Guys, I realize that I’m posting a lot about Trump, and I’m feeling a little bad about that. I think it’s becoming too excessive, and yet, I want to both express my thoughts about this topic, as well as create a repository for articles and other information.
Rebellion Brews but But American ‘Deep State” is a Myth is an article by John Schindler, a former NSA analyst. I don’t take Schindler’s word as gospel (really, I don’t take any journalist’s world as gospel), but Schindler is credible to me. Having said that, some of his tweets, chiding Trump for insulting the Intelligence Community (IC) have unsettled me a bit. These tweets are warnings that suggests if Trump insults the IC, the IC would get their revenge. In the article above, Schindler not only attempts to debunk the notion of a Deep State rebelling against Trump, but also ostensibly defend the leaks. He doesn’t do that great of a job, in my view, as I think can be seen in this section: Continue reading ‘Thoughts on the Government Leaks That Have Been Going On’
The press has problems. There’s ideological bias, that can lead to distortions and misleading reporting. There is commercial pressures and a lack of resources that can lead to hurt the quality of journalism even more. Despite these flaws, I still think the press is very important, and does have the capacity to report facts to hold the President accountable. If there’s one thing good about the Trump regime, it’s that I’ve gained a much deeper appreciation for our system of government and democratic institution, and the free press is close to the top of that list.
Here’s a thread that collects some video, quotes and anything else that serves as a paean to the press. The first video clip is my favorite:
This is a thread on the personnel in the Trump administration. I’m going to organize this thread a little differently. I’m going to try and use one post (comment) per staff, which I will update with articles and comments over time. In effect, the post/comment will be like a page for the person in question. I’m doing this for several reasons: 1) this makes finding information about an individual a lot easier; 2) it will limit the number of times the entire thread is bumped to the top.
The format of thread isn’t really structured for discussion, but if any of you want to post a comment please feel free to do so.
I’ve read several articles/tweets from conservatives criticizing the media, and while conservatives have been bashing the media for liberal bias for years, I’m hearing a slightly different twist, now. Some of them recognize the need for good journalism now, as well as public trust in the press, but these conservative critics believe the mainstream media (some of these critics are conservative journalists/writers) is basically clueless. In this thread, I want to address some of the points they make; here are some thoughts off the top of my head: Continue reading ‘Some Thoughts on Distrust Towards the Media’
For: Clive Crook, writer for Bloomberg. (It should be noted that Crook is not very supportive of Trump’s policies, and his actions so far.) Gayle Trotter, columnist, political analyst, lawyer
Against: David Frum, The Atlantic co-editor, former George W. Bush speechwriter. Michael Waldman, President, Brennan Center for Justic, and former speechwriter for Bill Clinton. (He’s the only liberal on the panel.)
Let’s talk about 80’s music that either had that retro 50’s rock n’ roll sound (e.g., Stray Cats) or had some quality that made you think of 50’s rock n’ roll, while also sounding pretty different, too (e.g., Huey Lewis and News’s “Heart of Rock and Roll”–or maybe that’s too close to the 50’s?) Hopefully, you get the idea. Here’s a few more (and we’re talking musicians as well as individual songs): Continue reading ’80’s Neo-Rock n’ Roll’
How to Culture Jam a Populist in Four Easy Steps is an article written by a Venezuelan who lived through the Chavez regime. (There’a also a WaPoversion.) Drawing on his experience, the author, Andres Miguel Rondon, gives some advice about how Americans should deal with Trump.
This thread is a repository of articles and comments about whether President Trump is making the country safer or not.
Recently, he signed an executive order (EO), banning individuals from seven countries in the Middle East and Africa. Notably, Saudi Arabia and Pakistan were not on the list. Also, individuals with green cards from these countries were not allowed back into the country.
I’m finding a lot of negative articles, but if you guys see ones that argue that Trump is making the country safer, please let me know.
I’m really think these are important questions for Americans to understand–especially since Trump seems to want withdraw American power from the world. Is this a good move or not? To answer this question, we need to understand the longstanding global order, lead by the U.S., and including NATO–what exactly are both and what’s good or bad about them from the point of view for American citizens. It’s a big topic, and I don’t have all the answers. Because of that, the purpose of this thread is to try and gain a better understanding of this topic.
I should really start by defining what I mean by a world order and even NATO, but I’m going to delay that, and just post a threaded tweet about possible consequences of U.S. withdrawing their power around the world. The tweets are from Andrew Clarkson, who, according to his twitter page, is a lecturer on German and European Studies in King’s College London. (I found this via a re-tweet by David Frum.) Here are the tweets:
The more I read about both Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin– specifically, the threat that both pose to the West–the more I think about the idea I will discuss in this thread. The idea involves starting a national discussion and a national celebration about our American system of government and our values. This may seem like an odd project to suggest, but I actually think that a large campaign to discuss and celebrate the American system of government is a crucial way to protect and preserve our great country. I’m offer some thoughts on why I feel this way, but let me start by explaining the nature of project. Continue reading ‘What Makes America Great Project’
DID YOU KNOW . . . that using a plunger to dislodge mint stems in your kitchen sink does not work? Even if you alternate plunging between the two sides of the sink for 20 minutes. It is; however, a decent cardio workout.
reid: my mind
A tweetstorm by Brendan Nyhan, a Dartmouth poli-sci prof, from November 2016
Important for everyone to see how many scholars/journalists who study illiberal/authoritarian regimes are deeply alarmed about US right now. These fears are not generic liberal opposition to GOP. Nothing comparable was said about Romney or McCain. This is not crying wolf. Parallels to past democratic breakdown here (Prof Timothy Snyder) and here (Valerie Bunce and Mark Beissinger from Cornell and Princeton, respectively) and to Russia (Masha Gessen, journalist) are all too real. Don't say you weren't warned or didn't know. It's happening. Our institutions/elites keep accommodating illiberal behavior. It must stop. And don't wait for something dramatic to happen. There will be no one moment when democracy fails. Risk is slow descent into illiberalism. Most important: this is not about ideology. GOP won - they should try to pass their agenda! But the norms of our democracy must be sacred. I would like nothing more than to be wrong. But the last 12 days have been the most alarming of my professional life. Patriots must speak up.
That was several days after the election. I don't think anything has changed--maybe things have gotten worse. What Nyhan says still applies. Americans should take what he says seriously.