Friday, October 13, 2017

Trump Won't Be Happy Until America's Word Is Worth As Little As His Own

Donald Trump's life story can be reduced to one word. He's a "grifter." He's a con artist, a veteran swindler, who has left a wake of bankruptcies, unpaid creditors and empty-handed investors who unwisely took his word as his bond only to discover that it really was worthless. I'm not suggesting that Trump is one-dimensional. Sure, he's many other things - a narcissist, a pathological liar, a racist, a misogynist, perhaps even a serial sex offender, all those things and more. But lurking in the pit of his personal operating system is the art of the broken deal. He's a grifter.

This is the guy who, while awaiting his inauguration, scrambled to settle the claims of students he defrauded with his Trump University scam. That made him a 70-year old grifter and, at that age, you'll never amount to anything more.

When Trump talks there's a kernel of fact in his remarks, maybe 30 per cent, but the remainder is the con, the outright lies, the masquerade.  This is not a man you take at his word. This is not a man to be trusted.

And today, Trump is dragging the United States of America down to his level. He's doing that by decertifying the Iran nuclear agreement, a multinational pact among Iran, Russia, China, Britain, France, Germany and the U.S.  Why? Because Trump says that Iran has broken the deal. But Trump is a grifter, a bullshitter. His word is meaningless especially when his claims are contradicted by his own secretary of state, his own defence secretary, even his own chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, plus Iran, Russia, China, Britain, France and Germany.

Trump won't kill the deal. He'll drop that hot potato in the lap of Congressional Republicans. He'll urge them to stiffen the terms which simply isn't going to happen. Most of the signatory nations say the agreement is not open to renegotiation.

This is the Grifter-in-Chief, Donald Trump's word, America's word, versus everyone else's.  And he's shown what many of America's traditional allies have suspected, the United States is no longer to be trusted. That's already reshaping the world, nowhere more so than across Asia where America's traditional influence is waning. Small nations that once sought to offset Chinese domination with
American alliances are now recalibrating their position, fearful they're really on their own when it comes to Washington. Even Thailand is beginning to turn its face toward Beijing.  It began with Trump's decision to kill off the Trans-Pacific Partnership, worsened during his irrational bellicosity toward North Korea, his slights to international comity, and now this bizarre stunt with Iran will only deepen fears that this man/baby is just looking for another war.

America's word is all but worthless and everyone knows it, friend and foe alike. Beijing knows it. So does Moscow. Those two see no end of opportunities opening as American influence is being gored by the Cheeto Benito. Once pro-American Asia knows it. Europe knows it. I even think the Trudeau Liberals know it.  The Middle East? It's certainly going to help them weigh switching the world's reserve currency to the Yuan or some basket of currencies. That alone could devastate the United States as much, even more than a war.

Iran Deal Update:

The man/baby president, Kaiser Trump, has clarified his position. He's declined to certify Iran in compliance even though he concedes Iran has met its obligations. And he wants Congress to slap new sanctions on Iran.

"If we are not able to reach a solution by working with Congress and our allies then the agreement will be terminated," Trump said. "It can be cancelled by me, as president, at any time." 

On cue, Trump's supporters, Netanyahu and the House of Saud applauded his stance.

Shortly after Trump's remarks, he received congratulations from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

"He [Trump] boldly confronted Iran's terrorist regime [and] created an opportunity to fix this bad deal, to roll back Iran's
aggression and to confront its criminal support of terrorism," Netanyahu said in a Facebook video.

Saudi Arabia also welcomed what it called Trump's "decisive strategy" toward Iran and said lifting sanctions had allowed Tehran to develop its ballistic missile program, step up its support for militant groups including Hezbollah and the Houthis in Yemen, and attack global shipping lanes.

Meanwhile the E.U. and America's co-signatories say Trump is dreaming if he imagines he can scuttle the agreement.

But Trump's decision also faced criticism, with European Union foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini saying the deal is a robust agreement that is working and cannot be terminated by any one leader.

She underlined that Trump cannot kill the deal, saying: "the president of the United States has many powers: not this one."

Also critical of Trump's decision were British Prime Minister Theresa May, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron, who issued a joint statement Friday night calling the deal "the culmination of 13 years of diplomacy" and "a major step towards ensuring that Iran's nuclear program is not diverted for military purposes."

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