Commenter Profile

Total number of comments: 3585 (since 2009-12-08 10:00:12)


One summer in Germany, a while back, I met many returning US kibbutzim. The exuberance and energy was affecting. Influenced by that, a few months later in college I started to physically protest/jeer from the Israeli perspective. On one occasion we all headed to the Cleveland City Club to hear and jeer Chomsky. Between our interruptions (which he handled gracefully with a "noted" and went on), I heard him speak about water theft. For some reason, being as swept up in the Uris-like glow about Israel as I was, I had never heard (listened?) or asked about anything remotely disturbing about Israel. Afterward I started asking basic questions like, "If this is true, how can one people do this to another people, and we cheer it on?" and got few even marginally responsive answers. All the contradictions between Israel-reality and Israel-myth that appear here, were present even then. The veil was pierced and my perspective flipped almost immediately. It was the '70s, Kent State, and we were supposed to be FOR civil rights. FOR everybody. I felt grossly stupid and more than a little betrayed. My former physical tactics and experience mirror what goes on here an in the larger net world. I understand the desperate need (by Israel) to clamp the lid down hard (and keep it clamped) on the deeply troubling reality of everyday Palestinian life. It also suggests that just one little glimmer of reality that gets through can make a difference, one person at a time. One never knows which glimmer that might be...

Showing comments 3585 - 3501

  • Did 'Hashomer Hatzair' shape Sanders's views on socialism and Israel?
    • Thanks echinococcus. I hadn't seen that he stated that plainly. I'll look it up.

    • I believe, Annie, that all dual citizens in the SES and elected should declare.

    • Because Israel can and/or does and/or has been known to confer citizenship to Jews who visit Israel automatically. I think that is a unique situation worthy of a question.

      And no I do NOT think factions in Israel would say a peep if he was for the same reason Sanders isn't open about his time there. It would elevate, legitimate, and broaden the dual-loyalty issue.

    • Is Sanders a citizen of a foreign country? Any foreign country.

      Are any other presidential candidates citizens of any foreign country or even remotely in a position to be considered to be/accused of same?

      Because of Israel's aggressive uniqueness in this area, Sanders needs to answer this question.

  • 'New York Times' picks up Bernie Sanders's 'socialist' kibbutz but leaves out the ethnic cleansing
    • I think this underscores your point RoHa. There was a SCOTUS case a few years back - Kelo v. City of New London - where the court held:

      The governmental taking of property from one private owner to give to another in furtherance of economic development constitutes a permissible "public use" under the Fifth Amendment. Supreme Court of Connecticut decision affirmed.

      link to

      I don't know if other countries have this type of immoral built-in "taking" (private to private/profit use), but we sure do in the US.

      As you say, just because it's legal doesn't make it moral or right.

      I just finished Howard Zinn's book "A People's History of the US" and it's littered with that sentiment - to the point that it should be a subtitle, and could be the actual title without much argument.

      Your observation has great company. Sadly.

  • Israeli designer eroticizes the Palestinian keffiyeh
  • 'An Arab is an Arab'
    • Israel is a giant Jerry Springer show.

      Jer-RY! Jer-RY! Jer-RY!... as the audience derisively chants as the little white-hooded toddler pristenely unselfconciously says "I hate niggers!"

  • Netanyahu responds to Ban Ki-moon's criticism of the Israeli occupation (Update)
    • Ignoring all his other shortcomings for a moment, isn't Ban- KiMoon the only person to make these kinds of criticisms and/or dire warnings while still in office?

      Pretty remarkable if only for that.

      Edit: Hi MDM. I can't remember anyone ever doing it while still in office - "almost" or otherwise. Maybe I'm wrong about that.

      Obama's fed-up yet tepid criticism and now this stark and unrepentant criticism both signal some kind of background shift to me.

  • Israeli mayors initiate boycott of Sweden over foreign minister's criticism
    • I think Israel and Israelis should boycott as many countries as possible for as long as possible.

      That'll teach the rest of us for being against slaughtering children PRN.

      Yeah, youbetcha.

  • 'Netanyahu at War' on PBS was dreadful but not without interest
    • They wanted Jordan. At least the bit where the water is.

      link to

      Still do it would seem. Although Israel got veto power over Jordanian water well drilling in their treaty so maybe the water was enough.

    • Thanks John. Good review. A lot of ways to perceive such a lopsided portrayal. I hope most viewers came away from that piece asking themselves whether such incredible imbalance is a good thing or not.

    • I think that half the people watching that show would come away feeling that such overwhelming Israeli influence means our policy is in good hands and half would be shocked and/or disgusted that they count so little in such life and death issues that directly affect them and their families.

      I think that 50-50 split might be an improvement in the latter awareness.

  • The candidates debate the U.S./Israeli relationship
    • Hey guys. I made myself sit through it because this is an egregious situation and I was curious if Frontline was going to help solidify it or ask some questions/pose some contrast to make viewers question the "rightness" of it all.

      I think the did the latter somewhat but as you all say it's tough to sit through it to get a sense one way or t'other.

      I only asked because the/any discussion of the nature of the "special relationship" (what does "special" really mean anyway...) has long been exorcised from US MSM to places like here. Here (and elsewhere) the discussion has strengthened and focused and imho it seeping back into MSM - however slowly. Frontline is kinda my test of the permeability of MSM and if they show little seams of sense and rationality then the discussion may well be moving back into MSM. Slowly.

      I think some small seams of questioning sense were in that piece. Or maybe a better way is to ask how some random person feel about watching the US Pres get led around by a nose ring for an hour and a half.

      IDK. Maybe nothing.


    • Yeah. All that for sure. My overall takeaway was that the stench of ultimate subservience was remarkably well documented (particularly the observation, which we all know, that US blood was EXPECTED, by Israel, to be shed in support of their unprovoked and unwarranted attack on Iran).

      I hope others, especially noobs, got the same nose-full. It's there to be whiffed. Not only the usual Israeli suspects spouting off about, "He didn't treat us as equals as is our due. Therefore he hates us. Therefore we hate him.", but all the usual US suspects smirk-nod-winking their concurrence. Dennis Ross going so far as to say it was his recommendation that Obama had to apologize to B-NET for raising the universally accepted "67 borders as starting point" and being insulted by B-NET's public, lengthy lecture in the Oval Office about why Israel was never going to start there.

      It was interesting also that Diana Buttu and [just] one of Obama's NSC advisors (McDonough?) were the only ones to make completely reasonably sense in contrast to the Netanyahu and Israel sycophants who made up the rest of the piece. It wasn't enough quantity of sense to make a big contrast, but it was there for normal/interested people (e.g. 66% of Democrats and 28% of Republicans according to Shibley Telhami's latest poll responding Agree or Somewhat Agree to a "Too much Israeli influence in US government?" question) to note.

      So like you said, a lot of retch-worthy biz-as-usual. But that may also be seen as equally retch-worthy overreach, particularly peppered with contrasting snippets of sense as it was in the piece.

    • Sorry ckg. Didn't see your comment.

      It was an interesting documentary.

    • Did anyone see Frontline on PBS last night? Kinda fleshed out the cartoon in documentary format related to the Iran deal. Portrayed total subservience by US policymakers to a tiny psycho country half way around the world (quelle surprise...) and the incredibly sickening/arrogant presumption, by Israelis, that their country has a right to equal say/partnership in setting US foreign policy.

      I hope tens of millions of people watched it and were disgusted.

      The only question is, given the obvious and cloyingly insistent incessant assertion of this "right", does Frontline use the Israeli assumption of undeserved parity to disgust, or do they simply view it as the unremarkable order of things.

  • US university defeated BDS by hiring three Israeli soldiers to talk up 'love' for Israel
  • US spying on Israel reveals cynical heart of the 'special relationship'
    • Hi Kathleen. Sorry for butting in but wrt the strength of the Israeli Lobby Iran deal only made it through the Senate by maybe THREE votes. And that wasn't a 52-48 affirmation by a slim majority, it was a 64-36 (+|-) skin-of-the-teeth future veto uphold.

      So to recap, the vote on whether we would go to war with a country of 80M people that controls access to 50% of the world's oil supply thereby destroying the global ecolony and costing 10,000 more US lives and those of 10M Iranians, none of which even remotely benefits anyone on the planet -- EXCEPT ISRAEL -- only avoided going down by a few votes that had to be personally lobbied by the White House to get even that marginal result.

      There's your Israeli Lobby power. They can get the US Senate to almost vote for Armageddon.

      The NRA are pikers in comparison.

      Wierd discussion. I guess I'm just gonna have to go with my own lyin' eyes when someone starts obscuring the power and malevolent intent if the Israeli Lobby.

  • Israeli ambassador flings Nazi label at Israeli leaders, after latest authoritarian step
    • abc, I'd add to what you said that more people are watching.

      I think you're right about Israel living, nay, malevolently reveling in its non-accountable past but that's also its undoing. The less Israelis care, the more it signals to others to care -- in the polar opposite direction.

  • 'Untenable one-state reality' is taking hold, Kerry tells Israel supporters
    • Clearly one state IS "tenable." Israel is doing it.

      I wonder if mass expulsions or killing residual Palestinians is equally "untenable" in Kerry-speak.

  • The double standard for white and Muslim shooters
  • Why Rabbi Susan Talve was called a 'real terrorist' by St Louis activists
    • "She represents dignity and is proven fighter for civil rights. - See more at: link to"

      Internal thought process snapshot: Gosh I could really get behind that kind of leadership. If only she didn't find it acceptable to slaughter a few hundred children and their parents on a routine basis and for no apparent reason. Next...


      Seafoid (where be ye, lad) brought up "The Picture of Dorian Gray" a while back. That story is a perfect analog for this "but fights for civil rights" chimera.


      link to

      link to

    • And my bad for saying "maybe."

      I remember once at dKos she was called anti-semitic by the pro-Israel goon squad there for posting something on the eve a Jewish holiday or some such, intentionally so that the Jewish debaters would not have a chance to see it.

      Beyond bizarre.

      That was the clincher for me that the only rule for pro-Israel arguments (and arguers) is that there are no rules.

    • Maybe so, Annie. But this is doubly noteworthy because it's pretty direct for her and it may be new ground. She seems to go out of her way (out of personal conviction) to NOT be this directly confrontational with even potentially tangential allies.

      I get the sense that, even as radically inclusive as she is, this may be (is probably?) a sign of a new, no-BS, phase in the/her Palestinian struggle. It's going to invite new levels of vitriol in the counterattacks, imho.

    • Strong stuff. Well voiced and necessarily on the clarifying offensive.

      I wonder if Sandra has been called anti-semitic after writing this. Hope not.

    • Maybe even intentionally self-serving. As in deliberately cloaking Israel's propensity to slaughter Palestinians on a whim and export its crowd control methods into the US black community with an manufactured aura of "Jews really do care about you."

      That may be harsh, but as MHughes implied the discrepancy is too gross and glaring for seemingly intelligent people to miss.

      I'm at a loss to explain PeP-dom any other way at this point. Ignorance is not an explanation. Too much info available.

    • Thank you, Mooser.

  • Israel's 'security' wall has provided little security
    • Good article, but again...

      What "territories" would these be?:

      "And though attacks have also taken place in Hebron, on the Palestinian side of the wall, those attacks demonstrate the intermingling of the Jewish settlers and Palestinians inside the occupied territories." - See more at: link to

      Sorry to be the bad guy (again) but it's designed, Palestinian identity-negating, Israel-speak phrasing. If you seek to negate Palestinian identity, please continue using this terminology.

      If not, it's such a simple thing to NOT do.

      ▶...occupied Palestine...◀, yes?


  • Golem and Big Brother
  • Israel isn't worried about ISIS
    • Hi Keith. I think part of the significant "force projection" advantage Russia has is the ability to launch cruise missiles at ISIS from its own territory - the Caspian sea.

      Cost would be the only impediment to bombing them into oblivion, or chaos whichever came first. Russia has the ability to stand off and rain fire on all those ISIS parades that we see so many photos of but which the US seems incapable of finding and disrupting. Russia could destabilize the destabilizers pretty easily.

      The question is, "Will they?" for all the reasons you generally point out.

    • It sure seems to me that THIS time it's a coin toss, pab. More so than any time in my memory.

      Global fatigue/antagonism toward Israeli manipulations vs. enforced, status quo political influence via money.

    • Does anyone get the feeling that this very tenuous "evil axis" scenario is so fantasia that it signals that Israel itself knows it has dug its hole too deep and this concoction is its last, best hope to climb out of it.

      But unfortunately for Israel the hole is made up of immutable self-interest, as seen here. They do not want to solve a global problem and climb out on a ladder of good will. The are still operating in 2-year old, "me me me" mode - bibi-ing themselves into some kind of advantaged (and separate/aloof) position by goading the rest of the world into yet another war/orgy of misery and death - while the world is already dealing with tragedy and the prospect of much more to come.

      This is probably the end-game for Israel as it's currently construed. They can't create such a huge problem and then pretend it doesn't concern them while citizens of its supporters are being murdered by Israel' s creation.

      Last straw? Who knows. But this seems more tree trunk than straw. IMHO.

  • Leading anthropologists group overwhelmingly passes BDS resolution at Denver conference
    • Agree Les. When the history is written, I think Salaita's treatment/firing for the temerity to say tangentially non-flattering things about Israel as a private citizen, showed academia just how deep and affecting the problem is. That is to say that this isn't just about Palestinians anymore. It's about THESE people and THEIR ability (under threat of termination) to voice opinions about Israel out loud.

      The pro-Israel goons way overstepped with Salaita.

      The old "first they came for the..." admonition is in full real-life, real-time effect here and these folks apparently sense it viscerally. They get it. Before it's too late. So cool.

      "First they came for the Palestinians...then thy came for Steven Salaita...then they came for me, but by then..."

      link to

  • Hillary Clinton equates ISIS and Hamas
    • Bingo.

      I'd change ignorant to insane though. She can't be THAT ignorant unless it's willful, and to be willfully ignorant on something that, if implemented, is certain to cause the death of a[nother] million human beings is psychopathic.

  • No justice for Tariq Abu Khdeir -- even US State Dep't faults Israeli 'accountability'
    • Glad you included it! It hyper-illustrates the glaring distinctions and discriminators between Israel where they simply and unashamedly and repeatedly just make stuff up to suit the moment (judicially AND legislatively), and other "western democracies" which, however vestigially, operate under an actual system of written laws and/or structured precedent.

      Israel couldn't be any more different.

      Thanks again.

    • The judge wrote in the verdict that the state prosecution has not presented a case with similar circumstances that resulted in the defendant “behind bars“.

      Wow. What an astounding circularity.

      You were caught on video murdering a Palestinian, but since no one has been sentenced to prison for murdering a Palestinian it's community service for you buddy!

      The selectivity gaming possibilities are limitless (Just append a day of the week for starters. Then there's night or day, rain or shine, solo or as a group, a dog barked in the distance, etc., etc., etc., ad nauseam ....

      Israel is one very messed up country.


      And at the rate Israel-ification of "western" law enforcement is proceeding, is this what we all have to look forward to in our own countries? It's pretty clear it's happening in the US (unless you're a black cop that kills a white kid, that is - but that too may arguably be another sign of this creeping sickness from abroad)

      Don't get me started on Abu Khdeir's cringer of a congresswoman: Kathy Castor.

      link to

      Hi everyone! :)

      Thanks Annie for following up on this.

  • Posters linking Muslim students and BDS activists to terrorism appear on college campuses in California and Washington, DC
    • Isn't this reverse "blood libel?" It is.

      So is unconstrained, generalized, vicious caricaturing now acceptable behavior? It appears so.

      Let the games begin. "Satire" the hell out of whoever is putting these posters up.

      PS. I know it's wrong whoever does it and for whatever reason but a moralizing "tsk tsk" doesn't cut it anymore. People are getting killed because of this crap. The only way to make it stop is to make it hurt. Sad.

  • Israeli troops detain and interrogate 6-year-old Palestinian boy in Bethlehem
  • The way for Americans to take on the Islamic state is to end support for Jewish nationalism
    • FFS. [muslin leaders] "getting their hands dirty"

      In one of the many many many many inconsistencies and/or raw insanities of our neocon policies, Assad was "getting his hands dirty" preventing the origination of ISIS in order to preserve [what now appears to be a paradise by comparison] secular Syria. So we tried to get rid if him to make Israel look like the aid-worthy island of calm in the region (that it isn't).

      Now we have animalistic desire, with means (aka Syria's former oil revenues) to perform wholly unpreventable bombings on the airlines and in the capitol cities of anyone that opposes them using more than words.

      Thanks neocons. Vote for Hillary. (bitter sarcasm, that last bit...)

      WBBB? (Would Bernie Be Better?) Not if he can't be open and honest about Israel, he won't. Honesty indicates a certain sanity and, maybe just maybe, a willingness to talk about what got us to this point and (more maybes) a desire to correct the (millions of dead and $6T - ie free college education for an entire generation if Americans) problem.

      Lack of openness suggests, well, the exact opposite.

      Is that a political point?

  • Dan Rabinowitz's response to Nadia Abu El-Haj on BDS
    • Do Professor Rabinowitz's objections mean the status quo is becoming untenable, or at least uncomfortable? That he now has to think about the cost of his privilege to others?

      If so, SUCCESS! (or at least a milestone)

      I wonder his [forced] introspection will yield in terms of changes he and his students can/will make to realign themselves with normal (for their calling anyway) modes of empathetic behavior. If future, unconstrained academic collaboration is the goal, that is.

    • Great points, can of worms. Rabinowitz seems to be an anthropologist in name only, not intellectual discipline or actual practice .

      Anthropomorph-ologist? (Not the right word, but he does seem, as so many Zionists and Israelis do, to be shaping the motives of others to resemble his own cocoon of zero-sum privilege.)

    • Brilliant Annie! Simply brilliant.

  • Seachange in public opinion: 'I am tired of Israel using US-made rockets to bomb Palestinians so that ultra-conservatives can steal their land'
    • That whole "the territory" in the French-language version v. the nebulous-by-design "territory" in the English-language version process of drafting 242 is fascinating.

      Iirc the Indian ambassador to the UN at the time said that discrepancy was deliberate to provide just the ambiguity you mention - in English where it mattered in the US.

      I believe the French version still says "the territory", meaning all of it.

      I'll try to find a link.

    • Sorry amigo. Was aiming at the authors. These North/Weiss NYT critiques always seem to use "territories" for some reason.

      Most folks that comment here are pretty sensitive to the terminology imo.

      My bad for being non-specific.

      PS. Looks like it was changed. Thanks.

    • Good article. Tweeted.

      But again, it's occupied PALESTINE, not some nebulous occupied "territories" in east f'ing Mongolia.

      You all do this every time. Why do you CHOOSE to diminish Palestine and Palestinians while ostensibly seeking to help it/them? If you can't even bring yourselves to name the country being occupied (or choose to use Israeli terms of diminishment) how can you expect to be seen as sincere?

      As I've said before, it IS a big thing. Naming something gives it power.

      PALESTINE! Dammit.

  • Israel gets to use violence. Palestinians don't. That's the rule
    • This is a joke, right?

      The exact opposite is reality/true.

      And beyond that simple fact, you guys ALWAYS leave out the violent Occupation as the starting point of the violence timeline. THAT is where the cycle begins. Why do you (plural) constantly omit that glaring fact? The omission makes you (plural) look like clown kings/utter fools who can only get dressed in the morning by a series of random accidents.


      Carry on.

  • Rigged Netanyahu 'conversation' at Center for American Progress shows it's twilight of the Israel lobby
    • I won't speculate on dates but at every turn it and the people who constitute it operate puvlicly against the interests of ordinary, struggling voters. Every turn.

      Someday, hopefully soon, somebody less reviled than Ann Coulter is gong to publicly hark to that in existence and extent, and millions of voter light bulbs will light up. Voila. Electoral anathema for most. Opposition tool for aspiring pols who want to and/or can make the case (and use this influence as a soecific example) that the are running to actually represent the interests of their constituents.

      Built for an inexorable fall. Can't say when. Hopefully soon, but I'm not looking past the difficulties.

    • Around the time that that lawyer delegation from VA cancelled their trip to Israel I remember reading that the State of VA had an actual state office, funded by taxpayers, to promote Israeli business in the state. Yup that's right. VA taxpayers fund the promotion of Israeli competition to their own domestic business interests and jobs.

      I'm sure it's everywhere.

      The Israel Lobby is hyper-extended. Poised to fall, it is.

  • Israeli forces kill Palestinian husband and wife -- 27 years apart
  • The Case for Parallel States: Excerpt from 'One Land, Two States: Israel and Palestine as Parallel States'
    • Mr. Levine,

      FTR, Zionism is a racist ideology. Are you saying you crafted this approach in collaboration with racists and did not disclaim that association (just wanted to point out the AW/IAK double standard)?

      Do you guys think that crafting a novel solution in collaboration with racists, to a problem caused and perpetuated by racism, is going to result in something other than more, if subtler, racism. I mean are the racists going to advocate for anything other than their historical privilege?

      Were any/a commensurate number of Palestinians involved in this project?

    • Good one tree. And the path from separate but equal (or "equal but separate" or whatever words are used to describe the concept) to even the first step of civil rights legislation is mass demonstrations/unrest (aka "intifada"). Same as today.

      Compound that natural process with the fact that this arrangement is meant to legitimize an unbalanced and unchangeable situation of with renaming pen strokes and paper shuffling (Exhibit A: "equal and separate" as opposed to "separate but equal"), thus removing all potential external pressures to make it work -- assuring an intifada to protest the legitimized imbalance and the SoS reactions we've all seen from the Jewish-Israelis ("no partner for peace" and variants that seem more than enough to placate studiously disinterested foreign observers).

      I was going to say "dead end," but it's probably a non-starter. Wirhout some new and significant change mechanism in this somwhere anything that gives the feckless international community MORE cause to ignore Israeli Apartheid (Hafrada) is far worse than the way it is now (where the existing mechanisms are all defined, stark, in-play, motivating, and actionable, i.e. genocide, expulsion, or inarguable, river-to-sea, criminal Apartheid).

      Great discussion, you all.

  • Park Slope Food Coop censors letters on BDS
  • Shoving of SJP activist seen as part of campaign of ‘intimidation’ on campus
    • Great comment, kalithea.

      A) The violence associated with the privilege is going to become more common as the privileged essence is question more deeply.

      B) The Israelification of the methods of handling dissent outside of Israel means we may all soon become Palestinians in the eyes of our respective states, or certainly get a taste of what that's like.

    • Laws will be passed, I tell ya!

      Probably starting with the finding: Since putting your face in the path of the fist of a supporter if Israel is an act of incitement and aggression...

      But maybe not.

  • The effectiveness of the pro-Israel lobby to intimidate our press has reached new heights
    • Maybe not in decline, but straining mightily to constrain increasing levels of divergence for increasingly diminishing returns.

      I just watched some laminate beams being tested. No visible deflection. No visible deflection. No visible deflection. CRACK! Like a gunshot.

      I'm a firm believer that natural/organic processes share common dynamic behaviors. Could be wrong about that, but if remotely true it could mean we're near the end of this influence/effect.

      Thanks for opening a discussion on where the endpoint may actually lie.

  • Netanyahu's 44 seconds of silence at UN are being widely mocked -- 'pathetic,' 'creepy'
    • Exactly lysias. I've never been a big fan of the "Samson Option" catch-all, but if it is real thing this speech would sure seem to be aimed at reinforcing and/or preparing Jewish-Israelis for that sacrifice.

      Kinda [all too] freakishly Jonestown-ish if you ask me.

  • Settlers gawk as Palestinian woman lies dying at checkpoint (Update)
    • Agree amigo. Murder. Plain and simple.

      And his family outside Israel should be found and made to feel "uncomfortable" by making it known they are kin to a sick bastard who likes to shoot defenseless young women.

      Since there is no punishment for these crimes in Israel, post leaflets around their neighborhood kinda like the unofficial treatment sex offenders get. Maybe family exposure will be communicated back to these sick f'ks and will make them a little less likely to gun down kids for no reason whatsoever. There sure doesn't seem to be any other deterrent.

      Same with the gawkers.

      Zionism is racism, but Israel is a sickness. It should be exposed as such.

  • The Obama administration needs to own up to the quagmire in Syria
    • Sometimes I feel like a one-handed phone typer. Oh wait...

      Trying again.

      Yeah. In order to defeat ISIS, arm everyone fighting Assad and hope they fight ISIS. Goes to that Counterpunch article where Plan B is/has always been the dismemberment of Syria.

      A living nightmare for so many.

    • Yeah. In order to defeat ISIS, arm everyone fighting AssadGoes bac

    • I really can't read stuff like that anymore. It describes a completely irrational, and self-congratulatory irrational, mindset.

      Six month posting to defeat ISIS? In what universe do you accept a post to do that and/or expect that it's even remotely possible.

    • Heh.

      “this was a more difficult endeavor than we assumed and that we need to make some changes to that program,” Mr. Earnest said. ...

      "Assumed," past tense?

      Make it "assume," present tense, and you have a perfect description of the complete circular obliviousness of Beltway group-think and policy formation.

      ▶“this was a more difficult endeavor than we assume and that we need to make some changes to that program,” Mr. Earnest said.◀

      Since no policy change appears to be forthcoming, the admission it is/was a bad assumption is blather. They still assume it and plan accordingly. That means they're completely incapable of change, despite harming Millions of people for no apparent reason.

  • Ad targeting Sen. Bennet says Iran wants to nuke the world's children
    • Yeah Bandolero. I was going to add that reinforcing/underlining purpose but cut it off. You're right that it's also an important complementing dynamic. My sense though, is that the people I talk to who might be susceptible are: a) short term- going to vote that way anyway for other reasons; and, b) long term- becoming more skeptical such that this stuff reinforces in the opposite direction (i.e. it makes candidates who echo the machine-generated condescension LESS credible instead of more credible.)

      The people I talk to here (N. AL) are searching for alternatives. They know something's not right (they're being lied to) and this reinforces that perception. Maybe not enough to change votes today (they ALL lie), but enough to energize and prolong the search for political alternatives (someone who doesn't lie, at least on the big stuff).

      Maybe enough to change suspension of disbelief into outright disbelief. But maybe not. TBD.

      Great comment. Well observed, imho.

    • I talk to a lot of people who would be judged "low info voters" by the makers of this ad. NONE of them are stupid enough and/or prone to be swayed by these types of ads.

      Just the opposite, it's seen as condescending and a turn off, probably put together by Jews (wink, wink) or Jewish interests in an effort to manipulate them. That last self-awareness bit is important and has been a revelation to me. These types of ads dig the hole deeper. The more such blatant BS is condescendingly crammed down normal people's throats, the more resistance is developed. It's all so positively...alienating.

      Now that's not to say there are not truly ignorant and/or terminally cynical/bigoted voters out there who fully subscribe to this baloney, but I believe they're far fewer than the producers of these ads assume.

  • Bernie Sanders is 'radical' on economic policy but a pussycat for Israel
    • Hi just. Well said.

      I think that the time is right for a US version of Corbyn. A clear alternative.

      Right now that role is being opportunistically being filled by Sanders, despite his history of fudges and hedges. He's just the closest major party candidate to the need.

      But I can't help but wonder what a Kucinich candidacy would look like in today's political environment. I think he'd give Sanders a run as the alternative to biz as usual.

      There is a need out here, not currently being filled. An unease not being addressed.

      Maybe there's a loud and unflinching crusader for "what should be" out there with Dennis' history of consistent "people's" advocacy who will give it a go this cycle.


    • How a candidate talks and acts on this one issue is the distillation of the candidate's ability/corruptability and willingness to act on all the others.

      Only one question is necessary to ascertain and predict a given candidate's future performance in the sought after office. The question can vary but only one is necessary.

      My personal fave is, "Do you support Israel slaughtering children in Gaza every other year?" The normal, indignant, uneqivocal answer (that would be automatically given on any other issue) is so self-evident that any weasel-y deviation or avoidance becomes the predictive glimpse into the candidate's "malleability"/soul/future.

      PEP = Progressive Except Everything-I'm-Told-Not-To-Be-Progressive-On

  • J'lem mayor warns Palestinians in holy site clashes: 'if they use violence we will hunt them'
  • Netanyahu 'declares war' on stone throwers
    • So many words. So little sense.

      Ya know, when you post canned stuff like this so obviously crafted in a vacuum, or arguing with itself, or an unprovoked strawman, or a speech delivered in front of a mirror, or whatever this was, it only reflects your inability to incorporate even the smallest drabs of upsetting/competing reality. That failure pretty much kills your point.

      If your point was that Jews who advocate for Palestinan right are destined to end up dead at the hands of their beneficiaries, give an example. I can't think of any offhand. Surely as inherently murderous as Palestinians are, there must be many examples to cite.

      Otoh, Yitzhak Rabin! Gideon Levy needs bodyguards. An Iowa Congressman was recently called a "kapo" (a death threat, if taken seriously) for supporting the Iran deal. Etc. Etc. Etc.

      First comment, eh? Carry on.

  • Coulter's point is that Republicans pander on Israel to win donors, not voters
    • One of the tweets cited as an example of "ugly" in that article:

      ●#IStandWithAnn because if Israel can build a wall, accept no refugees, and deport immigrants, so can the USA and Europe.●

      Seems like a completely legitimate observation to me. Though the tweep meant it to justify exclusion by using Israel as a model of exclusion, it can equally be used, without changing a word, to point out that there are no shared values.

      It's interesting that the US right and left [accurately] see the same things in Israel. I wonder what that means politically here.

  • #IStandWithAhmed: Story of Muslim-American teenager arrested for bringing clock to school goes viral (Updated)
  • 'New Yorker' says anti-Zionism is 'firmly rooted' in British left, and it's anti-Semitic
    • Mooser,

      Inside? Using the Pew poll of a few years ago, I'd say somewhere between the 69% who are strongly or somewhat attached to Israel (aka Zionists), and the 56% who are not intermarried.

      Call it 50% given that "somewhat" is pretty vague and I'm pretty sure it's possible to not be intermarried and still be aware of/disgusted by the violent oppressive reality in Palestine. Probably less than half in the under-40 age group (58% intermarriage rate in the last 15 years).

      link to

      Outside, or in-out-in? Enough to get an alternative data dump of sufficient quantity and volume to cause questioning/a generational shift.

      That's US.

      Inside Israel, the number inside (per Elliot's personal anecdotes and Dan Cohen's article on the "free-thinking" Tel Aviv bubble) probably approaches 100%.

      Globally inside? Say 75%.


    • Hmmm.

      And because a generational shift inside Jewish life is giving the left permission to embrace the Palestinian cause.

      Not because the "left" is acting on the easily observable' crystal clear morality of the issue, with or without "permission" from anybody, Jewish or otherwise?

      I think normal people ARE acting on the morality, completely independent of Jewish sentiment. The Jewish "generational shift" is a result of that action, not the cause of it. The shift comes because younger Jews who venture outside the cloister/"community" (or to MW!) get an earful or several.

  • 80% unemployment for young women, $1000 GDP per capita -- inside the UN's 'Gaza uninhabitable' report
    • Thanks Annie. You're right.

    • Yeah. I agree amigo. Halper is true friend of the Palestinian people.

      Good points.

      Using Palestine instead if "territories" confers so much identity, agency, and power, and it's such an easy rule to observe. It makes it all the more puzzling given the upside.

      But as you say, the habits may be so deeply ingrained and buried that it may be just that difficult to change one word. That in itself is remarkable, and a revelation of just how DEEPLY skewed the discussion is on this issue. A revelation to me anyway.


    • Thanks Keith.

    • Using occupied "territories" is like talking about someone in the third person while they are standing right next to you.

      Rude and dismissive.

      Halper should know better.

      I'd like to know why this phrasing is used by people who ostensibly want to highlight the plight of the Palestinian people. Seems like willful disregard for supporting Palestinian identity would tend to significantly minimize the effect of otherwise beneficial advocacy.

      Is this a symptom of the cocoon of intentional disregard for Palestinians that Jewish-Israelis and libzios operate within? Can they simply not help themselves because that disregard is so pervasive in their bubble that they don't recognize that they are doing it? Or does putting a name to the oppressed state a few meters away, PALESTINE, put them on the path to "pariah-hood" within Israel and with other "lefty" Israelis (i.e. outside the bounds of acceptable "discourse")?

      Not getting what the hangup is.

    • I believe $1000 p/c GDP is less than post-earthquake Haiti.

      And it's occupied PALESTINE, dammit! Not some f'ing "territory."

      If you can do nothing else constructive on this issue, at the VERY least don't aid the destruction of Palestinian identity by adopting Zionist terms. Should we call Palestinians "territorians?" I mean after all, they live in "territories" that no one seems to know the name of.

      Or should we fully surrender and just call them Samarians?

      Palestine is a country. It is occupied by Israel. Use the right words.

      And yeah, it iS a big deal.

  • I am Israeli

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