The Deep State and Donald Trump

Back in Oz and the first thing I see at the airport is that ludicrous front page on The Australian: Putin backlash hits Trump after Helsinki summit supplemented by its fool editor-at-large Paul Kelly with his Friends betrayed, foes rewarded: Trump’s Russia reset, not to mention the foreign editor with his ridiculous Trump’s duty to call out Putin for crimes.

As it happens, I spent the journey home reading my signed copy of The Deep State: 15 Surprising Dangers You Should Know which essentially highlights everything you knew but through the sheer massing of the facts and the detail really does bring the dangers presented by our “elites” to a level of clarity that is quite quite astonishing. If you are anti-Trump then you are trying to contrive a Venezuelan future for us as well. You are either ignorant, stupid or malevolent, but there is no justification for running an anti-Trump screed when the American President is all that stands between us and a socialist future of wealthy elites who use politically correct thoughts to identify their ideological enemies, who are, in general, you and me. Then there is Tucker Carlson who discusses these things as well.

John Brennan is mentioned everywhere by everyone. Well how about knowing this when you hear his name, and he is merely representative and in no way an outlier: John Brennan Entered CIA in 1980 Though Voted Communist in 1976:

Barack Obama’s CIA chief, John Brennan, told the Annual Legislative Conference of the Congressional Black Caucus, on 15 September 2016, in Washington DC, that when he had applied in 1980 to join the CIA, he admitted to them that in the 1976 Presidential election, when Jimmy Carter was running against Gerald Ford, Brennan had voted instead for the candidate of the US Communist Party, Gus Hall, and that he was then greatly relieved to find that this information didn’t cause rejection of his CIA-application.

These people are our enemies, and to see them quoted in the mainstream is not just a disgrace but something you really need to fear.

AND IN ADDITION: From P in the comments with gratitude: Everyone Is Smart Except Trump. Here are the first and last paras but you really should read it all.

It really is quite simple. Everyone is smart except Donald J. Trump. That’s why they all are billionaires and all got elected President. Only Trump does not know what he is doing. Only Trump does not know how to negotiate with Vladimir Putin. Anderson Cooper knows how to stand up to Putin. The whole crowd at MSNBC does. All the journalists do. . . .

What has Anderson Cooper achieved during that period? Jim Acosta or the editorial staffs of the New York Times and Washington Post? They have not even found the courage and strength to stand up to the coworkers and celebrities within their orbits who abuse sexually or psychologically or emotionally. They have no accomplishments to compare to his. Just their effete opinions, all echoing each other, all echoing, echoing, echoing. They gave us eight years of Nobel Peace Laureate Obama negotiating with the ISIS JV team, calming the rise of the oceans, and healing the planet.

We will take Trump negotiating with Putin any day.

This entry was posted in International. Bookmark the permalink.

54 Responses to The Deep State and Donald Trump

  1. Nicholas (Unlicensed Joker) Gray

    I am not sure what Steve Kates is on, but I want no part of it! Such Trumpophilia is bad for the health! I was hoping that a third alternative would be embraced by the American electorate. Trump is better than I imagine Hillary would have been, but not by much. Whilst American strength does restrain China, we don’t need Trump for that.

  2. Infidel Tiger

    There is no deep state.

    It’s all in plain sight.

    Talking about a deep state just makes you look like a lunatic.

  3. pbw

    Let us not forget that Turnbull immediately jumped in with personal criticism of the President of our most important ally. Unfortunately, my stomach cannot be turned any more by anything that Turnbull does.

  4. Dave of Reedy Creek, Qld

    Thank you for a bit of sanity about President Trump. Our leftist/communist media sing from the same songbook as CNN and their ilk. I cannot believe we are fed such bile in Australia about our only true ally. Our politicians are almost as bad as the slimy media, seemingly judging everything the US president does BUT what are they actually doing for this country? Mr Trump has tried to secure their energy, what have our politicians done. He is try to stop illegal immigrants from overflowing their country. What did the Communist labor party do last time they were in? 50,000 plus unknown numbers drowned at sea, billions of dollars wasted, debt run through the roof! Mr Trump is stimulating their economy, getting manufacturing restarted; what is our lot doing? He has taken a reasonable stand on abortion, here in Queensland we are going in the opposite direction. I could go on and on. I reckon the old saying “if you can’t say something decent, keep quiet” would be a good policy in Australia.

  5. Tim Neilson

    OK so Trump said some things at a press conference which may have been silly (though I understand that the media precis tend to be hysterically misleading).

    Is that really going to cause the universe to implode in a catastrophic fireball of total disaster?

    With Trump, at least as much as any other political leader, I’d pay a lot more attention to what he does than to what he says.

    There used to be a phenomenon known as a “sense of proportion”. It seems to have been abolished, but I’d like to see it revived.

  6. The same people who criticised the Intelligence (sic) Community for WMDs in Iraq, now believe everything they say is gospel.
    The same people who lauded Killary for the “Russia Reset”, plastic button and all, now attack Trump for trying to actually reset relations.
    The same people who shut up when The Kenyan was caught on a hot mic saying “Tell Vlad I’ll have more flexibility after the election” are going apoplectic about Trump talking to Vlad.

    As far as that piece of shit Brennan is concerned, I’ll let a former CIA man who knows him well tell it like it is….

    An Open Letter To Mr. Brennan
    You were never a spy. You were never a case officer. You never ran operations or recruited sources or worked the streets abroad. You have no idea whatsoever of the true nature of the business of human intelligence. You have never been in harm’s way. You have never heard a shot fired in anger.

    https://andmagazine.com/us/1527014711.html

    Brennan is a Clinton and Obama operative who set up the Steel Dossier to frame Trump. This will be exposed in due course, which is why he is so shit scared and noisy at mo.
    Brennan, Comey and Clapper are doing their best to stay out of jail.

  7. mh

    Infidel Tiger
    #2767380, posted on July 19, 2018 at 11:31 am
    There is no deep state.

    It’s all in plain sight.

    Hahaha. Liberty quote!

  8. .

    James Clapper is in plain sight. He lied to Congress and just rubbed it in.

    What. A . Prick.

  9. Egor

    “The press takes him literally, but not seriously; his supporters take him seriously, but not literally.”
    — Salena Zito
    The administrative state, who literally hate the Trump threat to their supremacy, are apoplectic . Good.

  10. Tom

    There is no deep state.
    It’s all in plain sight.
    Talking about a deep state just makes you look like a lunatic.

    There is a Deep State alright, IT. And it IS in plain sight.

    Once upon a time it was hidden in the internecine caves of the bureaucracy.

    But that was before satellites and the 24/7 news cycle of cable TV.

    Then someone went and invented the internet.

    The Deep State is indeed in plain sight. Like rabbits in the headlights.

    It’s an incredible time to be alive.

  11. Dr FRED LENIN

    What Putin should do now is finance the accused Russians to retain a couple of top lawyers to demand exposure of the case against them Bby comrades mueller and rosensteen ,I see the case against the so called Russians who hired lawyers who demanded information has died a death ,like stormy Daniels etc . These clowns can’t even fit Trump up using all the taxpayers money theycontrol . They are typical socialists ,half assed smart Alec’s who have never done a usefull thing in their miserable lives
    Bet Trump is amassing a case against these crooks including the Clintons and probably having a good look at the half white guy who betrayed the USA for eight years ,love to see them all in one of those lovely US jails for life .They certainly deserve it .

  12. Roger

    With Trump, at least as much as any other political leader, I’d pay a lot more attention to what he does than to what he says.

    True, even more so than with other political leaders.

    Unfortunately, his constant feeding of the media chooks means his achievements aren’t reported and are therefore largely unknown by the general public, at least in Australia. This doesn’t help us, not that that is Trump’s concern.

  13. FelixKruell

    So what is your view of the Trump meeting with Putin, and in particular, the press conference afterwards?

    Or would you like to keep diverting with irrelevant tid bits about who voted communist in the 70’s?

  14. If you are anti-Trump then you are trying to contrive a Venezuelan future for us as well. You are either ignorant, stupid or malevolent, but there is no justification for running an anti-Trump screed when the American President is all that stands between us and a socialist future of wealthy elites who use politically correct thoughts to identify their ideological enemies, who are, in general, you and me.

    Says an economics professor who spends his days railing against his ideological enemies on the Cat.

  15. stackja

    DT is annoying all the right people.

  16. JohnL

    Unfortunately, his constant feeding of the media chooks means his achievements aren’t reported and are therefore largely unknown by the general public, at least in Australia.

    There is a lot that is largely unknown to the general public in Australia! For this, we can thank the ABC, education system, and dishonest political class. Also, the general public is blessed with the attention span that starts and finishes with football and cricket.

  17. P

    Rabbi Dov Fischer has a good piece today in The American Spectator:

    Everyone Is Smart Except Trump

  18. a happy little debunker

    Mueller’s’ announcement of the 12 additional indictments in the days before Trump met Putin was planned to impact against the Trump/Putin talks.

    Not withstanding that only 4 of the 16 intelligence agencies claimed that Russia interfered/hacked the US election – How many examined the ‘hacked’ servers?

    When the US intelligence services are actively plotting against their commander in chief, it is not his loyalty that should be questioned – It should be their TREASON.

  19. Mueller’s’ announcement of the 12 additional indictments in the days before Trump met Putin was planned to impact against the Trump/Putin talks.

    Rosenstein gave Trump the option whether to release the indictments before or after the Putin meeting.

    Sorry to debunk your debunking, debunker.

  20. Iampeter

    Actually the way you help guarantee a “Venezuelan future” is mindless supporting an el-Presidente-like leader who openly admires actual strong men and tyrants and passes massive rights violating legislation like trillion dollar spending bills, trade and immigration regulations.

    Supporting Trump because “not Hillary” is fair enough, but this level of uncritical, blind and conspiracy peddling doubling down on a disastrous presidency is the very way you get the kind of world you think you’re fighting against.

  21. We have to keep winning. We have to win more!

  22. DaveR

    Paul Kelly, now the Australian’s Editor-at-Large, has been a bit of a problem for a while now. Nothing against his personal politics, he is entitled to his views. Its just when he writes in the “elder Australian statesman” mode, as if we are all meant to stop and listen carefully. Time and time again he has been dramatically wrong or so far off-direction to be irrelevant – you wonder if he talks to anyone in public life at all. The introduction of the carbon tax and associated anti-capitalist imposts under Labor was the watershed: he claimed loudly it was the way to go and would be embraced by all Australians and businesses alike. Couldn’t be more wrong, more so today. And now we get his enthusiasm to put the boot into Trump and the US in a moment displaying all his pent up dislike (mind you – so did Turnbull). As a seniopr editor, I wonder if he remotely understands that a significant proportion of Americans, and Australians as well, actually like how Trump is dismantling western socialism, institution by institution, miss-steps and all?

  23. a happy little debunker

    m0nty @ 2:41 pm

    Thanks for the link.

    2 sources within deep state confirmed that Trump was ‘offered timing’, not that anyone should trust them.

    But supposing it is correct, what do you suppose that the outcome would have been had Trump delayed any announcement?

    After 2 years of a nothing burger are you not wondering why this 2nd batch happens to occur just before this meeting?

  24. Dr Fred Lenin

    The type of people TRUMP is driving to madness proves beyond doubt that he is right ,it’s a real pleasure to see the humourless left desparately inventing tissue of lies to discredit him , to inspire all this communist hatevhe has to be doing the right thing . The campaign of the globalists is even worse than the hatred of Abbott was here ,only difference our liars are second rate compared to the international liars mob ,they even make giliard look a tad better . Keep it up Donald with a bit of luck a lot of them will end up in mental homes .

  25. Dr Fred Lenin

    The accused Russians should get lawyered up and demand disclosure from muellers gang ,the other people he accused did that ,and the cases have gone real quiet. It’s all left politics ,if I were Trump I’d put the dogs on the whole criminal bunch ,bleed them of money for lawyers ,do deals to dob each other in ,cause fear and treachery amongst them ,play them at their own game ,be a joy to watch that . You notice every move they make co insides with an important event for the President and the USA ..

  26. P

    “AND IN ADDITION:”

    Thank you Steve for the acknowledgement in your post of the article by Rabbi Dov Fischer:
    Everyone Is Smart Except Trump
    It’s a good one all right.

    h/t https://twitter.com/srrohohyes

  27. Jannie

    Steve, you note that The Australian has a ludicrous front page, a fool editor-at-large, and a ridiculous foreign editor. I agree, which is why I long ago cancelled my subscription to the silly rag, and why I cant read their paywalled articles which you link to. Why should I pay them for their stupid stuff? Please provide quotes of the text rather than links.

    Yes Infidel Tiger #2767380, posted on July 19, 2018 at 11:31 am

    There is no deep state.
    It’s all in plain sight.

    Liberty Quote for sure.

  28. Cynic of Ayr

    Kelly. It seems that there are at least two types of journalists.
    Young ones who think they know it all already, and therefor have no reason to think or investigate. The ABC is chockers with them.
    Then there are old ones, who think they know it all, simply because they are old, and therefor have no reason to think or investigate. Kelly is one. Savva is another.
    Just what do these clowns think Trump should have done. Confronted Putin?
    Trump, “President Putin, you are a sleaze ball, interfered with our election, and shot down a civilian airplane.”
    Putin, “President Trump, I didn’t come here to be insulted. Go fuck yourself and have a press conference by yourself. Goodbye!”
    What a great move forward towards some sort of calmer relationship that would be!
    These morons, stupid blind morons, can’t see that scenario. Why? Because they themselves do not have a tiny fraction of the guts or nerve, of either of these two men.
    These brain dead people, lots of them in this thread, have no idea of what the alternative was going to be.

  29. Nerblnob

    The media’s obsession with what Trump – or any public figure – says rather than what they do is leading to some weird contortions. In fact they’re not even going by what is said but by the tone of it.

    Theodore Roosevelt’s foreign policy: “speak softly and carry a big stick.”

    We had Obama who spoke softly but didn’t use his big stick. Now we have Trump who does, but doesn’t speak softly.

    Media don’t seem to know how to assess what is actually happening but rush from one press conference to another and then report (verbal) reactions as if they really matter.

    Since my work has been affected by new targeted US actions against Russia (totally unreported in the mainstream media as far as I’ve had time to look, but available in specialist legal and export publications – e.g. https://www.lexology.com/library/detail.aspx?g=9d288d25-9035-406f-8105-b382b5680fb0) I’ve been looking for anything in the wider media that reflects reality as I experience it.

    So far, I can see some sense in Al-Jazeera:
    https://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/opinion/trump-putin-puppet-180718073251949.html

  30. Leo G

    Rosenstein gave Trump the option whether to release the indictments before or after the Putin meeting.

    No he didn’t. That would imply serious corruption.
    The prosecutor can’t negotiate the timing of a grand jury decision. The issue was about the announcement of the grand jury return of indictment.

  31. m0nty
    #2767582, posted on July 19, 2018 at 2:41 pm

    Mueller’s’ announcement of the 12 additional indictments in the days before Trump met Putin was planned to impact against the Trump/Putin talks.

    Rosenstein gave Trump the option whether to release the indictments before or after the Putin meeting.

    Sorry to debunk your debunking, debunker.

    Don’t be so foolish. If Trump was given the option and he said no hold off, then the screams of interference would have been just as loud.
    Furthermore, it is NOT 12 indictments, it is ONE indictment of 12 people.
    So these 12 Ruskie officers all committed the same crime? BULLSHIT.
    Remember the earlier indicted Ruskies? One is a corporation who are now in court trying to get discovery and Mueller says no, classified. The company claims to have NOT been in existence at the time of the alleged crimes.

    I don’t care if you’re a Trumper or never Trumper, if you don’t smell some terrible fishy stuff coming from Mueller and his long time mate Rosenstein, then you are a gullible fool.

  32. Leo G

    If Trump was given the option and he said no hold off, then the screams of interference would have been just as loud.

    The options would have been between an official announcement and a leaked announcement through one of the usual media suspects. Trump would have been given no genuine choice about the timing.
    The media reports claiming Trump was given a genuine choice are aimed at defending DoJ from arguments that the timing of the indictments is a sign of hostility from Rosenstein.
    Rosenstein’s hostility to Trump is palpable. Why bother to defend Rosenstein from one more claim he was failing to conceal his hostility.

  33. P

    “On Tuesday, Trump told reporters at the White House that Putin was ‘very much involved now with us’ on guaranteeing Israeli security in Syria. Whether Putin follows through remains to be seen, but it is certainly a step in the right direction — of peace.

    And so while Trump’s critics compete to show how outraged they are that he even shared a stage with Putin, and the opposition accuses him of treason, the president appears to have scored a victory for American interests in the Middle East.”

    First Win for Trump-Putin Summit: Agreement to Restrain Iran in Syria

  34. BorisG

    If you are anti-Trump then you are trying to contrive a Venezuelan future for us as well.

    This one phrase is all you need to know to understand that Steve Kates is an idiot. Not all trumpists are but everyone who believes the above phrase is.

    That sentence is not only wrong about Trump, it is wrong with respect to any person, even Jesus Christ.

  35. BorisG

    his supporters take him seriously, but not literally

    yeh right. when he says EU is a foe (on trade), and Russia is a competitor, we should understand that the deep meaning is completely opposite.

  36. BorisG

    These people are our enemies, and to see them quoted in the mainstream is not just a disgrace but something you really need to fear.

    This is the crux of the problem. Fellow Americans with different political views are Trump’s enemies, while Putin is his friend.

    Sad.

  37. mh

    When the US intelligence services are actively plotting against their commander in chief, it is not his loyalty that should be questioned – It should be their TREASON.

    I hope everyone understands this.

  38. Iampeter

    When the US intelligence services are actively plotting against their commander in chief, it is not his loyalty that should be questioned – It should be their TREASON.

    But when the President of the United States stands besides one of the worlds most dangerous, murderous dictators and says things like “I think that the United States has been foolish” its not treason?

    Also the intelligence agencies work for Trump. When he criticizes guys like Dan Coats he is criticizing his own appointee. Is Trump committing treason against himself? Could he be the Deepest of all Deep States?!

    OhMehGerddd! It was Trump all along! Call Alex Jones! Resist! We didant listen!

  39. mh

    I hope everyone understands this.

    Everyone excludes Iampeter, of course.

  40. BorisG

    When the US intelligence services are actively plotting against their commander in chief,

    Except they are not. They are investigating attacks in America from its enemies such as Putin’s Russia

  41. Leo G

    They are investigating attacks in America from its enemies such as Putin’s Russia.

    I read the recent claims that those attacks were worse than 9/11 and the Japanese attacks on Pearl Harbour and that the US armed forces should have attacked Russia two years ago in response.
    Accordingly, they should have attacked China too, if leaks about Lisa Page’s testimony are correct.
    But all somewhat exaggerated, I suspect.

  42. .

    But when the President of the United States stands besides one of the worlds most dangerous, murderous dictators and says things like “I think that the United States has been foolish” its not treason?

    No.

    Also the intelligence agencies work for Trump. When he criticizes guys like Dan Coats he is criticizing his own appointee. Is Trump committing treason against himself? Could he be the Deepest of all Deep States?!

    Don’t you think public servants ever act rebelliously to their political masters? This conspiracy stuff has its limits; Putin apparently was funding the Euromaidan against himself now and Hillary did not just Arkancide Obama. Or Bernie.

    OhMehGerddd! It was Trump all along! Call Alex Jones! Resist! We didant listen!

    It seems like you’re mocking the very idea of a deep state.

    Do you not agree that Clapper and Comey have shown themselves to be at least morally corrupt? The association between Australia, the UK and the US D’rats allowing for the FISA warrant against Trump is collusive, corrupt and definitely not in the public interest.

  43. BorisG

    But all somewhat exaggerated, I suspect.

    Yes. As for treason, it really depends on trumps motives. If trump merely believes in appeasement, it is wrong and naive but not treason. But if he acts to protect his business interests in Russia (not likely) or scared of kompromat Putin may reveal on him (real or fabricated), then it may be.

  44. BorisG

    The association between Australia, the UK and the US D’rats allowing for the FISA warrant against Trump is collusive, corrupt and definitely not in the public interest.

    This conspiracy stuff has its limits.

  45. BorisG

    Don’t you think public servants ever act rebelliously to their political masters?

    But here we are not talking about a domestic intrigue. We are talking about a number of indictments in a espionage case by a hostile power. Do you think it is likely fabricated?

    And make no mistake. Trump does not believe it because in his twisted mind it somehow taints his election victory. Otherwise would he mention the size of his victory 2 years after it? Putin was elected only this year and did not mention his margin.

  46. Iampeter

    Don’t you think public servants ever act rebelliously to their political masters?

    Yes. This happens in the private sector too. When you’re not getting what you paid for from your employees you replace them. You don’t run a shit team you failed to manage properly and then whine its committing treason or life isn’t fair. That’s just incompetence.
    I mean, do you really not see that there would be no Meuller investigation if Trump had appointed someone other than incompetent conservative theocrat number 2101 Sessions? There would be a Hillary investigation. Also he could’ve ordered this, which would’ve been another way to avoid the situation he is in.
    Basically Trump doesn’t know what he is doing, his advisers have no idea and professional conservative politician and operatives are unfit for office. This administration is just a shambles and has no one but itself to blame.

  47. Iampeter

    It seems like you’re mocking the very idea of a deep state.

    That’s correct. There is no such thing as a “Deep State” or “Globalist” or “Open Borders” or any other made up terms in use by todays politically illiterate in order to pretend to be talking about politics.

    These are nonsense terms, package dealing together a whole bunch of different issues, on many of which you should have very different positions, in order to appeal to the lowest common denominator.

    Basically, when even basic politics requires too much ideology to have all these positions without contradicting yourself then even MORE basic concepts are needed and confused gibberish like “Deep State” is born.

  48. OldOzzie

    Henry Ergas sums it up with an Excellent Article in The Australian Today

    HENRY ERGAS
    With NATO and Putin, Trump’s cleaning up after Obama

    In a widely acclaimed column in last weekend’s The New York Times, Bret Stephens argued that Donald Trump’s foreign policy aimed at one result and one result only: “The collapse of the liberal international order”, even at the cost of leaving America hated, feared and alone.

    That outcome would “be gratifying to Trump’s sense of his historical importance”, and it would also suit Russian President Vladimir Putin, “who knows that an America that stands for its own interests first also stands, and falls, alone”. But it would be a “historical disaster”, demeaning “the democratic ideals that America once embodied”, and reducing the US to a mere bully.

    Stephens’s is no voice in the wilderness. On the contrary, during the course of the past week the invective hurled at Trump became a torrent of abuse, in a crescendo that reached a peak after his press conference with Putin.

    Yet there is one thing none of his critics has been able to say: that the US President’s view of the situation America and its friends and allies confront is fundamentally incorrect.

    Nor could they. For it is an undeniable reality that by the time Trump came to office, the “liberal international order” was not even a shadow of its former self — it was a ghost whose death was barely disguised by the din of its rattling chains.

    No purpose would be served by recounting its downfall. Suffice it to note that the final blow was ­delivered by Trump’s predecessor, who will be remembered as one of the few US presidents whose foreign policy left every region of the world in worse shape than it was when he came to office. Exuding an air of Olympian ­superiority, Barack Obama allowed much of the Middle East to be ­reduced to rubble, while framing a nuclear treaty with Iran whose flaws are recognised by even its staunchest supporters.

    Paralysed by his failure to follow through on the “red line” he set for Bashar al-Assad, he created a vacuum that invited Russia’s resurgence as a ­regional military power, while standing impotently by as the ­Syrian tragedy unfolded.

    Nor did Obama rise above indecision in dealing with China. And on international trade he was scarcely better. Placing greater priority on climate change, he steadfastly refused to spend political capital on rebuilding support in his own party for an open trading system or on preventing the Doha Round from becoming the first multilateral trade ­negoti­ations to crumble, as they did in 2016.

    But no one could dispute Obama’s skills when sanctimonious rhetoric was required. While struggling to communicate with the Democrats’ traditional blue-collar constituency, he had a natural rapport with Europe’s political elite, who have elevated euphemism, question-begging and sheer cloudy vagueness to an art form.

    Little wonder then that during his presidency the US and the EU formed such a powerful choir lauding the “liberal international order” they were doing so much to discredit.

    That Trump is cut from a different cloth is obvious. Temperamentally, his attraction is to the strongmen — be it Russia’s Putin, Hungary’s Prime Minister Viktor Orban, or Israel’s Benjamin Netanyahu — who, in nurturing a direct relationship with their base, make bluntness a crucial feature of their persona.

    Their objectionable features are apparent, as is their hostility to democracy; but if they are such successful politicians it is at least partly because their message has the ring of truth. So too with Trump. Who, for example, could dispute Trump’s claim that the Europeans “free ride” on America’s defence spending? After all, since Lyndon Baines Johnson in 1966, every US president has deplored Europe’s refusal to shoulder its share of the military burden.

    The difference is that Trump has convinced the Europeans that his threats are credible, with the result that the latest opinion polls show rising public support for greater defence spending, even in Germany.

    Equally with China. When the Clinton administration approved China’s accession to the World Trade Organisation, it claimed China would speedily and permanently liberalise its trade and investment regime. Instead, under President Xi Jinping, China has veered into mercantilism, repeatedly breaching the rules it committed to in 2001.

    As those breaches occurred, Obama filed the right complaints, as did the EU; but it is only now, in the face of Trump’s punitive tariffs, that China’s ruling caste has shown even the slightest willingness to consider changing course.

    And so finally with Russia. As of December, Putin will be the second longest lasting ruler of Russia since the fall of the tsars, and he seems likely to remain in power for years to come; to believe global ­issues can be resolved without ­engaging with him is an infantile delusion.

    Yes, Putin meddled in the US presidential election, just as the US was, and remains, heavily involved in the domestic politics of Russia’s immediate neighbours.

    And yes, the Democrats’ incessant focus on those ham-fisted efforts riles Trump, who believes — quite understandably — that their main goal is to undermine his legitimacy. Smouldering with rage, he readily allows himself to be provoked into foolish denials.

    That Trump’s denials, the howls of protest they unleash and his subsequent backdowns are cringe-worthy hardly needs to be said. But it is equally certain that they are a sideshow. Ultimately, what matters is whether a working relationship is restored between the two countries, as Trump has sought to do.

    Trump’s instincts on those basic issues have therefore been vastly superior to those of his critics, who focus on his every slip with the spot-beam of pure hatred. To say that is not to excuse his many errors of judgment, including his misconceptions about international trade. Nor is it to minimise the myriad dangers his approach involves.

    But Machiavelli was right that politics holds no safe options — only ones that are more and less unsafe. And Machiavelli was also right that the prince, if he is to protect liberty from its foes, may have to choose being feared over being loved, as love is fickle while fear endures.

    That fear, however, should not be the terror of unpredictability and arbitrariness. Rather, as Machiavelli stressed, its handling demands leavening the ferocity of the lion with the cunning and ­intellect of the fox.

    So far, Trump has shown that he knows how to be a lion. Now, as the consequences begin to be felt, he must show more of the artfulness of the fox.

    The world he inherited offers him few pathways to success and many roads to failure; whether he can find the wisdom to navigate the risks that creates will determine his legacy, and our future.

    Henry Ergas
    Columnist

    Henry Ergas AO is an economist who spent many years at the OECD in Paris before returning to Australia. He has taught at a number of universities, including Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, the University of Auckland and the École Nationale de la Statistique et de l’Administration Économique in Paris, served as Inaugural Professor of Infrastructure Economics at the University of Wollongong and worked as an adviser to companies and governments.

    The Comments are extremely positive

  49. These are nonsense terms

    Can you provide us with an Objectivist-approved list of terms for the discussion of politics?

  50. Iampeter

    There’s no approved terms Dover, just the fact that you don’t know anything about politics.
    Just like if a Keynesian joins an economics discussion and starts using nonsense terms like “aggregate demand” to pretend to talk economics, so it is with all too many conservatives who do the same thing with political conversations.

    If you want to avoid this then I recommend learning what politics is about.

  51. No, no, you cannot say there is no list of approved terms if you’re suggesting, as you are, that others know nothing about politics. Oakeshott had a good understanding of what politics is about:

    Politics I take to be the activity of attending to the general arrangements of a set of people whom chance or choice have brought together. In this sense, families, clubs, and learned societies have their ‘politics’. But the communities in which this manner of activities is pre-eminent are the hereditary co-operative groups, many of them of ancient lineage, all of them aware of a past, a present and a future, which we call states.

    That is, politics is the activity of attending to the general arrangements of an already existing set of people, hereditary co-operative groups, which you think have no right of self-government. If there is someone here confused about politics it is yourself.

  52. Iampeter

    In your case Dover, the specific issue is that you don’t realize that holding collectivist positions, those that put anything above the rights of individuals as the basis for government, makes you a leftist.

    Not sure that’s all that far removed from not knowing anything about politics though.

  53. In your case Dover, the specific issue is that you don’t realize that holding collectivist positions, those that put anything above the rights of individuals as the basis for government, makes you a leftist.

    Not at all. It’s not ‘collectivist’ in the slightest defending the rights of a self-governing people to determine who can and who cannot settle within their territorial jurisdiction. To deny this is to deny to the people of such hereditary cooperative groups their right to self-government. And anyone that objects to such a right is themselves a despot.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.