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The Trump Disaster Was Predicted Over 20 Years Ago

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Telstar

Telstar
Americans trying to unpick the phenomenon of Donald Trump have turned to a late left-leaning academic, who predicted that old industrialized democracies were heading into a Weimar-like period in which populist movements could overturn constitutional governments.

In 1998, the late Stanford philosopher Richard Rorty published a small volume, Achieving Our Country: Leftist Thought in Twentieth-Century America, that described a fracturing of the leftwing coalition that rendered the movement so dispirited and cynical that it invited its own collapse.

In the days after Trump’s electoral college victory over Hillary Clinton, passages from Rorty’s book went viral, shared thousands of times on social media. Rorty’s theories were then echoed by the New Yorker editor David Remnick in an interview with Barack Obama and essay on his presidency, and taken up across the internet as an explanation for Trump’s success.



https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2016/nov/19/donald-trump-us-election-prediction-richard-rorty

zsomething


I'm currently reading this book, They Thought They Were Free: The Germans, 1933-45 by Milton Sanford Mayer, in hopes of understanding a little more about Trump's cult. What we have now is clearly no longer a government. Trump's completely given up on making any attempt to govern and he's not even interested in it -- they even declared the pandemic "over" and list "defeating" it as one of the administration's accomplishments, right when it's at its worst. It's seriously fucking absurd, but it's what happens when there is no government, and the country's just held hostage by a crazy, delusional cult. I'm actually wondering if changing presidents and Congress is going to make much difference for about half the country, because they're still going to be following their cult leader... and cults thrive on having enemies. It drives people deeper into the cult if they feel they're under "attack," because the cult portrays itself as the only "safe place" for the cultists.

Anyway, the parallels with Germany are off the charts. The Germans quickly figured out that Hitler was going to be a dictator and was going all kinds of corrupt things, but they deliberately ignored all the things about him that they didn't like because they figured as long as they pretended they didn't know, they wouldn't be guilty if they went along with it. And the Nazis blitzed them with all kinds of propaganda to help them pretend they were "tricked." But they knew. They knew, and they just didn't care because they thought it all was only going to affect people they hated. And they'd been given permission to hate those people, and it was intoxicating for them. They'd been repressing a lot of dark things that they felt, but now, because Trump is irresponsible, they feel like they have permission to be irresponsible, too. Trump brings out the worst in them and tells them that their vilest instincts are not only okay, they're "patriotic.'


“Men who always do as they’re told do not know what to do when they’re not. Without the thoughtful habit of decision, they decide (when they must decide for themselves) thoughtlessly. If they are forbidden to beat Jews, they learn how not to want to, something a free man who wants to beat Jews never learns; then, when they are allowed to, the release of their repressed wish to beat Jews makes maniacs of them.” - p. 162.


Patriotism's great because you don't have to be smart. That's why people jump on it so blindly and hard, and rally behind guys like Trump. He waves a flag a little bit while laughing up his sleeve and they never stop to question that they're being played, they just yell "A flag! Ah like that guy!" and slap their forelimbs together.

And they do things that endanger themselves and others for the sake of the cult.

Like the pandemic. We see that right here in our resident lil' peezle who tries to debunk it as "no big deal," and who's got nothing in his history but bad decisions. They're putting survival of the cult over the survival of themselves or their loved ones. Willful ignorance. They can't stand that we can see it. We're watching a political party killing itself out of spite and a determination to "piss off the libtards" even if they have to make abject fools of themselves to do it.

And Trump doesn't give a fuck about 'em. Witness what he did to his cult in Omaha last night.

https://omaha.com/news/local/govt-and-politics/hundreds-of-people-waited-hours-in-the-cold-for-buses-after-trump-rally-at-eppley/article_9b050405-d58e-5441-8353-c16988e954ee.html

Drag a bunch of elderly and out-of-shape dullards out into the freezing cold by bussing them in from their cars parked four miles away... and then don't give them busses at the end to get them back to their cars. I believe in something called "idiot-tax." I think if you're willfully stupid and determined to be an idiot, it should cost you. Your life should be as hard as possible if you choose to be dumb. I'm not talking about the dumb that's thrust upon us. We're all dumb in some areas... but these folks, man, the world is grabbing them by the scruff of their necks and showing them what's really going on and they're yelling, "NO! FAKE NEWS! I want to believe THIS thing and not the sense-making thing that you say that I don't like!" When you're gonna be that person, and be a burden to everyone around you because you just refuse to smarten up... then, fine, freeze your ass. Pay some idiot tax.



Is hypothermia gonna wise 'em up? Nah. If basic sense got them where they were, they'd have bailed on this clown a long time ago. It takes effort to maintain a delusion like they've got, so it's not surprising that they marched into a situation that they didn't know how to get themselves out of, waving pom-poms and hoo-rahing the whole damn time. They're 30's Germans. They see what's happening but they tell themselves they don't because hey, at least the libs are pissed off and we got a cross-eyed evangelical nitwit who doesn't know what the first amendment's about on the Supreme Court and it's okay to hate non-whites again and so yee-haw, let's lose some toes to frostbite and get COVID while we're at it.

Ya can't help 'em, ya can't warn 'em, they're willfully blind and deaf and they want to believe they're "the good guys," same as the Germans did. Even after the war and what it revealed, a lot of them were still excusing it away. So it will go with this. Trump will be ousted, a lot more of his corruption will be revealed, and his supporters will still be spewing fantasies about "Hunter Biden's laptop," as if that's worse or at least equal. You can't reach 'em.

Floridatexan and Telstar like this post

Floridatexan

Floridatexan
Telstar wrote:Americans trying to unpick the phenomenon of Donald Trump have turned to a late left-leaning academic, who predicted that old industrialized democracies were heading into a Weimar-like period in which populist movements could overturn constitutional governments.

In 1998, the late Stanford philosopher Richard Rorty published a small volume, Achieving Our Country: Leftist Thought in Twentieth-Century America, that described a fracturing of the leftwing coalition that rendered the movement so dispirited and cynical that it invited its own collapse.

In the days after Trump’s electoral college victory over Hillary Clinton, passages from Rorty’s book went viral, shared thousands of times on social media. Rorty’s theories were then echoed by the New Yorker editor David Remnick in an interview with Barack Obama and essay on his presidency, and taken up across the internet as an explanation for Trump’s success.



https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2016/nov/19/donald-trump-us-election-prediction-richard-rorty

I don't buy this at all. I'm frankly tired of blame falling on Democrats for the illegal, underhanded actions of the right (Reich) wing. 1998: Bill Clinton was still president after attacks throughout his presidency, PNAC was writing Rebuilding America's Defences. According to the PNAC report, "The American peace has proven itself peaceful, stable, and durable. Yet no moment in international politics can be frozen in time: even a global Pax Americana will not preserve itself." To preserve this "American peace" through the 21st century, the PNAC report concludes that the global order "must have a secure foundation on unquestioned U.S. military preeminence." The report struck a prescient note when it observed that "the process of transformation is likely to be a long one, absent some catastrophic and catalyzing event--like a new Pearl Harbor."

These were the players:

Original 25 signatories were:
Source

Elliott Abrams, a former Reagan-era Assistant Secretary of State for Inter-American Affairs. During the Iran/Contra scandal, Abrams pleaded guilty to two misdemeanor counts of lying to Congress but was later pardoned by the first Bush administration. He subsequently became president of the Ethics and Public Policy Center. He is currently a member of Bush's National Security Council.
Gary Bauer, a Republican presidential candidate in 2000, who currently is president of an organization named American Values.
William J. Bennett, who served during the Reagan and first Bush administrations as U.S. Secretary of Education and Drug Czar. Upon leaving government office, Bennett became a "distinguished fellow" at the conservative Heritage Foundation, co-founded Empower America, and established himself as a self-proclaimed expert on morality with his authorship of The Book of Virtues.
Jeb Bush, the son of former President George Herbert Walker Bush and brother of current President George W. Bush. At the time of PNAC's founding, Jeb Bush was a candidate for the Florida governor's seat, a position which he currently holds.
Dick Cheney, the former White House Chief of Staff to Gerald R. Ford, six-term Congressman, and Secretary of Defense to the first President Bush, was serving as president of the oil-services giant Halliburton Company at the time of PNAC's founding. He subsequently became U.S. vice president under George W. Bush.
Eliot A. Cohen, a professor of strategic studies at John Hopkins University
Paula Dobriansky, vice president and director of the Washington office of the Council on Foreign Relations. Currently Dobriansky serves in the Bush administration as Undersecretary of State for Global Affairs.
Steve Forbes, publisher, billionaire, and Republican presidential candidate in 1996 and 2000. Forbes has also campaigned actively on behalf of the "flat tax," which would reduce the federal tax burden for wealthy individuals like himself.
Aaron Friedberg, professor of politics and international affairs; Director, Center of International Studies; Director, Research Program in International Security, Woodrow Wilson School, Princeton University.
Francis Fukuyama, author of The End of History and the Last Man; Dean of the Faculty and Bernard L. Schwartz Professor of International Political Economy at the Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) at Johns Hopkins University. Appointed to the President's Council on Bioethics by George W. Bush, January 2002.
Frank Gaffney - conservative columnist; founder and president of the Center for Security Policy in Washington, D.C. Web-site: http://www.centerforsecuritypolicy.org/
Fred C. Ikle, "distinguished scholar" at the Center for Strategic and International Studies
Donald Kagan, professor of history and classics at Yale University and the author of books including While America Sleeps: Self-Delusion, Military Weakness, and the Threat to Peace Today; A Twilight Struggle: American Power and Nicaragua, 1977-1990; and The Origins of War and the Preservation of Peace. Kagan is also a senior associate at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, a contributing editor at the Weekly Standard and a Washington Post columnist, a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the Alexander Hamilton fellow in American diplomatic history at American University. Past experience includes: Deputy for Policy in the State Department's Bureau of Inter-American Affairs (1985-1988); State Department's Policy Planning Staff member (1984-1985); speechwriter to Secretary of State George P. Shultz (1984-1985); foreign policy advisor to Congressman Jack Kemp (1983); Special Assistant to the Deputy Director of the United States Information Agency (1983); Assistant Editor at the Public Interest (1981).
Zalmay Khalilzad, an Afghan-American who was the only Muslim among the group's original signatories and the only signatory who was not a native-born U.S. citizen. Khalilzad has became the Bush administration's special envoy to Afghanistan after the fall of the Taliban as well as is special envoy to the Iraqi opposition to Saddam Hussein. Khalilzad has written about information warfare, and in 1996 (in pre-Taliban days), he served as a consultant to the oil company Unocal Corporation (UNOCAL) regarding a "risk analysis" for its proposed pipeline project through Afghanistan and Pakistan.
William Kristol, PNAC's chairman, is also editor of the Weekly Standard, a Washington-based political magazine. His past involvements have included: lead of the Project for the Republican Future, chief of staff to Vice President J. Danforth Quayle, chief of staff to Secretary of Education William J. Bennett under the Reagan administration, taught politics at the University of Pennsylvania and Harvard's Kennedy School of Government.
I. Lewis Scooter Libby, who later became chief of staff for Vice President Dick Cheney.
Norman Podhoretz, a senior fellow at the Hudson Institute and author of works such as Patriotism and its Enemies.
J. Danforth Quayle, former vice president under President George Herbert Walker Bush and a presidential candidate himself in 1996.
Peter W. Rodman, who served in the State Department and the National Security Council under Presidents Ronald Reagan and George Herbert Walker Bush, became the current Bush administration's Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security affairs in 2001.
Stephen P. Rosen, Beton Michael Kaneb Professor of National Security and Military Affairs at Harvard University.
Henry S. Rowen was president of the RAND Corporation from 1967-1972. He served under former presidents Reagan and Bush as chairman of the National Intelligence Council (1981-83) and Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs (1989-91). He currently holds the title of "senior fellow" at the Hoover Institution on War, Revolution and Peace
Donald H. Rumsfeld served former President Gerald R. Ford as chief of transition after Richard M. Nixon's resignation, later becoming Ford's chief of staff and secretary of defense from 1974-75. He subsequently served from 1990-93 as CEO of General Instrument Corporation and later as Chairman of the Board of Gilead Sciences, a pharmaceutical company. In 1998 he served as chairman of the bi-partisan US Ballistic Missile Threat Commission. Under President George W. Bush, he once again assumed the post of Secretary of Defense.
Vin Weber, a former Republican congressman from Minnesota, is now a well-connected lobbyist who has represented such firms as AT&T, Lockheed Martin and Microsoft. Weber is also vice chairman of Empower America and a former fellow of the Progress and Freedom Foundation.
George Weigel, a Roman Catholic religious and political commentator, is a "senior fellow" at the Ethics and Public Policy Center.
Paul Dundes Wolfowitz, formerly Dean and Professor of International Relations at the Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies at Johns Hopkins University, became Undersecretary of Defense for President George W. Bush in 2001.

https://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php/Project_for_the_New_American_Century

Thom Hartmann nails it here:

The Republican Party Is An Organized Gang of Sociopaths

Oct. 28, 2020 4:40 pm

Trump doesn't care how many people in Omaha were stranded for hours in the freezing cold, over 3 miles from the nearest road or parking lot, after he's left his rally, putting some in the hospital. And he clearly doesn't care how many people die of Covid.

One of the defining characteristics of a sociopath is that they view themselves as the only "real" humans on the planet, and everybody else is basically a prop in the amazing story of their lives.

Other people, they think, don't feel emotions or pain or anything else with the intensity that they do. They believe they're the only ones who matter, because they're the only ones who truly exist.

The Republican Party, starting in 1980, has brought that sociopathic worldview to politics, and made it a cornerstone of policy as well as a criteria for elective office.

Reagan didn't care how many people were harmed or died because of his "government is the cause of your problems" or "starve the beast" policies.

George W. Bush didn't care how many Americans or other human beings may die because of his lies about Iraq and WMD: if it helped him politically, it was all good.

But Trump and the GOP's sociopathy isn't limited to using supporters as props and letting the people he thinks of as suckers suffer from hypothermia.

The Republican-controlled EPA just authorized five years of a deadly pesticide being poured onto our food, so giant corporations and their shareholders could enjoy more profits.

The Republican-controlled Interior department is destroying our national parks and selling off public land to GOP-donor mining and drilling companies.

The Republican-controlled Agriculture department is cutting people off food stamps during the Trump Depression, while the Republican-controlled Department of Housing and Urban Development is trying to throw poor people out into the cold during a pandemic.

The Republican-controlled Justice Department is openly giving a pass to criminal Republican operatives, supporters and donors, while prosecuting critics of their racist, police-state tactics.

The Republican controlled CDC and FDA are cutting corners for big Pharma to help Trump win the election, while putting the lives of millions of Americans at risk.

The Republican-directed Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) is promoting privatized so-called "Medicare Advantage" plans that often wipe out seniors who get sick, while they devastate Medicare itself and will make it difficult to pass Medicare for All legislation.

Republican-dominated media organizations and radio and TV stations daily traffic in easily-disproven lies and are constantly trying to gin up racial hatred, all to benefit the oligarch class.

Republican-aligned billionaires financed a multi-million-dollar campaign to put rightwing judges on the Supreme Court, and those judges are preparing to repeat their 2000 scam of handing the White House to a man who lost the popular vote and only seized the Electoral College through voter suppression.

There is not a single elected Republican with any consequential profile in America who acknowledges the dangers of climate change and the straightforward solution of ending our dependence on fossil fuels, simply because fossil fuel billionaires own them all.

Republicans celebrate the Citizens United Supreme Court decision because it nakedly allows billionaires and giant corporations to own politicians and political parties.

Republicans embrace white racist gangs that pretend they're "militias" because they'll intimidate people of color who tend to vote Democratic.

Sociopathy cannot be "cured"; it can only be controlled. Sociopaths need to be identified, isolated from society, and restrained in ways that limit the damage they can do to others.

This is a central tenant of psychotherapy, and America must apply it to politics as well, before these Republican sociopaths totally destroy our nation and gut democracy around the world.

-Thom

https://www.thomhartmann.com/blog/2020/10/republican-party-organized-gang-sociopaths



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PkrBum

PkrBum
This is really sad. It's been amazing these last few years the depths that y'all have been gladly gobbling. I didn't vote for Trump. I thght he was an idiot. I was right. But you fucktards have jumped the shark. Sad may not be adequate. There's a serious mental condition that allows you to buy into narratives that you dismissed previously.

You're a groupthink aquarium.

zsomething


PkrBum wrote:This is really sad. It's been amazing these last few years the depths that y'all have been gladly gobbling. I didn't vote for Trump. I thght he was an idiot. I was right. But you fucktards have jumped the shark. Sad may not be adequate. There's a serious mental condition that allows you to buy into narratives that you dismissed previously.

You're a groupthink aquarium.

You think he's an idiot, you didn't vote for him, but you defend him vociferously and rail against anyone else who doesn't like him, accuse them of being "fucktards" for finding fault with him. Somehow you... I dunno, lack integrity.

And you have such contempt for us, it's weird that you want to hang out with us so much. Especially when none of us want your company in the first place.

Makes you look kind of pathetic and lonesome and out of all other options, struggling to keep staying people who you think are so bad and who don't like you at all. I mean, talk about serious mental conditions, that's gotta be considered one. Masochism in the very least, considering how you get treated. It's like the old joke about the guy and the bear -- "You don't come around here for the hunting, do ya, boy?" Smile

Floridatexan, Telstar and RealLindaL like this post

PkrBum

PkrBum
There's a gulf between defending him and pointing out your hypocrisy and idiocy.

Though you wouldn't understand.

Telstar

Telstar


I guess even hopeless besotted drug addicts need love from someone, Obviously his own family has abandoned him to die. I guess they could only take so much.

zsomething


PkrBum wrote:There's a gulf between defending him and pointing out your hypocrisy and idiocy.

Though you wouldn't understand.

Nobody understands things that are nonsense.  And I don't think you know what "gulf" means, because there's not even a hairline fracture between defending Trump and what you do.  You're a whatabout machine.  Insert Trump mountain of atrocity, pull lever, and out comes some fabricated molehill somebody else did.  And you pretend they're equal.

If you really thought Trump was an idiot and didn't support him then you'd agree with us at least some of the time.  But you never do.  That's how we know your supposed "dislike" of him is a pose.  I mean, Gatorfan says he doesn't like Trump... and I believe him, because he agrees with the criticism some of the time.  Usually what he gets pissed at me for are things I say about conservatives in general, hardly ever anything about Trump.  But you?   All criticism of Trump ever does is make you angry and make you fling insults at whoever's criticizing him... no matter how legitimate that criticism is.  And a hell of a lot of what we're saying is backed up by facts.  Floridatexan's always providing articles and most of them are from non-partisan sources.

As far as my "hypocrisy and idiocy" go... dude, I am far less of a hypocrite than you.  There is no one here as hypocritical as you.  Your defense of everything Trump does while claiming you "never liked him" is ample proof of that. You're just a guy who doesn't want to ever really commit to a position because then you'd have to be responsible for taking a stand... and that's the last thing you'll ever do.  And you could be twice as smart as you are and I could have a cinderblock fall five stories and land on my head and I'd still be ten times smarter than you.   And that's not self-flattery: I'm not even all that smart... you're just that fucking dumb.  If you were much stupider you'd be swimming around in a tank while some kid fed you flakes.  Give you a few shots of Jäger and there'll be a gardenia whupping your ass at Jeopardy.  You are the Amazing Turnip. There is no one here half as stupid as you are, and I'm counting the other right-wingers so it's not just an ideology thing.   You're a sorry, uncreative, unprincipled non-productive boring self-serving leech who has a smaller variety of things you know how to say than the beta-test of an Eliza program (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ELIZA ) and you do nothing but let your family down and inflict yourself on people who don't like you and don't care the least damn about you.  Honestly, I think you only come here because you want people to tell you off because you get off on it.  Being unwanted doesn't seem to register with you because maybe that's the only kind of relationship you've ever had with anybody.

If I thought everybody I was interacting with were a bunch of idiotic hypocrites, I would think enough of myself to get out there, find better company, or if that wasn't possible, just be alone.  I've done that with boards from time to time.  There's no pride in wasting your own time and building your own angst just to be a pain in everyone else's ass.

Clear picture:  you fight to remain in a place where no one likes you and where you claim everyone is beneath you.  So... what's this about hypocrisy again?  If we're really so bad, prove it by finding somewhere else to go.  Anything else is just gas.

Floridatexan and Telstar like this post

Telstar

Telstar
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