The Two Leading Presidential Candidates — Clinton And Trump — Are Both Mocking Free Speech On The Internet

from the this-seems-like-a-problem dept

Yesterday, we wrote about Hillary Clinton’s absolutely terrible plan for undermining both encryption and free speech on the internet as a way to “deal” with ISIS. I left out the worst quote of all that she stated in the process, mockingly:

“You?re going to hear all of the usual complaints, you know, freedom of speech, et cetera…”

Free speech et cetera? That’s handwaving it away. You can see the whole clip here, of the leading Democratic Presidential candidate who will almost certainly win the nomination:

Her full statement:

You?re going to hear all of the usual complaints, you know, freedom of speech, et cetera. But if we truly are in a war against terrorism and we are truly looking for ways to shut off their funding, shut off the flow of foreign fighters, then we?ve got to shut off their means of communicating. It?s more complicated with some of what they do on encrypted apps, and I?m well aware of that, and that requires even more thinking about how to do it.

Shut off their means of communicating? These tools are tools that everyone uses — and, in fact, which Hillary Clinton herself did a tremendous amount of (good) work helping to spread around the globe as Secretary of State. And now she’s trying to cut it all off?

And over on the other side of things, the leading Republican candidate, Donald Trump, basically said the exact same thing on Monday, just in a more Trump fashion.

We’re losing a lot of people because of the internet. We have to do something. We have to go see Bill Gates and a lot of different people that really understand what’s happening. We have to talk to them, maybe in certain areas, closing that internet up in some ways. Somebody will say, ‘Oh freedom of speech, freedom of speech.’ These are foolish people. We have a lot of foolish people. We have a lot foolish people.

You can see that one here:

Think about this for a second. You have the two leading Presidential candidates — one from each party — each advocating that we shut down entire parts of the internet and censor speech, because bad people can use the internet just like good people. And both of them flat out say that, sure, some people will complain about free speech, but they both dismiss such complaints mockingly with nothing more than a suggestion that you can’t take anyone who cries “free speech” seriously.

I usually laugh off people who get deeply scared about one person or another winning the Presidency, as they usually overestimate how much power the President really has. But, either I’m suddenly turning into an old cranky guy, or we’re facing one hell of a scary Presidential election next year where the major candidates are not just bad, but downright scary. It’s become pretty cliche to argue “that’s what the terrorists want” in response to various kneejerk reactions by politicians, but really, does anyone not think that certain people are getting a kick out of US politicians shoving each other aside to belittle one of the most cherished rights that is a key principle of our country — the First Amendment — at the first opportunity?

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Comments on “The Two Leading Presidential Candidates — Clinton And Trump — Are Both Mocking Free Speech On The Internet”

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162 Comments
Mason Wheeler (profile) says:

the leading Democratic Presidential candidate who will almost certainly win the nomination

You know, that’s what they were saying about her 4 years ago. It was inevitable, 2008 was to be Hillary’s coronation, etc. But then actual people started actually voting in the primaries, and she turned out to be such a horrible candidate that she literally lost to a rookie with no qualifications.

The only significant thing that’s changed since then is that she’s actually up against a worthwhile opponent in the Democratic primary this time.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

The citizenry should always be held responsible for its government.

If the government becomes trash it needs to do something about. It never ceases to amaze how may people say when life gives you lemons make lemonade, but the same crowds throws up their hands and then say screw it on politics.

We reap what we sow, and let me tell you what, we have been sowing some terrible garbage.

I do not need a candidate with a personality to my liking, but they MUST support the constitution, some say they do, but they actually don’t.

They are either against the 1st & 2nd, pro police state, pro big business at the expense of the people and society, or a federalist.

The fact that many people think that this 2 party system contains characters that are radically different from each other is the greatest con going on right now. Bernie, Trump, Hillary, Rubio, insert your candidate here… these guys are not all that different from each other.

Both sides make it clear they seek to enslave The People, they merely disagree on how to accomplish that goal! At the end of the day that is what we vote for. Who gets to enslave us.

What was the last time you heard someone actually say, lets remove ridiculous laws, or before we make new ones lets resolve all of the contradictory ones instead?

How about we take rule making AWAY from the alphabet soup agencies and put it right where the Constitution says it is supposed to be huh?

If that is too much to ask, then yes, WE DO DESERVE THE MISERY!

Wendy Cockcroft says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Re:

Whether or not they were held to account is not the point here. That no government can exist without the consent of its people is.

Remember how people power killed SOPA? Imagine that power being brought to bear on asset forfeiture, etc. I’ve been told by some people that they hate having to constantly push back against bad actors and the end result is campaign fatigue. Basically, they’d work harder to get their government to do their job properly if they could be bothered but they can’t. It’s too much effort.

This explains the angry calls for armed rebellion I see sometimes in the comments here on TD. It’s easier to point and shoot than to hold a politician to account and keep a tight hold on the proverbial choke chain. This is why an armed rebellion has no chance at all of succeeding: all it would achieve is a monumental bloodbath followed by repression on a massive scale when the resultant power vacuum ushers in the despot you believe will make the trains run on time.

This is a problem you have to organise your way to resolving. That means being willing to work together with people you disagree with. Then you will see change.

tqk (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

The citizenry should always be held responsible for its government.

It is delusional to believe 21st century elections can be fair elections. The politicians have had their fingers in the pudding for so long, it’s long since ceased to be in the voters’ hands. The head of the FEC agrees, and admits she/they can do nothing about it. It’s a rigged game from start to finish, gerrymandered to death, and only serves incumbents except in extraordinary circumstances.

The gov’t and politicians the Constitution was supposed to keep in check are running the place. The inmates have taken over the asylum; the fire in the fireplace is out of control and burning down the house. Revolution is the only option, sadly. Nothing else can stop it now.

Wendy Cockcroft says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Re:

Copy-pasta from last comment: It’s easier to point and shoot than to hold a politician to account and keep a tight hold on the proverbial choke chain. This is why an armed rebellion has no chance at all of succeeding: all it would achieve is a monumental bloodbath followed by repression on a massive scale when the resultant power vacuum ushers in the despot you believe will make the trains run on time.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:2

“How about we take rule making AWAY from the alphabet soup agencies and put it right where the Constitution says it is supposed to be huh?”

That will not make it any better. Why? Because the average voter is stupid too and will just vote whatever fox news or their favorite channel manipulates them to vote.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

“suck balls” may be an extreme expression but the concept has been around awhile: none of the candidates running are appealing to the masses. People refuse to cast a ballot because they don’t like any of the candidates. Unfortunately “none of the above” is not a valid choice, and writing in such won’t matter: many jurisdictions require a write-in candidate to meet all the other qualifications, including petition signatures and financial disclosures or they won’t count the write-in votes. There is a legal question regarding such practices but AFAIK they haven’t been challenged in court.

And when people do vote, lately there have been races where the winning candidate did NOT have a 50% or higher majority. This includes both elections that Bill Clinton was elected President. Thus you have citizens that think their vote doesn’t matter because over 50% voted for losing candidates. How does that happen? Because more than 2 people appear on the ballot.

The US is long overdue to acknowledge that sometimes other countries have a better idea. One such idea is in elections: wide open primaries with the top 2 candidates no matter what political party they belong to going to the general election. Unfortunately (at least for President and Vice President) a constitutional amendment would be required.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

Voter turnout is typically less than 50% in the US,
so what do some winning candidates claim?
They claim to have received a mandate.
Of course you have – lol.

Does the term “suck balls” refer to tea bagging?

Rather than vote for candidates who often change their minds after having received campaign contributions, why not vote on issues? Why do politicians lie? Because they can.

Dark Helmet (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

“Worthwhile? You realize that Bernie is a Democratic Socialists and so was the Nazi party?”

You’re fucking kidding me, right? The Nazis were NOT Democratic Socialists, they were National Socialist, from which they derive the Nazi name and also I hate you for being this stupid. The Nazis were a far right organization, on the other end of the political spectrum from Sanders and Democratic Socialists. Notable Democratic Socialists, other than Sanders, include:

1. Christopher Hitchens
2. Albert Fucking Einstein
3. Bertrand Russell
4. John Dewey
5. David Ben-Gurion

If you’re any indication of the level of intellect of the American voter, however, we’re all fucked and let’s all welcome our winners from the Trump/Carson ticket and enjoy the disaster to come.

Jesus fucking Christ….

orbitalinsertion (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

Never mind that something with the same description in a different culture, time, and place isn’t the same as one with the same descriptive words elsewhere. Hell, it’s like trying to play that continuity canard with Republican and Democrat parties of the Civil War era. “Republicans are the party of Lincoln!”. Snort

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

You realize that Bernie is a Democratic Socialists and so was the Nazi party?

Yet the leading Republican candidate is arguing for making all Muslims register…kinda like the Jews had to when Hitler came into power.

You are the epitome of what is wrong with the average voter – you use terms and have no idea what they mean.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

Okay i’ll bite. Actually 100% wrong. Hilter was a NATIONAL socialist (fascism, totally the opposite of any socialist ideals.). He despised democratic socialism (what bernie sanders represents) as expressed in mein kompf. But yeah single payer health care and free education = NAZISM. Someone should let Angela Merkel in Germany know that her political party is actually the Nazi party.

tiddyb (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

Damn and I thought FDR was one of our best presidents. Didn’t realize he was a Nazi when he was defeating the Nazi’s. So weird. Much wow. You’re illiterate. Bernie is like Sweden or FDR or Harry Truman. Trump is obviously, obviously, OBVIOUSLY, much more like the Nazi party than anyone in America has ever been.

David says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

FDR was racist (just read up on Jesse Owen’s treatment in Berlin and in Washington D.C.: pretty embarrassing when the U.S. president makes a stronger show of racism than Hitler). And antisemitism was a global phenomenon at the turn of the century and afterwards: just read up on Henry Ford.

The U.S. was pretty fine with Hitler’s persecution of the Jews. They could not really help getting involved when Hitler declared war on everyone, however.

Afterwards, everybody in the world had been in the resistance and fond of Jews and democracy and oppressed by the Nazis. Including in Germany itself.

Now of course it is nice that nobody identifies with that kind of ideology any more under its original name.

But that does not particularly help against it returning under other names.

tqk (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

And antisemitism was a global phenomenon at the turn of the century and afterwards …

There were plenty of racists, yes, but there were plenty of exceptions too. When the Allies stumbled into the death camps, Eisenhower and his staff were horrified, to the point of forcing the German people to go to the camps to see what their leaders had done in their name.

Meanwhile, here we are in the 21st Century and the racists still run rampant. One of them’s the GOP front runner. “Plus ca change, …”

Benjamin James says:

Re: Re: Re:

Woah, saying socialists are Nazi’s is like saying humans are chimps. Nazi’s weren’t socialists, they were totalitarians. Sender’s is considered a radical while he’s in the lime light but our government has elements of socialism and even communism that have worked out to the benefit of our citizens. Does that mean we should switch to a purely socialist or communist system? Of course not, it just means that a little bit of several ideologies seems to work best and is a sign of a healthier, more free country.

David Carrero says:

Re: Re: Re:

The Nazis weren’t Democratic Socialists. They were Nationalist Socialists (hence the shortened phrase “Nazi”). Believe it or not, there’s actually a big difference there. Nationalism (and of course Imperialism) is why we had both World Wars; people willing to blindly follow their country because it’s ” clearly the best country in the world”. It’s actually pretty narcissistic if you think about it. Whether you agree with Bernie Sander’s policies or not, his whole platform is essentially to better the lives of as many people as possible. The Nazis only cared about perfecting the Master “Arian” race and killing anyone who stood in their way.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

Dire straits? That’s a little hyperbolic.

I’m opposed to anything except strong encryption on principle. If those of us who feel this way lose this battle (and I’m pretty sure we are going to lose), then what’s going to change?

My predictions:

1) Telecom companies and ISPs will keep doing what they are doing now and maintain databases of everything we do electronically and they will share this data when they have to.

2) Mobile device companies like Apple and Google will hold on to a key that can be used to unlock your device when they are forced to do so.

3) People that want to communicate privately will do so via downloadable apps.

What will change? Nothing.

Anonymous Coward says:

“…then we’ve got to shut off their means of communicating. It’s more complicated with some of what they do on encrypted apps, and I’m well aware of that, and that requires even more thinking about how to do it.”


This from the person who made the crack: ‘Wipe the server? You mean with a cloth or something?’ (http://news.sky.com/video/1538286/hillary-brushes-off-email-claims )

radix (profile) says:

Not to minimize deaths...

This could come across wrong, but I do recognize that preventing one death is more important than saving a few dollars.

With that said, when you combine just 8-10 of the biggest data breaches over the last 5 years, you get over 500 million records compromised, at the cost of 10’s of billions of dollars to clean up.

World’s Biggest Data Breaches

You are literally millions of times more likely to be a victim of poor data security than good data security. And if security is millions of times more important than freedom (to balance that equation), then you might as well put a government minder on every street corner and government cameras in every house. “Big Brother is Doubleplusgood.”

Tsukee says:

Re: Logic...

Bad people used guns to commit crime…”We CANNOT regulate guns to stop this…”
Bad people used the internet to commit crime…”We MUST regulate free speech/the internet to stop this…”

Makes perfect sense. In this age you do not fight a fucked up government with guns, but free speech, so no shit they are scared of it. But they want to keep guns, so people have a fake sense of “if shit hits the fan, I can still use my peashooter”….

Anonymous Coward says:

Apparently, no one wants the First Amendment.

The Europeans don’t want anyone to talk about Nazi history, or to criticize one another; they order Google to take down links to true (=non-libelous) facts.

The universities don’t want to allow free speech, because someone might be offended; “trigger warnings” are required for “microaggressions”.

[I wish I could make this stuff up.]

Tsukee says:

Re: Apparently, no one wants the First Amendment.

Agree on everything else but this

“The Europeans don’t want anyone to talk about Nazi history, or to criticize one another; “

The Nazi history is still often talked about, even too much I would argue. Its history most of it is agreed upon, but is still used as a political argument way too many times.

In countries that were “occupied” by Nazi they still argue about collaborators and “liberation force”.

In Germany they are still shamed about it on every step of their education.

UK and US still beat their chests at every occasion for the “glorious win against forces of evil” and compare it to every new upcoming invasion of another country: “this is the hitler of “

And not to even fucking begin with Israel, its like their de-facto tool to use in every fucking negotiation “We have the right to do genocide on Palestine, because we were victim of one”

(ya I know I was not limited to Europe)

I do agree we should never forget WW2 but I think we should slowly start to acknowledge that things are not (especially in war) black and white, good or evil. And stop at “Shit happened, we should never let it happen again”.

Brent Ashley (profile) says:

Re: Re: Just Deserts

How is it bullshit? The sentiment works no matter which side you’re on.

By whatever measure you want, if America elects someone who proves undesirable, it’s because a) they wanted that person and their values or b) their system has become broken and it allowed the undesirable candidate to win despite their collective will, in which case they are the authors of (i.e. are deserving of) their failure.

If America elects someone who turns out to be good for them, it will be because they succeeded despite extreme obstacles and they will deserve their success. If this new leader manages to lead a corrective path (for any of a number of definitions of corrective), all the more deserving.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Just Deserts

Has anyone ever tracked political campaign promises over the decades and whether those promises were met while that person was in office?

Even if the number of kept campaign promises were at 75%, the fact that voters used the promises as a guide in their decisions means they expected something other than what was delivered . – But according to you they got what they deserved. I’m not sure if this is because they were not clairvoyant and therefore unable to see the promises were lies or whether it is because they simply deserve to be kicked around – you know cause it makes you feel better about yourself.

Brent Ashley (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Just Deserts

I see, you read my use of “deserved” as me righteously telling them off for their potential failure, whereas I meant it more as a straight analysis of cause and effect without judgement attached. I should have anticipated your reading of it; it’s a loaded word.

My point was meant to be that the American political and power distribution system seems to have strayed off course. American society can collectively do something to correct the trajectory or they can allow it to career further on its current path, and the outcome and their fortunes will depend on the electorate’s own efforts and ability (or not) to turn it around.

In Canada, we have recently seen a shift in the political winds, brought on largely by the population deciding against one style of politics and opting for another. We too in the scheme of things will get the government we deserve, and I hope it’s worthy of the faith that has been put in it.

Kal Zekdor (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Just Deserts

It’s bullshit because no one “deserves” anything. There’s no shadowy overlord dictating that this year Americans have been good little boys and girls and thus deserve a better government as a reward.

We have the government we have because we have the government we have. It is a tautology, and there is no meaning to be drawn from any of it.

Come back when you actually have some ideas on how to make the government better, even slightly. Until then, all you’re spouting is defeatism and victim blaming, and I would respectfully ask that you shut the fuck up, as you’re part of the problem.

Brent Ashley (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Just Deserts

I’m a bit confused by your response in that it draws meaning from my statement that wasn’t expressed or intended and then takes affront and chides me for that very thing.

Again, I grant that “deserves” is loaded so as a consequence of creating a brief and glib quote I failed in expressing blunt tautology rather than pointed blame. Sorry bout that.

I am not spouting defeatism – my point is that the outcome can and hopefully will be more positive than current prevailing opinion projects

If the outcome is negative, attributing the cause to those who steered the outcome in that direction is not victim blaming. Perhaps the system as become broken enough that no steering will be enough. I hope not.

The reason I haven’t made direct suggestions on making the government better is that as I’m not American it is not my place to lecture. I’m not telling you what to do, I’m indirectly suggesting that analyzing cause and effect is part of the solution, since I have observed that “more of the same” does not usually turn things around when current practices have been proven not to work.

I’m still optimistic that America can find a positive path through the political minefield.

Steve (profile) says:

How do you tell what the people in charge actually want? Simply by looking at what both “parties” agree on. This simply highlights that there is nobreal choice, with the only differences being things that don’t matter to those actually running things, but we all seem convinced are the real issues.

The objective js to shut down the means of dissent, prior to the shitstorm that is about to hit.

Mike Masnick (profile) says:

Re: Re:

Is there any concrete evidence that back doors to encryption for use by US law enforcement stifles free speech?

These are two separate issues.

Issue 1 is backdooring encryption (which is not a free speech issue, but a security/privacy issue). Issue 2 is demanding internet censorship, which is a free speech issue.

Sorry if it wasn’t clear in the article.

Anonymous Coward (user link) says:

Re: Re: Re:

Is this your fearless leader of free speech?

http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:6aCpqH8vGxgJ:www.pissedconsumer.com/tag/mike-masnick-techdirt.html+&cd=14&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=us

read it while it is hot on the Google cache because he pulled some favoursa and go it removed-so much for free speech

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

Possibly the most immature attempt at trying to defame someone. “I am only young” Because young people know oh-so much about Mike and what he does? Anyone with a simplified vocabulary like that would most likely have spelling errors, grammatical errors, etc. Obviously fabricated.

Considering it starts with “a sleaze” and ends up going on in a more tame way already shows it anyway.

Seriously, grow up.

DirtBag says:

Re: Re:

You miss the point. A backdoor allowing government entry can just as easily be used by hackers to also gain entry.

Unless you believe the key vault at Apple is secure… which they claimed their cloud storage was at one point.

Just a bad idea all the way around. We invent the worlds best technology but won’t allow it to be used because an extremist minority may gain an advantage.

David says:

Re: Re:

They are not really asking about a backdoor. They are asking about a frontdoor with a key reserved to government use. It’s not a matter of finding the backdoor. It’s a matter of getting the key. If the stuff is really well-designed, the key cannot be “found”. However, this sort of concept does not work for practical purposes if said key and/or an unlocking service is not available to thousands of users. A red telephone approach where the key will only get used in cases of actual national emergency instead of on a pretend contingency basis is not what the involved agencies could reasonably work with.

And with a key/unlock mechanism distributed as widely as that, it’s not feasible to prevent it getting out of hand.

And of course, that’s when assuming that the authorized persons use it for legal purposes, and the track record of them is really, really, really bad. And they derive a lot of unconstitutional powers and activities from it already.

So even when working as fantasized, it is a really, really bad idea.

John85851 (profile) says:

The Amendments

I know this may be a little off-topic, but it’s very interesting (or scary, depending on how you look at it) that people seem quick to break the constitution amendments in the Bill of Rights to get back at terrorists… except one. Can you guess which?

1: We can’t let terrorists have the right to free speech.
3: (Quartering soldiers doesn’t apply.)
4: We have to search everyone in case they might be a terrorist.
5: Terrorists don’t deserve due process and they should give up information on themselves (preferably under torture) for everyone’s good.
6: Terrorists don’t deserve lawyers or a fair trial. We know they’re terrorists and that’s good enough.
7: (Right to a trial by jury in civil cases doesn’t apply.)
8: Languishing in a prison cell without a trial isn’t considered cruel and unusual punishment at all.
9 and 10: (Don’t apply.)

That leaves us with the 2nd Amendment:
Why, yes, anyone can have a gun. We’d never dream of stepping on anyone’s rights.

tqk (profile) says:

Re: Re:

I wonder if this will be what pushes people over the edge to take back control of this almost completely corrupt government.

I have this vision of the winner at the swearing in ceremony, where thousands stand up chanting, “Liar, liar, pants on fire!” Should make for great reality tv, watching the SS drag them all away to waiting paddy-wagons.

Frost (profile) says:

Maybe Americans have wised up?

Yes, the President is a figurehead but he or she does still have the veto and is the leader of their respective party. I’m hoping Democrats will see Clinton for the war-mongering pro-corporate hawk she truly is and vote for the sane alternative, Bernie Sanders. Sure, Bernie would be fighting an uphill battle against everybody including the Democrats, but at least he’d have the visibility and authority behing the Presidency to do it with.

Trump, well, the man is a clown and a buffoon and not very competent. It’s not that hard to get rich when daddy hands you millions and say go play. What’s amazing is that he managed to fuck it up several times by bankruptcies…

Anonymous Coward says:

Relax

Homey don’t code. Homey will get what we give him.

The ability to code is to the modern era, is what reading and writing was in the 18th century. What the aristocracy doesn’t get, is that they are no longer the literate ones in this society.

Innovation is antithetical to tyranny. Anyone who has written anything that was useful and compiled, has run up against these guys at some point. And most of us have an axe to grind. It isn’t so much a vendetta, as a grievous sorrow over the harm caused by their narcissism.

So relax and support civil revolt through superior software engineering. Eventually, we will fulfill the promise the T-shirt fortold: “Go away, or I will replace you with a very small bash script”

Overturn Citizens United. Repeal Glass Steagall. Bust the Trusts.

Anonymous Coward says:

The War on Encryption? Don’t sweat it guys, it is only a police action, they haven’t instated Marshall Law, which might actually be a good thing. Our congress doesn’t have the integrity to declare war, they will let the president get blood on his hands. And if it all goes wrong our congress will have someone to point the finger at. Heaven forbid they would take responsibility for anything. The day is nigh when the future will be left to those of us willing to get our hands dirty.

Anonymous Coward says:

evil usually takes form in human skin and is suppose to be hidden from all including themselves however seeing two being of that shows proof they should not be aloud in any government position. If they shut down the internet they will only create more domestic terrorism to fight against, because our world is now too reliant on the internet than ever shutting it down will set us back centuries of progress putting us back to the 20th or so centuries.

Monday (profile) says:

The Power of POTUS...

I usually laugh off people who get deeply scared about one person or another winning the Presidency, as they usually overestimate how much power the President really has.

I get that. I really do, but as POTUS, that’s the tangible remainder of any Presidency. It says a / that specific something about a people, in regards to whom gets elected, and what they will be able to achieve in four years.

I wonder just what kind of meeting the Republicans will have on election night, 2016, when they see the inevitable conclusion of politics in America ’til 2024, AT LEAST, and the panic attacks actually start taking over.

Every reporter on Earth, is now aware of those Republicans, and their secret meeting addressing the fall, or how they could stump, or stomp, POTUS at every turn. It was during that fateful election night of 2008, and then again when G.O.P. Romney crashed and burned in 2012 and the really horrible horror ;)with a side of more panic attacks set in with the re-election of that “Black President”.

One thing that we, all of us, can be certain of, is the GOP has not even begun to put the, always useful, always hilarious, and verging on obligatory, foot in the mouth.

Nevertheless, POTUS does have tons of power. Be respectful of the Office. When’s the last time you heard Darrell Issa‘s name in the news??? ;>D

tqk (profile) says:

"National" vs. "Democratic" socialism.

National Socialist = Right wing socialism
Democratic Socialist = Left wing socialism

No.

National Socialist = Our country and its people are better than other countries and their (so-called) people who are demonstrably inferior lifeforms who can’t be trusted and need to be subjugated else they’ll steal all our stuff and probably hurt us. You can trust our gov’t to protect you from them because we’re your gov’t and we care about you and we know what’s right. Honest! Trust us, or we’ll kill you.

Democratic Socialism = “We The People …” rule by popular vote electing representatives to form a gov’t limited to specific defined functions and limits.

NS is stupid and in most cases leads to corruption enriching the rulers, tyrannical overreach and even genocide by its gov’t over those ruled.

DS may eventually be found to be workable, if only we can figure out how to make that “limited to specific defined functions and limits” work, which we’re at present nowhere near solving despite the thousands of years we’ve worked on it.

HTH.

Cooper's Loincloth (Anonymous Coward) says:

NS vs. DS

Yes.

National Socialism is domination of the individual by a select group who enforce their will on the entire populace in the name of the state, which is an extreme right wing socialist philosophy.

Democratic Socialism is the domination of the individual by an elected group who enforce their will on the entire population in the name of the state, which is an extreme left wing socialist philosophy.

Your choices in socialism are tyranny by the bosses (NS) vs. tyranny by the masses (DS). You can argue their motivations all you want, but the end result is the same. Either one sucks if you aren’t one of the chosen few who make the rules.

Interestingly enough, you can compare the two extremes in their enforcement methods – both focus on demonizing those who don’t follow the party line and marginalizing their identity and worth as human beings. One just focuses on homogenized outward characteristics like appearance or religion, while the other enforces thought and behavior compliance.

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