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Thread: The American Politics thread

  1. #23791
    International Coach StephenZA's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ausage View Post
    Most of it's been for stuff like lying to the FBI, witness tampering, lying to Congress. Basically impeding the investigation. I get those being serious issues if we're talking about a serious investigation, but if the whole thing is a witch hunt by an "intelligence community" who are solely looking to bring down the president then impeding it doesn't seem like a huge problem to me.
    This baffles me...
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  2. #23792
    Global Moderator Spark's Avatar
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    I mean, it depends on where you come from. If your angle is "IMPEACH TRUMP NOW" then I suppose yeah there might not be there, but I've found the predictive powers of most people on this matter to be pretty rubbish on all sides.

    If, however, your angle is "Russia has a ****ing horrible and almost uniquely illiberal no-good government aggressively pushing a ****ing horrible uniquely illiberal worldview on the rest of the world and there are almost no circumstances in which good people should have found their interests aligning with the Russian government since 2008" then the investigation has turned up plenty. And yes, I realise that many liberals have been profoundly hypocritical on this between 2012 and 2016, and I was critical of them for being so.
    Last edited by Spark; 05-03-2019 at 02:45 AM.
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  3. #23793
    Global Moderator Spark's Avatar
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    In that sense, I find Trump's financial ties and weird public fondness for Russia kind of prosaic: Russia since 1992 has been very much the dirty money Mecca of the world, and Trump as a distinctly unscrupulous NYC real estate man probably had no shortage of ties to dirty money which (as is the case across the Western world) inevitably leads to Russian state-aligned oligarichs of some description. And tbh on balance of probability I find it really quite likely that the man has very morally dubious links to people who are clearly Russian intelligence that he exploited during the campaign, given the very blurry lines between where the Russian intelligence service ends and rich Russians starts. Whether that arises to the level of criminal conspiracy or not, who knows.

    What I find really disturbing is the ideological fondness of many Trump-aligned people for the Russian state. That to me is a baaaaad sign, not least because it seems very open and honestly held.
    Last edited by Spark; 05-03-2019 at 02:51 AM.
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  4. #23794
    Hall of Fame Member harsh.ag's Avatar
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    I don't know practical "here are almost no circumstances in which good people should have found their interests aligning with the Russian government since 2008" is.
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  5. #23795
    Global Moderator Spark's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by harsh.ag View Post
    I don't know practical "here are almost no circumstances in which good people should have found their interests aligning with the Russian government since 2008" is.
    It's not that hard to say that "open societies are good, social liberalism is good, not invading your neighbours is good, not bombing cities to pieces (leaving its residents also in pieces) is good".

    EDIT: Or, failing that, "don't shoot down passenger jets".
    Last edited by Spark; 05-03-2019 at 02:57 AM.

  6. #23796
    Request Your Custom Title Now! Uppercut's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ausage View Post
    Most of it's been for stuff like lying to the FBI, witness tampering, lying to Congress. Basically impeding the investigation. I get those being serious issues if we're talking about a serious investigation, but if the whole thing is a witch hunt by an "intelligence community" who are solely looking to bring down the president then impeding it doesn't seem like a huge problem to me.

    Tbf Mueller hasn't released his findings. There could be a bombshell. There were also a few legit financial irregularities from people around the campaign which is not even remotely surprising considering how much money gets poured into US election campaigns. Trumps team followed some leads in attempt to get some dirt on Hillary (something that both sides were doing). Nothing that warrants the mass hysteria surrounding the issue.

    Frankly, that's a generous reading of it too. Calling it an attempted coup by the faceless, unelected bureaucracy and their media bootlickers doesn't seem particularly unreasonable tbh.
    It’s an investigation into interference in elections by a hostile foreign power. Of course that should be investigated, the US should understand why better than anyone else. I don’t understand how you’ve reached the conclusion that it’s a ‘witch hunt’ whatever that’s supposed to mean.

  7. #23797
    Cricketer Of The Year Ausage's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spark View Post
    I mean, it depends on where you come from. If your angle is "IMPEACH TRUMP NOW" then I suppose yeah there might not be there, but I've found the predictive powers of most people on this matter to be pretty rubbish on all sides.

    If, however, your angle is "Russia has a ****ing horrible and almost uniquely illiberal no-good government aggressively pushing a ****ing horrible uniquely illiberal worldview on the rest of the world and there are almost no circumstances in which good people should have found their interests aligning with the Russian government since 2008" then the investigation has turned up plenty. And yes, I realise that many liberals have been profoundly hypocritical on this between 2012 and 2016, and I was critical of them for being so.
    I mean this is one thing if you're looking at whether associating with Russia should be politically damaging, quite another if you're talking about using it as a pretext to disingenuously invoke the 25th amendment. An FBI special investigation shouldn't be a tool used to inflict political damage. The guy isn't an agent, he's just pursuing foreign policy some people don't like.

    And I get your point re Russia, but the bold is massively hyperbolic. Avoiding a resumption of the cold war seems to me to be a pretty good idea that should be in the interest of all parties.
    Last edited by Ausage; 05-03-2019 at 03:34 AM.
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  8. #23798
    Global Moderator Spark's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ausage View Post
    I mean this is one thing if you're looking at whether associating with Russia should be politically damaging, quite another if you're talking about using it as a pretext to disingenuously invoke the 25th amendment. An FBI special investigation shouldn't be a tool used to inflict political damage. The guy isn't an agent, he's just pursuing foreign policy some people don't like.

    And I get your point re Russia, but the bold is massively hyperbolic. Avoiding a resumption of the cold war seems to me to be a pretty good idea that should be in the interest of all parties.
    You forgot to actually bold anything

    But “avoiding a cold war” and “not aligning yourself with the Russian foreign policy and social worldview” are by no means mutually exclusive and the only who pretend otherwise have universally nefarious motives. There’s no reason why you can’t avoid a cold war whilst also not going full Tulsi “why aren’t American planes bombing Aleppo too” Gabbard.

    In any case the strategic disparity between Russia and America is too vast for a true cold war, hence why Russia is flailing around trying to make as much of a mess around the world as possible because business as usual is fatal for them in the medium-term. China, now, that’s another matter.

    With regards to your first point, tbh yeah I think it should be politically disqualifying. And I think for any normal politician it would have been. 25th Amendment, okay yeah that’s obviously silly.
    Last edited by Spark; 05-03-2019 at 03:23 AM.

  9. #23799
    Cricketer Of The Year Ausage's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Uppercut View Post
    It’s an investigation into interference in elections by a hostile foreign power. Of course that should be investigated, the US should understand why better than anyone else. I don’t understand how you’ve reached the conclusion that it’s a ‘witch hunt’ whatever that’s supposed to mean.
    On what evidence was the investigation raised? Hillary's (and anyone who hates Trump) sour grapes? The Steele dossier (that'd be some deep irony)? The hackers that deserve a medal for exposing the DNC's subversion of the democratic process?

    A "witch hunt" as in baseless political theatre with no aim other than to bring down a democratically elected president. You bring up a good point about the US interfering in democratic processes though. Specifically, the FBI and CIA are masters of it. Remember, "we will stop him"?

    Hey, maybe Mueller turns up something really damaging and I'm wrong about it all. But at the moment it looks like there's nothing there and the hopes and dreams of people that hate Trump.
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  10. #23800
    Global Moderator Spark's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ausage View Post
    On what evidence was the investigation raised? Hillary's (and anyone who hates Trump) sour grapes? The Steele dossier (that'd be some deep irony)? The hackers that deserve a medal for exposing the DNC's subversion of the democratic process?

    A "witch hunt" as in baseless political theatre with no aim other than to bring down a democratically elected president. You bring up a good point about the US interfering in democratic processes though. Specifically, the FBI and CIA are masters of it. Remember, "we will stop him"?

    Hey, maybe Mueller turns up something really damaging and I'm wrong about it all. But at the moment it looks like there's nothing there and the hopes and dreams of people that hate Trump.
    Wait, are you saying that “we did it too, therefore we should just turn a blind eye when they do it to us?”

  11. #23801
    Cricketer Of The Year Ausage's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spark View Post
    You forgot to actually bold anything

    But “avoiding a cold war” and “not aligning yourself with the Russian foreign policy and social worldview” are by no means mutually exclusive and the only who pretend otherwise have universally nefarious motives. There’s no reason why you can’t avoid a cold war whilst also not going full Tulsi “why aren’t American planes bombing Aleppo too” Gabbard.

    In any case the strategic disparity between Russia and America is too vast for a true cold war, hence why Russia is flailing around trying to make as much of a mess around the world as possible because business as usual is fatal for them in the medium-term. China, now, that’s another matter.

    With regards to your first point, tbh yeah I think it should be politically disqualifying. And I think for any normal politician it would have been. 25th Amendment, okay yeah that’s obviously silly.
    Heh. Fixed.

    Sleep, who needs it eh

    Anyway, my point is that there are a broad range of options and lenses through which you can view different geopolitical actions. For example Hillary's talk of bringing the Ukraine into NATO is a pretty extreme provocation that and the risk/reward analysis of such an action goes far beyond "would Putin approve of it".

    My bias is towards a less warmongering US empire though so there's that to consider.

  12. #23802
    Cricketer Of The Year Ausage's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spark View Post
    Wait, are you saying that “we did it too, therefore we should just turn a blind eye when they do it to us?”
    No, I'm saying the democratically elected president was targeted by agencies with form on regime change who attempted it in their own nation.

  13. #23803
    Global Moderator Spark's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ausage View Post
    Heh. Fixed.

    Sleep, who needs it eh

    Anyway, my point is that there are a broad range of options and lenses through which you can view different geopolitical actions. For example Hillary's talk of bringing the Ukraine into NATO is a pretty extreme provocation that and the risk/reward analysis of such an action goes far beyond "would Putin approve of it".

    My bias is towards a less warmongering US empire though so there's that to consider.
    I mean I want a less warmongering US empire too, but if I have to pick I’d pick US empire and the post-war consensus over Russian or Chinese empire.

  14. #23804
    Cricketer Of The Year Ausage's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spark View Post
    I mean I want a less warmongering US empire too, but if I have to pick I’d pick US empire and the post-war consensus over Russian or Chinese empire.
    Sure, but that's a pretty broad position that can and routinely is used to justify all sorts of ****** US warmongering.
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  15. #23805
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    Might have been posted earlier but thank goodness. Good to hear it officially


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