Living with Trump

10 Nov

 

president-trump

 

The single most important asset Australia must have to adjust to the new world order we face from next January is a government capable of dealing with the considerable challenges a Trump presidency will bring to us and to our region.

We don’t have such a government. What we have is a gaggle of at best mediocre, self-interested, belligerent geese, irreconcilably divided amongst themselves. None of them have grasped that they are no long in opposition, and none of them have shown the slightest talent for governance.

Their most observable attribute is an aptitude for wedging: this attribute has its place but when it’s the lone core strategy it’s an alarming signal that the government doesn’t actually know how to do anything else. It is also an adolescent triumph that achieves nothing of worth, but does make them feel temporarily clever. The Turnbull government’s need to feel individually and collectively clever by discovering new ways to wedge its opposition reveals a profound emptiness where vision, policies and governance should be.

It’s like being governed by teenagers whose brains have not yet fully formed.

As things stand nobody, including our man in Washington Ambassador Hockey, has the slightest idea of what is going to hit them, and how to deal with it when it does.

The lunatics in parliament such as Abbott, Bernardi, Christensen, Hanson, Roberts and the closet Trumpites (of whom there are more than a few, I hazard to guess) have not yet grasped that Trump is not of their faith. The man is not an ideologue, he will have no more interest in their brand of ideological claptrap than he does in that of his own party. Trump is an opportunist who sees himself as the leader of a movement, not an ideology, and he will cherry pick whatever he needs to maintain that movement’s momentum and his own pride of place at its head.

Indeed, it’s my opinion that he’s done this throughout the lengthy campaign: telling every group he’s addressed whatever he believes they need to hear in order to persuade them to support him. What he will actually focus on when he becomes president is anybody’s guess.

I’m not getting into hand wringing, although I was temporarily disturbed by the Trump family’s collective reluctance to genuinely embrace their patriarch when they all gathered onstage to claim victory. Nobody seemed to want their body close to his. This tells us much about the man.

There’s nothing to be done except pay serious attention as to how we’re going to negotiate this brave new world without going under. Kim Beazley, who preceded Hockey in Washington and how I wish he was still there, made the alarming judgement that our region is likely to be the most severely affected by a Trump presidency. We are ill-equipped to face our future, given the inadequate government we’ve got.

For a start, we desperately need a real foreign minister. As I heard Richard Bronowski remark last evening, Ms Bishop was very well made up and spoke calmly and collectedly, the only problem was she said absolutely nothing. I’ve been observing precisely this for years now.

Will they grow up in time? Are they capable of maturing? Because if ever we needed the adults in charge, it’s now.

As for the woman thing, I’ll leave that for another post.

 

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47 Responses to “Living with Trump”

  1. Moz of Yarramulla November 10, 2016 at 6:46 am #

    On the contrary, both Trump and the Coalition are policy-free opportunists who primarily care about winning whatever the battle of the day is. The outcome matters less than the winning. I predict they will get along famously.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jennifer Wilson November 10, 2016 at 6:56 am #

      We shall see, Moz. Anything is possible now.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Marilyn November 10, 2016 at 6:58 am #

      I agree, and our own airhead Asbestos Julie will flourish with airhead Trump.

      I will address the woman thing though – any other woman would have beaten the mannequin airhead. Elizabeth Warren would have, Nancy Pelosi would have but Clinton is another airhead without a lot to say but whose best friends are all war criminals with blood dripping off their entire bodies.

      Who can forget her great mate Kissinger and his many wars, or the disgusting Madeleine Albright gloating about half a million dead Iraqi kids being a great price to pay in Iraq.

      Clinton ordered the destruction of Libya and gloated over the butchering of Gaddafi, their former great friend, She sat around like a gorgon while another former great friend Bin Laden was also butchered.

      She has a tonne of blood dripping off her and she is a greedy bitch as well – only 7% of the Clinton foundation went to the Haitians, the Clintons and their cronies pocketed the rest,

      Liked by 1 person

      • Jennifer Wilson November 10, 2016 at 7:13 am #

        Trump won’t give a flying fuck about our politician or our region. Government will have to deal with the consequences of this & they are incapable of doing so. It will be disastrous.

        Like

      • Arthur Baker November 10, 2016 at 9:05 am #

        I’m elated beyond description. Got rid of Clinton, probably permanently. And this Trump presidency will be great spectator sport, live on your TV every night. Watch the man self-destruct, and his grim knuckle-dragging supporters being forced to realise what an offensive bloviating fraud he is. Got my popcorn in already. Can’t wait! Let the show begin! I love seeing people who made their own bed being forced to lie on it (like, for example, the Brexit aftermath).

        Now, back to the other work-in-progress, how to get Dutton, Turnbull, Abbott, Morrison and some others to The Hague. God I’m a vindictive sod.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Jennifer Wilson November 10, 2016 at 2:31 pm #

          I get your excitement at the coming spectacle, Arthur, & most of us if we’re honest anticipate some entertainment.
          Not so sure I feel as harshly towards the poor disaffected buggers who voted for him tho….

          Like

        • Marilyn November 10, 2016 at 5:13 pm #

          I reckon the GOP will lose congress big time in 2 years.

          Liked by 1 person

        • nansfarm November 10, 2016 at 7:26 pm #

          I didn’t make the Brexit bed but I’m able to view the crumpled mess, unfortunately, those who did, appear to be oblivious to the consequences of what they’ve created and probably because they never understood in the first place.

          Liked by 1 person

      • paul walter. November 12, 2016 at 11:44 am #

        Jennifer is right about Marilyn not being shut up. This comment demonstrates why.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Havana Liedown November 10, 2016 at 8:21 am #

    I have never been so happy after such little sleep. Oh well, off to work. A good day, all.

    Like

  3. doug quixote November 10, 2016 at 9:12 am #

    An ignoramus for President! An opinionated buffoon with limitless self belief!

    It would be schadenfreude, if the joke wasn’t on us as well.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. davechaffeyhippie November 10, 2016 at 9:17 am #

    One of my close friends has been telling me for a long time that Trump was going to win, while pretty much everyone else didn’t seem to think he had a chance. I’ve just promoted him to be my chief political advisor. I’ve watched underground media stuff that I don’t really like because I can see their delusions of massive loss of white patriarchal privilege, but they truly believe it, and collective delusions make for political movements. Trump appeared to have seen this coming because he wasn’t blinded by political ideology, just narcissistic opportunism, which will clutch at whatever it takes to win as you point out. The main stream media have screwed up so bigly (or big league, depending on which one you think is Trump talk). The left have got to take some responsibility and do some real soul searching. Can they lose their righteousness for a while and work out how to re-engage with the deplorables who believe such terrible things that are incompatible with a global egalitarian future but can’t be completely removed as long as we remain hairless apes with brains too big for our britches? I shouldn’t say ‘they’, it’s ‘we’. Practise what we preach and stop demonising regular folk who demonise others. They might be wronger than us, but we are still wrong. None of us can read the raw code of reality; yet we pretend we can. But of course go hard against our leaders of all stripes, because they must be constantly reminded that the shit they spray over us all does stink. I’m sounding particularly incoherent today; but this is the age of Trump, so I’ll just tell myself how great I am and start planning how I’m going to manipulate enough people that I’m right even when I’m totally wrong…

    Liked by 2 people

  5. allthumbs November 10, 2016 at 9:18 am #

    As a left winger I wanted Trump to win for all the wrong reasons.

    What will be interesting to see is the tussle or cage fight that ensues as those that have held power for so long on both sides of the ideological divide try to hold onto all they have amassed over the recent decades as the Thatcher/Reagan/Neo-Con model of history comes to a stop.

    Simultaneously the beginning of the era of the Great Disappointment, as Trumps’s “policy” decisions are unwound or walked back, put on the back burner, filed away in a drawer or simply disappear, gets underway and the first 100 days of chaos take hold. As the gravitas of the position of President begins to weigh heavy on Donald’s ageing shoulders he becomes a shadow of the Nominee he was on the hustings and the disappointment of his followers turn to disgust.

    When you have Democrats voting for Trump and not voting for Clinton or not voting at all and Republicans voting for Clinton or not voting for Trump or not at all, then the two party system has become a one party system with little differentiation between two wings of the one party.

    I do not see a resurgence of the US under Trump, I see one of a series of final nails in the coffin of the end of the Empire, an incompetent spanner in the machinery of Capitalism,(but hey that’s fine with me) a glint in the eye of the common man and woman, I hear the grinding of the wheel for the sharpening of pitchforks.

    Far from dividing the working class and the middle class, as each country begins to awaken to what a vote can do, you may even see the spread of an international movement begin to take shape, not party based, but interest based. I think the demographics of Trumps election will highlight many strands of diverse self interest were in play, more complicated, more intricate than the sort of bigoted racist fantasy the likes of Havana has of an all white middle class xenophobic master race has in mind.

    Interesting times.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Jennifer Wilson November 10, 2016 at 2:35 pm #

      allthumbs, I believe Trump’s election promises are already being wound back. Indeed, I doubt many of them had substance: they were used to get him votes & I wouldn’t be surprised if he’s already forgotten 3/4 of them, except the ones that involve revenge.

      Like

      • allthumbs November 10, 2016 at 3:44 pm #

        Perhaps Jennifer, but my take on it will be that Trump will be working on borrowed time, the electorate has had a taste of what can be done, what the electorate giveth the electorate can taketh away, and not necessarily with such civil, legal and polite ways.

        The international economy teeters on a knife’s edge, in bad times patience is no longer a virtue.

        Look to elections in France and Italy, the Presidential election re-run in Austria.

        The working class of whatever colour, the lower middle and middle class of whatever colour are losing their patience. When things are good they may be happy to look the other way, when things get hard then that is another story,

        Turnbull’s mantra of disruption’s required response is agility and nimbleness blah, blah, blah has been proven a furphy as Trumps election proves. Look how he clings to the business as usual phrasing yesterday and today after a seismic disruption of international proportion.

        Hanson exists because Howard union busted, privatized, and de-regulated following the lead of the smarmy git Keating. Labor abandoned those people to the likes of Hanson and the Liberal Party.

        When I hear Dutton complaining and vilifying Labor as being run by the “left wing” I have to pinch myself, so at ease are the Libs with recent right wing manifestation of the ALP they ridicule the left of the Labor Party. I remember a time when the Labor party was the left in its entirety.

        Trump hasn’t the intellect to carry this off. Someone is going to have to unite the havenots across, class, gender, colour and ethnicity and point out the common ground of such a force than the differences, because that is what those that just lost power will do, point out the differences and then it gets nasty.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Jennifer Wilson November 11, 2016 at 12:28 pm #

          We’re heading for revolution, and revolution is never pretty. All we need is the leaders…

          Like

  6. samjandwich November 10, 2016 at 10:34 am #

    This is the best analysis I’ve read of the consequences of Trump for Australia. Jennifer have you thought of spruiking your article to the Conversation/ABC/SMH?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jennifer Wilson November 10, 2016 at 2:28 pm #

      I don’t do sprucing all that well Sam 🙂
      And thanks for the appreciation

      Like

  7. paul walter. November 10, 2016 at 11:56 am #

    It is a rare situation indeed that revels no positives.

    But it has finally arrived in the form of the US election results.

    Congress, the Senate and the Supreme court, now all gone..A Clinton win might have at least retained the Senate and the Supreme court, but thanks to that fascist Comey, these are all now gone. It is a very 1934 scenario, unrelievedly desolate.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jennifer Wilson November 10, 2016 at 2:36 pm #

      I’m not so sure, PW. It will obviously be horrible for a while, but I also believe his election will re invigorate resistance and subversion.

      Like

    • Marilyn November 10, 2016 at 5:16 pm #

      Why blame Comey for doing his job? If he didn’t investigate he would be in an impeachable position. God knows Clinton’s abuses of process have been covered up long enough.

      Like

      • paul walter. November 10, 2016 at 5:54 pm #

        Be quiet, Marilyn.

        A certain letter makes progress, I commend to your attention its immanent arrival.

        Comey, a Repubican, made a political/politicised decision of the sort Brandis often makes, since by long practice such disclosures (which in this case proved to be unsubstantial) are avoided during an election.

        Liked by 1 person

  8. paul walter. November 10, 2016 at 12:28 pm #

    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/nov/09/rise-of-the-davos-class-sealed-americas-fate?CMP=twt_gu

    How satisfying it would be to strangle the top echelons of Wall St.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. flrpwll November 10, 2016 at 1:24 pm #

    I wonder how this will impact the TPP. Could this be the only bright spot? Trump seems pretty adamant he’s going to get rid of current trade deals, because they don’t benefit the US enough. Maybe he’ll ask for such ridiculous changes, that the entire thing falls though.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. doug quixote November 10, 2016 at 6:30 pm #

    Trump promises to build or rebuild bridges, roads, schools – all America’s infrastructure. It will be cute to see how the penny-pinchers of Congress, the rightist tea party Republicans, react to what must be a big spend.
    I suppose he will assuage their anger by cutting just about every social program.
    Watch for the tumbrils rolling within a few months of the end of January (T’s inauguration).

    Liked by 1 person

    • Havana Liedown November 10, 2016 at 7:04 pm #

      Oh goody – another prediction from Doug. Will the Tumbrils be imported and subject to a 35% tariff?

      Like

      • doug quixote November 10, 2016 at 10:13 pm #

        No; the Yanks should be able to manufacture their own.

        Why don’t you book a ride?

        Like

        • Havana Liedown November 11, 2016 at 9:10 am #

          Why would I book a ride in your tumbril? You have some odd fantasies.

          Like

      • Jennifer Wilson November 11, 2016 at 6:12 am #

        Havana, you seem to want to pick a fight.

        Like

        • Havana Liedown November 11, 2016 at 9:12 am #

          Yes, if being called a cunt and deserving of decapitation by expressing an opposing opinion can be described of picking fights.

          Liked by 1 person

          • Jennifer Wilson November 11, 2016 at 10:13 am #

            Oh, dear, did someone here say those things to you? I missed that.

            Like

    • Jennifer Wilson November 11, 2016 at 6:10 am #

      DQ, wasn’t it Abbott who promised to be the infrastructure PM?
      I see there are already riots in the streets, & college students are being given counselling and puppy therapy.

      Like

  11. nansfarm November 10, 2016 at 7:04 pm #

    RE: Donald Trump – Just a question… What normally happens when someone is judged to be a threat to national security?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jennifer Wilson November 11, 2016 at 6:11 am #

      Nansfarm, I imagine calling in the FBI is the next step, but that ship has probably sailed.

      Like

    • Arthur Baker November 15, 2016 at 1:32 pm #

      “What normally happens when someone is judged to be a threat to national security?”.

      They get impeached. Sit back and wait. It will happen. Enjoy your popcorn.

      Liked by 2 people

    • Jennifer Wilson November 14, 2016 at 8:41 am #

      We ought to be mobilising already in this country after the US experience. ALP need to get their fingers out & get very serious.

      Like

  12. Arthur Baker November 15, 2016 at 5:21 pm #

    “The single most important asset Australia must have to adjust to the new world order we face from next January is a government capable of dealing with the considerable challenges a Trump presidency will bring to us and to our region.”

    Apparently not.

    http://www.smh.com.au/comment/australia-has-a-secret-weapon-to-keep-donald-trump-in-our-alliance-20161114-gsor2j.html

    Painful as it may be for those of us who were appalled, in the 1970s, by the establishment of this US base in the Northern Territory, it turns out that Pine Gap may be the single most important asset Australia must have to convince Donald Trump (assuming he has advisers who would know if their arses were on fire) to value Australia’s friendship.

    It comes down to this: look, Donald, if you don’t have access to Pine Gap’s intelligence, you might not know if your precious country is under nuclear attack from some place in Siberia.

    Hey, Donald, we’re here and we’re your friends. Love us, buddy. Or stay ignorant.

    There just had to be something positive flowing from an atrocity like Pine Gap, one day. Today (or 20 Jan) might just be that day.

    Like

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