Democracy Gone Astray

Democracy, being a human construct, needs to be thought of as directionality rather than an object. As such, to understand it requires not so much a description of existing structures and/or other related phenomena but a declaration of intentionality.
This blog aims at creating labeled lists of published infringements of such intentionality, of points in time where democracy strays from its intended directionality. In addition to outright infringements, this blog also collects important contemporary information and/or discussions that impact our socio-political landscape.

All the posts here were published in the electronic media – main-stream as well as fringe, and maintain links to the original texts.

[NOTE: Due to changes I haven't caught on time in the blogging software, all of the 'Original Article' links were nullified between September 11, 2012 and December 11, 2012. My apologies.]

Tuesday, November 08, 2016

Donald Trump’s nomination is the first time American politics has left me truly afraid

Tonight, Donald J. Trump accepted the Republican Party’s nomination for president of the United States.

And I am, for the first time since I began covering American politics, genuinely afraid.

Donald Trump is not a man who should be president. This is not an ideological judgment. This is not something I would say about Mitt Romney or Marco Rubio. This is not a disagreement over Donald Trump’s tax plan or his climate policies. This is about Trump’s character, his temperament, his impulsiveness, his basic decency.

Donald Trump Promises Not To Lie, Right Before Lying A Bunch Of Times

CLEVELAND ― Donald Trump made a solemn vow near the beginning of his acceptance speech at the Republican National Convention on Thursday evening, promising to “present the facts plainly and honestly. … There will be no lies.”

Fittingly, that statement was a lie.

The Republican Party is dead

It was inevitable, I suppose. Last night at 8:09 EDT, Paul Ryan — Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives and chairman of the Republican nomination meeting — read out the cumulative state delegate totals, confirming that Donald J. Trump is the Republican nominee for president. The qualifier “presumptive” has now been dropped.

The Cleveland convention is a train wreck; you don’t want to stare, you can’t do anything else. The cast of speakers at #RepConv2016 is as baffling as it is unimpressive: sitcom and soap opera stars, a professional golfer I’d never heard of and a UFC fight promoter.

It’s Official: Clark’s LNG ‘Plan’ Was a Fantasy

It seems like only yesterday that British Columbians were being told that the province was on the cusp of LNG riches. In fact, it almost was.

Last October, Finance Minister Mike de Jong predicted: “We are poised to see the final steps taken. Every step of the way, there have been detractors and naysayers and people who have dismissed the opportunities.”

Follow the money: The oilpatch and First Nations

We got a taste this week of what financial transparency looks in the resource business — and it’s a taste that some people find mildly bitter.

The Globe and Mail got hold of a document from multinational oil company Royal Dutch Shell entitled “Report on Payments to Governments for the Year 2015”; it’s readily available now on the web.

May gets Hollande ultimatum: free trade depends on free movement

  • French leader takes hard line in meeting with British prime minister
  • Leave camp may struggle to deliver on referendum promises
  • Calais checks under Le Touquet agreement will stay in place, says president

Theresa May was warned by the French president, François Hollande, at their first meeting in Paris that the UK cannot expect access to the single market if it wants to put immigration controls on EU citizens.

Why This GOP Convention Is the Most Dangerous One Ever

"Lock her up! Lock her up!"

This is when the Republican National Convention turned dangerous. Hundreds of Republican delegates on the floor of the convention during the official proceedings were shouting that the opposing candidate, Hillary Clinton, should be thrown in jail. The GOPers weren't merely urging her defeat in November. They were demanding she be treated as a criminal and sent to the hoosegow. This moment marked the culmination of a meme on the right: that Clinton is not a legitimate leader and that her election would not be legitimate. By embracing this theme and placing it center stage at Trumpalooza, Donald Trump and the GOP were undermining, if not threatening, democratic governance.

Donald Trump and the Dark Soul of the GOP

This is what you need to know about Donald Trump's GOP. At the convention in Cleveland, Alex Jones, a prominent peddler of conspiracy theories, was in the hall as a special guest.

Jones sells paranoia. He is a 9/11 truther who claims that George W. Bush and Dick Cheney were in on the attack on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. He has promoted the idea that dissidents in America will be rounded up and placed in FEMA camps. His website maintains that the tragic Sandy Hook shooting was a hoax orchestrated so gun safety advocates could demonize gun owners. Jones tells his followers that the world is controlled by a global cabal—a coven of elites that can handpick the president of the United States.

Donald Trump’s Convention Speech Rings Terrifying Historical Alarm Bells

Donald Trump’s speech tonight accepting the Republican nomination for president will probably go down as one of the most frightening pieces of political rhetoric in U.S. history.

Even for people who believe the danger of genuine authoritarianism on the U.S. right is often exaggerated, it’s impossible not to hear in Trump’s speech echoes of the words and strategies of the world’s worst leaders.

Trump Campaign Manager Makes Astonishingly Sexist Argument For Why Women Should Vote For Trump

Donald Trump is not very popular with American women. His campaign manager, Paul Manafort, may not be helping that cause lately.

Ahead of Trump’s speech formally accepting his nomination at the Republican National Convention, MSNBC’s Chris Matthews asked Manafort how the campaign will handle the gender dynamic in attacks on Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton. Manafort responded that many women may respond to Trump because they are worried about their husbands’ paychecks supporting their lifestyles.

9 Lies In Donald Trump’s Big Speech To The Republican Convention

At the beginning of his big RNC-closing speech, Trump called for “a straightforward assessment of the state of our nation,” and said he would “present the facts plainly and honestly.” He didn’t follow through on that promise.

Trump’s speech was much more scripted than his typically ad-libbed rally performances, which are riddled with falsehoods. But his formal acceptance of the nomination was also full of deception. Here’s a rundown of some of the misleading claims made by the man whose campaign statements were named the “lie of the year” by Politifact.

It’s Donald Trump’s Party Now

CLEVELAND – Exactly 401 days after his much-disparaged ride down an escalator in his Manhattan skyscraper to announce his candidacy, developer-turned-entertainer Donald Trump formally took his spot atop the 2016 Republican ticket.

“Friends, delegates and fellow Americans: I humbly and gratefully accept your nomination for the presidency of the United States,” Trump told thousands of Republican activists packed into Quicken Loans Arena Thursday night.

It's Official: Hillary Clinton Is Running Against Vladimir Putin

The Republican nominee for president, Donald J. Trump, has chosen this week to unmask himself as a de facto agent of Russian President Vladimir Putin, a KGB-trained dictator who seeks to rebuild the Soviet empire by undermining the free nations of Europe, marginalizing NATO, and ending America’s reign as the world’s sole superpower.

Forget Trump: Peter Thiel Is So Dangerous and Fascinating You Have to Watch Him Tonight

Tonight, Peter Thiel, an openly gay immigrant hailing from San Francisco, will address the Republican National Convention in Cleveland. His speech will close out the coronation of Donald Trump as the nominee of his party, which three days earlier finalized a platform affirming the definition of marriage as “between one man and one woman.”