Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Overplaying the Weak Hand

 

If people keep getting away with outrageous behavior, if their provocations and incursions against decency and order are tolerated, for whatever reason, they begin to think that they’re in control. If their followers and those around them reinforce that impression, they risk growing deluded about their own authority and power.

Appeasement makes people foolish. Yes, it makes the appeaser seem weak, but it also misleads the appeased into imagining that they hold all the cards, and encourages them to raise too fast and bet too much. They begin to believe their own bluffs.

Until they’re called.

Are we talking about Iran here–

Yes.

or Pelosi’s delay-the-impeachment stunt?

Yes.

Published in Politics
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There are 9 comments.

  1. MichaelKennedy Coolidge

    Bill Clinton ignored repeated terrorist attacks, two in Africa, and finally the Cole bombing just before the 2000 election. He was able to get out of town ahead of the WTC attack and so was able to blame Bush. Bush was resisted as much as Trump was at first. His appointees were slow walked through the Senate and at 9/11 Rumsfeld had almost no appointee allies in the DoD. Bush made a serious mistake when he left Clinton’s DoJ appointees in place for a year, no doubt because of the difficulty in getting Senate approval. When Gonzales finally tried to clean house, the Democrats raised hell, ignoring Clinton’s firing of all US Attorneys immediately upon taking office, even though he was being investigated by one of them.

    The NeverTrump Republicans, what is left of them, forget this.

    • #1
    • January 10, 2020, at 9:19 AM PST
    • 15 likes
  2. Henry Racette Contributor
    Henry Racette

    Or maybe we’re talking about the whole trans/gender-identity movement?

    Oh, absolutely.

    • #2
    • January 10, 2020, at 10:06 AM PST
    • 3 likes
  3. Henry Racette Contributor
    Henry Racette

    [ Our friend Fred, recently of Ricochet, saw this post where I cross-posted it on Facebook — he and I are friends there — and commented that he thought Trump was a perfect example. I replied: “In order to overplay a weak hand, one must first hold a weak hand. And then one must overplay it. Neither seems applicable to the current President.”

    For those who are wondering, dear Fred hasn’t changed a bit. ]

    • #3
    • January 10, 2020, at 11:49 AM PST
    • 5 likes
  4. Jon1979 Lincoln

    The question going forward on the Domestic front is whether or not 2020 is going to be a 1972, a 1984 or even a 2004 for Trump. The Democrats always come off losing the White House thinking they still have the upper hand, and that their progressive ideas weren’t rejected, it was merely the bad candidate the last time who lost the election. They tend to not comprehend their weaknesses until they lose another election, and even there, it apparently takes three straight presidential election losses for them to really rein in the worst of their progressive behavior.

    So don’t expect any changes between now and early November, and really only a bigger win by Trump than compared with the 2016 squeaker is going to cause much of any soul-searching (and the questions even then won’t be “What positions can we back that the swing voters will support next time?” and more along the lines of “How can we do better hiding what we really believe from the swing voters?” which was what happened with Obama in 2008, and what they tried to do with Dukakis in ’88).

    As for Iran, the lesson the seemed to have taken from Trump’s reluctance to commit ground troops in the Middle East and his removal of troops from Syria was this was a guy they could roll just like Obama. What Soleimani missed was Trump may not be in favor of ground troops, but he also hates anyone trying to portray him as weak to the world. The Baghdad embassy siege, followed by Soleimani’s attempt to do a victory lap through Baghdad to show the Americans’ impotence after the pullback from the attack on the embassy, was where he made a slight error in misjudging his adversary).

    • #4
    • January 10, 2020, at 11:51 AM PST
    • 3 likes
  5. James Gawron Thatcher
    James Gawron Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Henry Racette:

    Appeasement makes people foolish. Yes, it makes the appeaser seem weak, but it also misleads the appeased into imagining that they hold all the cards, and encourages them to raise too fast and bet too much. They begin to believe their own bluffs.

    Until they’re called.

    Henry,

    So perfectly stated. This is exactly what the dynamic is. First, they create this false image of Trump out of their own weak self-image (the bluff). They repeat it over and over again until they believe that their own absurd policies and trivial candidates actually have something to offer. Finally, they scream and howl when Trump’s economy is the only thing that helps the people they claim to care about and Trump’s foreign policy is the only thing that hinders the people who are most dangerous in the world.

    Pelosi and company have been shooting up heroin called “All the President’s Men”. In their drug-induced stupor, they haven’t noticed that their articles of impeachment aren’t in the constitution and aren’t even crimes. They produced virtually no facts to support their contentions. Their process was a kangaroo impeachment and now they are whining about process?!

    Iran is in a vice. Trump hit them and hurt them. He backed off not to relieve any pressure but rather to increase it. He will bring the Europeans on board and ratchet up the pressure on Tehran even more. The regime will crack at some point.

    Regards,

    Jim

    • #5
    • January 10, 2020, at 12:45 PM PST
    • 4 likes
  6. MichaelKennedy Coolidge

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    [ Our friend Fred, recently of Ricochet, saw this post where I cross-posted it on Facebook — he and I are friends there — and commented that he thought Trump was a perfect example. I replied: “In order to overplay a weak hand, one must first hold a weak hand. And then one must overplay it. Neither seems applicable to the current President.”

    For those who are wondering, dear Fred hasn’t changed a bit. ]

    They will never recover from the knowledge that Trump is not one of them.

    • #6
    • January 10, 2020, at 3:43 PM PST
    • Like
  7. Steve C. Member

    Jon1979 (View Comment):

    The question going forward on the Domestic front is whether or not 2020 is going to be a 1972, a 1984 or even a 2004 for Trump. The Democrats always come off losing the White House thinking they still have the upper hand, and that their progressive ideas weren’t rejected, it was merely the bad candidate the last time who lost the election. They tend to not comprehend their weaknesses until they lose another election, and even there, it apparently takes three straight presidential election losses for them to really rein in the worst of their progressive behavior.

    So don’t expect any changes between now and early November, and really only a bigger win by Trump than compared with the 2016 squeaker is going to cause much of any soul-searching (and the questions even then won’t be “What positions can we back that the swing voters will support next time?” and more along the lines of “How can we do better hiding what we really believe from the swing voters?” which was what happened with Obama in 2008, and what they tried to do with Dukakis in ’88).

    As for Iran, the lesson the seemed to have taken from Trump’s reluctance to commit ground troops in the Middle East and his removal of troops from Syria was this was a guy they could roll just like Obama. What Soleimani missed was Trump may not be in favor of ground troops, but he also hates anyone trying to portray him as weak to the world. The Baghdad embassy siege, followed by Soleimani’s attempt to do a victory lap through Baghdad to show the Americans’ impotence after the pullback from the attack on the embassy, was where he made a slight error in misjudging his adversary).

    Iran’s best move is to steal a page from the Trump playbook. Ask for a face to face meeting in Geneva. Get some good old fashioned propaganda footage for the home folks. And continue their covert programs to destabilize the Middle East. 

    • #7
    • January 10, 2020, at 3:58 PM PST
    • Like
  8. Phil Turmel Coolidge

    MichaelKennedy (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    [ Our friend Fred, recently of Ricochet, saw this post where I cross-posted it on Facebook — he and I are friends there — and commented that he thought Trump was a perfect example. I replied: “In order to overplay a weak hand, one must first hold a weak hand. And then one must overplay it. Neither seems applicable to the current President.”

    For those who are wondering, dear Fred hasn’t changed a bit. ]

    They will never recover from the knowledge that Trump is not one of them.

    It’s not just that he’s not one of them: it’s that he’s done what they couldn’t. And turned out more conservative than any of their preferred standard-bearers. To the point where ~95% of Republicans side with Trump over them. They haven’t been utterly repudiated and humiliated just by Trump himself, but by all of the rest of us.

    • #8
    • January 10, 2020, at 4:07 PM PST
    • 4 likes
  9. Ed G. Member
    Ed G. Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Phil Turmel (View Comment):

    MichaelKennedy (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    [ Our friend Fred, recently of Ricochet, saw this post where I cross-posted it on Facebook — he and I are friends there — and commented that he thought Trump was a perfect example. I replied: “In order to overplay a weak hand, one must first hold a weak hand. And then one must overplay it. Neither seems applicable to the current President.”

    For those who are wondering, dear Fred hasn’t changed a bit. ]

    They will never recover from the knowledge that Trump is not one of them.

    It’s not just that he’s not one of them: it’s that he’s done what they couldn’t. And turned out more conservative than any of their preferred standard-bearers. To the point where ~95% of Republicans side with Trump over them. They haven’t been utterly repudiated and humiliated just by Trump himself, but by all of the rest of us.

    And that was in the making long before Trump started running for president as a Republican. ABR? Tea Party? Frustration at the live-to-fight-another-day chorus? Revulsion at the hide-our-real-beliefs-so-we-don’t-scare-the-middle strategy? Wasting the historic sweep of all branches? Check, check, check, check, and check. 

    • #9
    • January 11, 2020, at 9:22 AM PST
    • 2 likes