Trump = Putin's puppet?

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Richard Stanley, Jul 10, 2018.

  1. Richard Stanley

    Richard Stanley Administrator

    The following excerpt is the conclusion of a long article by Jonathan Chait of New York Magazine. I have previously commented on the same thesis, on this thread, that Trump is indeed a controlled asset of Putin's. And that Trump had been groomed back in 1987, just before The Art of the Deal was published. This article ties all the numerous factoids together in a comprehensive and coherent fashion. All the means to explain away various events and aspects are countered with more plausible explanations.

    The totality should be convincing. In days of yore, the likes of Trump et al. would have been rounded up and have had their heads lopped off by now. Instead, Trump has just selected a Supreme Court nominee who said that a President should not have to face criminal or civil charges while holding office.

    The following link is an interview about the article: http://www.msnbc.com/all-in/watch/could-trump-be-a-russian-intelligence-asset-1273436739894

    ...
    There is one other way in which Trump’s behavior has changed in recent months. As Mueller has plunged deeper into his murky dealings with Russia, the president has increasingly abandoned the patina of innocence. Trump used to claim he would be vindicated, and his advisers insisted his periodic fits sprang from an irrational resentment that Mueller was tarnishing his election and obscuring his achievements.

    Trump barely puts much effort into predicting a clean bill of health anymore. He acts like a man with a great deal to hide: declining to testify, dangling pardons to keep witnesses from incriminating him, publicly chastising his attorney general for not quashing the whole investigation, and endorsing Russia’s preposterous claims that it had nothing to do with the election at all. (“Russia continues to say they had nothing to do with Meddling in our Election!” he tweeted last month, contradicting the conclusion of every U.S. intelligence agency.) Trump’s behavior toward Russia looks nothing like that of a leader of a country it attacked and exactly like that of an accessory after the fact.

    “After” could be optimistic. The logic of Russia’s role in helping Trump has not changed since the election. If Trump’s campaign hired hackers to penetrate his opponent’s communications or voting machines, they would risk arrest. But Putin can hire hackers with impunity. Mueller can indict Russians, and he has, but he can’t arrest them unless they decide to leave Russia. Outsourcing Trump’s hacking work to Putin made perfect sense for both men in 2016, and still does.

    And if you’re Putin, embarking upon a coveted summit with the most Russophilic president since World War II, who is taking a crowbar to the alliance of your enemies, why wouldn’t you help him in 2018 and 2020? Ever since the fall of 2016, when Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell privately turned down an Obama-administration proposal for a bipartisan warning to Russia not to interfere in the election, the underlying dynamic has been set: Most Republicans would rather win an election with Putin’s help than lose one without it. The Democrats, brimming with rage, threaten to investigate Russian activity if they win a chamber of Congress this November. For Putin to redouble his attack — by hacking into voting machines or some other method — would be both strategic and in keeping with his personality. Why stop now?

    Meanwhile, the White House has eliminated its top cybersecurity position. That might simply reflect a Republican bias against bureaucratic expertise. But it might also be just what it looks like: The cop on the beat is being fired because his boss is in cahoots with the crooks.

    Shortly before Trump’s inauguration, according to Israeli journalist Ronen Bergman, Israeli intelligence officials gathered at CIA headquarters, where they were told something astonishing: Russia, the agency believed, had “leverages of pressure” over the incoming president. Therefore, the agency advised the Israelis to consider the possibility that Trump might pass their secrets on to Russia. The Israelis dismissed the warning as outlandish. Who could believe that the world’s most powerful country was about to hand its presidency to a Russian dupe? That the United States government had, essentially, fallen?

    A few months later, Trump invited Russian diplomats into the Oval Office. He boasted to them that he had fired “nut job” James Comey. “I faced great pressure because of Russia. That’s taken off.” At the same meeting, Trump passed on to the Russians a highly sensitive intelligence secret Israel had captured from a valuable source inside ISIS. It was the precise danger Israel had been cautioned about.

    Like many of the suspicious facts surrounding Trump’s relations with Russia, it was possible to construct a semi-innocent defense. Maybe he just likes to brag about what he knows. Maybe he’s just too doddering to remember what’s a secret. And as often happens, these unwieldy explanations gained general acceptance. It seemed just too crazy to consider the alternative: It was all exactly what it appeared to be.

    http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer/2018/07/trump-putin-russia-collusion.html
     
  2. Jerry Russell

    Jerry Russell Administrator Staff Member

    But it probably wasn't Putin that was responsible for the hacks of the DNC. The best evidence is that the info was stolen by an insider.

    And it's been open season on US voting machines for a long time. I don't know why anyone thinks that vote totals are trustworthy. It's not Putin's fault that American democracy has fallen into such a state of disrepair.

    But, ISIS is a US intelligence asset, and an Israeli collaborator. Russia and the US are only pretending to be collaborators in the fight against ISIS. So isn't the most likely explanation of Trump's alleged leak, that they want to promote this illusion that Russia and the US are fighting against ISIS?
     
  3. Richard Stanley

    Richard Stanley Administrator

    What American democracy Jerry? I am only observing the situation as best I can, and maybe there is an appearance that I'm trying to defend something, but it's only an illusion (regarding America and ...). Yes, you and Trump are right about American elections, they are rigged, especially with the onset of computerized voting machines.

    As for Putin, it seems richly ironic to me that Russia has become such an anti-liberal, nationalist, fascist state that Hitler (and his Rove-like brains) could be proud of, albeit without the regalia. Like Hitler, Putin does not like the 'modern' Liberal (not neoliberal) enterprise, of which the USA, in practice and theory, represents the penultimate evil. Putin's pandering, at least, to Traditionalism (like with the Orthodox Church) causes him to be a hero to long 'oppressed' American evangelicals - as does Trump's pandering to them. As such, they have mostly forgotten that they were once proud members of the American Liberal (not neoliberal) enterprise, however imperfect it ever was. Their apparent messiah has arrived, thus we're only waiting the official announcement of the death of the Liberal (not neoliberal) Republic.

    Hitler's mentor, Dietrich Eckart, stated after WWI that the war was not over, and he was correct that the various 'millennial' dynamics carried forward into WWII, which he did not live to see. Hitler stated that their messianic task would not be over till they had brought cleansing apocalyptic destruction to the whole world. So maybe Robert Baer's series, Hunting Hitler, is correct in the sense that the Nazi enterprise moved underground, it's messianic [sic] ideologues infecting both the USA, Russia, and elsewhere.

    As for Seth Rich, dead men tell no lies. But he certainly made a nice patsy for the Trumpian narrative, no matter who pulled the trigger.

    I was too generous in granting Russia (and thus Putin) any legitimacy as an entity before. As we just learned from new member, 90210, that Russia, writ small, can't even figure out where they came from, possibly even being straight up Khazars. How Byzantine!! So Putin is stuffing an approved narrative down everyone's throat.

    All that may be true, but besides the point. Under the normal non-Trumpian national security paradigm, the Republicans should be tearing their hair out, trying to impeach Trump as fast as they can, just for this act alone, if not a hundred others. Trump has openly stated that he is out to destroy the Republican Party, and he has effectively done so.

    The remaining paleo-Republicans understand the apocalyptic dynamics of Trump's evangelical and secular base, at least subconsciously, if not consciously. They were down with rigging the elections by various means long before Trump came along, so this aspect never gave them a pause.
     
  4. Richard Stanley

    Richard Stanley Administrator

    The following excerpted article by Tom Nichols examines Chait's recent article that I discussed here yesterday. It is mostly supportive of Chait, but I have a few quibbles, another layer of concern.

    ...
    But how would such compromising work in practice? Chait’s critics might be watching too much television. This is not an episode of The Americans. No one issues orders, and anyone looking for such evidence is likely to be disappointed. Rather, over time, as relationships grow, favors are asked. Friendships are pressed into service. The key is to induce the target to do what you want without telling him to do it—to be a friend, helping out friends.

    Later, there’s no need to receive instruction from a “handler” in the Kremlin. If the president is worried about what the Russians have on him, he may proactively be doing things he believes will keep him in good stead with Putin. A general sense of anxiety could well produce more cooperation than any direct order. This would explain why Trump always seems fearful and defensive whenever the subject of Putin is raised, and why he seems constantly eager to impress the Russian president at every turn. After starting a trade war with U.S. allies and questioning, as he has many times, the value of NATO, Trump has told Putin that his own staff are “stupid” for trying to keep him from getting too cozy with the Kremlin boss, and that he expects his summit with Putin to be the “easiest” of his many recent meetings.

    But why, critics might ask, would Trump and his cronies risk everything in an election if they were in so deep with the Russians? The key to this apparent stupidity, I think, is that no one involved in the Trump campaign, including the president, expected to win.

    Indeed, for Trump and his circle, losing would have been the best outcome: Trump would become the de facto leader of the GOP, his advisers would have a direct line to the majority in Congress, and they could operate as a shadow government, dogging Hillary Clinton around the country while making scads of money in everything from consulting to merchandising. People like Manafort and Michael Flynn could parlay their time in the campaign into access and credibility among Republicans.

    Winning screwed all that up. Suddenly, all those Russian contacts were a problem. This was a nightmare for Team Trump, but an accidental windfall for Team Putin. The junk stock they invested in back in the 1980s was now a blue chip.

    Victory therefore required a lot of quick mobilization to limit any possible damage, and to protect the new administration from revelations no one thought would matter after November 2016. If Chait’s narrative at times seems to lean on people acting strangely, bear in mind that these might have been the actions of people who never expected to be in the White House.

    Finally, whatever one thinks of Chait’s piece, the attacks from Trump defenders are no more than a reflex that reveals the exhausting double-standard that pro-Trump Republicans must now carry like a cinder block around their necks. People who once wanted to imprison Hillary Clinton for a uranium deal approved by the U.S. government are now waving away 30 years of Moscow’s personal and financial investments in Donald Trump as though it’s nothing more than a condo purchase on an overdrawn checking account. ...

    https://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2018/07/10/trump-russia-jonathan-chait-218966

    As a believer in the existence of the Hidden Hand, such as explicitly depicted with Napoleon Bonaparte, we should also be concerned, as I have discussed here with the domestic circumstances which were made manifest for Trump's election, the one "he did not expect to win". First, that the Republican primary procedures, their normal grooming of the anointed one, had been removed allowing Trump's bullying style to win out by divide and conquer. Second, was the massive public humiliation of Trump by Obama in 2011, providing a cover story for his motivation to run. Was this organic or staged for effect? Third, was the massive political stand-down of Crooked Hillary despite her campaign team's desire to have done much more.

    If anything Putin should be eternally grateful for the Clintons, as they played a vital role in the establishment of the post-Soviet economic and political structure of Yeltsin's and Putin's regimes. Yet, they pose as existential enemies. Everything here is staged, epitomized by Hillary's dumb-ass Russian reset button. As Trump says, it's all rigged, especially himself.

    As with Napoleon and Hitler before, I think we are seeing the chessboard signs of our coming Waterloo.

    As David Redles has exposed (Hitler's Millennial Reich), the Nazis were engaged, from their POV, in a divine messianic endeavor, their apocalypse scenario cribbed from the Bible and other sources. The time-tested mass psychological ingredients of the "apocalypse complex" were all carefully 'staged' into place and the desired realpolitik result was achieved.

    So now from the American evangelical (and similar others) POV, they have suffered their Weimar degradations enough, and ready to follow their fake-orange, Pied Piper messiah over the cliff. Somebody's new age beckons.
     
  5. Richard Stanley

    Richard Stanley Administrator

    The following excerpt is the conclusion of a Dana Milbank op-ed in the Wapo. Discussed in what is known as an 'inversion', as with Trump we can see just how easy such a massive inversion is to achieve on a polity, even if a majority is unhappy and/or 'resistant'.

    It does not matter if one thinks (incorrectly) that the Putanic Russians are wonderful, or (correctly) that there are (and have been) massive problems with the Western order. So don't get distracted by these aspects. The important thing is that we are witnessing shepherding of the human flocks on a grand and hyper-cynical scale.

    ...
    As we have seen for some time during the Trump era, the good guys are the bad guys, and vice versa. The world has been upside down for so long that American toilets now swirl in the opposite direction.

    Just a few weeks ago, Trump insulted his allies in the Group of Seven and called the leader of Canada weak and dishonest — and then flew off to Asia to hail North Korea’s Kim Jong Un as honorable. North Korea is now back to calling the Trump administration “gangster-like,” but Trump continues to have “confidence” in his new friend.

    On his European trip this week, Trump isn’t merely drawing a verbal distinction between the European killers and the fine Putin. He is acting accordingly.

    On the eve of his NATO meeting in Brussels, Trump kept up a steady attack on fellow members for failing to pay their share. Responding to European Council President Donald Tusk’s warning that the United States has few allies left, Trump on Tuesday dismissed the fraying NATO alliance by saying it “helps them a lot more than it helps us.”

    After Belgium, Trump goes to Britain, where Prime Minister Theresa May helped limit Trump’s exposure to protests (including a giant balloon of a baby Trump in a diaper) and arranged an audience with the queen. Trump repaid her Tuesday by lavishly praising Boris Johnson, the Brexit leader whose resignation as foreign secretary has brought May’s government to the verge of collapse.

    From there, Trump proceeds to Helsinki to meet Putin, whom Trump has already rewarded with a call for Russia to be readmitted to the G-7, a deepening rift in the transatlantic alliance and an acceptance of Putin’s claim that Russia didn’t interfere in U.S. elections.

    The European killers will watch anxiously to see what gift Trump might bestow this time. Recognition of Russia’s annexation of Ukraine? A drawdown of U.S. troops in Europe?

    It is probably true that hanging out with Putin is the “easiest” thing Trump will do in Europe. But such a fine man requires fine gifts.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/opin...ory.html?noredirect=on&utm_term=.e47d8cc92577
     
  6. Richard Stanley

    Richard Stanley Administrator

    NATO has cowered today before Trump, yet this is not good enough for President Trumputin. The following excerpt lays out what Trump is doing, but we can provide the underlying reason that Sargent wont.

    ...
    In that context, this exchange with Stoltenberg underscores the point. Stoltenberg gave Trump a big moment for domestic consumption, particularly for his base: The power of Trump’s “America First” message is forcing the Euro-weenie elites to stop fleecing the U.S. and pony up! They’re not laughing at us anymore, dammit! America is respected again! Or as one administration official recently described the Trump Doctrine: “We’re America, b—h!”

    Yet the takeaway from the episode has to be that Trump is far from satisfied. But what would satisfy him? It’s true that previous presidents have made an issue of NATO funding in the past, but what’s happening now seems like something different: As Jonathan Chait points out, Trump appears to be deliberately avoiding any scenario in which he might claim a win. Indeed, it’s plausible that, whether through ignorance or malice, he has structured his ask in a way that it cannot be fulfilled, in order to create a pretext for precipitating a fissure with the alliance:

    Compared to a week ago, it is now harder to imagine Trump will use the summit to leverage concessions that will make him appear like a strong negotiator, and much easier to imagine that he will use it to instigate a diplomatic crisis with NATO. By the time this is over, he may well have reoriented American foreign policy completely.

    It’s a variation on the routine of the schoolyard bully who says to his prey, “What did you say about my mother?” The prey then protests that he said nothing, prompting the bully to respond: “Are you calling me a liar?” The parallel is imperfect, but in both cases the interaction is rigged so no response is ever good enough, to create a pretext for a predetermined action.

    Something similar is happening on trade: Trump’s tariffs are being imposed along with demands that cannot be met, suggesting the actual goal is to rupture the global trading order. Indeed, the basic question that threads through many of Trump’s recent actions is whether he is actively trying to destroy the institutions and international order that have undergirded the Western liberal democratic achievement for the past 70 years. What presses this question upon us — and at the same time makes it hard to reckon with adequately — is that so much of what Trump does appears saturated in a level of bad faith that defies description, analysis or explanation.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/blog...ures-trumps-bad-faith/?utm_term=.693d9edf2dfe

    We underwent decades of the Republicans browbeating us that only they could protect the nation from its enemies, now they alternately sit and suck on their thumbs, scared witless by the apocalyptic Brown Shirts at home. They (fawning, brown-nosed Trumpublican senators) travel to Moscow and let Vlad's most bee-utiful whores piss all over them.

    Who's Neville Chamberlain now bitches?
     
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2018
  7. Richard Stanley

    Richard Stanley Administrator

    Of course polls can be rigged, even in Russia, but interesting to find that Putin's citizens find President Trumputin untrustworthy and dangerous. Maybe they still have a memory of Hitler's and Stalin's Non-Aggression Pact?

    In any case, we can most likely expect none of the Trumpian aggressive histrionics to be displayed when visiting with Putin. Trump is getting ready for his Helsinki love nest rendezvous with his handler by playing golf at one of his Russian floated white elephants in Scotland.

    A majority of Russians say they have a negative view of President Trump, according to a new poll from state pollster Russian Public Opinion Research Center (VCIOM).

    The poll, conducted earlier this week, found that 71 percent of respondents had an unfavorable view of Trump, compared to 10 percent who had a favorable view. Nearly 20 percent of respondents said they had no opinion.

    A large majority of respondents, 77 percent, said specifically that they view Trump as “self-centered” and just 16 percent said they think the U.S. president is “trustworthy.”

    A majority also described Trump as “dangerous.”

    The results of the poll come just days before Trump is scheduled to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Helsinki for a bilateral summit. ...

    http://thehill.com/policy/international/397016-poll-most-russians-dislike-trump
     
  8. Richard Stanley

    Richard Stanley Administrator

    Just discovered this 13 minute video of British prankster Simon Brodkin's pranking of then presidential candidate Donald Trump when he previously visited his Turnberry golf course. The video details Brodkin's planning and how he cleverly managed to bypass the Secret Service's security. This is likely great hope for freaky Mike Pence, but cold comfort for the rest of us.

    Priceless (and scarily predictive) was Trump's reaction and the obsequious manner in which minions go about picking up the red swastika golf balls strewn around Trumputin whilst Trumputin gives his speech.

     
  9. Richard Stanley

    Richard Stanley Administrator

    The emptywheel's Marcy Wheeler has been arguing that Russiagate is much more than election meddling, but rather a Grand Bargain between Trump, Putin, the Israelis, the Saudis and friends. The Grand Deal would effectively be Trump's 'New World Order', quite possibly to be announced as the outcome from the immanent Trumputin Helsinki summit. Given the growing heat from the Mueller investigation, Trump needs something dramatic like this to create a real distraction, unlike the ridiculous Kim summit. Such an agreement might give enough political cover for the Trumpublicans to impeach Rosenstein as a means to terminate the investigation.

    The deal would be that Russia would turn against Iran in exchange for the lifting of sanctions and that implementation of Jared Kushner's Peace Plan. The Palestinians and similar Shiites, presumably except the Syrian ones, would be left out in the cold I'm guessing.

    This adds another dimension to Erik Prince's involvement as a go-between besides the claimed plan to occupy Afghanistan with a private corporation to extract minerals and whatnot.

    ...
    All that said, it and some related comments inform why I have argued, since May 2017, that the “Russia” story is actually as much about Jared’s “Peace” “Plan” as it is about payoff to Russia in the form of sanctions relief.

    As I explained, I included the text in the oblique post because of reports that seem to confirm we’re closing in on the deal that Trump turned to implementing just hours after the election.

    Here’s another example, a follow-up from Adam Entous on an earlier report on Donald Trump’s New World Order. He describes how Mohammed bin Zayed told an American shortly before the election — that is, shortly before this text was sent to me — that Vladimir Putin might be willing to make a deal on Syria in exchange for sanctions relief.

    ...
    On the contrary, this text is something I’ve puzzled over ever since, because — as the substance of the text came to be corroborated by both Jared Kushner and Mike Flynn — I couldn’t understand how he had learned of it so quickly.

    The “significant role” I believe this person had in the Russian attack on the US is at least facially entirely separate from the subject of the text, though I do find it really telling that someone I believed had been and was subsequently involved in the attack on the US was in the loop on the foreign policy payoff so quickly.

    All that said, it and some related comments inform why I have argued, since May 2017, that the “Russia” story is actually as much about Jared’s “Peace” “Plan” as it is about payoff to Russia in the form of sanctions relief.

    As I explained, I included the text in the oblique post because of reports that seem to confirm we’re closing in on the deal that Trump turned to implementing just hours after the election.

    Here’s another example, a follow-up from Adam Entous on an earlier report on Donald Trump’s New World Order. He describes how Mohammed bin Zayed told an American shortly before the election — that is, shortly before this text was sent to me — that Vladimir Putin might be willing to make a deal on Syria in exchange for sanctions relief. ...

    https://www.emptywheel.net/2018/07/...ttack-it-just-linked-the-grand-bargain-to-it/
     
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2018
  10. Jerry Russell

    Jerry Russell Administrator Staff Member

    I don't see Trump's grinding on the Europeans as a renunciation of the Western alliance. On the contrary, Trump is acting like an emperor visiting his vassal states. He's demanding more tribute in the form of armaments sales and fuel supply contracts, and wants the Europeans to pay for them by sacrificing social services and enforcing austerity. The European military buildup is directed towards Russia and China, and all the nuclear missiles of the European states are still pointed in that direction.

    Iran is a key geopolitical, strategic and economic interest for Russia. The Russians have been carefully cultivating that alliance for a long time. If Trump can get Putin to welch on that alliance, I'd say it's strong evidence that Trump is Putin's handler, not the other way around. Maybe Trump's golf courses are just more proof that Trump is getting tribute from the Russian oligarchs. For that matter, if it were true that Putin helped Trump win the US election, maybe it's because Putin owed Trump a favor. Maybe the Trump-Russian business dealings are profitable all around. (Not that Putin had anything to do with hacking the DNC computers, or hiring the small cadre of Russian trolls at the Internet Research Agency. That's all Russophobic mainstream media propaganda, as I've pointed out many times.)

    At any rate, journalist Rami Khouri says Putin is not about to throw Iran under the bus, regardless of how much Israel might wish for it.

    https://therealnews.com/stories/can-trump-israel-and-gulf-allies-get-putin-to-turn-on-iran

    ... in terms of what [US] priorities are in the Middle East, is not another one also trying to destabilize and possibly overthrow the government in Iran? And on this front, can Putin-. Say Putin wanted to, could Putin help them in this goal, as seems to be the intent of Netanyahu’s visit to Moscow this week. And this, this report in The New Yorker saying that Trump came under pressure to strike a deal with Putin for exactly that purpose, of removing Iran from Syria.

    RAMI KHOURI: Well, this is the perception that dominates the American media, which is very much shaped by what the Israelis want people to believe. The reality is that the Russians are in the midst of negotiating, you know, maybe $15 billion worth of oil and gas investments in Iran to compensate for some of the people who are leaving Iran because of the American sanctions the the Iranians, and the Russians have been dealing with nuclear issues for some time.

    And also, Iran is a major regional player, as is Turkey. Two non-Arab powers who are very powerful in the region, and use their militaries in different places, especially Syria. And Russia is on good terms with both of them. And therefore the, the Russians are not going to tame Iran or sell out Iran or drop Iran or contain Iran just because Netanyahu or Trump or somebody else wants this for their own purposes.
     
  11. Richard Stanley

    Richard Stanley Administrator

    One can only imagine what the 'First World' would be like today if the crooked Ivy League / Georgetown HillBillies (aka Clintons) hadn't secured Yeltsin on his throne and the crony (admitted) fascist oligarch poodles. And thus Yeltsin's protege successor, Vladimir Putin. Is this really the Bear biting the HillBillies that fed him? "Don't feed the Bear!!!"

    Is Europe failing? There is plenty of evidence to suggest so, from the constant bickering over NATO contributions, to the proliferation of half-baked deals to regulate migration, to the growing signs of authoritarianism in Eastern Europe.

    Yes, Europe has repeatedly failed over the past 70 years, and those failures have been the building blocks of Europe’s success. But things are different today. Today’s noise isn’t simply another invitation for Europe to fail upward again. It’s the sound of Europe threatening to fall apart entirely.

    Three different versions of Europe constitute the one that we know today: the postwar Europe after 1945, the post-1968 Europe of human rights, and then the united Europe that emerged after the end of the Cold War. All three Europes are now cast into doubt. ...

    https://foreignpolicy.com/2018/07/10/3-versions-of-europe-are-collapsing-at-the-same-time/

    The above excerpt neglects to mention the rise of nationalist movements in all of Western Europe, including Brexit which was also supported by Russia.

    No Jerry, Trump is playing chaos Agent Samson, he is making 4% demands that he knows that most all NATO nations will not comply with, immediately after claiming he was responsible for Obama's insistence on gradually raising their commitment to 2%. As such, I suspect that the lesser nations, if not the major nations, are discussing Plans B and C.

    What possibly could Putin have owed to Trump before Trump became President? The Russians saved Trump from his bankruptcies, and as Putin says - they have the most beautiful prostitutes in the world. Even if Trump letting his best lover, Ivanka, sit in Putin's chair was a euphemism for letting Ivanka ride on Putin's lap, this still seems a stretch.

    Besides the properties were Trump merely brands his name and has a management contract, it appears that most Trump properties, especially the gold course, are money pits. And it has been pointed out that Trump is not likely to be anywhere near as wealthy as he has claimed. He has been caught in the past highly overstating his wealth. Most of Putin's poodles have more wealth than Trump does.

    As has been point out by many people, he displays all the personal attributes that make him a target for such as foreign compromise, Russian or otherwise.

    Jerry, this is now more than media propaganda, as their is an highly detailed indictment which says otherwise, which you may choose to continue to call propaganda. But it is not limited to the media now.

    Of course Jerry, there is one common thread which connects ALL the pupp.. err players. Here, even Uncle Stalin appears connected to that thread, albeit the 'media' has mostly scrubbed the evidence. But his bio still reads that he was a triple agent, having worked for the White Russian Ohkrana before becoming the Soviet leader. Coup Coup Ca ...

    I had previously been convinced that a final NWO would have a cosmopolitan aspect to it, but now in watching matters play out, and realizing that the canonic script is being played out, that the final order will be a feudal and Platonic order of ethnic nations, all 'autocrats' answering to one global authority (not Trump). This is also consistent with the feudal order imposed by Joseph and the Pharaoh in Genesis 47, and later by the Roman Imperium and Catholic Church for Europe. This is still decades off, with 2070 being a reasonable target date from a practicality aspect.
     
  12. Richard Stanley

    Richard Stanley Administrator

    Faux News thinks that Putin Ate Trump's Lunch, so I guess I must be wrong Jerry. Of course, Faux News Network has been playing an interesting game inside the Game, appearing to be "fair and balanced" occasionally criticizing President Trumputin, like allowing the following.

    Monday in Helsinki, President Trump left many deeply disappointed in his approach to his summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

    There was nothing inherently wrong with Trump’s summit with Putin. In fact, I would argue that in many cases, some of the best diplomacy comes through face-to-face meetings with adversaries. Still, the meeting was highly problematic in how little Trump delivered on the serious issues surrounding Vladimir Putin and Russia’s place in the modern world.

    At their joint press conference, President Putin was calculated and in control. Conversely, President Trump seemed to lack authority, praising Putin when he should have been condemning him, and ceding opportunities to confront Putin on his most egregious actions of the past decade – including meddling in the 2016 election and the illegal annexation of Crimea in 2014.

    During Putin and Trump’s prepared remarks, it was rather obvious who had led the discussion. While President Putin laid out a clear framework for advancing Russian interests within the context of U.S.-Russia relations, Trump appeared to have had little plan, alternating between vague promises of improving our relationship with Russia and spending too much time on U.S. domestic affairs, notably the 2016 presidential election. Instead of holding Putin accountable for his election interference, he referenced his defeat of Hillary Clinton. ...

    http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2018...nki-this-is-no-way-to-win-against-russia.html
     
  13. Richard Stanley

    Richard Stanley Administrator

  14. Richard Stanley

    Richard Stanley Administrator

    More voices on the right are voicing either concern or outright condemnation at what Trumputin did in Helsinki. Likely these are still not enough to reach a critical mass to remove the traitor. In addition to Trumpublican legislators being afraid of Trump base backlash, likely many are concerned by their financial ties to the NRA, which had $30 million dollars of dark Russian money funneled through it to finance American politicians. And likely there are some with real kompromat dangling over their heads.

    All this done to appease an admitted and proud fascist, openly hostile to traditional American values (the good ones), as was Hitler. In an interview, Putin told Faux News's Chris Wallace that he killed Russian journalists because American politicians have been assassinated. Obviously he meant that "the pen was mightier than the sword", at least in terms of his personal political career, if not his life, and if nothing else. In the press conference, Putin ambiguously admitted that he got Trump elected. He can plausibly deny the admission by claiming that he was only answering the two-part question that he was obviously in favor of Trump getting elected. Trump claimed that Putin would have quickly revealed any kompromat he had on Trumputin, but this is not the way such matters work. Putin denied that he knew Trump was in Moscow for a visit, yet Putin somehow gave Trump a gift while supposedly not knowing Trump was there. Remember, that Putin's KGB job was to recruit foreign businessmen to employ as useful idiots or more.

    ...
    New York Times columnist Charles M. Blow was among the first to apply the “T” word to the president in a prescient Monday piece titled “Trump, Treasonous Traitor,” which appeared just hours before the presser. “It was nothing short of treasonous,” former CIA Director John Brennan tweeted of Trump’s press conference performance. “I’m so sorry the Commander-in-chief is a traitor,” tweeted Michael Moore, agreeing with Brennan for the first time ever. Tea Party stalwart Joe Walsh said the same. “Trump the Traitor,” read the headline on Boston Globe columnist Michael A. Cohen’s Monday afternoon piece. He concluded, “Trump is a clear and present danger to US national security.”

    Other voices from both parties concurred without actually using the T-word. Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) called Trump’s kowtowing to Putin “shameful.” In a statement, Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) said Trump had “abased himself ... abjectly before a tyrant.” “Disgraceful,” wrote Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.). “Shameful,” wrote Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.). “Indefensible,” wrote former U.N. Ambassador Samantha Power. “Useful idiot,” wrote journalist David Corn. “Disgraceful,” reiterated CNN anchor Anderson Cooper. “Dangerous and reckless,” wrote Sen. Bob Casey (D-Pa.). “Donald Trump is either an asset of Russian intelligence or really enjoys playing one on TV,” wrote New York Times columnist Thomas L. Friedman. American academic and diplomat Eliot A. Cohen added this on Twitter, “The word treason is so strong that we must use it carefully. But that press conference has brought the President of the United States right up to that dark, dark shore.”

    Trump's obeisance to Putin in Helsinki was easy to predict given his earlier refusals to call the Russians out and punish them. But were we ready to see him come this close to violating his oath of office to protect and defend the Constitution? Watching him grovel and defer to Putin revealed Trump as a coward and weakling, an excuse-maker and an apologizer, and as someone unfit to hold the office of president. “If this is what President Trump says publicly, what did he tell Putin privately?” asked Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.). ...

    https://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2018/07/16/some-dare-call-it-treason-219014


    In any case the with the above reactions growing and the growing revelations from the Mueller investigation, the Rubicon for Trump to dissolve the republic, as we know it, is much closer. This, simply to protect himself if not the agenda of his backers, foreign and domestic, in rolling back the 'state' on many fronts. This approaching Rubicon is apparent by the desperation shown by President Tweety Bird and the Trumpublican congressmen so eager to do his bidding in harassing the investigation.
     
  15. Richard Stanley

    Richard Stanley Administrator

    Never mind!!!

    What a piece of work.

    President Donald Trump attempted on Tuesday to clarify his widely criticized comments in Helsinki, saying that he had misspoken when he said a day earlier that he did not see why Russia would have meddled in the election. Trump said Tuesday he meant to say he did not see any reason why it wouldn't have been Russia that interfered.

    "I thought that I made myself very clear, but having just reviewed the transcript...I realized that there is a need for some clarification," Trump said Tuesday at the White House. "The sentence should have been...'I don't see any reason why it wouldn't be Russia'."

    At the Monday press conference with Russian President Vladimir Putin, Trump said about election meddling in 2016: "(Putin) just said it's not Russia. I will say this: I don't see any reason why it would be." ...

    https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/po...lsinki-meant-say-n892166?cid=eml_nbn_20180717
     
  16. Richard Stanley

    Richard Stanley Administrator

    Who owns whom?

    upload_2018-7-17_14-31-2.png

    All the visuals from Monday show the same thing. No doubt Trump had his Depends on.
     
  17. Jerry Russell

    Jerry Russell Administrator Staff Member

    Rick, what I see here is the US military-industrial-media complex seething with hatred against Russia, eager for war, based on zero evidence. Trump, for all his failings, seems to be fighting against that hugely dangerous tidal wave.

    I have been saying for some time that Putin is smarter, better educated and more articulate than Trump. He's also less bigoted, less vainly materialistic, and far more popular in Russia than Trump is in the USA. So I'm not the least bit surprised that Putin "owned" the exchange with Trump, in audience perception.

    Hasn't this thread been documenting the extent to which Trump himself exhibits fascist traits? It's the US and its EU allies, not Russia, that is continually invading other states, acting like Hitler on the international stage. It's been a long time since the USA, in practice, has represented a 'Liberal' enterprise.

    It's a sad state of affairs, that the traditionalist, nationalist Putin is the last, best hope for "Liberal" values, among the governments of the world.

    This seems to be a good explanation why Putin might owe something to the Clintons: because they put him in office. Put that together with the cozy relationship between Trump and the Clintons, and voila. This is why the Russians send money to Trump.

    Good analogy. Yes, the bear is now biting the hand that fed him. It's tough to keep vassal states and proxy rulers towing the line. Pesky provincial states are always rebelling against the Empire.

    Trump may be creating chaos, yes. But how do you know the European governments won't comply with the 4% demands in the end, however much they might grumble? So much the more so if the EU collapses, leaving the European states to deal individually with the USA. We'll wind up with European economies in shambles, heavily re-militarized, and more beholden than ever to the US.

    If Europe does go to plan "B" and join up with Russia, then Trump's plan is a failure. Most likely, plan "C" for Europe will be to diplomatically attempt to build and maintain alliances simultaneously with both USA and Russia, as they're already trying to do.
     
  18. Jerry Russell

    Jerry Russell Administrator Staff Member

    Why? Has anything changed about Russia's alliance with Iran? If Russia is working together with the Saudis and the rest of OPEC to maintain high oil prices, doesn't that benefit Iran? Iran is a founding member of OPEC.

    That's not what Putin said. Wallace was grilling Putin about Skripal, Nepsov, and Poletkovskya. The first two we've already talked about here, and there's no evidence tying Putin or anyone in the Russian government to these crimes. The dialog that ensued:

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news...e-grilling-trump-wont/?utm_term=.a894bdcf5606

    PUTIN (THROUGH TRANSLATOR): Well, first of all, all of us have plenty of political rivals. I’m pretty sure President Trump has plenty of political rivals.

    WALLACE: But they don’t end up dead.

    PUTIN: Well, not always — well, haven’t presidents been killed in the United States? Have you forgotten about — well, has Kennedy been killed in Russia or in the United States? Or Mr. King? What — and what happens to the clashes between police and, well, civil society, and some — several ethnic groups? Well, that’s something that happens on the U.S. soil. All of us have our own set of domestic problems.

    But going back to what happened in Russia, yes. We do have crime and we unfortunately — there are some crimes. And to some extent, Russia’s statehood is maturing. And there are some side effects. And we prosecute people responsible for these crimes. But since you’ve mentioned the Skripal case, we would like to get at least some sort of a document, evidence about it. But nobody gives it to us. It’s the same thing as the accusations with meddling into the election process in America. We recently heard that two more people suffered from the same nerve agent that is called Novichok. I have never even heard the last names of these persons. Who are they? What —

    WALLACE: Supposedly they picked up the bottle that was used to attack Skripal.

    In other words: Wallace was making the ridiculous claim that political assassinations never occur in the USA, and Putin was simply refuting that claim. Putin went on to say that when crimes are committed in Russia, they are prosecuted -- and he questioned Russian responsibility for the Skripal case.

    Typical, but making the best of a bad situation. This "clarification" doesn't clarify anything at all, other than that Trump is still Trump. He doesn't see any reason why it would or it wouldn't be Russia. If he says it was definitely NOT Russia, he's crossing swords with the CIA and "intelligence community". And if he says it WAS Russia, he'd be lying.
     
  19. Jerry Russell

    Jerry Russell Administrator Staff Member

    Caitlin Johnstone's entire essay on the Helsinki summit is well worth reading, but I'm highlighting these paragraphs:

    https://caitlinjohnstone.com/2018/0...rpowers-offends-americas-assholes-and-morons/

    Though you’ll never hear American mass media talking about it on either MSNBC or Fox News because it doesn’t fit the narrative on either side, Trump has actually dangerously escalated cold war tensions with Russia far beyond anything his predecessor dared to do. From adopting a Nuclear Posture Review with greatly increased aggression toward Russia and blurring lines between when nuclear strikes are and are not appropriate, to facilitating the longstanding neoconservative agenda to arm Ukraine (a dangerously hawkish move which Obama adamantly refused to do), to repeatedly bombing the Syrian government and killing Russians in Syria as part of its illegal occupation of that country, to throwing out Russian diplomats on more than one occasion, to expanding NATO with the addition of Montenegro, to aggressive sanctions on Russian oligarchs and more, this administration has inflamed tensions along multiple fronts and increased the probability of something going disastrously, irrevocably wrong.

    Whether the US president has been doing these things because that was his plan all along, or because he is beholden to powers which wish to advance such agendas, or because he’s caving to political pressures from his opponents in order to avoid accusations of treason, is a question that’s open for debate. Personally, I do not care. What matters is the fact that these escalations are there, and that they need to be scaled down, and that I shouldn’t have to share a fucking planet with anyone who thinks otherwise.
    Regardless of whatever winking and nodding might have gone on between Trump and Putin, I'm not aware that any of these situations have been materially de-escalated.
     
  20. Jerry Russell

    Jerry Russell Administrator Staff Member

    Why does Trump need to dissolve the dysfunctional remains of the Republic? On the contrary, he continues to have the Republicans cowering in fear, and the Democrats are completely lacking in any spine necessary to pursue an impeachment proceeding. Mueller doesn't seem to have any case. Trump's packing of the Supreme Court is a done deal anyhow, so even if Mueller won, he would lose in the end.

    As the WSWS pointed out this morning, the real impending Rubicon is a military coup overthrowing Trump. Re-blogging in its entirety.

    http://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2018/07/17/pers-j17.html

    After Helsinki, Democrats incite “deep state” action against Trump
    17 July 2018
    Monday’s meeting in Helsinki has unleashed a torrent of wild denunciations that verge on a direct appeal to the military and intelligence agencies to take action to force Donald Trump’s removal from the White House.

    The Democratic Party, the corporate media and leading figures within the US military and intelligence apparatus have joined in branding Trump a traitor who is functioning as an agent of the Kremlin.

    Trump and his cohorts have many crimes to answer for. But the objectives that motivate the anti-Trump hysteria in the media and the conspiratorial methods to which the Democrats are resorting are utterly reactionary.

    The summit in Helsinki was preceded by the strategically timed announcement of an indictment of 12 alleged Russian military intelligence officers by Special Counsel Robert Mueller on charges of hacking into the computers of the Democratic National Committee and Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign chairman, John Podesta.

    This indictment, which consists of a series of unsubstantiated allegations, was seized upon by top Democrats and sections of the media to demand that Trump call off his meeting with Putin.

    When the Republican president ignored these demands and went ahead with the trip to Helsinki, the Democrats and their allied media outlets were prepared to erupt as soon as the talks had ended. This was made clear by a particularly reactionary piece by New York Times columnist Charles Blow headlined “Trump, Treasonous Traitor” published on the morning of the meeting, which accused Trump of “committing an unbelievable and unforgivable crime against this country …”

    The hysterical tone had already been decided upon in advance of the Trump-Putin meeting, and the reaction once it was over was instantaneous.

    No sooner had the US and Russian presidents finished their joint press conference than CNN’s anchor in Helsinki, Anderson Cooper, an heir to the Vanderbilt fortune who interned with the CIA before going into television news, announced to his viewers that they had been “watching the most disgraceful conduct by an American president…that I have ever seen.”

    ”The most disgraceful conduct by an American president”? That’s really saying something!

    More disgraceful than George W. Bush’s launching of a war of aggression against Iraq based on lies, which claimed more than a million lives? More disgraceful than Barack Obama’s drone assassination campaign that murdered thousands? More disgraceful than Trump’s own savage war on immigrants, in which the deliberate torture of children has become a weapon?

    What was Trump’s crime in Helsinki that eclipsed all of these war crimes and crimes against humanity? It was to question the campaign over Russian “meddling” in the 2016 election, in which the media treats the assertions of US intelligence agencies—the same agencies that gave us “weapons of mass destruction”—as proven facts, despite the lack of any substantiation.

    In one of the few incisive moments of the press conference in Helsinki, Putin, the former KGB agent, commented that, as a former intelligence officer, he had some familiarity with “how these dossiers are made.”

    The less traction this campaign gets within the American working population, the more frenzied its promotion by layers of the ruling oligarchy, the media corporations and the vast US intelligence apparatus. The vitriolic language employed in the denunciations of Trump’s statements in Helsinki has an ominous character.

    John Brennan, the career CIA official who became the agency’s director under Obama, declared that Trump’s appearance with Putin in Helsinki “exceeds the threshold of ‘high crimes and misdemeanors.’ It was nothing short of treasonous.”

    James Clapper, the former director of national intelligence, charged that Trump “essentially capitulated and seems intimidated by Vladimir Putin.”

    New York Times foreign affairs columnist Thomas Friedman, the chief media propagandist for the Iraq war, described Trump as “an asset of Russian intelligence,” adding sonorously, “My fellow Americans, we are in trouble and we have some big decisions to make today. This was a historic moment in the entire history of the United States,” given that Trump had “engaged in treasonous behavior.”

    Friedman added: “Every single Republican lawmaker will be—and should be asked on the election trail: Are you with Trump and Putin or are you with the CIA, FBI and NSA?”

    Such is the choice offered by the American ruling class to the population of the United States: Side with Trump or side with the unaccountable and murderous operatives of the “deep state.” Friedman and the Times, who reliably articulate the line of the Democratic Party, make clear that the Democrats are the party of the latter.

    Unmentioned by Friedman or any of the dozens of other media pundits who spoke or wrote along similar lines are the enormous crimes carried out by these agencies, from coups and assassinations of foreign leaders to torture and domestic spying.

    Friedman went on to assert that the only appropriate message for Trump to have delivered to Putin was a threat that Washington would regard Russian “meddling” as “an act of war,” and that “we will not only sanction you like never before, but you’ll taste every cyberweapon we have in our arsenal.” In other words, a threat of nuclear world war.

    There is an unmistakable logic to this kind of language. To the extent that Trump cannot be ousted by means of impeachment, the door is open to a military coup.

    This option was given concrete expression by Michael Hayden, the former four-star Air Force general who headed both the CIA and the National Security Agency. Interviewed by National Public Radio on Monday, he condemned Trump’s statements in Helsinki and added that “mid-range officers come and ask me what do I tell my people, and that’s a really telling question.”

    Behind the scenes, sections of the active-duty military, CIA spooks and former heads of major US intelligence agencies are in discussions about what is to be done with Donald Trump.

    If the military were to stage a coup against Trump, there is no doubt that the leadership of the Democratic Party would fall into line behind an American junta.

    The concerns of Trump’s ruling class antagonists are threefold. They fear that Trump’s “America First” foreign policy, based on trade war and the disruption of longstanding alliances such as NATO, is undermining the drive for US global hegemony.

    Second, those within the ruling class and the state apparatus opposing Trump view any attempt to reach a temporary accommodation with Moscow as a dangerous diversion from confrontation with a country they regard as a major impediment to US strategic interests.

    Third, there is a growing fear within America’s ruling oligarchy that the conditions are emerging within the US itself for an explosion of class conflict, which the Trump administration will prove incapable of containing. Within the ruling class a consensus is growing that it will prove impossible to suppress the coming social upheavals within the limits of democratic forms of rule.

    The dangers posed by the deepening of the political crisis, now driven above all by a growth of social opposition to capitalism among workers in the United States and internationally, can be answered only through the development of an independent political struggle of the working class in opposition to both parties and all factions of the capitalist class, and based on a program of workers’ power, the international unity of the working class, and socialism.

    Bill Van Auken
     

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