Let us spell it out:
E X P R O P R I A T I O N
Yes, expropriation. Remind me, wasn’t that a common practice in what some more uneducated Americans would call communist countries1?
Expropriation is the playbook according to which Trump is playing with TikTok. And the whole thing reeks of what the following German proverb embodies: Was ich selber denk und tu, trau ich auch dem Andern zu.2.
If Trump alleges that TikTok, owned by Chinese company ByteDance, could be forced to reveal details about communication of US persons under Chinese law, he’s merely accusing them of a practice that has been prevalent for a long time in the US and – until Snowden blew the whistle – was practiced in secrecy for the most part. So I’m not exactly sure what the issue here is, but whenever dabbling in international affairs it seems the US reserves special rights for its own citizens while trampling on the rights of the rest of the world3. Now that in turn reminds me of a concept from the dark ages of Nazi4 Germany: Herrenmensch. America, where are you headed? 🤨
- Obviously the closest that ever existed to real Communism was the War Communism in the 1920s under Lenin, perhaps with the exception of much smaller scale local experiments. But that doesn’t prevent average Americans and politicians speaking of socialist countries as if they were communist countries. Oh well. [↩]
- The meaning translates best to: That which I do and think myself, I will also readily accuse others of. … but the literal translation would be more come to expect of others instead of accuse others of. [↩]
- examples: FISA, ASPA, the Assange extradition case [↩]
- What was the expanded form of the abbreviation Nazi again, remind me?! 🤨 … any similarities with the heading of this post are pure coincidence. [↩]