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This is the forum for general discussion of the Downing Street minutes, the After Downing Street Coalition, and related matters other than activism, evidence, Congress and the media which have their own forum categories.

Tomgram: John Feffer, The Deconstruction of America, 2016-2050

This article originally appeared at TomDispatch.com. To receive TomDispatch in your inbox three times a week, click here.

Tomgram: Pratap Chatterjee, Obama's Last Chance

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Imagine this scenario: you’ve occupied an office for eight years and now you’re about to move out. You know who's going to move in and, by reputation, he’s a fellow with a minimal ability to control himself who might conceivably be a danger to others. So here’s one thing you undoubtedly wouldn’t do: leave a loaded revolver in the top desk drawer and a stash of extra ammunition in the closet.

However -- if you’ll excuse the analogy -- that seems to be exactly what President Obama and his national security team are doing when it comes to Donald Trump.

Too busy getting rich to commit war crimes?: Is Trump’s Idea To Fix the ‘Rigged System’ by Appointing Crooks Who’ve Played It?

By Dave Lindorff

 

       Donald Trump’s cabinet choices are suggesting a governing philosophy along the lines of a corrupt municipal police force relying on gangsters to help it keep street crime held in check.

Tomgram: Engelhardt, The Most Dangerous Country on Earth

This article originally appeared at TomDispatch.com. To receive TomDispatch in your inbox three times a week, click here.

Was 11/8 a New 9/11?
The Election That Changed Everything and Could Prove History’s Deal-Breaker
By Tom Engelhardt

Tomgram: Andrew Bacevich, The Swamp of War

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Tomgram: Nick Turse, Life's No Picnic in Trump's Secret (Service) Garden

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Focus: Cuba - Nov 27, 2016

 

I hope that Trump will reject regime change policies advocated by Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio regarding Cuba. It seems that they have not learned the tragic lessons of history: Iraq, Libya, Syria, etc. Cubans are poor but at least they are alive. The country’s literacy rate is at 100% and life expectancy parallels first world nations. There may be some limited food shortages but not famine. The two senators oppose the thaw in U.S.-Cuba relations which is a most positive legacy of Obama. At stake it is not only the normalization of the relations between US and Cuba opening economic and diplomatic ties with Havana. More important at stake it is the relations between US and Latin America where the left is influential whether it governs in countries such as Venezuela, Ecuador, Bolivia, El Salvador and Nicaragua or is the opposition such as in Argentina or Brazil.

 

Note on the Secretary of State candidates: I hope that Trump will launch a new era in US foreign policy by selecting a Secretary of State that will chart a real new course. In my opinion Mitt Romney and Rudy Giuliani are not a good fit. Least of all, war-hawks John Bolton and David Petraeus. 

 

Cruz, Rubio want Trump to dial back U.S.-Cuba relations, say Obama's recent ties with the island should be reevaluated - POLITICO


VIDEO: Ted Cruz: U.S. foreign policy -- not just to Cuba -- should no longer be a policy of weakness, but instead using U.S. strength to force and press for change - YouTube


Ted Cruz op-ed: Change can come to Cuba, but only if America prevents Fidel’s successor from playing the same old tricks - National Review


Marco Rubio: Donald Trump's Cuba policy should 'pave the way' for democracy - CNNPolitics.com


VIDEO: Sen. Rubio calls for "democratic opening" in Cuba - YouTube


Rubio Statement: History will remember Fidel Castro as an evil, murderous dictator - U.S. Senator for Florida, Marco Rubio


Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz slam politicians for praising Fidel Castro, go after Trudeau and Obama - inquisitr.com


Statement by President Obama on the passing of Fidel Castro - whitehouse.gov


U.S. State Dept reaffirms its support for deepening engagement with Cuba - Business Standard News


President-Elect Trump statement on the passing of Fidel Castro - Capitol Hill Cubans


Priebus: Trump will void Cuba deal unless Castro regime moves to concessions - Fox News


VIDEO: Priebus: Trump will void Cuba deal unless Castro regime moves to concessions - YouTube


VIDEO: Sanders on Cuba: "Of Course their economy is terrible," but they have health care and education - RealClearPolitics


Trudeau defends comments on death of Fidel Castro, He referred to him as a 'legendary revolutionary' who made significant improvements to the education and health-care systems - coastreporter.net


Statement by the Prime Minister of Canada on the death of former Cuban President Fidel Castro - Prime Minister of Canada


Cuba embargo must be lifted immediately after death of 'great figure' Fidel Castro, says French president - The Independent


On Fidel's death, Cuba and Puerto Rico, two paths intertwined - NBC News


Cuba's most prominent dissident group called off its weekly protest march for the first time in 13 years to avoid creating tensions: 'We respect the mourning of others' - Reuters


Castro's legacy and the envy of many nations: social care in Cuba, The country's literacy rate is at 100% and life expectancy parallels first world nations - The Guardian


To contact Bartolo email peaceloverblog[at]yahoo[dot]com (replacing [at] with @, [dot] with .)


Trans-Atlantic Bigotry: Brexit-Trump Comparisons Miss Some Key Points

By Linn Washington, Jr.

 

"Political language is designed to make lies sound truthful."

Tomgram: William Hartung, Trump for the Defense

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Tomgram: Rebecca Gordon, No "New Normal"

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Tomgram: Mattea Kramer, You Don't Leave Home Without It

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Tomgram: Nick Turse, America, the Election, and the Dismal Tide

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About that legacy, Mr. President: Obama Has a Small Window to Go Out with Some Flair and Excitement

By Dave Lindorff

 

            There is a lot of talk going on among the pundits about how President Obama is leaving no enduring legacy -- that his progressive actions as president, few and small that they may have been, were written in the sand of executive orders, which can and likely will be erased within days of Donald Trump’s inauguration.

Tomgram: Engelhardt, Through the Gates of Hell

This article originally appeared at TomDispatch.com. To receive TomDispatch in your inbox three times a week, click here.

Empire of Chaos 
With President Trump, Is the American Experiment Over? 
By Tom Engelhardt

The one thing you could say about empires is that, at or near their height, they have always represented a principle of order as well as domination.  So here’s the confounding thing about the American version of empire in the years when this country was often referred to as “the sole superpower,” when it was putting more money into its military than the next 10 nations combined: it’s been an empire of chaos.

Tomgram: Michael Klare, Whose Finger on the Nuclear Button?

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[Note for TomDispatch Readers: There will be no TD post this Tuesday. The next one will appear sometime between Thursday morning and Sunday night.  Now, go vote. Tom]

Tomgram: Engelhardt, Resurrecting My Parents From the Dead for Election 2016

This article originally appeared at TomDispatch.com. To receive TomDispatch in your inbox three times a week, click here.

Creating a National Security State “Democracy”
Or How the American Political System Changed and No One Noticed
By Tom Engelhardt

To say that this is the election from hell is to insult hell.

There’s been nothing like this since Washington forded the Rubicon or Trump crossed the Delaware or delivered the Gettysburg Address (you know, the one that began “Four score and eleven women ago...”) -- or pick your own seminal moment in American history.

Tomgram: Ann Jones, Donald Trump's Open Carry

This article originally appeared at TomDispatch.com. To receive TomDispatch in your inbox three times a week, click here.

Recently, the New York Times produced a veritable thesaurus of Trumpian twittery -- every insulting tweet of The Donald’s that their researchers could find since he declared his candidacy.  It’s quite a collection in which he goes after 282 people, places, and things in his uniquely abusive fashion. (Don’t even get me started on his tweets about Hillary Clinton; you’d be reading until tomorrow.) Here, instead, is a relatively limited list of his, a tiny entry of classic nastiness aimed at a peripheral character in this year’s election campaign, Senator Elizabeth Warren:

The choice this year is easy: Why No Leftist, Progressive or Liberal Should Vote for Hillary Clinton

By Dave Lindorff

 

            With one week to go in this year’s presidential election -- an astonishing and depressing contest in which the two least-liked and least-trusted candidates in history are the two choices put up by our two main political parties -- it’s time to look at why left and liberal people should not vote for the Democratic Party’s nominee, Hillary Clinton.

Tomgram: Nate Terani, One Veteran's War on Islamophobia

This article originally appeared at TomDispatch.com. To receive TomDispatch in your inbox three times a week, click here.

Recently, I was asked a question about Kill Anything That Moves, my history of civilian suffering during the Vietnam War. An interviewer wanted to know how I responded to veterans who took offense at the (supposed) implication that every American who served in Vietnam committed atrocities.

I think I softly snorted and slowly shook my head.  

Tomgram: Nomi Prins, Too Big to Fail, Hillary-Style

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Lost drug war: Pot Decriminalization Yields $9-million in Savings for Philadelphia

By Linn Washington, Jr.

 

A vivid example of value from decriminalization of possessing small amounts of marijuana occurred at the Philadelphia airport recently, a few days after the release of a report from two prominent organizations that called for the national decriminalization of personal use/possession of marijuana and other illicit drugs.

Speaking Events

January 10 and 11:
Events in Washington DC to present a petition telling president elect to end wars:
https://act.rootsaction.org/p/dia/action3/common/public/?action_KEY=12501

January 20-21 Occupy the Inauguration
 
January 29 David Swanson speaking in Arlington, Va.
 
February David Swanson debating a war supporter in Boston, Mass.
 
April 21-23 UNAC's annual conference in Richmond, Va.

April 29 possible multi-issue protest in DC.

Find Events Here.

 

 

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