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Good evening. It’s Thursday, August 10. Welcome to a new episode of System Update, our live nightly show that airs every Monday through Friday at 7 p.m. Eastern, exclusively here, on Rumble, the free speech alternative to YouTube.
Tonight: new polling data last week revealed that a majority of Americans – 55% – now oppose further financial assistance from the United States to fuel the war in Ukraine, with a similar percentage believing that the U.S. has now done enough, it will likely not surprise you to learn that the views of American citizens do not matter at all to the ruling class, either generally, or especially, when it comes to American wars.
Just days after this polling data was released and the trend has long been clear that support for the U.S. role in Ukraine has been eroding steadily among Americans, President Biden today demanded that Congress approve an additional $25 billion to send to arms manufacturers and to Ukraine. The U.S. has already authorized more than $110 billion for the war, but the new amounts Biden is now seeking are so large that even Associated Press, when reporting on it, called it “another massive infusion of cash as the Russian invasion wears on.” (Aug. 10, 2023)
This is the first time that Biden has sought the kind of additional expenditures for the war that will require congressional approval ever since the Republicans under House Speaker Kevin McCarthy regained control of the House. Prior to the midterm election, McCarthy, knowing that voters were turning against the war – and, more importantly to him, that many of the House Republicans he needed to become speaker opposed the war from the start and voted NO the first time around – pretended that he would be far more restrained than Nancy Pelosi was in allowing more spending for the war, saying “the days of a blank check are over.” However, as soon as Republicans safely won that election and the majority that went along with it and McCarthy was safely elected speaker, he and his allies, including the pro-war hawks he deliberately put in charge of the key military and foreign affairs committees, began making clear that the House speaker was, of course, a full scale and ardent supporter of Biden's war policies in Ukraine.
There is some speculation in Washington now about whether McCarthy will have the political space to maneuver Biden's request for approval in the House. The New York Times today reported that Mr. McCarthy said in June that any supplemental appropriation request for Ukraine was “not going anywhere” and that additional aid will have to be worked out in the regular congressional spending process. But it is hard to remember the last time the U.S. war machine did not get what it wanted, and it seems very difficult to envision that happening here. Will analyze all aspects of this new war spending request and the political components to it as well.
Then, Google faces one of the greatest legal threats yet to its massive power in a case brought by the Trump Justice Department against the search giant. A federal judge in Washington ruled in the fall that Google must stand trial in order to contest charges brought by the DOJ's Antitrust Division and various states’ attorneys general that its search engine’s market dominance is so extreme that it constitutes a violation of antitrust laws and should therefore be broken up. The trial starts September 12.
Our guest tonight to talk about all this is one of the nation's leading antitrust experts, Matt Stoller. Last week, he wrote about this case under the headline “The first big antitrust trial of the century is about to start.” About that trial, Stoller wrote: "Google has maintained this monopoly, the government alleges, not by making a better product, but by locking down everywhere that consumers might be able to find a different search engine option, and making sure they only see Google." Stoller with be with us to examine the potential consequences - which are massive - of this legal case starting soon.
Finally, last night, we told you about newly disclosed documents revealing that prosecutors working for special counsel Jack Smith issued a subpoena to Twitter in 2022, demanding that the social media company turn over Trump's private communications on the platform. Twitter resisted the subpoena to the point that they were fined by the judge. But not only was Twitter ordered by a federal court to turn over Trump's communications, but they were also banned by court order at the request of Smith's prosecutorial team to even advise Trump of the subpoena, which would have allowed him the opportunity to argue that it was legally invalid or unconstitutional. We'll take more in-depth into this common yet repressive practice and how it found expression in this investigation to try to render Trump a criminal and to report on one particularly bizarre component of the anti-Trump aspects of this ruling, where a judge seemed to approve an argument that the government later on set was invalid and that they made by accident.
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For now, welcome to a new episode of System Update starting right now.