Trump offers Putin Europe, meanwhile, the media is focused on Biden forgetting a name

On 1/20, I posted this on the Book of Faces:

I was amazed, confused, and upset that the responses I got were from the younger folks in my circle of friends. Two seminary classmates who are in their 30’s somewhere, in particular, blew my mind.

One said, “Siiiigh, I wish we could stop perpetuating this mindset on the left.”

Another said, “What is Biden running on? “Not Trump.” He’s got nothing to give us hope with, he’s trying to say “I’m not this other guy” as if it’s a whole response to “who are you and what do you actually stand for?””

When I replied, “[He’s giving us]… the hope of not living under a dictatorship, yes, but also: The hope of an improving economy and full employment. The hope of abating climate change. The hope of student debt relief - he’s doing what he can without help from Congress. The hope of the rule of law. The hope of international cooperation rather than the despair of isolation.
I agree with you that the two party system sucks. If we had a viable Green Party in the US, that’s where I’d be registered. But it is what it is, and, this time, the stakes are too high to get all idealistic.”

One reply I got was, “We see Biden’s track record very differently.”

If the best and brightest future leaders of Unitarian Universalism can’t see what’s at stake in the 2024 election, I think I’ll just crawl into a hole in the ground and pull a rock over my head right now.

If we’ve lost young people… :sob:


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I feel ya!


Well, lets just hope that “us” is a handful of people only.


Correct, he talks like a madman.


The reason why you see so many responses from right wingers is that the empty vessel makes the most noise.


All of NATO plus all other countries around the EU could not withstand a nuclear superpower it the US would be sitting on the fence.

The EU de facto has no nuclear deterrent of it’s own. I do not need to be von Neumann for seeing that “the only winning move is not to play” doesn’t work here as a premise. Also, expecting a change in (conventional) defense abilities in a medium term is quite optimistic. I would bet a bottle of Scotch single malt that 20 years would be needed to go from bedingt abwehrbereit to a real strategic force. Conventional only.

What the former POTUS said there is not a wake-up call. Trump thinks of himself like a businessman? Well, that statement is like a major stakeholder insinuating the company is close to bankruptcy and declaring they are short selling while another company is preparing a hostile takeover.


The story is crazy on so many levels. That the press is reporting Trump’s story as if it actually happened, or at the very least makes any sense, is maddening. That Trump would threaten US allies in the context of a mutual defense pact that has only ever come to the aid of the US, and no one is screaming bloody murder speaks volumes. That the press keep fixating on every gaffe Biden makes (or misrepresent something he said as a gaffe), while literally ignoring everything that Trump says (to the point where the press presents, as if they were actual quotes, their paraphrased summations of what they think he was trying to say)… I can’t even.

Trump’s total lack of understanding of NATO’s Wales pledge, for member countries to spend at least 2% of GDP on defense, has always boggled my mind. It’s not a difficult concept. That he kept acting as if somehow countries owed money to someone indicates how messed up the Trump administration was. On the one hand, people must have corrected his misunderstanding, but on the other hand, his staff clearly enabled it as well (coming up with the “bill” he presented to Angela Merkel). I wonder how much was Trump’s stupidity (making him unable to learn things), how much was his mental pathologies (making him refuse to acknowledge, even to himself, when he was mistaken and causing him to double down on misunderstandings), and how much was the pure theatrical value of this alternative reality he could sell to his base (and alienate his allies, who saw him as the incompetent idiot operating outside reality). I suppose in Trumpland, they’re all inseparable elements of the creation of Trump’s “reality.” Also, given that the deadline for this goal was this year, it’s not like any country had yet failed to reach that goal during Trump’s administration (nor can he claim credit if any achieved the goal when they intended to, just because it happened after his term).

I’m not entirely sure I buy that Trump ever actually did say that to the unnamed European leaders (it’s very much a “Trump tough guy” story, which almost never actually happen), but the fact that he’s now said it publicly certainly sends a message to Putin. It’s actually worse that he said it in public, rather than behind closed doors, in this respect. What happens during a second Trump administration? The US would have no real allies, only enemies of the country that are friendly with Trump…

Trump is a guy who we know for a fact has spent his entire career (and in fact made his career out of) not paying his bills. It’s another bit of pure Trump projection.

Well, at least he was a pimp for a while (his modeling agency whose primary purpose seems to have been to provide a steady supply of foreign teenagers to offer to his business partners).


I really try to consider Trump supporters and Republicans as just people with different values and information and not just hopelessly stupid. But stuff like this makes it so fucking hard.
How can you not see this approach to your international allies sacrifices actual strength in order to try and appear “tough”?


It’s also a Trump “Sir” story, which means that he’s bullshitting.


"One of the presidents of a big country stood up and said, ‘Well sir, if we don’t pay and we’re attacked by Russia, will you protect us?’

No tears in their eyes? They always have tears in their eyes.


Well, yeah. But we are speaking of a nuclear world war here, and at that point all rules are out the window anyway. For one, we in Europe wouldn’t have to care, as most of us would cease to exist, and secondly, the US would intervene in that war whether NATO existed or not, because it would be an existential threat to them.

In terms of defense procurement 20 years is very much “short term”. I was more thinking 40+ years


Easy if you don’t understand actual strength and mistake tough guy posturing for being strong.


I would argue that we pay a discount.

For example, there are two ways to go about making your military the strongest in the world. The first is to spend a whole lot of money to build up your own military. The second is to find indirect ways to weaken your adversaries’ militaries. You don’t need to build a bunch of extra tanks and warships to stay ahead of the other guy when the other guy’s tanks and warships are getting turned into scrap metal.

From that point of view, the United States has been getting a tremendous return on its investment for helping Ukraine chew up Putin’s forces.


Please check out Unitarian Universalism. We are the furthest thing from “right wing.”


Trump encouraging Putin to conquer delinquents who don’t pay their debts is some kind of wish fulfilment for him.


? ? both the uk and france have nuclear forces ?
and germany has " dual key nukes " ?


“Donald Trump is an entirely different sort of beast. For one thing, he is a comprehensive problem that encompasses every political issue. More to the point, however, he is disastrous on a number of essentially independent fronts. Indeed, it’s difficult to quite begin on capturing the existential threat that Trump represents. At a base political level, he is a committedly racist authoritarian. He weds this, in a manner not uncommon among authoritarians, to a strong commitment to corruption, although this is in many ways an understatement: he is reflexively corrupt to an extent that is largely unprecedented, wholly willing to collapse the entire function of government into the task of his own personal enrichment and glorification. But this general evilness is combined with a truly staggering vacuousness. Trump is not merely astonishingly ignorant and lacking in any intellectual curiosity, he possesses an epistemology that is entirely hostile to factual reality, nuance, doubt, or honesty. Combined with an unwavering narcissism that simply does not even consider the possibility that “experts” who “know things” might possess some competencies that he lacks, this produces an unprecedented level of basic incompetence. And while at times his incompetence undermines his commitment to evil, at plenty of other times they exacerbate each other.“


Any chance these classmates are members of minority groups facing real and immediate persecution in Trump’s version of America?


I don’t think that Biden actually went to the “I can’t recall” position during his four-hour interview with the Special Prosecutor. But the SP stated anyway that Biden might go for a memory-fade defense if actually prosecuted, which is all that the media wanted to hear.


At a skim read it sounds a bit similar to Baha’i, a fusion of various religious traditions.

I recognise the ethics of many religions as a spur to proper conduct; kindness, understanding, fellow feeling, help for the down trodden.