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Rather writes: "There are forces at work that are destabilizing some of our core institutions with not nearly enough notice. And one of the most dire threats is happening at the State Department."

Dan Rather. (photo: USA Today)
Dan Rather. (photo: USA Today)

The State Department Is in a Rate of Collapse Unlike Any Moment in Our History

By Dan Rather, Facebook

12 November 17


ere's a story that isn't getting nearly the attention it deserves. With elections, North Korea, hurricanes, and bombastic tweets understandably dominating the nation's attention, there are forces at work that are destabilizing some of our core institutions with not nearly enough notice. And one of the most dire threats is happening at the State Department.

In a dangerous and complicated world, we need the best minds and most committed public servants working for peace, not just preparing for war. Diplomacy is a difficult art, and experience matters. But under President Trump and Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, the State Department is in a rate of collapse unlike any moment I can think of in our history. It's not just a matter of policy or priorities. It's the entire ability of the American government to exercise soft power and function.

In all my travels around the globe over the years, I have consistently been impressed by the men and women of the foreign service. They are by and large a credit to our nation. The hard and sometimes dangerous work they do goes largely unheralded. But we would be a weaker nation without them. And that is where we are heading.

This wonderful article from Vox should be required reading:

New data shows how the Trump administration is destroying the State Department your social media marketing partner


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+2 # indian weaver 2017-11-12 14:16
The nation is in a state of collapse, unlike any other period in our history. The USA is creating the planet's collapse, unlike any other period in its 5 billion year history. Let's not get petty, only considering Rather's myopic "state department" article.
+9 # chapdrum 2017-11-12 14:46
Instead of taking action to stop the Don and his band of seditionists, we get pieces like this.
Can we ever wake up? Bannon said at CPAC in February that all of the Cabinet (then) nominees were chosen for their ability "to deconstruct the administrative state." Rex is doing his job. And our "leaders" sit back and watch.
+7 # elizabethblock 2017-11-12 15:40
For someone with a knowledge of history, what comes to mind is the decimation of people at State with any knowledge of China, after the havoc wrought by Joe McCarthy.
+9 # PABLO DIABLO 2017-11-12 15:49
A massive military buildup = an Empire in decline.
-8 # LeDeux Art 2017-11-12 16:57
A national registry of all known affiliated groups mandated of all public servants and officials would resolve this Mr Rathers
-17 # Depressionborn 2017-11-12 17:11
state wants war. Trump wants peace. One will fail. We will be all the one or all the other. Which one is yet to be settled.
+11 # futhark 2017-11-12 17:21
"New data shows how the Trump administration is destroying the State Department"

And who is surprised? The primary mission of the Trump administration since its inception has been to put jack hammer and wrecking ball to the foundations of the American republic. They are succeeding beyond anyone's wildest dreams.

Time magazine's cover story for its November 6, 2017 issue is "The Wrecking Crew". Check out one of the stories online: "While Trump Is Tweeting, These 3 People Are Undoing American Government as We Know It"
+4 # Rodion Raskolnikov 2017-11-14 06:59
The "Wrecking Crew" is also the name of Thomas Frank's very good book on the Reagan administration.

Thomas Frank, The Wrecking Crew: How Conservatives Ruined Government, Enriched Themselves, and Beggared the Nation

Trump is a republican. This is what the party has stood for since Reagan. There is nothing new here. Trump is the logical consequence of Reagan. The demo party under Bill Clinton made sure that democrats did nothing to oppose the Wrecking Crew.
+6 # giraffee23 2017-11-12 17:42
Doesn't it seem clear that trump is collapsing all parts of democracy. Get USA weak enough, which will happen unless Trump is stopped, and China and/or Russia will take over.
-6 # Rodion Raskolnikov 2017-11-14 06:55
giraffee -- this would actually be a good thing for the world. The collapse of the US empire will come someday no matter what and the world can return to normal. If Trump accomplishes this, he will go down with the greats -- Lincoln, Washington, et al.
+2 # economagic 2017-11-12 17:59
Dan, despite your long career in journalism--or at least in TV news--I have been greatly underwhelmed by most of your posts on RSN, beyond the fact that I tend to dismiss anything originating on Facelessbook. But I think you're on to something with this one.

I don't do TV, but I happened to pass through the living room as my wife was watching the BBC interview on this topic a couple of days ago. Combined with the Vox article it makes good sense about bad sense: Apparantly Trump and his cronies see diplomacy as unnecessary for their plans if not a hindrance to them. This is consistent with other evidence suggesting that their plan is effectively to complete the unfinished "New American Century" project, ruling the country and the world as absolute despots through military force, and stealing as much as much as possible of the remaining wealth of the planet in all forms.

From this standpoint, impeachment probably DOES make sense, contrary to what I have been saying all along on the grounds that Pence would pursue similar policies if not the same ones but with some actual understanding of how government works.

But such a plan is not compatible with functional government, only with hubris and megalomania. It is unlikely that Pence would attempt to reinstate the "status quo ante," but there is some chance he would not aggravate the situation nearly as badly as the guys in the day care center, and he might even attempt to restore some vital diplomatic capabilities.
+2 # Rodion Raskolnikov 2017-11-12 20:12
I finally agree with Dan Rather. Tillerson is totally ignorant about what a foreign ministry does. He has no knowledge of diplomacy. Clearly he took this job in order to try to manage Trump. He still thinks he is CEO of Exxon. Tillerson is destroying the State Department -- not that it was any good before him.

The US state department needs a total reform. It has moved over to become a junior Pentagon or Junior War Department. It runs its own covert ops via its many front groups like USAID. But none of this excuses the ignorance of Tillerson.
+3 # chapdrum 2017-11-13 18:52
Right, and in what way does hollowing out the State Dept. not endanger the American people?
+3 # angelfish 2017-11-12 20:23
THIS is their Machiavellian Plan from the Beginning, to Undermine our Democracy from within the Heart of our Government, instilling Morons and Wanna-Bee's into important Agencies to Cripple and Destroy them! The ONLY purpose I can think of for their Treason is, to continue to collude with Putin and other Despots in this World and turn us into a Drone State Forced to do the Bidding of Lesser humanoids! I can't believe SO many Americans have been Suckered in by this Moron no less, and allow, nay, Facillitating Sexual Predators and Child Molesters into our Government with the FULL knowledge of people who KNOW better and in former days of Sanity and Reason would have kicked their Filthy a**es to the Curb! The Molester-in-Chi ef NATURALLY turns a blind eye on his brothers from other mothers and has Sanctioned this kind of behavior! Trump is an Ignorant, Incompetent, Megalo-maniacal Sexual Predator himself who TRULY believes that All women want him (?) and who ONLY seeks to Feather his OWN nest and leave the Working Poor swinging in the Breeze! Special Prosecutor Mueller's Hammer can't Fall soon enough! Until it does, Resist, Rebel, RePudiate!
+7 # relegn 2017-11-13 07:05
To destroy the US's ability to function as a government is the goal of those who wish to create a corporate state. D. trump and his wealthy allies are well on their way to achieve this goal.
+1 # Depressionborn 2017-11-14 10:39
re: " US's ability to function as a government"

The nation is the people, not their government. Special interests own "gov".
-3 # Rodion Raskolnikov 2017-11-14 06:53
I'm surprised to see that D.R. is not blaming Russia and Putin for the hollowing out of the State Department under Tillerson. It is just clear that Tillerson is the one Trump administration person who actually does have close business ties with Russia and with Putin personally. As Exxon CEO he worked with Russian "oligarchs" and sought Putin's support for Exxon oil contracts.

None of this can be established for Trump, but Tillerson is Putin's Puppet and has been for years.

It is really odd that no one is talking about Tillerson and Russia. Where is Bob Mueller. Where is the FBI.

It is clear that Tillerson is destroying the State Department -- could this be on the orders of Vlad. Putin? I'm sure D.R would think so. Maybe his Deep State bosses have told him to lay low on this story.

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