Protests against Money in Politics: Thousands of Enraged Americans Storm Washington. Media Yawns Over 1,400 Advocates Were Arrested Outside the Capitol Building Last Week

 

                             Over 1,400 Advocates Were Arrested Outside the Capitol Building Last Week

 

 

Manipulation-médiatiqueThis article first appeared on WhoWhatWhy

But an ongoing story about the fight for the very soul of that democracy has been given short shrift.

More than 5,000 activists descended on the Capitol from across the country, including hundreds who had marched there from Philadelphia, the birthplace of American democracy. It was a campaign that recalled the non-violent civil rights protests of the 1960s.

Media Gives Event… 29 Seconds

On April 12, largely unnoticed by the corporate media, they began a weeklong series of rallies protesting money in politics and calling for a restoration of the sanctity of the election process.

In a show of civil disobedience designed to raise awareness of the devastating influence of money in politics, more than 1,400 people got themselves arrested outside the Capitol.

Notwithstanding the timeliness of the event — and its direct relevance to the presidential race — coverage has been miniscule. An analysis by the advocacy group Media Matters has found that the major news networks between April 11 and April 18 devoted to the protests a grand total of … 29 seconds, and only on PBS.

The only time the media seemed to find anything worth reporting was when celebrities were taken away in shackles. Actress Rosario Dawson was arrested Friday, April 15. Vermont’s ice cream royalty, Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield, were arrested as part of Democracy Awakening on Monday.

“It’s always exciting when celebrities really get into this kind of thing,” said Cassady Sharp, a Greenpeace employee who has been working as a spokesperson for Democracy Awakening, one of the two groups that organized the protests, along with Democracy Spring.

“So it doesn’t totally surprise me that people were really pumped to see the Ben & Jerry’s co-founders get arrested. I certainly hope that people realize that they had hundreds of people behind them.”

At the Heart of the Protest: Campaign Finance

The organizers of the event knew that getting front-page coverage was going to be an uphill battle.

“Campaign finance is not the sexiest of all issues,” Peter Callahan, the communications director for Democracy Spring, told WhoWhatWhy. Though polls have shown overwhelming majorities of Americans want to get money out of politics, they also rarely list it as one of the most important issues for voters.

“Other people have lots of issues that are near and dear to their hearts,” says Callahan.

But Callahan and the organizers of Democracy Spring and Democracy Awakening see campaign finance as the issue that encompasses all other issues. They point to Black Lives Matter, and environmental activists — as well as advocacy groups from the right — who see getting money out of politics as the first step in enacting change.

The protests received endorsements and assistance from over 300 different advocacy groups, including People For The American Way, Greenpeace and the NAACP.

“Our message is that 1) systemic corruption is at the root of many issues, 2) there are existing solutions that congress can implement today, and 3) the way to get there is nonviolent civil disobedience,”

Ardon Shorr, the Pittsburgh organizer for Democracy Spring, told WhoWhatWhy.

Overflowing Protesters Put in Warehouses

Shorr was one of the hundreds arrested on the first day of protests. The number of arrests was so high the police ran out of room and had to put the protesters in overflow warehouses. Organizers claim it was the largest act of civil disobedience at the Capitol in history.

For the people pushing for change, these protests are just the beginning.

“People are waking up to the fact that there are solutions,” Rio Tazelwell toldWhoWhatWhy. Tazelwell is the manager for the Government By The People Campaign at People For The American Way, and an organizer for Democracy Awakening.

“We want to keep pushing at the national level, but then we also want to plug people into campaigns that are already underway at the local and state level, particularly ballot initiatives and some legislative proposals.”

One of their stated goals is a 28th amendment to the Constitution guaranteeing the right to fair elections. The activists see history on their side.

“No movement has failed after mobilizing 3.5 percent of a population,” Shorr said, referring to the research of the political scientist Erica Chenoweth.

“That’s a lot of people, but it’s really a tiny minority. This is achievable.”

“Being willing to get arrested creates a moral dilemma for Congress: Either side with the people, or side with big corporate interests and continue to send hundreds of patriotic Americans to jail every day.”

The original source of this article is WhoWhatWhy
Copyright © Jon Hecht, WhoWhatWhy, 2016

Posted by Ainhoa Aristizabal — Unruly Hearts editor

 

Hillary Clinton: “If I’m President, We Will Attack Iran… We would be Able to Totally Obliterate Them.”

 

 

 

In-depth Report: IRAN: THE NEXT WAR

 

Endless wars are certain no matter who succeeds Obama. Clinton’s finger on the nuclear trigger should terrify everyone. ~ Oliver Stone filmmaker

 

By Stephen Lederman

Note: This piece which is of extreme relevance to the US election campaign was originally published in July 2015.

On July 3, 2015, presidential aspirant Hillary Clinton addressed a hand-picked audience at a Dartmouth College campaign event. She lied calling Iran an “existential threat to Israel… I hope we are able to get a deal next week that puts a lid on (its) nuclear weapons program.”

Even if we do get such a deal, we will still have major problems from Iran. They are the world’s chief sponsor of terrorism.

They use proxies like Hezbollah to sow discord and create insurgencies to destabilize governments. They are taking more and more control of a number of nations in the region and they pose an existential threat to Israel.

We…have to turn our attention to working with our partners to try to reign in and prevent this continuing Iranian aggressiveness.

Fact: US and Israeli intelligence both say Iran’s nuclear program has no military component. No evidence whatever suggests Tehran wants one. Plenty indicates otherwise.

As a 2008 presidential aspirant, she addressed AIPAC’s annual convention saying:

The United States stands with Israel now and forever. We have shared interests….shared ideals….common values. I have a bedrock commitment to Israel’s security.

(O)ur two nations are fighting a shared threat” against Islamic extremism. I strongly support Israel’s right to self-defense (and) believe America should aid in that defense.

I am committed to making sure that Israel maintains a military edge to meet increasing threats. I am deeply concerned about the growing threat in Gaza (and) Hamas’ campaign of terror.

No such campaign exists. The only threats Israel faces are ones it invents.

Clinton repeated tired old lies saying Hamas’ charter “calls for the destruction of Israel. Iran threatens to destroy Israel.”

“I support calling the Iranian Revolutionary Guard what it is: a terrorist organization. It is imperative that we get both tough and smart about dealing with Iran before it is too late.”

She backs “massive retaliation” if Iran attacks Israel, saying at the time:

“I want the Iranians to know that if I’m president, we will attack Iran. In the next 10 years, during which they might foolishly consider launching an attack on Israel, we would be able to totally obliterate them.”

She endorses using cluster bombs, toxic agents and nuclear weapons in US war theaters. She calls them deterrents that “keep the peace.” She was one of only six Democrat senators opposed to blocking deployment of untested missile defense systems – first-strike weapons entirely for offense.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net.

His new book as editor and contributor is titled “Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.”

http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com.

Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.

It airs three times weekly: live on Sundays at 1PM Central time plus two prerecorded archived programs. 


Judge Rules Hillary Clinton Exhibited ‘Wrong-Doing and Bad Faith’

 

Judge Rules Hillary Clinton Exhibited ‘Wrong-Doing and Bad Faith’

 

A U.S. District Court Judge ruled, on Tuesday March 29th, that in the civil matter of Hillary Clinton’s State Department emails, “there is evidence of government wrong-doing and bad faith.” Consequently, he has granted to Clinton’s adversary in the proceedings, Judicial Watch, what they had been seeking, which was “limited discovery” to seek further evidence about what she had done and why. (NOTE: This is not in the FBI’s potential criminal case against her, which remains at a preliminary stage. A main purpose of the civil case is to develop evidence that can assist in a potential criminal prosecution against the defendant.)

The Judge, Royce C. Lambreth, of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, further noted that there have been “constantly shifting admissions by the Government and the former officials.” This was a veiled reference to the former Secretary of State, Clinton.

He also said that, for these reasons, such “limited discovery,” as Judicial Watch was seeking, “is appropriate, even though it is exceedingly rare in FOIA [Freedom of Information Act] cases.”

Consequently, the petitioner (‘Plaintiff’) Judicial Watch, was, in his ruling, allowed — in accord with a prior judge’s ruling — to draw up its specific list of further evidence to be sought in “discovery,” in the case (which Judicial Watch had already done on March 15th), and, Clinton, the “Defendant shall respond ten days after plaintiff’s submission.” The prior judge’s ruling had already specified that Clinton(’s lawyer, David Kendall) has until April 5th to respond. Judicial Watch is to respond to that by no later than April 15th.

Clinton (via her lawyer) had requested a denial of the petitioner’s request for “limited discovery” of more evidence, and the Judge’s ruling against her here is referring to what he apparently viewed as being already-existing “evidence of government [i.e., of Clinton’s] wrong-doing and bad faith,” so as to make clear, to her — though tactfully in a way that didn’t condemn her by name, but only as “government,” in order not to harm her (political career) outside the ongoing judicial proceedings in this case — that, in his opinion, which is based upon what he has seen thus far, the prospect of a final judgment against her is very real. It’s simply a warning to her.

On February 23rd, a different judge, on the same Court, Emmet G. Sullivan, had already ruled that Judicial Watch’s request for additional evidence in the case was granted, by saying: “The Court grants [48] Motion for Discovery. … Plaintiff to Submit Discovery Plan To Court and Counsel by 3/15/2016. Defendant Response due by 4/5/2016. Plaintiff Replies due by 4/15/2016.” So: that ruling established the timeline by which the Court demands responses.

Judge Lambreth’s ruling merely seconds Judge Sullivan’s prior one, but adds to it Lambreth’s veiled warning to Clinton.

Whereas Judicial Watch is seeking additional evidence, Clinton has been seeking for the case to be instead either dismissed in “summary judgment,” or else, dragged on, until she has become elected President.

The Court has clearly not been convinced that the case is meritless. Consequently, the question for her, at the present stage, seems to be whether or not some additional way to postpone judgment will be able to be found by Clinton’s lawyer.

Already, by April 15th, the Democratic Presidential nominee might have been determined. And, if there is to be any indictment of Ms. Clinton on criminal charges, it would presumably occur after that time. Consequently, the possibility exists that she will be indicted while she is campaigning in the general election, against the Republican nominee. Anyone who votes for her before this case is cleared up is, apparently, comfortable with having helped to nominate a person who might be a criminal defendant campaigning against the Republican nominee. Alternatively, the Democratic Party’s 715 superdelegates might be able, if an indictment comes down prior to the Democratic National Convention on July 25th, to hand the nomination to her competitor, Bernie Sanders. However, if an indictment comes down after the end of that Convention on July 28th, there might be no way of salvaging election-year 2016 for the Democratic Party.

Investigative historian Eric Zuesse is the author, most recently, of  They’re Not Even Close: The Democratic vs. Republican Economic Records, 1910-2010, and of  CHRIST’S VENTRILOQUISTS: The Event that Created Christianity.

Note:

  • Judge Sullivan was appointed to the Court by the Defendant’s husband, Bill Clinton.
  • Judge Lambreth was appointed to the Court by Ronald Reagan.

Bernie Sanders slams Hillary Clinton’s event with George Clooney

SHAME ON YOU CLOONEY!

 

Bernie Sanders is not happy with Hillary Clinton’s upcoming fundraiser featuring actor George Clooney and his wife, attorney Amal Clooney.

“It is obscene that Secretary Clinton keeps going to big-money people to fund her campaign,” Bernie Sanders said in a recent CNN interview.

 

SEE MORE: George Clooney endorses Clinton — ‘the only grown-up in the room’

 

The event in question is a planned fundraiser most likely suggested by Obama, between the “star couple” and the corrupted Clinton.

A pair of seats at the head table are going for as much as $353,400.

 

“I think the world of her, and I would be very happy if she were president,” Clooney told Fusion.

 

It’s a far cry from the kind of fundraising Sanders’ campaign takes in — thousands of small-money donations.

 

His campaign is funded almost 100 percent by campaign donations. On the other hand, more than one-fourth of Clinton’s donations have come from super PACs and other groups.

 

Emails Show Hillary Clinton Aides Celebrating F-15 Sales to Saudi Arabia: “Good News”

The shockingly brutal Saudi air campaign in Yemen has been led by American-made F-15 jet fighters.

The indiscriminate bombing of civilians and rescuers from the air has prompted human rights organizations to claim that some Saudi-led strikes on Yemen may amount to war crimes. At least 2,800 civilians have been killed in the conflict so far, according to the United Nations — mostly by airstrikes. The strikes have killed journalists and ambulance drivers.

The planes, made by Boeing, have been implicated in the bombing of three facilities supported by Doctors Without Borders (Médicins Sans Frontières). The U.N. Secretary General has decried “intense airstrikes in residential areas and on civilian buildings in Sanaa, including the chamber of commerce, a wedding hall, and a center for the blind,” and has warned that reports of cluster bombs being used in populated areas “may amount to a war crime due to their indiscriminate nature.”

Bombs dropped by fighter jets are pulverizing Yemen’s architectural history, possibly in violation of international humanitarian law.

A few years earlier, as secretary of state, Hillary Clinton made weapons transfer to the Saudi government a “top priority,” according to her closest military aide.

And now, newly released emails show that her aides kept her well-informed of the approval process for a $29.4 billion sale in 2011 of up to 84 advanced F-15SA fighters, manufactured by Boeing, along with upgrades to the pre-existing Saudi fleet of 70 F-15 aircraft and munitions, spare parts, training, maintenance, and logistics.

The deal was finalized on Christmas Eve 2011. Afterward, Jake Sullivan, then Clinton’s deputy chief of staff and now a senior policy adviser on her presidential campaign, sent her a celebratory email string topped with the chipper message: “FYI — good news.”

The email string was part of a new batch of emails from Clinton’s private server, made public on Friday evening as the result of a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit.

One American official, whose name is redacted in the emails, said he had just received confirmation that Prince Salman, now the king of Saudi Arabia but at the time the senior Saudi liaison approving the weapons deal, had “signed the F-15SA LOA today” and would send scanned documents the following day.

“Not a bad Christmas present,” he added.

Another official, whose name is also redacted, confirmed that a Saudi general who had been working with U.S. officials was “pleased, as are all of us,” and said he would soon contact executives at Boeing.

The congratulatory tone continues through the email chain with other officials, also with redacted names, calling the weapons deal “Great news!”

On December 26, Jeremy Bash, then-chief of staff at the Pentagon, sent the email string, titled “F-15SA Christmas Present,” to Sullivan, who sent it to Clinton with his own note at the top.

David Sirota and Andrew Perez have previously reported for the International Business Times that Clinton’s State Department was heavily involved in approving weapons sales to Saudi Arabia. As weapons transfers were being approved, both the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Boeing made donations to the Clinton Foundation. The Washington Post revealed that a Boeing lobbyist helped with fundraising in the early stages of Hillary Clinton’s current presidential campaign.

Jeremy Bash is now managing partner at Beacon Global Strategies, a consulting firm that provides advice to Clinton on foreign policy while providing paid advice to the military contracting industry.

 

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At least 62 children killed in Saudi-led Aggression in Yemen: UNICEF

At least 62 children killed in Saudi-led Aggression in Yemen: UNICEF

Yemeni men inspect the damage at the site of a Saudi-led coalition air strike which hit a sewing workshop, in the capital Sanaa, on February 14, 2016. The factory owner, Faisal al-Musaabi, told AFP that "Two employees, including a 14-year-old boy, were killed and 15 others wounded in the overnight air raid,".   The coalition has been carrying out air strikes against Iran-backed rebels across Yemen since March.   / AFP / MOHAMMED HUWAIS        (Photo credit should read MOHAMMED HUWAIS/AFP/Getty Images)

Yemeni men inspect the damage at the site of a Saudi-led coalition air strike which hit a sewing workshop, in the capital Sanaa, on February 14, 2016.
The factory owner, Faisal al-Musaabi, told AFP that “Two employees, including a 14-year-old boy, were killed and 15 others wounded in the overnight air raid,”.
The coalition has been carrying out air strikes against Iran-backed rebels across Yemen since March.
/ AFP / MOHAMMED HUWAIS (Photo credit should read MOHAMMED HUWAIS/AFP/Getty Images)