Ronald Regan may have had early signs of Alzheimer’s while still in office.
I don’t recall the name of the book, but the gist of it was that the U.S and Soviet Union had an all out nuclear exchange and other nuclear powers chimed in, such that life in the northern hemisphere was annihilated. A radioactive pall then descended over the planet toward southern hemisphere and people in southern Australia were waiting for it to get to them. The last line was that the world ended with a whimper instead of bang.
Btw, during the cold war the experts opined that there were only 400 sites in the US or SU of sufficient industrial or military importance to warrant being nuked. But for 50 years the US said “the commies are coming, more nukes” while the citizens of the SU were told “the Americans are coming, more nukes”, until we had 50,000 warheads between us. How’s that for mutual insanity?
If Trump is not being treated as a demigod by the press (perhaps only an oversight as yet), he is applauded by them for his being a demagogue! The sad thing is that Americans seem all too willing to exchange their freedoms and maybe even representative democracy itself (piecemeal) for a demagogue’s media presence and an autocratic penchant for ill defined promises and intimations of an ‘improved America’ with him in charge doing things his way etc. Trump says to America >>> Trump knows best! Our press should be defending democracy and giving him hell over this attitude. Should be anyway!
The N. Koreans do not have our freedom of choice, of course but looking at the way the mainstream media in this country has relinquished its ‘fourth estate’ role as a check on government and oligarchy, one wonders whether the differences between the two countries press are as pronounced as they once were! Still there is a great deal of difference to living in America even under a Trump administration and of living under dictatorship in N. Korea so we still have a long way to go before censorship takes over press freedom entirely.
The similarity begins to show when the two leaders begin to boast of their individual power to initiate a nuclear war on their own say so. At that point Trump abandons the guiding principle of democracy in favor of that of a monarchical autocrat. Trump feels constrained by our representative democracy and chafes at the responsibility of an elected official to seek Congressional authorization. Trump wants the autocratic power that his counterpart wields in N. Korea!
His psychology ( that of a billionaire) gravitates towards autocracy and oligarchy not towards democracy.
While the two countries systems are radically different, the psychology of the two leaders are less so. In fact both men respond to each other in a rarefied sympatico. Autocrat to dictator perhaps but Trump should be responding only as an elected official in a representative democracy and not in this a ‘leader decides’ mode.
That Trump would even want to appear capable of his starting a nuclear war on his own say so is as bizarre as NK’s expressing the same thing.
There is little doubt about it actually. The unelected shadow presidency (the administration not the man) then determined policy with Reagan the spokesperson not the author. Trump is signing executive orders with reckless abandon and the press never call him to the carpet as to whether he even understands what he is signing. It was that way with Reagan too.
I think there is generally a lot less awareness today of the danger of nuclear war, because the Cold War sort of ended, to be replaced by the War on Terror, another phony construct to bleed the taxpayers dry. But we’ve remained on hair trigger alert with Russia and US missiles pointed at each other. The danger never really went away. There is also less awareness because the media has become more consolidated, and so more right wing, thanks in large part to Bill Clinton and the Telecommunications Act of 1996. Thirdly, I believe the American public is clinically depressed. It just seems no matter how much we march, no matter who we vote for, etc. we are going to get more wars, and more lies justifying wars. So, many people just tune politics out altogether, as it is depressing and their input seems to be ignored by Congress and the White House. In fact, our views are ignored, i.e., studies show that what the overwhelming majority of people want, on issue after issue, is not what gets passed into legislation. Which, of course, is the very definition of an oligarchy or plutocracy. __
You define the problem of ‘politics’ at least as most people think of it. Most people do not think of it usually and that is why we are frustrated. The Trump machine is waiting for us to grow disinterested and apathetic. Perhaps we are getting a taste of that but I think that we are being pummeled by Trump’s rapid fire changes so that we have a hard time keeping the issues straight in our mind as well as keeping abreast of what new changes are thrust on us almost daily.
This makes for a challenging political climate where the press is critical for people’s understanding of those changes and their implications. Unfortunately our press has somehow forgotten how to function as a critical voice towards our government thus leaving most Americans less informed about these rapid fire changes than they should be.
I am not excusing us but I am suggesting that our being dependent on a rigged game to keep us well informed about that very same rigged game is not working. Do people really want less rigorous regulations for water quality and so forth in their lives? Or for reducing proposed gas mileage regulations for automobiles? Doing away with regulations preventing the dumping of mining wastes into rivers and streams? Do we?
The real question is why isn’t our mainstream press functioning as a check and balance informing us of these onerous changes? Why isn’t the press informing us on how to combat these changes?
I often wonder what Americans and especially Progressive Americans would do without our nonmainstream press like is found daily on Common Dreams et al. The problem is that the rest of America relies on the mainstream press instead…at least they do when they take an interest in politics at all.
Adding to that is your perceptive point that Americans are showing signs of depression because we were very interested and then we were repaid by betrayal. First the people’s choice was sabotaged and like a victim of abuse or trauma who was denied validation and justice, we are suffering from a form of PTSD concerning politics and what is happening in Washington.
The saddest thing of all is that the republicans and Trump may be condemning the country and the world to great turmoil and added suffering as climate change becomes climate chaos and Trump’s oligarchic extremism leaves the door open to outright fascism and unrest in the future.
One must also ask whether the Dems really want to oppose Trump or do they want to embrace the corporate coup but don’t want to be publicly blamed for their having done so? Wondering whether or not the Dems are really opposing Trump is enough to depress anyone!
This author forgot one other major reason why people are not responding with hysteria over the “nuclear threat issue:” Most of us recognize the idiotic buffoon who is allegedly the President of the United States, as a blow-hard, hyper-reactive moron, and don’t believe a word he says!
Or maybe we live online and are therefore invulnerable.
Representative government is the poison pill.
If its not direct, its not democracy.
Yes remember that was what Bush 2 said after 911.
I am here now, but don’t “live” online. That is not living. Now, get outside and see some nature nature boy.
Remember as much as we need to get involved and keep involved with causes of importance- it’s what is happening in your community as well not just politically but also helping others .
Yes, I think that was a given a long long time ago.
Of course when they get off their couches.
Good grief! You must have too much time on your hands!!!
As a society we have become so detached from war that unless we know someone personally or happen to see real soldiers it is so distant. It should NEVER be like that. My late dad fought in WW2 , and although he certainly moved on in life, he told us about the history and his experiences. Our parents also mentioned how people back home made sacrifices. Think about this: While soldiers and first responders risk their lives, Wall Street has a party and crashes the economy of the country in which they live. How do people wrap their heads around THAT???
From “Ban The Bomb” in the 50’s, to today.
Wish it were otherwise, but it appears that protest makes no difference.
Or be able to break from the day-to-day, paycheck-to-paycheck, lifestyle those in power would want us locked into.
Is that where I got that? I thought it was Millard Fillmore who said that.
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