This thread is intended to discuss the upcoming Trump presidency and related matters. Areas of interest include domestic policy, foreign policy, electioneering, cabinet appointments & perspectives, media etc. etc. Additionally, perspectives from other countries, & the impacts on them of the 45th presidency are encouraged here & not discouraged. This is certainly not a thread for Americans only. All are welcome. @DarthDimi
and I thought this would be a good compromise to an issue we were having elsewhere.
The rules are simple. Come and be yourself, have fun, discuss, moan, whine, gripe, post relevant links, conspiracy theories, do whatever you want. I encourage you to express yourself any way you feel comfortable. Kindly just don’t spam with things that are irrelevant to the subject, and please try not to disrespect, judge or be offensive (collectively or individually) to other members’ points of view. I realize politics can be challenging & that Trump is polarizing (he’s very much like a Bond villain to some, I recognize), but in the end we all improve when we hear competing perspectives. Haters can become lovers, I hope.
I don’t expect that this thread will be closed barring some calamity (unlike a prior one which followed the memorable campaign, & which I see as its spiritual predecessor, linked below for those who came late to the party, are interested in politics, and who may be interested in reading it), but rather, that it will continue on with perspectives and opinions during and until the end of the historic Trump presidency.
Bring forth the next four (or eight) years! If anything, they are sure to be highly entertaining. I hope we all get through it!
I know the intention for the two threads is somehow for one to remain for criticisms of the system and this one somehow just for positive thoughts (?) but I can guarantee that won't work, and as it stands right now I just don't see the point.
Just thought I'd air my brief concerns, as I know many are in the same boat in thinking this can't go well, considering it never has or never will, especially after the election.
I want to be absolutely clear. I want to hear from dissenters here. It's not for Trump lovers only. That is not the point of this thread. The thread is for anything and everything you want to discuss related to Trump and politics, including stuff you don't like. I'm not a censorship kind of guy. Also, others can discuss the impacts of Trump on their own political systems in their local countries, including UK, France, Germany, Netherlands, Canada etc.
I only ask that personal attacks for people's political opinions be left elsewhere, where possible.
Dear @BondJames. I am simply not sure if in this polarized environment there eventually will be a nuanced, empathic, understanding discussion about all this. On page 3 of that other political topic (I don't even know the name), I gave my entire view on all this.
Today something cruel happened in The Netherlands, regarding a new political party and one of its frontrunners, Sylvana Simons:
And in the USA Trump keeps ignoring and scolding press like NYT. Nor does he condemn these kind of videos:
Or what about Trump's real estate properties? How....on Earth can you keep all this if you become president? A valid question, but it won't result in a proper discussion.
In all honesty I think it's better to tone down the amount of politics on here. I am already completely saturated :-(. This polarization will never result in a good discussion in which we really highlight solutions, in which we empathize with each other. Frankly, another topic like this basically scares me.
I'm interested in the foreign perspective, particularly in Europe, because I expect that many with radical views will indeed latch onto the Trump wagon and attempt to use it as cover for their own racist opinions.
I just found the following articles on her:
While I think laying all this at Trump's feet is unfair, he perhaps will need to make a race speech at some point in the future. Folks have been calling for it in the media.
An issue I have personal concerns about is conflict of interest. As you note, Trump has vast business interests, and how he can legitimately keep a wall between his business and political interests is difficult to see.
I'm not saying this. I am not blaiming Trump directly for this. But I think we both agree that the poltical climate has been completely poisoned and polarized. In The Netherlands, in the USA, on social media, and on many occasions also in here.
Anyway, this has(n't) been fun, but I'm out.
Those of us who were around long enough remember how this theory ("If the President does it, it's not illegal") worked for Dick Nixon.
I do think it's childish to have several people who hate Trump to constantly post negative things and to continuously bash other forum users.
Honestly guys, Obama is still the president like it or not Trump has no power right now. Let's give him a chance before we knock him.
Remember when Daniel Craig was cast and 90% of this forum bashed him, now a majority of Bond fans rank him second to Connery. I am not saying Trump will be the best president ever but America will most definitely change a lot in four years under him, whether good or bad let's hold off on all the disses and remarks and have valid conversations and points.
You wouldn't like me when I'm [dissententing].
The financial crisis and technology (Moore's Law) have laid bare the problems and limitations with unchecked capitalism & globalism. I believe Marx himself may have indicated that this is how capitalism could all end.
Moreover, we perhaps have too many people too. When you try to bring roughly 3bn (the combined populations of China, India and Brazil) into the capitalist model and the middle class, and they are willing to work longer for less, it's bound to create significant social tension. There are vast cultural differences here. Capitalism inherently is about winners and losers. It's a Darwinistic economic model.
Furthermore, declining birthrates in Western countries are adding to economic & productivity slowdowns, and that's further compounded by immigration of people who 'look different'. Obviously the tensions for the pre-existing homogeneous culture will be immense. Suspicions only grow further.
Then there's the issue of urban vs. rural. Do we just invest in cities and forget about people who live in the 'burbs? Brexit and Trump were as much a reaction to that issue as anything. It was also a reaction to governments ostensibly not listening to their voters, and looking at some as 2nd class compared to others.
How do we solve this? What's the approach? That's the big question.
I really think a form of 'managed capitalism' is one solution. 'State' managed even. That's what countries like Singapore did so well, and that's what countries like China are emulating. A business focused model which is state run and managed. The issue here is corruption and nepotism. One has to create a model of government that's accountable. Where there are more corporate style consequences for failure. Where useless lifers and 'hangers-on' are weeded out.
I also believe there has to be caps on executive compensation. When a CEO can make $50+m or more for a year, it's just ridiculous. There's only so much of the pie to go around. I'm sure there are excellent executives who would be willing to work for just a little less, and then there is more to go to employees. Statistics have shown that most of them don't add the shareholder value that they are paid for.
Dude, I'm serious. Come over, vent, and be your silly and usual fun self any time. I recognize that the dual thread thing is as silly as it gets, but it's the only solution we could think of. This one is for everyone.
Another good post which I borrowed from the other thread.
Yes, TPP is a geostrategic initiative first and foremost, and an economic one secondly. I agree that it was designed to bring the South East Asian nations closer together under American hegemony and also serve as a block to China.
So on the face of it, Trump's stated opposition to the deal seems like a huge miscalculation.
However, I think he knows that. I believe he will try to renegotiate the deal. Canada, Australia, South Korea and Japan are involved as well (and they are unlikely to run to China to spite the US as an alternative - Abe had a good discussion with Trump over the weekend and believes that the alliance is strong), and the whole thing rests on the US as the consumer of the products (the biggest market) anyway.
I've haven't looked into the details, but believe this is part of his negotiating tactic. Threaten to scuttle, but ultimately come up with something better for workers and jobs in the US.
Scrapping the Iran Nuclear Deal would be a big mistake though and is a far scarier geopolitical prospect. Iran should be viewed as a distinct case of keeping one's enemies close, and that's what the Nuclear Deal, imperfect as it is, does.
I don't have much to say at this point, but I think there is way too much conjecture in the media right now about what Trump is (and isn't) actually going to do. Every time a new cabinet member is rumored, it's like 'OMG! This means he's going to do this or that! Well, that's not what he campaigned on! -or- That means he is going to do extreme things to this country!' I can't even go on facebook without seeing friends commenting on "news" articles that are pure conjecture. The sky isn't falling, or if you really feel like it will, it hasn't yet. Ugh!
All I can say is I remember him saying he likes to be unpredictable. I think he was being honest then and we're seeing it now. Just enough to keep everyone on edge. Just enough to keep everyone comfortable. As for the actual outcomes, only time will tell, but my gut say that was always part of the plan...
Excellent point. I agree.
I agree with you. I believe this is exactly what he's doing. Playing everyone along. It's a bit Reaganesque. Enemies overseas thought Reagan was the 'real mad dog'. It was an illusion. Trump definitely has to make nice with America's friends who are worried, and I'm sure he will do that over the next few months. He has already had a good meeting with Japan's leader as mentioned earlier.
There's a wonderful quote from Salena Zito of The Atlantic which she wrote a few months back:
"The press takes him literally, but not seriously; his supporters take him seriously, but not literally"
The truth is probably some where in between.
I'm including a link below to an excellent article in the Washington Post. The important quote is below and then the full article:
"What has stood in the way of people running as an independent is that winning the presidency in a system that so clearly favors the two major parties is something of a hopeless cause. That’s a big reason former New York mayor Michael Bloomberg decided not to run several times when he seriously explored the idea.
Trump took the elements of an independent candidacy — the lack of clear ideology, the name recognition of a national celebrity and the personal fortune needed to fund a presidential campaign — and then did what no one seemed to have thought of before. He staged a hostile takeover of an existing major party. He had the best of both worlds, an outsider candidacy with crosscutting ideological appeal and the platform of a major party to wage the general election. By the time he had finished, he had taken down two political dynasties: the Bush dynasty in the primaries and the Clinton dynasty in the general election."
Trump, BE the Bruce Wayne we know you can be!
Trump isn't a blank slate. He has visible past behaviour in business and public life for the last fifty years. He ran on election promises and has questioned both the current president's legitimacy and claimed the very system that got him elected was rigged. So either he's a liar or he will fulfil his promises that the majority of the voting public disagreed with.
It's good that you can decipher which of his statements are true and which are not. Just as voters have cherry picked which statements they agree with of his and which of his provocative, incendiary and divisive comments they choose to ignore or tolerate. I find it amusing that people who have complained about liberal elites who don't have their best interests at heart have voted a thin-skinned capitalist elitist who will change little for the 'working class'. Ironically he'll increase spending - something the GOP are suddenly fine with - and give corporate tax breaks while still opposing the minimum wage.
I'd love to be proven wrong...but then again...I always thought Craig was a great choice for Bond.
If it's Giuliani for the latter, then I think we are in for Ra's al Ghul and not Wayne sadly. I have a distinct feeling it won't be Romney. I think Trump just spoke with him to get his world view and he's been doing that with a lot of folks including Kissinger, who was reasonably positive about his conversation with Trump. I heard a rumour somewhere that Petraeus is under consideration for something but not sure what.
This infrastructure program is going to be difficult to get through Congress. I think he will only be able to get it if they get tax reform and their tax cuts in return. No doubt there is going to be a huge hole blown in the deficit soon. However, these initiatives are likely to turbo boost the economy in the short term. Keynesian spending tends to work. It either has to come domestically or it will come in the form of some war spending which I'm against. The easy money approach is out of gas and interest rates have to go up (but not too fast) to curb speculative excesses and in order for the economy to be on a more balanced footing.
It was a quick talk before he had to leave, but I had a chance to ask him a few questions as he was at the podium. Most of this is known already but it was helpful to get it from him.
1. He believes fundamentally that Clinton lost because she didn't talk enough about the economy. He said he was particularly upset about that since he and Carville are the ones who came up with "it's the economy stupid!" during Clinton's 1992 campaign. He also lambasted the fact that she did 80 (or so) focus groups to determine her campaign slogan: "Stonger Together". Begala sais that America is not 'stronger together' at the moment. It is divided. Her slogan did not reflect reality. He also said that she didn't really have a cohesive message.
2. She was seen as the status quo candidate in a time of change. He indicated that the country has been moving in the Republican direction for some time....at Governorship and congressional level and districts. He suggested that despite this, since a Democrat was in charge of the White House (he means Obama), the Republican candidate was automatically seen as the change candidate. When I questioned him, he conceded that Trump was also seen as much more of a change than any other traditional Republican since he was an outsider.
3. He said that many of the commentators and pundits were too distracted by Trump's (he called him the big Orange Typhoon) bombast and rhetoric, and didn't realize that his fundamental message of economic renewal for the middle class and the forgotten had been resonating.
4. He was asked about why the polls missed what was happening. He indicated that they missed the 'denominator'. He meant the 'turnout'. Trump was able to pretty much hold onto Romney's vote total but got the mix right and in the right places. Clinton lost far more Obama votes, and particularly in the rust belt. However, I think he said that Clinton got more votes than any other white candidate who's run for president (not sure if I heard that right). He also said that the polls did tighten considerably on the last weekend and they could see that the pendulum was swinging towards Trump.
5. He also said that he missed that Trump wasn't really a developer any more. He was a media star, and understood media much better than anyone realized.
He said that he hasn't spoken with Hillary since the election loss but he has spoken with Bill, who has come to terms with the loss.
Sorry about the quality of the photo. My phone wasn't able to focus properly.
Mark my words - exactly because of that same disregard for the voter - we will see repeat performances in France, Germany and Holland. The establishment can't learn to listen, they and their acolytes know only how to slander.
And I tell you, this kind of narrative is what eventually will destroy Western prosperity. It has become like a 'psychological disease' in the mindsets of western people. Making America Great Again? Then fff-ing talk about HOW to make it great, instead of using this cheap, and at times untrue, slogan for blamefingering.
And again, I still don't know in which of these two topics I should post. It's all confusing. Similar discussions now get separated without any good reason. The meandering of this is tiresome. And where are the moderators? I think they are tired too.
You need to look back before you can look forward because you won't mend anything unless you understand how it got broke in the first place.
I think the reason Brexit and Trump happened, is way more extensive and complex than just one simple -and again, that's what I can read- bit of fingerpointing. I think in some of my previous comments I admitted intensively what's wrong with the establishment and elite. If there's one person who points the finger at his own beliefs and the attitude of those people I support, then it's me @stag. Me.
But reading your response only confirms that it will be very hard to talk about the issues, about certain facts of the global economy and about clearly defined policies in this topic. I hoped that could happen. But I'm afraid that the environment in here and out there is too heated, too sensitive and too polarized to actually have a dispassionate discussion about the issues.
Hence why I will most likely stay away from this topic (and others as well).
As a former resident, I'm curious about your thoughts on how things changed under Blair, Brown and Cameron. When I left London John Major was in charge. I was also there during some of the Thatcher years as a youngster (but too young to remember much). I know that Blair adopted a 'third way' in order to win the 1997 election, which essentially co-opted a lot of the conservative business friendly concepts & ideals in lieu of Labour's original focus on the 'working class' and 'left wing values', but with a stated commitment to social justice. This was seen as necessary to get Labour back into power after years in the wilderness under Neil Kinnock (for non UK folks, he was Labour opposition leader from 1983 until 1992). Hence the term 'New Labour'.
This was in many ways based on the 'New Democrats' concept espoused by Clinton (Bill). who also similarly saw this as a way to reverse numerous Democratic election losses in the 70s and 80's, and one relatively uninspiring presidency (Carter's).
Did this approach essentially sell out the middle class? That is something worth discussing. It can be argued (I suppose) that with less real representation in the respective governments, their relative power declined, as did that of the labour unions, both at the expense of corporations and financiers.
Moreover, financial deregulation, which was initiated first during the Thatcher & Reagan years and later continued during the Clinton and Blair years may have contributed to their current plight. For a time the issues were masked by the 'peace dividend' that occurred after the Soviet Union's collapse in the early 90's & the resulting prosperity that followed. However, now that we are in a more competitive and interlocked global trading environment (with a rising China in the WTO, India etc. etc.), the perils of this approach are laid bare for all to see.
This seems to have culminated in a working class left rebellion of sorts, with Jeremy Corbyn (UK labour leader) and Bernie Sanders/Elizabeth Warren (de facto leaders of the Democratic Party in the US until someone new comes along) as the peoples' choices from the left. This passionate lot haven't been enough to 'win' an election in the respective countries, but they are certainly very vocal & can influence the policy agenda.
@Gustav_Graves, you're correct that placing blame is not a solution. However, I agree with stag that it's necessary to truly understand the problem compassionately, as that will serve as a basis for sustainable solutions. As I mentioned in the old thread, Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump both identified the same problems. Those problems are real - they are not imagined. Their solutions for dealing with the issues are quite different, and I prefer some (but not all) of Trump's approach as I am business focused. Having said that, I'm not an extremist and believe that social safety nets must be relatively robust, but not so much that they become dependencies.
I'm interested in the economies of Germany and the Scandinavian countries, and Switzerland. I think a lot can be learned by understanding how these countries in particular have delivered reasonably high and growing standards of living, competitiveness and prosperity while also maintaining a reasonable social net. I realize that they are far less populous than the USA, and also far more homogeneous / less diverse, but I am sure lessons can be gleaned.
Trump has apparently named Betsy DeVos as Education Secretary. Jeb Bush and Bill Krystol of the Weekly Standard have approved of this pick.
She claims to be anti-Common Core (which is a program to standardize K-12 level education standards in mathematics/english/arts etc.), although some on the far right (who oppose that program) don't think she truly is. Those on the left think she will decimate public school funding and increase funding for religious schools.
There has been some pushback from states on Common Core. I'm not all that familiar with all of the concepts around it, but these are interesting articles I've read on it.
DeVos also claims to be in favour of Charter schools and private voucher programs, as well as letting states set their own standards.
Trump has also named Nikki Haley, the popular and respected Governor of South Carolina, as UN Secretary, replacing Samantha Power. She is the daughter of Indian immigrants and a rising party star.
Haley doesn't have foreign policy experience, but is considered by many to be a smart and symbolic pick. She delivered the Republican response/rebuttal to Obama's 2016 State of the Union address and was instrumental in getting the Confederate Flag removed from statehouse grounds in South Carolina after last year's slaying of a prominent minister and eight parishioners at a historic African American church in Charleston. Senator Lindsey Graham has approved.
Trump has asked Dr. Ben Carson to be the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, and Carson is reportedly going to accept the job. As many know, Carson ran against Trump during the primaries, and was, for a short time, leading in the polls. Carson came from a poor background in Detroit, and became a prominent and highly accomplished pediatric neurosurgeon, known for cutting edge procedures. Some of his achievements include performing the first and only successful separation of Siamese twins joined at the back of the head, pioneering the first successful neurosurgical procedure on a fetus inside the womb, performing the first completely successful separation of type-2 vertical craniopagus twins, developing new methods to treat brain-stem tumors and reviving hemispherectomy techniques for controlling seizures
Carson, if he accepts, will be the first African American member of Trump's cabinet.
All of the above picks will require Senate approval.
Believe it or not, most of Texas is obviously republican but Austin is mainly democratic and I would say 80% of the Austin crowd voted for Clinton.
Some friends of mine said that most people are so stupid that they literally go in and just vote for Clinton.
A lot of people will skip all the local voting and only vote for the presidential candidate. The popular vote does absolutely nothing. We elect the people who vote for the president. The republicans won the house and senate so obviously all the republicans went out and voted straight party...
I know a bunch of miniorites from high school who posted that they only voted for a presidential candidate and didn't understand the point of voting for anyone else or the fact that the popular vote doesn't elect the president LOL.
Bottom line is, a lot of people are uneducated. Trump won. Deal wth it.
Now with policies, to be on subject.
I really wonder what impact it will have on America when he actually deports illegals who are criminals. I mean I doubt we will see obvious change, it's going to be a few years and it really depends how many get deported. It's really going to be a small amount considering the local police could care less about illegals... My dad owns a roofing company and the old company he was employed at was about 90% Mexico. A majority of them spoke decent English and joked about how they have fake IDs and how easy it was to not get caught. We will see.....