Some commentary from Saagar Enjeti, conservative co-host at the Rising, and Katie Halper, progressive film-maker and political journalist, examining the Joe and Hunter Biden revelations in the tabloid New York Post. Or rather the desperate attempts by the Democratic Party and much of the “liberal” press in the United States to stifle any discussion of the revelations through any means necessary. As they say, no smoke without fire…
It’s really bad for. The Democrats now . Here is another Explosive story that came out a few days ago . and the fake news media hasn’t touched it either .
The heading goes .. CIA Whistleblower exposes Joe Bidens alleged roll with Seal Team 6 Deaths . Here is the video link . https://youtu.be/u4BKOZo5lFg
Don’t bet the farm on wannabe Pres. Biden.
I’ve no idea how authentic these emails are, but seeing as they were delivered to the NY Post by none other than Rudy Giuliani, who no doubt got them from his Russian agent friend in Ukraine, you’ll excuse me if I remain sceptical.
And ASF, you’re wise enough to know that, especially where politics is concerned, there is often plenty of smoke without fire.
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Yep, but in the case of Hunter Biden the smoke has been billowing out for two or three years now. If it was purely right wing media, the NYP and Fox News crowds, throwing accusations I’d be more sceptical than I am. But way too many sensible and level headed left wing journos are highlighting his activities as a matter of concern. And Twitter etc closing down debate on the matter? When so much else of far less substance has been allowed on their platforms?
There is something of the Washington politics as normal in the Biden scandal. And that is not meant in a good way 😉
I wonder if it would have an impact one way or another at this point. One significant problem for the Trump campaign is the sheer weight of insider… well, what can one call it, influence peddling, but it goes way beyond that. I doubt there’s a chance of Hunter Biden getting any role at all in a Biden White House but it’s beyond farcical the members of Trump’s family who have positions in or adjacent to the administration. And as with much of the Trump project one major problem is that they’re really not very good at what they do. It’s struck me that if the Trump crew were efficient, ideologically coherent and with a clear set of goals (beyond the judicial area where they have had considerable success) that would be another matter. Not that they haven’t been able to cause mayhem but that’s a different thing.
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There’s a better term here than “smoke”: Low quality evidence.
I wouldn’t make too much of these “level headed left wing journos” either way. The fact is that US political history is particularly riddled with bizarre and baseless conspiracy theories. There are many example of award winning journalists, future Presidents, state governors, respected lawmakers, prized author, labor union heroes, and other figures taking the bait at some point in their career.
Sure all countries have a history of this sort of thing, but for some reasons it has always seemed particularly over the top in the US.
Boy you have really misjudged the situation here. For one thing the (Republican majority) Senate investigated all that stuff last month and found no evidence of wrongdoing. Katie Halper is a disgruntled Tulsi Gabbard supporter who started out as a comedian. This isn’t to say that a former comedian can’t be a good journalist, but Halper obviously has motives other than a “fearless passion for the truth”.
This is a desperate attempt on the part of some to deliver Trump an “October Surprise” and on the part of other a vindictive attempt to sow FUD (Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt) out of pettiness because their horse didn’t get the nomination.
You argued a while back that the only difference between Trump and Biden would be abortion. Not really. It’s more realistic to say that the main difference between Biden and Sanders would be between a German Style Health System and a radically expanded version of the Canadian one. Biden also wants more of an old style “American System”. Basically the difference between The American System’s ideal and the European Social Democrat is that the former puts more emphasis on a mixed economy with nationwide goals and job creation in mind, and the latter places more emphasis on taxing the bounty of private enterprise to fund direct social benefits. (Now the nationalist goals are likely to focus on climate efforts and probably vaccine/pandemic related things.)
“Where there’s smoke there’s fire………” has to be one of the more nonsensical sayings I have heard in English or any language I’ve studied. Would you apply the same logic to “Pizzagate”? Or all the claims about how Obama was supposedly a secret Muslim? Or maybe “Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion”? More colorful historical “beauts” include claims that multiple early Presidents were bigamists or that the First Lady was, that Martin VanBuren was sleeping with his daughter-in-law, that Louisa Adams was a British spy, that Mary Todd Lincoln was a Confederate (or Russian) Spy and buying $300 scarves ($45K today), that Grover Cleveland had dozens of “love children”, that JFK had a secret line to The Vatican exactly like FDR’s line to Churchill’s bunker.
Of course, despite all that rumor mongering there never was much gossip about real things: Kennedy being in very poor health while in office. Lincoln of having an extended history of clinical depression and having almost died of smallpox in office, Grover Cleveland of having oral tumors removed from his mouth on a friends’ yacht. There was remarkably little even about FDR being in wheelchair and even Kennedy’s womanizing-until much later. There were also very few rumors about the games of tobacco companies that promoted their products as healthy, DOW selling leftover Agent Orange to posh County Clubs, or the close call between the US and USSR of 1983.
I have to say no. Rumor mills aren’t generally a good place to go looking for truth. Especially not in a US political context. As an anti-war activist my experience was that the 9/11 Conspiracy theorists harmed the anti-war movement beyond evaluation.
The no smoke without fire was slightly tongue in cheek but as I noted in another reply, the smoke in this case is pretty damn thick.
Hilary Clinton started out as the wife of Bill Clinton. Do you dismiss her political credentials so easily? Halpern came from an intensely political family and was involved in activism since her twenties. She has contributed significantly more to progressive thought than some out there, and in multiple forms of media. What was Hilary’s most significant contribution to progressive politics? Getting Trump elected in opposition to her.
I’ve heard that criticism of Halpern before, except in relation to her support of Sanders. She is explicitly on the American left. The real left, the social and economic liberals, not the faux liberalism of the neoliberal mainstream in the leadership of the Democratic Party and it’s millionaire class funders.
Biden is no where as bad as Trump. Or Clinton for that matter. But you don’t survive decades in the Washington swamp by being a saint. He’s tainted with the Beltway culture which is why the polling reflects an electorate willing to vote for him more out of despair than hope.
As for Hunter’s shenanigans. Well maybe this will turn out to be a faked up scandal. But it still deserves reporting and repudiation if found to be untrue. What is occurring now is censoring of the mere existence of the allegations in relation to the new sources of information. Sources which the Biden family has yet to firmly deny.
Are the emails real or fake? If entirely fake, then let Joe Biden state so and good investigative journalism can run with that.
Like, if this was a scion of the Trump dynasty do you think Twitter or Facebook would be blocking references to it? Or some US journalists ignoring it?
Again, the Senate already did an investigation on this stuff and ruled it as baseless. This was with a GOP majority. Do you think a majority GOP Senate would have really glossed over a real threat? No? Neither do I.
As for Halpern. So? I’ve been involved in activism since my teens with no major encouragement or discouragement from my family. Your narrative about her being a part of a “real left” that’s separate from most of the DNC is pretty baseless. Honestly, without going into a huge amount of detail about actual policy position of Biden, Sanders, Halpern, Cortez, both Clintons and so much more I don’t know quite where to start with that.
One thing you need to realize is that having a President of a particular political party rarely equates to a party being “in power” in the sense a Taoiseach would. Also the nominations wins of people like Clinton, Biden, and Obama versus the people you label as “real left” tends to come down to who can win the African American vote in Southern states-where 90% of the white population votes Republican. (Indeed that region is a LOT like Northern Ireland in some ways.). So to win a Democratic primary, is extremely difficult if you don’t get the Southern Black vote-simple as that. That population tends not to warm up easily to terms like socialist. To court that vote you HAVE TO stick with typical-US terminology like “progressive” versus “socialist” or even “social democrat”. In fact, it pays to emphasize actual (believable!!) programs over any political labels. If you make grandiose promises to African American voters, be prepared to explain how you plan to deliver!!! Of course, a lot of American demographics are much the same, but the extreme racial polarization of Southern voters is fundamental to who wins both primaries.
That’s the bottom line on why the people who label as “real left” rarely win nominations. There was nothing underhanded. It’s down to the “math” of the Democratic and Republican primaries. Even adopting the a system you’d call PR (although the term we use in US electoral reform is “Ranked Choice Voting” and it could theoretically be adopted without even a Constitutional Amendment), would not change this, unless there was a significant political realignment having creating more parties alone could not deliver.
As for Hillary Clinton? She didn’t exactly start out as the wife of Bill Clinton. She sort of switched gears from planning a political career as a young woman, to assuming from 80’s anti-feminist backlash and her husband’s greater success she would have to go the “wife-confidant” route, to getting back into the political fray as a former first lady. Her story was a lot more complicated than you realize, or for that matter more than I realized until after 2016. Also she got more votes than any other major party nominee in US history after Obama himself, and one of the strongest popular majorities since the 1980’s. The narrative of blaming her run for Trump is about 100 miles off base.
The BIG news, as far as I’m concerned, is that Grace and I are actually (and finally) in total and absolute agreement on something. 😀
On a more serious note, and as Grace has said, all of this stuff has already been the subject of an investigation by the GOP-controlled Senate, and found to be without any substance. There is no way on God’s earth that crowd would have come back with a clean bill of health for Biden if there had been something, anything, they could use (or even manipulate) to his disadvantage.
I repeat, Rudi Giuliani delivered this email stuff to the New York Post (is that paper still owned by Trump’s son-in-law, Kushner?) and it has long been known that Giuliani’s main source in Ukraine is a guy outed years ago as a Russian agent. Is it any wonder the “liberal media” as you describe them are not giving this any credence?
My final words on this, specifically on Hillary Clinton. A few points:
1) She was a far superior student than, and recognised to have a far superior intellect to, Bill. But they decided that she would be a support act to his political ambitions. In effect, sacrificing her own career, whatever that may have been. It was only after Bill had messed it up than she emerged fully from the shadows.
2) Closer to home, there are lots of people in Northern Ireland who will not hear a word against Hillary Clinton, and with good reason. While Bill, Tony, and Bertie were taking all the (deserved, in my view) plaudits for bringing peace to Northern Ireland, Hillary was working quietly with women’s groups right across the political spectrum here in the North. And she continued to do so for many years after the initial fanfare had died down.
3) As Grace has already explained in detail, the idea that Hillary is somehow responsible for Trump is ludicrous scapegoating. It not only ignores how well she actually did in the election, but also that the social/political phenomenon which delivered Trump had been years, decades even, in the making in the US. Trump just happened to exploit, help exaggerate and, ultimately, take advantage of societal fissures that were already there. If anything, it was the successive elections to the White House of a Black (actually mixed-race) president that brought much of it to a head. Are we going to blame Obama for Trump’s triumph? Of course not!
4) Finally, on the directly above, it never ceases to amaze me how many of the very same people who are happy to contend that “Hillary is to blame for Trump” are outraged by any suggestion that Corbyn was largely to blame for Johnson achieving such a majority in the last UK election – a far more realistic contention than the “Hillary is to blame for Trump” nonsense.
Corbyn had some rather bizarre flaws, but I wouldn’t blame him for Johnson.
As for why Clinton made the choice to go down the “wife confidant” route despite obviously being the smarter half of the couple. It was a combination of things. One big factor was the huge anti-feminist backlash of the 1980’s and the fact Bill Clinton’s native region was where they tried to get that political start. A lot of that anti-feminist backlash was more concentrated in The South and the reasons are complicated.
The reasons why The South is *different* are vastly more complicated than comparing the percentages of racists in different regions. In some ways the gaps on gender role and foreign wars are actually much greater between Southern vs non-Southern non-black groups than over racial issues.
Bill had a lot of other advantages in his native Arkansas, because of his history as a poor white guy who got into Civil Rights long before it was fashionable. Also in The South to the extent that there are white progressives they are nearly all men-or the men’s supportive wives. To the extent white women enter the political fray at all, the vast majority are conservatives-often overtly anti-feminist ones at that. It’s a very, very strange social dynamic. I don’t know what fully explains it, and am not sure the the currently fashionable “intersectionality” tells half the story.
Hillary Clinton had grown up as a studious working class girl from Chicago. She adored her working class father and was close to him in ways few women of her generation were, but her own feminist sensibilities grew early fast from experience. She had difficult time with the female norms of The South. She was also hopelessly out to sea with the complex relationships between white and black women in The South. Although I grew up in a more diverse environment than Hillary, and have done fine in heavily black job sites: If you put me in a room with a mix of Southern white women and Southern black women, I’d feel 10x more out of place than Rasputin arguably should have, but apparently didn’t in the Tsar’s court! I honestly, don’t know how to explain that. I could deal with a group of Southern black women, or Southern white women separately and do OK. And above, throughout the US “working class cred” Is always more readily given to men-as is the case in many Western cultures.
Also Bill Clinton could was widely seen as very empathetic. I remember how even some dedicated liberals (myself included) used to mock that. We’d poorly emulate his accent and voice saying “I feel your pain. I feel your pain.” While most liberals I knew found it hokey, it was a cornerstone of Bill’s popularity. Hillary Clinton was always more reserved and cerebral than her husband. If you get her in the right context, she has a fantastic sense of humor. However, she lacked Bill’s breezy charm and easy ability to connect with large audiences.
The worm began to turn when she first got onto a national stage as First Lady. Almost spontaneously women from all over The US started to say she should run for President. Some of the anti-feminist “ice” was starting to melt, and she started wonder if she could get back into the fray. There were plenty of American feminists who were lukewarm at best to the idea of her as President. Many didn’t want a Former First Lady to take the role of First Woman POTUS, as matter of pride!! Although I was just a schoolgirl at the time, I felt that way. Meanwhile I had several relatives from Hillary arguably most loyal support base-Boston raised Irish American women of a certain age- telling me I was too naive and idealistic for thinking it could be otherwise. They would say things like “Maybe you think she should have been raised in a log cabin too! Wise up, bright eyes!!! If you always take the high road, men are going to keep on winning everything!”
In a lot of ways, it probably was Hillary’s involvement with women’s groups in Northern Ireland that gave her back her belief in her own ability to connect with diverse audiences and across very challenging divides-as she once had as a young feminist.
Bill Clinton’s empathy for Northern Ireland via his own Civil Rights background and recognition of The Catholic Civil Rights movement that collapsed with The Troubles was/is very real. Yet Ireland, is riddled with the cultural blindspots of a Progressive Southern like Bill. He certainly deserves credit for pulling off what he did in Northern Ireland. Yet Bill Clinton made a few gaffes that Hillary Clinton wouldn’t have. Most notably the whole “drunks leaving a bar” statement Bill ended up apologizing for. Where Bill was raised making witty but unflattering analogies is a way of mildly nudging people’s behavior or maybe “taking a piss”. He totally missed how a “drunks” analogy would go down in an Irish peace process!!! It was probably right after her low-key involvement in the Irish Peace Process came to a close, that she starting contemplating her “second act”.
When I supported Obama over Clinton in 2008 it was an argument I had with myself 100x. I had feared John McCain’s horrible temper on the nuclear button since I was a child, and my heart told me Obama was more likely to win. However, there were too many people saying the opposite I had to consider that I might be wrong about that. Just after election 2012, I learned that what I had believed about Hillary Clinton’s vote regarding Iraq in 2002 wasn’t what I had believed it was in 2008 or during most of my active time as an anti-war activist.
It was summer of 2015, that I became an enthusiastic supporter of Hillary Clinton-very late in the day for anyone who voted for her with joy rather than holding their noses tight. It was a complex decision.
However, it wasn’t until after Trump was sworn in that I began to appreciate 75% of what I have written about Hillary Clinton.
Also notable that despite losing the election Hillary Clinton DID have a significant political career in that second act. She was elected as a Senator to New York a second time. She was Obama’s “Secretary of State” during his first time. So that was nine years in The Senate and four years as a member of Obama’s cabinet.
As for Bill’s mistakes? That wasn’t why she entered back into the fray at all. If anything his sexual escapades and the fact their marital issues were broadcast on a national and even world stage was if anything a liability.
I lied, here’s my final word on the matter: Don’t let the perfect be the enemy of the good.
If we were to look for perfection in whoever stands against Trump (are you listening, Bernie supporters) then Trump would be re-elected, because perfection, not least in politicians, is unachievable.
I have actually met a high volume of hard core Bernie supporters. The Bernie Bros stereotype is off base, but the idealized picture of “the real American left” is not really true.
I would say that 85% of the hard core Bernie supporters I have met are single issue supporters of The Health System promised by Bernie Sanders. So it’s single issue: Health care. To be clear, I’ve actually lived the reality of an uninsured, intermittently employed American with a chronic medical condition and no way to get proper treatment for it. In fact, the consequences of untreated health issues kept me intermittently employed and in rather tough straights. It was no fun at all.
Here one thing about US Healthcare politics: Most Americans think (Universal Healthcare) = “single payer” = (An Expanded Version of a Canada’s Health system-which they think is the current Canadian system). They aren’t necessarily clear on the difference between an NHS model, a Health Canada model, a more devolved NHS-like model such as Spain’s, or other models such as France’s or Germany’s. They think that if any country offers “Universal Healthcare” be it the UK, France, Germany, Spain, or any other country it’s more or less “just like Canada” (most of them believe Canada’s system is more generous than it is), and they assume that private insurance simply cannot exist-which is not true in Canada. If you tell them that Citizens/Residents of the ROI are “entitled to healthcare” and leave it at that, they WILL assume that private health insurance could not possibly exist anywhere in The Irish Republic.
Contrary to what a lot of people in the UK think American doctors NEVER ask patients about their insurance plans, and Obamacare has made a big difference: It got me out of a situation I would not wish on my worst enemy. It has been very uneven gains, but there was a real difference.
What I believe will happen with US health insurance is that it will evolve into more Teutonic style insurance system combined with a hybrid between Medicare Part A for all (Medicare Part A, covers hospital only in the US) and a minimal State level public systems were not everything is free at POS.
Very few Bernie supporters know all that much about Biden’s or Clinton’s actual positions on anything. I have found many of them were eligible for Medicaid and/or subsidized insurance and didn’t even know it. Hey, I can empathize having been there myself in the real pre-Obamacare days!!! Even those Bernie supporters who have subsidized insurance or Medicaid are convinced that if Sanders isn’t elected it will eventually all be taken away. Some of them have more serious health issues than I did while unemployed or were plunged into poverty by one or more “medical bankrupcies”.
If you even talk to them about Clinton’s or Biden’s plans to bring jobs, they would be too frightened of losing their healthcare to hear one single word of it. if you try to talk to them about France’s or Germany’s system, they won’t trust anyone who doesn’t advocate exactly what Bernie Sanders does (and Ted Kennedy did for years).
While many people in Europe would perceive it as some massive breakthrough if an American President loudly and proudly declared himself as a “Socialist” the reality is something else. The US was a mixed economy from inception, and most Americans reserve the term socialist for people most reading this might call “Trots”. The fact, an American politician eschews the term “socialist” or wears it proudly may say more about the voters he or she is trying to court, than actual policy positions.
Clinton and Biden both share very ambitious plans for living wage jobs and more. Biden is sneered at less for talking of the “dignity of working people” simply because he’s a man. That said the policy comparisons between Sanders versus Biden and Clinton pains a much more nuanced picture than simply saying “Sanders is the ‘real left’ while Biden and the Clintons are “neoliberals” is utter bullshit.
Well, here’s the thing: despite all your protestations to the contrary, there is NO US ‘left’ in any real sense of the term. For example, in the UK Bernie Saunders would be a member of the tory party. The Democrats and the Republicans are both centre to extreme-right parties. The USA is not a democracy – it is an oligarchy, where money buys all the Senators, and Representatives it needs to continue the dominance of a relatively small group of very rich capitalists and their immediate underlings. That is also why today millions of US citizens are unemployed, or dying from Covid, or being shot in the back by the thuggish police. The US press are complicit in this sham, and are able so far to keep the population docile. Joseph Goebbles would be proud of them.
PS Clinton (x 2), Biden, Trump, etc are all war criminals, and if there was any justice the would be on trial in The Hague, along with Tony Blair. In your posts you seem to accept that these people are normal human beings (with perhaps a few character flaws). This is nonsense.
Regardless of whether Trump or Biden is elected, the US is probably messed up for years, possibly even decades, to come.The Senate is about to send yet another far-right religious fanatic to the Supreme Court. She, Amy Coney Barrett, who is a member of a secretive religious cult [I kid you not] is not only on the extreme right on virtually every social issue imaginable – abortion, same-sex marriage, guns, healthcare, the climate – she’s also very strongly pro big business (on the side of reducing corporate taxation, watering down health and safety regulations, making it harder for labour unions to organise, removing pollution laws, and so on).
If Biden wins, and the Democrats take control of both houses (a big IF) the first thing they have to look at is expanding the number of members of the Supreme Court. Otherwise, the US is going to quickly become a theocratic/big business/big pharma hell-hole, and will remain that way for the foreseeable future.