Cohen’s Explosive Testimony: Trump A Racist, Conman

By Staff

US Donald Trump’s former lawyer Michael Cohen arrived on Capitol Hill on Wednesday to deliver explosive testimony before a Congressional oversight committee, blasting the US president as a “racist”, a “conman” and a “cheat” who committed wrongdoing as a candidate and as president.

In his opening remarks to the House Oversight and Reform Committee, Cohen – who has been sentenced to jail for crimes related in part to his work for Trump – expressed regret for his past loyalty.

“I am ashamed that I chose to take part in concealing Mr. Trump’s illicit acts rather than listening to my own conscience,” Cohen said. “I am ashamed because I know what Mr. Trump is.”

“He is a racist. He is a conman. He is a cheat,” he stated.

“I regret the day I said “yes” to Mr. Trump. I regret all the help and support I gave him along the way,” he said.

“The last time I appeared before Congress, I came to protect Mr. Trump. Today, I’m here to tell the truth about Mr. Trump,” Cohen said.

“Mr. Trump is a racist. The country has seen Mr. Trump court white supremacists and bigots. You have heard him call poorer countries ‘shitholes.’ In private, he is even worse,” Trump’s former lawyer said.

“While we were once driving through a struggling neighborhood in Chicago, he commented that only black people could live that way. And, he told me that black people would never vote for him because they were too stupid,” Cohen recalled.

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Why the Political is Dead

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February 26, 2019  /  Gilad Atzmon

By Gilad Atzmon

In the good old days when the terms Left and Right meant something the distinction between the two was clear. The Left believed that the resources and wealth of the state ought to be shared equitably. The Right’s position was that since only a few people in society are capable of handling capital properly, transforming prosperity into more prosperity, those few should be given a free hand and be taxed lightly to enable them to make the state more prosperous.

Noticeably, both of these viewpoints were both patriotic and intended to benefit the nation state and its citizens.  The Left wanted equality for the good of all. The Right maintained that Laissez-faire policies actually benefited the working class as well as the rich. Metaphorically we can think of the state’s wealth as a cake. The Left believed that the cake should be sliced equally to provide each member of society an equal portion, while the Right contended that if those who know how to make money enjoy a relatively free ride, the cake would actually get bigger and that working people would be among the first to benefit as their portion expands.

The theories of both Left and Right were meaningful within the political context of a capitalist manufacturing society. Industrial society produced the wealth that made the debate between ‘equality’ and ‘Laissez-faire’ relevant.  But the West is hardly productive anymore. Manufacturing has travelled to find the cheapest workers, moving among the Far East, South America and Africa. The working class has been reduced into a global workless class. Arguments about the distribution of wealth mean little in a globalist universe where state wealth has been replaced by exponentially growing debt. In a society that has replaced production with consumption, the bond/conflict between the factory owner and the worker belongs to nostalgia.

With both Left and Right emptied of their ideological and political relevance, Left and Right have been reduced into mere forms of identification with zero political or ideological relevance.  The Left is diminished into a ‘LGBTQ call’ and the Right is driven by ‘White nationalism’; both are quintessentially tribal, anti universal and hardly attractive to most.

This may explain the worldwide rise of new populist political formations that don’t fit the standard political clichés. Traditional political institutions, both ‘Left’ and ‘Right,’ struggle to cope with  change let alone adapt. Maybe two decades ago Labour could manage to be elected to lead Britain by pretending to be Tories, but this strategy is not going to save Labour in the future, as the Tories are hardly an attractive option. The same applies to the Democratic Party. Being an avid  Neocon and and a war monger didn’t help Hillary Clinton. Instead it was Donald Trump, an anti politician with zero ideological standpoint, who made it to the White House.

The world we are part of desperately awaits a new ethos: a new ideology, religion, spirit, metaphysics, it may even be an anti ethos. Is this spirit going to refresh our yearning for the universal, poetic, and the ethical consistent with Western Athenian roots or is it going to be repressive, hateful and tribal in accordance with the Jerusalemite approach that has been threatening Athens for two millennia? I guess that it is down to us to determine as this world is ours as we are this world.

Civil War Coming to America?

February 12, 2019

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What will the US midterm elections say? ماذا ستقول الانتخابات النصفية الأميركية؟

What will the US midterm elections say?

ديسمبر 12, 2018

Written by Nasser Kandil,

The semi-impossible winning of the Democrats in the Houses of the Senate and the representatives will not change the powers of the President Donald Trump and his pivotal role in drawing the policies and taking decisions, especially because the differences are not essential in the foreign policy and due to the limitedness of what can the Congress in its two houses do in the foreign policies. Furthermore, the semi impossible winning of the Republicans in the Houses of the Senate and the representatives will not change the escalation in the US tense foreign policies due to elements that are not related internally; the confrontation with Russia is governed with inability, the confrontation with Iran is governed with limited options, moreover, the escalation with Syria has become from the past, the deal of the century is disrupted due to the absence of the Palestinian partner ,and the deep relationship with Saudi Arabia and its Crown Prince is chasing the US President after the killing of Jamal Khashoggi and the circumstances of his killing in the light of the dilemma of the war of Yemen which turned into an organized crime.

The expected balance of the results which is in favor of the improvement of the Democrats’ situation and the remarkable participation of voters based on equation that has no electoral promises, which was missed in the campaigns of the rival parties. The battle is revolving around the future of the US presidency after two years, where the Republicans are preparing themselves for a second term for Trump, they ask the voters for a new opportunity for the businessman to achieve his promises instead of returning to the monotony of the officials who were presidents, while the Democrats tell the voters that the prevention of the renewal of Trump’s mandate is required, because the current disaster will be serious if Trump wins a second term.

The magnitude of the participation is due to the real division in the US community outside the political discourse of the two parties regarding what is represented by Trump. Most of the white Americans, the religious extremists, and the fanatical supporters of Israel and the remaining of the neo-conservatives see him as a hero who represents the American dream, while the rest of Latin, Chinese, and Middle Eastern origins see him as danger of ethnical cleaning and as a project of a civil war. In contrast, the intellectual elites and the media means which are committed to an American civil country and the influential centers in the public opinion are divided in favor of the political, military, religious, and ethnic extremism lobbies. The raised issues are just tools of confrontation, including the relationship with the royal family in Saudi Arabia. Trump does not feel embarrassed to say that money is more important than values.

The improvement of the situation of the Democrats which is almost certain apart from its influence on the coming balances in the two houses and the size of the broad electoral participation say that Trump is losing points and that the reason of that loss is the inability to turn the cleansing hostile internal and external discourse into profits in the balances of the extremists. It seems that the objective complications which are related to the ability not the desire prevent that. In other words, if the President Trump wants to win a second term, he has to a wage a winning battle, which means; to expose the international and the regional stability to threats that must be considered or to have compromises, thus to take the Democrats’ agenda and to achieve outstanding results in stability internally and externally, but to ensure the flexibility of the base on which Trump depends in the US community and the ruling institutions.

The ethnical, political, and cultural division will be the characteristic which will accompany the US interior in the next two years before the presidential elections. And it will not be easy to run a presidential competition by any candidates, through which America emerges more coherent and powerful.

Translated by Lina Shehadeh,

 

ماذا ستقول الانتخابات النصفية الأميركية؟ 

نوفمبر 7, 2018

ناصر قنديل

– لن يغيّر الفوز شبه المستحيل للديمقراطيين بالأغلبية في مجلسي النواب والشيوخ في صلاحيات الرئيس دونالد ترامب ودوره المحوري في رسم السياسات واتخاذ القرارات، خصوصاً أن الاختلافات لا تبدو جوهرية في السياسة الخارجية، نظراً لحدود ما يستطيعه الكونغرس بمجلسيه أن يفعله في السياسات الخارجية. كما لن يغير الفوز شبه المستحيل للجمهوريين مجدداً بالأغلبية في المجلسين لجهة زيادة منسوب التصعيد في السياسات الخارجية الأميركية المأزومة بفعل عناصر لا ترتبط بحجم التفويض الأميركي الداخلي، حيث المواجهة مع روسيا مسقوفة بالعجز، والمواجهة مع إيران محكومة بمحدودية الخيارات، والتصعيد في سورية بات من الماضي، وصفقة القرن معطّلة من داخلها بغياب الشريك الفلسطيني، وقضية العلاقة العميقة مع السعودية وولي عهدها تلاحق الرئيس الأميركي بعد مقتل جمال الخاشقجي وظروف قتله، وفي ظل مأزق حرب اليمن التي تحوّلت جريمة منظمة.

– التوازن المرتقب في النتائج لصالح تحسن وضع الديمقراطيين، وما يرافقه من كثافة لافتة في المشاركة من الناخبين، يتمّان على إيقاع معادلة لا تتصل بالوعود الانتخابية، التي تفتقد إليها حملات كل من الحزبين المتنافسين. فالمعركة تدور حول مستقبل الرئاسة الأميركية بعد عامين، حيث يستعد الجمهوريون لخوض معركة ولاية ثانية لترامب، فيقولون لناخبيهم لمنح رجل الأعمال فرصة جديدة لتحقيق وعوده، بدلاً من العودة لرتابة الموظفين الذين تولوا الرئاسة مراراً، وحيث الديمقراطيون يقولون للأميركيين أن المطلوب الاستعداد لمنع تجديد ولاية ترامب، لأن الكارثة الحالية ستصير أعظم وأخطر إذا فاز ترامب بولاية ثانية.

– كثافة المشاركة تعود إلى الانقسام الحقيقي في المجتمع الأميركي خارج الخطاب السياسي للحزبين حول ما يرمز إليه ترامب، الذي ينظر إليه الأميركيون البيض بأغلبهم والمتطرفون الدينيون ومؤيدو «إسرائيل» المتعصبون، وبقايا المحافظين الجدد، كبطل يجسّد الحلم الأميركي، بينما ينظر إليه الملوّنون من أصول لاتينية وصينية وشرق أوسطية بأغلبهم كخطر تطهير عرقي ومشروع حرب أهلية. وبالمقابل تنقسم حوله ساحة النخب الثقافية بين وسائل الإعلام الملتزمة بمشروع دولة مدنية أميركية، ومراكز تأثير في الرأي العام لحساب لوبيات التطرف السياسي والعسكري والديني والعرقي، وليست القضايا المثارة في المعركة إلا أسلحة في المواجهة، بما فيها العلاقة بالعائلة الحاكمة في السعودية، بين مفهومي المال أهم من القيم، أم القيم أهم من المال، ولا يخجل ترامب ومؤيدون من القول، نعم المال هو الأهم.

– التحسّن في وضع الديمقراطيين الذي بات شبه مؤكد بمعزل عن حجم تأثيره على التوازنات المقبلة في المجلسين، وحجم المشاركة الانتخابية الواسعة يقولان إن ترامب يخسر بالنقاط، وإن سبب الخسارة هو العجز عن تحويل الخطاب التطهيري والعدائي الداخلي والخارجي إلى نتائج أرباح في رصيد المتطرفين، وتبدو العقد الموضوعية المتصلة بالقدرة لا بالرغبة حائلاً دون ذلك، ما يعني أن على الرئيس ترامب كي يفوز بولاية ثانية أن يخوض معركة يراهن على الفوز فيها. وهذا سيعني تعريض الاستقرار الدولي والإقليمي لمخاطر يجب التنبّه لوقوعها، أو أن ينعطف بحدّة نحو التسويات، فيسرق برنامج الديمقراطيين ويحقق نتائج باهرة في مجال الاستقرار والتشبيك في الداخل والخارج، وهذا دونه عدم مرونة القاعدة الخلفية التي يستند إليها ترامب في المجتمع الأميركي ومؤسسات الدولة الحاكمة.

– الانقسام العرقي والسياسي والثقافي سيكون هو السمة التي تطبع الداخل الأميركي في السنتين المقبلتين قبل الانتخابات الرئاسية، ولن يكون سهلاً خوض معركة رئاسية على أي من المرشحين، ترامب ومَن سينافسه من الديمقراطيين، تخرج منها أميركا أكثر تماسكاً وقوة.

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