Trump Wild Card a Modified Status Quo

By   /   January 19, 2017  /   44 Comments

TDB recommends Voyager - Unlimited internet @home as fast as you can get

Trump’s abrasive style and irreverence for established policies and protocols looks to be destabilising at global level. He has us thinking that he’ll be a real threat to the existing fragile international peace between nuclear capable superpowers. He’ll make a gaff, or a wrong statement, commit some diplomatic faux pas, and China or Russia will push the red button.

Donald Trump’s election success is becoming more of a reality by the day, and he gets inaugurated this weekend. The internet is full of rightful speculation on what his term or terms will bring. There’s lots of fear and loathing. I also fear and loathe the man. His lifestyle, flashy trappings, arrogance and extreme wealth have long reflected all that’s crass about big business and its excesses, particularly in America. But is Trump such a radical, rogue, and dangerous new President as many of us worry, or is the new President just like every other President, with a wild card style, but in fact, just a modified, status quo?

Trump’s abrasive style and irreverence for established policies and protocols looks to be destabilising at global level. He has us thinking that he’ll be a real threat to the existing fragile international peace between nuclear capable superpowers. He’ll make a gaff, or a wrong statement, commit some diplomatic faux pas, and China or Russia will push the red button. There’s a madman (mad men, plural) in control of the planet’s future. Trump’s climate change views, taken to the extreme offer the same existentialist threat.

But as opposed to the antagonism between Russia and America under Barak Obama, Trump and Putin are comrades! Indeed, there are many similarities between them. Trump has a better existing relationship with Putin than the previous President, and that can only be ‘so far, so good’ for international affairs. Under Obama, tensions in the Crimea and Ukraine have resulted in massive militarisation, with Russian, and unprecedented ‘battle ready’ American and NATO troops concentrated in the region. If through their own brand of diplomatic relations, Putin and Trump manage to take that conflict off the boil, then all the better.
Meanwhile, the risk of increasing antagonism between America and China is a clear one, with or without Trump at the helm. Again, under Obama’s watch, there’s been growing hostile inflammatory behaviour from both countries protecting their perceived righteous self-interests in the South China Sea. America are down there buzzing the place with their military hardware, enforcing a self-appointed jurisdiction far from home. American geopolitical supremacy is at stake, but who doesn’t see the changing of that guard already? And America has to protect its, and our, trade routes after all.

Trump has quickly and flippantly but maybe even deliberately rejected / ignored / or been ignorant of established conventions by accepting a congratulatory call from Taiwan’s Premier upon his election. “Donald, didn’t you know about the ‘One China’ policy?” “For diplomatic purposes, Taiwan does not exist”. Who’s briefing this guy already? Is he even briefable? And who can blame him if he resists the inertia and agenda of the establishment anyway, in foreign affairs, diplomacy and the CIA? As Donald himself pointed out, America can sell $2billion military weapons to Taiwan but the new President can’t accept a phone call? So at very least he deserves credit for showing up the hypocrisies in the strange dark world of politics, diplomacy and arms sales.

In reality, neither Trump, nor Obama, or any President or single elected official really ‘runs’ the country. The industrial-military machine is bigger than any of them. And capitalism is too big to fail. There’s always an argument against unbridled power in the hands of one leader, especially when they’re seemingly arbitrary actors in charge of nuclear armed states. But we were at such risk of mutually assured destruction under Reagan (despite détente) as under Clinton, and Obama.

After all the farewell speeches and oratory, it’s like there’s a mood to nominate Barak Obama for Sainthood. Remembering of course that he won a Nobel peace prize, almost just for being elected. The world is less secure, and tens of millions of people have been effected by wars in the Middle East perpetrated by America after the last eight years of Obama’s reign. According to John Pilger, in 2016 alone Obama dropped 26,171 bombs. He says under Obama’s rule, the US has extended secret “special forces” operations to 138 countries, covering 70 per cent of the world’s population.

As a result of Obama’s own style of war-mongering, civilians in both the Eastern and western world feel less safe than ever before. There’s nothing like a drone strike that takes out your family to radicalise citizens. So now acts of ‘terror’ on domestic soil bring wars closer to home for the general public. Conflicts won’t just be contained to some ‘foreign field’, or dusty bazaar any more. ‘Terrorist’ dissidents wage their own form of warfare on new western battlefields that are public places too – nightclubs, concerts, train stations, streets, partly provoked by the destruction of their own homes and communities, houses and plazas by American and allied weaponry.

Politics is the ‘art of the possible’ but Obama’s agenda was also partly set for him, constrained and defined by established military interventions, foreign policy and investment. These commitments were bigger than any Presidential prerogative and overrode any more noble ambitions. But in turn, Obama has committed future Presidents such as Trump, to trillions more military expenses in the future.

Obama has been as culpable and corrupt as the Bushes (after all, as a friend of mine says, Obama was just a black Bush), and so on, as with Clinton, Reagan, …Nixon, Kennedy…. The engine of that good ship America is a corporate capitalist, military-industrial one, and all any President can do is try to steer it, but he won’t and can’t, sink the ship.
I’m sure history will come to judge Trump as a wild card, who made the world less safe, fair and sustainable than before. We have reason to be afraid. But that’s just a modified status quo, not a departure from the American norm.

***
Want to support this work? Donate today
***
Follow us on Twitter & Facebook
***

44 Comments

  1. Peter Bradley says:

    This sounds crazy but some of things trump says are extremely progressive – regulation of the pharmaceutical industry, berating military manufactures, deriding off shoring of jobs and talking about healthcare for all. What’s more Trump has proposed good relations with Russia likely to reduce the likelihood of conflict.
    If Trump is able to follow through with polices that back up his statements he could well end up being more progressive than Obama in practical terms. That’s a big if since getting things achieved in the US political system is very difficult.

    • Chooky says:

      +100..

    • Sally's Husband says:

      Peter I don’t know what planet you’re from but ‘Trump’ and ‘progressive’ are not words I’d use in the same sentence.

      Would you care to provide the references to your claims about “regulation of the pharmaceutical industry, berating military manufactures, deriding off shoring of jobs and talking about healthcare for all”? Because it’s news to me.

      In fact, Trump has announced a massive build-up of US military/nuclear forces. So that’s hardly some kind of de-escalation.

      And thus far Trump hasn’t announced any replacement for Obamacare that anyone is remotely aware off.

      Methinks you’re seeing things in Trump that aren’t really there, Peter.

    • CosmicRay says:

      Agreed – glad to see that someone else is actually listening to what he said, not just reports from the Hillary fan club aka the mainstream media. My biggest hope is that he improves relations with Russia. Putin doesn’t want war either. Let’s move on and be grown ups.

      His other comments on breaking down pharma monopoly and bringing jobs back to America don’t sound too bad either. If he is successful we could look to doing the same here. Gosh, how progressive. We wait to see what he does for healthcare – many have seen there premiums double and trebble since Obamacare came in – they want to see a better system too.

  2. andrew says:

    Trump is just one guy in an office, albeit a round one.

    To think that one man can destabilize the world is somewhat extreme.

    He is surrounded by moderating influences in the form of his staff, Congress, the Senate, a Federal system and the Supreme Court.

    • Christine Rose says:

      Andrew, I make that point that Trump isn’t just one guy in control, if you read the article.

      • Mike in Auckland says:

        Guys like Andrew will never get it, they do not want to get it, they are displaying ignorance here for ulterior motives.

    • Sam Sam says:

      the committee has to pick her apart because theyve done such a terrible job to date

  3. bert says:

    The accompanying graphic of Mount Rushmore to your piece is hilarious!

    “Oh F^#@%! what have they done”!

  4. Afewknowthetruth says:

    The entire economic-political system is unsustainable and in terminal decline because it is predicated on continuing (even expanded) use of fossil fuels, continued (even expanded) disruption of the geochemistry that makes life-as-we-know-it possible, and continued (or even expanded) ‘printing’ of fiat currencies.

    Trump is just another opportunist who has managed to wheedle his way to the top of the economic-political system, and, like all the other clowns and liars in power throughout most of the industrial world, will only make matter worse faster. Making things worse faster is absolutely guaranteed. As is a huge amount of lying.

    Whether people on the receiving end of America bombs and missiles will be any better off with Trump as president instead of Obama is yet to be seen.

    Never forget, it’s all a puppet show run by the ‘owners’ of America and most of this planet in their quest of energy and resources, which they use to prop up their unsustainable lifestyles just a little longer at the expense of the next generation.

    ‘Modified Status Quo’ is guaranteed. And they’ll keep doing it till they can’t.

  5. CLEANGREEN says:

    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/01/15/business/world-economic-forum-davos-shifting-us-stance-on-climate-change.html?_r=0

    The Global elite are now sitting in Davos totally floored that their plan for a one world order run by the eight richest people in the world who own now more than half of the rest of the world.

    “Just eight of the richest people on earth own as much combined wealth as half the human race”

    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/01/16/world/eight-richest-wealth-oxfam.html?rref=collection%2Fnewseventcollection%2FWorld Economic Forum in Davos&action=click&contentCollection=Business%20Day&module=Collection&region=Marginalia&src=me&version=newsevent&pgtype=article

    Trump is a large obstruction to their one world government plan now.

    • Chooky says:

      +100…re “Trump is a large obstruction to their one world government plan now.”

      …the oligarchy never supported him…too much of a wild card who spoke against their interests

  6. Adrian Thornton says:

    I think Cornel West and Tavis Smiley sum up Obama quite nicely in this two part Democracy Now! interview 2012…

    https://www.democracynow.org/2012/11/9/tavis_smiley_cornel_west_on_the

  7. Mike in Auckland says:

    This says it all, really:

    http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/onpolitics/2017/01/12/donald-trump-dina-habib-powell-goldman-sachs-george-w-bush/96500754/

    I know, this is US MSM, but Trump is indeed picking advisors and other ones as Secretaries of portfolios, who are anything but unblemished and anti establishment.

  8. Mike in Auckland says:

    And more signs of the PLUTOCRACY to come:

    http://www.vanityfair.com/news/2017/01/hedge-funds-need-a-cold-shower-theyre-so-excited-about-trump

    Trump and his backers knew, you only need to get enough to the politically illiterate, the emotional, the angry, the frustrated and desperate “dumbed down” people out to vote for you, and you are there, in the White House.

    Others did it before, with Bush and Reagan, for example, we had one Mr Key rule for eight years, voted in by idiots and selfish jerks combined, that was enough to get in and run government.

  9. CLEANGREEN says:

    100% MIKE

  10. Robert Atack says:

    Richard Heinberg said something along the lines of “we would vote for poon town natzies” in a post peak world, as long as they promised what we wanted and ignored the facts, ie coal over climate change.
    But at 405 … what ever PPM CO2, it wouldn’t matter if we burnt every last ounce of coal, and every drop of oil, humans are fuked no matter what, we can’t make it better of worse. …. we done it already.
    Well there is one thing I guess, we could start firing nukes, which will just speed up the global contamination from the 440+ power stations and cooling rod pools, that will need electricity for the next 50 years … which leads ‘us’ back to coal )

    • Iain Mclean says:

      Robert;

      Sadly this hype about CO2 is balderdash.

      It is 0.04% of atmosphere.!

      95% of greenhouse effect gas is actually water vapour.! H2O.

      Ask any real truly independent climate scientist.

      It’s all about control of Nation States and the citizens within them.

      Sorry.

  11. Iain Mclean says:

    Christine;

    I believe you might be wrong about Trump’s Administration, but having said that, your overall balance in your article is like a breath of fresh air.

    This is what comes from a person that obviously does not get their information
    solely from the MSM.

    Keep up the good work.

    Cheers.

    • Christine Rose says:

      Thanks Iain, I appreciate the feedback. Trump’s pretty scary, – was there something in particular you disagreed with? Do you think it will be better, or worse than I predict?

  12. countryboy says:

    I’ve watched the U$A and it’s Israeli mates wage wars on women, kids and animals for a dollar and a giggle. If trump does nothing at all, he’ll be better than the cadre of evil swine before him.

  13. This Trump “silver lining” line has me baffled. If any of you think there might be something for the people who really matter, get ready for less than crumbs. I’ve heard these arguments about politics for years and years and at the same time watched working people get dealt to – if anyone thinks a Trump administration will contribute to a revolution, then study history. I’m no Obama apologist, but please have a look who is in the Trump administration. Tell me that workers are going to be better off when the secretary of labour is from Carls Junior. The Republicans now have control of the House and Senate. Many of the things Obama tried to do were stymied because there was no Democratic majority. But now we have a government with a free hand. I watch in fear and loathing. And the roundup of righties from around the world attending his inauguration this weekend should be a warning for everyone.

    • Sam Sam says:

      Hi Darien

      Most of his caucus picks are ex Goldmen Sachs, as a company Goldmen is head and shoulders above the rest in terms of share price earrings and talent. Because they literally buy the best talent in the world straight out of Uni. And we are seeing these fundamentles have an immediate impact on the markets. We can’t put this trend down to anything else but Trump.

      The problem I see is in Steve Bonan. He is the figurative Eliot Ness, he is all to aware of how chaotic good change is let alone bad change. Millions of brown and black people are with out legal representation or means to defend themselves from a the United States that needs to double its prison population.

      It’s a race war

      • Mike in Auckland says:

        So what are the motives of Goldman Sachs then, I wonder, charity and social justice???

        • Sam Sam says:

          This is the third time Iv written this message because Aussie internet goes on the fritz in 50° heat. So this is the sort version.

          2 things

          1) market making, which is using financial leverage to create demand

          2) profit taking. A co-workers girlfriend had an options position that fell 3%. I advised her to cash out $2000AU which was still great profit at the time, she replied, I’ll wait till it goes back up to $140, I showed her the fundamentals again, she kept her position, the next day the stock went to zero. That was my first introduction to greed.

          These are the only two motives of an investment/retail banker

    • Christine Rose says:

      I don’t think anything good is likely to come out of his Presidency (and may lead to some differently aligned international relations, for better or worse), but worry that Obama’s vicious record and that whole American tradition of mistreating people at home and abroad, is expunged from the history books just because Trump’s been elected. Let’s not forget he’s representative of an unjust system, that wouldn’t have changed no matter who was elected – maybe even if it had been Bernie!

  14. Christine Rose says:

    I don’t think anything good is likely to come out of his Presidency (and may lead to some differently aligned international relations, for better or worse), but worry that Obama’s vicious record and that whole American tradition of mistreating people at home and abroad, is expunged from the history books just because Trump’s been elected. Let’s not forget he’s representative of an unjust system, that wouldn’t have changed no matter who was elected – maybe even if it had been Bernie!



Authorised by Martyn Bradbury, The Editor, TheDailyBlog, 5 Victoria St East/Queen St, CBD, Auckland, New Zealand.