I’ve Got No Strings

Some reading for this evening:

Nancy LeTourneau, Trump Is Making the Case That He’s Putin’s Puppet:

This is actually about a  country run by an authoritarian leader who wants to break up the kinds of alliances that have kept the global order fairly stable for the last 60 years and take us back to the “Great Power” politics that resulted in two world wars. Rather than standing up to that threat, our current president is playing the role of puppet to that leader …

Josh Marshall, We’ve Got a Problem. A Big Problem:

We have a President who clearly got a great deal of assistance from Russia in getting elected. We can argue about how important it was to his victory. But the reality of the help is not in any real dispute. His campaign at a minimum had numerous highly suspicious contacts with people either in the Russian government or acting on behalf of the Russian government while that was happening. That is a very generous interpretation. He’s doing all the stuff he’d have been asked to do if such a corrupt bargain had been made. At a certain point – and I’d say we’re clearly at or past that point – it really doesn’t matter whether we can prove such a bargain was made. I’m not even sure it matters whether it was explicit or even happened. The bank robber helped the teller get the job and now the teller just won’t seem to lock the safe or even turn on the alarm. We can debate forever whether the teller is just absent-minded or has some odd philosophical aversion toward locks. The debate may be unresolvable. It truly doesn’t matter.

Jonathan Chait, Trump Is Fulfilling Russia’s Dream of Splitting the Western Alliance:

“Senior government officials in Washington, London, Berlin, and other European capitals” tell Susan Glasser “they now worry that Trump may be a greater immediate threat to the alliance than even authoritarian great-power rivals, such as Russia and China.” Trump might be a greater threat to the West than Putin. Worse, he might be, in a sense, the very same threat.