The Trump Doctrine

The consensus among foreign policy wonks is that the President is a fool or nuts and is being played by Putin and Kim. But maybe not so. Mr Trump is naturally drawn to objects of his envy. He certainly did not expect the Constitutional constraints on his power and has worked assiduously to remove them. Kim and Putin are _aspirational_ for him. He has already advanced far toward this goal, discrediting the free press and undermining the Mueller investigation. I know people are thinking, oh, Mueller will save us or 2018 will save us, but this thinking disregards Mr Trump's clear intent. He thinks the way NK and Russia are run is a _better_ way than Constitutional government.

Putin and Kim understand this and realize that they can arrange things so that Mr Trump stays in power indefinitely and they have the ability to make him look good, which is all that ever really counts with this President. They also have the ability to mess with our elections at a level even greater than what occurred in 2016 Trump's new pal, NK, has some of the best hackers in the world, and Russia has already started. Mr Trump may feel he has gotten away with it--a foreign power has delivered him into the Presidency and there is no reason why this help should not continue.

So we see the emergence of a Trump Doctrine, in which the liberal order and the nations that espouse it--America's historic allies in Western Europe, the Americas, and Asia--are abandoned and a new authoritarian axis comprising the USA, Russia, NK, and Israel becomes the basis of American foreign policy. This policy will back suppression of liberty, disrupt liberal societies, and make war on the Muslim world, especially Iran. It will be kleptocratic in its essence, oppressive in its practice, and religious in its presentation.

In America, the FBI will become indistinguishable from the Russian FSB, the free press will be destroyed, elections will no longer matter, corruption will be pervasive, inequality will assume 19th century levels, as will sexual and racial repression. The world will finally come to resemble the one described in the final lines of Orwell's 1984: two totalitarian blocs (in our case the New Axis and China) locked in endless conflict and mankind with the boot in its face, forever. 

OTOH, 1940 was a pretty bad year too, and so were 1948, and 1968. End of the world predictions were rife; and then unexpected things happened and life went on in a different direction than the pundits had direly predicted. You gotta have hope, stupid as that may sound.