The Trump Paradox: “Making America Great Again” without the values that have made America great

The great paradox of President Donald Trump is that he promises to the American people that he will “make America great again” but in practice appears to want to do so without honoring and defending the values that have made America great in the past.

Following are opinions based on analysis of indisputable facts.

President Trump wants to make America great again while attacking the most respected newspapers in the country (e.g., the New York Times, the Washington Post, and the Wall Street Journal) as “the enemy of the people”. By libeling these and other newspapers and media outlets and leading an assault upon the press, he violates a central tenant of American democracy, Freedom of the Press, which is protected by the First Amendment.

Freedom of the press is central to any democracy, and is the first target of all would-be dictators and authoritarians.

He wants to make America great again by attacking a “so-called judge” who is a U.S. District Court judge appointed pursuant to provisions in the Constitution, and attacks other court decisions, including the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals decision upholding the District Court’s order staying application of his Executive Order on immigration, which would block entry to the U.S. from seven majority-Muslim countries, and refugees in general, for different periods of time.

He seeks to make America great again by cozying up to Vladimir Putin and Russia, who are conducting a full-fledged assault on American and European democratic traditions and institutions, who have rejected the United Nations Charter’s prohibition of the illegal use of force across international frontiers by invading and annexing the Crimea, and invading and occupying the eastern Ukraine, and who have continuously violated the most fundamental provisions of international and humanitarian law (“the law of war”) by supporting Bashar al-Assad’s war crimes and crimes againnst humanity in Syria, and by directly committing such crimes in that country themselves.

He seeks to make America great again by attacking the unanimous conclusions of 17 U.S. intelligence agencies that Russia intervened in the 2016 elections with the intent to favor his campaign, with the involvement of Vladimir Putin.

He seeks to make America great again by not criticizing Putin or Russia for anything, aside from issuing the mildest of possible criticisms when absolutely cornered by the press.

Above all, Donald Trump seeks to make America great again by conducting an all-out assault on the very concept of the truth itself.

By continually spouting major and minor lies, he appears to want to reshape the landscape of truth, so that he can dismiss any criticism, however factually based, by simply labeling it “fake news”.  All the while, he is constantly generating “fake news”of his own.

The Trump Paradox is glaring and screams forth from the heavens.

President Trump wants to make America great again while violating the traditions and values which, over the course of some 240 years, have made America great, one of the greatest nations in history, emulated throughout the world.

This matters.

We need to work and think hard in order to understand the truth, particularly the truth about where Trump is taking this country, and then to act with determination and dogged perseverance to do something about it.

The Trenchant Observer

About the Author

The Observer
"The Trenchant Observer" is edited and published by The Observer, an international lawyer who has taught International Law, Human Rights, and Comparative Law at major U.S. universities, including Harvard, Brandeis, the University of Pittsburgh, and the University of Kansas. He is a former staff attorney at the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights of the Organization of American States (IACHR), where he was in charge of Brazil, Haiti, Mexico and the United States, and also worked on complaints from and reports on other countries including Argentina, Chile, Uruguay, El Salvador, Nicaragua, and Guatemala. As an international development expert, he has worked on Rule of Law, Human Rights, and Judicial Reform in a number of countries in Latin America, the Caribbean, Africa, the Middle East, South Asia, and the Russian Federation. In the private sector, The Observer has worked as an international attorney for a leading national law firm and major global companies, on joint ventures and other matters in a number of countries in Europe (including Russia and the Ukraine), throughout Latin America and the Caribbean, and in Australia, Indonesia, Vietnam, China and Japan. The Trenchant Observer blog provides an unfiltered international perspective for news and opinion on current events, in their historical context, drawing on a daily review of leading German, French, Spanish and English newspapers as well as the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, and other American newspapers, and on sources in other countries relevant to issues being analyzed. The Observer speaks fluent English, French, German, Portuguese and Spanish, and also knows other languages. He holds an S.J.D. or Doctor of Juridical Science in International Law from Harvard University, and a Doctor of Law (J.D.) and a Master of the Science of Law (J.S.M.), from Stanford University. As an undergraduate, he received a Bachelor of Arts degree, also from Stanford, where he graduated “With Great Distinction” (summa cum laude) and received the James Birdsall Weter Prize for the best Senior Honors Thesis in History. In addition to having taught as a Lecturer on Law at Harvard Law School, The Observer has been a Visiting Scholar at Harvard University's Center for International Affairs (CFIA). His fellowships include a Stanford Postdoctoral Fellowship in Law and Development, the Rómulo Gallegos Fellowship in International Human Rights awarded by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, and a Harvard MacArthur Fellowship in International Peace and Security. Beyond his articles in The Trenchant Observer, he is the author of two books and numerous scholarly articles on subjects of international and comparative law. Currently he is working on a manuscript drawing on the best articles that have appeared in the blog.