Here is Michelle campaigning for Hillary yesterday. I’m about ready to watch it. Heard she managed to surgically destroy Trump without ever mentioning his name. So that should start my work day off with a smile.
https://www.balloon-juice.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/balloon_juice_header_logo_grey.jpg00TaMara (HFG)https://www.balloon-juice.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/balloon_juice_header_logo_grey.jpgTaMara (HFG)2016-09-29 09:51:562016-09-29 09:51:56Quit Being Part Of The F-ing Problem, Jerk-Off
Mr. Ullrich, like other biographers, provides vivid insight into some factors that helped turn a “Munich rabble-rouser” — regarded by many as a self-obsessed “clown” with a strangely “scattershot, impulsive style” — into “the lord and master of the German Reich.”
Do say. Sounds familiar. Let’s explore some more:
Hitler was often described as an egomaniac who “only loved himself” — a narcissist with a taste for self-dramatization and what Mr. Ullrich calls a “characteristic fondness for superlatives.” His manic speeches and penchant for taking all-or-nothing risks raised questions about his capacity for self-control, even his sanity. But Mr. Ullrich underscores Hitler’s shrewdness as a politician — with a “keen eye for the strengths and weaknesses of other people” and an ability to “instantaneously analyze and exploit situations.”
Hitler was known, among colleagues, for a “bottomless mendacity” that would later be magnified by a slick propaganda machine that used the latest technology (radio, gramophone records, film) to spread his message. A former finance minister wrote that Hitler “was so thoroughly untruthful that he could no longer recognize the difference between lies and truth” and editors of one edition of “Mein Kampf” described it as a “swamp of lies, distortions, innuendoes, half-truths and real facts.”
Hitler was an effective orator and actor, Mr. Ullrich reminds readers, adept at assuming various masks and feeding off the energy of his audiences. Although he concealed his anti-Semitism beneath a “mask of moderation” when trying to win the support of the socially liberal middle classes, he specialized in big, theatrical rallies staged with spectacular elements borrowed from the circus. Here, “Hitler adapted the content of his speeches to suit the tastes of his lower-middle-class, nationalist-conservative, ethnic-chauvinist and anti-Semitic listeners,” Mr. Ullrich writes. He peppered his speeches with coarse phrases and put-downs of hecklers. Even as he fomented chaos by playing to crowds’ fears and resentments, he offered himself as the visionary leader who could restore law and order.
Hitler increasingly presented himself in messianic terms, promising “to lead Germany to a new era of national greatness,” though he was typically vague about his actual plans. He often harked back to a golden age for the country, Mr. Ullrich says, the better “to paint the present day in hues that were all the darker. Everywhere you looked now, there was only decline and decay.”
Hitler’s repertoire of topics, Mr. Ullrich notes, was limited, and reading his speeches in retrospect, “it seems amazing that he attracted larger and larger audiences” with “repeated mantralike phrases” consisting largely of “accusations, vows of revenge and promises for the future.” But Hitler virtually wrote the modern playbook on demagoguery, arguing in “Mein Kampf” that propaganda must appeal to the emotions — not the reasoning powers — of the crowd. Its “purely intellectual level,” Hitler said, “will have to be that of the lowest mental common denominator among the public it is desired to reach.” Because the understanding of the masses “is feeble,” he went on, effective propaganda needed to be boiled down to a few slogans that should be “persistently repeated until the very last individual has come to grasp the idea that has been put forward.”
Hitler’s rise was not inevitable, in Mr. Ullrich’s opinion. There were numerous points at which his ascent might have been derailed, he contends; even as late as January 1933, “it would have been eminently possible to prevent his nomination as Reich chancellor.” He benefited from a “constellation of crises that he was able to exploit cleverly and unscrupulously” — in addition to economic woes and unemployment, there was an “erosion of the political center” and a growing resentment of the elites. The unwillingness of Germany’s political parties to compromise had contributed to a perception of government dysfunction, Mr. Ullrich suggests, and the belief of Hitler supporters that the country needed “a man of iron” who could shake things up. “Why not give the National Socialists a chance?” a prominent banker said of the Nazis. “They seem pretty gutsy to me.”
Hitler’s ascension was aided and abetted by the naïveté of domestic adversaries who failed to appreciate his ruthlessness and tenacity, and by foreign statesmen who believed they could control his aggression. Early on, revulsion at Hitler’s style and appearance, Mr. Ullrich writes, led some critics to underestimate the man and his popularity, while others dismissed him as a celebrity, a repellent but fascinating “evening’s entertainment.” Politicians, for their part, suffered from the delusion that the dominance of traditional conservatives in the cabinet would neutralize the threat of Nazi abuse of power and “fence Hitler in.” “As far as Hitler’s long-term wishes were concerned,” Mr. Ullrich observes, “his conservative coalition partners believed either that he was not serious or that they could exert a moderating influence on him. In any case, they were severely mistaken.”
Go ahead and reach for the bottle, people, if you haven’t already:
Hitler had a dark, Darwinian view of the world. And he would not only become, in Mr. Ullrich’s words, “a mouthpiece of the cultural pessimism” growing in right-wing circles in the Weimar Republic, but also the avatar of what Thomas Mann identified as a turning away from reason and the fundamental principles of a civil society — namely, “liberty, equality, education, optimism and belief in progress.”
The next time someone tells you that Hillary and Trump are both equally bad, or that Trump is no Hitler, tell them to shut the fuck up and get the fuck out of your face because you don’t have time for their stupidity and ignorance. You’re going to be out participating in events to get Hillary elected.
https://www.balloon-juice.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/balloon_juice_header_logo_grey.jpg00John Colehttps://www.balloon-juice.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/balloon_juice_header_logo_grey.jpgJohn Cole2016-09-28 16:52:432016-09-28 23:09:31This Should Scare the Ever Loving Shit Out of You
I believe that one of the reasons the 2000 race was so close — instead of being the blow-out it should have been — was the media fixation on Al Gore’s sighs in the first debate. Not to get all Bob Somerby on your asses, but all that bullshit about how Al Gore was the nerdy hall monitor and W was the likable jock…that bullshit is the reason W became president. Thus it’s the reason for the Iraq War and at least 5 or 6 trillion extra in debt.
All that bullshit is starting to happen again in this election.. So if anybody tells you that Hillary shouldn’t have glared at Trump or raised her voice or whatever in tonight’s debate, tell them to go fuck themselves.
https://www.balloon-juice.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/balloon_juice_header_logo_grey.jpg00Doug!https://www.balloon-juice.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/balloon_juice_header_logo_grey.jpgDoug!2016-09-26 12:51:342016-09-26 13:47:49A sigh is just a sigh
The head of the Commission on Presidential Debates has some advice for debate moderators this fall: leave the fact-checking to the candidates.
Janet Brown, executive director of the commission, told CNN’s Brian Stelter that moderators should let the candidates check one another on “accuracy and fairness.”
“I don’t think it’s a good idea to get the moderator into essentially serving as the Encyclopedia Britannica,” Brown said Sunday on “Reliable Sources.”
While Brown said the commission depends on “independent, smart journalists” to make their own decisions about how to moderate, she said that historically, correcting the record has been left to the candidates.
In watching the campaign coverage this year, I’ve sometimes had the same distressing feeling I felt in the run-up to the war in Iraq — that we in the media were greasing the skids to a bad outcome for our country. In the debate about invading Iraq, news organizations scrupulously quoted each side but didn’t adequately signal what was obvious to anyone reporting in the region: that we would be welcomed in Iraq not with flowers but with bombs. In our effort to avoid partisanship, we let our country down.
When some in cable TV cover Trump endlessly without sufficiently fact-checking his statements or noting how extreme his positions are, because he is great for ratings and makes money for media companies, we are again failing the country. We are normalizing lies and extremism.
There’s no real upside to telling the political truth in our society any more. You won’t be held accountable. In fact, those who are honest, admit their flaws, and try to deal with reality are punished because the other guy, who lies at will or just makes up fantasy scenarios (this was true to some extent with Bernie and all the things that would just magically happen and voila PROGRESSIVE NIRVANA) looks so much better by comparison.
https://www.balloon-juice.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/balloon_juice_header_logo_grey.jpg00John Colehttps://www.balloon-juice.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/balloon_juice_header_logo_grey.jpgJohn Cole2016-09-25 13:33:462016-09-25 13:33:46And the Stage is Set
So…. apparently Mark Cuban was scheduled to sit in the front row of the debate on Monday, and Donald Trump responded in the most Trumpian way possible:
Gennifer Flowers, the former model who had an extramarital affair with Bill Clinton in the 1980s, says she’ll accept an invitation from Donald Trump to sit in the front row of Monday’s presidential debate, according to an assistant.
The prospect of Flowers attending the debate was raised on Saturday when Trump tweeted that he would put her in the audience, if billionaire and Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban sat in the front row.
“If dopey Mark Cuban of failed Benefactor fame wants to sit in the front row, perhaps I will put Jennifer Flowers right alongside of him!” Trump tweeted Saturday afternoon.
I don’t even understand how this makes any sense as a rebuttal to Cuban sitting in the front row, unless Cuban and Melania have been screwing around, but I’m not an insane crazy person.