Trump’s Encouragements of World Dictatorships

Trump’s Encouragement of World Dictatorships

An historical theory of world governments is that they tend to follow worldwide political trends. Countries follow each other in becoming more liberal and international, or more conservative and chauvinistic. They can become more democratic, as in the Arab Spring, or more dictatorial. They American Revolution was followed by the French Revolution. The Roman Empire fell across the world. The Ottoman Empire spread throughout the Mediterranean. And then it retreated.

The United States is the leading world economy. It is also the world’s dominant and widespread military power, with expenditures as large as the next six countries combined. We had been the world’s diplomatic and trade leader. Under recent presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama, we have been backing liberation and democracy. President Trump, in dramatic contrast, has not found a dictator that he has not praised, sought compliments from, and welcomed visits with. This has indeed encouraged those who would become dictators, and those who are dictators from continuing and expanding their dictatorial powers.

Many of us were aghast when Trump sort of praised Xi Jinping for proposing that he be allowed to be President for Life. Xi had finished his first five-year term, and is starting on his second and normally last. Now he can be President for life. He dominates his Chinese Communist Party, and cannot be limited. As a leading trade partner, an expected denouncement of that action from Tariff-happy Trump could have discouraged Xi. But based on Trump’s not-even-wimpy reaction to Russian Dictator Putin and other dictators, Xi must have known he would be in the clear.

I would need to be a newspaper writer with editorial assistants to give a complete list of Trump’s acquiescence to dictators, of meetings with dictators, and even of praise to dictators. In the previous post I mentioned of few of his non-responses to Putin’s aggressions. This almost maximized yesterday when Trump’s Press Secretary refused to state the name of Russia as the nerve gas poisoner of an MI6 agent and his daughter in our ally England. Did this non-condemnation lead to the possible murder of an outcast oligarch in England today? Today, Trump fired Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, who was the only administration member who publicly called for sanctions against Russia, and also called for a response to the attempted murders. In Tillerson’s short departure speech to the State Department, he presented a warning to Russia from the point of view of Russia, but not from a possible US response. Only Special Counsel Mueller may discover how Putin controls Trump.

Let’s just give a short list of dictatorships on Trump’s best-friends-forever or BFF list. Putin for Russia, Egypt, Turkey, now China, and the Philippines.

Last week, talking about Xi, Trump suggested that he, Trump, should try becoming President for Life. His audience cheered. The next day Trump said he was joking. But Presidents and Washington work on the principle of “run it up the flagpole, and see who cheers”. Trump got so many cheers that he gave that line again at his Pennsylvania Republican rally, and again got cheers.

I had to look this up, but the XXII Amendment, passed after FDR’s fourth term, limits the president to two terms during his or eventually her lifetime. It takes a three-quarter approval of the States to change or eliminate that amendment.  Remember, Trump was already the oldest president to take office, at age 70.  Putin is 65, Obama is still only 56, and Xi is 64.  I have nothing against people who are in their 70s, being there myself, but I am not trying to single-handedly run the world.

 

A Giant However, though, Trump has been pushing as hard as he can during the Campaign, and in his first year, to suppress our freedoms and his Constitutional restraints, and to make the US into a dictatorship by him. That has been the motivation for many of my articles, but it is also well known to all Americans, whether they agree or disagree with Trump. He has today also completely established his Rule by Twitter, in firing the Secretary of State by Twitter. (This means that all Administration members have to put Trump’s Twitter on Alarm Notification, to see if they or their bosses still have their jobs.)

There are supposed to be checks and balances to protect us from dictators, and to protect our freedoms. With the Republican dominance of Congress, and the blocking of Obama’s Supreme Court nominee and judgeships, and the nomination of the youngest and most conservative and politically connected judges by Trump, these rights will be under maximum attack.

Trump has already established himself as Lord of the Flatterers, requiring daily public praise and obsequiousness from his staff and Cabinet. Those who speak on their own honesty or even make a single mistake in lying or covering for the president, must fall on their swords in apologies, or be tweeted out. In the context of the historical outlook of the start of this article, we also note that there have been several mentally unbalanced leaders in the history of the world.

About Dennis SILVERMAN

I am a retired Professor of Physics and Astronomy at U C Irvine. For a decade I have been active in learning about energy and the environment, and in lecturing and attending classes at the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) at UC Irvine.
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