Belligerent Incompetence: The Trump Terrorist Doctrine.

by Pitt Griffin on January 30, 2017 · 0 comments

in Politics, Trump presidency

Terrorists don’t kill Americans. Neither do sharks, bees or lightning. Before you get indignant, yes, some people die of these things – but from a statistical point of view, with rounding, the number is zero. And yet the Trump administration is willing to upend 70 years of American foreign policy to address events that hardly ever happen.

Take his indefinite ban on Syrian refugees and his moratorium on immigration from seven Muslim countries. No death by terrorism on American soil has been committed by a citizen of any of these countries. Had this measure been in place before the 9/11 attacks it would have had no impact. Zero. It would not have prevented a single American death.

Banning Saudis, Egyptians, Lebanese and UAE nationals might have made a difference. But none of those countries are on Trump’s ‘feck you’ list. Reasonable minds note that Trump does business in these countries – and wonder if any inference should be drawn from that.

The Trump administration weasels its way around that unpleasantness by saying they got the banned list from Obama. Oh, come on. Trump and his flying monkeys have peed on everything else Obama’s – this they keep? It’s laughable.

Then there’s the flip side of the coin. Trump will also pursue policies that do endanger lives. Repealing Obamacare without a replacement and driving desperate women to back-street abortions, for starters.

Abortion-banners argue that they are thinking about women’s wellbeing. Are they cynical or deluded? If you are serious about reducing abortions, reduce the number of unwanted pregnancies. All else is smoke. A ban on abortions is only a ban on legal abortions. In 1968 – before Roe vs. Wade – there were an estimated 900,000 illegal abortions. Re-criminalize abortion, and expect more of the same.

Then there is the Republican aspersion-casting on climate change. The Pentagon – which has neither political nor commercial axes to grind – cites global warming as a clear and present danger to human life. But any mention of climate change has been scrubbed from the White House website.

Temperatures are rising. Ice caps are melting. Weather patterns altered. But many, who slept through biology class, are now self-professed authorities on climate. Or take their ‘science’ from a few gadfly scientists or studies produced by those with a financial stake in climate change denial.

Plutocrats also promote profits over people. Industrialization proved one thing – unregulated industrial expansion is disastrous for well-being. Poisoned air and polluted water kill. But Trump would hobble the EPA – health consequences be damned. Food would come to market riddled with pathogens and chemicals. And Big Pharma would develop drugs with unforeseen and devastating side-effects. Thalidomide anyone?

Anti-science is a pervasive symptom of the right-wing’s chronic anti-intellectualism. Conservatives politicize science because they politicize everything. Doing the right thing is not part of their calculation. They take actions solely with an eye to their political payoff.

And in this case, the political payoff is contributions from industrialists glad to be unconstrained by consideration for the well-being of the regular citizen.

Should conservatives honestly care about their fellow man, they would have a better plan. Sadly, history shows they rarely have any plan – let alone a better one. What is their alternative to Obamacare? Who knows, they haven’t said. For eight years their only policy on healthcare is that everyone else’s policy on healthcare is a disaster.

Let’s look at the Muslim ban. Its rationale is grounded in claims that the Obama’s refugee vetting system was a travesty. That there needed to be a better plan. We would erect barriers against nationalities and religions – probably unconstitutionally – until there were better procedures in place.

But what are these better procedures? No one knows. Under Obama, the vetting of Syrian refugees took 18 to 24 months. Nine federal agencies – including the State Department, the FBI’s Terrorist Screening Center, The Department of Defense & the Department of Homeland Security – studied refugees’ histories, contacts, families, biometric data, etc. And DHS officers conducted in-person interviews with every applicant.

What else can #Trump offer? A sprinkling of truth dust? Of course, there is nothing. Just hot air, braggadocio, posturing, and bravado.

Trump is a man of action – but not a man of thought. Which means he is nothing more than a bull in a china store.

 

 

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