Home Main Forums General Discussion Trump, the Third Way Democrats, and Napoleon

  • Ohio Barbarian (4176 posts)
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    Trump, the Third Way Democrats, and Napoleon

    Never ascribe to malice that which is adequately explained by incompetence.–Napoleon Bonaparte

    Lest we forget, Napoleon was a master politician as well as a military genius. He knew that it was just as important not to overestimate one’s political opponents as much as to avoid underestimating them. When it comes to Trump and the Third Way Democrats such as the Clintons, Pelosi, and their ilk, I think way too many people are grossly overestimating them.

    Take Trump. Gods, he is clearly the most inept individual to occupy the White House in my or my parents’ lifetimes, and one of them was born when Wilson was President. All he knows how to do is to throw money around with his family business, get people to invest in projects with his name on them, mismanage them until they fail, stick others with the costs of those failures, and move on to the next project with his name on it. Win some, lose some, he still rakes it in. And when he doesn’t know what the fuck to do, which is frequent because he’s a pretty stupid and ignorant man, he delegates to someone else and blames them when they can’t get something he started to work.

    Donald Trump has never accepted responsibility for anything that ever went wrong in his life. Not once. At least I can’t remember him ever taking responsibility for one of his plethora of SNAFU’s, FUBAR’s, and other fuck ups. There was no reason to think he would change if he became President, and he hasn’t. He almost undoubtedly has financial interests that are tied up with some Russian oligarchs, and definitely has interests with people like the Saudis. Yet he’s too childish to even set up a blind trust to provide a fig leaf of Presidential integrity!

    He’s so ignorant he thought Andrew Jackson was alive when the Civil War started. He doesn’t think much before he tweets, speaks, or acts. This is very apparent. The most recent example is his firing of FBI Director Comey. For whatever real reason, he decided to fire the guy, ordered the Deputy Attorney General to draft a letter coming up with a reason for firing him, and all Rosenstein could think of was that Comey screwed up when he announced he was reopening the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s emails.

    And Trump was stupid enough to think that this would be no big deal! Surely the Democrats would be glad to be rid of Comey. What a fucking idiot!  Either it never occurred to him that the optics and the timing would be most suspicious, or he’s so arrogant that he didn’t care, or both. No Clintonian or CIA conspiracy, and no Russian plot to influence the election, are needed to explain what is obviously going on here.  We have an inept man surrounded by craven fanatics like Sessions and Bannon, and money-grubbing wheeler-dealers like Mnuchin and Kushner, who throws tantrums. And he’s not going to stop. Sooner or later, even most elected Republicans will either turn on him or run from him. He has sealed his own fate.

    As for the Third Way, they’ve screwed up just as badly. First, their policies were proven to be detrimental to the interests of all working class and most middle class Americans throughout both the Clinton and Obama years. People know they suck. Then they nominate one of the most reviled politicians in the history of presidential elections because it’s Her Turn, do everything they can to help Trump win the Republican nomination because he’s obviously such a reprehensible moron that even She can beat him, and then lose to this fool!

    Then, just like Trump, they all refuse to accept the least bit of personal responsibility for their own shellacking and blame the fucking Russians, of all people, for the horrible crime of releasing the truth about them to the American people! And, to top it all off, they then claim in open court that they can lie and defraud whoever they want within the Democratic Party, because they’ve got the money and the donors and the power and screw you, progressives. And then they get all pissy when progressives refuse to take being bullied anymore.

    Again, you don’t need a vast right wing conspiracy theory or the manipulations of intelligence agencies foreign or domestic to figure out what really happened here. Ineptitude on a colossal scale.

    In the short term, we all need to fight Trump and company tooth and nail, and then probably Pence and crew. We also need to fight the Third Way, whether that’s going Green or forming a new party or attacking them from within the Democratic Party. What we don’t need to do is to overestimate these people or any of their donors and allies. We can clearly outsmart them because they’re just not all that bright. We outnumber them. And that means we can out-organize them, and ultimately defeat them.

    We progressives need to have just a little faith in our own strengths and a realistic appraisal of our opponents’ strengths and glaring weaknesses. It’s easier to stay sane that way. It’s also easier to win that way.

    20score, chknltl, Ichingcarpenter and 25 otherstonyl, Johnny Rash, Salemcourt, JEB, Tierra y Libertad, Betty Karlson, Two way street, rampart, disillusioned73, Fuddnik, closeupready, Iwalani88, Xyzse, Enthusiast, , daleanime, 3FingerBrown, Baba OhReally, Populist Prole, virgdem, relgire, Lucas Jackson, Marym625, arendt, Doremus Jessup like this
    Ignorance is the foundation of tyranny.   

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22 replies
  • 4 months ago #7
    • Ohio Barbarian (4176 posts)
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      1. And I forgot. Good night, and good luck. I'll be back tomorrow.

      Ignorance is the foundation of tyranny.   
    • arendt (1432 posts)
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      2. Thank you for a dose of sanity. n/t

      • Ohio Barbarian (4176 posts)
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        8. Anytime. And it was you who got me thinking on this.

        Ignorance is the foundation of tyranny.   
    • Marym625 (24729 posts)
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      3. On The Daily Radical!

      Excellent piece. Thank you!

      Good night. See you tomorrow!

      "Once the decision was made to go into Iraq as an invader and occupier,  it’s like our nation lost its conscience. And it has not yet gotten that conscience back." Madfloridian  
      • Ohio Barbarian (4176 posts)
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        9. Thanks, Mary.

        Ignorance is the foundation of tyranny.   
        • Marym625 (24729 posts)
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          13. Thank you!

          "Once the decision was made to go into Iraq as an invader and occupier,  it’s like our nation lost its conscience. And it has not yet gotten that conscience back." Madfloridian  
    • davidgmills (5022 posts)
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      4. Lots of smart people lose to money and power all the time.

      I wish I could be as optimistic as you but I can’t.

      French Revolution; not secession.
      • Ohio Barbarian (4176 posts)
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        10. I know. I'm one of them. But I can't give in to despair or I'll take up

        fire-bombing or battle-axing or something.

        Ignorance is the foundation of tyranny.   
        • davidgmills (5022 posts)
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          16. That sounds pretty cool.

          More along the lines of what it will probably take.

          French Revolution; not secession.
          • Ohio Barbarian (4176 posts)
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            17. When you're right, you're right.

            I’m descended from one of Washington’s officers on one side and a British redcoat on the other. They faced each other at Yorktown.

            A most unpleasant business, but sometimes, shit happens.

            Ignorance is the foundation of tyranny.   
            • davidgmills (5022 posts)
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              19. When I am wrong, I'm wrong.

              Don’t like to admit it much, but I have had my share of crow for dinner.

              And like you most of my ancestors were here before the revolutionary war.  And I think the fact that my ancestors were here for so long is partly what makes me such an isolationist and so anti-war.  I have no feelings at all for any other country though my ancestors were English, Irish and French.

              I think much of the interventionist policy comes from people whose American ancestry only goes back a couple of generations.  Whoever they are, the seem to advocate for American intervention in the countries they immigrated from.  Understandable.  But yet I don’t want any of it because we always fuck up even if we have good intentions (a big IF).

              French Revolution; not secession.
              • Ohio Barbarian (4176 posts)
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                21. Yes, American intervention is a mostly unbroken track record of FUBAR since the

                Marshall Plan, which actually accomplished most of its goals. Did you know that was administered by Herbert Hoover? He was actually a brilliant administrator, and Truman was smart enough to tap him.

                I sure don’t see any brilliant administrators in Washington these days.

                Ignorance is the foundation of tyranny.   
    • dreamnightwind (1139 posts)
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      5. I say never underestimate your opponent

      and I would flip the Napoleon quote 180 degrees. We often assume incompetence because we give people’s motives too much benefit of the doubt. When we look at it from the perspective of maintaining the status quo and enriching themselves, they suddenly look much more competent.

      Most of them are quite intelligent, they just aren’t very good people, and they’re working for other than the stated reasons.

      • Ohio Barbarian (4176 posts)
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        11. I disagree. They're NOT that intelligent. Their actions prove it. To me, anyway.

        Ignorance is the foundation of tyranny.   
    • Enthusiast (9435 posts)
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      6. If we could just get a fair shake in the media. All that you say is true.

      But, the influence of that damned media.

      "The NSA’s capability at any time could be turned around on the American people, and no American would have any privacy left, such is the capability to monitor everything. There would be no place to hide."  Frank Church "When plunder becomes a way of life for a group of men in society, over the course of time they create for themselves a legal system that authorizes it and a moral code that glorifies it." - Frederic Bastiat, 1848
      • Ohio Barbarian (4176 posts)
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        12. More and more people are going to alternative media, which is a good thing.

        Ignorance is the foundation of tyranny.   
    • Xyzse (2852 posts)
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      7. Well said!

      Like a wise-man has once told me.

      Never underestimate the power of stupid.

       

      • Ohio Barbarian (4176 posts)
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        14. Thanks. As Adlai Stevenson once said,

        “There is nothing more frightening than watching stupidity in action.” I actually learned that from a Republican friend of mine many, many moons ago. He’s dead now, and I miss him. No way would he have voted for Trump, though. No way.

        Ignorance is the foundation of tyranny.   
        • Xyzse (2852 posts)
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          15. Yeah, that definitely makes sense.

          I think I got my quote from Jim Butcher’s Dresden Files.

          :)

    • Betty Karlson (3601 posts)
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      18. perfect in every syllable.

      "Someone hacks the DNC allowing all of America to see how the DNC operates as one of the most corrupt political machines in national history. Ergo, Hillary Clinton should be installed as President by judicial fiat. And if you do not agree to this scheme you deserve to be brought up on charges of treason because fascism." - NUGrrl, december 2016 “Once a person has been determined to be an UNTRUSTWORTHY LIAR, their pretend stances on important issues are simply not relevant to rational discussion.” – Ida Briggs, September 2016
      • Ohio Barbarian (4176 posts)
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        20. Why thank you! So Far From Heaven has a post somewhere of a poll that found

        the first word Americans thought of when they thought of Trump was idiot, followed closely by inept and incompetent. I think it’s safe to say that most regard the Third Way Dems in the same light.

        Ignorance is the foundation of tyranny.   
    • tonyl (874 posts)
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      22. While I agree that a lot of what has transpired (for so long now) ..

      has been overestimating stupid (ok, I’m paraphrasing now ..), I think (and have mentioned on another thread), that the problems that have beset the US are not new and the degradation of the US is not confined to the IDIOTS (malevolent or otherwise) in power. The truth seems to be that it is now INSTITUTIONAL – by this I mean that they cannot be fixed by replacing this individual or that (only to find that you have someone worse – remember Obama ?).

      It seems to me that nothing short of a root and branch clearing is necessary – and if that’s what it takes then this is a very long road indeed.

      The degradation seems to have started around the end of WWII and, as far as I can tell, would have been when the world accepted the financial arrangements arising out of Bretton-Woods. The US was allowed to really reward itself and the world has payed a price for it ever since. The wars and the domestic chicanery really got going then. The degradation has made its presence felt in nearly every department of civil administration (like the DoJ and it’s investigatory arms, police forces etc).

      I could be reading this all wrong, but observing history as long as I have tells me that the problems are systemic now – and I’m normally regarded by my peers as a glass half full kind of guy.

      Because you cant have integrity occasionally
    • Ohio Barbarian (4176 posts)
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      23. The problems ARE systemic, and the central problem is capitalism itself. It

      rewards greed and sociopathic behavior. Trump is the logical outcome of a system where screwing people over for profit is so heavily rewarded, and where politicians and public officials, who are supposed to serve the public interest, are for sale to the highest bidder.

      I think we agree here.

      Ignorance is the foundation of tyranny.