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

Today in The Australian

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.

 

About Henry Ergas

Henry Ergas AO is a columnist for The Australian. From 2009 to 2015 he was Senior Economic Adviser to Deloitte Australia and from 2009 to 2017 was Professor of Infrastructure Economics at the University of Wollongong’s SMART Infrastructure Facility. He joined SMART and Deloitte after working as a consultant economist at NECG, CRA International and Concept Economics. Prior to that, he was an economist at the OECD in Paris from the late 1970s until the early 1990s. At the OECD, he headed the Secretary-General’s Task Force on Structural Adjustment (1984-1987), which concentrated on improving the efficiency of government policies in a wide range of areas, and was subsequently Counsellor for Structural Policy in the Economics Department. He has taught at a range of universities, undertaken a number of government inquiries and served as a Lay Member of the New Zealand High Court. In 2016, he was made an Officer in the Order of Australia.
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28 Responses to With NATO and Putin, Trump’s cleaning up after Obama

  1. stackja

    “The collapse of the liberal international order”, even at the cost of leaving America hated, feared and alone.

    Good result.

  2. C.L.

    Donald Trump’s foreign policy aimed at one result and one result only: “The collapse of the liberal international order”

    Good.

  3. Robbo

    Unlike the loonies from the left I do not hate, or even dislike, Trump however we should all remember that at the last Presidential election voters in the USA had to make a choice between Trump and Hillary Clinton. No wonder he was elected.

  4. Leo G

    America First, America Hated, America Alone

    Trump intends to bring about the collapse of the liberal international order, in its commitment to open societies and its institutions.

    By Bret Stephens
    Opinion Columnist
    The New York Times
    July 13, 2018

    Some near-forgotten anniversaries are worth commemorating. One hundred years ago — Bastille Day, 1918 — Theodore Roosevelt’s youngest son, Quentin, was killed in aerial combat at the Second Battle of the Marne. Twenty-six years later, Quentin’s oldest brother, Ted, also died in France, after landing at Utah Beach on D-Day.

    Quentin and Ted are buried side-by-side at the Normandy American Cemetery and Memorial in Colleville-sur-Mer. It’s a moving sight for everyone who still believes in the cause for which they and their brothers in arms fought and died — above all, the idea, possibility and preservation of a free world, anchored and inspired by America but not subservient to it.

    In other words, the things that Donald Trump has spent his presidency trashing under the historically sordid banner of “America First.”

    That trashing reached some sort of climax this week with the president’s excruciating tantrum against Germany at the NATO summit in Brussels, followed by his gratuitous humiliation of British Prime Minister Theresa May via an interview in a Murdoch tabloid. Maybe next he’ll propose that Vladimir Putin rejoin the Group of 7 — except he already did that in Canada more than a month ago, right around the time he launched a trade war with Canada, Mexico and the European Union.

    What does all this achieve?

    No doubt just what Trump intends: the collapse of the liberal international order, both in its animating commitment to open societies as well as its defining international institutions — the G-7, NATO, the European Union, the World Trade Organization. Seen in this light, the president’s wretched behavior isn’t — or isn’t merely — the product of a defective personality. It’s the result of a willful ideology.
    … … …

  5. OldOzzie

    Henry,

    thanks – an excellent article – succinct and to the point

    Majority of Americans have never been to Moscow/Russia, and as the SBS Soccer Commentators broadcasting World Cup from a Studio in Red Square said, they were surprised how friendly the Moscow Russian People were and even more surprised that Moscow was not Multi-Cultural but basically mono ethnic i.e Caucasian – same thing struck me about both Moscow and St Petersburg – great places and great people, especially the young, when I visited last year.

    Revisiting Beijing this year, I found I preferred Moscow Red Square over Tiananmen Square and Forbidden City.

    I had watched the Oliver Stone Putin Interviews and other Putin reviews before going to Russia and found those born after 1991 – enthusiastsic about Putin and the Future and they could not understand the antipathy of Americans towards Russia

  6. P

    Henry,
    thanks – an excellent article – succinct and to the point

    And thanks OldOzzie for giving us the article to read here.

  7. Senile Old Guy

    Excellent article, Henry. Well written and well argued.

  8. Dr Fred Lenin

    The destruction of the u.n.communist soros fascist dictatorship what’s not to love ? Now to get rid of may. Macron merkel etc etc ,the air will be fresher then . The best we can hope for is another dysfunctional senate to prevent the union branch of the alp takes over from the turnbull branch of the alp ?
    So they cannot pass any more u.n.communist fascist laws and stay that way till we get a political revolution that sweeps career politics into the bin of history.

  9. OldOzzie

    The World Explained: It’s Simple – Everyone Is Smart… Except Trump

    That’s why they all are billionaires and all got elected president…

    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.

    They could not stand up to Matt Lauer at NBC. They could not stand up to Charlie Rose at CBS. They could not stand up to Mark Halperin at NBC. Nor up to Leon Wieseltier at the New Republic, nor Jann Wenner at Rolling Stone, nor Michael Oreskes at NPR, at the New York Times, or at the Associated Press. But — oh, wow! — can they ever stand up to Putin! Only Trump is incapable of negotiating with the Russian tyrant.

    Remember the four years when Anderson Cooper was President of the United States? And before that — when the entire Washington Post editorial staff jointly were elected to be President? Remember? Neither do I.

  10. Leo G

    Trump intends to bring about the collapse of the liberal international order, in its commitment to open societies and its institutions.

    Rather it seems that a global civil service elite, who believe they are empowered by a liberal international order, regard President Trump as a challenge to their ideological construct. An army of Don Quixotes tilting at an enemy they imagine as an evil giant.

  11. Davo

    One flawed individual (not as flawed as the alternative….or his predecessor who did nothing much constructive other than talk up his game and hang out with celebrities), but wow, he really is doing his best to improve the work with more equity and fairness overall; and he’s getting traction

    Unless effort is rewarded, civilisations ultimately decay and will fail

  12. Bela Bartok

    Trump will not be allowed to continue in defeating the ‘swamp’.
    $100 on Trump being impeached, scandalized, verballed before Feb 2019.

  13. sdfc

    No one needs to verbal that colossal buffoon. He says and tweets more than enough stupid stuff of his own.

  14. Ragu

    I’m a Trump constituent. He aint the messiah, but he’s right. First world countries are losing their manufacturing workforce and their government is telling the displaced that the future is selling each other insurance. Not everyone wants to work in an office. And we get sneered at by the ‘educated’ class via the media that we’re wrong to not be over-educated shitheads.

    I don’t for a second believe Trump wants tariffs on all his trading partners. He is trying to keep people like me in clover.

    It’s cheaper to buy a structural module from China and pay for the remedial work. That’s fucked up because your skilled workforce learns how to fix things, not build things without fucking it up.

    That trashing reached some sort of climax this week with the president’s excruciating tantrum against Germany

    This is just stupid.

  15. .

    Three things I’d like to see Trump do:

    1. Exit the UN and pull funding.
    2. Cut spending and pay off US Federal debt, which has global implications.
    3. Lower trade barriers and stop spouting the nonsense that a trade deficit creates a blow for incomes.

  16. Donald Trump’s foreign policy aimed at one result and one result only: “The collapse of the liberal international order”

    Good, there is no greater enemy of historical peoples at present.

  17. Ragu

    Shit Arky is right. Government has diminished the skills base. And look at the shit fight we are in. South Korea is going gangbusters because Australia can’t find three blokes that can find entrepreneurship

  18. sdfc

    Protecting manufacturing employment is basically a policy of service workers subsidising manufacturing jobs.

  19. .

    We taxed offshore oil into irrelevance in Australia.

    One example of poorly thought out policy driving away industry and primary production or manufacturing.

    The carbon price is next.

    Two off the bat.

    Blaming trade liberalisation is really misguided.

  20. .

    Probably one of Keating’s absolute WORST policies.

    40% on profits after expenses including GST.

    So it is double the US corp. rate now.

  21. Ragu

    I can’t remember Hansard, but it was sold to us as Australia being such a perfect and idyllic place that we should tax the shit out of it.

  22. BorisG

    Ultimately, what matters is whether a working relationship is restored between the two countries, as Trump has sought to do.

    But with what means and at what cost? Definitely not through appeasement.

    Trump sucking up to Kim and Putin is sickening. And don’t tell me it is all purely tactical. It is clear from his posture that he believes Kim and Putin.

  23. .

    Boris

    How has Trump appeased Kim at all?

  24. Ragu

    Answer the question, Boris G

  25. Ragu

    Stop being a troll.

    Trump is thinking of trade. Money in

  26. BorisG

    How has Trump appeased Kim at all?

    He afforded the tyrant a meeting of equals with the leader of the free world, and then showed all the respect and trust in his empty promises.

    Not sure if he still believes Kim will give up nukes, after they insulted his Secretary of State.

  27. BorisG

    PS and also suspended all ‘war games’ with South Korea, not sure about Japan.

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