Former TIME managing editor Richard Stengel told MSNBC on Friday that President Donald Trump’s government shutdown is making a mockery of America’s efforts to spread and promote democracy.
“We are the only western democracy, the only functioning big democracy in the world that has government shutdowns,” Stengel said, comparing the current paralysis in the U.S. unfavorably to Brexit. “The big picture in a way for diplomats is we go around the world preaching democracy telling people how to work it and they look at us and go, ‘you guys can’t even play this game, you can’t even keep your government open.'”
Stengel said one particular country was laughing more than the rest: Russia
“Every morning when Vladimir Putin opens up his newspaper and sees that the United States government is shut down, he smiles inwardly,” Stengel said. “This is exactly his whole policy for the past two decades, is to undermine the way America works, the way democracy works, so we can’t go around the world and say our system works better than these other systems.”
“I don’t know if he’s supporting the government shutdown,” Stengel added. “But he takes a lot of pleasure from it.”
Watch the video below.
Trump’s disordered personality fits into a disturbing historical pattern
I wasn’t surprised by Donald Trump’s rage-tweet attack on Reps. Ilhan Omar, Ayanna Pressley, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Rashida Tlaib, any more than I was surprised by the maturity and sobriety of their response. After all, Trump’s racism is legendary, and telling them to “go back where you came from” is not just textbook racism, it’s a schoolyard bully’s taunt. And a racist schoolyard bully is the sum and substance of what Trump is.
Trump tweets deranged rant about Mueller and the FBI as hearing draws nearer
On Monday, President Donald Trump tweeted an angry invective against former special counsel Robert Mueller, who is slated to testify before the House Intelligence and Judiciary Committees on Wednesday, proclaiming once again — falsely — that the report showed "NO COLLUSION, NO OBSTRUCTION!"
He followed up this outburst with complaints about a litany of villains frequently promoted by Fox News, including the Hillary Clinton campaign and two former FBI agents who were fired after having a affair and who supposedly were biased against him in text messages (though no evidence has ever shown they improperly influenced Mueller's investigation):
Trump busted for lying about not having ‘talking points’ about Dem congresswomen
President Donald Trump furiously denied reporting that his aides had supplied him with "reams of opposition research" about four Democratic congresswomen.
The president has been lobbing racist attacks at the first-year lawmakers since last weekend, and the Washington Post reported that aides had supplied the background research to urge Trump to question their patriotism and political ideas, rather than calling on them to leave the country.
"The Amazon Washington Post front page story yesterday was total Fake News," Trump tweeted Monday morning. "They said 'Advisors wrote new talking points and handed him reams of opposition research on the four Congresswomen.'"