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246 Greek University Economic Professors sign declaration to urge Greeks to vote YES in referendum

Declaration of Professors of Economics at Greek Universities on the referendum as to whether Greece should accept the final proposal delivered by EU/Troika creditors.

Alex Christoforou

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The following declaration is signed by 246 professors at Economics Schools and Universities in Greece. By this declaration, we want to express our great distress about the latest developments in our country. We strongly believe that, at this crucial point, it is of paramount importance to avoid excesses, to show national cohesion, to preserve our position in the Eurozone and the EU, and to regain our credibility in the international community. Further, the fiscal consolidation program, drawn jointly with our EU partners and other creditors like the IMF, should be characterized by the lowest possible recessionary consequences and the highest possible level of social protection, aiming at growth and job creation in the private sector as soon as possible. The prolonged political uncertainty has led the economy to a renewed recession, has reversed the decline in unemployment, has lowered tax revenue and has widened the fiscal gap.

Taking into account that the proposals of our creditors and the Greek government were converging until last Friday, we believe that what is really at stake in the coming Referendum, irrespective of the precise formulation of the question, is whether Greece will remain, or not, in the Eurozone and, possibly, whether it will remain in the EU itself.

The funding of the Greek economy by Eurozone countries was suspended last weekend after the Greek government abandoned the negotiations at a time when no alternative funding opportunities seem to be available. We are already at the first stage of a very slippery process that, if not urgently reversed, will lead to a chaotic debt default and exit from the Eurozone. Bank closures and capital controls (that had been so far avoided throughout the deep crisis) constitute only the first rupture from the Eurozone and the EU itself

We believe that the recessionary consequences of debt default and exit from the Eurozone, especially in such a chaotic and superficial way, will be much worse than the effects of a painful compromise with our EU partners and the IMF. A disorderly break of our country from the core of Europe will have disastrous economic, social, political and geopolitical consequences.

Short-run consequences: Bank closures, cut in the value of deposits, sharp decline in tourism, shortages of basic consumer goods and raw materials, black market, hyperinflation, firm bankruptcies and a big rise in unemployment, rapid fall in real wages and the real value of pensions, deep recession and serious problems in the functioning of public health care and defense, social unrest.

Medium-term consequences: international isolation of the country, no access to international capital markets for several years, low growth and anemic investment, high unemployment combined with high inflation rates, suspension of the flow of EU structural funds, significant decline in the standard of living, poor provision of basic public goods and services.

All these developments should not have happened after 5 years of big sacrifices by the Greek people, and a tremendous fiscal adjustment, right at the time when the economy was starting to recover, with favourable expectations for further easing in the terms of our public debt obligations. They should not have happened in a period when the European economy is returning to positive growth rates and other peripheral euro countries start growing and reducing unemployment. They should not have happened in a favorable time for further EU integration that will benefit the South and when the ECB facilitates growth with excess liquidity and zero interest rates.

Leaving the Eurozone, especially with this chaotic and superficial way, would likely lead to a process of leaving the EU too, with unpredictable and disastrous consequences for the national security and the democratic stability of our country.

For all these reasons, Greece must remain in the core of the EU, which is the Eurozone.

For all these reasons, our unequivocal answer to the real question of the referendum is: YES. Yes, to Europe.

1. Adam Αntonis University of Ioannina

2. Aggelidis Timotheos University of Peloponnese

3. Alexakis Christos University of Pireaus

4. Alexakis Panagiotis Athens University

5. Anagnostou Aggeliki University of Thessaly

6. Andoniou Fabio University of Ioannina

7. Andronikidis Αndreas University of Macedonia

8. Androutsopoulos Ion Athens University of Economics and Business

9. Androutsopoulos Κonstantinos Athens University of Economics and Business

10. Apergis Νikolaos University of Pireaus

11. Apostolopoulos Thodoros Athens University of Economics and Business

12. Argouslidis Paris Athens University of Economics and Business

13. Arvanitis Stelios Athens University of Economics and Business

14. Atsalakis George Polytechnic of Crete

15. Avlonitis George Athens University of Economics and Business

16. Balios Dimitris Athens University

17. Ballas Apostolos Athens University of Economics and Business

18. Baltas Georgios Athens University of Economics and Business

19. Baltas Nikolaos Athens University of Economics and Business

20. Basiakos Ioannis Athens University

21. Bellou Victoria University of Thessaly

22. Benos Nikos University of Ioannina

23. Benos Theofanis University of Pireaus

24. Billias Ioannis Athens University of Economics and Business

25. Bitros Georgios Athens University of Economics and Business

26. Blavoukos Spyros Athens University of Economics and Business

27. Bourantas Dimitris Athens University of Economics and Business

28. Bourantonis Dimitris Athens University of Economics and Business

29. Bournova Eugenia Athens University

30. Brisimis Sofoklis University of Pireaus

31. Chalamandaris George Athens University of Economics and Business

32. Chalkias Ioannis Athens University of Economics and Business

33. Charitakis Nikos Athens University

34. Chletsos Michael University of Ioannina

35. Chlomoudis Kostas University of Pireaus

36. Chortareas George Athens University

37. Chouliaras Asteris University of Peloponnese

38. Christopoulos Dimitris Panteion University

39. Christopoulou Sofia University of Macedonia

40. Christou George Athens University of Economics and Business

41. Damianos Dimitris Agricultural University of Athens

42. Dedoulis Manolis Athens University of Economics and Business

43. Delipalla Sofia University of Macedonia

44. Demoirakos Efthymios Athens University of Economics and Business

45. Demos Antonis Athens University of Economics and Business

46. Demousis Michalis University of Patras

47. Dialla Violetta Athens University

48. Dimeli Sofia Athens University of Economics and Business

49. Dimitriadi Zoi University of Macedonia

50. Dotsis Georgios Athens University

51. Doukidis Georgios Athens University of Economics and Business

52. Drakos Anastasios Athens University of Economics and Business

53. Economides George Athens University of Economics and Business

54. Economidou Claire University of Pireaus

55. Economou Athina University of Thessaly

56. Efstratoglou Sofia Agricultural University of Athens

57. Eleftheriou Kostas University of Pireaus

58. Fountas Stylianos University of Macedonia

59. Gaganis Chrysovalantis Univiversity of Crete

60. Gatsios Konstantinos Athens University of Economics and Business

61. Genakos Christos Athens University of Economics and Business

62. Genius Margarita University of Crete

63. Georgiou Andreas University of Macedonia

64. Georgoutsos Dimitrios Athens University of Economics and Business

65. Giaglis Georgios Athens University of Economics and Business

66. Giamouridis Daniel Athens University of Economics and Business

67. Giannakopoulos Nikos University of Patras

68. Giannelis Dimitrios University of Pireaus

69. Giannelis Νikos University of Crete

70. Giotopoulos Ioannis University of Peloponnese

71. Glavinis Panayotis Aristotle University of Thessaloniki

72. Griva Krina University of Ioannina

73. Hassid Josef University of Pireaus

74. Hatziantoniou Damianos Athens University of Economics and Business

75. Hatzipanayotou Panos Athens University of Economics and Business

76. Hatzis Aristides Athens University

77. Iatridis George University of Thessaly

78. Ifantopoulos Ioannis Athens University

79. Indounas Konstantinos Athens University of Economics and Business

80. Ioannidis Antonis Athens University of Economics and Business

81. Ioannidis Stavros Panteion University

82. Ioannou Georgios Athens University of Economics and Business

83. Iordanoglou Chrysafis Panteion University

84. Ireiotis Nikolaos Athens University

85. Kainourgios Dimitris Athens University

86. Kalamboukis Theodoros Athens University of Economics and Business

87. Kalogirou Ioannis Metsovio Polytechnic University

88. Kalyvitis Sarantis Athens University of Economics and Business

89. Kammas Pantelis University of Ioannina

90. Karagiannis Ioannis University of Macedonia

91. Karamanis Konstantinos Athens University of Economics and Business

92. Karaveli Eleni Athens University of Economics and Business

93. Karkalakos Sotiris University of Pireaus

94. Kasimatis Konstantinos Athens University of Economics and Business

95. Katranidis Stelios University of Macedonia

96. Katsimi Margarita Athens University of Economics and Business

97. Kavousanos Emmanouil Athens University of Economics and Business

98. Kazakos Panos Athens University

99. Koen Sandra Athens University of Economics and Business

100. Kollias Christos University of Thessaly

101. Konstantinou Panagiotis Athens University of Economics and Business

102. Konstantopoulos Panos Athens University of Economics and Business

103. Kontouli Maria University of Peloponnese

104. Korliras Panagiotis Athens University of Economics and Business

105. Kosteletou Nikolina Athens University

106. Kostis Kostas Athens University

107. Kotsios Stelios Athens University

108. Kottaridi Konstantina University of Pireaus

109. Koundouri Phoebe Athens University of Economics and Business

110. Kouretas Georgios Athens University of Economics and Business

111. Kritikos Manolis Athens University of Economics and Business

112. Kyriazidou Katerina Athens University of Economics and Business

113. Kyriazis Nikolaos University of Thessaly

114. Kyriazis Dimitris University of Pireaus

115. Kyritsis Ioannis Aristotle University of Thessaloniki

116. Kyrkillis Dimitris University of Macedonia

117. Ladi Stella Panteion University

118. Lekakos Georgios Athens University of Economics and Business

119. Leledakis Georgios Athens University of Economics and Business

120. Leventakis Ioannis Athens University of Economics and Business

121. Liargovas Panagiotis University of Peloponnese

122. Liaropoulos Lykourgos Athens University

123. Loizidis Ioannis Athens University of Economics and Business

124. Lolos Sarantis Panteion University

125. Louri Eleni Athens University of Economics and Business

126. Louridas Pangiotis Athens University of Economics and Business

127. Malevris Nikos Athens University of Economics and Business

128. Malliaris Petros University of Pireaus

129. Matsagganis Manos Athens University of Economics and Business

130. Mergos Giorgos University of Athens

131. Metaxas Theodoros University of Thessaly

132. Miaouli Natasha Athens University of Economics and Business

133. Milliou Chrisovalantou Athens University of Economics and Business

134. Mylonas Nikolaos Athens University

135. Mylonidis Nikos University of Ioannina

136. Nikas Christos University of Macedonia

137. Nikolaou Ioannis Athens University of Economics and Business

138. Nikoleris Theodoros Athens University

139. Nikolopoulos Andreas Athens University of Economics and Business

140. Nikolotsa Daphni University of Crete

141. O’Donnel Owen University of Macedonia

142. Pagkratis Spiros Athens University of Economics and Business

143. Pagoulatos Giorgos Athens University of Economics and Business

144. Palis Thanos Aegean University

145. Palivos Theodoros Athens University of Economics and Business

146. Panagiotopoulou Lida Athens University of Economics and Business

147. Panagiotou Dimitris University of Ioannina

148. Panagopoulos Andreas University of Crete

149. Pantelides Theologos University of Macedonia

150. Papachristou Giorgos Aristotle University of Thessaloniki

151. Papadakis Vassilios Athens University of Economics and Business

152. Papadamou Stephanos University of Thessaly

153. Papadimitriou Stratos University of Pireaus

154. Papadopoulos Hrisoleon Aristotle University of Thessaloniki

155. Papadopoulos Konstantinos Aristotle University of Thessaloniki

156. Papalexandri Nancy Athens University of Economics and Business

157. Papanastasopoulos Giorgos University of Pireaus

158. Papandreou Andreas Athens University

159. Papapanagos Harris University of Macedonia

160. Papastathopoulou Polina Athens University of Economics and Business

161. Papathanassiou Iason University of Macedonia

162. Papavasiliou Nikolaos Athens University of Economics and Business

163. Papoulias Dimitris Athens University

164. Paraskevopoulos Christos University of Macedonia

165. Pasiouras Photis Polytechnic of Crete

166. Patronis Vassilios University of Patras

167. Patsouratis Vassilis Athens University of Economics and Business

168. Pechlivanos Lampros Athens University of Economics and Business

169. Peka Oikonomou University of Pireaus

170. Pelagides Thodoris University of Pireaus

171. Petrakis Manolis University of Crete

172. Petridou Evgenia Aristotle University of Thessaloniki

173. Philippopoulos Apostolis Athens University of Economics and Business

174. Pittis Nikitas University of Pireaus

175. Polemis Michalis University of Pireaus

176. Pollalis Ioannis University of Pireaus

177. Pournarakis Efthimios Athens University of Economics and Business

178. Pragidis Ioannis Democritus University of Thrace

179. Pramatari Katerina Athens University of Economics and Business

180. Psaltopoulos Dimitris University of Patras

181. Psarianos Jacob University of Thessaly

182. Psillaki Maria University of Pireaus

183. Raikou Katerina University of Pireaus

184. Repas Panagiotis Panteion University

185. Repoussis Panagiotis Athens University of Economics and Business

186. Riginos Michalis Athens University

187. Rigopoulou Eirini Athens University of Economics and Business

188. Roumanias Kostas Athens University of Economics and Business

189. Sakellaris Ploutarxos Athens University of Economics and Business

190. Sakellis Yiannis Panteion University

191. Samitas Aristides Aegean University

192. Sarris Alexandros Athens University

193. Sartzetakis Efthimios University of Macedonia

194. Sideropoulos Moissis Aristotle University of Thessaloniki

195. Siourounis Grigoris Panteion University

196. Siris Vasilios Athens University of Economics and Business

197. Sklavou Helen Athens University of Economics and Business

198. Sklias Pantelis University of Peloponnese

199. Skordile Sofia Harokopio University

200. Skountzos Theodoros University of Pireaus

201. Skouras Athanassios Athens University of Economics and Business

202. Skouras Dimitris University of Patras

203. Skouras Spyros Athens University of Economics and Business

204. Soderquist Klas Athens University of Economics and Business

205. Sorros Ιoannis University of Pireaus

206. Sotiropoulos Dimitris Athens University

207. Spinellis Diomidis Athens University of Economics and Business

208. Spyrou Spyros Athens University of Economics and Business

209. Stamatopoulos George University of Crete

210. Stathakopoulos Vlasios Athens University of Economics and Business

211. Stavrakoudis Athanassios University of Ioannina

212. Symeonidis Spyros University of Ioannina

213. Tarantilis Christos Athens University of Economics and Business

214. Tatsos Nikos Panteion University

215. Thalassinos Lefteris University of Pireaus

216. Thomadakis Stavros Athens University

217. Thomakos Dimitrios University of Peloponnese

218. Tinios Plato University of Pireaus

219. Topaloglou Nicholas Athens University of Economics and Business

220. Toumpis Stauros Athens University of Economics and Business

221. Tragaki Alexandra Harokopio University

222. Tsakanikas Angelos Metsovio Polytechnic University

223. Tsakiris Nikos University of Ioannina

224. Tsakloglou Panos Athens University of Economics and Business

225. Tsamourgelis Ioannis Aegean University

226. Tsintzos Panagiotis Democritus University of Thrace

227. Tsionas Efthymios Athens University of Economics and Business

228. Tsipouri Lena Athens University

229. Tsiritakis Emmanuel University of Pireaus

230. Tsoukalis Loukas Athens University

231. Tzavalis Elias Athens University of Economics and Business

232. Tzelepis Dimitrios University of Patras

233. Tzionas Ioannis University of Macedonia

234. Tzouvelekas Vangelis University of Crete

235. Vakola Maria Athens University of Economics and Business

236. Varsakelis Νikos Aristotle University of Thessaloniki

237. Vassilatos Vaggelis Athens University of Economics and Business

238. Veletzas Κostas University of Macedonia

239. Venetis Ioannis University of Patras

240. Vettas Νikolaos Athens University of Economics and Business

241. Voudouri Irini Athens University of Economics and Business

242. Xanthakis Manolis Athens University

243. Xepapadeas Tasos Athens University of Economics and Business

244. Zacharias Lefteris Athens University of Economics and Business

245. Zopounidis Konstantinos Polytechnic of Crete

246. Zoumboulakis Michalis University of Thessaly

References:

http://www.ekathimerini.com/198826/article/ekathimerini/news/declaration-of-professors-of-economics-at-greek-universities-on-the-referendum

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Fusion GPS founder trapped in legal jeopardy, bets on Democrat midterm win to bury Russiagate hoax (Video)

The Duran – News in Review – Episode 135.

Alex Christoforou

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Fusion GPS researcher Nellie Ohr and ex-FBI official James Baker are set to testify before Congress, but Fusion GPS co-founder Glenn Simpson is taking the Fifth.

The man at the center of the Russiagate hoax, Glenn Simpson, headed the espionage/PR smear firm Fusion GPS, which ordered the discredited and fake Trump ‘dossier’, which John McCain handed to the FBI, and which Buzzfeed News published as actual news.

Simpson has a lot of explaining to do, and now appears trapped in his “under oath” lies.

Simpson had previously testified under oath to the House Intelligence Committee that he never met with DOJ official Bruce Ohr, husband to Fusion GPS researcher Nellie Ohr.

Simpson also stated under oath that he never discussed with Bruce Ohr the Steele dossier prior to the October FISA application, which was used to spy on Carter Page and kick off the ‘Russiagate hoax’.

The Duran’s Alex Christoforou and Editor-in-Chief Alexander Mercouris discuss the legal jeopardy entangling Fusion GPS co-founder Glenn Simpson. Republicans are close to breaking the ‘Russiagate hoax’ wide open, but Simpson is betting on delay tactics, and a subsequent Democrat midterm House victory, to save his ass from prosecution, and bury his involvement in a brazen attempt to discredit and remove an elected US President.

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According to Zerohedge, Fusion GPS co-founder Glenn Simpson may be in “real legal jeopardy” over inconsistent testimony given to Congress regarding his involvement in a massive counterintelligence effort against then-candidate Donald Trump, including the infamous Steele dossier.

Speaking with Fox News Maria Bartiromo, John Ratcliffe (R-TX) said…

“I’m not surprised that Glenn Simpson is taking the Fifth.”

“He probably should. He’s in real legal jeopardy. Very clearly someone is not telling the truth.”

Via The Daily Caller… 

Simpson, who investigated the Trump campaign on behalf of the DNC and Hillary Clinton presidential campaign, informed Congress on Thursday that he will plead the Fifth to avoid speaking with members of the House Judiciary and House Oversight & Government Committee in an interview set for Tuesday.

“The reason for that … is that Glenn Simpson had previously testified under oath to the House Intelligence Committee that he never met with Bruce Ohr or discussed with Bruce Ohr the Steele dossier prior to the October FISA application in 2016 or the 2016 presidential election,” said Ratcliffe, a member of the House Judiciary panel.

Via Fox News ‘Sunday Morning Futures’

Via Zerohedge

Ohr told the Judiciary and Oversight & Government Reform Committees in an August 28 interview that he met with Simpson in August and December of 2016 to discuss Fusion GPS’s opposition research into Donald Trump.

Bruce’s wife, Nellie Ohr, was hired by Fusion GPS for the anti-Trump effort at the time.

Simpson, however, told a different story to the House Intelligence Committee on November 14, 2017, when he said that he hadn’t been in contact with anyone from the DOJ or FBI until after the election. While he did acknowledge meeting with Bruce Ohr (meetings which would result in Ohr’s demotion), Simpson never disclosed his wife’s employment.

“Ohr, who has been demoted twice since December, was also in frequent contact with Christopher Steele, the author of the infamous anti-Trump dossier. Steele, a former British spy, was hired by Fusion GPS in June 2016 to investigate the Trump campaign’s possible links to the Kremlin.

Steele met with the Ohrs on July 30, 2016, a day before the FBI opened its counterintelligence investigation into the Trump team. Ohr met just after with FBI deputy Director Andrew McCabe.” – Daily Caller

Following the 2016 election, Steel and Ohr met over a dozen times, despite the FBI having blacklisted Steele for improper media disclosures concerning his work.

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Hillary and Holder are hurting Democrat Party with their rhetoric

Democrat-written opinion piece points out the fact that the party has radicalized so much it has left its own supporters behind.

Seraphim Hanisch

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Fox News ran an opinion piece written by Douglas E. Schoen early Sunday. It points out how radicalized the Democrat Party has become, and it is noteworthy because Douglas Schoen is a Democrat himself. He writes (emphasis added):

As Democrats campaign for the Nov. 6 midterm elections, they have plenty of legitimate criticisms to level at President Trump and Republicans who control the House and Senate. But Democrats were hurt in recent days by amazing and disgusting comments made by Hillary Clinton and former Attorney General Eric Holder.

As a Democrat, I want my party to win as many seats as possible in the House and Senate and to capture as many governorships and other state offices as it can. But the Clinton and Holder remarks do not advance that effort – they hurt it.

Former Secretary of State and 2016 Democratic presidential nominee Clinton said Tuesday that “you cannot be civil with” the Republican Party because it “wants to destroy what you stand for, what you care about.” She added that “if we are fortunate enough to win back the House and or the Senate, that’s when civility can start again.”

But even worse than Clinton’s comments were those of Eric Holder, who said at a recent campaign event in Georgia that Democrats should abandon the advice of former first lady Michelle Obama, who said at the 2016 Democratic National Convention that her party and mine should respond positively to negative attacks from the GOP.

Mrs. Obama said that “when someone is cruel or acts like a bully, you don’t stoop to their level. No, our motto is, when they go low, we go high.”

Holder argued just the opposite, saying: “When they go low, we kick them. That’s what this new Democratic Party is about.” He later said he wasn’t advocating violence – not literal kicking.

I beg to differ with both Clinton and Holder.

The only way the Democrats can regain the majority in either or both houses of Congress is by being civil, and pointing out the differences between Democrats and Republicans on the issues.

This is the real issue that should govern elections. Rather than the politics of popularity, one needs to consider policy points and which side offers points that are actually achievable, believable, concrete, desirable and specific. Calling President Trump and his administration names does not offer any constructive dialogue on policy matters.

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Conservatives and Trump supporters know this and it is precisely because of this that Donald Trump won the White House.

While the mainstream media (and here we can include Fox News largely) tried every possible way to ridicule Donald Trump’s candidacy, the people that actually listened to what he had to say found him very impressive on policy as much as his ability to speak as the voice of the people. The recent hysteria around Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination and confirmation to the Supreme Court was hysteria up front, driven by real policy fears from the deep core of liberals, as they know that this Justice is likely to form an effective wall against liberals ramming their agenda through the courts since their efforts fail legislatively so often.

Mr. Schoen continues:

As a centrist Democrat, the issue that strikes me most is the degree to which the national debt and the deficit are now out of control.

America faces uncertain and unstable times financially. Yet we are seeing a Republican-controlled Congress that has largely failed to do anything besides provide tax cuts for major corporations and the wealthiest individuals. This is by no means certain to have fundamentally altered the path of the economy or to provide economic growth.

Put another way, what the Trump administration has failed to do is to fix health care and cover pre-existing conditions more fundamentally; lead America in a fiscally responsible way; and pass tax cuts that help the average American. The Trump tax cuts have driven up the national debt and endangered funding for programs that benefit millions of people in our country.

So, here are policy points. Now we can begin to have a debate. Is Mr. Schoen right, or wrong in his information? This is far different than name-calling!

Democrats have long argued the need for a centrist agenda that focuses on:

  • Providing health-care benefits – whether private or public – to all Americans to cover expansively all pre-existing conditions.
  • Protecting the environment from the policies of the Trump administration that have only encouraged –and I dare say exacerbated – environmental degradation and climate change.
  • Promoting a pro-growth, inclusive agenda that seeks to put working people first, and the interests of Washington insiders and economic elites second. President Trump claims that he is doing this – he calls it “draining the swamp” – but this has not happened.

There is no justification for the angry rhetoric of Clinton and Holder, which only feeds into Republican claims that Democrats are an angry mob that can’t get over Clinton’s loss to Trump two years ago.

And Holder looks particularly bad because he was once the chief law enforcement officer of the United States, yet now sounds like he is effectively advocating what appears to be either illegal activities, or metaphorical initiatives that run counter to our traditions and our politics.

Hillary Clinton has said she won’t run for office again, but Holder has said he may run for president in 2020. Whoever the Democratic candidate turns out to be needs to be a responsible and respectable opponent – not one who calls for kicking the GOP or for incivility.

We should have learned from the Senate confirmation hearing for now-Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh that resisting for the sake of resisting doesn’t work. In fact, Democratic attacks on Kavanaugh may well have backfired, recent polls show.

The Democratic Party itself is lost now, without a message, a direction, a strategy, or agenda to confront a Republican Party that is seen as in many ways as having let the American people down.

We need change – but it must be constructive change. This Democrat believes that the comments that Eric Holder and Hillary Clinton made are wrong, counterproductive, and deserve to be rejected by the leadership of the Democratic Party.

Perhaps Fox News ran this opinion piece because Douglas Schoen is the first rational Democrat contributor to say anything in some time. However, it also appears that Mr. Schoen is a minority in his own party. It is a greatly logical approach to argue policy, as he has and as anyone who really understands American government should. But it is unclear as to whether the bulk of the Democrat Party even has reasonable people remaining.

If they do, it may well be that they are being betrayed by their party’s increasingly leftist and radical positions. The Party apparatus seems focused, but it also seems to have left people like Mr. Schoen behind.

Who knows? Maybe that will bring them into the Trump camp.

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Patriarch Bartholomew lifts anathemas on schismatics in Ukraine (VIDEO)

Most of the Orthodox world is in strong opposition to this move by Patriarch Bartholomew, whose motivations seem not to be of Christ.

Seraphim Hanisch

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The biggest news in the Eastern Orthodox world in recent times occurred on Thursday, October 11, 2018. The Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople, Bartholomew I, lifted the anathemas against two schismatic Ukrainian Churches and their leaders, paving the way to the creation of a fully independent Ukrainian national Orthodox Church.

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This announcement was given in English and is shown here in video with the textual transcript following:

“Presided by His All Holiness the Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, the Holy and Sacred Synod convened for its regular session from October 9 to 11, 2018 in order to examine and discuss items on its agenda. The Holy Synod discussed in particular and at length, the ecclesiastical mater of Ukraine in the presence of His Excellency Archbishop Daniel of Pamphilon and His Grace Bishp Ilarion of Edmonon, Patriarchal Exarchs to Ukraine, and following extensive deliberations decreed (emphasis added):

First, to renew the decision already made, that the Ecumenical Patriarchate proceed to the granting of autocephaly to the Church of Ukraine;

Second, to re-establish at this moment the stavropegion of the Ecumenical Patriarchate in Kiev—one of its many starvorpegion in Ukraine that existed there always;

Third, to accept and review the petitions of appeal of Philaret Denisenko and Makary Maletich and their followers who found themselves in schism not for dogmatic reasons, in accordance with the canonical prerogatives of the Patriarchate of Constantinople to receive such petitions by hierarchs and other clergy of all the autocephalous Churches. Thus, the above mentioned have been canonically reinstated to their hierarchical or priestly rank, and their faithful have been restored to communion with the Church;

Fourth, to revoke the legal binding of the Synodal letter of the year 1686, issued for the circumstances of that time, which granted the right through economia to the Patriarch of Moscow to ordain the Metropolitan of Kiev elected by the clergy-laity assembly of his eparchy, who would commemorate the Ecumenical Patriarch as the first hierarch at any celebration, proclaiming and affirming his canonical dependence to the Mother Church of Constantinople;

Fifth, to appeal to all sides involved that they avoid appropriation of churches, monasteries, and other properties as well as every other act of violence and retaliation so that he peace and love of Christ may prevail.”

There are a few things that must be said about what this declaration is not before we get to the matter of what the points of actually are. The point of reference is the strict letter of the text above itself.

  • This is not a granting of autocephaly (full independent self-rule status) like the fourteen universally canonical Orthodox jurisdictions in the world. However, it is a huge step towards this status.
  • As far as Constantinople is concerned, Filaret Denisenko, the leader and “Patriarch” of the “Kyiv Patriarchate of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church” and Makary, the “Metropolitan” of the “Ukrainian Orthodox Autocephalous Church”, and all their faithful are now restored to communion. The statement says that this applies to “The Church” which may be trying to state that these two men (and all the faithful that they lead), are now in communion with the entirety of canonical Orthodoxy, but more likely, this may be a carefully worded statement to say they now are in communion with Constantinople alone.
  • There is an official call for the cessation of the violence directed against the Moscow Patriarchate parishes and communities, who are the only canonically recognized Orthodox Church in Ukraine, and who are also the largest by far in that country. The Kyiv Patriarchate and Uniate (Roman oriented) Greek Catholics in Ukraine have gone on record for seizing MP church properties, often by force, with neo-Nazi sympathizers and other radical Ukrainian nationalists. So this official call to cease the violence is now a matter of public record.

However, the reaction has been far less civil than the clergy wished for.

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko: “Expressing his view of the Moscow Patriarchate, Poroshenko added, “This is a great victory of the God-loving Ukrainian people over the Moscow demons, the victory of Good over Evil, the victory of Light over Darkness.”’

Perhaps this is the reason Metropolitan Onuphry of Ukraine (exarch under the Moscow Patriarchate) has been labeled an enemy of Ukraine and is now receiving death threats. Very civil.

Poroshenko’s statement is all the more bizarre, considering that it has been Ukrainian ultra-nationalists that have been violently attacking Moscow – related parishes in Ukraine. This has been corroborated by news sources eager to pin the blame on Russia, such as the U.K. Guardian.

The Union of Orthodox Journalists, based in Kiev and supportive of the Moscow Patriarchate, has been under intense cyber attack since October 11th, when the EP’s announcement was issued.

Ukrainian Orthodox Church (Moscow Patriarchate) Chancellor, Metropolitan Anthony of Boryspil and Brovary: “What happened at the Synod in Istanbul yesterday shocked the entire Orthodox world. It seems the Patriarchate of Constantinople is consciously embarking on a path of schism in world Orthodoxy. Patriarch Bartholomew ignored the calls of the Local Churches to convene a meeting of the primates to work out a common and conciliar solution to the Ukrainian Church issue and unilaterally made very serious but erroneous decisions. I hope the Orthodox world will give this action an objective evaluation… Having received the schismatics into communion, Patriarch Bartholomew did not make them canonical, but has himself embarked on the path of schism. The schismatics remain schismatics. They did not receive any autocephaly or tomos. It seems they have lost even that independence, although non-canonical, that they had and which they always emphasized.”

Metropolitan Rostislav of the Czech Lands and Slovakia:“The Orthodox world recognizes the only canonical primate of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church—His Beatitude Metropolitan Onuphry of Kiev and All Ukraine. This fact was repeatedly mentioned and confirmed by the primate of the Great Church of Christ His Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew on behalf of all present at the Synaxis of the Primates of the Local Orthodox Churches that was held in Chambésy (Switzerland) from January 21 to 27, 2016. Therefore, any attempt to legalize the Ukrainian schismatics by the state authorities should be strongly condemned by all the primates of the Local Orthodox Churches.

Patriarch Irinej of Serbia wrote two letters to the Ecumenical Patriarch, advocating that the provision of a new autocephaly is possible only with the consent of all local Orthodox Churches. According to Sedmitza.ru (Translation by Pravoslavie.ru),

“In these letters, it was very clearly stated that the granting of autocephaly cannot be the prerogative the Patriarchate of Constantinople alone, that new autocephalies must be created only with the consent of all the Local Orthodox Churches, as the Holy Synod of Antioch also said in its recent statement.”

Pat. Irinej also warned the Patriarchate of Constantinople against making such major decisions unilaterally, because “it will not bring harmony and peace to the Ukrainian land, but, on the contrary, will cause new divisions and new schisms.”

The Holy Synod of Antioch, the oldest Orthodox Church, and actually the very first place where the disciples of Christ were even called “Christians” weighed in on the issue as well and they had several things to say:

“The fathers examined the general Orthodox situation. They stressed that the Church of Antioch expresses her deep worries about the attempts to change the boundaries of the Orthodox Churches through a new reading of history. She considers that resorting to a unilateral reading of history does not serve Orthodox unity. It rather contributes to the fueling of the dissensions and quarrels within the one Church. Thus, the Church of Antioch refuses the principle of establishing parallel jurisdictions within the canonical boundaries of the Patriarchates and the autocephalous Churches as a way to solve conflicts, or as a de facto situation in the Orthodox world.

To summarize, this move by Constantinople is not being warmly received by many, many people. Most of the local Churches are on record giving their reaction to this process. In brief, here is the list most of the Local Churches and a one or two word summary of their reactions.

Patriarchate of Georgia: Unilateral action is wrong; Constantinople and Moscow must cooperate and find a solution together.

Patriarchate of Jerusalem: recognizes Ukraine as a canonical territory of the Russian Orthodox Church alone, as do all other local Churches

Patriarchate of Alexandria and all Africa: The Church does not bow to politicians. Moscow-led church is the only canonical Church in Ukraine.

Archbishop of Cyprus: Decries the Ukrainian situation but offered to mediate a discussion between Moscow and Constantinople

Bulgarian Patriarchate: Interference of the State in Church affairs leads to serious and negative consequences for both.

Polish Orthodox Church: Metropolitan Sawa called for a council of Orthodox ruling hierarchs to discuss this situation.

Estonian Orthodox Church: Condemns Constantinople’s actions in Ukraine.

Greek Archdiocese of America: Supports Constantinople’s actions in Ukraine.

The Orthodox Church of Greece (Metropolitan Seraphim of Piraeus quoted): “Schismatics, as we know, are not the Church, and communion with them is forbidden by the Divine and holy canons and the Apostolic and Ecumenical Councils. Why then this persistence of the Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew in recognizing schismatics as an autocephalous Church? To provoke schisms and divisions in the one universal and Apostolic Church of Christ?”

Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia (ROCOR): Ceased commemoration of Constantinople, ceased concelebration with Constantinople.

This issue has also rocked the secular geopolitical world.

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