Full Interview of Julian Assange by John Pilger on the State of the Union 2016

julian-assange

[Interview published November 5, 2016 with transcript]

John Pilger:
What’s the significance of the FBI’s intervention in these last days of the U.S. election campaign, in the case against Hillary Clinton?

Julian Assange:
If you look at the history of the FBI, it has become effectively America’s political police. The FBI demonstrated this by taking down the former head of the CIA [General David Petraeus] over classified information given to his mistress. Almost no-one is untouchable. The FBI is always trying to demonstrate that no-one can resist us. But Hillary Clinton very conspicuously resisted the FBI’s investigation, so there’s anger within the FBI because it made the FBI look weak. We’ve published about 33,000 of Clinton’s emails when she was Secretary of State. They come from a batch of just over 60,000 emails, [of which] Clinton has kept about half – 30,000 — to herself, and we’ve published about half.

Then there are the Podesta emails we’ve been publishing. [John] Podesta is Hillary Clinton’s primary campaign manager, so there’s a thread that runs through all these emails; there are quite a lot of pay-for-play, as they call it, giving access in exchange for money to states, individuals and corporations. [These emails are] combined with the cover up of the Hillary Clinton emails when she was Secretary of State, [which] has led to an environment where the pressure on the FBI increases.

John Pilger:
The Clinton campaign has said that Russia is behind all of this, that Russia has manipulated the campaign and is the source for WikiLeaks and its emails.

Julian Assange:
The Clinton camp has been able to project that kind of neo-McCarthy hysteria: that Russia is responsible for everything. Hilary Clinton stated multiple times, falsely, that seventeen U.S. intelligence agencies had assessed that Russia was the source of our publications. That is false; we can say that the Russian government is not the source.

WikiLeaks has been publishing for ten years, and in those ten years, we have published ten million documents, several thousand individual publications, several thousand different sources, and we have never got it wrong.

John Pilger:
The emails that give evidence of access for money and how Hillary Clinton herself benefited from this and how she is benefitting politically, are quite extraordinary. I’m thinking of when the Qatari representative was given five minutes with Bill Clinton for a million dollar cheque.

Julian Assange:
And twelve million dollars from Morocco …

John Pilger:
Twelve million from Morocco yeah.

Julian Assange:
For Hillary Clinton to attend [a party].

John Pilger:
In terms of the foreign policy of the United States, that’s where the emails are most revealing, where they show the direct connection between Hillary Clinton and the foundation of jihadism, of ISIL, in the Middle East. Can you talk about how the emails demonstrate the connection between those who are meant to be fighting the jihadists of ISIL, are actually those who have helped create it.

Julian Assange:
There’s an early 2014 email from Hillary Clinton, not so long after she left the State Department, to her campaign manager John Podesta that states ISIL is funded by the governments of Saudi Arabia and Qatar. Now this is the most significant email in the whole collection, and perhaps because Saudi and Qatari money is spread all over the Clinton Foundation. Even the U.S. government agrees that some Saudi figures have been supporting ISIL, or ISIS. But the dodge has always been that, well it’s just some rogue Princes, using their cut of the oil money to do whatever they like, but actually the government disapproves.

But that email says that no, it is the governments of Saudi and Qatar that have been funding ISIS.

John Pilger:
The Saudis, the Qataris, the Moroccans, the Bahrainis, particularly the Saudis and the Qataris, are giving all this money to the Clinton Foundation while Hilary Clinton is Secretary of State and the State Department is approving massive arms sales, particularly to Saudi Arabia.

Julian Assange:
Under Hillary Clinton, the world’s largest ever arms deal was made with Saudi Arabia, [worth] more than $80 billion. In fact, during her tenure as Secretary of State, total arms exports from the United States in terms of the dollar value, doubled.

John Pilger:
Of course the consequence of that is that the notorious terrorist group called ISIl or ISIS is created largely with money from the very people who are giving money to the Clinton Foundation.

Julian Assange:
Yes.

John Pilger:
That’s extraordinary.

Julian Assange:
I actually feel quite sorry for Hillary Clinton as a person because I see someone who is eaten alive by their ambitions, tormented literally to the point where they become sick; they faint as a result of [the reaction] to their ambitions. She represents a whole network of people and a network of relationships with particular states. The question is how does Hilary Clinton fit in this broader network? She’s a centralising cog. You’ve got a lot of different gears in operation from the big banks like Goldman Sachs and major elements of Wall Street, and Intelligence and people in the State Department and the Saudis.

She’s the centraliser that inter-connects all these different cogs. She’s the smooth central representation of all that, and ‘all that’ is more or less what is in power now in the United States. It’s what we call the establishment or the DC consensus. One of the more significant Podesta emails that we released was about how the Obama cabinet was formed and how half the Obama cabinet was basically nominated by a representative from City Bank. This is quite amazing.

John Pilger:
Didn’t Citybank supply a list …. ?

Julian Assange:
Yes.

John Pilger:
… which turned out to be most of the Obama cabinet.
.

Julian Assange:
Yes.

John Pilger:
So Wall Street decides the cabinet of the President of the United States?

Julian Assange:
If you were following the Obama campaign back then, closely, you could see it had become very close to banking interests.

Julian Assange:
So I think you can’t properly understand Hillary Clinton’s foreign policy without understanding Saudi Arabia. The connections with Saudi Arabia are so intimate.

John Pilger:
Why was she so demonstrably enthusiastic about the destruction of Libya? Can you talk a little about just what the emails have told us, told you about what happened there, because Libya is such a source for so much of the mayhem now in Syria, the ISIL jihadism and so on, and it was almost Hillary Clinton’s invasion. What do the emails tell us about that?

Julian Assange:
Libya, more than anyone else’s war, was Hillary Clinton’s war. Barak Obama initially opposed it. Who was the person championing it? Hillary Clinton. That’s documented throughout her emails. She had put her favoured agent, Sidney Blumenthal, on to that; there’s more than 1700 emails out of the thirty three thousand Hillary Clinton emails that we’ve published, just about Libya. It’s not that Libya has cheap oil. She perceived the removal of Gaddafi and the overthrow of the Libyan state — something that she would use in her run-up to the general election for President.

So in late 2011 there is an internal document called the Libya Tick Tock that was produced for Hillary Clinton, and it’s the chronological description of how she was the central figure in the destruction of the Libyan state, which resulted in around 40,000 deaths within Libya; jihadists moved in, ISIS moved in, leading to the European refugee and migrant crisis.

Not only did you have people fleeing Libya, people fleeing Syria, the destabilisation of other African countries as a result of arms flows, but the Libyan state itself err was no longer able to control the movement of people through it. Libya faces along to the Mediterranean and had been effectively the cork in the bottle of Africa. So all problems, economic problems and civil war in Africa — previously people fleeing those problems didn’t end up in Europe because Libya policed the Mediterranean. That was said explicitly at the time, back in early 2011 by Gaddafi: ‘What do these Europeans think they’re doing, trying to bomb and destroy the Libyan State? There’s going to be floods of migrants out of Africa and jihadists into Europe, and this is exactly what happened.

John Pilger:
You get complaints from people saying, ‘What is WikiLeaks doing? Are they trying to put Trump in the Whitehouse?’

Julian Assange:
My answer is that Trump would not be permitted to win. Why do I say that? Because he’s had every establishment off side; Trump doesn’t have one establishment, maybe with the exception of the Evangelicals, if you can call them an establishment, but banks, intelligence [agencies], arms companies… big foreign money … are all united behind Hillary Clinton, and the media as well, media owners and even journalists themselves.

John Pilger:
There is the accusation that WikiLeaks is in league with the Russians. Some people say, ‘Well, why doesn’t WikiLeaks investigate and publish emails on Russia?’

Julian Assange:
We have published about 800,000 documents of various kinds that relate to Russia. Most of those are critical; and a great many books have come out of our publications about Russia, most of which are critical. Our [Russia]documents have gone on to be used in quite a number of court cases: refugee cases of people fleeing some kind of claimed political persecution in Russia, which they use our documents to back up.

John Pilger:
Do you yourself take a view of the U.S. election? Do you have a preference for Clinton or Trump?

Julian Assange:
[Let’s talk about] Donald Trump. What does he represent in the American mind and in the European mind? He represents American white trash, [which Hillary Clinton called] ‘deplorable and irredeemable’. It means from an establishment or educated cosmopolitan, urbane perspective, these people are like the red necks, and you can never deal with them. Because he so clearly — through his words and actions and the type of people that turn up at his rallies — represents people who are not the middle, not the upper middle educated class, there is a fear of seeming to be associated in any way with them, a social fear that lowers the class status of anyone who can be accused of somehow assisting Trump in any way, including any criticism of Hillary Clinton. If you look at how the middle class gains its economic and social power, that makes absolute sense.

John Pilger:
I’d like to talk about Ecuador, the small country that has given you refuge and [political asylum] in this embassy in London. Now Ecuador has cut off the internet from here where we’re doing this interview, in the Embassy, for the clearly obvious reason that they are concerned about appearing to intervene in the U.S. election campaign. Can you talk about why they would take that action and your own views on Ecuador’s support for you?

Julian Assange:
Let’s let go back four years. I made an asylum application to Ecuador in this embassy, because of the U.S. extradition case, and the result was that after a month, I was successful in my asylum application. The embassy since then has been surrounded by police: quite an expensive police operation which the British government admits to spending more than £12.6 million. They admitted that over a year ago. Now there’s undercover police and there are robot surveillance cameras of various kinds — so that there has been quite a serious conflict right here in the heart of London between Ecuador, a country of sixteen million people, and the United Kingdom, and the Americans who have been helping on the side. So that was a brave and principled thing for Ecuador to do. Now we have the U.S. election [campaign], the Ecuadorian election is in February next year, and you have the White House feeling the political heat as a result of the true information that we have been publishing.

WikiLeaks does not publish from the jurisdiction of Ecuador, from this embassy or in the territory of Ecuador; we publish from France, we publish from, from Germany, we publish from The Netherlands and from a number of other countries, so that the attempted squeeze on WikiLeaks is through my refugee status; and this is, this is really intolerable. [It means] that [they] are trying to get at a publishing organisation; [they] try and prevent it from publishing true information that is of intense interest to the American people and others about an election.

John Pilger:
Tell us what would happen if you walked out of this embassy.

Julian Assange:
I would be immediately arrested by the British police and I would then be extradited either immediately to the United States or to Sweden. In Sweden I am not charged, I have already been previously cleared [by the Senior Stockholm Prosecutor Eva Finne]. We were not certain exactly what would happen there, but then we know that the Swedish government has refused to say that they will not extradite me to the United States we know they have extradited 100 per cent of people whom the U.S. has requested since at least 2000. So over the last fifteen years, every single person the U.S. has tried to extradite from Sweden has been extradited, and they refuse to provide a guarantee [that won’t happen].

John Pilger:
People often ask me how you cope with the isolation in here.

Julian Assange:
Look, one of the best attributes of human beings is that they’re adaptable; one of the worst attributes of human beings is they are adaptable. They adapt and start to tolerate abuses, they adapt to being involved themselves in abuses, they adapt to adversity and they continue on. So in my situation, frankly, I’m a bit institutionalised — this [the embassy] is the world .. it’s visually the world [for me].

John Pilger:
It’s the world without sunlight, for one thing, isn’t it?

Julian Assange:
It’s the world without sunlight, but I haven’t seen sunlight in so long, I don’t remember it.

John Pilger:
Yes.

Julian Assange:
So , yes, you adapt. The one real irritant is that my young children — they also adapt. They adapt to being without their father. That’s a hard, hard adaption which they didn’t ask for.

John Pilger:
Do you worry about them?

Julian Assange:
Yes, I worry about them; I worry about their mother.

John Pilger:
Some people would say, ‘Well, why don’t you end it and simply walk out the door and allow yourself to be extradited to Sweden?’

Julian Assange:
The U.N. [the United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention] has looked into this whole situation. They spent eighteen months in formal, adversarial litigation. [So it’s] me and the U.N. verses Sweden and the U.K. Who’s right? The U.N. made a conclusion that I am being arbitrarily detained illegally, deprived of my freedom and that what has occurred has not occurred within the laws that the United Kingdom and Sweden, and that [those countries] must obey. It is an illegal abuse. It is the United Nations formally asking, ‘What’s going on here? What is your legal explanation for this? [Assange] says that you should recognise his asylum.’ [And here is]

Sweden formally writing back to the United Nations to say, ‘No, we’re not going to [recognise the UN ruling], so leaving open their ability to extradite.

I just find it absolutely amazing that the narrative about this situation is not put out publically in the press, because it doesn’t suit the Western establishment narrative — that yes, the West has political prisoners, it’s a reality, it’s not just me, there’s a bunch of other people as well. The West has political prisoners. Of course, no state accepts [that it should call] the people it is imprisoning or detaining for political reasons, political prisoners. They don’t call them political prisoners in China, they don’t call them political prisoners in Azerbaijan and they don’t call them political prisoners in the United States, U.K. or Sweden; it is absolutely intolerable to have that kind of self-perception.

Julian Assange:
Here we have a case, the Swedish case, where I have never been charged with a crime, where I have already been cleared [by the Stockholm prosecutor] and found to be innocent, where the woman herself said that the police made it up, where the United Nations formally said the whole thing is illegal, where the State of Ecuador also investigated and found that I should be given asylum. Those are the facts, but what is the rhetoric?

John Pilger:
Yes, it’s different.

Julian Assange:
The rhetoric is pretending, constantly pretending that I have been charged with a crime, and never mentioning that I have been already previously cleared, never mentioning that the woman herself says that the police made it up.

[The rhetoric] is trying to avoid [the truth that ] the U.N. formally found that the whole thing is illegal, never even mentioning that Ecuador made a formal assessment through its formal processes and found that yes, I am subject to persecution by the United States.

To support Julian Assange, go to: https://justice4assange.com/donate.html

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Jill Stein is right about our foreign policy and Hillary Clinton is all wrong!

jill-stein


In an interview with Cenk Uygur on The Young Turks TYT show on October, 21, 2016, Jill Stein was asked what would she do to ensure the protection of Estonia from an invasion from Russia. I found her response to be very rational, unlike what I have heard from Hillary Clinton regarding her posture toward Russia.

She questioned the need for our financing of NATO, the need for 800 US military bases around the world, the threat that such imposes to neighboring countries, and the cost to American households.

Jill Stein asked, how would we feel if Russia had installed nuclear missiles along our Canadian and Mexican borders. She observes that in NATO that is precisely what the United States has done in Europe along Russia’s borders. We have surrounded Russia with thousands of nuclear missiles on hair-trigger alert.

Moreover, Jill Stein quoted a Harvard research study concluding that the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have cost us thus far $6 trillion. That means these wars have cost each United States’s household $50,000. Are you pleased that our government has spent $50,000 of your money on these two wars alone thus far?

Hillary Clinton will only continue these endless military interventionist wars and funding, costing each American household thousands of more dollars and risking the lives of everyone on our planet. One million casualties have already resulted from her three interventionist wars in the Middle East.

How many more millions of people need to die, and how many trillions of our tax dollars need to be spent, before Americans stop electing candidates owned by the military-industrial complex and Wall Street?

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Michael Moore says middle class should vote for Trump to oppose elites, Corporate America, Wall Street, career politicians, media

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Transcript of speech given by Michael Moore on October 24, 2016 in Ohio

I know a lot of people in Michigan who are planning to vote for Trump. And they don’t necessarily like him that much, and they don’t necessarily agree with him.

They’re not racist and rednecks. They’re actually pretty decent people. And so I wanted to, after talking to a number of them, I wanted to write this.

Donald Trump came to the Detroit Economic Club and stood there in front of the Ford Motor executives and said, if you close these factories as you’re planning to do in Detroit and build them in Mexico, I’m going to put a 35-percent tariff on those cars when you send them back, and nobody’s going to buy them.

It was an amazing thing to see. No politician, Republican or Democrat, had ever said anything like that to these executives, and it was music to the ears of people in Michigan and Ohio and Pennsylvania and Wisconsin, the “Brexit states”.

You live here in Ohio. You know what I’m talking about. Whether Trump means it or not is kind of irrelevant because he’s saying the things to people who are hurting.

And that’s why every beaten-down nameless forgotten working stiff who used to be part of what was called the middle class loves Trump. He is the human Molotov cocktail that they’ve been waiting for, the human hand grenade that they can legally throw into the system that stole their lives from them.

And on November eight, election day, although they lost their jobs, although they’ve been foreclosed on by the bank, next came the divorce, and now the wife and kids are gone, the cars been reposed, they haven’t had a real vacation in years, they’re stuck with the shitty Obamacare Bronze Plan when you can’t even get a fucking percocet, they’ve essentially lost everything they have except one thing, the one thing that doesn’t cost them a cent and is guaranteed to them by the American Constitution: the right to vote.

They might be penniless. They might be homeless. They might be fucked over and fucked up. It doesn’t matter because it’s equalized on that day. A millionaire has the same number of votes as the person without a job: one. And there’s more of the former middle class than there are in the millionaire class.

So on November eight, the dispossessed will walk into the voting booth, be handed a ballot, close the curtain, and take that lever or felt pen or touch screen, and put a big fucking X in the box by the name of the man who has threatened to upend and overturn the very system that has ruined their lives: Donald J Trump.

They see that the elites who ruined their lives hate Trump. Corporate America hates Trump. Wall Street hates Trump. The career politicians hate Trump. The media hates Trump, after they loved him and created him and now hate him. Thank you, media.

The enemy of my enemy is who I’m voting for on November eight.

Yes, on November eight, you, Joe Blow, Steve Blow, Bob Blow, Billy Blow, Billy-Bob Blow, all the Blows get to blow up the whole goddamn system because it’s your right.

The Trump election is going to be the biggest fuck you ever recorded in human history.

And it will feel good.

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Jill Stein is right about our foreign policy and Hillary Clinton is all wrong!

jill-stein


In an interview with Cenk Uygur on The Young Turks TYT show on October, 21, 2016, Jill Stein was asked what would she do to ensure the protection of Estonia from an invasion from Russia. I found her response to be very rational, unlike what I have heard from Hillary Clinton regarding her posture toward Russia.

She questioned the need for our financing of NATO, the need for 800 US military bases around the world, the threat that such imposes to neighboring countries, and the cost to American households.

Jill Stein asked, how would we feel if Russia had installed nuclear missiles along our Canadian and Mexican borders. She observes that in NATO that is precisely what the United States has done in Europe along Russia’s borders. We have surrounded Russia with thousands of nuclear missiles on hair-trigger alert.

Moreover, Jill Stein quoted a Harvard research study concluding that the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have cost us thus far $6 trillion. That means these wars have cost each United States’s household $50,000. Are you pleased that our government has spent $50,000 of your money on these two wars alone thus far?

Hillary Clinton will only continue these endless military interventionist wars and funding, costing each American household thousands of more dollars and risking the lives of everyone on our planet. One million casualties have already resulted from her three interventionist wars in the Middle East.

How many more millions of people need to die, and how many trillions of our tax dollars need to be spent, before Americans stop electing candidates owned by the military-industrial complex and Wall Street?

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The Brainwashing Of Hillary Voters Is Complete. Transcript of October 20 2016 The Jimmy Dore Show.

jimmy-dore

[Transcript of October 20, 2016 The Jimmy Dore Show]

So you know I like to keep them honest here as they say at CNN. We’re not playing the partisan game of rooting for one horrible candidate over another horrible candidate. In fact you know our theories about it?—that voting neoliberalism this election is worse than ever because right now the Republican Party is falling apart, crack fracturing, and we’ve talked all about this.

This is the year to start a progressive movement. But when I see stuff like this, ThinkProgress tweets out a Trump presidency is a clean-energy nightmare, and then they have an article about it, which I didn’t bother to read because Trump’s not going to be President. And ha-ha. And so would Hillary Clinton. I get it. Yes, I’m sure a Trump presidency would be a nightmare for climate change. So is Hillary Clinton’s.

I don’t think people realize how far past the tipping point?— we past the tipping point. You know the Copenhagen agreement. People said that was a travesty. And they wanted to keep it at 2 degrees Celsius climate increase.

And then the Paris one is even worse. They said three. It’s over already. It’s already over. Start to figure out how you’re going to die because climate change is here. And we have no rational response to it. Governments have no rational response.

So I just put that, “I want to defend fracking”, which is what she said in released WikiLeaks.  She said that in her speeches that got released through the WikiLeaks, right. So we know she said that, “I want to defend fracking”, and so I tweeted that.

And the reason why I’m bringing this up is to just show you how brainwashed regular people are.  Just how they just regurgitate talking points handed to them by the corporate duopoly that is now in control of our elections.  They just repeat it, and without thinking, they don’t go away.

Hey, this is the conventional group.  This is group think For instance,somebody right underneath that said, “dude, we know Hillary is bad. We’re voting for her because airplanes would fall from the sky with Trump.” So you’re just going to invent crazy things about trust.

What I said to that was, meanwhile we’re bombing Yemen. Our Democratic president is pushing the TPP.  And he’s jailing journalists.  But this seems rational.

So if you’re going to concoct a conspiracy to distract people from the most horrible shit in the world, you would create Donald Trump.  And maybe the Democrats got lucky that he just came along but they certainly helped.  What the WikiLeaks are also revealing that the Clintons knew Trump would help them and they pushed it.  And that’s exactly what’s happening.

All this horrible shit that’s happening and everybody’s talking about Trump.  Oh, did you see Michelle’s speech about Trump? Hey, did you know we’re poisoning kids and Flint with lead? You know, they’re already poisoned already? You know, your husband is now drone bombing weddings?

So I’m getting off the track a little bit.  This is to show you how mental regular people are. And we all know that the comedians and the pundits, who used to be considered lefty, who are now propping up a corporatist warmonger, who’s turned her back on the climate and her own country and workers, those people who are doing that, I don’t know how to look them in the eye anymore, eh.

But they’re going to keep doing this, this excusing horribleness.  Have they been manipulated or is there something wrong with their brains?  I don’t know.

But anybody who can defend Hillary Clinton, they’re either getting paid or they’re brainwashed.  And I’m going to say that guy’s brainwashed: oh, because with Trump airplanes would fall from the sky.  To me that actually sounds like maybe that guy is joking.  Like no we have to vote for Trump because planes would fall from the sky right? Isn’t that what everybody says, right?  That sounds to me maybe that’s what that guy was saying, Ramon.  Good for you, Ramon.  I’m going to turn it around: he was probably right.

And then right underneath Ramon, right underneath that, this is again, this is just showing what I’m talking about.  It is not random.  This is the same thread right underneath this, a woman says, “a third party vote goes nowhere,” and she somehow spaces out nowhere so it’s bigger.  A third party vote goes nowhere.

But what I said to that woman was, “two party vote goes to more war, more fracking, more Goldman Sachs deregulation, trillion-dollar bailouts, congrats.”  But a third party vote goes nowhere.

What if a lot of people voted third party, would it still go nowhere? Or does it go nowhere because people like you keep saying don’t vote third-party.  If everybody who said, don’t vote third party because it goes nowhere, voted third-party, we would probably win the election.

You know, more people consider themselves independent than they consider themselves Republican or Democrat, so if everybody voted their conscience this election, we can get rid of these two parties.  But people won’t do it.  Why?  Because you’re brainwashed, that’s why.  Because people don’t have a problem regurgitating corporate talking points handed to them by warmongers.  They don’t mind doing that.  That’s exactly what you’re doing.

John Oliver’s doing it.  Half the comedians, ninety percent of the comedians I know, are doing it.  You’re propping up the fucking thing that’s ruining everybody.

We are going to keep going.  And then this guy says?— by the way, this is the same thread?—this guy says “I think the irrational thing might be to think voting Stein has any effect on this machine.”

Ok, so here we go.  Here’s what I said back. “I can tell you for sure what doesn’t have any effect on the machine; pledging your vote and support to the machine.”  So this idea that people have?—you hear it from everywhere, you hear it from grownups who say, “no, I’m voting for Hillary and then, you know, and then we’re going to move her left.”

Which may be the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard.  Can you get her to go left before you vote for her? No. But you’re going to get her to go left after she doesn’t need your vote anymore?  Yeah.  That may be the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard.  That’s right up there with compassionate conservatism.  That’s right up there.  The way you get a politician to try to cotton to your ideas is to say, you’re not voting for him.

And then here’s another one.  “The only issue with me voting third party is that the candidates?—this is all in the same thing?—is that the candidates can’t tell me reasonable ways to follow through with policies.”  So I would vote third party but they don’t show me a reasonable way where they can follow through on their policies.  So instead what I’m going to do is I’m going to pledge my support to the person who knows how to follow through on the policies that I oppose.

What is wrong with people?  That didn’t take me a second to think of that.  So this is just people repeating corporate talking points handed down to you by the electoral duopoly. And you just say them; you just accept it.

The only thing Hillary Clinton and the corporatists have to offer you is fear.  This is what Chris Hedges says.  The only thing they have to offer you is fear.  You got to vote for them because where else you going to go.  Are you going to go to Trump? Ha-ha-ha!

As soon as you stop being afraid, that’s when they get afraid.  That’s what Chris has said.
And remember what George Orwell said: “a people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves and traitors are not victims, but accomplices.  Think about that.  People that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves and traitors are not victims but they’re accomplices.  Accomplices.

And I would rather vote for somebody who reflected my ideals and lost than vote for somebody who doesn’t represent me and wins.  And that’s what Debs said.

It’s a sad state what’s happening in America to the mind of the American left voter.  They completely swallowed the corporate talking points handed to them by people whose interest it is in keeping a two-party duopoly.

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Jill Stein argues that Hillary Clinton is much scarier than Donald Trump

jill-stein

It’s now Hillary Clinton who wants to start an air war with Russian over Syria by calling for a no-fly zone. We have 2,000 nuclear missiles on hair-trigger alert and Mikhail Gorbachev, the former Premier of the Soviet Union, is saying we are closer to a nuclear war than we have ever been. Under Hillary Clinton, we could slide into nuclear war very quickly from her declared policy in Syria.

So I don’t sleep well at night if Donald Trump is elected. But I sure won’t sleep well at night if Hillary Clinton is elected. Fortunately, we have another choice other than these two candidates who are both promoting lethal policies.

On the issue of war and nuclear weapons and the potential for nuclear war, it’s actually Hillary’s policies which are much scarier than Donald Trump who does not want to go to war with Russia. He wants to seek modes of working together, which is the route that we need to follow.

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Jimmy Dore says voting your conscience means not voting for Hillary Clinton but for Jill Stein

dore

Jimmy Dore: So guess what: everybody’s coming down on me for wanting to vote my conscience. Right, because I don’t want to vote for a warmonger. Right, which is what Hillary Clinton is. She voted for the Iraq war, which to Democrats that used to be a disqualifier ever since Howard Dean. Was a disqualifier but now ignoring her vote on the Iraq war is the progressive thing to do. Which is ridiculous, right, because we’re still paying for that.

People like to go, we’re still paying for Ralph Nader because of George Bush’s mistakes. No, we’re still paying for Hillary Clinton’s mistakes because it wouldn’t have happened without Hillary Clinton. The Democrats went along with George Bush. That’s why we need a revolution.

So why is it she tweets this out: she said vote your conscience. So I’m going to vote my conscience because I can’t support a warmonger or someone who’s against helping climate change, which she is: she’s pro-fracking, which is worse, we’ve been told, than coal-burning because of the methane. And she doesn’t accept the science on fracking.

So again she’s just as bad as the people she’s trying to point the finger at. She is because she’s in bed with corporations. The Republicans are in bed with the fossil fuel industry, which is why they deny climate change. The Democrats are in bed with the fossil fuel industry, which is why they deny the damage from fracking. You see how it goes.

And then they get to say we accept science because we think about the other thing but this thing. So why is it if she says vote your conscience, and I vote my conscience, people are going to call me childish. People will call me a super dick head. They’ll call me uninformed. They’ll call me childish: did I already say that one?

Unidentified Speaker: Yeah.

Jimmy Dore: Petulant. They’ve called me reckless. I’ve been called everything. Also my character has been assaulted because I’m too lazy, I don’t have the character to do the work to get informed about Hillary Clinton.

The problem isn’t with people are uninformed about Hillary Clinton. Your problem, Hillary Clinton supporter, is the people who are informed about Hillary Clinton’s record: you duplicitous liar.

So it’s ok to vote your conscience. She says vote your conscience but only if you’re going to vote for her, not if you’re going to vote for Jill Stein. Then that’s bad. But only if… again, she’s entitled to your vote.

Unidentified Speaker: What Hillary Clinton’s people are asking you to do, and they must have come around to this, they’re asking you to overlook certain things about Hillary Clinton because the alternative is so dangerous.

Jimmy Dore: Then say that. Then say that: please let’s overlook her horribleness. I can’t believe we ended up here.

Unidentified Speaker: You just can’t put that on TV spot though. I mean, how is that going to go down?

Jimmy Dore: You don’t have to write articles calling Bernie sexist or calling me reckless. You don’t have to do stuff like that. You don’t have to go, boy, look, I feel bad that Jimmy Dore has been put in this position. He has to either support a warmonger whose pro-fracking and pro Wall Street. That’s his choice or he can vote his conscience and if he does that, I’m going to smear him as not having the character to get informed. I’m going to smear him. That’s what people do, like I’m a bagel.

Unidentified Speaker: Right, l you’re cute, you’re delicious and edible, I’m sure. But what I would say is that, of course, makes no sense. I understand the argument, which is, Jimmy, the viable vote, the vote that has a chance to carry the election, has to be cast for Hillary or Donald Trump. The Jill Stein protest vote is effective in the protest arena but it doesn’t actually affect the likely outcome, which will be one or the other. I get that. And so in that context, they’re saying, Jimmy, vote your conscience that way.

But all the other stuff they’re doing, which is keeping on the, you’re misinformed, you don’t know what you’re talking about, you haven’t seen the stuff, that’s, of course, it’s because you’re over informed that you can make these points. She isn’t a good choice. She’s a bad choice. But given the alternative, and the I believe the guy she’s running against his as mobbed up as you can be, I mean, really….

Jimmy Dore: He is in bed with Kissinger, oh, I’m sorry, with Hillary. Remember he is in bed with some guy who secretly bombed Cambodia for a few years. No?

Unidentified Speaker: I mean, you’re right. It’s awful. Mommy and daddy are both bad. I wish I could say one was good. They’re not.

Jimmy Dore: She has some more experience of our own: she took some sniper fire in Bosnia [laughter]. Trump is such a liar. Vote your conscience but only if your conscience tells you to vote for Hillary.

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Glenn Greenwald Asks “Why Did Saudi Regime & Other Gulf Tyrannies Donate Millions to Clinton Foundation?” Transcript and video.

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Questions surrounding Hillary Clinton and the Clinton Foundation continue to grow. On Sunday, Democratic National Committee interim chairperson Donna Brazile defended Clinton’s meetings as secretary of state with Clinton Foundation donors, saying, “When Republicans meet with their donors, with their supporters, their activists, they call it a meeting. When Democrats do that, they call it a conflict.” Donna Brazile’s comments come in response to an Associated Press investigation revealing that while Hillary Clinton served as secretary of state, more than half of the private citizens she met with during the reporting period had donated to the Clinton Foundation. The AP investigation comes after a three-year battle to gain access to State Department calendars. The analysis shows that at least 85 of 154 people Hillary Clinton had scheduled phone or in-person meetings with were foundation donors. We speak to Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Glenn Greenwald of The Intercept. His most recent piece is headlined “Why Did the Saudi Regime and Other Gulf Tyrannies Donate Millions to the Clinton Foundation?”

AMY GOODMAN: This is Democracy Now!, democracynow.org, The War and Peace Report. I’m Amy Goodman. As we continue our conversation with Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Glenn Greenwald, we turn to the U.S. presidential elections and the growing questions surrounding Hillary Clinton and the Clinton Foundation. On Sunday, Democratic National Committee interim Chairwoman Donna Brazile defended Clinton’s meetings as secretary of state with Clinton Foundation donors on CBS’s Face the Nation.

DONNA BRAZILE: When Republicans meet with their donors, with their supporters, their activists, they call it a meeting. When Democrats do that, they call it a conflict. It’s not pay to play, unless somebody, you know, actually gave someone 50 cents to say, “I need a meeting.” No, in this great country of ours, when you meet with constituents, when you meet with heads of states, when you meet with people like Bono, who I love, you meet with them because they have a—they want to bring a matter to your attention. That’s not pay to play. It’s called that when Democrats do it; it’s not called that when Republicans do it.

AMY GOODMAN: Donna Brazile’s comments come in response to an Associated Press investigation revealing that while Hillary Clinton served as secretary of state, more than half of the private citizens she met with during the reporting period had donated to the Clinton Foundation. The AP investigation comes after a three-year battle to gain access to State Department calendars. The analysis shows that at least 85 of the 154 people Hillary Clinton had scheduled phone or in-person meetings with were foundation donors, not including meetings Clinton held with U.S. or foreign government workers or representatives, only private citizens. And these 85 donors contributed more than $150 million to the Clinton Foundation combined.

The AP investigation has faced criticism for excluding Clinton’s meetings with U.S. and foreign government officials, which some say present a skewed view of her activities while secretary of state. But in a statement, the Associated Press defended the investigation, writing, quote, “It focused on Mrs. Clinton’s meetings and calls involving people outside government who were not federal employees or foreign diplomats, because meeting with U.S. or foreign government officials would inherently have been part of her job as secretary of state,” unquote.

This all comes as a federal judge has ordered the State Department to set a timetable for the release of 15,000 additional emails the FBI has collected during the agency’s investigation into Clinton’s use of a private email server.

For more, we continue our conversation with Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Glenn Greenwald of The Intercept. He has been closely following the U.S. presidential elections. His recent piece, “Why Did the Saudi Regime and Other Gulf Tyrannies Donate Millions to the Clinton Foundation?” So, Glenn, your response?

GLENN GREENWALD: Well, I mean, the problem here is that the context in which this is all taking place is that the Republicans have nominated this truly unstable, dangerous and often terrifying person who obviously should never get anywhere near the White House. And so, there seem to be a lot of people, including in journalism, who think that because that’s the case, the Democratic nominee, who has all kinds of flaws and vulnerabilities and ethical clouds surrounding her, should sort of get to waltz into the White House free of challenge or questioning, because somehow it’s our civic and moral duty to make sure that Donald Trump loses the election. And although I do think that Donald Trump getting anywhere near the White House is very dangerous, I also think it’s very dangerous to allow someone to gain extraordinary amounts of political power, even more than they already have, without being challenged or questioned by an adversarial media. The role of journalists should be to shine a light on both of them. And there’s a lot of light to be shined on what Bill and Hillary Clinton had been doing in terms of unifying private wealth and oligarchical financing and enormous amounts of political power in ways that blur every single conceivable ethical line.

And what Donna Brazile said in that video that you played is nothing short of laughable. It’s not questioned when Republicans do favors for their donors? Of course it is. In fact, it’s been a core, central critique of the Democratic Party, both Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton, for years, that Republicans are corrupt because they serve the interest of their big donors. One of the primary positions of the Democratic Party is that the Citizens United decision of the Supreme Court has corrupted politics because it allows huge money to flow into the political process in a way that ensures, or at least creates the appearance, that people are doing favors for donors.

And so, here you have Hillary Clinton and Bill Clinton having this Clinton Foundation, with billions of dollars pouring into it from some of the world’s worst tyrannies, like Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates and Qatar and other Gulf states, other people who have all kinds of vested interests in the policies of the United States government. And at the same time, in many cases, both Bill and Hillary Clinton are being personally enriched by those same people, doing speeches, for many hundreds of thousands of dollars, in front of them, at the same time that she’s running the State Department, getting ready to run for president, and soon will be running the executive branch. And so, the primary defense of Democrats, which is, “Look, there is no proof of a quid pro quo. Yes, Hillary Clinton did things that benefited these donors, but you can’t prove that the reason she did them is because she got—the Clinton Foundation got this money or her husband got this money,” this is an absurd standard. That has been the Republican argument for many years. Of course you can’t prove a quid pro quo, because you can’t get into the mind of somebody and show their motives. That was the argument of Antonin Scalia and John Roberts in Citizens United, and Anthony Kennedy. They said, “Look, you can’t prove that big money donations are corrupting. Maybe it creates an appearance of it, but you can’t prove it.”

And so, the problem here is that the Clintons have essentially become the pioneers of eliminating all of these lines, of amassing massive wealth from around the world, and using that to boost their own political power, and then using that political power to boost the interests of the people who are enriching them in all kinds of ways. And of course questions need to be asked, and suspicions are necessarily raised, because this kind of behavior is inherently suspicious. And it needs a lot of media scrutiny and a lot of attention, and I’m glad it’s getting that.

AMY GOODMAN: Let me go to Paul Glastris, who is the editor-in-chief of the Washington Monthly, and he was President Bill Clinton’s chief speechwriter from ’98 to 2001. I want to go to his comments.

PAUL GLASTRIS: The reason the Clinton State Department and the entire Obama administration was willing to give a lot of arms to the Saudis and the Bahrainis was that they were tubing the Saudis and the Bahrainis by trying to open negotiations with Iran. Everybody knows this. It’s not—we don’t need to kind of find some nefarious payoff in order to understand the policy. You can agree with the policy or disagree with the policy, but if you’re in favor of the opening of Iran, it’s hard to say they shouldn’t have sold these arms to the Sunnis. They were trying to keep a balance of power going in order to bring some kind of peace and resolution of these nuclear issues.

AMY GOODMAN: So that was Paul Glastris, when he had a debate at the time on Democracy Now! last week with David Sirota of International Business Times. But your response, Glenn?

GLENN GREENWALD: What an intellectually dishonest hack that guy is. Just think about what you just heard. So this is a former Democratic operative, who now is the editor-in-chief of a liberal magazine, the Washington Monthly, and what he is doing is he’s looking into the camera and speaking into his microphone and justifying selling arms to the worst regime, or one of the worst regimes, on the planet, which is the Saudi regime, because he needs to do that in order to defend the Clintons. That is what the Democratic Party has become. He is in the position of having to justify extraordinarily immoral behavior. The Saudis are currently using those arms, that were funneled to them by the United States government, approved by Hillary Clinton, to obliterate Yemeni children and Yemeni civilians for over two years now with the direct help of the United States government. And he is justifying that as some sort of magnanimous desire on the part of the Clintons to bring about world peace by forging a deal with Iran.

The reality is, is that the Democratic Party and the Republican Party have been funding the Saudis for decades, long before that nonsensical excuse was even available about trying to facilitate the Iran deal, and at the very same time, the Saudis are feeding millions and millions and millions of dollars to the Clinton Foundation, enriching and empowering the Clintons in all kinds of ways. It’s a case of the Clintons and the world’s worst despots scratching each other’s back and doing favors for each other, while Democratic propagandists, like the one we just heard from, justify it as some sort of magnanimous gesture.

And this has really become the problem, which is, you have—there was all this talk over the last two weeks about the dangers of letting the media merge with a political campaign, when Donald Trump hired the chairman of Breitbart. And yet what you have is huge numbers of media outlets that are liberal media outlets, that are—exist for no reason but to serve the Democratic Party and their political leaders. They justify every single thing they do. They defend them from every single criticism that exists, without any kind of scruples or even pretense of independence. And overwhelmingly, the American media is completely on the side of the Clintons and Hillary Clinton in this campaign, and the liberals in the U.S. media are more propagandistic in defending Hillary Clinton than even her own campaign spokespeople are. And that clip proves that so, so potently.

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Chris Hedges argues that corporate commodification of our natural resources and human capital will continue unabated. Transcript and video.

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[Unofficial transcript provided by William Brighenti.  Please advise of any errors or omissions.  Thank you.]

Lee Camp: Welcome to Redacted Tonight VIP. I’m Lee Camp. On the show today I talk with Chris Hedges, the Pulitzer Prize winning journalist and author who also hosts the show On Contact here on RT America. His latest book, Wages of Rebellion, explains why revolt is a moral imperative. He doesn’t just write about these tough topics, he also walks the walk.

You filed a lawsuit against the Obama administration in 2012 challenging the National Defense Authorization Act, which allows our government to indefinitely detain people without a trial or charges, including journalists. I talked with Chris earlier today while we did each other’s nails.

And in the second half of the show, I want to address the complaint that I don’t criticize Donald Trump enough. It’s a harsh and hurtful critique and that’s why I want to respond to it.

But first here’s my talk earlier today with Chris Hedges.

Hi Chris, thanks for joining me.

Chris Hedges: Sure.

Lee Camp: I have a lot of questions but most of them revolve around Brad Pitt Angelina Jolie’s divorce. I hope that’s okay.

Chris Hedges: Yeah, that’s the primary focus of my work.

Lee Camp: Yeah, I know that. No, actually first I’d like to ask you, you’ve talked before about Sheldon Wolin’s idea that we live in corporate totalitarianism ruled by the anonymous corporate state. With the case of the recent Dakota access pipeline protest, you know, there was the private security firm alongside the militarized police using dogs and pepper spray to protect basically the investment of the big banks. The big banks are our funding the pipeline. Is it fair to view those dogs as kind of the teeth of the corporate state while the actual rulers, the decision-makers, the ones calling those shots, they’re nowhere to be seen. There probably not even in the Dakotas.

Chris Hedges: Yeah, that’s very much, I think, what Wolin elucidates in his last book, Democracy Incorporated and he argues that we live in, he calls it, inverted totalitarianism. And by that he means it’s not classical totalitarianism?—it doesn’t find its expression through a demagogue or a charismatic leader?—but through the anonymity of the corporate state.

So you’re right. It’s a faceless kind of entity. And so you have a corporate system that purports to pay fealty to electoral politics, the Constitution, the iconography and language of American patriotism, and yet internally has seized all of the levers of power to render the citizen impotent. And you’re exactly right. So the actual figures or entities that are pulling the strings are nowhere near North Dakota.

Lee Camp: Right, and what do you make of Amy Goodman of Democracy Now being charged with trespassing for simply reporting on it?

Chris Hedges: Well, they’ve been doing that up-and-down pipelines. They were doing that when they were building the southern leg of the XL. People would actually be invited onto private land, and I think one of the things that’s most frightening, and we saw this with North Dakota, this fusion of State Security with these amorphous private mercenaries or security outfits.

I was arrested during the Occupy movement with several activists in front of Goldman Sachs but the people who actually came out and were involved in our removal weren’t NYPD. They were, they may have used former NYPD or FBI, but they were all the internal security of Goldman Sachs itself. We know that corporations have privatized the gathering of intelligence, that there is a fusion down near Wall Street of these corporate and public policing entities. Seventy percent of US intelligence of our 16 intelligence agencies is actually carried out by companies like Booz Allen Hamilton, where Snowden worked. 99 percent of it. So that that’s very frightening when you essentially are with?—and there’s no discussion of this among the public?—you are powering these subterranean unseen private security entities and giving them in essence police power and yet, they are never identified. People don’t know. What we saw with Katrina, you know, with the then black water appearing on the streets of New Orleans.

Lee Camp: Right, and in fact the police around the pipeline mysteriously disappeared when the dogs came out because I take it cops are not allowed to release dogs on protesters but private security, it’s a different scenario.

You mentioned the corporate state kind of pretends to obey electoral politics but it seems to largely be a distraction. And it seems like, I mean maybe it’s always been rigged, but it seems like we’re seeing an increasing level of rigging of these elections. We saw in the primaries how Bernie Sanders campaign was undermined every step. We’ve seen the reality of the rigging through the leaked DNC emails and the hundred thousand voters knocked off the rolls in Brooklyn, that was just Brooklyn, New York alone. And when that was happening, we were told by our mainstream media that our election system is completely just, it’s right, it can never be manipulated. Anyone saying otherwise is a conspiracy theorist.

Yet all of a sudden this weird thing has happened after the primaries where the corporate media seems to have suddenly had a change of heart. They report regularly on how the elections could be hacked, they could be rigged. CBS News did a report recently on how someone could hack an electronic voting machine with a fifteen-dollar device that is sold online. What do you make of the sudden change in the media.

Chris Hedges: Well there were many obstacles that were placed by the Democratic National Committee against the Sanders campaign. One of the biggest was that in many states they banned independents from voting in the Democratic primaries, which of course constituted most of Bernie Sanders base. Now the taxpayers pay for the primaries and yet it is the party that sets the rules and games the system with super-delegates. They stole Nevada. Well I think that at the moment the people, or let’s say the power elites, have to create a level of trust and confidence in the system even though they may know it’s rigged. And so after the fact, after it’s too late, one can go back and do a post-mortem when it can’t affect anything. But during the process itself, you’re right, anybody who questioned the legitimacy of the system, let’s call it over the corporate airwaves, was kind of dismissed as a wacko.

Lee Camp: Yeah and I want to ask one more question about the election before I move on to something else. I saw some my cousins this weekend, and they want, I think, a lot of the same things that you or I want: they want more equality in our country; they want less racism; they want more privacy and less war. And they, like many Americans, say if you want those things, you have no choice but to hold your nose and vote for Hillary Clinton. What’s wrong with that logic?

Chris Hedges: Well, because it’s neoliberal policies, globalization, which has created the phenomena of Trump and enraged disenfranchised supporters, primarily white, and if Clinton wins the election and continues these policies, we are going to get somebody worse than Trump. Trump as a figure may disappear from the political landscape but until we halt the assault of neoliberalism, the programs of austerity, the corporate assault?—I mean, you go to cities like Scranton, Pennsylvania, everything, they just sold their sewer system, everything is privatized, they sold their parking authority, they’ve already sold their water system. Rates are going through the roof. This kind of constant gradual gouging of the underclass?—and half of the country lives in poverty or, you know, relative poverty?—will create a backlash.

Trump is not the phenomenon; he’s responding to the phenomena, and unless we break that phenomena, then we are headed the way all societies that essentially seize up and refuse to respond to legitimate grievances of citizens are headed towards: whether that’s by Weimar Germany which ended in the Nazis or Yugoslavia which I covered which ended with the rise of ethnic religious nationalists like Slobodan Milosevic and Radovan Karavich and Franjo Tudjman and others.

And you know, we have to stop looking beyond this election cycle and see that this corporate driven ideology, you know, this commodification of the culture, this constant extracting of blood from us as citizens to pay what in essence were private debts of the banks which engaged in casino capitalism, has political consequences. History has taught us that. And Hillary Clinton is only going to further that process.

Lee Camp: Yeah, absolutely. You started to jump ahead to my next question. You touched on it. You were a war correspondent in many countries. You saw the devastation and the chaos, and you saw what led up to it. And in your book, Wages of Rebellion, you see the same things in America now. Can you speak to what it is you saw that mirrors other countries? What you see now that mirrors other countries?

Chris Hedges: Yeah, well, what mirrors is that there is in this case a corporate cabal, a tiny group of the power elite, that has seized the machinery of government to serve their own interests at the expense of the vast majority. So this creates what I would call political paralysis because the normal functions of the state, the common good, you know, we’re seeing it with hedge funds taking over school systems, through charter schools, which is because they want the 600 some billion dollars they spend. You know, it’s not about teaching disadvantaged children to read or write. There’s a cannibalization, actually Karl Marx wrote about this as the final stage of capitalism and I have watched countries that have whether it’s a kind of proto-fascist or, you know, an ethnic nationalist cabal, seize power to serve their own interest.

I’ve watched the explosion that takes place, and we are no different from them. We’re really playing now with potentially deep unrest especially with the proliferation of weapons in this country and political breakdown. That’s the game we’re playing. And I think history has amply illustrated that.

Lee Camp: Yeah I mean it’s kind of inevitable when you have a corporate state that will just exploit everything, exploit the resources and the people, to the breaking point, that eventually there will be a response.

Many believe that in a capitalist society the corporate entities will always ultimately take over the levers of the state and they will use the state to further their ends. We talked some about that earlier with the Dakota pipeline and really with bailing out the banks in 2008. So does that mean capitalism is fatally flawed and if so what type of system do you think people should be pushing for?

Chris Hedges: I lost the last part, could you repeat the question?

Lee Camp: Yeah the question was is capitalism fatally flawed in that way and if so what type of system should people be pushing for?

Chris Hedges: Right. Well I think we have to differentiate between different types of capitalism. There’s the penny capitalism that took place in the farm community where I grew up where farmers came in and sold their produce. There’s regional capitalism, that is, a business owner owns a small factory and sits on the school board, invests in the community. And then there’s something else which is global corporate capitalism, which essentially eviscerates national borders, pushing through trade agreements like NAFTA and the TPP, driving down, doing what capitalism always does, which is maximize profit and drive down labor costs.

So that the protections that workers had garnered in the industrialized world, now only about six percent of the private sector is unionized, is destroyed because we can use sweatshop workers in Bangladesh who make 22 cents an hour. So I’m not actually anti-capitalist but capitalism, and again this is something Marx understood, has to be heavily controlled. And to break up monopolies, to break up of as we see with the banks, these institutions that are “too big to fail” and that are global?—that have no loyalty to the national state?—and unfortunately these corporate capitalists have taken over the system so the government now accelerates this assault, as you correctly pointed out, not only on working men and women, the poor, and now the middle class, but of course we can’t forget the ecosystem itself.

Lee Camp: Right. I think part of that heavy regulation is to make sure that capitalism doesn’t put a price on everything, such as air, water….

Chris Hedges: That’s what it has done. That’s what it has done. It’s the commodification of everything and they will do what they do, which is that they will exploit, whether it’s the natural world or whether it’s human capital, until exhaustion or collapse. And now there are no impediments left.

Lee Camp: Chris, I can’t thank you enough. I hope you’ll come back sometime, and keep fighting.

Chris Hedges: Thank you.

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Ralph Nader Says Calling a Third-Party Candidate a Spoiler Is the Same as Saying Shut Up

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People from outside the major parties who are pursuing elected office are exercising their First Amendment rights, and calling them spoilers is an act of “political bigotry” that should never be tolerated by the American people, civil rights champion and four-time presidential candidate Ralph Nader told “Democracy Now!”

Nader’s comments come one week before the 2016 nominees’ first presidential debates, which the Commission on Presidential Debates—a private corporation owned and controlled by the Republican and Democratic parties—announced Friday will exclude both Jill Stein of the Green Party and Gary Johnson of the Libertarian Party.

“If we had proportional representation, instant runoff voting, all this spoiler stuff wouldn’t be around,” Nader continued. “Everyone has an equal right to run for office. Everyone is going to get votes from one another. So they’re either spoilers of one another or none of them are spoilers.”

“You should never tell anybody to shut up,” Nader added. “And when you run for office, it’s free speech, petition and assembly. It’s the consummate use of the First Amendment. But here—it’s a scapegoating. The Democrats could never get over how they couldn’t beat this bumbling governor from Texas, who couldn’t put a paragraph together and has a horrible record.”

In the clips below, Nader and “Democracy Now!” host Amy Goodman discuss the system that decides who gets to enter presidential debates—how it formed and how it operates today—and how the “huge, wonderful effort” that Sen. Bernie Sanders launched during the 2016 presidential primary “is now aborted,” as Nader said.

“Sanders hasn’t returned a call from me in 18 years,” Nader stated. “He is a lone ranger. He doesn’t like to be pushed into more progressive action than he is willing to adhere to. As a result, millions of his voters now are in disarray. They don’t know where to go.”

At length, Nader spelled out what he thinks Sanders should do:

“It is the time for Senator Sanders to mobilize, as he can, all his supporters around the country with mass rallies to put the heat on both candidates. Is anything wrong with that? He should have a mass rally in the Mall and then spread it all over the country, so you have civic pressure, citizen pressure, coming in on all the candidates to further the just pathways of our society. Why doesn’t he do that? …

It isn’t a matter of either/or; it’s a matter of him cutting out from the accolades to Hillary, which he doesn’t like to do—he doesn’t like to be a robot or run around the country that way—and mobilize the citizenry, which will transcend the election and start something effective after the election.”

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