Dr. Jill Stein & Michael Hudson: Fighting Russia & China to Last American: Destroying US From Within

Posted on by

Yves here. Some readers plan to vote for Jill Stein even though her campaign seems quixotic. This interview of her and Michael Hudson shows how her effort nevertheless can and hopefully will shift the Overton window on the domestic costs of trying to preserve US hegemony way after its sell-by date.

Originally published by Nima of Dialogue Works

NIMA ROSTAMI ALKHORSHID: Today we’re going to talk with Dr. Stein, 2024 presidential candidate in the United States and her policy advisor, Professor Michael Hudson. And we’re going to talk about Ukraine, Taiwan, Israel, and domestic policy in the United States.

And so let’s get started with the conflict in Ukraine. Michael, how do you find the current face of the war in Ukraine? How do you find the policy of the Biden administration? It seems that they want to continue this war in Ukraine. How do you find it so far?

MICHAEL HUDSON: Well, despite the pretense that somehow Ukraine can still win, they know that the Ukrainians have already lost. The Russians are moving pretty much at will up to the Dnieper and then along the north shore of the Black Sea, all the way to Odessa. And once they move to Dnieper and Odessa, they’ve got really what they want in Ukraine. Now, there won’t be resistance.

So what does Biden mean when he said this will go on and on? He’s in agreement that just like Putin said it’s going to go on probably for 10 years, Biden says it’s going to go on for 10 years.

And the reason he’s saying that is because France and England both say that they’re going to come in, Poland is going to come in. And so the war in Western Ukraine is going to be not so much against the Ukrainian army, which is now pretty depleted, but against other NATO troops. And it’s going to be an escalation, and it’s going to be a forever war.

And the objective of the administration here is simply they believe that a forever war will keep depleting Russia’s arms and missiles and tanks and army so that it will be in a lesser position to defend China when Mr. Biden says that he intends to follow the military plans to attack China in 2025 and 2026. So the United States plan is for a forever war basically, extended from the Ukraine to China, and probably in the Near East, because Iran is the third main enemy designated by the United States.

NIMA ROSTAMI ALKHORSHID: Dr. Stein, how do you find the foreign policy of Biden administration in Ukraine?

JILL STEIN: As Michael describes it, this is absolutely Orwellian. It is terrifying. It reflects this mindset of a state of permanent war of a country that thinks that it is the sole imperial power, which is basically rampaging around the world and butting up against conflicts that are huge, that could go global, that could go nuclear. This is unfortunately a microcosm of that mindset.

It has been absolutely clear from the get-go that for NATO to continue to move to the East, violating the promise of the United States and NATO basically to Russia that it would not expand to the East, not one inch after the reunification of Germany, which constituted an existential threat to Russia, which was just recently recovering from the Second World War and the loss of some 20 million, maybe 27 million of its citizens after an invasion over the Ukrainian border.

So Russia is understandably touchy about its border, but no more touchy than the United States is about its borders. In the same way that the United States was ready to go to nuclear war, in fact, we had the nuclear bombs launched and in the air when it was discovered that Russia had placed nuclear missiles in Cuba, we were ready to go to war to prevent that threat of nuclear missiles placed so close to our capital and to our country that there would really be no defense against a launch.

It’s exactly the same for Russia. This is understandable. This is what all informed Russia experts and Russia watchers had advised for years. It was considered insane to be butting up against Russia’s border and to be breaking the promise that had been made to Gorbachev.

It is an extremely warmongering, ill-informed, aggressive policy. When did this war surge? Actually, it goes back to 2014 and the interference of the U.S. in domestic Ukrainian politics in participating very much in the overthrow of the democratically elected ruler, president of Ukraine at the time, who simply wanted neutrality for Ukraine, which is essentially what Russia was asking for, was neutrality, not to take one side or the other. This war has been specifically ginned up by the U.S.

When the war in Afghanistan basically came to its disastrous end, as the whole war had been a disaster, when it finally wrapped up, that’s when the war industry cannot bear for there to be a peace dividend for the people of the world and the people of the United States. Instead, we were then plunged into this ginned up, absolutely unnecessary war, which could have been averted at any point.

Russia was begging for negotiations, which the U.S. basically refused to participate in. After the war had begun, there were negotiations that took place under the auspices of [Türkiye], where Russia showed that it did not want this war, it was ready to come to the table to negotiate and to compromise substantially. The U.S. and the U.K. basically shut it down.

This is a war being ginned up by the war industry. It’s absolutely a disaster. It’s part of an endless war machine that is impoverishing the American people and endangering the whole world. This could go nuclear.

As Michael was referring to recent statements by France and England, that France may be sending troops and that England was basically giving their blessing to the use of weapons provided by England to be used to attack the interior of Russia, it’s no surprise whatsoever that Putin basically said this is an existential threat and began to engage nuclear war exercises again, which is a horrifying development.

And there’s every reason for this war to end, but even as Ukraine is losing more and more territory now, you have Biden again, or Blinken, I think it was actually just the other day, declaring that there will be no end to U.S. support. And the Democrats, I must say, voted unanimously for this latest $61 billion to be thrown into this fire. It’s basically just fuel being thrown on a fire, which is a disaster above all for the people of Ukraine who are paying in blood here, essentially for the exercise of just military might on the part of the U.S. But it’s military might that is extremely ill-conceived and could be challenged by the other nations of the world.

The U.S. is no longer the sole power now, as it had been for prior decades. It no longer is. We’re living in a multi-polar world, no longer a unipolar world.

MICHAEL HUDSON: Well, what makes it so striking is that the polls show that I think over 80% of the American public wants the war in Ukraine to end, or at least the United States to stop spending the money in Ukraine. They also opposed the genocide in Gaza. And yet, despite what the public wants, we’re having a Congress voting completely the other way, in the inverse proportion to what the American public wants, not spending on war, spending at home.

What you’re seeing is that this is not democracy. This is not the idea that other people have of how America works. How is it that the Republicans and the Democrats in Congress together are taking a position almost unanimously against what the people want, and yet America does not have a parliamentary system like Europe, where you can get third parties and fourth parties and fifth parties to provide an alternative.

There’s not an alternative in the United States, which explains the problems that Jill is having. She’s the only anti-war candidate, and she’s trying to get on the ballot. And the Democrats and Republicans are doing everything they can to prevent any third party on the ballot, which really means any second party to the Republican-Democrat duopoly.

NIMA ROSTAMI ALKHORSHID: Dr. Stein, can you explain what you’re facing right now in New York?

JILL STEIN:  Yes, exactly. And that’s exactly where I wanted to go, because New York, in many ways, is the last stand of empire. It’s empire’s last stand. This is where the most difficult rules have been concocted in order to make our elections extremely undemocratic, in order to keep alternatives off the ballot, because the forces of war and Wall Street know that they cannot beat us in the court of public opinion. So their solution is to simply prevent us from having a voice in this election at all.

And as Michael mentioned, we are the only anti-war, anti-genocide, pro-worker campaign that is on track now to be on the ballot across the country.

So New York is where the most difficult rules have been put together, basically in a poison pill that was inserted unbeknownst to most observers. This was not debated. It was not discussed. It was just rammed into a budget package in 2022 in New York State by the now disgraced Governor Cuomo, who basically tripled the requirement. So the requirement is now for 45,000 valid signatures. Valid meaning the signature has to match exactly the signature on the voter registration form. If you used a middle name on your voter registration and you didn’t use it in your petition, your name can be thrown off the petition count. And so 45,000 of these are required, which is why we have to double the numbers, because the Democrats are using every dirty trick in the book in order to use trivial technical details to challenge the signatures.

And they have hired, as they have actually had the gall to admit, they’re shameless about this, they have hired an army of attorneys in order to challenge these ballot signatures to try to prevent their competition.

So when people bemoan the potential of Donald Trump to advance fascism, it’s really important to remind people that we really have fascism. Democracy is under attack. It’s terrible to challenge the peaceful transfer of power, but it’s also terrible to throw political opponents off the ballot. This is another hallmark of authoritarianism that has been practiced shamelessly by both parties, but in particular, by the Democrats for a long, long time. So this is why New York is such a really, it’s a moment of decision. It’s like, will genocide, will endless war, will the crushing inequality, will climate collapse, will the plight of workers, will the assault on our democracy with the police state now being called in to bash heads on campuses for students who are simply standing up for what the American people believe, for what the International Court of Justice has validated, what the United Nations General Assembly and the steering committee as well, the Security Council has also validated for young people who are simply doing the job of democracy, exercising their democratic rights. Their heads are being bashed in by police forces, largely trained in part by the Israeli occupation forces in these horrible, dehumanizing, and abusive practices. Young people are standing up against that.

This is where the American people agree, we need to be doing the right thing here, yet we have a Congress and a White House that is completely, there’s a total disconnect here. What’s wrong with the picture is that this is unfortunately the state of American democracy. It is in a state of all-out emergency, and we need to reassert that democracy by getting out and overcoming these obstructions and getting these critical issues front and center in this election.

We are otherwise on track to be on the ballot across the country. We have 75 percent over that, in fact, of the total burden of signatures that are collected. But New York is the main obstruction right now, so I really want to urge people to go to jillstein2024.com, or you can also go to the New York Green Party, you can Google the New York Green Party, and join the ballot struggle. Not only sign a petition if you are a registered voter in New York, but anyone who is a registered voter anywhere in the country can carry a petition, and we need to be attaining that margin of safety now of 20 or 30,000 signatures in the next two weeks. So we already have the bulk basically guaranteed, but we need to go all out in the remaining time.

MICHAEL HUDSON: I want to ask one question that I haven’t had a chance before. You know, scientists have a policy, strategy to get rid of mosquitoes. They make sterilized mosquitoes, and they let them loose so that the mosquito breeds ends.

Now, I understand that there’s another candidate that has already got 100,000 signatures, RFK, and all of his signatures for the ballot, had been, they go up to people and say, do you want a third party candidate? Well, many people have signed not knowing that he’s the third party candidate. They’ve covered that up. Now, my question to you is, if somebody’s already signed a ballot for one of these sterile mosquitoes, and the same people signed for your ballot, does that, is that grounds for disqualifying the whole page of signatures?

JILL STEIN: Yes, it is. And there are very complicated rules in every state, and they are different in every state. In New York, it is true that if a registered voter signs for one candidate, they cannot also sign for the other. And exactly which one gets discounted, I don’t know. It may depend on which set of signatures gets turned in first. But this is just another one of the booby traps that’s basically built into the ballot access process here, which is essentially, it is a screen, you know, it is a filter to prevent grassroots campaigns from getting on the ballot.

If you are a member of the parties of War and Wall Street, that is, if you are a Democrat or a Republican, this set of requirements does not apply to you. You’re essentially grandfathered in simply by getting the nomination of your party.

But for Greens, for socialists, for alternative third parties, for libertarians, that does not apply. We have to attain this mountain of signatures.

Now, if you are taking money from billionaires and bankers, and you have a super PAC that’s doing the job for you, a super PAC, which can accept, you know, money from billionaires without, you know, any limit on it whatsoever. It’s essentially a conduit for big money and for corporations to pull strings from the inside. If you’re doing that, you know, you can be quite assured that you’re going to get on the ballot.

And, you know, we know that RFK has a billionaire running mate who can help fund this. He also has a super PAC with, you know, basically billionaire funders as well. In fact, there are two of them who are funding the majority, you know. So what kind of democracy is that, you know, when basically it’s powerful special interests who are funding you? That is a guarantee, you know, that your campaign will be serving, you know, nefarious purposes, basically.

So if you’re a big money campaign, you can game these rules. These rules essentially are designed to stop grassroots, true people-powered political movements, which is why we must overcome them.

And, you know, there’s a whole game plan here because the state of emergency of our democracy has everything to do with money. It has everything to do with limiting ballot access. It has everything to do with the corporate consolidation of the media, which, by the way, can be challenged on day one. We can instruct our Department of Justice to undertake essentially antitrust lawsuits against consolidated corporate media as well. So there are solutions. You know, we can get money out of politics by having publicly funded campaigns. We voted that in my home state. We passed it by voter referendum to have public funding. And then the Democrats, the progressive Democrats, repealed it on a voice vote in our legislature. I mean, for me, that was the final straw to know that I would never be a Democrat. And I had never been a member of, you know, of either political party because I grew up in the Vietnam era. Again, seeing the Democrats calling out the police state to crack the heads of protesters who were objecting to another genocidal war.

You know, so for me, it’s this fundamental corruption of the entire system, which is embraced by Democrats like Republicans and exactly why it is we need to prevail.

And by the way, I won’t go into it at this moment, but sometime today before we’re done, I want to talk about that there is actually a pathway forward. This is a black swan election, and the American people have shown every indication of not proceeding along predictable pathways. Witness, for example, the primary of the Democratic Party here in New York State, where there was a phenomenal 12 percent uncommitted vote, but there was an equally phenomenal 83 percent no-show compared to the voters who turned out to support Joe Biden in 2020. They are voting with their feet and the floor has fallen through in the Democratic Party and people are, you know, tearing their hair out for other options here besides these two zombie candidates being rammed down our throats. So people need to feel very empowered here about totally transforming the direction of our democracy.

MICHAEL HUDSON: Well, this seems to be a digression, but it’s not. It’s directly factored into what Nima’s question was about the war in Ukraine. Because New York is a Democratic Party state, and the Democrats and Ms. Biden have said that you are the main threat to Biden’s victory. Because if you get on the ballot, that means fewer people will vote for Biden, and they blame you for Donald Trump’s winning in 2016 under the fantasy that if people wouldn’t have voted for you, they would have voted for Biden, which of course is absolutely silly. There’s no way they’re going to vote for Biden.

Well, right now, you’ll notice that Biden and the Democrats in New York have done everything they can to promote the candidate of RFK Jr., a neoliberal libertarian, and who they think will take more votes away from the Republicans. So they’re all in favor of a third party candidate that will take votes away from Republicans. But they’re afraid of you. And as you know, the former managers of RFK have left his campaign to go over to your campaign. So you really have covered the whole third party scheme. And that’s what frightens the Democrats. That’s why this election shows, is America really a democracy or isn’t it?

NIMA ROSTAMI ALKHORSHID: We know that Biden is defining new tariffs on China, and these tariffs are going to influence the life of Americans. This is the same policy, the same old policy coming from the Trump administration. And right now, Biden is doing the same. What’s your take on these new tariffs?

MICHAEL HUDSON: Well, it’s not only the tariffs against steel and against solar panels and e-mobiles. He also wants to confiscate TikTok, because it’s much more successful than any of the other major platforms in America. And both Biden has said that AIPAC and the Israelis are absolutely right. You must get rid of TikTok, because there are writers on there that say, we support the United Nations, and we support the International Court of Justice. They say that is anti-Semitic, because you can’t have any discussion that genocide is occurring or any criticism of Israel. They want to take over TikTok. So it will be stripped of any opposition to the government as Facebook and X and the other media are already there.

But what is so especially hypocritical is Biden says that, well, the reason we’re imposing the tariffs on China is because we want to industrialize the United States again.

The real reason is that he’s declared China the number one enemy, and he’s doing everything to do to sanction it. But the fact is, the pretense that somehow these tariffs are going to create jobs just exposes what’s gone wrong with the American economy. It’s been deindustrializing ever since the Clinton administration in the 1990s. And the last 30 years have basically concentrated wealth at the very top of the economic pyramid financially and left the rest of the economy.

The average employee is so expensive that if you were given every wage earner in America, all the food, all the clothing, all the transportation for nothing, they still couldn’t compete with any other country because of the two problems. The rents here are so high that they outstrip any other country, and the medical costs are too high, and the student loans are so high. If you have people entering the workforce who’ve had to pay $50,000 to $100,000 a year for four years and begin the workforce having to pay off a quarter million to a half million dollar in debt, how can their employers pay them enough money to live and still pay for their housing and the student loans?

There’s no way America can reindustrialize, and the United States is somehow trying to break off and isolate China and the whole global majority. If China, Russia, and the global South didn’t exist, they think somehow all the neoliberalized countries will be in the same boat, and yes, we will all be equally competitive, but what are we going to do about the 85% of the population? How can America compete?

I think Jill has some solutions.

JILL STEIN: Yes, exactly. I think that simply erecting tariffs, which will add further impediments to greening the economy, and it will also normalize a high cost for electric vehicles. It’s good for electric vehicles to be available at a price that everyday Americans can afford because if the price gets doubled, which is certainly what these tariffs will do because they’re 100% tariffs, it basically adds this huge inflationary factor to the American economy.

In terms of Michael’s larger point, you don’t create an industrialized economy simply by implementing a tariff. This is like the patient with multi-system failure on a bed in the intensive care unit. They have multi-organ failure, and you can’t just address one little superficial part of it. It needs a total reboot.

We need to address that cost of healthcare that makes American industries absolutely uncompetitive. We need to move to a Medicare for all system, which will not only improve our health, cover everyone in all capacities. There are huge holes right now in coverage, but it also cuts the total cost by half a trillion dollars a year. 30% basically of the cost can be recouped right away.

We need to address the issue of rent. Rents are completely going through the roof right now. Half of all renters are severely economically stressed, just trying to keep a roof over their head, paying over 30% of their income just for their rent, which doesn’t leave enough for putting food on the table after you’ve paid your student loans, etc. There are simple solutions that can be implemented nationally, including federalized rent control, including a tenant bill of rights so that evictions without cause basically are a thing of the past. There need to be accessible housing attorneys to assert tenant rights. We need to bring back public housing, which has essentially been prohibited by legislation that essentially makes it impossible for quality public housing, now called social housing, to be built.

There are practical solutions that we can put on the table to address that part of the uncompetitiveness of American industry.

Above all, we have a Green New Deal program, which will put substantial dollars, like trillions of dollars, initially in the first year to jumpstart an economic recovery program by training people and creating projects for greening our energy system, for phasing out fossil fuels within the next 10 years, for greening our agriculture so we can bring back family and community farms instead of this very destructive and unsustainable agribusiness that has basically put the family farmer and the Black farmer in particular essentially out of business. We can create the jobs that we need without creating these tariffs that essentially destroy the little bit of climate policy that’s underway currently.

MICHAEL HUDSON: Well, there’s still a problem in trying to do this, and that’s the debt problem and the related problems that you have.

Right now, you have in the New York Times and the other democratic media writers by the journalist Paul Krugman, for instance, that’ll say, why don’t the wage earners get it? 80% of Americans say that the economy is very bad and that their living standards are bad. Paul Krugman says, how can they say that? The consumer price index is stabilized at 3.5% and unemployment is down. Gee, many families can get two or three jobs to get by. What are they complaining about?

Well, all of the attention from the economic reports of the Federal Reserve every week or every month are the consumer price index, but there are no indexes that are published in America of the debt problem. Debt is not part of the consumer price index. The reason that Americans are so unhappy right now is they’re debt burdened. They’re so burdened that arrears and defaults are occurring for every category of debt, for student debt, for mortgage debt, for bank and credit card debt, especially for automobile debt to drive to your job to get it.

The fact that the debt service is going up is basically what is blocking the ability of employees to buy the products that they produce. There’s no circular flow there. It’s all siphoned off to finance at the top.

The consumer price index doesn’t show how prices is going up right now because the Federal Reserve has raised interest rates so high, the mortgage rate is seven and a half percent. That means that if you take out a mortgage to buy a house, in 10 years, the bank gets as much for the house as the homeowner who sold. The doubling time of seven and a half percent is under 10 years at compound interest.

Just imagine, at this rate, individual families cannot afford to buy a house anymore.

What you’ve had since 2008 is something amazing that no one’s talking about. In 2008, before the Obama bailout of the banks, the home ownership rate in America was 59 percent. The idea was that the entrance to the middle class was going to be owning your own home. But right now, with the interest rates so high, people can’t buy homes. The home ownership rate now is below 50 percent.

America is no longer a homeowner society. England, Scandinavia, Europe, 70 to 80 to 90 percent of the population are homeowners, not the United States. After Obama evicted 8 million American families to bail out the banks from the victims of junk mortgages and false credit reports and bank fraud, their homes were all picked up by private capital firms like Blackstone and others. And you’ve had these private capital firms playing the role today that landlords did in the 19th century England, before you had all the reforms of classical economics. So America’s gone backwards. The word neo-feudalism is picking up more and more in the papers.

We’ve gone backwards and are making it really impossible to achieve an economic recovery without almost a total systemic reform. And I know Jill has outlined particular elements of those reforms. But as she said, one or two fixes won’t work. You really need the whole system. And in order to have that, you have to have a discussion of what are the problems and what to do. There’s no discussion of the problems. That’s one of the reasons that we need a politician who can actually introduce this discussion into the overall discussion and debate about policy.

You have to realize the problems that are holding America back, not just saying, you should be happy. We don’t know why you’re not voting Biden back in.

JILL STEIN:  And if I could just add quickly, I saw something, you know, flashed by my iPhone, on my iPhone screen about the stock market attaining some unprecedented height as of today. You know, and this is the mindset of our political class. You know, they live within the top 5%. And so the economy is doing great as far as they’re concerned. But, you know, we’re in an economy where 3 billionaires have the wealth and resources of half the population altogether.

And, you know, year by year, this is not getting better. This is only getting worse, because we’re now in this like vicious feedback loop right now, where the economic elites are basically giving the marching orders to the political elites. And in many cases, they are the political elites themselves, you know, the billionaires who enter into our political system, you know. And so inside of the political system, they are then generating the policies that further concentrate wealth and the advantages of the oligarchs, you know. So we’re in a situation right now of oligarchy and empire. They go hand in hand in the same way that Martin Luther King said, you know, that we have this triple evil of militarism, materialism, extreme materialism, and racism, basically.

And, you know, and the system is like an airplane going into a tailspin right now on its way down. And we got to pull out of that, out of that tailspin. And it really requires a systemic fix. And that’s why, you know, that’s why we’re in this race. That’s why we need to be on the ballot in New York. That’s why we need, you know, every one of us to do everything possible, you know, to jump into the mix here and to, you know, get the airplane into a pull-up, we need to pull up out of this tailspin while there’s still time.

MICHAEL HUDSON: Well, basically the real voters are the donor class, the billionaires that you’ve mentioned, because they can give money to back the candidates. And money is what buys television time, buys people to get the signatures on the ballot. And you could say it’s a democracy for the oligarchs, but that’s called oligarchy. And not only do these sort of unelected billionaires end up deciding who gets to be on the ticket in the primaries, depending on who they’re backed, but there’s also the blob, the secret government, the damage of the CIA, NSA, FBI, and the deep state.

And one of the programs that Jill has suggested is a new Church Commission. We need something like South Africa’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission. What has the CIA and the National Security Council been doing behind our, to try to push for these regime changes all over the world that lead to the American involvement in wherever there’s been a regime change in one of the 800 military bases the United States have all over the world?

JILL STEIN: And to add to that, it was a big wake-up call for me when I discovered this kind of the hidden history here that the CIA has essentially overturned, the count is somewhere around 70 countries now since the Second World War. If you look at South America, one of the shining examples in South America is Costa Rica, which basically doesn’t have a military because when they had their revolution against their military, and I think it was 1952 or -3, something like that, but it was just before the CIA was created. And that’s why Costa Rica sort of stuck in under the wire. They actually had a socialist revolution. They dismantled their military. They put their national resources largely into the social needs of their population.

Whereas, go not too far away, you have Guatemala where the democracy, the democratically elected president, Arbenz, I think his name was in 1954, just a year or two later, he was then subject to regime change by the US acting on behalf of United Fruit, which did not want to see land redistributed out of the hands of corporations and into the hands of everyday people and peasants.

And it’s taken, what is it now, 70 years for Guatemala to recover. I think Guatemala just elected a real reformer. Let’s hope that holds steady. But this is not a simple thing when the US is in the business of overthrowing other democracies.

And so we badly need not only a Church Commission, we need to re-engage congressional hearings in general on substantive issues. One of the products of the Church Committee, which was the creation of these intelligence committees in the Senate and the House, they were supposed to do the watchdogging, but they’ve now become full collaborators in these plans and are not doing the watchdogging that desperately needs to happen. So we need to reconvene meaningful congressional hearings in the same way that we also need to hold the feet of elected representatives to the fire by forcing them to meet with their constituents.

We used to have an institution called town hall meetings. They are not used anymore because congressional reps and senators are way too busy raising money from their billionaire donors and their corporate donors, the surrogates for the corporations at any rate, the executives of corporations. That’s where they’re spending their time instead of actually meeting face to face with their constituents.

So we have some very serious problems here, but there are real solutions that we can bring to bear simply by virtue of the power of the presidency, the executive power, or the bully pulpit to really compel certain institutions to get started again to begin this process of recovery for our democracy.

MICHAEL HUDSON: Well, I think there’s a reason why you just mentioned that the Congressional Oversight Committees aren’t doing their job. That’s because in the Democratic Party and the Republicans, every politician, in order to get on a committee, has to contribute. Given 100,000, 400,000 committee chairmanships, you have to raise $500,000.

Now, who has this money to give them? We’re back again to the PACs, the political contributors that determine who’s suggested. Now, the military-industrial complex will give so much money to their selected politicians that the politicians can buy their chairmanship of the committee, and other congressmen or senators can also use the money that their contributors give to the committee.

And this has been discussed for a long time, the corruption of Congress and why Congress does not represent the people.

There’s also a parallel to this that’s occurred recently, and that’s the same thing of billionaires determining policy has occurred, as you’ve seen in the last month, over the entire educational system of this country. You’ve seen all of the demonstrations opposing the genocide in Gaza, and you’ve seen two university presidents already fired because their donors of the university have said, We are not going to give you funding unless you fire, you take the names of all of the students and give us the names and expel them from the university because they’re opposing, they’re supporting the United Nations and the International Court of Justice. Support of the United Nations is anti-Semitic. You must fire them, and you must fire any faculty member that opposes American military policy.

Now, this has happened in one campus after another. Columbia is obviously the most notorious, but the first was Harvard. I think Bill Ackman, a fund manager, said, I’m withdrawing all my money from you if you don’t fire the president and put faculty members and a curriculum that I and my colleagues approve of. The same thing at Columbia. They threatened the donors of one of their hospitals, said, we’re not going to give you the half million dollars we promised or the 10 million to finish your diabetes hospital unless you fire the protesters who say, if you say that Palestinians are human beings, that’s anti-Semitic.

Congress has just proposed a law saying that to say “from the [river to] the sea” or to defend the Palestinians is, by definition, a criminal anti-Semitic act. This has actually been proposed in Congress. There’s very little chance of the Senate passing this because the Senate is not quite as nutty as the Congress, but I don’t think the rest of the world realizes how radical this change is and how nothing like it has ever, ever occurred before in American history, not even under J. Edgar Hoover in the 1920s.


NIMA ROSTAMI ALKHORSHID: One of the other dimensions of this economic problem in the United States would be de-dollarization. We know that Putin and Xi are so hand-in-hand to de-dollarize their trades. And recently, Putin just said that in two years they could reduce their dependence on US dollar from 54% to 13%. That’s huge. And what’s going on, Michael, right now, considering Russia, China and Brexit?

MICHAEL HUDSON: Well, here’s what I don’t understand. Biden repeatedly says, “China is our number one enemy,” “Russia’s our number two enemy,” you’ve seen the United States and its Europe satellites already confiscate all of Russia’s foreign exchange that’s held in Europe and the United States. Why doesn’t China fear this?

As you point out, it’s moving gradually to de-dollarize, but if America is actually going to go to war with a country, of course, it’s going to grab its foreign exchange and foreign reserves, just as it grabbed the foreign reserves of Iran, Venezuela, any other country, Libya. We still don’t have any idea what happened to Libya’s gold after Hillary Clinton and the French got in and devastated the country.

It’s obvious that the world is splitting into two parts, and this split in the world part is affecting the U.S. banking system very substantially because the International Monetary Fund just recently came out saying, finally acknowledging the third world countries, that is, the global south, cannot afford to pay their dollar debts. The flow of money is from the debtor countries to the creditor countries, not the other way around.

Every calculation shows that if the global south countries do not default on their dollar bonds or stop paying the dollar bonds, they will have no money at all for social spending of any form. And in order to prevent the currency from collapsing, just like the German mark collapsed when they tried to pay reparations, the global south countries are paying reparations for 75 years of financial colonialism under the way that the United States has forced a false austerity program on them, a false economic doctrine that austerity and cutting labor’s wages is the way to get rich.

The way to get rich is the way that America and Europe did. You raise labor’s wages to make it better schooled, better dressed, better fed, healthier. That’s the way to raise our productivity.

But debtor countries lack the money to do that, and they’ve followed the directions of the IMF and the Washington consensus. And they have every right now to say, we’re going to put our own population first, not the creditor nations. We cannot afford to pay the dollar debt without bankrupting our economies and having a revolution here.

I’m sure that right now when President Putin is meeting with President Xi, they’re discussing how to de-dollarize. Well, I think that if countries are going to, global majority countries, realize that, okay, we’re not going to pay the debts, the United States is going to essentially confiscate what they have in this country and do to them what it did to Venezuela and even Argentina.

So the result will be, anticipating this, I would expect global south countries to say, by the way, we have our gold in the Federal Reserve or the Bank of England or in Africa, the Bank of France, could you please return the gold to us? Get your gold out, sell your American securities, especially China will sell its billion dollars worth of treasury bonds and convert it into something else. Like, certainly 40% of it will probably go into gold. The rest will be to develop infrastructure throughout the Belt and Road.

Now, if that happens, and there’s no way that it can avoid happening, not paying the dollar debts is going to lead to insolvency for a lot of American banks. There will be a financial crisis here. If you can imagine, the government’s going to say, who are we going to put first, the banks or the voters? You can guess who they’re going to put first. And so this is going to be what the next administration is going to have to confront from as soon as whoever wins takes power next year.

JILL STEIN: And I’ll just throw in that this is sort of the ultimate dysfunction and incompetence, really, of our national so-called leaders who don’t have a clue about how to be a team player, whose military policy is formally described by the term full-spectrum dominance. That is, that the U.S. will dominate all potential areas of competition. We’re all about dominating competition and essentially squelching competition, as opposed to having some kind of a notion of collaboration or cooperation.

It’s as if the leadership of the U.S. and its allies are people who don’t have a clue how to be team players and who have to dominate their relationships, which is not a good way to make friends and influence people.

For many decades, the U.S. has prevailed coming out of the Second World War, where basically all other powerful countries were destroyed and we were protected by our distance from the conflict. So we emerged unscathed and became the global dominant power.

Well, time has run out, basically, and the curves have now crossed so that it is China and its allies, the BRICS Association, essentially, and much of the global south that is increasingly productive and prevailing and now actually has a larger GDP than the U.S. and its allies.

So, you know, we’re kind of running out of steam here in this illusion that we are kind of the dominant global player.

Our leaders could not have done a better job of mobilizing our chief competitors and bringing them together in alliance against us.

And sooner rather than later, for all of us, we need to have an enlightened administration that’s capable of being a team player and can be part of the global economy in a way that’s not exploiting, preying upon, and seeking to destroy the rest of the world, which is basically what the full spectrum dominance position says. That any rising power, even on a regional basis, will not be allowed to rise and that we will basically squash that power.

So this is not working out good for us. And what Michael has just described about, you know, the looming de-dollarization should be very good reason right now for people to stand up and demand that this incredibly dysfunctional, immature and incapable regime in the U.S. just be, they need to be retired. They need to be moved out of positions, not only of power, but positions of really controlling our lives and potentially destroying our lives, largely through conflicts that could blow up on us in many places around the world right now.

NIMA ROSTAMI ALKHORSHID: Michael, when it comes to the conflict in Ukraine, we know that they’re saying that the United States is willing to fight the war in Ukraine to the last Ukrainian. Right now in this economic war of the United States and China, especially, Putin in his interview with Tucker Carlson said that we are looking for some compromise and cooperation with the United States. He, in his last visit to the United States, was seeking some sort of compromise and cooperation with the United States. The question here would be, is the United States willing to sacrifice each and every life in the United States in order to fight Russia and China?

MICHAEL HUDSON: It’s willing to fight every, fight to the last American too. Yes, it is. These are, the neocons are people who have, let’s say, not more than a chip on their shoulder. They really have a fear that if they don’t control the world, the world will do something that they might not like. There’s a desire for control of other countries and a fear that there’s really a different economic system than the system that has concentrated all the wealth in the hands of the 1%.

Well, it’s called socialism. And since China calls itself a socialist economy, the danger is that other countries may do what China has done and have the monetary system and the banking system a public utility.

Well, we have some people here like Ellen Brown that have talked about public banking. The one fear of the 1% who have made their money financially is that other countries will create a system where the economic surplus is used to raise the living standards of the population as a whole, instead of concentrating it in the 1%, especially the 1% that lives in the United States and is concentrating it all here.

This means the end of their dominance. And it’s more than total spectrum. It’s total control and total concentration of the wealth and decision-making power.

And the neocons want an economy that shifts resource allocation and policy out of the hands of Washington and other financial centers into the hands of Wall Street, England, the Paris Bourse, the Bank of Japan. The fight is over who’s going to control the economy. And this is where they’re willing to fight to the very end, just like the Roman oligarchy was willing to fight civil war rather than to give in, cancel the debts that the population was demanding in the civil wars that erupted in the first millennium BC.

So, yes, it’s literally a war of civilization. And you’ve had the Americans in the 1990s, the American phrase, the end of history. We’ve won. We’ve won, and now we can take over the world.

Well, now they’re saying there’s a fight of civilization, and they’re treating it just as you’re having in America and the whole world just like what you’re seeing in Israel, a fight between two irreconcilable systems.

Well, America says our democracy, which is their euphemism for oligarchy, is incompatible with autocracy, their word for socialism and a government policy run to try to uplift the economy as a whole. That’s the fight that we’re in, and it’s a fight that’s going to go beyond this election year.

NIMA ROSTAMI ALKHORSHID: Yeah. Dr. Stein, what would be your policy considering compromise and cooperation with the rest of the world, with the global majority?

JILL STEIN: Well, I mean, it’s clearly the only way forward. The U.S. is no longer the dominant economic power, nor are we the dominant military power. We sort of have parity with Russia in terms of nuclear weapons, but there are all sorts of other weapons right now where Russia seems to have the upper hand in the super fast missiles and so on. And it’s a crazy system in which we can all spend ourselves into oblivion in this endless arms race, which has basically been reengaged now for at least a decade or so.

But I think at the moment where we are right now, we can’t assume that we have parity or that we have adequate defenses against Russia’s super fast missiles. And this is not to reengage that arms race. That is not the solution. That’s never going to solve it. We’re already spending down in our own country the resources that we desperately need for housing and for health care and to deal with the climate crisis and so on. We need those resources.

In fact, we need to be demilitarizing. And so the foreign policy that we are advocating is a foreign policy based on international law, human rights and diplomacy. And what we see going on right now in Gaza is not only a death watch for two million people whose lives are on the line now by the hour, really, because there’s no water, there’s no food coming in. And now the little trickle that was getting into the country has basically been shut down by Israel when it took possession of the Rafah gate. And, you know, so I mean, this could, an epidemic, you know, cholera or whatever, you know, there’s just anything could happen now. People are malnourished. They don’t have food. They don’t have shelter. They’re being bombed. They’re being targeted. They’re being shot at like fish in a barrel. It’s just, you know, unconscionable what is going on here now.

And this is sort of a symbol of where U.S. militarism goes. It’s, you know, this is kind of the tip of the iceberg. It’s not the first genocidal war. You know, we killed three million people in Southeast Asia, you know, in that war, which was simply, again, about an exercise of U.S. power, really without a rational reason for it. And in all the wars since, we are spending down the resources of the American people in this foreign policy based on essentially militarism and the control of economic markets and resources. That’s what the game is about. It is an absolute disaster. We have lost every single one of these catastrophic wars, certainly since Vietnam and including Vietnam, but all the recent Middle East wars, which have been just a series of disasters.

And you have a media now, a mainstream media, which is, it is a lapdog. It’s not a watchdog. And without a vigilant media, you know, the public is endlessly misinformed and disinformed by our, you know, our security state and by the Pentagon writ large. So we need fundamentally a foreign policy based on international law, human rights and diplomacy.

And Gaza shows us where we are going in the absence of that. It’s not just two million people whose lives are on the line right now in Palestine. It’s also the lives and the future of Israelis, because when you have Egypt, the major partner of Israel in making peace with its neighbors, when Egypt is now joining the lawsuit with South Africa, and when Egypt has actually threatened several weeks back to tear apart its treaty with Israel, if Rafa proceeded, you know, they have good cause to do that.

Now you have crowds in Jordan where people are also demanding an end to the peace accords with Israel. So it’s the lives of Israelis who are also in the target hairs and absolutely people all over the Middle East. And because nuclear weapons could easily be triggered here, it’s really people all over the world. And if we are in the business of destroying international law and human rights, which is happening in Gaza right now and in Palestine, where we are normalizing the torture and the murder of children on an industrial scale, if we allow that to go forward, we’re basically normalizing this in a future where we are no longer the dominant power. So all of this needs to be seen as fundamentally a threat to the future of civilization and the threat to we ourselves, who are no longer top dog in this setting. So we need to start, you know, working for a world that works for all of us, like our own lives depend on it, because in fact they do and they will increasingly, going forward.


MICHAEL HUDSON: Well, I can bring Saudi Arabia into all of this. Jill didn’t mention it, but you’ve seen Saudi Arabia is in a squeeze. All of its national wealth, its government money, is held in the United States because when it increased the oil prices in 1974 and 75, it was told that you can charge as much as you want for your oil, but you have to keep the proceeds in the United States. We’re not going to let you buy any American industry that’s important, any company that’s an American company. You can buy treasury bonds, you can buy overall stocks, you can buy real estate like the Japanese have done and lost their shirts on, but you have to keep your money here, then charge whatever you want as long as we get all of what you charge.

Well, now they’ve done that since 1974. This is 50 years of their savings are there. Now suppose that their population that’s largely Palestinian rises up as they may do in Jordan or in Egypt. Well, if they rise up, they’re going to give pressure. You have to take the Palestinian side and break relations with Israel.

Well, if they do that, the Americans are holding all of Saudi Arabia’s and Kuwait’s and the United Arab Republic’s money in the United States hostage. They can do to the Arab countries just exactly what they did to Russia and Venezuela, simply confiscate it.

At a certain point, if Saudi Arabia that I think has applied for membership in BRICS, if it does indeed support BRICS, what is it going to do with the foreign reserves? Well, obviously the BRICS are going to say, we want you to keep your savings as part of the new civilization. I think if they anticipate doing that, they should begin to withdraw their savings in the United States. Again, put it into gold and other or each other’s currencies.

Well, you can imagine what that will do to the dollar. And if the dollar goes down, there goes the American price index way up. So the cost of America supporting the war in the Near East, and it’s really America’s war. Everyone says they’re blaming Netanyahu and it’s Israel’s war. All these bombs are Americans. It’s the Americans that tell the Israelis where to bomb. It’s the Americans that tell Israeli leaders, and I’ve heard them tell Netanyahu’s leader in person, you are a landed aircraft carrier. I’ve sat in on these discussions.

And the Americans want this war against Palestine. It’s the first step of greater Israel taking over Near Eastern oil on behalf of the United States. Obviously, it will get some for itself. But this is America looks at oil as the key to the world’s energy and hence the world’s industrial production. And if it controls oil, as well as food, then it can have a stranglehold on countries that do not produce their own and non oil energy and do not produce their own food. So this is the implicit threat to the Americans of the bricks and the new economic order. And it’s the promise to the global majority that yes, there can be a new civilization. We don’t have to do what America and Europe is doing. We can make our own fate. That’s what the whole fight is going to be about. And it’s going to be fought in the financial area, the trade area, and I’m afraid the military area too.

JILL STEIN: And just to underscore what Michael is saying here, Ronald Reagan himself said the quiet part out loud in the 1980s, when he said that Israel is the unsinkable battleship for the US in the Middle East. And I think it was Joe Biden himself who said, and I’m not sure when he said it, but that if we didn’t have an Israel, we would have to invent an Israel.

Again, this is all part of that major game plan of full spectrum dominance. The US will not allow any other power to rise in any region and take command of important global resources. So even before greater Israel, even with the lesser Israel, you have basically a very powerful military outpost for the US in this region of major oil resources, where the US is positioned to essentially control the flow of oil.

And that war is already taking place right now. And the skirmishes between Yemen and Israeli ships or other US and allied forces, it’s a taste of what’s to come if this is allowed to proceed. This is an absolutely suicidal, homicidal foreign policy that is just, we’re doomed here with this, because the world is armed and angry right now. And this needs to be put to a stop. We need adults in the room here who are able to approach international relations and diplomacy as adults and as members of a team in a multipolar world that just is the condition of the world today.

And we need entirely new leadership. Our current leadership needs to be removed from power as soon as humanly possible, so we can have a future not only to thrive in, but a future that we can actually survive in, because that is all very much imperiled right now.

MICHAEL HUDSON: No wonder they don’t want you on the ballot.

JILL STEIN: Exactly. If we’re on the ballot, mainstream media cannot lock us out. They will condemn us. They will vilify us. Bring it on. That’s all just fine. But they will seek to make us unknown. And currently we are unknown. We have, I think, the highest “do not know what that candidate is about” in polling of any of the candidates. And that’s the way they want to keep it.

Even some of the so-called liberal outlets that typically cover kind of a greater spectrum, they’re not talking about us. They are talking about solo voices in the wilderness who have the political positions that we do, but they’re not talking about us because we are actually on track right now to be on the ballot across the country. And New York is their last holdout. So again, I want to encourage people to go to jillstein2024.com and get out for a day or 10 days, whatever you can do to ensure that there’s a margin of safety, because if we are on the ballot, they cannot lock us out. And everything that we’ve been talking about here today, you will then hear about the mainstream media will be forced to cover these issues. We want this to be front and center. It has to be front and center. This has to be discussed. The minute it’s discussed, it’s unstoppable. In the words of Frederick Douglass, power concedes nothing without a demand. We need to bring that demand into political discourse. But in the words of Alice Walker, the biggest way people give up power is by not knowing we have it to start with.

And we do have enormous power, not only 68 percent, depending on which poll you look at, but there’s a strong majority of Americans that wants an immediate ceasefire and a diplomatic solution to the genocidal war going on now by Israel on Palestine. There’s a huge majority there. There’s, you know, 44 million young people who have no future locked into student debt. And in fact, people under 25 now, 50 percent describe themselves as hopeless. 25 percent have considered harming themselves physically within two weeks of the poll. What does that tell you about the status of our civilization, where young people are basically being devoured by a predatory economy? What society, you know, lives on and perpetuates itself by devouring its young? But that’s now become, you know, the latest cash cow for the ruling elites.

If you look at health care, 87 million people who do not have adequate health care coverage, 100 million locked into debt.

So there is the makings here of a huge super majority, you know, even in a two-way race. But we’re going to be in a four-way race where a vote divided four ways can be won by as little as 26 percent. And in Wisconsin, for example, we’re currently running 22 percent among people 30 and under, people who sort of can say which way the wind is blowing, you know, who predict which way trends are going. And we’ve been running, I think, eight percent overall in Wisconsin. It’s not a huge leap to go from eight percent to 25.

This is entirely feasible, given that people revile the zombie candidates being forced down their throats right now. And this is, you know, this is the makings of a perfect storm to really demand the deep political change that actually is possible right now. And for us to have the courage of our convictions and to, you know, take the example of the students who will not be shut down, who are continuing to fight, you know, and a poll just came out, I think, today showing that the American people overwhelmingly approve of, you know, this fight by the students and, you know, and the effort to shut down this genocidal war. So if we stand up with the courage of our convictions, we really can change the direction of the future. And there’s no better time to make this happen than right now.

MICHAEL HUDSON: I think I should point out a technicality many people may not realize. It is unlikely that you will be elected as president, but that’s not, that doesn’t mean that either Biden or Trump will be the next president, because if you have enough delegates in enough states that actually go into Congress, then, and neither Biden nor Trump has more than 50 percent, and each of them have, you know, we’re talking about most American elections are 51 percent versus 49 percent. If you can get enough candidates, then the whole election is thrown into the House, and it’s a grab bag.

And that means that you’ll have the same position that a third party will have in Germany or England. You can say, well, if you want my vote to elect you or whoever the compromise president is, which may be neither Biden nor Trump, then here are the policies that I insist on in having to give my vote.

So you don’t have to be elected president. You just have to win enough delegates to be able to be in a position to dictate your terms, and as the trade-off time comes in November.

JILL STEIN:  Yeah. And if I can just add on to that, the name of the game here, I think, is standing up and pushing against this very corrupt and dangerous system as much as we possibly can. It is entirely possible, it may not be likely, but it is possible to actually win the office especially in a four-way race, where three candidates are going to be splitting the pro-genocide, pro-war vote. It’s entirely possible that we could prevail over that, but it’s also possible we will fall short, but we come up with something like, say, it’s 6 percent of the vote or 10 percent of the vote. That is a huge leap forward. And typically, that is the way that political movements build. They attain one count in one race, and then in the next they attain greater. And in the system that we have right now, it is so biased against independent people-powered politics. It’s taken many runs to just get to this point, but this is a point at which we can continue to build. So the name of the game, in my view, is what Alice Walker said, that the biggest way we give up power is by not knowing we have it. We do have that power, and it’s absolutely critical to stand up and fight for it, like our lives depend on it, because, you know, in fact, they do more than ever.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email


  1. none

    I’m not in a swing state so there’s no reason for me to vote major party. I usually vote for some hippie party. Stein seems ok to me too.

  2. upstater

    “New York is the main obstruction right now”

    Last week I went to GPNY’s website to find out about petitions… but the information was incomplete. While blank petitions are available, there was no information about deadline (“We need to get 45,000 valid signatures in a time frame of 6 weeks”… 6 weeks from when???) or where to send completed petitions. There was no information about local Green Party offices or activists where one might go to sign. Everything on the site seemed to require signing up with your personal email and phone numbers. I don’t want to get pestered like Sanders campaigns.

    The petition form has space for 5 signatures, which I could get from family members. It would be great if one could complete the form an mail it in.

    The ballot access problem is Andrew Cuomo’s and state democrats’ creation. But GPNY doesn’t make it any easier for voters.

  3. rob

    I like the term “zombie party” “zombie candidates”….. Is there really a choice, for people who actually think?

    The green party…. may need a lot of work…. Which considering it has never had any money… or chances…. they offer a choice… other than a zombie candidate.
    I will be voting green again…. happily.
    the feeling you get for the four years that “I didn’t vote for that idiot”…. priceless. I haven’t felt “dirty” for years, not caving to the canard of voting the lesser evil….. “is there really a lesser evil?

    1. Sadie the Cat

      I agree. I never vote strategically. My friends do, believing a vote for a 3rd party helps the greater evil. Every 4 years I get to say my bit, which is that both parties stink and I say “NO” to both.

      1. hk

        People call it “strategic voting,” but it’s hardly “strategic” in most instances that people come up with.

        First, third party votes are rarely numerous enough to actually matter. (FL 2000 was not only a freak example, but also the product of substandard politicians. (More on this below.)

        Second, the idea is offensive and presumptuous, as it assumes that a win by a Kang over Kodos in the next election beats out not having aliens as candidates. Maybe it is for some people, but not everyone. If both parties are peddling bad choices, the only way to get an improvement in the long term is to get them to lose in the near term, especially the side that might be marginally “better”–because they are the ones who take you for granted. So voting third party is in fact the more “strategic” a choice: it shows that there are in fact votes out there, people who are willing to spend the time to vote, but that politicians had better try to earn their votes.

        1. Acacia

          “Strategic voting” for nothing to change.

          Keep the oligarchy in power. Defend the status quo.

        2. Michael Fiorillo

          Not to disagree with the gist of your argument, but the trope that Nader and the Green Party cost the D’s Florida in 2000 is typical Left-punching by a hopeless, structurally doomed Democratic Party, and a self-serving myth promoted to mask their betrayals and failures: 200,000 Florida Democrats voted for Bush in 2000, dwarfing the effect of Nader on the election.

          1. hk

            Exactly my point about “substandard politicians.” If you have good politicians, you get votes, even across party and/or ideological lines.

    2. Not Qualified to Comment

      Well, to zombie party and zombie candidates why not add zombie voters? How often have I read here and elsewhere statements that it’s not worth voting, so I won’t? Or that I’ll hold my nose and vote for my perception of the least worst of the two parties in an attempt to keep the worst out, ignoring any other names on the ballot?

      If that’s your attitude don’t complain when you get what you didn’t vote for, or didn’t want what you voted for, because you made an election even if you didn’t vote and that’s the democracy you’re choosing.

      Not voting your choice because you know you’re candidate won’t win is the American disease. All that matters is to be on the winning side. If I can’t win I won’t play. But may be if the Jill Steins of the election did a little better than expected this time, they’d get a few more votes next time, and the time after that until… That’s how avalanches start.

      1. juno mas

        The best way to vote is with your feet. The “ballot box” is now just a part of the national charade. People need to do what many college students are doing: show their displeasure with the status quo by grouping their bodies and displaying real discontent. It gives new candidates courage.

      2. Valerie in Australia

        I completely agree with your last paragraph. A viable Third Party is not out of the question and I think this is the best chance a Third Party has had in my lifetime. The younger generation will vote for Stein, old Lefties, of my era, will vote for Stein and if we can get the disenfranchised to vote for Stein instead of not voting at all, we might be able to shake things up. It really is our only chance to avoid war – and a lot of Americans are sick to death of our debt problems being greatly exacerbated by war.

    3. Feral Finster

      Humans are very good at rationalizing tribal loyalty. “Vote Blue No Matter Who!”

  4. Belle

    I plan to vote for her. It was a tough choice between her and Cornel West, but I picked her due to some conspiratorial comments by his VP-though, like all candidates, he deserves coverage, and he is still head, shoulders, chest, and waist (minimum) above Trump and Biden.

    1. AG

      What´s wrong with C. West? (being in Europe my insight is limited)

      p.s. West´s suggestion – 6 months ago however – in case he had leverage after a positive Nov. vote, to force Biden to agree to certain demands – seemed reasonable.

      I have zero idea if this is realistic. But frankly many people who talk about that have no real knowledge. Bringing working-class and poor to the ballot is a totally unpredictable art – as far as I remember e.g. the tight Georgia senator vote 2021. But those were pre-UKR/GAZA times.

    2. Valerie

      I also like West, but the Greens are on the ballot in most states and to the best of my knowledge, Cornell is not.

    3. gk

      Me too. I think this article convinced me. I’ve been skeptical of the Greens but that’s because I used to vote for them for the Munich town council. That was before they became a far-right party. I hope that, despite the name, the US Greens are different.

    4. Emma

      I think this Bad Faith interview covers the ‘beef’ between Dr. West and GPUSA.


      Admittedly, I never took Cornel West’s candidacy seriously. Cornel West has been all hat no cattle for years, taking a good (and extremely verbose) game but never doing anything substantive to support the issues that he purportedly cared about. His criticism of power was always tempered by wanting to continue rub elbows with the same people. Him burning through two parties, not taking any advice from others, and spending more time punching ostensible allies than challenging ‘brother Biden’s shows what he is, a radical sounding sheepdog.

  5. Tom Pfotzer

    One of Dr. Hudson’s comments really stood out for me:

    what makes it so striking is that the polls show that I think over 80% of the American public wants the war in Ukraine to end, or at least the United States to stop spending the money in Ukraine. They also opposed the genocide in Gaza. And yet, despite what the public wants, we’re having a Congress voting completely the other way, in the inverse proportion to what the American public wants, not spending on war, spending at home.

    I’d like to see those polls; can anyone point me to them? This is important because I think – I think – that people who constitute that polling majority … think of themselves in the _minority_.

    They’re cowed. It _seems_ like they’re afraid to stand up to these bullies.

    It may be very helpful for those of us in this purported majority to actually see, in the numbers, that we _are_ the majority. And then we’d act, and think, and believe in ourselves accordingly.

    Separately, I was planning to no-vote in this next presidential election. I may, instead, vote for Jill Stein. I support most of her aspirations, and she’s articulate enough to introduce alternative ways of thinking.

    A note to Jill Stein: please try to refrain from saying “you know”. It shows up a lot in your dialog, and it reduces your efficacy. I also suggest that you do some thinking about how to deliver some tangible progress re: the rapid marginalization of our workforce. I didn’t see much in your remarks that I thought offered solutions.

    The oligarchs are not going to teach people how to secure the benefits of their own productivity. The workers are going to have to teach themselves.

    A few days ago here @NC, there was talk of (largely) self-funding colleges, whose programs taught people how to make things they need in their own lives, such as housing, in addition to the conventional subjects of collegiate study. Sort of like “think and do”.

    The students learn immediately-salable, practical, creative skills in addition to the more abstract (and still highly valuable) conventional learning obtainable at college.

    The students in these programs leave college with high-value skills and no debt.

    If you haven’t already, it might be worth learning more about Berea College in Kentucky.

    1. Telee

      While I appreciate the content of Jill Stein’s remarks, I agree with you about her frequent interjection of “You know.” I have the same reaction.

      1. old ghost

        If we are free to offer advice to the candidates, I would suggest when talking about Russia or Red China that they replace “enemy” with “competitor”.

        Competitor sounds less threatening.

    2. AG

      @Tom Pfotzer

      This is funny, I attended Berea College many years ago…
      One of the respected art colleges in the country – back then.

      1. Tom Pfotzer


        I have only a little awareness of Berea. Here’s what I like about what I think Berea is:

        a. Kids get educated without being loaded down with debt
        b. There’s an emphasis on creativity, and making things of immediate use to a household (like learning to build a house, or grow food, etc.).

        Let’s take a look at the economic future for most young people:

        a. Cost of household inputs (education, food, energy, housing, healthcare, etc.) are going to continue to rise, due to inflation and predatory oligarch pricing, etc. while …

        b. The value of the young person’s labor in the marketplace is going to continue to attenuate (automation, concentration of wealth, relative power of capital .vs. labor)

        Seems likely those trends are going to continue. Therefore, to avoid that trap, young people might consider:

        a. Developing alternatives to buying inputs from the oligarchs, and being subject to inexorable, possibly rapidly accelerating inflation

        b. Finding new markets for their labor outside the corporate confines (where labor’s pricing power is being systematically eroded)

        So when a school, Berea or any other institution, puts together a program that enables young people to develop skills they can sell to themselves (build their own home, grow their own food, produce their own energy, practice preventive health-care, etc.) that’s probably a good thing.

        Why is it a good thing?

        a. Autarky. Import substitution with “domestically produced goods”, and the corollary reduction in wealth transfer to the predator-class
        b. New market for their labor. Puts a floor under the (declining) value of their labor

        I think the solutions that Dr. Hudson advocates, such as state-owned banks investing where it’s needed .vs. where it provides a sure return for a privileged few, and making the key inputs to household operation (health care, education, housing) more affordable … these are great ideas.

        But there are some really potent obstacles standing in the way, and everyone already knows what they are. Some of them are spelled out in this thread’s discussion.

        To overcome those obstacles is likely going to require a revolution – a violent one. To get to that stage – ready to revolt – requires a great deal of widespread suffering – the society has to be in extremis.

        We’re not nearly there yet. And intellectuals aren’t generally the ones that actually do the bleeding and dying that revolutions require. We’d need a lot of “deplorables” with guns for that job.

        Not many of those deplorables read NC. NC and deplorables aren’t talking to one another.

        Got some miles to go, wouldn’t you say?

        So, do we incrementally evolve away from the Game as defined and operated by the oligarchs, or do we wait for things to get so horrible that we have to wreck our society with a revolution, and start anew.

        Which alternative do you prefer?

        1. AG

          Some important points you are making, which could in fact offer some ideas on quick to realize educational programs and restructuring.

          Points which btw would apply to German attempts of giving “deplorables” at least a voice, if not power, too.

          Much could be said on the notion of offering one´s own labour on the market, be it as much coordinated as possible , because a market it still is with all it´s misgivings. Which is not to say it couldn´t be managed. Since, as you say, the revolution will not take place now and we still have to try to improve things.

          In terms of degrees there is this odd French example, that France created countless academic advanced degrees for all kinds of non-academic subjects which eventually led to an inflation of countless degrees with no significance and value.

          If I am not totally mistaken Berea despite it´s social policy did have regular programs too with a tuition as high as 20.000-30.000$. From German standpoint those were astronomic figures, still.

  6. TomDority

    Most of the Dem and Repub presidential, house and senate candidates are not fit for office and a lot from local offices on up. Both parties support oligarchy and vested interests that care nothing about human rights, genocide, financial subjugation, political economy. Despite the rhetoric on both sides – Biden with his defending democracy and Trump with his victim woe is me-ism – they have both stated that they are protecting the economy….(I assume they mean the financialization economy, not the real economy) or protecting us from whatever threat of the day or from whomever or whatever is coming to steal our stuff or prevent us from thinking the right way.
    Anyway, despite the kabuki finger pointing and accusations by both sides that the other is doing what they ought not, while doing the exact thing they accuse the other of doing. They both do not uphold the Constitution. As a past president has said-
    “We, the People, are the rightful masters of both the Congress and the Courts. Not to overthrow the Constitution, but to overthrow the men who have perverted it.” – Abraham Lincoln
    A long course of perversion by a class of people who just want to earn as much as possible with little thought or effort and, little regard to anything else (nothing wrong, as most people who work would rather vacation more and live less stressful lives) so, in this pursuit, they have perverted the constitution for the very narrow self interest – Moneyed interests have corrupted absolutely.
    I will happily vote for anyone other than a Repub or Democrat – the two parties that have, pay walled democracy, health care, education, free press and perverted the Constitution.

  7. gwb

    In this year’s Maryland primary, there were 56,000 uncommitted Democratic voters, more than twice as many as in 2020. There could be a few surprises come November. I voted for the Green Party in 2020, after poking around the Biden/Harris campaign web site and seeing the looong list of D.C. foreign-policy establishment types, both Dems and GOPers, who joined the Biden camp in opposition to Trump. More of the same Deep State crap.

  8. old ghost

    Hudson said: IF “neither Biden nor Trump has more than 50 percent, …., then the whole election is thrown into the House, and it’s a grab bag.

    And that means that you’ll have the same position that a third party will have in Germany or England. ……

    So you don’t have to be elected president. You just have to win enough delegates to be able to be in a position to dictate your terms, and as the trade-off time comes in November….”

    Nope. We can certainly wish this were so. But the way I understand the US constitution, if nobody has a majority of 270 Electoral votes, the House gets to select the next president from one of the 3 Presidential candidates. Each state delegation gets one vote, regardless of the number of congressional districts it has. Since Republicans control 27 states and Dems have 23, can you guess who the next president would be ? ? ?

    1. Michael Hudson

      Yes, that’s right. But to AVOID turning matters over to the House, electoral college voters pledged to Jill can say to the Democrats, “You see that Trump will win in the House if it goes to there. If I ask my voters to switch to Biden 2 .0, what policy concessions will you give me?”
      OR, Jill can say, “My campaign’s strength is the first step in ending the Democratic Party. I know that Trump is a crook, but over the long term (if there IS a long term) it is necessary to end the Democratic Party’s role as the liberal-rhetoric wing of the Republicans. That’s the only way to create a REAL alternative party. Let the Democrats know that the DNC’s role is OVER — for good.”

      1. Hepativore

        The problem with that, is there is nothing stopping either party from reneging on anything they supposedly promised the moment the moment that they take office.

        Also, I would not be surprised if either party would rather lose than stray from the demands of their corporate donors…as losing an election does not mean very much to the duopoly in the grand scheme of things, but fundraising is of utmost importance.

      2. old ghost

        Electors are not all free agents who can vote the way they please. Some 29 states have laws that restrict who their Electors can vote for.

        Since the Jan. 6, 2021 coup failed. The loser may have some new tricks up their sleeve, like getting the Supreme Court involved to pick the winner (like they did with the Smirking Chimp in 2001). There are already some hints of this floating around. Attorney Sidney Powell said the January 6 riot could have caused a delay which would have allowed Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito time to stop the certification of Biden’s victory—but that chance was lost when Nancy Pelosi reconvened Congress later that evening to complete the process.

        ……and then there are “fake electors” to mess things up even further.

      3. AG

        Q from a non-US citizen: How would such leverage be upheld during the term? How guarantee that WH keeps promises once made to a Jill Stein or a Cornel West (since he too floated that idea)?

        1. Emma

          There really isn’t any leverage in a non-parliamentary system. They might be able to force in a few cabinet positions and use the bully pulpit and at least force a vote on the slate. But always remember what they did to Allende and Imran Khan, even when they had clear support of the majority of their populations.

      4. bernie

        Michael, are you seriously suggesting that Jill advocate for Joe Biden, under any circumstances? Supporting a promoter of genocide and a serial corruption politician would irreparably tarnish her image wouldn’t it?

        It would be mirror image of Sanders supporting Hillary and then Biden. He was unmasked as controlled opposition.

        The last democrat i voted for was McGovern because he wanted to end the war. I have never voted for any other democrat or republican.

        I’m 74. And i am entirely pessimistic that there will be any change along the ballot box (altho i have voted for Nader and Stein past 6 elections). I don’t trust the polling here anymore then i trust legacy media. And i believe the electorate have been pacified after decades of brainwashing.

        I think that change will only occur when things are so bad they have to change.
        And i admire your work and have read and listened to your podcasts for years. thanks for the education.

    2. Balan Aroxdale

      Since Republicans control 27 states and Dems have 23, can you guess who the next president would be ? ? ?

      Actually no.The GOP hates the sight of Trump. In such a situation, is there a strategy allowing for them to pick, say Halley?

      1. old ghost

        B.A. wrote:“The GOP hates the sight of Trump. In such a situation, is there a strategy allowing for them to pick, say Halley?”

        In theory yes. But the career criminal was impeached twice. Both times the GOP voted to acquit him. So that dog won’t hunt.

        I wish it were otherwise. But if the 2024 Presidential election goes to the house, we will get the Orange Anus back for another 4 years.

      2. John Anthony La Pietra

        Actually, the language in the 12th Amendment says: “from the persons having the highest numbers not exceeding three on the list of those voted for as President, the House of Representatives shall choose immediately, by ballot, the President.” So the House could perhaps choose not to consider a third-place finisher . . . but it can’t consider anyone who wasn’t on the list with at least one electoral vote.

        Unless perhaps it was a flat-out tie at 269 with nobody else getting any votes — in that case, *maybe* someone could suggest a third-place finisher. Note that in the 1824 race, there were four candidates who won some electoral votes: Andrew Jackson 99, John Quincy Adams 84, William H. Crawford 41, and Henry Clay 37. Clay was eliminated by the top-three-only rule, but swung his support in the House (where he was the Speaker, after all) to Adams — and that was enough to win him the “contingent” election on the first ballot, by 13 votes to 7 for Jackson and 4 for the ill Crawford.

        (One thing I learned in checking back about this: John C. Calhoun, who was elected VP with no problem, got 182 electoral votes — as the running mate of both Jackson and Adams!)

        1. old ghost

          John wrote: “…the 12th Amendment says: “from the persons having the highest numbers not exceeding three on the list of those voted for as President, the House of Representatives shall choose immediately, by ballot, the President.” So the House could perhaps choose not to consider a third-place finisher . . . ”

          Just to throw another monkey wrench in here, does “immediately” mean the lame duck
          House (2024) or the new 2025 House will do the voting??? If the vote is held immediately in 2024 the Republicans have a majority. And will return the Orange Menace to power in 2025.

          1. marym

            It’s immediately after the electoral votes are counted after the new Congress convenes. The dates for the count and the new Congress are set by 3 USC 15 and the 20th Amendment respectively.

  9. CA

    “Mr. Biden says that he intends to follow the military plans to attack China in 2025 and 2026…”

    “Biden repeatedly says, ‘China is our number one enemy’…”

    Please forgive me, but I have never read nor heard any such statements by the President. There seem to be no such Presidential statements in Google. I mention this because the language is so frightening to me.

    1. CA

      “Mr. Biden says that he intends to follow the military plans to attack China in 2025 and 2026…”

      “Biden repeatedly says, ‘China is our number one enemy’…”

      Having carefully searched again, I can find no such Presidential intention nor quote.

      1. CA

        Forgive me, but Presidential words matter.

        Words from the President set administration attitudes and policy and influence national attitudes and can set national policy. President Obama’s 2011 pivot to Asia, was surely not declaring China “our number one enemy”; was not declaring an intention “to follow the military plans to attack China in 2025 and 2026” or any other year.

        1. juno mas

          Well, it’s like Nixon’s AG John Mitchell said, ‘watch what we do not what we say.’ As Lambert points out, “pivot to Asia” is the dog whistle. The US sending military arsenals to Taiwan and creating 100% tariffs on EV’s is the action. Who do you think is considered the main enemy?

        2. Emma

          Nothing Biden says credible. Remember that he recently claimed his uncle was eaten by cannibals and that he saw pictures of 40 beheaded babies. He torpedoed an earlier presidential run by plagiarizing another politician’s speech. There fact that the ostensible greatest power in the world is led by someone without the moral qualifications to be a used car salesman shows how much this country has fallen.

        3. bernie

          WASHINGTON (AP) — ‘The Biden administration has approved a $500 million arms sale to Taiwan as it ramps up military assistance to the island despite fervent objections from China.Aug 23, 2023’

          Our One-China policy legislation states that Taiwan is part of China, so why would we be arming Taiwan? Isn’t that the same footprint, the Nat Sec State has used , in proxy wars, from Ukr, Syria, Lybia, etc? Its crystal clear, i think anyways, what the intention is.

          Using Google, polling (which i admittedly don’t have much faith in) seems to unanimously claim that Americans in the majority , 40%, feel China is our number one enemy. Which is ridiculous, but i , hmmm, wonder how they were educated to that belief?

      2. CA

        “Who do you think is considered the main enemy?”

        I thought the argument through carefully, and think I was wrong to argue Presidential language used from 2011 to the present, from pivot to Asia to containment of China, was meaningfully soft. America was threatening Chinese development from the Wolf Amendment in April 2011 on. Trying to stop or limit a Chinese space program with the Wolf Amendment and becoming harsher from there, was sadly enough.

        I was wrong.

        Thanks for the argument, beginning with Lambert.

    2. CA


      November 16, 2012

      President Obama Goes to Asia

      President Obama leaves on Saturday for a trip to Asia that will show his commitment to having the United States engage more intensely with countries there. But it comes at an awkward time. Israel and Hamas are at war in Gaza, and efforts to end the violence are demanding Mr. Obama’s attention. The Middle East is likely to remain a top priority, but he is right to also focus on Asia, where China’s growing assertiveness presents a challenge.

      The trip to Thailand, Myanmar and Cambodia should give President Obama a chance to expand on an approach to Asia that has been seen as too security-oriented at the expense of trade and economic matters. When he announced his pivot to Asia in 2011, it was a sign that the United States was not ceding anything to China….

    3. Rolf

      I do not know that Biden has explicitly made such statements, although much of what he says is often later retracted by handlers, no? But he has evinced no real control over our national security state’s ultimate intentions. His Defense Department, in its National Defense Strategy NDS document, has declared China a “strategic competitor”,

      “The most comprehensive and serious challenge to U.S. national security is the PRC’s coercive and increasingly aggressive endeavor to refashion the Indo-Pacific region and the international system to suit its interests and authoritarian preferences. The PRC seeks to undermine U.S. alliances and security partnerships in the Indo-Pacific region, and leverage its growing capabilities, including its economic influence and the PLA’s growing strength and military footprint, to coerce its neighbors and threaten their interests. The PRC’s increasingly provocative rhetoric and coercive activity towards Taiwan are destabilizing, risk miscalculation, and threaten the peace and stability of the Taiwan Strait. This is part of a broader pattern of destabilizing and coercive PRC behavior that stretches across the East China Sea, the South China Sea, and along the Line of Actual Control.”

      This statement, coupled with Biden’s comments about Xi as dictator, his declaration that China will not surpass the US as global leader, and his dismissive, hawkish characterizations of Xi (and Putin, in breezy language that inspires little confidence), sum to his overall intention to make military confrontation with China imminent, if re-elected, in my view.

  10. Glenda

    I’ll be voting for Jill Stein.
    I read progressive GND lists where it is suggested that we are voting for the political battle ground between Joe and Don. With DT being characterized as much more likely to axe any kind of Unioning groups. However, I don’t see how the Dems are going to Not just do that as well. After all — follow the $.

    I also want to feel good about who I stand with, rather than hold my nose. Jill Steins platform is Exactly what we need to become a good place to live.

  11. AG

    If NATO has no Ukr. proxy army left to fight, who do they want to put into the field?
    Germans? French? Italians? Good luck with that.
    No government will take that suicidely step.
    So, how is this going to last 10 years without soldiers?

    I agree that the intention for a ten-year war is there, no question. But you have to realize it. And unlike with Iraq et al. basket cases, anyone aspiring to join the US-Marines in order to escape poverty or to get college paid for, will think thrice if the enemy is Russia. Since what is it worth when you´re dead.

    Everyone interested in the US Army knows the reports from the Ukr. front. Be sure of that.

    This never ending war, again, sounds very much like one of those incompetent and idiotic “Kagan”-esque schemes which only an East coast millionaire can make up who never leaves his condo.

    (Think Russel Crowe as CIA-operative in Ridley Scott´s 2008 “Body of Lies” where he is sitting in an AC-office in D.C. drinling coffee doing politics in Jordan and hunting “terrorists” from 10.000 miles away. That´s how those plans come to life. Complete bullshitting.)

    Scott Horton and the honourable Matthew Hoh from the Eisenhower Network described how Kagan once – in person – visited Afghanistan. Whenever his US-guide told him the true nature of things there, and that they wouldn´t turn out as Kagan&friends had suggested, all what Kagan would say: “Nah, I don´t agree. I think you are wrong there.”

    This is US war planning today.

    p.s. just look at this mundane Wiki excerpt on Kagan. THIS guy wants to do geopolitics and war in the real world. Good God…???

    “Kagan was born in Athens, Greece. His father, historian Donald Kagan, was the Sterling Professor of Classics and History Emeritus at Yale University and a specialist in the history of the Peloponnesian War, was of Lithuanian Jewish descent. His brother Frederick is a military historian and author. Kagan has a B.A. in history (1980) from Yale, where in 1979 he was editor-in-chief of the Yale Political Monthly, a periodical he is credited with reviving. He later earned a master of public policy from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government and a Ph.D. in American history from American University in Washington, D.C.

    Kagan is married to American diplomat Victoria Nuland, who previously served as deputy national security advisor to Vice President Dick Cheney and assistant secretary of state for European and Eurasian affairs in the Obama administration.”

  12. Lambert Strether

    > And we’ve been running, I think, eight percent overall in Wisconsin

    Quinnipiac, May 8:

    When the matchup is expanded to include independent and Green Party candidates, the race is too close to call. Biden receives 40 percent support, Trump receives 39 percent support, independent candidate Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. receives 12 percent support, Green Party candidate Jill Stein receives 4 percent support, and independent candidate Cornel West receives 1 percent support.

    Among voters who support Biden in the head-to-head matchup, 80 percent support him in the 5-way race, 11 percent support Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., 7 percent support Jill Stein, and 2 percent support Cornel West.

    Impressive, actually, even 4%, given the givens.

  13. Susan the other

    Can individual states leave the Union? To my knowledge no state was ever coerced into the Union. And what exactly is required of any state to remain part of the Union? Is there a states’ independence movement? Is there a separation of physical, contiguous union and political union? And why are we all so politically homogenous? And etc. To have choice the choices must have some meaning and effectiveness. Jill Stein is an example of how good our choices could be. But they never have been.

    1. gk

      > Can individual states leave the Union?

      If they have a very big army

      > To my knowledge no state was ever coerced into the Union.


      1. Emma

        Also Tejas and the rest of Northern Mexico. Stealing other people’s land, including land pre-stolen by another European power, is in this country’s DNA.

  14. AG

    guys – this is insignificant but funny – instead of BRICS the interview transfer by Nima made an error:

    instead of BRICS it says “bricks”, pretty late in the interview 😂

    “So this is the implicit threat to the Americans of the bricks and the new economic order.”

    I find this error in various places online – A Freudian glitch?!

  15. Rubicon

    We’ve given up on America. It never flowered into an actual civilization and it never will.
    There is not one candidate out there that will make a wit of difference. The Financial/Political powers in the US are far too overwhelming.
    We may end up doing a write-in name like XI, Putin, or Jesus. Who knows. It won’t matter.
    We’ll simply keep our eyes on watching even further degradation of American citizens; politicians and the like, hoping some of us can whether the storm before the entire ship sinks to the bottom of the ocean.

  16. Alice X

    I will vote for Claudia de la Cruz and Karina Garcia of the PSL, if they are on my ballot. If not, then Jill Stein.

    1. Emma

      Would you reconsider if the Greens were nationally polling at 25 or 30 percent in October?

  17. juliania

    I would like to suggest that a candidate for President ought to have, and not be ashamed to have, a speech writer – for all speeches, even these conversational ones. President Kennedy was an excellent off the cuff speaker, but he had a speech writer. Be aware that a large part of your audience knows by now the issues. What is lacking is the sound of a potential president. The issues are there; they just need that sound.

    This shouldn’t be so difficult to express. It isn’t propaganda to have powerful ways to express the indignation and motivation most of our citizenry feel, not in percentages and statistics but in strong rhetoric. I’m sure there are members on your team who have the ability to construct such speeches, bearing in mind that the individual who gives the speech can also amend it to strive for clarity and calm confidence that what he/she is saying is truthful. For an example of what not to say, one item that bothered me here was expressed in the following terms:

    “…Our leaders could not have done a better job of mobilizing our chief competitors and bringing them together in alliance against us….”

    Many, if not most, of those voting for you, Dr. Stein, do not consider the rest of the world to be ‘our chief competitors’, nor that they are ‘in alliance against us’. We look at what BRICS is doing, what China and Russia are doing, in recognition that their policies are helping their citizens in ways we wish our government was doing but isn’t because it is so caught up in profiting from the war machine.

    I, for one, would like to be part of the rest of the world again, and I consider that they, the rest of the world, would be happy to have us. In peace. I notice that word hasn’t been mentioned; it ought to be. Peace in the world and care of the nation are more important than anything else in the hearts and minds of US citizens concerned for families and neighbors, children above all. There has to be a meaningful way forward toward rapproachment with those successful countries rather than an attitude of competition or power. We cannot compete; it is time to humbly return to our roots — there is goodness there. Not greatness; goodness. It is time to rejoin the family of mankind. And if we have to admit to the harm this nation’s policies have caused that family, I am more than ready to do that. It has been happening for far too long already. Time for it to stop! Please find the right words. They are out there, like Michelangelo’s beautiful ‘Pieta’ hidden in a slab of marble. Chip away, find them.

    Sorry to be so outspoken. I truly wish both of you success.

    1. Emma

      RFKJr might have a good speech writer (though once you hear more than 2 or 3, they’re all just appealing to misbegotten Camelot nostalgia) but he’s actually a terrible off the cuff speaker. He constantly goes off on tangents and get himself in trouble, as he did when he said Asians and Ashkenazi Jews are less vulnerable to Covid, an unforced error that he made massively worse by bringing in Schmuley Boteach to fix things with Zionists. He said he would debate Max Blumenthal and then chickened out. He says he would run a transparent campaign against the deep state that killed his father and uncle, then it turns out that he’s funded by a bunch of deep state tied Zionist billionaires and his ‘ex-CIA’ daughter-in-law is anything but ‘ex’.

      And for me Palestine and anti-genocide are redlines. Anyone who doesn’t resoundly oppose Israel and what American Zionists are doing against the First Amendment and international law, can never be trusted on anything else. It’s a litmus test and RFKJr flunked it.

      I’ve heard maybe 10 Stein interviews at this point, she always comes across as genuine, compassionate, knows the issues and details very well, and it’s honest about the limits of her knowledge and abilities of GPUSA. The portion that you’re nitpicking is just that. China and Russia are competitors, albeit largely due to the US preventing better collaboration. But describing them as competitors is fine, because the competition doesn’t have to be belligerent or foreclose opportunities for collaboration.

      1. Michael Hudson

        I should point out to NC readers that RFK JR’s original political manager was Dennis Kucinich (for whom I was economic advisor in the 2008 race) along with Dennis’s long-term friend Dave Kelley.
        As soon as RFK Jr made his disgusting appeal to Zionism, Dennis and Dave left his campaign. Dennis was offered the VP slot by Jill. but he thought it would not look good to shift horses in midstream. However, Dave immediately shifted to Jill Stein’s campaign because of the obvious reason: She’s the only anti-war candidate.
        I also should add that when Cornel West was thinking of running on the Green ticket, Radhika Desai and I were provided as his economic advisors. He decided pretty quickly that he didn’t need any advisors or even getting help to get on the ballot to run. So he doesn’t have a team that can help him. That’s where Jill stepped in, and we’e known each other for many years now. That explains how I became her economic and policy advisor, and where the other third-party candidates veered off on their own.

        1. Emma

          Professor Hudson, thanks so much for the inside scoop though I’m saddened by how it further confirms my view of West as a vain and superficial man who is far more concerned about his personal brand than trying to bend the world to justice. He’s just another Marianne Williamson.

          Kucinch was the only reason I ever took RFKJr seriously. I was already having severe doubts about RFKJr once it became clear that he was going to make unquestioned support of Israel a major pillar of his campaign (pre-October 7) but Dennis’s departure signaled to me that there was nothing good left in that campaign.

          I say this even though I do not believe RFKJr’s Zionism is sincere, because a sincere and committed Zionist would never have anything to do with Kucinch, Blumenthal, or Waters. I also heard people who knew him for decades say that they’re surprised by his rabid Zionist turn. But RFKJr decided to make a deal with the devil and let his Zionist daughter-in-law control his campaign. Genocide and the First Amendment are redlines for me, and he completely damned himself by standing on the wrong side.

        2. AG

          Indeed, great insight! Thx.
          I wish German commentators would check this site.
          But instead we will get the insufferable same merry-go-around like every 4 years.

          (German foreign correspondents still receive a huge load of money and essentially do – nothing. They attend WH press conferences, read WaPo/NYT/Politico, meet a few party clowns in some fancy restaurants and forwad their hollow pieces about the election and the possible end of the world. For that they receive double compensation for rent and when they return they have a guarantee in the mother house for some high position which they are usually unqualified for. But they shape the German public´s view of what takes place around Nov. in the US. And rest assured, what will get reported re: Stein here, is her potential antisemitism + necessary self-hatred.)

          1. gk

            I remember giving up on Die Zeit when their US “expert” repeated (years after the election) the lie that Gore claimed to have invented the internet.

    2. Michael Hudson

      When that time comes, Jill will of course have speech writers.
      But she isn’t giving speeches yet, except for “stump speeches” and our interviews.
      That’s because all her efforts have to be spent on trying to get signatures in the face of Democratic Party law fare to block third-party candidates from getting on the ballot.
      Almost all her time is focused on New York. We don’t know what tricks the Democrats will pull, but what I fear is that RFK Jr’s team went through New York asking people to sign a petition to promote third-party candidates, with the top of the petition obscured that it wasn’t just for a third-party candidate right but for him specifically. What will happen when people are asked to sign for Jill, and may already have signed RFK Jr’s petition thinking that it would help Jill? Will such a signature be invalidated — and in so doing, invalidate the entire sheet of signatures?
      We don’t have a clue. The Democrats are not too upset withRFK Jr because he will pull as much from Trump as from Biden. But they’re scared sh-tless about Jill, and are still trying to blame her for Hillary’s 2016 loss — as if her supporters would have voted for the destroyer of Libya.

    3. tawal

      Wise words juliania.
      I wish Jill takes them to heart.
      Stephanie Kelton would be a credible choice.

  18. Rolf

    We look at what BRICS is doing, what China and Russia are doing, in recognition that their policies are helping their citizens in ways we wish our government was doing but isn’t because it is so caught up in profiting from the war machine.


  19. SocalJimObjects

    While I appreciate this interview, I think it left off the most important question that needs to be asked of any US Presidential candidate namely: “what would you do if you were given the Mike Johnson treatment?”
    Mike Johnson had been ostensibly against more aid to Ukraine, etc until he was read the riot act by the Deep State. Say Jill Stein’s campaign were somehow able to make enough progress to gain the later’s attention, how would she respond to “Say, Dr Stein, we see that you have two children here, we can make life VERY VERY difficult for everyone in your family if you insist on this path you have chosen …..”

    If there’s anyone who can set America on the “right” path again, it will be someone who will have to be very Machiavellian and ruthless, willing to do whatever it takes including going down in history as a villain. At this point, my take on America’s “democracy” is if they are allowing you to vote, it’s because they’ve taken care to make sure that voting does not matter.

    1. Cassandra

      If you want to know what might happen if Jill Stein’s campaign were to start to gain significant support, you can look at videos of Bernie Sanders during the spring of 2016 and compare with his news conference with Harry Reid on June 9, 2016. That morning, the Sanderses had a meeting with Obama, followed by the conference in which Reid announced that Sanders accepted his defeat and would be supporting HRC. Sanders was very notably silent in that video.

      In my opinion, Bernie Sanders is not a particularly good actor.

      Also, Sanders is widely known to be very fond of his wife, children, and grandchildren.

      1. Emma

        Yes, that worries me. My hope is that the somewhat more sane and less neo-con portion of our oligarchy has realized that turning the country completely fascist (because there’s no other way to describe the transparent crackdown against anti-genocide protests supported by a clear majority of the population) not a real option, especially with BRICS in ascendancy. Also Sanders has had terrible foreign policy positions for decades and was always a liberal Zionist, Stein has been consistently had good positions there.

        I don’t think she would be blackmailed. But she and GPUSA could be subverted, lawfared, and assassinated. Happened to JFK/MLK/RFK/Malcolm X. Just imagine a world where even one of these men lived and accomplished what they wanted to do.

        But what are the alternatives? Let’s give peaceful revolution a chance. If they break it, as seems likely, that’s a lesson for the rest of us. Remember that Al Aqsa Flood was proceeded by the Great March of Return. Those who make peaceful change impossible…

        1. AG

          I disagree with throwing JFK/MLK/RFK/Malcolm X into one lot – however on your assassination point: Cornel West said this very clearly, if such a thing to him would happen, it wouldn´t come unexpected. Stein isn´t as much in danger I agree. Besides, so far, to assume West would, is unrealistic.

          It´s a pity we can´t have all of them in one single alternative party which would peacefully but with big might FLOOD the country…but I understand that for now is no option.

          1. Emma

            Cornel West is not a threat to the PTB. He is a radical sounding sheepdog who just did substantial damage to the GPUSA by putting their ballot lines in jeopardy through his underhanded behaviors. The deep state would never bother to assassinate their useful tool.

            1. AG

              …I am too old to suggest that couldn´t be the case ;-)

              (I have been judging him solely through the eyes of a follower of Norm Finkelstein´s activism as of late and via my limited reading of West´s own scholarship. Since I have no political expertise of my own to truly rely on. But I like giving people credit in the beginning. After all, noone forced West to leave his ivory tower to fight an uneven fight. But that´s certainly no safeguard against the dangers of vanity.)

  20. GlassHammer

    “The consumer price index is stabilized at 3.5%”

    Sheesh…the public is going to see food prices, rent prices, home prices, car prices, etc… far more often than they are going to see a Krugman article.

    Heck I already buy some goods and services “ahead of need” (a thing I rarely did in the past) because I know they go up in price month to month. I aready adjusted to “sale price” being last week’s “regular price”. And I know familes who buy more food on their credit card than they currently need because they figured out that the interest percentage on the card is actually less than the percentage price increase of that food month to month.

    Basically I already live like I am in Argentina under runaway inflation and I doubt I am the only one.

  21. AG

    But I doubt Jill Stein will be part of any nationwide TV debate…or?
    (Her, West, Biden, Trump, Kucinich – that be fun! For once I´d watch…)

    p.s. In any case, good luck from Germany for your campaign! Hope you guys find a way to do a better job than those German counterparts by name only.

    1. John Anthony La Pietra

      The bi-partisan (literally; created by the then-just-ex-chairs of the Rs and Ds) Commission on Presidential Debates requires that candidates meet these criteria to be allowed to participate in the debates:

      * Be constitutionally eligible to serve as President: at least 35 years old, a natural born US citizen who’s lived in the US for at least 14 years, and not ineligible for some other reason in the Constitution. (I don’t know if they’d consider someone who wasn’t 35 yet but would be by Election Day or by the time they took the Oath of Office.)

      * Be on the ballot in enough states to have at least a theoretical chance to win a majority of the Electoral College votes. (Actually, that’s too strict; we know these days that you can win the Presidency if you finish third in Electoral votes — and if you win just over 1/4 of those, or 135, there’s no way more than two people could finish ahead of you. If the two ahead of you tie at 136, that uses up 407 votes and leaves only 131 for anybody else. Even with a three-way tie at 135, nobody else could win more than 133.)

      * And of course there’s the most famous requirement — averaging at least 15% in the latest editions of five nationwide polls selected by the CPD “rely[ing] on the advice of a recognized expert or experts in public opinion polling”.

      The last two are taking the name of “non-partisan” in vain, IMO; they’ve consistently been and leaned BI-partisan, which is *NOT* the same thing. Here in Michigan, we have seven parties qualified for the ballot, though probably not all of them will nominate Presidential tickets. But it’s a remote chance, even in this year of multiple active alternative tickets, that any more than the Ds and Rs will consistently be in the polls or in the MSM.

      Heck, state law requires alternative parties to nominate at state conventions or county caucuses held before the Big Two primaries in August. But the Bureau of Elections, while it posts prominently a list of anyone who’s filed to be on that primary ballot, consistently refuses to put candidates from the alternative parties (or independent candidates of “No Partisan Affiliation”) on a similar list for the November general-election ballot until the primary is over — and the R & D state conventions after, with their nominations for some statewide offices, are finalized too.

  22. AG

    sry for this uninformed question: Regarding the hopes some had expressed with Janet Yellen´s appointment 2020 – have any of those hopes materialized in any meaningful way?
    (In 2020 for me the online world was very different, not being aware of sites like NC, so I have a lot of catching-up to do.)

  23. AG

    “States Target Voter Registration Drives With “Unbelievable” Restrictions
    New GOP-backed laws in several states add fines or criminal penalties for minor mistakes in voter registration work.”

    By Aaron Mendelson & Ashley Lopez , TheCenterforPublicIntegrity
    May 18, 2024


    Some examples of madness (from a German POV):

    “In Florida, state legislators in 2022 upped the maximum fine a voter registration group could receive from $1,000 to $50,000. The next year, they boosted it again to $250,000. They also limited how and where organizations can return forms, and barred non-U.S. citizens and people with certain felonies from doing the work.”

    “As a consequence of all these threatening provisions, the League no longer collects paper voter registration applications,” said Cecile Scoon of the League of Women Voters of Florida.”

    “State data shows that in the months after the Florida law took effect in 2023, registrations through drives fell by 95%, compared with the same months four years earlier.”

    “Additionally, SB 7050 criminalizes retaining the personal information of people registering to vote, now a felony punishable by up to five years in prison. (This has also been blocked by a court for now.) Groups say information like addresses and phone numbers had been a key part of their voter outreach.”

    “Just 3,860 Floridians registered through drives in the first three months of 2024. During the same time frame in the last presidential election year, 40,963 voters did so.”

    “The Kansas law criminalizes impersonating an election official, in language that civic engagement groups say is so vague that they’ve been forced to suspend operations.(…) Groups say that their staff and volunteers carefully explain who they are but are sometimes mistaken for government employees anyway — and now could face a fine of up to $100,000 and 17 months in prison over that mistake.”

    A couple of the hyperlinks:

    State Restrictions on Voter Registration Drives
    by Diana Kasdan
    November 30, 2012

    Youth Voter Registration Has Surpassed 2018 Levels in Many States, but It’s Lagging for the Youngest Voters
    September 14, 2022

    White Paper
    A History of Third-Party Voter Registration Drives
    by Joshua A. Douglas, Research Professor of Law, University of Kentucky
    May 17, 2023

    How Republicans flipped America’s state supreme courts
    State supreme courts were once dominated by Democrats. A concerted effort by right-wing groups has changed that — with massive implications for abortion, LGBTQ+ rights and elections.
    by Aaron Mendelson
    July 24, 2023

    Voter registration groups in Florida have scaled down their operations after new restrictions
    By Valerie Crowder
    April 29, 2024

  24. esop

    I quit the Democratic Party at the end of Clinton’s first term, while reading Sinclair Lewis’ It Can’t Happen Here. Green ever since.

  25. tawal

    I voted for Bob Dole in 1996, the likely only time I’ll vote for a Republican in my life; because, Clinton, after 3 days in office, invoked the don’t ask don’t tell policy for the military instead of giving full emancipation for those willing to serve in the military. My reasoning was that it could have hampered military recruitment at that time; I’m totally anti-war, all wars.

  26. David Smith

    It’s the Ukrainians, not the US, who are dragging this war on and on. They’ve refused to budge on giving up land that is lost. And yeah, the US/Europe/NATO won’t pull the plug.

  27. John Anthony La Pietra

    One small note for those wanting to keep finding out more:

    The Green Party whose nomination Jill Stein is seeking to win officially at its National Nominating Convention in mid-August is the Green Party of the United States (GPUS), not the Greens/Green Party USA (GPUSA). It’s an understandable confusion, stemming from a history that goes back a few years. To be specific but brief, a proposed merger of the GPUSA and the Association of State Green Parties failed to get 2/3 approval in 2001; later that year, ASGP applied to the FEC to become the official national Green Party of the United States.

    The GPUS Website is:


  28. Phil

    Regardless all the parsing here; regardless all the pleas by Stein, West, and Kennedy; a vote for *any* third party candidate for POTUS in 2024 is a vote for Trump. To be cavalier with one’s vote at a time like this is gobsmackingly (sic) irresponsible.

    1. John Anthony La Pietra

      In our current “First Past The Post” system, *NO* vote for an alternative can *EVER* help a Republican beat a Democrat or a Democrat beat a Republican.

      If we get Ranked Choice Voting, a vote for an alternative can go next to your preferred lesser evil — and as long as you don’t go on to rank the evil you see as greater, that candidate will never get your vote.

      But there’s one more thing to remember. It’s been true for years now that, when surveyed, more voters said they identified with neither Republicans nor Democrats than with either one.


      Which shows that, if we ever get past the propaganda and scaremongering — and finally manage to vote with the courage of our convictions — we can make real change.

      (And I fully authorize sharing this message wherever the myth in the post above this one is perpetrated.)

      1. Phil

        Well said, but the reality of the 2024 POTUS election, notwithstanding your (and my, btw) preference for ranked choice voting, simply is what it is. There is a binary choice to make in November. Might I remind you of what happened in Florida, in 2000. Alternative votes *did* make a difference then, and they very well could in 2024. (Incidentally, I live in a RCV municipality and love it, but RCV isn’t going to make it to the Federal election polls anytime soon.

        I’m with you on having more choice for POTUS, but given the current embedded power structures that isn’t going to change anytime soon.

        Last, in 2024, if Trump wins, we may find that any opportunity to get past pure fascism or “fascism lite” will be lost.

        1. John Anthony La Pietra

          More dogs in Florida in 2000 barked for Buchanan on the butterfly ballot than voted for Nader but would have voted for Gore. Still, those were ballots that might have made a difference — since the boters intended them to ho to Gore. OTOH, even more voters were temporarily color-blind Yellow Dogs who howled for Bush not Gore. (Though the billionaires would have been content with either of them — and that was long enough ago that a billionaire here and a billionaire there added up to real money. . . .)

          1. John Anthony La Pietra

            (Moderators, please feel free to delete the above comment — and this meta-comment. An interruption on my end prevented me from making the edits I wanted to make, so I switched from phone to laptop and re-did the comment.)

  29. John Anthony La Pietra

    A lot of those dogs in Florida in 2000 were barking for Buchanan on the butterfly ballot. Now there were some ballots that might have made a difference — since the voters intended to vote for Gore, unlike those who voted for Nader and mostly wouldn’t have voted for Gore over Bush. And let’s not forget the briefly color-blind Yellow Dogs who decided to vote for Bush instead. (Of course, the billionaires would have been happy with either one — and that’s long ago enough that a billionaire here and a billionaire there and you were talking real money.)

    But ultimately, the biggest study ever done showed that Gore actually got more votes than Bush in the state. (Gotta recount ’em all!) Mind you, Greens tend to want to make sure all the votes are counted accurately, even if they didn’t get the most . . . like David Cobb working with Libertarian Michael Badnarik in Ohio in 2004 when John Kerry refused to make a challenge . . . or, yes, Jill Stein in 2016, when already enough laws had been tilted that she had to pay more for the recounts than Ms. Clinton would have had to had she been interested.

    Things won’t change? Well, they don’t change until they do — and they won’t change if we give up trying to make it happen. And I’m not giving up just yet . . . and I wish you luck, and hope you can recover your courage in your convictions.

    As for fascism “lite”, I read what I can stand to read from this site and some others — and what with the warfare and the lawfare (and all the rest of the unfare), I don’t see any lite shades from either rightward twist on the Duopoly (campaign) Trail. Which is why I’ve kept my eyes focused on the Green path all this century, and expect to keep following it — for my people, our planet, and everyone’s peace.

    And I’ll be happy to help anyone else who wants to help build some of that change get in touch with some friends.

Comments are closed.