Don’t underestimate Trump’s power to do harm

Because Donald Trump seems so undisciplined and ignorant, I continually underestimate his effectiveness.

I didn’t think he would be nominated.   I didn’t think he would be elected.   And sometimes I fool myself into thinking it is better to have Trump in the White House than somebody with the same agenda, but more competent.

This is a mistake.   In order to do good, you need not only good will, but intelligence and hard work, but that in order to do harm, all you need is malice.

Click to enlarge

>>>Donald Trump has left many key positions in government unfilled, but is moving forward at a rapid pace to nominate federal judges and U.S. attorneys.   The judges will be in office possibly decades after Trump is gone.   District judges and appeals court judges are almost as important as Supreme Court justices because most cases don’t reach the highest court.

Many of Trump’s executive orders have been blocked by court rulings.   Putting his own people on the bench lessens the likelihood that this will happen.

The bulk of his nominations have been in states represented by Republicans.   Customs of the Senate allow a Senator to block a judgeship nomination.   Concentrating on Republican states is smart because it means he can get a lot of his people approved before turning to the Democratic states.

>>>Republicans in Congress seem stalled for now in repealing the Affordable Care Act, but Trump doesn’t need congressional action to make the ACA fail.   All he needs to do is to have his administration fail to do what’s necessary to make the law work, then return with the argument that it is unworkable.

This is true of all the governmental programs that Trump doesn’t like.   He doesn’t need to have Congress repeal them, at least not right away.   All he needs to do is to allow key administrative positions go unfilled and deny adequate funding, then watch them fail, then brand them as failures.

>Foreign Policy magazine reported that Trump demanded that his administration find Iran in non-compliance with the nuclear weapons agreement negotiated during the Obama administration.   Secretary of State Rex Tillerson declined to make that finding this time around, for the good reason that there is no actual evidence Iran is cheating.

But Trump insists on such a finding by October, possibly by demanding things not in the agreement with the expectation that the Iranian government would refuse.   This wouldn’t necessarily mean war with Iran, but it would set the stage if this is Trump’s intent.


Donald the Destroyer: Assessing the Trump Effect by Jim Kavanaugh for Counterpunch.   The case for regarding Trump as the lesser (because less competent) evil.

The Mask Is Off: Trump Is Seeking War With Iran by Trita Parsi for LobeLog.  Hat tip to Jack Clontz.

Trump is nominating a ton of judges and U.S. attorneys by Allan Smith for Business Insider.

Six ways Trump is ‘dismantling’ the US after six months in office by Dominic Rushe, Oliver Milman, Molly Redden, Jmiles Larty, David Smith and Oliver Laughlan for The Guardian.

Five ways the Trump Administration is a Disaster for Science by Michael Halpern for Rolling Stone.


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One Response to “Don’t underestimate Trump’s power to do harm”

  1. whungerford Says:

    Advocating police brutality in NYC is a new unacceptable low.


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