Thread: USA viewed as 'client state' under political and economic control of Russia.

Already it's exhibiting characteristics of a "post-socialist' / "2nd world" country.

Some characteristics of the worst-off of them? Let a Southeast Asia wonk note some similarities! [1/20]
1. "State Capture:" consolidation of one-party rule under a pretense of multiparty democracy.

(Russian interference on behalf of Trump, Repub gerrymandering, voter 'fraud' laws to suppress Dem turnout.)
2. Complete repudiation of prior political regime.

(Trump's zeal to undo all Obama administration achievements i.e Iran Deal, Affordable Care Act) [3/20]
3. Regulatory capture: appointed state regulators are frequently the biggest crooks in the area they exercise oversight for, or... quickly become so.

(#ScottPruitt, #RyanZinke, #BetsyDevos, etc.) [4/20]
4. Elite of ruling party flout existing transparency mechanisms/norms, and actively work to suppress them.

(Consistent failure of Trump to file income tax returns. Kushner's repeated omissions on security clearance. Pruitt's secret meetings with industry reps.) [5/20]
5. Resurgence and (political exploitation) of religious conservatism

(Anti-Muslim hysteria, '#MuslimBan' push to criminalize abortion) [6/20]
6. Appointment of family as top political aides / successors.

(Jared, Ivanka. This would have sunk Trump if announced in 2015.) [7/20]
7. Erasure of divisions between personal wealth and political motive.

(#Emoluments: Mar-a-Lago as 'Winter White House', Trump's continued promotion of his properties) [8/20]
8. Powerful economic interests / oligarchs directly write and submit laws that benefit their interests.

(#NRA 'dark money' Treasury Department decision) [9/20]
9. Deference/obedience of judicial appointees to appointing official(s).

(SCOTUS nominee #Kavanaugh certainly had a talk similar to the 'I want loyalty' Comey discussion.) [10/20]
10. Paper / Media 'Of Record' is State owned/run and unabashedly supportive of the ruling party.

(Fox News - not owned by Trump but by comrades. Ailes was campaign advisor.) [11/20]
11. Rumors are 'flipped' by State Media into news stories, which are then used as objective facts to smear/suppress opponents.

(Fox News) [12/20]
12. Executive openly abuses women, appoints abusers to power, rolls back socialist-era goals/laws on gender equality. Oligarchs threaten female stars / celebrities into coercive relationships.

(Roger Ailes, Cohen's hush money payments.) [13/20]
13. Ruling elite is insulated from public by bodyguards, state security, wealth

(Bogus 'Civility' debate, Scott Pruitt's 1st class plane trips) [14/20]
Next up: Thought you were outraged? They're just getting started. [15/20]
14: 'Asset stripping': expropriation / sale of natural resources / land at bargain prices to cronies

(Dana Rohrabacher has suggested returning Alaska to Russia. After Helsinki, are you surprised anymore?) [16/20]

15. Use of elections as a means to draw out and suppress political opposition.

(Let's see what happens to figurehead .@Ocasio2018. Fingers crossed.) [17/20]
16. "Absolute power, absolute control." Power (as exercised) is not derived from the will of the people manifested in elected officials: it reverts direction and flows upward to consolidate with Executive Branch/leader. [18/20]
17. Exaltation of military prowess, exercise of military power to distract population as well as accomplish elite goals.

(Iran war? Russia would like that.) [19/20]
18. Relegation of minority group / non majority ethnicity as scapegoat for social issues. (Manufactured migrant crisis when illegal migration is at historic low (Happening now and will accelerate. I should have started with this.)) [20/20]
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