Category: Donald Trump
Sanders: ‘Trump doesn’t fully understand’ being president

Vermont Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersSanders: ‘Trump doesn’t fully understand’ being presidentPotential 2020 Dems look beyond TrumpSanders on Comey memo: ‘Now more than ever we need a special prosecutor’MORE (I) hit President Trump on Tuesday, questioning whether the commander in chief knows “what being president of the U.S. is about.”

“I think, for whatever reason, Donald TrumpDonald TrumpAxelrod: Trump going overseas to flee his problemsHollywood stars call for Trump special prosecutorMaritime sanctuaries must be protected from offshore oil drillingMORE doesn’t fully understand what being President of the US is about,” Sanders said. “When you sit in a room and by the way exclude American media and only have Russian people coming in, and then you tell Russians highly classified information that is endangering our security as a people…. this is a big deal.”

Sanders was referring to a report on Monday that Trump shared highly classified information with Russian officials while they were visiting the White House last week. Sanders criticized the president for sharing the information, saying it could damage our relationships with other countries and put people in danger.”This president better learn what it’s like to be president and not share classified information with people who do not wish us well,” Sanders added.

Current and former U.S. officials told the Washington Post Monday that Trump relayed information from a critical source of intelligence on the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria.

The information was provided by a U.S. partner through an intelligence-sharing arrangement. The partner did not give the United States permission to share the information with Russia.

Sanders has been an outspoken critic of Trump, but has offered to work with him on legislation multiple times.

Bernie Sanders Lays Waste To Republicans With A Crushing Argument For Investigating Trump

Bernie Sanders Lays Waste To Republicans With A Crushing Argument For Investigating Trump

After the latest bombshell revelation that Trump may have obstructed justice, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) put the heat on Republicans to step up and hold Trump accountable.

Bernie Sanders Lays Waste To Republicans With A Crushing Argument For Investigating Trump

After the latest bombshell revelation that Trump may have obstructed justice, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) put the heat on Republicans to step up and hold Trump accountable.

In a statement provided to PoltiicusUSA, Sanders said, “Now more than ever we need a special prosecutor to determine whether there was collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia. Now more than ever we need to make public any recordings from the Oval Office. Now more than ever we need to make sure that the next FBI director is independent of the Trump administration. Now more than ever we need Republican members of Congress to work with us in demanding that Trump be held accountable for his actions.”

Sanders zeroed in on all of the issues that Republicans are trying to avoid. A special prosecutor is necessary, and if there are tapes, they must be turned over, and in the bigger picture, there must be a new FBI director will be independent of Trump and Jeff Sessions.

Most of all Republicans need to step up. They are the reason that the country has been thrown into a constitutional crisis. Donald Trump is the candidate that they were too weak to stand up to, and any messes that he causes are on their hands.

The tone of Sanders statement suggests that Republicans better step up or get out because Trump must be held accountable for his actions.

America’s Civil War II
| May 16, 2017 | 8:07 pm | Donald Trump, political struggle, Russia | No comments

People on Times Square in New York follow the preliminary results of the US election

America’s Civil War II

© Sputnik/ Alexey Filippov


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Finian Cunningham
Civil wars are perhaps the most tragic and bitter, when a country goes to war on itself – and it’s brother against brother, homesteads destroyed by other compatriots.

Today, the United States of America seems to be at war with itself again. Not yet an all-out bloodletting as in the Civil War of 1861-65, but nevertheless the nation seems to be plunging into an internecine process of shredding itself, pulling down the very edifice of the state.

There’s even reports of married couples splitting in divorce because of the growing political divisions.

The governing business of running the country is held hostage by incessant political scrapping; the institutions of governance appear in meltdown from eroding authority.

This time around, it’s not northern states versus the south, or over industrialists wanting to usurp landowners, or moral questions of race and slavery. The current war is due to powerful factions within the political class not willing to accept the election of Donald Trump.

Trump was not supposed to win the presidential election in November 2016, as far as ruling class elements were concerned. His Democrat rival Hillary Clinton was the favored candidate owing to her deep connections to the foreign policy establishment and corporate news media.

Trump’s avowed stance to normalize relations with Russia was the number-one bugbear for the US establishment which preferred Clinton’s more hawkish outlook as part of extending its global hegemonic ambitions.As always, the American ruling class is variegated. No doubt there are powerful Wall Street and corporate factions among American capital that are indifferent about the actual election result, or perhaps even rather pleased by it. Trump, so far, seems to be rather disposed to pandering to corporate America with generous tax-breaks for the wealthy, so there is no problem there for many among the American ruling class.

Where the problem arises is more within the political class of foreign policy establishment, straddling the Republican-Democrat career politicians in Washington, the intelligence community and the security-military apparatus, the CIA, Pentagon and their assets or class sympathizers within the corporate media. This is the deep state complex, although not all within the deep state may hold the same hostile view of Trump. Enough evidently do in order to sustain a political war against Trump’s presidency.

The whole Russia-gate “scandal” just keeps running and running regardless of objective proof. Never, it seems, has so much political and media time been spent on a nebulous issue which has such negligible substance. It’s a classic case of tilting at windmills.

Earlier this week, James Clapper, the former national intelligence director, reiterated in a media interview that he has seen no evidence of “collusion” between the Trump election team and Russian state agents. Clapper then goes on mealymouthed to say: “I can’t confirm or deny it”.People like Clapper and the former FBI chief James Comey continually hint at a Russia-gate scandal, but they never present any evidence. They should either put up or shut up. For to not do is nothing less than political witch-hunting. The purpose of which is to undermine President Trump’s mandate. And it is all given full vent by politicians and media who wittingly or unwittingly rally behind the American paranoia of Russophobia.

We may loathe Trump’s personality or his crony-style politics, but the fact is that he was elected on November 8. The question then is: do we accept the result of democracy?

It seems clear that there are elite interests within the US ruling class who do not accept American democracy and the mandate of Trump’s electors. This is a fundamental revelation that goes to the very heart of American democracy, which we are led to believe is the best in the world.Manifest Destiny, American Exceptionalism, the Land of the Free. It’s evidently all balderdash, self-preening propaganda. For American democracy is being shredded by elements within the ruling system who do not accept the result of the last presidential election.

They are covering up their brazen anti-democratic assault on the electorate with outlandish and frankly ridiculous claims of Trump being a Russian agent and about his reliance on Russian cyber-hacking to get him into the White House.

The political witch-hunt continues unabated against Trump, not because of any credible evidence, far from it, but simply because those people fanning the allegations are powerful enough to make sure the witch-hunt remains a dominant focus in public life.

Last week, Trump fired the FBI’s James Comey for the good reason that he was hamming up the Russia-gate probes. The media claimed this was Trump covering up his alleged Russian links. Twist after twist.Now this week the US media are full of claims that Trump leaked highly classified information on Islamic State terrorists to Russia’s foreign minister Sergey Lavrov during their closed-door meeting at the White House.

We have the extraordinary spectacle of US politicians and the corporate media accusing a sitting president of lying, betraying state secrets to “a foreign enemy”, and the president’s top national security advisor General HR McMaster being forced to publicly state that the claims are “false”.

In the Clapper interview mentioned earlier, he said that the US was being attacked both externally and internally. The former he said was from Russia. No evidence presented, just the usual assertion and bombast. On the source of internal attacks, Clapper blamed President Trump for “assaulting state institutions”.

The top institution of the US, the office of presidency, is being assaulted by people like Clapper and the establishment who are refusing to acknowledge Trump’s electoral mandate. Systematically, repeatedly, openly calling the president of the country a liar and traitor is the most corrosive assault on the legitimacy of government.

Ultimately, the pre-eminent institution of American democracy – the will of the people – is being assaulted by the same powerful factions.

This is what Russia’s foreign minister Sergey Lavrov alluded to when he said last week that America was “humiliating itself” by making the unfounded claims that Russia subverted its presidential election. How can the supposedly most powerful nation on Earth, as it continually claims to be, be so vulnerable to alleged Russian hackers?The people attacking American democracy are American, not Russian or anyone else. The country is at war with itself. It is its own worse enemy, and flailing around with paranoid fears over non-existent threats.

America’s Civil War II is underway and it’s a war over whether democracy in that country exists or not. Old Glory is being shot to pieces and the victors have yet to emerge.

The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official position of Sputnik.

‘Trump’s only ideology is ‘me’, deeply authoritarian & very dangerous’ – Noam Chomsky

‘Trump’s only ideology is ‘me’, deeply authoritarian & very dangerous’ – Noam Chomsky
World-famous linguist, philosopher and political thinker Noam Chomsky has described US President Donald Trump’s ideology simply as ‘me’, adding that while it’s not fascist, it’s still “deeply authoritarian and very dangerous.”

However, there is no other option in the eyes of the people, Chomsky added in his interview to BBC.

“What is the alternative to Trump? The democrats gave up on the working class 40 years ago. It’s not their constituency, no one in the political system is. The Republicans claim to be, but they are basically their class enemy. However they can appeal to people on the basis of claims ‘We’re gonna help you economically, even when we kick you in the face’?”

In his book, Chomsky branded the Republican Party as “the most dangerous organization on Earth,” and when asked to explain, he pointed out that it’s about something they refuse to admit exists.

“Trump will do damage to the world, and it’s already happening. The most significant aspect of the Trump election is not just Trump, but the whole Republican Party as they are departing from the rest of the world on climate change, a crucial issue, an existential threat,” Chomsky said.

He called the denial “an astonishing spectacle,” in which “the US, alone in the world, not only refuses to participate in efforts to deal with climate change, but is dedicated to undermining them. And it’s not just Trump – every single Republican leader is the same and it goes down to local levels.”

And US popular opinion isn’t exactly of any help, according to Chomsky.

“Roughly 40 percent of the population think it can’t be a problem, because Jesus is coming in a couple of decades.”

Isn’t Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) more of a threat? It would seem so, but Chomsky isn’t sure about that.

“Is ISIS dedicated to destroy the prospects for organized human existence? What does it mean to say is Not only we’re not doing anything about climate change, but we’re trying to accelerate the race to the precipice. Doesn’t matter whether they genuinely believe it or not, if the consequence of that is, let’s use more fossil fuel, let’s refuse to subsidize developing countries, let’s eliminate regulations that reduce greenhouse gas emissions — if that’s the consequence, that’s extremely dangerous.”

“Trump’s only ideology is ‘me’, it’s not Hitler or Mussolini, but deeply authoritarian and very dangerous,” the philosopher concluded.

The process happening in the US is universal, though, and is taking place worldwide, Chomsky told BBC, due to “a massive assault on the large part of the population, an assault on democracy” which led to “not just anger, but contempt for centrist institutions.”

“A large part of the population feels that they are just not responsive to them,” and Chomsky enumerates the results of this: Trump, Brexit, Le Pen.

Nevertheless, Emmanuel Macron’s victory in the French presidential election is “by no means the end to the populism in Europe,” he said. In fact, “Macron is an example of populism, because he came from the outside, because the institutions have collapsed. The vote for him was substantially the vote against Le Pen.”

Last, but not least, Chomsky spoke out on WikiLeaks Editor-in-Chief Julian Assange, calling his persecution and threats against him to be “completely wrong.”

“What’s keeping him in prison – and in fact he is in prison [holed up in the Ecuadorian embassy in London] – is the threat that the United States will go after him. Same thing that’s keeping [security whistleblower Edward] Snowden in Russia. And he is right to worry about it and it is the threat that is wrong.”

American Paranoia Deserves Russian Mockery
US President Donald J. Trump (L) and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov (2-L) during a meeting at the White House in Washington, DC

American Paranoia Deserves Russian Mockery


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Finian Cunningham
US President Trump Fires FBI Director Comey (26)

US politicians and media have evidently become so unhinged from Russian conspiracy theory, they are perhaps best treated with the mockery they deserve.

Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov was in Washington this week to discuss serious global issues with his American counterpart Rex Tillerson. Instead of asking the pair about the Syrian conflict or the danger of nuclear war breaking out on the Korean Peninsula, all the assembled US media was clamoring to know about were the diplomats’ views on James Comey, the sacked FBI chief.

Lavrov couldn’t contain his contempt for such boorish behavior. He shrugged his shoulders and feigned surprise by saying: “You’re kidding me. You’re kidding me.”

Meanwhile, Russian President Vladimir Putin was interrupted from partaking in an ice hockey game in Sochi by an American reporter who also pressed him for his view on Comey’s firing. Putin replied: “Your question is funny to me.” And he went on to say that the matter has nothing to do with Russia, being internal political business for President Trump and his law enforcement agency.
US President Donald Trump speaks to staffers setting up for the Commander in Chief's trophy presentation in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington, US, May 2, 2017.
© REUTERS/ Joshua Roberts

If the Russian leaders can be accused of anything is that they are being too polite in the face of such nonsense.If someone insists on asking you a stupid question, loaded with prejudice and paranoia, then it is best to simply ignore rather than dignify the nonsense with a considered answer.

For over six months now, since Donald Trump was elected US president on November 8, the US media and much of the other Western media too, have been dominated by claims that Russia “hacked American democracy” to get Trump into the White House.

Not one shred of evidence has been presented to support these lurid claims, which have mutated to also include allegations of Russia hacking into the French and other European elections. It’s all based on speculation, usually by politicians, think-tanks and unscrupulous journalists linked to unelected state intelligence agencies.

This is a relapse of Cold War-style Russophobia, but one which has become totally divorced from any reality. At least in the old Cold War days, Western states could create a semblance of there being a Soviet enemy. It was still overblown propaganda back then, but there was the appearance of ideological enmity between West and East.Today, it is objectively hard to plausibly portray Russia as an enemy state with malicious designs of conquest over the West. That disconnect, however, has not stopped the Western mainstream media churning out propaganda articles warning of the imminent Russian invasion of Europe or subversion of Western democracy.

Emmanuel Macron, head of the political movement En Marche !, or Onwards !, and candidate for the 2017 French presidential election, speaks during a news conference to unveil his fully budgeted manifesto, named a contract with the nation, in Paris, France, March 2, 2017
© REUTERS/ Christian Hartmann

The trouble is that there is such a credibility deficit to such claims; because they are based on nothing, except Russophobia and a desire by powerful Western state factions to fuel global conflict and massive military expenditure. In short, deep state militarism, propping up bankrupt Western capitalism.There is also a deep inherent problem in Western societies of traditional politics having completely lost legitimacy in the eyes of ordinary citizens. Decades of failed capitalist economics and burgeoning social inequality have fomented widespread disillusionment and contempt for the political establishments. The latter has run out of any solutions to address today’s urgent social needs of decent work, public services and welfare.

So much so that when elections don’t go the way that the powers-that-be want, then there is a tendency to find a scapegoat to explain the breakdown in political order. Russia and its alleged hacking into electoral process is the handy scapegoat for the US and its European allies to blame for what is inherent decay in their own systems.The election of business tycoon Donald Trump defied the political-media establishment in the US. And so his surprise victory has to be “explained” by a nefarious foreign plot allegedly carried out by the Kremlin. A more realistic, accurate assessment is that Trump won simply because millions of ordinary Americans have come to despise the fat-cat politicians who sit on Capitol Hill doing the bidding for corporate lobby groups. But that explanation cannot be admitted by the decadent establishment.

The self-serving paranoia of Russophobia put out by the Washington establishment just keeps digging a deeper hole for itself.

Trump fired FBI chief James Comey this week because the top law enforcement officer was riding a gravy train that is supposedly investigating alleged collusion between Trump’s election team and Russia. There is no evidence for these claims, therefore the probe should be shut down as an obscene waste of taxpayer money. Yet, Comey’s gravy train was set to keep on rolling, on and on.Comey wouldn’t look into investigating Trump’s presidential rival Hillary Clinton for provable violations of government secrecy rules when she was formerly the Secretary of State. But the FBI man wanted to keep stoking the smoke over outlandish claims that Trump is a “Russian agent.”

The whole charade is a ridiculous waste of time and taxpayer money, and Trump is right to call a halt to it by sacking Comey.

Rather than coming to their senses, however, the US media and large sections of the political establishment are doubling down on their paranoia.

Trump is accused of closing down Comey in a cover-up of the “truth” about his alleged Russia links. Comparisons are being made to the Watergate scandal that brought down Richard Nixon in 1974. Top US media outlets like the New York Times are openly calling Trump a “liar.”

But what “truth” are they talking about? The allegations of collusion with Russia and the latter hacking US democracy are all based on hearsay, conjecture and prejudice. The only reason why this absurd story has kept on running is because of deep-seated Cold War-style paranoia and Russophobia among the American political elite.Trump’s reception of Russia’s top diplomat Sergey Lavrov at the White House the day after he terminated Comey was more fodder for the unhinged American media and political class.

Lavrov was right to treat the stupid US media questions about his view on Comey with the contempt that they deserve. Trump was right, too, to exclude the same media posse from the Oval Office where he greeted Lavrov and Russia’s ambassador Sergey Kislyak.

If US media are not capable of holding intelligent questions about real-world pressing matters then they should be shown the door. And if they persist in indulging in paranoid fantasies, then the only suitable reality-check is to hit them with a dose of mockery.

Genuine questions deserve a genuine response. Ridiculous questions that are persistently asked to further a spurious political agenda should be spurned.

The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official position of Sputnik.

Sanders Says Firing Comey Suggests Trump Has Something to Hide
Senator Bernie Sanders looks on after the Vermont delegation cast their votes during roll call on the second day of the Democratic National Convention at the Wells Fargo Center, July 26, 2016

Sanders Says Firing Comey Suggests Trump Has Something to Hide

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US Senator Bernie Sanders said that the dismissal of FBI Director James Comey indicates that President Donald Trump is trying to hide something.

WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — US Senator Bernie Sanders said in a statement that President Donald Trump’s decision to fire FBI Director James Comey appeared to show that the White House is hiding something.

“Donald Trump’s decision to fire FBI Director James Comey raises serious questions about what his administration is hiding,” Sanders said Tuesday.

Trump fired Comey earlier on Tuesday based on the recommendation of Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and Attorney General Jeff Sessions.

“President Trump has repeatedly taken steps to kill inquiries into Russia’s involvement in the US election. It is clear that whomever President Trump handpicks to lead the FBI will not be able to objectively carry out this investigation. We need an independent investigation into the Trump campaign’s ties to Russia,” Sanders added.Russian officials have repeatedly denied allegations of interfering in US elections, and have characterized the charges as an absurd attempt to distract the US public from revelations of corruption and other pressing domestic concerns.

Clinton: ‘Scandalous, Boring and Incapable of Recognizing Her Own Mistakes’
Democratic US presidential nominee Hillary Clinton speaks at a campaign rally in Lake Worth, Florida, US October 26, 2016.

Clinton: ‘Scandalous, Boring and Incapable of Recognizing Her Own Mistakes’

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Former Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton remains in denial that she destroyed her campaign with her own hands, political scientist Gevorg Mirzayan wrote for RIA Novosti, commenting on Clinton’s claim that it was FBI Director Jim Comey, WikiLeaks, and Russia behind her defeat.

While Hillary Clinton is pinning the blame for her defeat in the US 2016 presidential elections on FBI Director James Comey, WikiLeaks and elusive “Russian hackers,” it appears that she destroyed her own campaign, Gevorg Mirzayan, Associate Professor at the Department of Political Sciences of Finance University under the Government of the Russian Federation, wrote in his op-ed for RIA Novosti.Speaking to CNN host Christiane Amanpour at the recent Women for Women International event in New York, Clinton claimed that she was “on the way to winning until a combination of Jim Comey’s letter on October 28 and Russian WikiLeaks raised doubts in the minds of people who were inclined to vote for me [her] and got scared off.”

“If the election had been on October 27, I would be your president,” she said.

However, according to Mirzayan, Clinton’s claim is nothing but wishful thinking.

Perhaps, James Comey behaved inconsistently, announcing the second round of the investigation into Clinton’s email on October 28 and then, on November 6, saying that the inquiry “hadn’t turned up anything,” the political scientist noted. However, it was Clinton who used a private email server for official communications during her tenure as Secretary of State.

And still, Clinton went unpunished.

Citing one of Donald Trump’s tweets, Mirzayan said that Comey was indeed “the best thing that ever happened to Hillary Clinton.”

“As for ‘Russian hackers’,” the political scientist continued, “they, according to Hillary, broke into the mailbox of the chief of her staff, John Podesta, and found many interesting things there. For example, they threw light on unfair competition in the democratic primaries, when the party supported Hillary against Bernie Sanders.”

It wasn’t “Russian hackers” who sunk Bernie Sanders, who, in contrast to Hillary, had a good rating.Gallup consulting company reported back in July 2016 that “as the Democratic National Convention gets underway in Philadelphia, Hillary Clinton’s image is at its lowest point in the 24 years of her national career, with 38% of Americans viewing her favorably and 57% unfavorably.”

“As political scientists correctly said, Trump could be beaten by any decent Democratic candidate with a good rating and a decent reputation,” Mirzayan highlighted.

“Scandalous, boring and incapable of recognizing her own mistakes, Hillary lost the elections, because even part of the ‘loyal’ democratic electorate did not vote for her,” he said.

Only 43 percent of white highly-educated women voted for Clinton, while, for comparison’s sake, 53 percent of them cast their ballots for “sexist” Trump, the political scientist recalled.Clinton lost because she failed to win the hearts and minds those in the Rust Belt, in Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, and Michigan.

As David Axelrod, who served as former president Barack Obama’s adviser, recently remarked, “Jim Comey didn’t tell [Clinton] not to campaign in Wisconsin after the convention,” and “Jim Comey didn’t say ‘don’t put any resources into Michigan until the final week of the campaign.'”

“Finally, Hillary lost due to the fact that the Democratic Party has ceased to be democratic,” Mirzayan wrote, “According to a joint poll by The Washington Post and ABC, 67% of respondents believe that the Democratic Party is out of touch with the concerns of their voters (62% of respondents think the same about the Republicans).”

According to the political scientist, if the Democrats want to regain the positions they need new competitive candidates.

However, it appears that the former Democratic presidential nominee is going to return to politics in her own way.

Politico reported Friday that Clinton is building a new political group to throw sand in the gears of Trump and the Republicans.

“The former secretary of state is building a new political group to fund organizations working on the resistance to President Donald Trump’s agenda, spending recent weeks in Washington, New York City, and Chappaqua, N.Y., meeting with donors and potential groups to invest in, and recruiting individuals for the group’s board of directors,” the media outlet said.

Only time will tell whether Clinton’s new strategy will work.