Quote of the Day

In our age there is no such thing as 'keeping out of politics.' All issues are political issues, and politics itself is a mass of lies, evasions, folly, hatred and schizophrenia.-- George Orwell

“I would rather be a swineherd at Amagerbro and be understood by the swine than be a poet and be misunderstood by people.” ― Søren Kierkegaard, Either/Or: A Fragment of Life

The opinions, rants and absurdities expressed herein belong solely to the founder of RBPD. Read with caution. Content may induce nausea, confusion, vertigo, tears, hallucinations, anger, pity, reflexive piety, boredom, convulsions, lightheadedness, a fit of ague, or an opposing view.

Books by RBP writers: Round Bend Press Books. For RBP's writing and editing services go here.

Friday, February 24, 2017

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Buzzer Beater


The Oregon Ducks thrive or die with the three-point shot, and last night's game with Cal was no exception.

Their habit could cost them a shot at the NCAA title next month, but for now its all lollipops and championship dreams.

Trailing by 10 with 4 min. to play, Oregon hit four straight long balls to snatch a victory out of the Bears' jaws.  To set up the opportunities the Ducks had to play a little defense as well, employing a nasty, trapping, full-court press.

It paid off with a pair of steals, setting up four last-ditch attempts.

Ennis, Boucher and Pritchard each nailed deep shots before Dillon Brooks' game winner with .09 left sent Cal and its fans home in an even deeper funk.

Four chances, and each one critical to Oregon's desperate comeback.

"Bing, bango, bongo, Kaboom!" (Schonley and Dooley)

UCLA must beat Arizona Sat. night in the PAC "game of the season" for Oregon to win the conference regular season title.

And Oregon must win its final two against Stanford and OSU. Fingers crossed.

I've never been much of a UCLA fan until now.


TS

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Amen

We frequently hear calls for system change, at public mobilisations, in conference halls and even in negotiation halls. The calls come as slogans, they come in anger and they come as a strong rebuke to the systemic scaffold on which our pains, our exploitation and the denial of our voices and rights are hung.

The necessity of system change is inescapable. The present system is dependent on the extreme exploitation and enslavement of nature and labour, built around an inherently unjust core. We are in the dying days of a civilisation driven by fossil fuels. This end is not coming merely because of the recorded and predicted severe species extinction, or by peak oil. Its end is being heralded by a looming climatic catastrophe and by the reawakening of social forces realising that slavery persists as long as the enslaved is unaware of his state.--NB

Right on, brother.


TS

Itching Forward

The New York Times is currently engaged in one of its most ambitious projects: Removing a sitting president from office. In fact, Times columnist Nicolas Kristof even said as much in a recent article titled  “How Can We Get Rid of Trump?”

Frankly, it’s an idea that I find attractive, mainly because I think Trump’s views on immigration, the environment, human rights, civil liberties and deregulation are so uniformly horrible, they could destroy the country.   But the Times objections are different from my own. The reason the Times wants Trump removed is because Trump wants to normalize relations with Russia which threatens to undermine Washington’s effort to project US power deeper into Central Asia.--DW

Hear the dogs barking yet?


TS

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Sad Story

Native Americans and fellow activists huddled around small fires in the Oceti Sakowin Camp on Sunday night and sang songs in a nostalgic and bittersweet gathering. These demonstrators opposing the Dakota Access pipeline, who call themselves “water protectors,” feel they are making a last stand at Oceti Sakowin.

Nightly rituals of song, speech, dance and gatherings by firelight used to involve thousands at this camp, but that number has dwindled to about 50 people—many of whom have been subjected to police violence and have spent time in jail. The national media have all but vanished. Cold winds blow through the vast, empty plains.--DK

Sad, but indicative of where we are under the duopoly.


TS  

Single-Payer Now!

But "single-payer reform could," write the co-founders of Physicians for a National Healthcare Program (PNHP). "Such reform would replace the current welter of insurance plans with a single, public plan covering everyone for all medically necessary care—in essence, an expanded and upgraded version of the traditional Medicare program."

Such reform, also known as Medicare-for-all, could save $504 billion annually on healthcare bureaucracy, they say, plus an additional $113 billion "could come from adopting the negotiating strategies that most nations with national health insurance use, which pay approximately one half what we do for prescription drugs."

These savings would offset the cost of expanding insurance to the 26 million who remain uninsured despite the Affordable Care Act (ACA), as well as "plugging the gaps in existing coverage—abolishing co-payments and deductibles [and] covering such services as dental and long-term care that many policies exclude."--DF

If Trump really wanted to fuck over the corporatist liberals he would follow this plan!

The move might swing things back his way and out of the clutches of the Intelligence bureaucracies.

Obamacare lard distributed here.


TS

Good Stuff


Well, OK, a lot of people, apparently, because there’s been a new twist in the official narrative. It seems the capitalist ruling classes now need us to defend the corporate media from the tyrannical criticism of Donald Trump, or else, well, you know, end of democracy. Which millions of people are actually doing. Seriously, absurd as it obviously is, millions of Americans are now rushing to defend the most fearsome propaganda machine in the history of fearsome propaganda machines from one inarticulate, populist boogeyman who can’t maintain his train of thought for more than fifteen or twenty seconds.--CJH

This one is run through with rare intelligence and perception. A must read.


TS

Monday, February 20, 2017

Teach the Children



This was very cool to see.


TS

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Friday, February 17, 2017

Towards the Title

Oregon polished off Utah last night.  The Ducks have a noon game against Colorado on Sat., which ought to be a rout simply from the revenge angle.

Colorado beat Oregon at high altitude in Boulder last month.

But the road trip to Cal looms, a treacherous thing.

The Ducks need Arizona to lose to UCLA and then win out themselves.

Mercy!  What a great college ball season.

EDIT: Oregon smashed Colorado, got revenge!


TS

Message for the "Resistance"



















"To be Clear:" as in wiping the cobwebs from your eyes.


TS

Beyond the Democrats

This reflexive defense of the recent status quo is bolstered by inertia, especially at the top of the party. The House Democratic leaders—all septuagenarians—were easily re-elected to their party posts. In the Senate, New York’s Chuck Schumer took over from Harry Reid as minority leader, as long planned. The big outside money is flowing to the same operators (Guy Cecil and David Brock) and the same big institutions (the Center for American Progress, Priorities USA) as before. If Representative Keith Ellison’s effort to head the DNC is defeated, the party structure itself will remain largely in the hands of those who eviscerated it (or their designees). Not surprisingly, these longtime party leaders are invested in what was accomplished under Obama, eager to defend it against Trump’s calumnies, and intent on returning to power under similar terms.

But this reflex ignores an uncomfortable but inescapable reality: Trump is in the White House in large part because of the establishment’s failures over the past decades. What economist Paul Krugman once called the “long depression” features a slow recovery that has not benefited working people. We remain mired in endless wars. The country’s inequality is more extreme, its insecurity more widespread, its institutional racism still entrenched. Money continues to corrupts our politics. Senator Elizabeth Warren got it exactly right when she addressed the Progressive Congress strategy summit on February 4: “Our moment of crisis didn’t begin with the election of Donald Trump. We were already in crisis…. Men like Donald Trump come to power when countries are already in deep trouble, when economies are already deeply flawed, when people in those countries begin to lose hope and look for someone else to blame.”--RB

A writer who gets it.

So rare these days.  I hear Hillary is gearing up for a last run for the Queendom.  Maybe Liz and Bernie won't endorse her next time?  Or am I dreaming, hoping against hope?


TS

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Family Time

Ducks tonight in a big game against Utah.  Oregon is at home this weekend.

It's big, as Oregon attempts to stay within striking distance of Arizona for the regular season PAC championship.

Here's a nice story on Oregon's Chris Boucher, a Canadian by way of Jamaica, who will play in front of his family for the first time in his Eugene career.


TS

Simple Minds

The travel ban was a test, and not only with regard to the mechanisms of America’s judicial politics and constitutional law. It was a test of the basic ideological preparedness of a nation that has spent most of its time trying not to imagine a Trump presidency, and must now shape that sentiment, as quickly as possible, into the groundwork of a credible resistance. While our justice system appears to have passed the test, at least for the time being, our first attempts at resistance reveal a nation struggling in thought and action to frame the larger case against Trump. Obviously, such a case does exist, and there should be no question at this point that our feelings of imminent danger are justified. It’s just that the narrative we’ve been telling each other to explain and act on those feelings – the Love vs. Hate narrative passed down to us by Democratic leadership – is so grossly simplistic, so troublingly inconsistent, and so profoundly at odds with the reality of this danger, that we become ally to the very forces we are fighting against each time we tell it.--PG

Simplistic is the right word.  It is as if many people are slowly awakening from a long sleep. They are what Henry Miller was fond of calling them--somnambulists.

Unequipped to think for themselves, they haven't studied history nor developed a critical capacity to analyze the forces that surround them.  Their lives, steeped in apathy and apolitical dreams, were barren, and as long as they had good jobs and enough toys to distract them they were fine with the world.

Everything was too easy for many.  Now things are tougher and they're having to engage with aspects of existence that never occurred to them in the past. They've lost their way and remain reliant on wishes and dreams without realizing there is no easy fix.

It will take a mass mobilization and new consensus, or nothing will change inside the oligarchical system that dominates our lives.


TS

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Coup in Progress

One upshot of the Flynn resignation is that Vice President Mike Pence, a white “Christian” nationalist, who is also is a darling of both Wall Street and the “neo con” interventionists comes out smelling like roses. Trump is a twisted narcissist who is a political opportunist. But Pence is likely what a lot of people claim Trump is.

Flynn was compelled to resign in large part because what is euphemistically called the “intelligence community” apparently had recording of his dealings with Russian representatives that he allegedly mischaracterized.

This implies that people will be held accountable for their falsehoods if — and only if — their stance upsets the CIA, NSA, et al.--SH

Trump is toast, has been since his election.  Things will return to normal once the Intel community has its way.

The CIA will not allow this upheaval to go on much longer; it's been overturning regimes (and democratically elected governments) fluidly worldwide since the Dulles brothers reigned supreme.

The better to hold hegemony and Empire.

Elites can't afford this kind of infighting at the top, and the U.S. is restless now; the last thing the Intel community wants is revolution.

Regime change is what American elites do best, and with the full backing of the majority of Americans this time, they'll get it.

Kennedy lasted three years in office.   Trump won't last half that long because he insulted the Deep State and hasn't the capacity or savvy to play along like Clinton would have.

Ironically, it might be the first time the CIA got something right!

God Bless American Imperialism!

Now, once the Dems and Repubs hook up again in a satisfactory realm, will we survive a messy nuclear exchange with the Rooskies!?


TS