Today’s posting is inspired by and its title is a takeoff on REM’s 1987 hit entitled: It’s the End of the World As We Know It. That line is both the song’s title and the oft repeated refrain. By changing the tense of one word is it perfectly sums up what damage Donald Trump has done to America’s global image in a succinct phrase. Let’s explore.
I am a baby boomer; a generation of Americans named for our infancy that are now a bunch of senior citizens. Whether it was Harry Truman, Barack Obama or any of those who serve between their times in office, the American president was viewed as the de facto leader of the free world. In less than six months in office Donald Trump has destroyed that perception.
Trump has managed to offend every major American ally individually and/or collectively. At the same time he has gone out of his way to be buddies with despots and enemies. I know he is trying to lead an organized criminal enterprise but this adherence to The Godfather theory of: “Keep your friends close and your enemies closer” is both ridiculous and unproductive!
Trump used a baseball analogy to describe his recent foreign trip. He said every encounter was a “Home run”. Among the things Trump regularly displays his ignorance of is baseball. Remember this is the same guy who claimed to be the best baseball player in New York City in the ‘60’s. Has he ever heard of Yogi Berra, Whitey Ford or Mickey Mantle; I just included the Hall of Famers. What Trump called a series of home runs looked more like a string of called third strikes to me.
He started out at the NATO meeting where he lectured his allies (when he wasn’t literally shoving them aside in a photo-op). Interestingly he told the Saudis (who are neither NATO members nor allies you can trust in a pinch) that he was not there to lecture them or tell them how to conduct their business. He neglected to reaffirm Article 5 of the NATO Treaty. Article 5 is the heart and soul of the alliance. It dictates that an attack on any NATO member is an attack on all and thereby guarantees mutual defense. America with the alliance’s most powerful military is the lynchpin to NATO’s potency. Ironically the only time Article 5 has been invoked was in the aftermath of 9/11 which NATO declared to be an attack on the United States and the NATO nations assisted America in its retaliatory military efforts. Many young American veterans fought beside NATO allies in the Middle East.
On trade Trump removed America from a TPP agreement that was never going to come to pass anyway. I am on the record as one of many progressives who Barack Obama failed to sell on TPP. I was concerned (though not positive) that it would be bad for American jobs. One thing I am positive of is that Trump’s action opens a door for China to become the dominant regional economy.
More concerning was Trump’s recent action of backing out of the Paris Climate Agreement. Big American businesses are global businesses. They need a federal government that is global not isolationist. By backing out of an agreement Trump has essentially made America’s word useless. Who will want to enter into a deal with a country that can do 180 degree about faces every four years?
At the G7 meeting the other six leaders took a healthy walk. Trump followed behind in a golf cart. That was symbolic on many levels; none of them good for America’s world standing. European leaders in particular have decided they must just carry on without Trump and for the moment America. German Chancellor Angela Merkel has emerged as Europe’s leader. Trump doesn’t even understand the basic concept of the European Union. (Is it any wonder that an anti-union guy like Trump would have a problem with the concept of international collective bargaining?) French President Emmanuel Macron is now the most respected leader in the free world and effectively has replaced the American President as its leader.
There is much discussion as to whether a Trump Doctrine will evolve and just what it will be. I say it has; the Trump Doctrine is one of fascist isolationism. Trump has created a new world order – one without America.
I foresee the day where the American President is again universally viewed as the leader of the free world. It will take more than just conjugation. It will take some changes in Washington D.C. paramount among them the occupant of the White House.
This article is the property of tellthetruthonthem.com and its content may not be used without citing the source. It may not be reproduced without the permission of Larry Marciniak.