Posted by Curt on 8 September, 2016 at 3:15 pm. 22 comments already!


The New Americana:

One of the biggest problems with political pundits, foreign policy wonks, and politicians themselves is that they don’t take into account the deeper effects of messaging. They think they do. They think they understand the effects of a particular message, but as has been made abundantly clear, anything they thought they knew in the past can be tossed out the window.

Donald Trump is almost certainly not beholden to Russian President Vladimir Putin. Yes, there are plenty of conspiracy theories and a strange number of connections between Trump and Russia, but a direct connection between Trump and Putin is highly unlikely. That’s been the lesser of two theories about why Trump has been saying such nice things about Putin for months. The more prominent theory is since Putin says potentially nice things about Trump (depending on how you read them), his self-centered narcissism compels Trump to return the favor. There’s a little truth to this, but it’s actually much deeper.

The reason that Trump continues to praise Putin is because average Jane and Joe Voter have conscious or unconscious respect for the Russian strongman. Most don’t like him. Most don’t agree with him. Most would be shocked if they did their research and discovered the depth of Putin’s depravity. With all this understood, they still respect him.

The American people view Putin as a strong, albeit evil, leader of his country. The media has hammered us in recent years with stories of Putin outmaneuvering and even bullying President Obama. We’ve been fed the propaganda meant for the Russian people with images of him striding triumphantly on horseback and working out like a prime physical specimen. We’ve seen world leaders condemn him and we’ve watched as he has refused to back down.

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