You’ve been Trumped! (the shaming of the G7)

So, six of the G7 leaders finally learn that it doesn’t matter how much you fawn over and suck up to Donald Trump the man has no respect for anyone other than himself, Putin and various other strong men/dictators.

Furthermore, having fallen into tolerating Trumps daily lies and distortions and much more, they now find they can be insulted by Trump as easily as he insults and lies about any one he sees as an opponent or simply doesn’t like back in the US.

This is a man who backs public officials who have patently broken the law (his EPA Administrator); fails to criticise racism; is offended and angry that his Attorney General recuses himself from investigations instead of watching Trump’s back; has bragged about assaulting women; and clearly has no time whatsoever for the norms and conventions of US government, many of which have been utterly trashed in less than a year and a half in office. Not to forget, of course, that this is a man who it becomes clearer by the day is almost certainly US president because of outside manipulation of the US election in 2016 (whatever Fox News and other Trump supporters might claim to the contrary).

Well, now the G7 has also been trashed and Trump’s fellow democratically elected leaders left looking like fools while Trump flies off to meet a a man he can really respect – and I suspect make a fuss of doing business with – a dictator. And this is the man we now know Boris Johnson holds in such high esteem that he imagines what a marvellous job he’d do at sorting out Brexit. I’ve always thought there are many similarities between Trump and Johnson apart from the obvious blond hair. Let’s hope that Johnson never becomes Prime Minister as with him and Trump in power that truly would be an ‘axis of evil’.

Comments

  1. Geoff -

    At Indiana University Sara Konrath and colleagues have produced empirical evidence demonstrating the easy way to identify a true Narcissist – the “Single-Item Narcissist Scale” they simply ask “are you a narcissist.” https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0191886915300167 for the short summary.
    It might seem counter intuitive, to ask this, however true narcissists are unique in their personality traits, they are not embarrassed by their behaviour on the contrary they are more likely to be proud of it. The SINS question doesn’t tell us about personality traits such as grandiosity or lack of empathy for that more detailed testing would be required, however, due to their self centered focus it seems to hold true that they will happily and willingly reveal themselves via the question. With Trump we have the added advantage, although not always a welcome one , of seeing his answers to the questions put to him by the press. Over time, I suggest, this has shown Trump possess most of the following symptoms:

    Exaggerates own importance
    Is preoccupied with fantasies of success, power, beauty, intelligence or ideal romance
    Believes he or she is special and can only be understood by other special people or institutions
    Requires constant attention and admiration from others
    Has unreasonable expectations of favorable treatment
    Takes advantage of others to reach his or her own goals
    Disregards the feelings of others, lacks empathy
    Is often envious of others or believes other people are envious of him or her
    Shows arrogant behaviors and attitudes

    Five from the list would indicate a narcissist personality.

  2. Sean Danaher -

    Ivan
    sadly Trump is also admired by Jacob Rees-Mogg and many others on the Tory right. We face an uncertain few years.

  3. Andy Crow -

    Trump isn’t the problem. He’s a symptom….of the extent of state capture in the US.

    His campaign agenda has been completely trashed and was undermined from day one. Because he is such a ‘loose cannon’ the GOP initially distanced itself from him during the campaign period and only got behind him at all because when he was reigned-in by all the mechanisms of the ‘Deep State’ establishment.

    The Russia-gate nonsense was all security services spin to make clear to him that he was inherently insecure, they and the media would hound him out of office he didn’t toe the line.

    Hillary would have been onside from the start pursing the agenda she was well versed in from her experience as Secretary of State. Trump needed to be ‘house trained’.

    JFK was probably the last of the statesman presidents, he had too much popular support to be controlled and had to be removed from office ‘with extreme prejudice’.

    I’m not entirely sure about Nixon, but other presidents since JFK have either been part of the ruling elite, Johnson, Bush elder, Clinton; or useful idiots, G W Bush, Trump. Reagan. There’s a degree of crossover. Obama was an enigma , but did nothing radical while in office. A feelgood president.

    I know all this reads like rabid conspiracy theory, but I don’t think any other rational conclusions can be drawn from watching the picture of the past four decades unfold.

    Democracy in the US is well under control. None of the levers os power are in the hands of the populus. And a ‘populist’ president, like Trump s utterly powerless, but he draws fire, and sets the tone.

    The only person who believes Trump is running America is Donald Trump. He no longer even has his own team in the White House.

    He’s a glove puppet.

    I think the moment of truth for Trump was when he refused to agree the Paris climate accord. That was his life or death crunch decision, I think. I believe he did briefly consider his options at that juncture and chose to continue in office, rather go down in the annals with Lincoln, JFK and Garfield who tried and failed to make America great.

  4. Peter May -

    Love the title!
    Trump is very destructive of treaties too. Ripping up the Iran deal on a whim probably means that the next time there’s an agreement with the US won’t be worth the paper its written on. Indeed tho’ N Korea is in itself untrustworthy I don’t know why the South at least would trust any agreement that comes out of this week’s talks.

    1. Ivan Horrocks -

      Agree entirely, Peter. Why would anyone/country believe a word said by someone who blatantly lies on a daily basis and whose ignorance of most policy issues is already legendary (thus making a nonsence of what he often thinks he’s making a decision about – witness the trade wars he’s now started).

  5. Ivan Horrocks -

    Andy, I can agree with your first statement, and indeed had I had the time was intending to write a blog about this at the time Geoff blogged on elites for us. And I can also agree with your categorisation of presidents who were part of what was traditionally seen as the US establishment (ie. WASP) or used by it, and the few ‘oddities’. But I don’t agree that Trump has been ‘reigned in’ – far from it – hence the outrage amongst traditional conservative (but establishement) commentators (just watch The Last Word with Lawrence O’Donnell to witness how such commentators now share their outrage with the ‘liberals’ of MSNBC. And as far as the Russia probe goes, well I’ll agree that there’s an element of the ‘establishment’ using this to attack Trump, but ultimately it has already been shown that there were multiple examples of what most people would regard as forms of collusion between various Trump campaign related people and I wager that ultimately it will become evident that Trump himself was well aware of this. Add that to the numerous examples of ethical failures and breaches – and the many more that will occur under an president who has no interest in such standards and that represents a significant undermining and cheapening of US government, the rule of law and thus democracy itself – however imperfect that might be.

  6. Geoff -

    This is not something I’ve seen previously. I think Richard Whitney makes the point very well. The charts he’s produced towards the end are simple, useful and add significantly to our understanding of the USA and it’s power in the world.

    https://truthout.org/articles/us-provides-military-assistance-to-73-percent-of-world-s-dictatorships/

    It’s a link provided by this CounterPunch article – https://www.counterpunch.org/2018/06/08/rotten-to-the-heart-authoritarian-chickens-roosting-at-home/

    1. Ivan Horrocks -

      The Counterpunch article on the US is a corker, Geoff, so thanks for sharing the link. A corporate democracy it certainly is. Not that the UK or indeed EU is much better – if at all.

      1. Geoff -

        I thought of it as a master class Ivan, one of the very best analysis on corporate America todate

  7. Graham -

    We are living in an age of enormous hypocrisy – perhaps we always have. I was reading an interview in the Grauniad with a former member of the FBI who objected to the US’s use of torture and left the service. But one thing he said struck me, in the light of much that has been said above: “Our strongest asset in defeating [the Islamist terrorism] narrative is our western values.”

    What are “western values”, sometimes referred to as “British Values” or “American Values”? Is it a kind of buffet of Enlightenment thought, American Declaration of Independence (at heart a thoroughly elitist and exclusive document), ancient Greek philosophy and anything else that sounds good?

    Because “Western Values” in practise – colonialism, slavery, illegal wars, support for dictators, overthrowing of elected regimes, economic exploitation and all the rest of the dirty tricks western governments, (mainly, but not exclusively, the US) use to rule the world are what we need to get rid of.

    1. Sean Danaher -

      Graham
      it disturbs me that one of the “upsides” to Brexit is the ability to sell even more arms to unsavory regimes. Yemen should be making headlines almost every day yet seems to be barely mentioned. Sorry to bang on about Ireland but one thing that was introduced after independence was an absolute ban on any arms manufacture. An exemption was granted for an artisan shotgun manufacturer which made big news when I was a teenager.

      On dirty tricks it seems that in both Trump’s election and Brexit the Russians may have used these “Dirty Tricks” very effectively. Someone asked Mahatma Gandhi what he thought of western civilisation, and he replied: “I think it would be a very good idea.”

    2. Ivan Horrocks -

      Graham, my impression when I hear that term used by those in power (or their minions) is that they are talking about such things as a free press, free speech, free and fair elections, toleration, and so on. But of course it’s a moot point as to whether these things really amount to what the founding fathers of the US, or Thomas Paine, etc envisaged. I doubt they would have classed a press dominated by rich individuals such as the Murdoch’s or the owners of the Mail, etc, and that thus promote and defend the interests of the owners of the media as ‘free’. And free and fair elections when countries like ours and the US still use ‘representative’ electoral systems that patently fail to allow millions of people to express their true political views.

      Then again, I know from many discussions with believers in and practitioners of ‘realpolitik’ what their response to those criticisms would be (e.g. what about life in Russia, Turkey, Cambodia, Burma, etc, etc). In short, those ‘western values’ may well be tainted and past their sell by date but they’re still better than nothing. That said, as far as I can see we appear to be on a road that’s taking us ever closer to that ‘nothing’ and there are a lot of people like Trump, Johnson and co who don’t much seem to mind that.

      1. Geoff -

        The ultimate Holocaust, the destruction of planet earth. Driven by the blind profit of petrol heads and fossil fueled capitalism without reason or sense, I can not think of any other species that is so blatantly stupid as mankind. ”

        A Common ruin – rooted in capital’s never ending, profit- and accumulation-addiction.” (Paul Street)

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