Monday, October 25

Gentleman Joe vs. Maga Champion? Machiavelli would die laughing… | Simon Tisdall


NorthA few months after the elections he lost completely, the specter of Donald Trump – darkly threatening, subversive and seemingly immune from prosecution – continues to cast a shadow over democracy and America’s global position, distorting politics and poisoning political life. How can this be? Why does this horror movie keep running?

Trumpism, like other fascist variants, is a disease, a plague, a far-right populist nationalist miasma that pollutes and rots everything it touches. Older Europeans share a popular memory of fascism. But too many Americans just don’t get it. The willingness to end this disease before it returns in a more virulent form is alarming.

By refusing to confront his corrupt predecessor and bring him to justice, Joe Biden fuels Trump’s delusional sense of divine impunity and the dire prospect of a blasphemous second coming. To a watching world, its paralysis smells of weakness. Confuse friends. He leads enemies to hope that he, not Trump, is the problem.

Maybe Biden lacks the killer instinct. Yet you don’t have to be Niccolò Machiavelli to know that Trump poses an existential threat to democratic norms. There will be no tolerance for each other, no forgiveness, if you get a second chance, just revenge, reckoning, and ever-increasing abuse of power.

For now, Trump hides in Mar-a-Lago, biding his time and backing the loyalists for future contests. He claimed a hit last week when an arch-flatterer won a congressional race in Ohio. You are raising money – your the war chest already totals over $ 100 million. Polls show that it remains easily the most popular presidential election among Republican voters.

Stripped of his social media platforms, his spiteful voice is not broadcast as before, although he found space last week to attack the soccer players who “woke up.” But this relative tranquility is deceptive. There is a sham war going on ahead of next year’s midterm election campaign, which Trump sees as a warming for 2024.

Last month, author Michael Wolff warned complacent Democrats that Trump was preparing for battle. “Triumph [is] always ready to fight back with more force than he has been hit, to blame anyone other than himself, to take what he believes to be his … Sound the alarm, ”Wolff wrote. He said he was confident that Trump would run again.

Who will cure this disease? Who can clean this stain from America’s face? Disqualifying him as criminally inappropriate for public office is the obvious way to avoid further chaos in the West Wing. However, “Gentleman Joe” and his shy attorney general, Merrick garland, keep pulling your punches.

What about the numerous obstruction charges detailed by Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation? No action by the Garland Justice Department. What about the multiple complaints of corruption and tax fraud? There is no federal prosecution in sight. Or a series of alleged sexual assaults? There are no pending criminal charges.

When asked what he would do about Trump’s crimes, Biden said last August that going after his predecessor in court would be “very unusual”. “It was not good for democracy to talk about prosecuting former presidents.” In short, I would rather ignore the problem.

Yet since he spoke, Trump has fomented the insurrection, the Jan.6 assault on Congress, for which hundreds, though not himself, have been indicted. It drives his mendacious and destabilizing narrative of the “great robbery.” It has also emerged that he lobbied the justice department, as well as state officials, to discredit the election.

It is not “good for democracy” to ignore the blatantly unconstitutional irregularities of its top official. Doing so helps Trump dismiss everything as a hoax. It sets a terrible political and ethical precedent at home. It damages America’s reputation abroad. But still Biden and Garland sit on your hands.

President Joe Biden discusses firearm crime prevention measures as Attorney General Merrick Garland watches.
President Joe Biden discusses firearm crime prevention measures as Attorney General Merrick Garland watches. Photograph: Kevin Dietsch / Getty Images

Meanwhile, the Trump plague is taking a terrible toll. Out of deference to him and his base, it appears that cruel policies against immigrants remain in place, progressive action on racial justice has stalled, and attacks on the right to vote are advancing. Republicans are now more of a cult than a party.

This poisoning of the body politic also extends abroad. Why, for example, should the President of Tunisia pay attention to American homilies on democratic principles and the rule of law when they are not upheld in the United States itself? Why should China? Why should anyone take Biden’s presidency seriously if the Maga champion can run rings around him from a Florida golf cart?

Iran vividly illustrates Trump’s evil influence at work. When he stupidly abandoned the 2015 nuclear pact, he empowered Tehran’s hardliners. Now they have seized the presidency of Iran, exploiting fears of Trump’s return. They warn the united states cannot be trusted. It is a message with legs.

The mime of dictators from Moscow to Manila, the draw for the 2020 Taliban talks in Doha (which led directly to today’s Afghan collapse), Jared Kushner’s peace-for-cash scam in the Middle East, and official denial of the climate crisis are additional products of Trump. plague. Biden struggles daily with the toxic consequences.

Some argue that Trump’s illness is overblown, that Biden’s bipartisanship is producing results – look at his new infrastructure plan. But if you feel like you can’t get your own house in order, the world, and American voters, will turn their backs on you.

Bottom line: The former and future king’s foreign fiascos continue to haunt America abroad in the same way that their corrosive disregard for democracy, law, and common decency divides and weakens them at home. Surely this situation cannot continue.

What other leader in the world would allow a series of crimes to go unpunished, tolerate incessant acts of subversion and disruption by such a prominent and hostile figure? If he weren’t already dead, Machiavelli would die laughing.

Too nice Joe must stop being polite, take off his gloves and neutralize the Trump variant before it reaches pandemic levels. Isolation and social distancing would help. So lock it up!


www.theguardian.com

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