January 20, 2017
The Not-Hillary President
It is impossible to know what the Not-Hillary inauguration will bring. Not-Hillary because putting up Hillary as candidate was the most stupid thing the Democratic party and it paymasters could do. She had extremely high negative ratings and stood for everything that one could dislike with the party's policies. Many who ended up not voting or voted for Trump could have been easily won by a different Democratic candidate even with much of the same general policies (see: Obama, Barack).
Hillary would surely have lost against any middle-of-the-road Republican candidate. History will note that she was an arrogant but incompetent Democratic candidate who lost against a rather bad Republican candidate, one who lacked support even from his own party. Trump won barely, but she lost completely.
Seen from the perspective of power centers Clinton once had all the support she needed. But she then lost a decisive group due to her uncompromising neo-conned foreign policy. Here is an interesting take based on a theory from the 1950s:
[T]he power elite can be best described as a “triangle of power,” linking the corporate, executive government, and military factions: “There is a political economy numerously linked with military order and decision. This triangle of power is now a structural fact, and it is the key to any understanding of the higher circles in America today.”
The 2016 US election, like all other US elections, featured a gallery of pre-selected candidates that represented the three factions and their interests within the power elite. The 2016 US election, however, was vastly different from previous elections. As the election dragged on the power elite became bitterly divided, with the majority supporting Hilary Clinton, the candidate pre-selected by the political and corporate factions, while the military faction rallied around their choice of Donald Trump.
That is only a rough take. The corporate factions are divided within. The oil industry does not like it when wars disturb its long term businesses (see Russia and Libya). Boeing wants to sell planes to Iran. Other corporate parts don't mind such wars as long as they create new markets or easy access to cheap labor. The media love war as it creates ever thrilling content around which they can sell advertisements.
The decisive political point in this election round was the fight between neo-conservatives/liberal-interventionists and foreign policy realists. One side is represented exemplary by the CIA with the U.S. military on the other:
A schism developed between the Defense Department and the highly politicized CIA. This schism, which can be attributed to the corporate-deep-state’s covert foreign policy, traces back to the CIA orchestrated “color revolutions” that had swept the Middle East and North Africa.
The CIA created bloodthirsty future enemies the military will later have to defeat. Fascists in Ukraine and Takfiris all over the Middle East are used by the CIA to further neocon aims but then require relative cheap military intervention at high human costs. The Generals do not like that. (The precedence of al-Qaeda in Afghanistan was enough for them.) Neither does the military industry. Fighting Takfiris does not require big ticket items. Ratcheting up the rhetoric against peer competitors (without ever fighting a real war) is the best justification for a two million strong military and huge military contracts.
It is still astonishing that the military Trump faction of the power triangle could win the fight. Trump made that possible when he used a hostile media for his gain. The corporate media stood strongly behind Clinton but that was not enough to hide her negative sides. Trump's salesmen bluster proved too fascinating to not be reported. In the end the media that hated him ended up making the very best advertisement for him. For weeks the neoconned Washington Post editorial page ran five or six anti-Trump pieces per day. That alone was for some reason enough to vote for Trump.
Trump will now have to win over other parts of the power triangle. The corporate part is the easy one. He will lower its taxes. He will also, in one form or another, reinstate tariffs along the U.S. borders. His confrontational position against main exporting countries, China, Germany, Mexico etc, will also transfer into higher U.S. corporate profits. It may even create some additional jobs in the U.S. which would help him to get reelected.
The military will demand its due beyond the three generals now in Trump's cabinet. But soldiers do not like to go to war. That means that Trump will increase conflict rhetoric against some foreign countries but also that he will not start any serious war. Expect the announcement of some super nifty, new but useless military wonder weapon for which Trump will promise trillions (Reagan's star wars redux).
The most difficult faction to win over to his view is the political/executive/secret services side including many people within his own party. Neoliberalism has inflicted those on all levels. Trump will have to neutralize or fire people in their upper ranks early and often. If he fails to do that all his plans will be challenged and stymied in their early implementation.
Trump is a highly gifted salesman, one of the best I have ever seen. His general business skills are more average. He is full of bluster before going into negotiations. His current rhetoric in relations to other countries should be seen as opening shots. Such threats and offers alike are to him just parts of a negotiation process. His main aim with those will be to get some manufacturing back into the United States. He needs some success in this, in creating jobs, jobs, jobs and raising wages, to secure his reelection.
Economically Trump will lower taxes and increase spending (after some minor for-show cuts.) U.S. national debt will rise significantly. Interest rates will rise in conflict with his aim to lower the dollar value in exchange markets. His U.S. centric protectionism will allow other countries to also take steps in such a direction. At one point Trump will have to take up a fight with speculative Wall Street banking. It is an impediment for all his other aims. This will be his most difficult fight and the one he will probably lose.
Over all I do not expect anything exceptional from Trump. His time in the White House will probably turn out to be minor remake of Reagan's.
Posted by b on January 20, 2017 at 11:55 AM | Permalink
It raises an interesting question, how can neoliberalism be purged from the group mind. Karl Popper embarrassed logical positivism out of existence, it seems like that should have already happened to neoliberalism. I suppose more money is involved in this status quo.
Posted by: Cresty | Jan 20, 2017 12:05:28 PM | 1
b, maybe you are right, I reserved judgement for now. We avoided direct war with Russia without Hillary, what we gain could be even greater conflict in Asia with Trump started with Obomo pivots to Asian..
Questions, can Trump delivery what he said? [watching Trump speech now]
Posted by: OJS | Jan 20, 2017 12:11:46 PM | 2
A calibrated geopolitical variant/application of the 'Strategy of Tension' with near peer States (Russia/China), and capable/defensible foes, Nth Korea & Iran, greases the sluice gates of the pigs trough, that the snouts of the MICC & ultimate owners rort, gouge from ...
Posted by: Outraged | Jan 20, 2017 12:22:24 PM | 3
Thanks b, Your last paragraph says.."Over all I do not expect anything exceptional from Trump. His time in the White House will probably turn out to be minor remake of Reagan's."
I, on the other hand, when taken into account the makeup of his appointees, think this will
be one of the most successful coups by corporate America ever achieved. IF these new people in his cabinet are approved, the takeover of the U$A gov. by corporate interests will complete the circle, to the total detriment of the American working classes.
The interests of the American people will now become subordinate to the profits gleaned from them by the global corporatists.
I would love to be wrong about these feelings, but everything points differently.
Posted by: ben | Jan 20, 2017 12:24:26 PM | 4
Á propos b's
Seen from the perspective of power centers Clinton once had all the support she needed. But she then lost a decisive group due to her uncompromising neo-conned foreign policy.
There are two main (and intimately connected) reasons why HRC lost the election - Internet and Wikileaks. I would bet in my kitchen sink that the Zio-cons would have it exactly as they had planned if it wasn't for the masses' possibility to instantly get information about anything from thousands of different sources, as well as the stubborn persistence of Wikileaks (almost as big as MSM's love for Killary and silence on all of her exposed dirty laundry).
Posted by: LXV | Jan 20, 2017 12:40:13 PM | 6
There are a lot of Big Oil entities who were hoping to replace Russia's natural gas flow to Europe with LNG from all the fracking in the US, and to eventually control that massive pool of petroleum in Central Asia in Russia and the former Soviet states. Considering the fragility of the market (eight years after the crash there still is a weakened demand for product) it's economically unfeasible for Europe to switch to American natural gas. I think those dreams will die with Trump in the White House. Essentially, the choice for the ruling elite of the US was corporatism with Russia as an ally (Trump) or corporatism with Russia as the target (Clinton, McCain et al).
There really isn't enough demand from the working class either in Europe or in the US to spur much growth. WIthout massive transfers of wealth from the 1% to the 99% in the West the next economic collapse will come. If there is nobody to sell your products to there is no business. Trump's domestic economic plans, tax cuts for the wealthy, if enacted, would pretty much shut down the economy.
Avoiding war with Russia could have been a good move for the US economy if that money could be directed towards the working class. But it won't. Military suppliers will continue to get their contracts, even if only to fill warehouses and fields with unused tanks et al.
Without someone like an FDR we are fast approaching dark economic days. I think that the Clintonites saw a war with Russia as a way to ratchet up the US economy not unlike FDR's war-footing economy. But even if she had succeeded in a war hot enough to generate profits and cool enough to avoid nuclear exchanges the profits wouldn't trickle down to where it's needed.
If the US economy develops a way to thrive without consumer demand there are a lot of superfluous bread-gobblers that will need to disappear. In any case, hard times ahead for the working class.
Posted by: Bob In Portland | Jan 20, 2017 12:55:29 PM | 7
If the people had elected JEB! or any other boilerplate Republican, they'd have expected a cabinet full of Neanderthal Republican Assholes to go after their Social Security and Medicare.
They voted for Trump because he was not a politician. His cabinet choices do not jibe with any anti-politician.
Campaign Trump derided that jerk-off Ted Cruz - beholden to Goldman Sachs - for his relationship and that of his wife with Goldman Sachs.
So Trump fills admin with Goldman Sachs.
Posted by: fastfreddy | Jan 20, 2017 1:04:55 PM | 8
The day has come! Hopefully the most brutal attacks on Trump etc will now stop!
But the MSM still fights on - they still have some energy left, although considerable weaker.
Wherever you go today in MSM:
"Trump is a danger" "Russia is bad" blabla, seriously who gives a f'ck anymore about these warmongers? Get a real job as far as I am concerned because less and less people buy the stupid MSM propaganda. Let Trump rule and support him would my advice to MSM be, but no instead they keep whine about Trump 24/7.
Posted by: Anonymous | Jan 20, 2017 1:07:23 PM | 9
You're overoptimistic B. The u.s.-economy is in really bad shape, the reasons are structural. Tronald does not understand that. With his aged recipe poor will grow in number. There will be more social unrest. The 'solution' for this is a 'good' war.
Sure it was a not-Hillary election, but Tronald is not just not-Hillary. He is an overambitious, nostalgic old man surrounded from other overambitious, nostalgic old men (and few women)- to put it very very mildly. He is another nail in humanity's coffin (as Reagan by the way).
Posted by: Pnyx | Jan 20, 2017 1:10:43 PM | 10
"while the military faction rallied around their choice of Donald Trump."
No, mostly ordinary soldiers supported Trump. But the Pentagon and the high level Ash Karter/General Breedlove/NATO types supported Hillary Clinton.
The Pentagon favored more escalation in Syria, and in Europe, it did not favor Trump's deescalation. The Pentagon was the most hawkish US player, it bombed Syrian soldiers in Deir as Zor, wanted to arm the ukrainians and sabotaged John Kerry and the Russia/Syria ceasefire deal repeatedly.
The Pentagon wanted a new Cold War and the big bucks associated with it.
Anyone who says that the Pentagon supported Trump and was against Hillary Clinton has no idea what he is talking about.
Posted by: Observer | Jan 20, 2017 1:41:57 PM | 12
@11 i wonder how debt, oil production and warming will trend in those 25 years. Not much cause for optimism, but every new day alive is a good day hey.
Posted by: aaaa | Jan 20, 2017 1:46:15 PM | 13
I'm with Laura @ 11. It's too late. The dominoes are already starting to fall for the "West." It would have been the same for Hillary with a little bit longer sunset date. With Trump all bets are off. Just from the last couple months it looks like he's going "double down" on Obama's Asia pivot. The Dragon will eat his lunch. And Trump, the victim of an ego so large it should be visible on Google Earth, will blunder tragically in response.
Posted by: Mike Maloney | Jan 20, 2017 1:48:18 PM | 14
Trump won. To hell with the idea that Hillary lost and a difference Democrat would have won.
Posted by: Wade | Jan 20, 2017 1:58:38 PM | 15
Hillary would surely have lost against any middle-of-the-road Republican candidate.It's important to note that Hillary WANTED to run against Trump because of what were perceived to be his high negatives (billionaire, inexperience, bombast, social views, etc.)
The decisive political point in this election round was the fight between neo-conservatives/liberal-interventionists and foreign policy realists.
The support that Hillary got from the establishment was so strong that she took the election for granted.
In fact, I wrote of the possibility that the Orlando nightclub attack was an effort to help Hillary's troubled candidacy. Part of the reasoning for why this may be so comes from recent evidence of the depth of CIA's anti-Trump leanings.
As noted above, Hillary viewed her experience as a major asset against Trump. Any possible terrorist attack would be an opportunity to contrast her experience with Trump's inexperience. But Trump effectively countered Hillary's attempt to capitalize on the attack by saying that neither Hillary nor Obama would say the words "radical Islamic terrorism" and noting Hillary/Obama's closeness with Saudi Arabia where being openly gay risks beheading.
Over all I do not expect anything exceptional from Trump.
And why so? Because of the opposition arrayed against him? You should reconsider. His willingness and ability to use the 'bully pulpit' (take his message directly to the people)
is a 'force multiplier' that could help him prevail.
Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jan 20, 2017 2:14:10 PM | 16
Talking about the economy, there were very few tourists in France lately, even during the Xmas holidays. The dollar is almost at parity with the euro these days. Only wars have supported Western economies in the last five years. Can that last forever?
Posted by: Mina | Jan 20, 2017 2:18:10 PM | 18
A different democrat like Biden would not have done it for me, b. Trump's anti-globalist rallying cry informed my choice and it just so happened that he framed this outlook into a nifty slogan that appealed to red state and rust belt working-class. I tell everyone to at least give the man some credit: he ran circles around the Hildabeast and, for me, it wasn't just lesser-evilism voting.
Good highlighting, though. Something will have to give with the battle btw Trump and high-finance, however. An event, a correction, will no doubt occur when money is not garnered the easy way any longer, from public coffers. We will see what that looks like during his presidency.
Ps. Can you please un-ban my home ip? Or must I continue arranging long comments with my frekin phone?
Posted by: NemesisCalling | Jan 20, 2017 2:20:04 PM | 19
Trump needs to be careful. He knows very well that his votes came from the heartland. He must be very careful not to piss off the NRA and blue collar workers. If he starts pandering to the elite the rumblings will begin.
Posted by: dh | Jan 20, 2017 2:20:07 PM | 20
b. - Wonderful analysis, but as I mentioned sometime ago - Washington is a vicious maze.
I doubt that Trump will not be obstructed from all sides, unlike Reagan.
Ok, those were the different days of "black" and "white" politics and The World deeply divided and also a long before we sped up our information channels (internet), but never the less - Not-Hillary is not in for the fun ride.
Scary is the crowd Trump hastily gathered around and that is the spotlight where the worst things are going to happen.
If Trump delivers 10% of what he said in his inaugural speech he is going to do well, anyway.
Posted by: laserlurk | Jan 20, 2017 2:22:35 PM | 21
@ jackrabbit 16
No doubt that she postively relished those debate appearances against Trump. You could see it on her smug face the delusion that everyone at home was with her. The democratic party and her have their slaves still so convinced of his dastardly motives that they are still repeating their same mistakes without even an ounce of reflection or soulsearching. Meanwhile, President Trump and his supporters don't care and/or are appreciative for these diversionary tactics which is only distracting the public so his policymaking will be smoother.
Posted by: NemesisCalling | Jan 20, 2017 2:28:27 PM | 22
@22 I said long ago that Trump might hold a reign of terror. Congress has been put on notice, and politicians that are in the way of his policy initiatives might be targeted heavily. I'm not sure whether that will extend to the citizenry or not. There might be heavy COINTELPRO/Project Veritas type hijinx against NGOs that oppose him.
There could be division in USA, the likes to which we've never seen before. As a part-time cynic and infotainment junkie I'm quite eager to watch it all unfold in hi-def
Posted by: aaaa | Jan 20, 2017 2:34:22 PM | 23
7 - Bob In Portland | Jan 20, 2017 wrote:
Avoiding war with Russia could have been a good move for the US economy if that money could be directed towards the working class.
I agree with every word you say, but just one thing - going to war with Russia is not an option. Ever. Not a conventional war certainly, as there the only other option is left and that would be to use just nukes and following this path nobody wins, actually nobody survives.
Also, a good reason why nobody makes any money out of it.
Posted by: laserlurk | Jan 20, 2017 2:40:03 PM | 24
There are so many errors of fact and questionable assumptions a detailed analysis would be writing for free, which Dr. Johnson tells us only a fool would do. Thus, to keep this a hobby, let me content myself with commenting on this: "The corporate part is the easy one. He will lower its taxes. He will also, in one form or another, reinstate tariffs along the U.S. borders. His confrontational position against main exporting countries, China, Germany, Mexico etc, will also transfer into higher U.S. corporate profits. It may even create some additional jobs in the U.S. which would help him to get reelected."
Inflation will not restore profitability, which is what corporate sector will fear from a massive deficit spending approach. Thus, lower corporate taxes will be offset either by raising regressive taxes (a value-added tax may well be in our immediate future) or by massive social spending cuts (Medicaid first, then Medicare and Social Security,) or both. And if Trump doesn't he will have trouble with the Republican majorities in both houses. As for tariffs restoring profitablity, they will not. The growth of inequality in the US economy is already so far advanced the domestic market is possibly contracting. Most of all, the pressure on corporate profits is not from taxation, but from overproduction on a world scale. Firing everybody or cutting their pay isn't going to restore a domestic market large enough to make profits large enough for reindustrialization. And frankly, the theory that the real economic problem is too many people are taxed too much instead of too many people being paid too little may be popular in boardrooms and libertarian noodles, but it's still wrong. Actually destroying foreign economies will make profits from manufacturing go up eventually, if the US destroys enough. I suppose Trump can resort to nuking select enemies, as a cheap form of warfare that will really strengthen his bargaining position. The claim that Trump is capable of delivering on his promises is really propaganda, closer to the black sort than the white.
Posted by: s | Jan 20, 2017 2:49:26 PM | 25
Good roundup, b, particularly this observation...
"Trump will have to neutralize or fire people in their upper ranks early and often. If he fails to do that all his plans will be challenged and stymied in their early implementation."
... to which the basket of Deplorables would say
"Trump promised to be the "You're fired!" President, which is the best way to drain the swamp".
Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Jan 20, 2017 2:53:21 PM | 27
I did not anticipate Trump's victory in large part because I underestimated the breath and depth of hatred for Hillary, as well as hatred for the various themes she represented. My personal deep hatred for her caused me to make this underestimation, my trying to be reasonable and somewhat objective in guessing who would win.
I agree with the 'triangle of power' formulation. But, it doesn't mention the people. The confluence of the interests of corporations, executive power and military power, to the exclusion of the people, is how I think about fascism, as we saw in the 30s in Europe.
The (Republican) legislative part of the 'political directorate' that may be anti-Trump can be co-opted by the power of the presidency. Congresscritters love power and are susceptible to the skillful use of presidential power. Successful politicians have achieved that in the past; some really smart presidents have failed at using this natural power to sway senators and representatives (none more spectacularly than 0bama). Trump's people skills and dealmaking experience will help; his lack of experience with politicians (other than buying them with contributions) may hinder. This will be interesting.
I'm a first time-long time, been reading daily for several years and I love hanging quietly at the bar.
Posted by: howard in nyc | Jan 20, 2017 2:57:42 PM | 28
Am I making too much of the fact that of the three prayers to bless his inauguration, the first was Jewish, and making reference quite specifically to Jerusalem. I think the message is clear. USA will move its embassy to Jerusalem and accept it as capital of Israel. Then watch the fireworks.
Posted by: aniteleya | Jan 20, 2017 3:06:56 PM | 29
One important thing to remember is not to overestimate Trump ability to solve every issue, and perhaps, and this is important, he may perhaps not even try of various reasons, he could be that candidate Obamas was, supposedly anti-war, but after his terms we know he was totally different.
For example I would not be surprised if hes first trip will be to the Europe/EU and Nato where he will repeat the type of warmongering rhetoric we have heard past years from EU/NATO/Obama.
However Trump's win is far (FAR!) better than if Hillary would have won. So either way, its a small win nontheless.
Posted by: Anonymous | Jan 20, 2017 3:08:29 PM | 30
Trump who is all sales-con lip-service pitch and posturing before the people for the benefit of his ego power trip is but a front and a pretty transparent one (and this is where the transparency ends) for the worst kind of corruption in U.S. Government: Goldman/Wall Street, the MIC, and Zionism (which is of course inconvenient to the Trump religion strangely laid out above and oh so excruciating to comprehend in its utter self-deception.). It is one thing to defend the indefensible and yet another to propagandize it.
That means that Trump will increase conflict rhetoric against some foreign countries but also that he will not start any serious war.
I'm going to record this statement in my notes, as it begs an I told you so I will not hesitate to deliver in future. I was under the impression that if people are killed; all war is serious. So, what exactly is a war that is not serious? Is there any such war; or was this another; I’m covered either way caveat in case he does the unthinkable?
Between Trump-god and Trump-twitter man-baby; lies the REAL Donald Trump who will underwrite one of the worst fascist chapters in American history. As I wrote earlier, Trump will make Dubya look like Lincoln.
The benefit for Russia here is that Trump represents the unintended unraveling of the Empire no thanks to those here trying to prevent it. Trump is to earth what the planet’s other man-baby, Kim, is to same, and the former has a less credible excuse for his immaturity and the consequences of it he will inflict.
Our fate is in the hands of a raging megalomaniac who will take us straight to hell with every pretense on the chamberlain-like intentions projected on Herr Trump here.
Posted by: Circe | Jan 20, 2017 3:20:50 PM | 31
@6 There are two main (and intimately connected) reasons why HRC lost the election - Internet and Wikileaks.
Er, no. There is one reason why Hillary "lost" the election despite winning 2.8 million more votes than Trump. That reason is the defective and imperfect American constitution. The majority of the people voted for Hillary; the electoral college made Trump President.
Posted by: Mike | Jan 20, 2017 3:22:56 PM | 32
Sorry, my italics did not appear;
The following should be italicized:
That means that Trump will increase conflict rhetoric against some foreign countries but also that he will not start any serious war.
Posted by: Circe | Jan 20, 2017 3:26:14 PM | 33
Trump will win some battles an lose others. He will call compromises a 'win' (so be careful how you score). Each battle will be hard-fought.
1) He's likely to lose on social issues ...
His agenda is more conservative than the country
2) likely to win on business/trade, tie on taxes, but lose on finance ...
His business background and bully pulpit are positives
3) likely to win on international affairs.
President's have great power to craft international relations
I'd bet he doesn't end NATO and CIA as some have called for but reforms them.
I think his Presidency is inherently consequential because he had to beat the establishment to win.
Whatever his successes may be, his win in 2020 is very uncertain.
Note: the above assumes that Trump tries to follow-thru with what he has said publicly (I don't expect him to be as devious as Obama - but no President has been 100% honest).
Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jan 20, 2017 3:29:17 PM | 34
I'm enjoying MI6's News Outlet (BBC) conducting a faux debate about Trump lacking political experience.
Regrettably, 90% of the Punditocracy appear to have forgotten that in a Democracy a real politician doesn't ignore, or talk down to voters, he/she LISTENS to them. Which begs the question "Is Donald Trump the only real politician in the neo-conned West?"
Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Jan 20, 2017 3:29:21 PM | 35
Hillary would surely have lost against any middle-of-the-road Republican candidate. History will note that she was an arrogant but incompetent Democratic candidate who lost against a rather bad Republican candidate, one who lacked support even from his own party. Trump won barely, but she lost completely. - so b.
Hillary won the election but lost the electoral college..
Posted by: Mike | Jan 20, 2017 3:30:14 PM | 36
I did not anticipate Trump's victory in large part because I underestimated the breath and depth of hatred for Hillary, as well as hatred for the various themes she represented.
Erm - this person so hated won 2.8 million more votes than the Trump who had the "victory". The people wanted Hillary; the electoral college wanted Trump.
Posted by: Mike | Jan 20, 2017 3:34:01 PM | 37
The President is elected by the Electoral College.
He won the Electoral College and won the Election.
Hillary won a popularity contest.
Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jan 20, 2017 3:35:51 PM | 38
Hillary won the election but lost the electoral college..
Nope. Hillary won the popular vote but lost the electoral college. In doing so, she lost the election.
I recommend reading the U.S. Constitution.
Posted by: lysias | Jan 20, 2017 3:37:01 PM | 39
Fascinating. The above (except most of what b had to try to say) indicates that the alleged election is still being fought. Same old same old.
I find it very interesting that people seem unable to think beyond the already thought. The arguments, pro and con Trump, are still being put forth.
Do you think that it might be possible to actually think for a change?
I doubt it ...
Posted by: rg the lg | Jan 20, 2017 3:37:55 PM | 40
Trump's tweets are the 21st century equivalent of FDR's fireside chats over the radio. In both cases, ways to bypass hostile media.
Posted by: lysias | Jan 20, 2017 3:43:30 PM | 41
If Hillary was too stupid to know she had to win the Electoral College to become POTUS, how many other embarrassing stupidities was she embracing?
Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Jan 20, 2017 3:44:18 PM | 42
It is not true that a majority of the American people voted for Hillary. Even if you count only the people who actually voted, she still only got a minority. I, for example, voted for Jill Stein. And I definitely preferred (and prefer) a Trump victory to a victory by the neocon warmonger Hillary.
Posted by: lysias | Jan 20, 2017 3:47:04 PM | 43
Hillary never campaigned in Wisconsin. And she definitely campaigned too little in Michigan and Pennsylvania.
She believed the polls that said Trump had no chance in those states.
In contrast, Trump and Pence did a lot of campaigning in those states in the days immediately before the election. Their polling was definitely superior.
Posted by: lysias | Jan 20, 2017 3:49:07 PM | 44
There were indeed times during the campaign, when the atmosphere was like some alternate reality; but the transition period from Election Day to Inauguration was certainly a disgraceful spectacle. I've never seen anything like it. And the petulance of the Democratic side extended right up to the swearing-in today, with a boycott of the ceremony by some Democrats.
The orchestrated campaign attacking the legitimacy of the newly elected president was joined by a political visibility from some parts of the intelligence services, never seen before,-- an insidious campaign designed to create the impression that the President-Elect was the tool of Russia, The Democrats were not asking for whom the bell tolls, at the crucial moment, when Wikileaks, and whomever it was that handed over documents, showed what the Clinton machine had done to rig the Convention process and the primary process itself.
Moreover, limousine liberals, and many sympathetic Hollywood actors, and the whole raft of liberal comedians, have never once stopped chewing on the bone of that fraudulent story about Russia's "hacking of the election".
The Democrats have descended into panic mode, taking refuge in a refusal to see the shortcomings and all pertinent criminal activity of the Clintons. The Clinton Foundation: a tsunami of cash, laundered money and political graft on an international scale, is just one example. Trump was not so bold as to mention it by name during his speech; but one of his themes was the uneven scale of privilege which has allowed politicians of both parties (within the DC Beltway) to prosper personally, while the quality of life and the state of the national infrastructure deteriorates
Posted by: Copeland | Jan 20, 2017 3:50:39 PM | 45
@lysias | Jan 20, 2017 3:47:04 PM | 44
Me too thanks. Did you watched the sworn-in ceremony?
I watched RT Live. Have a good weekend.
Posted by: OJS | Jan 20, 2017 3:54:43 PM | 46
NPR also aired a lot of commentary that was hostile to Trump's inaugural address. I don't remember that ever happening for any previous inaugural address. The U.S. media certainly have dropped any pretense of impartiality.
Posted by: lysias | Jan 20, 2017 3:59:26 PM | 48
rg the lg,
...Do you think that it might be possible to actually think for a change?...
Wait and see will ya? If Trump's actions are more than words and turns out exactly the opposites of the motherfucker Obomo speeches, I'm happy.
Remember Nixon turns out to be a moderate liberal (Social programs) in the 60s and opened China to the world.
Posted by: OJS | Jan 20, 2017 4:03:16 PM | 49
I dont even bother watching MSM anymore on these issues, its pure propaganda these days, instead of accepting the democracy - that Trump won, the MSM apparently tries destabilize, delegitmize and create chaos in the US. Its a disgrace and its becoming normal - thats why so few protest against it.
Trump has been 100% correct in his condemnation of this kind of reporting of MSM, finally we have a political leader that arent taking this BS anymore, I applaude him for that and that hes not backing down.
Posted by: Anonymous | Jan 20, 2017 4:04:00 PM | 50
So strange to watch the US federal government make such a big deal out of itself. If I were president I would just take the oath and discretely exit
Posted by: aaaa | Jan 20, 2017 4:06:14 PM | 51
Moreover, limousine liberals, and many sympathetic Hollywood actors, and the whole raft of liberal comedians, have never once stopped chewing on the bone of that fraudulent story about Russia's "hacking of the election".
Posted by: Copeland | Jan 20, 2017 3:50:39 PM | 46
I knew that a lot of Hollywood "stars" weren't deep thinkers but the depth and breadth of their General Ignorance didn't become obvious until Meryl Streep launched her Crusade at the Golden Globes.
Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Jan 20, 2017 4:09:49 PM | 52
Why did Chuck Schumer talk about Civil War and shedding blood ?
Trump also spoke in his speech about blood - the same color regardless of race...
He also talked about:
- "not forcing our lifestyle on other nations"
- right of other countries to actin their own best interests
- fighting the world terrorism (i.e. CIA, MI6, NATO, City of London cabal)
- fighting the drug problems (the same as above)
Why the Lincoln's Bible? Maybe that's why: Lincoln and Alexander II – the two liberators
(12 Feb, 2009) On Thursday, the U.S. celebrates its 200th birthday of President Abraham Lincoln, known for abolishing slavery in the country. Halfway across the globe Russian Tsar Alexander II also dreamt of freedom for the serfs.
Despite the distance between the American and Russian leaders, not to mention their drastic cultural differences (Lincoln was born in a log cabin in Kentucky, whereas Tsar Alexander was born into an imperial family), the two corresponded with each other, sharing their thoughts and experiences.
“It was mainly correspondence between ministers. First of all, naval ministries of Russia and naval ministries in the U.S.,” Dr. Aleksandr Petrov from Insitute of World History said.
The relationship sometimes went beyond mere correspondence. Russia, for example, sent naval ships to the U.S. to help Lincoln keep his country together.
“Russia stepped forward and helped the Union – not the confederate army, not France, and not Great Britain, but really helped Abraham Lincoln to save the Union,” Aleksandr Petrov said.
While Lincoln was about to witness a civil war that would tear the country in two, Tsar Alexander II proclaimed his Manifesto liberating 20 million serfs.
“Alexander II really believed in a free world, because Russia just abolished serfdom in 1861 and two years after that Lincoln made his famous speech – The Gettysburg address,” Aleksandr Petrov said.
“Fourscore and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent a new nation, conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal. Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure,” the address said.
It was a long hard war fought to keep a nation together but to also ensure all men were free and could have basic rights like to learn to read and write.
Back then John W. Fields remembered his thirst for knowledge as a slave.
“In most of us coloured folks was the great desire to [be] able to read and write. We took advantage of every opportunity to educate ourselves. The greater part of the plantation owners were very harsh if we were caught trying to learn or write. It was the law that if a white man was caught trying to educate a negro slave, he was liable to prosecution,” he said in an interview in 1937.
Serfs in Russia were also uneducated, but some like Praskovia Kovalyova-Zhemchugova were an exception. She became Count Nikolai Sheremetev’s mistress then and then wife, but their relationship was kept secret. In 1798 Sheremetev emancipated his wife, 63 years before Alexander II would abolish serfdom.
It was one of the most important legislative acts in Russian history as the abolishment of slavery would be in the United States.
Both men vowed to liberate and did, and both were tragically assassinated
Let me repeat this link I posted after the election:
Russia Green Lights $65 Billion Siberia-Alaska Rail and Tunnel to Bridge the Bering Strait!
Posted by: ProPeace | Jan 20, 2017 4:14:43 PM | 53
I agree. I don't do twitter and I was trying to watch all three networks but often had to cut off the sound. Good grief, I am so glad my policy is to avoid such peacockery as a general rule. The new first lady looked lovely, and good on Trump for dishing it out in his speech. Loved the granddaughter managing the pens, and that he didn't do that stupid thing where signatures get cobbled together so everyone can have one. Also did catch Franklin Graham standing up to the pundits who for some crazy reason thought Trump should have mentioned Hillary in his inaugural address - come again??!!
I enjoyed Obama's red face during the speech though. No arm around the shoulders after that.
Boy do we need better tv pundit people. Could we arrange a transition of the press? Yesterday?
Posted by: juliania | Jan 20, 2017 4:33:53 PM | 57
Amazing that CNN actually dared to air that. If such an assassination had actually happened (which, thank God, it seems has not happened and will not happen), CNN would have faced the danger of legal charges for having inspired such a deed.
I wonder what their lawyers told them. (Lawyers have to vet all programming.)
Posted by: lysias | Jan 20, 2017 4:34:46 PM | 58
@ lysias | 49
NPR also aired a lot of commentary that was hostile to Trump's inaugural address. [...] The U.S. media certainly have dropped any pretense of impartiality.
Obligatory disclaimer: I'm not a "Trump supporter", nor do I regard him as a political antichrist whose election signals the beginning of the End Times.
You may have seen yesterday's CNN report (or stories about it), supposedly a part of their pre-inauguration coverage. They featured a story by some hack named Brian Todd (Any relation to Chuck?) about what might happen if Trump and Pence were somehow eliminated on Inauguration Day.
Todd's report was prefaced by anchor Wolf Blitzer, who led into the story by dramatically asking "What if an incoming president and his immediate successors were wiped out on day one?" WTF?
Of course, the anti-Trumpers would say that this is Trump's fault for "provoking" CNN by being so mean to them at that press conference. But it's just appalling that CNN would openly harp on the scenario of Trump/Pence being assassinated-- you know, just as a sort of civics-class exercise.
Then today I noticed that, interspersed with inauguration coverage, a local PBS station is televising "The Assassination of President Lincoln"-- at least twice. Again: WTF?
I can't remember what PBS televised in previous elections; I've generally shunned them in recent years. But with all of the presidential puff pieces available, why showcase the assassination of a president on Inauguration Day?
It's not even "subliminal seduction"-- it's more like liminal seduction.
Posted by: Ort | Jan 20, 2017 4:45:24 PM | 59
I had the same thoughts when Reagan was elected. But he calmed down after a bit. After threatening nuclear war.
A 70-year old guy hasn't the energy for revolution, though he may give way to his aides.
Posted by: Laguerre | Jan 20, 2017 4:46:49 PM | 60
I guess Trump will be to the US what Gorbatschow was to the USSR. Like Gorbatschow wihdrew Russian troops from Europe, Trump will withdraw American troops from Europe. There's little choice, because there's little money.
Posted by: Passerby | Jan 20, 2017 4:47:19 PM | 61
Speaking of Gorbachev, I wonder how much longer it will be before the U.S. system collapses. I remember reading Andrei Amalrik's Will the Soviet Union Survive Until 1984? when I was stationed in Berlin circa 1970. I read the book with interest, but found it hard to believe that the USSR could collapse so soon. But Amalrik turned out to be only a few years off.
Since the Western financial crisis of 2008, I have increasingly come to suspect a collapse of our system is not far off. A book very much worth reading -- and also a very scary book -- is Wolfgang Streeck's How Will Capitalism End?: Essays on a Failing System.
Posted by: lysias | Jan 20, 2017 4:56:06 PM | 62
Seen from afar, and under the influence of reading MoA, I believe Trump won because of the vets. They've put their hope in this guy because they are fed up with being the slaves of the top guys who place them as commodities in the Gulf and elsewhere as if they were ruling the galaxy. Just like everyone say, let's wait and see. If he fails they will certainly find another way to get organized. Manning and Snowden probably inspired a number of the kids who have no choice but work for the mil. corp. because it's the only thing available. Isn't the USA a country where almost 0,5 % of the people work directly or not for the State and army apparatus?
Posted by: Mina | Jan 20, 2017 4:56:07 PM | 63
Posted by: Passerby | Jan 20, 2017 4:47:19 PM | 62
I'd be happy if Trump did indeed withdraw US troops from Europe. Europe needs to run its own policy, not that of the US. Regrettably it's unlikely to happen.
Posted by: Laguerre | Jan 20, 2017 4:59:31 PM | 64
I don't see where the Constitution says you get to pick the best of two. Must be a liberal "guiding class" thing. Besides, your Party is a criminal racket and an international child trafficking ring, and therefore should be put in prison camps rather than offices.
It's a republic, not a mythical being. Only corporate Democrats and other sycophants use that language. If you don't arrogantly impose your own false consciousness on systems, you don't have to pretend not to understand when they don't behave according to theory.
Posted by: Jonathan | Jan 20, 2017 5:22:08 PM | 65
Creep Brennan quits (Hears the wire taps. Knew he would get the ax). Closet McConnell acts like that's a bad thing. No one at the helm! OMG.
Probably a Goldman guy would do well as CIA head.
Posted by: fast freddy | Jan 20, 2017 5:28:34 PM | 66
Is there any estimate of how many people attended today in DC, apart from protesters?
Posted by: Mina | Jan 20, 2017 5:29:33 PM | 67
MSM concerted focus on historically low inaug. attendance. Many pictures of empty seats and empty bleachers. Contrast this with Hillary's empty campaign venues which were never shown or pointed out.
Posted by: fast freddy | Jan 20, 2017 5:37:07 PM | 68
@ 46 Nice comment, Copeland.
I feel I am living in a parallel universe to friends, co-workers, family. The media has succeeded in obliterating all traces of critical thinking it seems. There are no nuances or complexities any more. How many times do I have to hear that Trump is an arrogant buffoon? Buffoons don’t build billion dollar businesses.
Somebody a long time ago said that the visible sign that the Roman empire was disintegrating was when the long lines of carts loaded with produce and finery entered Rome and left carrying… human and animal waste. Previously they would leave with highly crafted goods produced in Rome. Container ships entering Los Angeles now leave with waste paper and refuse plastic.
So if Trump can reverse that trend in any way good luck to him. Wall Street may come round to the fact that some sort of re-industrialization may not be such a bad idea. Some corporations are heavily in debt after buoying up share prices with stock repurchases and keeping the Dow Jones at an artificial high. This cannot go on because the total amount of shares in play has declined correspondingly. The stock market is shrinking as are hedge fund profits.
Pepe Escobar, in his latest, quotes extensively from a source who maintains that Trump/Kissinger are playing good cop to Congress/media/Brezinski bad cop to exhort concessions from Russia. Interesting theory.
Posted by: Lochearn | Jan 20, 2017 6:14:39 PM | 70
Trump has picked up where American society has been led vis-a-vis the bullshit "Global War on Terror" (GWOT) and has made it his own with "Radical Islamic Terror" rhetoric and with the MSM he has continued the dumbing down of a vast multitude.
It is perceived that America has been severely weakened by Obama and his gang of effete pussy Democrats and phony Republicans. (The facts be damned. The USA had been more aggressive militarily and meaner than ever.)
A Military Boondoggle Missile Defense system surely will appeal to "Idiot America". Even as its Public Schools, Social Security and Medicare are ransacked.
Posted by: fast freddy | Jan 20, 2017 6:37:46 PM | 71
Isn’t it cause and effect? Didn't The Global War on Terror produce “Radical Islamic terror?”
Posted by: Lochearn | Jan 20, 2017 6:50:27 PM | 73
Too many harbor the illusion that one of the presidential candidates won a majority of votes from those eligible--that is 100% incorrect.
Trump cannot impose tariffs; only congress can do so. Same with raising/lowering taxes and cutting programs. Trump can only affect what goes on within the Executive to a certain degree since congress controls the purse strings.
Trump has already become a criminal since he hasn't arrested any of the many criminals from the previous administrations and is now an abettor of their crimes, just like Obama as I predicted.
One important point: Trump hasn't renounced the #1 policy goal of the Outlaw US Empire--Full Spectrum Domination. From what I've gleaned, he intends to go about gaining it using different methods than those put forth by HRC and her Neocon allies.
Many call Trump a Fascist, while some have also called Obama and HRC Fascists. The book Friendly Fascism was published during Reagan/Bush to inform people that they were Fascists. The years that have passed since have only deepened the particular Fascist grip exercised by what's known as the Deep State within the Outlaw US Empire. Trump is now their new tool to further deepen their hold. Those advocating resistance are correct, but what they forward as a solution isn't since it's just the other side of the same coin. Those who can leave for other pastures will, but they are the fortunate few. I have no choice but to remain and observe; at least I'm somewhat insulated from the ill wind that was going to blow regardless of who became POTUS.
Posted by: karlof1 | Jan 20, 2017 6:54:39 PM | 74
When you kill someone's child or children or other loved ones, you stand a good chance of producing a "radical" so-and-so hell-bent on revenge.
The GWOT is a sad and terrible farce.
Posted by: fast freddy | Jan 20, 2017 7:00:09 PM | 75
Those advocating resistance are correct, but what they forward as a solution isn't since it's just the other side of the same coin.
I wouldn't lump all resistance into the other side of the same coin, and the more time Trump stays in power; the greater probability there will finally emerge a third option that will oppose the two-headed monopoly that furthers deep-state power and imperial hubris.
Posted by: Circe | Jan 20, 2017 7:11:54 PM | 76
Circe, I get your cynicism and it is a vast beast. It is that Lernaean Hydra multi-headed snake which swung into shape in an incredibly short space of time through the 1970s and got power back in 1980 and set up its matrix again (after the New Deal sort of aberration). Of course it had been gestating for a couple or more decades since the 1950s. Trump is just another head of the snake. In that I agree. But at least we won’t all be fried tomorrow.
Posted by: Lochearn | Jan 20, 2017 7:27:47 PM | 77
@ Posted by: howard in nyc | Jan 20, 2017 2:57:42 PM | 29
Well thought out & well said first post, H in nyc. Bravo. More of it Sir/Madam :)
@ Posted by: From The Hague | Jan 20, 2017 2:16:28 PM | 18
b: Trump is a highly gifted salesman
FTH to b: You are a mentally retarded salesman
Hooah! Major Brass Balls!
See Etymology of, in above link, definition No.3. ... *Gasp* Wow, just, wow !
@ Posted by: Mike | Jan 20, 2017 3:22:56 PM | 33 & 37 & 38
There were 50 + 1 State elections. There is not, nor ever was, just one election. The results of the 50 +1 determine the make up of the Electoral college, and the majority number thereof, as direct result of the Elections. hence why the House & Senate joint session to formally process, register and tabulate the results of the 50 +1 elections ... in order to formally confirm POTUS & VPOTUS !
Clearly civics, or an actual understanding of the constitution, or the very legal process is absent. Determined ignorance or being disingenuous ? ... or is it a wilful continuation of a 'campaign' narrative ? Hm ?
Posted by: Outraged | Jan 20, 2017 7:32:01 PM | 78
I am certainly far, far more of a Hillary-phobe than a Donald supporter. But Trump has just delivered a totally mind-blowing inaugural address:
Transcript of President Trump's inauguration speech
Yeah it's just words, but it sounds very good.
Here's a possible reality that I am contemplating:
1) Trump cannot possibly carry out his proposed agenda without raising, never-mind diminishing, taxes on the super-rich.
2) Congress and the bureaucracy will totally freak out if he hints of increasing those taxes! And they will begin to tout his impeachment.
3) Then Trump hints of creating a "third" party.
4) Either the establishment compromises, or Trump and his own congressional crew form a new party, and they then run with that party in 2020.
This is just wild speculation, of course.
Posted by: blues | Jan 20, 2017 7:34:19 PM | 79
Recently Trump said he would replace Obamacare at the same time it is repealed. He said all Americans should have healthcare.
There is no way to do this immediately unless he mandates Medicare for all or some combination of Medicare/Medicaid.
If he does that, he will be reelected and remembered for all times.
He could get a great deal of popularity mileage with all US citizens if he did that.
People would forgive many other shortcomings.
It would be brilliant in so many ways.
Posted by: linda amick | Jan 20, 2017 7:39:27 PM | 80
Copeland @ 46 said: " but one of his themes was the uneven scale of privilege which has allowed politicians of both parties (within the DC Beltway) to prosper personally, while the quality of life and the state of the national infrastructure deteriorates.
This theme was one of the factors that propelled Trump to the POTUS, by convincing rust belt voters he intended to reverse this trend.
Can his actions match his rhetoric? I doubt it. One of his sycophants, Paul Ryan, has already pulled a " buy American" provision from an infrastructure bill, in the House.
The handwriting is on the wall folks.
Posted by: ben | Jan 20, 2017 7:39:41 PM | 81
Jared Kushner is already in the Oval Office at Trump's side while Trump signed Executive Orders. He didn't waste a minute becoming a fixture; this is one ambitious guy. I agree with chipnik on this. He will be the middle man between Trump and Netanyahu--no need for Israeli spies. Netanyahu and the illegal operation that is Israel will have a Zionist President in the Oval Office.
Mark my words: this Zionist is already interning for the position and intends to be President after Trump.
Posted by: Circe | Jan 20, 2017 7:48:40 PM | 82
Pepe Escobar has a source with knowledge about "Masters of the Universe", and explains why they were backing Trump. See
Who are these "Masters of the Universe"? A commentator, J.L.Seagull, apparently familiar with Escobar's use of the term, says
"You’re confusing two groups which Pepe failed to explain in detail in this particular post.
Masters of the Universe = Wall Street and mega-corporate interests. Trump’s Cabinet.
Deep State = majority of CIA, Syria jihadist trainers, “warmongering neocon/neoliberalcon status quo”, former pro-Clinton hangers-on, now issuing propaganda against Trump.
Pepe’s source X (who he’s used in the past, to good effect) claims that MotU are using Deep State as their bad cop. That’s simply the way the game is being played, that doesn’t mean Deep State is not independent and able to move on its own.
MotU wants continuity of government. They see America at a precipice, and they don’t want their heads getting chopped off. They will do what is necessary to prevent national collapse. They have been pro-Russia for years, Trump’s Cabinet included."
I recently concluded that Trump has very powerful backers, beyond 200+ generals who backed him.
A Pulitizer Prize winner's investigations into Trump scandals (or "questionable associations" with a major drug trafficker) merited network attention in Australia, Japan, Canada, Britain, France and Germany, but has not gotten on ABC, NBC, CBS or Fox, and PBS "edited out every reference to Donald's connections to these criminals." "Hardly" any coverage in the NY Times and Washington Post.
Does the military, alone, have the ability to censor main stream media, to this extent? Maybe. But it seems more within the reach of "Wall Street and mega-corporate interests"
Posted by: metamars | Jan 20, 2017 7:48:57 PM | 83
One important point: Trump hasn't renounced the #1 policy goal of the Outlaw US Empire--Full Spectrum Domination.
See the link @80 to a transcript of Trump's Inaugural Address. In his speech, Trump said:
We do not seek to impose our way of life on anyone, but rather to let it shine as an example for everyone to follow.
That's about as far as any President will go. If you place this in context of how he criticized Hillary/Obama, it means no more liberal-interventionist regime changes.
Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jan 20, 2017 7:53:00 PM | 84
b This is a very interesting post and thanks for the link to David Chibo’s article. I agree 95%. Old fogies who served in the First Cold War, I am sure, have heard the joke that goes something like; “There is stupid. There is really stupid. Then there is war with Russia”. Any sane American soldier serving in Ukraine does not want a war with Russia. They may even recognize that their training mission is highly destabilizing. But, an orchestrated military coup? No. Supporters? Yes. Donald Trump is old enough and smart enough to realize that a war with Russia is stupid. He said so. He has advisors who agree. He won the election. A battle between nationalist and globalist factions of the western oligarchy is underway. The question is can Donald Trump restore the sovereignty of western governments over multi-national corporations, billionaires and trans-national institutions, or not?
Posted by: VietnamVet | Jan 20, 2017 7:58:18 PM | 85
@ Posted by: VietnamVet | Jan 20, 2017 7:58:18 PM | 86
Truer words, never said.
Absolutely, fully, concur!
And that is the question.
Was 'Make', the sovereign nation and citizens thereof, 'America', 'Great Again', actually meant to be taken literally ? As opposed to the rapacious thefts nationally & globally of 0.01% psychopaths over the last 70+ years ?
The 'Bag-of-Deplorables' thought and determinedly apparently think so. One does not have faith or trust in the 'Trumpster' given his lifelong conduct/actions, though, one is beginning to wonder what may come, even if only in a minor way, re pushback/reform.
The world has achieved brilliance without wisdom, power without conscience. Ours is a world of nuclear giants and ethical infants. We know more about war that we know about peace, more about killing that we know about living. - Former General of the Army Omar Nelson Bradley
Give me the money that has been spent in war and I will clothe every man, woman, and child in an attire of which kings and queens will be proud. I will build a schoolhouse in every valley over the whole earth. I will crown every hillside with a place of worship consecrated to peace. - Charles Sumner
"There are no atheists in foxholes" isn't an argument against atheism, it's an argument against foxholes. - James Morrow
A great war leaves the country with three armies — an army of cripples, an army of mourners, and an army of thieves. - German Proverb
The Military will NOT mutiny, Trump has the Generals, and the most highly regarded and respected of them by those that count, the NCOs & SNCOs, & Junior to Field Grade officers, who are constantly at the coal face, constantly having to deal with incompetent or compromised superiors, and they themselves not compromised yet by Military Politics in order to advance a career or suborned by raw corrupt Department/Administration, politics, or seeking to sell their souls upon service exit as corporate lobbyists.
Posted by: Outraged | Jan 20, 2017 8:40:58 PM | 87
It is time for everyone to move on. In the end when we discuss issues in here we are talking about power, or more correctly control. Just as the the 20th century corporatist types through their sales divisions came to understand that it is impossible to control any one individual but easy to get large masses to behave as they wish, anyone who is concerned about the welfare of all humans has to quit trying to persuade people one by one to support some type of centralised benevolence and instead set about ensuring all humans have the opportunity to express their own interests.
Laura's post at #7 sums up the current problems that have led to the 'de-powering' of humanity. Until mechanisation of manufacturing industries really took hold most humans depended on manufacturing workers to exercise their ability to withdraw labour as a tactic for an end run around the bribing of the inevitably corrupt political class.
When manufacturing folded the less esteemed professional workers in health and education (essentially teachers and nurses) took up as much of the mantle as their positions would allow. Withdrawing labour from hospitals and schools isn't merely controversial, it just doesn't cause the same panic in boardrooms that production lines sitting idle used to do.
So that meant the leverage exerted by those workers had to go through another step a transmission system like a gearbox, that system was political and subject to the same flaws caused by character deficiencies as the political system it meshed with.
Most of us are familiar with the old bourgeois ploy of 'pulling the ladder up after yourself', epitomized by the education fees and oppressive 'loans' system which boomers imposed upon the generation coming after them once they had extracted all that they needed from tertiary education.
Well Trump will do the same with the political system and the worst of that is the very forces of neoliberalism that loathe trump so much will be the agents of change dedicated to ensuring no 'populist' unwanted and resented by the political elite can ever rise again.
Whether it be by way of censorship of alleged 'fake news' on FB, or hands on control of net routing, presenting opposing points of view is about to become much more difficult, as will working through the internal machinations of an established political organisation.
The Russia thing is but one tentative move by the dem party elite to set about preventing "Bernie" or anyone like him getting so close ever again. The same will happen in the UK if and when Mr Corbyn is deposed. Make no mistake about it, these fat assed fork tongues play for keeps when it gets down to us or them.
Yet even if the elites do secure everything they want before the employment based economy is totally extinct and they imagine they won't need to generate wealth to survive, they will find they cannot stop, simply because the insanity within them will not be able to find an outlet unless they continue to exploit the rest of us in some form or another. Sure they can play golf or poker or fucking Diablo against each other but that is akin to giving a junkie a capsule of paracetamol - it may ease the pain, but it doesn't ease the pain.
The assholes need us, even if it is just to validate their superiority and the sanctity of their lives, they will continue to market shit to us. Most nations with amerika as a possible exception, will be forced to adopt some sort of negative tax system, so that everyone gets enough of a pittance to buy the shit the elites sell.
The alternative is simply not tenable as we have seen before in all the failures of fascism, if the masses are pushed far enough, they will push back, and do so inventively, remorselessly and totally, until the old elite is replaced by a new one most usually comprised of leaders of the 'resistance'.
So elites in most societies which have the means to, will construct a safety valve in the form of something along the lines of a negative tax, in order to white ant opposition to their domination.
But that is the end point and while we are considering the destruction of employment as the goal for the navigators employed by elites we aren't there yet. In the interim there are measures to institute which will not prevent the ultimate automation of all jobs, but will ensure that we the shit-kickers do retain enough power to prevent our oppression.
If you grabbed one of the 'adorable deplorables' or any of the other drongos who have been convinced Trump is a cure not just another symptom, and asked them what it is that motivates their passion for trump, the odds are good you will get some personal story about an incorrect invoice, a faulty product or a really unjust medical or financial decision. Same goes for all the shit-kickers protesting his inauguration. In the end it is the personal indignities which we have all endured over the last two decades that underpins the upswell of anger across the population.
The citizen attempted to right the wrong but quickly discovered that life has been reduced to a series of one way valves. Every entity from your energy utility to your hospital has many channels open brimming with ways to access the goods or services the entity 'markets' but absolutely no method of providing meaningful feedback when things are to say the least, unsatisfactory.
It comes back to my initial statement about controlling masses but not individuals. The entitites don't care, there is nothing anyone can do as even when someone manages to be heard above the cacophony of competiting claims and counter claims, all that is required a large dose of 'feeding the chooks' as a particularly bent Australian politician used to describe his interactions with media, and all is forgotten/ forgiven.
The corporates have jumped aboard the advantanges granted by available tech and stymie us all with no public contact in the name of security, emails to 'support' that provoke irrelevant form responses, and circular 'voicemail' systems where even if you do get to talk to a human at the end the odds are high that a/ the human will be on the other side of the world, and b/ he or she won't be an employee of the entity that has wronged you anyhow.
At the moment we, meaning the 99% of us who just want to live our lives, are letting the pricks do this, shrugging our shoulders and feeling more embittered, resentful and less empowered every day.
It amazes me that there hasn't yet been an effective pushback against this by using the same tools as the entities use to oppress us.
True it would take leadership and smarts, but imagine for a moment a group in say amerika, was to put out a phone app where people could enter the detail of their corporate relationships (before the cries of privacy and paranoia begin we also need to believe that the app uses effective end to end encryption and secures it's database if even that is where data is stored and not just with the end user).
A particularly egregious act by one of the entities whose consumers are well subscribed to the app comes to light. A crime of greed so bad that any normal decent human when notified of it by their app and asked "do you support this crime or do you want to show you're appalled by it?" selects b I'm appalled and want to tell the assholes that. Clicking the button then notifies the app holder's financial authority that all payments to the greedy entity must cease immediately.
How many corporations can manage the immediate loss of their cash flow? SFA that is how many.
This is a simplified explanation of a complex system which doesn't detail arcane mechanics, but I have no doubt that if political power in the sense we understand it, that is getting elected bodies to express our will to corporate power, is destroyed, as I believe is inevitable under Trump, and standard issue republican/democrat pols, the solution sits before us.
We simply go around them and create our own mechanism to do the things that the legislature corrupted by corporations, will not do.
Posted by: Debsisdead | Jan 20, 2017 8:59:56 PM | 88
b notes Trump won barely, but she lost completely.
That is the most delicious result of this election. Hopefully it will mean the defeat of the neoliberal faction that has controlled the Dems for the last 25 years -- unlikely,to be sure, but maybe they will lose some of their influence.
Posted by: ToivoS | Jan 20, 2017 9:06:21 PM | 89
Here’s an example of the REAL Donald Trump’s other famous words for those ready to buy Trump’s well-intentioned lip service.
This one’s for jackrabbit, one of Trump’s people: You know what else they say about my people? The polls, they say I have the most loyal people. Did you ever see that? Where I could stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot somebody and I wouldn’t lose any voters, okay? It’s like incredible. In other words his supporters will defend the indefensible. TRUE with some here.
While moving arms in spastic motion, Uhh I don't know what I said. Uhh I don't remember. He's going like 'I don't remember. Maybe that's what I said.
Donald J. Trump is calling for a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States
The answer is that there has to be some form of punishment. Matthews asked him to clarify if he meant punishment for the woman seeking the abortion, and Trump responded, Yes, there has to be some form.
I would bring back waterboarding, and I’d bring back a hell of a lot worse than waterboarding
Oh and this:
Mayor Rudy Giuliani visited Israel to show solidarity with terror victims. I sent my plane because I backed the mission for Israel 100 percent.
My number-one priority is to dismantle the disastrous deal with Iran.
Iran is a very big problem and will continue to be, but if I’m not elected president. I know how to deal with trouble. And believe me, that’s why I’m going to be elected president, folks.
Iran is a problem in Iraq, a problem in Syria, a problem in Lebanon, a problem in Yemen and will be a very, very major problem for Saudi Arabia.
The United Nations is not a friend of democracy, it’s not a friend to freedom, it’s not a friend even to the United States of America where, as you know, it has its home. And it surely is not a friend to Israel.
The United States must oppose this resolution and use the power of our veto, which I will use as president 100 percent.
When I become president, the days of treating Israel like a second-class citizen will end on day one.[IOW, Israeli citizens first; ISRAEL FIRST.]
We will move the American embassy to the eternal capital of the Jewish people, Jerusalem.
and on an on ad nauseaum.
But by far the words that best describe him are these.:
And when you're a star, they let you do it. You can do anything. Grab them by the pussy. You can do anything.
The REAL Donald J. Trump.
Posted by: Circe | Jan 20, 2017 9:24:28 PM | 90
Debs @ 88: One of your better efforts, thanks.
Posted by: ben | Jan 20, 2017 9:25:42 PM | 91
"...The orchestrated campaign attacking the legitimacy of the newly elected president ..."
Well said, sir or madam.
I will say this has continued today, and a sad spectacle it was. Perhaps pay per view folk got more restrained viewing but on NBC, ABC and CBS the overtone of punditry reached fever pitch as the inaugural parade took place, and that I think is unprecedented. Here were high school orchestral groups, military bands, veterans, in a finely tuned choreographical display that they must have spent long hours practising to perfection - and they were very, very good. The rude pundits of every one of those channels (I kept switching back and forth) were louder than the trumpets, louder than the drums, louder even than the bagpipes. Faster and faster their "commentary" went, but it wasn't commentary! It wasn't a joyful description of what we were seeing but rather a re-faux-analysis of every phony issue from the beginning of the century - louder, and louder, and louder.
I was glad to see the Trump family enjoying the show. Just imagine if you were a proud grandparent waiting to catch a glimpse of Johnny or Janie performing that intricate flag routine or playing his or her heart out on the trombone? No way, not with that indoctrination fest ongoing.
These people not only were rude, they were attacking the legitimacy of the newly-elected president every step of the way. And apparently a lot of posters here want to do the same.
Posted by: juliania | Jan 20, 2017 9:31:49 PM | 92
Make of this, what one will ...
Link provides access to duplicate of full article by alternate service, avoiding WSJs 'Paywall':
Companies Pony Up for Donald Trump's Inauguration
By Rebecca Ballhaus, Wall Street Journal (WSJ)
Last summer, many corporations hesitated to fund the Republican National Convention over concerns about Donald Trump, then the presumptive GOP nominee, leaving the Cleveland host committee with a $6 million gap days before the event began.
Months later, as Mr. Trump's supporters sought to raise money for his inauguration, those hesitations were gone. The donations help fund the parade, concert and other celebrations during the weekend.
At least four corporations that declined to support or reduced their donations to the July convention have given to Mr. Trump's inaugural committee, which raised a record $90 million, according to an official on the committee. That haul far surpassed the $44 million President Barack Obama's committee raised in 2013 and the $53 million it raised in 2009.
Beyond the hope of avoiding Mr. Trump's Twitter wrath, there are plenty of reasons for corporations to sponsor an inauguration...
A major donation also wins corporations or individuals the ear of the president: Donors who give $500,000 or more receive tickets to a "candlelight dinner" attended by Mr. Trump and his wife, Melania, and Vice President Mike Pence and his wife, Karen.
Meanwhile, at least three major corporate donors to Mr. Obama's inauguration in 2013 have opted not to support the event this time around. Northrop Grumman Corp., Xerox Corp. and the Edison Electric Institute, which collectively gave $435,000 in 2013, aren't donating to the inauguration this year. Chevron Corp. halved its contribution to the inauguration this year, giving $500,000...
Spokesmen for Northrop Grumman and Xerox said their decisions were for reasons unrelated to Mr. Trump. A spokesman for Edison Electric, an association of shareholder-owned electric utilities, said Mr. Trump's inaugural committee didn't accept funding from trade associations or PACs.
Posted by: Outraged | Jan 20, 2017 9:35:53 PM | 93
The media are already grovelling and slobbering all over this Presidency, which proves this from Escobar's latest piece Here’s how the Trump presidency will play out:
X” starts by doing something US deep state-connected regulars, who revere their idols, never dare to, at least in public; “It is important not to attribute too much importance to either Kissinger or Brzezinski as they are merely fronts for those who make the decisions and it is their job to cloak the decisions with a patina of intellectuality. Their input means relatively nothing. I use their names on occasion as I cannot use the names of those who actually make the decisions.”
That’s the cue for “X” to detail the new normal; “Trump was elected with the support of the Masters to tilt towards Russia. The Masters have their tools in the media and Congress maintaining a vilification campaign against Russia, and have their puppet Brzezinski also come out against Russia, stating ‘America’s global influence depends on cooperation with China’. The purpose is to threaten Russia to cooperate and place these chips on the negotiating table for Trump. In a traditional good cop-bad cop approach, Donald is portrayed as the good cop wanting good relations with Russia, and Congress, media, Brzezinski are the bad cops. This is to aid Trump in the negotiations with Russia as Putin sees the ‘precarious’ position of his friend and should be willing to make major concessions as the line goes.”
Trump was elected by the Empire's Masters to be the pretend good-cop to the real deep state's bad cop machinery.
Posted by: Circe | Jan 20, 2017 9:41:01 PM | 94
TPP is gone. Carter considered the TPP another aircraft carrier in Obama's war/pivot against China. It also gave corporations control over the governments that signed up to, and ratified it.
Posted by: Peter AU | Jan 20, 2017 9:43:57 PM | 95
Paul Craig Roberts
President Trump’s brief inaugural speech was a declaration of war against the entirety of the American Ruling Establishment.
This list of those on whom Trump has declared war is long enough, although there are more that can be added.
We should ask ourselves why a 70 year old billionaire with flourishing businesses, a beautiful wife, and intelligent children is willing to give his final years to the extraordinary stress of being President with the stressful agenda of putting the government back in the hands of the American people. There is no doubt that Trump has made himself a target of assassination. The CIA is not going to give up and go away. Why would a person take on the grand restoration of America that Trump has declared when he could instead spend his remaining years enjoying himself immensely?
Whatever the reason, we should be grateful for it, and if he is sincere we must support him. If he is assassinated, we need to take up our weapons, burn Langley to the ground and kill every one of them.
If he succeeds, he deserves the designation: Trump the Great!
Posted by: From The Hague | Jan 20, 2017 9:45:40 PM | 96
juliania @ 92 said; "Sad"
Yes, it is, but, just as sad is 16 top Republicans meeting in the Cacus House eatery the night of Obama's Inauguration and vowing to oppose EVERYTHING he proposes. It's politics kid, nothing more. Sad!
Or, at Obama's first State of the Union address, being called a liar out loud. It's just politics kid, and "what goes around comes around." Sad!
For the record, I am not an Obama supporter, nor Trump or Clinton. Maybe one day we'll have a politician that will act in the best interests of the 99%. Trump? We'll see:)
Posted by: ben | Jan 20, 2017 9:54:44 PM | 97
His entire cabinet is Goldman/Wall Street/MIC/Zionists and he gave Sheldon Adelson a seat on the inaugural dais which is unprecedented! There is NO swamp draining with Trump. He's a megalomaniac who wanted the glory of the Presidency, and that quote is total rubbish.
Posted by: Circe | Jan 20, 2017 9:54:57 PM | 98
Circe @ 94 said: "Trump was elected by the Empire's Masters to be the pretend good-cop to the real deep state's bad cop machinery."
I will believe this until events prove me wrong.
Posted by: ben | Jan 20, 2017 9:57:24 PM | 99
Wow, a lot of comments on this. To the comment that Trump will be a minor Reagan--well, Reagan was actually pretty minor himself. He did accomplish some horrible things, namely increasing inequality and hugely increasing military spending for no rational reason--although at the end he was willing to back off on nuclear weapons, thankfully (despite his idiotic 'Star Wars' spending; it's dangerous and never worked and still doesn't work on the US side)--but the economy was a disaster and unions were forever destroyed to the detriment of working people. He got a free ride from the media the whole time (Hillary had nothing on him in that regard) but he actually wasn't a very popular president. As with other dead leaders, he's now a holy symbol who must be spoken of with reverence but without analysis.
Changing leaders at the top is not a major thing, although it's hard to tell that to the Hillary Forevers who are convinced the End is Nigh. Expect the worst and you probably won't be surprised in a bad way.
But still relieved we've dodged WW3 at least for the moment.
Posted by: WorldBLee | Jan 20, 2017 10:01:37 PM | 100