1. On the Trump Press Meltdown
2. Trump Official Obsessed Over Nuclear Apocalypse (...)
3. Greenwald: Empowering the "Deep State" to Undermine
Trump is Prescription for Destroying Democracy
4. Trump Will Continue to Scam the White Working Class. Here’s
How to Stop Him.
This is a Nederlog of Friday, February 17, 2017.
a crisis log with 4 files and 6 dotted links. Item 1 is about the Trump Press Meltdown, and in fact has three dotted links; item 2
is an interesting but somewhat frightening article about the nuclear
fantasies and delusions by a Trumpian that was nominated by Trump to
the National Security Council; item 3 is about a fine interview with Glenn Greenwald on Democracy Now!; and item 4 is about an article on Truthdig that is OK but that I also found a little bit naive.
As for today
(February 17, 2017): I have changed my site on February 1, 2017 to make
that it might be read,
because it now happened for most
of last year that both of my sites are not uploaded
1. On the Trump Press Meltdown
On xs4all.nl it may be days, weeks or months behind to show the proper
last date and the proper last files (in the last 4 years always
date it was that day), and it was this morning correct
again (but yesterday it was not);
one.com it may be shown
December 31, 2015
often was!!!) but was correct this morning; and
indeed I am sick of being systematically made
unreadable and therefore changed
the site to allow most readers to find it more easily.
For more explanations, see here - and no:
with two different sites in two different countries
with two different providers,
where this has been
happening for a year (and not
for over 20 and over 12 years
before) now I'm absolutely certain that
this happens and that it's not due to me.
Incidentally, if you reached February 1, 2017 on one of
my sites you are in the new set-up and from there you can
find the latest Nederlog, and all others from there.
The first item today is about Trump's latest press conference. I have based this on
three articles on respectively The Intercept, The New York Times and Mother Jones:
The first of these three articles, by Robert Mackey, starts as follows :
Donald Trump launched a surprise attack on the news media on
Thursday at a press conference in which he mocked and harried the White
House press corps for more than an hour.
Having carefully avoided questions from all but a handful of friendly
reporters in recent days, as evidence of his stumbling performance as
president mounted, Trump devoted less than 60 seconds
to introducing his new secretary of labor nominee Alexander Acosta.
Then he launched into what amounted to a 20-minute campaign speech
blaming reporters in the room for portraying an administration in chaos
when it was, he said, “running like a fine-tuned machine.”
As I have said many times by now, I am a psychologist who thinks Trump has very probably a serious mental disorder, for he is quite evidently a pathological narcissist.
This Trumpian performance supports my opinion: Sane presidents, even if they much dislike considerable parts of the press (I do as well, though not for Trumpian reasons), simply act differently (in my psychologically qualified eyes).
But OK... Here is some more:
When he opened the floor to questions, Trump responded to them in a
sarcastic, rambling, not entirely coherent manner, frequently adopting
the tone of an insult comic, roasting reporters as if at the annual
correspondents’ dinner. He raged at the profusion of leaks that have
been coming out of his administration — and at what he called the “fake
news” that was based on those leaks.
The performance, which prompted an outpouring of disbelief from
viewers around the world, was the clearest example yet of Trump treating
reporters who fail to flatter him as “the opposition party,” as his
chief White House strategist, Steve Bannon, explained to The New York Times last month.
Much of the rest of this article - there is considerably more - consists of Tweets, and was skipped by me for that reason. 
The second of these three articles, by Peter Baker, is blissfully totally free from Tweets. This is from near the beginning:
At a hastily organized White House event — ostensibly to announce a new nominee for labor secretary,
R. Alexander Acosta — Mr. Trump engaged in an extended attack on the
news media and insisted that his new administration was not a chaotic
operation but a “fine-tuned machine.” Any challenges, he said, were not
his fault. “To be honest, I inherited a mess,” he said.
In fact, he did not "inherit a mess" (see below) and in fact it seems as if the performance of his White House is - completely apart from any politics - a lot
worse than the performances of previous presidents + cabinets.
This is about Trump's berating reporters and news organizations, and about his lies about what he calls "fake news":
Trump spent much of the conference berating reporters and their news
organizations. Clearly exasperated by coverage of him, he said he did
not watch CNN but then gave a detailed critique of one of its shows. He
cited specific articles in The Times and The Wall Street Journal that he
called “fake,” even harking back to one from last year’s campaign.
“The press is out of control,” he said. “The level of dishonesty is out of control.”
He added later, “The public doesn’t believe you people anymore.”
In fact, this is extremely authoritarian: Trump wants "the American people" to believe his Tweets and discard reading the press or viewing the ordinary TV.
Then there is this about anti-semitism:
At one point, he called on Jake Turx, an ultra-Orthodox Jewish reporter
from Ami Magazine. “Are you a friendly reporter?” he asked.
haven’t seen anybody in my community accuse either yourself or anyone
on your staff of being anti-Semitic,” Mr. Turx said. But, citing bomb
threats against Jewish centers, he said, “What we haven’t really heard
being addressed is an uptick in anti-Semitism and how the government is
planning to take care of it.”
Trump bristled, taking it as a suggestion that he was anti-Semitic even
though the reporter specifically said the opposite. “I am the least
anti-Semitic person that you’ve ever seen in your entire life,” Mr.
Turx protested that he was not suggesting otherwise. “Quiet, quiet,
quiet,” Mr. Trump said. “See? He lied. He was going to get up and ask a
very straight, simple question.” Instead, Mr. Trump said, the question
was “repulsive” and “very insulting.”
Of course a pathological narcissist would reply that He is "The Least Anti-Semitic Person Ever". More below:
The third of these three articles is by Kevin Drum. He wrote about the mess Trump asserted there is (that was, albeit quite partially, reported above):
Fact check: Delusional. Trump inherited an economy in
pretty good shape. Crime has steadily decreased over the past decade.
ISIS is losing ground and close to defeat. Illegal immigration has been
stable for many years. Test scores for schoolkids are up. Fewer than a
dozen American soldiers have died in combat in the past year. Obamacare
has cut the number of people without health insurance almost in half.
The budget deficit is down to 3 percent of GDP. After years of
stagnation, wages are finally starting to go up. Unemployment and
inflation are both low.
I don't think I would have been quite as optimistic as Kevin Drum (there is - for one thing - a great amount of dire poverty in the present USA), but he is, in general terms at least, correct.
There is also this about Trump's assertion that He had The Biggest Win in the elections
since a long time:
Yes, evidently so - and I agree with Kevin Drump that Trump is delusional.
Fact check: Also delusionial. He got 304 electoral votes, and Reagan, Bush Sr., Clinton, and Obama all did better.
Finally, there is this about the above reported exchange between Trump and Turx:
Fact check: Incoherent. Turx explicitly tried to
assure Trump that nobody thought he was anti-Semitic, but Trump's skin
is so thin that he immediately decided Turx was calling him a racist and
an anti-Semite. I wonder why?
By the way, the entire point of this press conference seemed to be
directed at one thing: accusing the press of being horrible and
dishonest. This came up in nearly every Trump answer.
As to Kevin Drum's "I wonder why?": This seems to me a good answer. And I think
Drum is also correct in saying that the basic point of the press conference was to accuse "the press of being horrible and
As I said, I don't like the mainstream media either, but for quite different reasons than Trump does. And he is just not acting as a president, but as a crazy person - I am very sorry to say, and namely because he has the power to blow up the world by nuclear arms.
And precisely that fact - there are nuclear arms that can blow up every human being - is the subject of the next item:
2. Trump Official Obsessed Over Nuclear Apocalypse (...)
This starts as follows (and this article contains much more than I extract from it, and is quite interesting, though also quite frightening):
The second item is by Peter Maass on The Intercept. It is here because I fear there is a good chance of a nuclear war with a president like Donald Trump:
I say. I do know that it is possible to make small nuclear bombs, but I also know
A senior official on President Trump’s embattled National
Security Council warned in previously unreported comments that it is
“inevitable” an Islamic terrorist group will carry out a successful
nuclear attack against the United States, and that in its aftermath, the
world “will regress hundreds of years politically.” The official,
Michael Anton, laid out a dire scenario of multiple nuclear detonations
on American soil, saying that terrorists “will, I think, wait until they
can hit us with several blows at once, followed by a number of
Anton, appointed as the Trump administration’s senior director of
strategic communications on the NSC, wrote in 2009 that he was
“surprised it hasn’t happened yet” and predicted that once the attacks
occur, “economies will collapse … the world will revert to a kind of
localsim [sic] and warlordism.” He added, “If Chicago wakes up one
morning and NY is simply not there any more, and some dude on Al Jazeera
is saying, ‘Chicago you are next!’ I don’t see order lasting long.”
that many people rely more on their own fantasies and imaginations in politics and
in religion than on real facts.
And Mr. Anto seems a fantasist. Here is some more:
“An all out nuclear war is not inevitable, or even likely,” he wrote in a
discussion thread he started about nuclear terrorism. “A regional
nuclear exchange between two regional powers is more likely, but still
not inevitable. A nuclear detonation in a major US or European city (or
Moscow) is inevitable.” He added, “Let’s just say the event is overdue.
People have been wanting to do it for a long time, and trying to do it
for a long time. … As a general matter, anything that human beings have
wanted to do badly enough, that it is physically possible to do, they
have eventually found a way to do.”
What the hell is his evidence for his fantasies?! He seems to be completely - and also quite idiotically - bullshitting. And he is on the National Security Council...
Here is more about his totally fact-free delusions:
Asked by another commenter when he thought the nuclear attack would occur, Anton responded, “Any day now.”
Here is Peter Maass's conclusion:
The detail and apparent extremism of Anton’s comments appear to go even
further than much of what has already emerged from the Trump White
House. The comments provide what seems to be the darkest of contexts for
understanding the Trump administration’s desire for radical crackdowns
on immigration and Muslims in general: a fervent conviction that a
civilizational apocalypse caused by Muslims is coming soon.
Yes indeed - and there is a whole lot more about Anton's deluded fantasies in the article, which is recommended.
3. Greenwald: Empowering the "Deep State" to Undermine Trump is Prescription for Destroying Democracy
The third item is by Amy Goodman and Nermeen Shaikh on Democracy Now!, who interviewed Glenn Greenwald (and there are more interviews with Greenwald there, that were made on the same day, and that are also recommended):
This starts with the following:
Some supporters of Trump, including Breitbart News, have accused the
intelligence agencies of attempting to wage a deep state coup against
the president. Meanwhile, some critics of Trump are openly embracing
such activity. Bill Kristol, the prominent Republican analyst who
founded The Weekly Standard, wrote on Twitter, "Obviously strongly
prefer normal democratic and constitutional politics. But if it comes to
it, prefer the deep state to the Trump state." We talk about the deep
state with Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Glenn Greenwald, co-founder
of The Intercept.
This is - for me, at least - a very interesting topic. There is considerably more about the Deep State in the index for 2016, and I recommend especially this one: Crisis: On The Deep State in the USA, TTIP Has 'De
Facto Failed' (with four different sub-sections, all worthwile).
Now to Glenn Greenwald, but I start with a bit of background by Shaikh and Goodman:
We’re looking at the growing scandal over the Trump administration’s
alleged dealings with Russia before and after the November election. In
early January, Democratic Senator Chuck Schumer appeared on The Rachel Maddow Show and suggested the intelligence community may try to get back at Donald Trump.
SEN. CHUCK SCHUMER:
Let me tell you, you take on the intelligence community, they have six
ways from Sunday at getting back at you. So, even for a practical,
supposedly, hard-nosed businessman, he’s being really dumb to do this.
AMY GOODMAN: That was the Senate minority leader, Chuck Schumer, in January.
Some supporters of Trump, including Breitbart News, are now accusing
the intelligence agencies of attempting to wage a "deep state coup"
against the president. Meanwhile, some critics of Trump are openly
embracing such activity, like Bill Kristol, the prominent Republican
analyst who founded The Weekly Standard. He wrote
on Twitter, "Obviously strongly prefer normal democratic and
constitutional politics. But if it comes to it, prefer the deep state to
the Trump state."
Yes, and it is good to have this background. Here is Glenn Greenwald:
The deep state, although there’s no precise or scientific definition,
generally refers to the agencies in Washington that are permanent power
factions. They stay and exercise power even as presidents who are
elected come and go. They typically exercise their power in secret, in
the dark, and so they’re barely subject to democratic accountability, if
they’re subject to it at all. It’s agencies like the CIA, the NSA
and the other intelligence agencies, that are essentially designed to
disseminate disinformation and deceit and propaganda, and have a long
history of doing not only that, but also have a long history of the
world’s worst war crimes, atrocities and death squads.
Yes, I agree. Here is more Greenwald:
The CIA and the intelligence community were
vehemently in support of Clinton and vehemently opposed to Trump, from
the beginning. And the reason was, was because they liked Hillary
Clinton’s policies better than they liked Donald Trump’s.
I think that is also quite correct. Then there is this:
So, Trump’s agenda that he ran on was completely antithetical to what the CIA wanted. Clinton’s was exactly what the CIA
wanted, and so they were behind her. And so, they’ve been trying to
undermine Trump for many months throughout the election. And now that he
won, they are not just undermining him with leaks, but actively
subverting him. There’s claims that they’re withholding information from
him, on the grounds that they don’t think he should have it and can be
trusted with it. They are empowering themselves to enact policy.
I also agree with this, though there is - naturally - less good evidence about what mostly secret agencies like the NSA and the CIA really want and really do.
Here is the last bit that I quote, that is still from Glenn Greenwald (and there is considerably more in the interview):
Now, I happen to think that the Trump presidency is extremely dangerous.
You just listed off in your news—in your newscast that led the show,
many reasons. They want to dismantle the environment. They want to
eliminate the safety net. They want to empower billionaires. They want
to enact bigoted policies against Muslims and immigrants and so many
others. And it is important to resist them. And there are lots of really
great ways to resist them, such as getting courts to restrain them,
citizen activism and, most important of all, having the Democratic Party
engage in self-critique to ask itself how it can be a more effective
political force in the United States after it has collapsed on all
levels. That isn’t what this resistance is now doing. What they’re doing
instead is trying to take maybe the only faction worse than Donald
Trump, which is the deep state, the CIA, with
its histories of atrocities, and say they ought to almost engage in like
a soft coup, where they take the elected president and prevent him from
enacting his policies. And I think it is extremely dangerous to do
Hm. I agree with most of this (although "this resistance" seems broader to me than Greenwald seems to suggest, but I may be mistaken) - except for the fact that I am a psychologist who thinks Trump is not sane (and I am not by far the only psychologist or psychiatrist who thinks this, as the last link shows).
In fact, it seems to me that the real choice is between the following two options:
It is a difficult choice, but since I believe that the CIA and the NSA will remain where
(1) The very dangerous Trump who is president, and who has very bad plans and
policies, as I completely agree with Greenwald, and who is not sane; and
(2) the very dangerous CIA and NSA, who are behind the scene mostly secret forces,
who themselves are not and never elected, and who are very bad (as Trump is,
and in historical terms indeed worse), but who are (mostly) sane though bad.
they are until the American state collapses (and probably even then, until they can be
weeded out, if they can be), and until then need some government and some president who protects them, my own choice tends to be for (2), because I think Trump may be removed a lot easier than the CIA and the NSA, especially because I think Trump is not sane (which is what forces my choice: I don't want a nuclear war started by a madman), also because I indeed will not support the CIA and the NSA, which will do what they please anyway.
Then again, I have a lot of respect for Glenn Greenwald, and the choice is a difficult one, from two major evils. And there is considerably more in the interview, which is strongly recommended.
4. Trump Will Continue to Scam the White Working Class. Here’s How to Stop Him.
The fourth item is by Paul Street on Truthdig:
This is from near the beginning (and I do give five quotations from this article, in which there is considerably more, also for each point that I do quote):
The Wedge We Need to Build
Two things are clear going forward. First, progressives hoping to
defeat Trump and Trumpism will need to drive a class wedge between the
new administration’s big basket of deplorable, super-wealthy plutocrats
and the president’s conservative WWC base. Second, Trump is going to
provide a lot of ammunition for that wedge-building task with policies
that mock his posture as some kind of great white working-class hero.
First about "WWC": This represents the White Working Class, and I think it is one of many abbreviations I do not see the point of and am against, but this is very much
a side-remark  that I mostly make because the abbreviation is used in the quotation.
And second, I don't much believe in driving "a class wedge" between Trump and his many hardly educated followers and supporters, apart from telling the truth and stating
the facts, and hoping they read them.
Then there is this (and each point I quote has more text in the original):
Yes, I mostly agree: Trump scammed most of his supporters and will continue to do so.
There is every reason to think that Trump will continue scamming the
WWC as president. Loaded with anti-union billionaires and
multimillionaires, his administration is one of the most business-heavy
and corporate-friendly in American history.
Then there is this on "free trade" (which in my reconstruction of this Orwellian propaganda term means: The freedom of the rich to exploit the poor as much as they can, after deregulating most of the laws that protect the non-rich):
I agree. Here is the last-but-one bit that I quote, which is about deregulations and tax cuts for the richest:
Free Trader Trump
What about Trump’s much-ballyhooed opposition to the North American
Free Trade Agreement, his withdrawal from the Trans-Pacific Partnership
and his threat to impose steep tariffs on goods imported from Mexico and
China? Trump has sold all this as part of his plan to bring back
manufacturing jobs stolen, he says, by other countries (primarily China
and Mexico) under the rules of “free trade.”
This, too, is a scam. Protectionist bluster will not magically
recreate jobs that were evaporated long ago by technological change and
Tax Cuts and Deregulation: A Regressive Wrecking Ball
Then there’s Trump’s promise to slash taxes on the rich and their
corporations along with regulations on finance and industry. Nearly half
(47 percent) of Trump’s proposed tax cuts will go to the top 1 percent
while his plan will increase levies on 26 million low-income Americans.
I agree again. And this is a decent article that is recommended, although I should also say that the last bit - "Here’s How to Stop Him." - is mostly limited to Street's advice not to look down upon "the WWC"  and to (I quote) "try joining it".
There is also this, from the ending, that expands a bit on the "try joining it":
Progressives must, of course, work with and through particularities of
race, gender, ethnicity, nationality and sexual orientation. But there
are socialist, democratic and working-class solidarity-building ways of
doing that, and there are hateful, neoliberal and top-down
“divide-and-rule” ways of dealing with those particularities. A real,
progressive activist must strive for the former.
I agree considerably more than not, but I fear more is needed to stop Trump.
 But this journalistic article (like quite a few other journalistic articles these days) has far too many Tweets in it, for me at least: I very much dislike Tweets - self-advertisements in maximal 140 characters, usually consisting of bullshit
and necessarily without any rational argumentation - and this articke has far too many Tweets.
 I dislike
most abbreviations that do not belong to standard English (like "etc.",
which is fine with me) and my two reasons are pretty fundamental, and
are more important than they seem.
First, it is much easier and much faster, and also far less interfering
with my trying to understand what an article does say, if I every time
some new abbreviation is introduced - like "WWC" for "white working
class" - have to realize: "O yes, he means
"white working class" by "double you double you see" (for that is how I read such "abbreviations").
Second, I also think many of these abbreviations are in fact introduced (and especially by governments, indeed) with the intent to confuse the readers, and that in two ways:
First, a couple of letters - like "USA PATRIOT" (<-Wikipedia) - do not mean what they would say when expanded (which is in this
case doubly tricky, for it means in fact the mouthful "Uniting and
Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to
Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism Act of 2001"), and second, as the last example showed, these very abbreviations are themselves chosen in order to mislead the readers. (For this "legalized" the spying on every American by the NSA.)
And yes, of course I know "U can UAA as much as UL but DYRT this
CMs?" And if you do, why not rather write it unabbreviated but without
the vowels (so that the above translates as "Y cn s rbtry bbrvtns s mch
s y lk bt d y rll thnk ths clrfs mttrs?)
For me, it is usually easier and faster to read the full English expression, and if that is
indeed inconveniently long, as in the case of "Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism Act of 2001"
to refer to it as "this law" - which is nearly always possible, and is certainly almost always less confusing then an abbreviation (which also itself may be tricked and tricky, as in the above example).