Eric Zuesse, originally posted at strategic-culture.org
This will be a nonpartisan commentary about U.S. politics, as viewed by an American historian who is disgusted with the profoundly corrupt U.S. Government — not merely the political Parties, but the billionaires who effectively control them. Not everyone who finds Trump and the Republican Party to be beneath contempt is a Democrat. All that this commentator is is a democrat — a person who is opposed to all forms of dictatorship, including America’s own.
Key factors are now coming together to indicate that Donald Trump’s Presidency is already doomed, even if he survives to the end of his term as President. His remaining chances of being elected to any public office are near zero; even his success with the Republican Party has doomed — tainted for years, if not ended — that Party, made it not just repulsive, but increasingly repulsive, both inside and outside the United States; and, here is how, and why, this extraordinary phenomenon is happening:
Everyone knows, by now, that Steve Bannon, who was reliably reported (both before the election, and, in even deeper retrospect, after the election) to have been absolutely crucial to Trump’s election, has recently become instead the total opposite, Trump’s enemy — out to destroy both Trump and his family. A book will soon be published from him, that’s sure to spill lots of disgustingly putrid beans, beyond anything previously wafted by the public, from these now rotting but powerful targets.
The well-connected political reporter Michael Wolff has also recently come out with a new book (excerpts here), in which many of Trump’s aides already anonymously leak damning testimony of Trump’s personal stupidity and psychopathy.
Also, the brilliant geo-strategic analyst and reporter Wayne Madsen posted to the Strategic Culture site, on January 4th, “‘I, Neocon’ – the Foreign Policy of Emperor Trump”, in which he says (and I know, from multiple reliable sources, that all of this is true):
Trump follows the advice of a dangerous cabal he has established around himself. On issues of the Middle East and relations with Muslim nations, Trump’s cabal possesses a toxicity never seen before in a US administration. This cabal revolves around the troika of Jared Kushner, Trump’s son-in-law with many portfolios; Jason Greenblatt, former chief legal officer for the Trump Organization and now Assistant to the President and Special Representative for International Negotiation; and David Friedman, formerly with Trump’s law firm of Kasowitz, Benson, Torres & Friedman and now US ambassador to Israel. They, along with Trump, have succeeded in reversing 70 years of US Middle East policy by ensuring America’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. The Jerusalem decision will also see the United States move its embassy from Tel Aviv to property in Jerusalem originally seized by the Israelis from Palestinian landowners.
The Jerusalem decision sends a stark warning to Muslims everywhere, who regard Jerusalem as the third-holiest city in Islam, after Mecca and Medina. It also throws a gauntlet down to the Roman Catholic Church, Eastern and Coptic Orthodoxy, and mainstream Protestantism, all which regard Jerusalem as not only Christianity’s most-revered city but an international zone that ought to be placed under joint Israeli-Palestinian control or under a regime like those of past international city-states, Tangier, Danzig, and Trieste, for example. By rewarding Israel with US recognition, Trump’s action was a slap in the face to Christians in Jerusalem who have been forced to contend with hundreds of vicious Jewish hate attacks on Christians, such as the scrawled words in Hebrew, “Death to the Heathen Christians, the enemies of Israel” and “Christians to Hell,” painted on the Benedictine Monastery in the Old City of Jerusalem, the revered site of Jesus’s Last Supper. The Israeli government has taken no action to find and punish the perpetrators of these anti-Gentile attacks by Jewish hate mongers.
On January 1st, Israel’s own Ha’aretz newspaper bannered “U.S. Gives Israel Green Light to Assassinate Iranian General Soleimani”, who is, in effect, the Commander-in-Chief of Iran’s military.
Ayatollah Khamenei and the mullahs are at the very top of their state, but the elected President, Hassan Rouhani, though the nation’s President, is not, in addition, the head of Iran’s military institutions. Technically, Khamenei is Iran’s Commander-in-Chief; but, in reality, he relies for that function almost 100% upon the strategic brilliance of General Qassem Soleimani, whom the Israeli regime has long wanted to assassinate; but only now has the U.S. regime given them the go-ahead to do that. It would, effectively, decapitate Iran’s military.
Here is one scenario:
1: Major General Qasem Soleimani becomes assassinated by Israel’s Mossad.
2: Iran and its Hezbollah Shia ally in Lebanon release all their missiles against Israel, to blitz-destroy as much of Israel as possible. Any Iranian weaponry that would be held back in such an attack would only be destroyed in Israel’s counter-attack, and so there would be no sense in holding any of it back.
3: Israel nukes Iran, and it also attacks Hezbollah in Lebanon — but not with nukes, because Lebanon is too close to Israel, and Israel will try to minimize contamination of its own territory.
Here is another scenario:
2: Iran “takes it on the chin,” and tries to find, immediately, someone who is comparably brilliant to Solomeini, to fill his role — the role upon the basis of which, Iran has achieved remarkable improvements in its military, and thus made possible its remarkable achievements in their international relations.
Obviously, Iran will be a much weaker nation, when Israel murders its commander-in-chief. Donald Trump, apparently, wants this as desperately as does Benjamin Netanyahu. Trump is the only U.S. President who ever has. This is a very big development. The U.S. regime is now, even more clearly than before, a rogue state, just as Israel itself is. It’s now clearly out in the open.
The highly respected analyst and commentator upon international relations concerning Middle Eastern countries, Abdel Bari Atwan, had already reported, on December 30th, that:
Israel’s Channel 10 has disclosed that a secret agreement was reached on 12 December, following talks between Israeli national security adviser Meir Ben-Shabbat and his US counterpart HR McMaster, for the two sides to take action and devise scenarios against Iran on several fronts. This reportedly entailed measures aimed at curbing Iran’s nuclear and missile capabilities, rolling back its presence in Syria, and confronting its ally Hezbollah in Lebanon. The White House later confirmed the existence of the agreement after news it of it was leaked to media.
Then, there’s the catastrophic domestic policy that Trump and his unanimous Republican congressmen rammed through Congress and Trump signed into law on taxes and lots more. Here’s a bit of the best summary of it:
In 2027, the Republican tax overhaul would raise taxes on 53 percent of households. Still, … Households making $1 million or more per year would get an average tax cut of $23,190. … in 2018, households earning $1 million or more — or, 0.4 percent of all tax filers — would be getting 16.5 percent of the total benefit from the bill.
In 2027, households earning $1 million or more — estimated to be 0.6 percent of all filers — would be getting 81.8 percent of the total benefit. …
In 2018, only 5 percent of taxpayers would have tax hikes, and by 2025, only 9 percent would. … In 2027, 53 percent of tax filers would have a tax hike.
Congress members could avoid that wave of tax hikes by extending those individual tax cuts beyond 2025. The White House has suggested that this is the plan. … But if they do, it means a much heftier price tag, as yet-another analysis released Monday found. As currently written [which is the bill that did become law], the bill would cost around $1.5 trillion. But if Congress extended provisions that expire early, the bill would cost more than $2 trillion.
The U.S. economy is already skating on thin ice, and federal debt at the end of the third quarter of 2017) is $20,244,900,000,000 and rising at an accelerated clip since 2009, when it was $11,126,941,000,000 in the first quarter of 2009 — almost a doubling during the past 7 years.
The Republican Party used to be nominally opposed to increasing the federal debt, but now they are totally committed to soaring the federal debt. Yet all of that increase is going to the military (the most-wasteful and corrupt of all federal departments). Other federal departments — especially the regulatory agencies such as the FDA and EPA, which protect consumers and the environment — are being slashed. Productive spending is thus to be slashed, while destructive spending is to be escalated.
Clearly, Donald Trump combines the worst features of the worst Presidents in American history — George W. Bush and Barack Obama — and displays those worst features even more than both of them together did.
And, then, there’s Trump’s removing America from the already weak Paris Climate Accord, so that global warming will increase even more — and fossil fuels corporations will benefit even more, at the planet’s expense.
Isn’t it now obvious that Trump, in the view of future history (if there will be future history) will be loathed?
The billionaires own the corporations that select and publish the newspapers, books, and other propaganda that newspeople and historians write, but anyone is going to be able to see through the lipstick that might be painted onto this pig.
Consequently: I predict that a progressive political party will soon be created, with almost only grassroots support, which will come close to winning (or even could win) the U.S. Presidency in 2020 (and then soon replacing either the Republican or the Democratic Party — just as the Whig Abraham Lincoln switched to the new Republican Party and won the Presidency in 1860 ending the Whig Party), unless this country is even more corrupt than I think it is. If such a new-and-committedly-progressive party wins (which I consider unlikely), then that will constitute America’s repudiation and reversal of the conservative Reaganite path it has been on ever since 1980 ended the progressive Democratic FDR era in America and started the conservative Reagan era — which now has more clearly become fascism in America.
The likelihood if no such grassroots party wins the Presidency in 2020 is that America’s billionaires will increase their control over America even more than than they already have now, because the Republican Party has represented only the wealthiest ever since 1865, and the Democratic Party has represented only the wealthiest ever since 1992 and especially since 2008. However, Trump is the first President in all of U.S. history who in peacetime greatly expands military expenditures while greatly shrinking non-military expenditures. Here is his proposed 2018 budget, as compared to the year before (Obama’s last):
-29% State Dept.
-21% Ag. Dept.
+6% Veterans Affairs
+7% Homeland Security
Not only is this a historically unprecedented give-away to America’s military-industrial complex, but it’s an unprecedented give-away to American’s billionaires, who will be subject to less regulation and less law-enforcement than they have even now, and who will thus be able to dirty the environment and poison consumers and cheat consumers and abuse workers even more than has previously been allowed to them — stripping away many of America’s meager protections for the public, while granting the super-rich to scoff-up even more of America’s economy than previously; the existing level of economic inequality isn’t vast enough to satisfy America’s billionaires and centi-millionaires who control the U.S. Government, and it will now certainly rise even further, until the next crash comes, and maybe even beyond that.
Consequently, since this is a solidly Republican U.S. Government, many voters will be so terrified of the evilness of Republican politicians as to vote for Democratic Party nominees no matter how conservative they might be (like they did for Hillary Clinton) — and the billionaires who select candidates will make sure that they’re as neoliberal and as neoconservative as a ‘Democrat’ can be (like she was). And this is the reason why only a successful new and uncompromisingly progressive political party in America, led by a well-known and politically-battle-tested consistently progressive person (with high and extremely positive name-recognition amongst the public) as being its Presidential candidate (inevitably a nationally prominent former Independent, or former Democrat, since there are no more progressive Republicans — the Republican Party will reasonably be blamed for what they’re now doing) could even possibly salvage the clearly sinking future of America’s public.
Thus, the Trump-Republican horribleness is unfortunately protecting, instead of endangering, the control over America by its billionaires and centi-millionaires, and making even less likely than before, the Democratic Party’s presenting decent nominees to voters in general elections for federal offices. Right now, the noose of corruption is tightening around Americans’ throats.
Investigative historian Eric Zuesse is the author, most recently, of They’re Not Even Close: The Democratic vs. Republican Economic Records, 1910-2010, and of CHRIST’S VENTRILOQUISTS: The Event that Created Christianity.