Trump's mental prowess called into question.

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Yale psychiatry professor warns President Trump's mental health is 'unraveling' in meeting with more than a dozen lawmakers.

A psychiatry professor at Yale who believes President Trump's "unraveling" mental health is a mounting emergency made her case to more than a dozen members of Congress last month.

Dr. Bandy X. Lee, an internationally recognized expert on violence who edited the book "The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump: 27 Psychiatrists and Mental Health Experts Assess a President," met with lawmakers on Dec. 5 and 6, she told the Daily News.

Lee gave a presentation on why Trump posed a "public health risk" to the group of Democrats - and one lone Republican - during the private meetings that lasted more than 16 hours during the course of two days, Politico first reported.

"From a medical perspective, when we see someone unraveling like this, it's an emergency," Lee said. "We've never come so close in my career to this level of catastrophic violence that could be the end of humankind."

I don't particularly disbelieve this. But it feels very convenient. The Republicans got what they want in Tax Breaks. The need for Trump is on the decline, but showing corruption with Russia would cast the entire party under question. If Trump is found incompetent, well... that's the nation's fault. The people voted him in. The Republican Lawmakers and politicians are faultless in that.

If Trump needs to step down for the safety of the nation, Republicans can "lead the charge", showing they put the people over party lines... and still benefit from an unpopular president's actions while simultaneously getting a small boost in perception for making the "sacrifice".

I legitimately think Trump has mental issues. I thought he had mental issues in 2016. They seemed obvious, I thought. I simply feel now that Republicans got what they want out of the president, we're going to see more and more professionals who "make a compelling argument" and the Republicans will Feng Shui this into more clout.

Yes, Trump is a danger to the health (or health system, ho ho) of Americans. We've always known that.

But has she even been in the same room as-

"While Lee made it clear that psychiatrists are prohibited from diagnosing from afar..."

Oh, nevermind, article raises that point. Meh.

Thaluikhain:
Yes, Trump is a danger to the health (or health system, ho ho) of Americans. We've always known that.

But has she even been in the same room as-

"While Lee made it clear that psychiatrists are prohibited from diagnosing from afar..."

Oh, nevermind, article raises that point. Meh.

Which I think is the point. Knowing how Trump is (he wouldn't dare have someone question him), Republicans who want to save face and be re-elected in this 2018 race will probably call for the President to get evaluated. And his refusal will call for "action".

Why? It's the perfect storm. Wolff's book is going to drop. The mass firings/fleeing from the Trump bandwagon. Mueller. His Taxes. Promises rescinded. The vastly unpopular Tax Break for the Rich. The Republican party is already suffering. Moore lost. Virginia was only won by a lottery. Nuclear. Threats. Through. Tweets.

It's the best way to get Pence in the seat and restore the face of the republican party (which has been tracking at consistent lows BEFORE the Tax Cut), while already getting everything they wanted from a Trump presidency.

Trump's mental prowess called into question.

Shocking.

ObsidianJones:
I don't particularly disbelieve this. But it feels very convenient. The Republicans got what they want in Tax Breaks. The need for Trump is on the decline, but showing corruption with Russia would cast the entire party under question. If Trump is found incompetent, well... that's the nation's fault. The people voted him in. The Republican Lawmakers and politicians are faultless in that.

If Trump needs to step down for the safety of the nation, Republicans can "lead the charge", showing they put the people over party lines... and still benefit from an unpopular president's actions while simultaneously getting a small boost in perception for making the "sacrifice".

I legitimately think Trump has mental issues. I thought he had mental issues in 2016. They seemed obvious, I thought. I simply feel now that Republicans got what they want out of the president, we're going to see more and more professionals who "make a compelling argument" and the Republicans will Feng Shui this into more clout.

This seems unlikely to me. I mean, the God I don't believe in knows that the Democrats have been trying their best not to tie Trump to the Republican Party because they apparently hate winning, but it's not like Republicans in general are polling better than Trump right now, nor should they be. They have been pushing awful policy and for once in our country's ignominious politics, people are paying a little bit of attention.

Republicans don't like looking weak, and reversing themselves again on Trump will make them look very, very weak. You don't go from #NeverTrump to falling in line and then back again. That just makes the initial flop look (more) silly and craven.

Seanchaidh:
This seems unlikely to me. I mean, the God I don't believe in knows that the Democrats have been trying their best not to tie Trump to the Republican Party because they apparently hate winning, but it's not like Republicans in general are polling better than Trump right now, nor should they be. They have been pushing awful policy and for once in our country's ignominious politics, people are paying a little bit of attention.

Republicans don't like looking weak, and reversing themselves again on Trump will make them look very, very weak. You don't go from #NeverTrump to falling in line and then back again. That just makes the initial flop look (more) silly and craven.

But you have to ask what seemed stronger? Continually latching yourself to a man who's becoming more visibly unbalanced blindly? Or Standing up, Saying you can't back this any more, and doing something about it?

The Republican Party is in a tailspin, regardless of how much the dwindling core still clings to it. We see how the tide is turning just by the special elections of last year. Blind obedience is already losing numbers. Maybe I'm giving too much credit to people, but there has to be some sense out there.

I reckon this is just the Republican party keeping a weapon on standby as there's a significant chance they'll need it. But, otherwise, why remove a political asset who's still useful? There's always more that can be achieved. More tax cuts, further degradation of regulations, elimination of Medicare, privatization of police and fire services, larger gated areas etc. Someone always convinced by the last person in the room and whose Tweets distracts from what you're doing in Congress is a godsend.

And how is this any worse than prior to him running for President? When was he ever a mental mastermind?

It's almost like people are using the current climate to get famous making extravagant claims and selling books. But I'm sure medical professionals would never engage in such conduct.

But if he is completely mental, then surely the US needs to start requiring psychiatric evaluations prior to people entering the primaries? It's a little late at this stage in the day.

It depends on how much of their voter base they perceive as passionate Trumptonians that their support relies upon and whether they are wanting to appeal to the so called 'moderates' enough to risk losing the unquestioning foxlings trust. Trump has been too useful a catch for them, could they go back without losing what they gained this term? But even then, maybe those people would still vote same party out of pure habit and hatred of anything resembling 'lfty-librlz.'

Could it even be that they might be thinking of setting up some groundwork for a defense of diminished responsibility when it comes to the Russia meetings to distance themselves further from repercussions? Would that work? Would it stop them from trying regardless?

Catnip1024:
And how is this any worse than prior to him running for President? When was he ever a mental mastermind?

It's almost like people are using the current climate to get famous making extravagant claims and selling books. But I'm sure medical professionals would never engage in such conduct.

But if he is completely mental, then surely the US needs to start requiring psychiatric evaluations prior to people entering the primaries? It's a little late at this stage in the day.

I'll answer this backwards.

I wholeheartedly believe EVERY nation with government should require psych evals. Without question. Same thing with owning weapons.

People made extravagant claims over and over to get political rivals arrested or at least discredited. In all countries. It doesn't matter about the extravagance. The Truth is the only thing that matters.

And leaving the best for last. We don't care if he's smart. Well, actually. I do. But what's the difference between him running and today?

image

He didn't have a nuclear payload at his 'discretion' before.

ObsidianJones:
I wholeheartedly believe EVERY nation with government should require psych evals. Without question. Same thing with owning weapons.

Fully agree.

People made extravagant claims over and over to get political rivals arrested or at least discredited. In all countries. It doesn't matter about the extravagance. The Truth is the only thing that matters.

Well, "truth" is a fairly vague term when discussing mental health, but one has to wonder about this particular example. The previous book of gossip, at least is factual in its reporting of rumours. This is a theory put forwards coinciding with the release of a book, based on external, probably finely selected observations.

Truth is good. Opportunistic self-publication less so.

That said, no in-person psychiatric evaluation of the President can be trusted at this point. Whoever chooses the quack will ensure they find in the way they want. That's US politics. So spurious speculation is probably the best we have to go with.

And leaving the best for last. We don't care if he's smart. Well, actually. I do. But what's the difference between him running and today?

My point is, as it stands the US does not have mental health checks for presidents. If Donald Trump is the same man mentally as he was prior to running, or at least possesses the same faculties, then he is the man the US voted for. If the US decided to give a stroppy temperamental idiot control of the nuclear button, who are we to say they can't?

If he lost his faculties following the election, that is a very different scenario as he is not the man they voted for.

Catnip1024:

ObsidianJones:
I wholeheartedly believe EVERY nation with government should require psych evals. Without question. Same thing with owning weapons.

Fully agree.

People made extravagant claims over and over to get political rivals arrested or at least discredited. In all countries. It doesn't matter about the extravagance. The Truth is the only thing that matters.

Well, "truth" is a fairly vague term when discussing mental health, but one has to wonder about this particular example. The previous book of gossip, at least is factual in its reporting of rumours. This is a theory put forwards coinciding with the release of a book, based on external, probably finely selected observations.

Truth is good. Opportunistic self-publication less so.

That said, no in-person psychiatric evaluation of the President can be trusted at this point. Whoever chooses the quack will ensure they find in the way they want. That's US politics. So spurious speculation is probably the best we have to go with.

To be fair, Trump started the whole "Not fit for President" idea with Hillary during the election. In school ground terms (which seems to be the height Trump wants to reach during this Presidency): if he opened the door, he has to walk through it as well.

This hypothesis has no evidence, just observed phenomena. But I argue if there are any questions at all in this type of position, they should be quelled for the sake of not only the nation, but the world that still has America as a player (who know how long that will last under Trump).

And it's not just one person saying it.

Ford Vox, M.D wonders runs down a list of worrying similarities to patients he sees. Stat News has gone over past and present interviews and found a disturbing drop in linguistic competency. Trump's interviews are barely put together ramblings that would make high school debate teachers blush in embarrassment if any of their charges gave it.

Again. If not just to assure the public that our president is ok, these warning signs that top minds in the field can't ignore are distressing. And can not be ignored simply due to feared political leanings.

My point is, as it stands the US does not have mental health checks for presidents. If Donald Trump is the same man mentally as he was prior to running, or at least possesses the same faculties, then he is the man the US voted for. If the US decided to give a stroppy temperamental idiot control of the nuclear button, who are we to say they can't?

If he lost his faculties following the election, that is a very different scenario as he is not the man they voted for.

The only way we'll know if he's the same man or at least a competent man is to test him and find out. And we already have this as our 25th amendment.

The amendment states that if, for whatever reason, the vice president and a majority of sitting Cabinet secretaries decide that the president is "unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office," they can simply put that down in writing and send it to two people ? the speaker of the House and the Senate?s president pro tem.

Then the vice president would immediately become "Acting President," and take over all the president's powers.

Now, the issue is that it might be political suicide either way. Trump still is popular with Republicans. Republicans in Government..? Not so much.

Fewer than three in 10 Americans -- 29% -- hold a favorable view of the Republican Party according to a new CNN poll conducted by SSRS. That is down 13 percentage points from March and is the lowest mark for the GOP since CNN began asking the question in 1992.

The previous low point for the GOP was 30% -- hit twice -- in October 2013 following the federal government shutdown over President Barack Obama's health care law, and December 1998, in the wake of the House of Representatives approving two articles of impeachment against then President Bill Clinton.

Republicans are signaling they prefer President Donald Trump's vision for the party, with 79% saying he is taking it in the right direction. A majority of GOP voters -- 53% -- believe Republican leaders in Congress are taking the party in the wrong direction.

Here in lies the dilemma. With more and more experts saying that Trump's actions are worrisome, the democrats and the independents will take more notice. The Republicans are somewhat lost, convinced that a man and a party who has routinely voted against the sanctity of this nation's Parks, drilling, EPA, Vets, and Regular Healthcare to name a few... is some how doing it in their best interests. But even in Red states... there are Democrats, Independents, Millennials, New Voters... People who the Republican Politicians who are already elected need to start considering because they are growing increasingly unhappy with the way this country is going.

The Republican Party already needs a lot of damage control. Blindly backing an unfit man (or shielding him from the same type of scrutiny he puts to others on a daily basis) looks weak. This is the situation they find themselves in.

I made a thread about this two months ago. Where...ah, here.

Seanchaidh:
This seems unlikely to me. I mean, the God I don't believe in knows that the Democrats have been trying their best not to tie Trump to the Republican Party because they apparently hate winning, but it's not like Republicans in general are polling better than Trump right now, nor should they be. They have been pushing awful policy and for once in our country's ignominious politics, people are paying a little bit of attention.

Republicans don't like looking weak, and reversing themselves again on Trump will make them look very, very weak. You don't go from #NeverTrump to falling in line and then back again. That just makes the initial flop look (more) silly and craven.

I don't think it's all that unlikely. It's entirely possible, in my mind, that Hypothetical President Mike Pence will disown Trump entirely, claiming to have been uninvolved in the more corrupt and morally bankrupt aspects while still pushing an identical Republican agenda. And people would let him get away with it. Most would simply be relieved that Trump isn't around.

Catnip1024:
And how is this any worse than prior to him running for President? When was he ever a mental mastermind?

Well, he won the election, and now he has nukes and is comparing the size of his nuclear penis to other country's nuclear penises. That is the most pressing distinction.

Before, he was just a crazy old rich guy. Now, he's a crazy old rich guy with the ability to slaughter millions of people with five minute's notice.

Catnip1024:
It's almost like people are using the current climate to get famous making extravagant claims and selling books. But I'm sure medical professionals would never engage in such conduct.

No, no...these suspicions are old. People have been raising very serious and very credible concerns about Trump's mental health since well before he won the election.

Really, the fact that he won the election despite all these blaring red warning lights would make any medical professional who genuinely thinks Trump is mentally ill think "shit, maybe I'm not being loud enough."

Catnip1024:
But if he is completely mental, then surely the US needs to start requiring psychiatric evaluations prior to people entering the primaries? It's a little late at this stage in the day.

That would be the ideal solution, yes, and proposals have been floating around ever since Reagan was discovered to have developed early-onset Alzheimer's during his administration. None of them have ever gained ground; both parties are afraid that the other will use the process as a weapon to depose a sitting President.

The easiest path to reform would be through the party primaries, because party leadership can impose whatever restrictions they want onto a prospective candidate. But the results would be inherently partisan; it's not hard to imagine the Republicans simply refusing to perform the tests on a candidate that they know is hiding something, like a congenital heart weakness or clinical depression, and then taking advantage of the other side's disclosure to make them look physically or mentally unfit.

So the best solution would be for this to be handled by some respected, non-partisan agency with both the expertise necessary to make such a diagnosis and the professionalism necessary to be trusted. But, then again, this past year we've seen the Republicans openly ignore or try to discredit the assessments of respected, non-partisan agencies - the CBO's assessment of their healthcare reform plan was dismissed, and the JCT's assessment of their tax plan was similarly ignored, with the party in power simply insisting that any negative assessment of their policies is the result of bias. It would simply be very easy for a Republican to dismiss the assessment of a medical professional as being politically motivated. Look at what they're trying to do to Robert Mueller.

If it were up to me? I'd just fold it into the regular physicals a President is required to undergo and make sure there's a second and third opinion available, to account for the often-hazy nature of psychiatric diagnosis. My personal suspicion - as a person who is in no way a medical professional in any sense, and who is literally sitting in an armchair right now - is that he's got Alzheimer's. The symptoms are there, the risk factors are there, the slow degeneration of speech patterns and motor control is there. And Alzheimer's isn't a psychiatric diagnosis, I mean - it can be confirmed objectively, with a brain scan. So I really think that needs to be done, and if Trump were anywhere near responsible enough to hold the presidency in the first place, he'd agree.

bastardofmelbourne:
Well, he won the election, and now he has nukes and is comparing the size of his nuclear penis to other country's nuclear penises. That is the most pressing distinction.

Before, he was just a crazy old rich guy. Now, he's a crazy old rich guy with the ability to slaughter millions of people with five minute's notice.

As I said to ObsidianJones though, if he was mental before, and the US voted him in, surely that's just democracy? And it's not like he was concealing who he was prior to the election, either.

Regarding the screening, you'd hope a party would be inclined to listen prior the primaries on the grounds that it avoids worse embarrassment down the line. I mean, Trump could well set a shining example in this regard.

Catnip1024:
If the US decided to give a stroppy temperamental idiot control of the nuclear button, who are we to say they can't?

I would hope the rest of the world has enough sense of self preservation to say they do have a stake in avoiding a nuclear holocaust.

Is it too early to be talking sanctions on the US? Speaking as a US citizen here, my country isn't reigning the dude in, maybe it's time for some outside pressure.

Jux:
I would hope the rest of the world has enough sense of self preservation to say they do have a stake in avoiding a nuclear holocaust.

Is it too early to be talking sanctions on the US? Speaking as a US citizen here, my country isn't reigning the dude in, maybe it's time for some outside pressure.

Again, that's dangerous territory to head into.

Unlike say North Korea, the US hasn't actually done anything illegal yet - for instance, nuclear weapons testing. To single out the US for sanctions on the grounds of the mental state of the leader means that you are first of all interfering with a nations internal affairs, and second are implying that any unsanctioned state therefore has a more mentally sound leader than Trump. And there are some proper nutjobs out there.

It would also almost certainly be counterproductive, because I can't see the US as a whole taking kindly to being told what to do by foreigners.

Catnip1024:

It would also almost certainly be counterproductive, because I can't see the US as a whole taking kindly to being told what to do by foreigners.

I imagine it would go over just as well as the "We'll be watching which way you vote about Israel" comment.

TrulyBritish:
I imagine it would go over just as well as the "We'll be watching which way you vote about Israel" comment.

Touche. However, just because the current US administration is doing crazy shit, doesn't mean that you should play into the hands of future nutjobs by giving the voters grievances or a sense of injustice...

You're all wrong, he's a 'stable genius': http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-42589860

Baffle2:
You're all wrong, he's a 'stable genius': http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-42589860

You're also wrong, he's a "like, total genius". Like, he's totally famous for it.

I bet those people who wanted Trump kicked off Twitter are happy they didn't get their way now.

25th Amendment

As I said before, we do have options to remove Trump. I hate the guy. Outright loathe. But again, I accept him in office as long as he's legally allowed to be there. If he committed crimes, he has to go. If he's mentality incompetent, he has to go. He's been showing earmarks of both.

We have the option. But we need to get ahead of this instead of having Republicans drag their feet because they like being in control.

"Now that Russian collusion, after one year of intense study, has proven to be a total hoax on the American public, the Democrats and their lapdogs, the Fake News Mainstream Media, are taking out the old Ronald Reagan playbook and screaming mental stability and intelligence...

"... Actually, throughout my life, my two greatest assets have been mental stability and being, like, really smart. Crooked Hillary Clinton also played these cards very hard and, as everyone knows, went down in flames. I went from VERY successful businessman, to top T.V. Star ...

"... to President of the United States (on my first try). I think that would qualify as not smart, but genius ... and a very stable genius at that!"

"Michael Wolff is a total loser who made up stories in order to sell this really boring and untruthful book. He used Sloppy Steve Bannon, who cried when he got fired and begged for his job. Now Sloppy Steve has been dumped like a dog by almost everyone. Too bad!"

-

This isn't funny or entertaining. It's just sad and embarrassing, growing only moreso with time. You put a malfunctioning human at the highest position in power with all the available knowledge to hand and people who feel safe and detached enough think it's funny?? This is the face of America, there it is. History will remember this for all of time.

Catnip1024:

TrulyBritish:
I imagine it would go over just as well as the "We'll be watching which way you vote about Israel" comment.

Touche. However, just because the current US administration is doing crazy shit, doesn't mean that you should play into the hands of future nutjobs by giving the voters grievances or a sense of injustice...

No, I mean I'm agreeing with you that it's a daft thing to do. Trump tried this kind of thing himself and it didn't work, why would European leaders expect it to go any differently?

Catnip1024:

Baffle2:
You're all wrong, he's a 'stable genius': http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-42589860

You're also wrong, he's a "like, total genius". Like, he's totally famous for it.

I bet those people who wanted Trump kicked off Twitter are happy they didn't get their way now.

That timing is pretty delicious. The stress seems to be piling up.

For anyone who is curious, Trump is undergoing the first physical examination of the presidency on Jan 12:

Trump is to undergo the first physical examination of his presidency on Jan. 12. The exam was announced on Dec. 7 after questions arose about Trump's health when he slurred part of a speech announcing that the United States recognised Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

https://uk.reuters.com/article/uk-usa-trump-book/trump-rejects-authors-accusations-calls-self-stable-genius-idUKKBN1EV0DU

Dissapointment that this remains only a "physical" aside, does anyone know what the protocol for the examination is? I assume its mandatory that White House medical staff perform it (Not Trump's own wacky doctor), but in this timeline frankly who knows.

Catnip1024:
[quote="Baffle2" post="528.1033659.24185940"]he's a "like, total genius". Like, he's totally famous for it.

I have unpleasant visions of him stalking the halls of Sweet Valley High, like. Or possibly Byker Grove, like.

Catnip1024:

Jux:
I would hope the rest of the world has enough sense of self preservation to say they do have a stake in avoiding a nuclear holocaust.

Is it too early to be talking sanctions on the US? Speaking as a US citizen here, my country isn't reigning the dude in, maybe it's time for some outside pressure.

Again, that's dangerous territory to head into.

Unlike say North Korea, the US hasn't actually done anything illegal yet - for instance, nuclear weapons testing. To single out the US for sanctions on the grounds of the mental state of the leader means that you are first of all interfering with a nations internal affairs, and second are implying that any unsanctioned state therefore has a more mentally sound leader than Trump. And there are some proper nutjobs out there.

It would also almost certainly be counterproductive, because I can't see the US as a whole taking kindly to being told what to do by foreigners.

North Korea testing nukes isn't 'illegal', as I'm pretty sure they're not beholden to anyone elses laws, and aren't breaking any treaties. They are dangerous though. Maybe limited sanctions on Trump and his family's holdings, it doesn't have to be a full blown thing against the US just yet.

Do you think US sanctions against Russia are wrong because 'it meddles in their internal affairs'? The US has been interfering with other countries internal affairs for a long damn time, a lot of the times unjustifiably. I would think that a US president flirting with the idea of nuclear war would be a justifiable reason to get involved, since you know, when the nukes start flying, it will affect the rest of yall.

Won't change much. His mental instability was obvious from the start and people decided to willfully read the warning label as a selling point

My favorite part of Trump's latest meltdown is that today we found Trump's newest--best--nickname...

Fredo.

https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2018/01/donald-trump-goes-full-fredo/549875/

From now on Trump is "Fredo".

Jux:
North Korea testing nukes isn't 'illegal', as I'm pretty sure they're not beholden to anyone elses laws, and aren't breaking any treaties.

I believe they are breaking the comprehensive testing ban treaty. And whether signed up to it or not, the rest of the world kind of has a vested interest if people are detonating nuclear weapons. Whereas Trump and co haven't actually launched any yet. Because he is like, super smart.

You could argue for future sanctions against the US for not complying with the Paris Agreement, but you'd have to demonstrate that all your actual signatories were actually complying, which last I heard they were a loooong way off.

They are dangerous though. Maybe limited sanctions on Trump and his family's holdings, it doesn't have to be a full blown thing against the US just yet.

For what? Daring to be President of the US? There's no clear case for sanctioning Trump on mental grounds, and considering he is currently President would be massively counterproductive for any sort of diplomatic ties.

Do you think US sanctions against Russia are wrong because 'it meddles in their internal affairs'? The US has been interfering with other countries internal affairs for a long damn time, a lot of the times unjustifiably. I would think that a US president flirting with the idea of nuclear war would be a justifiable reason to get involved, since you know, when the nukes start flying, it will affect the rest of yall.

People have been flirting with the idea of nuclear war since the 1950s. Funnily enough, hasn't happened yet.

US sanctions against Russia are for various things - illegal invasion of a neighbouring country, corruption (backed up with physical evidence), amongst others. What the sanctions aren't in place for is because we don't like Putin, or we don't think Putin is up for the job. That is not in the West's remit to get involved with.

Catnip1024:
US sanctions against Russia are for various things - illegal invasion of a neighbouring country, corruption (backed up with physical evidence), amongst others. What the sanctions aren't in place for is because we don't like Putin, or we don't think Putin is up for the job. That is not in the West's remit to get involved with.

Surely its a combination. Saudi Arabia faces no sanctions despite arguably being worse in both invading neibouring countries and corrupt lack of civil-liberties. I agree that sanctions are supposed to be based on law, but its unrealisitic to believe that its the only motivating factor.

edit: Also, "not liking Trump" is not the same thing as "fearing for your life because of Trump." Trying to play it down achieves nothing. You can argue that the fear is unfounded but you cannot argue that a more thin-skinned imbecile currently holds on to the worlds largest nuclear arsenal. A man that ineffectually fired 60 (or 80?) cruise missiles just because he could. It doesn't have to be nuclear war that kills after all.

ineptelephant:
Surely its a combination. Saudi Arabia faces no sanctions despite arguably being worse in both invading neibouring countries and corrupt lack of civil-liberties. I agree that sanctions are supposed to be based on law, but its unrealisitic to believe that its the only motivating factor.

You need a legal pretext to implement sanctions. Once you have a legal pretext, it is a choice whether to implement them or not. Like a Casus Belli.

There are indeed worse regimes around than Russia, and for whatever strategic reasons they are left alone.

Back to Jux's original suggestion, you'd still need some form of legal pretext to place sanctions. If you had overwhelming evidence of Trump corruption, you could sanction some of his businesses. You could tax US goods to factor in the environmental damage the US is causing, to pressure them into meeting the Paris Agreement.

But, as a US ally, you have to play the long game. You don't want to burn bridges over a 4-year spell of madness. The US is a fairly major player in NATO, regardless of whatever Trump says. Eastern Europe doesn't want to make themselves vulnerable in the long-term because of one nutjob. The Pacific relies on US support to counter Chinese influence.

So, the respective alliances could just make it clear that they would not be party to a first strike scenario, put political pressure on and distance themselves in that way. I can't think of much else that could be done that wouldn't shoot themselves in the foot in the long-term. Potentially remove permission for any stationing of nuclear weapons in their territory (if there still are any - I don't follow the latest MAD news).

EDIT - in response to your edit, Putin is at least as dangerous to those in Russia and around it than Trump is to US citizens. He has invaded Georgia, occupied the Crimea and stifled and murdered opposition. Many leaders are similarly bad. The phrase "not like" is a bit of an understatement, but still pretty much accurate.

And, at the end of the day, horrible though it comes across, a nuclear war with North Korea would be horrifically one-sided and over quickly. You would probably still have hundreds of thousands dead and millions displaced, but it would be localised.

The political fall-out, on the other hand, would not be...

Catnip1024:
Back to Jux's original suggestion, you'd still need some form of legal pretext to place sanctions. If you had overwhelming evidence of Trump corruption, you could sanction some of his businesses. You could tax US goods to factor in the environmental damage the US is causing, to pressure them into meeting the Paris Agreement.

I suppose it depends on your definition of "overwhelming", but there is evidence of corruption right now. Not to the degree that there is in Russia, granted, but its there. Its no secret that the international community is more than happy to fabricate evidence or look the other way but that's not the world that we want to live and certainly not the reason to sanction the Trump family. Besides, where else could I get such quality steaks and ties?

But, as a US ally, you have to play the long game. You don't want to burn bridges over a 4-year spell of madness. The US is a fairly major player in NATO, regardless of whatever Trump says. Eastern Europe doesn't want to make themselves vulnerable in the long-term because of one nutjob. The Pacific relies on US support to counter Chinese influence.

So, the respective alliances could just make it clear that they would not be party to a first strike scenario, put political pressure on and distance themselves in that way. I can't think of much else that could be done that wouldn't shoot themselves in the foot in the long-term. Potentially remove permission for any stationing of nuclear weapons in their territory (if there still are any - I don't follow the latest MAD news).

I suppose the question becomes "can the international community pressure without causing reactionary isolationism to gain more traction in the U.S.". I was amused by the press bothering Terasa May over whether Trump was fit for office, her reply that Trump was "committed to the best interests of the United States." may or may not be a dog whiste against Trump from the British side (perhaps I'm wrong, but being "committed" can sometimes carry the same conotation as being "sectioned", i believe) but does nothing for the people in the U.S.

Frankly I think the most positive thing that the international community can do is say something along the lines of "OK U.S., you are currently off the rails at the moment but we will look forward to seeing you in 3 years." Part of Trump's schtick is "bringing America's respect back", if everyone else had the guts to badmouth this administration in a way that complimented the rest of the U.S. population (impossible to do regarding Trump's base, but screw his base), you might see a surge in anti-Trump feeling. Yes, it could all go tits up in those 3 years and potentially someone might be screwed since president toddler doesn't want to help the meanies, but its quite unlikely. I don't think anyone is at a position to launch a war with a 3 year time limit.

Sorry, this became a very long post out of nowhere.

I get the feeling that we will be edit-missing each other continually, so I have nipped it in the bud and gone ahead to make another post answering your one. I hope that's alright.

Catnip1024:

EDIT - in response to your edit, Putin is at least as dangerous to those in Russia and around it than Trump is to US citizens. He has invaded Georgia, occupied the Crimea and stifled and murdered opposition. Many leaders are similarly bad. The phrase "not like" is a bit of an understatement, but still pretty much accurate.

I can see your argument. Frankly, it mystifies me that anyone is doing business with China considering the whole "re-education camps" situation. The world is perfectly happy accepting murderers and lunatics so long as the rich get richer. Typically though, lunatics/murderers from the U.S. have had a little class to them at very least. Here we are entering uncharted waters.

For the record, I don't think we are going to die by nuclear war. That said, it does take two to tango and when not just one but both partners seem to be unstable it does raise the question.

And, at the end of the day, horrible though it comes across, a nuclear war with North Korea would be horrifically one-sided and over quickly. You would probably still have hundreds of thousands dead and millions displaced, but it would be localised.

The political fall-out, on the other hand, would not be...

In my unqualified opinion, a nuclear exchange (even one that is as you say as one-sided as DPRK v U.S.) would likely be worse than the political fallout from breaking ties with the U.S.. Barring overwhelming amounts genocide from either Chinese or Russian authorities in massive expansionist manouvers I can't see how even half as many people could die as a result. From looking at Chernobyl the idea of "localised" nuclear fallout might be unrealistic, but I am far from an expert on such things.

Again, unqualified opinion, but breaking ties with this administration might not necessarily be the same as breaking ties with the U.S. in totality. There are plenty of staffers working for the U.S. government that would also like nothing more than an end to the Trump presidency and more than enough people in the U.S. believing the same as well.

ineptelephant:
I suppose the question becomes "can the international community pressure without causing reactionary isolationism to gain more traction in the U.S.". I was amused by the press bothering Terasa May over whether Trump was fit for office, her reply that Trump was "committed to the best interests of the United States." may or may not be a dog whiste against Trump from the British side (perhaps I'm wrong, but being "committed" can sometimes carry the same conotation as being "sectioned", i believe) but does nothing for the people in the U.S.

It does carry that connotation, but if that was intentional Theresa May is a lot more subtle than I imagined.

Frankly I think the most positive thing that the international community can do is say something along the lines of "OK U.S., you are currently off the rails at the moment but we will look forward to seeing you in 3 years." Part of Trump's schtick is "bringing America's respect back", if everyone else had the guts to badmouth this administration in a way that complimented the rest of the U.S. population (impossible to do regarding Trump's base, but screw his base), you might see a surge in anti-Trump feeling. Yes, it could all go tits up in those 3 years and potentially someone might be screwed since president toddler doesn't want to help the meanies, but its quite unlikely. I don't think anyone is at a position to launch a war with a 3 year time limit.

This is the thing. Showing how his actions are counter-productive is a lot more effective than words. You back out of the Paris agreement, implement a tax on goods from non-compliant states. Damaging the very industries he is stating to protect.

As for international condemnation, it depends how it is conducted. For instance, the best thing to do to a lot of his Tweets would be to completely ignore them. Getting into spats with other leaders (Kim Jong Un style) just makes you all look as bad.

ineptelephant:
For the record, I don't think we are going to die by nuclear war. That said, it does take two to tango and when not just one but both partners seem to be unstable it does raise the question.

Maybe it is primarily an issue because of the number of nutjobs in power at the minute, combined with the widespread reporting of their actions by a media more concerned with views than with peace.

I mean, historically you have had similar irritable people in positions of power. De Gaulle did some crazy shit, and Churchill was a little bit on the fighty side. But people managed to work around them well enough to keep things functional and stable (ish). Although the last 6 years of fighting might have had some influence on that...

In my unqualified opinion, a nuclear exchange (even one that is as you say as one-sided as DPRK v U.S.) would likely be worse than the political fallout from breaking ties with the U.S..

There is an argument that an earlier move to replace the North Korean leadership would have saved millions of lives from being forced to do it later, once North Korea is nuclear armed. And would prevent the ongoing suffering of thousands in labour camps. We are rapidly heading to the point where that is not a viable option, though.

As for political fall-out, if the US launched a relatively unprovoked nuclear first strike against another state, I can imagine a number of it's alliances kicking it out. Heavy sanctions, calls to disarm, not to mention likely mass protests in the US. My comment wasn't implying that more people would die globally, but that it would massively and irreversibly alter the geopolitical climate.

From looking at Chernobyl the idea of "localised" nuclear fallout might be unrealistic, but I am far from an expert on such things.

It's not an ideal comparison because one was a power plant, which burned comparatively slowly and retained vast amounts of still radioactive material in the wreckage (to the point that billions have been spent sealing it), and the other is a rapid reaction with little left over. But by localised, I referred to the primary effects. Food monitoring and restrictions might be in place across the neighbouring nations, along with other measures, but it would be no nuclear winter scenario (afaik - I'm no expert, though). Assuming it wasn't Trump going crazy and firing absolutely everything for shits and giggles.

Again, unqualified opinion, but breaking ties with this administration might not necessarily be the same as breaking ties with the U.S. in totality. There are plenty of staffers working for the U.S. government that would also like nothing more than an end to the Trump presidency and more than enough people in the U.S. believing the same as well.

Well, like it or not, protocol is that the administration is the state for the time being. You could possibly make statements to suspend ties for the time being, but it's unclear how well that would go down.

Catnip1024:
Maybe it is primarily an issue because of the number of nutjobs in power at the minute, combined with the widespread reporting of their actions by a media more concerned with views than with peace.

I don't think we have an unusually high number of nutjobs in power currently - in fact, perhaps the opposite. We just have a nutjob who happens to be president of the most powerful country in the world.

Even then, most apparent nutjobs do have a decent understanding of how the political world works and what needs to be done to keep things ticking over. You can say many things about the likes of Kim Jong Il, but he's still a guy who has politically matured with considerable experience and has a reasonable inkling about the way things work and what needs to be done. Were he not at least reasonably competent, you can bet he'd be deposed in a jiffy.

Trump is a nutjob because he's totally clueless about how the political world works. Even Trump is not the end of the world. He's a danger because he's basically clueless about politics, how things work, and has no interest except self-obsession. Thankfully, as leader of a Western nation, he's working in a system full of checks and balances, institutional forces and constitutional limitations etc. that mean it's actually very hard for him to do that much damage. That's why we evolved those sorts of systems. As an autocrat, Trump would be terrifying and could wreak havoc.

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