Posts by Russell Brown

  • Hard News: Trump's Dummkopfs, in reply to Conal Tuohy,

    Have you seen this very recent poll? It backs what it calls the ‘conventional wisdom’ about Trump’s strength in working class support

    It shows that white working class voters are dissatisfied, in part because they're "nervous about cultural changes taking place in the United States" and feel "Christian values are under attack".

    It also indicates that as a group they're doing quite well and largely have secure jobs. Also that they're pretty racist.

    If you were trying to convince me that culture-war isn't a factor here, I'm not sure this is right survey to do it with.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 21417 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Trump's Dummkopfs, in reply to Ian Dalziel,

    I don’t believe Russell claimed support for a virtuous Hillary, he just pointed out that she would be a safer alternative, and that ‘her’ charity is not as grotesque and fraudulent as you would like to believe – especially compared to Trump’s confection.

    Yes. She’s compromised. She could be described as a liberal hawk. But a good deal of what people believe they know about Clinton simply isn’t true – witness Andrew’s venom on the topic of the Clinton Foundation.

    And more to the point, on every measure, including regulation of Wall Street and foreign policy, Clinton is a better choice than Trump.

    Is she an establishment candidate? Well, yeah. You can see that in her tax proposals, which are small-c conservative, slightly more redistributive.

    Trump’s published tax policy is summed up by Business Insider’s headline last month: Trump’s tax plan sounds populist, but it aims its key benefits at the rich

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 21417 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Trump's Dummkopfs,

    Another right-wing Silicon Valley billionaire backing Trump. Palmer Luckey, founder of Oculus, has been funding the production of racist, misogynist Clinton "shitmemes".

    We know Hillary Clinton is corrupt, a warmonger, a freedom-stripper. Not the good kind you see dancing in bikinis on Independence Day, the bad kind that strips freedom from citizens and grants it to donors,” Luckey wrote on a Reddit thread introducing his initiative, using the pseudonym NimbleRichMan.

    Luckey’s support for Trump may be unusual in a tech industry that has a tendency to support Democrats, but it is his embrace of the dark side of Trump’s internet army that is so alarming. We may be used to the incredibly wealthy supporting pro-business politicians by writing checks to the Republican party, but the full-on embrace of “shitposting” and the bigoted online harassment that so often comes with it is something else entirely.

    Shitposting is not intended to add to an online discussion but to shut it down with, well, shit. It is the opposite of the ideals of good faith, open discussion made possible by the internet.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 21417 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Trump's Dummkopfs, in reply to Conal Tuohy,

    Because racial minorities have been made scapegoated by his campaign? Like right-wing populists always do? I mean, obviously you know that; so why are you asking?

    Mother Jones has a story this week listing the various neo-Nazi and white supremacist organisations to endorse Trump. Not a single one of those endorsements has been disavowed by the candidate or the campaign Not one.

    That is not business as usual. Except in the sense that’s it’s mirrored in the violent anti-immigrant rhetoric of the Brexiteer fringe, Len Pen’s mob in France, etc.

    Why do you think that negates the idea that Trump’s support is riding a wave of legitimate grievance with joblessness, homelessness, and hopelessness, and social alienation?

    I don’t doubt that Trump has found some purchase among poor, disenfranchised white voters.

    But the idea that he’s riding a wave of the jobless and homeless simply isn’t backed up by the evidence.

    Pew Research found Clinton with a 29-point lead over Trump among the poorest voters (< $30,000 pa income).

    A big Gallup poll reported by The Guardian found Clinton with a 25-point margin among Americans earning $24,000 or less.

    For annual incomes between $30,000 and $100,000, Pew found support basically equal, with Clinton having a slight lead over $100,000.

    But overwhelmingly, poor Americans do not support Trump.

    The strongest determinants for supporting Clinton look to be, in order: (non-white) race, (low) income, (young) age, (female) gender, and (high) education.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 21417 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Trump's Dummkopfs, in reply to AndrewH,

    A fucking political turd circling the bowl, in the gravitational embrace of her grotesque “charitable foundation”.

    The foundation that gets an "A" rating from CharityWatch, publishes all its accounts, works with the Word Heath Organisation and is universally acknowledged as having played the key role in reducing the cost of HIV/AIDS medication to African nations, thus saving millions of lives? That one?

    Or are we talking about some fantasy organisation in your head?

    If you had the courage to admit you just don;t get it about Trumps supporters (and Brexit)

    You know, in the week after the Brexit vote, my reliably left-wing friend in London didn't want to walk to work because there had been a series of racist assaults carried out by apparent Brexiteers in the area. She's non-white.

    I’d have some sympathy, but your condescension is just awful.
    Russell Brown – student hero. has somehow morphed into middle class, Auckland property owning wanker.

    Well, I was never a student, but thanks for illustrating my point about the alt-left.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 21417 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Trump's Dummkopfs,

    Yikes. Trump foreign policy advisor Carter Page – a former Merrill Lynch investment banker with money in Russian oil – is under investigation:

    U.S. intelligence officials are seeking to determine whether an American businessman identified by Donald Trump as one of his foreign policy advisers has opened up private communications with senior Russian officials — including talks about the possible lifting of economic sanctions if the Republican nominee becomes president, according to multiple sources who have been briefed on the issue.

    The activities of Trump adviser Carter Page, who has extensive business interests in Russia, have been discussed with senior members of Congress during recent briefings about suspected efforts by Moscow to influence the presidential election, the sources said. After one of those briefings, Senate minority leader Harry Reid wrote FBI Director James Comey, citing reports of meetings between a Trump adviser (a reference to Page) and “high ranking sanctioned individuals” in Moscow over the summer as evidence of “significant and disturbing ties” between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin that needed to be investigated by the bureau.

    Some of those briefed were “taken aback” when they learned about Page’s contacts in Moscow, viewing them as a possible back channel to the Russians that could undercut U.S. foreign policy, said a congressional source familiar with the briefings but who asked for anonymity due to the sensitivity of the subject. The source added that U.S. officials in the briefings indicated that intelligence reports about the adviser’s talks with senior Russian officials close to President Vladimir Putin were being “actively monitored and investigated.”

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 21417 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: Christchurch: We're not…, in reply to Sacha,

    Thanks, Greg. Christchurch always had a high degree of community engagement and volunteering. Glad to hear it hasn’t been completely destroyed by the bozos.

    You see it all over the place – but as Greg notes, everyone's busy with something.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 21417 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Trump's Dummkopfs, in reply to Conal Tuohy,

    I’m no fan of Trump, at all, and I really hope Clinton wins the election, but it does seem to me that you’re are barking up the wrong tree here; fixating on the “culture war” rather than seeing it as a symptom of a deeper malaise. Trump is tapping into a real (justified) sense of injustice, and a frustration with the American system’s failure to really grapple with the deep economic crisis.

    Which doesn't really account for the ubiquitous role of race in these movements, in the US and Europe. Why does Trump have a net 14-point lead in approval among white Americans, but little support among black and Latino Americans? Why is Le Pen just as keen on Putin as Trump is?

    It seems, more than anything, like the externalising of blame, in quite an alarming way.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 21417 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Trump's Dummkopfs,

    I largely agree with this FT comment piece on the threat to global stability of a Trump Presidency:

    The Republican party’s contender for the White House is not alone in cosying up to the Kremlin. Populists across Europe — Marine Le Pen’s National Front in France, Nigel Farage’s UK Independence party and the fascist Jobbik and Golden Dawn in Hungary and Greece respectively — have all tipped their hats to Moscow. Mr Putin also has sympathisers on the left. Britain’s Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn is more comfortable denouncing US “imperialism” than challenging Russian revanchism.

    And:

    The obvious fear is that a temperamentally unstable president Trump would lash out in a crisis. Robert Gates, the Republican former US defence secretary, says simply that he is “unfit to be commander-in-chief”. Mr Trump’s reaction to the latest bomb outrage in New York fitted the pattern. The US had to “knock the hell out of them … do something serious over there” — “them” being indeterminate and “over there” being the Middle East.

    The bigger danger lies in Mr Trump’s promise to withdraw — to tear up trade deals such as the North American Free Trade Agreement, throw up trade barriers against China, repudiate the Paris climate change agreement and the nuclear deal with Iran, and abdicate responsibility for the security of east Asia and Europe. Mr Trump’s policies are shot through with contradictions but one constant drumbeat is his belligerent isolationism. America will go it alone. Hyper-realism, some call it. Dangerous is a better word.

    The comments below it are almost uniformly hostile – alt-right and alt-left in step and, one has to suspect, a few of those Russian-sponsored trolls in the mix.

    This is typical:

    The reason liberals hate Putin, Trump, Netanyahu, and Europe’s emerging ethnonationalist parties is that all of these at least attempt to represent the interests of their countries and citizens. Liberalism, on the other hand, is the upper classes allied with an entire class of immigrants they have brought in to make war on the native middle and working classes of every single Western nation. Trump and the rest, who want to celebrate their peoples and countries, make the liberals look as bad as they are.

    Someone with the screen name “John Galt” replies:

    WELL SAID SIR!

    And this:

    I guess the “liberal, rules-based system” allows obama to support a war in syria by funding jihadi groups, approve staging a coup in Ukraine, and provoking russia so that putin is justified in the eyes of his people to use military force in crimea and syria.

    obama and hillary are pushing toward hot war with russia (and already in syria) – one wonders which planet the author of this article is from

    the author asserts without evidence that trump is “authoritarian” – i would suggest that he is no more,and probably far less “authoritarian” than obama or hillary

    I can't quite tell if it's a paid troll or just a useful idiot.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 21417 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Trump's Dummkopfs, in reply to DeepRed,

    The firmly reality-based Noam Chomsky has cautioned against such nose-cutting:

    I don't always agree with Chomsky, but as he indicates, this shit is just basic. If a President Trump was to act on even half his stupid foreign policy promises (and I include flouting trade agreements in that) the world would become a much more dangerous and unstable place.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 21417 posts Report Reply

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