...military industrial complex....
I heard the early drafts of Eisenhower's talk referred to a congressional military industrial complex but he didn't want to get Congress angry so he dropped its name.
...is there a Green party in the U.S.?
America needs a Green Party. In recent elections two people have run for president as Greens. Had one been elected they would have had no allies in Congress and been very lame ducks. When the Greens have people in local and state office, training for national office, I will register with the Party. I'm 85 and probably won't live until the Greens get wise. My wife and I were agnostic and each had reason for having no kids.
...some good reading material (by academic historians)....
Heather Cox Richardson's To Make Men Free: A History of the Republican Party.
For non-believers, Kevin Kruse's One Nation Under God: How Corporate America Invented Christian America.
Am I a Democrat? No! Republican? Definitely No! Libertarian? Never, although my beloved son is! The one individual name I claim for myself is an atheist; not the soft kind but the hard variety. A hard atheist believes there is no god, never has been a god and never will be a god. The word known as "god" is a construct created on the minds of Homo sapiens to explain things for which he (male) has no tools to understand the complexities of the universe. He also creates the reasons for having power over others, especially females and children.
I understand Sanders to be an Independent who in Congress "caucuses with" Dems.
He is out to the left of most Dems. On most issues I'm out there too.
I consider Dems and Repubs equally corrupted by money but the Dems are more humane. When both parties annoy me I say Dems are dumb and Repubs are cruel.
My empathy varies, Kathy. It decreases when I'm stressed. With friends here where I live I sometimes say empathy is a nuisance. It comes back.
Did I tell you my dad was born (1904) and grew up in Newport? His name was Louis and his favorite trick question was "How do you pronounce KY's capital, Louisville or Lou-ee-ville?". He loved being able to say "Frankfort".
In a hiking group he met Alice (b 1906) and in 1928 they married. In the late 1930s her parents moved to St. Pete Fla. In 1947 Lou and Alice and five kids moved to St. Pete; she to be with her dad and he to go fishing.
Kathy, I wonder that too! Is it "nature versus nurture"?
Tom, I like your statement, "Dems are dumb and Repubs are cruel."
Yeah, but I usually refuse to criticize Obama in front of Republicans. I don't want them to think I'm on their side. If I do criticize him, it's usually for the same reasons I criticized Bush. Dems are just Repub lite. Washington pols are almost universally corrupt.
I wrote over 12,000 posts on Democratic Underground, but I left because I finally figured out the site is toxic. Anything you post, even, "The sky is blue" will attract a troll who will try to piss you off. When I criticized Obama for not following through on his promises and for appeasing the Repubs, I got blasted by people I thought were my friends. They called me a racist and all I did was criticize his policies. It was then I realized Democratic Underground--much like Fox News for right-wingers--was a waste of my time and energy. Leaving was a healthy decision for me.