedrock principle of one man one vote.


      It’s perfectly clear that the Attorney General of New York or California could walk into the Supreme Court tomorrow, and ask the Court to hear the case. Delaware tried to do this exactly fifty years ago, but the Court ducked the question. But based on that complaint, were I a citizen of California, I’d ask my current AG (and future Senator) why hasn’t CA done the same thing? And were I a citizen of New York, I’d ask my AG the same. Why are these big states standing by quietly as their voters are essentially silenced by the unconstitutional inequality?

    1. It is not only the right, but the duty of the Electoral College to reject Donald Trump. But we've never had a candidate as unfit for office as Trump, so that duty has been ignored and subverted. We need to do all we can to let the Electors know that we expect and support that they will exercise personal judgment to do what is best for the nation and the world.

    1. Donald Trump is a vile liar. So are the people who associate with him. So are the Republicans who supported his presidential campaign, or stood by as though it was fine to say nothing. Don't regard them as anything other than vile liars.

      journalists need to understand what Trump is doing and refuse to play by his rules. He is going to use the respect and deference typically accorded to the presidency as an instrument for spreading more lies. Reporters must refuse to treat him like a normal president and refuse to bestow any unearned legitimacy on his administration. They must also give up their posture of high-minded objectivity — and, along with it, any hope of privileged access to the Trump White House. The incoming president has made clear that he expects unquestioning obedience from the press, and will regard anyone who doesn’t give it to him as an enemy. That is the choice every news outlet faces for the next four years: Subservience and complicity, or open hostility. There is no middle ground.

    1. Bogus news stories, which overwhelmingly favored Trump, did flood social media throughout the campaign, and the hack of the Clinton campaign chair John Podesta’s e-mail seems likely to have been the work of Russian intelligence services. But, as harmful as these phenomena might be, the prospect of legitimate dissenting voices being labelled fake news or Russian propaganda by mysterious groups of ex-government employees, with the help of a national newspaper, is even scarier. Vasily Gatov told me, “To blame internal social effects on external perpetrators is very Putinistic.”

      So, PropOrNot's report declares so many websites to be "Russian propaganda" that it is practically Russian disinformation. I guess they should add their own site to the list.

    1. Russia’s increasingly sophisticated propaganda machinery — including thousands of botnets, teams of paid human “trolls,” and networks of Web sites and social-media accounts — echoed and amplified right-wing sites across the Internet as they portrayed Clinton as a criminal hiding potentially fatal health problems and preparing to hand control of the nation to a shadowy cabal of global financiers.


      Another group, PropOrNot, is supposed to be releasing their study on Russian propaganda tomorrow, 25 November. [Update: PropOrNot apparently labelled so many sites as "Russian propaganda" that it is practically a piece of disinformation all by itself. Maybe they're Russian. :) http://www.newyorker.com/news/news-desk/the-propaganda-about-russian-propaganda

    1. The users of a subreddit devoted to Donald Trump have been a big hassle for Reddit moderators

      “At this point, I think reddit is a lost cause because of the admins inability to take action on the group while simultaneously being overwhelmed with dealing with the individual,” a moderator told us. “No other subreddit has been able to be used [as] a platform for harassment for this long in Reddit’s history. And it’s likely going to be what kills it.” Said another: “The social experiment has run its course.”

      The names and pseudonyms of multiple sources in this story have been omitted to protect their anonymity due to credible threats.

  9. Nov 2016
    1. This is an interesting look at Trump's personality, but it shrugs off the danger we're in.

      Donald Trump is a liar, a cheat, a narcissist, and a petty bully with no principles. And Trump himself is only part of the danger. I have no doubt that some members of the 1% are actively looking for opportunities to flush democracy down the toilet for the sake of making an extra billion. And they may be colluding with wealthy Russians.

      That’s how you move Trump. You don’t talk about ethics. You play the toughness card. You appeal to the art of the deal. You make him feel smart, powerful, and loved. You don’t forget how unmoored and volatile he is, but you set aside your fear and your anger. You thank God that you’re dealing with a narcissist, not a cold-blooded killer. And until you can get him safely out of the White House, you work with what you have. People in other countries have dealt with presidents like Trump for a long time. Can we handle it? Yes, we can.

    1. I have watched as tobacco, coal, oil, chemicals and biotech companies have poured billions of dollars into an international misinformation machine composed of thinktanks, bloggers and fake citizens’ groups. Its purpose is to portray the interests of billionaires as the interests of the common people, to wage war against trade unions and beat down attempts to regulate business and tax the very rich. Now the people who helped run this machine are shaping the government.

      Donald Trump has filled his staff with these liars.

    1. Republican Rep. Jason Chaffetz of Utah, chair of the House Oversight Committee, has shown great enthusiasm for persecuting Hillary Clinton. But for some reason, he doesn't seem to have any interest in investigating Donald Trump's glaring conflicts of interest.

    1. From 11 Oct 2016, Donald Trump and his followers fit all 14 of Umberto Eco's criteria for Ur-Fascism.

      Also note that many of the videos of Trump doing and saying horrible things come from pro-Trump YouTube channels. His fans love that he’s a fascist. It’s what they want — a strong man who will take care of them, scare off the bad people and tell them what to do.

    1. Donald Trump is using the methods of tyrants to control the media. He was already doing this during his campaign, and he has only gotten worse since becoming President-Elect.

      • Berate them directly.
      • Refuse access to those he disapproves.
      • Turn the public against them.
      • Condemn criticism and satire aimed at him.
      • Threaten them with lawsuits and potential new laws.
      • Limit media access.
      • Speak directly to the public. (There has been mention of Trump continuing to hold rallies. He likes the instant gratification and adulation of a cheering crowd.)


    1. Donald Trump's "lies about voter fraud are a prelude to massive voter suppression." This has become typical of the Republican party. But Trump and his staff are sure to make it worse, and they're already showing it.

    1. Johnathan Chait once chided Ta-Nehisi Coates for his hopelessness. If there is a more persistent demand of the marginalized and oppressed than that they perform hope for their benefactors, it is difficult to find it. We have, of course, a nomenclature problem. When white allies want us to be hopeful what they really mean is that they require absolution in exchange for their sympathies. And, when black people say that they are plenty hopeful we tend to mean that our hope is tempered by a deep awareness of how thin is the veneer of white civility.


      My hopelessness isn’t nihilism just like my blind spot has always seen clearly the limits of American progress.

      My hopelessness is faith in things yet seen and works yet done. It is a necessary requirement for the hard work of resisting tyranny and fascism. It is the precondition for sustained social movements because history isn’t a straight line. It is a spinning top that eventually moves forward but also always goes round and round as it does.

    1. 7 Oct 2016 joint statement from DHS and DNI.

      The U.S. Intelligence Community (USIC) is confident that the Russian Government directed the recent compromises of e-mails from US persons and institutions, including from US political organizations.

    1. A statement from Marc Elias, general counsel to Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign. They've been watching the vote counts closely, and will continue to do so. They "had not uncovered any actionable evidence of hacking or outside attempts to alter voting technology."

    1. Members of the Electoral College should not make Donald Trump the next president unless he sells his companies and puts the proceeds in a blind trust, according to the top ethics lawyers for the last two presidents.

      Richard Painter, Chief Ethics Counsel for George W. Bush, and Norman Eisen, Chief Ethics Counsel for Barack Obama, believe that if Trump continues to retain ownership over his sprawling business interests by the time the electors meet on December 19, they should reject Trump.

    1. I grew up in rural, Christian, white America. ... The problem isn’t that I don’t understand these people. The problem is they don’t understand themselves, the reasons for their anger/frustrations, and don’t seem to care to know why.


      Since facts and reality don’t matter, nothing you say to them will alter their beliefs. “President Obama was born in Kenya, is a secret member of the Muslim Brotherhood who hates white Americans and is going to take away their guns.” I feel ridiculous even writing this, it is so absurd, but it is gospel across large swaths of rural America. Are rural, Christian, white Americans scared? You’re damn right they are. Are their fears rational and justified? Hell no. The problem isn’t understanding their fears. The problem is how to assuage fears based on lies in closed-off fundamentalist belief systems that don’t have the necessary tools for properly evaluating the fears.

      What CAN change their minds?

      • Someone they consider "one of them" and respect as an authority, who preaches tolerance and critical thinking. We need more of those. (Unfortunately, there are now many public figures who reinforce their worst beliefs.)
      • Personal experience: knowing people from the groups they are prejudiced against.
    1. J. Alex Halderman, Professor of Computer Science at U. Michigan, says yes, it's possible that the election was hacked. We should audit the results. And paper ballots should always be used in future elections.

    1. Jill Stein filing for vote recounts in MI, PA, and WI. Needs to raise $2.5 million by Friday afternoon.

    1. "Farewell, America", Neal Gabler

      If there is a single sentence that characterizes the election, it is this: “He says the things I’m thinking.” That may be what is so terrifying. Who knew that so many tens of millions of white Americans were thinking unconscionable things about their fellow Americans?


      The virus that kills democracy is extremism because extremism disables those codes. Republicans have disrespected the process for decades. They have regarded any Democratic president as illegitimate. They have proudly boasted of preventing popularly elected Democrats from effecting policy and have asserted that only Republicans have the right to determine the nation’s course.


      The media can’t be let off the hook for enabling an authoritarian to get to the White House. ... When he ran, the media treated him not as a candidate, but as a celebrity, and so treated him differently from ordinary pols. The media gave him free publicity, trumpeted his shenanigans, blasted out his tweets, allowed him to phone in his interviews, fell into his traps and generally kowtowed until they suddenly discovered that this joke could actually become president.

    1. Ethnographers often act surprised at how "nice" white supremacists are -- to another white person, that is.

      What I realized was how tired I am of hearing how “nice” and “decent” the people are who voted for Trump. I’m so damn tired of this particular excuse because so-called nice and decent white voters put bigotry in office. “Nice” and “decent” don’t necessarily negate racism. Klan members can seem nice and still be racist. And “nice” and “decent” is often only extended by white people to other white people. This is pretty much only a shock to white people.

    1. Michael Signer says it is the duty of the Electoral College to judge candidates and reject a man like Donald Trump.

    1. Prof. Timothy Frye on the disturbing abnormalities of the 2016 election -- and their similarity to the status quo in weak democracies.

      • candidate keeping his finances a secret
      • threats to imprison a political opponent
      • racism, xenophobia, and misogyny
      • interference by a foreign government
      • media circus
      • politicization of security services (FBI)
    1. Bill Palmer's opinion:

      In order to believe that the official vote tallies are legitimate, you have to accept that all of the above legitimately happened: African-Americans in the south went from turning out in droves for Hillary Clinton in the primary to not caring if she won the general election. Donald Trump got perhaps seventy percent of the same-day voting in Florida. The polling averages were wrong for the first time in modern history. Trump beat his poll numbers despite having spent the primary season tending to fall below them. Clinton fell below her poll numbers despite having spent the primary season tending to beat them. In every state where Trump pulled off a shocking upset victory, he just happened to do it with one percent of the vote. And in an election that everyone cared particularly deeply about, no one really turned out to vote at all.

    1. During the transitional period, Donald Trump has continued to demonstrate that he is completely unfit for the office of President. And he doesn't seem to be smart enough to choose assistants that can do what he cannot -- which is pretty much everything the job requires: attention to detail, concern for law and policy, being very careful with words, and staying calm in tense situations. And if he suddenly starts displaying competence, it won't be a relief. Trump is a liar, a cheat, a con-man, and a bully.

    1. Paul Horner publishes fake news that is often shared widely. He claims that his stories are intended to be taken as satire like The Onion.

      Honestly, people are definitely dumber. They just keep passing stuff around. Nobody fact-checks anything anymore — I mean, that’s how Trump got elected. He just said whatever he wanted, and people believed everything, and when the things he said turned out not to be true, people didn’t care because they’d already accepted it. It’s real scary. I’ve never seen anything like it.

      My sites were picked up by Trump supporters all the time. I think Trump is in the White House because of me. His followers don’t fact-check anything — they’ll post everything, believe anything. His campaign manager posted my story about a protester getting paid $3,500 as fact. Like, I made that up. I posted a fake ad on Craigslist.

    1. Another way the Trump presidency is likely to be disastrous: he will (by his very nature) introduce systemic corruption in which friends of Trump and his cronies become "successful businesses" and those who oppose them are punished.

    1. Leonid Ragozin: "We Russians have watched our president embrace anyone prepared to join his gang and do his bidding. Americans will see the same from [Trump]." Expect him to neutralize criticism over xenophopia, racism, and misogyny by welcoming people from various communities into his camp, and appointing some to government posts.

      "Putin and Trump don't create ethnic movements, they create gangs in which the only criterion that really matters is whether you are 'with us' or 'against us'"

    1. If that's what democracy is worth to us, then we deserve what we get. Democracy requires support. It requires citizen support. It requires an investment of care and an investment of vigilance and an investment of participation more than deciding, “Yeah, I'm going to vote or I'm not going to vote.” It requires the fulfillment of a duty to be part of the public that counts and observes the counting of the votes so we don't have the ludicrous situation where we hand our ballots to a magician who takes them behind a curtain, you hear him shred the ballots, then comes out and tells you so-and-so won. This is what we've got now and it's what we've accepted.

      Steven Rosenfeld interviews Jonathan Simon, author of "Code Red: Computerized Election Theft and the New American Century" about exit polls and vote counts.

      Exit polls are not entirely trustworthy. But if they disagree much with the vote counts -- and especially if they tend to disagree in a particular direction -- it's a big red flag that something is wrong.

    1. But a former employee, Antonio Garcia-Martinez, disagrees and says his old boss is being "more than a little disingenuous here."


      "There's an entire political team and a massive office in D.C. that tries to convince political advertisers that Facebook can convince users to vote one way or the other," Garcia-Martinez says. "Then Zuck gets up and says, 'Oh, by the way, Facebook content couldn't possibly influence the election.' It's contradictory on the face of it."

    1. But according to regulators who have overseen potential conflicts of interests under two former presidents, Trump’s arrangements were unprecedented and present a host of issues.

      This is in no way a blind trust, said Karl Sandstrom, former chairman of the Federal Election Commission (FEC), the regulatory body that oversees campaign finance, under Bill Clinton and George W Bush. “A blind trust is not anywhere near the same. You don’t still have access to the decision being made. That’s why you put assets in and don’t just have someone else manage the company,” he said. Trump’s assets will instead apparently remain united under his company, and operated under his name even if he is not directly in charge.

    1. Ms. Merkel needs to fend off a resurgent Russia that is promoting its brand of illiberal democracy by backing right-wing parties throughout the Continent and fanning the flames of populism. But with Mr. Trump openly admiring Russia’s president, Vladimir V. Putin, even maintaining economic sanctions imposed on Moscow over conflicts in Crimea and Ukraine will be a challenge.


      Ms. Merkel had a brisk, assertive tone that was a measure of how far Germany has come since American generosity and protection enabled it to rise from Nazi defeat, first to prosper and eventually to overcome Cold War division.

      “Germany and America are bound by common values: democracy, freedom, as well as respect for the rule of law and the dignity of each and every person regardless of their origin, skin color, creed, gender, sexual orientation or political views,” she said. Cooperation with the United States, she said, must be “based on these values.”<br> -- Angela Merkel, Chancellor of Germany

    1. America is in great danger. Not just potential, but already upon us. And most of the media (especially television) is acting like nothing unusual has happened.

      Imagine a category-five hurricane was bearing down on the East Coast with a 30 percent chance of making landfall, but the evening news treated it as a remote threat. Then imagine the forecast changed to 100 percent. Then imagine the news sent a reporter and cameraman to the coast for a beachfront live shot, with the storm just over the horizon. Then imagine that they devoted their airtime to commenting on the beauty of the ocean and the talent of the surfers.

      That is basically what has happened over the course of the past week, except that the hurricane is Donald Trump’s presidency, and the East Coast is all of us—America and the world.

    1. The tyranny of the mob is enabled by those who refuse to recognize the threat, who rationalize the mob’s aims, or who – like the elites of the 1830s – avoid discussion of the racial enmity at its core. That same deep denial is occurring today, over 180 years later. We have a moral obligation to oppose it and document it, as others have in dangerous eras, in the hopes of negating threats to the most vulnerable.

    1. Petition the Electoral College to reject Donald Trump. There is a similar petition asking them to select Hillary Clinton. This one requests the more likely possibility of casting their votes for a different Republican. Includes contact information for many members of the Electoral College.

    1. But law enforcement officials said that their investigations found no direct link between Mr. Trump and the Russian government in the hacking of the Democrats’ computers. They also found no conclusive evidence of financial connections between Mr. Trump’s associates and Russian financial institutions.

      Still, some advisers to Mr. Trump have had contact with the Russian government. Lt. Gen. Michael T. Flynn, a retired intelligence officer and an adviser to Trump on security issues, was seated next to Mr. Putin during an anniversary dinner in Moscow for the English-language satellite television network, RT, in December 2015. And Paul Manafort, Mr. Trump’s former campaign chairman, had previously been a paid consultant to former President Viktor F. Yanukovych of Ukraine, a Kremlin ally before he was ousted in a civic uprising.

    1. Gloria Steinem responds to the election of Donald Trump.

      I’m being realistic, not negative. Almost every issue of equality now has majority support in public opinion polls, ideas of race and gender are changing, activism and iPhones are exposing the racial violence that has always been there, sexual assault from the campus to the military is no longer hidden, and Trump’s very public misogyny has unified women, educated men and inspired activism. It’s the Anita Hill effect, but deepened and multiplied. Trump has helped to expose desperation among those jobless and working poor who support him only because they oppose Washington.

    1. When Hughes writes, in the first two lines of his poem, “Let America be America again/ Let it be the dream it used to be,” he acknowledges that America is primarily a dream, a hope, an aspiration, that may never be fully attainable, but that spurs us to be better, to be larger. He follows this with the repeated counterpoint, “America never was America to me,” and through the rest of this remarkable poem he alternates between the oppressed and the wronged of America, and the great dreams that they have for their country, that can never be extinguished.

      -- Harry Belafonte

    1. Donald Trump has 75 ongoing legal battles, including:

      • 3 lawsuits against Trump University for misrepresentation
      • a NY investigation of misuse of Trump Foundation funds
      • a claim by a former employee that she was fired after reporting sexual harassment
      • suits and countersuits with two restaurant owners who pulled out of his D.C. hotel after his comments about Mexican immigrants
    1. The Complaint for Rape of a minor against Donald J. Trump and Jeffrey E. Epstein filed 30 Sep 2016. (This suit is apparently being dropped. The Daily Mail stated the charges were baseless, and other journalists had been hesitant to cover it due to lack of credibility.)

    1. The forces that propelled Mr. Trump’s rise need to be confronted and defeated. It won’t be easy, given that tens of millions of Americans will vote for him and believe deeply in him. But if these forces are not defeated, what happened this year will be replicated in one form or another, and the Republican Party will continue to inflict great harm on our republic.

      • Anti-intellectualism [Actually, outright insanity. Complete disregard for reality. Trump and his followers "believe" whatever they want to "believe". The Republican party has become a party of frauds and liars.]
      • Political recklessness [Playing bullshit games instead of doing the duties they were elected to do. The refusal to vote on President Obama's Supreme Court nominee is one example.]
      • Appealing to nativism and xenophobia [No shit. This article is otherwise forthright. He should have said fascism and white supremacy.]

      Aside from the sins of the Republican Party:

      • Major media failed us by giving this asshole all kinds of free publicity.
      • Responsible journalists did their jobs. We need to support them, and we need more of them.
      • Entertainers pretending to be serious political commentators and fake news sites have become a danger to democracy.
      • Trump supporters: shameless racists, or just astonishingly stupid? [No, moron, Hillary Clinton is not just as bad as Trump.] Can we please improve education at least enough to counterbalance the ineducable?

      the greater sin of the Republican Party wasn’t that Mr. Trump won the nomination by carrying a plurality of votes in a large field. It was that people who surely knew better rallied to Mr. Trump once he became the nominee. Some advised him, others defended him and excused him, and still others tried to ignore him.

      And we should never forget who those people were, Paul Ryan.

    1. she is a patriot. She will uphold the sovereignty and independence of the United States. She will defend allies. She will execute the laws with reasonable impartiality. She may bend some rules for her own and her supporters’ advantage. She will not outright defy legality altogether. Above all, she can govern herself; the first indispensable qualification for governing others.
    2. The lesson Trump has taught is not only that certain Republican dogmas have passed out of date, but that American democracy itself is much more vulnerable than anyone would have believed only 24 months ago. Incredibly, a country that—through wars and depression—so magnificently resisted the authoritarian temptations of the mid-20th century has half-yielded to a more farcical version of that same threat without any of the same excuse. The hungry and houseless Americans of the Great Depression sustained a constitutional republic. How shameful that the Americans of today—so vastly better off in so many ways, despite their undoubted problems—have done so much less well.
    3. America's first president cautioned his posterity against succumbing to such internecine hatreds: “The spirit of revenge, natural to party dissension … leads at length to a more formal and permanent despotism. The disorders and miseries which result gradually incline the minds of men to seek security and repose in the absolute power of an individual; and sooner or later the chief of some prevailing faction, more able or more fortunate than his competitors, turns this disposition to the purposes of his own elevation, on the ruins of public liberty.” George Washington’s farewell warning resounds with reverberating relevance in this election year.We don’t have to analogize Donald Trump to any of the lurid tyrants of world history to recognize in him the most anti-constitutional personality ever to gain a major-party nomination for the U.S. presidency.
    4. I’m invited to recoil from supposedly fawning media (media, in fact, which have devoted more minutes of network television airtime to Clinton’s email misjudgment than to all policy topics combined) and instead empower a bizarre new online coalition of antisemites, misogyists, cranks, and conspiracists with allegedly ominous connections to Russian state spy agencies?
    5. One of only two people on earth will win the American presidency on November 8. Hillary Clinton is one of those two possibilities. Donald Trump is the only other.Yes, I fear Clinton’s grudge-holding. Should I fear it so much that I rally to a candidate who has already explicitly promised to deploy antitrust and libel law against his critics and opponents? Who incited violence at his rallies? Who ejects reporters from his events if he objects to their coverage? Who told a huge audience in Australia that his top life advice was: "Get even with people. If they screw you, screw them back 10 times as hard. I really believe it”? Who idealizes Vladimir Putin, Saddam Hussein, and the butchers of Tiananmen as strong leaders to be admired and emulated?
    1. But the thing is, this doesn’t make me different than Trump supporters; it makes me exactly the same as Trump supporters.

      While our very real fears may manifest themselves in different ways, and while those fears may look and sound dissimilar, they are really the same fears: The fears of being left behind, left out, and being turned against.

    1. But on issues of racism, race-baiting, religious intolerance, misogyny, sexual assault, white supremacy and demagoguery — there can be no gray area, Peter. These are disqualifying issues and you are completely wrong to support Donald Trump.

    1. Senate Republicans have refused to give President Obama's Supreme Court nominee a hearing, under the pretense that it is too close to an election, and "the American people should have their say on this issue".

      Now, they're talking about refusing to consider anyone that Hillary Clinton nominates.

      The people already spoke twice when they elected Barack Obama. The people are about to speak again.

  10. Oct 2016
    1. Trump is Bad for Business. Letter opposing Donald Trump, drafted by 12 business leaders and signed by hundreds.

    1. An open letter from students at Liberty University.

      Because our president has led the world to believe that Liberty University supports Donald Trump, we students must take it upon ourselves to make clear that Donald Trump is absolutely opposed to what we believe, and does not have our support.

    1. The Republican Party nominated an ignorant, bigoted, authoritarian candidate to be president of the United States. The best message that the country can send with the popular vote is that if you try to win the presidency by stoking race hatred and promising to degrade the Constitution, you will lose and lose badly—that a fascist does not have an even-odds chance of becoming the most powerful person in the world.

  11. Sep 2016
    1. Is this the example we want for them?

      This piece could have been stronger if it didn't end with a question.

      "This is not the example we want for them."

    1. U.S. intelligence officials are seeking to determine whether an American businessman identified by Donald Trump as one of his foreign policy advisers has opened up private communications with senior Russian officials


      The activities of Trump adviser Carter Page, who has extensive business interests in Russia, have been discussed with senior members of Congress during recent briefings about suspected efforts by Moscow to influence the presidential election

    1. Palmer Luckey is funding "Nimble America," an organization that supports Donald Trump by mocking and badmouthing Hillary Clinton. Luckey sold virtual reality company Oculus to Facebook for $2 billion in 2014