Obama Warns Of Parallels To Rise Of Hitler

Chicago Business reports:

American democracy is fragile, and unless care is taken it could follow the path of Nazi Germany in the 1930s. Mixed in with many softer comments, that was the somewhat jaw-dropping bottom line of Barack Obama last night as, in a Q&A session before the Economic Club of Chicago, the Chicagoan who used to be president dropped a bit of red meat to a hometown crowd that likely is a lot closer to him than the man whose name never was mentioned: President Donald Trump.

The U.S. has survived tough times before and will again, he noted, particularly mentioning the days of communist fighter Joseph McCarthy and former President Richard Nixon. But one reason the country survived is because it had a free press to ask questions, Obama added. Though he has problems with the media just like Trump has had, “what I understood was the principle that the free press was vital.”

The danger is “grow(ing) complacent,” Obama said. “We have to tend to this garden of democracy or else things could fall apart quickly. That’s what happened in Germany in the 1930s which, despite the democracy of the Weimar Republic and centuries of high-level cultural and scientific achievements, Adolf Hitler rose to dominate,” Obama noted. “Sixty million people died. . . .So, you’ve got to pay attention. And vote.”

  • joeyj1220

    I miss having a wise President

    • Butch

      I miss having a president who could speak like he wasn’t just learning the language.

    • Galvestonian

      I miss having a real politician — one with a real brain – one that knows and respects this country – one that understands American history and believes in The United States. Are their any left ?

      • orion dumptee

        Ralph Kramden is now in the WH (at least Jackie was good playing the role)…this current dude is for real (sigh)

        • sfbob

          Kramden would have made a better president.

          • orion dumptee

            you hit that RIGHT!

          • prixator

            And Norton would have easily drained the swamp.

    • mpatreyu

      I miss having a president.

    • JCF

      I miss having a non-treasonous President!

  • zhera

    I understand why he couldn’t say something like that when he was President, but Barry, dear, it’s a bit late in the game for these warnings. About 2 years late.

    • Friday

      He knows the Right ‘immunized’ the masses with the constant Hitler and Stalin comparisons …just cause Obama was actually a very good and smart and popular speaker. (Especially compared with the functionally-illiterate-sounding candidates the Republicans either got elected or nominated for VP and the Presidency. Of course when it was John Kerry, they and the corporate media thought he should be unelectable for being, according to them, *boring.* )

  • Lazycrockett

    Okay when a cool as cucumber in every situation while in the WH is talking bout the rise of Nazism in America we better pay the fuck attention.

  • DreadPikathulhu

    Vote, and don’t waste your vote on third-party candidates at the state or national level. Ponies and rainbows aren’t going to be delivered from the top until a strong local presence is established.

    • MooseMalloy

      Remember, only Democrats can save us from certain nuclear war destruction holocaust so be afraid and vote democratic party or we’ll all die and it will be all your fault!!!1!!eleventy!!

      • Publius

        Feel better?

        • DreadPikathulhu

          Some people just like to watch the world burn.

        • The_Wretched

          It’s a troll. You should be able to note the kinship.

          • Publius

            Predictable dumbass, knee jerk response from you. In any case, thanks for your up-votes.

      • matrem

        Or allow the gop to reign. Your choice.

      • Lantor

        When we live, and nearly always have lived, in a duopoly, yes, at this time in our history only democrats can.

        I don’t understand why, on both sides of this third party argument,it is so contentious. I was a Bernie supporter. Still am. I think a social democracy is the way we need to go. But I supported Hillary in the general election. My hope for social and economic progress would have been better served by her than Trump. Marriage rights is the prime example. Working within Obama’s sphere we got him to “come around” on marriage equality. Do you think for a moment President McCain would have come to our way of thinking? Highly doubtful. Better to work in the system and build the coalition.

        • juanjo54

          Very true. I firmly believe in Democratic Socialism as the best system for our country but I am aware that politics is the art of the possible. You form alliances and move forward in small increments. True believers who think that maintaining some high standard of ideological purity allows them to claim moral high ground are idiots. In real life those people are eaten alive by the Hitlers, Lenins, Stalins, & Trumps who have no such illusions.

      • j.martindale

        You are absolutely right. The republicans who have taken over the government and who currently support a pussy grabber in chief, who back a pedophile for the senate, who would rather shut down the government to the tune of a billion dollar cost to the taxpayers, who for eight years had only one objective–to fight every proposal of the president and his party, who have demonstrated they cannot keep themselves from stealing from the poor to give to the rich with this latest tax proposal, who willingly vote to take health insurance from millions, a party whose platform demands that people like us be second-class citizens, who support the breakdown of barriers between church and state– YEAH, MAYBE I’LL FUCKING VOTE FOR THOSE ASSHOLES.

    • AJD

      There are parallels there too: the German Communist Party, which refused to form a coalition government with the Social Democrats because it wanted to destroy that party and figured Hitler would be so bad he’d spark a revolution.

      • Bunter

        I remember ist differently – I think it was the Social Democrates who refused to work together until it was too late?

  • Ragnar Lothbrok

    He’s right ya know

  • DisqusD37

    β€œOh, it could NEVER happen HERE….” Mmm-hmmm.

    • Galvestonian

      What’s next ??? You just know that this peckerhead is somehow gonna get us nuked by North Korea or some big clusterf**k in the near east. I mean it’s like he wants to completely turn the U.S. into a desolate wasteland, stoneass broke, wasted and classified as a 3rd world craphole. We’re doomed with the Orange Hitler ( and the damn Republicans ) in charge.

  • Treant

    Obviously. But when most of us can’t be arsed to go to the polls, and when we tolerate voter suppression and blatant election theft without burning something down (figuratively or…oh, hell, literally would work too)?

    We’re asking for it.

    • Karl Dubhe 2

      Who’s this ‘we’? πŸ™‚

      • Treant

        You, me, and 350 megaAmericans.

        I’ll attach greater responsibility to anybody with significant enough power to block Trump or stop him. While the rest of us peons did what little we could, it certainly wasn’t enough.

        • Karl Dubhe 2

          I didn’t vote in your election at all. Can’t. πŸ™‚

          I suppose I didn’t work hard enough to get Hillary elected, but uhhh, I’d thought you were serious about not letting foreigners do more than offer some moral encouragement.

          • Treant

            Oh, if you’re not a citizen of the USA, then it’s not a problem.

            But if you love us, invade. I’ll make cookies.

          • Galvestonian

            I’ll make tea and make cocktails, chill the beer and get the party nibbles together. Someone else has to do the barbecue but since I’m in Texas I can get a steer or two and a lot of feral pigs. Who’s up for it ?

          • orion dumptee
          • Galvestonian

            tres, tres festive !

          • and i’ll make a kick ass savory pie, muffins, cafe/cofeve, whatever you want. please, united other places. invade us. i give the best blow jobs you’ve ever had and i’m willing to be your slave in exchange for the freedom to garden and work a fair wage paying job.

  • Karl Dubhe 2

    He is right. I think it’s a bit late now, unfortunately.

  • bkmn

    The thought of Trump having a private security firm working at his whim, with little to no oversight should upset everyone.

    • AdamTh

      You mean a private intelligence service, since he doesnt trust or respect the CIA??

      • Treant

        He also has private security guards. Now he wants a private intelligence agency.

        (Honestly, the latter doesn’t worry me all that much other than the really suckass precedent. He can’t hire good Administration people, what makes us imagine that he can attract a decent spy?)

        • Galvestonian

          Hitler’s Brown Shirts

        • Misutaa Roboto

          Maybe he can get some work visas to hire some good Russian spy talent. What could go wrong?

    • crewman

      The fact this would even be an idea being CONSIDERED should create a massive uproar. But it fades into the background.

      • Bunter

        The numbing is part of the plan. People get used to more and more extreme violations of the laws when they are confronted with such an onslaught of extremity.

    • pj

      and run by blackwater…what could possibly go wrong.

      • sfbob

        Everything.

  • AlternativeQuacks

    Totally worth it for a billionaire tax break — The GOP.

    • Treant

      Nuclear fallout reaches everywhere and collapsing societies tend to be aggressively warlike. –Me

    • Karl Dubhe 2

      It’ll be the easy way to make those billions look like trillions.

      Too bad that the currency will have the value of the Zimbabwean Dollar.

      • Galvestonian

        … or Monopoly money

        • Karl Dubhe 2

          Nah, you can still get stuff with monopoly money. πŸ™‚

          Heck, if you’re evil you can get stuff with Canadian Tire Money.

  • DreadPikathulhu

    When I was young I used to be a big reader of dystopian science fiction novels and always wondered how a society could collapse and bring about such change. Now we’re seeing it unfold before our eyes; all it takes is a compliant media, a dumbed-down population fed a constant stream of lies, voting restrictions to ensure that only the “right” people vote, unlimited campaign cash from a handful of special interests, and politicians that put party over country.

    • Paula

      I love that same genre and Alternate History, too.

      • DreadPikathulhu

        Same. That stuff is fascinating. Heck, in my own life I often think back to that that one simple decision that could have changed everything.

        • Helen Damnationβ„’

          The one simple decision for me was: stay with the love of my life or choose drugs. Guess which one I chose…

          • sfbob

            Many of my sober friends would at one time let nothing get between them and their drugs and booze, not even the love of their lives. And then later came to regret that set of priorities. To be honest I was well on my way down that road as well but managed to turn around in time. I hope you chose to stay with the love of your life.

          • Helen Damnationβ„’

            Unfortunately, I didn’t. But we’ve stayed in contact; he’s married and successful, living across the pond.

      • james1200

        I do, too. But it’s been hard to enjoy that particular genre now that it feels like we entered an alternate timeline that should never have been on Nov. 8. I’ve had Amazon’s The Man in the High Castle on my queue forever but I just can’t bring myself to watch it right now.

        • Jeffg166

          In many parallel universes he did lose the electoral college. Hillary is president and is being investigated by a republican congress.

    • CanuckDon

      It’s absolutely terrifying. You’d think that with advanced technology, science study and continual increased knowledge of the human mind that we’d be invincible to dictatorial monsters backed with their zombie-esque supporters….but sadly, advances in technology and sociology can still be conquered by fear and ignorance.

      • sfbob

        The big problem is that the tools created by advances in technology and scientific study can be used to manipulate people for selfish ends just as readily as they can be used to improve the quality of everyone’s life.

        • jimi008

          BINGO!

          • Carissa

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          • Professor Barnhardt

            The Carissa got a bad review in Consumer Reports last year.

    • Matt Williams

      That’s what I learned from the book “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?” by Philip K. Dick. The androids create fear and then create a religion to sate that fear but still control the humans with that fear. The religion already existing changes nothing.

  • coram nobis

    Trouble with Hitler comparisons is that sometimes it’s too generalized. It’s worth noting that the Weimar Republic was founded in chaos, with freikorps and communist uprisings in the immediate aftermath of the war, an economy that never really stabilized and a weak constitution. Weimar never really had a chance. Obama might have been onto something if he compared it to the rise of Mussolini, say, or Juan PerΓ³n and the juntas that followed.

    • Treant

      Right now, it feels more like Nixon. Or Lincoln when he got grabby with that habeus corpus thing. So far, the courts have done a pretty good job of reigning him in.

      There are tons of troubling signs, but as it stands at the moment, the resistance to any slide toward fascism is pretty strong.

      • Friday

        The fascism itself isn’t so like Nixon, even if Drumph is actually just a wannabe as dictators go.

    • Karl Dubhe 2

      Aye, t’is the lazy shorthand.

      But ‘we’ don’t know as much about the history of those other dictators, and you Yanks really can’t have a second class despot take over, can you?

      • coram nobis

        We had a close call with Huey Long. If FDR hadn’t come along, who knows what homegrown Mussolini the U.S. might have had during the Depression?

    • Lazycrockett

      I’ve always compared Drumpf more to Il Duce than Hitler, but whatever wakes people the fuck up.

      • coram nobis

        Well, yes, and it’s important if Obama starts talking like this. He’s normally unflappable, so if he’s alarmed, it’s — well, a bit alarming.

      • Bunter

        There are similarities to both, or rather to the years before they took power.

    • Publius

      Yeah I’m all about Obama, but Hitler comparisons tend to make me cringe. Hitler invokes images of stacked bodies, ash snow, and a fundamental transformation of a democratic state into totalitarianism. Donald Trump is a dick and an idiot, he’s reckless and we’re all the worse off for it. But the one thing that we have going for ourselves, that silver lining, is Donald Trump is literally too stupid to manage a country.

      So, while it may feel nice and affirming for people to hear these comparisons, the reality is they are baseless and fantasies at best. Not to mention these comparisons cheapen the horrors of the Holocaust.

      • Chitown Kev

        Hitler evokes those images NOW…but remember…the Old Grey Bitch profiled Hitler in in his wonderful chalet in 1937…and he had done quite a bit already…but nothing like what is to come…do not that PBO said ”the rise of Hitler.”
        https://placesjournal.org/article/hitler-at-home/

        • Bunter

          Everybody laughed at Hitler for a very long time, he was a buffoon too- until he wasn’t.

      • JD

        Really could not disagree more. there is a direct parallel to the dismantling of rights and scapegoating of categories of people, there is already a privatised prison system that relies on a “justice” system to feed the machine which is what concentration camps did initially, and if you do not think there are plenty of people ready to shove us into ovens, you are not paying attention. Vigilance is critical, and downplaying the risk of following actual history is pacifying.

        • Publius

          As I acknowledged, it feels good and affirming to hear the comparisons. They’re just not true. Resisting the urge to scare the shit out of everyone is not downplaying; I just don’t see the utility in lying to people. You know, I know, my cat knows that nobody is getting thrown into ovens. It’s irresponsible to suggest otherwise.

          • JD

            I think the point is that no one got shoved into ovens on day one…and then it was too late. I’d rather not be sleeping. And hope you are right…but for a historian, patterns are revealing.

      • The_Wretched

        My former communist friend from Bulgaria says he’s lived through all this before and is not happy to see it happen here.

      • Charles Nelson

        Hitler had concentration camps to kill millions…Trump has a little red button. Incineration either case.

    • Stephen Elliot Phillips

      I think we are paralleling the rise of the Russian authoritarian post communist regime.

      • coram nobis

        That’s alarmingly close, although Trump is more of a Boris Yeltsin buffoon, minus the vodka. But it’s an uncomfortable parallel and you’re spot on.

        • Stephen Elliot Phillips

          Yes trump is yeltsin. We arent in the “putin phase” yet….
          God help us if someone competently evil takes over

          • JD

            Pence?

          • Stephen Elliot Phillips

            Oh please. Pence? No. Some generalisimo lurking in the wings most probably.

        • Mike

          and the problem is that the buffoon will weaken the state sufficiently for a more astute authoritarian follower. You loose the court and the US is screwed.

        • i have a friend in NYC who has personally seen the traitor drinking, in the 80s. don’t fall for that crap he says about “never” drinking.

  • Rex

    If anyone thinks that we’re not living in dangerous times, they need to think again.

    • Hank

      We all thought thinks were bad under Bush and Cheney… NOTHING compares to this, today!!!

  • Nax

    Let’s just hope there are free and fair elections in November.

    • Treant

      Let’s just hoperealize that there are never free and fair elections in November.

      FTFY. πŸ™‚ Hope instead for a Dem landslide they can’t cheat their way out of.

    • Friday

      We’ve simply had to overwhelm the Republican *cheating* for decades, now.

  • Do Something Nice

    OMG!

  • boobert

    I’m not nearly as optimistic as he is.

  • bkmn

    Seeing reports that Franken will resign tomorrow so they can go all in against Roy Moore.

    • Lazycrockett

      DC DEMS going after Moore is not going to sway Alabama voters.

    • AmeriCanadian

      Yeah like that’s going to work. It’s a pathetic plan and the reason why Dems will only continue to lose seats.

      • Craig Howell

        We’re not going to lose that MN seat. The governor is a Democrat and will name a Democratic replacement if Franken steps down. Whether his resignation would do anything to sway AL voters next Tuesday is dubious.

        • JCF

          It’s 1) to sway AL voters and, if failing that 2) go all in on RESISTING the seating/accepting of Moore. Dems are NOT going to accept Moore, NOR accept Rethugs who do. They WILL Shut.The.Fucker.Down. Believe it!

    • Do Something Nice

      That isn’t right. Franken should resign if he is guilty and fight to stay in office if he is not. But resigning for political reasons is the wrong thing to do and probably will backfire.

    • Man_in_the_mists

      And when he does the reich wing will laugh and say “Dance puppets dance!”

  • Bryan

    There’s your sobering thought for Wednesday…

  • Mike_in_the_Tundra

    I cannot look at Obama without feeling great sadness.

    • JCF

      Any of the Obamas.

  • Lazycrockett
    • Friday

      Cause in all the Roy Moore scumminess, he forgot to do something internationally *stupid* so far this week.

      • Galvestonian

        … the week ain’t over yet.

        • DreadPikathulhu

          We could have mushroom clouds by Friday and a worldwide nuclear winter on Sunday. It’s gotten that out of control.

          • Longpole

            Are there any trump hotels in the middle East?

  • GanymedeRenard

    Thank you.

  • ChrisInKansas

    And millions of people are perfectly willing to go along. I just can’t believe what America has become.

  • Statistics Palin

    That’s about 18 months too late.

    • CJAS

      His administration should have begun this conversation in April, 2009, because it was obvious to anyone, like him, who’s studied political science where we were headed.

  • GanymedeRenard
    • MBear

      Well past early warning signs

      • GanymedeRenard

        Indeed.

  • Michael White

    In my recent studies about the rise of Hitler, sad hobby I know, one of the big differences was with the un/under employed young men. The Nazi organization provided housing and food to them. They were housed in big apartment buildings and were organized in a quasi military manner. This is not happening as far as I know. But the apathy and denial of what was happening allowed the loss of the press and the judiciary system, though he is packing the courts (life time appointments) which concerns me.

    But there are many similarities and I think the loss of net neutrality is a big move to eliminating our access to non propaganda information. We need to be on our guard as it can happen here very easily.

    • coram nobis

      The US had something like that with FDR — the Civilian Conservation Corps, which even had Army officers running it. The CCC was a response to hard times rather than a sign of impending fascism, at least, by itself.

      • Michael White

        But CCC was not used as a “private army”. in Germany, the young men (who became the brown shirts) were not organized to work on public works projects to help end the great depression, but to beat up those who did not support Hitler. A very big difference, but a real possibility.

        The 22nd Amendment to the Constitution was enacted because many saw FDR’s 4 terms as a way for a president to become a dictator.

    • OdieDenCO

      take note of the independent militias, the white supremacist and the churches as means of indoctrination. donny & co are not organizing them, as far as we know but it would not be a tough step to take.

      • Michael White

        I agree they are a big danger. But are they sponsored and payed for by the RepubliCONS. The Brown Shirts were. I think the organized sponsorship isn’t a key. Also I don’t know how much connection between the militias and communication or planning goes on between them. This would make them much more dangerous

        • Bunter

          The NSDAP was sponsored by conservatives, and basically shoved into parliament by them. If you regard the regular Republicans as a different party from Trump’s alt right/tea party splinter groups, you have basically the same dynamics as with the Centre Party and the NSDAP.

    • Bunter

      You don’t have a hunger crisis, but when you look at the recruiting of young men and troll hordes via online boards, you have very similar structures. The street fights of the global village happen online, not on the street anymore.

  • IAMBOWLINGQUEEN
  • billbear1961

    YES, and keep speaking out!!

  • i get to say this. none of you will like it. but i have a Right to say this as a fellow UChicago person.

    fuck you, Barry. right up your poopshoot. without lube.

    why do i say this? well, um, it might have something to do with the fact that this man had the literally highest security clearance in the world. and that somebody, i know for a fact cause he’s said so in the past, was warned about russians in our politics. and he chose to do…. nothing. it’s all about him, it always has been and will be. i know some stories that most people do not. he’s not perfect or even close to it. he’s a coward.

    Michelle, i never wanted him and you never had to be afraid of me. i still remember that look on your face, the day you had your hair up and wore that really cute black dress and we both went to see K and W about a thing. however, i am and remain angry at you both, for letting this happen. someday, when i am in a prison camp being tortured to death, maybe you two can explain to me why your little family is more important than the entire future of the world. you were THERE. you had “the keys.” hell, even my cousin’s golfing buddy Bill would’ve backed you on an aggressive plan to correct the problems in our vast, obscenely rich security services/MIC. but it was more important to both of you that you remain popular. that pisses me off a lot. you and the girls can move to malta or whatever and live in comfort and safety for the rest of your natural lives. meanwhile, america is burning.

    shit like this is too little and too late. mealy mouthed “oops, we fucked up. you trusted us” moments now don’t make me feel better at all, and more importantly aren’t helping fix the problems.

    • whollyfool

      I hear you, but I’m not sure we can say he didn’t do anything. If he did do something, we probably wouldn’t know about it. (Til it comes out in Mueller’s investigation. )

    • DreadPikathulhu

      Unfortunately, had Obama said anything during the election the GOP would have savaged him and likely driven even more people to vote against Clinton. They already had their base primed with claims that Obama would try to steal the election for Hillary and/or cancel it outright. He was damned if he did and damned if he didn’t.

      • BobSF_94117

        When you’re damned if you do and you’re damned if you don’t, you do the right thing. He didn’t.

      • Man_in_the_mists

        He could’ve and should’ve savaged them right back. One of the tools in the president’s arsenal is the bully pulpit, and as good of an orator as he is it would’ve been a potent weapon in his hands. But he never used it often enough, and that’s arguably the biggest mistake he made in his presidency.

    • The_Wretched

      Thank you

    • Stephen Elliot Phillips

      Im with your mindset. Obama was a great president in the calm likable sense but he was too ethereal. Too trusting in a fragile system. Too worried about rocking boats.
      Im not mad at him im mad at us for not fighting hard enuf. Mad that too few on our side didnt realize the consequences of being contrary and not sticking together and voting.
      This is only going to get worse from here on out. May the gods help those of us who dont have the wealth to escape

      • Friday

        There was basically one strategy that could pull us out of what came before and what’s coming, …frankly, it’s not his fault that strategy was *blown* by a number of well-known factors, including the ‘purity test’ shit and blaming Democrats for everyone getting complacent/snippy at him for the first midterms, which resulted of course in six years of *utter bullshit* and a Presidential election we could in no way afford to *lose,* never mind should have.

  • justmeeeee

    Damn, Bams!

  • Mike

    In reality I suspect the US is already at war – you just don’t know it yet. Dump trump – dump the pence – but their cult wont go quietly.

  • Slippy_World
    • billbear1961

      Yes, more and more, I believe massive and relentless protests, on a scale with the Women’s March, coupled with economic measures, are going to be–are already–absolutely necessary to PRESERVE this democracy!

      Obama is the biggest name yet to warn of what’s happening!!

  • AdamTh

    Anyone that has NetFlix might want to watch a documentary called “Hitler – A Career”. You WILL see the parallels…

    (It’s long, about 2-1/2 hours)

    • Bunter

      There are a lot more parallels apart from th direct Hitler comparisons. The strategies of the NSDAP during the late 20s are basically the same as what we have seen during the last two years.

  • billbear1961

    If Nazis or Klansmen or other fascists were running for office and won, would you accept their authority? Well, what’s going on now with the GOP is not, is no longer, THAT different.

    You KNOW that these people are habitual liars and baldfaced hypocrites who abuse their power and are afraid of the light of day, of exposure. They call themselves the “party of God,” the party of “family values,” and profess admiration for Christ and then advocate policies that VIOLATE his teachings. They make excuses for monsters who sexually assault children. They are utterly corrupting the legislative process right in front of your eyes and are poised to pillage the nation to make the rich richer while forcing millions–including children–into misery and suffering and threatening tens of thousands a year with premature DEATH. They claim they “respect democracy” and then suppress the vote and place FANATICS on the courts who will strip millions of their constitutional rights. They make excuses and look the other way while the POTUS, a proven hatemonger who has said good people march with NAZIS, undermines the rule of law and engages daily in proven pathological lying, undermining the very concept of objective TRUTH.

    We see what they are doing–we have the evidence of our own eyes. An election–and this past one is in question–does not give the right to those who gain power to do WHATEVER they like, not in a GENUINE democracy. What they are doing FORFEITS their right to ANY claim to legitimate authority.

    If you recognize the authority of GANGSTER government, you must expect the end of your democracy. You must expect RUIN.

  • netxtown

    Unfortunately, “the principle that the free press was vital” is now based on revenue generation.

    • JD

      Exactly. And click baits which, with respect, we all do right here contributing speculation and opinion as much as (more than) verifiable fact. The commodification of everything has been building for decades – in times of crisis, even 9-11, the best the then Prez had to offer was to say get out an buy–consume–spend. All the pretty (and pretty frightening) rhetoric was aimed at continuing the cycle of people as disposable consumers and oligarchs as protection-worthy overlords. Man, finding my thinking is really shifting…

    • Snarky

      It was always based on revenue generation. Newspapers are businesses, and the #1 job of any business is to keep the lights on.

      Newspapers used to be supported by classified ads, display ads and subscriptions/single copy sales. Craigslist killed classifieds. People share news stories online now, so subscriptions and single-copy sales have plummeted. With that declining circulation, advertisers are not spending as much on display advertising (because there are fewer eyeballs on those ads than there used to be).

      And let’s not forget that over the past couple of decades, lots of newspapers and newspaper chains have consolidated ownership to private equity firms who wanted to make a quick buck by slashing newsroom budgets, firing journalists in every community across the country.

      In came the internet, and Facebook & sites just like this one share stories without delivering one penny to those who created it. Those who spent money reporting a story. Newspapers don’t know what to do. The best model so far is online subscriptions, but click bait and inline ads and video ads are not bringing in the revenue that newspapers used to have. And newspapers don’t seem to be able to innovate their way out of this mess. Though I have hope that someone like Jeff Bezos, who owns the WaPo and came up through online retail, can figure out a way to create a new revenue model.

      Revenue generation was always a part of journalism in this country. Even nonprofit news organizations need to pay their employees, as they should.

      If we want a free press, we need to pay for it.

      • BobSF_94117

        The internet is certainly to blame, but let’s not forget that the news division of a network was not always a profit center and when it was, it was never in the range of today’s “minimum returns” of 15% and up.

    • William

      Consolidated ownership of media is the opposite of a free press.

  • Richard

    All benefits accrue to the wealthy, the poor and working class will work to enrich the wealthy at all cost and private intelligence organizations (brown shirts?) reporting directly to the dear leader will make sure the working class follows orders. One party rule is very dangerous, especially when that one party is corrupt….the fox guarding the hen house. American democracy will continue to decline, so long as the oligarchs are running the government.

  • Jean-Marc in Canada
    • Bunter

      There are a lot more similarities not just between him and Trump, but between the strategies of the alt right and what the NSDAP did on a street level, what the German “Republicans” did, etc. I’m worried like shit since early 2017.

      • Jean-Marc in Canada

        Absolutely.

  • joe ho
  • Daveed_WOW

    #TRUMPISHITLER

  • ByronK
    • Edmund Allin

      Oh, wow.

    • Bunter

      This so much.

      I started reading analyses of 1930s propaganda methods from people who were actually there, and it’s basically Groundhog day.

  • thrunch

    … AND VOTE. Not just for President … because our federal system has power dispersed. Do you want authoritarian-minded persons as your local supervisor of elections?! The election will cease to be fair if you neglect to pay attention to local and state elections. It matters folks … EVERY ELECTION … EVERY TIME. But particularly now because the fascists are on the march in almost every western country (including us) and they are fueled by Russian rubles.

    • MaryJOGrady

      ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
      This!

  • JWC

    He may not have been your ideal But he must be listened to If, to you this is Horsepucky then we already know your stand on the issue

  • It was a great experiment, while it lasted….sigh

  • ted-

    Young people need to care and not be complacent as I’ve seen. I work in a university and I see this daily.

    • Bj Lincoln

      Kids are not taught duty as an American in school. It is not pushed that they must vote. Instead they are taught the way it runs but not their place in it and they have a choice to vote or not. They do not understand that to remain by and for the people that the people must participate. It is easy to blow off voting when they are full time students and may have a job or family to care for. The news talks about how long the lines are in some places. Personally, I have never had to wait for more than 5 minutes in line in the several places in 2 states. I almost always take a new person with me.

  • Kevin Andrews

    That this “warning” (an accurate reflection of reality) truly is an accurate observation of what is AmeriKKKa today is disgusting to any ethical human. The Corruption of the Roberts SCOTUS fueling the auction of America plays out again. The Meat-Puppets (Obama is not above this description) are shills for the MIC that robs us blind to fuel the Banker’s greed.
    These bastards do NOT “represent” We The People. Theirs is a tribe of purchased loyalty of cowards. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/53a292faacbd995326f368dff48a9309b07ccd35063f7d141e19f84807a20ef0.png

  • Bj Lincoln

    This is what I just posted on my FB with this article.

    “All you need to do is read about the history of the rise of Nazi Germany and you will clearly see the signs.
    The current President thinks it’s ok to discriminate and has been open and clear about who he hates. Yesterday it was confirmed that he thinks putting a sign in business windows “We don’t serve Gay people” was OK. The government has removed the Civil Rights page from the website and has shut down the Civil Rights Dept. that covered ALL our rights and protections.
    It is not just Gay people or just immigrants. He treats women horribly and has 16 women come forward to file harassment charges. One has charged him with rape when she was only 13.
    He has filled his cabinet with people who are unqualified and often hates the very department they now head. Betsy DeVos is in charge of Education and the first thing she did was get rid of protections for trans kids.
    Violence in the streets has been on the rise and most targets are black, brown and LGBT with black trans women getting the worst of it. 5 killed in Baltimore this year!

    Calling your Congressmen is a start. Easy to do and they do listen. I had no problem talking to mine when I had/still have a problem with Social Security and he did help.

    Remind them why you voted for them and how you feel about issues. The most important thing you can do is VOTE. Voting is your duty as an American. It is part of how and why we are by and for the people. If the people don’t participate then it leaves gaps for the wrong sort to creep in and start taking advantage of the people. If you feel like you were lied to by those in an office or they are voting against the things opposite of your opinion, let them know it and vote them out.

    It is our job to keep our democracy from falling apart or into the wrong hands. “

  • Adonisus

    “If the representatives of the people betray their constituents, there is
    then no recourse left but in the exertion of that original right of
    self-defense which is paramount to all positive forms of government, and
    which against the usurpations of the national rulers may be exerted
    with infinitely better prospect of success than against those of the
    rulers of an individual State. In a single State, if the persons
    entrusted with supreme power become usurpers, the different parcels,
    subdivisions, or districts of which it consists, having no distinct
    government in each, can take no regular measures for defense. The
    citizens must rush tumultuously to arms, without concert, without
    system, without resource; except in their courage and despair.”
    -Alexander Hamilton

  • Halou

    Speech from Ronald Reagan, of all people.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SDouNtnR_IA

  • I keep hearing “Resist, Resist, Indivisible”, etc. But we are assaulted daily with new atrocities. I’m beginning to think “resistance is futile” as the Borg destroys more with every stroke of a pen. Telling people to “vote” is well and good, but that is basically what got us here (yes, not everyone voted) and is just as likely to keep us here. Protest? I’ve been doing that since the 60s. Everything we’ve fought for, for decades, every gain, every progressive advance, is being eliminated, uttered out of existence, without a “vote” without debate or discussion, without transparency, without true representation. #45 and the republicans in congress are a frighteningly dangerous combination, and now the courts are falling in line. Resist? How? What really is our recourse? The Washington Post? Voting? Making comments on JMG?

  • Newfirelock
  • History played out in front of us at Charlotteseville and we could not look away from the vile images or be saddened by the deafening silence from our President or the triumphant sounding white supremacists who were emboldened by his
    immediate silence.

    And why wouldn’t they. During the campaign Trump was an an expert
    demagogue whipping disillusioned working class voters into a
    frenzy, stoking racial resentments, misrepresenting facts, exaggerating
    threats and giving the disenfranchised a bogeyman to blame. Sound
    familiar? This ugly stew of propaganda was straight from a fascist
    recipe book and its a recipe for disaster.
    History has never seemed more relevant.
    Take a look at some powerfully illustrated Vanity Fair cover from 1933 a
    tumultuous year with far reaching consequences can serve as a somber
    harbinger for our own troubled times. http://wp.me/p2qifI-43c