By Jonathan Freedland for The Guardian – For it was Groucho Marx’s character – impersonated for that scene by brother Chico – who asked, in the 1933 classic Duck Soup, “Who are you going to believe, me or your own eyes?” In his first appearance at the podium as White House press secretary on Saturday, Sean Spicer adhered to that same Marxist doctrine by demanding that the media ignore the clear evidence of their own eyes, as well as photographs and video footage, and instead believe Trump’s claim that he had drawn record-breaking crowds to his inauguration ceremony the previous day. Or to be precise, “the largest audience to ever witness the inauguration – period. Both in person and around the globe.”
By Jon Rappoport for Jon Rappoport’s Blog – This is a coup. This is equivalent to declaring a national state of emergency, including martial law: the DHS, if it deemed it necessary, could utilize armed agents to enforce the new directive and take over states’ offices that resist. Election-processes belong to the states. But not anymore. And of course, with this awesome new power, the DHS could intercede, behind the scenes, in the voting process and rig elections. There is an additional aligned factor at work in this op: the proposed elimination of the Electoral College—yet another measure designed to “federalize” the election process. Most people are entirely ignorant of the fact that the Constitution was a pact among states.
By Moon of Alabama. Last week the U.S. Director of National Intelligence, the CIA, the NSA and the FBI released a report about alleged Russian hacking of the Democratic National Council and on Russian influence operation on the U.S. presidential election. The report failed to convince anyone. It is indeed a public relation disaster for the Intelligence Community. John Harwood covers “the economy and national politics for CNBC and the New York Times.” More then 100,000 people follow him on Twitter. He is known as Hillary Clinton supporter and chummy with John Podesta who ran Clinton’s election campaign. Harwood set up a simple poll. It is not statistically representative but gives a picture of a general sentiment: 83% believed Wikileaks, 17% believed US intelligence officials.
By William J. Barber, II for Think Progress – On election night I felt a great sadness for America — not a Democratic or Republican sadness, but a sadness for the heart and soul of the nation. It is impossible to react to the election of Donald Trump with anything less than moral outrage. Trump is, as David Remnick wrote for The New Yorker, “vulgarity unbounded,” and his election has not only struck fear in the hearts of the vulnerable but also given rise to hundreds of documented cases of harassment and intimidation. Trump ran his campaign sensing the feeling of dispossession and anxiety among millions of voters — white voters, in the main.
By Staff of Sparrow Media – WASHINGTON, DC — The CIA, FBI, Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) are in violation of the Freedom of Information Act. Investigative journalist Jason Leopold and Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) PhD candidate/Harvard Klein Center for Internet & Society research affiliate, Ryan Shapiro, filed a lawsuit yesterday against the FBI, CIA, DHS, and ODNI. The suit is over the agencies’ failures to comply with Shapiro and Leopold’s Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests for records on Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election. Shapiro and Leopold’s FOIA requests and lawsuit…
By Joe Catron for Mint Press News – NEW YORK — Thousands of protesters who have mobilized nationally since the election of Donald Trump are planning a massive convergence in Washington against the presidential inauguration on Jan. 20. “We believe that we are entering a new period of mass mobilization in the United States,” Walter Smolarek, a spokesperson for the ANSWER Coalition, told MintPress News. ANSWER, which organized a number of major anti-war protests since its founding 15 years ago, is one of many groups mobilizing against the inauguration.
By Thomas S. Harrington for Common Dreams – I would love to share, my liberal friend, in your sense of incredulity about the election of Donald Trump to the presidency of United States. I would love to stand with you in the sense of woundedness that, while certainly painful up front, carries with it the secondary compensation of a warm and nurturing solidarity. I would love to sit with you and fulminate in righteous anger about the unparalleled vulgarity and cruelty of Trump and his followers. As much as I’d like to do these things, I won’t. Why? Because I know you, perhaps better than you even dare to know yourself.
By Staff of DC Indy Media – From January 14-16, we’ll be organizing a series of trainings and workshops to get people ready for the upcoming actions, and to deepen our analysis and understanding of what is truly at stake under a Trump administration, how we can resist, and what we’re building towards. There will be in-depth Nonviolent Direct Action trainings, Self-Defense, Street Safety, and De-escalation trainings, Know Your Rights trainings, and many more. If you’d like to propose a workshop or training on either action or organizing skills, theory, or history, click here to fill out a quick submission form. We also want to create space for everyone who wants to protest to be able to participate safely.
By Sam Biddle for the Intercept. There’s a lot of evidence from the attack on the table, mostly detailing how the hack was perpetrated, and possibly the language of the perpetrators. It certainly remains plausible that Russians hacked the DNC, and remains possible that Russia itself ordered it. But the refrain of Russian attribution has been repeated so regularly and so emphatically that it’s become easy to forget that no one has ever truly proven the claim. There is strong evidence indicating that Democratic email accounts were breached via phishing messages, and that specific malware was spread across DNC computers. There’s even evidence that the attackers are the same group that’s been spotted attacking other targets in the past. But again: No one has actually proven that group is the Russian government (or works for it). This remains the enormous inductive leap that’s not been reckoned with, and Americans deserve better. . . in times of extraordinary risk, with two enormous military powers placed in direct conflict over national sovereignty, we need an extraordinary disclosure. The stakes are simply too high to take anyone’s word for it.
By Steve Horn for Desmog Blog – Shaun King, a writer for the New York Daily News, has uploaded what appears to be a recorded audio file of Energy Transfer Partners’ Chief Operating Officer saying that “election night changed everything” for the company as it relates to its embattled Dakota Access Pipeline. King stated on social media and on the SoundCloud page on which he posted the file that a source sent him the file on December 13, hours after Matthew Ramsey — COO of Energy Transfer Partners — gave his speech.
By Robert Parry for Consortium News – As Democrats, the Obama administration and some neocon Republicans slide deeper into conspiracy theories about how Russia somehow handed the presidency to Donald Trump, they are behaving as they accused Trump of planning to behave if he had lost, questioning the legitimacy of the electoral process and sowing doubts about American democracy. The thinking then was that if Trump had lost, he would have cited suspicions of voter fraud…
By Staff of The Feminist Wire – The Feminist Wire is an anti-racist, anti-imperial feminist media and publishing company whose vision of justice and equity centers those whose lives, well-being, and bodies are the first to be assaulted under conditions of hyper-militarization, capitalism, patriarchy, ableism, white supremacy, and anti-Black racism around the world. Our work is grounded in a long and rich tradition of Black feminist thought and organizing, which compels us to interpret and respond to the world through an intersectional lens.
By Marcy Wheeler for the Empty Wheel. Before I start with the substance of the story, consider this background. First, if Trump comes into office on the current trajectory, the US will let Russia help Bashar al-Assad stay in power, thwarting a 4-year effort on the part of the Saudis to remove him from power. It will also restructure the hierarchy of horrible human rights abusing allies the US has, with the Saudis losing out to other human rights abusers, potentially up to and including that other petrostate, Russia. It will also install a ton of people with ties to the US oil industry in the cabinet, meaning the US will effectively subsidize oil production in this country, which will have the perhaps inadvertent result of ensuring the US remains oil-independent even though the market can’t justify fracking right now. The CIA is institutionally quite close with the Saudis right now, and has been in charge of their covert war against Assad.