Donald Trump is the harbinger of GOP doom: The devastating history lesson that Republicans are completely ignoring – HEATHER DIGBY PARTON THURSDAY, AUG 20, 2015 10:49 AM PDT


More and more are candidates getting sucked into Trump’s immigration vortex — bad news if you’re a Republican

Donald Trump is the harbinger of GOP doom: The devastating history lesson that Republicans are completely ignoring

There was a time back in the day when I used to joke with Republican friends that I would happily support a constitutional amendment that would ban all presidential candidates from California if they would agree to ban all presidential candidates from Texas. The joke, of course, was that my home state, “the land of fruits and nuts” had recently produced two conservative Republican presidents, Nixon and Reagan, while Texas’s most recent contribution had been the man responsible for “Hey, hey LBJ, how many kids did you kill today.” In those days of post-Vietnam liberalism, that trade seemed like an excellent deal for the left.

It’s hard to imagine now, but from Harry Truman until Bill Clinton, California voted for a Democratic president just one time, for John F. Kennedy in 1960. With a few exceptions here and there, California also voted for GOP governors and senators more often than not. Even though the state had a longstanding reputation for social tolerance and cutting-edge cultural change, politically speaking it was a conservative state, as red as Texas is now.

There were obviously many factors that contributed to California’s evolution into the deep-blue state it is today, from demographics to the culture war. But none of those things come close to the damage that then-Governor Pete Wilson did to the longterm interest of the California Republican Party in 1994, when he scapegoated Latino immigrants as the cause of all the state’s woes.

Wilson was running for re-election, and as part of his campaign to distract from the economic failure of his first term and increase turnout among his base, he ran on a platform promising to crack down on undocumented workers, and enthusiastically supported the infamous Prop 187, which set up a statewide system designed to deny any kind of benefits to undocumented workers, including K-12 education and all forms of health care.

(He also supported a constitutional amendment to repeal birthright citizenship, currently guaranteed by the 14th Amendment.)

Here’s the famous “they keep coming” ad the Wilson campaign ran that year:

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http://www.salon.com/2015/08/20/donald_trump_is_the_harbinger_of_gop_doom_the_devastating_history_lesson_that_republicans_are_completely_ignoring/

The one-dimensional Muslim by Rafia Zakaria – August 12, 2015 2:00AM ET


Why the United States needs the Muslim assassin

ROBERT SCIARRINO / NJ ADVANCE MEDIA / LANDOV

ROBERT SCIARRINO / NJ ADVANCE MEDIA / LANDOV

In many ways the United States appears to be in its most inclusive moment. The Black Lives Matter movement is drawing crucial attention to police violence against African-Americans. The Supreme Court has recognized the right of same-sex couples to marry in all 50 states. Caitlyn Jenner’s public gender transition has brought the struggles of transgender Americans to the national spotlight.

However, even in the midst of these crumbling barriers, prejudice against American Muslims remains robust. Many Americans across the political spectrum appear to view discrimination against Muslims as an acceptable form of profiling. On July 16, after 24-year-old Kuwaiti-American Muhammad Youssef Abdulazeez shot and killed four U.S Marines in Chattanooga, Tennessee, the incident was immediately labeled an act of terrorism. A Muslim shooter was all that was needed to apply the tag. It did not matter that the shooter, like many other troubled Americans, had issues with depression, substance abuse and came from a broken home.

A week earlier, Ali Muhammad Brown, who allegedly killed a college student in New Jersey last year, became the first person to be charged under that state’s terrorism statute. The only basis for the indictment was Brown’s alleged confession in which he said the murder was an act of “vengeance” for lives lost in Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria and Iran.

By contrast, another deadly shooting on June 17 in Charleston, South Carolina, where white supremacist Dylann Roof killed nine people, was simply treated as a hate crime. This has been true in other cases of mass shooting. For example, James Holmes who killed 12 people and injured 70 in a movie theater in Colorado was never charged with terrorism. The implicit assumption is clear: Only Muslim mass murderers are treated as terrorists.

Article continues:

http://america.aljazeera.com/opinions/2015/8/the-one-dimensional-muslim.html

The Breathtaking Hypocrisy Of The Republican Freak Out About John McCain, In One Letter – BY JUDD LEGUM JUL 20, 2015 8:07AM


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On Saturday morning, Donald Trump blasted Senator John McCain, quipping that he was “not a war hero” because he was captured. “I like people who weren’t captured,” quipped Trump.

John McCain was shot down over Vietnam in 1967 and was held as a prisoner of war for more than five years. By all accounts he conducted himself honorably, enduring torture and refusing early release unless those who were captured before him were released first. He was awarded a Silver Star and a Purple Heart, among other honors, for his service.

The remarks have predictably generated an avalanche of criticism from the rest of the Republican presidential field. Jeb Bush, for example, tweeted the following:

Enough with the slanderous attacks. @SenJohnMcCain and all our veterans – particularly POWs have earned our respect and admiration.

— Jeb Bush (@JebBush) July 18, 2015

This seems like an uncontroversial statement. Who would disagree with the notion that “all our veterans” deserve “respect and admiration” for their service?

One such person, recent history reveals, is Jeb Bush.

In 2004, a group called the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth spent millions of dollars attacking the military service of John Kerry, who was then the Democratic nominee for president. The group claimed that Kerry lied about his service and was awarded military honors he didn’t deserve. The basis for these claims were definitively proven false, but the group carried on with their campaign anyway. (The claims were first published in a book by Jerome Corsi, who would later gain fame for insisting that Obama had a fake birth certificateand was not born in the United States.)

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http://thinkprogress.org/politics/2015/07/20/3682278/breathtaking-hypocrisy-republican-freak-john-mccain/

 

Our nation’s most toxic obsession: The violent history of “Real Americans” – HEATHER DIGBY PARTON SATURDAY, JUL 4, 2015 06:30 AM PDT


From its earliest beginnings to its 1st black president, America has seen too much bloodshed over who truly belongs

Our nation's most toxic obsession: The violent history of "Real Americans"

From the early days of our nation, we have been debating what constitutes a “Real American.” If one were to define a real American as a person indigenous to the continent we know as North America, one would certainly have to say that the only Real Americans are native Americans. But since the United States as we know it was formed by the offspring of British colonialists and religious migrants who wanted the colony for themselves, we can fairly say that from the beginning that has never been an accurate definition, even though it probably should have been. (Some people have even described the original “nativists” as the Indians, which I think is wrong. They were defending their own lands against invasion, which isn’t the same thing at all.)

Needless to say the most repressed immigrants in America have always been the descendants of African slaves. They didn’t ask to come here and they certainly didn’t ask to be slaves. But their ancestors were here long before most of the rest of us and their claim to being Real Americans could not stronger. Of course nativists usually don’t see it that way, simply because most nativists are also racists. All you have to do is look at the nonsensical conspiracy theory about the first African American president being a “foreigner”to see how mixed up race and ethnicity are with those folks.

Be that as it may, going all the way back to the beginning, this country has been a nation of immigrants from all over the world. And while we have, at various times and in many different ways, celebrated that fact, we have also been a xenophobic society from the get-go. In the 19th century, the original Americans were upset about Irish catholic immigration. There was fighting in the street over that one for many decades. And soon there was hatred towards German immigrants (the single largest ethnic sub-group in America, by the way) with complaints about their alleged unwillingness to assimilate properly and their habits of speaking their mother tongue, sending their kids to their own schools, and attending their German church (Lutheran, of course). In the 1890s, a Wisconsin Governor said:

“We must fight alienism and selfish ecclesiasticism…. The parents, the pastors and the church have entered into a conspiracy to darken the understanding of the children, who are denied by cupidity and bigotry the privilege of even the free schools of the state.”

Those Germans just refused to assimilate. And look what’s happened. They’re everywhere.

You don’t even want to think about the hatred toward the Chinese. It was one thing to import them by the thousands to do the heavy scut work of building railroads and the like, quite an other to consider them Real Americans. The Irish Americans who had been the object of xenophobic rage in earlier decades were particularly upset by the Chinese, and they led the way to the Chinese exclusion act in 1882, the first of America’s official federal immigration containment programs.

In the 20th century, all those previously considered unworthy (except the Chinese, of course) were suddenly okay, as a huge influx of immigrants from southern and eastern Europe decided to come to the land of opportunity. The government went to work to ensure that this didn’t get out of hand. Senator Henry Cabot Lodge proposed literacy tests, making the intention very clear:

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Meet the Texan Fighting for the DPR: Russian Roulette (Dispatch 107) – Vice News Published on Apr 23, 2015


Among the thousands of foreign soldiers who are fighting alongside the pro-Russia separatists of the Donetsk People’s Republic is an American fighter known simply as “Texas.”

In this dispatch, VICE News correspondent Simon Ostrovsky speaks with Texas about the reasons behind his involvement in Ukraine’s ongoing conflict.