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Umbrage irony: So who’s the leader who has disrespected NATO?

You can’t make this stuff up.

Niceness and respectfulness guru Donald John (“Grab ‘em by the Pussy”) Trump has denounced as “nasty” and “disrespectful” comments made by French President Emmanuel Macron about NATO.

Trump was offended, not on his own behalf, mind you, but on behalf of his beloved organization NATO, to which he has done so much to promote respect and loyalty, by Macron’s comment that NATO was suffering a kind of “brain death.”

In rising to the defense of NATO and taking offense on its behalf (and, of course, entirely on its behalf alone) his excellency the POTUS did not clarify that the “brain death” to which Macron had metaphorically alluded was brought about by the unprecedented disrespect shown to NATO by said POTUS himself.

Here’s the Washington Post coverage of Trump’s reaction to Macron’s remark, and here’s the New York Times’.

Comments (43)

  1. Submitted by RB Holbrook on 12/03/2019 - 04:24 pm.

    Only Trump is allowed to make nasty comments about others. It’s a constitutional prerogative of the Presidency, set out quite clearly in Article XII.

  2. Submitted by Ray Schoch on 12/03/2019 - 08:53 pm.

    And this is only NATO. I can hardly wait for his reaction to articles of impeachment, or, come November, to losing the election, should either or both of those things take place…

  3. Submitted by Roy Everson on 12/04/2019 - 01:28 am.

    Having bullied some allies into raising their military spending Trump assumes his role as the uber-CEO while board members from Britain, France and Canada joke about him behind his back. Meanwhile the actual CEO, a Norwegian named Jens, is tasked to calm their nerves. Sorta like the poor mountain lad who is forced to outwit the troll in an old norse folk tale.

  4. Submitted by Pat Berg on 12/04/2019 - 06:08 am.

    I had to go to the emergency room to have my jaw re-attached after I heard that report.

  5. Submitted by William Hunter Duncan on 12/04/2019 - 08:23 am.

    Brain death does not begin to describe WaPo and NYT cheerleading NATO militarization to Russia’s very border (and every other war besides).

    Trump is increasingly like a great distraction from the pathological in America’s war profiteering/eternal war making, and elite racketeering economics generally. Is war against Russia the prize for deposing this president? Or just a return to the status quo (we haven’t really emerged from) the same transfer of wealth up the pyramid we have had every administration since Reagan?

    • Submitted by Paul Brandon on 12/04/2019 - 03:34 pm.

      Since Russia invaded a country (Ukraine) on ITS border, this looks like a rational reaction on the part of the Baltic members of NATO. Remember that Russia includes land both to the east and the west of the Baltic states (look at a map).

      • Submitted by William Hunter Duncan on 12/05/2019 - 09:30 am.

        NATO has taunted Russia for a long time, talking about installing ballistic missles in Ukraine. One of the saddest chapters of these impeachment proceedings is Ukraine having been turned into an otherwise helpless but forthright ally against evil Russia. Nevermind we (CIA/NGOs/State Dept) worked in part with the neo-nazi Sovboda party to covertly overthrow the democratically elected president in 2013-2014 (aka regime change), and those neo-nazis afterward started perpetrating violence against the predominant ethnic Russians in east Ukraine. Crimea voted overwhelmingly to leave Ukraine. If a gov in Mexico aligned with cartels started raiding and killing Americans at those businesses that left America for Mexico, just across the border, what would we do?

        There is so much more about the Ukraine story, but no one in Washington or the Media is going to tell us. It makes all this talk about democracy and freedom and the best last light for the world and the shining city on a hill sound like a lie; In that way even the real news is fake, and it can be said we truly live in an age of disinformation.

        • Submitted by Paul Brandon on 12/05/2019 - 04:49 pm.

          But how did those ‘ethnic Russians’ get into Crimea?
          Same thing happened in the Baltic states after WWII.
          That’s how the Russian empire has always expanded.
          Read your history.

        • Submitted by Solly Johnson on 12/05/2019 - 06:00 pm.

          After the Warsaw Pact disbanded, NATO had no real reason to exist and now seems to be an organization seeking a purpose. Of course, the mainstream media fails to be honest in its coverage of NATO and the fact that it has pushed its reach to the Russian border from the Baltic to the Caucasus and regularly holds military drills next to the Russian border, which is the real threat to peace in the region.
          Currently the mainstream media gives us regular coverage of the “freedom fighters” in Hong Kong, but fails to state that members of the
          Neo-Nazi Azov Battalion from Ukraine have entered Hong Kong and joined them. Meanwhile, after Morales was removed in a coup in Bolivia with help from the USA the non-stop coverage ceased, even though Anez, the current leader, gave police freedom without penalty to shoot any protesters, resulting in the deaths of many citizens, especially in Cochabamba. Human rights violations are of importance only when its a government the USA wants overthrown, as we have seen in Bolivia, Chile, Libya, Syria, etc.

  6. Submitted by BK Anderson on 12/04/2019 - 09:38 am.

    As an actual democratically legitimate leader of a functioning modern democracy, Macron feels obligated to inform his citizens of reality, and the reality is that the NATO alliance is now lamed and paralyzed by having a reckless, unqualified fool with an obvious severe personality disorder at the center of its “leadership”. In other words, the NATO alliance is in serious trouble and can no longer be relied upon. Hence the (perfectly correct) analogy to brain death.

    Trump naturally waited a month before “objecting” to Macron’s comment, as he is nothing but a game player and carnival barker. He had to have something to newsworthy say at the 70th Anniversary, and this was selected as the lede.

    The NATO allies are attempting to placate Trump as they hope to wait out his bizarre anti-presidency. But one cannot “wait out” what the American conservative movement has become, or hope that next time the failed American constitution will produce a democratically legitimate president. The problem is not so much Trump as the 63 million Americans who are simply delighted to have an abusive Anti-President in office. And delighted to have (Repub) presidents that do not attain office through the will of the people, thanks to the disastrous electoral college.

    Quite ironically, a faction of the electorate that purported to fear the Soviet Union for decades and thought opposing its supposed designs was the principal American policy now enthusiastically supports a reality-TV performer in thrall to Russian strongman Vladimir Putin. With an “ally” like this, the Europeans need to take Macron’s analogy seriously and ponder whether it makes sense to maintain a military alliance with a brain dead ally as its de facto “leader”. Because, unfortunately, brain death is permanent.

    • Submitted by Henry Johnson on 12/04/2019 - 07:31 pm.

      Many excellent observations IMO, good post BK.

      Though I don’t think NATO should be disbanded, there is no doubt that no president in US history has degraded it’s effectiveness and created a sense of disunity and demoralization among it’s members the way president Trump has.

      Eric Black mentioned Trump’s access Hollywood comment, but more relevant would be the president’s repeatedly saying that NATO was “obsolete”, and publicly declaring at one point that he was not so sure that the US under his questionable “leadership” would honor the treaty and go to the aid of one of it’s member countries! Geez.

      Nothing undermines a treaty’s value as a deterrent than loudly and publicly wondering if it may or may not be honored – unbelievable.

      What a clueless dolt… Brain-dead indeed.,,

      All of this of course was music to the Russian leader’s ears, and a satisfying confirmation I’m sure that helping him win the 2016 election was a great investment.

      It’s unclear whether the Russians “have something” on Trump, or whether he just loves the idea of a totalitarian state and totalitarian leaders, but either way it’s almost like he’s following a script to do everything he can to favor their interests and goals.

      Jumping on the bogus Russian propaganda lie that Ukraine and not Russia hacked the 2016 election (shamelessly adopted since by many Trump-publicans) is his latest treasonous action.

      Even Trump toady Lindsey Graham found a remnant of bone in the area where his spine used to be, and uncatagorically threw cold water on that bogus lie today.

      He may walk that statement back in a few days when he catches hell from Fox news hosts and perhaps from Trump himself for telling the truth about something for a change, but for today anyway, there was a small glimpse of the man he used to be, to his credit.

  7. Submitted by joe smith on 12/04/2019 - 10:04 am.

    NATO is a joke. The USA paying hundreds of Billions annually to this outdated, bloated, do nothing boondoggle is a joke played on American taxpayers. Yes, this is more foreign aid money leaving our country doing nothing. Please stop this waste.

    • Submitted by Neal Rovick on 12/04/2019 - 11:18 am.

      NATO was predicated on the idea “fight them there, so we don’t have to fight them here”. With our leader firmly in thrall with the anti-democratic leaders of the world, perhaps the ROW is quite right in their reluctance to tie into support for our foreign policy.

      I do like the Macron Br’er Rabbit child psych approach of “don’t throw me into the briar patch Mr. Fox…” and Trump promptly goes on a strident defense of NATO. Reverse psychology, indeed.

      Who knew Trump would be so prescient when he said, “the world is laughing at the US”.

    • Submitted by Colin Brownlow on 12/04/2019 - 12:38 pm.

      Other than membership dues, the US pay’s nothing like the amount you describe to NATO.

    • Submitted by ian wade on 12/04/2019 - 01:25 pm.

      If you really want to stop waste then the GOP should stop treating the military like a jobs program. While they’re at it, they could cease production of certain military weapons that the Pentagon doesn’t even want and that in most cases, are obsolete by the time they roll off the assembly line. Of course, that would mean an end to fat government contracts for the companies that manufacture those weapons which are primarily located in ‘red’ states.

    • Submitted by Paul Brandon on 12/04/2019 - 03:43 pm.

      “As of fiscal year 2017, foreign aid provided through the U.S. State Department and USAID totaled $50.1 billion, or just over 1% of the budget.”
      Trump wants our contribution to NATO to be about the same as Germany’s (a much smaller economy.

    • Submitted by Henry Johnson on 12/04/2019 - 04:12 pm.

      I think we should probably think a little bit more about European history, and even recent history at that Joe, before dismissing NATO as “a joke”.

      At the end of WWII the Soviet Union essentially took over all of eastern Europe, and was threatening to expand beyond that.

      I think most scholars would say that without the NATO treaty opposing that imperialism, that the rest of Europe might have been swallowed up as well, and also that those Iron curtain satellite states might never have been liberated.

      Now, Russia is being led by someone who said the breakup of the Soviet Union was “the greatest geopolitical catastrophe of the 20th century” and said more recently that he “would reverse the collapse of the Soviet Union if he had a chance to change Russian history”.

      https://www.rferl.org/a/putin-says-would-reverse-collapse-soviet-union-1991-if-could-question-asked-kaliningrad/29076226.html

      I think the plan is to reconstruct the boundaries of the former Soviet Union if possible.

      That same leader has already absorbed Crimea into Russia and is trying to do the same with Ukraine now.

      I believe that many European experts also believe that the Baltic states are on the radar for absorption/invasion also.

      Since the Russian leader is a former KGB agent, and a pretty sharp cookie, he has proposed and appears to be following an approach based on trying to regain those former Soviet conquests by a strategy more in line with achieving objectives using his KGB background and methods, rather than by using pure military force – it’s more efficient in both Rubles and lives.

      For example, you electronically hack and disrupt the election systems in those countries, and those that might be allies (like the United States), and move public opinion thru the use of troll farms very active on social media sites, to try to get in place the weakest possible leaders, in terms of their willingness or ability to oppose the plans to take over those countries.

      Also, create confusion, internal conflict, and anything else that might weaken the ability of those countries to oppose those plans, and again, the same with potential allies of those countries like the United States.

      Certainly the election of Trump with help from Russia was a major coup, as he has nothing but praise for their leader, believes anything he is told by that leader over what our intelligence agencies have concluded, has made NO attempt to batten down the hatches against what he considers non-existent foreign hacking (in fact he opposes those efforts thru McConnell in congress) and recently, he held up badly needed military aid for the country that is actually under military attack, namely Ukraine, until he found out that a whistleblower had reported that withholding of aid.

      Also, with the never ending controversies, the derogatory nick-names, the insults blasted out at all but the most loyal followers, the crude comments, the lies, etc., etc, an environment of internal strife has been generated, “a house divided against itself”, which of course weakens the country and importantly reduces it’s ability and desire to be a factor in the international arena.

      So, if you hired a Russian agent to do so, you probably couldn’t do much better than our current president, in terms of doing things that are favorable to Russia and it’s plans.

      I guess we could take an isolationist attitude and say, well who cares about whether much or all of Europe is taken over by Russia?

      I know that that was the attitude in the United States in 1936 – 1941 regarding HItler and Japan, and it was only after Pearl Harbor that we decided we can’t really sit on the sidelines and watch while the world is taken over by tyrants – because this affects US too!

      Prior to maybe 1900 or in 1800 much more so, maybe we in the United States could almost safely just ignore the status of things in Europe, at least to some significant degree.

      But with Nuclear missiles that can fly across the globe in hours, high speed airplanes, submarines, and an internet that connects the whole globe nearly instantly, I don’t think we can afford to just say to heck with NATO, and if Russia takes over much of the rest of Europe, who cares?

      Is there any doubt in your mind Joe that if the United States had taken that isolationist attitude in the 1940’s, and allowed the Nazis and the Japanese to take over all of Europe (including England), and all of Asia, and probably South America too, that we in the United States wouldn’t have been next on the chopping block, and that the prosperity and freedom we have enjoyed from 1945 to now, would still have existed in the same way, without it being greatly reduced or eliminated entirely by the dangers of the powerful Nazi and Japanese empires?

      I’m actually okay with some of the reasoning behind “America first”, but I don’t think “America alone and isolated from our allies and any US opposition to international dangers” is a wise or safe place to be, for us as a country, not to mention the rest of the world.

      Isolationism might sound like a good thing, and even I have some attraction to that concept myself to be honest, but in today’s interconnected world, I’m not sure that that’s not a bit of a fantasy in that the whole world is so interconnected now that if you have tyranny and war in one part of the world, at least involving a major world power, that even though we might imagine it won’t affect us here in the US, it probably will eventually, and maybe sooner and more adversely than we might think.

      Those are my thoughts and opinions anyway.

      • Submitted by BK Anderson on 12/05/2019 - 09:59 am.

        Thanks for this. One may have differing attitudes on how NATO should “look” in the 21st Century or the best approach to combating Putin’s reactionary Russian nationalism, but one thing should be clear: if there is to be a massive change to America’s strategic position and the post-war alliance system that it engineered to oppose perceived Soviet expansionism in 1946, it certainly cannot be made by an electoral college president who lost the popular vote by the greatest margin in history. If conservatives choose to obtain power through the most anti-democratic mechanisms in our failed constitution, then those presidents cannot claim a “mandate” to alter long standing national policy. Indeed, they have no “mandate” to do anything of consequence.

        Trump is without question the most ignorant and personally ridiculous man ever to hold the office, and he cannot process information to boot. He’s admitted he won’t (can’t?) read anything longer than a paragraph. He seems most akin to a middle-schooler who can’t understand fractions.

        An infantile mind such as this is naturally attracted to authoritarian “strongmen”, hence Trump’s affinity (and simply endless sycophantic praise) for Putin, Erdogan, Kim, Xi, and Prince bin Salman, etc, while having nothing but contempt for democratically elected leaders such as Merkel and Trudeau. And now we’ve got the entire Repub party parroting propaganda disseminated by Russian military intelligence! Talk about a nation divided against itself….

        It’s quite revolting to such such dictator-fawning in any American citizen, but simply beyond belief to see it by an American president. The unfortunate truth (for those with eyes to see) is that Trump almost certainly admires Hitler and Stalin to a greater extent than FDR.

    • Submitted by Frank Phelan on 12/04/2019 - 04:48 pm.

      Yes, let’s stop this waste.

      We should immediately slash the bloated military budget by one half. (It’s not a defense budget.) Pretty well any other way those tax dollars are spent, it would create more jobs, given that weapons spending is capital intensive rather than labor intensive. We could even let the taxpayers decide for themselves how to spend their hard earned money.

      Imagine how much more efficient our economy would be if we re-built our crumbling bridges, water treatment facilities, sewer plants, & electrical grid.

      That would be much better than buying gold plated hammers just to keep the politically contested weapon manufacturers on welfare.

  8. Submitted by Misty Martin on 12/04/2019 - 11:14 am.

    Eric:

    I KNOW!!!! I was watching Jimmy Kimmel segment on this (don’t laugh – there are still facts behind the jokes) and in his taped segment, he showed HOW MANY times President Trump had spoken badly about NATO himself. Do any of his followers even listen to him? The evangelicals support him – Rev. Franklin Graham even refers to there being an “almost demonic force” trying to take down his presidency (do we have to wonder who the “demon” is here? no, not Graham . . .) and I wonder where they are when President Trump is taking the Lord’s name in vain and doing other despicable things (for which he’s NEVER repented) as he once said “that he didn’t get the idea of repentance – why did you have to repent if you hadn’t done anything wrong?” I guess like with the “perfect” telephone conversation with the President of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelensky? What gives here? Do they not hear/read/see the train wreck that ALL of those who oppose President Trump can witness? Oh, if only the late Richard Nixon had had all of the supporters that President Donald J. Trump has – how might history have gone down? At least, Nixon had enough character to resign. I can’t see that happening here for some reason and I am concerned for America and what she stands for in this political climate that we are now entrenched in during this period of history.

  9. Submitted by Joe Musich on 12/04/2019 - 09:03 pm.

    Now more then ever NATO is needed. And once again the people’s not choice seems to be doing the bidding of the forces who would rather NATO end as a defense force. Aren’t there some Eastern European countries wanting success for the organization ?

    • Submitted by Paul Brandon on 12/05/2019 - 08:54 am.

      You could start with Ukraine…. erm , sorry; that’s part of Putin’s Greater Russia (previously known as the Soviet Union).

    • Submitted by RB Holbrook on 12/05/2019 - 10:09 am.

      NATO is still needed, but it needs a change of focus. The real threat from Russia is no longer a land invasion, but cyberwarfare and the continuing campaign of targeted assassinations abroad (e.g. the recent killing of a Chechen separatist in Germany). NATO is also ill-equipped to deal with non-state actors, and would do well to devote attention to China’s European activities.

      What is the line about generals fighting the last war? I wonder if this is what President Macron meant when he called NATO “brain dead.”

  10. Submitted by Dennis Wagner on 12/05/2019 - 08:56 am.

    What was that Ben Franklin quote:
    “We must all hang together, or, most assuredly, we shall all hang separately.”
    Some folks ought to give that a little thought, when you burn everything down out of spite that includes your house as well as mine.

  11. Submitted by William Hunter Duncan on 12/05/2019 - 09:42 am.

    Listening to the impeachment hearings yesterday, I was most struck by the Dems on the committee and panel using the language of Reagan: shining city on a hill, the last best light…

    It seems in their hatred of Trump Dems have been drawn into the arms of the military/intelligence complex, that unaccountable war machine profiteering all over the globe. Ukraine has been turned into a helpless maiden to be saved from dark evil Putin/Russia. War war and more war.

    • Submitted by RB Holbrook on 12/05/2019 - 10:04 am.

      “Shining city on a hill” comes from a sermon by the Massachusetts Puritan John Winthrop. It was picked up by President Kennedy, and later by President Reagan. The “last best hope” line was coined by Abraham Lincoln.

      I’m not sure how those two well-known phrases lead to the conclusion that the Democrats “have been drawn into the arms of the military/intelligence complex . . .”

      • Submitted by William Hunter Duncan on 12/05/2019 - 10:51 am.

        Like a lot of popular songs, we tend to remember the one who made it famous. Reagan used those phrases often, in a time when Americans really wanted to hear them.

        The Dem stance toward Russia and Ukraine is the imperial stance, the stance of the foreign policy of that military/intelligence complex known by some as the deep state that unelected cohort driving policy. What the CIA says about Ukraine, Syria, Libya, Russia etc is what Democrats tend to repeat, because it is repeated to them by CNN, NYT, WaPo, and MSNBC.

        I don’t need that phrasing to lead to that conclusion, that conclusion has been self-evident since 2016, the phrasing is just a reminder how deeply entrenched that has become, that the Dem stance on foreign policy is the stance of imperialism.

        • Submitted by RB Holbrook on 12/05/2019 - 11:11 am.

          I don’t suppose it’s possible that Russia is a legitimate threat to the security of the United States, is it? That Russian imperialism that we see today is part of a pattern of behavior that has been continuing, in fits and starts, since at least the days of Peter the Great?

          • Submitted by William Hunter Duncan on 12/05/2019 - 02:21 pm.

            Is Russian aggression/imperialism a current reality, or just something so often repeated in the media and by the military/intelligence complex that it has become Truth with a capital T?

            Or, is Russia being provoked endlessly by NATO and empire America (sanctions anyone?) Would you blame a bear for attacking you if you back it into a corner?

            A full on war against Russia could very well become reality, I think less because of Russia, and more because of the arrogance of our gov, military, intelligence, corp, bank, edu and media elite, and the relentless war propaganda so carelessly repeated.

            • Submitted by RB Holbrook on 12/05/2019 - 03:55 pm.

              “A full on war against Russia could very well become reality, I think less because of Russia, and more because of the arrogance of our gov, military, intelligence, corp, bank, edu and media elite, and the relentless war propaganda so carelessly repeated.”

              Why do you think our elite is more likely to do this than Russia’s elite would be?

              I personally doubt that it would come to a full-fledged war between armies of human beings, but I think that the situation will play itself out in other manners.

              • Submitted by William Hunter Duncan on 12/06/2019 - 08:32 am.

                Because we are the aggressive global empire and our elite are stupifyingly drunk with that power, and self assured of their inevitability to rule the world.

                • Submitted by RB Holbrook on 12/06/2019 - 10:54 am.

                  One could easily say the same about Russia or, for that matter, any imperial power through history.

                  I’ll put in a plug here for John Darwin’s excellent book After Tamerlane: The Global History of Empire. Imperialism is not a phenomenon unique to any particular nation state, culture, or historical era.

    • Submitted by Edward Blaise on 12/05/2019 - 10:54 am.

      Your point seems to be:

      Putin invades Ukraine and the US is more at fault than Russia.

      • Submitted by William Hunter Duncan on 12/05/2019 - 02:09 pm.

        There is a difference between invading a country and stepping across a border to protect people with ethnic and familial relations to you from being slaughtered.

        Had America not perpetrated covert regime change, Russia would have not entered Crimea or the Dunbass.

        • Submitted by David Lundeen on 12/05/2019 - 02:45 pm.

          I agree with some of what your write, but this is so off the mark. Putin cares nothing of the suffering of Russians, case in point the kleptocracy running the country. His concern of Ukraine and the Crimea parallels Stalin’s concern – that Ukraine must always be a buffer. But don’t take it from me, start reading the excellent Russian journalist Masha Gessen.

          • Submitted by William Hunter Duncan on 12/06/2019 - 08:43 am.

            With respect David, we have had a kleptocracy thieving the commons in America ongoing for 40 years, our kleptocrats and oligarchs arguably more rapacious than the Russian variety, if their wealth be the measure. But to be fair, the financial system has facilitated this kind of theft all over the globe, no less in Russia. I just think we should focus more on the kleptocrats and monopolistic oligarchs in our own nation, and let Russians mostly deal with theirs.

            I highly recommend Stephen Cohen as well, who is perhaps not as critical of our elite as I am, but certainly withering in his assessment of our relations with Russia.

            • Submitted by Edward Blaise on 12/06/2019 - 03:31 pm.

              Kleptocracy (from Greek κλέπτης kléptēs, “thief”, κλέπτω kléptō, “I steal”, and -κρατία -kratía from κράτος krátos, “power, rule”) is a government with corrupt leaders (kleptocrats) that use their power to exploit the people and natural resources of their own territory in order to extend their personal wealth and political powers. Typically, this system involves embezzlement of funds at the expense of the wider population.

              Sorry William, as much as Trump would like to call in the Forbes US top ten wealthiest individuals and tell them:

              “25% Of Yours is mine or you to can sit in a cage while we try your for crimes against the state”

              He has not yet done it as his pal Putin already has. Any wonder why he admires the guy so much?

              Russia is the Kleptocracy capital of the world, the US, not so much.

              I assume you have never made an Amazon purchase?

              Bezos was a working class guy with an idea 25 years ago and now finds himself the second richest person in the world after Putin. I have no problems with Elizabeth Warren’s plans to make life a little more difficult for Bezos. I still find his accomplishments admirable and your efforts to equate his story and Putin’s is as far a stretch as one can imagine:

              One is an “American success story” like Edison, Ford, Wright(s), Watson(s) who have made our lives better and the other is a criminal.

              • Submitted by William Hunter Duncan on 12/08/2019 - 10:45 am.

                44% of the US population makes $18,000 or less. Men like Bezos are monopolists, and if impoverishing half of America is your idea of making life better for everybody, then I’d say neither the left nor right believes in democracy anymore and would just rather go back to living a feudal existence before an effective landed aristocracy as long as the bread and circuses flow more or less freely.

                If Americans believed in Democracy, Amazon, Google and Facebook would be broken up, and likely Microsoft and Apple, the tax structure would be shifted to weaken corporations and banks and billionaires and empower regular people, we would have something like a Green New Deal to put people back to work doing something worthwhile and meaningful remaking America, and we would put an end to systemic pollution and the extermination of species. The war/security complex would be cut in half at least.

                But instead we are being led on a path of increased income inequality, and war against Russia and maybe China. Because our elite would rather our impoverished masses die in WWIII than upend the system to make life better for people generally, species generally and the land and waters.

                • Submitted by Edward Blaise on 12/08/2019 - 03:54 pm.

                  William, you consistently defend Donald Trump yet it seems you are in almost complete agreement with the candidates most commonly identified with the most radical departure from Trumpian policies:

                  “Mar 8, 2019 – Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) said today that, if elected president in 2020, her administration will break up the giants of the tech industry, including Amazon, Facebook, and Google. The proposal is the most stringent stance taken by a candidate in the presidential campaign so far.”

                  “Aug 22, 2019 – Sen. Bernie Sanders was the first of the 2020 Democratic presidential contenders to back the Green New Deal”

                  “May 2, 2019. Bernie Sanders: Fundamentally, why I am running for president is to get our priorities right. Our priorities are that we rebuild our infrastructure, that our kids have the ability to go to college regardless of income, that we address the crisis in affordable housing, and all the other crises — climate change, we have to deal with that, and it will take a lot of money. And we do not have to simply allow large defense contractors to become even wealthier.”

                  Do you see these candidates as essentially dishonest in their expression of a point of view that seems to align with yours?

                • Submitted by Edward Blaise on 12/08/2019 - 05:45 pm.

                  Should we have broken up Amazon in 1996 when their sales hit $511,000 in 1995? When they hit a billion in 1999?

                  Where along an innovating companies growth do we change the rules of the game?

                  I mostly agree with Elizabeth Warren’s thinking on breaking up the tech giants. To paint Bezos as a monopolistic kleptocrat along the lines of Putin is both ridiculous and contemptuous of our traditions. In 1995 Bezo’s was a hard working, common man with an idea working out of his basement. In 2020 he is the essence of evil?

                  • Submitted by William Hunter Duncan on 12/09/2019 - 08:31 am.

                    I do not defend Trump’s policies generally, as much as I defend his presidency from what I believe to be a coup/regimen change attempt by the DNC, corporate media and the deep state intelligence community.

                    As for Bezos, he wants to control the online means of buying anything anywhere. He does not pay taxes, he treats his employees like machines, he controls cloud computing for the CIA, suing to do the same for the Pentagon, and he defines the official narrative for the CIA and Pentagon through the Washington Post. All of that is a direct threat to democracy – but that is my point too, we no longer have democracy as much as we are consumer serfs to those who control the dollar.

                    Go Bernie.

            • Submitted by David Lundeen on 12/09/2019 - 02:26 pm.

              You didn’t respond to my point. I stated that Putin cares nothing of ethnic Russians in former Soviet Satellites as proven by his disdain for his own citizens. You digressed about how the US kleptocracy eclipses the Russia oligarchs, which is true. There is no justification for Russian invasion of Crimea, just as there was no justification for US intervention in Latin America and across the globe.

              But yes, I agree, I’m not in favor interfering in Russian affairs as Russia is no threat to our interests near or abroad, and we share much more in common.

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