Trump Authorized Pentagon Spent More on Propaganda Than Any Other Department
As I argued, yesterday there are different ways you can look at Mattis speaking for Trump after North Korea’s-failed-nuclear test on Saturday night.
“Defense Secretary James Mattis issued a brief statement that, oddly, appeared to speak on Trump’s behalf. It said: “The president and his military team are aware of North Korea’s most recent unsuccessful missile launch. The president has no further comment.”
There are different ways to interpret this. The more optimistic view-that I’ve seen espoused by some pundits-is that Mattis is a moderating effect on Trump. No comment is a lot better than more of Trump’s bellicose talk, the thinking goes.
True. It’s good to see things dialed down-for now at least. Trump’s saber rattling played right into Kim Jong-un’s hands. He loved the attention the Western media gave his big military parade with all the missiles on Saturday morning.
Still, the other side of it, is a disquieting feeling that civilian control of the military has eroded under Trump. For Mattis to speak for Trump in sense may be a good thing-as ‘no comment’ is better than further saber rattling. But the other side of it is the concern that the Pentagon is losing its independence. Mattis sounds like Trump’s press secretary here.
During Watergate there were conversations-in the WH-if Nixon could be trusted to leave if he were impeached-or would he try to stage a military coup? This was a worry among many of his advisers, including Henry Kissinger and Alexander Haig-who respectively effectively ran Nixon’s foreign and domestic policy the last 15 months after Erlichman and Haldeman left.
Is the Pentagon too chummy with Trump? Note that ICE seems to agree with Ted Yaho and Devin Nunes: ICE seems to believe they work for Trump and answer to him.
For those who make an issue of a democratically elected President being usurped by the Deep State a few thoughts:
1. The obvious point is Trump is not legitimate so he’s not really democratically elected.
2. But even putting 1 aside for the moment, Sumner is right. The Deep State can be a very good thing.
The establishment (now called the deep state) is a good thing, as it reduces the risk of a dangerous demagogue causing major problems.”
3. Some may argue this is a bad thing for unelected bureaucrats to undo the will of a democratically elected President.
Shadi Hamid-who insists on referring to Trump as legitimately elected-thinks this is a bad thing.
But this means he has a unitary model of political power-to the winner of the electoral college goes total power.
4. But the fact that other institutions can resist the drift of an unqualified democratically elected President is a major feature. Certainly for Alexander Hamilton it would be.
5. History shows that the Deep State or other unelected officials have at times effectively taken over the Presidency. We noted Nixon above for whom, after Erlichman and Haldeman left, effectively abdicated decision making. He checked out emotionally.
So Henry Kissinger and Alexander Haig ran the government. When Reagan got shot early in his Presidency, Haig unnerved the nation with his infamous ‘I’m in charge.’
But maybe this was force of habit as the last 15 months he was in charge in the Nixon WH. Then, later in Reagan’s second term, some of his own staff worried about his mental state and whether they should apply the 25th Amendment. You had James Baker spying on Reagan to make sure he wasn’t nuts.
Then you have Woodrow Wilson in his last few years when he was really sick and his wife effectively ran the country. Ironic as this was just after women finally won the vote.
Hillary should be President, but till now the only actual time we’ve been run by a woman is the end of Wilson’s second term.
Regarding what should have been, you have to try Hillary Beat Trump is you haven’t seen this wonderful website yet.
Here is one article today-it’s not real, of course, It’s mock, but it’s terrific:
“On Thursday, Wikileaks published a trove of hacked emails that show Gen. John W. Nicholson, Commander of U.S. Forces in Afghanistan, has repeatedly complained to colleagues about President Hillary Rodham Clinton’s “hands-on” leadership since she took office in January.”
“While generals were critical of Obama’s doveish reluctance to use force, their problem with the more hawkish Clinton seems to stem from her intellectually demanding management style.”
“In a series of spirited communications with BlackwaterBro@aol.com, Nicholson bitterly complains Clinton is “micromanaging” American airstrikes throughout the Middle East, going to far as to demand “millions of details before she let’s us use of deadly force. What a bitch!” Nicholson writes.”
BlackwaterBro. You know, Erik Prince.
In another email, Nicholson writes: “Personally, I have found her to be a frustratingly informed commander in chief (i.e., bitch,) who too often exercises independent judgement when us alpha dogs are urging her to nuke Afghanistan and carpet bomb Syria,” he said.
When BlackwaterBro@aol.com responded to Nicholson’s criticisms of Clinton dismissively, saying Clinton is “probably just traumatized by the Iraq War,” Nicholson went ballistic: “She literally just nixed a beautiful plan to drop a MOAB on Afghanistan until she saw more rigorous estimates of the resulting civilian casualties. Bitch!”
“He said that her questioning of generals’ plans proved so rigorous, detailed, and exacting that top military brass nicknamed her “the smother of all bombs” and a “real droner killer.”
“In another equally lacerating if philosophical email, Nicholson writes about the imperfections he perceives in America’s Constitution, particularly, its insistence on civilian oversight of the military: “Clinton won the election by 3 million votes, therefore she’s the ‘Commander In Chief,’ I guess. But this is just crazy. She acts like its her job to question the military and tell it what to do. Lord, I wish we had a rubber stamp,” Nicholson said.
This website is a daily pleasure for us Hillarybots.
P.S. As we saw in my poll out last week, the long awaited poll results are in, and right now I’m just 11 points down vs. Peter King (GOP-NY-District 2). And the voters don’t even know who I am yet.
There is nothing more important in getting answers to Trump-Russia collusion than a Democratic House in 2019. Please donate to help me in my part of the effort to fight for a Dem House.
Thank you. We must have a Dem House. And so, we will.