Monthly Archives: December 2016

Context

I do not in any way approve of Russian involvement in our election, should this intelligence analysis be borne out over time, but I certainly think some context is important.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/samuel-ramani/why-russia-is-interfering_b_12801892.html

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/the-us-has-been-meddling-in-other-countries-elections-for-a-century-it-doesnt-feel-good_us_57983b85e4b02d5d5ed382bd

 

 

The long ideological struggle

http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/five-myths-about-us-china-relations/2016/12/09/beedb888-bccc-11e6-91ee-1adddfe36cbe_story.html?utm_term=.eefe5355b527

Excellent article on US-China relations. All good, but this part popped out for me:

MYTH NO. 1 – Trade and engagement will set China free.
This idea has been a foundational myth of America’s engagement with China almost since President Richard Nixon went there in 1972; it’s been used to justify decades of interaction…So far, this epochal bet has been a bust.

To say the least. We are back to having a stiff competition between two ideological traditions. One is the liberal democratic republican tradition of the U.S. and the European states. The other is good, old-fashioned authoritarianism.

It’s on Republicans to put country before party

This is a difficult one. I very much believe that the intelligence associated with the Iraq War was politicized. I think the evidence clearly shows that the Bush administration pressured the agencies to deliver the results it wanted to justify its war of choice and to downplay unsupportive evidence.

So, I don’t find it too much of a stretch for Pres.-elect Trump – or any Republican, for that matter – to feel the same way about intelligence agencies operating under Pres. Obama. Naturally, I think the evidence is there to show that Russia engaged in hacks and disclosures designed to elect Trump. So what to do?

Well, that’s why we need the investigatory powers of Congress to get involved. It’s checks-and-balances 101. Congress is separately elected and empowered for just this reason. But for this to work properly, we’re going to need congressional Republicans to put country before party and step up to carry out a thorough investigation.

One of the oldest and best tests in these situations is to imagine if the parties were switched. If this involved Clinton, I’m positive Republicans would be running around like a bunch of chimps screaming for years-long investigations and demanding that she resign before even taking office. As they typically do, Democrats have been more subdued, hoping their political fellows will do the right thing. I’m glad that Senators McCain and Graham have done so, but I don’t have much hope for the rest.

By the way, if you voted for Trump or Republicans in this last election, this is on you, too. You are personally responsible for pressuring your representatives to do the right thing for their country – that is, if representative democracy is to mean anything at all. So, I ask you: What are you going to do for your country?