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Democracy in Crisis: What ‘War and Peace,’ umbrellas and anti-fascists tell us about the way we understand the world

Last week, a few moments before Senators Richard Burr and Mark Warner, chair and co-chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee respectively, came out to present an update on their investigation into Russian attempts to interfere with the 2016 election, a man walked out carrying a large cardboard sign — not a protest sign, but the clip-arty press-conference explainers that are always terrible but expensive looking. […]

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Democracy in Crisis: Alabama’s special election and Trump’s attack on Kaepernick point to an even more racist Republican future

Last week, the populist theocratic authoritarian former Alabama chief justice Roy Moore beat Luther Strange in a special election to fulfil the rest of Jeff Sessions’ term in the Senate. Strange, who had been filling the seat, was endorsed by President Trump, even though Moore, who pulled a gun out at a rally right before the special election, is far more Trumpian than Strange. In some ways, he is even more Trumpian than Trump. Moore’s closest analogue may be fascist former Maricopa County sheriff Joe Arpaio, whom the president recently pardoned. […]

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Democracy in Crisis: The Juggalos March on Washington eclipses pro-Trump ‘Mother of All Rallies’

The political heat of 2017 has finally boiled all the political chants down to their essence. “Fuck that shit!” More than a thousand juggalos — fans of the horror-art rap group the Insane Clown Posse (ICP) — chant this perfect refrain for our insane era in front of the Lincoln Memorial on Saturday, Sept. 16. Many of them are wearing clown paint on their faces or sporting tattoos or other signs that they are down with the clown. […]

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Democracy in Crisis: A prominent conservative signs on for an attempt to change the Constitution

In the early years of the Obama era, then-Senator Jim DeMint embodied a series of contradictions in the American character. The hard-jawed and bitter-faced sandlapper was simultaneously a theocrat, a cynic and a salesman. What he sold, as salvation, was hate and fear. He realized before the rest of us that it does not matter what politicians say or do as long as they can demonize their enemies, turning them into villains that the American people can love to hate. […]

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Democracy in Crisis: A queer dance party descends on McConnell’s house following anger over health care bill

A swanky stretch of C Street near the Capitol in Washington D.C. is blocked by a raucous crowd dancing in front of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s house on an unseasonably cool summer evening. As music blasts from loudspeakers, the scene resembles a Pride block party as about 50 members of the LGBTQ community and their allies attempt to dance away their fears and anger over McConnell’s so-called health care bill, which was negotiated in secret. […]

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