A Military Coup against Dilma Seems to be Underway

As you consider all of this,  remember that Brazil was under a US-friendly, CIA-sponsored military dictatorship from 1964 (Golpe 64) until 1985.  The regime imprisoned, disappeared, and tortured many of the guerilla opposition.  Dilma was imprisoned and tortured for three years beginning at the age of 22 in 1970.  The CIA/US coup against Hugo Chavez in 2002 ended quickly when the military by and large refused to support it.  May it prove so in this case eventually.

“Brazil’s Senate vice president has denounced a siege against suspended President Dilma Rousseff ordered by the interim right-wing president.

Senate-imposed Interim President Michel Temer has deployed military troops to cordon off the area surrounding the Palácio da Alvorada, residence of the suspended President Dilma Rousseff,  Brazilian Senate Vice President Jorge Vianna said on Thursday. 

Vianna said there’s a checkpoint at the Palácio do Jaburu, where Temer currently resides, and which is very close to Rousseff’s residence in the capital of Brasilia.  

“Anyone visiting President Dilma has to go through a checkpoint installed at Jaburu, with several heavily armed military … I just made a visit to President Dilma. I was with the president of the National Congress. And we had to identify ourselves and wait a long time before g(e)tting the access,” Vianna said. 

“This means that the elected president is under siege? What country is this? What provisional government is this?” the senator added.” 

Temer assumed the post of interim president last week following the suspension of President Dilma Rousseff who is now facing a Senate impeachment trial. 

Rousseff, along with millions of others across the country, regards the move as a coup waged by the right-wing opposition.

Despite formerly chairing the oil giant Petrobras — from which several former and current officials are linked to the corruption scandal dubbed “car wash” — Rousseff has not been formally tied to the scandal and there are no formal charges against the socialist leader.” 

Snakey Interim President Temer has appointed the head of the Sao Paulo stock exchange as CEO of (currently state-owned) Petrobras; Bloombegr has reported that at least partial privatization is already in the works.

Also at Telesur: ‘Brazil Coup Gov’t Moves to Change Definition of Slavery and It’s an Absolute Disaster’; Brazil’s new unelected government is looking to introduce new measures that would “soften the definition of slavery” in the country in what is being seen as a roll back of many of the reforms introduced by the leftist government of President Dilma Rousseff.

Clearly Dilma made strides in ‘freeing some of the slaves’, but not enough, critics claim, especially the indigenous of the Brazilian Rain Forest.

Temer’s short rule has already been so egregious that even (gasp!) the Guardian seems taken aback: ‘Brazil’s interim government wastes no time erasing Workers’ party influence;  In just a week, centre-right government has scaled back social policies as ideological shift already has sparked outrage and fear of going backward’

Moves are under way to soften the definition of slavery, roll back the demarcation of indigenous land, trim housebuilding programs and sell off state assets in airports, utilities and the post office. Newly appointed ministers also are talking of cutting healthcare spending and reducing the cost of the bolsa familia poverty relief system. Four thousand government jobs have been cut. The culture ministry has been subsumed into education.”

The author does present (ahem) supporters’ viewpoints, of course.

RT has up a very long interview and transcript: ‘Dilma Rousseff: Old Brazilian oligarchy behind ‘coup’, May 19, 2016  (video translations in English), including:

DR: I’m fairly optimistic. I keep fighting not only to remain President, but also – and first and foremost – for the democratic rights in my country. To tell you the truth, I don’t intend to stay cooped up in my official residence, the Alvorada Palace. I want to go to many Brazilian cities and meet many people. This way I can tell Brazil, and maybe even the entire world, about what’s really going on in the country and how we intend to counter what we believe is a coup attempt. 

RT: Speaking of the impeachment, the coup and the trial, I’d like to ask you – is this basically a soft coup, without weapons and violence? Moreover, to which extent do you think this coup is aimed against you, and to which extent not only against Brazil, but against its allies, say, the BRICS countries?”

Her response is very long… much of it you’ll likely already know.

The opposition (headed by former Chavez coup-plotter Henrique Capriles) to Bolivarist Maduro is hinting at a coup as I type (see the Club des Cordeliers post below); stay tuned.  In the Ukraine, Nuland’s nationalist neo-Nazis and other thugs are on fire to Maidan II the Chocolate King if he goes forward with elections in the Donbass; more on that another day.

42 responses to “A Military Coup against Dilma Seems to be Underway

  1. Liliana Ayalde, the US Ambassador to Brazil, reportedly born 1956 in Baltimore MD has a surprising spare biography on Wikipedia. And was Ambassador to Paraguay when some nasty things happened there. Seems that the current soft-power fad is “constitutional coups”.

    Thanks to Trevor Paglen’s Blank Spots on the Map: The Dark Geography of the Pentagon’s Secret World, I’m more aware of dark matter in the political universe.

    It is much more subtle how this goes down than the cases that formed the basis for Edward Luttwak’s Coup d’Etat: A Practical Handbook

    Wikipedia says:

    In a 1980 review of the book, Richard Clutterbuck called Coup d’État: A Practical Handbook (1968) one of “only two general contemporary books on the subject” of military coups d’état that are worthwhile in content and readerly interest, the other being Samuel Finer’s The Man on Horseback. However, Clutterbuck criticises the book for not further emphasising the role of the news media in determining the likely success of a coup d’état

    Keeping Dilma under house arrest in essentially a guest house of the Presidential Palace is kind of subtle, given that the impeachment trial has not occurred.

    Noticing that Obama has not rushed to recognize Temer’s government. Interesting caution. Concern that they cannot make it stick?

    • yes to the role the media can play, and all signs are that brazilian media haven’t been incensed, but i did see a headline at telesur on the sidebar that might say more about the media.

      ‘subtle’; hmmm. guess i hadn’t thought so. i was more down with ‘outrageous’ given that loads off temer’s cronies are also either under investigation or indictment for corruption.

      no, O hasn’t rushed to recognize, but you got me looking for what has occurred.

      Escobar: “White House spokesman Josh Earnest limited himself to the proverbial platitudes: “challenging moment”; “trust in Brazilian democratic institutions”; or even “mature democracy.” Yet he added, significantly, that Brazil is “under scrutiny.”

      Mark Weisbrot: “The day after the impeachment vote in the lower house of Brazil’s congress, one of the leaders of the effort, Senator Aloysio Nunes, traveled to Washington, D.C. He had scheduled meetings with a number of U.S. officials, including Thomas Shannon at the State Department.
      Shannon has a relatively low profile in the media, but he is the number three official in the U.S. State Department. Even more significantly in this case, he is the most influential person in the State Department on U.S. policy in Latin America. He will be the one recommending to Secretary of State John Kerry what the U.S. should do as the ongoing efforts to remove President Dilma Rousseff proceed.

      Shannon’s willingness to meet with Nunes just days after the impeachment vote sends a powerful signal that Washington is on board with the opposition in this venture. How do we know this? Very simply, Shannon did not have to have this meeting. If he wanted to show that Washington was neutral in this fierce and deeply polarizing political conflict, he would not have a meeting with high-profile protagonists on either side, especially at this particular moment.

      Shannon’s meeting with Nunes is an example of what could be called “dog-whistle diplomacy.” (nunes’s party advertized the meeting, of course.) (he writes that as in honduras, everyone knew the dog-whistle code.)

      so i checked out ayalde a bit, and found that she was shannon’s replacement, and has quite a history with USAID (cia). a charmer. i’d seen her history as ambassador to paraguay noted in the twitterverse, but had forgotten. real charmer she sounds like.

      ‘if they can make it stick’, mebbe so. yeah, i’m not thinkin’ that through very well just now. but give weisbrot’s argument….

      • p.s. dilma’s house arrest caused me to think of benazir bhutto (sp); isn’t that how it started for her? and by the way, do remember who in the us G told her it was safe to ‘come home’, she did…and was assassinated for her silly, trusting bravery?

  2. maduro & rousseff & their supporters…brave men & women. which is why articles like this annoy me:
    no doubt there’s some or even lots of truth to this, but the guy is still staring down the long, all-killing barrell of Uncle Sam’s immeasurable gun, as is Rousseff. give people some frickin’ credit will you, you trotsky fundie assholes? one is as likely to read laudatory comments of “Castro’s” Cuba or Chavism in Venezuala in the National Review as at wsws. it’s distasteful & gauche for gauchistes to be so celebratory about imperialism having a couple more heads possibly on the chopping block.

    anyway, enough of the rant on wsws. Weisbrot’s note on the meeting is key. thanks.

    • wow; quite a burn there, jason. it’s late for me, but i’ll give it go. yes to ‘failure to diversify’, but van akun doesn’t seem to know the history of universities being convinced to get in the streets in aid of MUD, as i remember it. nor does he seem acquainted with the hoarding of critical commodities in a effort to discredit the maduro govt. he skipped by the great advances in college graduate percentages, housing, yada, yada, as well.
      quoting the ‘paper of record’ seems a bit of a gvieaway, yes? keeee-rist.

      “It is entirely possible that the Maduro government will use the state of emergency to suspend the constitutional right to seek a recall vote and thereby derail the right’s campaign” yikes; guess i won’t read hi mind, although he’s between a rock and a hard place. who knew, for instance, the price of oil would tank, and him…just a rookie. oh, yeah: a former bus driver’, they love to joke, sure, his military exercises are a feint, but he doesn’t want to appear weaker…than he actually is..

      corruption is still afoot, of course, like in any nation, and someone at ian welsh’s place said he lived in VZ, and chavez’s daughter is a multi-millionaire today. might even be so. but this i have to wonder about:

      “The turn to the military comes on the heels of “Operation Liberation of the People” launched last year, which has seen police and military collaborating in mass arbitrary arrests and extra-judicial executions in the name of a war on crime waged in poor and working class neighborhoods. Last Tuesday, a crackdown resulted in the arrest of 1,130 people and killing of at least nine.” ???

      the VZ analysis newsletter came in today, and i’ll just paste in a couple links that may be agitprop, may be so.


      (dead Vzelans on the recall)

      sweet dreams,amigo. sometimes the trotskyites get in right, sometimes they’re the msm. sometimes jaobin gets it right, many times they’re they’re the tools of st. bernie’s revolution. ;-)

  3. i don’t post on the wsws website. i’m sure some commentators there would state what i said. when i went to register there ages ago, the discus or whatever s/w, the 1st question was, “Can we have access to all your contacts?” uh no.

    lots of if’s, lots of what have you’s, but b.v. auken is certainly aware oil is being artificially-deflated. and that the US military…dwarfs VZ’s, etc., etc. as far as corruption goes, who can forget Mandela? for not fully embracing the SEP catechism, the US invades your country & eviserates your half-assed attempts at not even limp pseudo-socialism and its your own damn fault. uh huh.

    • do tell me what you mean about mandela, corruption, and SEP, if you would. yah, one can’t say all those ‘pink tide’ nations were sincerely socialist, but close enough to be abhorred, and even more: feared by the capitalist class.

      when O put it out that ‘VZ is a threat to US national security’ it was hilarious: the truth hidden in plain sight.

      RT has an interview with lula, again very long, scanning showed he was enumerating some of the major flaws in dilma’s second term. i got to thinking that evo morales had turned a bit neo-lib capitalist, as well, and some journalists thought he was selling out his fellow indigenous. ooof.

      but yeah, you’d think auken couldunderstand a few more things. ish, disqus, whatever: they claim it’s very secure by now, i don’t believe it. it’s just a cheap way to go, since they host off-site commenting. ha! you can discuss posts at CP on facebook! (thank you, no…)

      temer has fired dilma’s prez of the public broadcasting system, replaced him with some right-wing criminal or some such. he really is runnin’ the table. and telesur has a headline about macre makin’ military ventures w/ the US of A.

      • maybe more so the ANC than Mandela personally. Roussef having been a victim of the US-sponsored torture regime was what made me think of Mandela’s experience. he gets out of prison and, correct me if i’m wrong, but the socialism of the ANC quickly gets shredded.

        the US can’t let any alternatives exist. none. mediocre, great, or whatever rank one wants to give them. certainly true. given the disparities of power b/n the US & VZ and the history of coup attempts, the armchair expert’s disdain for Maduro really rubbed me wrong.

        • is that social what you’d meant by SEP? i just dunno the acronym. but yes, the ANC’s rule has been ghastly in many respects. i couldn’t have said when, but police were shooting striking miners, platinum, gold, and it turns out it was in 2012, maybe other incidents as well. this says the other strikers were being charged as accomplices murder, and that jacob zuma would investigate. ptui. but they quoted to la times:

          “The killings on Aug. 16 have thrown into sharp relief the country’s deep problems with inequality and poverty 18 years after the African National Congress took power. The decision to charge miners under the apartheid era “common purpose” law fueled anger and illustrated the ANC’s alienation from poor workers who had been a major element of its political base.”


          now i dunno who zuma really is, so i bipped onto panafrican news wire, and they have this story of sort of a soft coup against him. i’m in no position to even have an opinion, as what i ever sorta knew about s africa under the anc has evaporated.

          but yes to van auken as an armchair critic, and out of the reality stream, at that. a lot of leftist intellectuals spout a lotta hot air. speaking of which, #left forum starts today in new yawk, zizek, BAR authors, goodman, benjamin. i forget who all, billed as something, something, and revolution.

          bread day for me, so i’ll be in and out.

          on edit: i couldn’t ping why zizek’s left a bad taste in my mouth lately, so i went a-scouting. dude has others, as well.

  4. i seem to remember your fondness for carl bildt, jason. /s

    • carl who? he can get former Chavez/Maduro colleagues to say something that he can construe as “leftist policies destroying VZ”? and be a deep thinker getting paid big bucks? i already hate him. wait, wait, lemme guess: b/c leftist policies are destroying VZ, we should consider…intervention? or, um, supporting a coup? color me shocked.

      SEP=Socialist Equality Party, that’s the party name behind wsws.

      i read one of Zizek’s books 10 or so years ago when i was more into defining what is “post-modernist say-nothing drivel” and tho’t the book i had was pomo drivel’s ne plus ultra. i’m not sure that’s the case about every sentence expectorated from this ill-tuned bagpipe of a windbag, but you know, there are more exciting self-masterbatory activies than cloistering oneself away w/a hairy dugong of a guy in a ratty t-shirt. “rethinking the enlightenment views on human rights in light of the current refugee crisis” or whatever…that laughable persona of i’m too deep for a haircut and a shave, or, uh, laundry day…zizek needs some roundup cuz that unkempt weed sprouts up all over the damn place. #facepalm #leftforum

      i think the subject is interesting. and it demonstrates exactly what again? don’t forget! nazis loved bach! thanks zizek, ur 2 deep for ur own britches.

      • ooooh, thanks for the zizek color; my sentiments exactly. “can ya buy a shirt a size or two larger so ya don’t have ta keep pluckin’ at it?” but those are some choice comments, no. he’s another one ‘leftists’ genuflect before as they do old sourpuss hedges, although he get thing right some of the time, imo.

        amy goodman loves zizek, i can never figure out if reading him is better or worse than listening to him. but that drivel, and others about women, miscegenation, and lesbians (too hard to read all of the passages) fivek brought. oh, my.

        ach, i’m sorry. i’d thought you’d railed against the ‘fascist bildt’ earlier; swedish conservative, PM, minister of foreign affairs, long-time russophobe, heavy in the crimean scene, south ossetia, tra la la. loverly man…..


        • it did flash across my mind to google/wiki who carl b is before assuming maybe he’s some incarnation of the new normal at the WaPo editorial page. non-subscribers only get so many monthly link clicks so gotta save ’em.

  5. well, no; i won’t put up anything about the #LeftForum ‘rage, rebellion, and revolution’, given this title at RT: ”Democracy in the US is a fraud’: Left Forum debates next steps for Sanders movement’. that ‘bern revoution’, it seems. amy goodman will interview zizek tomorrow. ;-)

    oh, give me strength: medea benjamin:

    “Medea Benjamin, the Code Pink activist known for infiltrating Congressional hearings and the Republican convention, started by disagreeing with Hedges’ opinion that Sanders should have run as an independent, describing the party as Clinton, Wall Street, and the weapons industry on one side and people who “really want the Democratic Party to represent their values and they are values that Bernie Sanders is standing for” on the other.”

    Less Bug Splat Bern; Okay with O’s Terror Tuesday Kill List Bern. A Different Sort of NATO Bern.

    this.is.the.left. hopeless. or is is it that we haven’t we reached that global evolutionary higher consciousness yet?

    • still clinging to some vestige, what’s bigger than a vestige? anyway some hope of being respectable to the democratic party machine? Influence, Pressure, Foot/Feet meet Fire, Conversation, transparency…amy goodman interviews zizek: your siesta moment at the otherwise always rockin’ LeftForum!!!! Madea goes to congress. (i’m more than cool w/making congress look stupid. not…that…hard…and of course amy g. is not all bad by any means. ditch the zizek for random homeless person.)

      • yah, it was just a Wapo maduro hit piece that bildt has ‘retweeted’. i’d just been on nuland’s euPress twit, and followed a few breadcrumbs, ended up seeing carl.

        bigger than a vestige: glimmer? of course any is fine as a story-teller, but lately: so much about electoral politics, a few RIP’s. but medea’s construct just about made me weep; it just didnt track for me one iota. guess people are all to eager for heroes/leaders. lesser evil rules. not that he’s evil, just well, who he is.

  6. Seems like everywhere leadership has sorta of disappeared. My guess is that what has disappeared is followership–thus libertarianism and anarchism. Leadership implies an establishment that commands some legitimacy that ratifies that you are the one and only leader. Pervasive corruption has sort of left that framework in ruins.

    So to Deray. When last seen he was (1) speaking to the BlackChamber in Baltimore, whatever that is but it sounds like black businessmen and (2) receiving an honarary doctorate from the New School (to go with his Bard bachelors degree) and (3) expressing a certain nostalgia for classroom teaching. Just to catch up.

    Van Jones fares worst, having pissed off the Clinton crowd for something he said (I didn’t get it).

    Shaun King delivered a column “Why I am leaving the Democratic Party” on the same day that Debbie Wasserman-Schultz unilterally undid all of the restrictions against the DNC lobbying that Obama put in in 2009. And Sanders has endorsed Wasserman-Schultz’s primary opponent Canova.

    Wasserman-Schultz for her part, released the rules of the convention this weekend. And Philadelphia’s finest seem to be getting ready for the show in July. Meanwhile the Drumf coronation comes first in, what?, Cleveland.

    Meanwhile on the Republican side, each and every one is clicking heels and promising to back Herr Drumpf.

    And the California primary could be chaotic given the communications flame war between Clinton’s blog surrogates and Sanders supporting commenters. Both Markos and Al Giordano have jumped the shark several times already over Sanders’s failure to know his movement is dead. Meanwhile the Clintonistas are looking longingly at the prospect of waves of anti-Drumpf Republicans looking for a comfy donkey to help them go to sleep.

    Now you don’t have to look at any US election coverage at all.

    Jill Stein meanwhile is propositioning the Sanders supporters who are about to be shoved out.

    And Gary Johnson is using his gubernatorial experience to drum for a libertarian alternative.

    Not quite a clusterfuck of an election—-yet.

    It’s gonna be a long summer with US-NATO putting the press on Russia in the Baltic and China off the Spratlys. The endgame coming in Syria for Daesh, a Shi’ite split between the Sadrists and the Badrists (and others) in Iraq over relations with Iran and Kurdistan, and the ever-grinding whatever-it-is in Afghanistan. And Israel’s new defense minister Avigdor Lieberman (leaving Yalom and Barak calling the turn the rise of fascism in Israel.) Add in South America and Africa and the heat of June through August in US cities and police violence. And Herr Drumpf’s continuing series of tweets and voila. Oh, and blacks and Hispanics still being arrested in Colorado and Washington for marijuana. Not to mention the NRA’s “Hillary’s coming for your guns.” Looks like the Fort McMaster area of Canada in April 2016.

    This might be the global evolutionary higher consciousness. We just can’t grok it yet. Nah, couldn’t be. That would be Heinlein as a verb.

    • “That would be Heinlein as a verb” wins the daily comment prize!!!

      ooof, thank you for filling in electoral rubbish ‘so i don’t have to’. i’d seen some headlines, including barak’s cautionary tale. can’t say i grasp the ” Shi’ite split between the Sadrists and the Badrists (and others) in Iraq, but i’ll take your word for it. i’ve had tunnel vision lately, obviously.

      summer will be hot and heavy in so many directions, won’t it? ‘deray’ caused me to remember a tweet i’d grabbed yesterday (?) and meant to check out. looks par for His course, esp. the bank sponsorship:climbing the corporate ladder; hope he find his dreams, and leaves corporate education behind. damn, there’s that blasted four-letter word again; sorry.

      thanks, amigo.

    • okay. after a hot soak in a long tub, i remembered jason’s zizek book rant; the two of you’ll have to split the prize. wish i knew what the prize might be… ;-)

      • there’s only room for one at the top! this blog ain’t big enuff for the two of us!

        • love ya and yer humor, dude, and ‘that other dude’,, too! yer both tuff enuff for me. :)

          boogie if ya gottem. sometimes all there’s left is to dance the revolution.

  7. sorta OT, MoA’s latest on God Emperor Messiah Vladimir Barak Harkonnen in Vietnam. what’s the possiblity of Vietnam saying “no thanks to us being a staging ground for your war w/China?” zero. depressing. sick-making. what’s Vietnam to do? can there be any doubt that the US would crush Vietnam economically if they put up some resistance, or sure as hell try to? it’s disgusting they even let that rat bastard into the country.

    • i’ll look tomorrow; i’m flirting with enough despondency tonight after a long day. i doubt that there’s any room for doubt, fwiw.

      dream well; g’ nite.

    • That MoA piece truly made me feel I have lived too long. These attempts to rewrite history on O’s behalf are sickening to the core – bad enough he visited Japan, where the first George B at least had the decency – or was it karma? – to throw up. The truth is out there, o our masters, and a reckoning is coming even to the very least of ye liars, ye press toadies who insert into your columns little tweaks like the ‘small good things’ O has done, such as Obamacare. Small? for whom? Oh yes, those impoverished masses. Good, for whom? Ah, hasta be the better-offals and insurance company moghouls.

      In pursuit of the Mandela question I returned to “The Shock Doctrine”. ‘Twas enlightening to say the least that introducing the subject not even halfway through, Naomi says “. . . Since there was already widespread agreement that corporations shared responsibility for the crimes of apartheid, the stage was set for Mandela to explain why key sectors of South Africa’s economy needed to be nationalized just as the Freedom Charter demanded. He could have used the same argument to explain why the debt accumulated under apartheid was an illegitimate burden to place on any new, popularly elected government. There would have been plenty of outrage from the IMF, the U.S. Treasury and the European Union in the face of such undisciplined behavior, but Mandela was also a living saint – there would have been enormous popular support for it as well.. .”

      Her summation of the SA situation also bites: “Politically its people have the right to vote, civil liberties and majority rule. Yet economically, South Africa has surpassed Brazil as the most unequal society in the world.”

      That came out in 2007, that analysis. And then came O. Mandela at least had been stuck in prison. What was O’s excuse?

      • the payback will be a bitch, won’t it? tragically, the rest of us will reap what they’ve sown, unless…well, maybe there IS no viable unless afoot. as an aside, when i see on so many ‘left’ twit accounts people using ‘bernie for peace’ logos, that also makes me ill, given what he says about his FP positions.

        interesting, and thank you, for the naomi klein passages. it seems almost unbearably sad that mandela’s legacy is being torn asunder; i hope the ANC can make its way back somehow. the trends globally are not encouraging, are they?

        but yes, let’s do anything to make sure that the US is the sole super-power, and all others quake before it. war is peace, yanno.

        oh, and i did spot a headline while O’asshat was in japan, something to the effect that ‘the enola gay is in a museum, but O’s $30 trillion over (X) years nuclear missile upgrade IS NOT.’ get it china? get it iran and russia?

      • better-offals & moghouls. nice. and the piece on mandela.

        sorry for being captain bring-down right before everyone went “bedward, ho!”

    • yep, that NYT thang shouldda come with airsick bags. make a case for juuuuuust enough concessions on human rights to allow the US to profit from selling you arms (even though ‘ours’ are more expensive than china’s’). but then ‘we’ well war toys worth billions to the saudis, so it’s all fine.

      do remember, as well, that O is getting a bit nervous about the tpp being ratified, and both japan and viet nam are potential signatories, although i don’t know the status of that in either nation. but you can betcher bottom dollar the trade rep’s aides will be closeted with their counterparts, and armed with carrots, sticks, and whips.

      God Emperor Messiah Vladimir Barak Harkonnen good on that un, but ‘harkonnen’ was the one that made my stomach roil in its truth.

      morally defective superpower crap‘, and good on b.

      • the surviving powers, esp. the overwhelmingly dominant US, looked out over the rubble of WW2 and said…”that was fun! maybe we can do it mo’ betta next time?” (well, ditto WW1). Obama is doing the same thing. the images & the actual story of Vietnam are more real to me, unlike the never-mentioned Korean War, unlike WW2 where the “heroic narrative” justifies everything “the allies” did and the only images one sees are of death camps & their liberation (thanks, USSR!) or other “heroic” nonsense. aka, I feel Vietnam way more viscerally.

        President Agent Orange: “TPP will give you access to some nice new shiny chemicals! you can defoliate your country your own selves this time!” on the level of the brain, i know the reps and the dems are same, but b/c of my quondam vague liberalism, illusions about the dems piss me off a lot more. i know, it’s like a vestigial tail i need to have removed.

        way OT, but it is funny, w/all the new hitlers popping up everywhere, that for the dems, the next new hitler is that business-crashing used-car salesman real estate speculator peckerwood candidate big hair across the aisle. what?!? hitler had a tv show in the US doling out his “business acumen”? ah absurdity, my ol’ friend…

        ok, later…

        • yse, plus: ‘dropping the bombs was necessary to save lives!’ and srsly, one still hears that from ‘libruls’. i agree with the tail removal, but my take on why it pisses us off even more is that so many ‘libruls’ and fauxgressives still believe that the Ds are the ‘people’s party’. when i witness the arguments for the queen of chaos, esp. as to being able to ‘get things done’, i cringe and wanna take cover.

          now domestically, hair-ball man might be a baby hitler against muslims, but globally…how many Ds and O have been global killers of brown people and causing mass diaporas and subsequent death? notto mention war by other means.

          but ha:

          “”I remain confident we are going to get it done, and the reason I’m confident is because it is the right thing to do. It’s good for the country, it’s good for America, it’s good for the region, it’s good for the world,” Obama said during a joint press conference with Vietnamese President Tran Dai Quang in Hanoi.

          Leaders signed the 12-nation TPP, which includes the US and Vietnam as members, back in February, but it still requires ratification from each country’s lawmakers before it can go into effect. That process has stumbled, though, as public outcry against international trade deals increases. In the US in particular, all three major-party presidential candidates have come out against the deal.” and so on….

          and of course scores of millions of soviets (civilians and soldiers alike) never died fighting the nazis. revisionist history.

          • by dint of (mis)fortune, i don’t typically hang out w/the rebel flag waving troglodytes so i have less occasion to be personally annoyed by them.

            • anymore, the main Rs i speak with are appliance repairmen (always men, interestingly enough), and all are wont to educate me politically. the one who is s’posed to come back this morning lurves him some Red Hairdo man; says the oddest things about him, praises him as a ‘self-made billionaire, for one thing. er…guess again, but he likes it that he’s a daddy warbucks. his secnd choice would be a general… odd how many Ds backed wesley clark for prez in 2004, guess bing a critic of the iraq war back in the day was…good enough.

  8. I guess his excuse is that he is not a saint. Could have been, though; could have been.

  9. re: the prize for best comments the other day, i was chuckling about saying that first prize is One zizek book, and that third prize would be…Three zizek tomes. ;-) at my. firedoglake, when a commenter would urge me to read one of his ‘recent essays’, i swear, i’d try, but then advise the commenter that i’d even tried to read a second time from the ending upward, a failed to like it, or even make sense of it. but this is fascinating, imo.

    good on her, if she really did leave the forum then.

  10. “A close ally of Brazilian acting President Michel Temer is stepping aside in a new political scandal. Planning Minister Romero Juca was caught on tape allegedly conspiring to obstruct the country’s biggest-ever corruption investigation.

    In the tapes, leaked by a newspaper, he appears to talk of stopping the probe at oil giant Petrobras by impeaching suspended President Dilma Rousseff. Mr Juca says his comments have been taken out of context.

    Dilma Rousseff said the tapes prove that the impeachment process is a “political coup” designed to protect senior figures implicated in the Petrobras scandal.

    She is accused of massaging budget figures ahead of her re-election in 2014, and is due to be tried in the senate in the coming months.

    In the transcript of the audio, leaked by the Folha de Sao Paulo newspaper on Monday, Mr Juca appears to be saying the impeachment was necessary to “staunch the bleeding” and create a “political pact” needed to “stop everything and limit things.”

    For many analysts, the context of the conversation appears to be Brazil’s political crisis, and he seems to be talking about preventing investigations into Petrobras from continuing.”

    In comments immediately taken up by Ms Rousseff’s supporters as evidence for her claim of a coup, Mr Juca also said:”I am talking to the generals, the military commanders. They are fine with this, they say they will guarantee it.”

    more at the bbc.

    • “…the military commanders…are fine w/this…” salutary reminder of who actually runs the world’s nations…the emperor serves at the pleasure of the pretorian guard…

      • yep, the military has to be on a leaders ‘side’, or at least follow orders. i hope juca’s wrong in the end, guess we’ll see. the military not being on the side of the capriles, et.al.’s coup saved chavez.

        i haven’t heard another word about dilma’s house arrest, oddly. maybe thd was right, and that it was a ‘subtle’ ploy, although it’s hard for me to imagine her thinking that. there are apparently wikileaked cables they dug out about the ambassador temer appointed (maybe to the un?) but i can’t find it again, just saw mention of it in the twittersphere. but in any event she has long ties to the us and susan rice, oh goodie gumdrop.

        this may answer you video question about zizek at #left forum. in RT’s: “Žižek at Left Forum: ‘Terrorists, rapists, & criminals among refugees, but who cares?;”, this:

        “The feed ends with an always fascinating, sometimes heated Q&A, cutting off just as someone expressed how offended she was by a Žižek anecdote during his speech.
        Forum organizers told RT the unexpectedly long event outlasted the camera’s memory, but they are attempting to edit together other video and audio recordings after the cut.”

        glad it’s become a thing, but @cordeliers put up a rant of his from 2015 that seemed similar as i scanned it. so the organizers knew who he is.

  11. Challenging the Optimism of White Privilege in the Age of Unquestioned Optimism of a Personified Self-Restraint?

    As such, this heading of a Commentary comes to a full-circle when Optimism is being addressed appropriately since Michelangelo’s David was the predicate to “action” in the European Renaissance and my view of Chief Joseph’s enforced-migration into Canada was the culmination of “action” as well.

    And into this mix is today’s “white privilege” or for what is represented by this past 500 years of my indigenous hemisphere. Thusly, into the next “mix” is America’s brown Democracy and predicated as well, with ‘new’ Ideas. Consequently, the leadership and entrepreneurship for this Optimism will occur and which begins to confront our America within the next 30-year Era of The Next Power Cyclic. Otherwise, the daily enjoyment of a “Day of Peace and Not War” is still in the offing.

    Now, do you have any ‘new’ Ideas?


  12. i’m not understanding the commentary’s title, jaango, especially the “Unquestioned Optimism of a Personified Self-Restraint” portion. i’d love to know your thoughts about what actions michaelangelo’s ‘david’ heralded; it’s not something i know. ah, chief joseph, though; what a wretched and tragic tale.

    “I will fight no more…forever.”

    i do hope you’re right about ‘the next power cyclic’ and brown people, but i still have my doubts. it’s a cool thought experiment, though, imaging what this nation might be like ruled by first americans, latino/as, and i assume blacks. but in imaging, one has to consider similar privilege accorded, or assumed, for people of color in other nations, as well.

    please tell us your ideas, jaango. nothing’s coming to me. even with a global non-violent revolution, what comes next has to be suitable for all, or close to all, yes? grassroots populism as with the zapatistas: could that ever scale up in such a nation as this?

  13. Wendy,

    The “commentary” is a reference point to where I first posted this item at the Chicano Veterans Organization web site.

    As to the David, Michelangelo’s creation, as seen by me, a midpoint from ‘action’ to ‘non-action’ of the political violence that had accrued to Europe of Europe’s past years.

    And as to brown America’s eventual or designated “privilege” has bedeviled me as well. How this ‘privilege’ devolves remains to be seen but political and financial corruption can be tossed into this mix of human behavior, just as it has in Brazil and among other nation’s in this hemisphere.

    Take, for example, the far Left as seen through the prism of the Zapatista, can be seen as two-fold, the European “flourish” of Socialist, or seen through the prism that is “nationalist” and which is an Indigenous rhetorical flourish. Or perhaps, mercenary versus non-mercenary, and which to me, means a stronger version of Self-Restraint. Or perhaps, a New Age of Discovery? And where the Confluence of Unity, becomes common place?

    And as a parent, you should be patting yourself on the back for having realized and actualized that your sons and daughters were never raised to be bigots or racists, or both. Thus, acculturation and assimilation “starts’ at the lap of the strongest of Moms.


    • thanks for the explanation, jaango, i may get more of your thinking now. thanks for the pat, but otoh, our son, at his then new wife’s bequest…joined the natioanal guard. you might imagine that we expressed our horror to him that he might be facing us with rifles on the street one day (metaphorically, we’re too old to get in the street anywhere large enough to be meaningful protest). but no, they’re not racists, although our son flirts with fundie Xianism, as our daughter’s husband does/did.

      yes, we all wait and pray (even apatheistically) that the maya predictions of this calendar being on the cusp of a global leap to higher consciousness may prove to be so. but we seem collectively to have a hella long way to go, no?

      but oh, bother, and durn ya; i got to pinging ‘the david’, both what i knew via author irving stone, michaelangelo’s royal sponsors, etc. the wiki says he took up that huge block of carrara marble after two other sculptors kinda ruined it. holy canole! but in any event, da wiki says this interestingly enough:

      “Because of the nature of the hero it represented, the statue soon came to symbolize the defense of civil liberties embodied in the Republic of Florence, an independent city-state threatened on all sides by more powerful rival states and by the hegemony of the Medici family. The eyes of David, with a warning glare, were turned towards Rome.”

      and here i’d thought the medicis were his sponsors as well. but how cool is that, if true?

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