Miscellany, plus and minus

There was a program on something called axs.tv recently that consisted of interviews with the Doors, sans Jim Morrison of course, whose grave in Paris at the Père Lachaise Cemetery we’ve visited. They were very smart and articulate, terrific in fact. We were surprised, but probably shouldn’t have been, since it obviously takes a lot of talent, genius perhaps, entrepreneurial skill, and unyielding persistence to turn a group into a phenomenon. OTOH, we listened to Background Briefing on our jog, and weren’t at all surprised by ravings of the the PhD and media aliens from another universe. Sample:

“We begin with the week of hate in America starting last Monday with a pipe bomb delivered to George Soros then on Wednesday a white supremacist shot two African Americans at random in a store in Kentucky, then as the week proceeded more pipe bombs were delivered to two former presidents, a Secretary of State, an Attorney General, a former head of the CIA, the former Director of National Intelligence, two U.S. Senators and a Congresswoman. By Friday the would-be assassin and bomb-maker was caught after mailing 14 pipe bombs to prominent Democrats singled out by Trump for vilification.

And just as the bomber’s pro-Trump profile and burning hatred of Democrats, Jews, gays, Muslims, blacks, Latinos, and CNN emerged, on Saturday a heavily-armed white man shouting anti-Semitic hate opened fire in a Pittsburg synagogue killing 11 worshipers and wounding two more as well as four police officers. David Neiwert, an award-winning journalist, author and expert on right-wing extremism whose latest book is “Alt-America: The Rise of the Radical Right in the Age of Trump”, joins us.

We will discuss the obvious connection between Trump’s rhetoric and his apparent inability to criticize American neo-Nazis and white supremacists which has enabled fringe movements to enter the mainstream, emboldened to act on their sick beliefs and tortured conspiracies that are propagated by Fox News, Breitbart, Limbaugh and Alex Jones.

Then we look into why the alleged bomber Cesar Sayoc was attracted to Trump with cult-like fervor to the point he decided to assassinate Trump’s critics in the leadership of the Democratic Party, along with top former intelligence officials and Trump’s “enemies of the people”, the press. David Dayen, a contributing writer to Salon.com and The Intercept where his latest article is “Cesar Sayoc’s Home Was Foreclosed on by Steve Mnuchin’s Bank Using Dodgy Paperwork”, joins us to look into how Sayoc became homeless and ended up living in a van and blaming Democrats instead of those who are taking away what’s left of a social safety net this ill and troubled man so clearly needed.

Then finally we speak with Nina Burleigh, the National Politics Correspondent at Newsweek who latest book, just out is “Golden Handcuffs: The Secret History of Trump’s Women”. She joins us to discuss Trump’s wives and daughters and the connections that Ivana the mother of Trump’s children Don Junior, Eric and Ivanka has had with Czech intelligence and the KGB and the role of Rupert Murdoch who is not just the major propagandist for Trump and one of his main advisors, but the matchmaker who brought Ivanka and Jared Kushner together.”


More about the 11 Pittsburgh murders here. You will note that it is spelled wrong in the paragraphs above. No surprise. We spent a lot of very pleasant time in that city when lending to coal and steel companies and visiting many steel mills and coal mines, which were often fascinating.

Back then, at the request of an old friend at the NYT, we took a WaPo opinion writer to lunch at the Duquesne Club in the seventies, and he rewarded our generosity by writing a column sharply critical of us as a stupid servant of the corporate order. Sigh.

Bonus insanity here.

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