The Bishop and the Butterfly: Murder, Politics, and the End of the Jazz Age
    Michael Maiello's picture

    That Nicaragua Feeling

    It's already become a transition cliche that Donald Trump is turning the US into a banana republic.  We've got the situational diplomacy, the crony appointments and the massive conflicts of interest as the president-elect clings to his global real estate and branding business even as he is about to take power.

    Now, we have confirmation of what everybody knew during the election, which is that Russia supported Donald Trump and engaged in a hacking campaign to help his efforts during the election, hoping perhaps to weaken Hillary Clinton had she won but contributing instead to a surprise result.

    To even a casual observer of US policy in Central and South America, there is some definite schadenfreude​ to be had.  Given all the US has done to subvert other democracies and revolutions in Chile, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Cuba, Venezuela, well... you get it.  I'm not saying we shouldn't be outraged that a foreign power tried to manipulate our elections (and apparently succeeded) but I am saying that this is another example of the chickens coming home to roost.

    This should be taken seriously, more seriously than I'm seeing so far.  This should be considered a constitutional crisis.  This should be bigger than Watergate.  Of particular interest should be whether or not anybody in the Trump campaign aided and abetted Russian efforts. So far, I'm seeing this as something that might well blow over and that is not good.

    At the very least, we should also be re-evaluating our own policies in the world.  I do not know whether or not foreign powers have successfully interfered with US elections before.  I can only imagine this is not a first.  But this is public knowledge.  Now we know how it feels.  We should be better global citizens going forward.

    America is not so exceptional that it is immune to the forces that affect people in other countries.

    This Nicaragua feeling sucks, doesn't it?




    Republican primary voters overwhelmingly voted for Trump. Russia had no part in that contest. Russian hacking may have tipped the final election to Trump, but the final result was entirely created inside our boders. As Driftglass summarized:

    You see, a little over 62 million American meatheads and bigots and phony Christians took an 18-month-long look at a lying DayGlo fascist con-man with a lurid comb-over and a penchant for racism and decided "Yes!  I want that!  I want that supersized!"

    Trump and the Republican Party are the demagogue backing  anti-fact, anti-public education, anti-democracy, anti-science, anti-compromise rigid ideologues, race baiting proto-fascists who are the enemy within.

    Trump is home grown,  you could say we deserve him. Chile didn't deserve having Allende murdered, Iran didn't deserve having Mossadegh deposed.

    I thought Michael's point was not that the Russians control what happens here without qualification but that the conflicts of interest of our politicians combined with reports of foreign influence means that the high horse we have been riding for some time now amongst other nations has just gotten a lot shorter.

    Yes. I certainly don't disagree that Trump won at home. In a better world, Russia's interference would have been unsuccessful. But, as you say, our whole "bastion of functioning democracy" routine is a lot less convincing than it used to be.

    In a better world, Russia's interference would have been unsuccessful


    and, potentially, counterproductive!


    It used to be that no one ran for president touting the "nice things he (Putin) says about me (Trump"


    Beyond that, consider the zero traction afforded the documented communique from Al Baghdadi containg entreaties for the divine thumb on the electoral scale that would "deliver the American presidency to Donald Trump"




    My point is the Republican Party and it's media are destroying our democracy, for power and money, turning it into an oligarchy. Putin is willing to help them in that endeavor.

    Same page. Dangerous times.

    TRUMP opens 'politicals' open air detention facility at Guantanimo for citizen counterrevolutionaries. CIA to be reorganized under Roger Ailes and Uday Trump.

    from Kos -

    high horse we have been riding for some time now amongst other nations has just gotten a lot shorter.


    I suppose there may be a few venues in which the irony of wounded howls from John McCain (R, Getoffmylawnville) about foreign meddling in the electoral process draws the appreciative grimace or two


    One might imagine the foundation of an NGO entitled Friends of Maga (not the pakistani nobel laureat, the other maga) who will solicit suggestions for the color of the Trump revolution and offer a set of commorative plates thru Ivanka's home shopping channel.


    You always want to tie the merch into the tale.


    ETA the Secretary General of Friends of Maga will, of course, be the (unceremoniously) deposed former President of the Ukraine.

    Michael, lies from unnamed CIA sources with no evidence provided is not what any rational person would view as confirmation. I'm sure you realize that these CIA mouthpieces are professionaly trained and compulsive liars and when they aren't lying they are ofter just wrong. This is  a Hail Mary agenda coming from loser Clintonites soon to lose their high positions to try to torpedo Trump's friendship/deal ovetures to Putin before the swearing in ceremony. Obama could be trying to be the unbiased mediator in this fiasco or he could be seeking payback for Trump throwing the dead stinking TPP on his doorstep.

    Again the only people turning purple because of Trump's supposed conflicts of interest are Clintonite losers who are now leaderless and possibily permanently out of power. He'll hand over control of his empire to his kids and managers because he has much bigger fish to fry including rounding up and saying 'You're Fired' to many of the Clintonite quislings in government.

    The evidence for the attack:

    So you can stop using that line now, Comrade Peter.

    You wasted your time posting a link.  Peter, like Trump doesn't need information because he is "smart."  In fact, I'm beginning to think Peter IS Trump.  

    A 'Borg Trump'?

    A catfish/troll Trump.

    What do you mean by "Trump's supposed conflicts of interest" ? Are you saying that there are no conflicts and that reports of them are fictional?

    Perhaps you do not know what the concept means. It does not mean that one will necessarily pursue one set of priorities over another. It means that the opportunity to do so is immediately available so that any decision made by an official will always be mired in uncertainty as to which interests is being served.

    That is why judges recuse themselves from cases where they have a conflict of interest: To avoid having their authority diminished by the possibility that their actions serve an agenda other than that required by their duties.


    Peter, the Clinton hate, which you now giddily anticipate will be projected onto 'Clinton quislings', was to get haters like you to back him. The fanatical chants of "Lock he Up!" at Trump rallies were like the Two Minutes Hate from Orwell's dystopian authoritarian world of 1984, where hate was used to control people also.

    He targeted Goldman Sachs for hate, and said they owned Hillary.

    He has hired 3 Goldman Sachs executives to top posts. Including Treasury Secretary and the CEO of Goldman as chief economic advisor.

    He got haters of 'Mexicans' onboard also. He will likely deport even less than Obama.

    His interests are to expand his personal wealth, and the image of himself. That is all narcissists care about.

    His motivation was not to lead an endless crusade against your 'Borg/Red Queen'. (Sorry to be the one to tell you!)

    If he was as squeaky clean and principled as you hallucinate, he would have released his taxes because that has legal requirements to be telling the truth.

    squeaky clean and principled as you hallucinate

    I think you do Peter an injustice--He knows Trump is dirty and don't give a fuck.

    Those pious eye-roles and pearl clutches are just Peter's best try at sophistry.  Of course, the Sophists were a bunch of philosophers, albeit assholes, whereas Peter fills only one of those requirements.

    I hate to ascribe motives to people I don't know very well (ie. Peter) but he HAS to know what a vermin donald is. I really wonder what they think his end game is, if not to feather his already feathered nest. He is certainly turning the country on it's head, which is kind of dumb, if you ask me. It needs some tweaking, that's for sure, but to undo 50 years of slow, tedious progress is just irresponsible.

    Since it's looking more and more like the man/child is going to actually take the reins of world power, we need to be extremely vigilant. Although I'm not even sure what that means any more. The repubs en masse have decided there is no such thing as facts, just what you think about stuff, so we're pretty much screwed unless some of the more rational ones grow some and stand up to the man/child. They didn't do it during the primaries, why would they now?

    There's two wild cards that I can't think through yet--On the one hand, Ryan and McConnell will always have a whip over Trump  where his emoluments violations become the basis for an impeachment resolution that takes five business days from opening Judiciary Committee Hearings to the inauguration of President Pence--(Break glass and deploy in case of Trump intransigence re:gutting medicare and social security)


    Per Contra:As long as he signs Ryan's bills, he can monetize the US Military into a giant protection racket.  Frum's take is that Trump aspires to Putin (richest guy in the world, some say) level luchre.


    Meanwhile, Putin' without peradventure must have a jar containing two shriveled and unattractive testes,(replicas) , sort of 21st century faberge easter eggs, inside which are the flash drives marked Kompromat, Trumpski, Dinisov Fredovich.


    I can't believe The Onion comments here at Dag!

    Peter, I put to you the following, relying upon what I have come to believe is a view more defined by cynicism than the usual self interest which blinds most supporters of that collection of (temporarily cooperating) quasi-independent neural networks that calls itself Donald Trump.

    1. Do you doubt that multiple state agencies dotted across Europe and Asia, have penetrated the servers on which repose the collected emails of every member of both the Republican and Democratic party inner councils?


    Assuming, arguendo, that such penetrations have occurred, would you concede that the considerations which lead to the publication of any data is the resultant of the value to the hacker of the perceived impact vs. the cost the hacker in revealing means and methods?


    That said, they fucked Hillary and not Donald.  You would always, after all pick one side and hold what you had on the other so as to provide leverage.


    Would you not?

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