That was then, this is now

A Cincinnati newspaper printed a malevolent editorial proclaiming that [Andrew] Jackson’s mother was a common prostitute brought to this country by British soldiers.  thereupon she married a mulatto man with whom she had several children, among them Andrew Jackson.  Apprised of this far-fetched, scandalous tale, [John Quincy] Adams thought it absurd, but cynically went on to comment that even if proved true it would probably not hurt Jackson.  The course of the campaign seemed to substantiate all Adams’s apprehensions that fervent partisanship was demolishing reasonableness, a slugfest of calumny and lies replacing political civility.  Vice was triumphing over virtue.  And the cynicism expressed in his reaction to the malignant piece regarding Jackson’s mother and his birth signaled that he had begun to doubt the probity of the republic and its citizens.

That is from the very good book by William J. Cooper, The Lost Founding Father: John Quincy Adams and the Transformation of American Politics.


Wait a minute, I thought Alexander Hamilton was the mulatto, not Andrew Jackson ...

Oh, my God, I was lied to by my $900 Broadway ticket!

Perhaps it means that Jackson’s mother got knocked up by an Irishman since the Irish used to be black back then. I dunno, history is just a social construct anyway.

'history is just a social construct anyway'

Ask an American who won the War of 1812, and then ask a Canadian.

Who is right?

Just performed half of the test:

"The what? Who was fighting?...I don't know."

Now to find a Canadian.

History is obviously a social construct, so what?

Life and consciousness are also social constructs.

It was a draw so if they say anyone, then they are both wrong.

The Canadian who says "we did" is doubly wrong.

"Ask an American who won the War of 1812,"

The French.

The Irish are certainly part of the African race. Especially that O'bama fellow.

That joke was dumb even in 2008 where it came from.

I liked that joke. This site could use a few 'dad' jokes now and then to lighten things up. Part irish, btw.

On the on hand, politicking using scurrilous rumors, dirty tricks, and fake news is almost as old as the Republic. We could say that the political environment of the last few decades is merely the country returning to the way it used to be in the early 19th century.

OTOH those years of extreme partisanship led to the country sliding into Civil War.

Hopefully, since the political parties only control a tiny fraction of government and can influence an even smaller fraction of policy, the stakes are lower and it won’t come to that. On the other hand, people sure seem to be filled with hatred and those that actually do hold power don’t seem properly frightened of pissing off the peasants with their pitchforks, so who knows.

Hatred and violence are the hallmarks of the left.

OTOH those years of extreme partisanship led to the country sliding into Civil War.

No, they didn't. The sectional conflicts cleaved the extant political parties down the middle.

The Republicans were a new party.

Founded a quarter century after the midpoint of Adams' and Jackson's time in public life, when both men were dead.

"The Republicans were a new party."

Formed after the demise of the Whigs. Both the Whigs and the Democrats had both supporters and opponents of slavery.

"No, they didn't. The sectional conflicts cleaved the extant political parties down the middle."

Correct, I was skipping over all that for the sake of conciseness.

But what remains true about the dangers of hyper-partisanship is that divides such as that one led to Civil War instead of a political solution. Most other countries were able to abolish slavery without fighting a Civil War. The US political system was unable to accomplish that, resulting in hundreds of thousands of deaths.

As I remarked to TC by email, well before Trump was elected, and I have saved the email to prove it, Trump reminds me of Andrew Jackson, and I said as much on this board. Sure enough, proving Trump or one of his minions reads this blog, after Trump got elected he put a portrait of Jackson in the Oval Office.

A good book to read is this one, I'm about half done with the Kindle edition (slow reading it): "The Birth of Modern Politics: Andrew Jackson, John Quincy Adams, and the Election of 1828". Jackson makes Trump seem moderate. Besides defying the Supreme Court over the Am. Indian relocation (which a commentator in another thread said was borderline legal, not clearly illegal), Jackson dueled with several men, killing at least one, and dealt savagely with alleged deserters in the one-sided Battle of New Orleans (fought after the war of 1812 was already over, due to lack of communications, and the British stupidly died assaulting heavily defended positions), executing them (he was omitted by the Louisiana legislature in a public letter of thanks, and fined by a court $1000 for contempt of court after the war was over, a big sum back when people worked for less than $1 a day), but the public loved him, including the shady Aaron Burr. The hoi polloi just love dictators like Jackson and Trump. Jackson further destroyed the useful 2nd Bank of the US (Biddle), which, though I feel money is neutral and banks don't really add that much value, did usefully smooth out the credit cycle in rural early America.

Bonus trivia: what was the population of the USA in 1828? A mere 12 million! Amazing.

Well isn't the 1828 Jackson/Adams battle in weird parallel to Trump/HRC battle in which Jackson/Trump evidently pushed out the legacy political figure for prior eras? (Although Trump was born into wealth which is completely opposite of Jackson and HRC was really born in the (upper) middle class. She was legacy by marriage not by birth.)

In reality, I don't see Trump as extreme and frankly find him fitting the Douthat 'Phantom Autocrat' that talks really big but really make small changes.

Trump's actual policies that he's been able to implement, due to institutional checks and balances, have been pretty normal Republican stuff. What makes him awful is the person, and the symbolism. But he's not the end of the world, or the nation. He's just terrible.

A conventional Republican administration would have to spend quite a bit of time reversing Trump policies.

- end the trade wars, build trade agreements

- eliminate new restrictions on *legal* immigration, especially on graduates of US universities.

- re-establish American leadership of NATO

- re-establish a linkage between human rights and democracy worldwide. It's not just good, it's a competitive advantage.

Trump has actually moved us as far towards oligarchy as our system and his incompetence allows.

And I am old enough to remember when oligarchy was not a Republican value.

Fair enough, some of his stuff is typical Democratic policy too.

His coal bailout is more like something out of the British Labour party.

Oh yeah, ideally Republicans would want to deregulate energy and restore faith in the FBI.

Whatever Junipero Serra may have done in his life to deserve repudiation by Stanford University, he was a saint compared to the malevolent Andrew Jackson. Jackson's treatment of native and African Americans is a stain on America. Yet, Jackson has been lionized by both Arthur Schlesinger Jr. and Sean Wilentz. The two historians credit Jackson for the rise of democracy in America (Rise of Democracy is the title of one of Wilentz's books); indeed, that's the contrast between Jackson and Adams (a republican). John Quincey Adams, the son of John Adams, spent his formative years among the believers in reason, including Jefferson and those in Europe while his father served as ambassador to France. Jackson, not so much. Schlesinger and Wilentz overlook Jackson's very dark side because they credit Jackson with promoting a more democratic government than what the founders contemplated, even though it was a populist government that reflected the dark side of America. Trump is Jackon's heir because Trump, like Jackson, reflects the dark side of both America and democracy itself.

It is almost as though historical figures were real people with both good and bad elements to their character.

Like all of us, historical figures muddle through and are blinded to things outside of their experience. Jackson did break a loose cabal of elitists running the Republic. Absent someone like him, we may well have seen repeated outbreaks of Shay's Rebellion-esque conflicts.

Yeah Jackson sold his soul to slavery and was pretty terrible on a lot of things. Yet today we have a lot of Democrats who take positive glee at ruining the lives of people they disagree with about race or religious morality. We have many politicians who support "organic food" that kills a few million globally, let alone the potential epidemics from anti-vaccine stuff.

Every politician eventually becomes a villain to someone.

"Yet today we have a lot of Democrats who take positive glee at ruining the lives of people they disagree with about race or religious morality."

Right, kicking Alex Jones off Twitter is just like genocide.

Bad faith

Did you actually read that comment? Would you prefer to discuss organic food as genocide?

I dunno, what would you call it when Europe's anti-GMO legislation requires African nations to choose between using safe technology to prevent losses of staple crops (e.g. bananas and peas) and or forfeiting earnings measured in billions of dollars?

The going rate for an African QALY means that we are looking a millions of lost QALYs. Europe's liberals and their idiotic opposition to all things GMO are literally burning the resources for more QALYs than the Rwandan genocide cause; and Europe is doing it every year.

'Europe's liberals and their idiotic opposition to all things GMO'

I'm not really sure how to break this to you, but it isn't just Europe's liberals who are completely uninterested in buying anything connected with GMOs.

Which is one reason the U.S. trade policy remains so vigorous in saying that GMO labelling laws are a trade barrier, since letting someone know what is in the products they are buying creates a situation where customers can choose between products.

For example, both the CSU and AfD reject GMOs (unsurprisingly, the Bavarians of the CSU insist that Bavaria will remain GMO free even if the EU allows GMOs), as of several years ago.

Rejecting GMOs is beyond stupid. And yes it does kill Africans.

I wouldn't say it's "beyond" stupid, but it's clearly a rejection of the science.

Oh please, labeling should be done for any deviation from accepted healthy standards. Unless and until you can establish some negative health effect the default should be that generally safe goods should require no special labels. Goods which deviate from the norm may optionally choose to label their adherence to standards above those required for safety.

Labeling is particularly inane as the exceptions are a mile wide and confirmatory testing is impossible (as you know ever genetic sign of "GMO" is found in wild food crops).

Somehow people who support mandatory labeling of "may contain genetically modified organisms" never seem to cotton to "may contain fecal bacteria" even the latter is much more relevant to human health and historically was true for organic crops.

I was thinking more of the bakers being fined >$100,000 for refusing to bake cakes for celebrating gay weddings. I am sure all the support from the liberal side of the internet for this penalties, more severe than allowed for most felonies, was my imagination.

Or perhaps we could recall when Brendan Eich was hounded out of Mozilla for daring to contribute to a political campaign opposed by liberal Democrats. I mean the fact that everyone within his organization said that he had never been disrespectfully or done anything harming them appeared to matter little to the outrage chorus who then celebrated his departure.

Or perhaps I could go on about when Gallaudet University decided to sanction their chief diversity officer for daring to believe not that gay marriage was wrong, but that it should be voted upon in a referendum.

Maybe the "had it coming to them"s I heard after the Family Research Council was the site of a low grade terrorism incident was all fine with you as well. Or when we had a mass assassination attempt of Congressional Republicans, I'm sure that and all of the above are the same to you as Twitter policy.

I get it, you dislike people and think everyone who opposes you gets what is coming to them. But I can still long for the days when people could think that the bakers were wrong, but didn't deserve death threats and chapter 11 level fines.

I get that plenty of people on the left can have good faith conversations, but this sort of dishonesty is exactly the sort of thing that galls me. Let's go for cheap rhetoric rather than engaging with substance.

How does organic food kill millions though?

It doesn't kill millions.

Organic food doesn't kill, anti-GMO rules do.

Golden rice, per basically every reputable scientific source, would save a few hundred thousand lives per annum if it entered into cultivation.

How exactly are the anti-GMO activists who literally destroyed the crops being grown for safety testing (and breaching the quarantine to boot) not responsible for delaying implementation? How are anti-GMO regulations not responsible for perpetuating basically a small city being slaughtered every year?

that happened on the UK which people define as "not European union"

That's the thing. You started with some reasonable comments on the bad old days, and then you shift this weak beer indictment of Democrats.

Your examples do not equal the Trail of Tears, no.

Using standard epidemiology about 250,000 children die per annum due to vitamin A deficiency. We have had well researched GMOs that could introduce large amounts of vitamin A into staple crops and prevent pretty much all of those deaths.

Some liberal protesters destroyed the experiments working to asses the safety of these crops. This significantly delayed the implementation of these crops. We finally had sufficient data to certify golden rice as safe for human consumption this year.

For calculation purposes should I treat these anti-GMO protesters like they spoiled a batch of vaccines or like they contaminated a vaccine production line?

Exactly how many thousand dead children would the calculations need to indicate before it is a "Trail of Tears"?

"Let's go for cheap rhetoric rather than engaging with substance."
Sounds like what we have now in the White House.

What, exactly, is the difference between democracy and populism? The distinction seems to be made based on outcomes rather than processes: majoritarian policies that I like are democratic, majoritanian policies that I dislike are populist.

I support economic redistribution, so the "We're the 99%" argument of the Occupy movement is an appeal to basic democratic principles. I support legally enforced accommodations for transgender people, so the assertion that the great majority of the population consists of cis people who're uncomfortable with exposed penises in girls' locker rooms is a manifestation of unreasoning populism.

>What, exactly, is the difference between democracy and populism?

When Dems win elections, it's democracy.

When the GOP wins elections, it's populism. And democracy is in GRAVE DANGER.

Are you goofs pretending that this populism is majoritarian?

Check some polls. I am not a historian though, and maybe this is typical. Are "populists" actually commonly agitated sub-majorities?

I always read populism as appealing to the modern version of the populares.

It’s more anti modern optimates / elites than actually about majority polling.

Either way it’s always been sheer idiocy.

I agree with your interpretation, but don't know why it would be considered sheer idiocy.

"the Populares sought popular support against the dominant oligarchy, either in the interests of the people themselves or in furtherance of their own personal ambitions. "

That's a pretty reasonable definition of populist. And it's in agreement with the current definition.

"populist - a member or adherent of a political party seeking to represent the interests of ordinary people."

It's become a slur, but frankly I don't know why. Certainly, Democrats & Republicans have always claimed to be populists, even when they clearly weren't.

I think my objection to populism is based on two things:

1) it tends towards anti-liberty. Against freedom of speech, freedom of association, freedom of commerce. We rightly expanded the franchise. But it allows for anti-liberty politics to flourish, and we have to guard against it.

2) it tends to scapegoat outgroups for intrinsic problems (memetic violence). Populism seems to follow a pattern of sacrificing some outgroup on the alter of blame. In Europe it’s often Jews, in the Muslim world its...also Jews, in Pakistan it’s Indians, in America it’s Latino immigrants, in South America it’s the non mestizos, in China it’s the Japanese....

This denial of reality via performing a sacrificial memetic (metaphorical) violence ritual is completely antithetical to solving the actual root causes. And it’s irrational and absurd.

Back when universal or near-universal adult male suffrage was achieved in the more democratic European countries, around the turn of the 20th Century, there were tons of books, articles, studies, and the like by the bourgeios set about "the mob", "mass man", "madness of crowds" and so on saying that having to appeal to millions of voters would ruin and debase parliamentary democracy by having to appeal to public passions, those of lower education and social distinction, etc. Now, maybe that is true, but it goes to show that the distinction between democracy/populism (the manner in which Plato and Socrates talk about "democracy" generically sounds a lot like the way modern critics of populism talk about populism) has always been a matter of intuitive judgment rather than technical form. It doesn't help that "democracy" just means "rule of the people", nothing about universal voting franchise, 50% + 1 controlling the outcomes and policies for the rest, and all the things in the US and UK that we associate with the parliamentary brand of "democracy".

Jackson supported slavery, and owned slaves. While president, he successfully supported the adoption of a gag rule in Congress that was intended to silence the abolitionist including JQA, who had been elected to the House after his term as president. Adams, not to be silenced, collapsed on the House floor after countless impassioned pleas against slavery and died three days later.

You can either think, "Slavery was Evil therefore everyone who owned slaves was Evil," or you can think, "tens of thousands of non-Evil people owned slaves, therefore slavery wasn't Evil."

There are other things you can think, but thanks for those two options.

Slavery has been outlawed time and again throughout history. It is not like the US Centric view is the only one.

In 539BC, Persian King Cyrus the Great issued the first ever decree on human rights. He freed slaves, declared that all people had the right to choose their own religion, and established racial equality.

But who was it, Lindsey Graham who would hate to learn buddy that he carried Persian genes?

King Cyrus “He freed slaves, declared that all people had the right to choose their own religion, and established racial equality.”

Take off the rose colored glasses, and see which Cyrus actually appears.

I’m not saying he wasn’t shrewd, and that he wasn’t one if the greatest administrative innovators in history. But he was a strongman conquerer who ruled ruthlessly via satrapies, enforced tribute and conscription. And his vaunted ecumenical pluralism was most likely to forestall rebellions.

Cyrus the Great respected the customs and religions of the lands he conquered. This became a very successful model for centralized administration and establishing a government working to the advantage and profit of its subjects. In fact, the administration of the empire through satraps and the vital principle of forming a government at Pasargadae were the works of Cyrus.

But anyway, that's not the main point. The real question is why slavery also reemerges throughout history.

Probably because while we have always understood it is evil, some have always been greedy.

Sure, slavery is evil. But killing people that you don't know is OK.

Is killing people you do know OK?

If you're talking about the drones, I agree it is evil. It is possible that I don't think or talk about it enough because I am so pessimistic about it.

I don't believe any American president fights the Drone War because he thinks it is good. He does it because he knows that if there is another big terror strike in America people will suddenly ask "did you do everything you could?"

So he makes the political calculation that he should keep fighting with drones to be visibly "doing everything he could."

Tragic, because it ultimately rests on the fear of a political retribution, not a higher morality.

Drones are evil?

What a vapid comment.

We’re at war with the Taliban and associated groups who shelter in Waziristan. Should we invade the sovereign territory of a nuclear armed state? Or have an under the table agreement to operate drones.

Killing a wedding party because one guest ia a suspect is evil, yes.

It sure as heck ain't due process.

There’s no due process in war for obvious reasons.

Also they’re not suspects...they’re leaders of the Taliban.

You want a rule where if Taliban commanders stay around civilians they’re untouchable.

Solve for the equilibrium.

You are confident that it is okay to kill a house full of people because someone assured you that a couple of them were "Taliban."

Maybe think more about that, and the bad loops that can occur when you trust the government to tell you who the bad guys are.

For extra credit imagine yourself as a guy in a house in Afghanistan or Yemen.

I don’t need to imagine how they’re identified as Taliban because I’ve been in the room.

I don’t need to be assured because I know exactly how it’s done.

And I’ve been the guy in ‘a house in Afghanistan’ directing the drone to begin with.

You are clueless.

did you choose to kill any innocent people? if so, you did something evil.

"did you choose to kill any innocent people? if so, you did something evil."

Sure, much like Truman and FDR did something evil.

All emotion and no logic. Solve for the equilibrium.

If any enemy can use human shields and be untouchable, then you’ve ceded the world to them.

Don’t cry though, we’ll make the hard decisions so you can assert your faux moral superiority on the Internet.

You’re Fucking welcome.

+1. His whole shtick is sanctimonious posturing. If you don't agree with him, you're evil, anti-science, yada...zzz.

To be fair, arguing that murdering innocent people is wrong is not exactly sanctimonious posturing and is to be expected in societies you want to live in.

"All emotion and no logic."

Quite the opposite. Emotionally, I find Hiroshima understandable and I can't make myself feel any anger towards Truman. Logically, I understand that dropping the bomb was an intrinsically evil action.

I don't know about the anti-science thing. I honestly think you must have me confused with somebody else. I don't particularly f-ing love science.

And don't tell me that the last six times that happened were all accidental.

Is built into the way the Drone War is fought.

I think you’re out of your element and have very little clue as to what you’re talking about.

Depending on the target, collateral damage can be acceptable. Obviously.

And they’re not suspects.

If you want a rule in war where collateral damage is always unacceptable then just advocate for surrender and be honest about it.

collateral damage can be acceptable.
Of course, if the one inflicting the damage is doing the accepting.

Yes, clearly the senior leaders of the Taliban would prefer that they would be safe and sound as long as they had human shields.

They would adamantly support any proposal that would allow them to murder innocents with impunity, as long as they can gather civilians near them at all times. Which is what they do.

The equilibrium of your moronic implied proposal would be that groups that are willing to use human shields would be untouchable.

The real world is messy. I’m sorry it disturbs your autistic faux morality bullshit.

+1. In war we must try to avoid civilian casualties if possible, but it is not always possible. That's war. If the Taliban don't like it, don't bring down buildings killing 3000 innocents.

The senior leaders of the Taliban aren't necessarily morons. They must know that being around civilians, whoever they might be, doesn't guarantee safety. The fact is that "being around around civilians" is a pretty normal condition for them. Autistic faux morality bullshit is what leads to objections to "destroying the village in order to save it". We shouldn't consider that the village is about 7000 miles away.

There will always be employers who want the benefits of operating in a high-trust society with advanced and expensive infrastructure without the associated costs.

As with Trump, there was a huge element of classist disdain in the opposition to Jackson. His speech wasn't genteel, and he didn't have a properly elevated background. Worst of all, he harmed our democracy by -- wait for it -- appealing to the common people.

I don't remember the part where Jackson sided with the Saudis to kill free speech.

Having come late to America I know very little of its history so, on Jackson and Adam I cannot opine but, with respect to “fervent partisanship was demolishing reasonableness, a slugfest of calumny and lies replacing political civility”, that which I often refer to as polarization profiteering, that I surely recognize.

Daniel Walker Howe's book _What Hath God Wrought_ is excellent. Here's Howe: “The presidential campaign of 1828 was probably the dirtiest in American history. It seems only fair to observe that while the hostile stories circulated about Adams were largely false, those about Jackson were largely true.” (242-43). (But not the one cited above.)

Howe's book is often contrasted with the books written by Schlesinger and Wilentz. Indeed, there have been lively debates about the contrast and which author(s) have the better argument. I think Howe, but see the comments to my first comment. I wonder if Wilentz (Schlesinger is dead) would be less inclined to lionize Jackson now that America has elected the populist Trump.

Man, the President of our country calls one porn star ex-lover ‘Horse face’ on Twitter and everyone gets so damn touchy.

These are definitely Strange Days, with headlines like:

"Pro-Trump pimp, Nevada GOP assembly candidate Dennis Hof dies after rally, birthday party with Grover Norquist, Joe Arpaio and porn legend Ron Jeremy"

It did manage to surprise me a bit that Grover Norquist was mixed up in there.

So yeah, we might again doubt the probity of the republic and its citizens.

Never thought things would come full circle and now it's the Left that lectures everybody about beer-drinking and sex.

Amen. Never thought the right would fall in love and in line behind a philandering New York con artist but here we are. Interesting times!

Remember when Reagan said of Gary Hart's affairs in 1988: "Boys will be boys, but boys can't be President"?

It's like a different country. But then again even 10 years ago mainstream outlets printed lines like this:

>"Hill's allegations — that Thomas pressured her to date him and graphically discussed sex and pornography — seem less explosive today. But they would reshape the debate on sexual harassment and usher in the "year of the woman" in politics."

I'd wager that this would be regarded as extremely "explosive" were it to come out within the past two years about a sitting politician or judge: allegations about behavior like this forced Alex Kozinski into retirement. Maybe the mid-90s through early 2010s were just a sexual free-for-all, and in 5 or 10 years we'll be there again after #MeToo dies down.

When Harriet Martineau visited the US in 1835 her guide knocked on the door of the White House and Jackson himself opened it. Later that day somebody tried to assassinate him.

These are my favorite aspects of early American life. Before the pretentions of the old world set in.

He also had a kegger that turned into an inauguration, killed several men in duels, and suffered from several dueling injuries himself including several bullets that they couldn't extract.

Jackson also shot the Cincinnati reporter cited in this post, saying, "My mother was not a common prostitute. She was an extraordinary one."

Your mother was certainly an extraordinary prostitute. Its too bad she made a extraordinary cuck as well.

JQ Adams was a good man but Jackson embodies the American spirit, warts and all.

Sadly, one could say the exact same sentence substituting McCain for Adams and Trump for Jackson.

Trump is indeed a modern Jackson, and an American Berlusconi. He won't be around forever.

No, but to the Dems, it will sure seem like it. Indeed, it already does.

(And the Ivanka and Don Jr presidencies will only make them crazier. )

To troll the libs right, you have to use something with even a shred of plausibility. Like 8 yrs of Trump followed by 8 years of Cruz or something.

I what world was McCain a good man. He had all of trumps flaws but simply lacked Trumps personality. If McCain hadn’t been a Trojan Horse republican you would despise him. Not to mention the delightful humor to be had in juxtaposing your comments about him in 2008 to your comments about him today. Adams was actually a good man not a terrible person who liberal like because he helps them politically.

What were my comments about him in 2008? Why was McCain a terrible person? This outta be good.

Keating Five. Divorced wife number one while she was in the hospital. Constant infertility notoriously rageful. Should I keep going? What’s going to be even better is you pointing out something Trump did that McCain didn’t.

So Trump is terrible, as is Gingrich. Copy that.

What a cowardly response. Low t to a t.

Surrender accepted.

Look at you all mad.

I'm not sure the sort of aspiring gleichschaltung incorporated into incidents like this:

isn't something of a novelty.

Politics has always been a slugfest, with its ups and downs. This is why it's important to limit their influence on our lives.

With the authoritarian right in all branches of government now, politics is more intrusive than ever. Immigration, like the war on terror before, is providing them the cover they need to unleash new ops against freedom and liberty. See TSA's new facial recognition tech rolling out to a city near you.

" authoritarian right" Orwell would be proud.

My favorite one of these is still the time when Thomas Jefferson's supporters claimed that John Adams was an evil hermaphrodite who wanted to marry his children to the English royal family.

Pre-Civil War partisan politics were pretty vicious and polarized.

Trump's favorite president is Andrew Jackson. Is it any wonder that Trump would view Mohammed bin Salman and the Saudis as friends and allies and deserving of Trump's admiration and confidence. MBS relies on the same confidence heuristic as does Trump.

You're just now finding out that Saudis are stupid and corrupt and we've cynically allied with them for decades?

Next, you'll be telling me Facebook inflates its advertising numbers.

Wasn't Trump supposed to drain the swamp? He could "renegotiate" this aspect of foreign policy like he keeps telling us he would do but if its anything like his previous "wins" a la USMCA or Obamacare, it would probably look 98% the same as before but with the Trump name emblazoned on it with a follow up tweet or two about how wonderful and amazing everything is now. If anything, Trump is more friendly to the Saudis than the Clintons and the Bushes.

Jefferson was the most two-faced back-stabbing politician of all time. The democrats called Abe Lincoln monkey man. I suggest you read Hamilton and George Washington.

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