Stephen Miller Helps Explain Nazi Movement

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Stephen Miller was captured in a tone that makes it seem he popped from a frame of  “Leni” Riefenstahl film.

If you ever wondered about the type of personality that furthered the Nazi movement, and place that pondering in modern times, there is no need to venture further than Stephen Miller. Without doubt, of all the ones in the Trump orbit, other than Trump himself, Miller is the most reprehensible and disgusting.  Vanity Fair has a must-read about the man, and what has to be the only other person alive who would agree to actually marry him.

Portions of the article are below.

In some way, Mr. and Mrs. Miller are emblematic of young Washington, circa Trump: arrogant and gleefully pugnacious. They have few close friends outside the administration. They don’t hang out much in public because they tend to get harassed. They recently traded D.C. for the more secluded Arlington, Virginia. Outside of Jared and Ivanka, and Don Jr. and Kimberly Guilfoyle, they are perhaps the city’s most powerful couple under 50. Their influence reaches beyond immigration policy into the two most pressing issues of the day: civil unrest around systemic racism, and the pandemic. He plays a key role in Trump’s messaging, decrying the removal of Confederate monuments and the threats to American “heritage.” She, as the spokesperson for the White House Coronavirus Task Force, is a poster child for its disastrously bungled response. The Millers’ respective issues dovetail in a single phenomenon: harm to immigrant communities and people of color. And given the new couple’s knack for pulling the levers of power, and the Trump administration’s control over the judicial and legislative branches, they may be with us for a long time to come.

Miller entered Duke in 2003 and seems to have tried out a new persona—Libertarian Lounge Lizard. Dorm mates recall him slinking around in a bathrobe and slippers, smoking Nat Sherman cigarettes. Because he was prematurely balding and looked older, the girls on his floor found him useful for buying alcohol. Miller obliged. “He’d put on a suit, then go to the liquor store and they wouldn’t card him,” says one of his dorm mates. Deep down, he seemed to desire female affection. He found some—as Guerrero uncovers—with a Mexican-American girl from a Texas border town, whom we’ll call Sara.

Their courtship would be rich material for a social scientist. A source close to Sara says she found him intelligent, but mainly she felt sorry for him, as he didn’t have many friends. He was not opposed to immigrants, he told her, just illegal immigrants, which is why she even gave him a chance. But he wanted more from her than she from him. Sometimes she let him in; sometimes she’d try to shake him. “She’d just say, ‘Go away, Stephen,’ in that mean-girl way,” says a friend of Sara’s who suspects she was embarrassed to be seen with him in public. But he could lash back. The friend recalls that when Sara spoke Spanish, he’d cut her off, telling her, “You should just speak English.” It went on this way for much of their freshman year, until she returned home. He called her a few times over the following summer but she never called him back, and she never returned for their sophomore year. Sara’s friends, seeing his anti-immigrant stance explode over the years, later wondered to one another, “Man, how bad did she hurt him?”

With Sara gone, Miller returned to his old passions, like hating janitors. As Guerrero reports in Hatemonger, he leaned into this particular bit, telling aghast classmates after meals to leave their messes because “we have people for that.” He found a fresh target in the Palestine Solidarity Movement, an activist group on campus. Just as he had complained about Santa Monica High on The Larry Elder Show a couple years earlier, so now he called into the show to attack Duke. Terrorists were recruiting members from campus, he claimed, and Duke was doing nothing about it. He landed a column, called Miller Time, in the school newspaper, The Chronicle, in which he set his sights on the same bogeymen: multiculturalism, affirmative action, the war on Christmas, et cetera. He invited Horowitz to speak at Duke and relished all the shouting it elicited from the audience.

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On a team filled with unpleasant people, Miller fit right in. “He was just a dick,” says a former campaign official. “Very territorial, not warm, just bleh.” The national spotlight emboldened his rhetoric. In television appearances, he delivered “fact”-filled diatribes in an air-hogging monotone. He made outrageous claims, like that immigration would lead to mass female genital mutilation. He worked similarly vivid bombast into Trump’s speeches—about immigrants who “stomp on their victims,” “slash them with machetes”—and into his own warm-up act, which he performed before the crowds at rallies.

At one such event in Johnstown, Pennsylvania, where the Glosser branch of his family is from, Miller talked about the town’s former glory, and invoked the names of his relatives, Izzy and Sam. David Glosser, hearing the names of his beloved father and grandfather used in connection to Stephen’s vitriol, could stay silent no longer. He posted on the Johnstown newspaper’s Facebook page: “If in the early 20th Century, the USA had built a wall against poor, desperate immigrants of a different religion, like the Glossers, all of us would have gone up the crematoria chimneys with the six million other kinsmen.” Glosser says he received an “avalanche of support” from Glossers everywhere, even ones he’d never heard of. Alas, Stephen’s mother, Miriam, “wasn’t enthusiastic about [the post], to say the least,” says Glosser.

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These may be the Millers’ final days this close to the sun. But for some of his family members, even a Trump defeat won’t end the nightmare. “I personally believe that he should be tried for crimes against humanity,” says Patti Glosser of her young relative. Katie could easily find herself at a place like Fox, a new Irena Briganti. Stephen will likely find a role at a far-right think tank or a Breitbart-like corner of the web. The worry among his relatives is that Stephen has laid the groundwork for longevity. “When he’s in his 60s or 70s or even sooner, we could go through this all over again,” fears Patti. “Will we become a kinder, gentler nation, or will we continue on the path that we are?”

When A Former Defense Secretary Links Donald Trump To Nazis…..

….you know there is a reason for the word choice.

Let me start by underscoring how dramatic this news story is, and not because it has the word Nazi in the article.  No, rather because there is a code of conduct that General Jim Mattis has lived and demonstrated over his long career.  He is not one to go public with criticism of sitting political leaders.  That holds true not only for him but for others who have served in the military.

But there are those moments in our history when the adults must rise from the corners and speak out. Timing is everything at a moment like this, and as such Mattis sent Trump a clear message that he’d better back down or risk united resistance from the military establishment.  It is Mattis now……others will follow if Trump does not slink backward from his threat to use federal troops in the states–or to further attack our citizens as was done this week outside the White House.

Former Defense Secretary James Mattis slammed Donald Trump’s response to the protests over the death of George Floyd and called his photo op in front of St. John’s Episcopal Church “an abuse of executive authority.”

Donald Trump is the first president in my lifetime who does not try to unite the American people—does not even pretend to try. Instead, he tries to divide us,” Mattis wrote in a statement published Wednesday by The Atlantic.

“Instructions given by the military departments to our troops before the Normandy invasion reminded soldiers that ‘The Nazi slogan for destroying us … was “Divide and Conquer.” Our American answer is “In Union there is Strength.”‘ We must summon that unity to surmount this crisis — confident that we are better than our politics,” Mattis wrote.

In the stunning rebuke of his former boss, Mattis, a retired general, said he’d promised to defend the Constitution when he was sworn into the Marine Corps “some 50 years ago.”

“Never did I dream that troops taking that same oath would be ordered under any circumstance to violate the Constitutional rights of their fellow citizens — much less to provide a bizarre photo op for the elected commander-in-chief, with military leadership standing alongside,” Mattis wrote, referring to Monday night’s federal show of force to clear protesters from the front of the White House.

Madison School Board Member Ali Muldrow Used Trump Tactics

UPDATE–ACTION ALERT–Sign Petition and remove Ali Muldrow from Madison School Board.

To say I am very disheartened with Ali Muldrow would be a severe understatement.

Since 2015 I have lamented the tone, style, and tactics of Donald Trump with his use of bombastic language, lack of facts, and wild exaggerations.  I have wondered how deep his impact would be on the body politic.  While our political discourse has always been frothy in the history of our nation there is no doubt the wheels appear to be coming off the bus since Trump arrived on the scene as a presidential candidate.

But with the words and statements used by Madison School Board member Muldrow regarding local police, Nazis, and concentration camps I am truly saddened, given this is a very liberal and seemingly educated area.   If we can not rise higher in our discourse and ability to argue a point what hope is there for the hinterlands?

On Saturday, Muldrow said on Facebook, “I think that (it’s) important to talk about what it is like for the students who are arrested at school and end up in the Dane County Jail. We would not talk about the role of the Nazis and act as if the experiences people had in concentration camps is a separate issue.”

I was stunned at her words, and equally so at the lack of her awareness of what occurred during one of the most inhumane chapters of the 20th century.  I am sure she has a number of degrees and diplomas, but this weekend she acted as if she had never opened a history book in her lifetime.

There is no excuse for making such an outlandish and hurtful statement.  It was not as if Muldrow misspoke, as what she offered was in writing which takes more time and awareness to prepare.  The harm she did with local efforts to unite people who have varying perspectives on local police and oversight issues will take time to sort out.  That she consciously linked our police with Nazis and the efforts to stem violence in schools with concentration camps is stupefying. 

I have never been to the sites where concentration camps were set up by Hitler’s men.  But I have studied history, read a great deal, and saw enough documentary coverage to know that what happens to teenagers who run afoul of society’s expectations in high school are not being subjected to anything comparable to a concentration camp.

The bar in our country for political discourse is pathetically low.  I do not have a great deal of hope from conservatives in lifting it, as they seem only willing to support Trump’s tone and style.  But I need to have faith that liberals and progressives can elevate our conversations that are much needed if we are to govern and learn from one another.

What Muldrow did was of such lack of principle and common sense that she will not find any soft words of apology will carry away the harm and hurt she purposefully placed into the community.

And so it goes.

White Nationalism Smacked Down On Facebook

There is good news to report about how a major social media platform is responding to the uptick in White Nationalism.

In a major policy shift Facebook banned white nationalism and white separatism on its platform.  There is no room for these hate groups to have a platform from which to spew their vile horse-rot.  This move marks a major reversal for the social media platform, whose previous internal policies told content moderators that white nationalist and white separatist content should be treated differently than white supremacist content.  That shade of gray provoked outrage and forced the top brass of Facebook to rethink their actions.

As part of the policy update, Facebook will also direct users searching for content related to white supremacy on its platform to Life After Hate, a nonprofit organization that provides support and education to help people leave hate groups and movements.  As we know, the most important thing is education for those who use hate as a tool.

More specifically, the company is going to ban “praise, support and representation of white nationalism and separatism” on both Facebook and Instagram.  Facebook said that it would start enforcing the new rules next week.   It can not come soon enough for this nation.   The long and short of it is that Facebook has now promised to weed out white supremacy from its site.

And so it goes.

Trump Shows His True White Supremacist Feelings Saying Neo-Nazis Are “Very Fine People”

Everyone knew that President Trump had not changed his attitude about white supremacists and nationalists when he was forced to give comments before the nation Monday.  He did not believe what he read from a prepared statement any more than believed there was a real man in the moon.  The moment on Monday was for a political show.  He did not step on his own tongue and was labeled by some as a success.

But when the bar is so low that just saying Nazis are bad makes one look like a leader, means the definition of leadership itself is needing to be revisited.

But like everything that Trump does he blows hot one moment, cold the next.  His level of mental abilities comes in likes waves to a shore.  Sometimes it brings in only water, other times a dead fish. Today Trump brought forth a reeking mess from the depths.

A short time ago the truly foolish looking orange-haired man defended some of the neo-Nazis and white supremacists who were part of the deadly Charlottesville protests.  It was simply appalling.

With an apparent early dose of sun-downers taking hold of Trump–and just since yesterday when he slammed the pro-white groups who organized the two-day protests–he now says, “There is blame on both sides.”  “I don’t have any doubt about it.”

But note that this is from a half-baked loaf of a man who spreads rhetoric and ideas floated by the alt-right political movement that has ties to white supremacist groups.  Our president is taking the dark side’s position on an issue that my dad and so many other Americans fought against in World War II.

Republican lawmakers made it clear this weekend what they thought of Trump’s lack of a clear response to the white angry men who thought they were going to prance about with fire and vile comments. Therefore there will be again many members of the GOP who will stand up and correctly rebuke Trump.  One of the reason is that he broke with his immediate predecessors by saying there were “very fine people on both sides” of the protests in Charlottesville.  In doing so, Trump essentially rebuffed most U.S. presidents of the last few decades by implying that neo-Nazis can be “very fine people.”

I suspect Barry Goldwater would say that every sound-thinking American should kick Trump in the ass.  Even conservatives know a traitor when they see one.