My take on the Trump impeachment is the same as Mike Gravel’s and Tulsi Gabbard’s. There are many things that are objectionable about Trump (and virtually all other presidents), and calling him out on those things would be justifiable if Congress cared to do so. But the impeachment effort is just a grandstanding partisan exercise that is meaningless because Trump won’t be convicted in the Senate.
In this clip from PRIMO NUTMEG #207, former Democratic US Senator and 2020 Presidential candidate Mike Gravel explains that he would probably also vote “Present” on Donald Trump’s impeachment if he were still in the US Senate, as Hawaii Representative Tulsi Gabbard recently did in the House of Representatives.
Some pretty good insights into how “democracy” actually works: The “people’s representatives” receive their marching orders from the overlords of the empire, which they are then expected to rubber stamp.
” She also introduced a resolution calling on the House to censure Trump on five issues she implied were far more substantial. Those include carrying out wars without congressional approval, illegally “occupying and pillaging” Syria, “recklessly enabling” Turkey to invade Northern Syria and ethnically cleanse Kurds (a U.S. ally), continuing to support Saudi Arabia’s “genocidal war” in Yemen and scrapping nuclear agreements with Iran and Russia, thereby strongly increasing the risk of nuclear proliferation.”
Elections are different for anarchists. We’ve already made our peace with the basic fact that representative democracy is a sham even when it’s not rigged by moneyed oligarchs. So when we do actually take part in the process, it’s usually for purposes of propaganda and/or Machiavellian strategy. One thing Trump was right about is the influence of the deep state, though it’s hardly the shadowy coalition of dope smoking lesbian Bolsheviks the Alex Jones-set imagines them to be (I wish.) Rather, they’re more of a loose coalition of rich old white men who travel back and forth between unelected positions in the federal government and the numerous industrial complexes of the Fortune 500. At the risk of sounding like a member of the tinfoil hat brigade, these are the people who really run this country. Elections, especially at the presidential level, are largely just theater, a glorified reality TV show designed to feed the masses the illusion of living in a democratic society beneath the steel boot of a rapidly decomposing empire.
I personally subscribe to the Murray Rothbard philosophy on elections, which basically goes that since the state is defined by it’s monopoly on the use of force, the best we the people can do when we’re not loading rifles is to support the most antiwar candidate available. To me, this school of thought is made doubly relevant by the fact that theoretically the only thing the president has direct authority over is the armed forces. To say that this philosophy has brought me to some strange places is an understatement. I have personally changed political parties no fewer than three times and counting. And I’ve found myself openly backing everyone from Jurassic goldbugs like Ron Paul to New Age hippie vaxxers like Jill Stein (who’s 2016 campaign sticker continues to haunt Hillaryites from the bumper of my Ford Taurus.)
The DNC’s bottomless clown car of milquetoast morons doesn’t exactly provide a lot of options for the Rothbardian voter. Most of the candidates seem to come from the Oprah School of social democracy, chumming debt besodden millennials with the promise of an endless procession of free shit, payed through taxing super-villains without offering to cut a single missile. The only solidly antiwar candidate was 89 year old former senator Mike Gravel, but since Mike has called it quits after essentially being banned from Cable TV and screwed out of his rightful place in the latest debates, that only leaves contrarian powder-keg, Tulsi Gabbard.
I almost never endorse politicians. I generally regard all elected officials, from the President to dogcatchers, as employees of the real ruling class (C. Wrights Mills’ “power elite”). Voting is merely participating in the king’s coronation rituals in a way that conveys legitimacy on the state. However, there are times when political campaigns can be used for propagandistic purposes. Ron Paul’s presidential campaigns in 2008 and 2012 are examples, and Tulsi Gabbard’s present campaign is another potential example.
I doubt she will get the nomination. The Democrapic party will either find a way to block that from happening (i.e. cheating), or she will simply fail to do well in the primaries because, in my experience, most of the kinds of people who are likely to be voters in the Democratic primaries are not people who consider foreign policy to be a primary issue. What passes for “the Left” in the US is, with some exceptions, pathetic when it comes to international relations. They’re far more interested in idpol, expanding the welfare state, and environmentalism (i.e. advancing the interests of the left-wing of the First World middle class). However, a Tulsi vs. Trump contest in 2020 would be a highly interesting turn of events for a range of reasons.
I think she would actually do better in a general election than in the primaries, though I don’t know if she could beat Trump or not. I think not because not only are there the standard issues like incumbent’s advantage but also because, given her views on international relations, the overlord class would pour money into the Republicans to keep Tulsi out of the White House, and the media would work overtime to ensure her defeat. Notice the only time the media (other than FOX) ever said anything good about Trump were the two times he attacked Syria. It would be a highly interesting and comical situation because the political class, capitalist class, deep state, media, etc would suddenly rally behind Trump after years of endless hating on him because they would view him as objectionable though more easily contained and less immediately threatening to the empire’s interests. It would be a true “memory hole” moment. Such a situation would also greatly exacerbate the cleavage between neoliberals (most of whom would move to Trump) and progressives (most of whom would stay with Tulsi). Certain dividing lines would become clearer among the center (radical center vs. establishment center) and right (neocons vs nativists vs populists vs non-interventionists) as well.
Of course, even if she won Gabbard would be constrained by the wider ruling class, political, and deep state apparatus. At best, she would be another Jimmy Carter, i.e. a moderate who is a generally decent person but essentially unable to maneuver within the framework of a system of overwhelming opposition by elites. The “Trump hate” that has been piled on by the wider ruling class is nothing compared to the “Tulsi hate” that would come about if she were elected (the same would be true of a Republican with similar views).
Any US president who seriously moved against the interests of the oligarchy would meet the same fate as Mosadegh, Arben, Suharto, Diem, Sihanouk, Allende, Saddam, Qaddafi, so many others.
Tulsi Gabbard is turning out to be the most anti-statist of any of the presidential candidates (a very low standard to say the least). She has also introduced legislation to end federal marijuana prohibition as well. For many years, I have argued that the central focus of anarchists, libertarians, and anti-statists should be opposing US imperialism in the international realm, and opposing the so-called “criminal justice system” (police state), prison-industrial complex, over criminalization, war on drugs, “consensual crime” laws,” surveillance state, anti-terrorism laws, etc. as opposed to the Left’s focus on identity politics, environmentalism, and expanding the welfare state, and mainstream libertarianism’s focus on opposing the welfare state. We should also be striving to take the anti-gun control issue away from the patriotic, cop-loving, military-worshipping reactionary right, and frame gun control as means of oppressing the poor and minorities (which it clearl is).
By Dominic Holden
Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, the Democratic presidential contender from
Hawaii, told BuzzFeed News unequivocally she wants to decriminalize sex
work, asserting a clear position on an enormous underground industry
that’s largely ignored by American politicians.
“If a consenting
adult wants to engage in sex work, that is their right, and it should
not be a crime,” Gabbard said. “All people should have autonomy over
their bodies and their labor.“
Most candidates in the 2020 race
have skirted the issue, including President Donald Trump, but questions
about sex work are beginning to chase the Democratic presidential pack.
embrace of the issue comes just days after Sen. Bernie Sanders was
asked for his position and didn’t have one. “That’s a good question, and
I don’t have an answer for that,” he told The Breakfast Club.
asked in late February if she supports decriminalization, Sen. Kamala
Harris, who opposed a sex work decriminalization measure in 2008, told the Root, “I think so. I do.”
The White House didn’t answer questions from BuzzFeed News last year about whether Trump thought sex work or paying for sex should be legal. Nor would officials say if the president supported the Justice Department busting a website accused of posting sex work ads.
It’s obviously true that most of the MSM, particularly television, is simply the propaganda arm of the Democratic National Committee, just as FOX, talk radio, Christian broadcasting, and the Wall Street Journal are simply the propaganda arm of the Republican National Committee.
By Caitlin Johnstone
Hawaii Congresswoman and Democratic presidential candidate Tulsi Gabbard recently appeared on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert,
where instead of the light, jokey banter about politics and who she is
as a person that Democratic presidential candidates normally encounter
on late night comedy programs, the show’s host solemnly ran down a list
of textbook beltway smears against Gabbard and made her defend them in
front of his audience.
when a Democratic Party-aligned politician appears on such a show, you
can expect jokes about how stupid Trump is and how badly they’re going
to beat the Republicans, how they’re going to help ordinary Americans,
and maybe some friendly back-and-forth about where they grew up or
something. Colbert had no time to waste on such things, however, because
this was not an interview with a normal Democratic Party-aligned
politician: this was a politician who has been loudly and consistently
criticizing US foreign policy.
don’t “believe” in electoral politics, because elected officials are
just the paid employees of the power elite proper (see C. Wright Mills),
but this would still be great because it would force the power elite to
really step foward and show its hand. “Hell, no. We ain’t having this!”
The ruling class has already waxed hysterical over Trump, who is just
an old-fashioned Nixon-Rockefeller Republican (“Nixon was the last
liberal president”-Noam Chomsky) and governs like a normal Republican on
most domestic issues. Imagine how the oligarchy would respond to
Any US president who seriously moved against the
interests of the oligarchy would meet the same fate as Mosadegh, Arben,
Suharto, Diem, Sihanouk, Allende, Saddam, Qaddafi, so many others.
A good discussion of how the corporate imperialists circle the wagons around anyone with even moderately anti-interventionist views. US foreign policy is essentially a Roman-like imperialism that is committed to large-scale massacres as a matter of policy. The Democrats and Republicans are fine with this, and committed to preserving it. Most progressive liberals and SJWs consider anti-imperialism to be just another issue, or a matter of indifference. Even a supposed “far leftist” like Alexander Reid-Ross-Podhoretz-Kristol is more concerned about Russo-Assadist conspiracies on behalf of the Learned Elders of Thule than opposing the US empire of corpses.
In an article I wrote for LewRockwell.Com 12 years ago, I introduced my theory of “totalitarian humanism” (i.e., the co-optation of cultural leftism by the state and capitalism) as the emerging ideology of the ruling class. Read the original article here. These were the core precepts of “totalitarian humanism” that I identified:
Militarism, Imperialism and Empire in the guise of ‘human rights’, ‘democracy’, modernity, universalism, feminism and other leftist shibboleths.
Corporate Mercantilism (or ‘state-capitalism’) under the guise of ‘free trade’.
In domestic policy, what I call ‘totalitarian humanism’ whereby an all-encompassing and unaccountable bureaucracy peers into every corner of society to make sure no one anywhere, anyplace, anytime ever practices ‘racism, sexism, homophobia’, smoking, ‘sex abuse’ or other such leftist sins.
The reception that Tulsi Gabbard received during her appearance on “The View” is a shining example of totalitarian humanism human being applied to the foreign policy realm. An authentic cultural leftism would be more in the vein of Thaddeus Russell or Abbie Hoffman, not this crap.
An interesting article from Daily Kos. I know the author of this piece, who is generally friendly to ATS.
By Alex Shepard
he election of 2020 is approaching us fast, and the primary season will be here before we know it. Already, the 2020 democratic field has a few challengers. The darling of the establishment, Elizabeth Warren, has announced. From the insurgency ranks, outside of the establishment, is Hawaii congresswoman, Tulsi Gabbard.
Tulsi Gabbard, on nearly all sensible and progressive policies gets a perfect score. She supports the reinstitution of the Glass Steagall act. She supports raising the minimum wage. She also has vocally opposed and taken part in protests against the monstrosity called the Keystone Pipeline. She has continuously called for Climate change to be taken seriously and for America to embark on a pragmatic shift away from fossil fuels to efficient alternative energy. She has supported civil rights for all individual Americans, including our Latino, LGBT, African-American, disabled and Muslim citizens. So therefore, it appears she should be an ideal candidate for all left-leaning individuals, mainly those who supported Sanders in the 2016 primary. She also was one of the few Democrat Party officials to endorse Bernie Sanders during his presidential race in 2016, with considerable risk to her political career. She freely resigned from her high ranking post as vice chair of the DNC in order to follow her conscience and endorse Sanders, much to the chagrin of the DNC’s operators.
Most importantly, and speaking from the personal perspective as a PHD candidate in the field of Middle Eastern Studies, she has a spotless foreign policy. Hers is the kind needed for a successful and functional American relationship with not only the Middle East, but the rest of the world as well. She has rightly condemned the illegal war of aggression against Syria. At great risk to her person, and her own political career, she undertook a fact-finding mission in the war-torn nation of Syria. She has since taken it upon herself, much to the ire of the Democratic Party establishment, to tell Americans the truth about where their tax-dollars are going. They are being funneled at the behest of the Military Industry Complex, Saudi Arabia, and Israel to aid the wrong side of a conflict that is of no interest to the United States. Mainly, the American government is actively using American money to assist those who have killed Americans in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Libya. She also repeatedly called for the suspension of aid and weapon sales to the atrocious and genocidal regime in Saudi Arabia, which has been in the process of starving the Yemeni population to death. She also condemned Obama’s illegal war of aggression against Libya, which our former commander in chief admitted was a tragic mistake.
This is a pretty good discussion of Gabbard. From what I can tell, she’s basically just a moderate who trends liberal on social issues, who is pro-military, pro-Israel, and pro-terror war but who merely thinks the neocon/neoliberal foreign policy paradigm is insane (which it is), largely from her experience of actually having been in the military in Iraq. She apparently has a soft spot for India, which is obviously due to her own Hinduism. The worst thing that I have ever heard about her is her friendship with Sheldon Adelson.