Tags: Donald Trump, Gary Johnson, Green Party, Hillary Clinton, Jill Stein, Libertarian Party, Presidential election, Ralph Nader, spoiler
How can you best fight against Trump?
How can you best protect
- the country,
- freedom of speech,
- political freedom here and world-wide,
- innocent persons,
- human fairness,
- the US Treasury,
- the human world,
- and the natural world,
against the damage that each of those would suffer if Mussolini-like Trump became President?
Some of the voters who are revolted by Trump are planning to vote against Trump without voting for Hillary.
They are planning to vote against Trump by voting for the Green candidate, or are planning to vote for the Libertarian candidate.
But a vote for anyone other than Hillary is only half a vote against Trump.
Here is why.
Although voting for one of the spoiler candidates doesn’t increase Trump’s tally, it also doesn’t increase his opponent’s tally. It has zero effect on the comparison of their two tallys, which is the comparison that will determine who becomes President.
A vote for Hillary doesn’t increase Trump’s tally by 1, but also does increase Hillary’s tally by 1.
That increases the difference between Hillary’s tally and Trump’s tally by 2 units.
That is two blows against Trump.
A vote for the Green or for the Libertarian candidate doesn’t increase Trump’s tally by 1, but that is only half the effect on the difference between Hillary’s tally and Trump’s tally that would be produced by a vote for Hillary.
Remember what happened when Ralph Nader acted (unintentionally) as a spoiler against Gore.
How did that turn out?
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Tags: : Bernie Sanders, Commander in Chief, defense, Hillary Clinton, ISIS, Presidential election, refugees
Here are some questions about Bernie Sander’s fitness to be the Commander in Chief.
Does Bernie Sanders agree that we need a capable – hence adequately funded – Department of Defence?
What capabilities of the Department of Defence does Bernie Sanders want to enhance?
How does Bernie Sanders plan to respond to the non-traditional military sitiations posed by terrorism and by countries (Syria, Russia, China, North Korea) that sneer at international law?
What policies does Bernie Sanders think should govern the use of drones?
What are his thoughts on collateral damage?
What areas of defense R&D does Bernie Sanders think needs to be pursued? What new weapons and tactical capabilities are needed?
What is Bernie Sander’s rough estimate of the proper level of funding for the Department of Defense next year? How many Divisions and how many aircraft carriers should we have?
When Assad used chemical weapons against peaceful Syrians, did Bernie Sanders support the idea of US participation in setting up a no-fly zone to protect Syrian civilians from attack by Assad’s military? (A no-fly zone was not set up after Asaad’s use of chemical weapons, despite our prior hollow talk of a ‘red line’. That created a vacuum. That vacuum helped catpult ISIS into becoming a priminent player. Our lack of follow-through, and the hollowness of our threat, bears a major responsibility for the flourishing of ISIS.)
What would Bernie Sanders do to protect the non-extremist anti-Assad groups in Syria from Assad, and from Putin?
What would Bernie Sanders do to protect the very effective Kurdish fighters against attacks by Erdogan’s authoritarian Turkey?
What would Bernie Sanders do about the desparate refugees who have fled ISIS?
Any candidate who cannot come up with thoughful, practical answers to these questions is utterly unfit to be commander and chief.
Any candidate who has not already pondered these questions is utterly unfit to be commander and chief.
During the Presidential election, that will be obvious to anyone who values practical effects over wishful thinking.
Being good-hearted is not enough.
Economic fairness is important, but do not underestimate the importance that most voters assign to:
– adequate defense
– our role in supporting international fairness
– and to being respected internationally, and effective internationally.
Some of those latter urgeswere a major factor in the ability of Mussolini and Hitler to replace open political systems by authoritarian ones.
Those same aspects drive Putin’s high popularity in the face of the economic disaster he has brought to Russia.
The importance of same aspects are why China follows an aggressive, nationalistic policies in south-east Asia, despite the political and economic backlash from neighboring countries, and because of China’s falling rate of economic growth.
In the Presidential election, a candidate that lives in dream-land will lose to a candidate who at least cares about what is achievable, no matter how ill-considered are that candidate’s specific goals and paths to those goals.
So a vote in the primary for a well-intentioned candidate who does not care about defense and about foreign policy will inadvertantly aid the victory of the candidate of the opposite party, as long as that competing candidate does have strong opinions (however stupid) about defense and foreign policy.
Remember how votes for the egotist Ralph Nader first made George Bush president instead of Al Gore, and then four years later help George Bush win a second term. (Recall also Nader’s hypocritical claim that there would be no difference between Gore and Bush presidencies.)
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Tags: autocrat, dictator, Donald Trump, George Washington, Lord Acton, Michael Gerson, Presidential election, Putin, Republican, Republican candidate, tyrant
The present post seeks to understand why Trump esteems Putin.
Why does Trump not see in Putin’s actions what everyone else sees?
The explanation is to be found in Trump’s job history.
“Trump began his career at his father’s real estate company”, according to Wikipedia. So he started with a strong dynastic advantage.
Trump spent almost his entire career as the unremovable top executive of a large company.
No one in his company could gainsay him.
No one in his company could contradict him.
No one in his company could refuse to do what he asked.
Despite nearly fatal business mistakes in 1989 through 1991, no one in his company could criticise him.
Only sycophants were allowed.
In his company, he became an autocrat.
He enjoyed being an autocrat. (“You’re fired!”, said he, with relish and glee. )
He eventually came to believe that autocracy was the only effective way to obtain results.
That is why Trump approves of Putin, and is unable to see how massively Putin has damaged Russia.
Conscience leads almost every autocrat to wish to believe that they are a benevolent autocrat.
Trump wants to believe that he is a benevolent autocrat.
That is why he repeatedly says “They love me!” (The emphasis is his.)
When you hear words, even if they were spoken by yourself, they activate the same neural chains that are activated by words spoken by others.
So words spoken aloud by yourself are more comforting and supportive, and they carry a whiff of objectivity and outside validation.
(That is why prayer and wishes and political slogans said aloud, either by yourself or spoken in unison in a crowd, are so much more reassuring than silent prayers or wishes or slogans.)
So Trump says again and again, emphatically, “They love me!”
Of course benevolent autocrats are rare, even among those who wish to believe that they are benevolent. Lord Acton’s insight applies: “Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.” Acton’s insight does not refer to corruption by greed, but to corruption by rationalization and by arrogance.
Trump is the opposite of George Washington, that avid self-taught student of the history of freedom versus autocracy, who, as the first President of the US, deliberately and adamantly refused to set monarchical precedents, and who accepted the decison of Congress even when he thought it to be mistaken. Washington thereby set the most precious precedents of all.
Trump is a would-be President who doesn’t understand or like democracy.
He doesn’t understand the creativity and self-correction that is provided by the intellectual
crowd-sourcing that arises from the uproar that occurs in any open society.
Trump is utterly unfit to be President.
Trump’s advantaged career history also explains his other peculiarities:
Trump is arrogant. While announcing his candidacy, Trump astoundingly asserted that he would make Mexico pay for building a wall along its US border. Make? How? This is Bluster’s Last Stand.
Trump is conceited. So he feels no need to have his ideas critiqued before announcing them or acting upon them. Trump asserted that Mexico keeps its good people for itself, and “sends” its criminals and other misfits to the US. Does Trump suppose that a panel in Mexico reviews information about each of it citizens, and then issues orders to each, either stay or head north? This breathtaking idiocy is of a piece with Trump’s assertion that Putin has boosted the rest of the world’s opinion of Russia. It is also of a piece with Trump’s disastrous business decisions during the late 1980s and early 1990s, which nearly bankrupted his business and himself.
Trump is tone deaf. He has far less than the normal ability to see himself as others see him. He has lost much of his former skill in mentally mirroring others that was demonstrated by his college career. He seems to have retained only the mental mirroring skills needed for business deals.
It is sometimes asserted that sucess in business is one of the best indicators of suitability for executive office.
Trump illustrates the truth that being a business executive who lacks extensive experience in elective politics, or in another arena having frequent give-and-take between evenly matched participants, does not indicate suitability for high office. Instead it indicates unsuitability. (The same is true for military leaders.)
Trump illustrates the truth that a sense of entitlement is the root of most evil.
Trump is utterly unfit to be President.
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