Jim: It's roundtable time. We'll talk about the election and other topics. Our e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org. Participating in our roundtable are The Third Estate Sunday Review's Dona, Ty, Jess, and me, Jim; Rebecca of Sex and Politics and Screeds and Attitude; Betty of Thomas Friedman Is a Great Man; Kat of Kat's Korner (of The Common Ills); Cedric of Cedric's Big Mix; Mike of Mikey Likes It!; Elaine of Like Maria Said Paz); Ruth of Ruth's Report; Trina of Trina's Kitchen; Wally of The Daily Jot; Marcia of SICKOFITRDLZ; Stan of Oh Boy It Never Ends; Isaiah of The World Today Just Nuts and Ann of Ann's Mega Dub. Betty's kids did the illustration. You are reading a rush transcript.
Jim (Con't): The election is finally approaching. Can we trust the polls? Are the polls for real?
Mike: That's a good question, especially when you're seeing reporting -- like at ZERO HEDGE -- about the oversampling. I wish C.I. and Ava were involved with this because I have a law degree, but I'm not poli sci intelligent. I haven't studied research methodology, for example. But we were talking about ZERO HEDGE's work over the phone and it's not possible that those polling couldn't see what ZERO HEDGE is pointing out -- and couldn't see it prior to the polling taking place. In other words, this isn't an accident in the polling, it's a design flaw, one created intentionally.
Jim: Kat and Wally, you're on the road speaking with Ava and C.I. What are you two seeing?
Kat: I see support for Jill Stein and Gary Johnson.
Wally: More for Jill.
Kat: Yeah. Now whether that is because we're speaking right now to very political audiences and very young ones, I don't know.
Wally: Right. What we're seeing wouldn't have to hold across all demographics but I'd say first time voters are very interested in Jill Stein. I'd say they're also interested in Gary Johnson but more for Jill.
Trina: Jill's noted that first time voters aren't being included in polling. INVESTORS BUSINESS DAILY has a new poll out today:
With 16 days to go until November 8, Donald Trump leads Hillary Clinton by 2 percentage points — 43% to 41% — in a four-way race, according to the latest IBD/TIPP presidential tracking poll.
Libertarian Party candidate Gary Johnson saw his support held steady at 7%, while the Green Party's Jill Stein dipped to 3%.
Unrounded, Trump leads 42.6% to 40.8% — a 1.8-point edge — with Johnson at 7.2% and Stein at 3.3%.
Trump also holds a nearly one-point lead in a two-way matchup — 43.2% to 42.3%.
Jim: That is so different from the poll by ABC.
Kat: But how can we trust a poll by an ABC or NBC when they've attempted to hijack the election from the very beginning. They've refused to treat issues seriously, treated the e-mail scandal as an irritation when it's a serious issue.
Ann: They don't like Donald Trump. I'm a Green voting for Jill Stein. I've never seen the media behave like this. They are threatened by Donald Trump.
Ty: I would agree with that. He's not someone they can control the way they can Hillary. With Hillary, it's like there's an agreement, 'Please the elites and will let you be as corrupt and crooked as you want.' Donald Trump can't be controlled like that. He brings an independence with him that scares elites. He might burn their house down. That's why they're lining up behind Hillary.
Ruth: That is a very astute call. Donald Trump represent a populism they cannot control, that they do not like and that they do not respect. If they cannot control him with regards to war, what if, heaven forbid, he came into office and turned out to be a 'class traitor' and started working for class equality? Think of all the efforts the establishment made to tear down FDR's reforms -- just reforms, mind you -- and how it took decades for them to tear down so much. Think of how the last president who appeared concerned about poverty was LBJ and how the establishment has worked so hard at undoing his Great Society. In the sixties, those speaking of class inequality used to note the top 5% controlled the bulk of the money and now it is up to the top 1%.
Cedric: Those are some solid points. Now with Hillary Clinton? The ruling class knows she will be doing just what her husband did -- using racist dog whistles to scare up tensions and justify the continued disproportionate imprisonment rates. She is not about changing anything. A few crumbs will be tossed to some in the form of minor increases in disposable income. But the bulk of Americans will suffer.
Ann: And blame themselves, wonder what it is about them that doesn't allow them to be included in the Clinton 'boom' -- never realizing that the system is rigged against them and their so-called public servant isn't serving the public at all. Hillary is so hideous and I really have so little tolerance for the idiots backing her.
Isaiah: You mean White entitlement gurus like Tom Hayden and Jane Fonda? Yeah, they are a big fat joke. The world will be a lot better when both of those geriatric fake asses either get put in assisted living or die off. And am I the only one laughing at Katy Perry and Miley Cyrus and their dumb asses on campuses going "Vote for Hillary"?
Betty: I love the whole White power brigade for Hillary -- as a Black woman, I find it very telling how we keep seeing all these White power activists -- Tom Hayden, Katy Perry. Hell, Jane Fonda. She's so racist. Look at the films she produced and find the Black people? The biggest Black star she ever hired for a film? Willie Tyler -- and Lester! For a bit part in COMING HOME. Does it get more racist than that? COMING HOME, THE CHINA SYNDROME, ROLLOVER, 9 TO 5, ON GOLDEN POND -- this is a radical making films? Hell, it's not even a liberal.
Rebecca: Don't forget she gave a bit part to an African-American actress in 9 TO 5 -- the cleaning lady who's only line is: "Vera, there's another stiff in the john."
Marcia: I saw White power Hillary on TV this afternoon, she was at a church -- an African-American church. She sure likes to use us as props.
Kat: All I see on TV from her campaign is White people. Does she have any people of color?
Elaine: No, but her cult sure rushed to refer to Jill Stein as too White, didn't they?
Marcia: Yeah, despite the fact that her running mate is Ajamu Baraka -- the only person of color on any presidential ticket.
Elaine: White 'leaders' have been especially disappointing in the last years as they've failed to stand up for any issues that matter but instead act as megaphones for the administration. That's not challenging anything. That's not demonstrating bravery.
Betty: For me, it starts in 2008 when Grace Lee Boggs bought into and spread Barack Obama's false hope and change.
Cedric: Amen. On my old site on Blogdrive, every week I would highlight her or her writing and activist partner. I would highlight one of their weekly columns and I had such admiration for Grace Lee Boggs. But then she went on DEMOCRACY NOW and acted the fool.
Betty: And Lord knows that's the place to act it. Talk about disappointing.
Ruth: When Amy Goodman supported the Libyan War and slanted her coverage to lie about it, that was your first clue that our so-called leaders had come unhinged. Grace Lee Boggs was a disappointment but I cannot get over Ms. Goodman and how quickly she publicly sold out.
Rebecca: I thank God that Arhundati Roy basically washed her hands of the US and focused on something else. I would hate to think she could have gotten taken in but when I look at the list of the fools and the sell outs -- it's like who knows, you know? Seriously. She's an outspoken defender of Ed Snowden, the NSA whistle-blower, so I would think even if she'd focused on the US in, say, 2010, she would have been her true self but, honestly, I just don't know.
Isaiah: They were always puppets. Norman Solomon damn well knows better than to go on the radio praising Barack Obama, in 2008, without informing listeners that he's a delegate for Barack. The whoring really starts there, if you think about it.
Ann: And don't forget CJR. Martha had to shame them. You find out that a Bully Boy Bush official, while he was in Iraq, was sleeping with a reporter? Okay, maybe it's not big deal. But then you find out that she was showing him her coverage before she submitted it to her editor. It is a big deal. And the so-called ethicists of FAIR and CJR didn't want to touch it. It took Martha, community member Martha, pointing out the rank hypocrisy of CJR as they went overboard on some local story about some journalist sleeping with who she was covering, it took that to get CJR to cover the official sleeping with the reporter covering him.
Cedric: And just to add, the official was protected by the press not because he was Bully Boy Bush's boy in Iraq but because he was now Barack's. We're talking about Gina Chon and Brett McGurk and, excuse the hell out of me, but I'm damn tired of POLITICO and others giving credit for 'breaking' the story to websites that published it a day or two days after C.I. had already written about it -- check the June 5, 2012 snapshot. C.I. was the first to write about the e-mails.
Rebecca: Well they're threatened by C.I. She won't play nice -- that's what the e-mails I get say -- from reporters. Why won't she play nice? Because she's opposed to the Iraq War and she's opposed to 'coverage' that lies. You do your job and she'll be thrilled, she'll praise you if you warrant it. But, no, she's not Bob Somerby, she's not going to lie for you because your her friend. She's not going to look the other way because you made nice.
Jim: Well, I mean, here she and Ava cover TV and they don't mince words, they say what needs to be said and, yes, sometimes it hurts people's feelings. And if they know the person, they call and they say, "Look, it's our opinion, it may be meaningless, don't lose sleep over it, but we can't lie when we're writing."
Dona: But don't insult Nick Lachey -- you could probably get away with it today. Back when he had his moment and they wrote "Nick and Jessica Reporting For Two Hours of Self Love," for example, e-mails from Nick fans were filled with death threats.
Ty: And the sell out that we're talking about, it's all documented in real time in their reporting. John Nichols wants Bully Boy Bush impeached! He writes a book calling for the impeachment! The book comes out and he's promoting it! Two or so weeks later, Nancy Pelosi says impeachment is off the table and John's no longer promoting the book or pursuing impeachment. I'm sorry, I thought John Nichols worked for THE NATION magazine -- didn't realize that meant being a toady to Nancy Pelosi.
Mike: The number of people who did not sell out in the last years is very limited. You can put John Stauber on the list as a truth teller who kept his ethics.
Trina: Agreed with that call.
[We're inserting a Margaret Kimberley Tweet that went up after this roundtable because it came in second for Tweet of the Week.]
Trina (Con't): Glen Ford, Margaret Kimberley and Bruce Dixon have done a great job at BLACK AGENDA REPORT and telling the truth is not easy right now people have wanted their bedtime stories and not the truth.
Elaine: Jane Mayer -- press whore. Instead of doing her GITMO reporting or reporting on torture, she goes to what she probably considers the backwoods to mock religious people. She's just a whore. She dealt with serious issues when Bully Boy Bush was in office and she whores with crap when Barack's president.
Kat: Include the whole damn NEW YORKER in that. They won't even publish Seymour Hersh. That's how cowardly and craven they are.
Wally: Can you believe that s**t? Seriously, can you believe it? They won't publish Hersh's exposes. That's how disgusting they are. If it was about Bush, they would. But since it's about Barack, he has to publish in THE LONDON REVIEW OF BOOKS.
Marcia: They just don't have any ethics. They just don't. That's why they publish a Jane Mayer and refuse to publish Sy Hersh. They're not reporting, they're not informing, they're just trying to protect their bubble.
Stan: It's really depressing and it kills any and all activism. You have to spend all your time explaining to people why they should be outraged or why we need to change something and by the time you convince them, you're too exhausted to move to the step of action. And we have to do that because these liars in the press will not do their job. I bet you anything, for example, we will find out that the IRS scandal was far worse than we knew, e-mails will turn up that were Lois Lerner's private account and the whole thing was even worse than we thought and I think it was pretty bad. Sorry, I'm an African-American, I'm not going to applaud the IRS targeting people for politics because, Lord knows, in the past, it would have been African-Americans being targeted.
Ruth: I agree with you on everything you just said and I cannot believe Ms. Lerner did not face consequences for her actions.
Rebecca: Who the hell did? That was loud, sorry, Ruth. But who the hell did? He was going to have a transparent government, the most open in the world, and what happened to that? He declared war on the press and war on whistle-blowers. And none of his people had to apologize for anything. He let that stupid [Eric] Shinseki stay on as Secretary of Veterans Affairs long after the man proved he was inept and not up to the job. There has been no accountability in Barack's administration -- not in the first term, not in the second.
Jim: Ruth, will let you reply.
Ruth: I'm laughing. I'm laughing because Rebecca really did get heated on that and it is something to be heated about. She is right, there has been no accountability. They have behaved in the worst possible ways. That includes that awful budget man and his sleeping around repeatedly even after he gets one woman pregnant. It was frat boy circus time.
Dona: And maybe that's why these sell outs think they can -- they think there will be no accountability.
Jess: But they're wrong. There already is accountability. Amy Goodman has lost so much prestige, for example. And there are so many others. People are sick of these sell outs. So we do have accountability.
Jim: There's a positive note. So we'll end on that. This has been a rush transcript.