Paul Manafort, Trump’s fixer

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Paul Manafort, Trump's fixer

Who is Paul Man­afort, the man in charge of the Trump cam­paign? Mary Kate Cary explains,

When Trump hired Man­afort, The New York Times buried the story on page A14, with only a sin­gle sen­tence about his inter­na­tional polit­i­cal con­sult­ing; The Wall Street Jour­nal also had only one sen­tence. Sim­i­larly, The Wash­ing­ton Post ran a story in its sec­tion that cov­ers lob­by­ing, and it too ran just one sen­tence on his for­eign deal­ings: “Over a 40-​year career as a lob­by­ist and polit­i­cal con­sul­tant, Man­afort and his firms have advised, in no par­tic­u­lar order, a busi­ness group tied to Fer­di­nand Mar­cos, the dic­ta­tor of the Philip­pines; Vik­tor Yanukovych, the ousted Ukrain­ian pres­i­dent and ally of Russ­ian Pres­i­dent Vladimir Putin; and Lyn­den Pin­dling, the for­mer Bahamian prime min­is­ter who was accused of ties to drug traf­fick­ers. Now, he works for Don­ald Trump.”

The Post for­got to men­tion that Man­afort also advised “the despots of the Domini­can Repub­lic, Nige­ria, Kenya, Equa­to­r­ial Guinea, and Soma­lia,” accord­ing to a recent arti­cle by Franklin Foer in Slate, one of the few domes­tic news out­lets look­ing into Manafort’s, ahem, check­ered past. (New York mag­a­zine is another.) When the Cen­ter for Pub­lic Integrity pub­lished a 1992 report enti­tled “The Tor­tur­ers’ Lobby,” Manfort’s firm was men­tioned repeat­edly, Foer added. But for the most part, the story hasn’t bro­ken through in much of main­stream Amer­i­can media.

But wait! There’s more,

The Lon­don Telegraph’s cov­er­age (head­line: “Can Trump’s new cam­paign advi­sor do for The Don­ald what he did for African tyrants and a Ukrain­ian klep­to­crat?”) details his “extra­or­di­nary” ros­ter of clients, includ­ing Mobutu Sese Seko, the “bru­tal” dic­ta­tor of Congo who amassed a per­sonal for­tune through offi­cial cor­rup­tion, and Yanukovych, the ex-​convict who returned to power in 2010 as pres­i­dent of Ukraine. Yanukovych – “fre­quently accused of being Vladimir Putin’s stooge” – promised to sign an asso­ci­a­tion agree­ment with the Euro­pean Union. Once in power, he broke his promise to sign the agree­ment, trig­ger­ing mas­sive protests that resulted in the Ukrain­ian rev­o­lu­tion of 2014; Yanukovych fled Kiev under cover of dark­ness and went into exile in Rus­sia. From all reports, he’s still in Russia.

Why does it mat­ter that Trump is rely­ing on a for­eign lob­by­ist with such a ros­ter of unsa­vory clients?

As Cary explains,

Trump’s “Amer­ica First” for­eign pol­icy – regard­less of what you think of it – rings espe­cially hol­low if he’s sur­round­ing him­self with paid for­eign lobbyists.

I find ths alarm­ing because we’re talk­ing about the can­di­date who did not know (let’s hope he googled it by now) that the U.S. and Rus­sia are the only two nuclear pow­ers in the world to have three ways of deliv­er­ing nukes, i.e., nuclear triad capa­bil­i­ties, and that

The Pen­ta­gon has esti­mated that it will need to spend as much as $18 bil­lion per year over the next 15 years — for a grand total of $270 bil­lion — to mod­ern­ize the nuclear triad.

Yes, the same can­di­date who said he’d bal­ance the bud­get within eight years.

No won­der there’s resis­tance to Don­ald Trump among the GOP.

The Trump supporter’s reac­tion to such resis­tance has been crass; Ace is post­ing about bul­ly­ing,

Trump rep­re­sents an very stu­pid and dan­ger­ous form of author­i­tar­i­an­ism. Every­thing with him is force and bul­ly­ing. Riots at the con­ven­tion if he doesn’t get his way. His online trolls actively threat­en­ing people’s phys­i­cal safety.

I don’t get it — I’m sup­posed to be out­raged by Lois Lerner, yet amused by this? Why? Because this will only be vis­ited upon my ene­mies? First, that’s not prin­ci­pled, that’s just stu­pid trib­al­ism„ and sec­ond, it’s not true — the gen­tle per­sua­sions of author­i­tar­ian You Will Be Made to Buckle are already being vis­ited on us, and by “us,” I mean non-​Democrats.

I per­son­ally didn’t oppose the thug­gish­ness of the left just to be bul­lied by a new thug­gish­ness of the alt-​right.

There’s bul­ly­ing, and then there’s out­right dis­mis­sive­ness (“my way or the highway!”),

Way to unite a frac­tured party, skippy!

Fausta Rodriguez Wertz writes on U.S, and Latin Amer­i­can pol­i­tics, news, and cul­ture at Fausta’s Blog.

Who is Paul Manafort, the man in charge of the Trump campaign? Mary Kate Cary explains,

When Trump hired Manafort, The New York Times buried the story on page A14, with only a single sentence about his international political consulting; The Wall Street Journal also had only one sentence. Similarly, The Washington Post ran a story in its section that covers lobbying, and it too ran just one sentence on his foreign dealings: “Over a 40-year career as a lobbyist and political consultant, Manafort and his firms have advised, in no particular order, a business group tied to Ferdinand Marcos, the dictator of the Philippines; Viktor Yanukovych, the ousted Ukrainian president and ally of Russian President Vladimir Putin; and Lynden Pindling, the former Bahamian prime minister who was accused of ties to drug traffickers. Now, he works for Donald Trump.”

The Post forgot to mention that Manafort also advised “the despots of the Dominican Republic, Nigeria, Kenya, Equatorial Guinea, and Somalia,” according to a recent article by Franklin Foer in Slate, one of the few domestic news outlets looking into Manafort’s, ahem, checkered past. (New York magazine is another.) When the Center for Public Integrity published a 1992 report entitled “The Torturers’ Lobby,” Manfort’s firm was mentioned repeatedly, Foer added. But for the most part, the story hasn’t broken through in much of mainstream American media.

But wait! There’s more,

The London Telegraph’s coverage (headline: “Can Trump’s new campaign advisor do for The Donald what he did for African tyrants and a Ukrainian kleptocrat?”) details his “extraordinary” roster of clients, including Mobutu Sese Seko, the “brutal” dictator of Congo who amassed a personal fortune through official corruption, and Yanukovych, the ex-convict who returned to power in 2010 as president of Ukraine. Yanukovych – “frequently accused of being Vladimir Putin’s stooge” – promised to sign an association agreement with the European Union. Once in power, he broke his promise to sign the agreement, triggering massive protests that resulted in the Ukrainian revolution of 2014; Yanukovych fled Kiev under cover of darkness and went into exile in Russia. From all reports, he’s still in Russia.

Why does it matter that Trump is relying on a foreign lobbyist with such a roster of unsavory clients?

As Cary explains,

Trump’s “America First” foreign policy – regardless of what you think of it – rings especially hollow if he’s surrounding himself with paid foreign lobbyists.

I find ths alarming because we’re talking about the candidate who did not know (let’s hope he googled it by now) that the U.S. and Russia are the only two nuclear powers in the world to have three ways of delivering nukes, i.e., nuclear triad capabilities, and that

The Pentagon has estimated that it will need to spend as much as $18 billion per year over the next 15 years — for a grand total of $270 billion — to modernize the nuclear triad.

Yes, the same candidate who said he’d balance the budget within eight years.

No wonder there’s resistance to Donald Trump among the GOP.

The Trump supporter’s reaction to such resistance has been crass; Ace is posting about bullying,

Trump represents an very stupid and dangerous form of authoritarianism. Everything with him is force and bullying. Riots at the convention if he doesn’t get his way. His online trolls actively threatening people’s physical safety.

I don’t get it — I’m supposed to be outraged by Lois Lerner, yet amused by this? Why? Because this will only be visited upon my enemies? First, that’s not principled, that’s just stupid tribalism,, and second, it’s not true — the gentle persuasions of authoritarian You Will Be Made to Buckle are already being visited on us, and by “us,” I mean non-Democrats.

I personally didn’t oppose the thuggishness of the left just to be bullied by a new thuggishness of the alt-right.

There’s bullying, and then there’s outright dismissiveness (“my way or the highway!”),

Way to unite a fractured party, skippy!

Fausta Rodriguez Wertz writes on U.S, and Latin American politics, news, and culture at Fausta’s Blog.