"Trump failed because he picked bad people" is an insufficient explanation. In truth, he failed because his so-called populist project was a lie. He never wanted to drain the swamp, he wanted to profit from it. ft.com/content/cc5636…
Like Orban, Kaczynski, Duterte, Erdogan, Putin and so many others, Trump created fake culture wars to hide his real agenda: Personal profit, personal power, personal narcissism. Le Pen et al would be no different.
Also Chavez. The politics of greed and cynicism can be either Left or Right.
Here's what I wrote about Venezuela nine months ago: The country has been destroyed by Marxist socialism *and* by illiberal nationalism *and* by polarization
Chavez didn't fail because he picked bad people, although he did pick bad people. He failed because his political project was fundamentally mendacious, just like Trump's.

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More from @anneapplebaum

22 Nov
Why are so many senior Republicans going along with this farce? Why are so many of their friends in the media enabling this assault on democracy? I've tried twice to explain this phenomenon, once in my book, published last summer:
Also in this article for the Atlantic, also published last summer:
Both have been criticized, from the right, as overly harsh accounts of people who are "just doing their jobs." But as Trump's clownish attempt to steal the election continues, as other Republicans imitate him, I wonder if they didn't go far enough.
Read 7 tweets
19 Nov
This headline repeats a lie. The EU is not 'punishing' PL and HU for their conservative policies. They are requiring those two countries to abide by the law. Orban and Kaczynski are throwing up smoke, trying to create a culture war where there is none.
In fact the whole story is ridiculous. It quotes Polish and Hungarian officials without pointing out that they are lying. Same kind of reporting that led to Brexit.
Orban's main goal is to continue using EU money to stay in power and enrich his friends and family. Kaczysnki's goal is to keep undermining Polish justice so he can arrest his enemies and evade corruption charges. No point pretending this is about anything else.
Read 4 tweets
18 Nov
Hungary and Poland have vetoed the EU budget because of a regulatuon linking payments to the "rule of law." Why was this linkage considered necessary? Because both countries are in violation of EU standards on apolitical justice.
Hungary is in trouble for corruption: the country misuses EU funds many times more than any other country. Poland has illegally subjugated its constitutional tribunal to party control. Other EU courts are now questioning the independence of Polish courts.
Now, how are the ruling parties explaining this issue to their voters? In Poland, the deputy justice minister has said "rule of law" means Poland would have to accept "children being sold at markets" and gay marriage
Read 6 tweets
14 Nov
Wrong headline. Should read: American business leaders fear Trump coup, hold call to discuss it. on.ft.com/32KGTRY via @FT
"There was great concern about the president’s words and the national reaction, that it was leading to more cleavage in the country rather than less. None of them wants a divided nation. They don’t want fractured communities. They don’t want hostile workplaces.”
Amazing that the Blackstone CEO was so uninformed, did not know that absentee ballots were being deliberately counted late in PA
Read 4 tweets
8 Nov
Remember: she was a birther. Lying about the legitimacy of an elected president was how she got to be First Lady
All legal votes are being counted, right now. There is no evidence -none- that anything is going wrong. Calls for "transparency" are designed to make people believe something untransparent is happening. It's not.
there are glitches and mistakes, as there are every year. No evidence of anything else. Trump's lawsuits are being thrown out of court, one by one.
Read 4 tweets
4 Nov
the commentary would be: "Biden's pulling away...it's not even close...Trumpism has failed..."
"the postal ballots are flowing in from California and New York....it's an incredible landslide..."
this kind of take, for example, would be impossible:

Read 4 tweets

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