This is a worrying time for us all with Donald Trump (aka Mr Toad) in the White House.
The person holding the Office of President of the United States of America is considered the leader of what is usually defined as “the free world”.
One of the best of the many ‘think tanks’ in the USA is the Brookings Institution which has just published a very significant report entitled : “Building situations of strength – A national security strategy for the United States”. Click here for the Introduction to the Report and click here for the Full Report. It makes terrific sense.
See also this evaluation in the Atlantic: “The Foreign-Policy Establishment Defends Itself From Trump ‘The question confronting us as a nation is as consequential as any we have faced since the late 1940s,’ a group of Republican and Democratic experts write”
Also this on CNN: “Who, exactly, is running US foreign policy?” which contains this observation:-
“Bannon, who has taken a key post in the National Security Council and is building his own parallel NSC, may want to keep the State Department’s influence low. After all, his goals for the country and the world are a sharp departure from America’s traditional role as an advocate of democracy, human rights, freedom and open markets. The longer the State Department remains quiet, the more likely it is that its voice will not be heard on policy-making within the administration; the more it signifies that the United States will abandon its role as global advocate of liberal democracy.”
Bannon is a pretty nasty piece of work. See this from October 2015 on Bloomberg: “This Man Is the Most Dangerous Political Operative in America – Steve Bannon runs the new vast right-wing conspiracy—and he wants to take down both Hillary Clinton and Jeb Bush”
The CNN story also reports on a poll by YouGov: “People across Europe and Asia now have a lower opinion of America and Americans because of Trump “.
YouGov concludes: “Reading the results, it is clear why so many in Europe and Asia are down on America. Across the board there are expectations that Donald Trump won’t be a good president and that his presidency will have a negative impact on their countries.”
Despite the fact that over 50% of UK citizens think that Donald Trump will not be a good president and that his presidency will have a negative impact on our country, Teresa May (aka The Wicked Witch of Westminster) has caused the Queen to invite Trump to a State Visit to the UK, far sooner than a US President is usually invited.
It is likely that any such visit will be an opportunity for the UK’s Stop Trump Coalition to mount one of the biggest demonstrations in recent history. This page, Who We Are, has a list of the initial supporters.
Many of these names may not mean much to some readers, but they are in sufficient number to suggest that the policing of any Trump visit, not to mention the security implications, are going to need to be very extensive and very expensive.
Trump – Farage – Mercer
Torygraph Telegraph reports: “Nigel Farage dines with Donald Trump and Ivanka in Washington” It appears from the report that Farage also had discussions with Bannon.
Torygraph Telegraph does not appear ready to disclose to its readers is however this very worrying story in the Guardian’s sister Sunday paper – the Observer: “Revealed: how US billionaire helped to back Brexit” which includes this:-
“It has emerged that Robert Mercer, a hedge-fund billionaire, who helped to finance the Trump campaign and who was revealed this weekend as one of the owners of the rightwing Breitbart News Network, is a long-time friend of Nigel Farage. He directed his data analytics firm to provide expert advice to the Leave campaign on how to target swing voters via Facebook – a donation of services that was not declared to the electoral commission….“.
The Independent also reports on this: “Hedge-fund billionaire and Donald Trump backer ‘played key role in Brexit campaign’ Robert Mercer allegedly offered his firm’s help to Nigel Farage for free“.
It is, of course, wholly improper that election campaigns or referenda should be influenced by donations from non-UK nationals to one side or another and a donation in kind is just as improper as a sackful of currency. It will be interesting to see what the Electoral Commission has to say about this.
The Guardian also has this: “Nigel Farage says Brexit and Trump win are ‘beginning of global revolution’ – The former leader of the United Kingdom Independence party (Ukip) spoke at the Conservative Political Action Conference Friday near Washington DC“.
The Independent has another take: “Donald Trump’s biggest lie: His promise to unify America – Democrats can barely keep up with the anger of their own grassroots supporters“.
According to Gallup, President Trump has a 13 point disapproval rating. According to YouGov,the Congress has a 36 point disapproval rating and Reuters says that only 31% of US citizens think the USA is on the right track while 51% think the USA is on the wrong track.
Short of some drastic remedial action, the least of which might involve removing Mr
Toad Trump to a “twilight home for the bewildered“, one can only assume that we shall be living in what Robert Kennedy once described as “interesting times“.