Sunday, March 19, 2017

Nobel Laureate Paul Krugman Issues a Warning About What We All Know Is Coming

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Mod: This piece first came out around 6 weeks ago. It deals with the unhappy topic of the possibility of war and the political advantages that could bring for the current administration. As the most unpopular new President in recent memory, something alone the lines of a 9/11 attack really would help to solve many of Trump's problems.

Paul Krugman Issues a Warning About What We All Know Is Coming (Alternet link): In September of 2001 the Administration of George W. Bush was running into trouble. A President who had lost the popular vote, installed into office only through a hotly contested Supreme Court decision, had nonetheless behaved from the start as if he possessed a mandate, eagerly dismantling his predecessor’s achievements and turning the country on a hard rightward course, following a strategy that had been carefully concealed from the public during the campaign.

The public reaction was swift and negative—Bush’s own popularity tanked precipitously as the public reacted to an agenda most had not realized they had voted for. Prior to September 11th his approval levels had dropped to the lowest of his still-young Presidency.

All of that was transformed in a matter of hours, as the nation witnessed the worst terror attack America had ever experienced. Before the rubble had even been sifted to identify the bodies, Bush’s popularity skyrocketed to 90%. Within a matter of weeks he began the process of lying us into an unnecessary war that had been planned prior to the attacks, using those same attacks as his justification. That war destabilized the entire Middle East and resulted in hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of pointless deaths.

Meanwhile, here at home, dissent was shouted down as unpatriotic. The Right Wing media outlets labeled protesters as traitors, and nearly all the so-called conventional news sources either abetted or encouraged the Administration’s efforts, which soon instigated torture as an accepted practice, threw out the Geneva conventions, and instituted a web of foreign and domestic surveillance, the parameters of which are still undisclosed. Despite the fact that we were spending a trillion dollars for war, massive tax cuts were instituted benefitting only the wealthy.

Nobel Laureate Paul Krugman, writing for the New York Times, believes the situation we now find ourselves in, with Donald Trump holding the levers of power, is incomparably worse than anything the country faced with Bush or Cheney:

We’re only three weeks into the Trump administration, but it’s already clear that any hopes that Mr. Trump and those around him would be even slightly ennobled by the responsibilities of office were foolish. Every day brings further evidence that this is a man who completely conflates the national interest with his personal self-interest, and who has surrounded himself with people who see it the same way. And each day also brings further evidence of his lack of respect for democratic values.

The one positive thing that can be said about the Bush Administration is that it did not provoke the attacks of 9/11. Despite clear and well-documented early warning signs (which were ignored by Bush), the attacks, however carefully planned, were a shock to everyone, Bush included. And when the Courts began to rein in Bush and Cheney's abuses of power, while they were surely displeased—even irate—they never stooped so low as to undermine the basic institution of the Judiciary. As a result, the country slowly returned to a sense of normality because our institutions held up against the onslaughts.

Trump has already gone out of his way to provoke another terror attack on this country. By vilifying and demonizing not just Muslims by attempting to bar their entry into the country, but even equating those those who cross the Mexican border with the worst types of criminals imaginable, he has deliberately laid the groundwork for some type of retaliation. He has, in fact, invited it. And, as Krugman notes, he seems to want it:

The really striking thing about Mr. Trump’s Twitter tirade, however, was his palpable eagerness to see an attack on America, which would show everyone the folly of constraining his power:

Krugman is referring to this “Tweet”:


What Trump has done in attacking the very Judges and Courts that have (thus far) placed restraints upon his arbitrary abuse of power is to tie those restraints directly to the potential for further acts of terrorism against the country. He is telling us, in a very cold, cynical way, that he will consider himself blameless if we are attacked, with the unmistakable implication that such an attack would justify abandoning any constraints or limitations on his own powers:

Never mind the utter falsity of the claim that bad people are “pouring in,” or for that matter of the whole premise behind the ban. What we see here is the most powerful man in the world blatantly telegraphing his intention to use national misfortune to grab even more power. And the question becomes, who will stop him?

It is abundantly clear that the malevolent cast of characters who make up his “inner circle” will do nothing to stop Trump from taking full advantage to exploit the public’s fear and grief in the event of a large-scale terror event. His closest advisors, a white supremacist with a history of anti-Islamic hatred, and a general obsessed with Islamophobia in charge of the military, appear absolutely thrilled at the prospect of provoking an attack. They will not help us. In fact they would author the Orders that would attempt to initiate deportations and surveillance, limit speech and assembly, or otherwise revoke or “suspend" Due Process for certain “targeted” groups.

Neither will the Republican-dominated Senate, which, for all its phony pretensions of disapproval, is well on the way to confirming the most abominably incompetent President’s cabinet in the nation’s history. Neither they nor their ideological compatriots in control of the House of Representatives are going to lift a finger to help us.

The Judiciary does stand in his way, for now. But the nature of the Judiciary is not to be proactive but to react, most often after the damage has already been done. Trump is doing his best to undermine the Judiciary by his now-constant attacks on Judges who stand in the way of his exercise of arbitrary power. Ultimately they can only do so much.

No, when the terror attack comes—and Trump and Bannon are making damned sure that it does come—it will only be the common people, banding together, that will be able to stop him. If we let fear affect our judgments, an aftermath with rules imposed by people who have nothing but contempt for our institutions will be worse than anything terrorists could do to destroy us.

In the end, I fear, it’s going to rest on the people — on whether enough Americans are willing to take a public stand. We can’t handle another post-9/11-style suspension of doubt about the man in charge; if that happens, America as we know it will soon be gone.

We need to be ready. What is coming will literally be the fight of our lives.

sierramadretattler.blogspot.com

59 comments:

  1. Bush regime was so bad in so many ways. Even the pope said don't do it. Then they bombed and killed members of the press and civilians. Then abu graib. Then they caused isis.

    Obama got the peace prize as a preemptive strike by the civilized world to reign in right wing crazy.

    Now it's happening again. Even china warned yesterday to keep a level head.

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    1. Paul Krugman? Is that the best you can do? Now the hard left is really getting desperate.

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    2. Troll thinks Krugman is hard left? If you can't debate meaningfully then just give up kid, find another blog that fits between your blinders

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    3. I know Trumpies get really mad and put upon when anyone says this, but a lot of them really are kinda stupid.

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    4. Tattler has lost it. Obama left Trump with a mess. Trump will fix it and America will be great again.

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    5. "OK Milo" "OK Milo" please come up with new material.

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    6. Sure, Milo.

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    7. 8:51 days Nobel laureate not good enough. Troll talking pedophile defender

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  2. Time to protect ourselves, I' am running out to the store and buying up as much tin foil that I can carry.

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    1. Did you find Obama's birth certificate yet, Foily?

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    2. How Donald Trump Became Conspiracy Theorist in Chief
      http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2016/10/trump-infowars-alex-jones-clinton-conspiracy-theories

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    3. I can't stop to type much today... digging hole in backyard.. deep hole... lots of food... blankets.. I'll make room for a few nice neighbors... I'm at

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    4. Six feet deep? Let me guess. You lost your health care and you want to do your part to make America great again.

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    5. Hmm. Trump Guy versus Paul Krugman. Battle of the ages.

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    6. That's trump troll #2- the racist who sleeps with his gun. Troll #1 is the goofy grammarian

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    7. Which is the one that supports Nazi Boy Spencer?

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    8. I heard Charles Manson now does political analysis for Breitbart.

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    9. That's possibly both but definitely #2

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    10. Anybody want to bet that Trumps travel ban will be upheld. Even Alan Dershowitz said the ban is constitutional. I'll put Alan up against Krugman anytime.

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    11. Upheld where? It has already been shot down in every court that looked at it.

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    12. I'll take the Trump guy over Krugman who has been wrong too many times to count.

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    13. Trump Guy makes no sense.

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    14. Anyone with a brain knows the left has been forum shopping with the 9th circuit which gets about 100 percent of their decisions overturned by the Supreme Court.

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    15. Them judges in the upper left zone weren't the only ones, pardner. And even there some of the ones that shot down Senor Orange were Republicans.

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    16. Sorry pilgrim. Leftist judges believe in a "living" constitution. In other words one with no anchor. They just vote their own biases without citing any precident except perhaps Rachel Madow.

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    17. Thank you Mr. Bannon.

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  3. Why ‘Trump Administration’ Is An Oxymoron
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/why-trump-administration-is-an-oxymoron_us_58cb1996e4b00705db4dd6ae

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  4. Truly decent post. I just discovered the blog and wished to say that I've really delighted in browsing the blog entries.

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  5. In one of the previous blog topics, someone had heartburn that the blog master doesn't stick to Sierra Madre topics. Well, it's still a free country and last I checked no one is forcing people what to read or not read. So quit your whining if you don't agree with the content. Until you maintain your own blog and commit your own time, money and energy, then feel free to read this blog and deal with the postings. There's not always enough going on in SM to warrant daily blog topics and (unfortunately) the Dump 'administration' and the hatred his chronies are spreading does feel that gap.

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    1. Or better yet, if you think the Tattler is wrong, provide meaningful counterpoint backed by vetted facts. Have a real discussion, not just anonymous armchair whining.

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  6. The Pope said "don't do it"? He's concentrating on counseling a few prists.
    President Clinton gave a bombastic greeting to Osama Bin Laden, back in 1997 & 1998.
    Bin Laden said to his supporters; quick go to America and train as airline pilots; study and plan for a catastrophic event. You have nine months to complete this challenge, because President G. Bush will be seated in the White House by then.
    ps. I try to avoid products made in China.

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    1. Hijackers in the September 11 attacks
      From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
      The hijackers in the September 11 attacks were 19 men affiliated with al-Qaeda. Fifteen of the 19 were citizens of Saudi Arabia, and the others were from the United Arab Emirates (2), Egypt, and Lebanon.[1] The hijackers were organized into four teams, each led by a pilot-trained hijacker with three or four "muscle hijackers," who were trained to help subdue the pilots, passengers, and crew.

      The first hijackers to arrive in the United States were Khalid al-Mihdhar and Nawaf al-Hazmi, who settled in San Diego County, California, in January 2000. They were followed by three hijacker-pilots, Mohamed Atta, Marwan al-Shehhi, and Ziad Jarrah in mid-2000 to undertake flight training in south Florida. The fourth hijacker-pilot, Hani Hanjour, arrived in San Diego in December 2000. The rest of the "muscle hijackers" arrived in early- and mid-2001.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hijackers_in_the_September_11_attacks

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    2. The Bush-Bin Laden Family Connection
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rKwPzzK1b4k

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    3. Vilifying and demonizing Muslim's is a Progressive creation aimed at creating drama for those individuals less educated.
      Jihaidist's Muslim's closely resemble American Progressives.

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    4. What War Are We Buying With Another $58 Billion for the Military?
      http://www.alternet.org/news-amp-politics/what-war-are-we-buying-another-58-billion-military

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    5. North Korea.

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    6. https://twitter.com/USseriously/status/843290118421123077

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    7. Ready or Not, Here Come Trump and North Korea
      https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2017-03-19/ready-or-not-here-come-trump-and-north-korea
      President Donald Trump is a reckless bully with authoritarian leanings and a craving for attention. Kim Jong-un is a reckless bully with dictatorial powers and a craving for attention. Oh yes, and both have fingers on nuclear triggers. That's why so many national security experts of both political parties struggle to think of a scarier pair.

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    8. That's troll #1 loose with history, facts and spelling

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    9. Pope John Paul II's critique of the Bush doctrine of unilateral preemptive war couldn't have been clearer, more heartfelt or more vigorously argued.

      He once showed anger on the topic in a private audience with British Prime Minister Tony Blair and firmly rejected the direct appeals of Catholic neoconservatives to support the invasion. He used not just his bully pulpit but the full political machinery of the Vatican to try to stop what he saw as an act that did not meet the Christian definition of "just war" -- and was rather "a defeat for humanity."

      "War cannot be decided upon, even when it is a matter of ensuring the common good, except as the very last option and in accordance with very strict conditions, without ignoring the consequences for the civilian population both during and after the military operations," John Paul proclaimed on Jan. 13, 2003, even as he was sending his emissaries to Iraq, the U.S. and the United Nations to lobby for peaceful negotiations. "War is never just another means that one can choose to employ for settling differences between nations."

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  7. Here's counting on the new Sierra Madre Manager, to do his best.
    Not much coverage, not much happening.
    These next months will be a full agenda.

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  8. You "HARD LEFTS AND HARD RIGHTS" are scaring the hell out of many. Through out history you people have been the cause of more deaths and out an out slaughter of innocent people who just want to live and have a happy family life. You're absolutely disgusting. You're god is coming and he is not happy with you!

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    1. There are no 'hard lefts' on this blog they are just regular people. Mostly mainstream opinion, maybe a few on the left/right at heart. And two fear-mongering trolls.

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    2. If you don't like The Tattler, read the Mountain Views News. Printed Prozac.

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  9. Republican Senator who voted for anti-trans ‘bathroom bill’ busted in hotel with underage boy
    http://deadstate.org/senator-who-voted-to-protect-bathrooms-from-trans-people-caught-in-hotel-with-underage-boy/

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  10. Interesting, city paints a nice picture like all is well, appears that the last city manager did so well. Curious, is the new city manager going to take the blame for all the problems as they are exposed? We need to work close and support this new manager as his job is going to get difficult. An easy out for him will be to go along with getting more money from the local tax payers. Lets hope he has studied up on CA. laws and cities rights.

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    1. If Engeland was to lay out all of the information about Sierra Madre's big debt problems, including how it happened and who was responsible, I would have no problem supporting him. If he doesn't it is just more cover-up and phony tax pandering. Wasn't that something Michael Amerio was supposed to do for the city? What the hay ever happened to him?

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  11. Dude slips Secret Service, gets a selfie in Trump’s Mar-a-Lago study
    http://nypost.com/2017/03/19/dude-slips-secret-service-gets-a-selfie-in-trumps-mar-a-lago-study/

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  12. 9:10 asks: "What War Are We Buying With Another $58 Billion for the Military?
    http://www.alternet.org/news-amp-politics/what-war-are-we-buying-another-58-billion-military"

    It's a war to ensure that the children, grandchildren, and great grand children of military contractor executives and major investors live the lavish, effortless lifestyles of trust fund babies.

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    1. War with North Korea.

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    2. ‘TRUMP REGRETTERS’: NUMBER OF PEOPLE WHO REGRET VOTING FOR DONALD IS INCREASING
      http://www.inquisitr.com/4071502/trump-regretters-number-of-people-who-regret-voting-for-donald-is-increasing/

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  13. Japanese school children practice sheltering in the event of missle strikes from N. Korea.


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  14. You cannot reason with the leader of a personality cult who believes he's a god. Trump Troll #1 just choked in a way that oddly enough can only be described as "ungrammatical," but I'm not referring to TT#1's hero, I'm referring to Kim Jung-un, who cannot be reasoned with and cannot possess deliverable nukes. So military action is probably inevitable.

    Our problem is that the military action will be led by a personality cult leader who thinks he's a god and cannot be reasoned with. (That was your cue TT#1.)

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  15. Trolls get trumped again! DT been promising this year's:

    WASHINGTON ― White House Budget Director Mick Mulvaney threw cold water on the promise that “everybody” would get health insurance under GOP legislation ― a promise that was made by none other than President Donald Trump himself.

    “We don’t have universal ― the only way to have universal care, if you stop to think about it, is to force people to buy it under penalty of law,” Mulvaney said Sunday on ABC’s “This Week.”

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  16. Tillerson and Chinese. PM agreed with the Progressive Politicians that smog was the first and formost killer of individuals.
    North Korea should be ignored, they create the least amount of smog and climate change.

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  17. Cutting edge. The 1960's had Americans practicing shelter in place, in case of missle attacks, way ahead of the curve of preemptive strikes.

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    1. All mechanisms of government control through reinforced fear of the population.

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