Archive for Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Opinion: Trump espouses dangerous doctrine

July 27, 2016

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Last week Donald Trump laid out a deeply disturbing view of America’s role in the world.

The Trump Doctrine — if we can call this mass of contradictions a doctrine — embraces isolationism while simultaneously insisting Trump can swiftly destroy the Islamic State. It suggests we should abandon our closest allies, the democracies in NATO and Asia, even as Trump embraces autocrats like Russian leader Vladimir Putin and Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

But what is scariest about the Trump Doctrine is that its author shows no grasp of what he is talking about and no desire to learn, even as he makes clear his belief that he, and he alone, knows everything. The key line in Trump’s dark acceptance speech at the Republican convention went like this: “Nobody knows the system better than I, which is why I alone can fix it.”

This is the statement of a demagogue who will do tremendous harm to U.S. security if given the chance. Let us count the ways that Trump’s message will, and already has, made America less safe.

First, his apocalyptic speech painted a dark, scary portrait of America that is grist for Russian and Chinese (and Islamic State) propaganda mills that claim the American system is finished as a global model.

Yet Trump has falsely defamed his own country. Contrary to his claims, the U.S. economy is doing well, unemployment is down, and serious urban crime, while undergoing a 2015 uptick in some cities, is down in many urban areas and has been dropping steadily for over a decade.

Second, Trump’s praise for autocrats, and disrespect for his own democracy, further feeds the Russian-Chinese-Islamic State narrative that liberal democracies are headed for history’s dustbin. In a scary foreign policy interview with the New York Times, Trump expressed admiration for only two foreign leaders. The first was Putin, who pulls all the strings in Russia, sends opponents to Siberia (if they are not mysteriously murdered), and is trying to imitate a Russian tsar. “I think Putin and I will get along very well,” he told the Times.

The second was Erdogan, who wants to reclaim the past glories of an Ottoman sultan. He has used a failed coup as an excuse to round up tens of thousands of civilians, including anyone who might ever oppose him, behavior that Trump refused to criticize. Even before the coup attempt, the Turkish leader had silenced leading opposition media by using draconian libel laws that bankrupted critical newspapers. Trump has said he would tighten U.S. libel laws if elected (First Amendment be damned).

Third, Trump promotes an America First isolationism that will convince the world that our country is a spent power. He has undercut key alliances with Europe, Japan and South Korea, which will thrill Russia and China as they try to dominate their neighbors.

Last week, Trump said he might not honor the essential pledge to come to the aid of a NATO member under attack if that state had not “fulfilled their obligations to us.” He also suggested he might bring troops home from Japan and South Korea, which would strengthen China’s effort to dominate the region and increase the North Korean threat there.

Trump made clear to the Times that he sees little value in those alliances, especially if they protect countries with whom America has a trade imbalance. In other words, to Trump — a man whose deals often enriched him even as creditors were left hanging — our key security alliances are meaningless if they don’t turn a profit. (He also appears ignorant of the fact the Japan pays heavily for the cost of U.S. bases.)

This is the man who says he will make America safe.

Fourth, this level of ignorance pervades most of Trump’s foreign policy positions. Example: He talks of starting a massive trade war with China but seems to have no appreciation of the cost to America in lost exports and jobs (not to mention the fact that such a war would probably shut down Wal-Mart, which depends on cheap Chinese imports and is where much of Trump’s base shops).

Fifth, in foreign (as well as domestic) policy, Trump makes promises he can’t possibly keep. There won’t be a wall along our southern border paid for by Mexico nor can he deport 11 million undocumented immigrants. Nor will Trump be able to instantly vanquish the Islamic State as he claims.

So I can’t help wondering what a President Trump would tell the U.S. public when he is revealed as a charlatan. Probably he will blame his failure on internal enemies. That’s what Putin does, blaming “traitors” who undermine Mother Russia. That’s what Erdogan does, blaming “traitors,” including the Kurds and a cleric in Pennsylvania, and America.

We know the Donald already has a long enemies list that includes blacks, Hispanics, the media and anyone who crosses him. His angry followers, including the racists and crazies who have been mainstreamed by his campaign, would no doubt vent their anger on these traitors.

The one person Trump is unlikely to blame for the security debacle that will follow his election would be himself.

— Trudy Rubin is a columnist and editorial-board member for the Philadelphia Inquirer.

Comments

Armen Kurdian 1 year, 9 months ago

Interesting how she focuses on the one who espouses poor foreign policy than the one who enacted lousy foreign policy.

Barb Gordon 1 year, 9 months ago

Because calling on foreign nations to commit espionage in order to give you an electoral advantage is exactly the sort of quality one looks for in leaders. Vote for Trump, komrade.

Ron Holzwarth 1 year, 8 months ago

It is not spelled komrade, it is spelled Товарищ.
Better start brushing up on your Russian.

Bob Smith 1 year, 9 months ago

If Hillary can be said to have a doctrine, it would be money talks.

Barb Gordon 1 year, 9 months ago

Голосовать за Трампа , товарищ .

Paul Beyer 1 year, 9 months ago

Hillary haters still out in full rant. Facts be damned, just keep on hating. That's the tea drinkers motto.

Bob Smith 1 year, 9 months ago

You're an apologist for the most corrupt and vernal candidate to run for President at the head of a major party since Warren Harding. Keep drinking that Flavor Aid.

Barb Gordon 1 year, 9 months ago

I think you're confused, Bob. Paul isn't being an apologist for Trump.

You also appear to be a bit mixed up on the vocab. I'm not sure what you meant by "vernal." I don't see anything relating to the spring about either candidate. Best I can guess is that you miss-typed "venial," but even that's not entirely fitting.

Calvin Anders 1 year, 9 months ago

Armen, you could certainly argue that Obama's foreign policy has not been ideal. You could even argue that Clinton bears some responsibility for the hawkishness and shortsightedness of that administration's foreign policies (but the argument starts to get a little thin there). What I don't think you can argue, with any credibility, is that foreign policy enacted during the Obama administration is nearly as stupid, inflammatory, ill conceived or potentially disastrous as what Trump has suggested. The problem with being critical of Clinton's foreign policy positions and track record is that she has demonstrated a steady hand in implementing policy. She understands the implications and nuances of foreign policy and has shown she has a fairly conservative approach to dealing with the rest of the world. Trump, on the other hand, seems to have the approach of throwing poop at the wall and waiting to see what sticks. It's not just that Trump has zero experience with foreign policy, it's that he has zero experience coupled with the confidence that he can bully his way through any issue without first learning anything about who or what he is dealing with. It's the difference between a veteran quarterback who may have had a tough season, but still has a solid team and just needs to tune up a little, and a rookie who has not ever played pro ball. Hell, he hasn't even played college ball. Hell, he hasn't even played high school ball. Let's face it, Trump barely knows what a football looks like. But he's bragging that he knows exactly what to do.

Armen Kurdian 1 year, 8 months ago

First of all, I REALLY appreciate your well-written response, no sarcasm here.

I am 100% in agreement w/you on Trump. He has no idea what he has doing. But I provide the following in evidence of Clinton's and Obama's utter incompetence in foreign policy:

1) Support of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt in the stead of Mubarak or the military when Morsi was deposed, MB being the group that spawned Al Qaeda.

2) Support for toppling Qadafi, bad as he was, which allowed an Islamic Government to come in, and sewed the seeds for the massive instability there now and the death of our Ambassador.

3) Failure to support the Iranian students in 2009 because of this insane drive to get a nuclear deal with Iran.

4) Aforementioned nuclear deal, allowing Iran access to $150B in assets. We negotiated with terrorists violating one of our most fundamental tenets of foreign policy.

5) Failure to act swiftly with Russia in the Ukraine & Crimea.

6) Failure to recognize the emergence of ISIS as a global threat.

7) Fractious relations with Israel while trying to be more embracing to our enemies.

So it boils down to this for me. I know for a fact that Clinton's foreign policy has been incompetent and embarrassing, and that's what we get with her. With Trump, I can only hope that he'll surround himself with smarter people who would advise him appropriately.

Calvin Anders 1 year, 8 months ago

Armen, I really can't argue with your evidence of incompetence and poor results. It really comes down to 2 bad choices, both on domestic and foreign policy. But, U.S. policy in the Middle East has traditionally been short sighted and poorly reasoned. From Reagan's under the table dealings with Iran to decades of every administration ignoring human rights abuses by many countries in the region to arming Iraq during it's conflict with Iran to invading Iraq based on a false pretext, administration after administration has pursued agendas that almost always make things worse. So, Obama's Middle East results, while poor, were in large part inherited and were part of a larger pattern of imperialistic arrogance that stretches back many decades. Also, the Obama administration's efforts can't be completely tied to Clinton. She was a role player, but it's not fair to contend that she was completely responsible. And she was only Secretary of State for the first 4 years of the current administration's tenure. I have zero confidence that Trump would be able to find or recognize intelligent, insightful resources to help him develop productive Mideast policy. He has shown no inclination to surround himself with anyone besides sycophants and idiots. And if anyone is in a position to have learned anything from the gigantic pile of idiotic mistakes the US has made in Mideast policy, it's Clinton.

Armen Kurdian 1 year, 8 months ago

All fair points. However I doubt she has learned anything, as what she is advocating for now is no different than during her tenure. She can't, anyway, at least until notionally in office because that would contradict herself while working for Obama, which would not help her campaign (i.e., friction between her & the President, lot like the Obamas and Clintons are good friends).

I don't trust Clinton at all, and as much as I despise Obama, even I gave him a chance when he took office to prove himself. She is crap from day one as far as I'm concerned. Trump to me is a shade better. Clinton out and out lied to the American public, the FBI, and Congress to hide her incompetence regarding national security secrets. Trump, despite all of his blowhard bluster, hasn't actually done anything wrong yet. Realist that's a bit of a sardonic comment. Best I can come up with.

Fred Whitehead Jr. 1 year, 9 months ago

Trump is a fascist Nazi-like presence in the U.S. election. The outrageous statements of today inviting Russia to interfere with the process of the U.S. election should disqualify him from even running for office. But the dyed in the wool Republicans (the ones who brought us Brownback and Kobach) will fawn and fall over themselves to support this throwback to the Third Reich. (Get your history books out folks)

Armen Kurdian 1 year, 8 months ago

The Russia comment was a joke in poor taste. Here you are talking about that instead of the fact that someone hacked into the DNC and showed their collusion to centralize power (something the Communists did), not to mention Clinton's complete gross negligence and intentional deception regarding her handling and management of this nation's top secrets. Dems have spun it well that they have you looking at the wrong hand..."These are not the droids you are looking for."

The Russia angle is totally made up by the Dems to get you to look away from their incompetence.

Barb Gordon 1 year, 8 months ago

The Russian comment was something Trump didn't walk back or dismiss as a joke during the interview in spite of several invitations to do otherwise. So I'm not going to consider it to be an off-color joke, my New Jersey komrade. Meanwhile, the DNC wasn't hacked by "someone." They were hacked by the Russians. Meanwhile Trump has multiple connections to Putin and has already said he'd have policies that would be favorable to Putin's aims. I'm not saying there's any proof he's colluding with Russia, but it's the sort of thing he's not even close to being in a position to joke about.

Oh yes. Those terrible emails. I read them. Mostly it just showed political chit-chat resulting in little to no action. It's weird how the Democrats favored the registered Democrat. But go ahead and keep telling us about how high that molehill is. Is there snow on top?

There's nothing made up about the Russian connection, btw. Private and government experts have overwhelmingly said as much. US intelligence says it's Russia. http://www.nytimes.com/2016/07/27/us/politics/spy-agency-consensus-grows-that-russia-hacked-dnc.html The private firm hired to investigate after the DNC discovered that they were hacked says it's Russia https://www.wired.com/2016/07/heres-know-russia-dnc-hack/ The FBI says it was Russia http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2016/07/25/fbi-suspects-russia-hacked-dnc-u-s-officials-say-it-was-to-elect-donald-trump.html

The wikileaks founder (who scrubbed the Russian metadata after everyone pointed it out) claims there's no way to tell it's Russian. Same guy who helped Snowden get to Russia, I might add.

If the DNC were going to make up a source for a hacking, they'd claim it was the RNC, not Russia.

“This was absolutely not an amateur operation … When you look at the totality of all those pieces and you put them together, it kind of paints a really good picture of who the actor was,” Michael Buratowski, the senior vice president of cybersecurity services at Fidelis Cybersecurity, told ABC News Monday. “I come from a law enforcement background, and it’s [about being] beyond a reasonable doubt. And I would say it’s beyond a reasonable doubt … I’m very confident that the malware that we looked at [was from] Russian actors.”

Armen Kurdian 1 year, 8 months ago

The Russia angle that Trump is in cahoots with Russian hackers is pure fantasy. Russia has hacked everything under the sun in this country, as have the Chinese. DNC to blame for their own poor cybersecurity. And you are doing the same thing that I asserted, about ignoring the substance of the correspondence in favor of trying to spin this as anti-Republican, when an honest and good man (though I totally disagree with him politically) was efforted to be disenfranchised along with the 13M who voted for him.

And here you are going off on these hacks and saying nothing about Clinton's utter and intentional negligence in the mishandling of our nation's highest secrets. We won't know if those got hacked, although the same intelligence communities you reference say that was highly probably as well.

And yes, Trump has walked it back. It was a jab at Clinton's lack of security and deletion of official correspondence. It was a joke regardless of whether you think it was or not.

I and Randolf and apparently Jerome seem to be the only ones with any objectivity on this board. I can say here and for the record that Trump is a bad candidate. Can you honestly tell me you think Hillary Clinton is not just as bad? The entirety of this board is nothing but negativity on both candidates! About the only positive thing I can say about Trump is I believe he actually loves this country. I can't even say that about Clinton!

Barb Gordon 1 year, 8 months ago

Ok, first off. I've read the emails being circulated around as evidence, Jersey. It's a bunch of nontroversy. Most of these "damaging" emails were sent after Sanders had lost any path to victory and contained idle speculation ("Should we do X?" X thing doesn't happen). There's zero evidence that the primary outcome would have changed without DWS, and everyone already knew she was biased from the words that came out of her mouth. Also, DWS is not Clinton, nor is there evidence she did this with Clinton's blessings - unless I'm missing some other email.

Now let's get back to the part where it was Russia. Sure, we can speculate that they hack us all the time. They keep the intel secret. This is the first time they've had a well-timed data dump designed to influence the outcome of a US election. That's a big deal. And no, Trump did not walk back his statement during the press conference in which he made it in spite of many opportunities to do so. It wasn't until words like "treason" were floating around that he suddenly decided he was just kidding. Too late. Even if it's a joke when you claim you've got a bomb in an airport, nobody is going to take it like one. That's the sort of thing the next president of the United States should not have to have explicitly explained.

Yes, I can honestly tell you that I think Clinton is not "just as bad." I'd be right there with Randolf in doing so. She's not a perfect candidate. There's no perfect candidate on the ballot this (or any) year. She may even end up being a bad president. But she's not "just as bad" as Trump, who is the least qualified and scariest presidential candidate to appear as a major candidate in any election in US history. And that's not hyperbole.

Armen Kurdian 1 year, 8 months ago

You're still doing it, playing down one set of negatives while playing up the others. And you are being logically inconsistent. Based on your position, you have to give equal weight to both issues, the hacking of the e-mails and potential that it was Russia, and the content of the e-mails that the DNC was working against Sanders.

Hillary Clinton is a proven liar on multiple occasions along with the atrocious judgment and record as SoS as I laid out in a previous post. Trump has made some of the dumbest comments I have ever heard out of a Presidential candidate's mouth, or at least lets say he's probably got the most of any. Clinton lied to everybody to try to hide her mishandling of classified information. If you don't live in that world, I can't expect you to truly understand how critically damaging that is. The content of those messages, if they were hacked, utterly dwarfs anything else we are talking about here.

Truthfully, if you can tell me you acknowledge that Clinton is all of that, but you find Trump more distasteful, I can't really fault you for voting for her, considering the two main choices we have. I find Clinton the most despicable candidate to run for President in the Post WWII era, save maybe David Duke.

Barb Gordon 1 year, 8 months ago

I'm being very consistent and considering things in context. You're conflating issues in order to give artificial weight to your arguments in an ironic case of playing down a set of negatives in order to inflate another.

The DNC hack was the DNC, not Clinton. Clinton is not the DNC. The DNC is not Clinton. DWS is not running for president. I didn't say anything about Clinton's separate email server in this thread, for which there is no evidence of a Russian hack. (Ironically, there is evidence the Russians hacked the state department email server around the time they were hacking the DNC. You know, the "secure" one.)

I'm not going to say she did nothing wrong, but it was a wrong that, per the FBI, does not merit prosecution. Insisting repeatedly that she's a "proven liar" when Trump can't even finish a sentence without lying about how he started it strikes me as a double standard. She's been objectively far more honest in her statements than he has per fact checking sources.

She's also been evaluated by scholars as one of the most effective Secretaries of State (Kerry one of the least), and they've gone on a ton of tax-payer funded fishing expeditions in order to find otherwise, so excuse me if I don't buy into your narrative on that one, either.

But yes, even if I agreed with your assessment of her, which I don't, I'd still consider her a better candidate to run the country. The worst that she can do is be a bad president. Perhaps even lie occasionally. The consequences of Trump would be far more disastrous.

Armen Kurdian 1 year, 8 months ago

Then why did DWS become the honorary chair of Clinton's campaign? Fine, it speaks to the DNC. And Hillary is the standard-bearer, and she made no comment about the content of the DNC e-mails. Why should she? Just ignore it, let it work for you.

I laid out seven critical failures of Clinton as SoS above. And she just lied on television again about Pat Smith's speech at the RNC convention, about what she told them following Benghazi.

There is no conflation of issues. If you want to hammer on Russia for a hack, fine, but it does not discount the content of what was revealed. Nor does it absolve her of criminal negligence for mishandling of classified information. You really want someone who has lied to your face to cover up her bad behavior of this magnitude in the White House?

The only people with any sense this November are going to be those who vote Libertarian, and dare I even say it, Green, because so far as I know neither one of them are the gargantuan disasters that we are talking about now. Character matters. Trump may be an ass, but Hillary has already done her damage, and I can't stomach more of her crap.

Barb Gordon 1 year, 8 months ago

She didn't become the honorary chair. She became an honorary chair. It's a position with no responsibilities, no pay, no budget, and no employees. You know, "honorary." Obama had 24 honorary chairs, including an actress and a high school teacher. That said, I agree it was a boneheaded move, as the optics look bad under the circumstances. She probably thought she was smoothing things over by giving her a gold star to hang on her fridge, since she didn't give her anything of actual meaning.

Why would she need to make a comment on the emails? She has enough problems with her own emails without inviting more trouble, as is clearly demonstrated by your conflations of the issues here.

You made an argument about your assessment of her job as SoS. Scholars and experts disagree with you. And I'd rather have her "lies" than Trump's blatant, repeated, and objectively more frequent lies any day of the week. Yes, please. If he's a liar, I don't want him, but if he does half the things he says he'll do, I really don't want him. Plus I'm not going to let Putin get a vote on who I elect.

People who vote libertarian and green are effectively voting for one of the two top candidates by proxy. The people who truly don't support either candidate should leave that spot blank and vote down-ticket. I don't have the privilege to live with the consequences of imposing a purity test on my candidates, so I'll vote for Clinton and against the Trump dumpster fire. You're welcome to vote for Johnson.

Barb Gordon 1 year, 8 months ago

And after Trump may have already revealed confidential information to the entire world after getting an intelligence briefing, I don't want to hear anything more about Clinton's email setup.

Barb Gordon 1 year, 8 months ago

Nope - turns out he just doesn't know what he's talking about. Why would anyone trust him with confidential information?

MerriAnnie Smith 1 year, 8 months ago

I doubt it was a joke, Armen. It's very common for some people to have no idea how venal an idea is and to propose it, and then when he's faced with it, says, "I was just joking."

It was some heck of a twisted joke if it was a joke.

But he followed it up with this today: Russia is willing to hack our government business for Trump to help him win the election but he wants Trump, if he wins, to lift sanctions on Russia that were put there by the US and our European allies because he invaded a sovereign nation and annexed them into Russia (Crimea). He also wants Trump, if he's elected, to break ties with our allies in the European Union. (a story you can find at politico.com).

When a reporter asked Trump today if he'd do that, he said he'd consider it.

So in one breath the man says he was just joking about the hacking, but in another breath Trump said that he'd consider giving Russia's neighbors to Putin if he wants them without any interference from the US or its allies -- if Putin would hack the US Government's business.

Does this sound like a man who should be in charge of our government? It doesn't to me. One thing for sure we can know... Hillary wouldn't sell her country out just to get help from Putin on a personal goal of hers.

MerriAnnie Smith 1 year, 8 months ago

And you might remember, as well, that the deleted emails were like when YOU or I delete emails. I do that all the time. EVERY SINGLE DAY. I get a lot of emails. I wake up in the morning to maybe 50 of them. I just go through and delete most of them, read the rest and then delete them too.

Some of them are personal business and some are junk mail. Hillary had the same right YOU do to delete old emails.

Armen Kurdian 1 year, 8 months ago

Do you have any idea about the gravity of deleting official correspondence to hide it from official records, or how grave the mishandling of classified material is? Are you really telling me you are going to excuse the trove of her bad behavior and only focus on Trump's bad behavior? Have you worked in Government in that official capacity? Fact is I do not have the right to permanently delete e-mails en masse as part of my job...e-mails are official Government records:

"Records include all books, papers, maps, photographs, machine-readable materials, or other documentary materials, regardless of physical form or characteristics, made or received by an agency of the United States Government under Federal law or in connection with the transaction of public business and preserved or appropriate for preservation by that agency or its legitimate successor as evidence of the organization, functions, policies, decisions, procedures, operations, or other activities of the Government or because of the informational value of the data in them (44 U.S.C. 3301)."

Your comment either demonstrates your lack of knowledge about the laws in this country or a deliberate effort to ignore bad behavior. I'll assume it's the latter in fairness.

Greg Cooper 1 year, 9 months ago

Great pic, Bob. You can't even be consistent in your lack of care for the nation. Putin? That's not even close to funny. And the irony of your pretending to support Putin is lost on you. Pity.

Dorothy Hoyt-Reed 1 year, 9 months ago

I wonder if Trump supporters have started taking Russian lessons yet?

Ron Holzwarth 1 year, 8 months ago

That's not necessary. Online or computer translation will take care of everything, without requiring any background information on the language. You don't even need to know the Cyrillic alphabet.

But don't worry, the Russians will surely allow us to keep on speaking English. I'm sure of that because of an aunt's experiences in Russia, where she spent a great deal of time teaching advanced English students the nuances of spoken English. They are very eager to learn, since English is a much more universal language than Russian is.

Plus, guess where they aspire to move to - here!

This diverges from the topic a bit, but I'll write it anyway. Russia has many problems, although Mother Russia does aspire to be a superpower. There are so many problems in Russia that a few times my aunt (she speaks fluent Russian) heard older people in Russia say in the presence of younger people:
"There is no hope for Russia."

Jerome Bradley 1 year, 8 months ago

Google Translate app on your phone lets you hold your phone up to a sign or letter and it will translate it right there in front of your eyes! Last I checked it had 5 major languages it could translate on the fly.

Armen Kurdian 1 year, 8 months ago

Bob, it's too late for this. Obama & his two failed SoS's have already made Russia great again.

Dorothy Hoyt-Reed 1 year, 8 months ago

Would you like to say how? Oh I forgot, that's not necessary. Facts and details are just for us liberals.

Barb Gordon 1 year, 8 months ago

He's bought the narrative he's been sold on Clinton, and no facts will get in the way of his thinking. In fact, he feels the need to double down on them whenever possible to fight the cognitive dissonance.

Michael Kort 1 year, 9 months ago

What surprises me is how trusting of trump Americans who know little about this guy are .

I think that if Jack the Ripper had a TV show that Americans would volunteer to be killed !

The presidency is not a one hour a week, reality show or somebodies 15 seconds of fame .

He is a 3 time bankrupt who failed to pay contractors, investors, would be deposited condominium buyers, hoodwinked students, etc "all left spinning in the wind, in his better ideas", to take the fall for his projects, that feed his pockets and expensive lifestyle . Making it right is not his problem !

He is of the habit of wining at the expense of others......and there is nothing like Donald's having no morals to trouble himself with .

Bob Summers 1 year, 8 months ago

Yes. And Liberals voted for a Hawaiian whose friends called a Choom gang leader. Someone whose brother thinks is a mess.

Everyone has a few skeletons in their closets.

Shall we talk about Sanders and Clinton?

Let's talk about Clinton's skeletons.

Barb Gordon 1 year, 8 months ago

Vote Трампа and make Russia great again!

Armen Kurdian 1 year, 8 months ago

Randolf & I have it right, both candidates are terrible, we're just not agreeing who is more terrible, which is the right argument.

Do any of you Trump haters actually think Clinton is a good candidate? If you do, you've drunk the kool aid and need to get yourselves educated. Unless one of these clowns is impeached or forced to resign, we are in big trouble as a country over the next four years.

We are not just headed in the wrong direction anymore. We have arrived and are digging in. If you don't think that's right then you are deluding yourselves.

Armen Kurdian 1 year, 8 months ago

Good call. Honestly, I vote in NJ...so I probably won't know if I vote Libertarian or Republican until the morning of. I hate Clinton. But I know the Donald is a bad candidate too. So do I vote against someone I utterly loathe, or for someone with good character?

Armen Kurdian 1 year, 8 months ago

JB, have you ever voted Libertarian before? I did the first time I was eligible to vote, I turned 18 just 2 weeks before the 1988 election.

Jerome Bradley 1 year, 8 months ago

I voted for Gary in 2012 after the GOP shafted him in the GOP debates and he left the party. I am not a fan of any parties and think the two party system has failed most Americans, even if they do not see it.

I personally wanted Austin Petersen to get the LP ticket, but that didn't happen, but I believe Johnson is much better, and with actual executive experience between him and Weld, than Trump or Clinton.

Seeing how Kansas will go red as history suggests, I view my vote for Johnson this year as getting him closer to a 5% national popular vote so another party can get federal funding. Breaking the two party stranglehold will give Americans more choices and it is so desperately needed.

Armen Kurdian 1 year, 8 months ago

I wonder what would have happened had the RNC used a super delegate system and the DNC had not?

Seems like the last 20 years has seen a steady decrease in partisanship and increase in a race to the extremes of the spectrum. Maybe we need to fix the Primary system.

Jerome Bradley 1 year, 8 months ago

This article has a wonderful visualization as to just how polarized and partisan we are becoming: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2015/04/23/a-stunning-visualization-of-our-divided-congress/

I believe we need to fix the primary system, that or have a voting system that isn't just for one candidate, have all take all, but rather where people get to vote up to x amount of people and if one drops out, you still have expressed support for someone who may still be running. There is a specific name for such a system but I cannot remember off the top of my head. Either way, I believe something needs to change for the sake of the American people to have a greater role or voice, and I think it begins with including more political parties or independents in the debates to get a larger and more broad discussion and narrative going.

Barb Gordon 1 year, 8 months ago

Interesting question. Mostly like the outcome would be Clinton vs some other candidate.

Paul Beyer 1 year, 8 months ago

Never heard of them, so why should I waste my vote on them?

Jerome Bradley 1 year, 8 months ago

The only wasted vote is an unprincipled vote.

Sounds like you need to expand your news/information/knowledge sources :) MSM won't spoon feed you anything beyond the Rs and Ds.

He is on the ballot in all 50 states and between the two, they were both two term governors (NM and MA), they have 16 years executive experience and are socially liberal and more fiscally conservative. MSM barely covers them. I do not like everything they are for, but that goes with any candidate. Only time you will agree with a candidate 100% is if you are the candidate.

This site, www.isidewith.com, can help you discover many different candidates beyond the Ds and Rs, but that requires you to do seek that information on your own and do some research and look beyond the normal day to day ways you gather information :)

Barb Gordon 1 year, 8 months ago

You shouldn't. You'd hate his economic policies. He's the candidate for conservatives that realize Trump is dangerous but can't bring themselves to vote for Clinton.

Armen Kurdian 1 year, 8 months ago

I don't think you mean parliamentary, right? But I like the idea of voting for two or possibly three candidates in a primary, or say 20-30% of the candidates, whatever that may work out to, so if there were just three, you only get one, but if there were five, you might get two votes. Also, I no longer think primaries should be closed to only party voters, unaffiliated should be able to vote in the primary of their choice.

I think it's tragic we had so many fantastic candidates on the Republican side this time, and end up with arguably the worst. Kasich, Bush, Huckabee, even Christie or Fiorina would have wiped the floor with Hillary. Trump may do that as well, but I won't be jumping for joy by any means.

Bob Smith 1 year, 8 months ago

Funny how American leftists were all about loving commies until the Russians stuck a torpedo in the DNC. Not so much now.

Barb Gordon 1 year, 8 months ago

Funny how the "American leftists" are apparently still better at knowing the difference between communism, socialism, and social democracy than you are. The right seems to have an infatuation with Putin's corrupt autocracy and cult of personality right now. Just ask Trump.

Armen Kurdian 1 year, 8 months ago

Yeah, they ("American leftists") really don't. General level of intelligence in this country is deteriorating rapidly.

Barb Gordon 1 year, 8 months ago

Correct. The American Leftists don't have an infatuation with Putin. I'm glad you agree. I doubt the general level of intelligence is dropping so much as the anti-education sentiment of right-leaning populists is rising. It's a real pity to see, Jersey.

Michael Shaw 1 year, 8 months ago

Alternate history class in this thread.

Barb Gordon 1 year, 8 months ago

That poster is unfairly critical of Clinton and The Joker.

Bob Summers 1 year, 8 months ago

It was entertaining, but quite instructional, to watch Clinton and her Liberal sycophant comrades co-opt the American flag as their own during her assembly.

Barb Gordon 1 year, 8 months ago

It turns out that they're patriotic Americans, Komrade. If you don't like Americans using their First Amendment rights, just vote Trump. He'll take care of those pesky constitutional freedoms for you.

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