Trending Topics:

Sheldon Adelson is not the problem

US Politics
on 166 Comments

The world loves a villain. At age 81, with beady eyes, mangy hair, and a monster ego, casino magnate Sheldon Adelson easily fits the role.

For many, Adelson personifies the evil force of money taking over our politics. Moreover, his politics are bad. He supports Republicans. He supports Netanyahu. He’s the Rupert Murdoch of Israel. He expects obeisance to his desired policy; he makes politicians dance the Hora to get at his money. His wife drops purses on Democrats in Congress.

Adelson and his wife were in the gallery during the Netanyahu speech to Congress on March 3, 2015. The sighting provoked several op-eds pointing the finger at Adelson as exerting undue influence over our politics.

Take, for example, Bill Moyers and Michael Winship in Salon, on March 7: “Everything you need to know about Benjamin Netanyahu’s address to Congress Tuesday was the presence in the visitor’s gallery of that man [Sheldon Adelson]. We are hostage to his fortune,” they say.

….Not only is this casino mogul the unofficial head of the Republican Party in America (“he with the gold rules”), he is the uncrowned King of Israel — David with a printing press and checkbook instead of a slingshot and a stone. All of this came to the fore in Netanyahu’s speech on Tuesday: the US cannot determine its own policy in the Middle East and the majority in Congress are under the thumb of a foreign power.

Like a King Midas colossus, Sheldon Adelson bestrides the cause of war and peace in the most volatile region of the world. And this is the man who — at Yeshiva University in New York in 2013 — denounced President Obama’s diplomatic efforts with Iran and proposed instead that the United States drop an atomic bomb in the Iranian desert and then declare: “See! The next one is in the middle of Tehran. So, we mean business. You want to be wiped out? Go ahead and take a tough position and continue with your nuclear development.”

Tyler Durden, over at Zero Hedge, picked up the ball on March 9 and ran with it:

This whole thing [about dropping atomic bombs on Teheran] takes on a much greater level of significance given Adelson’s near total control of the U.S. Republican party, as well as his control over Israel’s Prime Minister. The man is not only the 8th richest man in the world, he’s also a menace to civilized society, and people need to start paying a lot more attention to him.

Finally, a few days ago, Tom Friedman chimed in in the New York Times:

[W]hen it came to showering that cash on Republican presidential hopefuls and right-wing PACs trying to defeat President Obama (reportedly $150 million in 2012), and on keeping Netanyahu and his Likud party in office, no single billionaire-donor is more influential than Sheldon. No matter what his agenda, it is troubling that one man, with a willingness and ability to give away giant sums, can now tilt Israeli and American politics his way at the same time. ….

When money in politics gets this big, when it can make elected officials bow and scrape in two different countries at the same time, it is troubling. I’m sure Adelson cares deeply about Israel, but he lacks any sense of limits in how he exercises his extraordinary financial power — power he is using to simultaneously push Israel and America toward eliminating any two-state solution between Israelis and Palestinians, toward defunding the Palestinian Authority and toward a confrontation with Iran, not a diplomatic solution. People need to know this.

But is this true?  Are we hostages to Adelson’s money? Does he control near total control over the U.S. Republican party? Is Congressional support for Israel the result of Adelson’s money? Is the rightward drift of Israeli and U.S. politics due to Adelson?  I don’t think so.

U.S. Support for Israel

Israel has enjoyed overwhelming American support from the outset. Walter Russell Mead notes in a 2008 Foreign Policy Magazine essay that whereas Presidential advisers are often ambivalent, public support has been consistent and widespread. “In the United States,” says Mead, “a pro-Israel foreign policy does not represent the triumph of a small lobby over the public will. It represents the power of public opinion to shape foreign policy in the face of concerns by foreign policy professionals.”

Mead points out that this popular American support for Zionism goes all the way back to the founding fathers.  Some of it is was based on biblical prophetic literalism (e.g. John Adams); some of it came from a vision of the United States as an embodiment of God’s building a better world through human progress, and that the United States was thus intimately linked with the ancient Promised Land; and some of it, throughout the 19th century, came from liberal secular Zionists who associated the restoration of a Jewish state with Jerusalem as its capital with the general march of human progress.

The writer Herman Melville expressed this view: “We Americans are the peculiar, chosen people — the Israel of our time; we bear the ark of the liberties of the world.” From the time of the Puritans to the present day, preachers, thinkers, and politicians in the United States — secular as well as religious, liberal as well as conservative — have seen the Americans as a chosen people, bound together less by ties of blood than by a set of beliefs and a destiny. Americans have believed that God (or history) has brought them into a new land and made them great and rich and that their continued prosperity depends on their fulfilling their obligations toward God or the principles that have blessed them so far. Ignore these principles — turn toward the golden calf — and the scourge will come.

The United States and Israel are both settler states. Over the history of the U.S. we have looked to God’s biblical promise of Canaan to the Jews as a mere prelude to our own settlement of the new land and conquest of its people.  Other factors have contributed to the close bond, such as the tremendous shock of the Holocaust, and American Jewish support of the civil rights struggle.

After 1967 there has been a rightward drift in support for Israel in this country. On the left, support has waned due to the occupation and weakening support among Blacks, and on the right, support has strengthened with a growing political activism within the Evangelical Christian Church and a strong adverse reaction to Islamist movements throughout the Middle East among populist-nationalist (“Jacksonian”) voters.

Many Jacksonians formed negative views of the Arabs during the Cold War. The Palestinians and the Arab states, they noted, tended to side with the Soviet Union and the Nonaligned Movement against the United States. The Egyptians responded to support from the United States in the 1956 Suez crisis by turning to the Soviets for arms and support, and Soviet weapons and Soviet experts helped Arab armies prepare for wars against Israel….[As] events in the Middle East have unfolded since 1967, they have become more sympathetic to Israel even as many non-Jacksonian observers in the United States — and many more people in the rest of the world — have become less so.

The Six-Day War reignited the interest of prophetic Zionists in Israel and deepened the perceived connections between Israel and the United States for many Jacksonians. After the Cold War, the Jacksonians found that the United States’ opponents in the region, such as Iraq and Iran, were the most vociferous enemies of Israel as well.

Jacksonians admire victory, and total victory is the best kind. The sweeping, overwhelming triumph of Israeli arms in 1967 against numerically superior foes (sic) from three different countries caught the imaginations of Jacksonians — especially at a time when the United States’ poor performance in Vietnam had made many of them pessimistic about their own country’s future. Since then, some of the same actions that have hurt Israel’s image in most of the world — such as ostensibly disproportionate responses to Palestinian terrorism — have increased its support among Jacksonians.

Mead concludes:

One thing, at least, seems clear. In the future, as in the past, U.S. policy toward the Middle East will, for better or worse, continue to be shaped primarily by the will of the American majority, not the machinations of any minority, however wealthy or engaged in the political process some of its members may be.

And this holds true for Sheldon Adelson and his money as well. The U.S. has been supporting Israel since long before Sheldon Adelson made his first billion. Congressional support for Israel is not the result of his money, it’s due to the will of the American majority.

Rightward Drift in Politics

Just like Adelson and his money are not the cause of Congressional support for Israel, Adelson and his money are not the cause of the rightward drift in politics, not in the U.S., and not in Israel. In the U.S. the shift in favor of Republicans over the past 30 years has been primarily due to the fact that Southern Democrats switched parties after the Civil Rights movement, they are now Southern Republicans, and the fact that there are structural imbalances in our Constitution that strongly favor less populated conservative rural regions over densely urban areas. In Israel, a rightward drift in politics is due in part to the First and Second Intifadas, the occupation, ongoing hostile relations with neighbors, and the influx of large numbers of immigrants from the Soviet Union.  This shift happened long before Adelson built his first casino.  The two-state solution has been a corpse since 2000. Netanyahu killed it long before Adelson became a large donor.

Had Adelson gone broke in 2008, our Congress would be no more functional today. Politics in the U.S. and Israel would be no different. The two-state solution would still be dead.

Just Another Politically Active Rich Guy

Just like it’s mean-spirited and beside the point to demonize Donald Trump because of his mystery hair (although it’s fun to do so) it’s misguided to demonize Adelson because of his looks, his lack of education, or the fact that he spends some of his money on political causes (although it’s easy to do so).

Fact is, Adelson is an American success story.  He came from humble background and he built, and re-built his empire from the ground up. He has swagger, but he also has a twinkle. He has a strong and accomplished woman for his second wife. You’ve got to admire that.

Adelson co-developed COMDEX, the premier computer trade show during the 1980’s and ’90s. He earned his first $500 million when he sold this business in 1995.  At that time Adelson was 62 years old and he could have retired and enjoyed a very nice lifestyle. But he didn’t. He took this money, and his share of the Sands hotel which he acquired in 1988, and built his Casino empire in Las Vegas, Macao, Pennsylvania, and Singapore. By 2008 his net worth was ~$34 billion. He lost $15 billion of this during the crash, but he’s back to nearly $30 billion now.

He has a reputation for being tough.  And Steve Wynn, the casino competitor on the Las Vegas strip, says: “Sheldon is a man who harbors a lot of animosity toward a lot of people, [a]nd when Sheldon is angry, he gets nasty.” That stands to reason, but it’s not what we are thinking of when we dub him a political villain.

The Adelson foundation gives a lot of money for medical research; he has funded school construction in Las Vegas; he supports Republican candidates for office; and he supports a lot of charitable causes in Israel [his wife was born in Haifa and received her MD degree from Tel Aviv University]; he has contributed $140 million to the Birthright Israel foundation, which finances Jewish youth trips to Israel; he has given large donations to Yad Vashem, the Israel Holocaust Museum. In the 2012 election cycle, Adelson is reported to have given at least $98 million to get Republicans elected.

We might choose to spend this money differently, but there is nothing villainous about Adelson being engaged in the political process and with charitable causes.
It’s silly to suggest that Adelson’s extremely naive and impolitic statement about threatening Iran by dropping a nuclear bomb in the desert is in any way dictating or influencing either Israeli or American policy.  Netanyahu has been beating the drum on Iran and its nuclear ambitions since at least 1993. If Israel decides to go it alone and ultimately bomb Iran, which seems unlikely, it won’t be because of anything Adelson says or doesn’t say.
Large donor money is a problem in politics. But total political spending in the 2012 election cycle was $7 billion, according to the FEC.  The $100-$150 million that Adelson contributed, therefore, represents less than 2 percent of the total spending.  Or, to put it another way, Adelson’s entire contribution can be neutralized with 300,000 $50 political donations–that’s a $50 donation from .002 of voters who actually cast a ballot.
Big money in politics is a problem, but lack of participation is a bigger problem. The political orientation of our 100 wealthiest citizens is the least of our problems.
Roland Nikles
About Roland Nikles

Roland Nikles is a Bay Area writer and attorney. He blogs here: rolandnikles.blogspot.com. And you can follow him on twitter @RolandNikles

Other posts by .


Posted In:

166 Responses

  1. March 14, 2015, 9:08 am

    “Congressional support for Israel is not the result of his money, it’s due to the will of the American majority.”

    “Big money in politics is a problem, but lack of participation is a bigger problem. The political orientation of our 100 wealthiest citizens is the least of our problems “.

    Wow. Tough to decide which of the two comments directly above is the higher quality bullspit.

    This article was sufficiently dishonest/ridiculous to appear in the NY Times.

    • just
      just
      March 14, 2015, 9:30 am

      “This article was sufficiently dishonest/ridiculous to appear in the NY Times.”

      I have to agree with that, Giles. There’s more to unpack from this lengthy ode to Adelson, but you hit the nail on the head.

      blergh.

      • W.Jones
        W.Jones
        March 14, 2015, 8:51 pm

        Correction: “This article was sufficiently [pro-Israeli] to appear in the NY Times.”
        Ridiculousness is not a criteria. But it is not an obstacle if the argument is pro-Israeli enough.

        The article was ridiculous because it proposes that support for the Israeli State has been very longstanding and widespread in America. It should be obvious to people informed on American culture that there was no widespread popular belief demanding or politically supporting a state for the Jewish religious community alone in the Middle East prior to the 1960’s. It is not a major theme in US literature or culture, or something most everyday Americans spent much time thinking about.

        I am positive that few Americans know the vast extent of US Israeli aid compared to other countries. Americans have more favorable views of many other countries. To say that this is all from some longstanding widespread support for Zionism among everyday American households is totally ridiculous.

    • Interested Bystander
      Interested Bystander
      March 14, 2015, 12:28 pm

      Giles: I’m not sure what you believe to be “dishonest” about the article (mine)? The value of the comments is to help argument, point out problems, disagreements, and–of course–entertain. Try: “I disagree because ….” If we’re just trying to register “likes” an “dislikes” (which takes less thought) perhaps the management can put in one of those FB buttons.

      • just
        just
        March 14, 2015, 12:35 pm

        “The value of the comments is to help argument, point out problems, disagreements, and–of course–entertain.”

        Whew, it might have helped had you even hinted that this was partly for entertainment. I thought so at times, but by the end of it……

        I’ll give it another go, I guess.

      • Interested Bystander
        Interested Bystander
        March 14, 2015, 1:07 pm

        Just: We’re talking comments. Quite a few commenters on this site are clearly entertaining themselves. You think not? That’s not necessarily a bad thing.

      • just
        just
        March 14, 2015, 1:20 pm

        I think it’s obvious that I enjoy and learn from MW articles and comments. I laugh often.

        Speaking of $$$, did anyone see this?

        “The Koch brothers’ conglomerate Koch Industries has refused to comply with an investigation by three Senate Democrats into whether the company has funded groups or researchers who deny or cast doubt on climate change.

        In response to a request from senators Barbara Boxer, Edward Markey and Sheldon Whitehouse for information about Koch Industries’ support for scientific research, Koch general counsel Mark Holden invoked the company’s first amendment rights.
        …..
        The senators’ investigation was prompted by documents obtained through a freedom of information request by Greenpeace, the environmental group. The documents revealed a prominent Harvard-Smithsonian Center scientist had accepted more than $1.2m from the fossil-fuel industry. The scientist, Wei-Hock Soon, has espoused on television and before Congress alternate theories of climate change, including a discredited theory that the sun’s energy explain global warming.

        Soon received at least $230,000 from the Charles G Koch Charitable Foundation, according to the documents obtained by Greenpeace. The Koch brothers, whose wide-ranging corporation extends into oil refineries, fertilizer production and polymers, paper and minerals, avidly inject cash into both political causes and cultural ones and do not always shy from the spotlight.

        In January officials in the brothers’ political organization announced a budget of almost $1bn would be available for the 2016 presidential field. David Koch has also leant his name to both the plaza at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York and an exhibit about human evolution at the Natural History Museum in Washington DC. The company recently began an advertising effort to rehabilitate its reputation and recast itself as an all-American operation.”

        http://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2015/mar/13/koch-industries-refuses-senators-climate-investigation#comment-48884939

      • March 14, 2015, 2:16 pm

        Congressional support for Israel is not the result of his money, it’s due to the will of the American majority.” “

        Big money in politics is a problem, but lack of participation is a bigger problem. The political orientation of our 100 wealthiest citizens is the least of our problems “.

        The absurdity of those two statements is self evident, is it not? Do you really need it more fully explained?

      • RoHa
        RoHa
        March 14, 2015, 3:12 pm

        Yes, using the circumstantial version of argumentum ad hominem to smear sceptical scientists.

        (The really big money is on the other side, but that is no reason for rejecting the man-made global warming hypothesis either.)

      • W.Jones
        W.Jones
        March 14, 2015, 8:59 pm

        I’m not sure what you believe to be “dishonest” about the article (mine)? ~Bystander

        This statement is either dishonest is delusional:
        “Israel has enjoyed overwhelming American support from the outset.”

        It’s not “overwhelming” if you mean politicians, since Eisenhower opposed and stopped the Israeli war on Egypt in the Suez Crisis.

        And not if you mean an overwhelming majority of regular Americans, most of whom were not particularly interested in Israeli politics. I don’t think most mainstream preachers were spouting Christian Zionism from the pulpits, nor are most of them doing so today. Most Americans in the 1950’s were thinking about workdays, unions, the mafia, the Cold War. The Israeli state was not particularly important to most people, as most mainstream Americans should be able to tell you from their family background. And guess what? We still had racial segregation and there was more anti-semitism than there is today! How does one imagine segregationalist southerners with anti-black racism in the 1950’s being pro-Israeli?

        To say that the Israeli government has always had widespread American popular support or overwhelming US political support is dishonest, delusional or extremely misinformed.

    • seafoid
      seafoid
      March 14, 2015, 4:30 pm

      “The political orientation of our 100 wealthiest citizens is the least of our problems “. –

      Couldn’t disagree more. those parasites control a massive chunk of US income. All because of the way they have structured political economy in the US
      American politics is bought.

      • W.Jones
        W.Jones
        March 14, 2015, 8:05 pm

        Exactly, Seafoid.
        Isn’t it true that 1% of Americans own 40% of the wealth or something?

      • Doubtom
        Doubtom
        March 18, 2015, 2:00 am

        Precise characterization! They are indeed ‘parasites’ in the clearest sense of the word.

    • Doubtom
      Doubtom
      March 18, 2015, 1:58 am

      Let’s just accept that he’s a shill for the Israelis and Sheldon in particular.

  2. talknic
    talknic
    March 14, 2015, 10:27 am

    Adelson ain’t the problem. He has money.

    The problem is Israel DOESN’T have the money and has never had the money to be able to afford to adhere to the law once broken by having disowned its own citizens, exceeded its borders even as they were being proclaimed to the world for recognition and having dispossessed non-Jews from the remainder of Palestine, outside the State of Israel.

    Now after 67 years of illegal facts on the ground, the cost of Israel adhering to its borders as required by law, relocating Israelis back into Israel, facing their inevitable class actions for having been deceived into thinking they had a right to settle in non-Israeli territories and paying rightful compensation to the Palestinians for their razed homes and villages and their hardship is simply astronomical, far beyond the Adelsons of the world.

    Israel’s leaders have never intended to adhere to the law and they haven’t.

    • catalan
      catalan
      March 14, 2015, 10:49 am

      @ talknic – you, presumably a native speaker of the English language, clearly do not know the rules for using contractions and apostrophes (it’s vs its). Yet you wish to be heard on international law. Learn grammar first:).

      • just
        just
        March 14, 2015, 10:56 am

        What an entrance you’ve made!

        Look to the substance first, please.

      • bintbiba
        bintbiba
        March 14, 2015, 11:04 am

        ‘Just’ +1

      • just
        just
        March 14, 2015, 11:39 am

        You gave a schoolmarmish scold re: grammar in your premier post, nothing else. That’s what I was replying to.

        talknic speaks for him/herself.

      • Donald
        Donald
        March 14, 2015, 11:51 am

        Well, that was unintentionally revealing. It’s not uncommon for people to be upset by grammatical mistakes. But when you use this as an excuse to dismiss substance it tells everyone what sort of contributor you are likely to be.

      • amigo
        amigo
        March 14, 2015, 12:56 pm

        @ talknic – you, presumably a native speaker of the English language, “catalan

        I don,t think Talknic is from England.

      • catalan
        catalan
        March 14, 2015, 1:10 pm

        Donald,
        English is not my first language. Bulgarian is. It’s just hard for me to take seriously people discussing law, politics or economics when they don’t know third grade grammar of their first language. Grammar itself is not indicative of substance of course. However, it does tend to show the quality of one’s education and willingness to learn basics. It’s form, not substance, like clothes, manners, etc. Would you like to take a class in international law from a poorly dressed person who cannot spell and confuses you are with your?

      • Kris
        Kris
        March 14, 2015, 1:13 pm

        Seriously, you’re talking contractions and apostrophes?

        Many of us are using electronic devices that automatically “correct” our typing, even if those “corrections” then turn the correct words we have typed into computer-generated incorrect forms that the program selects. This happens to me when I use my Kindle because I don’t know how to turn off the automatice “correct” feature. Many of us are typing in a hurry, and apostrophe errors are easy to make, and easy to miss if you are proofreading quickly. It doesn’t matter, since what we are interested in is CONTENT.

        Your rude comment to talknic is an ad hominem attack; here’s a good example of what you’re trying out: http://www.nizkor.org/features/fallacies/ad-hominem.html You are trying to say that because talknic made apostrophe errors, his views should not be taken seriously.

        I’m assuming you are a Zionist, since you are arguing in such a lame way. Here are some writing prompts that you may find useful in future posts: Holocaust, Jew hatred, antisemitism, blood libel, Holocaust, deserts bloom, delegitimization, Jew hatred, Holocaust, uncomfortable, whole world against us, Holocaust, Hamas Charter, rockets, self-hating Jew, terrorism, push Jews into the sea, suicide attacks, Hamas, democracy, Israel’s “security,” “disputed territory,” only “democracy” in middle east, Jewish “settler” children in bomb shelters, every hand against us, God gave us this land, high tech, Holocaust, special relationship, Jew hatred. Also unfair higher standard, bad/worse things somewhere elsewhere, Muslim threat, ISIS, beheadings, sharia law, Holocaust.

      • Kris
        Kris
        March 14, 2015, 1:38 pm

        @catalon: “Learn grammar first.”

        I think you might enjoy this website, catalon, even though there may not be a comments section (I didn’t look for one): http://www.holmdelschools.org/schools/satz/eng_dept/Grammar/Diagramming/diagramming_practice%20MAIN.htm

        I had forgotten how fun it is to diagram sentences; I used to LOVE this stuff.

      • Kris
        Kris
        March 14, 2015, 1:55 pm

        Now I’m really confused. I generally skim posts on mondoweiss, not looking for apostrophe errors, and now that I look back and read talknic’s post, very carefully, I CAN’T FIND ANY ERRORS!

        What is up, catalon? Could you please tell me where talknic has broken the punctuation rules?

      • Donald
        Donald
        March 14, 2015, 2:00 pm

        Try a little harder to overcome your attitude about grammar. Quite a few intelligent people make spelling and grammatical mistakes. Also, I’ve found my own mistakes are greatly multiplied when I use an IPad– some of it is due to my fingers being a little too large and the rest is the IPad correction software. One of the things I think it has done is correct its with it’s, or maybe the other way around.

      • John O
        John O
        March 14, 2015, 2:13 pm

        I am a native English speaker, and a retired editor of educational books and websites. Yes, the editor within me sometimes sighs softly when commenters here get their apostrophes muddled, but: (a) English spelling conventions are a nightmare, not just for those who learn it as a second language, but for native speakers as well; (b) I don’t let spelling or grammar errors distract me from what people have to say. If you threw a writer’s work in the waste-paper basket because of their poor spelling and punctuation, you’d miss out on some great people, like Jane Austen and Emily Dickinson, to name but two (or is that to or too?).

      • just
        just
        March 14, 2015, 2:37 pm

        lol, John O!

      • amigo
        amigo
        March 14, 2015, 2:45 pm

        “Grammar itself is not indicative of substance of course. However, it does tend to show the quality of one’s education and willingness to learn basics ” catalon

        It seems you need to go back to basics buddy.How do you explain all the pro war neocons who pushed for war against Iraq.All that fancy education and they were on the wrong side of history.You seem to be making the same mistake.Backing the border-less apartheid and so called democratic ,rogue entity that is Israel. I would say that is an education wasted and financially a total write off.

        If your support for Israel lies in spell checking then forge ahead .Very few here, will communicate with you.One word of warning!!. Watch out for the dreaded , Ro Ha .

        By the way, take some lessons in social skills .You sure could use some.

      • seafoid
        seafoid
        March 14, 2015, 4:31 pm

        WTF?
        The grammar was fine. another bot deflection attempt . Such a pity hasbara is still dead.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        March 14, 2015, 5:19 pm

        “catalan” are you one of those choosen people? Or perhaps a looser?

        “Catalan” I am sure, never has problems with typo’s. He only cuts-n-pastes well-edited material.

      • talknic
        talknic
        March 14, 2015, 7:33 pm

        @ catalan ” you, presumably a native speaker of the English language, clearly do not know the rules for using contractions and apostrophes (it’s vs its). Yet you wish to be heard on international law. Learn grammar first:)

        Strange. No where in the post do I intend to say “it is”. Please scan the post again. It’s still there.

      • talknic
        talknic
        March 14, 2015, 7:56 pm

        To clarify. I’m an Australian. English is my primary language.

        When I was a kid, I’d get the apostrophe thing wrong all the time. It still happens now and then. BTW I appreciate folk pointing it out ….. when it’s actually an issue.

        Were I perfect of course I’d’ve gotten all them ol’ apostrophes under control by now. But I’m not perfect so I ain’t. But hey, I’m not dead yet, so where earlier I mightn’t’ve, there’s still a chance I might.

      • just
        just
        March 14, 2015, 7:58 pm

        roftlmao!

        charming!

      • Bornajoo
        Bornajoo
        March 15, 2015, 10:47 am

        “@ talknic – you, presumably a native speaker of the English language, clearly do not know the rules for using contractions and apostrophes (it’s vs its). Yet you wish to be heard on international law. Learn grammar first:).”

        Excuse me catalan, but unfortunately it’s you who doesn’t know the difference between it’s and its. The variations Talknic used in his post are perfectly correct. It was an extremely desperate way to try and counter Talknic’s arguments which you have tried to do by criticising his grammar which was correct in any case.

        Yet another hasbara own goal. There’s been quite a few of these recently. Keep up the good work!

      • Citizen
        Citizen
        March 15, 2015, 3:24 pm

        @ catalan
        Go away puny fly.

      • Sulphurdunn
        Sulphurdunn
        March 16, 2015, 9:05 pm

        That’s a red herring’s red herring.

      • Doubtom
        Doubtom
        March 18, 2015, 2:06 am

        –and lacking any substantial opposing view, you resort to criticizing his grammar. The object of communication, any kind of communication, is to be understood and talknic’s comments need not rely proper grammar. He got his point across, much to your displeasure it would seem.

    • catalan
      catalan
      March 14, 2015, 11:12 am

      @just – Talknic has an obsession with the borders proposed under the Partition Plan. Yet the UN, the Arab League, Hamas, Fatah, and even Iran have indicated that they would accept a two-state solution based on the 1967 borders, assuming the other issues are resolved as well. I just fail to understand why the partition plan needs to be discussed any more.

      • annie
        annie
        March 14, 2015, 11:37 am

        assuming the other issues are resolved as well. I just fail to understand why the partition plan needs to be discussed any more.

        that’s because you’re lacking in the most basic sense, the common kind. since there’s no reason to assume “the other issues are resolved” when they are far from resolved, then everything is still in flux, is it not?

        anyway, nice diversion. but it won’t work.

      • catalan
        catalan
        March 14, 2015, 11:46 am

        Annie, everything is indeed in flux. I was trying to point out that in the range of solutions, both 1967 and a one state solution seem far more likely than returning to the partition plan.

      • annie
        annie
        March 14, 2015, 12:16 pm

        the UN, the Arab League, Hamas, Fatah, and even Iran have indicated that they would accept a two-state solution based on the 1967 borders…I…fail to understand why the partition plan needs to be discussed … both 1967 and a one state solution seem far more likely than returning to the partition plan.

        as talknic made clear, “Israel’s leaders have never intended to adhere to the law and they haven’t.”

        when something is broken, to fix it one must deal with the reality, not the fantasy. one clear fixed reality in the equation (or the pieces of the puzzle, or the broken vase) is that israel does not, or will not adhere to the law. therefore any and all agreements it makes cannot be trusted. therefore, it seems probable and likely a solution may eventually be imposed on the state, as opposed to a solution israel agrees upon.

        furthermore, what “the UN, the Arab League, Hamas, Fatah, and even Iran have indicated that they would accept”, israel would not accept and there’s no reason to assume just because some parties accepted something in the past they will accept those terms under conditions in the future. conditions in which, at this juncture, are unknowable.

        what seems likely (to me) is that any solution imposed on israel may include the imposition of punitive measures. those measures may take into considerations agreements israel made in the past – and broke.

        the point of discussing the partition plan is that putting it all back together may require starting at the beginning, taking everything into consideration.

      • eljay
        eljay
        March 14, 2015, 12:01 pm

        || catalan: Talknic has an obsession with the borders proposed under the Partition Plan. ||

        The borders accepted by Israel when it proclaimed its statehood within them.

        || Yet the UN, the Arab League, Hamas, Fatah, and even Iran have indicated that they would accept a two-state solution based on the 1967 borders, assuming the other issues are resolved as well. ||

        So…has Israel accepted the offer of ’67 borders – a huge concession by the Palestinians – and agreed to sincerely negotiate a just resolution of other issues (such as RoR of refugees from the geographic region comprising Israel)?

      • Donald
        Donald
        March 14, 2015, 12:03 pm

        Ever hear of the “Overton. Window”? If not, google it. What happens is that people on the pro-Palestinian side say that international law supports a 2ss solution along the 67 lines and then that becomes the leftmost position. Israel supporters then start haggling over how much of the remaining land they can take or keep. That is what happens when the U.S. is the mediator. So even if one thinks a 2ss along the 67 lines was the best achievable solution, it makes sense to,point out just how much the Palestinians are giving up, so as to rebut the claims that Israel is making a generous offer when it offers something even less than the 67 lines.

        The fact is that even the 47 partition was unfair to Palestinians, giving them less than half the land when they were 2/3 of the population at the time. A 1ss with equal rights for all would be fair. It may or may not be achievable, but the Israelis in their arrogance are making even the 67 lines unachievable.

      • just
        just
        March 14, 2015, 12:27 pm

        Thanks folks. Seems pretty clear to me.

        Israel cannot be trusted. It has never wanted peace, nor has it ever demonstrated any intention of creating any space for justice.

        Superfluous comments on my part, I know. I’m “preaching” to the choir of realists.

      • pjdude
        pjdude
        March 14, 2015, 1:59 pm

        there is what people will accept and than there is what the laws actually says. the 67 lines are Israel’s legal borders. talknic believes Israel’s conquering inside the partian lines is legal i don’t. but for anyone with even a passing understanding of international law will tell you nothing out side those borders is legally Israel’s under international law.

      • lonely rico
        lonely rico
        March 14, 2015, 7:06 pm

        >catalan
        . . . under the Partition Plan . . . the UN, the Arab League, Hamas, Fatah, and even Iran have indicated that they would accept a two-state solution based on the 1967 borders, assuming the other issues are resolved as well.

        Israel’s response (repeatedly) ?

        War and destruction, dispossession, torture and murder of those of the wrong ethnicity/religion.
        Thanks for the correction of talknic’s grammar.
        I eagerly await your corrections of the contents/substance of his posts/site – https://talknic.wordpress.com/

      • talknic
        talknic
        March 14, 2015, 8:19 pm

        @ catalan “Talknic has an obsession with the borders proposed under the Partition Plan”

        It’s essential information necessary for people to understand the basis on which hundreds of UN/UNSC resolutions are adopted reminding Israel of the obligation to adhere to the Laws, Charter and conventions they re-affirm and emphasize.

        “Yet the UN, the Arab League, Hamas, Fatah, and even Iran have indicated that they would accept a two-state solution based on the 1967 borders, assuming the other issues are resolved as well. I just fail to understand why the partition plan needs to be discussed any more”

        Knowing where Israel’s actual borders are undermines the wholly holey Hasbara, dispelling the Zionist myths, the nonsense about UN bias against Israel and the nonsense about Israel’s ‘generous’ offers

        Israel’s actual borders are the basis of hundreds of UN/UNSC resolutions giving Israel hundreds of opportunities to adhere to the law and that far from being biased against Israel, the UN has in fact been incredibly lenient. No other UN Member has been in breach of so many of their legal obligations for so long. No other UN Member state has missed so many opportunities

      • talknic
        talknic
        March 14, 2015, 8:30 pm

        @ pjdude ” talknic believes Israel’s conquering inside the partian lines is legal i don’t”

        Not quite. The razing of homes, villages and the dispossession of non-Jewish Israelis within partition boundaries prior to (or after) 00:01 May 14th 1948 (ME time) had absolutely no legal basis what so ever.

      • dgfincham
        dgfincham
        March 15, 2015, 9:42 am

        The partition borders are not themselves the issue. The problem is that the proposed territory for Palestine, based on the 1949 Green Line (which should never be called the 1967 line, because it did not move an inch in 1967) consists of only the West Bank and Gaza, 22% of Mandatory Palestine. Israel would keep the remaining 78%. Given that the Arab population outside the Green Line, including refugees with a right to return, is equal to or greater than the Israeli population inside the Green line, the proposed solution is manifestly unjust to the Palestinians and could not possible lead to a viable Palestinian State or a peaceful future. Palestine deserves and needs more territory.

        The partition line was not a suitable border in 1948, and is even less suitable today. The whole border needs to be renegotiated. Please see my previous article

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        March 15, 2015, 1:47 pm

        “The whole border needs to be renegotiated.”

        Re-negotiated? “Re”?

    • catalan
      catalan
      March 14, 2015, 2:09 pm

      Kris,
      It does appear that the editors have corrected it’s with its. So my comment has done something good:)
      On your other point, I don’t think I am a Zionist. Nationalism, be it Russian, American, Venezuelan, Arab, or Jewish (Zionism) is just not my cup of tea. I get why it exists and that it has good sides, but just not my thing. That is probably because I grew up as a Jew in Bulgaria, which made me kind of an outsider (no complaints though). And here in the States I am an immigrant with a Slavic accent so I don’t think I make a good American nationalist. I guess I believe in loving individuals not countries.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        March 14, 2015, 5:25 pm

        “So my comment has done something good:)”

        Love the typographical emoticon. Now, that’s rhetorical precision.

  3. a blah chick
    a blah chick
    March 14, 2015, 11:33 am

    The most charitable thing I say say in response to the article is that yes, Adelson is not alone in his behavior. Wealthy people have a disproportionate amount of influence because they have so much money to buy political loyalty or lobby for legislation they want.

    Adelson is singled out because in addition to reminding everyone of Mr. Potter he uses his wealth to influence foreign policy. Birthright is not about getting young Jews to get in touch with their roots it’s about recruiting them to go live on settlements and/or join the IDF. He bankrolls a free newspaper in Israel that is proudly pro-Bibi and has called for the nuking of another country. And because he got booku bucks politicians look to him for a handout and listen to him. All this goes beyond just giving money to causes you believe in.

    He’s a major player and like his ilk is not elected or appointed, so there is no way to hold him accountable for the disastrous policies he champions.

  4. Rusty Pipes
    Rusty Pipes
    March 14, 2015, 11:46 am

    Apparently, Uri Avneri’s overstated case about Sheldon Adelson right before Bibi’s congressional visit gave some liberal commentators, from Moyers to Friedman, a little courage to criticize the Israel Lobby obliquely by pointing out the influence of Adelson on Republicans. No specifics about the influence of major Zionist donors on Democrats, though.

    • Interested Bystander
      Interested Bystander
      March 14, 2015, 12:22 pm

      Thanks, Rusty. I like Avneri and his piece here. But to me it confirms some of the limits of money. His suggestion that Netanyahu dissolved the government in order to prevent a vote on a bill directed at his newspaper on orders from Adelson (without a hint of evidence), or the suggestion that it was Adelson who orchestrated Ron Dermer and Boehner around the Congress speech seems implausible. [If someone had any evidence along those lines, that would be scoop!]

      • W.Jones
        W.Jones
        March 14, 2015, 9:53 pm

        Avnery’s article doesn’t “confirm” Adelson’s “limits” because it doesn’t provide any facts or information to refute those limitations. How does failing to provide direct evidence of under the table direct lobbying disprove it?

        You want Avnery to come up with a phone call by Adelson, or else it didn’t happen?!

  5. Donald
    Donald
    March 14, 2015, 12:27 pm

    I think there is some truth to this post but it is overstated. The part that is true is that the US and Israel are both settler colonialist state and there is a cultural affinity there. Many Christians in the US are Zionists, and that part about Jacksonians who tend to be warlike also rings true. I think Mead was working off of an idea proposed in the book Albion’s Seed by the historian David Hackett Fischer (not sure of the spelling). So if there weren’t these cultural proclivities the Israel lobby wouldn’t have as much traction.

    That said, if money wasn’t involved I don’t think you’d have this reflexively Orwellian praise for Israel and its values by nearly every American politician. We may be a militaristic country, but there was much more division about, say, the Central American wars a few decades ago or even about Iraq. But Israel is a sacred cow and when they bombed Gaza and kill hundreds of children, what I remember from Washington was a lot of nonsense about Israel having a right to defend itself. Kerry when he thought he was off camera expressed some disgust. And remember how Christie had to genuflect after he used the term occupied territories? Most Americans wouldn’t have known or cared. it’ absurd to deny the role of money here.
    Also, we are finally getting the MSM to admit the role of money from a few rich donors in helping to determine what DC types say and how policy is set. No sane person denies how much influence money can have in politics, so why would anyone deny it here?

    • Interested Bystander
      Interested Bystander
      March 14, 2015, 1:02 pm

      Thanks, Donald. There is no denying money has influence. What the article suggests is that Adelson’s money doesn’t make him either King of Israel or the real chief of the Republican party. [Is it Adelson, or Koch, or the Chamber of Commerce, or … pick your favorite villain?] Get rid of Adelson–you haven’t solved the problem. As the article notes, there was $7 billion spent on the campaign in the 2012 cycle and Adelson accounted for 2% of that. They say 60% of money to the Democratic party comes from Jewish sources each election cycle; that’s not Adelson–that’s the rest of us. To the extent that such funds are raised, channelled, and directed by politically harmful organizations like AIPAC, that just suggests it’s the politics that matter. If the politics behind the 60% were suddenly very concerned about justice for Palestinians–that would make a difference. You’d want big money to go to that, wouldn’t you?

      • just
        just
        March 14, 2015, 1:34 pm

        “To the extent that such funds are raised, channelled, and directed by politically harmful organizations like AIPAC, that just suggests it’s the politics that matter.”

        good point. But, the pols have to play along with AIPAC and their Israel- first agenda in order to get elected and stay in office. Many constituents aren’t even aware of the “loyalty pledge”! Goodness knows, the MSM is not about to inform them, either.

      • W.Jones
        W.Jones
        March 14, 2015, 9:15 pm

        Get rid of Adelson–you haven’t solved the problem. As the article notes, there was $7 billion spent on the campaign in the 2012 cycle and Adelson accounted for 2% of that. They say 60% of money to the Democratic party comes from Jewish sources each election cycle; that’s not Adelson–that’s the rest of us. To the extent that such funds are raised, channelled, and directed by politically harmful organizations like AIPAC, that just suggests it’s the politics that matter.

        So you are actually thinking that a major problem is not so much donations by Adelson, but donations by “Jewish sources” with pro-Israeli politics?

        If you believe that is really a big chunk of the problem, why not write an article on that for the NY Times? Or is there something holding you back?

      • Donald
        Donald
        March 15, 2015, 12:47 pm

        In your article I think you take a pollyanish view of Adelson–he isn’t merely participating in the political process. he is doing his best to use his wealth to get what he wants and much of what he wants is immoral. He wasn’t simply naive in suggesting we bomb the Iranian desert. He suggested threatening a second bomb on Teheran if we didn’t get our way. So, no, I don’t find this merely naive. You point to the fact that his contributions are only 2 percent of the total, but if his influence is so negligible, why wasn’t he rendered an instant pariah after he made the bomb the desert and then threaten to bomb Teheran remark? You quote people who say Adelson is a mean person when crossed and seem to admire him for making billions. I don’t get this. What is admirable here? making billions might be admirable in some respects if one does it by making a genuine contribution to society in the process, but doing it via casinos? it’s good that he donates to charity–that is yet another demonstration that people are rarely if ever the embodiment of pure evil.

        I think there is also a bit of undemocratic thinking in your notion that a great many ordinary people could cancel out Adelson by contributing money to the opposing side of whatever issue. That amounts to the notion of one dollar, one vote. The fundamental problem is this–why should billionaires have vastly more influence than ordinary people? yes, if we are going to have billionaires throwing money around I would prefer to have them on my side, but I’d much rather not have them wield that kind of influence–we basically have a new aristocracy.

        on the rightward drift of US politics, I partly agree with your explanation. I grew up watching white southerners turn Republican and yes, it was in large part true that many of those same people were bigots. But I also grew up watching how programs like Friedman’s series Free to Choose” introduce the meme that government was always the problem into people’s brains. there was a deliberate concerted effort by rightwingers to turn people against liberalism on the domestic front, and to make militarism the default option in our foreign policy. that can’t be blamed solely on the militaristic and racist tendencies of white Southern voters and the way the Constitution gives excessive power to certain regions of the country.

        I suspect with no proof that you might be bothered by the coverage given Adelson because he is a living incarnation of an anti-Semitic stereotype. If so, I think your reaction is misplaced. the problem is the excessive influence of the wealthy on the political process–in this case the repugnant rich guy is also a Likudist Most people are smart enough not to make stupid generalizations from this. But I’m just guessing–that might not be a motive here.

      • Interested Bystander
        Interested Bystander
        March 15, 2015, 4:42 pm

        @Donald: Here is a tangent. Have you read Larry Derfner’s piece over +972 today<? It makes for depressing reading. Derfner is as smart an analyst on Israeli politics as I’ve run across. Not surprisingly, to me, there is no mention of money or Adelson in his lengthy analysis. If Adelson were really “King of Israel” and all the politics there is driven by him, you might think he’d show up in the discussion. No?

      • Donald
        Donald
        March 15, 2015, 7:43 pm

        Thanks, IB. Derfner is always worth reading. I don’t think Adelson is king, just that in the US and probably over there he uses his considerable influence for bad causes. It’s like Fox News–I don’t think Fox is enough to wreck the country, but it has probably played a big role in making the American right more irrational.

        How much would I quantify all this? No idea.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        March 17, 2015, 1:29 pm

        “Derfner is always worth reading.”

        Derfner writes? Wow, I thought he drove a bus, and was going to run me over with it. Just shows to go, people often have hidden talents.

        Oh, damn it, there’s Derfner again, revving the engine and honking the horn. I’m staying inside.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        March 17, 2015, 1:31 pm

        “Interested Bystander”

        Well, at least you’re honest.

    • W.Jones
      W.Jones
      March 15, 2015, 6:06 pm

      Roland and Donald:

      Roland claims about Derfner’s article: “Not surprisingly, to me, there is no mention of money or Adelson in his lengthy analysis”.

      Why does Roland say this? Derfner’s article does mention Adelson, saying: “Sheldon Adelson’s pro-Netanyahu free sheet Israel Hayom… has puffed [Bibi] up.” So Adelson has so much cash that he can run a free newspaper that campaigns for Netanyahu.

  6. catalan
    catalan
    March 14, 2015, 2:46 pm

    John,
    You are making some great points. However, respectfully, talknic is no Jane Austen or Emily Dickinson. He just repeats the same things about over and over, each time making the same grammatical errors as well. Browse through his archive if you don’t believe me.
    You are correct though. I have a relative who is a published writer and yet confuses the contractions. I guess that’s what editors are for.

    • John O
      John O
      March 14, 2015, 4:26 pm

      “He just repeats the same things about over and over, each time making the same grammatical errors as well.”

      You raised the issue of grammar, so, as a courtesy to the rest of us, please check your own posts for grammatical errors (such as the one in the sentence above) before hitting “Post Comment”.
      As for your remark about talknic, whether he/she is worthy of comparison to Austen or Dickinson is irrelevant to what we discuss here on Mondoweiss.

    • oldgeezer
      oldgeezer
      March 14, 2015, 4:34 pm

      However, respectfully, blah blah

      Perhaps you could post a complete sentence next time. It would be ever so helpful.

    • amigo
      amigo
      March 14, 2015, 6:12 pm

      “He just repeats the same things about over and over ” catalan

      Who should we compare you to??. I have an 8 year old nephew who might be a suitable candidate.

      Run back to hasbara central catalan.People here are not fools and can see right through your BS.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        March 15, 2015, 3:58 pm

        “He just repeats the same things about over and over ” catalan ”

        Heck, it took me a long time, and many repeats of Talknic, to grasp what lay at the root of Israel’s intractable intransigence.

      • Bornajoo
        Bornajoo
        March 15, 2015, 4:05 pm

        “Heck, it took me a long time, and many repeats of Talknic, to grasp what lay at the root of Israel’s intractable intransigence.”

        Same here Mooser

    • bintbiba
      bintbiba
      March 15, 2015, 12:26 pm

      Methinks I detect a humble- passive / über- aggressive stance, catalan.
      tsk tsk tsk !

  7. seafoid
    seafoid
    March 14, 2015, 4:08 pm

    What el fink said in defamation. Rich Jewish warmongers stateside are the worst thing that ever happened to Israel. Adelson is one of them.


    6 mins 50

    Their money buys political support they can never get from popular votes . It gets used in Likud ads.

    And it deforms US democracy.

    Adelson is a big part of the problem.

    Israel can’t stand on its own 2 feet. Never could.

  8. JLewisDickerson
    JLewisDickerson
    March 14, 2015, 4:35 pm

    RE: “Americans have believed that God (or history) has brought them into a new land and made them great and rich and that their continued prosperity depends on their fulfilling their obligations toward God . . .” ~ Walter Russell Mead

    ERGO:
    John Hagee Says Obama’s Treatment Of Netanyahu Will Cause God To Destroy America

    • P.S. ALSO SEE – “John Hagee: Ebola is God’s punishment for Obama ‘dividing Jerusalem'”, By Joshua Fechter, MySanAntonio.com, October 16, 2014
    LINK – http://www.mysanantonio.com/news/local/article/John-Hagee-Ebola-is-God-s-punishment-for-Obama-5827110.php

    • JLewisDickerson
      JLewisDickerson
      March 14, 2015, 5:04 pm

      P.P.S. As far as I am concerned, “American exceptionalism” (i.e., the belief that Americans are a “chosen people”) is not really very different from the Nazis’ belief in Aryan superiority!

      • W.Jones
        W.Jones
        March 14, 2015, 9:17 pm

        Dickerson: Of course there is “a” major difference. It’s not racial. America is a melting pot. The thinking is still very imperialist though and not different maybe from the thinking of the Roman empire, or even more so.

      • JLewisDickerson
        JLewisDickerson
        March 15, 2015, 1:09 pm

        Both Nazis and “exceptional” Americans believe they are superior to others, and I believe that American exceptionalism (at least at its origins) is covertly racial (whereas Nazism was overtly racial).
        Most of Walter Russell Mead’s “Jacksonians” are racists!

      • JLewisDickerson
        JLewisDickerson
        March 15, 2015, 1:50 pm

        P.P.P.S. ALSO SEE: “Opportunistic Paranoia; Obama-Netanyahu Globalism”, by Norman Pollack, CounterPunch.org, March 6-8, 2015

        [EXCERPT] Peace is weakness. A permanent state of war confirms the nation’s sense of superiority in itself. Even consider engaging in negotiation lessens social discipline at home, signals to the world an absence of toughness and the requisite moral stamina for asserting hegemonic purpose and dominance. Sound familiar? Probably not, however accurate (and blunt) the description of Netanyahu’s speech before the American Congress, but that is its subtext as calculated to resonate with the views and patriotic values of his auditors, a bipartisan display of neo-fascism directed to the glorification of war. So embedded in the mindset of Americans and Israelis, the transparency of arrogance, brutality, exceptionalism has been obfuscated to read, merely, self-defense in the promotion of international peace and justice. Iran is the immediate target within reach by which to heap abuse and stimulate fear, as cover for the pursuit of a geopolitical framework in which regional and international supremacy become co-mixed and mutually reinforcing, America and Israel qua twin colossi or so they envision. . .

        CONTINUED AT – http://www.counterpunch.org/2015/03/06/obama-netanyahu-globalism/

      • JLewisDickerson
        JLewisDickerson
        March 24, 2015, 2:29 pm

        RE: “Most of Walter Russell Mead’s ‘Jacksonians’ are racists!” ~ me (from above)

        ■ A CLASSICAL, RACIST “JACKSONIAN” (REPRESSED HOMOSEXUAL VERSION):

      • JLewisDickerson
        JLewisDickerson
        March 24, 2015, 2:36 pm

        ■ ANOTHER CLASSICAL, RACIST “JACKSONIAN” (REPRESSED HOMOSEXUAL VERSION):

    • JLewisDickerson
      JLewisDickerson
      March 15, 2015, 1:48 pm
  9. JLewisDickerson
    JLewisDickerson
    March 14, 2015, 5:21 pm

    RE: “Fact is, Adelson is an American success story. He came from humble background and he built, and re-built his empire from the ground up. He has swagger, but he also has a twinkle.” ~ Roland Nickles

    FOR MORE ABOUT THAT ADELSON “TWINKLE”, SEE:
    “Israel’s sugar daddy, Sheldon Adelson”, by Brad A. Greenberg, JewishJournal.com, June 27, 2008

    [EXCERPT] . . . But what really shocked me was a portion a little closer to home for Adelson, whose non-union Venetian was in 1999 being picketed by the Culinary Union:

    Las Vegas’s Temple Beth Sholom was holding a dinner to fête the new mayor of Las Vegas, Oscar Goodman. Adelson, a member of Beth Sholom, had recently pledged two hundred and fifty thousand dollars to the temple’s new-building fund. The dinner was to be held at the Venetian, but Mayor Goodman said that he would not cross the picket line, and synagogue officials decided to go elsewhere. Adelson excoriated Beth Sholom’s rabbi, Felipe Goodman. Rabbi Goodman told the Review-Journal that Adelson had been “so verbally abusive. I was very upset because no one had ever talked to me like he talked to me.” After the dinner took place at the Four Seasons, Adelson withdrew his pledge to Beth Sholom. He gave large sums to the local Chabad, a branch of the Hasidic Chabad-Lubavitchers, for the construction of a new center. . .

    ENTIRE ARTICLE – http://www.jewishjournal.com/thegodblog/item/israels_sugar_daddy_sheldon_adelson_20080627

    • JLewisDickerson
      JLewisDickerson
      March 14, 2015, 5:29 pm

      P.S. FOR INFO ON ADELSON’S INTENSE NEED FOR ‘DESPOTIC CONTROL’, SEE WIKIPEDIA
      [Defence mechanisms, as of 1/28/14]:

      [EXCERPTS] . . . In Freudian psychoanalytic theory, defense mechanisms are psychological strategies brought into play by the unconscious mind[4] to manipulate, deny, or distort reality in order to defend against feelings of anxiety and unacceptable impulses to maintain one’s self schema.[5] . . .
      . . . The list of defence mechanisms is huge and there is no theoretical consensus on the number of defence mechanisms. . .

      Vaillant’s categorization of defence mechanisms

      Level 1: Pathological
      The mechanisms on this level, when predominating, almost always are severely pathological. These six defences, in conjunction, permit one to effectively rearrange external experiences to eliminate the need to cope with reality. The pathological users of these mechanisms frequently appear irrational or insane to others. These are the “psychotic” defences, common in overt psychosis. However, they are normally found in dreams and throughout childhood as well.[22] They include:
      • Delusional projection: Delusions about external reality, usually of a persecutory nature [i.e., perceiving legitimate criticism of Israel’s actions as “anti-Semitism” ~ J.L.D.].
      • Conversion . . .
      . . . • Extreme projection: The blatant denial of a moral or psychological deficiency, which is perceived as a deficiency in another individual or group.
      • Superiority complex: A psychological defence mechanism in which a person’s feelings of superiority counter or conceal his or her feelings of inferiority [think “Rosebud” ~ J.L.D.]. The inflated feelings of being superior, above the ordinary, and special, along with arrogance lead to difficulties at work and in relationships.
      • Inferiority complex: A behaviour that is displayed through a lack of self-worth, an increase of doubt and uncertainty, and feeling of not measuring up to society’s standards. Despotic control [again think Rosebud] is a compensation for tremendous feelings of inferiority, unworthiness, self-rejection and often feeling unlovable. . .

      SOURCE – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Defence_mechanisms

    • JLewisDickerson
      JLewisDickerson
      March 14, 2015, 5:48 pm

      P.P.S. FOR MORE ON ADELSON’S INTENSE NEED FOR “DESPOTIC CONTROL”, SEE:
      “Israel’s sugar daddy, Sheldon Adelson”, by Brad A. Greenberg, JewishJournal.com, June 27, 2008

      [EXCERPT] . . . Adelson’s reach hasn’t been limited to charity. In fact, some say he uses money to meddle in Israeli politics, pushing a right-wing vision void of a peace process through his connections with American politicians—Bush called the Republican donor “some crazy Jewish billionaire”—and his free daily newspaper, Israel Hayom, which observers criticize as being stuffed with propaganda for Likud leader Benjamin Netanyahu.
      At a formal dinner attended by more than a hundred senior officials of various Israeli and Jewish organizations, guests were offered the opportunity to tell Peres what they considered the biggest challenge facing the Jewish people. Adelson, according to Ha’aretz, declared, “I think Jews should have lots of sex. That is the solution to our demographic problem.”
      After Adelson addressed the conference, Nahum Barnea wrote in his column in Yedioth Ahronoth, “I saw a gambling tycoon from Las Vegas who bought my country’s birthday with three million dollars. I thought with sorrow: Is the country worth so very little? Were the champagne, wine and sushi that were given out for free in the lobby—breaking convention for such events—worth the humiliation?” Barnea went on:

      Adelson is a Jew who loves Israel. Like some other Jews who live at a safe distance from here, his love is great, passionate, smothering. It is important to him that he influences the policies, decisions, and compositions of the Israeli governments. He is not alone in this, either; even back in the days of Baron Rothschild, wealthy Jews from the Diaspora felt that this country lay in their pocket, alongside their wallet. Regrettably, in the latest generation, we are being led by politicians who look at these millionaires with calf’s eyes.

      In Israel, where political, academic, and business leaders tend to be outspoken, there is a striking reticence at the mention of Sheldon Adelson. Even people who are diametrically opposed to his politics refuse to be interviewed. “There is a discernible amount of self-censorship going on,” the liberal Israeli-American writer Bernard Avishai said. “There is no ideological justification for what Sheldon is doing among the Israeli intelligentsia—and a revulsion at an American weighing in so heavily on Israeli politics, in such a crude, reactionary way. But they won’t speak.”
      These details come from Connie Bruck’s masterful and revealing profile of Adelson for this week’s New Yorker. It’s been getting a lot of buzz for its insight into the mindset of a right-wing American Jew whose love for Israel spans from his Lithuanian father too poor to set foot there to his sabra wife. . .

      ENTIRE ARTICLE – http://www.jewishjournal.com/thegodblog/item/israels_sugar_daddy_sheldon_adelson_20080627

      • just
        just
        March 14, 2015, 5:55 pm

        John~ thank you so much for these articles and links, especially this latest one.

    • JLewisDickerson
      JLewisDickerson
      March 14, 2015, 7:42 pm

      P.P.P.S EVEN MORE ON ADELSON’S NEED FOR “DESPOTIC CONTROL”:
      “Why GOP Mega-Donor Sheldon Adelson Is Mad, Bad and a Danger to the Republic”, By Rick Perlstein, Rolling Stone, 4/10/12

      [EXCERPTS] . . . Adelson’s anti-union mania (I would argue) is the most important thing to know about him. For it reveals just how crazy, and how unscrupulous, the man is.
      Let’s start at the very beginning. Adelson remembers meeting Gingrich in Washington in 1995, when Gingrich was House Speaker and Adelson was lobbying to get the U.S. embassy in Israel moved from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. Other reports have them being introduced in 1996 by a far-right anti-union operative in Nevada who worked for Adelson. Details of the subsequent courtship are murky, although the huge favor Gingrich did for Adelson in 1996 by turning off a federal investigation of the gambling industry probably did a lot to cement their friendship.
      Two years later, Nevada conservatives sponsored a “Paycheck Protection” ballot initiative – the right-wing term for measures weakening unions by banning them from automatically deducting dues from members’ pay. Adelson was gung-ho for it – and “would spend any amount of money,” D. Taylor, secretary-treasurer of Las Vegas’s Culinary Workers Union Local 226, told me . . .
      . . . In 1999, Adelson closed one casino, the Sands, and completed work on a new one, the Venetian, stiffing so many contractors that there were at one time 366 liens against the property. Taylor, of the Culinary Workers, said he and his colleagues presumed that “like every other casino that had done that, workers in the [closed] hotel would be given priority when the [new] hotel was built.” Instead, Adelson refused even to talk. All this, in a union town like Vegas, was unprecedented. “Even when you’re having battles, you continue to have talks. Shit, we’re talking to the North Koreans right now!” he told me. “The Israelis talk to the Arabs. Talking doesn’t necessarily solve anything, but at least you understand the other guy’s position.” Adelson, not much interested in understanding the other guy’s position, proceeded to launch a campaign against the Culinary Workers that Taylor calls “beyond aggressive.”
      Right before the grand opening of the Venetian, in 1999, the Culinary Workers staged a demonstration on the public sidewalk out front. Adelson told the cops to start making arrests; the cops refused. Glen Arnodo, an official at
      the union at the time, relates what happened next: “I was standing on the sidewalk and they had two security guards say I was on private property, and if I didn’t move they’d have to put me under ‘citizen’s arrest.’ I ignored them.” The guards once again told the police to arrest Arnodo and again, he says, they refused. The Civil Rights hero Rep. John Lewis, in town to support the rally, said the whole thing reminded him of living in the South during Jim Crow. . .
      . . . Did I mention Adelson is nuts? But don’t take my word for it – it was George W. Bush who called him “some crazy Jewish billionaire.” . . .

      ENTIRE ARTICLE – http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/blogs/national-affairs/why-gop-mega-donor-sheldon-adelson-is-mad-bad-and-a-danger-to-the-republic-20120410

  10. catalan
    catalan
    March 14, 2015, 5:48 pm

    Seafoid,
    The ‘it’s’ were corrected to ‘its’ by the editors after my comment. So glad you figured me out, but then again I am much simpler than this mysterious thing you refer to as “political economy”.
    I guess I don’t see the point of the endless posting of quotes from the Israeli Declaration of Independence, but if it benefits you so much that’s tremendous. Also, I get the difference between normal mistakes from typing and idiosyncrasies on the one hand and poor grammar on the other. We all make mistakes, I more than others.
    Some people though just seem to not know basic rules yet speak with incredible authority. Anyway I know there are like three people in America that care about it’s vs its and you’re vs you are so no biggie.

    • Mooser
      Mooser
      March 14, 2015, 9:56 pm

      “We all make mistakes, I more than others.”

      And so I’m sure everybody will understand if there is some little inaccuracy in Israel’s border’s. A normal variation of several feet is acceptable, and in deserted, poorly mapped areas, a greater error is possible.
      Perhaps technological advances in the GPS system, and improved topographical technique, will ameliorate any slight errors Israel has with its extent, wouldn’t you say, “catalan”?

      “Some people though just seem to not know basic rules yet speak with incredible authority.”

      “Talknic” usually quotes or links to primary source documents. Would you like to tell us where he’s made a mistake?

      Remember “Catalan” we are talking about Israel’s offenses, where they have acted illegally, or we think immorally. What Israel ends up getting away with, (at the expense of the Palestinians and, to some extent, the Jews,) remains to be seen.

      • Walid
        Walid
        March 15, 2015, 2:19 am

        “Remember “Catalan” we are talking about Israel’s offenses, where they have acted illegally, or we think immorally. ” (Mooser)

        Exactly, Mooser, that’s what it’s all about, not really about Palestinians.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        March 15, 2015, 12:28 pm

        “Exactly, Mooser, that’s what it’s all about, not really about Palestinians.”

        Exactly, Walid. Exactly. I’m glad you see that. I and I am sure, a lot of people here would feel exactly the same, no matter who the victims of Israel’s immoral and illegal acts were or are.

        If you are asking me if I feel that Israel ceasing (or at least reducing) its immoral and illegal acts towards the Palestinians (and others) would be “good for the Jews” , the answer is “yes”, I think it would. But as I said, I can’t help that.

    • seafoid
      seafoid
      March 15, 2015, 12:07 pm

      You’re just another bot, Catalan.
      Wow, grammar is such an interesting angle. Hasbara is still dead.

  11. Keith
    Keith
    March 14, 2015, 5:52 pm

    ROLAND NIKLES- (quoting Mead) “In the United States,” says Mead, “a pro-Israel foreign policy does not represent the triumph of a small lobby over the public will. It represents the power of public opinion to shape foreign policy in the face of concerns by foreign policy professionals.”

    While you are quoting Mead, his views as expressed in an article in the 2008 issue of Foreign Policy Magazine appear to closely reflect your own. Foreign Policy magazine was founded by Samuel Huttington, it’s current CEO is David Rothkopf, as such, its views represent the self-serving mythology of the 1%. The notion that imperial foreign and domestic policy reflect the will of the 99% is laughable. In case you haven’t noticed, the global empire responds primarily to the perceived needs and desires of the transnational corporations, most significantly the financial institutions which have establish themselves as the guiding lights of empire. Support for Israel is based upon strategic considerations as well as the perceived interests of some very powerful oligarchs. Adelson is one of several Jewish Zionist billionaires who, along with other wealthy Zionists, form an extremely powerful Israel support network. This, along with other elite domestic support, accounts for the extraordinary degree of US support for Israel.

    I find it interesting that you seem to find Adelson so admirable. I personally find concentrated power to be socially dysfunctional and would love to see the tax laws changed to eliminate all oligarchs, and curb the corporations. You, like David Rothkopf, seem to be an apologist for the current political economy and for the fat-cats who are laying waste to the planet. So, yes, Adelson by himself does not dictate imperial policy. However, trying to paint the Founding Fathers as Zionists (pre Herzl, I might add) is a bit of a disingenuous stretch, don’t you think? I mean, let us not put all of our eggs in the Walter Russell Mead basket. And US feelings of exceptionalism are not so freely shared with others, at least not prior to 1967.

    • W.Jones
      W.Jones
      March 14, 2015, 9:46 pm

      Good response, Keith!
      Thank you.

    • Interested Bystander
      Interested Bystander
      March 15, 2015, 2:46 am

      Hello Keith: Thanks for reading and your comment. I did say “Foreign Policy” magazine; I misspoke, the article appeared in Foreign Affairs. It is linked. I recommend you read it. I don’t think the argument he’s making–that support for Israel is widespread and deep, far beyond the 1.8% of American Jews, or the 1%–is “laughable.” Take a look at the Hagee video that Dickerson posts in the comments here. Hagee has 62 stations broadcasting to 150 million households it is claimed. 150 million viewers who take that kind of talk seriously. This is the reason Netanyahu gets 29 standing ovations in Congress, not Adelson’s money. Netanyahu’s first appearance to a joint session was in ’96 (long before Adelson was on the scene as a political player). And at that time, support was still unanimous.

      If you watched the Samantha Power/Susan Rice appearances at AIPAC this year, and witnessed the cold reception they got–compared to Netanyahu and other supporters of racist policies in Israel, who received wild cheering–that’s from the 16,000 attendees who are not rich cats, but ordinary folks. They are the folks this site is trying to make inroads with.

      The question isn’t whether Adelson is “admirable.” I have no views on whether he’s a nice guy, or not. It appears he has some very unpleasant qualities. It’s like the character depicted in the movie “There Will be Blood.” These are larger than life characters. They are interesting. The question is whether Adelson is the cause of Congressional support for Israel, or whether he is King of Israel and dictates what Israel does. I think the influence of such persons is less than we often think. Ultimately rich guys, even very rich guys, are just part of the politics. How do we change the politics? We can be fatalistic about how it’s the big money that matters and there’s nothing we can do, or we can contribute, get involved, raise $50 bucks at a time, and convince some other fat cats to support our cause.

      Don’t get carried away with guessing my politics on “fat cats laying waste to the planet.” Feel free to read more at my blog.

      • Keith
        Keith
        March 15, 2015, 4:12 pm

        INTERESTED BYSTANDER- ” I did say “Foreign Policy” magazine; I misspoke, the article appeared in Foreign Affairs.”

        Oy vey, worse yet! Foreign Affairs is the magazine of the Council on Foreign Relations, the ultimate fat-cat think tank and power broker. These are the instigators and justifiers of imperial policy whose views and actions absolutely reflect the goals and objectives of the 1% as you are probably aware. This is your source of inspiration?

        Interested Bystander- “I don’t think the argument he’s making–that support for Israel is widespread and deep, far beyond the 1.8% of American Jews, or the 1%–is “laughable.”

        What is this, bait and switch? In the quote which you provided, he claims that US support for Israel “represents the power of public opinion to shape foreign policy.” That isn’t true. Foreign policy is shaped by elites to reflect their perceived interests. They then use the tremendous resources at their disposal to manufacture consent. To suggest that the elites calling the shots are responding to the will of the people is laughable the first time, somewhat perverse to keep insisting that US policy towards Israel is in response to popular sentiment, as if oil, geostrategy and the Lobby were insignificant factors. And as for popular support for Israel, in view of the distorted media message, what can we expect? We have been inundated with pro Israel propaganda since about 1967.

        Interested Bystander- “Hagee has 62 stations broadcasting to 150 million households it is claimed. 150 million viewers who take that kind of talk seriously. This is the reason Netanyahu gets 29 standing ovations in Congress….”

        Not only is Congress the loyal servant of the people, but they are under the influence of Pastor Hagee! Lobby? What Lobby? Campaign donations? What campaign donations? As for Netanyahu getting standing ovations prior to Adelson, the Israel Lobby has been around long before Adelson became notorious. As I indicated in my comment, Adelson is just one rich guy, the Lobby reflects the combined wealth and organization of a lot of rich guys. And, of course, you have the military-industrial complex, etc.

        Interested Bystander- “I have no views on whether he’s a nice guy, or not.”

        Good Grief, Roland. Do you not even bother to read what you wrote? Remember saying this: “Fact is, Adelson is an American success story. He came from humble background and he built, and re-built his empire from the ground up. He has swagger, but he also has a twinkle. He has a strong and accomplished woman for his second wife. You’ve got to admire that.” Sounds like praise to me!

        Interested Bystander- “How do we change the politics?”

        We are a money driven, money controlled society. Money is power, economic power in fluid form, the primary instrument of social control. In the long run, money overwhelms all opposition. Neoliberalism is global class war which the oligarchs and corporations have effectively won. We have traveled so far in the wrong direction that I personally have little hope of staving off disaster. The financial system is an unmitigated disaster. A private, debt-money based system that requires growth or privatization to avoid default. Wealth is wildly, excessively concentrated, the oligarchs and corporations a form of capitalist nobility. What little hope I have is directed toward Third Party candidates. Your opinion that very rich guys are just part of politics is part of the official mythology which you feel the need to promote, perhaps in an attempt to find employment within the doctrinal system which justifies an unjust system. So, Adelson by himself is but a part of the problem. THE SYSTEM IS THE PROBLEM!

      • can of worms
        can of worms
        March 17, 2015, 4:05 am

        RE: American “support for Israel is widespread and deep” — I get that this is your primary hasbara.

        We should talk about what “support for Israel” means, because I personally don’t have any clue. Enlighten me.

        Secondly, the approval rating of the United States Congress itself has shrunk to the point where it is no longer even detectable by the technology currently available. Even the Congress that people voted for, whose job is to support Israel “unconditionally”, has no support!

        http://www.newyorker.com/humor/borowitz-report/congresss-approval-rating-no-longer-detectable-by-current-technology

        Thirdly, by excluding, disingenuously, the causal explanation of direct influence through the buying of Congressional “support”, you are still suggesting that popular “support for Israel” (w.t.m.) is due to the indirect influence of capital (via the circ. of information and ideas).
        So back to square one.

  12. catalan
    catalan
    March 14, 2015, 5:59 pm

    Mooser,
    Unlike talknic I don’t claim expertise in international law. I stopped acquiring knowledge right after learning how to tie my shoes. However, shouldn’t experts in the high disciplines know basic grammar? it just seems to elevate things if nothing else.

    • talknic
      talknic
      March 14, 2015, 8:38 pm

      @ catalan “Unlike talknic I don’t claim expertise in international law. “

      Odd, I’ve never made such a claim.

      BTW my grammar isn’t the topic

    • can of worms
      can of worms
      March 17, 2015, 4:13 am

      You know catalan, trying to exclude people from debate and even from the vote on the basis of literacy has been tried before. It won’t be the first time and it won’t be the last time.

    • can of worms
      can of worms
      March 17, 2015, 4:20 am

      I don’t really see how trying to discredit people’s insights into the fundamental injustice of Israel (where people can’t vote in national elections today on the basis of a wrong ethnicity), and trying to do this on the basis of a misplaced apostrophe, is really “elevating things”.

  13. catalan
    catalan
    March 14, 2015, 6:20 pm

    Mooser,
    I am definitely more of a looser.

  14. W.Jones
    W.Jones
    March 14, 2015, 7:14 pm

    Roland,

    The US and Israel are not both settler states in a promised land. The US no longer has an ideology of Manifest Destiny for its land and the Native Americans are not only full citizens but given tax breaks. However, there are remnants of colonization, like unequal economic status for Indians.

    Even if it were true, it would not be enough to “explain the special relationship between the countries”. The fact that two countries (like the US and Israeli State) each think their own colonized land was promised to each does not mean that they will create a special relationship, since their promises are separate. For example, Muslims who conquered a North African country a few centuries ago may believe that their own land was given to them by Abraham’s God (I heard that Islam may have such a tradition about “Muslim lands”), but that hardly means that they will create a special bond with the Israeli state.

    Finally, even if merely having a special relationship is due to the commonality of colonization, this still does not mean that Adelson et. al. do not play a key role in forming it. US politics is based to a large degree on donations, campaigning, and lobbying. If Adelson et. al. make large donations and have a major lobby and assets – as they do, then how would that not play a major role in forming such a relationship?

    All of this should be so obvious that it is surprising one would propose the complete opposite.

    • Interested Bystander
      Interested Bystander
      March 15, 2015, 3:05 am

      Thanks WJ: I think you are right that the manifest destiny story has lost a lot of its grip. I’m not a scholar of how deep it was at its height. But it is part of the story we tell ourselves. I thought it was interesting how prominently Netanyahu drew attention to the “we share manifest destiny” story. It sounded false to me, but then you have ~475 Congressmen and Congresswomen applauding, so who’s to say that narrative has lost its power.

      Mead suggests that there is a lot more to the Special Relationship, than the Jewish Lobby. If that is right, what does it imply for what has to be done to change it. (If we’re talking about “so obvious” as not to require further reflection or thought, think about the lobby of 1.8% of the population getting all of Congress to provide unanimous support for a cause through 50 years of occupation? Doesn’t it seem liker there is something more going on?)

      If we write the problem off to the 1%, or just the Jewish Lobby, we are missing the boat on understanding how change might come about.

      • W.Jones
        W.Jones
        March 15, 2015, 8:12 am

        Bystander,

        First, you ask: “It sounded false to me, but then you have ~475 Congressmen and Congresswomen applauding, so who’s to say that narrative has lost its power.”
        That the narrative of manifest destiny lost its power is shown by how rarely supernatural ideas of divine destiny are discussed by mainstream politicians or openly applied to foreign policy. Typically even evangelicals don’t have an agreed-on “doctrine” on America per se.

        The near=continual Applause at Netanyahu’s speech didn’t necessarily mean approval of one individual idea that he spouted, as should be obvious. In the middle of the speech he spent 4 paragraphs on Iran’s threats, ending it with a statement about Iran now dominating Mideast capitols. It was a totally irrational moment for an audience to applaud as they did unless they were hardcore pro-Iranian.

        Second,>/b> if it weren’t for the Lobby, then some alliance would still exist just as it does with perhaps a dozen Christian or democratic states in the region. The reason for those alliances is geopolitical. I think if Americans woke up about the issue, the relationship would change some. However, there are issues in America like poverty or the problems with invading Iraq that many Americans are awake about, and yet those problems were not fixed either. Probably Chomsky is right that the US political or economic system would have to change radically in order to solve the issue of special interest political power in Washington and the “special relationship.”

        Third, you comment: If we write the problem off to the 1%… we are missing the boat on understanding how change might come about.
        No we aren’t. Whether one ascribes the relationship to special interests or not, one can still understand that changes in public perception are a potential key to changing US policies. Also, as the Israeli state goes more and more right wing, it will become more and more likely that Americans will become disillusioned with it.

      • Interested Bystander
        Interested Bystander
        March 15, 2015, 10:56 am

        @WJ. When you say

        “Whether one ascribes the relationship to special interests or not, one can still understand that changes in public perception are a potential key to changing US policies. Also, as the Israeli state goes more and more right wing, it will become more and more likely that Americans will become disillusioned with it”

        …. that sounds correct. But isn’t that to say that ordinary politics will overcome big money politics? And that’s the whole point.

      • W.Jones
        W.Jones
        March 15, 2015, 6:23 pm

        Interested Bystander:
        You ask: “But isn’t that to say that ordinary politics will overcome big money politics? And that’s the whole point.”

        No, I said that public opinion is a “potential” key to changing policy. It does not mean ordinary politics “will” overcome big money politics. Theoretically, big money politics could control some particular issue for generations until society goes bust. Far right Israelis could square off against a far right Pakistan in a nuclear conflict and the issue could become moot. It’s only as a matter of faith and hope that such tragic outcomes would not occur. But people should not be blind to the potential for those bad outcomes.

  15. JWalters
    JWalters
    March 14, 2015, 7:32 pm

    “U.S. policy toward the Middle East will, for better or worse, continue to be shaped primarily by the will of the American majority, not the machinations of any minority, however wealthy or engaged in the political process some of its members may be.”

    That is the core of Mead’s picture, with which Nikles agrees.

    But Mead and Nikles both leave out the fact that Americans have lived under a blanket of lies about the “Zionist project” since its inception. And this blanket of lies has been perpetrated by a relatively small number of ultra wealthy people. They have done this through using their wealth to control major media and politicians in both England and America. America’s will might be directed very differently, toward justice, if it knew the facts. Even today the New York Times remains engaged in this cover-up.
    http://mondoweiss.net/2015/03/article-settlements-palestinian

    Americans today do not, by and large, look back on the extermination of Native Americans with pride. So there is no reason to think they would look favorably on a similar extermination elsewhere today. True, the Israelis try to play on this similarity. But without their accompanying coverups there is no reason to think it would work.

    Also not due to big money, according to Mead and Nikles, is the shift in favor of Republicans. This is “primarily due to the fact that Southern Democrats switched parties after the Civil Rights movement”. Left out of this brief account is that Republicans began actively fanning the flames of racism at that point. And this was done under the direction Richard Nixon, who sabotaged a Democratic peace initiative with Vietnam and then dragged the war out for several more (profitable) years. Racism injects irrationality and chaos into political discussion, which is useful for people trying to mislead the population.

    “Just like Adelson and his money are not the cause of Congressional support for Israel”, says Nikels, ignoring the other sources of Big Money supporting the Zionist throttling of the press in England and America. Leaving out relevant information is a standard Zionist tactic.

    Mead sounds to me like he was commissioned to write something scholarly to continue the Zionist coverup. His half-story can then be echoed by others.

    The financial bullying and lies began early in the history of the “Zionist project”, with war profiteers at the roots of the “war on terror”, which came into being with the establishment of Israel. It’s no accident that today the Republicans and Likud are the primary parties of war profiteers, continually pushing for needless war.

    • Interested Bystander
      Interested Bystander
      March 15, 2015, 3:52 am

      Hello JW: I think you overestimate the readership of the NYT, or the close reading habits of the broad masses. Half of the country+ that is susceptible to the Hagee message (“God will punish the U.S. if it doesn’t support Israel”) is not susceptible to that message because of their reading of the New York Times, or other MSM. Mead is trying to explain some of the dynamics that might account for it.

      We were looking at Adelson. He, of course, has nothing to do with the NYT, which is a family owned paper, nor does he control any U.S. media that I’m aware of. Adelson obviously has strong right wing views on Israel, but I don’t think he has been instrumental in creating the narrative on Israel.

      The narrative of Israel as a miracle nation, rising from the ashes of the Holocaust, to become a plucky start-up-nation, repeatedly overcoming great odds, and living under constant thereat of annihilation is a complex story with complex reasons why it has such a grip in the face of a contrary reality. I think it’s not helpful to think of this narrative as the result of a few wealthy individuals pulling the wool over everyone’s eyes, and if we just got rid of those few individuals everything would be fine.

      This site, and many others, are trying to change the narrative, to help find and establish a new paradigm that can provide justice for all in Israel/Palestine. The help rich guys can provide is to help fund sites like this, and support think tanks, and positive forces looking for a new post-Zonist paradigm both among Jews and Palestinians. Worrying about rich guy conspiracies in all this is just a distraction.

      As to Mead, sometimes, I think it’s better to just read what someone has to say and consider it on its merits, and not worry so much about what nefarious motives might be behind what is said.

      • JWalters
        JWalters
        March 16, 2015, 6:15 pm

        When someone repeatedly denies a voluminously documented side of reality, as you, Nikles, and Mead are doing, it naturally makes any informed person wonder about their motives for that massive denial.

    • Rusty Pipes
      Rusty Pipes
      March 16, 2015, 6:19 pm

      Mead’s article in the the CFR-related Foreign Affairs was written in the summer of 2008, a year after the publication of M&W’s book, The Israel Lobby (and even though it did not get much coverage in the press, aside from being panned by Zionists, it was being read among the Left and academics). As the Democratic primaries wound down and Hillary was reticent to concede to Barack, and her donors seemed even more cautious about switching their financial support to Obama, the press was trying to talk about the challenge in Democratic fundraising and strategy without naming Zionism as an issue.

      Mead’s article conveniently claimed that Zionism is an important issue not just to crazy rightwing Christian Zionists, but broadly to American Christians and has been for centuries. Certianly, soft Christian Zionism exists among mainline Protestants and Catholics, but more as background music to their major voting concerns. Such soft Christian Zionist sentiments are easily fostered by hasbara like “Exodus.” Confrontation with the realities in Israel/Palestine is an effective antidote to Sunday School images of the Holy Land and soft Christian Zionism for many mainliners.

      Pay no attention to the Israel Lobby behind the curtain.

      • W.Jones
        W.Jones
        March 17, 2015, 12:36 pm

        “Certianly, soft Christian Zionism exists among mainline Protestants and Catholics, but more as background music to their major voting concerns.”

        I would be more specific, Rusty: It OCCASIONALLY exists among some of those mainliners.

        As a teenager, an old Catholic man once told me that the Jews (today as before) are God’s Chosen People, and suggested this had political/social repercussions. But what was unusual about the conversation is how unusual it was in mainline Christian discussions. It’s actually not a widespread open belief among mainline Christians.

        For example, I was as a teenager pretty partial to the Israeli narrative and hadn’t much of the Palestinian one, and my partiality was based to a major degree because I had a Biblical association. But would have said that God was still acting in the same way with the modern secular state as in Biblical times? No, because the New Testament doesn’t really describe much of an ongoing close relationship like there was before, and nor do our mainline Christian theologians. In fact, the New Testament sometimes might imply that that particular relationship is over, with the rending of the Temple’s curtain at Jesus’ crucifixion, the earthquake at that time, etc.

        In any case, Christian Zionist sentiment in terms of creating an Israeli state in Palestine simply isn’t a mainstream doctrine widespread among mainline Christians.

      • Walid
        Walid
        March 17, 2015, 5:46 pm

        “As a teenager, an old Catholic man once told me that the Jews (today as before) are God’s Chosen People, and suggested this had political/social repercussions: (W.Jones)

        The Quran also makes the same claim about the Jews’ choseness, twice.

      • dgfincham
        dgfincham
        March 18, 2015, 3:48 am

        @Walid

        “The Quran also makes the same claim about the Jews’ choseness, twice.”

        Can you give sura and verse please?

      • JWalters
        JWalters
        March 17, 2015, 5:52 pm

        Rusty, thanks for that very relevant and informative historical information. It helps put Mead’s article in perspective. The fast disappearance of M&W’s analysis was a sight to behold, as if by magic.

      • Walid
        Walid
        March 18, 2015, 4:39 am

        David Gerald Fincham, There are approximately 60 verses in the Qur’an that speak directly about or to the Jews. Two thirds of these use the phrase “Children of Israel” (bani Isra’il), There’s a whole sura 17 that’s named “al-Isra” as well as “Bani Isra’il.”

        “Indeed we gave the children of Israel the Book, and wisdom, and the prophecy, and we provided them with good things and favored them above all creation. ”
        (Qur’an 45:16)

        “O children of Israel, remember my favor which I bestowed upon you, and that I favored you above all creation. ”
        (Qur’an 2:47 and 2:122))

      • dgfincham
        dgfincham
        March 18, 2015, 5:28 am

        Thank you so much. I am a Christian who is just beginning to study the Quran in the interests of inter-faith understanding, and to combat the horrible Islamophobia which is infesting western societies these days.

      • Walid
        Walid
        March 18, 2015, 10:29 am

        David Gerald Fincham, you have to account for the political undertones and timelines throughout those 60 or so verses dealing with the Jews, otherwise they could be confusing. In Islam’s first 5 years, relationships, especially mercantile ones were very good between them and to the point where Moslems prayed 3 times daily with the Jews facing Jerusalem, fasted with them, celebrated Yom Kippur, circumcisions, dietary laws and so on. Then things soured between them and the Jews became the bad guys for a while when they refused to consider the prophet as their saviour, and direction of prayers shifted towards Mecca and prayers raised to 5 times a day, fasting for a full month rather than the 10 days, but eventually became the good guys again because they were “people of the book”. When one picks and chooses verses for references, some of them when looked at in the absolute could be rather mean, and this is what Islamophobes usually do, most probably out of ignorance and end up quoting verses way out of context. Nonethless, all 3 Abrahamic religions have closets full of skeletons.

      • dgfincham
        dgfincham
        March 18, 2015, 11:19 am

        I think I remember from my reading about 40 years ago that when Mohammad was in Medina some of the Jews there joined the polytheists in attacking the Muslims, and that is when relations between the two communities began to get rocky. Is that right?

      • gamal
        gamal
        March 18, 2015, 12:27 pm

        you would be well advised to start any study of Islam with a reading of a reputable Sirat ul Nabi, rather than reading the Quran.

        https://archive.org/details/SeeratUnNabiVolIienglish

        for instance you will find Jews on page 82, but better read at least the Badr and Uhud sections first, if you have never read any sirat stuff.

        link is to shibli noamanis’ well known work
        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shibli_Nomani

      • Walid
        Walid
        March 18, 2015, 2:45 pm

        “… that is when relations between the two communities began to get rocky. Is that right?”
        (David Gerald Fincham)

        It depends on whose version of history you want to adopt. It boils down to Muhammad having broken out in a new religion with aspects of Rabbinic Judaism and having his followers stick to Jewish religious customs such as circumcision, fasting, Yom Kippur, Jerusalem and so on. But at one point, the Jews refused to accept him as their awaited saviour and things started going downhill from there. Muhammad distanced his group from Jewish customs and sort of declared war on them.

        You will read in the Quran that all the Jewish prophets were actually good Moslems: Noah, Abraham, Moses, Aaron, Joseph, Jesus, all of them Moslems and that the Jews scewed up by not listening to them.The Jews didn’t buy into it.

  16. JLewisDickerson
    JLewisDickerson
    March 14, 2015, 8:16 pm

    RE: “Sheldon Adelson is not the problem”

    SEE: “Sheldon Adelson – The Dangerous American Oligarch Behind Benjamin Netanyahu”, by Tyler Durden[lol], LibertyBlitzkrieg.com, 03/09/2015

    [EXCERPT] . . . That a handful of extraordinarily rich and powerful oligarchs as well as mega-corporations have completely hijacked the American political process is hardy news. It’s been the key topic of discussion here at Liberty Blitzkrieg and elsewhere for many years (see: New Report from Princeton and Northwestern Proves It: The U.S. is an Oligarchy).

    What makes their control so effective is the use of an army of lobbyists, lawyers, Super PACs and bought and paid for politicians to do their dirty work, thus employing an opaque network of well-heeled minions created to conceal who is really pulling the strings.

    Of all the commentary written about Netanyahu’s embarrassing political stunt in front of the U.S. Congress last week, the most important angle was largely overlooked. That is, it sort of represented a coming out party for the American oligarch from behind the curtain.

    Sheldon Adelson, by all accounts a vile and violent sort of the worst kind, has made entirely controlling [i.e., exercising “despotic control” ~ J.L.D] the Republican party his lifelong achievement. Additionally, and quite significantly to U.S. and Israeli citizens, Mr. Adelson has transformed himself into the puppet-master behind Benjamin Netanyahu. . .

    ENTIRE COMMENTARY – http://libertyblitzkrieg.com/2015/03/09/sheldon-adelson-the-dangerous-american-oligarch-behind-benjamin-netanyahu/

    P.S. Personally, I’m in favor of changing Thanksgiving Day to ‘Oligarch Appreciation Day’! ! !

    • JLewisDickerson
      JLewisDickerson
      March 14, 2015, 8:40 pm

      P.P.S. AN EXCELLENT ILLUSTRATION (originally from Haaretz)

      • just
        just
        March 14, 2015, 8:54 pm

        Funny!

    • Keith
      Keith
      March 15, 2015, 5:27 pm

      JLEWISDICKERSON- “Personally, I’m in favor of changing Thanksgiving Day to ‘Oligarch Appreciation Day’! ! !”

      Not a bad idea! One of the problems we face is that our use of democratic vocabulary helps sustain the illusion of democracy. I think it would help if we altered our vocabulary to reflect actual social reality. For example, it seems obvious (to me at least) that the fat-cats are a form of capitalist nobility, hence, Lord Gates, Lord Buffet, Lord Adelson, etc. Since the larger corporations are more powerful than the individual oligarchs, they would be Great Lords. So, Great Lord Microsoft, Great Lord Google, Great Lord Goldman Sachs, etc. Perhaps due to organizational affiliations we would refer to Lesser Lord Dershowitz? This would more honestly reflect real power relationships now that we are headed toward neofeudalism. We have come full circle from an ideological based royalty to a capitalist nobility which derives its justification, power and privilege from money.

  17. W.Jones
    W.Jones
    March 14, 2015, 8:30 pm

    Roland Nickles fails to provide real details proving this longstanding supposedly widespread popular support for Zionism:

    U.S. Support for Israel

    Israel has enjoyed overwhelming American support from the outset. …public support has been consistent and widespread. “In the United States,” says Mead, “a pro-Israel foreign policy does not represent the triumph of a small lobby over the public will. It represents the power of public opinion to shape foreign policy in the face of concerns by foreign policy professionals.”

    Mead points out that this popular American support for Zionism goes all the way back to the founding fathers.

    Most people from mainstream Protestant and Catholic backgrounds on this board should be able to attest that going back earlier than the 1970’s Evan. movement and 1967 Israeli war, a “Christian Zionist” interest in creating a Jewish State in Palestine was not a particular social concern of their parents or grandparents.

    Open support was certainly not something I encountered at Protestant Sunday school, at Catholic school, or even at a rural Evangelical school even in the 1990’s. Nor was it something I particularly remember from reading pre-1967 US folk history or literature.

    Look at this quote from Herman Melville in the article:

    “We Americans are the peculiar, chosen people — the Israel of our time; we bear the ark of the liberties of the world.”

    Not only was “America as Israel” not exactly a major theme in Melville or US literature, the quote nowhere mentions a Jewish state. Perhaps most importantly, this quote actually goes against the concept of supporting a Jewish state for a simple reason: it is a version of what pro-Israeli writers deride as “Supersessionism”. In this way of thinking, the Church, or in Melville’s case, Christianity, are the people Israel. Therefore, to equate a secular government someplace else as precisely God’s Biblical people is superfluous. If America is now Israel wondrously “bearing the ark of liberty”, then what is the point of going back to an older concept of a nation-State in the Middle East that is not spreading liberty? Certainly, the Israeli national philosophy does not include spreading democracy to the people it militarily occupies or battles, or to the rest of the world does it?

    How many American thinkers or even politicians wrote about it at length before the state’s creation? At best, there was a range of opinions and typically weak interest in it among sections of the American people before 1967. So it is strange that the author proposes support for the Israeli state is based on a longstanding and widespread belief in Christian or political Zionism among Americans for centuries.

    • MHughes976
      MHughes976
      March 15, 2015, 1:19 pm

      I think that the wells of Anglo-American Christian Zionism are quite deep. As far as I know the first book-length exposition of CZ (or even of Z in the modern world) was by Sir Henry Finch MP in ‘The Great Restauration’ of 1621. Victoria Clark suggests (Allies for Armageddon p.40) that Finch’s ideas had some influence on the choice of ‘Salem’ as the name for some of the ‘Puritan’ New World settlements. I don’t know how well the line can be traced from Finch via George Eliot in ‘Daniel Deronda’ to William E. Blackstone, whose ‘Memorial’ to the President in 1891 was the first major statement of ‘Palestine for the Jewish people’ to be endorsed publicly by a substantial number of Protestant ministers.
      Deep wells are not the same as a mighty flowing river but I think that a stream of general, vague and (as Walt and M say) shallow sentiment in favour of a Jewish homeland was important in setting up the system we now have. It was very noticeable in the UK in my young days but it’s clearly in the United States where the real story is: when politicians vote aid to Israel, taking advantage of the vague public sense that it’s a good thing, they also vote aid to themselves – and to some extent to their constituents, where Israel spends the money on purchases from the US. I’m not convinced that the very rich supporters of Israel are throwing much of their own money into the bottomless pit, not a thing that very rich people like doing – they may be only the front-men in a system that works through subsidies, tax reliefs etc..
      That vague, shallow sentiment is now being challenged more openly, with universities and students beginning to create a vigorous public argument. This produces a more open demonstration of their convictions by those working the customary system – I don’t doubt that even Mr. Adelson, who doesn’t sound like an ideal employer, thinks he is doing very much the right thing where Israel is concerned.

      • W.Jones
        W.Jones
        March 15, 2015, 6:47 pm

        MHughes,

        I agree that one can find earlier beliefs in a Jewish State in 19th century Western civilization like Scofield, but they were not “widespread” across wide sectors of American society.
        1. The name “Salem” reflects Christian “Supersessionism” and the belief that Christians are inheritors of ancient Israel. Zionists oppose this idea because it negates a philosophical need for creating a Jewish state in Palestine. For example, there is a major 17th century “New Jerusalem” monastery in medieval Russia, and it’s hard to see them as pro-Zionist.
        2. George Eliot’s novel “Deronda’s” portrayal of Jews was not widely accepted, as it was controversial:

        Eliot’s friend John Blackwood noted upon publication: …even her magic pen cannot at once make them a popular element in a Novel.” Many years later, FR Leavis called for the Jewish sections of the novel to be cut out completely,”

        http://www.theguardian.com/books/booksblog/2009/feb/10/zionism-deronda-george-eliot
        In other words, Zionism was actually not popular in 19th century Britain.
        3. Even individual figures like Blackstone do not mean that Zionism was “widespread” in US society. I only know of him from familiarity with US legal philosophy. You would need to show at least that a large minority of US politicians or pastors and priests (maybe 40%) were talking about Zionism, which we know they were not, to make it “widespread”.

        Zionism was not “widespread” in American society. Even the Pittsburgh principles in Reform Judaism did not accept Zionism. If Zionism was still controversial in pre-war America among Jews, it absolutely was not “widespread” among mainstream Christians. In fact, two of the examples you gave suggest that Zionism was not popular.

  18. catalan
    catalan
    March 14, 2015, 10:27 pm

    Talknic,
    Your reply about apostrophes was so humble and gracious. I am sorry for making the grammar comment. In hindsight, it was unnecessarily harsh. It was a mean and arrogant thing to say on my part. Lesson learned.

    • Mooser
      Mooser
      March 15, 2015, 12:32 pm

      ” Lesson learned. “

      Maybe we can try “please” and “thank you” next, and you will grow up into a real mensch

      • bintbiba
        bintbiba
        March 15, 2015, 12:36 pm

        +1 , Mooser.

    • talknic
      talknic
      March 16, 2015, 1:12 am

      @ catalan ” I am sorry for making the grammar comment. In hindsight, it was unnecessarily harsh. It was a mean and arrogant…” and false in that instance.

      Please address the topic or content of my post

      • just
        just
        March 16, 2015, 1:33 am

        Still waiting…..

      • seafoid
        seafoid
        March 16, 2015, 6:11 am

        You should have put a STFU in there Talknic.

        Apologising for the grammar thing is like Israel apologizing for calling Abu Khdeir gay or Fox apologizing for that guy who said Birmingham UK is a completely Muslim city with no go areas for Christians.


        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jOKM4uU5ins

        It’s all about the first impression and dragging the conversation elsewhere. Bad faith comes as standard with all Zionist models.

      • talknic
        talknic
        March 16, 2015, 11:17 am

        @ seafoid “You should have put a STFU in there”

        LOL sometimes it’s necessary to self moderate :-)

        +10 re bad faith. It seems to be a pre-requisite to the Zionist colonization project. Lock them in a room together and they’d be rid of themselves in a flash

  19. swansontudor
    swansontudor
    March 15, 2015, 10:11 am

    It’s true that the US’s long history of unwavering support of Israel isn’t just about Adelson & AIPAC money and influence. But like most policy both domestic and foreign, it’s never been about the “will of the American majority” either. The US has long seen Israel as an important lynch-pin and ally in maintaining hegemony in the region. Both countries may have begun as colonial settler states (of course Israel still is) but for the US, imperial self-interest is at the root of its support for Israel, not foundation myths. The fact that so much noise is being made and money spent by the Zionist Right is due largely to trying to stop the growing ambivalence among many Americans regarding our continued unquestioning support of Israel and its treatment of Palestinians.

  20. SonofDaffyDuck
    SonofDaffyDuck
    March 15, 2015, 10:21 am

    I don’t disagree that in the past Israel has had, more or less, a free pass from the American people. Partly something to do with the judeo-christian thing. But I would contend that this is not because of the inherent virtue or mutual interests of the two countries, but mainly rather because of the Image making by popular media (the “Exodus” movie being a prime example and the innumerable Holocaust films and dramas of victimhood) and because of the “antisemitism” barrier constructed to make criticism of any Israeli act punishable by cultural and political exile.
    Now come Sheldon and Bibi(along with a host of sycophants..many in the American Congress) whose very actions and demeanor make it impossible to maintain the image and consequently the barrier.
    We are just commencing upon the National conversation we have long needed to reassess the cost that we as Americans pay for our subservience to Israeli policy…and the crass and crude behavior of these twins has enhanced that conversation. Of course, thankfully, Mondewiess and others have been present to expose it. Hopefully Bibi will win again and help us take the A out of AIPAC.
    So I say…..Hats off to Selley and Bib…we wouldn’t be where we are without ya.
    We love ya!!!!

    • Mooser
      Mooser
      March 15, 2015, 12:58 pm

      In the US, all Zionism has to do to collapse among American Jews is go out of fashion.

  21. just
    just
    March 15, 2015, 10:33 am

    “Iran nuclear talks: White House warns Congress to stand down

    Letter asserts that pending legislation in Congress likely would have a ‘profoundly negative impact’ on the ongoing talks the US is having with Tehran”

    http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/mar/15/iran-nuclear-talks-white-house-warns-congress-stand-down#comment-48937422

    It seems that the republicans are going for broke. They also appear to be absolutely devoted to the PM of Israel, come hell or high water. Are they Islamophobic and ignorant as well? I think so.

  22. catalan
    catalan
    March 15, 2015, 10:57 am

    Bornajoo,
    The editors corrected the errors after my comment. Talknic himself admitted he is bad with apostrophes. I apologized to him for making the rude comment. You can see all this in the comment section if you bother to read it.
    A word of advise: read all the information before hurling insults at someone you know nothing about.

    • Bornajoo
      Bornajoo
      March 15, 2015, 12:17 pm

      “You can see all this in the comment section if you bother to read it.
      A word of advise: read all the information before hurling insults at someone you know nothing about.”

      Catalan, the comment you left deserved the reply I gave you. I have no idea how others navigate through the MW comments section but I read through and reply and comment as I go. I do not read through nearly 90 comments (which is the number when I got to this article) and then try and remember who said what and then try and backtrack. So your ‘advice’ doesn’t work for me.

      I did eventually read your comment with your apology to Talknic

      It’s a shame you decided to make such an awkward entrance. But my advice; let’s move forward by debating the issues and not the grammar

  23. catalan
    catalan
    March 15, 2015, 11:15 am

    Bornajoo,
    As to your Hasbara comment, cool it down a little bit, please. I just express my own opinions, which are frequently wrong. It is gracious of the editors of this popular web site to allow that. Yes, I am Jewish, but certainly don’t feel that the Israelis, or anyone else for that matter, have much need of me to defend them.

    • Mooser
      Mooser
      March 15, 2015, 12:37 pm

      “Yes, I am Jewish, but certainly don’t feel that the Israelis, or anyone else for that matter, have much need of me to defend them.”

      What are you, some kind of moser? Listen to me, “catalan”, if tribal unity goes, the entire Zionist project goes bosom-up! It is up to every one of us to fight for, contribute to, and defend Zionism!
      I ask you this “catalan”: If Zionism doesn’t need you to defend it, who does it need, Sheldon Adelson?
      Or would you rather leave the job to me?

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        March 15, 2015, 12:39 pm

        “Yes, I am Jewish,”

        Cite, please? Anybody can say that, and these days, since there is so much to be gained by association with Judaism and Zionism, almost anybody will.
        And it wouldn’t be the first time somebody tried that excuse, either. Are you feeling “uncomfortable” or “endangered”? Got that ol’ pre-traumatic stress, gnawing at your kishkas?

    • amigo
      amigo
      March 16, 2015, 12:02 pm

      “Yes, I am Jewish, but certainly don’t feel that the Israelis, or anyone else for that matter, have much need of me to defend them.” catalan

      What do you mean by “Israelis”?.

      Would that include the 20 % of Israel,s population that are not Jewish.Would you defend them from the marauding zionist fanatics roaming the streets of Jerusalem shouting , “death to Arabs”.

      http://electronicintifada.net/blogs/ali-abunimah/video-emerges-israeli-mob-shouting-death-arabs-attacked-palestinians-jerusalem

      • catalan
        catalan
        March 16, 2015, 12:21 pm

        Would you defend them from the marauding zionist fanatics roaming the streets of Jerusalem – Amigo
        If I could, I would. I am not a fan of nationalist fervor of any kind. How could I be? I have been a stranger in many places, a guest more or less, it seems.

  24. catalan
    catalan
    March 15, 2015, 12:19 pm

    Seafoid,
    Yes grammar is dumb. Political economy, now that’s original! Not all feud have the mind to penetrate “deep structural problems” lol.

  25. catalan
    catalan
    March 15, 2015, 12:23 pm

    Seafoid,
    Yes, grammar is dumb. Political economy, now that’s original! But I can’t penetrate “deep structural problems” lol. Please enlighten me on the Fed and interest rates lol.

  26. catalan
    catalan
    March 15, 2015, 12:37 pm

    “Methinks I detect a humble- passive / über- aggressive stance, catalan. tsk tsk tsk ! ” bibithba.
    Add to that lots of anxiety, some neurosis, and definitely insecurity and you get the picture. To be fair though, I am at least aware :).

  27. James Canning
    James Canning
    March 15, 2015, 1:34 pm

    Sheldon Adelson’s insane notion that the Palestinians should get out of occupied Palestine is very very dangerous.

  28. dgfincham
    dgfincham
    March 15, 2015, 1:56 pm

    @Mooser March 15, 2015, 1:47 pm

    thanks for the correction – I meant ‘negotiated’

    • Mooser
      Mooser
      March 15, 2015, 2:17 pm

      Dave, we were talking about this yesterday. That it’s very hard to talk about or write about the I-P situation without either qualifying almost every word, (like “negotiations” “security”) or indulging the Zionists in some way.
      Ordinary words end up meaning something entirely different or at least very equivocal.

      • dgfincham
        dgfincham
        March 15, 2015, 4:13 pm

        Mooser, there are two sorts of Davids in the world: those who are called David, and those who are called Dave. I am in the first category. I am a bit sensitive about this, because there is a TV channel called ‘Dave’ which does not carry the sort of programs which appeal to me.

        However, it can be useful to have the two versions. I once worked in an office with four Davids, but two were Davids and two were Daves. This doubled the chance of getting the right responder if someone shouted for David (or Dave).

        It’s my parents’ fault (catalan – have I got the apostrophe right?) for giving me such a common name. But they made up for it by giving me a less common middle name. I am pretty sure that I am the only David Gerald Fincham in the world. I like that.

        I thought ‘negotiate’ but typed ‘re-negotiate’. That’s the sort of thing that happens at my age.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        March 16, 2015, 8:07 pm

        Then “David” it shall be, as you prefer.

  29. catalan
    catalan
    March 15, 2015, 4:05 pm

    Mooser,
    No need to put my nick in quotes. It’s my family name on my mother’s side. Sephardic. Someone way back in the day was from Catalonia, I guess. Not a bad place.

    • Mooser
      Mooser
      March 16, 2015, 8:04 pm

      “No need to put my nick in quotes.”

      I usually put a user-name in quotes, just to set it off as a name, since they can be without capital letters, or aren’t always obvious as names. Everybody gets them, if I remember.

  30. kma
    kma
    March 15, 2015, 5:25 pm

    “Fact is, Adelson is an American success story. He came from humble background and he built, and re-built his empire from the ground up. He has swagger, but he also has a twinkle. He has a strong and accomplished woman for his second wife. You’ve got to admire that.”

    Why is this article on Mondoweiss? It’s complete re-hash propaganda. Nobody gives a crap whether they’d love or hate Adelson if they were stuck hanging out with him on weekends, not even the cheaply bought politicians who do it. The sentiment in the quote above is taught every day to US students lest they wonder why they need two jobs to make twice minimum wage instead of one. There is nothing “admirable” about wanting and pursuing obscene amounts of money, only superficial, and this old line gets re-used any time you can’t find an actual admirable quality about someone you are writing a tribute to.

    The crap about southern Democrats is irrelevant – Americans have NEVER been leftists… which is also irrelevant because defending Israel’s ethnic cleansing with our own money and lives is no right/left issue. Americans aren’t into it.

    As for the rest of the worn-out messaging, even Michael Oren doesn’t believe his own words that the Special Relationship dates back to Plymouth Rock because the US is the original “Zion”. Nobody learns that in US history class, believe me! It’s pure zionist propaganda.

    Yes, politicians are bought in this country, filtered, removed, controlled – by money. The money owns the parties which are nothing but a circus. It is called “corruption” and should be illegal, not protected “speech”. Hardly a secret these days…

  31. just
    just
    March 15, 2015, 11:53 pm

    Ted Cruz *cough*

    “Unlimited political cash would give rank-and-file conservative activists greater sway in picking their representatives, including the president, White House hopeful Ted Cruz told New Hampshire voters on Sunday.

    Cruz, a first-term senator who represents Texas, said deep-pocketed donors should have the same rights to write giant campaign checks as voters have to put signs in their front yards. Both, Cruz said, were an example of political speech, and he added that “money absolutely can be speech”.

    “I believe everyone here has a right to speak out on politics as effectively as possible,” Cruz said told a voter who asked him about the role of the super-rich in politics.”

    http://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2015/mar/15/ted-cruz-backs-unlimited-campaign-cash-money-absolutely-can-be-speech#comment-48961199

    The most ‘convincing’ part of the article:

    “But Cruz also told voters his daughter, Caroline, had given him permission to join the presidential race in the hopes that the family puppy would get to play on the White House lawn instead of near their Houston high-rise condo.

    “If you win, that means Snowflake will finally get a backyard to pee in,” Cruz said his daughter told him.”

  32. Citizen
    Citizen
    March 16, 2015, 4:08 pm

    I also don’t know why this article is on MW–sans even a note that the US campaign finance system, coupled with SCOTUS interpretation of corporate cash as “free speech,” makes the US congress and WH always products of who had the donors to bring their campaign message via TV to the masses. It’s a bad joke, eh?
    All the corporate shell games regarding PACs, the ways the rich get to hide their donor names… they think we are all fools, when really it’s a matter of wealth or government doles every time–hence the stupid bi-party system & the rules on how to count votes & whether or not an organization must be transparent re its donor base. Auction block, all the way–nobody knows this better than AIPAC NETWORK.

  33. just
    just
    March 16, 2015, 7:42 pm

    “The winners and losers of Israel’s election campaign

    Even before the polls open, there are clear winners and losers in this political season.

    [one of the winners]

    Sheldon Adelson: Last November the Knesset voted in favor of a bill that would have forbid the free distribution of Yisrael Hayom, the pro-Netanyahu daily founded and funded by the American casino mogul, Sheldon Adelson. The fact that some coalition members supported the bill in its preliminary reading is seen as one of the reasons – some believe a central one – that Netanyahu dissolved his government. The election foiled the bill’s final approval. Will there be the political will in a new Knesset to restart legislation? Doubtful.

    Even if Adelson’s protégé loses and vacates the Prime Minister’s Office, the American billionaire has cemented his position as a central power-broker in Israeli politics, just as he is the U.S. Perhaps even more so. If Netanyahu wins, Adelson will have enhanced his standing further, and if the prime minister leaves, the auditions for a new leader of the right-wing will be held. The candidates will compete fiercely for the tycoon’s blessing and the support of the highest-circulating newspaper in Israel.”

    http://www.haaretz.com/news/israel-election-2015/.premium-1.647287?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter

    *ahem*

  34. just
    just
    March 16, 2015, 10:49 pm

    “REUTERS – The U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee could vote as soon as next week on a bill requiring U.S. President Barack Obama to submit any nuclear agreement with Iran for Congress’ approval, the panel’s chairman, Republican Senator Bob Corker, said on Monday.

    Obama has threatened to veto the bill, saying it impinged on presidential authority and could disrupt the talks.

    Corker told reporters at the U.S. Senate that he planned to move ahead with the legislation in the committee next week.

    Aides to Corker and the committee’s top Democrat, Senator Robert Menendez, said the panel had not yet settled on a specific date to debate and vote on the bill. Menendez must also agree on a date for the panel to consider the legislation.”

    http://www.haaretz.com/news/world/1.647303?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter

    Idiots.

Leave a Reply