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    I wish I had your confidence. I’m glad this lot are earth-shatteringly incompetent but have no faith that the next ones won’t be an American Putin or Erdogan.

    Comment


      Originally posted by Bruno View Post
      It's impossible to be a competent authoritarian in a liberal system. That's why they always stack the courts and kill journalists.
      I wish this was the case. It proves to be suprisingly easy to reinvent a previously liberal system to suit the requirements of a semi competent authoritarian. And you don't even need to kill journalists, you just need to buy/obtain the media.

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        I wasn't meaning to sound optimistic actually. I meant that trying to push a liberal system in an authoritarian direction will typically look and be incompetent from the standpoint of liberal norms and procedures. That doesn't mean it can't succeed. Appointing incompetent bureaucrats is procedurally incompetent but can succeed in making the bureaucracy a joke and transferring more power to the executive. Lawyers making leaky disingenuous arguments to a liberal court sound incompetent but can succeed in muddying the waters and creating the appearance of a need for more "conservative" less "activist" judges. Trump and the GOP have been very attentively stacking the courts with stooges anyway (or so I read).

        An American Putin would probably look more incompetent than the Russian Putin, who contended with far fewer liberal obstacles in taking over an imploded state with a long history of authoritarian and even totalitarian rule. I think that becoming and staying authoritarian will always come down to reserving the right to murder or imprison your enemies and running roughshod over justice, which is "competent" from an authoritarian perspective if you can get away with it and incompetent from a liberal perspective because it exposes your inability to succeed by rational persuasion on a fair playing field.

        I'm sure there are more and less efficient or competent ways to make the playing field less fair, and I wouldn't reduce the question to what Trump is doing, since he's essentially a product of a decades-long campaign against a very robust liberal system. Has that campaign been easy? I guess it depends how you look at it. I assume the plutocrats are content as Trump hasn't slowed down their mission of stealing from everybody.

        Comment


          Appointing incompetent bureaucrats is procedurally incompetent but can succeed in making the bureaucracy a joke and transferring more power to the executive.
          This was Bannon's plan, wasn't it. Sabotage the federal government, and you create an apparent need for a strong man.

          It is how Putin came to power after Yeltsin destroyed all semblance of organised government in Russia.
          Last edited by anton pulisov; 12-07-2019, 10:14.

          Comment


            The way that Pence is spinning his visit to the concentration, sorry, reception camps for immigrants should make anyone wary of the advisability of trying to impeach the president. In many other ways too this course of action would be counter-productive. Concentrate on positive reasons why you (Dems, mainly) should be elected. The sad fact is that the right do negativity a lot better so why compete in this part of the battlefield?

            Comment


              An underlying problem is that the US constructed a liberal system to constrain states and interest groups that are prone to be illiberal and the latter will always find cracks they can exploit.

              Moreover, as Durkheim emphasized, liberalism only works if there's a broad consensus to respect its norms. That has been eroded over decades.

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                Meanwhile, Trump spiked Iran deal just to spite Obama


                https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-48978484

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                  The Racist in Chief has tweeted that three native born Congresswomen of colour (and their Somali refugee colleague) "should go back to the crime-infested places they came from".

                  A surprising number of pundits are expressing surprise.

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                    A surprising number or surprising because of who these pundits are?

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                      I, for one, am suddenly shocked and surprised at this President's amazingly rapid change into not following traditional conventions and norms and not concealing his racism.

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                        Straight into the CNN Rolodex you go
                        ​​​​​
                        Well played

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                          Sporting, a bit of both, though as SB intimates, the real surprise is that there are any.

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                            Originally posted by Guy Profumo View Post
                            Meanwhile, Trump spiked Iran deal just to spite Obama


                            https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-48978484
                            It’s going to be hilariously fucking funny when this ends up with Iran having a viable nuclear weapon, forever ending the Blob’s fantasy of invading Iran.

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                              Can there be, is there, a solution for the Pelosi-Squad stand-off? The left tearing itself apart again...

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                                If Pelosi is "left" in any meaningful sense then we are truly fucked

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                                  Yeah, true

                                  Comment


                                    Originally posted by Sporting View Post
                                    Can there be, is there, a solution for the Pelosi-Squad stand-off? The left tearing itself apart again...
                                    More accurately the Democrats tearing themselves apart again.

                                    It's pretty routine stuff in a pre-election year though isn't it? By next Summer they'll all be playing kissy-face

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                                      It doesn't seem like a big deal. It helps blue dog/centrist Democrats define themselves as "reasonable" by being opposed to AOC. It helps leftish Democrats like AOC who have no meaningful Republican opponents prevent any insurgency against them and also helps them get their agenda in the public eye.

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                                        Sure. It's a way of taking the electoral temperature while fighting for pole position in the party's future

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                                          I'm not even sure it is that it is that. It is theatre that plays well in each side's districts.

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                                            I suppose all public political activity is in the category of performance these day.

                                            However the AOC squad vs Pelosi dust up isn't in the same category as the current UK Labour party's ructions.

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                                              Not even close, largely as a result of the large differences in the systems

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                                                Yeah - they aren't really the same kind of thing at all, the Dems and Labour

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                                                  No surprise here then.

                                                  https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-48982172

                                                  Comment


                                                    "racially-charged". Mealy mouthed wankers.

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