One has to wonder, after Donald Trump's tidy wrapping-up of the North Korea situation (he did everything short of come right out and say "peace for our time!"), what all the fuss was ever about. It took only a few months (or forty minutes, depending on how you count) to go from the the brink of nuclear war to BFFs. Today the U.S. seems to be getting along better with North Korea than with Canada (or, frankly, any western nation). If dealing with North Korea was that easy, why hadn't anyone done it before? Maybe Donald Trump really is the master negotiator he portrays himself to be?
Um, no. The outcome of the Singapore summit is just another Trump flim-flam, and not just because the only tangible result it produced was a major unforced error by the U.S. Imagine if Barack Obama had done what Trump just did. The exact same words spoken, the exact same outcomes. What would be the Republican's response?
Happily, we don't have to imagine it. We know exactly what their response would be, because we know what their response was when Obama produced an actual verifiable deal for Iran to give up its nuclear weapons. They were absolutely apoplectic about that. It was a terrible deal! So bad that it had to be unilaterally torn up and re-started from scratch.
But the North Korea non-deal? The unilateral cessation of war games with no corresponding concessions from the North Koreans? The Orwellian re-writing of North Korea's atrocious human rights record? That is masterful statecraft. Because that was done by Trump and not Obama!
There was a time when politicians put country before party. In the 1970s, Congress overrode Richard Nixon's veto to pass the Clean Water Act. (Imagine that happening today!) Then a few years later, the Senate voted 77-0 to establish a select committee to investigate the Watergate scandal. (Ditto!) Donald Sanders, the man who discovered the existence of the Watergate tapes and arranged for that knowledge to become public, without whom we would never have known that Richard Nixon was, in fact, a crook, was a Republican.
Those days are long-gone. Today's Republicans stand for party loyalty over country, over the truth, ueber alles. Everything Obama did is bad. Everything Trump does is good. Never mind the actual merits, what matters is that Trump "succeeded" where all of his predecessors failed. Especially Obama. Oh yes, especially that illegitimate un-American Muslim-loving Barack Husssssssein Obama! Thank God that nightmare is finally over!