GUEST BLOG: Andra Jenkin – Trump: In his Own Words

By   /   July 13, 2017  /   48 Comments

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When I was a kid, around 12 I guess, my father was a newsreader on Radio Windy. The news would come out of a clunky teletype machine in a long roll of paper. Circled with a line through it was the news not to be broadcast on the air. Dad assigned me the task of reading these items.

When I was a kid, around 12 I guess, my father was a newsreader on Radio Windy. The news would come out of a clunky teletype machine in a long roll of paper. Circled with a line through it was the news not to be broadcast on the air. Dad assigned me the task of reading these items.

He wanted me to check that New Zealanders weren’t missing out on important information because it might affect the station’s advertisers, or wasn’t aligned with its politics. Most of that news was simply Eurocentric and not releveant to our small island nation, or it wasn’t as newsworthy as the stories marked to be read on the radio. But occasionally I’d find something interesting, and despite the direction not to, dad would read it on air. He never got fired for this and I took a few lessons with me from the experience.

One, that it was better to ask forgiveness than permission. After the fact there wasn’t much the powers that be could do about it, unless they really did want to escalate to firing him. Two, that there was plenty going on in the world we never got to hear about and the reasons for that mattered. Because thirdly, there really was a slant to the media, and that bias was generally skewed in favour of those with money. I learned that if you truly want to know what’s going on with a story, follow the money. Fourthly, I found out that there were good people, who cared about the truth, working in newsrooms.

That was often how they got there. It was cruical to them that people got the news that was important and they wanted to ensure everyone had access to information about the world they lived in.

I want to continue that legacy. It’s important to me to write the truth. When writing about Donald Trump, that’s harder than you might think. I’ve cross checked, verified references and I read so many articles trying to either confirm or deny things that seem impossibly mad and I have thought must be satire, but after hours of research, I find, no, the President of the United States acutally said . “You know, I’m automatically attracted to beautiful — I just start kissing them. It’s like a magnet. Just kiss. I don’t even wait. And when you’re a star, they let you do it. You can do anything….Grab them by the pussy. You can do anything.”

I think people must know from that quote alone he’s a misogynist, he doesn’t care about consent, and when a female minor accuses him of rape, that it doesn’t seem such a leap when he says things like this. But then I hear people justifying his unjustifiable positions and it makes me crazy.

Desipite the time and effort I spend on finding out what is fake news, alt facts, outright lies, or indeed, what is actually accurate, I often see that what I report is not believed. His supporters won’t believe a word said against him. Then there are those who uniformly mistrust anything reported by what they refer to as the MSM, (mainstream media) which appears to include everything not written on random blogs with or without evidence. But while readers may believe Trump over me, I wonder why they don’t believe what he is capable of when he is pretty clear about it. For instance, he doesn’t care what I write because firstly I’m a woman, and our entire gender don’t rate too highly judging by his words and actions, and he says himself “You know, it really doesn’t matter what the media write as long as you’ve got a young, and beautiful piece of ass.”

While I realise that many news outlets are owned by the same few rich people whose interests are certainly protected by some of the editors and reporters in their employ, I refuse to belive that every single person who works in the mainstream media is in on a global conspiracy to lie about Donald Trump.

I don’t need to believe other reporters either, there are plenty of hideous, wrong-headed, racist, mysogenistic and made up nonsense stated by the current POTUS that can be seen online, in his speeches, in his tweets. So I don’t think he is racist because CNN have told me he is, I believe it because he said “When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending the best. They’re not sending you, they’re sending people that have lots of problems and they’re bringing those problems with us. They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists… And some, I assume, are good people.”

So the idea that his ban is a Muslim ban rather than a travel ban is no leap.

If he was worried about terrorists he’d have a problem with Saudi Arabia rather than selling them more arms than anyone has in the history of the world.

No, I’m not able to verify every story first hand. I don’t live in the United States, and I do not have direct access to Donald Trump, therefore the reports of others informs my opinion. Reports that often show footage of Trump’s actual words and deeds and discuss real laws that have impact on people all over the world.

Trump himself relies on the mistrust of the media by his supporters, and one of the most dangerous things he is doing is negating the news about him. By lying and saying that news that criticises him is fake, he starts a debate about the reliability of sources that bring us the world. By setting up the media as an opposition party, he does what all despots do, he blinds us all to any opposing or critical view of his actions in order that his rule be unquestioned.

I’ve seen what that looks like. When I was in Indonesia a wailing woman would come on the TV screen before the news. On every chanel. There was no choice in the news. There was only one news broadcast, telling the populace of the most recent wonderful thing that had been achieved by their ruler Suharto, who embezzelled billions from his people.

The poverty in Indonesia was evident, the lack of healthcare, education, equality or opportunities. Indeed the Rupiah had crashed to the extent that my American travellers cheques trippled in value in the three days I had been there and the middle class were rioting. I didn’t hear that those riots were quelled with AK47s until I got back to New Zealand and found out from a comedian during his routine. It seemed apt. This lack of news and the resulting governmental corruption, in my view, is exactly where America is headed, and if National gets into power again, they will import the user pays model for healthcare and education causing greater inequality and poverty than we have ever had before. The more we hand over power to our government, and allow them to dictate the narrative of the media, the more likely we are to have our own riots quelled with firearms. Then like Indonesia in the 90s, those who speak out will disappear and no one will be safe to speak. News will be propaganda and we will all be powerless.

I believe it’s important to report the truth about Trump, because everything I’ve read about him, everything I’ve seen, all of his actions and words lead me to believe that this is exactly what he wants. He knows what he is doing and what he is doing is copying Putin, who rules in exactly this way. That is how unchecked power becomes absolute. We should know that its harder to get rid of than it is to prevent. But if you don’t trust the media, you won’t believe me.

Trump is the worst president ever to disgrace the office. I truly think he is dangerous and unstable and potentially might kill us all, and as I’ve previously reported, I’m not the only one. When the doomsday clock is moved closer to midnight, because people like Steven Hawking belived Trump is a threat to the world’s surivial, that makes me sit up and take notice, whether it’s the mainstream media reporting it or not.

So this week I haven’t researched what he’s done this week, I’ve scattered his actual words throughout this article in an attempt to let him speak for himself. If you want to know what someone is like, they will tell you. All you have to do is listen.

 

 

Andra Jenkin co-wrote Double-Edged Sword- The Simonne Butler Story, and contributed to New Zealand Anthology of Women’s Comics ‘Three Words.’

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48 Comments

  1. Geoff Lye says:

    You are dead right we should be very worried.

  2. kejomu says:

    Thanks Andra

  3. Historian Pete says:

    There is no doubt about it, Herr Trump is a filthy pervert.And the interesting thing is that the last 20 years of the U.S Empire State Sponsors of Terrorism Presidency have produced two filthy perverts! I refer to sicko cigar pervert Bill Clinton. Of course both Herr Trump and Bill Clinton are also war criminals with their propensity for illegal regime change, and firing missiles at other countries in false flag operations. Still,its what the exceptional country does. But to be fair to Bill and Donald ,the U.S is so ridden with political corruption; 95% of the members of congress are on the take and the real rulers are the deep State/Oligarchy, that its probably very difficult to not follow suit.The good thing though is that the economy is teetering on the verge of collapse with the predations of the Banksters, the vast cost of the military complex ,the social cost of the two and a half million prisoner prison industrial complex ,the obsolete and decaying infrastructure ,the collapsing health system, and the falling standard of living for both the working and middle class! We all know where this is heading. Karl Marx will be rotating in his grave. Yeehaa !!

    • D'Esterre says:

      Historian Pete: “the interesting thing is that the last 20 years of the U.S Empire State Sponsors of Terrorism Presidency have produced two filthy perverts! I refer to sicko cigar pervert Bill Clinton. Of course both Herr Trump and Bill Clinton are also war criminals with their propensity for illegal regime change, and firing missiles at other countries in false flag operations.”

      Heh, true! Though in my view, all of the previous iterations of POTUS, going back to Kennedy at least, could with justification be tagged as war criminals. And little doubt that Kennedy was also a pervert; it’s only the fact that social media didn’t then exist which prevented his antics becoming public at the time and sullying that wholesome image.

  4. Brigid says:

    “Trump is the worst president ever to disgrace the office. I truly think he is dangerous and unstable and potentially might kill us all…”

    Yes, and he is Obama’s legacy

  5. Andy says:

    CNN is fake news. They admit it themselves via the Project Veritas videos

  6. Historian Pete says:

    “Trump knows what he is doing is copying Putin,who rules in exactly this way.That is how unchecked power becomes absolute”
    Trump does not have the intellectual capacity of Putin to be able to copy him.Neither does Hillary or Mike Pense.You were always going to have a cerebral pygmy in the Whitehouse. Trump also can only dream of the approval rating that Putin enjoys !

    • Trump also can only dream of the approval rating that Putin enjoys !

      Well, to be fair, it helps when the Russian media is mostly controlled by Putin and his mates.

      As for your comment that “Trump does not have the intellectual capacity of Putin to be able to copy him” – from what I have seen and heard, it’s hard not to agree with you on that point.

      • D'Esterre says:

        Frank: “….it helps when the Russian media is mostly controlled by Putin and his mates.”

        If you spoke or read Russian, you’d know that a climate of vigorous political debate prevails in Russia. They have access to TV shows that debate political issues of moment to the citizens. That includes on the state-owned outlets. Would that we here in NZ had as much, instead of the uncritical, supine media outlets we now have!

        Remember also that state-owned and controlled doesn’t necessarily entail support for the current government; were that so, Viktor Yanukovych would still be president of the Ukraine. There is plenty of opposition to Putin in Russia – though in truth, at least some of it comes from citizens who think that he isn’t half tough enough with the likes of the US and the EU – but that opposition is at present far outweighed by support for him.

        “As for your comment that “Trump does not have the intellectual capacity of Putin to be able to copy him” – from what I have seen and heard, it’s hard not to agree with you on that point.”

        Oh indeed! And the citizens of Russia are well aware of this. Putin is very smart, and he has had the benefit of a tertiary education in Russia. Russian education is superb.

        On the other hand, this quote comes from James “mad dog” Mattis (sorry, don’t yet have the link):
        “‘So it’s hard to say, It’ll certainly be aspects that are in outer space and in the cyber domain that were not there before. We fought on this planet mostly with ground armies until navies became something one hundred years ago.’”
        Mad dog? More like big dumb pooch. Words fail me… And this from a man who was formerly a marine. It probably says everything that any of us needs to know about the quality of education in the US, at least outside of the Ivy League schools.

        And these are the people running the US war machine? God help us all.

        • D’Esterre. Can you point to any RT News story critical of Putin?

          As for Mattis. Yes, well. Another of Trump’s “best talent” appointments. ’nuff said.

          Oh indeed! And the citizens of Russia are well aware of this. Putin is very smart, and he has had the benefit of a tertiary education in Russia. Russian education is superb.

          No doubt left over from the Soviet Era, which placed a high value on education (as does most of Europe, by the way).

          If you spoke or read Russian, you’d know that a climate of vigorous political debate prevails in Russia. They have access to TV shows that debate political issues of moment to the citizens. That includes on the state-owned outlets. Would that we here in NZ had as much, instead of the uncritical, supine media outlets we now have!

          I’m afraid your glowing appreciation of present-day life in Russia is at odds with reports of “mysterious” deaths of Putin’s opponants; arrests of dissidents, journos, and other political figures (who are then barred from running in elections); and a media that is largely now controlled by Putin’s regime.

          But if you can point to RT News publishing a story critical of Putin, a man you appear to admire, then I’ll have to review my position. If you can’t find such a story, you may have to do likewise.

          Even Fox News, the media-arm of the US Republican Party, is occassonally critical of Trump.

          • Francesca says:

            .
            Frank, ever watched Larry King on politicking?
            Plenty of guests lambaste Putin. Incidentally, Larry says he has always been given a free run, and never censored.
            Worlds Apart is a program that invites guests who very often have stridently opposed political views to the official Russian view, for instance on the EU, Crimea, Ukraine.There are vigorous exchanges of opposing views and yes, Putin gets criticised

            Novaya Gazeta(part owned by Gorbachev) is an opposition newspaper that regularly criticises Putin
            Nezavisimaya Gazeta is also a well known opposition newspaper
            The Dozhd TV channel airs the views of Russian liberals,
            Ekho Mozvsky (funded in part by Voice of America)is critical of govt policy
            Liberal opposition newspapers regularly run stories criticising Russian foreign policy, corruption, as seen recently in the Mevdevev protests, and economic policies
            I wonder …Where are our opposition newspapers and TV channels, and dissident broadcast media?

            • Francesca, I’ve had a quick look at one “Worlds Apart” interview I chose at random, between the host, Oksana Boyko, and journalist/author of “The Putin Mystique”, Anna Arutunyan.

              Part of the transcript went like this:

              Anna Arutunyan: Yeah, yeah [laughter] so it’s not just a dictator, I don’t want to say that Russians will always be looking for a dictator but that’s a very big part of that equation, and the reasons for that are very complex and multifaceted. It’s not because Russians need a strong hand to rule them. As I describe in the book, there are a lot of objective, geographical, historical, geopolitical factors that converge to create these patterns that rulers have to conform to.

              Oksana Boyko: Well, you just mentioned the word “dictator”, which is obviously a very loaded

              Anna Arutunyan: – strong –

              Oksana Boyko: – word, but there are many other ways to describe this yearning that you have just described. One way would be by appealing to paternalism, and I think Putin himself complained on a number of occasions of this paternalism, that he has to essentially be the leader who covers all the bases, for his citizens. But I wonder if it is so unique to Russia, because if we look at many societies, especially transitional societies around the world, take Turkey, take many of the Arab states, take China for example, they all had this longing for a very strong, sometimes iron-fisted leader who would deliver, so is that so peculiar to Russia?

              Just when I thought there would be critical analysis of Putin, the host jumped in with this:

              Oksana Boyko: Well, I would like to take an issue with that, because I think there is this implicit suggestion in your book that Putin essentially is pretending that we are living in this legal state, but that’s really what it is, pretending, that when push comes to shove, you know, all pretences are gone. But if you look at his policies and his statements, he’s actually very meticulous, very particular about upholding the law. Take this change of power back in 2008, he could have easily changed the constitution, he had public support for that, but he didn’t do that. Take the recent events in Crimea, it would have been enough for him to just cite historical or moral reasons, but he went, in his speeches, into great details, speaking about why it was legal and why Russia wasn’t, in his view, violating international law. So it seems that he indeed pays a lot of attention to making sure that the law is respected in Russia.

              And this;

              Oksana Boyko: Now in your book you state that, quote, after twenty years of transitioning to democracy, there’s little doubt that democracy hasn’t really happened in Russia. That’s quite a statement to begin with. But then you go further, calling Russia a “neo-feudal world, where the Sovereign” – capital “S” – “is perceived as both divine and demonic”, and I guess we can disagree on how democratic or undemocratic Russia really is, there’s quite a discussion on that within this country, but don’t you think that calling Putin “the Sovereign” and his people the subjects, is just a little bit hyperbolic, I mean, just a couple of weeks ago we had mass rallies, protesting Putin’s policies on Crimea, and I don’t recall having those mass rallies in the Middle Ages, and people rallying against their masters.

              And this;

              Oksana Boyko: The main thesis of your book, as we discussed earlier, is that Putin moulded himself into the kind of leader that people want to see and when you think about Putin, this idea of self-restraint and self-discipline, really comes to the fore, at least for me, I mean. His liking of sports, sports requires a lot of self-discipline, his not being given to the typical Russian vices, like his predecessor was, Boris Yeltsin, I think it was the Time magazine a couple of years ago which also wrote about Putin even blinking less frequently than other people, so this idea of self-discipline, self-restraint is really out there, so I wonder if that doesn’t make him very different from all the Russian rulers and Russian people in general, because Russians are not very keen on discipline and yet Putin, with all his meticulousness, with all his pragmatism, with his self-discipline, he really comes across as more of a Western figure to me at least, than your typical Russian.

              ref: https://www.rt.com/shows/worlds-apart-oksana-boyko/putin-fact-from-fiction-665/

              The rest of the interview proceeds along the same lines, with Boyko defending Putin at every turn. Which counters your own cloaked criticisms where you deride our media;

              I wonder …Where are our opposition newspapers and TV channels, and dissident broadcast media?

              Aside from the likes of Mike Hosking, John Roughan, and a handful of others, I can’t recall our journalists ever defending Key with quite the same gushing as Boyko did.

              I’ve looked into one aspect of “Worlds Apart” on RT News. If you have examples counter to mine, feel free to present them, complete with quotes and links. I’ve done my work on looking into this. Your turn now.

            • By the way, Francesca, I will still occassionally reference RT News where necessary, to present the Russian point-of-view. (Which is more than I can say for conspiracist, alt-right, garbage-dumps such as “Infowars”.)

              • D'Esterre says:

                Frank Macskasy: “I will still occassionally reference RT News where necessary, to present the Russian point-of-view.”

                Frank, RT is for foreigners. You really do need to go to Russian-language media outlets in order to get a handle on the Russian pov.

            • Otto Mann says:

              Francesca & Desterre, your devotion to Putin is admirable on the one hand, but troubling on the other.

              You do realise he is the ex-leader of the former KGB?

              You do realise Putin’s political opponents and critical journalists have a habit of being attacked, injured, harassed, and often murdered?

              Let’s have a bit more objectivity in your thinking please. Otherwise you both come across as mouthpieces for a regime that not many of us would want to live under (unless your one of the lucky Oligarchs).

              • Francesca says:

                You mistake devotion to Putin for a healthy scepticism about much of the twaddle written about him
                I for one think the only president worth a pinch of shit was Mujica of Uruguay
                Criticism of propaganda , and pointing out the other side of a cliche is not synonymous with adoration.

              • Francesca says:

                And incidentally he was never the leader of the KGB, you’re thinking of Bush senior who was the director of the CIA
                Putin resigned from the KGB as a lieutenant/colonel
                Whoops, guess pointing that out makes me a Putin lover
                In your defense, He was briefly head of the FSB
                It pays to get your facts right

              • D'Esterre says:

                Otto Mann: “You do realise he is the ex-leader of the former KGB?”

                No he wasn’t. He was a KGB officer. As to that, so bloody what? That organisation no longer exists; even if it were extant, why would his being a former employee disqualify him from having the rest of the world acknowledge his indisputable intelligence and achievements as president of Russia?

                GHW Bush was a former director of the CIA, an organisation which still exists, and which has done more damage in other countries than the KGB could ever have dreamed of during its existence. Would that disqualify his presidency from favourable evaluation?

                “You do realise Putin’s political opponents and critical journalists have a habit of being attacked, injured, harassed, and often murdered?’

                If you would be so good, produce substantive evidence of these claims. Not media assertions, such as those broadcast by CNN, BBC, and printed by NYT: that isn’t evidence, it’s propaganda. I’ve asked others for this evidence; nobody’s produced anything thus far.

                “…you both come across as mouthpieces for a regime that not many of us would want to live under (unless your one of the lucky Oligarchs).”

                Heh, that sounds just like the US! For which polity many commenters here sound just like cheerleaders. Are you one such?

                • Francesca says:

                  D’Esterre,
                  there are many articles along these lines, but this is quite a good un
                  about journalists in Russia

                  http://www.moonofalabama.org/2017/07/yasha-mounk-lies.html#more

                  • D'Esterre says:

                    Francesca: “this is quite a good un about journalists in Russia”

                    Thanks for that! Yeah, I’d looked at the CPJ site that Frank posted, and I’d noticed there that the stats on journalists killed in Russia match with those given in that link you posted.

                    I noted, too, the reference there to journalists being killed by criminals and in war. Also journalists and lawyers working in Chechnya have been killed; a case has been in the courts recently.

          • D'Esterre says:

            Frank Macskasy: “Can you point to any RT News story critical of Putin?….. and a media that is largely now controlled by Putin’s regime.”

            If, as you claim, the Russian media is largely controlled by the Kremlin, why would you be asking only about RT? It’s very far from being the only news outlet in Russia. So surely, if all the other outlets are similarly controlled, they would also report only positive stories about Putin? But of course that’s not so; stories critical of him from Russian sources are frequently reported in Russia, and in the western press. I invite you to go read them.

            “No doubt left over from the Soviet Era, which placed a high value on education (as does most of Europe, by the way).”

            What on earth are you talking about? What has the rest of Europe to do with anything? I was taking a well-deserved swipe at Mattis’s woeful ignorance of history, given that he was a marine, for god’s sake. And implying that the quality of the education he got in the US system is to blame.

            Putin, on the other hand, has a very good handle on history in general; Russian history in particular.

            “I’m afraid your glowing appreciation of present-day life in Russia is at odds with reports of “mysterious” deaths of Putin’s opponants; arrests of dissidents, journos, and other political figures (who are then barred from running in elections)…”

            A comment about the climate of political debate in contemporary Russia is just that; I was making no observations about other aspects of life there, and I’ll thank you not to ascribe to me things I haven’t said.

            As to your other assertions: produce the evidence, please. Not from any US news outlet – especially not the mendacious NYT or CNN – nor even the BBC, sadly no longer the commenter of record that it was when I was young. I have asked others to produce similar actual evidence; nobody has thus far.

            “…Putin, a man you appear to admire…”

            Christ almighty! Who wouldn’t? It isn’t necessary to like someone in order to admire what they’ve managed to achieve. Nor ought admiration for Putin’s abilities and intelligence be assumed to entail an uncritical view of the Russian polity. That’s certainly not true in my case.

            He and his administration have acted with forbearance and sophistication in the face of egregious provocation and Russophobia on the part of the US and the EU. Look at the muppets – Clinton, Bush, Obama, the awful Blair, those idiots in the EU and god help us all, now Trump – they’ve had to deal with over the past 20 years. It is largely Russia and Putin we have to thank for there not having been a hot war in the last few years. Note which polity has been needling away, for at least the length of Obama’s time in office, at China and north Korea? Not Russia. Let’s hope that China and Russia between them can keep the peace there.

        • Francesca says:

          You’re right about that D’esterre, Russia has one of the highest literacy rates in the world, and blitzes most of the world including Europe, the US, Scandinavia, New Zealand, Australia, in tertiary education rates
          I think their home ownership is also off the charts compared to saps like us

          • Hmmm, I wonder what might be the response if I voiced the same love and admiration for the United states; it’s socio-economic system; and past *strong* leaders in the same manner as some exhibit for Putin and the Russian leadership…?

            Is blanket admiration for any super-power a positive thing?

            • Francesca says:

              Neither is blanket acceptance of everything the media stuffs in your face
              My positive comments about Russia are to counter the endless negative horror stories we are daily exposed to
              The attitude is quite schizophrenic
              On the one hand(according to Obama) Russia is a petrol station masquerading as a country,weak, its economy in tatters, a pariah in the world, its population declining and dying out early through alchoholism and sheer lack of morale,its people miserable(no one smiles!)repressed and spied upon
              On the other hand, Russia has managed to pull off the heist of the century! according to our media and leaders
              With supernatural cunning, mass hypnosis, foresight bordering on sorcery,and technology hitherto unknown to mankind, information from the DNC server has been hacked and transferred to Wikileaks without the all powerful NSA being able to detect the how or the when.
              Russia has effected regime change without a shot fired
              The CIA could use that kind of magic!
              Seriously, any country that doesn’t bend the knee is a hostile nation as far as the media is concerned
              No doubt I’d be out on the streets in Russia as well if I lived there, but that doesn’t mean I swallow every piece of propaganda our media has been peddling ever since the wests poodle Yeltsin was succeeded by Putin
              I just dislike the whole Russia! ooh,thugs and vodka,kleptocrats cliche, and the fact that not one article I’ve ever come across in MSM has a single good or even neutral thing to say about it
              And we could bloody well do with some of the detente Trump promised in this highly militarised and dangerous world

              • D'Esterre says:

                Francesca:

                “Neither is blanket acceptance of everything the media stuffs in your face”

                Hear hear! I agree with everything you say.

                “And we could bloody well do with some of the detente Trump promised in this highly militarised and dangerous world”

                Yay to that as well! God defend us all from neocon interventionism US-style.

            • D'Esterre says:

              Frank Macskasy: “…I wonder what might be the response if I voiced the same love and admiration for the United states; it’s socio-economic system; and past *strong* leaders in the same manner as some exhibit for Putin and the Russian leadership…?”

              Isn’t that what you’ve been doing? Doesn’t wholesale critique of every aspect of the Russian polity and its current leader imply wholesale support for the US political system and its leaders? That’s certainly how I’ve been reading it.

              • Isn’t that what you’ve been doing? Doesn’t wholesale critique of every aspect of the Russian polity and its current leader imply wholesale support for the US political system and its leaders? That’s certainly how I’ve been reading it.

                You’ve been reading it wrong.

                For the nth time, I place no faith in any of the super-powers. You may view Putin as some kind of ‘saviour’ (much as many Americans voted for Trump in the same vein), I do not.

                As I’ve mentioned in the past, and which I’ll repeat for your benefit, any ‘faith’ I might have had for the US was firmly swept away after their support for the ousting of President Allende in Chile followed by the CIA-inspired Iran-Contra scandal.

                Both Russia and the US have meddled in the affairs of other nations, D’esterre. You choose to see only part of it.

                • D'Esterre says:

                  Frank Macskasy: “You may view Putin as some kind of ‘saviour’”

                  Oh well, at least it makes a change from you accusing me and others from being Trump supporters, no matter what we say about him!

                  “Both Russia and the US have meddled in the affairs of other nations…”

                  Ha! Uncle Sam has made an art form out of it, sticking its nose into the business of any polity it chooses. And it never ends well. Uncle Volodya cannot compete. Nor, of course, would he wish to: his approach to foreign policy is Westphalian. Pity Uncle Sam don’t know what that means…

                  • Francesca says:

                    Hear hear!
                    Its a false equivalency to cry a pox on both their houses in this respect
                    The US takes the dubious prize for meddling in other countries elections hands down

      • Francesca says:

        https://consortiumnews.com/2016/11/23/demonizing-russian-media/

        Sorry this may be a repeat, but its a worthwhile second look at a hackneyed view of Russia

        • I’ve read the story by Gilbert Doctorow.

          It’s telling that Doctorow makes this comment;

          One ubiquitous fact is that the panelists are not scripted and if anyone is cut off in mid-sentence it is by other panelists vying for the microphone, not by the presenter keeping the political line of discourse in check. Except in the case of senior politicians, who are given the respect their rank demands, no panelist is safe from interruptions and the audience encourages a culture of gladiators in the arena, with applause punctuating the debates.t

          – but passes no further analysis on his observation that “senior politicians […] are given the respect their rank demands”.

          Interesting, and book-marked for future reference.

          However, it doesn’t change the realities that journalism in Russia is a dangerous profession, as outlined by the Committee to Protect Journalists (https://cpj.org/europe/russia/).

          To check that the CPJ is not simply an anti-Russian, Western front-group (which would make it pointless as a source of impartial information), I checked the entry for the Ukraine, which is in a state of war with Russia, a proxy of the West. The results can be seen here: https://cpj.org/europe/ukraine/

          For Israel; https://cpj.org/mideast/israel-and-the-occupied-palestinian-territory/

          And for the United States itself; https://cpj.org/americas/usa/ (Though perhaps the greatest crisis facing American journalism is not attacks on individual journalists, but the willingness with with they often adopt a certain narrative such as the non-existent Iraqi “weapons of mass destruction”.)

          Happily, New Zealand fared much better: https://cpj.org/asia/new-zealand/

          One point is clear, as Glenn Greenwald pointed out in a piece on The Intercept entitled, “CNN Journalists Resign: Latest Example of Media Recklessness on the Russia Threat”, we must all guard against not just fake news, but sloppy news as well.

          news: https://theintercept.com/2017/06/27/cnn-journalists-resign-latest-example-of-media-recklessness-on-the-russia-threat/

          • Francesca says:

            It may very well be a dangerous profession. It probably would be in this country if journalists actually stood up on their hind legs
            Suzie Dawson certainly has her feelings about that.
            Are you assuming that the Russian govt kills off all its rivals?
            I would suggest Russian society is far more complex than that. There is the oligarch problem, battles between them, the Russian mafia, pretty well entrenched after America’s “help” in democratising read privatise public assets.Plenty of candidates motivated to kill journalists outing them.
            I am not suggesting Russia is the perfect country by any means, but I’m pretty sick of the lazy assumptions and dangerous vilifications that pass for unquestioned facts
            I myself am highly suspicious of Russia/Putin’s ambiguous relationship with Israel, not convincingly explained by the substantial numbers of Russian jews ( in fact the largest ex pat community)living there
            And it seems as a culture the Russians are as at least homophobic as the 10 US states that still have homophobic laws on their books.
            Oksana Boyko doesn’t always have it her own way, but well done for the research!
            You are probably aware that RT is not a domestic channel
            and is a vehicle of “soft power”
            As to the many TV channels state or part state owned,30% of Russia’s GDP still comes from state owned (or part) enterprises.
            My replies have been in response to your remark”Well to be fair it helps when the Russian media is mostly controlled by Putin and his mates”
            Unfair, untrue and sloppy

    • Francesca says:

      Historian Pete, you might be interested in this
      Casts a bit more light on the baffling Trump junior media extravaganza at the moment,with its peculiar cast of characters
      Talks about the Magnitsky case as well
      https://necpluribusimpar.net/trumps-collusion-russia-add-nothing-nothing-get-still-nothing/

  7. Francesca says:

    Yes its all pretty tasteless and misogynistic, but what I really object to, and something you appear to pay no heed to, is his unleashing of the military to do what they will, slaughtering women and children in NorthAfrica, the Middle East and Afghanistan
    US presidencies have a record of creating charnel houses
    and bloodbaths in faraway countries, with the Democrat presidents funnily enough being even more inclined to go to war than the Republicans
    Criticise Trump for reneging on his campaign promises to pull back the military and revise NATO commitments
    I have far more sympathy for the innocent millions made victims of American imperialism
    than I do for the American electorate

  8. Francesca says:

    Frank
    I hope you dont have any objections to Consortium News, edited by Robert Parry who is an award winning journalist of long standing
    Gilbert Doctorow , the writer of this piece has first hand experience of Russia over many years
    https://consortiumnews.com/2016/11/23/demonizing-russian-media/

  9. Archonblatter says:

    @Franscesca & D’ Esstere. Your comments very much appreciated. One wonders which R.F. or U.S.S.R. leaders the Putin bashers would favour over Russia’s present leader. Lenin? Stalin? Khrushchev? Brezhnev? Gorbachev? Probably all of these. In the days of the U.S.S.R. employment in the KGB was rather sought after. In a rather interesting book ‘First Person’ published in 2000, three Russian journalists obtained about 24 hours of in depth interviews with Putin, his friends, associates an ex teacher and family. They did not edit the interviews. It consists of interviews and monologues. The journalists felt that the Russian people wanted to know “Who is this Mr. Putin?”
    Well worth reading.
    As for super states, I would have thought China fits this category these days more than the R.F. It’s amazing how many people today are still following the 19th century obsession with ‘the great game.’

    • One wonders which R.F. or U.S.S.R. leaders the Putin bashers would favour over Russia’s present leader. Lenin? Stalin? Khrushchev? Brezhnev? Gorbachev?

      If the term “Putin basher” ,is directed at me, the answer to your question, Archonblatter, is; no. That’s up to the Russian voters to decide in a free and fair election.

      • Francesca says:

        provided the Clintons don’t interfere, Mr and Mrs have both had their sticky hands in there

      • D'Esterre says:

        Frank Macskasy: “If the term “Putin basher” ,is directed at me, the answer to your question, Archonblatter, is; no.”

        From comments you’ve made here, I think the rest of us can be forgiven for concluding that the epithet is fairly directed at you!

        “That’s up to the Russian voters to decide in a free and fair election.”

        I completely agree, and I’m pleased that this is what you think. Putin has been elected – and re-elected – in a succession of free and fair elections. This is more than can be said for that old lush Yeltsin, who was re-elected in 1996 only because the CIA rigged the election for him. There are articles online about this: I invite you to go read them.

        We all realise that you’ve got a bee in your bonnet about Russia, and no doubt your history explains that to some extent. But the world has turned a turn or two. The USSR no longer exists, and none of that communism stuff was the fault of Putin – who is younger than I am, and I’m a boomer – or of any of the current population of Russia, come to that. It was foisted on them by their elders.

        My family has good reason to hate the Germans, but what would be the point? We have Germans in our extended family now, and again, they were born either after the war, or were very young during the Hitler era: that wasn’t and isn’t their fault.

        We must all accept that enough Russian citizens support Putin to keep him in power. Moreover, it’s none of our damn business whom they elect to govern them. Nor is it the business of the US, though that hasn’t stopped them interfering in the most egregious manner in Russia’s internal affairs.

        To the excellent links that Francesca’s posted above, I’d add this one: https://consortiumnews.com/2017/07/13/how-russia-gate-met-the-magnitsky-myth/

        And for a bit of light, only-in-Russia relief, this: https://twitter.com/NinaByzantina/status/886266627242590210

    • D'Esterre says:

      Archonblatter: “The journalists felt that the Russian people wanted to know “Who is this Mr. Putin?” Well worth reading.”

      Thanks: sounds interesting. Do you have any information on publication details etc?

  10. Archonblatter says:

    Suprisingly, not all Russians are pro democracy. Below are excerpts from report in The Guardian.

    ‘As the centenary approaches of Russia’s 1917 revolution, which deposed the Romanov dynasty after centuries of rule, Chavchavadze is part of a small but influential section of Russians who are looking to the tsarist past for inspiration – and even hope to restore a monarchy one day soon.

    “Look at what the Russian people did with Lenin, Stalin, Putin. As soon as someone is in power for a few years, they become sacred. The Russian people strive for a monarchy; the Russian soul is monarchic,” said Chavchavadze.’

    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/mar/06/russia-revolution-tsarist-school-moscow-nicholas-ii

    (Another pro-Czarist)’Reshetnikov said it was likely to be decades before Russia could seriously think about restoring the monarchy, and would require a more mature and religious society before it could be contemplated.’

    (Another pro-Czarist) ‘Malofeyev, however, said it could happen sooner than expected, and said he believes it to be quite possible that Putin could be crowned tsar: “Nobody wanted Yeltsin to carry on forever, but everyone wants Putin to carry on forever.”

    Fancy that.

  11. Archonblatter says:

    Two years ago The New Stateman had the following article.

    http://www.newstatesman.com/politics/2015/03/why-do-russians-support-still-support-vladimir-putin

    Excerpts:

    “Russians love and support their president. I wanted to understand why, so I spoke to a number of people in their 20s, 30s and 60s who helped me crystallise their reasoning into the following arguments.’

    ‘Putin has restored Russian might. Throughout his time in office, Putin has demonstrated his dedication to addressing the values Russians care about most: the integrity of their country, its sphere of influence in international relations, and its ability to withstand the US dictating its policies to the world at large. This is perhaps the core factor in Putin’s popularity, which came across in all the conversations I’ve had with those Russians who support the current regime.’ ”It’s not about the economy or the welfare,” a professional woman in her 30s said to me, ”

    The article concludes:

    ‘In the increasingly cool climate between Russia and the west, it helps to understand each other’s values.’

    Amen to that.

    • D'Esterre says:

      Archonblatter: thanks for the link; that article is well worth a read. I’ve passed that on to family as well. I’ve read similar commentary elsewhere, though I can’t now find the articles.

  12. D'Esterre says:

    Andra: guessing (correctly, as it turns out) that this post would be of a piece with others of yours on Trump, I originally came to this thread to proffer a critique. Then I was waylaid by the debate over Putin.

    But – that out of the way – I’m back to that critique.

    “…people must know from that quote alone he’s a misogynist….”

    This sounds to me like the sort of locker room talk that men of his age – heck, young men even, which you’ll know if you are acquainted with many – indulge in when they’re with other men. Braggadocio, I’d call it; just big talk. Whether it translates into actual misogyny is a moot point. That can only be judged by how men act, rather than what they say when they’re with other men. It’s a free country, there as here; we can’t crimp others’ freedom of speech and nor should we try.

    “there are those who uniformly mistrust anything reported by what they refer to as the MSM, (mainstream media) which appears to include everything not written on random blogs with or without evidence”

    Yet here you are, wishing to have your views taken seriously, writing on a random blog. You need to understand that, since the rise of the internet, many of us have discovered the extent to which we have been propagandised at best, lied to at worst, by the MSM. It has come as a rude shock to discover that – going back at least as far as the immediate post-WW2 period – we’ve been given at best a version of the truth regarding international events. Do you know what really happened during the Cuban missile crisis? The fall of Sukarno and the rise of Suharto in Indonesia – and the CIA involvement in it? The Vietnam war? CIA meddling in multiple Central and South American and Caribbean polities? The breakup of the former Yugoslavia? Conflict in the Middle East since WW2? The Ukraine and the secession of the Crimea? If you’ve been relying on the MSM for your information, you’ll have no idea.

    “I don’t think he is racist because CNN have told me he is…”

    Expressing bigotry and prejudice isn’t racism; again, the US is a free country, and Trump can say what he likes, both on the campaign trail and now. Racism constitutes what governments do by way of legislation that discriminates against particular ethnic groups: South African apartheid, Nazi-era laws discriminating against Jews, segregation US-style prior to civil rights activism. Such activities by governments are racism; not what pollies say.

    Even the extension of the wall on the Mexican border, and the attempts to prevent travel from particular Muslim countries, don’t qualify. Any polity is entitled to protect its borders from excessive numbers of immigrants and refugees, especially where there are issues of crime and religious extremism.

    “If he was worried about terrorists he’d have a problem with Saudi Arabia rather than selling them more arms than anyone has in the history of the world.”

    Do you understand at all what’s going on in Washington? There’s a long tradition of the US selling arms to Saudi; the neocons have made sure that Trump continues. Unfortunately, he’s been unable to withstand the pressure from that quarter.

    “By setting up the media as an opposition party, he does what all despots do, he blinds us all to any opposing or critical view of his actions in order that his rule be unquestioned.”

    Trump was democratically elected; he is certainly not a despot. If he were hoping to blind people to his critics, he’s making a piss-poor job of it! I’d point out that it is the MSM which has set itself up in opposition to Trump, not the other way about. I’d point out further that Trump’s use of Twitter, and citizens’ reaction to it, is eloquent evidence that democracy is alive and well in the US; if it were a repressive regime, people who respond to his tweets as they do would be carted off in the night to the US equivalent of Abu Graibh. And that doesn’t happen.

    “… what he is doing is copying Putin, who rules in exactly this way. That is how unchecked power becomes absolute.”

    I think that the commentary above will have alerted you to the fact that you’re completely wrong about this. But if you’re depending upon the MSM for your news, it’s scarcely surprising that you’d believe rubbish of this sort: that’s the propaganda line they’ve been peddling for years now.

    “Trump is the worst president ever to disgrace the office.”

    Ha! The worst since Obama, and Bush jnr, and Clinton, and Bush snr, and Reagan, and so on… right back to before I was born. If you’re old enough to have been in Indonesia during the Suharto years (travellers’ cheques? who was using them in the 90s?), you’re certainly old enough to have acquainted yourself with the perfidies of US presidents, going back many, many years.

    “I truly think he is dangerous and unstable and potentially might kill us all”

    You may well think that, but it by no means follows that you’re right. Remember that it was Hillary Clinton the neocon who was all for picking a fight with Russia, a large and tough polity with a lot of nukes, and which in any event has never been successfully invaded. Trump on the other hand wanted to pursue a policy of detente with Russia, in which endeavour he was, sadly, white-anted by the neocons. It’s much more likely that, had she been elected, it’s Clinton who would have dragged us into a hot war, probably with Russia. Or even north Korea; either of which would risk getting us all killed.

    You’ve said before that you want to do journalism. This piece is a rant, peppered with typos and ostensibly about Trump, but which veers off inexplicably into diatribes about Suharto, Putin and the current government of NZ.

    I think by now we all understand that you don’t like Trump. But really, whatever you may think of him, it’s far too early in his presidency to judge his record. Nobody ought to be doing that before the end of his term. And when that time comes, the task is best left to Americans, whose president he is. There is plenty happening in politics here: get your teeth into that and leave Trump to other Americans.