THE MARCH TO FASCISM

Trump’s Turn From Immigration to the Enemy Within… the shift from demonizing immigrants to targeting leftists is straight out of the fascist playbook. 10.3.2020

...the Trump administration has increasingly and prominently centered purported threats posed by leftists, anarchists, and anti-fascists in its bid to hold onto power. This widening of the threat aperture is straight out of the authoritarian playbook, said Jason Stanley, a professor of philosophy at Yale University…” (author “How Fascism Works: The Politics of Us and Them.”)

You begin with something that separates citizens from non-citizens,” Stanley told The Intercept, explaining how fascistic power grabs often take place. “You have your colonial war, your war on terror, your imperialist war that focuses on distinguishing between citizens and non-citizens, and then you direct that force inwards against your political opponents.”

Ryan Devereaux   The Intercept

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Counter-Coup Unarmed Community Organizing Resource List

By Voices for Creative Nonviolence.


An organizer and analyst we deeply respect, “Training for Change” co-founder George Lakey, recently suggested Voices help maintain a list of organizations in the U.S. which are helping people prepare for the possibility of a stolen election, a rigged election, or an outright coup following November 3rd voting in the U.S.. In a nation with rapidly dwindling concern for democracy, the principle of nonviolent community organizing for democracy has seldom seemed so urgent.

https://popularresistance.org/counter-coup-unarmed-community-organizing-resource-list/

 

And this too:

10 things you need to know to stop a coup

Because the best way to stop a coup is to deter it.

By Daniel Hunter

We have a president who has openly said he might not respect the outcome of our election. We have to be ready if he claims victory before votes are counted, tries to stop counting, or refuses to accept a loss.

Some days I feel confident it will happen. A poll showed over 75 percent of Democrats think this is possible — and a shocking 30 percent of Republicans do too!

Find the Choose Democracy Pledge here: https://choosedemocracy.us/
Read the rest here:

https://www.nationofchange.org/2020/09/19/10-things-you-need-to-know-to-stop-a-coup/

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Trump Defends Police Shooting of Portland Man as “Retribution”

That’s the way it has to be,” the president said of the killing of a suspect.

Inae Oh News and Engagement Editor Mother Jones

President Trump offered a full-throated defense of the killing of Michael Reinoehl, the Portland man suspected of killing a member of a right-wing group last month, claiming that Reinoehl’s shooting by law enforcement officials was the inevitable price to be paid for his alleged crimes. 

“This guy was a violent criminal and the US Marshals killed him,” Trump told Fox News’ Jeanine Pirro in an interview that aired Saturday. “And I will tell you something: That’s the way it has to be. There has to be retribution.” [Reinoehl, who an eyewitness says was not resisting and was killed by police without warning.]

The remarks, which essentially encouraged extrajudicial murders by US police, come as the latest in the president’s open promotion of violence against his perceived political enemies. Mother Jones

 

The Feds Say They Tried to Arrest Portland Protest Murder Suspect Michael Reinoehl ‘Peacefully.’ A New Eyewitness Describes a Violent Ambush

By Tim Dickinson Rolling Stone 11 September 2020

The “takedown” of Michael Reinoehl by a federal fugitive task force resembled an execution, according to a new eyewitness

Michael Reinoehl, the antifascist activist accused of the killing Aaron “Jay” Danielson in during a right-wing protest in Portland last month, was shot and killed by officers who were dispatched to arrest him near Olympia, Washington on September 3rd. Now an eyewitness is contradicting the federal account of Reinoehl’s final moments, alleging that — far from attempting to “peacefully arrest” Reinoehl — law enforcement opened fire on him without warning, and that Reinoehl himself never brandished a gun. Rolling Stone

 

US Cops Are Treating White Militias as “Heavily Armed Friendlies”

By Kristian Williams, Truthout
Published September 17, 2020

Among the many effects of the ongoing wave of protests against police violence and racial inequality, one of the most striking is the increasingly overt cooperation between the police and armed right-wing groups, surpassing anything we have seen in decades.  Truthout

 

A Progressive Prosecutor Faces Off With Portland’s Aggressive Police

Portland’s new district attorney said he wouldn’t prosecute most protesters. Police kept arresting them anyway. Alice Speri September 16 2020, 12:04 p.m.

Intercept 

 

Conspiracy Theories by Cops Fuel Far Right Attacks Against Antiracist Protesters

By Shane Burley & Alexander Reid Ross, Truthout
Published September 18, 2020

On August 22, a far right confederation of Three Percenter militia, Proud Boys and Trump Republicans confronted Black Lives Matter (BLM) protesters in Portland, Oregon. They came armed to the teeth: open-carried rifles and handguns, shields paired with pipes and batons, and body armor with heavy-duty bulletproof helmets. They formed a shield line, many emblazoned with far right slogans like “Save the Children,” a reference to the conspiracy theory that Democrats are running child sex-slave rings. After an hour of taunts, they charged into the crowd. They swung metal pipes, beating people to the ground, breaking bones and leaving serious injuries.  Truthout

 

Rochester Protesters Say Justice for Daniel Prude Requires Defunding the Police

By Ella Fassler, Truthout
Published September 13, 2020

On March 23, seven Rochester police officers surrounded, mocked and placed a mesh “spit hood” over Daniel Prude’s head. Prude, a Black man who was nude at the scene, was having a mental health crisis on the wintery evening in the Upstate New York City and needed help, his brother Joe said. The officers told Prude to “calm down” and “relax,” as they pushed a knee into his back and neck, suffocating him until he was brain dead. The Monroe Country Office of the Medical Examiner ruled Prude’s death a homicide by “complications of asphyxia in the setting of physical restraint.”   Truthout

 

 

Forced Sterilization Is Nothing New to Criminalized People in the US

Allegations of mass hysterectomies at an ICE-run jail are consistent with a long history of state-sanctioned eugenics.

by Jenn M. Jackson, Truthout September 16, 2020

The United States has long used citizenship status and perceived criminality as a means to determine whether individuals deserve basic human rights. This week’s egregious allegations of mass hysterectomies at an immigrant jail in Georgia are consistent with the long U.S. tradition of state-sanctioned eugenics, medical abuse and forced sterilizations against those whose humanity the state does not recognize or value. Truthout


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Friends,

To facilitate your police accountability lobbying efforts please find appropriate individuals' contact information below. Please note regarding the Supervisors listed, due to their Chairmanship positions and/or committee assignments they are accountable to all citizens of Schoharie County.


It would be helpful to first familiarize yourself with the information at https://scfpg.blogspot.com/p/camp-homicide.html and review my earlier letter to editor post.


If you need clarification concerning any elements of the case please message me.


Wayne Stinson




Police Accountability Contact List – for Schoharie Citizens

Board of Supervisors Chair, William A. Federice, (607) 353-2110 federicebill@gmail.com

Law Enforcement Committee:

Chair, Richard Lape, Richmondville Town, Cell Phone: (518) 231-3084 lapelspc@midtel.net

Steve Winhofer, Broome Town, 518-827-4510, Broomeclerk@midtel.net

Margaret Hait, Jefferson Town, (607) 652-7223 jeffersontwnsup@gmail.com

John H. Leavitt, Calisle Town, (518) 429-8365 carlisleclerk@gmail.com

Harold Vroman, Summit Town, Home: (607) 397-8187, summitclerk@midtel.net


NYS Governor Andrew Cuomo, Governor of New York State, NYS State Capitol Building Albany, NY 12224, 1-518-474-8390 https://www.governor.ny.gov/content/governor-contact-form

NYS AG Letitia James, Office of the Attorney General
The Capitol Albany, NY 12224-0341
https://ag.ny.gov/contact-attorney-general-letitia-james

NYCLU Capital District Chapter, 41 State Street, Suite 612, Albany, New York 12207
518-436-8594 mtrimble@nyclu.org



Times Journal: tjournalnews@yahoo.com
Mountain Eagle/Schoharie News: theschoharienews@gmail.com
Times Union: tuletters@timesunion.com
Daily Gazette: PO Box 1090 Schenectady, NY 12301 https://www.dailygazette.com/ [could not find serviceable link for email submissions]

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June 2020

Friends,

A first, and necessary, understanding concerning your relationship to police: They don't work for you... unless you are a business owner, unless you are a politician (subservient to the business owners), unless you are of the elite class (with the ear of the loyal politicians).


Police departments are authorized and funded by local governments - that's who the cops (and Sheriff's Deputies) work for. Your only lever for affecting how the police behave is your representative in local government, in Schoharie County your Town Supervisor and the County Board of Supervisors. These officials have failed you.


If you wish an explanation/justification for that last statement see: https://scfpg.blogspot.com/p/camp-homicide.html

For a better understanding of the police accountability problem check out the resources below.

Wayne



Understanding reactionary cops



Mapping Police Violence:

Police shootings / structural racism, 2018 report:





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30 March 2020

Clyde Barrow lecture

Barrow helps us understand the Trump phenomenon – and maybe see where we’re headed | 45 min. video

Clyde W. Barrow is Chair & Professor of Political Science at the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, who specializes in state theory and political economy. His most recent book is Toward a Critical Theory of States (SUNY, 2016)


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Masha Gessen speaking at the Wheeler Center  -       1 hr. video

Masha Gessen is an acclaimed Russian-American journalist and the author of ten books of nonfiction, including bestsellers The Man Without a Face and Words Will Break Cement. Her work has appeared in the New York TimesSlateVanity Fair, and many other publications, and has received numerous awards.

Her most recent book is The Future Is History: How Totalitarianism Reclaimed Russia, which won the 2017 National Book Award for nonfiction. She is a staff writer at The New Yorker. A longtime resident of Moscow, she now lives in New York.

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Friends,

This by a trustworthy observer and one of my favored news sources.

Thom Hartmann calls it by its name, Fascism 

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26 February 2020

To the Editor
The Times Journal

Fighting Fascism – it’s up to us!

Just a few days after the 2016 election of Donald Trump, Russian-American journalist and author Masha Gessen offered her advice on how to survive the autocracy of a Trump administration:

Rule #1: Believe the autocrat. He means what he says. Whenever you find yourself thinking,... he is exaggerating, that is our innate tendency to reach for a rationalization.
Rule #2: Do not be taken in by small signs of normality.
Rule #3: Institutions will not save you. It took Putin a year to take over the Russian media and four years to dismantle its electoral system; the judiciary collapsed unnoticed.
Rule #4: Be outraged. If you follow Rule #1 and believe what the autocrat is saying, you will not be surprised. ...in the face of the impulse to normalize, ...maintain one’s capacity for shock.
Rule #5: Don’t make compromises. ...Democrats will... grasp at chances to work with the new administration. This will be fruitless.
Rule #6: Remember the future. Nothing lasts forever. ... Trumpism, ... will not either. Read it here 

Ten days later noted Eastern European historian and author Tim Snyder offered his advice “20 Lessons from the 20th Century on How to Survive in Trump’s America” in a Facebook post, subsequently published as “On Tyranny:” See:

We owe these authors a debt of gratitude for warning us of the coming authoritarianism, now approaching full blown fascism, and offering strategies for coping and resisting. We can easily recognize the trajectory to fascism from the daily reports of this president’s and crony collaborators’ criminal behavior.

If there is one thing for us to glean from these learned historians’ warnings it is that as citizens of the United State we must assume responsibility for fighting fascism. It’s up to us to resist authoritarianism, restore the institutions that are being damaged, and save our democracy.

Wayne Stinson
Summit, NY

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13 February 2020

MSNBC Commentary regarding Justice Dept. Chaos

Rachel Maddow looks at the importance of institutions in preserving democracy when the rule of law starts to fail, and asks what citizens should do when sounding the alarm about those failures isn't enough to stop them. 

Aired on 2/13/2020. youtube

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21 January 2020
 
Understanding of the precarious state of our nation. please read.  WRS

Trump Has Laid the Groundwork for “Full-On Authoritarian Rule”

Chauncey DeVega interviews historian Ruth Ben-Ghiat in an effort to better understand where America is on its road to fascism and authoritarianism in this fourth year of Trump’s regime.
Ben-Ghiat is a professor of history and Italian studies at New York University and an expert in fascism and authoritarianism.



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12/18/2019  Impeachment of President Donald Trump

Watching this constitutional crisis play out over the past three years has been painful. Especially disturbing were the disingenuous arguments offered by the Republican Representatives throughout the impeachment debate. I came away with an impression that their defense of Trump resembles a cult of personality, or perhaps their behavior is simply the result of a craven disregard for the constitution and selfish concern for their future electoral success. In either case we are in a very dangerous time.

I am very concerned for our country. The first defense against Fascism is to recognize it. To that end please read on.  Wayne

 
THE 14 DEFINING CHARACTERISTICS OF FASCISM
By Dr. Lawrence Britt Free Inquiry Magazine / Spring 2003

1. Powerful and Continuing Nationalism-

Fascist regimes tend to make constant use of patriotic mottos, slogans,
symbols, songs, and other paraphernalia. Flags are seen everywhere, as
are flag symbols on clothing and in public displays.

2. Disdain for the Recognition of Human Rights-

Because of fear of enemies and the need for security, the people in
fascist regimes are persuaded that human rights can be ignored in
certain cases because of "need." The people tend to look the other way
or even approve of torture, summary executions, assassinations, long
incarcerations of prisoners, etc.

3. Identification of Enemies/Scapegoats as a Unifying Cause-

The people are rallied into a unifying patriotic frenzy over the need
to eliminate a perceived common threat or foe: racial , ethnic or
religious minorities; liberals; communists; socialists, terrorists,
etc.

4. Supremacy of the Military -

Even when there are widespread domestic problems, the military is given
a disproportionate amount of government funding, and the domestic
agenda is neglected. Soldiers and military service are glamorized.

5. Rampant Sexism -

The governments of fascist nations tend to be almost exclusively male-
dominated. Under fascist regimes, traditional gender roles are made
more rigid. Divorce, abortion and homo-sexuality are suppressed and the
state is represented as the ultimate guardian of the family institution.

6. Controlled Mass Media -

Sometimes to media is directly controlled by the government, but in
other cases, the media is indirectly controlled by government
regulation, or sympathetic media spokespeople and executives.
Censorship, especially in war time, is very common.

7. Obsession with National Security -

Fear is used as a motivational tool by the government over the masses.

8. Religion and Government are Intertwined -

Governments in fascist nations tend to use the most common religion in
the nation as a tool to manipulate public opinion. Religious rhetoric
and terminology is common from government leaders, even when the major
tenets of the religion are diametrically opposed to the government's
policies or actions.

9. Corporate Power is Protected -

The industrial and business aristocracy of a fascist nation often are
the ones who put the government leaders into power, creating a mutually
beneficial business/government relationship and power elite.

10. Labor Power is Suppressed -

Because the organizing power of labor is the only real threat to a
fascist government, labor unions are either eliminated entirely, or are
severely suppressed.

11. Disdain for Intellectuals and the Arts -

Fascist nations tend to promote and tolerate open hostility to higher
education, and academia. It is not uncommon for professors and other
academics to be censored or even arrested. Free expression in the arts
and letters is openly attacked.

12. Obsession with Crime and Punishment -

Under fascist regimes, the police are given almost limitless power to
enforce laws. The people are often willing to overlook police abuses
and even forego civil liberties in the name of patriotism. There is often a national police force with virtually unlimited power in fascist
nations.

13. Rampant Cronyism and Corruption -

Fascist regimes almost always are governed by groups of friends and
associates who appoint each other to government positions and use
governmental power and authority to protect their friends from
accountability. It is not uncommon in fascist regimes for national
resources and even treasures to be appropriated or even outright stolen
by government leaders.

14. Fraudulent Elections -

Sometimes elections in fascist nations are a complete sham. Other times
elections are manipulated by smear campaigns against or even
assassination of opposition candidates, use of legislation to control
voting numbers or political district boundaries, and manipulation of
the media. Fascist nations also typically use their judiciaries to
manipulate or control elections.


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10/27/2019

To The Editor
The Times Journal

Much has been written over the past two years concerning the authoritarian behavior of the President and his appointees. They have disregarded the responsibility and specific authority of other branches of government. They have resisted efforts to rein in their offensive actions, often acting contrary to the provisions of our constitution. The President’s inclination toward authoritarianism has been described by some observers as fascist and reminiscent of the behavior of the governments in Italy and Germany leading up to the second world war.

Two features of authoritarian - fascist behavior we have witnessed since this administration took office are the glorification of the military, including out-sized reverence for military personnel. It is common practice for public assemblages such as sporting events or school graduation ceremonies to be required to stand, recognize and applaud military personnel in attendance1. Likewise, law enforcement personnel have been brought into the same fold by the President and encouraged to not be too gentle with the people they arrest.2 Witness the outrageous treatment of migrants by our border agents.

Impunity for police officers who violate the law is much in the news recently. Two Texas police officers who have been charged with murder recently were exceptions which prove the rule. In the vast majority of cases criminal behavior of police officers is not identified or prosecuted. Five years on the New York City officer who killed Eric Garner finally was fired but not prosecuted.3 Here in Schoharie County the Sheriffs Deputy responsible for Josh Camp’s death three years ago4 remains in the employ of our county and has not faced prosecution.

Thankfully, we have the ability to resist fascism with our vote. Town Supervisors will be on the ballot next week. Citizens should withdraw support for these officials unless they can explain their failure to deal with police malfeasance and provide accountability for criminal behavior by law enforcement personnel. If necessary, write in the name of any trustworthy citizen.

Wayne Stinson
Summit, NY

1Cobleskill-Richmondville High School
2Donald Trump addressing the Suffolk County Police Dept. 2017
3Officer Pantaleo, July 17 2014
4June 17 2016, State and local officials failed to properly investigate and prosecute. Documentation archived at https://scfpg.blogspot.com/p/camp-homicide.html


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13 August 2019

Fascist Censorship ploy 

President Trump is preparing to sign an executive order creating an Internet speech police with sweeping powers to censor the Internet.

A draft copy of the executive order was leaked to the media, giving us a chance to alert the public and generate the grassroots backlash needed to kill Trump’s “Internet speech police” executive order.1

The leaked executive order would put the FCC and the FTC in charge of deciding what political speech is—and isn’t—permissible on the Internet.

The order comes in response to a myth pushed by far-right activists that Internet platforms like Facebook and Google are biased against conservatives.2

But instead of protecting free speech, Trump’s executive order would put political appointees in charge of deciding what speech is allowed and what speech isn’t. 

[1] White House drafting executive order to tackle Silicon Valley’s alleged anti-conservative bias: Politico
[2] The myth of social media anti-conservative bias refuses to die: Columbia Journalism Review

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William Rivers Pitt writing in Truthout 3 July 2019

Trump’s July Fourth Tank Display Is a Glaring Sign of Fascism


“Let’s see how many boxes have been checked so far: Is the right to vote being dismantled? Check. Does one political party control virtually the entire government, including the highest court? Check. Are the concentration camps up and running? Check. Are there threats of violent retribution against those who speak out against all this? Check. Are many mainstream media outlets willing accomplices? Check.
What are we forgetting? Oh, right, a gaudy display of military might on the front lawn of the nation.
Multiple reports have confirmed the July Fourth celebration on the Mall in Washington D.C. will be transformed into an armed and armored outdoor fortress in the service of Donald Trump’s egg-fragile ego. According to CNN, this will include M1 Abrams tanks that will have to be brought in by train, because there are no battle tanks housed in the district. “We have the brand-new Sherman tanks,” Trump said in the Oval Office on Monday. M4 Sherman tanks have not been in service since the 1950s.
Along with the Abrams tanks will be two Bradley fighting vehicles and an M88 Recovery Vehicle. There will be flyovers by a B-2 stealth bomber, F-22 fighter jets and the new F-35 stealth fighter jets, provided the notoriously fussy and gruesomely expensive F-35s can actually get off the ground and avoid tumbling out of the sky. The Navy’s Blue Angels squadron has been dragooned into the show, and Air Force One along with Marine Helicopter Squadron One will also make an appearance.
“Mr. Trump, who is to speak at the celebration, has requested that the chiefs for the Army, Navy, Air Force and Marines stand next to him as aircraft from each of their services fly overhead and their respective hymns play on loudspeakers,” reported The New York Times on Monday. Along with the brass will be around 300 military servicepeople, surrounded by what I can only assume will be eleventy billion U.S. flags…”
But, wait. Has anybody else noticed The Emperor Has No Truths? WRS


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Friday, March 15, 2019


IMPEACHMENT


In an interview with Breitbart, Donald Trump had a not-at-all-subtle message for his opponents. “I have the support of the police, the support of the military, the support of the Bikers for Trump,” he claimed. “I have the tough people, but they don’t play it tough—until they go to a certain point and then it would be very bad, very bad.” Breitbart  Note: this venue is a mainline injection point for the Trump army. (emphasis mine)

Explicit threats of authoritarian violence from the orange ogre. We should take him at his word because we know some elements of his assumed army  of "tough people" are capable of acting on such suggestions.

Considering the vile pronouncements which spew from this nut job's pie hole, it is obvious Trump is a threat to the safety of peoples all over the world. The New Zealand Islamaphobic shooter was likely inspired by our hate champion.

With regard to police supporting Trump, all you have to do is look at the video of Suffolk County police officers, including ranking officers, clapping, smiling and smirking as stage backdrop for Trump's theater event in Brentwod NY in 2017.  youtube Do not watch this on a full stomach. Disclosure: I am an alumni of the aforementioned institution and can no longer be proud of that association.

It is long past time for an impeachment investigation to have begun. Palosi is just wrong about "He's just not worth it." We are in a constitutional crisis and congress is thus required to act!

Mr. Delgado, get on board with impeachment now!


-------------------------------------------------

2/24/2019

They Hate Democracy

Abby Martin of Empire Files has produced a 40 min. video which I think is the most comprehensive reporting on the crisis in Venezuela to date. Abby interviews UN Investigator and Human Rights Rapporteur Alfred De Zayas.


I am struck by the obvious parallels of anti-democratic behavior by political actors in both Venezuela and here. It seems the oligarchs here and there are one team and are following the same playbook. What Mr. Zayas reports should strike fear in the hearts of our citizenry.

On the eve of another US war for oil, Abby Martin debunks the most repeated myths about Venezuela and uncovers how US sanctions are crimes against humanity. The Report



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24 Feb. 2019

Ugly, hateful Razor wire?

You should feel there is something terribly wrong with America when you see the US Military installing razor wire along our border with Mexico. WRS

Nogales Arizona officials demand US remove razor wire along the U.S.-Mexico border. The razor wire extends from the border fence to the ground. U.S. Army soldiers have added new rows of concertina wire along the border in Nogales, Ariz. Feb. 9 2019 UPI Report

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24 Feb. 2019

Operation Janus:

The Trump administration's effort to "erase" non-whites from America. I could be proved wrong if/when some naturalized Nordic (Aryan?) immigrant citizens are pushed out. WRS  See NY Times report

Justice Department Secures First Denaturalization As a Result of Operation Janus.

On January 5 2018 Judge Stanley R. Chesler of the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey entered an order revoking the naturalized U.S. citizenship of Baljinder Singh aka Davinder Singh, and canceling his Certificate of Naturalization, the Justice Department announced.
Following Judge Chesler’s order, Singh’s immigration status reverted from naturalized citizen to lawful permanent resident, rendering him potentially subject to removal proceedings at the Department of Homeland Security’s discretion.
Singh’s denaturalization is the first arising out of a growing body of cases referred to the Department of Justice by United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) as part of Operation Janus. The action against Singh was filed contemporaneously with two other Operation Janus cases, announced by the Justice Department on Sept. 19, 2017.  (Jan 2018 DOJ press release).


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Monday, October 29, 2018


A WEEK OF BUILDING FASCISM


A Week Of American Hate: Bombs Mailed, Black People Executed, Jews Slaughtered
Hate showed what it is truly capable of in America this week.

A man executed two black people at a grocery store, but didn’t engage a white man outside because “whites don’t shoot whites.”

A Donald Trump supporter and apparent anti-Semite who looked up to white supremacists sent bombs in the mail to the president’s opposition.

An avowed anti-Semite walked into a synagogue and killed 11 people after screaming, “All Jews must die!” huffingtonpost.com



The President a proud nationalist

As a general rule, presidents do not refer to themselves as a “nationalist” given the freighted history of the word. But as President Trump tries to galvanize his conservative base to turn out in the midterm elections, he has adopted the label as a badge of honor.

At a rally in Houston on Monday night, he embraced the term as unabashedly as he ever has. “Really, we’re not supposed to use that word,” he told supporters in a nod to the usual political sensibilities that he relishes disrupting. “You know what I am? I’m a nationalist, O.K.? I’m a nationalist. Nationalist! Use that word! Use that word!” nytimes.com

"Nationalist! Use that word!" apparently proud of what he has wrought. WRS

I call it A Week Of Building Fascism - call it by its name and vote to deny them power 11/6!

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Steps on the way to Fascism


Dominate the narrative – propaganda

Ready for Trump TV? Inside Sinclair Broadcasting’s Plot to Take Over Your Local News Andy Kroll Mother Jones report

Its mix of terrorism alerts, right-wing commentary, and “classic propaganda” could soon reach three-quarters of US households.

In April, Sinclair hired Boris Epshteyn, a former Trump White House staffer and frequent television surrogate, as its chief political analyst. Epshteyn’s softball interviews with administration officials and brusque commentaries are slavishly pro-Trump; a Baltimore Sun columnist wrote that the segments are “as close to classic propaganda as anything I have seen in broadcast television in the last 30 years.”

“Sinclair is exploiting that credibility or trust that people have invested in their local stations by injecting a political message into it,” warns David Zurawik, the Baltimore Sun‘s veteran TV critic and a close company watcher. “Boris Epshteyn is wrapped in the packaging of the trusted local newsperson.”

After a campaign season spent boosting Trump, Sinclair looks set to grow even bigger thanks to the president’s appointees at the Federal Communications Commission: In May, the company announced a $3.9 billion deal to acquire Tribune Media’s 42 TV stations, which would give Sinclair access to New York, Los Angeles, and Chicago, the nation’s three largest media markets. The deal—and, for many, Sinclair itself—came to prominence after John Oliver blasted it in an episode of his HBO show, Last Week Tonight, that has been seen more than 6 million times on YouTube.

[note: WRGB – CBS Ch.6 Albany is Sinclair owned – discover advertisers and boycott, WRS]

John Oliver Tears Into Sinclair Broadcasting, the Trump-Loving Local News Giant Apr. 2, 2018 Mother Jones

On Sunday, John Oliver went further to unpack some of the alarming ways the Trump-friendly media group twists viewers’ trust in their local news reporters to parrot highly misleading, right-wing messaging. That content can range from mandatory “Terrorism Alert Desks” to deceptive features on the “deep state.”
The HBO host also slammed the “fake news” script: “When you see just how many local stations were forced to read it and you watch them together, as many have been doing online in the last couple of days, you begin to realize the true effect of Sinclair’s reach and power.”

Additional reporting on Sinclair at Democracy Now

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Homeland Security to Compile Database of Journalists, Bloggers


By Cary O'Reilly - Bloomberg Government  April 5, 2018

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security wants to monitor ...news sources around the world and compile a database of journalists, editors, foreign correspondents, and bloggers to identify top “media influencers.” The data to be collected includes a publication’s “sentiment” as well as geographical spread, top posters, languages, momentum, and circulation.

The DHS wants to track more than 290,000 global news sources, including online, print, broadcast, cable, and radio, as well as trade and industry publications, local, national and international outlets, and social media...

The DHS ...will set up an online “media influence database” [with] the ability to browse based on location, beat, and type of influence. For each influencer found, “present contact details and any other information that could be relevant, including publications this influencer writes for, and an overview of the previous coverage published by the media influencer.”
d radio, as well as trade and industry publications, local, national and international outlets, and social media...

The DHS ...will set up an online “media influence database” [with] the ability to browse based on location, beat, and type of influence. For each influencer found, “present contact details and any other information that could be relevant, including publications this influencer writes for, and an overview of the previous coverage published by the media influencer.”

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Enlist and corrupt authority


31 July 2017

Timothy D. Sini, Commissioner
Suffolk County Police Department
Yaphank, NY

Good morning Commissioner Sini,

I am a SCPD retiree (1963-1985) and I am very disturbed by the presence, and behavior, of SCPD officers during President Trump's address this past week in Brentwood. I noted there were supervisory level SCPD officers on the stage as a backdrop for the President's address. Were they assigned by you? Were you there?

The Brentwood speech is the most disgraceful performance by the President to date. There is so much wrong about it that I have to limit my comments to just two aspects critical to police community relations. First is the obvious promotion of excessive use of force and then, the implicit denigration of an ethnic demographic which likely represents a high percentage of the Third Precinct population. The potential ramifications of such irresponsible comments by a siting president, horrible as they are, are exacerbated by rows of SCPD officers smirking, smiling and clapping. Such inappropriate behavior by officers can only occur when there is inadequate supervision.

Donald Trump's administration represents a clear danger to our democracy. His rhetoric, many of his executive orders and some GOP legislative initiatives, threaten our freedoms and our way of life. The police should not be participating in this destruction. They should be a bulwark against such injuries.

I have watched Trump's speech in its entirety and searched news outlets for official reactions or analysis. I am very disappointed with both so far. I do note the "tweet by SCPD"... an unsigned twitter post by a county police agency? What is that? That can not stand as the only response by SCPD. Surely a newspaper or TV news reporter attempted to contact you t
behavior, of SCPD officers during President hat day. I am expecting an official statement denouncing the President's comments and an apology to the citizens of Suffolk County for the SCPD officers’ behavior and the department's involvement in this theatrical event.

Sincerely,
Wayne Stinson

President Trump speech on MS-13 to Federal State and Local Law Enforcement. 7/28/17, Suffolk Community College, Brentwood Long Island, NY. youtube

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Glorify the military – identify with

Trump’s Military Parade Plans Come Into Focus: Planes, but No Tanks By MATT STEVENS , 3/9/18 NYT Report

It looks as if President Trump will get the military parade he has coveted for months. But it will not be on the Fourth of July — and it will not include tanks.
Instead, plans are underway to hold a plane-filled display on Veterans Day in Washington, according to a Pentagon memo sent to the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
The memo, with Thursday’s date, says its purpose is to “provide initial guidance for the planning and execution” of a procession that would run from the White House to the Capitol and integrate with the city’s annual Veterans Day parade.
Medal of Honor recipients and veterans’ organizations are to be included in the march, which, according to the memo, will feature a heavy dose of history.
“This parade will focus on the contributions of our veterans throughout the history of the U.S. Military, starting from the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812 to today, with an emphasis on the price of freedom,” the memo said.

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The NFL Kneels to Trump 5/23/18 Truthdig:

The League’s new policy will fine teams whose players elect to take a knee during the national anthem. An example of civil society, in this case a sports league/corporation, bending to an authoritarian regime.

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Protect and Serve Act HR5698 

Law enforcement officials are not part of a disadvantaged minority in need of protection. The Blue Lives Matter meme is simply a manifestation of police tribalism and discriminatory attitudes in reaction to the Black Lives Matter movement's criticism of the killings of African-Americans by law enforcement. 

This legislation will effectively increase police power by imposing harsher sentences on citizens accused of crimes targeting police officers. This is a dangerous shift in the direction of greater authoritarian government that we will regret. For an intelligent analysis of the bill see this report.

Passed House, introduced in Senate.  The ACLU—along with Human Rights Watch, the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, and the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund—wrote a letter to the Senate asking that senators oppose the introduction and co-sponsorship of this bill.

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Surveillance - Watch Everyone 5/22/18

...internal emails (pdf) published by the ACLU on Tuesday revealed that Amazon has been aggressively selling its facial recognition product to law enforcement agencies throughout the U.S., privacy advocates and civil libertarians (ACLU) raised grave concerns that the retailer is effectively handing out a "user manual for authoritarian surveillance" that could be deployed by governments to track protesters, spy on immigrants and minorities, and crush dissent.

First unveiled in 2016, "Rekognition" was explicitly marketed by Amazon as a tool for "tracking people," and it has already been put to use by law enforcement agencies in Florida and Oregon.




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