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But I don’t buy the half-reassuring line that says Bannon has set his sights on Europe simply to compensate for his supposed estrangement from Trump.

Source: https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/jun/06/steve-bannon-far-right-radicalise-europe-trump?CMP=share_btn_tw

Can you help me with understanding the passage in bold? What does the author want to say? She does not fully believe that Bannon acts to compensate for his supposed estrangement from Trump?

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But I don’t buy the half-reassuring line that says X has set his sights on Europe simply to compensate for his supposed estrangement from the Orange Man.

Your interpretation is basically right. X is acting, not acts, though.

She does not believe the interpretation made by others that X decided to focus on Europe only for the purpose of compensating for (making up for) for fact that he is supposedly estranged from Trump.

to buy a line= accept an argument or interpretation half-reassuring=that makes something not "all bad", an x that is partially re-assuring

set one's sights on something=is taken from sights on guns or other weapons or telescopes, to have something as a target

Sorry, but I do not want to use those names as I do not want to be associated with those characters, even anonymously. :)

Something someone says or does can be entirely or partially re-assuring. half-reassuring means partially. It is not fully reassuring.

In other words, if X was only spreading his ideological crap in Europe due to his estrangement from the Orange Man, it would be half-reassuring in the sense that it would not be only for other reasons. She thinks it is for entirely other reasons. He is on an ideological mission. [what a hateful character he is].

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Exactly right.

"I'm not buying it/ I don't buy it" means that the speaker is not convinced of the validity of a statement (see this definition).

  • Thank you. And what about the phrase "the half-reassuring line"? Is that the opinion that has only 50% validity? – bart-leby Jun 6 '18 at 13:44
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    @bart-leby - That's exactly what it means. The word half- in this context could perhaps be replaced by "somewhat." – J.R. Jun 6 '18 at 13:47

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