"Donald Trump Poisons The World"

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"Donald Trump Poisons The World"

Post by Amskeptic » Fri Jun 02, 2017 5:06 am

Donald Trump Poisons the World
David Brooks
The New York Times

June 2, 2017
This week, two of Donald Trump’s top advisers, H. R. McMaster and Gary Cohn, wrote the following passage in The Wall Street Journal: “The president embarked on his first foreign trip with a clear-eyed outlook that the world is not a ‘global community’ but an arena where nations, nongovernmental actors and businesses engage and compete for advantage.”

That sentence is the epitome of the Trump project. It asserts that selfishness is the sole driver of human affairs. It grows out of a worldview that life is a competitive struggle for gain. It implies that cooperative communities are hypocritical covers for the selfish jockeying underneath.

The essay explains why the Trump people are suspicious of any cooperative global arrangement, like NATO and the various trade agreements. It helps explain why Trump pulled out of the Paris global-warming accord. This essay explains why Trump gravitates toward leaders like Vladimir Putin, the Saudi princes and various global strongmen: They share his core worldview that life is nakedly a selfish struggle for money and dominance.

It explains why people in the Trump White House are so savage to one another. Far from being a band of brothers, their world is a vicious arena where staffers compete for advantage.

In the essay, McMaster and Cohn make explicit the great act of moral decoupling woven through this presidency. In this worldview, morality has nothing to do with anything. Altruism, trust, cooperation and virtue are unaffordable luxuries in the struggle of all against all. Everything is about self-interest.

We’ve seen this philosophy before, of course. Powerful, selfish people have always adopted this dirty-minded realism to justify their own selfishness. The problem is that this philosophy is based on an error about human beings and it leads to self-destructive behavior in all cases.

The error is that it misunderstands what drives human action. Of course people are driven by selfish motivations — for individual status, wealth and power. But they are also motivated by another set of drives — for solidarity, love and moral fulfillment — that are equally and sometimes more powerful.

People are wired to cooperate. Far from being a flimsy thing, the desire for cooperation is the primary human evolutionary advantage we have over the other animals.

People have a moral sense. They have a set of universal intuitions that help establish harmony between peoples. From their first moments, children are wired to feel each other’s pain. You don’t have to teach a child about what fairness is; they already know. There’s no society on earth where people are admired for running away in battle or for lying to their friends.

People have moral emotions. They feel rage at injustice, disgust toward greed, reverence for excellence, awe before the sacred and elevation in the face of goodness.

People yearn for righteousness. They want to feel meaning and purpose in their lives, that their lives are oriented toward the good.

People are attracted by goodness and repelled by selfishness. N.Y.U. social psychologist Jonathan Haidt has studied the surges of elevation we feel when we see somebody performing a selfless action. Haidt describes the time a guy spontaneously leapt out of a car to help an old lady shovel snow from her driveway.

One of his friends, who witnessed this small act, later wrote: “I felt like jumping out of the car and hugging this guy. I felt like singing and running, or skipping and laughing. Just being active. I felt like saying nice things about people. Writing a beautiful poem or love song. Playing in the snow like a child. Telling everybody about his deed.”

Good leaders like Lincoln, Churchill, Roosevelt and Reagan understand the selfish elements that drive human behavior, but they have another foot in the realm of the moral motivations. They seek to inspire faithfulness by showing good character. They try to motivate action by pointing toward great ideals.

Realist leaders like Trump, McMaster and Cohn seek to dismiss this whole moral realm. By behaving with naked selfishness toward others, they poison the common realm and they force others to behave with naked selfishness toward them.

By treating the world simply as an arena for competitive advantage, Trump, McMaster and Cohn sever relationships, destroy reciprocity, erode trust and eviscerate the sense of sympathy, friendship and loyalty that all nations need when times get tough.

By looking at nothing but immediate material interest, Trump, McMaster and Cohn turn America into a nation that affronts everybody else’s moral emotions. They make our country seem disgusting in the eyes of the world.

George Marshall was no idealistic patsy. He understood that America extends its power when it offers a cooperative hand and volunteers for common service toward a great ideal. Realists reverse that formula. They assume strife and so arouse a volley of strife against themselves.

I wish H. R. McMaster was a better student of Thucydides. He’d know that the Athenians adopted the same amoral tone he embraces: “The strong do what they can and the weak suffer what they must.” The Athenians ended up making endless enemies and destroying their own empire.
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Re: "Donald Trump Poisons The World"

Post by Jivermo » Fri Jun 02, 2017 10:13 am

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Re: "Donald Trump Poisons The World"

Post by Amskeptic » Sun Jun 11, 2017 5:39 pm

I'd buy that.

Onwards we go. Maybe Donald is exactly what the Universe ordered to get us off our lazy butts.
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Re: "Donald Trump Poisons The World"

Post by ruckman101 » Sat Jul 08, 2017 11:10 pm

Sums it up succinctly.


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Re: "Donald Trump Poisons The World"

Post by ruckman101 » Sat Jul 08, 2017 11:11 pm

The world is very tired of Imperialism.


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Re: "Donald Trump Poisons The World"

Post by Bleyseng » Sat Jul 08, 2017 11:54 pm

ruckman101 wrote:
Sat Jul 08, 2017 11:11 pm
The world is very tired of Imperialism.


neal
How soon these assholes forget we had two World Wars that cost millions of lives for nothing.....
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Re: "Donald Trump Poisons The World"

Post by Amskeptic » Tue Jul 25, 2017 10:22 am

. . . and now, Donald Trump poisons the minds of our Boy Scouts. Putrid:

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/07/24/us/p ... tics-.html
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Re: "Donald Trump Poisons The World"

Post by JLT » Tue Jul 25, 2017 12:06 pm

Amskeptic wrote:
Tue Jul 25, 2017 10:22 am
. . . and now, Donald Trump poisons the minds of our Boy Scouts.
The first time that a crowd of thirteen-year-olds has been addressed by a President with the mind of a thirteen-year-old. No wonder they gave him an ovation.

(Repeated from a Facebook post)
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Re: "Donald Trump Poisons The World"

Post by sgkent » Thu Jul 27, 2017 9:56 pm

we like DT and frankly find most of those who attack him boring, sheep like, and first in a crowd to hand someone else the bill for their BS.
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Re: "Donald Trump Poisons The World"

Post by JLT » Thu Jul 27, 2017 10:22 pm

sgkent wrote:
Thu Jul 27, 2017 9:56 pm
we like DT and frankly find most of those who attack him boring, sheep like, and first in a crowd to hand someone else the bill for their BS.
Well, you'll probably find me boring and sheep-like, too. Maybe you're hanging out with the wrong people, but I find most of those who attack him to be interesting, independent-minded, and the last people to expect others to cover their BS bill. Many of them have paid their dues as soldiers, resisters, and activists, and some of them have risked their lives and fortunes for what they believe in. I'll be glad to introduce them to you.

But with all respect, exactly what is it that you find likable about the guy?
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Re: "Donald Trump Poisons The World"

Post by sgkent » Fri Jul 28, 2017 6:52 am

Maybe you're hanging out with the wrong people
only because we don't want to support the corruption. Maybe you and your friends are comfortable with how life is in this country now, I am not. We want a safer happier place. The Democrats had their chance to make that happen and instead focused on changing life in other countries, then sending the working class here the bill. The majority of us are done with that.

Try to fill your bus gas tank in California and see how well that works for you - I spoke with ARB on it, they laughed about the problem and thought it was because we drive old cars. Their solution is have the station staff fill your car. Really? By law if they can't fill it properly they have the right to refuse you gas. Think about that on November 1 when the gas tax and car license fee here doubles. Try to find someone here to accept your electronic-waste - bet you can't even though it is illegal to toss it out any other way. Try to redeem your aluminum cans you pay a CRV on when you buy them- you'll find that the majority of the recycle centers have closed because the state is having trouble paying back the CRV. Try to drive in a HOV lane, you'll be run over by cars with one person in them. In many parts of the state HOV lanes are being changed into a toll lane under the Democrats here - just can't take enough money from the middle class to give it to the poor. The more they take the more poor there are. There is so much corruption in the Democratic Party right now we cannot support it at a political level. It is awful here. We thought Jerry Brown would help solve some of these issues but the last 3 or 4 years he has gone nuts on taxes. When we had the drought a good friend was told that if she doubled the size of her orchard she could have water but if she didn't plant more trees from a 1/2 acre to an acre her trees (already on drip irrigation) would have to go un-watered. All the while the democrats here supported water theft to their political donors - there was just a film on it. http://channel.nationalgeographic.com/w ... nia-heist/
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Re: "Donald Trump Poisons The World"

Post by JLT » Fri Jul 28, 2017 11:22 am

sgkent wrote:
Fri Jul 28, 2017 6:52 am
Maybe you're hanging out with the wrong people
only because we don't want to support the corruption. Maybe you and your friends are comfortable with how life is in this country now, I am not. We want a safer happier place.
Don't we all? That's why I'm leaning more toward the Progressive end of the Democratic Party. They seem to have the best handle on how to do this.
The Democrats had their chance to make that happen and instead focused on changing life in other countries, then sending the working class here the bill. The majority of us are done with that.
Foreign aid is an investment, based on the fact that it's cheaper than waging war. We seem to have forgotten that, which is why we have a foreign policy that is creating enemies faster than we can eliminate them. And frankly, I haven't seen a great deal of difference in how the political game is played, either on the federal or state level. As long as our political system is pay-to-play, that probably won't change.
Try to fill your bus gas tank in California and see how well that works for you
Merlin, I live just down the road from you. I've never had a problem filling my gas tank. What do you mean?
Try to find someone here to accept your electronic-waste - bet you can't even though it is illegal to toss it out any other way.
I just take it to my local Goodwill donation center. They'll take just about anything that has a circuit board.
Try to redeem your aluminum cans you pay a CRV on when you buy them- you'll find that the majority of the recycle centers have closed because the state is having trouble paying back the CRV.
I'll take your word on that, because I haven't tried to cash in aluminum cans. I presume you know about the California Recycling web site.

http://www.calrecycle.ca.gov/BevContain ... &Mode=View
I see that there are fifty-three locations listed in the Sacramento area, three of them in Citrus Heights, but I don't know if the list is current.
Try to drive in a HOV lane, you'll be run over by cars with one person in them. In many parts of the state HOV lanes are being changed into a toll lane under the Democrats here - just can't take enough money from the middle class to give it to the poor


I've been living in this state for thirty-seven years now, and that's been an issue from time to time whichever party has been in power. (And from what I hear, it is not a problem confined to this state.)

And we don't want to take money from the middle class. It's the Republicans who are trying to kill the middle class. We want to take money from the filthy rich to give to the poor. There's a difference, you know.
It is awful here. We thought Jerry Brown would help solve some of these issues but the last 3 or 4 years he has gone nuts on taxes.
And California is solvent again, having crawled out of the hole that Enron and company put us into during the energy crisis.
When we had the drought a good friend was told that if she doubled the size of her orchard she could have water but if she didn't plant more trees from a 1/2 acre to an acre her trees (already on drip irrigation) would have to go un-watered.
I agree that there are a lot of water issues right now. A lot of it is due to the fact that growers are afraid that if they cut back their water use, the state will say "We've obviously been giving you too much before, and you've wasted it. So now you get less." (Kinda like the military with its budgets, isn't it?) But answer me this: every time I drive down I-5 or 99, I see all these signs on the side of the road blaming the water crisis on Congress, even though the Republicans have been in charge of Congress for the last few years. What's up with that?
All the while the democrats here supported water theft to their political donors - there was just a film on it. http://channel.nationalgeographic.com/w ... nia-heist/
All politicians support their political donors. Read Molly Ivins's book You Got To Dance With Them What Brung You (the greatest title for a political book in years!) for the best explanation I've read about how money corrupts politics. And if you believe that the Republicans are somehow going to reverse this, I have a beautiful bridge right here in Sacramento to sell you. It's painted faux gold, and it's very pretty.

But enough of this. I asked you what you liked about Trump. I'd still like to hear your answer. I saw Michael Moore on Steven Colbert's show the other night, and he said that Trump's appeal to the voters was that he was a Molotov cocktail that was thrown mostly to disrupt the status quo, and to shake up the system, even though he had no real agenda beyond throwing out enough red meat to win the election. Do you agree with that, or am I missing something?
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'70 Frankenwestie "Blunder Bus"
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Re: "Donald Trump Poisons The World"

Post by tommu » Fri Jul 28, 2017 12:13 pm

sgkent wrote:
Thu Jul 27, 2017 9:56 pm
we like DT and frankly find most of those who attack him boring, sheep like, and first in a crowd to hand someone else the bill for their BS.
I'm interested too. What do you like about him? You are very clear and precise about most other things you post on.

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Re: "Donald Trump Poisons The World"

Post by sgkent » Sun Jul 30, 2017 7:16 pm

tommu wrote:
Fri Jul 28, 2017 12:13 pm
sgkent wrote:
Thu Jul 27, 2017 9:56 pm
we like DT and frankly find most of those who attack him boring, sheep like, and first in a crowd to hand someone else the bill for their BS.
I'm interested too. What do you like about him? You are very clear and precise about most other things you post on.
He is shaking up the status quo. He does understand everything in life has consequences. If someone doesn't work in both the private sector and government they cannot understand the differences between the two. He is learning that and It will take him some time to see the difference but we believe that in the end we will be better off than continuing the path we were on after 8 years of the DNC running things (or 8 years prior under the GOP) - my personal belief is that by the end of 8 years of one party in power corruption will begin to creep in regardless of who is in power. We needed a change. Bernie was a nice guy, we supported him $$ but did not throw our votes his way. Unfortunately he was unable to fend off someone as simple as the head of his own party. If you want to see what happens in the kind of socialism that is being promoted now in the progressive movement look no further than Venezuela (or Argentina under Peron in the 1940' and 50's.) There is too much economic chaos and ethnic racism in this country for us to achieve the European model of socialism. That requires planning and people working together in a common culture. Americans lack that.

We had an interesting experience the 2nd weekend of July at Yosemite. The two families next to us were from Denmark. They were the nicest folks, and their children were totally wholesome. Quite enjoyable. One thing that the adults voiced in discussion is how fearful the Danes are right now that the seeds of failure of their way of life have been sown. They are socialist, which works really well for them, they said that right now almost every Dane contributes as much to their system as they take out. Everyone is hard working but the last few years with all the migrants and refugees coming in that has changed, and now many people are taking much more out than they are putting back in. Many of the newcomers refuse to work. In fact the newcomers they say act like it is owed to them by the rest of society. That is making it very hard for socialism to continue because the system cannot support itself with so many taking and not putting back in. So I would argue that a socialist / progressive society here cannot succeed without a purge like Stalin or Lenin did, or the Chinese do when they execute someone who is on drugs and pulling society down etc., and no way would I want to see something like that - and I know you would not want to see that either but the math doesn't work out otherwise. There are too many taking and not enough putting in. My opinion is that we are already as socialist / progressive as we can be because the middle class cannot handle any more debt or laws - we can't enforce the rules we make now. It is easy for those who own nothing to say, "sure I'll join if someone else buys." And I think that DT sees that too, that is why he wants everyone back to work as can be even if we have to step back a little on other things - people have to be able to support themselves before they can support others. Will it work? I don't know because if all that happens is that the wealthy get more and the middle class gets less - no. That is what created much of the poverty to begin with. I do know that we have to eliminate as much crime as we can because once no one believes the laws work then no one will adhere to them. Then it really does become a free for all.

Last re the gas - late bays dump fuel. There are countless threads on it. The issue is the gas foams too much and the lack of an adequate breather in the fill tube cause it to back up. The only way to fill and not spill is to go painfully slow filling the bus. Early bays that have the vent tube back to the neck don't seem to have the problem. You can see the breather in the image below - green arrow is the neck with the breather. Red arrow is a late bay no breather.

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Re: "Donald Trump Poisons The World"

Post by airkooledchris » Sun Jul 30, 2017 10:12 pm

I don't believe he's shaking anything other than his own member. If he ever does something, I will have to evaluate what that was, but thus far there's just nothing to judge him on. If a man's words were worth anything, you might be able to craft something, but I think even his supporters will agree that you shouldn't judge him on his words - because they aren't consistent enough to form an actual conclusion from. When and if he takes any actions himself - we'll have to see direction he wants to go, where it isn't just reacting/texting to something he just ran into within the past 20 minutes.
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