Photo by Jane Wyman/Flickr 

Right from the beginning, the candidates in the South Carolina Republican debate brushed aside President Obama’s hopeful State of the Union message, doubling down on their apocalyptic vision of America.

Ted Cruz took the first question—whether the GOP candidates are “peddling fiction,” as the President said, when they claim that Obama has destroyed the U.S. economy. Cruz immediately pivoted to a darker theme: the image of U.S. sailors on their knees in front of Iranian soldiers. He excoriated Obama for not even mentioning the incident in which the sailors were picked up by Iran in his State of the Union address, and promised that he would bomb any country that tries to humiliate us.

Never mind that Iran had already freed the sailors, that the Pentagon has clarified that they had, indeed, strayed into Iranian waters, or that the Obama Administration’s improved diplomatic relationship with Iran led to the quick and peaceful resolution of the whole affair.

Things went downhill from there.

Donald Trump and Ted Cruz competed for what Trump “proudly” called “the mantle of anger.” They put on a ridiculous sideshow revolving around whether Cruz is really a U.S. citizen.  Obama was the real winner of that exchange as well, since the birther argument against Cruz exposes the sheer silliness of the birther argument against the President. The Republican base cheered Cruz for pointing out that the law is clear that being born in another country to a mother who is a U.S. citizen makes you a “natural born” U.S. citizen. So Obama, born of a U.S. citizen mother on U.S. soil, is clearly a natural born citizen, too.

But never mind. Facts don’t matter in the parallel universe where Donald Trump is the most popular candidate in the primary field for President of the United States.

Trump bushed back on Cruz, saying the law is murky, it would be “dangerous” to have him on the ticket, and that the Democrats are undoubtedly preparing a lawsuit on the birther issue right now. The crowd ate it up.

Jeb Bush was the only candidate to directly attack Trump’s bigoted Muslim-bashing, which Bush has described as “unhinged.” But moderator Neil Cavuto quickly shot down Bush’s sensible point that scapegoating Muslims as a group is both morally reprehensible and no way to build a coalition in the Middle East. Cavuto asked, if Trump is unhinged, is the base that supports him unhinged, too?

Bush had to say no. But it’s a key question. The forces the Republican Party has set loose by courting white supremacists, conspiracy theorists, and blood-thirsty nationalists who for a key part of Trump’s base can’t be easily crammed back in the attic. That door is losing its hinges and the result is scary, even for the people who opened it a crack.





Don`t conflate Obama with Sanders. Obama is a democrat. Sanders is a socialist. Obama was young, handsome and charismatic. He also represented the biggest demographic bloc in the Democratic party. Obama also had the support of the DNC which Sanders does not. Hillary is leading Sanders by 25 points in 2 recent polls. Hillary appeals to people of color unlike Sanders. Sanders may appeal to the young but a lot of them don`t vote. You really exaggerate the appeal of Sanders.
Brushed aside? How about called out? Every word out of scumbamas mouth was and IS a lie. Fake jobs reports, fake unemployment numbers, fake scumbamacare numbers ect... sadly you retarted liberals just suck in and actually believe what comes out his mouth. This presidential imposter and his boss valerie (muslim) jarrett have cause irreputable harm to this country.

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From drone strikes against Americans overseas to broad surveillance powers to indefinite detention, Obama certainly...

A thoughtful, optimistic, progressive speech about the better possibilities of American democracy just as the most...

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By Wendell Berry

Manifesto: The Mad Farmer Liberation Front

Love the quick profit, the annual raise,
vacation with pay. Want more 
of everything ready made. Be afraid 
to know your neighbors and to die.
And you will have a window in your head.
Not even your future will be a mystery 
any more. Your mind will be punched in a card 
and shut away in a little drawer.
When they want you to buy something 
they will call you. When they want you
to die for profit they will let you know. 
So, friends, every day do something
that won’t compute. Love the Lord. 
Love the world. Work for nothing. 
Take all that you have and be poor.
Love someone who does not deserve it. 
Denounce the government and embrace 
the flag. Hope to live in that free 
republic for which it stands. 
Give your approval to all you cannot
understand. Praise ignorance, for what man 
has not encountered he has not destroyed.
Ask the questions that have no answers. 
Invest in the millennium. Plant sequoias.
Say that your main crop is the forest
that you did not plant,
that you will not live to harvest.

Say that the leaves are harvested 
when they have rotted into the mold.
Call that profit. Prophesy such returns.
Put your faith in the two inches of humus 
that will build under the trees
every thousand years.
Listen to carrion—put your ear
close, and hear the faint chattering
of the songs that are to come. 
Expect the end of the world. Laugh. 
Laughter is immeasurable. Be joyful
though you have considered all the facts. 
So long as women do not go cheap 
for power, please women more than men.
Ask yourself: Will this satisfy 
a woman satisfied to bear a child?
Will this disturb the sleep 
of a woman near to giving birth? 
Go with your love to the fields.
Lie easy in the shade. Rest your head 
in her lap. Swear allegiance 
to what is nighest your thoughts.
As soon as the generals and the politicos 
can predict the motions of your mind, 
lose it. Leave it as a sign 
to mark the false trail, the way 
you didn’t go. Be like the fox 
who makes more tracks than necessary, 
some in the wrong direction.
Practice resurrection.

Wendell Berry is a poet, farmer, and environmentalist in Kentucky. This poem, first published in 1973, is reprinted by permission of the author and appears in his “New Collected Poems” (Counterpoint).

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