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President Trump: Diplomacy and Democracy in America
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By the end of the first month of President Trump’s Administration we are in a better position to evaluate the policies and direction of the new President. An examination of foreign and domestic policy, particularly from a historical and comparative perspective will provide insights about whether America is heading for a catastrophe as the mass media claim or toward greater realism and rationality. We will proceed by examining whether Trump pursues diplomacy over warfare. We will evaluate the President’s efforts to reduce US foreign debt and trade burdens with Europe and Asia. We will follow with a discussion of his immigration and protectionist policies with Mexico. Finally we will touch on the prospects for democracy in the United States.

Foreign Policy

President Trump’s meeting with the leaders of Japan, the United Kingdom and Canada were largely successful. The Abe-Trump meeting led to closer diplomatic ties and a promise that Japan would increase their investment in automobile manufacturing in the US. Trump may have improved trade relations by reducing the trade imbalances. Trump and Abe adopted a moderate position on the North Korean missile test in the Sea of Japan, rejecting a further military build-up as the liberal-neo-con media demanded.

US-UK meeting, in the post-Brexit period, promised to increase trade.

Trump moved to improve relations with China, clearly backing the ‘single China’ policy and proceeding to re-negotiate and re-balance trade relations.

The US backed the unanimous UN Security Council vote to condemn North Korea’s missile launch. Trump did not consider it a military threat or rising to the level of additional sanctions.

Trump’s policy of reconciliation with Russia in order to improve the war against Islamist terrorism has been stymied. Led by the witch-hunting left liberal Senator Elizabeth Warren, neo-conservative militarists and Democrats pronounced Russia as the primary threat to US national security!

The rabid, ceaseless mass media blitz forced the resignation of Trump’s National Security Adviser, Ret. General Michael Flynn, on the basis of an 18th century law (the Logan Act) that prohibited private citizens from discussing policy with foreign leaders. This law has never been implemented. If it were enforced, hundreds of thousands of American citizens, most especially the big-wigs among the 51 ‘Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations’, as well as the foreign affairs editors of all major and minor US media outlets and foreign policy academics would be on the ‘chain-gangs’ with convicted drug dealers. Never embarrassed by absurdity or by trivializing tragedy, this recent ‘Tempest in the Teapot’ has whipped up passionate calls by the media and Democratic Party operatives for a new ‘Nine-Eleven Style Investigation’ into General Flynn talks with the Russians.

Trump’s setback on his National Security Adviser Flynn has put the prospects for improved, less bellicose foreign affairs in danger. It heightens the risk for a nuclear confrontations and domestic repression. These dangers, including a domestic anti-Russian McCarthy-style purge of foreign policy ‘realists’, are exclusively the responsibility of the ultra-militarist Democratic Party-Neo-Conservative alliance. None of this addresses the serious domestic socioeconomic problems.

Rebalancing Foreign Spending and Trade

Trump’s public commitment about rebalancing US relations with NATO, namely reducing the US share of funding, has already started. Currently only five NATO members meet the required contribution. Trump’s insistence on Germany, Italy, Spain, Canada, France and 18 other members fulfilling their commitments would add over $100 billion to NATO’s budget – reducing US foreign imbalances.

Of course, it would be far better for all if NATO was disbanded and the various nations re-allocate these many hundreds of billions of dollars for social spending and domestic economic development.

Trump has announced a major effort to reduce US trade imbalances in Asia. Contrary to the claims, often made by foreign trade ‘experts’ in the mass media, China is not the only, or even the largest, among the ‘offenders’ in exploiting unbalanced trade with the US.

China’s current account trade surplus is 5% of its GDP, while South Korea’s is 8%, Taiwan’s 15% and Singapore’s is 19%. Trump’s target is to reduce the US trade imbalances to $20 billion dollars with each country or 3% of GDP. Trump’s quota of $100 billion dollars stands in marked contrast to the ‘Asian Five’s’ (Japan, China, South Korea, Taiwan and Singapore) current trade imbalance of $700 billion dollars in 2015, according to the International Monetary Fund.

In sum, Trump is moving to reduce external imbalances by 85% in order to increase domestic production and create jobs for US-based industries.

Trump and Latin America

Trump’s Latin America policy is focused primarily on Mexico and to a much lesser degree on the rest of the continent.

The White House’s biggest move has been to scuttle Obama’s Trans-Pacific Trade Partnership, which favored multi-national corporations exploiting Chile, Peru and Mexico’s work force, as well as attracting the neo-liberal regimes in Argentina and Uruguay. Trump inherits from President Obama numerous military bases in Colombia, Guantanamo, Cuba and Argentina. The Pentagon has continued Obama’s ‘cold war’ with Venezuela – falsely accusing the Venezuelan Vice President of drug trafficking.

Trump has promised to alter US trade and immigration policy with Mexico. Despite the widespread opposition to Trump’s immigration policy, he lags far behind Obama’s massive expulsion of immigrants from Mexico and Central America. America’s deportation champion was President Barack Obama, who expelled 2.2 million immigrants and their family members in eight years, or approximately 275,000 a year. In his first month in office, President Trump has deported just one percent of Obama’s monthly average.

President Trump promises to re-negotiate NAFTA, imposing a tax on imports and enticing US multinational corporations to return and invest in America.


There are numerous hidden advantages for Mexico if it responds to Trump’s policies with its own ‘reciprocal protectionist’ economic measures. Under NAFTA, 2 million Mexican farmers went into bankruptcy and billions of dollars have been spent importing (subsidized) rice, corn and other staples from the US. A ‘Mexico First’ policy could open the door for a revival of Mexican agriculture for domestic consumption and export; this would also decrease out-migration of Mexican farm workers. Mexico could re-nationalize its oil industry and invest in domestic refineries gaining billions of dollars and reducing imports of refined petroleum products from the US. With an obligatory import-substitution policy, local manufacturing could increase the domestic market and employment. Jobs would increase in the formal economy and reduce the number of unemployed youth recruited by the drug cartels and other criminal gangs. By nationalizing the banks and controlling capital flows, Mexico could block the annual outflow of about $50 billion dollars of illicit funds. National-popular policies, via reciprocity, would strengthen the election of new leaders who could begin to purge the corrupt police, military and political leadership.

In sum, while the Trump policies may cause some short-term losses, it can lead to substantial medium and long-term advantages for the Mexican people and nation.


President Trump’s election has provoked a virulent authoritarian campaign threatening our democratic freedoms.

Highly coordinated and endless propaganda by all the major media and the two political parties have fabricated and distorted reports and encouraged elected representatives to savage Trump’s foreign policy appointees, forcing resignations and reversals of policy. The forced resignation of National Security Advisor Michael Flynn highlights the Democratic Party’s pro-war agenda against nuclear-armed Russia. Liberal Senators, who once made grand speeches against ‘Wall Street’ and the ‘One Percent’, now demand Trump reject working with Russian President Putin against the real threat of ISIS while supporting the neo-Nazis in Ukraine. Liberal icons openly push for sending more US warships in Asia to provoke China, while opposing Trump’s policy of favorably re-negotiating trade deals with Beijing.

There are many hidden dangers and advantages in this partisan political warfare.

Trump has exposed the systemic lies and distortions of the mass media, confirming the distrust held by a majority of Americans for the corporate news media. The low opinion of the media, especially held by Americans in the economically devastated center of the country (those described by Hillary Clinton as the ‘deplorables’) is clearly matched by the media’s deep disdain for this huge portion of the electorate. Indeed, the constant media chatter about how the evil ‘Russians’ had hacked the US presidential elections giving the victory to Donald Trump, is more likely a ‘dog whistle’ to mask their unwillingness to openly denounce the ‘poor whites’– including workers and rural Americans – who overwhelmingly voted for Trump. This class and regional element goes a long way to explain the constant hysteria over Trump’s victory. There is widespread fury among the elites, intellectuals and bureaucrats over the fact that Clinton’s big ‘basket of deplorables’ rejected the system and rejected its coiffured and manicured media mouthpieces.

For the first time there is a political debate over freedom of speech at the highest levels of government. The same debate extends to the new President’s challenge from the enormous, uncontrolled police state apparatus (FBI, NSA, CIA, Homeland Security, etc..), which expanded massively under Barack Obama.

Trump’s trade and alliance policies have awakened the US Congress to debates over substantive issues rather than internal procedural quibbles. Even Trump’s rhetorical policies have aroused mass demonstrations, some of which are bona fide, while others are bankrolled by billionaire supporters of the Democratic Party and its neo-liberal expansionist agenda, like the ‘Grand Sugar Daddy of the Color Revolutions’ George Soros. It is a serious question whether this may provide an opening for genuine grass-roots democratic-socialist movements to organize and take advantage of the rift among the elite.

The bogus charges of ‘treasonous’ communication with the Russian Ambassador against Trump’s National Security Adviser Michael Flynn, while still a civilian, and the convoking of the Logan Act against civilians discussing foreign policy with foreign governments, opens up the possibility of investigating legislators, like Charles Schumer and several hundred others, for discussing US strategic policy positions with Israeli officials…

Win or lose, the Trump Administration has opened a debate on the possibilities of peace with a nuclear superpower, a re-examination of the huge trade deficit and the necessity to stand-up for democracy against authoritarian threats from the so-called ‘intelligence community’ against an elected President.

Trump and the Class Struggle

The Trump socio-economic agenda has already set in motion powerful undercurrents of class conflict. The media and political class have focused on conflicts over immigration, gender issues, and relations with Russia, NATO and Israel as well as intra-party politics. These conflicts obscure deeper class antagonisms, which grow out of Trump’s radical economic proposals.

President Trump’s proposal to reduce the power of the federal regulatory and investigatory agencies, simplify and lower taxes, curtail spending on NATO, re-negotiate or scrap multilateral agreements and cut the budgets for research, health and education all seriously threaten the employment for millions of public sector workers and officials across the country. Many of the hundreds of thousands of protestors at the women’s rallies and marches for immigration and education are public employees and their family members who are under economic threat. What appears on the surface to be protests over specific cultural, identity or human rights issues are manifestations of a deeper and more extensive struggle between public sector employees and the agenda of a privatizing state, which draws its class support from small business people attracted by lower taxes and less regulatory burdens, as well as private ‘charter school’ officials and hospital administrators.

Trump’s protectionist measures, including export subsidies, pit the domestic manufacturers against multi-billion dollar importers of cheap consumer goods.

Trump’s proposals for deregulated oil, gas, timber, more agro-mineral exports and major infrastructure investments are supported by bosses and workers in those sectors. This has provoked a sharp conflict with environmentalists, community-based workers and producers, indigenous peoples and their supporters.

Trump’s initial effort to mobilize domestic class forces opposed to continued budget-draining overseas warfare and in support of market relations-based empire building has been defeated by the combined efforts of the military-industrial complex, the intelligence apparatus and their supporters in a liberal-neo-conservative-militarist political elite coalition and their mass supporters.


The evolving class struggle has deepened and threatens to tear apart the constitutional order in two directions: The conflict can lead to an institutional crisis and toward the forceful ouster of an elected president and the installation of a hybrid regime, which will preserve the most reactionary programs of both sides of the class conflict. Importers, investors and workers in extractive industries, supporters of privatized educations and healthcare, warmongers and members of the politicized security apparatus may take total control of the state. On the other hand, if the class struggle can mobilize the public sector workers, workers in the commercial sector, the unemployed, the anti-war democrats and progressive IT entrepreneurs and employers dependent on skilled immigrants, as well as scientists and environmentalists into a massive movement willing to support a living wage and unify around common class interests, deep systemic change becomes possible. In the medium term, the unification of these class movements can lead to a progressive hybrid regime.

(Republished from The James Petras Website by permission of author or representative)
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  1. Agent76 says:

    February 19, 2017 The Stakes for Trump and All of Us

    We need to understand, and so does President Trump, that the hoax “war on terror” was used to transform intelligence agencies, such as the NSA and CIA, and criminal investigative agencies, such as the FBI, into Gestapo secret police agencies. Trump is now threatened by these agencies, because he rejects the neoconservative’s agenda of US world hegemony that supports the gigantic military/security annual budget.

    • Replies: @Inertiller
  2. @Agent76

    No, no. Trump has been vetted (not threatened) by the investigative agencies. The idea that he is being threatened is fake – part of the relentless effort to deify whomever is in the White House – both the “professional” right and left do this in their social media dispensaries – since their role is to sustain the fake front of electoral politics. No one should buy it anymore, but if social media is any indication, many people still believe the fraud of US Democracy, and the President is a maverick of some sort. They love a good bunch of crap, and Paul Craig Roberts delivers. Whatever happened to the prediction that Trump wouldn’t appoint “Wall Street people” to his cabinet? Senility apparently. And where there’s Goldman Sachs, there’s the blowing up other countries.

    Trump was groomed, he’s a made man. He is who the media, the deep state and the PTB wanted. The louder they “attack” one another, the higher the ratings. Trump is the best thing to happen recently to Paul Craig Roberts (and Paul Krugman.) Have no fear, Trump has promised to rebuild the world’s most expensive military, perhaps rivaling the epic-military-socialist paradise of the Reagan era and post 9/11 Bush/Obama. We will recommission the USS Iowa to have it blown out of water in the South China Sea. Make Unz Great Again!

    • Replies: @Agent76
  3. Agent76 says:

    Believe what you will and I will trust myself more than any one source. The two party system is a myth and anyone paying attention for over a decade knows this fact as I do.

    Feb 3, 2017 How Trump Filled The Swamp

    With promises to “drain the swamp!” still ringing in our ears, we have watched Trump appoint nothing but Goldman banksters, Soros stooges, neocon war hawks and police state zealots to head his cabinet.

  4. FKA Max says:

    Did anyone else notice, that the article is missing?

    It shows up here:

    It probably has to do with Mr. Unz upgrading the software/website:

    Actually, I’ve been very busy the last two months working on major changes in the software, and just loaded the new version on the website earlier a few hours ago.

    Given the huge number of changes in the underlying code, it’s been a very pleasant surprise that there have been so few problems that almost no one noticed anything different. Naturally, there were some bugs, and you apparently found one of them. With luck I should be able to quickly fix them once people find them.

    After everything seems to be working properly, I’ll put up an Announcement describing the software release and the various new features added.

  5. joe webb says:

    more Class Struggle obsession and not a word about Race. Ergo, a useless piece, yet again, from another old leftie.
    There is a class problematic here, and in Europe, but Race is far more important, even if it is the invisible giant in the semi-unconscious living room of the White brain. It is totally conscious in Black , brown, and yellow brains. And Jew brains as well. Jews wage war against Whites always.

    The Dem Party is the party of the minority racists, with jews cheerleading the looters, border jumpers, welfare cheats, and chink anchor babies, the latter being the most dangerous in the long run especially cuz they are smart and totally Orientally Despotic.

    No other race but Whites invented democracy, free speech, rule of law, and the rest of political civility. Never mind all the tech and science, etc.

    Only whites have the genetic propensity for political liberty. Class Struggle can be easily overcome with a harmony of hierarchy, as long as the wealth is shared out…but only among whites.

    Joe Webb

    • Replies: @Che Guava
    , @iffen
  6. Alden says:

    “progressive IT entrepreneurs” would rather die than employ the most skilled, innovative genius White American instead of the most mediocre Indian or Chinese programmer who can’t even write usable code.

    Anyway, since the top colleges no longer accept White American men into their STEM programs, there will soon be no White Anerican men in tech.

    Affirmative action against White Americans is at the root of all our problems.

    Take it from one who remembers when Cupertino, Los Altos, Mountain view were 99 percent White, when White American male math and STEM students had jobs lined up fall of senior year, the IT and STEM ibdustries are totally committed to
    No Whites Need Apply.

    Many articles writers don’t appear to live in the real world.

    Like farmers, food processors, supermarkets and restaurants, IT and STEM are totally and irrevocably and forever committed to never hiring White Americans.

  7. The choices in 2016 selection of “president” were: Obamina and white Obama.
    White Obama was selected, stability and continuity of nobelized mass murderer will continue.

  8. The two party system is a myth and anyone paying attention for over a decade knows this fact as I do.

    You write excellent comments. However, the two party myth goes back much further.

    “Well, these … men, whether they were Democrats or Republicans, were willing to do anything to help each other. They were all in the same boat, regardless of party, and so they made rules and did things to help each other get elected…”

    -Jeanette Rankin, interview, 1972
    © 1974 by The Regents of the University of California

    Rankin, running as a Republican Progressive, was the first woman voted to congress and was the only congressperson to vote against US entry into WW1. She was also the only one to vote against the war against Japan after the attack on Pearl Harbor.

    Our democracy is but a name. We vote? What does that mean? It means that we choose between two bodies of real, though not avowed, autocrats. We choose between Tweedledum and Tweedledee.…

    Helen Keller,
    Letter published in the Manchester Advertiser (3 March 1911), quoted in A People’s History of the United States (1980) page 345.

    “In 1956, I shall not go to the polls. I have not registered. I believe that democracy has so far disappeared in the United States that no “two evils” exist. There is but one evil party with two names, and it will be elected despite all I can do or say. There is no third party.
    W.E.B. Dubois, Why I Won’t Vote, The Nation, 20 October 1956

    “”Pettigrew, you know the two old parties are just alike. They are both controlled by the same influences, and I am going to organize a new party a new political party in this country based upon progressive principles.

    -Teddy Roosevelt as quoted by R. F. PETTIGREW, TRIUMPHANT PLUTOCRACY , The Story or American Public Life from 1870 to 1920, p237

  9. Agent76 says:

    [Too much duplicative comment-spamming, including with repeated YouTube videos. Stop this, or your future comments may get trashed.]

    • Replies: @Agent76
  10. Che Guava says:
    @joe webb

    すAgreeing with much of what you are saying about the USA, but not everything about exclusivity.

    China also invented rule of law at times, and meritocracy, sure, there were many periods where they lost it, so did Europe.

    What became Zen in Japan, was essentially training for junior samurai to face death, much as Zen teaching has much beauty, that is essential what it was.

    The original in China was a monastic order that was very concerned with protecting the people against depredations of both government and bandits.

    I greatly admire the Western rules of law ideal (not singular), derived from earlier Rome, Justinian, or customary law of Germanic tribes, Napoleon’s Empire may not have lasted long, but continental legal codes (and Japan’s) are based on, or largely, based on, his code and system.

    Did you know that the American Constitution is largely based on the 1689 England and Wales Bill of Rights? Scotland had a very similar contemporary document.

    Lawyers in both places like to pretend that neither applies, and succeed by concensus, but both are never repealed, in America, judges want to put themselves above the legislature and Constitution, that is evil, not that most of the US legislature is not evil, starting with Hanoi Hilton broadcaster, John McCain. What a dangerous person he is.

    Late mediaeval to ‘enlightenment’ Europe favoured education in the classics, as did China.

    The old Viet and the Korean kingdoms tended to adopt the Chinese ideas on that, Korea had made major innovations

  11. @Che Guava

    I think you misconceive the essence of what Western lawyers mean by “rule of law” when they. Support it as one of the most important princilles on wgich their societies are based. It is not “rules” of law that is at the heart of the concept. What is of the essence is the attempt to protect the enforcement and interpretation of the law from a judge’s prejudices and personal philosophy or preferences. Of course the inclusion of the Bill of Rights in the US Constitution is what has made US judges’ task almost impossible despite the best efforts of originalists and strict constructionists.

  12. Agent76 says:

    Dec 18, 2015 Donald Trump Is The Establishment Candidate

    While his rise in the polls is attributed to his challenging the establishment and the political status quo, let’s look at the many ways Donald Trump, when it comes to his political positions, represents that very same status quo. From the Fed, to war, to civil liberties, the “anti-establishment”? Trump takes no positions not already endorsed by the establishment.

  13. Agent76 says:

    Got it! “Truth is stranger than fiction, but it is because Fiction is obliged to stick to possibilities; Truth isn’t.”  Mark Twain

  14. tom giles says: • Website

    He has a full Zionist staff, that’s all you need to know.

  15. joe webb says:
    @Che Guava

    there is also the profound difference between Social and Political. We are a social animal, but Aristotle went further and said we are a political animal, at least we whites.

    Social means interaction between folks of almost any type, interaction that is, not people.. Political means going farther and recognizing that Social is not enough. Not enough means that there are huge numbers of folks in any given community that will never know one-another and that conflict is therefore a problem, that the merely Social cannot address, and also, that the merely Social cannot address more complex common/ general problems.

    A rational person recognizes the need for rules and laws and civil codes that can keep the peace between folks in a particular community, can address Common concern, and of course can provide for enough unity to defend against outside enemies.

    Whites are the only race to have recognized the Political…basically secular, and Rule/Law based, and establishing Political Equality…not Social Equality.

    Solon first introduced law to Athens and secured a relative peace that was totally undemocratic, but folks recognized the need for it. Athens then proceeded to democratize over time, meaning only 3 generation males…and no barbarians, metics, or women.

    Better that some are free, than none are free. Oriental Despotism and African and to some degree Semitic despotism…no sense of The Political, just tyranny.

    Jews never invented any form of democracy, along with the rest of the other races. Today the left-liberals are on a tear to replace Politics, with Society. They want Social Equality (social Justice…which is utopian ) We are all One, I am you and your are me, and we are all together. This is madness. Equality madness, either within a race or between races.

    And let us not forget that Semitic religions are theocracies. Law for them is religious law to be written and enforced by priests. This law is not Political law. This is one of the reasons that Jews are no nutty, they , like their Arab cousins or brothers, lack a sense of The Political.

    Catholic Church law got itself straightened out cuz of ancient Rome, etc. The Protestant tendency is subject to confusion. Some of the evangelical types are theocratic types

    Joe Webb

    • Replies: @Che Guava
  16. joe webb says:
    @Che Guava

    “China also invented rule of law at times” Yeah but it was law from the maximum leader, no elections.

    Elections are the brilliant invention of whites that are about as calming and peace-bringing as anything one can conceive. Bourgeois! yelled the commies. And the extreme Fascists claim a mysterium that goes beyond common sense, like Evola.

    Blood and Soil is based not any mysteries, but on behavioral genetics. Dissimilar ethnics do not get along. Better to keep the Body Politic at least united in blood…that reduces violence. Just common sense, and again, it is all science and biology. No mystery here.

    Rule of law sanctioned by majorities. What we got now is rule of law by minority racists who hate us Whites. That, and white race traitor cowards and Magical Words of zero empirical validity.

    Joe Webb

  17. Art says:

    Trump moved to improve relations with China, clearly backing the ‘single China’ policy and proceeding to re-negotiate and re-balance trade relations.

    Did Trump’s switch from a two-China policy to a one-China policy have anything to do with China’s recent changed policy to NO imports of N Korean coal into China?

    This is hurting N Korea big time. They really need the foreign capital.

    Peace — Art

  18. iffen says:
    @joe webb

    No other race but Whites invented democracy, free speech, rule of law, and the rest of political civility.

    You forgot about the invention of Social Justice Warriors who burn with a puritan righteousness and determination capable of melting the sword in the right hand of God.

  19. Agent76 says:

    24.02.2017 The Three Trump Administrations

    Foreign and national defense ministries around the world, as well as embassies in Washington, DC, are struggling to ascertain who is actually in charge of the U.S. government one month after Donald Trump was sworn in as president of the United States. It is a fair question, considering the conflicting statements issuing forth from the White House, State Department, and the Pentagon.

  20. Che Guava says:
    @joe webb


    Your reply is interesting.

    I have read much of Aristotle.

    Agreeing with much that you are saying. Backpacking time overseas, I met a former Catholic seminarian, he had two theories that were of interest to me, and somewhat convincing, others, too, but am forgetting the details.

    He was a very talented theologist.

    One was that the OT Solomon never existed, that he was just a copy of Solon of Athens. I found his arguments on that very convincing.

    The other was that the sudden appearance of Christian communities around the Mare Nostrum of old was the result of conversions of Epicurean communes, semi-monastic at the time.

    It all makes sense.

    I truly enjoyed his talk, amateur theologian as I am, but he made convincing cases for both cases above, and one or two others I forget. A very brilliant failed priest and very depressed, privileged to have met him.

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