"He has neither the temperament nor the judgment to be president"
December 2, 2016 9:37 AM   Subscribe

The interval between the 2016 US election and inauguration of POTUS #45 continues. Donald likes an avid reader, but claims many bogus votes were cast and others believe it. Romney (previous, post title, transcript) emerges full of chocolate cake and glowing praise. The "swamp" continues to be filled, and despite 'leaving business' there are conflicts (multiple, many) of interest. There's recount news in Michigan, Nevada and Wisconsin. Amongst voter suppression news (more, more, again), recent tactics arguably worked (more), Michigan is trying to pass tougher ID laws, legal issues continue in North Carolina, and the fight will be a hard and an unavoidable one.

Housekeeping. Please...
- Don't go after each other, don't poke known sore points.
- Take it to Chat for context-free, exclamations and other existential reactions.
- Check before submitting a link whether it's already been done in this thread.
- Don't paste huge swathes of text from somewhere you're linking to anyway.
- If needed there are self-care recommendations from the mods, or try writing or commenting on a non-political post on MetaFilter, good nutrition, sleep or company, or walk away from screens and enjoy nature for a while.

For legacy content see the many posts tagged with election2016. The election reference wiki explains some of the terminology used in comments on these threads. There's also...

MetaTalk
* MeFi in the time of Trump - managing news.
* What are YOU doing?
* MeFites offering refuge for the holidays.

(And if you've been adding heaps of comments over the last many threads/months - or even if you haven't - then there's MetaFilter/mods who have been keeping content shipshape and live)

In other news, Lindsey Graham readies legislation, the electoral college vote looms, Adam Kokesh has declared to run in 2020, and retweeted "science" "news" does not impress Bernie.

Forthcoming US political events
* December 10th: Louisiana State run-off.
* December 19th: Electoral College vote.
* January 20th, 2017: Inauguration of POTUS #45.
* November 6th, 2018: Midterm elections.
* November 3rd, 2020: US Presidential and other elections.
* 7.6 billion A.D. (probably a tuesday): Earth destroyed by expanding sun.
posted by Wordshore (2430 comments total) 96 users marked this as a favorite

 
* 7.6 billion A.D. (probably a tuesday): Earth destroyed by expanding sun.

Nice. Thanks Wordshore!
posted by petebest at 9:41 AM on December 2, 2016 [46 favorites]


Four billion years from now, the increase in the Earth's surface temperature will cause a runaway greenhouse effect, heating the surface enough to melt it.

So use up your vacation days now
posted by Greg Nog at 9:43 AM on December 2, 2016 [21 favorites]


What kind of protests and demonstrations are planned for Inauguration Day, in Washington DC? Things could get really lively if enough angry people get together to make their voices heard.
posted by Midnight Skulker at 9:43 AM on December 2, 2016 [2 favorites]


Also recount news in Pennsylvania.
posted by rabbitrabbit at 9:44 AM on December 2, 2016 [2 favorites]


Military Frantically Googling Defense Secretary Presidential Order Succession after appointment of General Mattis as SecDef leaks at a Thursday rally. [satire]
posted by corb at 9:45 AM on December 2, 2016 [11 favorites]


Trump voter lost her home to new Treasury secretary: OneWest, a bank formerly owned by a group of investors headed by Mnuchin, had foreclosed on her Los Angeles-area home in the aftermath of the Great Recession, stripping her of the two units she rented as a primary source of income.

"I just wish that I had not voted," said Colebrook, 59. "I have no faith in our government anymore at all. They all promise you the world at the end of a stick and take it away once they get in."

posted by roomthreeseventeen at 9:45 AM on December 2, 2016 [22 favorites]


Oh wait, when I saw recount news I thought it was about the blocks. There are blocks of the recount being attempted in all three recount states. Michigan and Wisconsin.
posted by rabbitrabbit at 9:46 AM on December 2, 2016 [3 favorites]


Kokesh has called for a "new American revolution" and has announced plans to run for President in 2020 on the platform of an "orderly dissolution of the federal government"

Hahahaha good luck finding one in 2020
posted by beerperson at 9:46 AM on December 2, 2016 [11 favorites]



What kind of protests and demonstrations are planned for Inauguration Day, in Washington DC? Things could get really lively if enough angry people get together to make their voices heard.


Heard by whom? To what effect? I'm not against protest, but should there be a desired result? I guess I just worry that a massive protest will not change the opinions of anyone and be used to demonstrate how 'unhinged' the left is.

I'm pretty impressed at the protests (even though they are under covered) in regards to the pipeline, and I think the BLM protests have had great impact on raising attention to real problems... But a protest against the new president before he is being sworn in... Will this change how the legislature votes, or the actions of the incoming president?
posted by el io at 9:48 AM on December 2, 2016 [4 favorites]


So it doesn't get lost in the bottom of the previous thread, I thought the Tyndall Report on Big Three TV news coverage of issues in the past eight presidential election seasons was really telling:

year (mins) Total ABC CBS NBC
1988 117 36 40 42
1992 210 112 38 60
1996 98 29 53 17
2000 130 45 39 46
2004 203 40 119 44
2008 220 41 119 66
2012 114 13 70 32
2016 (YTD) 32 8 16 8
posted by rabbitrabbit at 9:49 AM on December 2, 2016 [9 favorites]


So now that his modus operandi is known, tweeting insane/inflammatory/factual incorrect things during times of crisis for his personal brand and as a diversion technique, it's going to be fascinating to see what else he comes up with, and how long it takes the public to become aware of this deft slieght of hand.
posted by Keith Talent at 9:49 AM on December 2, 2016 [4 favorites]


Rabbi Shmuley has been spotted back at Trump Tower. Even the religious leaders he talks to are TV talking head cranks.
posted by zachlipton at 9:51 AM on December 2, 2016 [2 favorites]


What kind of protests and demonstrations are planned for Inauguration Day, in Washington DC? Things could get really lively if enough angry people get together to make their voices heard.

The day after inauguration is the Women's March on Washington.
posted by chris24 at 9:51 AM on December 2, 2016 [18 favorites]


Would you believe that Trump aide Steve Bannon was part of IGE, the virtual gold-farming company founded by a James Bond villain-ish Internet video visionary and child molester?
posted by johngoren at 9:58 AM on December 2, 2016 [13 favorites]


Protesting on Inauguration Day is a bad idea. The whole Mall will be on lockdown with security and at the same time crawling with Neonazis doing a Victory Goosestep in absurd red hats, frothing with hate, ready for a fight.

And just to think 8 years ago it was crawling with a diverse group of happy people looking forward to a bright future of peace and tolerance.

I really still can't believe this is happening.
posted by dis_integration at 9:59 AM on December 2, 2016 [95 favorites]


But a protest against the new president before he is being sworn in... Will this change how the legislature votes, or the actions of the incoming president?

That's already happening no matter how reasonable our objections are. The point of the protests is to show our fellow Americans, and indeed the world, that this man may assume the presidency, but he does not represent what this country stands for.
posted by monospace at 10:00 AM on December 2, 2016 [49 favorites]


I have already bought a seat on the bus from Knoxville to the Women's March on Washington. I am undecided on what my protest sign will say... right now I'm leaning toward "My rights are not negotiable."
posted by workerant at 10:03 AM on December 2, 2016 [30 favorites]


Trump voter lost her home to new Treasury secretary: OneWest, a bank formerly owned by a group of investors headed by Mnuchin, had foreclosed on her Los Angeles-area home in the aftermath of the Great Recession, stripping her of the two units she rented as a primary source of income.

"I just wish that I had not voted," said Colebrook, 59. "I have no faith in our government anymore at all. They all promise you the world at the end of a stick and take it away once they get in."


You know, I don't feel bad for her at all. I too wish she had not voted.
posted by qcubed at 10:04 AM on December 2, 2016 [93 favorites]


I am undecided on what my protest sign will say... right now I'm leaning toward "My rights are not negotiable."

I'd be tempted to try and organize with a few others to spell out "FUUUUUUUUUCK" with several signs.
posted by odinsdream at 10:05 AM on December 2, 2016 [16 favorites]


Good article on protesting Trump from one of the previous threads.

Why Some Protests Succeed While Others Fail
posted by Golden Eternity at 10:05 AM on December 2, 2016 [15 favorites]


I was at the market, I asked the deli server what he thought about the election. He said everyone is hating on Trump. I asked him if he reads a variety of news sources. He said they are all just hating on Trump. So, somewhere there is a go to source that says, "Don't bother reading the news, they just hate on Trump." People like this person, regard this as the truth.
posted by Oyéah at 10:07 AM on December 2, 2016 [12 favorites]


Why Some Protests Succeed While Others Fail

Decent article, but FYI there's a hell of a TL;DR at the end.
posted by Mooski at 10:08 AM on December 2, 2016 [1 favorite]


This just in: I need a Chrome extension to block people from telling me I need a Chrome extension that will measure my "political bubble" for me.
posted by soren_lorensen at 10:11 AM on December 2, 2016 [12 favorites]


@BetseyStevenson
Unemployment by education:
Less than high school 7.9%
High school 4.9%
Some college 3.9%
College 2.3%
posted by chris24 at 10:11 AM on December 2, 2016 [1 favorite]


Donald Trump’s Tie Is Held Together by Scotch Tape

Ladies and gentlemen, the owner of his own tie company, Mr. Donald Trump.
posted by Capt. Renault at 10:11 AM on December 2, 2016 [15 favorites]


So Obama was required to give up his Blackberry when he became president. Will Trump have to give up his phone or will he be tweeting from the oval office.
posted by octothorpe at 10:11 AM on December 2, 2016


You know, I don't feel bad for her at all. I too wish she had not voted.

You know, I consider the only bright point on this election cycle to be that Trump's voters will get exactly the government they deserve. The downside is, of course, everyone else will also get the government Trump's voters deserve, which is hardly fair.
posted by Mitrovarr at 10:12 AM on December 2, 2016 [88 favorites]


Trump Sealed Carrier Deal With Mix of Threat and Incentive
“I don’t want them moving out of the country without consequences,” Mr. Trump said, even if that means angering the free-market-oriented Republicans he beat in the primaries but will have to work with on Capitol Hill.

“The free market has been sorting it out and America’s been losing,” Mr. Pence added, as Mr. Trump interjected, “Every time, every time.”
If Obama talked like this, Twitter would already be full of hammer and sickle photoshop jobs.
posted by zachlipton at 10:14 AM on December 2, 2016 [46 favorites]


Puttin' the "socialism" in "national socialism"!
posted by soren_lorensen at 10:15 AM on December 2, 2016 [44 favorites]


I've been frankly just kind of avoiding the subject since the election, and continue to be completely dispirited. And I'm in Canada.

This is what has me stuck: way back when, Colbert famously said that "reality has a liberal bias."

Which was cute, and funny, and true.

What nobody was expecting was for a huge chunk of the population to metaphorically say "oh, if reality has a liberal bias, then fuck reality."

There's is, as far as I can tell, not only a "post-truth" feeling to Trump and his followers, but an avid dislike of truth.

If they don't believe that the media tells the truth, and they don't believe in science, and they only believe in their own prejudices, fake Facebook news and email forwards, what hope is there?

How can you recover a democracy when almost half of the electorate have proudly declared that they don't have even the slightest regard for facts and logic?

It freaks me out to the point of shutdown. This isn't an American thing, it freaks me out up here as well. "Focus on school boards, try to fix things so kids develop some logic and fact-checking skills, and hang on and pray that we can survive another generation" is not a strategy that really sits well.
posted by Shepherd at 10:15 AM on December 2, 2016 [208 favorites]


Instead of a protest of the new president, why not instead send off Obama with a cheering crowd? (I wonder if he'll fly somewhere for time out or just go straight to the new house in D.C.?)
posted by ZeusHumms at 10:15 AM on December 2, 2016


Not a Trump supporter but I thought the move to keep Carrier from relocating its entire factory to Mexico was pretty good. 1000 jobs remain at a cost of $7,000,000 so roughly $7,000 per job "saved". I think that pays for itself pretty quickly.
posted by any portmanteau in a storm at 10:16 AM on December 2, 2016 [2 favorites]


Hypothetically: if something were to happen that caused a president elect to withdraw/resign/other before the Electoral College vote took place, would the VP automatically move to the top of the ticket? And if that were to occur, would that be considered a reasonable justification for electors to switch their votes, especially if the opposing candidate had won the popular vote?
posted by Atom Eyes at 10:17 AM on December 2, 2016 [4 favorites]


Not a Trump supporter but I thought the move to keep Carrier from relocating its entire factory to Mexico was pretty good. 1000 jobs remain at a cost of $7,000,000 so roughly $7,000 per job "saved"

Carrier keeping 800 jobs but still shipping 1,300 jobs to Mexico, while receiving $7mil Indiana taxpayer dollars.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 10:18 AM on December 2, 2016 [47 favorites]


I have neither the patience nor the sense of humor to endure this presidency.
posted by narancia at 10:20 AM on December 2, 2016 [36 favorites]


Hypothetically: if something were to happen that caused a president elect to withdraw/resign/other before the Electoral College vote took place, would the VP automatically move to the top of the ticket? And if that were to occur, would that be considered a reasonable justification for electors to switch their votes, especially if the opposing candidate had won the popular vote?

I would think that the party would decide internally, then issue instructions to the electors.
posted by ZeusHumms at 10:20 AM on December 2, 2016


Protesting on Inauguration Day is a bad idea. The whole Mall will be on lockdown with security and at the same time crawling with Neonazis doing a Victory Goosestep in absurd red hats, frothing with hate, ready for a fight.

Isn't that why protesting is a good idea?
posted by Greg Nog at 10:21 AM on December 2, 2016 [28 favorites]


Isn't that why protesting is a good idea?

It depends whether or not you can safely do so.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 10:22 AM on December 2, 2016 [3 favorites]


I had a dream last night; weird one. I dreamed it was January 21, and I was telling my wife we needed to pack our shit and get north of Virginia as fast as humanly possible, and she asked me why and I turned on the TV to Fox News where they were providing ongoing coverage of the Constitutional Crisis that was Obama declaring he would not turn over the Presidency to Trump who had neither won the Electoral College or the popular vote and was furthermore unqualified for the job. They were also noting the population of the United States were making unprecedented moves to the north or south of the fabled Mason-Dixon line, based on which side of the argument they supported.

It's fairly disturbing to me that I awakened exhilarated at the prospect until my head cleared.
posted by Mooski at 10:23 AM on December 2, 2016 [65 favorites]


Trump talks to the public through Twitter. Here's what happens when your next president blocks you

In which Trump blocks random people who criticized (or insulted) him on Twitter:
“If not, it’s just as much an honor to be blocked by the 45th president of the United States,” said Del Otero, a member of his high school class council.
posted by zachlipton at 10:24 AM on December 2, 2016 [9 favorites]


"I just wish that I had not voted," said Colebrook, 59. "I have no faith in our government anymore at all. They all promise you the world at the end of a stick and take it away once they get in."

Oh for Pete's sake. This reminds me of people who voted for Brexit expressing surprise over what they voted for.
posted by BibiRose at 10:25 AM on December 2, 2016 [59 favorites]


* October 2018: The reign of President Pence begins.

Seriously, Trump will be impeached within 2 years. His is the kind of presidency that can only happen as a "Change" candidate, which means he is useless to the right in 4 or even 2 years, as it becomes clear to his "movement" how full of shit his populist rhetoric was.

Now that he has swept in the far right conservatives and handed them everything they've ever wanted, they will turn on him as soon after the inauguration and confirmation hearings as possible, digging up (or manufacturing) some kind of massive legal or ethics violation excuse (I'm guessing they already have all the evidence they'd really need stashed away somewhere, because come on: "I'm hearing" such evidence exists).

And then they will be able to push him out and replace him with their own guy, all while grandstanding about how responsible they're all being for holding "their" president accountable (it's how they'll be able to distance themselves from the fact that they were the ones who put him there in the first place). Make no mistake about it - this is a Pence presidency we're talking about here. They all hate him, and they are not just holding their noses for power and profit. They are also counting the hours to sweet revenge. Once they have consolidated their power, the far right will gut Donald Trump like an oversized carp and flush the entrails directly into the public water supply (all sewage filtration and treatment plants having been shut down as emblematic of government overregulation).
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 10:25 AM on December 2, 2016 [42 favorites]


I think there's a very good chance that the Republicans will simply have the electoral college refuse to elect Trump. It'll go to the house, and that's how we'll get President Pence. Or maybe Rubio, or something.
posted by Mitrovarr at 10:27 AM on December 2, 2016 [1 favorite]


So it turns out that Republicans were trying to prop Trump up during the primaries too, in the belief they could take him down. That time Ted Cruz helped Donald Trump win New Hampshire
So why would Cruz help the man he’d just narrowly beaten in Iowa?

Well, that’s part of the complex, multi-dimensional chess match that was the Republican primary, a contest which still featured a dozen GOP candidates at that time. Cruz’s campaign always firmly believed they could beat Trump in a head-to-head matchup. Knocking out Kasich and, more significantly, Sen. Marco Rubio, in New Hampshire could have seemed the quickest path to do that.

“The larger the field the better for us,” as Lewandowski had said at Harvard.
posted by zachlipton at 10:28 AM on December 2, 2016 [1 favorite]


I think there's a very good chance that the Republicans will simply have the electoral college refuse to elect Trump.

We also didn't think the Republicans would let him get the nomination in the first place. Pull your head out of the sand. The party doesn't have nearly as much power as you think.
posted by potrzebie at 10:29 AM on December 2, 2016 [36 favorites]


I think there's a very good chance that the Republicans will simply have the electoral college refuse to elect Trump

For what reason? They are getting everything they want out of him so far.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 10:29 AM on December 2, 2016 [40 favorites]


I'm shopping for some art prints as a gift for my husband and I have found an outstanding and haunting representation of our future. Unfairly optimistic, though, unless the astronaut is actually a robot.
posted by lydhre at 10:30 AM on December 2, 2016 [21 favorites]


Rabbi Shmuley has been spotted

Gosh, what would a shameless publicity-seeker with a curious way of managing charities on both sides of the Atlantic be doing there?
posted by holgate at 10:31 AM on December 2, 2016 [1 favorite]




We also didn't think the Republicans would let him get the nomination in the first place. Pull your head out of the sand. The party doesn't have nearly as much power as you think.

All they have to control to keep him from getting the electoral college vote is a few Republican electors. Not the same as controlling a bunch of regular voters.
posted by Mitrovarr at 10:31 AM on December 2, 2016 [2 favorites]


I just wish that I had not voted," said Colebrook, 59. "I have no faith in our government anymore at all.

When I was a child, I once intentionally touched the glowing orange burner of a hot stove and burned the shit out of my finger. And yet, somehow I still believe in cooking.
posted by Atom Eyes at 10:31 AM on December 2, 2016 [60 favorites]


Yeah, maybe it was wrong to help lift billions in Asia out of substinence-level poverty and no real hope for future to let white people, who ransacked multiple continents and raped entire peoples, to I dunno, slowly maybe learn to compete on equal footing.

Curious that the burden falls on the American working class to lift poor Chinese out of poverty by giving up their jobs while the American 1% gets richer from globalization. That is class warfare in its essence.
posted by JackFlash at 10:32 AM on December 2, 2016 [64 favorites]


For what reason? They are getting everything they want out of him so far.

I think he's doing that precisely so they don't turn on him. He'll flip on the party once they don't have anything to hold over him, and start doing his own agenda... whatever that is.
posted by Mitrovarr at 10:32 AM on December 2, 2016 [1 favorite]


KidRuki and I will be going to the Women's March, and we'll be wearing pussyhats.
posted by Ruki at 10:33 AM on December 2, 2016 [14 favorites]




Looking over Wikipedia's List of U.S. Recessions, I noticed that with the exception of Gerald Ford (president for 2 years 6 months, the first nine months of which were a recession), a recession has begun under every Republican president since Garfield, 1881 (president for six months). I'm sure Trump will honor this streak.

If Obama holds out another month and a half, then there would have been exactly one recession start during any of the last five Democratic presidencies (Carter, the exception).

While looking this up, I also ran across this fact (unknown to me). Lincoln ran for reelection under the name of The National Union Party. He wasn't officially a Republican president upon reelection.
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 10:35 AM on December 2, 2016 [27 favorites]


The day after inauguration is the Women's March on Washington.

My mom is going which fills me with pride.
posted by Joey Michaels at 10:37 AM on December 2, 2016 [10 favorites]




City Attorney Spraying Anti-Trump Graffiti While Drinking Wine Is All We Have Left
For the liberal elites, it’s come to this. We’ve been reduced to this. We are all Duncan Lloyd, an assistant city solicitor in Philadelphia. Lloyd was busted by surveillance cameras videoing a buddy spraying “Fuck Trump” on the side of a newly opened Fresh Grocer. Lloyd is pictured below in his civil disobedience uniform.

Yes. That’s a man, wearing an ascot, holding a glass of wine, who tagged an upscale supermarket.

This is our life now, hyper-educated coastal elites. We’re not going to stock up on guns and insta-waffles. We’re not going to hop in a Prius and ethanol-roll motorists we disagree with. We’re not going to burn an American flag, because we don’t own an American flag, because what kind of jingoistic prick can find space for a freaking flag in a one-bedroom apartment?
posted by zachlipton at 10:38 AM on December 2, 2016 [43 favorites]


Very thoughtful blog post about Mattis as Secretary of Defense that apparently will be discussed on Marketplace today.
posted by anastasiav at 10:39 AM on December 2, 2016 [9 favorites]


Why would the GOP want to impeach Trump, as long as he keeps signing their bills? His bombastic nature is a useful screen to distract the left-leaning public (ie, the media), which allows many of the right's more controversial measures to get passed unexamined. The GOP knows their policies are unpopular with a lot of the country - if white-bread Pence is the president, ALL the focus is on policy.

Seriously, get used to the possibility of a 2-term Trump presidency.
posted by smokysunday at 10:39 AM on December 2, 2016 [20 favorites]


I'd be tempted to try and organize with a few others to spell out "FUUUUUUUUUCK" with several signs.

Please ... This is a family community blog.

So from now on use "F*UUUUUUUUCK."
posted by ZenMasterThis at 10:41 AM on December 2, 2016 [26 favorites]


And with just a small constitutional amendment Melania 2024
posted by sammyo at 10:42 AM on December 2, 2016


I'm not against protest, but should there be a desired result? I guess I just worry that a massive protest will not change the opinions of anyone and be used to demonstrate how 'unhinged' the left is.

It makes a statement that, as a population, as a county, that we did not consent to this man; that the hateful and kleptocratic policies he campaigned on are not ours as Americans; and that there are large numbers of people who will fight this administration and everything it stands for. There's a misonception (with some truth to it) that big protests are isolated street theater and drama being put on by disorganized leftists who don't have any kind of policy plans, but I don't think that's true in general or of the planned protests against Trump's inauguration. Protests like this don't have a single discrete policy goal, or the protest as a be-all end-all-- the point is that the people who are showing out in numbers are people who intend to engage in practical political activism in the future. They're there to show solidarity and as a show of numbers, to remind the administration that Trump is a minority president, and to show the groups of people who this regime has promised to harm that large numbers of people in this country will not let them be taken without going through their neighbors. The point of large scale political protests like this are to say: not with my consent, not in my name, and not without a fight.
posted by moonlight on vermont at 10:45 AM on December 2, 2016 [43 favorites]


What are the odds Dr. Oz will get Surgeon General?
posted by fuse theorem at 10:46 AM on December 2, 2016 [9 favorites]




This is a really good piece.

Paul Manafort Is Back
posted by Golden Eternity at 10:52 AM on December 2, 2016 [6 favorites]


All they have to control to keep him from getting the electoral college vote is a few Republican electors.

Trump won the election. Clinton won the popular vote. No one else in either party was on the ballot.

Trump is going to be president. We have to stop bargaining here.

What's left is to organize and re-learning the exact same lessons we learned under Bush -- that the population doesn't care about facts, that the left eternally sabotages itself, and that we will be playing defense for the next four years.

The electoral college will not save you. The recounts will not save you. In fact, you will not be saved.
posted by steady-state strawberry at 10:52 AM on December 2, 2016 [64 favorites]


Looking over Wikipedia's List of U.S. Recessions, I noticed that with the exception of Gerald Ford (president for 2 years 6 months, the first nine months of which were a recession), a recession has begun under every Republican president since Garfield, 1881 (president for six months). I'm sure Trump will honor this streak.

Isn't it so funny how clear the data is about which economic policies work and which ones don't? And how Republicans (latter-day Republicans, i.e. post-Southern Strategy) choose every time to ignore years and reams of research? In order to line the pockets of their buddies, and make poor people suffer needlessly? That is just so funny.
posted by witchen at 10:53 AM on December 2, 2016 [31 favorites]


Well, on the bright-side, at least you yanks didn't elect a moderate-centrist-democrat with extensive experience in government and global affairs.

Could you imagine what a disaster that would have been?
posted by blue_beetle at 10:54 AM on December 2, 2016 [79 favorites]


Could you imagine what a disaster that would have been?

She might've sent some emails!
posted by dis_integration at 10:58 AM on December 2, 2016 [35 favorites]


Margaret Sullivan has her piece up on the various ways in which Trumpers have directly said that facts don't matter over the past few days.
posted by zachlipton at 11:01 AM on December 2, 2016 [7 favorites]


I'm in for car repairs right now, and they're auto playing the inexactly named History channel, which is currently on a "UFOs, and the government conspiracies to hide them" kick. It made me wonder how many people get their news from cable "news/truth" channels and just don't question that there is actually news or truth pouring out.
posted by corb at 11:02 AM on December 2, 2016 [8 favorites]


Beyond all the previous reasons why the electors aren't going to go with anyone other than Trump, he just demolished the Republican Party as much as the Democratic Party and USA, and he did it by running against the establishment. They screw him and their base turns on them even more and they get killed in 2018 and 2020. Trump would be tweeting constantly and holding rallies going after Republicans and Ryan. This is also why they won't impeach him unless they absolutely have to.
posted by chris24 at 11:03 AM on December 2, 2016 [9 favorites]


Curious that the burden falls on the American working class to lift poor Chinese out of poverty by giving up their jobs while the American 1% gets richer from globalization. That is class warfare in its essence.

Which is why I support free trade AND an activist government that's willing to use the fiscal and monetary tools to keep unemployment low and assist in creating good jobs.

I mean, the US only has the equivalent of a Black Card in it's ability to borrow money.
posted by FJT at 11:06 AM on December 2, 2016 [8 favorites]


It made me wonder how many people get their news from cable "news/truth" channels and just don't question that there is actually news or truth pouring out.

46%, give or take a few thousand.
posted by Mooski at 11:06 AM on December 2, 2016 [9 favorites]


In fact, you will not be saved.

Yeah, and furthermore the tip of the disaster iceberg was Trump's victory but the bigger problem is that the presidency was the last safeguard against Republican dominance of all three branches of the federal government government. We festishize the presidency to our peril every four years.

We have a remote chance to fuck up the Republican agenda in 2018 but we have to get our feet on the ground now. We can't wait for 2020. Even if 2018 is the wash that we all think it will be, if we can increase off-year dem turn-out significantly and get at least some more progressive (or even centrist) D's to replace the R-is-for-Reactionaries in control now, we can maybe get some momentum going for 2020.

Yes, they're going to pass laws that try to limit who votes. We need to do everything we can to get around those laws. Voter IDs? Organize to raise money to get people their IDs (which might mean driving people around and actually paying for their IDs). Stripping people from the voter roles? Organize to make the people whose names are stripped aware that their names have been stripped and start working to get them reinstated.

And, of course, we need to find candidates. Not superhuman perfect candidates but candidates who have some intelligence and charisma and are willing to run. The "willing to run" part seems to be the hardest thing to do.

Its going to be hard, hard work and we're going to be fought every step of the way by people with more money and more experiencing at ratfucking, but the DNC can't be counted on to make this happen and we can't wait. Ugh. It seems like a mountain and I don't know that there's anyone trying to climb it. Do we need to start a national group that is like the ACLU but focused exclusively on voting rights? Does a group like that exist?
posted by Joey Michaels at 11:06 AM on December 2, 2016 [70 favorites]


Why Trump supporters stand by debunked claim (of illegal voters)
posted by P.o.B. at 11:07 AM on December 2, 2016 [1 favorite]


NYT: Trump Backers Go to Court to Block Vote Recounts in 3 States
Bill Schuette, the attorney general of Michigan, said that the recount, initiated by Jill Stein, the Green Party candidate, put Michigan voters at risk of “paying millions and potentially losing their voice in the Electoral College in the process.”
Instead, of course, we should just be content with the majority of Americans losing their actual voice in the popular vote.

(I don't think the recounts will change the outcome, I'm just sick of hearing the argument that overweighting the rural vote is necessary so that a minority of people have an outsize influence. Because god forbid if we got rid of the electoral college, the parties would actually have to to try to appeal to a majority of Americans to win, instead of just winning because they put their foot on the scale).
posted by triggerfinger at 11:07 AM on December 2, 2016 [14 favorites]


Do we need to start a national group that is like the ACLU but focused exclusively on voting rights? Does a group like that exist?

NAACP has been doing a lot of work on voting rights.
posted by zutalors! at 11:08 AM on December 2, 2016 [8 favorites]


What are the odds Dr. Oz will get Surgeon General?

I'd make a joke about him explaining which kinds of poop the other appointees are. But this is too klassy a place.

[Also NSFW/ the weak-stomached.]
posted by NorthernLite at 11:09 AM on December 2, 2016 [1 favorite]


Agree that more folks should register but really wouldn't just getting the folks that are already register to show up make a significant difference?
posted by sammyo at 11:14 AM on December 2, 2016 [1 favorite]


Curious that the burden falls on the American working class to lift poor Chinese out of poverty by giving up their jobs while the American 1% gets richer from globalization. That is class warfare in its essence.

The American working class voted in the people who oversaw the wholesale gutting of the labor union while presiding over stagnant wages. The deal was that manufacturing would head out and we'd all transition to service economies. This has been possible and the transition has been successful in multiple western economies.

Globalization isn't the problem. It's the businesses owners capitalizing on market instability to slash wages. There was no way to stop globalization. There was a way to make sure people can live a comfortable and dignified life throughout the transition. The Republican governments did NOTHING to ameliorate the situation. Now we blame something that was inevitable instead of the crooks that looted the country over the past four decades.
posted by Talez at 11:14 AM on December 2, 2016 [61 favorites]



What kind of protests and demonstrations are planned for Inauguration Day, in Washington DC? Things could get really lively if enough angry people get together to make their voices heard.


Vuvuzelas, y'all.
posted by ocschwar at 11:16 AM on December 2, 2016 [32 favorites]


tl;dr: Trump steals 11 cookies out of the dozen, points at the Chinese guy and says "watch out he's after your cookie".
posted by Talez at 11:16 AM on December 2, 2016 [25 favorites]


Do we need to start a national group that is like the ACLU but focused exclusively on voting rights? Does a group like that exist?

Project Vote
posted by sunset in snow country at 11:19 AM on December 2, 2016 [8 favorites]


Seriously, get used to the possibility of a 2-term Trump presidency.

Or a lifetime President. He's never going to go away, and we'll never have another fair election after 4 more years of expanding the North Carolina and Wisconsin models of voter suppression to Michigan, Pennslyvania and Ohio, or nationally with Sessions killing what's left of the VRA. Uday and Qusay Trump Jr. and Eric will be there when Trump becomes to senile to be trotted out on stage.

It's not really possible to be too pessimistic about the future of American democracy. I'm firmly of the opinion that it's already over, and we're entering into what comes next, autocracy.
posted by T.D. Strange at 11:20 AM on December 2, 2016 [24 favorites]


I think a real autocracy would result in either a civil war (unlikely as it would probably result in the death of all due to nuclear weapons) or the country fragmenting with the two coastlines probably becoming individual countries, and the middle another, possibly several.
posted by Mitrovarr at 11:22 AM on December 2, 2016 [10 favorites]


There is no rural advantage in the Electoral College. There is a closely-divided state advantage, which is entirely transitory as among the specific states. For example, Virginia, Colorado and California (yes!) have gone from state Republican Presidential states, to swing states, to safe Democratic states, in a single generation. There is a small population state advantage, which includes both relatively densely populated small states and un-densely populated rural states.

"Rural" was interesting in this election because a swing in the rural vote seemed to have had an impact. In general rural political interests are overrun by urban / suburban ones. Rural America would be (legally and politically) very different if it state lines were redrawn to permit rural self-determination -- imagine a new "rural" state consisting of Pennsylvania east of Pittsburgh and west of Philly and New York east of Buffalo and north of Westchester, or a one consisting of all of California and Oregon excluding the coastal counties of California and the I-5 corridor of Oregon.
posted by MattD at 11:22 AM on December 2, 2016 [1 favorite]



We have a remote chance to fuck up the Republican agenda in 2018 but we have to get our feet on the ground now


2017 for some state offices.
posted by ocschwar at 11:22 AM on December 2, 2016 [5 favorites]


Does anyone else keep waking up and for a few brief heartbeats hope this is all a nightmare?
posted by INFJ at 11:25 AM on December 2, 2016 [62 favorites]


2017 for some state offices.

Virginia and New Jersey governor races are 2017, as well as the entire North Carolina legislature after the court ruling on gerrymandered districts 2 days ago.

And don't forget Foster Campbell in LA Senate runoff in 8 days!
posted by chris24 at 11:26 AM on December 2, 2016 [17 favorites]




Interest, Conflict of: Donald Trump profited from investment in Carrier's parent company

It seems like a small stake, and he apparently no longer owns that stock ("but it's unclear from the documents whether he still has an interest in the company"), but this is precisely the problem. Read on to see that he owns stock in many of the other companies he's criticized too, including Ford, Nabisco, Disney, and Apple.

For more on the subject, we turn to Before Donald Trump Rescued Carrier, He Sued Them. A hotel employee broke the air conditioner unit, and Trump sued Carrier because he claimed they disabled the switch that's intended to keep the unit from freezing up. The judge was none other than "Shira Scheindlin ― whom Trump maligned in the first presidential debate as a “very anti-police judge” for halting New York City’s stop-and-frisk policy."
posted by zachlipton at 11:28 AM on December 2, 2016 [5 favorites]


Does anyone else keep waking up and for a few brief heartbeats hope this is all a nightmare?


The first two nights.

Now I have to get on with it. Got a wife and two kids to continue supporting, possibly a Slavic language to learn if I want to obtain a jus sanguinis option, things to do.
posted by ocschwar at 11:30 AM on December 2, 2016 [10 favorites]


Do we need to start a national group that is like the ACLU but focused exclusively on voting rights? Does a group like that exist?

Yes! The Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law works on exactly this issue. As do other organizations such as the NAACP, as someone rightly noted.
posted by prefpara at 11:34 AM on December 2, 2016 [10 favorites]


I found this really compelling (I'm still thinking it through, which I think is a good sign?): The New Jewish Question
posted by Mchelly at 11:35 AM on December 2, 2016 [3 favorites]


I would just like NAACP to get more credit for its work on voting rights, to legitimize how that work helps everyone and NAACP isn't the niche special interest group people seem to think it is. No reason to not also contribute to the other organizations.
posted by zutalors! at 11:35 AM on December 2, 2016 [19 favorites]


Quite right, and if you look at who the plaintiffs are in many important voting rights cases, you will see the NAACP is right there. Is there an app that sends a dollar to the NAACP every time my heartrate goes over some stress threshhold? I would find that useful.
posted by prefpara at 11:38 AM on December 2, 2016 [7 favorites]


Thanks for the push. I just set up a recurring donation to the NAACP. Getting out the vote, and making sure everyone that is legally allowed to vote can do so, is a top priority in every election from here on out.
posted by rabbitrabbit at 11:44 AM on December 2, 2016 [8 favorites]


Scott Lemieux, Lawyers, Guns, and Money: The Mainstream Media Is Guilty of Grotesque Malpractice
This is remarkable, and severely damning: [...]

This really should be the death of glib, sublimely confident arguments that changes in MESSAGING could have easily put Clinton over the top. Trump completely dominated press coverage. Some of this was negative, but especially on tv a lot of this was just stuff like unedited coverage of his rallies. Clinton was not, to put it mildly, given the same kind of opportunity to get her message out. Clinton didn’t get significantly more coverage than Trump during the Democratic National Convention. There’s no effective way of getting a message out in that kind of environment; the net effects of advertising just aren’t that powerful. And there were two cases in which Trump didn’t dominate coverage: EMAILS! and HILLARY CLINTON IS ON HER DEATHBED! If you want an explanation for why Trump, an unprecedentedly dishonest and corrupt candidate, was viewed by the public is being more honest than Hillary Clinton (who, if anything, is more honest than the typical politician), there you go. The idea that the media deserves a pass for putting an elephant on the scale because Hillary Clinton is a FLAWED CANDIDATE is beyond absurd.
posted by tonycpsu at 11:46 AM on December 2, 2016 [115 favorites]


Does anyone else keep waking up and for a few brief heartbeats hope this is all a nightmare?

This morning I woke up remembering that the guy who said not paying federal income taxes makes him "smart" on live television will soon be US president.

And that he's surrounded by actual Nazis, fascists and bigots.

With a near absolute Republican deathgrip on every branch of government.

Honestly, I'd have preferred to stay in my actual nightmare.
posted by byanyothername at 11:49 AM on December 2, 2016 [20 favorites]


There is no rural advantage in the Electoral College.

There's a few different ways you might slice this.

1. If you take the states whose percent-rural-population is above the median, they have just 166 electoral votes.
2.If you look at the correlation between electors-per-person and percent rural population. r = 0.32, which at a=0.05 is significant, p = 0.011.
3. If you order the rural states from most to least and keep taking states until you get to 270 electoral votes, you've accrued 46% of the population.
posted by Jpfed at 11:49 AM on December 2, 2016 [11 favorites]


Scott Lemieux, Lawyers, Guns, and Money: The Mainstream Media Is Guilty of Grotesque Malpractice

It's beyond argument now that the media wanted Trump to win. He was better for ratings, he's better for their corporate owners bottom lines. The orders came down to build up Trump and tear down Clinton, and they did. Now they'll get down to the real business of groveling and fellating until it's time to tear down Trump's 2020 challenger.
posted by T.D. Strange at 11:51 AM on December 2, 2016 [11 favorites]


For example, Virginia, Colorado and California (yes!) have gone from state Republican Presidential states, to swing states, to safe Democratic states, in a single generation.

One of the few signs of encouragement I got from the election here in California is that for the first time since the Great Depression, Orange County went for the democrat in the presidential election.

As unlikely as it is that any state or region could successfully secede from the US, if it were possible, this would probably be the time.
posted by Huck500 at 11:52 AM on December 2, 2016 [7 favorites]


(Which means that if you took the ruralmost states until you got half of the population, they'd have more than 270 EVs: 282, to be precise)
posted by Jpfed at 11:52 AM on December 2, 2016 [5 favorites]


Does anyone have a handy clip of the president-elect saying "You knew I was a snake when you took me in" for, e.g., sending to the people complaining on Twitter about his obvious lack of swamp-draining?
posted by NMcCoy at 11:55 AM on December 2, 2016 [10 favorites]


Or a lifetime President.

People said the same about GWB. Remember the confident predictions of machine-gunning protesters?

Trump is gonna be terrible. He's not going to make himself Dictator For Life. The fears about voter suppression resulting in other Republican victories in the future are well founded but that's different than Trump staying in. We need to have a realistic picture of the country we are living in if we want to have a hope of playing defense. Paranoid fantasies about Trump becoming a permanent president are just that.
posted by Justinian at 11:57 AM on December 2, 2016 [49 favorites]


I think there's a natural temptation to look for grand lessons in a loss like this, and I'm not going to discount the idea that they exist, but I wonder how much of this situation is less an issue of strategy or tactics and more about the unforeseen events which transpired. In sports this is the "any given Sunday" mentality or the situation where a back of the pack car ends up winning a race on the last lap when the leaders crash into each other and create an opening. If you buy into the idea that part of the reason Trump won is that a lot of crazy, unpredictable shit happened in just such a way that it created the right opening for him to leap through, then you also have to take with it the idea that his flailing and general managerial incompetence as displayed during the campaign didn't really matter. I think it's hard to argue this outcome and very easy to argue its reason. What it makes me wonder about is what happens when, as it must at this level of responsibility, this managerial competence does actually matter. We're in a dreamland with the Trump administration because it hasn't really started, but what happens if/when we wake up? Everything seems unpredictable, unstable, and surreal.
posted by feloniousmonk at 11:58 AM on December 2, 2016 [5 favorites]


> There is no rural advantage in the Electoral College.

As American as Apple Pie? The Rural Vote’s Disproportionate Slice of Power
Rural America, even as it laments its economic weakness, retains vastly disproportionate electoral strength. Rural voters were able to nudge Donald J. Trump to power despite Hillary Clinton’s large margins in cities like New York. In a House of Representatives that structurally disadvantages Democrats because of their tight urban clustering, rural voters helped Republicans hold their cushion. In the Senate, the least populous states are now more overrepresented than ever before. And the growing unity of rural Americans as a voting bloc has converted the rural bias in national politics into a potent Republican advantage.

“If you’re talking about a political system that skews rural, that’s not as important if there isn’t a major cleavage between rural and urban voting behavior,” said Frances Lee, a professor of government and politics at the University of Maryland. “But urban and rural voting behavior is so starkly different now so that this has major political consequences for who has power.

“And it’s not just in terms of policy outcomes,” she continued. “This pervasively advantages Republicans in maintaining control of the U.S. national government.”
posted by tonycpsu at 11:59 AM on December 2, 2016 [14 favorites]


Look at how strategic each FBI letter is.

– Give GOP momentum pre RNC
– Kneecap HRC momentum post DNC
– Finish her off after debate wins
posted by T.D. Strange at 12:00 PM on December 2, 2016 [39 favorites]


As American as Apple Pie? The Rural Vote’s Disproportionate Slice of Power

Right; the idea that the electoral college doesn't give a massive advantage to rural states is absurd. Hell, that's the reason it was designed in the first place. To protect the interest of agrarian slaveholders.
posted by Justinian at 12:01 PM on December 2, 2016 [15 favorites]


And now J Street is weighing in on Ellison: CONTINUING ATTACKS ON CONGRESSMAN ELLISON SEEK TO SILENCE LEGITIMATE POSITIONS ON ISRAEL

This is increasingly ugly for everyone, in a way that frightens me.
posted by zachlipton at 12:03 PM on December 2, 2016 [8 favorites]


Just received this by email:
University of California releases principles in support of UC community members

The University of California today announced that it will vigorously protect the privacy and civil rights of the undocumented members of the UC community and will direct its police departments not to undertake joint efforts with any government agencies to enforce federal immigration law.

“While we still do not know what policies and practices the incoming federal administration may adopt, given the many public pronouncements made during the presidential campaign and its aftermath, we felt it necessary to reaffirm that UC will act upon its deeply held conviction that all members of our community have the right to work, study, and live safely and without fear at all UC locations,” said UC President Janet Napolitano.
posted by mudpuppie at 12:04 PM on December 2, 2016 [39 favorites]


Carrier keeping 800 jobs but still shipping 1,300 jobs to Mexico, while receiving $7mil Indiana taxpayer dollars.

Anyone who thinks this is an impressive deal when it amounts to the government paying $8,750 per job on behalf of the specific people retaining them is never, ever allowed to complain about government handouts again.
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 12:05 PM on December 2, 2016 [85 favorites]


Honestly, I'd have preferred to stay in my actual nightmare.


I just watched an episode of Black Mirror and didn't experience debilitating existential dread right as the credits flowed.
posted by ocschwar at 12:06 PM on December 2, 2016 [10 favorites]


As unlikely as it is that any state or region could successfully secede from the US, if it were possible, this would probably be the time.

I don't actually want Calexit yet (ask me again in 2020) but I am 100% in favor of stirring shit up about it now and getting the idea of it out into public discourse and using our silly ballot proposition system to pass as many "we will not comply with the unconstitutional orders of the illegitimate non-president Donald Fuckface Trump" and electing our own ridiculous celebrity governor (WE HAVE DONE THIS BEFORE) who runs on a platform of "Fuck Donald Trump" and "no more of CA's money is going to the Feds until there aren't any more god damned Neo-Nazis employed in the executive branch" and generally throwing a giant California-sized tantrum until this fucking human punchline is out of the White House.
posted by prize bull octorok at 12:07 PM on December 2, 2016 [80 favorites]


There's still a chance Obama will just say fuck it and toss trump, Pence, and Ryan off the balcony just before the swearing in.
posted by Burhanistan at 12:08 PM on December 2, 2016 [14 favorites]


There is a small population state advantage, which includes both relatively densely populated small states and un-densely populated rural states.

Of course, there are considerably fewer "relatively densely populated small states" than "un-densely populated rural states".

In general rural political interests are overrun by urban / suburban ones.

In general this is untrue, either on the state level or the national one. It is untrue when you look at the range of subsidies and inducements now taken for granted in order to prop up rural infrastructure; it is untrue when you look at the deliberate splintering of urban centres on districting maps; it is untrue whenever the US Senate casts a vote.
posted by holgate at 12:11 PM on December 2, 2016 [11 favorites]


Also, this drives me crazy:

"I just wish that I had not voted," said Colebrook, 59. "I have no faith in our government anymore at all. They all promise you the world at the end of a stick and take it away once they get in."

They DON'T all promise you the world! Some politicians say "I will work to make your lives better but they won't be perfect" and then you feel disappointed by that so you go with the asshole who promises you the world. Maybe instead of not having faith in government you should stop having faith in the assholes who are using it for their own benefit. I get it, I get that you feel betrayed and disappointed, I totally understand that, but this destroying your faith in the government is the kind of thing that prevents government from getting better and helps the con men by making you believe it's not worth caring enough to vote for someone who is actually going to try to help. This shouldn't destroy your faith in the government, it should destroy your faith in Donald Trump and, in a better world, make you think "if I was wrong about him, about what else might I be mistaken? What sources led me astray? Who did I ignore who maybe could have helped? What should I do differently next time?" If you just become nihilistic about the whole thing it's never going to get better. Self-reflection is hard but it would be so, so nice if Ms. Colebrook could learn more from this experience than "government is bad".
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 12:12 PM on December 2, 2016 [86 favorites]


Little did we realize that It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia predicted the president-elect's economic plan eight years ago. Strap on that job helmet, midwestern steel workers! We're firing this sumbitch off.
posted by Mayor West at 12:12 PM on December 2, 2016 [4 favorites]


There's still a chance Obama will just say fuck it and toss trump, Pence, and Ryan off the balcony just before the swearing in.

What's the Secret Service protocol if a sitting president throws down against a president elect on the inaugural stage, I wonder?
posted by Atom Eyes at 12:15 PM on December 2, 2016 [29 favorites]


Trump is gonna be terrible. He's not going to make himself Dictator For Life.

He runs Trumpists against Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell, gets 60 Republican seats in the Senate in 2018 with any dissenters terrified to oppose him, deploys the FBI and NSA against all Democratic candidates releasing their emails and phone calls through Wikileaks and allied Russian media, launches FBI investigations of every Democratic candidate, throws some of them in jail, none of these things are paranoid. The apocalyptic downside scenarios are all in play. The model here is not the historical norms of the US anymore. It's Turkey and Egypt.
posted by T.D. Strange at 12:16 PM on December 2, 2016 [35 favorites]


@RVAwonk: #Trump tells Cincinnati rally that violent crime is at a 45-year high. It's actually at a 51-year low, according to latest FBI data. (jpeg)
posted by Golden Eternity at 12:17 PM on December 2, 2016 [41 favorites]


Speaking of disproportionate rural power, there are efforts in many states to stop prison gerrymandering (which artificially boosts the power of rural districts at the state level). More info from: Prisoners of the Census and the NAACP LDF. The ACLU won a prison gerrymandering cases in federal court in Florida and Rhode Island earlier this year.

This is a state/local issue that needs work even in solid blue states.
posted by melissasaurus at 12:20 PM on December 2, 2016 [11 favorites]


Yesterday, I told my 101-year-old grandmother that some people call our new president-elect a butternut turd. And now she repeats the phrase at every opportunity, relishing the sheer poetry of it. Butternut turd. Butternut turd. Butternut tuuuuuuuurd.

It's been my silver lining.
posted by mochapickle at 12:20 PM on December 2, 2016 [105 favorites]


They DON'T all promise you the world! Some politicians say "I will work to make your lives better but they won't be perfect" and then you feel disappointed by that so you go with the asshole who promises you the world. Maybe instead of not having faith in government you should stop having faith in the assholes who are using it for their own benefit. I get it, I get that you feel betrayed and disappointed, I totally understand that, but this destroying your faith in the government is the kind of thing that prevents government from getting better and helps the con men by making you believe it's not worth caring enough to vote for someone who is actually going to try to help. This shouldn't destroy your faith in the government, it should destroy your faith in Donald Trump and, in a better world, make you think "if I was wrong about him, about what else might I be mistaken? What sources led me astray? Who did I ignore who maybe could have helped? What should I do differently next time?" If you just become nihilistic about the whole thing it's never going to get better. Self-reflection is hard but it would be so, so nice if Ms. Colebrook could learn more from this experience than "government is bad".

To be quite honest, I am completely okay if this destroys her faith in government and consequently voting. If she's so stupid as to believe people like Trump, she's stupid enough to believe anything, and if she elects to opt out of future elections so that less idiotic peoples' votes count more, that is, honestly, a good outcome.

I also hope she fucking loses her fight with the mortgage company that fucked her over.
posted by qcubed at 12:21 PM on December 2, 2016 [15 favorites]


He runs Trumpists against Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell, gets 60 Republican seats in the Senate in 2018 with any dissenters terrified to oppose him, deploys the FBI and NSA against all Democratic candidates releasing their emails and phone calls through Wikileaks and allied Russian media, launches FBI investigations of every Democratic candidate, throws some of them in jail, none of these things are paranoid.

All of it is paranoid.
posted by Justinian at 12:23 PM on December 2, 2016 [13 favorites]


Destroying faith in government is the Republican strategy working as intended, y'all.
posted by soren_lorensen at 12:24 PM on December 2, 2016 [28 favorites]


I guess I just worry that a massive protest will not change the opinions of anyone and be used to demonstrate how 'unhinged' the left is.

You won't be able to placate these people or stay safe by doing nothing or playing nice - may as well rise up swinging.
posted by ryanshepard at 12:26 PM on December 2, 2016 [25 favorites]


Yeah, I think a constitutional convention is far more likely than an impeachment. I expect systematic voter suppression and redistricting in every place they can get away with. Trump will fill the pipeline with publicity stunts like Carrier to keep his popularity up. He will do whatever he can to hold onto middle America.

The good news is he may stay away from guting medicare and wars and things that could do him major damage but it depends on what he can get away with with his propaganda which is extremely effective.

What if our first woman President is Ivanka Trump?
posted by Golden Eternity at 12:26 PM on December 2, 2016 [1 favorite]


4 years ago the idea of the FBI director or the FSB intentionally influencing an election would've been called paranoid, and yet here we are.
posted by T.D. Strange at 12:26 PM on December 2, 2016 [57 favorites]


What's the Secret Service protocol if a sitting president throws down against a president elect on the inaugural stage, I wonder?

Ideally, they'll whisk him away to Air Force One, with a complement of fighter jets with pilots loyal to Obama, to a nice estate in Hawaii where he'll be under "house arrest" while actually still calling the shots.
posted by Burhanistan at 12:27 PM on December 2, 2016




No, no, if there's a fistfight the Secret Service follows hockey rules. Let them get it out of their systems, step in when there's blood, etc.
posted by Slackermagee at 12:29 PM on December 2, 2016 [1 favorite]


We're talking POTUS on PEOTUS homicide here, not some gentlemanly fisticuffs!
posted by Burhanistan at 12:30 PM on December 2, 2016 [1 favorite]


As far as paranoia, I'm going to gently suggest that we all remain very very vigilant but also remember that many of these people (in the new Trumpist power structure) are both a) old and b) not real bright.

I've been getting concerned for my husband's mental health because he thinks there's legit going to be a race war, started by the white supremacists (who, to be fair, have been itching for it for decades and are pissed as hell that people of color steadfastly refuse to start one). He's slipping down into depression and anxiety and I'm trying hard to help him. Mainly what I've got is that most of these folks are very stupid, and very bad at cooperating with one another. When you're all sitting in your seekrit clubhouses with no power, it's easy to fantasize about getting together and cracking some skulls. It's a lot harder when you have to agree on who your leaders are and have some discipline in following orders.

(I've also got my own dual citizenship in my back pocket, which makes me feel like an asshole, but it does keep me warm at night.)
posted by soren_lorensen at 12:30 PM on December 2, 2016 [25 favorites]


this totally making me think of the ending of Gladiator
posted by prize bull octorok at 12:32 PM on December 2, 2016 [2 favorites]


Trump is gonna be terrible. He's not going to make himself Dictator For Life.

i get the impression that he is going to be bored stiff of having to negotiate with people he can't strong-arm due to a gross power differential in about 4-6 months. once the afterglow of the election wears off he is going to be fussing like a petulant teenager.

which is not to understate the amount of damage his appointees and handlers can wreak in the meantime
posted by murphy slaw at 12:32 PM on December 2, 2016 [24 favorites]


What's the Secret Service protocol if a sitting president throws down against a president elect on the inaugural stage, I wonder?

My sole remaining sliver of hope is that Trump, as he approaches to take the oath, is suddenly interrupted by the loudspeakers blaring "Hail Columbia" as "Diamond" Joe Biden rushes the podium and hits him with a folding chair, thus pre-empting four years of national misery.
posted by Mayor West at 12:34 PM on December 2, 2016 [26 favorites]


Inaugural protest: I want to get the word out that no matter where you are that day, you should be wearing black, all black. I'm even considering wearing a black arm band for a suitable mourning period though that may be for four years. Please spread the word.
posted by njohnson23 at 12:34 PM on December 2, 2016 [23 favorites]


you should be wearing black, all black

As I did on Nov. 9. As I also did on Nov. 3, 2004.
posted by soren_lorensen at 12:36 PM on December 2, 2016 [8 favorites]


When the driver told him it would cost him more money, police say the suspect punched Adem in the head and face while repeatedly yelling, “Trump.”

In court Thursday, Holtzlander’s attorney said his client has been enrolled in a substance abuse assessment program to get help for his alcohol problem.

Alcohol is to blame for many of society's problems, but Trumpism sure as shit ain't one of them.
posted by Atom Eyes at 12:37 PM on December 2, 2016 [10 favorites]




I've been getting concerned for my husband's mental health because he thinks there's legit going to be a race war


I'm surprised by this because I thought this only lived in the minds of the white supremacists themselves. Also "white" and "people of color" are not two neatly divided sides.

(btw not saying anything against your husband and I truly sympathize with his distress).
posted by zutalors! at 12:37 PM on December 2, 2016


I'm even considering wearing a black arm band for a suitable mourning period though that may be for four years

I recall a bunch of Republican assholes in my office doing this back in 1992, after Bill Clinton was elected.
posted by briank at 12:38 PM on December 2, 2016 [2 favorites]


Eternal vigilence is the price of liberty.

Not that it will change anything, but Change.org 's petition to the electoral college is closing in on 5M toward its goal of 6M.
posted by yoga at 12:40 PM on December 2, 2016 [1 favorite]


Well, maybe race war was too much of a loaded term for what he thinks is going to happen: organized white supremacist agitators en masse entering black and brown neighborhoods and fucking shit up with the complicity of law enforcement until the residents are forced to fight back themselves.
posted by soren_lorensen at 12:40 PM on December 2, 2016 [7 favorites]


ah, gotcha.
posted by zutalors! at 12:41 PM on December 2, 2016


Not that it will change anything, but Change.org 's petition to the electoral college is closing in on 5M toward its goal of 6M.

Serious question - has one of these petitions ever had a substantive, meaningful outcome?
posted by ryanshepard at 12:41 PM on December 2, 2016 [8 favorites]


I recall a bunch of Republican assholes in my office doing this back in 1992, after Bill Clinton was elected.

Freedom of expression is one of our cherished first amendment rights, even if the president elect and ~24% of the population don't believe in the constitution that they claim to venerate. Making a non-violent, non-intimidating statement is something that people should feel free to do, even if we might think that they're wrong.
posted by Candleman at 12:42 PM on December 2, 2016 [5 favorites]


Huh. Mic is reporting that Obama is considering post-presidential digital media career.
President Barack Obama has been discussing a post-presidential career in digital media and is considering launching his own media company, according to multiple sources who spoke on background because they were not authorized to speak for the president.

Obama considers media to be a central focus of his next chapter, these sources say, though exactly what form that will take — a show streaming on Netflix, a web series on a comedy site or something else — remains unclear. Obama has gone so far as to discuss launching his own media company, according to one source with knowledge of the matter, although he has reportedly cooled on the idea of late.
posted by DynamiteToast at 12:43 PM on December 2, 2016 [12 favorites]


Serious question - has one of these petitions ever had a substantive, meaningful outcome?

I hope the end of the Obama administration also marks the end of Change.org, too many people think signing an internet petition is the appropriate way to interact with their government.
posted by T.D. Strange at 12:44 PM on December 2, 2016 [25 favorites]


Worked out so well when Al Gore did it. We got Current, in exchange for losing Newsworld International. I do not want to, once again, lose "real" news to a bunch of YouTube-style short form crap with the occasional two minutes of actual information.
posted by wierdo at 12:46 PM on December 2, 2016 [3 favorites]




Well that de-escalated quickly.
posted by soren_lorensen at 12:51 PM on December 2, 2016 [12 favorites]


Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie in the New Yorker:

Hazy visions of “healing” and “not becoming the hate we hate” sound dangerously like appeasement. The responsibility to forge unity belongs not to the denigrated but to the denigrators. The premise for empathy has to be equal humanity; it is an injustice to demand that the maligned identify with those who question their humanity...

Identity politics is not the sole preserve of minority voters. This election is a reminder that identity politics in America is a white invention: it was the basis of segregation. The denial of civil rights to black Americans had at its core the idea that a black American should not be allowed to vote because that black American was not white. The endless questioning, before the election of Obama, about America’s “readiness” for a black President was a reaction to white identity politics. Yet “identity politics” has come to be associated with minorities, and often with a patronizing undercurrent, as though to refer to nonwhite people motivated by an irrational herd instinct.

posted by sunset in snow country at 12:51 PM on December 2, 2016 [57 favorites]


All of it is paranoid.

Didn't you also predict Stein wouldn't follow through with the recount after collecting money for it? How many of your other 2016 election season predictions have been wrong?
posted by krinklyfig at 12:52 PM on December 2, 2016 [4 favorites]


Konstantin Kilibarda and Daria Roithmayr in Slate: The Myth of the Rust Belt Revolt
posted by Rustic Etruscan at 12:55 PM on December 2, 2016 [1 favorite]


Nearly all of them. I should be a TV pundit.
posted by T.D. Strange at 12:56 PM on December 2, 2016 [13 favorites]


I want to get the word out that no matter where you are that day, you should be wearing black, all black.

I don't know if this will accomplish anything, but as a sign to other mourners? I'm in. Full-on Victorian style mourning will barely even begin to express how sad I am for the country my friends died for right now.
posted by corb at 12:56 PM on December 2, 2016 [45 favorites]


So now that his modus operandi is known, tweeting insane/inflammatory/factual incorrect things during times of crisis for his personal brand and as a diversion technique, it's going to be fascinating to see what else he comes up with, and how long it takes the public to become aware of this deft slieght of hand.

If by the public you mean his minions, the answer is forever. Or NEVER.
posted by notreally at 12:58 PM on December 2, 2016 [1 favorite]


Hazy visions of “healing” and “not becoming the hate we hate” sound dangerously like appeasement.

That's because that's what they are.

I reserve the right to hate racists and homophobes and misogynists and transphobes and sometimes the only thing that keeps me from grabbing a bat and going to town is the knowledge that there are ways of making them irrelevant that won't get me sent to prison.
posted by Mooski at 12:59 PM on December 2, 2016 [14 favorites]


Didn't you also predict Stein wouldn't follow through with the recount after collecting money for it? How many of your other 2016 election season predictions have been wrong?

Hah you sure got me!! I was really mostly just snarking at Jill Stein, given that she helped put Trump in the White House. But yeah good job!!!

I will note that I was pretty much the least confident person in a Clinton victory in most of these threads. Like... I expected her to win but I was not nearly as sanguine about it as almost everybody else.
posted by Justinian at 1:00 PM on December 2, 2016 [13 favorites]


Black armbands for January 20th? Sounds good to me.
posted by ocschwar at 1:00 PM on December 2, 2016


Yea I don't get this weird picking on Justinian thing. I don't think it's a bad idea to point out that the President For Life stuff is hyperbolic (and just plain unhelpful, really).
posted by zutalors! at 1:01 PM on December 2, 2016 [12 favorites]




Also it doesn't take a super genius to recognize paranoid fantasies about Dictators For Life. Frankly, Trump is probably gonna hate the next four years. He doesn't like to actually, you know, work at stuff.
posted by Justinian at 1:02 PM on December 2, 2016 [13 favorites]


Holy Conflict of Interest! The Firm Holding Much of Trump's Debt May Be Up for Sale.
On Friday, Reuters reported that his second-biggest lender, a small Wall Street firm called Ladder Capital Strategies, may be putting itself up for sale to the highest bidder. Public records show Trump owes the firm at least $282 million, on four lines of credit. This means that other big money players—Wall Street firms, American banks, overseas banks, financial institutions partly owned by foreign governments—could move to buy up the debts of a US president and create a host of conflicts of interest.
Clara Jeffery suggests a Bloomberg or Bezos should buy it, especially to avoid the debt falling into foreign hands.
posted by zachlipton at 1:02 PM on December 2, 2016 [24 favorites]


Carrier keeping 800 jobs but still shipping 1,300 jobs to Mexico, while receiving $7mil Indiana taxpayer dollars.

Anyone who thinks this is an impressive deal when it amounts to the government paying $8,750 per job on behalf of the specific people retaining them is never, ever allowed to complain about government handouts again.


What exactly is the alternative here? Let's say Carrier moves those 800 jobs to Mexico. The State saves $7 million in taxes up front. But are these laid off workers going to find equivalent employment or end up becoming something like a Walmart greeter or Amazon warehouse worker? That sounds like a net loss in revenue over time to me.

As far as I'm concerned the question to ask is if there was a better way for Indiana to spend the money. Like if Indiana gave each of the laid off workers the $9,000 to do what they want, or if it spent it on retraining them would they be better off? I'm OK with governments doing this here in Ontario, just as long as there are controls in place to prevent the company from shipping the jobs the second they receive the incentive.
posted by any portmanteau in a storm at 1:04 PM on December 2, 2016 [2 favorites]


Trump is going to hate being the most powerful man in the world, having ways to enrich himself and his friends and family in ways beyond his wildest dreams? Yeah, okay. I will take that bet. No impeachment. No retirement.

Trump will be like eighty years old after two terms. Far more likely Ivanka or Kushner go into politics, imo. Until they are ready they'll try to find someone else who protects their interests.
posted by Golden Eternity at 1:06 PM on December 2, 2016 [3 favorites]


What exactly is the alternative here? Let's say Carrier moves those 800 jobs to Mexico. The State saves $7 million in taxes up front. But are these laid off workers going to find equivalent employment or end up becoming something like a Walmart greeter or Amazon warehouse worker? That sounds like a net loss in revenue over time to me.

I didn't get the memo. Was the 35% tax thing supposed to be one of the things we weren't supposed to take literally?
posted by Talez at 1:07 PM on December 2, 2016 [2 favorites]


Hah you sure got me!! I was really mostly just snarking at Jill Stein, given that she helped put Trump in the White House. But yeah good job!!!

I'm not trying to be snarky. Given everything that has come to pass since this started, I'd much rather be vigilant than dismissive about Trump becoming an autocrat. He's already acting like a tinpot dictator, and he hasn't even taken the oath of office. A significant number of people who have first hand experience with dictatorships are ringing the alarm bells for everyone to stay as vigilant as possible about Trump. Dismissing these concerns as paranoia sounds to me like whistling past the graveyard.
posted by krinklyfig at 1:07 PM on December 2, 2016 [32 favorites]


I agree. I think people are in denial about how bad this is. We really don't know what Trump and the GOP will do, it is completely up to them. That is what's so scary. Fear is good.
posted by Golden Eternity at 1:09 PM on December 2, 2016 [17 favorites]


i have this vision of a couple million people at the inauguration blowing vuvuzelas and canned-air boat horns.
posted by quonsar II: smock fishpants and the temple of foon at 1:10 PM on December 2, 2016 [14 favorites]


Even if Trump & Co. suppressed votes and secured power for an unreasonable amount of time, it's not like it has to be forever. I mean, Gambia just pulled this off and did not re-elect their Dictator for Life. The guy who said "he would rule for 'one billion years' if 'Allah willed it.'"
posted by witchen at 1:10 PM on December 2, 2016 [9 favorites]


i have this vision of a couple million people at the inauguration blowing vuvuzelas and canned-air boat horns.

...yeah but that'll be the supporters.
posted by Mooski at 1:11 PM on December 2, 2016 [8 favorites]




i have this vision of a couple million people at the inauguration blowing vuvuzelas and canned-air boat horns.

I have this vision of a couple million people at the inauguration doing something else, but we now live in a world where I'm afraid to put it on the Internet because I could be thrown in prison for voicing an opinion online.
posted by chonus at 1:12 PM on December 2, 2016 [9 favorites]


Now I only spent dozens of hours watching those klan rallies out of sheer terror and I do recall that we were explicitly promised that companies wouldn't leave and even if they did leave we'd tax them so hard we'd be swimming in cash. Was I just hallucinating that part? Or did Trump say "we'll handsomely reward companies that only move 3/5 of their workers to Mexico"?
posted by Talez at 1:12 PM on December 2, 2016 [14 favorites]


why can't we be vigilant about totally normally dismal economic and social policy? I don't think it's denial or whistling or anything else. I think for the most part a lot of the most hyperbolic stuff will be scaled back, but pretty horrific shit will happen quietly, and people will get complacent because they feel like they won something.

That's the danger I see with the hyperbole. We're not going to have public Muslim registries that white people can also sign up for, but we'll have reintroduction of NSEERS and no one will notice except those affected.
posted by zutalors! at 1:13 PM on December 2, 2016 [25 favorites]


What exactly is the alternative here? Let's say Carrier moves those 800 jobs to Mexico.

Trump specifically said he would punish companies that move jobs out of the US. Instead he folded like a house of soggy cards and made Pence give them a $7 million tax break. They called Trump's bluff and now every other corporation will hold their workers hostage in exchange for tax breaks.

Apple currently has like 30 gajillion dollars stashed overseas they won't bring into the US because it will be taxed. Trump said he wants to force Apple to make the iPhones in the US. I wouldn't be surprised if they start producing a token amount in a small factory in the USA and suddenly receive a tax holiday on their foreign earnings.
posted by PenDevil at 1:14 PM on December 2, 2016 [19 favorites]


I mean, the really striking thing about dictatorships is that everyone says very similar things in the run-up: basically, it will never happen; "it can't happen here." Until it does. Then everyone finds out it's too late to stop it.
posted by krinklyfig at 1:14 PM on December 2, 2016 [22 favorites]


I mean, the really striking thing about dictatorships is that everyone says very similar things in the run-up: basically, it will never happen; "it can't happen here." Until it does. Then everyone finds out it's too late to stop it.

It's ok! Other liberals have told me it's illegal to become a dictator! We're safe on that account!
posted by Talez at 1:16 PM on December 2, 2016 [6 favorites]




I don't think hyperbolic fear is unassailably good. Someone in another thread was trying to assert that "all Latinx looking people will be deported" and thought that was a completely viable claim. It's not. It's ridiculously unwieldy. It does serve to take attention away from more real, immediate risk.
posted by zutalors! at 1:20 PM on December 2, 2016 [7 favorites]


Even if Trump & Co. suppressed votes and secured power for an unreasonable amount of time, it's not like it has to be forever. I mean, Gambia just pulled this off and did not re-elect their Dictator for Life.

On the other hand, Erdogan has imprisoned IIRC 15K+ journalists, professors, military, and other dissidents since the failed "coup."

Anyway, I'm currently violating the terms of a silent meditation retreat I'm attending, which I need to get back to for now. For my own sanity...
posted by krinklyfig at 1:20 PM on December 2, 2016 [5 favorites]


he folded like a house of soggy cards

I am curious how House Of Cards is going to play out now that Underwood, a bright, capable, politically experienced, albeit sociopathic and vengeful murderer seems like a pretty decent choice for President, all things considered.
posted by Jon Mitchell at 1:20 PM on December 2, 2016 [18 favorites]




The Intercept contacted nine of the most prominent such firms, from Facebook to Booz Allen Hamilton, to ask if they would sell their services to help create a national Muslim registry, an idea recently resurfaced by Donald Trump’s transition team. Only Twitter said no
posted by adamvasco at 1:24 PM on December 2, 2016 [30 favorites]


On the other hand, Erdogan

Oh, for sure, there is no shortage of counter-examples. Just noting that neverending doom isn't *always* the case when dictators come to power.
posted by witchen at 1:26 PM on December 2, 2016


I am curious how House Of Cards is going to play out now

I feel like Veep is likewise going to feel very different. Its brand of banal "inside the DC sausage factory" humor doesn't really work when the real president is a fascist who brags about committing sexual assault.
posted by jedicus at 1:26 PM on December 2, 2016 [9 favorites]


What exactly is the alternative here? Let's say Carrier moves those 1,000 jobs to Mexico. The State saves $7 million in taxes up front. But are these laid off workers going to find equivalent employment or end up becoming something like a Walmart greeter or Amazon warehouse worker? That sounds like a net loss in revenue over time to me. As far as I'm concerned the question to ask is if there was a better way for Indiana to spend the money.

The other question is whether there's a better way for the President-elect -- or the President -- of the United States to spend their time than however long it took to strike that deal. What wasn't he doing while he was doing that? We know Trump has apparently declined to actually receive the daily intelligence briefing he's entitled to; what else isn't he doing? Why is he spending his time on this when he could be spending it on more consequential things?

He's supposed to be the President of the entire country. Taking several days to strike a deal for the benefit of one company, and the workers of that company, is not the way to do that; it's inefficient and it's not scaleable, leaving aside whether or not the deal itself is good (but: it isn't, because there are better ways to spend that money, and there are better precedents to set than 'free money for continuing to employ people and turn a profit').
posted by cjelli at 1:27 PM on December 2, 2016 [14 favorites]


JUST IN: @GovHowardDean tells the crowd in Denver, via video, he is NOT running for the DNC chairmanship.

Argh, dammit!
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 1:27 PM on December 2, 2016 [5 favorites]


The Intercept contacted nine of the most prominent such firms, from Facebook to Booz Allen Hamilton, to ask if they would sell their services to help create a national Muslim registry, an idea recently resurfaced by Donald Trump’s transition team. Only Twitter said no.

Mefi's own Maciej Cegłowski via Twitter:

Facebook already *is* a Muslim registry. They can’t exactly refuse to build one.
posted by ryanshepard at 1:29 PM on December 2, 2016 [11 favorites]


Men Screaming 'Donald Trump' Attacked Woman Wearing Hijab On The Subway [NYC]
Is "Donald Trump" the new "Allahu Akbar?"
--@michaelianblack
posted by zachlipton at 1:30 PM on December 2, 2016 [24 favorites]


Rural America, even as it laments its economic weakness, retains vastly disproportionate electoral strength.

I ran some numbers of my own (teaching apportionment this semester, so I already had 2010 census data and House representation in a spreadsheet). I added on some urbanization data and tried to figure out what EV share urban voters have by multiplying the urban population percentage in each state by the number of electoral votes in that state (arguably, since most states are winner-take-all this is an unreasonable proxy, but each voter at least theoretically has an equal opportunity to impact their state's electoral votes). My result was that the urban share of the EV total is 427.8. That's 79.5% of the total electoral vote. The US population is 80.7% urbanized.

Another way of putting this: in urban areas, there's one elector per 582,000 people. In rural areas, one per 540,000. That's a disadvantage, but not wholly an absurd one. The system privileges lightly-populated states, but that includes Rhode Island, DC, Delaware, and Hawaii, all of which are significantly urbanized.
posted by jackbishop at 1:30 PM on December 2, 2016 [7 favorites]


Or, to put it another way, Trump's work (to the degree it was his work) on the Carrier deal would have been the equivalent of Obama working to bail out the auto industry one car dealership at a time; whether or not the specifics of the deal are themselves ideal is irrelevant when weighed against the opportunity cost of not being able to spend that time doing anything more productive.
posted by cjelli at 1:30 PM on December 2, 2016 [21 favorites]


Meanwhile, Congress is hard at work with Rep. Gohmert ranting about his fight [video] to cook ribs at the Capitol for his fellow members: "it's probably the only time here on Capitol Hill where I actually leave a good taste in people's mouth instead of a bitter taste."
posted by zachlipton at 1:32 PM on December 2, 2016


Inefficiency and incompetence are the best outcomes left to us at this point though.
posted by T.D. Strange at 1:34 PM on December 2, 2016 [7 favorites]


Donald Trump risks China rift with Taiwan call; First contact from a US president-elect since diplomatic relations were cut in 1979
posted by anastasiav at 1:35 PM on December 2, 2016 [24 favorites]


Or, to put it another way, Trump's work (to the degree it was his work)

that's the craziest thing - for what else except political press did Pence just not do this himself ?
posted by zutalors! at 1:36 PM on December 2, 2016 [3 favorites]


If you're worried about all the ways your incoming president will ruin the country I'd think that having him spend all his time negotiating small deals would be a great way to keep him busy.
posted by any portmanteau in a storm at 1:36 PM on December 2, 2016 [9 favorites]


Donald Trump risks China rift with Taiwan call; First contact from a US president-elect since diplomatic relations were cut in 1979

*facepalm*
posted by PenDevil at 1:38 PM on December 2, 2016 [13 favorites]


There is but one thing I can be sure of in the next presidential election: Jill Stein will run again as third party candidate.
posted by Postroad at 1:38 PM on December 2, 2016 [7 favorites]


Well, enough "deals" like the Carrier one and he'll start draining local and state coffers, plus create a weird shadowy network of more people tainted by him.
posted by Burhanistan at 1:38 PM on December 2, 2016 [2 favorites]



Donald Trump risks China rift with Taiwan call; First contact from a US president-elect since diplomatic relations were cut in 1979


OH MY GAWWWWWD. Is there, like, no one who can just take his damn phone away? They did it during the campaign for a couple weeks at a time.
posted by soren_lorensen at 1:41 PM on December 2, 2016 [2 favorites]




I see a lot of truth in the analysis of why Trump won (even though he didn't actually 'win', but he sure got a lot of votes either way):

Yes, racism - backlash and deeply held white American values coming to the surface.
Yes, economics - we have been stagnant and income inequality is bigger than ever.
Yes, a poorly educated electorate who is used to reality TV style popularity contests - Trump was built to succeed with an audience that lacks a strong educational background and watches online bullies succeed
Yes, a broken electoral democracy system - gerrymandering is at it's most extreme and voter disenfranchisement is at it's highest since the Voting Rights Act
Yes, The Internet and fake news - surely there is an impact of very poor quality reporting, a hobbled news media, and the rise of garbage, for profit news, fake and "real" in the form of bullshit propagandizing
Yes, anti-government sentiment - whipped up by the Republicans and cemented by government's coddling of corporate America while most of us have an ever-worsening quality of life
And....

It seems like there are other factors going on here that I want to understand.

How come Western Europe, where there is a robust (if weakened) welfare state and quality education, is also seeing a rise in racist and fascist politics?
Isn't this in a way an extension of anti-governmentism that started showing it's head during California's Taxpayer Revolt era? So why now?

I'd be interested in reading some big picture analysis of this that tries to look at this from some angles I may not have thought of.
posted by latkes at 1:41 PM on December 2, 2016 [22 favorites]


the country fragmenting with the two coastlines probably becoming individual countries, and the middle another, possibly several.

I am literally okay with this. We can have our democracies and the neo-confederates can have their fascist, theocratic paradise. We clearly all hate each other, let's just do the divorce and move on.
posted by LastOfHisKind at 1:44 PM on December 2, 2016 [20 favorites]


So, he's been fulsome in praise to Pakistan, pissing off India, and he's acknowledged Taiwan's government, pissing off China... Christ, any more long-simmering feuds he can put America in a sticky position on? Is he right now trying to figure out the most troublesome thing he can say to Palestine? State Department operatives must be going nuts over this.
posted by jackbishop at 1:44 PM on December 2, 2016 [9 favorites]


In nearly every swing state, voters preferred Hillary Clinton on the economy
In nearly every state, Clinton did better (and Trump worse) with voters worried about the economy than with the overall pool of voters. (Notice how the blue slices in the smaller circles extend further than the blue slices in the larger ones.)

How can that be? How can she win a majority of the majority and still lose? Because she lost with other groups worse.
...
...across the country, the story told by the exit polls seems clear: Trump didn't win because people were worried about the economy. He won thanks to people who were worried about the subjects of immigration and terrorism that he started hammering on from the very first day of his campaign.
posted by kirkaracha at 1:46 PM on December 2, 2016 [48 favorites]


Donald Trump risks China rift with Taiwan call; First contact from a US president-elect since diplomatic relations were cut in 1979

Between this and the Pakistan call I think other countries are rapidly going to realize that, no, he really is just that stupid and easily manipulated. They may make a public show of indignance, either as part of a political strategy or to play to their own population, but I think that privately they will start thinking very differently about the US and its leadership than they have historically.
posted by jedicus at 1:47 PM on December 2, 2016 [36 favorites]


Donald Trump risks China rift with Taiwan call; First contact from a US president-elect since diplomatic relations were cut in 1979

People seem almost religiously devoted to ignoring how badly Trump is going to fuck up literally everything.
posted by odinsdream at 1:47 PM on December 2, 2016 [42 favorites]


Yeah, given how he's doing with the heads of state, I retract my previous complaint about his involvement in the Carrier deal. If he wants to micromanage a series of plant closings across the US for the next four years, that would be great. Considering the realistic alternatives.
posted by Joey Buttafoucault at 1:48 PM on December 2, 2016 [21 favorites]


So, he's been fulsome in praise to Pakistan, pissing off India, and he's acknowledged Taiwan's government, pissing off China... Christ, any more long-simmering feuds he can put America in a sticky position on? Is he right now trying to figure out the most troublesome thing he can say to Palestine? State Department operatives must be going nuts over this.

"You know what, Mahmoud? I know Bibi and he's a nice guy and we'll see about getting your land back and ending the blockade."
posted by Talez at 1:48 PM on December 2, 2016 [8 favorites]


> Destroying faith in government is the Republican strategy working as intended, y'all.

Exactly. With respect to people like prize bull octorok who believe that a "states' rights, but not that kind of states' rights" approach can meaningfully improve their lives and the lives of those around them, I think it's a losing strategy for liberals in the medium to long term. I don't necessarily blame anyone for doing what they need to do to stop the Trump jackboot from stepping on their neck, but advancing a secessionist narrative, even if the intent isn't actually to secede but to merely use it as leverage, is just going to play into the hands of the people who would be quite happy to have the nation torn asunder.
posted by tonycpsu at 1:49 PM on December 2, 2016 [4 favorites]


Trump didn't win because people were worried about the economy. He won thanks to people who were worried about the subjects of immigration and terrorism that he started hammering on from the very first day of his campaign.

In other words, it wasn't economic anxiety. it was racism.
posted by chris24 at 1:49 PM on December 2, 2016 [70 favorites]


I am literally okay with this. We can have our democracies and the neo-confederates can have their fascist, theocratic paradise. We clearly all hate each other, let's just do the divorce and move on.

Except for the people who can't afford to/shouldn't have to move and would be trapped in the modern metaphorical East Germany.
posted by Talez at 1:50 PM on December 2, 2016 [37 favorites]




I am literally okay with this. We can have our democracies and the neo-confederates can have their fascist, theocratic paradise. We clearly all hate each other, let's just do the divorce and move on.


Google Partition of India
posted by zutalors! at 1:51 PM on December 2, 2016 [32 favorites]


People seem almost religiously devoted to ignoring how badly Trump is going to fuck up literally everything.

I have quite literally reached the point where I am considering quitting my job and homeschooling my child so I will at least be with my son when the bombs start to fall. I'm not kidding.
posted by anastasiav at 1:51 PM on December 2, 2016 [22 favorites]


It was a melange of ignorance, not just racism or dumb economics.
posted by Burhanistan at 1:52 PM on December 2, 2016 [3 favorites]


"Economic anxiety" is this year's "ethics in games journalism"
posted by jason_steakums at 1:53 PM on December 2, 2016 [82 favorites]


I am literally okay with this. We can have our democracies and the neo-confederates can have their fascist, theocratic paradise. We clearly all hate each other, let's just do the divorce and move on.

The ironic problem would be how would NYCaliforniastan deal with White-Christian-ISIS out of the former red states and the massive influx of refugees from Trumpland.
posted by T.D. Strange at 1:56 PM on December 2, 2016 [15 favorites]


I am literally okay with this. We can have our democracies and the neo-confederates can have their fascist, theocratic paradise. We clearly all hate each other, let's just do the divorce and move on.

States aren't really red or blue: they're all a shade of purple, if we choose to actively ignore everyone who doesn't slot into either of those two colors to being with. There's no way for a divorce like that to work without recreating the exact same pre-existing divides on a smaller scale on both sides of the hypothetically separate states. And then within those states, which have just gone through a period of stressful separation, the wedge issues that caused that separation would likely intensify rather than abate -- it would be a net increase in sectarianism and partisanship, not a decrease.

We're stuck with the country we have, for better or for worse; secession or separation is not a practical answer.
posted by cjelli at 1:57 PM on December 2, 2016 [18 favorites]


When the US and China talk to each other formerly, the US officials have to recite several paragraphs worth of boilerplate about how there's only one China and blah blah blah. This stuff is a delicate dance for a reason: hundreds of nuclear weapons are involved.

The best-case scenario from this is that Chinese officials see it as Trump being an idiot who doesn't have a clue what he's doing. If Clinton did this, they'd see it as a super-deliberate snub we'd have to spend years recovering from, but Trump has the plausible deniability of not knowing anything. So yeah, best-case scenario is that China thinks our President is the kind of fool you pat on the head and go "there, there" because he knows not what he has done.
posted by zachlipton at 1:59 PM on December 2, 2016 [24 favorites]


I have quite literally reached the point where I am considering quitting my job and homeschooling my child so I will at least be with my son when the bombs start to fall. I'm not kidding.

FUCKING THANK YOU.
posted by odinsdream at 1:59 PM on December 2, 2016 [10 favorites]


things gonna get hella impractical in a lot of ways over the next 4 years tho
posted by prize bull octorok at 1:59 PM on December 2, 2016 [3 favorites]


The reason Pennsylvania is called Pennsyltucky is that it's got hugely blue Philly and Pittsburgh (and a little bit blue Harrisburg) and nothin' but red in between. Is PA a blue state or a red state? Are we CoastalEliteLand or Trumpistan?
posted by soren_lorensen at 1:59 PM on December 2, 2016 [7 favorites]


We would only separate into different countries as a result of civil war or a devastating foreign war on our soil that made the federal government too poor to hold power.
posted by zutalors! at 1:59 PM on December 2, 2016 [3 favorites]


The reason Pennsylvania is called Pennsyltucky is that it's got hugely blue Philly and Pittsburgh (and a little bit blue Harrisburg) and nothin' but red in between. Is PA a blue state or a red state? Are we CoastalEliteLand or Trumpistan?

Solution: Send all the people in blue cities to Bel Air. First class and drinking orange juice out of a champagne glass.
posted by Talez at 2:01 PM on December 2, 2016 [2 favorites]


We're stuck with the country we have, for better or for worse; secession or separation is not a practical answer.

It may not be practical, but I am wondering if it is now inevitable. No country will last forever - the US has been destabilizing steadily for some time.
posted by latkes at 2:02 PM on December 2, 2016 [8 favorites]


I can turn off the nuance centers of my brain and be like well why the hell CAN'T the president-elect just call up Taiwan and say 'yo, you guys are legit' and cut through all the diplomatic bullshit that necessitates ritual affirmations of the one-China policy and just like, be real, and in that moment I come as close as I can to Understanding The Trump Voter
posted by prize bull octorok at 2:03 PM on December 2, 2016 [14 favorites]


I can turn off the nuance centers of my brain and be like well why the hell CAN'T the president-elect just call up Taiwan and say 'yo, you guys are legit' and cut through all the diplomatic bullshit that necessitates ritual affirmations of the one-China policy and just like, be real, and in that moment I come as close as I can to Understanding The Trump Voter

China has nukes.
posted by Talez at 2:04 PM on December 2, 2016 [2 favorites]


China has nukes.

China also owns a lot of US debt.

But yeah, nukes. And a very large population of males of fighting age (who may become an 'inconvenience' sometime in the near future).
posted by porpoise at 2:05 PM on December 2, 2016 [5 favorites]


Exactly. It's almost brilliant in a "only Nixon could go to China" sort of way: only Trump can throw out every foreign policy rule in the book because nobody expects him to have a clue what he's doing.
posted by zachlipton at 2:06 PM on December 2, 2016 [14 favorites]


massive influx of refugees from Trumpland

Yes. If the coasts stopped being part of the United States, even if you take out the cishet white middle-class liberals, there are going to be a lot of people in the midwest like me who're primarily safe living in these places because of the moderating influences of more liberal states. It is going to be actively dangerous for me to live in Nebraska under those circumstances. Okay, I'm employable in California. Is every other queer, trans, and/or nonwhite person in the entire rest of the country? Is everybody on disability benefits which would then disappear going to be someone the coastal economies can absorb to keep them safe?

I recognize that the separatist idea is appealing. It appeals to me, too. But it only works if you all leave the rest of us behind here. To quite possibly literally die, especially the most vulnerable communities like those with significant disabilities.
posted by Sequence at 2:06 PM on December 2, 2016 [26 favorites]


There is so much money based around our relationship with China that I can only think that if he really had a chance to meaningfully screw it up, the powers that be (the main republican party, a rich businessman, etc.) would step in and stop him. He's not emperor, he can still be stopped (by the Republican party if not by anyone else).
posted by Mitrovarr at 2:07 PM on December 2, 2016 [3 favorites]


And they're serious about the whole One-China thing. All that boilerplate is there to convince and reassure the PRC that no, you're the legitimate government, see, everyone agrees you are! So they don't decide to invade Taiwan.
posted by T.D. Strange at 2:08 PM on December 2, 2016 [7 favorites]


Here's what I'm picturing: 1 year in to Trump: war rhetoric is ramping up between the US and a country or two, a set of draconian, racist laws threaten immigrants who are part of the economic elite, then a massive earthquake strikes LA, and FEMA repeats their performance in Katrina. A lot of economically powerful people are fucking pissed, there is chaos and death in the street, can you not picture secession?
posted by latkes at 2:08 PM on December 2, 2016 [1 favorite]



I recognize that the separatist idea is appealing. It appeals to me, too. But it only works if you all leave the rest of us behind here. To quite possibly literally die, especially the most vulnerable communities like those with significant disabilities.


Also many millions of people would die trying to get to their new subcountry of choice.
posted by zutalors! at 2:09 PM on December 2, 2016 [7 favorites]


FUCKING THANK YOU.

I'm not sure why you're thanking me for being completely terrified, but, uh.... you're welcome?
posted by anastasiav at 2:13 PM on December 2, 2016 [7 favorites]


Also many millions of people would die trying to get to their new subcountry of choice.

I dunno, I kind of figured there would be a 'sorting period' where people moved freely from one to the other. The truth is, neither section wants the people who want to be in the other. So there isn't much reason not to let them go.
posted by Mitrovarr at 2:13 PM on December 2, 2016 [3 favorites]


I wouldn't be surprised if [Apple] start producing a token amount in a small factory in the USA and suddenly receive a tax holiday on their foreign earnings.

CNBC: Wall Street Likes' Trump's Repatriation Holiday Idea

So this is looking more and more like a thing. Of course, the money will come back to corporations which will then buy back stock and boost their price (and thus employee/executive comp) instead of investing in domestic capital.

So how can an individual profit from this? Is someone building a fund or ETF of corporations that have massive overseas cash?

Here's the top 50 according to Oxfam.
posted by JoeZydeco at 2:15 PM on December 2, 2016 [1 favorite]




Y'all realize you're basically talking about ethnic cleansing, except under the guise of political preference? I mean, that's kind of wack.
posted by rikschell at 2:15 PM on December 2, 2016 [31 favorites]


I don't really think it'll come to that, I think Trump will be a breathtakingly shitty president for four years and we'll have another recession and some glassy-eyed troglodyte will be appointed to the supreme court and it will profoundly suck, but we'll more or less survive it and elect somebody with actual qualifications in 2020. But! I am not good at predicting! I thought Clinton would win many more electoral votes than she did! So if shit gets really, really bad, and things like Muslim registries and mass deportations and wars with nuclear powers are on the table, then I hope to god that every state that has the political will to say this is not us, we want no part of this, this is not the America we belong to, we will go our own way and not participate in this travesty does so, and puts their money where their mouth is.
posted by prize bull octorok at 2:18 PM on December 2, 2016 [15 favorites]


Also many millions of people would die trying to get to their new subcountry of choice.

I dunno, I kind of figured there would be a 'sorting period' where people moved freely from one to the other. The truth is, neither section wants the people who want to be in the other. So there isn't much reason not to let them go.


Yeah no seriously Google Partition of India.
posted by zutalors! at 2:18 PM on December 2, 2016 [57 favorites]


I sincerely wish that people would stop talking about California or Pacifica secession as if it were anything but fictional. Three of the five largest commercial ports in the US are in CA. The US's main carrier base is in San Diego. If you believe that the US government is going to watch a majority of its trade and military power walk out without a really serious, violent fight, you are crazy.
posted by TypographicalError at 2:19 PM on December 2, 2016 [43 favorites]


I really, really would love to know how much behind-the-scenes stuff Obama (and John Kerry, etc.) are doing right now to try to insulate, as best they can, the country from a Trump presidency. I know that the administration has been working overtime to push new rules and regs through, but what else can they (and would they) do? Can they preemptively try reassure our allies in any way? Can they put up any effective hurdles to help prevent Trump from starting WW3? I have no idea, but I imagine (and hope) that Obama is working around the clock to do anything within his power to try to prevent some of the worst disasters from happening.
posted by triggerfinger at 2:22 PM on December 2, 2016 [7 favorites]


Yeah no seriously Google Partition of India.

The Simpsons with the tl;dr.
posted by Talez at 2:23 PM on December 2, 2016 [1 favorite]


Can a divided America come together under Trump? Historians weigh in.

I wish we could stop with this coming together crap. I don't want to come together with white supremacy and neofascism, I want it to be ground into dust.
posted by Justinian at 2:24 PM on December 2, 2016 [112 favorites]


And they didn't want to come together with a centrist to Republican leaning president who bent over backwards to accommodate them because he was black and had a D next to his funny sounding name. We don't owe them any attempt to come together.
posted by T.D. Strange at 2:28 PM on December 2, 2016 [37 favorites]


I dunno, I kind of figured there would be a 'sorting period' where people moved freely from one to the other.

Even in a fantasy of this happening without a war, "moving freely" is a thing that is not going to exist until we live in a post-scarcity society. I can't even afford right now to move most of my stuff from Ohio to Nebraska, so I'm living here at the moment in an apartment with no furniture except a bed on a metal frame while I pay the bill on a storage unit. And I make more than the US median income. Housing isn't free. Jobs don't grow on trees. Even just in terms of moving people to the coasts under the existing single country to get members of marginalized groups to safe places, it's already prohibitively expensive. We can't just all show up in NY or CA tomorrow and be in states that're willing to protect us. Until we can, we have to be working to make it safe to be queer and in Nebraska. Or black, or Ohio, or trans, or Alabama, or... you get the idea.
posted by Sequence at 2:28 PM on December 2, 2016 [27 favorites]


I remember a Great National Retcon in 07-08 when it was clear to everybody that Katrina was handled terribly and the Iraq War was a completely unnecessary catastrophe and suddenly all the people who were super-smug Bush supporters were like "yeah, that guy's an idiot! we never liked him!" and while I would prefer a mind-shattering revelation of how tragically wrong they were accompanied by uncontrollably sobbing in shame and remorse, I'd accept the former from Trump voters and in such a way a country can come back together
posted by prize bull octorok at 2:30 PM on December 2, 2016 [21 favorites]


We can't just all show up in NY or CA tomorrow and be in states that're willing to protect us. Until we can, we have to be working to make it safe to be queer and in Nebraska. Or black, or Ohio, or trans, or Alabama, or... you get the idea.

Obviously that would be better but it looks like it might come down to abandoning some areas so that we can make other areas safe, or not being able to make any places safe.
posted by Mitrovarr at 2:32 PM on December 2, 2016 [1 favorite]


I think that privately they will start thinking very differently about the US and its leadership than they have historically.

The Chinese leadership thinks at least one decade at a time, arguably two decades, and it will want to get past this, even as it becomes a way to point at democratic elections and say "really?"

But oh, [ ] wants to build a hotel in Taiwan, so there's that.

I'd be interested in reading some big picture analysis of this that tries to look at this from some angles I may not have thought of.

There's some heft to the "WW2 moving out of living memory" argument, but also the sense that the political reins in western Europe and the US are held by [white] people who gloss over their earlier life having fewer creature comforts and a smaller scope of potential and aspiration towards the world, while their own later years are different from their parents' -- smaller and more dispersed families, greater health and care burdens, longer lifespans offset by chronic debilitating conditions (especially ones like Alzheimer's). That feels a bit too much like "Four Yorkshiremen", but I don't think it's that far off.
posted by holgate at 2:34 PM on December 2, 2016 [6 favorites]


>>> Donald Trump risks China rift with Taiwan call; First contact from a US president-elect since diplomatic relations were cut in 1979

>> Between this and the Pakistan call I think other countries are rapidly going to realize that, no, he really is just that stupid and easily manipulated.

> It's almost brilliant in a "only Nixon could go to China" sort of way: only Trump can throw out every foreign policy rule in the book because nobody expects him to have a clue what he's doing.


Don't mind me, I'm just quietly gibbering under my desk in terror and frustration. This - this racist orange talking yam - is throwing away decades worth of carefully cultivated international relationships because he doesn't even understand what they stand for, even at an undergrad pol sci major level. And everyone else is getting the message loud and clear that there are no grown-ups minding the store come Jan 21st.
posted by RedOrGreen at 2:35 PM on December 2, 2016 [78 favorites]


I don't believe that Blue State Attorney Generals fighting back has been discussed yet. It all comes down to how the Supreme Court goes, of course, but it references how much of Obama's goals have been hindered by the Texan Attorney General:
"I go into the office in the morning, I sue Barack Obama, and then I go home.”
If the Supreme Court can be held, the economically strong and solidly blue states may be able to do much the same, tie down as many bad bills as possible in a mire of lawsuits. Perhaps overly optimistically I hope that this election might tip Kennedy towards the liberal side. And I'm praying Roberts is aghast as well - I disagree with him on many things but I think deep down he is an honorable man in a way that Scalia wasn't, and maybe not wanting to be the Chief Justice that rubber stamped the downfall of the country will be enough to keep him on the side of good on some of the key decisions.
posted by Candleman at 2:36 PM on December 2, 2016 [15 favorites]


while I would prefer a mind-shattering revelation of how tragically wrong they were accompanied by uncontrollably sobbing in shame and remorse, I'd accept the former from Trump voters and in such a way a country can come back together

It is a lot easier for folks to change their minds if they can save face and pretend they never changed their minds at all!
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 2:36 PM on December 2, 2016 [2 favorites]


You know, maybe when the apostle John spoke of Gog and Magog he was actually seeing GOP and MAGA.
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 2:46 PM on December 2, 2016 [37 favorites]


How scary is the China thing? What will they do now to ensure no loss of face?
posted by prefpara at 2:48 PM on December 2, 2016


John: *writes Revelations* Lord, the End is signaled by trumpets?
God: No, Trump/Pence
John: Right. Trumpets.
God: Fine. They'll know.
posted by Justinian at 2:48 PM on December 2, 2016 [115 favorites]


How scary is the China thing? What will they do now to ensure no loss of face?

8 CNY to the USD.
posted by Talez at 2:49 PM on December 2, 2016 [3 favorites]


And with a name like Justinian your Bible interpretations have authority.
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 2:51 PM on December 2, 2016 [4 favorites]


I stole it from the internet.
posted by Justinian at 2:51 PM on December 2, 2016 [9 favorites]


Seriously, I don't think people are following zutalors' very good advice to google Partition of India before talking left-secessionism
posted by tivalasvegas at 2:53 PM on December 2, 2016 [18 favorites]


lol Sarah Palin: Trump's Carrier deal is 'crony capitalism'
But touting the value of free markets, Palin signaled her disapproval if it was a case of “political intrusion using a stick or carrot to bribe or force one individual business to do what politicians insist.”

“When government steps in arbitrarily with individual subsidies, favoring one business over others, it sets inconsistent, unfair, illogical precedent,” she asserted.

And in an apparent jab at Trump, whom she famously endorsed in a rambling speech earlier this year, she asked: “Republicans oppose this, remember? Instead, we support competition on a level playing field, remember? Because we know special interest crony capitalism is one big fail.”
posted by zachlipton at 2:57 PM on December 2, 2016 [24 favorites]


I don't even know what to do anymore when I find myself on Sarah Palin's side.
posted by triggerfinger at 3:01 PM on December 2, 2016 [75 favorites]


Google Partition of India

took me a couple of seconds to realize that google was being used as a verb and not as the named party responsible for a new corporate sponsored partition.

i mean if anything it'd be facebook
posted by poffin boffin at 3:01 PM on December 2, 2016 [22 favorites]


The Chinese leadership thinks at least one decade at a time, arguably two decades, and it will want to get past this, even as it becomes a way to point at democratic elections and say "really?"

I guarantee they're already considering the effects of hacking, information disclosure, and propaganda on the election and how to play the same game in the future. Russia may be first class on all three of those but the Chinese are not far behind and already have a lot of dirt on many people in government.

How come Western Europe, where there is a robust (if weakened) welfare state and quality education, is also seeing a rise in racist and fascist politics? ... I'd be interested in reading some big picture analysis of this that tries to look at this from some angles I may not have thought of.

The destabilization of the middle east leading to a resurgence of Islamic extremism that targets Western targets.
The previous generation of Islamic immigrants not integrating into Western culture in the way they have in the United States with a few of their children becoming terrorists that carried out horrific attacks.
A new influx of refuges, generating fear of additional terrorism/flooded social support systems and racism.
Globalization continuing to eat away at non-skilled labor and high unemployment rates for the young and non-skilled.
The economic crash and lack of accountability for the international financial system.
The financial crisis in Greece and its effects on the Greek populace and the strong economies that helped keep the boat afloat.
Dislike of unelected technocrats from other countries having control over one's own country.
Dynamic and bombastic leaders on the right, not unlike Trump, and boring but sane leaders on the left.
The rise of social media and decreased quality of media literacy and consumption.
posted by Candleman at 3:02 PM on December 2, 2016 [22 favorites]


The Michael Slager case was just adjourned for the weekend in South Carolina. Apparently they can't come to a consensus.
T.J. Holmes ‏@tjholmes
Judge says he has received THREE notes from the jury. Reading first one now. #SlagerTrial


1st note is in the form of a letter from a juror: "I can not in good conscience vote for a guilty verdict." #SlagerTrial #walterscott

2nd note from foreperson says: "It's just one juror that has the issues." #SlagerTrial #WalterScott

3rd note, and I quote: "That juror needs to leave. He is having issues."#SlagerTrial #WalterScott
Sigh. Welcome to America. Where you can be literally shot in the back retreating from a policeman and someone will still not think it's murder because a cop did it.
posted by Talez at 3:14 PM on December 2, 2016 [24 favorites]


Bush ignored intelligence briefing that warned of 9/11. Fucking Trump doesn't even read them. Look for another bloodbath on Uhmerkin soil.
posted by quonsar II: smock fishpants and the temple of foon at 3:19 PM on December 2, 2016 [8 favorites]


Josh Marshall has some thoughts on Ellison
I think this is profoundly unfortunate because truly the last thing the Democratic Party needs right now is a toxic internecine fight over Israel. And equally important, we are in an era when real anti-Semitism has been rearing its head in the United States in a way it has not done in 80s. That makes the ADL more important than it has been in a very long time. (Since the election, I've been reminding myself that I want to send checks to the SPLC and the ADL.) So it pains me in a very deep way to see a misfire like this.
...
I will put this another way. I like the ADL. I like Ellison. I like the Democratic party. From this point of view, this is F'd up in every direction.

I'm agnostic on who should be Chairman of the DNC.
This is largely where I come down too. No good comes of this, and I really don't want the fight over the head of the DNC to be wrapped up in Judaism and Israel, because that will be awful for everyone for no particular productive purpose. It's sad and it's scary and it takes away attention from people drawing swastikas on the damn subway.
posted by zachlipton at 3:22 PM on December 2, 2016 [10 favorites]


How come Western Europe, where there is a robust (if weakened) welfare state and quality education, is also seeing a rise in racist and fascist politics?
It's the racism. Populists have successfully described welfare as a zero-sum game, where middle-class pensioners will loose if immigrants/refugees are allowed in. Infuriatingly, the established parties have not provided a substantial answer to this, even though that answer is extremely simple: because of demographics, there are already now not enough tax-payers and service workers and doctors and engineers to provide the care needed for the populist voters. In Europe, we desperately need immigrants now. And the capitalists know it and are not shy about it. I really wonder why this isn't articulated clearly within politics, and the only meaningful reason is: it's the racism. And not only in a manipulative sense. I suspect that a number of European politicians are petit bourgeois ignorants and personally are insecure around Muslims and Africans. No actually, I don't suspect that, I know it from talking with several politicians on the left and right. Goddam idiots.

This is why I have zero tolerance for leftists who claim to be colorblind and insist that this is all about the economy. Nope, nope, and nope.

To elaborate a bit, and I have no idea wether this is relevant in US politics, the established parties are loosing members and activists at an alarming scale. As a consequence, the passage to power for political talents is becoming very short: many politicians have no experience outside the equivalent of a BA in something relevant and an internship with the party. Ministers have 15-30 years of experience imagining how life might be outside the bubble. In the context, the populists (left and right) have a platform. And the mainstream politicians who sense there is something there, run after the populist sentiment without really knowing what is about.

Yesterday, as we walked home from a restaurant, my daughter told me about two of her classmates we met on the street who had (predictably) entered the low life. One was no doubt a pusher, another on the edge. It reminded me of one day I was listening to a debate on the radio between a social democrat and a conservative, about what to do with those kids "in the ghetto". Apart from being angry about my neighborhood being called a ghetto, I was incensed that the socialist agreed to the basic premise that some whole areas were somehow destined to fail. She had all the rights to be telling that conservative ignorant that the kids were lost on his watch. But she didn't. Because she too saw my daughter's classmates as others. Back then, I wrote her a mail and she replied graciously. But she hasn't changed at all.
In our photo albums, we have pictures of these two young men when they were kids, bouncy, bright eyed and trusting. There was always another way. To be very specific, that other way would have entailed a lot of engagement on both sides. Khaled's dad had made a career of "bridging" between Muslims and local authorities, and was doing almost exactly the opposite. You would need to be able to call him out without being racist. Difficult, but not impossible. And also setting some boundaries. Ahmed's parents were struggling with almost every trauma imaginable, and not really able to raise children. But back then, relief and foster parents weren't available for Muslim families. I couldn't have helped more than I did - I was on the brink every single day myself back then. But I got like 500% more help than they did.

tl/dr: its the racism
posted by mumimor at 3:24 PM on December 2, 2016 [37 favorites]


Do you want Trump reading a 9/11 memo? He's just tweet "looks like there'll cheap land in Manhattan soon again!"
posted by mrzarquon at 3:24 PM on December 2, 2016 [4 favorites]


So, somewhere there is a go to source that says, "Don't bother reading the news, they just hate on Trump."

It's Trump

Also, how is "Calexit" not the epitome of "fuck you, got mine"?
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 3:27 PM on December 2, 2016 [15 favorites]


Black armbands for January 20th? Sounds good to me.

Sigh. Back in my antichoice days we work black armbands on Jan. 22, for the "March for Life," to honor all the little murdered babeez. So if you get one, be sure and take it off before the 22nd.

I have quite literally reached the point where I am considering quitting my job and homeschooling my child so I will at least be with my son when the bombs start to fall. I'm not kidding

Ever since the 9th when I see an obituary of a famous person who had a good life and died peacefully, I think "Lucky bastard."

I wish we could stop with this coming together crap. I don't want to come together with white supremacy and neofascism, I want it to be ground into dust.

I think of it as a sort of force-field; you can come over to where I am, but only if you leave your hatefulness at the gate. Otherwise, you don't get though, sorry.
posted by emjaybee at 3:28 PM on December 2, 2016 [8 favorites]


Ruth Bader Ginsburg Debating Whether To Cancel Winter Vacation Climbing K2
“Maybe it’s wiser not to go, since the weather is supposed to be pretty bad up there this time of the year—although I have always wanted to summit K2 without any supplemental oxygen, and these upcoming weeks seem like the perfect occasion,” said the liberal-leaning 23-year veteran of the nation’s highest court, who later added that she might just take a slightly less strenuous route than the notoriously difficult South Face for her ascent of the 28,251-foot peak instead.
posted by Rhaomi at 3:28 PM on December 2, 2016 [13 favorites]


I think the General Mattis pick for Secretary of Defense is actually a pretty good one, and I'm very curious to see who gets tapped for State and the rest of the cabinet. I get the feeling that Trump will be relying on the "other people in the room" much more than the "average" President, so I'm really hoping he chooses some capable folks.
posted by Man Bites Dog at 3:30 PM on December 2, 2016 [3 favorites]


The Intercept contacted nine of the most prominent such firms, from Facebook to Booz Allen Hamilton, to ask if they would sell their services to help create a national Muslim registry, an idea recently resurfaced by Donald Trump’s transition team. Only Twitter said no

Man, you know Booz Allen Hamilton has already been working on one for years just for fun
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 3:33 PM on December 2, 2016 [7 favorites]


I think the General Mattis pick for Secretary of Defense is actually a pretty good one, and I'm very curious to see who gets tapped for State and the rest of the cabinet. I get the feeling that Trump will be relying on the "other people in the room" much more than the "average" President, so I'm really hoping he chooses some capable folks.

Our standards are set so low that "It’s fun to shoot some people." is the more sane choice than a paranoid conspiracy lunatic.
posted by Talez at 3:34 PM on December 2, 2016 [11 favorites]


Clara Jeffery suggests a Bloomberg or Bezos should buy it, especially to avoid the debt falling into foreign hands.


Mark Cuban, please come to the white courtesy phone...
posted by ocschwar at 3:36 PM on December 2, 2016 [9 favorites]


how is "Calexit" not the epitome of "fuck you, got mine"?

I don't think it's every going to happen for reasons that have been expressed above, but I can sympathize with the interest in the idea. If the Supreme Court becomes a majority Republican tool with no chance of reversing it for decades and rampant disenfranchisement/gerrymandering ensures continued control of the Senate and House, what else is there to do if there's a party that's set on redistributing your state's income to their constituents while stomping on your attempts to do things like regulate the environment and support liberal social causes?

At a certain point there's the desire to circle the wagons around what you can control and try to protect it.
posted by Candleman at 3:40 PM on December 2, 2016 [16 favorites]








Google Partition of India

took me a couple of seconds to realize that google was being used as a verb and not as the named party responsible for a new corporate sponsored partition.


i mean if anything it'd be facebook


lolz!!!

Since no one could be bothered:
About 11.2 million ( 77.4% of the displaced persons) were in the west, with the Punjab accounting for most of it: 6.5 million Muslims moved from India to West Pakistan, and 4.7 million Hindus and Sikhs moved from West Pakistan to India; thus the net migration in the west from India to West Pakistan (now Pakistan) was 1.8 million.
A crowd of Muslims at the Old Fort (Purana Qila) in Delhi, which had been converted into a vast camp for Muslim refugees waiting to be transported to Pakistan. Manchester Guardian, 27 September 1947.

The remaining 3.3 million (22.6% of the displaced persons) were in the east: 2.6 million moved from East Pakistan to India and 0.7 million moved from India to East Pakistan (now Bangladesh); thus net migration in the east was 1.9 million into India. The newly formed governments were completely unequipped to deal with migrations of such staggering magnitude, and massive violence and slaughter occurred on both sides of the border. Estimates of the number of deaths vary, with low estimates at 200,000 and high estimates at 2,000,000.


That's your sorting period.
posted by zutalors! at 3:43 PM on December 2, 2016 [38 favorites]


they're auto playing the inexactly named History channel, which is currently on a 'UFOs, and the government conspiracies to hide them' kick

I guarantee you if the government is hiding UFOs we'll find out right after Trump goes.
posted by kirkaracha at 3:45 PM on December 2, 2016 [2 favorites]


It's not really possible to be too pessimistic about the future of American democracy. I'm firmly of the opinion that it's already over, and we're entering into what comes next, autocracy.

Maybe it won't be so bad.
posted by y2karl at 3:46 PM on December 2, 2016 [3 favorites]


At a certain point there's the desire to circle the wagons around what you can control and try to protect it.

Those CNN clips of Trump supporters saying they believe that millions of people voted illegally in California? That doesn't mean they think millions of undocumented immigrants voted. That means they are beginning to have a heightened awareness of California as a majority-minority state and are angry that all those Latinos have voting rights, because they think it should be illegal for people like that to be able to vote in US elections. I don't want a Calexit and think it's mostly tech bro foolishness, but the urge to protect your community from a country that thinks it should be "illegal" is a little more complex than "fuck you, I got mine"
posted by moonlight on vermont at 3:46 PM on December 2, 2016 [56 favorites]


I keep thinking of that Emma Goldman quote, "if voting actually changed anything, they would make it illegal." Well, they're trying.

I think that we have to adapt our strategies as well. If more states pass requirements to have IDs, we might need to start initiatives to fund paying for low-income folks to get IDs. If states try to make that illegal, we might have to make those initiatives informal and difficult to trace.

At a certain point (and maybe we're already there), we need to start talking about how voter suppression delegitimizes the authority of the government.
posted by overglow at 3:47 PM on December 2, 2016 [13 favorites]


That's your sorting period.

Southern Baptist Pakistan
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 3:47 PM on December 2, 2016 [3 favorites]


Our standards are set so low that "It’s fun to shoot some people." is the more sane choice than a paranoid conspiracy lunatic.

Yeah that particular quote gets a lot of heat and perhaps rightfully so, although I think there's some context there.

But this is also the same General who did this...

As his division prepared to ship out, Mattis called in experts in Arab culture to lead cultural sensitivity classes. He constantly toured the battlefield to tell stories of Marines who were able to show discretion and cultural sensitivity in moments of high pressure.
posted by Man Bites Dog at 3:49 PM on December 2, 2016 [15 favorites]


Yeah that particular quote gets a lot of heat and perhaps rightfully so, although I think there's some context there.

There is. He likes to apply extrajudicial justice to people who aren't nice and disagrees with quite strongly.

This is why people who like to shoot people shouldn't be Secretary of Defense. But if I have to choose between regular catshit and the massive stinker of a turd my maine coon just laid I'll take regular catshit.
posted by Talez at 3:51 PM on December 2, 2016


Didn't Mattis also want to decrease our military footprint?

I'm torn, because he seems least awful, and yet I want Democrats to stick to RULES RULES RULES and oppose the waiver.
posted by zutalors! at 3:52 PM on December 2, 2016 [5 favorites]


how is "Calexit" not the epitome of "fuck you, got mine"?

By that logic, so is the American war of independence. The legitimacy of government derives from the consent of the governed, and it's OK to form a new governmental system.
posted by jaduncan at 3:53 PM on December 2, 2016 [21 favorites]


Too much talk about the Carrier thing everywhere... It's a stunt, and BTW the Obama administration did very similar things early on. Not much wrong with it, just not news. I heard someone (Dan Pfeiffer?) quoting a study saying he'd need to do this every day for 30 years to save the same number of manufacturing jobs as the auto bail-out (which ended up making money for tax payers).

Here's hoping that empty gestures are going to be the centerpiece of the Trump administration.
posted by kleinsteradikaleminderheit at 3:53 PM on December 2, 2016


If you believe that the US government is going to watch a majority of its trade and military power walk out without a really serious, violent fight, you are crazy.
I previously noted a 2003 Popular Science article I read (in a hospital where the reading choices were limited) about a speculative California Secession attempt that is squashed in 72 hours because there are so many Federal Military bases, especially air bases, in the state. Google Books copy. The Popular Science fiction piece is set in 2043, with some technological speculation, but it makes a good argument for "don't try it; it'll never work".
posted by oneswellfoop at 3:57 PM on December 2, 2016 [1 favorite]


I think the Orange County win for Clinton got people excited. I've been there several times, and people just say the most breathtakingly racist shit, seriously the most anywhere, except not *about* me because I guess I'm one of the good ones or alternately right there.
posted by zutalors! at 4:01 PM on December 2, 2016 [1 favorite]


I'm torn, because he seems least awful, and yet I want Democrats to stick to RULES RULES RULES and oppose the waiver.

It's just sad that #1 qualification for a Secretary of Defense that is vaguely acceptable is "applicant is not Michael Flynn".
posted by Talez at 4:01 PM on December 2, 2016 [3 favorites]


How Much The Polls Missed By In Every State

There’s been so much talk since Nov. 8 about what the polls got wrong. The national polls are ultimately going to be off by only about 2 percentage points, which is not out of the ordinary historically speaking. State polls however, missed by wider margins. In 41 of the 50 states, the average of the polls underestimated Donald Trump’s margin of victory.
posted by futz at 4:04 PM on December 2, 2016 [3 favorites]


There is. He likes to apply extrajudicial justice to people who aren't nice and disagrees with quite strongly.

This is why people who like to shoot people shouldn't be Secretary of Defense.


Yeah I understand what you're saying, although to be fair he said that in 2005 about the Taliban, with whom we had been fighting for several years at that point. Not exactly extrajudicial justice if you're talking about shooting enemy combatants on the battlefield, in my opinion.

But I guess my point here is that with enough "pretty good" (my opinion) or at least "better than a Maine coon massive turd" (your opinion) people around him like Mattis, perhaps there is room for at least a little bit of optimism. Perhaps.
posted by Man Bites Dog at 4:04 PM on December 2, 2016 [1 favorite]


Yeah I understand what you're saying, although to be fair he said that in 2005 about the Taliban, with whom we had been fighting for several years at that point. Not exactly extrajudicial justice if you're talking about shooting enemy combatants on the battlefield, in my opinion.

Except we invaded them. The Taliban were terrible people there's no doubt. But we walked in, started smashing up the place, and forced them into the role of enemy combatant.
posted by Talez at 4:07 PM on December 2, 2016 [3 favorites]


That means they are beginning to have a heightened awareness of California as a majority-minority state and are angry that all those Latinos have voting rights, because they think it should be illegal for people like that to be able to vote in US elections.

This is exactly right.
posted by lalex at 4:09 PM on December 2, 2016 [10 favorites]


People seem almost religiously devoted to ignoring how badly Trump is going to fuck up literally everything.

Earlier today I had the revelation that this election feels like the time my dad drove me around Chicago when his neuropathy in his feet meant he couldn't tell if he had his foot on the accelerator or the brake. Only I didn't know that was happening at the time, I just knew my dad was braking every hundred feet or so on Lake Shore Drive while my mother looked a little peeved. The next day my mother explained and then concluded with "I just hate the way he drives these days", like he was going ten miles over the speed limit instead of nearly killing us all.

Yeah. So that's what this feels like. But I still have obligations and other people I care about, so I'm keeping on keeping on.
posted by dinty_moore at 4:10 PM on December 2, 2016 [14 favorites]


Transition team says that the president-elect’s endorsement of the controversial Dakota Access pipeline ‘has nothing to do with his personal investments’
posted by adamvasco at 4:13 PM on December 2, 2016 [1 favorite]


Trump's education pick says reform can 'advance God's Kingdom'
The billionaire philanthropist whom Donald Trump has tapped to lead the Education Department once compared her work in education reform to a Biblical battleground where she wants to "advance God's Kingdom"
...
In the interview, an audio recording of which was obtained by POLITICO, the couple is candid about how their Christian faith drives their efforts to reform American education.

School choice, they say, leads to “greater Kingdom gain.” The two also lament that public schools have “displaced” the church as the center of communities, and they cite school choice as a way to reverse that troubling trend.
...
“Our desire is to be in that Shephelah, and to confront the culture in which we all live today in ways that will continue to help advance God’s kingdom, but not to stay in our own faith territory,” Betsy Devos said.
The comments come from 2001 at "The Gathering" conference. I at least thought we were beating back some of this Dominionist shit when Cruz lost.
posted by zachlipton at 4:16 PM on December 2, 2016 [12 favorites]


Okay, this is a bit of a derail, but can anyone here give me some articles or pointers about what exactly Paul Manafort's endgame or guiding political philosophy might be? Every time he shows up in the news I'm disgusted and horrified but also just, ????? His CV is almost a punchline-- a semi-respectable history of employment with conservative US administrations and then, what the hell happened? This bizarre downward spiral into indefensible dictators-- Marcos, Mobutu, the Angolan warlord, then a step back towards Western World evil with the Yanukovych scam... what possesses a person to seek out a string of employers like that other than malicious sociopathy and a desire to wreck societies? Surely there are less high-stakes ways to make that kind of money; is he just doing it for the evulz? I can understand someone banking their life and fortune on ONE dictator, but five in a row?
posted by moonlight on vermont at 4:17 PM on December 2, 2016 [3 favorites]


"My interests are less in conflict than anyone you've ever met, trust me."[fake]
posted by contraption at 4:17 PM on December 2, 2016


That means they are beginning to have a heightened awareness of California as a majority-minority state and are angry that all those Latinos have voting rights, because they think it should be illegal for people like that to be able to vote in US elections.

I feel impressively dumb. Until now, I hadn't quite realised that all the 'only if you count California' is also a coded way to dismiss PoC votes when discussing the popular vote total. Sometimes life makes me sad.
posted by jaduncan at 4:18 PM on December 2, 2016 [25 favorites]


People seem almost religiously devoted to ignoring how badly Trump is going to fuck up literally everything.

But I still have obligations and other people I care about, so I'm keeping on keeping on.


Not sure if it's so much the people who need to keep on keeping on, more so the "time to accept that he's president and unify" types who are acting like we elected Marco Rubio or Jeb Bush or some other grown adult who might suck a lot but at least still knows how to drive the ship.

It's like a toddler is waving a loaded gun around the room at a dinner party and his stubborn parents are like "don't criticize him, he needs a supportive environment!"
posted by windbox at 4:18 PM on December 2, 2016 [29 favorites]


This is why people who like to shoot people shouldn't be Secretary of Defense. But if I have to choose between regular catshit and the massive stinker of a turd my maine coon just laid I'll take regular catshit.

"When I was a young officer in 1979, I toured what was known as "The Killing Fields" in Cambodia. This is the area where the Khmer Rouge killed off nearly a quarter of the Cambodian population, something like 1.9 million people in just a few years. My guide told me that they started by rounding up all of the teachers. They wanted to extinguish free thought, and the spark of questioning and dissent. Because, to a Totalitarian dictator, an open and inquisitive mind is more dangerous even than a Marine with a rifle."
--General James Mattis

None of the widely touted new technologies and weapons systems "would have helped me in the last three years [in Iraq and Afghanistan]. But I could have used cultural training [and] language training. I could have used more products from American universities [who] understood the world does not revolve around America and [who] embrace coalitions and allies for all of the strengths that they bring us."
Speaking at a professional conference on military transformation, urging the Pentagon to invest in efforts that would "diminish the conditions that drive people to sign up for these kinds of insurgencies." Breaking the Warrior Code (February 2005)


In this age, I don’t care how tactically or operationally brilliant you are, if you cannot create harmony—even vicious harmony—on the battlefield based on trust across service lines, across coalition and national lines, and across civilian/military lines, you need to go home, because your leadership is obsolete. We have got to have officers who can create harmony across all those lines.
At the May 2010 JFCOM Conference Ares blog, Aviation Week (June 2010)


PowerPoint makes us stupid.
Referring to the ubiquitous presentation software at a brief in North Carolina in April 2010, as quoted in We Have Met the Enemy and He Is PowerPoint (2010) by Elisabeth Bumiller, The New York Times

Mattis is more than his battlefield imagine.
posted by ridgerunner at 4:19 PM on December 2, 2016 [47 favorites]


Also, how is "Calexit" not the epitome of "fuck you, got mine"?

"Fuck you, I've got mine rights and freedoms and I very much want to live in a country where the leadership doesn't threaten to take them away from me because of their religion or -phobia or -ism."

*I'm originally from Texas and I understand the future of this and other secessionist movements, but let's at least be honest about one of the motivations in this particular case.
posted by mudpuppie at 4:28 PM on December 2, 2016 [12 favorites]


Hands up for how many of us are secretly happy about Mattis because he raises the hope that if things get too crazy, we can at least hope for a military coup.
posted by frumiousb at 4:30 PM on December 2, 2016 [31 favorites]


(that was humor, kind of)
posted by frumiousb at 4:31 PM on December 2, 2016 [8 favorites]


Wonkette on General Mattis :
Another thing we like about Mattis: He takes laws and regulations against torture seriously, and was one of the commanding officers who reviewed the misconduct charges against then-Lt. Col. Allen West, who was accused of firing a gun next to the head of a blindfolded Iraqi prisoner during an interrogation. Mattis wrote of West’s behavior, “this shows a commander who has lost his moral balance or watched too many Hollywood movies.”
posted by corb at 4:31 PM on December 2, 2016 [39 favorites]


Looks like Sarah Palin's been passed over, as she's now call Trump's policies Crony Capitalism.
posted by 922257033c4a0f3cecdbd819a46d626999d1af4a at 4:39 PM on December 2, 2016 [10 favorites]


Another thing we like about Mattis: He takes laws and regulations against torture seriously

I thank God every day that we didn't elect someone who might (gasp!) put someone who works on Wall Street anywhere in her staff.

Mattis doesn't sound awful, but I wish that we were discussing the viability of a $15 per hour minimum wage.
posted by steady-state strawberry at 4:43 PM on December 2, 2016 [4 favorites]


And we have a tweet: "The President of Taiwan CALLED ME today to wish me congratulations on winning the Presidency. Thank you!"

Apparently he's watching cable news. Also he's comically missing the point that this isn't about who places the damn phone call.
posted by zachlipton at 4:48 PM on December 2, 2016 [13 favorites]


I mean does he not have caller id or something?
posted by zachlipton at 4:49 PM on December 2, 2016 [3 favorites]


Apple currently has like 30 gajillion dollars stashed overseas they won't bring into the US because it will be taxed. Trump said he wants to force Apple to make the iPhones in the US. I wouldn't be surprised if they start producing a token amount in a small factory in the USA and suddenly receive a tax holiday on their foreign earnings.
posted by PenDevil at 4:14 PM on December 2

I doubt they would need to do anything to partake in the tax holiday proposed. Trump/Mnuchin just want American companies to bring their overseas cash back here so they have proposed forgiving all the back taxes or penalties.


I don't think hyperbolic fear is unassailably good. Someone in another thread was trying to assert that "all Latinx looking people will be deported" and thought that was a completely viable claim. It's not. It's ridiculously unwieldy. It does serve to take attention away from more real, immediate risk.
posted by zutalors! at 4:20 PM on December 2

I can see why you felt the need to push back so hard on me then if that is what you thought I meant. I never said all. I said, "In addition to deporting any Latinx-looking person they can land their hands on I am now worried that[...]" Now I can see how that might read as all Latinx living here but I meant anyone that got caught up in illegal immigration round ups. I lived in California and worked in the restaurant business in the early 80's. It was a very scary time. You never knew who was going to come to work that day and people who did come to work never knew if their relatives and friends were going to be OK. Plus you never knew if the immigration authorities were going to show up and demand to see everyone's papers.

The tricky thing then (and perhaps still) is many of the people who worked and lived in Southern California were born in CA but spent their childhood in Mexico with grandparents so that the parents could work in the USA. Many US citizens therefore dressed and spoke like people from Mexico-- it wasn't always clear if they were legal citizens, legal immigrants or people who came without papers. I knew a number of guys (waiters, kitchen help) who borrowed IDs so that they could get hired and were terrified of being caught.

It was a pretty terrible time and I hoped never to see its like.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 4:49 PM on December 2, 2016 [8 favorites]


@realDonaldTrump: "The President of Taiwan CALLED ME today to wish me congratulations on winning the Presidency. Thank you!

@fordm: Beijing's gonna love the "President of Taiwan" part

you guys i honestly don't know how much more of this i can take
posted by lalex at 4:50 PM on December 2, 2016 [55 favorites]


Oh god I didn't even catch that. Official US policy is a multi-paragraph disclaimer before using any word starting with the letter "T" when discussing anything within several thousand miles of China.

And yes, some of that official policy is braindead stupid, but it's stupid in a way that allows everyone to maintain certain polite fictions about the world that are important to ensure people don't start killing each other, so we don't randomly throw it away without an enormous amount of consideration first, none of which Trump is remotely capable of performing.
posted by zachlipton at 4:53 PM on December 2, 2016 [18 favorites]


By that logic, so is the American war of independence. The legitimacy of government derives from the consent of the governed, and it's OK to form a new governmental system.

I heard there was another war, had something to do with the notion of secession.
posted by atoxyl at 4:54 PM on December 2, 2016 [2 favorites]


Awesome, a renegade president called a renegade province.

Nothing will go wrong.

(Is this the beginning of Taiexit? Taiwexit?)
posted by FJT at 4:55 PM on December 2, 2016


Is there a "Taiwan/US/China" 101 that I can read somewhere?
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 4:56 PM on December 2, 2016 [3 favorites]


Trump isn't even President yet and he's already destabilizing the world.
posted by Justinian at 4:56 PM on December 2, 2016 [10 favorites]


I can't wait to see what Xi Jinping tweets.
posted by Golden Eternity at 4:57 PM on December 2, 2016 [10 favorites]


I am honestly terrified: he doesn't even know what or how he's fucking up and apparently the idea that he might have minders was.... laughably optimistic. Someone handed him a fucking phone and said "Sir, it's the President of, uh, Taiwan?" and Donnie said "I bet they make good crab Rangoons, hand him over" and we're all going to die.
posted by lydhre at 4:59 PM on December 2, 2016 [33 favorites]




oh lydhre, don't be so pessimistic. I'm not saying we wouldn't get our hair mussed. But I do say no more than ten to twenty million killed, tops. Uh, depending on the breaks.
posted by Justinian at 5:02 PM on December 2, 2016 [15 favorites]


Hey, wow. We didn't even have to wait until he was in office before he made nuclear war more likely.
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 5:03 PM on December 2, 2016 [8 favorites]


"Do not interfere when your adversary is making a disastrous blunder."

I bet Xi Jinping is too busy calling Japan, the Koreas, Vietnam, Malaysia and Indonesia right now to actually respond to the Taiwan tweet. The opportunity is too good.
posted by ocschwar at 5:03 PM on December 2, 2016 [8 favorites]


Oh he knows exactly what he's doing when he says the 'President of Taiwan'
posted by 922257033c4a0f3cecdbd819a46d626999d1af4a at 5:05 PM on December 2, 2016 [1 favorite]


"Chiang Kai-shek was a wonderful guy, just tremendous, wanted to make China great again."

[fake Trump]

posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 5:06 PM on December 2, 2016 [3 favorites]


Oh cool I didn't even think of the terrifying possibility that he might piss off China enough that we'll have both Russia and China trying to hack and manipulate the US to different ends.
posted by jason_steakums at 5:06 PM on December 2, 2016 [1 favorite]


Are there any informed adults in trumps Tower of Doom?
posted by futz at 5:08 PM on December 2, 2016 [1 favorite]


Oh he knows exactly what he's doing when he says the 'President of Taiwan'

i mean? i don't think so? i don't think any of the clueless sycophants surrounding him have the slightest idea about the whole china/taiwan situation. i really don't. they thought the white house came fully staffed.
posted by poffin boffin at 5:11 PM on December 2, 2016 [93 favorites]


Somebody does. Somebody who spun Trump up and set him down aimed at the One China policy.
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 5:13 PM on December 2, 2016 [4 favorites]


he probably thinks the nuclear football is a real football, he's gonna ask tom brady to sign it.
posted by poffin boffin at 5:15 PM on December 2, 2016 [11 favorites]


I think there's a small but fairly tiny chance he said "President of Taiwan" in full knowledge of what that means. I think there's a 0% chance he understands what he's doing when it comes to revamping the entire role of the US into the world in what Jeet Heer is calling a pre WWII mercantalist system according to some sort of ethnonationalist dream cooked up by Bannon.
posted by zachlipton at 5:17 PM on December 2, 2016 [2 favorites]


About that. Jeet Heer has a theory.

Haha great, we can relax. Trump does have a plan! Only, it's to undo the global economic order which has successfully prevented a war between the great powers representing one of, if not the longest periods of peace in history. So that he/we can "make better deals." I would honestly rather he have no plan.
posted by feloniousmonk at 5:17 PM on December 2, 2016 [17 favorites]


The White House was not told about Mr. Trump’s call until after it happened, according to a senior administration official.

I truly believe, in my heart of hearts, that he just looked at the Animaniacs Nations Of The World song lyrics, picked one of the words at random, and started dialing
posted by Greg Nog at 5:18 PM on December 2, 2016 [17 favorites]


Oh he knows exactly what he's doing when he says the 'President of Taiwan'

Definitely. Obama Trump is playing 11-dimensional chess here and people think it looks dumb only because as mere mortals they cannot comprehend its genius.
posted by indubitable at 5:21 PM on December 2, 2016 [6 favorites]


1.) He has property in Taiwan he wants to develop, just like every other "random" country he's been in contact with in the past week, and

2.) Do we not remember how many times he kept yelling about GHINA during the campaign? It didn't really resonate with most Americans to the point of it sounding bizarre but I think DJT really does have some kind of simmering resentment against China and their global financial position. I would not expect this to be the last time he provokes them.
posted by moonlight on vermont at 5:25 PM on December 2, 2016 [16 favorites]


Somebody does. Somebody who spun Trump up and set him down aimed at the One China policy.

Honestly, I think it can be ever simpler than that. Go back to Trump's Razor. Trump's basic foreign policy position has been that he'll be tough, but he wants to be friends with everyone. If you have no clue what you're doing and just generally want to reset all foreign policy everywhere and be generally friendly in service of no particular goals other than hoping foreign leaders think you're a swell guy, you'd do exactly what he's doing now: talking to everyone, praising them effusively, inviting them to drop round for a visit if they're in the neighborhood, etc... Why would he think that he shouldn't he talk to the President of Taiwan? We want to be friendly with Taiwan, she's an important person, he wants to build a hotel there, so of course he'll pick up the phone. Why overcomplicate it and think there's anything more to it than that?

What he has no conception of is that a lot of countries being friendly with each other is based on various polite fictions we've all agreed to assume in the name of moving on with our lives and moving on to other issues. With those polite fictions, it's not possible to just be friendly with everyone. It's like inviting two spouses locked in a horrible divorce to your Christmas party; you may think that you're not taking sides and just being nice to everyone, but the reality is that you're messing with something far bigger than yourself. And of course, you've vowed to defend one spouse already and the other one has a massive army. It's madness.
posted by zachlipton at 5:27 PM on December 2, 2016 [58 favorites]


By that logic, so is the American war of independence. The legitimacy of government derives from the consent of the governed, and it's OK to form a new governmental system.

I heard there was another war, had something to do with the notion of secession.
posted by atoxyl at 0:54 on December 3 [+] [!]


I did consider this. Famously, the Confederacy did not really score very well on 'consent of the governed'.

I don't think there's a useful analogue between the Confederacy starting a war and (presumably) a referendum in California followed by pressure for the US to allow withdrawal. Much as, say, the UK once undertook the highland clearances but still allowed a Scottish referendum on independence.
posted by jaduncan at 5:28 PM on December 2, 2016 [2 favorites]


I think there's a small but fairly tiny chance he said "President of Taiwan" in full knowledge of what that means. I think there's a 0% chance he understands what he's doing when it comes to revamping the entire role of the US into the world in what Jeet Heer is calling a pre WWII mercantalist system according to some sort of ethnonationalist dream cooked up by Bannon.

I don't think they realize that trying to break the International capitalist system won't work like it would have back in the '30s. The US isn't the unquestioned center of manufacturing or even a dominant force of world GDP anymore. If the US decides it's going to retreat from the international stage I have a feeling either EU or China (EU is more equipped, China wants it more) will be more than happy to take the privileged position that you get from being the leading economy in the post-Bretton Woods world order.

The world's trade isn't going to fall into bilateralism and ethnocentrism because the US suddenly decides to aim a nuke at its economic foot as Bannon would believe. Worst case the world lands bilateral deals to deal with Trumpism and routes around the damage otherwise. There's way more people coming into the consumer class than ever before in China and India.
posted by Talez at 5:29 PM on December 2, 2016 [7 favorites]


Other difference: I suspect large numbers of the hardcore GOP leadership would quite like a situation where CA's electoral votes and worrying tendency to demand things like environmental regulation would no longer be their problem.

Not that I'm in favour of any of it, I can just totally see how it could be agreed to if it was something CA's electorate actually wanted to do.
posted by jaduncan at 5:31 PM on December 2, 2016


Surely Trump is not stupid enough to be unable to see the benefits we get from being at the apex of the global financial pyramid. If he is, FSM help us, because the Republican fulmination about the debt will suddenly have meaning in a way it hasn't previously.

The system benefits us in a way that far exceeds the cost. That would hold true for every one of us if the Republicans weren't such greedy pigs and were willing to let some of their table scraps go toward helping out the workers displaced by the offshoring of manufacturing. Their short-sighted treatment of said workers is largely responsible for the backlash against the very thing that gives us one of the highest standards of living in the world. The very thing that enables them to become so wealthy in the first place.

Not only is it good for us and our trading partners economically (for the most part), it also helps keep the peace. China isn't going to upset the apple cart as long as the economic order allows them to modernize their nation at the rate they have been. Take that away and they have no reason to let Taiwan be or maintain the two-system policy with regard to Hong Kong. Or even stay out of the resource-rich parts of eastern Russia that they have had their eye on for longer than we have been a nation.
posted by wierdo at 5:39 PM on December 2, 2016 [7 favorites]


I guess Trump himself becoming President For Life seems quite unlikely, but I think the parallels to Boris Yeltsin many people have made during the last year-plus still hold as a potential scenario: eight years of spectacular incompetence and health scares during which he dismantles and privatizes everything he can get his hands on at bargain-basement prices, by the end of which everyone is so desperate for stability that they accede to one of his more competent-looking toadies taking over and we get an American Putin.
posted by XMLicious at 5:40 PM on December 2, 2016 [23 favorites]


I don't think they realize that trying to break the International capitalist system won't work like it would have back in the '30s. The US isn't the unquestioned center of manufacturing or even a dominant force of world GDP anymore. If the US decides it's going to retreat from the international stage I have a feeling either EU or China (EU is more equipped, China wants it more) will be more than happy to take the privileged position that you get from being the leading economy in the post-Bretton Woods world order.

Well, yeah-- China is already doing that. I'm thinking the Taiwan thing might work out well for them in the end, though. Trump starts defending Taiwan (because who really cares about Taiwan), China blusters. Trump makes a deal-- leave Taiwan alone in return for trade concessions. In the meantime, they close their fist on the entire region. They can always deal with Taiwan later. Trump pulls back behind national borders, and China keeps investing in Africa and South America, and they get better at is as they go along. In the meantime, they decimate the wildlife population of Africa for Chinese medicine because nobody else cares, and they get access to the resources they need to eventually take on India. Anyone feel like brushing up on their Mandarin?
posted by frumiousb at 5:40 PM on December 2, 2016 [1 favorite]



Surely Trump is not stupid enough to be unable to see the benefits we get from being at the apex of the global financial pyramid.


right, but he thinks the way to keep us there is to default on all international debt, which is what he would do if it was his own debt.
posted by poffin boffin at 5:41 PM on December 2, 2016 [5 favorites]


From Heer's tweets:

There are some shrewd foreign policy thinkers who are sympathetic to aspects of Trumpism (say Andrew Bacevich

Wha? Which aspects of Trumpism is Bacevich sympathetic to? I've only read a couple of his books and a handful of his articles, but he doesn't strike me as on board with Trumpism in the least (the opposite, if anything). Googling now to see what I can find... but what am I missing here?
posted by Rykey at 5:41 PM on December 2, 2016 [1 favorite]


@passantino CNN reporting China has already contacted the White House over Trump’s call with Taiwan pres

Oh boy. Lucky Obama.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 5:43 PM on December 2, 2016 [48 favorites]


Well, yeah-- China is already doing that. I'm thinking the Taiwan thing might work out well for them in the end, though. Trump starts defending Taiwan (because who really cares about Taiwan), China blusters. Trump makes a deal-- leave Taiwan alone in return for trade concessions. In the meantime, they close their fist on the entire region. They can always deal with Taiwan later. Trump pulls back behind national borders, and China keeps investing in Africa and South America, and they get better at is as they go along. In the meantime, they decimate the wildlife population of Africa for Chinese medicine because nobody else cares, and they get access to the resources they need to eventually take on India. Anyone feel like brushing up on their Mandarin?

China is trying to do it their own way but their inability (unwillingness) to open up the yuan to full convertibility and their apprehension to letting their currency appreciate with demand (or print the living shit out of it to satisfy that demand) is what still holds them back from becoming the great financial power they want to be. They may be able to start a yuan bloc in Africa and possibly South America but if I had to look a decade post-Trump I'd put more money on the Euro supplanting USD instead of CNY.
posted by Talez at 5:44 PM on December 2, 2016 [1 favorite]


And now for some Domestic Policy...

Politico Trump's education pick says reform can 'advance God's Kingdom'
In the interview, an audio recording, which was obtained by POLITICO, the couple is candid about how their Christian faith drives their efforts to reform American education.

School choice, they say, leads to “greater Kingdom gain.” The two also lament that public schools have “displaced” the Church as the center of communities, and they cite school choice as a way to reverse that troubling trend.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 5:46 PM on December 2, 2016 [3 favorites]


Surely Trump is not stupid enough to be unable to see the benefits we get from being at the apex of the global financial pyramid.

Yes, he is. Seriously folks, he's not playing 11-dimensional chess here. He's not even playing Connect Four. He's not Obama. He has no idea what he's doing.
posted by lalex at 5:47 PM on December 2, 2016 [62 favorites]


"I just wish that I had not voted," said Colebrook, 59. "I have no faith in our government anymore at all. They all promise you the world at the end of a stick and take it away once they get in."

She's still gonna vote for the stupid son of a bitch in 2020. I hope some reporter remembers to follow up.
posted by great_radio at 5:48 PM on December 2, 2016 [13 favorites]


like i don't think his understanding of the world is much more advanced than a spoiled greedy toddler who just grabs whatever he wants and screams if it's taken away or if he's told it belongs to someone else, and will shrilly deny his involvement when he's caught.

see also: will smash a toy he's been told to share so no one else can use it

he's a dumb stupid dangerous manbaby who has no self control and no actual understanding of real world consequences for his actions, and instead of having people who could rein him and his greatest idiocies in, he's surrounded by venal enablers who would eat a mile of his shit just to gobble the hole it came from as long as it kept them in power themselves
posted by poffin boffin at 5:50 PM on December 2, 2016 [31 favorites]


The President of Taiwan CALLED ME today to wish me congratulations on winning the Presidency. Thank you!

He lied.

@kylegriffin1
Taiwanese media is reporting that the call was organized by Trump's staff
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 5:51 PM on December 2, 2016 [50 favorites]


Great, now we're actively taunting the Chinese.

@realdonaldtrump: "Interesting how the U.S. sells Taiwan billions of dollars of military equipment but I should not accept a congratulatory call."
posted by lalex at 5:54 PM on December 2, 2016 [17 favorites]


What if Trump's plan is actually to dissolve the world into chaos so everyone has to start buying military supplies from the geographically isolated US?

I...just don't even know anymore.
posted by corb at 5:57 PM on December 2, 2016 [8 favorites]


The Taiwan News Trump wants to build luxury hotels in Taiwan’s Taoyuan: mayor
A woman working for the Trump Organization came to Taoyuan in September, declaring the company’s investment interest in Taiwan’s Taoyuan Aerotropolis, a large urban planning development project surrounding the Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport.[...]

Reports also said the meeting suggested that Eric Trump, the son of the President-elect, will come to Taiwan personally to see about the potential business opportunity by the end of the year.
Jesus Christ. He has met/spoken with how many heads of state and how many of them involved countries where he is building or planning to build? If we are lucky he will spend very little of time being Donald Trump, US President and most of his time being Donald Trump, CEO Trump Empire.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 6:01 PM on December 2, 2016 [9 favorites]


Oh boy. Lucky Obama

Someone linked to it here, maybe, but this article on presidential phone calls is fascinating and terrifying.

The relevant part: phone calls to the Chinese government, at least in the Bush era, require(d) the president to verbally recap our treaties with China before getting to business.

Clinton would have done it. Trump will mispronounce every leader's name.
posted by steady-state strawberry at 6:04 PM on December 2, 2016 [9 favorites]


Surprised to see CalExit going as far as it has here. Screw the military bases and other assets; CalExit goes nowhere unless they can also take the states they're getting their water from with them. Otherwise everyone in New Free California will get very thirsty, very quick.
posted by Bringer Tom at 6:04 PM on December 2, 2016 [24 favorites]


right, but he thinks the way to keep us there is to default on all international debt, which is what he would do if it was his own debt.

Doesn't Peter Thiel want to throw the nation into chaos to end democracy? And aren't he and the other Trumpist fellow travelers big fans of returning to the gold standard? I can see them pushing for a US sovereign default; it would probably push gold prices through the roof and pretty well fuck up the financial system.
posted by indubitable at 6:06 PM on December 2, 2016 [2 favorites]


"We could run away and just go back up in the hills and live very safely and very comfortably — or are we going to exist in the Shephelah and try to impact the view of the community around us with the ideas we believe are more powerful ideas of a better way to live one’s life and a more meaningful and a more rewarding way to live one’s life as a Christian?" Dick DeVos says. "Our job is to figure out in the contemporary context — how do we get the pig bones out of our culture?"

How generous of them! They've got it all figured out, nothing to learn anything from anyone else, but will oh so graciously try to fix everyone else.

I do wonder what will happen when. They realize Christians aren't the only ones who can run religious schools.
posted by ghost phoneme at 6:06 PM on December 2, 2016 [7 favorites]


Jesus Christ. He has met/spoken with how many heads of state and how many of them involved countries where he is building or planning to build? If we are lucky he will spend very little of time being Donald Trump, US President and most of his time being Donald Trump, CEO Trump Empire.

Serious question: could building permits etc count as gifts for the purposes of the emoluments clause? If so, this seems like it's day 1 impeachable.
posted by jaduncan at 6:06 PM on December 2, 2016 [13 favorites]


Oh he knows exactly what he's doing when he says the 'President of Taiwan'

Trump's Razor wasn't a disposable. We didn't throw it away after the election ended.
posted by Slackermagee at 6:09 PM on December 2, 2016 [5 favorites]


powerpoint makes us stupid - mattis
Edward Tufte agrees (pdf)

posted by j_curiouser at 6:10 PM on December 2, 2016 [4 favorites]


If it makes anyone feel any better, I'll wager that parallels to this thread are going on inside every executive, central committee and cabinet around the world, right now.
posted by Devonian at 6:12 PM on December 2, 2016 [15 favorites]


This is just exasperating to read. I leave it here in case you want to do some some combination of eye rolling and muttering under your breath.

WaPo Many Trump supporters willing to let him pick and choose what promises to fulfill
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 6:13 PM on December 2, 2016 [3 favorites]


LOL, Maddow's response to the "Interesting" tweet is to ask if Donald is actually interested.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 6:14 PM on December 2, 2016 [3 favorites]


> Trump will be like eighty years old after two terms.

Flagged as offensive.

> but I think the parallels to Boris Yeltsin many people have made during the last year-plus still hold as a potential scenario: eight years of spectacular incompetence

What the shit, people?
posted by tonycpsu at 6:14 PM on December 2, 2016 [8 favorites]


Devonian, that does not make me feel any better. Hold on to your breeches, folks, we'll have to see if the world can ride out this epic confluence of power and stupidity.
posted by lydhre at 6:15 PM on December 2, 2016


Alcohol is to blame for many of society's problems, but Trumpism sure as shit ain't one of them.

Errrr . . I think it's a huge part of it at the core. Have you looked at the eyes of his inner circle? Between Bannon, Conway, Manafort, and Dr. Lebowski they're 80 years old in tree years. "Famously Alcoholic" trails just about every longtime Trump insider. They're not just ignorant racist fuck-ups, they're trying to be.

As soon as hearts start a-breakin' you can bet the punches, pistols, and police will be whipped up. The only reason they haven't been photographed waking up naked on the lawn yet is our news media are run by shit and our entertainment 'journalists' are too busy stalking . . . whoever's Britney these days.

It's gonna get cokey real quick, too. Tell me Corey "The Situation" Lewandowski isn't gonna angle for Peruvian ambassador.
*snf*
Believe me.
*snf*
Yuuuge.
posted by petebest at 6:36 PM on December 2, 2016 [5 favorites]


GOP lawmakers praise Trump for Taiwan call

Rep. Matt Salmon (R-Ariz.) applauded Trump for “making a strong statement” with the historic conversation.
"I commend [President-elect] Trump for reaching out to the democratically-elected President of Taiwan, Tsai Ing-wen,” Salmon said in a statement to The Hill.

Salmon chairs the House Foreign Affairs subcommittee on Asia and the Pacific. He is a former missionary in Taiwan, and attended the recent inauguration of the new Taiwanese president.

"America has always been a champion of democratic values and individual freedoms, and I applaud the President-elect for making a strong statement in support of those values around the world,” he added.

Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.), a Trump loyalist who also serves on the Foreign Affairs panel, downplayed the phone call in a statement to The Hill.

"President-elect Trump recognizes that reaching out to every world leader is a critical component of an effective foreign policy," Meadows said. "It's not policy, it's a phone call."

In a statement released Friday night, Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Arkansas) said Trump's move "reaffirms our commitment to the only democracy on Chinese soil."


Also:

...House GOP Policy Committee Chairman Luke Messer (R-Ind.), a member of the leadership team, said he "loved" Trump's bold move.

...Rep. Pete King (R-N.Y.) took to Twitter to praise the president-elect.

"Plaudits to President-elect Trump for his historic phone call to Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen. Strong message to China. New day in Asia,” he wrote.


jesus christ and WTF.
posted by futz at 6:38 PM on December 2, 2016 [22 favorites]


@iamchrisscott: .@realDonaldTrump hey dude what's your phone number, since everyone on the fucking planet seems to already have it
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 6:43 PM on December 2, 2016 [24 favorites]


Is there a "Taiwan/US/China" 101 that I can read somewhere

Wikipedia has a write up here, but it is pretty long.

I'm going largely off my memory, and I'm not expert. But here goes.

Basically, the Chinese Civil War ended in 1949 and the Communists won. The Nationalists (which were the government) fled to Taiwan and established an autocratic regime there, intending to take back the Mainland someday. The US chose to recognize Taiwan's government, which is called the Republic of China (the name of the pre-Communist government), because Containment. So, the Republic of China (in Taiwan) had the UNSC seat and was recognized by the West as "China". Even all official maps of the ROC (in Taiwan) didn't only show Taiwan, they always included the parts they had no power of (which is the entirety of China). In the 70s Nixon saw an opportunity and "went to China". Recognition of the official "China" changed after that. Both the US and the PRC agreed there was one China, and the PRC was officially that China (though there's some disagreement about the legalese because the US translation uses the word "acknowledge", while the Chinese translation uses the stronger term, "recognize"). But the ROC still had relations with the US, and the US promised to defend it if it was under attack, and they both agreed that the decision whether or not to be integrated into China should be settled by peaceful dialogue by both sides. And that's the "status quo" for the last 40 or so years.

And in those 40 years, things changed. The island become a real democracy, with it's own identity. The pan-Blue political side, which includes the Nationalists, doesn't want take over Mainland China anymore and instead wants to establish some form of reunification with the PRC. So when they're in power, relations are usually good with the Mainland. The pan-Green, pro-Independence side would rather have full independence, but in reality they know that there's a lot missiles pointed at their head and they shouldn't provoke China, so they probably would be okay with the status quo until the sun blows up. The current president is part of the pan-Green side, so when they're in power usually things are a little more tense.

And Taiwan is not officially (de jure) recognized as a country by most of the world, except 20 small/minor/island countries, like some in the Caribbean or Pacific. But Taiwan still has it's own (de facto) money, borders, and military. The US has a non-embassy offices there that are staffed with retired or former State Dept. people that function pretty much as an embassy. Other big countries don't have embassies either, but "trade offices" that function a lot like embassies. So, it's kinda with this mental fiction of being a non-country that functions like a country that's the status quo. With all these steps taken so that officially Taiwan is not recognized, it is a big deal when the US president-elect talks directly to the president of the Republic of China (in Taiwan). I mean, it made the news earlier this year when even former VP Dan Quayle visited Taiwan.
posted by FJT at 6:49 PM on December 2, 2016 [46 favorites]


"Bold" and "strong" used to describe good coffee; now its a Republican euphemism for utterly batshit things PEOTUS does.
posted by gatorae at 6:52 PM on December 2, 2016 [3 favorites]


GOP rep: Trump has 'extra-constitutional' view of presidency

Oversight Committee Chairman Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) has repeatedly made the point that Trump hasn’t even been sworn in yet, even as he’s vowed to continue to probe whether Trump’s rival, Hillary Clinton, mishandled classified information.

But Amash, who serves on the Oversight Committee, said the powerful panel should take a closer look at some of these issues.

“My job is to uphold the Constitution, follow the rule of law and represent all my constituents,” Amash said. “I think we should treat him the same way we treat any president. That means we need to make sure there are no conflicts of interest, just like we would do if Hillary Clinton had won.

“If we were going to look at the issues for Hillary Clinton, then we should also look at them for Donald Trump. I just think the same standard should apply.”

posted by futz at 7:00 PM on December 2, 2016 [26 favorites]


GOP lawmakers praise Trump for Taiwan call

Cool, he dumbasses his way into a situation and gets praise heaped upon him by sycophants, like when you give your dog a treat for his birthday and he's like, I don't know what I did but dang, I must be a good boy! Failing upwards, the American way.
posted by jason_steakums at 7:03 PM on December 2, 2016 [18 favorites]


It's good you did that, Donald! It's good you did that! Don't send me to the cornfield!
posted by Justinian at 7:04 PM on December 2, 2016 [34 favorites]


For the liberal elites, it’s come to this. We’ve been reduced to this.

I predit a HUUUUUGE run on popcorn for this season. *Stock up now* or experience facepalm angst!
posted by Twang at 7:04 PM on December 2, 2016


Apparently, we have pivoted from Taiwan back to jobs.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 7:09 PM on December 2, 2016


I'm torn, because he seems least awful, and yet I want Democrats to stick to RULES RULES RULES and oppose the waiver.

And we should stick to the rules regarding Mattis, no matter how much you like him. The law regarding civilian control of the new Department of Defense was written in 1947 after seeing how the military took over civilian roles in both Germany and Japan. Now that we have a neo-fascist entering the White House is precisely the wrong time to start bending the rules regarding civilian control of the military. History ... doomed ... repeat .. and all that.

As Trump said, Mattis is the closest thing to General Patton, a guy you need when you want to kill a lot of people and blow stuff up. That should scare you. Patton is not the guy you want for civilian control of the military.

But hey, for all you Mattis fans, the road to fascism is paved with small stepping stones.
posted by JackFlash at 7:12 PM on December 2, 2016 [32 favorites]


yes but what if he gives us the good kind of fascism where the right ppl are in charge
posted by poffin boffin at 7:15 PM on December 2, 2016 [9 favorites]


What if his second choice for the job is someone like Giuliani?
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 7:17 PM on December 2, 2016 [4 favorites]


Trump's PEOTUS run is so absurd and reality-breaking that it could not have been accepted as plausible - outside of comic books (and even then). Like, Judge Dredd and shit.

C'mon, we got a supervillain in Trump.

I guess I've hit the 'deal with it' stage:

Could we please, PLEASE!, have the superheroes who have been hiding from the MSM start showing up now and give us a hand?
posted by porpoise at 7:19 PM on December 2, 2016 [6 favorites]




What if his second choice for the job is someone like Giuliani?

You make it sound like Democrats have only two choices. They can filibuster forever, as Republicans have demonstrated, until there is an acceptable candidate. Show a little backbone.
posted by JackFlash at 7:21 PM on December 2, 2016 [8 favorites]


We're up to, what, 3 generals either confirmed to be or under consideration to be in the Cabinet? That's way too many. This is not a military junta. They should oppose the waivers on those grounds alone regardless of who the alternative to Mattis is.
posted by Justinian at 7:21 PM on December 2, 2016 [29 favorites]


+1 JackFlash

block:
Mattis (rules)
Petraeous (criminally untrustworthy)
DeVos (1A issues w church-state)
Mrs McConnel l(nepotism)
Mnuchin (utter scumbag)
...
kos makes a distinction: we're past obstruction and into resistance. concur.
posted by j_curiouser at 7:24 PM on December 2, 2016 [14 favorites]


I honestly feel terrible for the people of Taiwan. What a fucking imbecile. I wonder if Tsai even wanted to take the phone call. Does it fit in with her strategy or did she just think she couldn't refuse it?
posted by great_radio at 7:26 PM on December 2, 2016 [5 favorites]


If anyone has a line on a bomb shelter I'm a good cook and even better company.
posted by dis_integration at 7:27 PM on December 2, 2016 [5 favorites]


They can filibuster forever, as Republicans have demonstrated

Well, if Republicans were willing to not confirm a justice, shut down the government, etc I'm not sure they won't be just as willing to get rid of the filibuster. Normally the argument would be they might pay some political price for this, but clearly they wont (see my previous sentence --- if the Supreme Court thing didn't cost them then I can't see how this would). The other argument against it would be the "well in the future when the Democrats are in charge again" but they don't appear to be taking the long view so much.

I mean, I guess it can't hurt if the alternative is to confirm anyway... but I don't think the Dems can actually block things, as I suspect the GOP is much more willing to throw away the filibuster than the Dems were.
posted by thefoxgod at 7:27 PM on December 2, 2016 [5 favorites]


Mrs McConnel l(nepotism)

Prior her Chao's nomination, I didn't know Mitch McConnell was married and always thought he was gay. But that's Lindsay Graham, I guess, right? I don't think I ever realized they were two different people.
posted by great_radio at 7:32 PM on December 2, 2016 [5 favorites]




What a silly archaic rule. What could a bunch of clowns all the way back in 1947 know about maintaining stability in an increasingly fanatical and authoritarian world
posted by theodolite at 7:40 PM on December 2, 2016 [17 favorites]


Never forget that the GOP can still stop this but they'd rather roll the dice on world war so long as they get to repeal Obamacare
posted by theodolite at 7:41 PM on December 2, 2016 [37 favorites]


Funny how back in the early postwar era even the hardcore conservatives managed to understand the social contract between labor and management and how being completely rapacious was bad for business and for the country. Oh how far we've fallen from this stuff.
posted by wierdo at 7:42 PM on December 2, 2016 [5 favorites]


Mrs McConnel l(nepotism)

If you can't call her by her name just go straight to OfMitch, it's cuter.

guess she can't do any real harm to the nation since she's just the little woman, though
posted by queenofbithynia at 7:47 PM on December 2, 2016 [14 favorites]


posted by Golden Eternity Trump will be like eighty years old after two terms.
posted by tonycpsu Flagged as offensive.


Un-flagged as a fact.
posted by mattdidthat at 7:49 PM on December 2, 2016 [2 favorites]


Donald Trump's New Defense Secretary Will Keep Ties with Theranos

I take back all of my hopes in Mattis - if he was an X-Com soldier, his Psi rating is effectively 0 and will be mind-controlled at will. Seriously? You fell for Theranos and advocated it getting Federal funding for deployment for soldiers? You're a fucking moron/susceptible to being conned and have zero sources of reality-based Science advice.

Seriously, Theranos? That particular Family must have a load of blackmail material on you, if you haven't backpedaled since day 1 of the downfall.
posted by porpoise at 7:49 PM on December 2, 2016 [11 favorites]


Do we need to be worried about faked Executive Tweets, or fake faked Executive Tweets? I was thinking, if China didn't already ban Twitter, they could insert fake ones whenever his Twitter page is viewed through their networks, even only for a limited period of time and it would appear it had been deleted. Or conversely, Trump could tweet something as a way of provoking a particular response, then delete it and claim that the NSA had gone rogue and faked it, or that Twitter, Inc. is collaborating with enemies of the state, or something like that.

In any case, I would think that the fact he can feasibly say anything at all, no matter how crazy or stupid, may create novel problems.
posted by XMLicious at 7:51 PM on December 2, 2016 [4 favorites]


Prior her Chao's nomination, I didn't know Mitch McConnell was married and always thought he was gay

She was married to him the whole time she was Secretary of Labor back in the Bush years, too. not, let's say, the best Secretary of Labor we've ever had. but I can take comfort, I guess, in the knowledge that in another decade nobody will remember a blessed thing about the Trump years either.
posted by queenofbithynia at 7:53 PM on December 2, 2016


WaPo Many Trump supporters willing to let him pick and choose what promises to fulfill
Terry said he has no problem with Trump’s pick for treasury secretary, Steven Mnuchin, a former Goldman Sachs executive and Hollywood producer who co-founded a bank during the financial crisis that foreclosed on thousands of homeowners.

“Let’s face it, he’s going to look out for corporations, to make things work for them, to bring jobs back home,” Terry said. “And as things trickle down — as they’re going to because it’s America — the little guy will get something, too.”
When have things ever trickled down? Are there any examples of that ever working?
His wife agreed, adding: “It was a debate. . . . He doesn’t always think. He’s not a politician. He just says it.”
Urge to kill...rising.
The deal didn’t happen quite that way. Carrier agreed not to shift about 800 manufacturing and management positions south of the border, in exchange for a $7 million incentive package from the state. About 1,300 jobs will still move to Mexico, however.

Meyer and other Trump supporters shrugged at these details, saying that’s just how business works.

“At least he put forth the effort,” she said. “And he might not be able to do that with everybody. . . . But I want us to start producing things again. I want to buy a clothes item that’s made in the good ol’ U.S.A. I want to buy a sweeper that comes from the U.S.A. We don’t produce, and that really bothers me.”
The Obama economy has now created 15 million jobs. I'm sure she gives Obama 18,750 times the credit for putting forth the effort.

Made in America: A buyer’s guide for Donald Trump: "over 100 examples of U.S. manufacturers and businesses ready and able to produce the same goods he makes overseas."
posted by kirkaracha at 7:56 PM on December 2, 2016 [33 favorites]


but I can take comfort, I guess, in the knowledge that in another decade nobody will remember a blessed thing about the Trump years either.

I on the other hand, believe that this "presidency" will have ramifications that will echo through the decades to come.
posted by futz at 7:57 PM on December 2, 2016 [9 favorites]


I can take comfort, I guess, in the knowledge that in another decade nobody will remember a blessed thing about the Trump years either.

Pro: that's true. Con: because we'll all be dead. Sad!
posted by kirkaracha at 7:58 PM on December 2, 2016 [15 favorites]


in the knowledge that in another decade nobody will remember a blessed thing about the Trump years either.

I should imagine we'll be looking forward, not back.
posted by jaduncan at 7:58 PM on December 2, 2016 [3 favorites]


> Mrs McConnell (nepotism)

Can we not? Elaine Chao was director of the Peace Corps and Deputy Secretary of Transportation before she ever married Mitch McConnell, and after that a member of George H.W. Bush's cabinet. Whom she married has nothing to do with her qualifications for office. This should be crystal clear to anyone who voted for a former First Lady for President.

If you want to block her appointment, find a real reason.
posted by mbrubeck at 8:05 PM on December 2, 2016 [60 favorites]


twitter: imho tweets are presidential records, illegal to delete or modify. dunno if archives is on the same page.

the more i think about it, the more i think dems should adopt the R approach to confirmation and legislation. they don't have the power to 'no meetings no hearings no votes'. but they can make the Rs fight hard for every inch of their agenda. fight. hard. even on marginally-not-destructive-legislation. don't legitimize any R idea, even mildly good ones.

every time a dem has a chance to talk about bannon, lead in with, "white supremecist Bannon..."

every time a dem has a chance to talk about medicare, lead in with, "the ryan-trump-mcconnell medicare betrayal..."

one minute interview on cnn? no matter the question, "carrier jobs are only kept in the US using indiana's trump-pence income tax on the white working class."

time for our side to exploit truthiness. right up to the libel threshold. i should probably drop this for now - i'm a little shouty and worked up.
posted by j_curiouser at 8:07 PM on December 2, 2016 [28 favorites]


Chao is a pretty bog-standard conservative hack but she has experience as an administrator and is totally qualified in the normal sense to be in the Cabinet. I think she has terrible ideas, but she knows what she's doing.

I wager that being married to McConnell is punishment enough on its own.
posted by dis_integration at 8:09 PM on December 2, 2016 [13 favorites]


Never forget that the GOP can still stop this but they'd rather roll the dice on world war so long as they get to repeal Obamacare

They actually don't give a shit about that except that they're pot committed at this point after 8 years of "it's sochulism!" rhetoric. All they've ever wanted is tax cuts for the rich. That's really, really it. And to destroy Medicare and Social Security of course. Preferably by redirecting all that money to the rich. But that's really a stretch goal after the tax cuts. And the second round of tax cuts. Maybe some more tax cuts for good measure. Then destroy the welfare state. And round it out with more tax cuts.

And the Laffer curve says it'll all pay for itself! 0% taxes = infinity revenue! Republican math never fails, it can only be failed!
posted by T.D. Strange at 8:10 PM on December 2, 2016 [8 favorites]


I wager that being married to McConnell is punishment enough on its own.

I'd lay any amount of money it's a marriage of convenience.
posted by T.D. Strange at 8:11 PM on December 2, 2016


Can we not?
hmm...sorry you're offended by my statement. it's a false equivalency. mcconnell won't recuse himself from the confirmation vote. it's about him, not her.

and maybe also about her. haven't we been generally concurring with the effort to 'not normalize' this regime? i'm ok with a fraction of superficially distasteful activities.

so....no.
posted by j_curiouser at 8:15 PM on December 2, 2016 [1 favorite]


Ah, in Mattis, Trump finds his Doenitz and/or Rommel. Someone really good at being in the military and obviously a Nazi but not that bad as Nazis go. (Supposedly, of course).
posted by Ghostride The Whip at 8:17 PM on December 2, 2016 [4 favorites]


Can we not? Elaine Chao was director of the Peace Corps and Deputy Secretary of Transportation before she ever married Mitch McConnell, and after that a member of George H.W. Bush's cabinet. Whom she married has nothing to do with her qualifications for office. This should be crystal clear to anyone who voted for a former First Lady for President.

If you want to block her appointment, find a real reason.


Well, since you asked, she was Labor Secretary under Bush and failed to protect minimum wage employees from wage theft by employers who didn't pay required federal minimum wage or overtime pay. Contrary to her role as "labor" secretary, she invoked the Taft-Hartley Act for the first time in over 30 years to bust a longshoreman's union. She also cut back on coal mine inspections which resulted in the death of 15 miners.

Is that sufficient to disqualify her?
posted by JackFlash at 8:23 PM on December 2, 2016 [64 favorites]


Yes.
posted by mbrubeck at 8:26 PM on December 2, 2016 [21 favorites]


The chances that the cabinet will include both the owner of the Sago mine and the federal official who presided over the lax regulatory regime when the disaster took place are pretty high, so thanks for your votes, West Virginia.
posted by holgate at 8:31 PM on December 2, 2016 [27 favorites]


the president of the Republic of China (in Taiwan)

To add to this, it's important diplomatically to call Tsai "the president of the Republic of China (in Taiwan)" and not "the president of Taiwan", as Trump did, because the latter implies that Taiwan is an independent entity from China (it's why athletes from Taiwan compete under "Chinese Taipei" in the Olympics).
posted by airmail at 8:32 PM on December 2, 2016 [3 favorites]


(As an aside, anti-nepotism laws seem highly likely to come into play for real in the Trump administration, so we might want to keep that knife sharp rather than wield it in a case where it doesn't really apply.)
posted by mbrubeck at 8:33 PM on December 2, 2016 [11 favorites]


To add to this, it's important diplomatically to call Tsai "the president of the Republic of China (in Taiwan)" and not "the president of Taiwan", as Trump did

No, it's totally cool when he bumbles about. He's not a politician, and just doesn't think. Which is a good thing. Because reasons. The best reasons. Yuge reasons.
posted by ghost phoneme at 8:41 PM on December 2, 2016


The Democrats are a coalition party. Don't expect the same sort of unilateral opposition we've come accustomed to seeing from the Republicans.
posted by schmod at 8:42 PM on December 2, 2016 [2 favorites]


I wonder if we can get liberal leaning businesses to have the occasional sale for people who have a valid voter ID for their state. People will do things in the name of a half price latte that they won't do in the name of civic virtue.
posted by quillbreaker at 8:46 PM on December 2, 2016 [15 favorites]


Trump just tweeted about another Indiana company that is sending 300 jobs tp Mexico. Trupm tweeted (paraphrasing) thet the employees were losing their jobs visciously and that "THIS MUST STOP". He apparently heard about this when a few of the 300 showed up at one of his post-Carrier speeches with signs etc.

It's all who ya know and how to poke them. trump loves being adored for the least effort on his part and it looks like another Indiana company is his easiest road to looking like a hero for the little man again. I noticed last night at the Ohio Afterglow Rally that one lone person in a moment of relative quiet "woo hoo'd" trump. And trumple basked in the moment. He stopped his "speech", pointed the person out, agreed with the woo hooer for woo hooing, and he kinda did a sideways Elvis pose and pointed again. So weird.

Ok, now I have to find video because my story sounds crazy. Did I dream that last paragraph?
posted by futz at 8:47 PM on December 2, 2016 [8 favorites]


He stopped his "speech", pointed the person out, agreed with the woo hooer for woo hooing, and he kinda did a sideways Elvis pose and pointed again.

OK, turns out it's the Daniel Pinkwater universe we're in now. Kind of a curveball there
posted by theodolite at 8:49 PM on December 2, 2016 [11 favorites]


They may be able to start a yuan bloc in Africa and possibly South America but if I had to look a decade post-Trump I'd put more money on the Euro supplanting USD instead of CNY.

The Euro? Maybe, but the current streak of far right take overs of governments isn't showing signs of abating and some of the next possible group, like Le Pen, aren't inspiring much confidence in the European Union's long term future. If things continue in this direction, I wouldn't be surprised to see Germany decide to pull back and put their own interests first instead of trying to steer a sinking ship. Add in Russia's interest in putting the "the" back in Ukraine and angling to diminish NATO and I wouldn't be putting a lot of money on the Euro being the dominant currency anytime soon.

I also have to wonder if the Taiwan call wasn't Flynn, Bannon, and the boys manipulating Trump into getting what they want without letting him know the full details of everything involved beyond Trump's own personal interests in real estate. That's going to mess with the India Pakistan relationship too, I imagine. Two more nuclear powers we can blunder around with acting tough and trying to protect Trump's property investments. If Eric is taking charge of Taiwan, maybe Donnie Jr can handle the properties in India. Ivanka, of course, has to stay in Washington to sit in on all the meetings with world leaders, so she can't go.
posted by gusottertrout at 8:52 PM on December 2, 2016 [3 favorites]


Ah, in Mattis, Trump finds his Doenitz and/or Rommel. Someone really good at being in the military and obviously a Nazi but not that bad as Nazis go. (Supposedly, of course).

I hope it’s better than that because 1) those guys were both pretty bad in their own right and 2) they didn’t have nuclear arms.
posted by Fongotskilernie at 9:02 PM on December 2, 2016


Oh god they're going to make President Obama stay up all night reciting boilerplate text about how "there is only one China and the United States of America recognizes..." over and over again.
posted by zachlipton at 9:06 PM on December 2, 2016 [7 favorites]


Philippine leader Rodrigo Duterte says President-elect Trump told him he is conducting his deadly drug war "the right way" - AFP

Who knows what Trump actually told him; he's left himself open to utter nonsense like this.
posted by zachlipton at 9:08 PM on December 2, 2016 [19 favorites]


If you want to block her appointment, find a real reason.

We have. Nepotism.
posted by 922257033c4a0f3cecdbd819a46d626999d1af4a at 9:18 PM on December 2, 2016 [3 favorites]


Which is to say that Mrs. Clinton was _not_ nepotism, seeing as Bill was no longer President when she ran.
posted by 922257033c4a0f3cecdbd819a46d626999d1af4a at 9:19 PM on December 2, 2016 [2 favorites]


[China] may be able to start a yuan bloc in Africa

No idea if this would be material to prospects for the yuan in Africa, but I recently stumbled across a fact I was unaware of: 14 countries in West and Central Africa, rather than maintaining their own currency, use West and Central versions of the CFA franc, which Wikipedia says is "guaranteed by the French treasury".
posted by XMLicious at 9:22 PM on December 2, 2016 [4 favorites]


Who knows what Trump actually told him; he's left himself open to utter nonsense like this.

since the Transition Team has taken the ah unusual step of not ever reporting its own diplomatic conversations, there's no reason why the president of Brutopia shouldn't just tell his people that America has sworn to help them defeat their ancient enemies one country over
posted by theodolite at 9:23 PM on December 2, 2016 [3 favorites]


...“I hope I didn't call you too early,” Bush said.
“No, no. It's about a little past 8 a.m. here,” she replied.
“Oh, it's about past 7 in the evening here, so we're actually in different timelines," Bush said.


That's my Bush!
posted by thelonius at 9:24 PM on December 2, 2016 [9 favorites]


I'd lay any amount of money it's a marriage of convenience.

Could we not go here? The right said the exact same thing about the Clintons.
posted by steady-state strawberry at 9:29 PM on December 2, 2016 [14 favorites]


That's way too many. This is not a military junta.

let's not be hasty, comrade
posted by poffin boffin at 9:36 PM on December 2, 2016 [1 favorite]


man they are never gonna let my pinko ass back into peru at this rate
posted by poffin boffin at 9:37 PM on December 2, 2016 [3 favorites]


Imagine watching someone rise to power in your society. Someone who builds his following on the concept of Pureblood superiority. Someone who your political leaders tell you not to be afraid of, because their top priority is maintaining order. Someone who makes your half-blood friends and colleagues feel afraid. Someone who emboldens the Purebloods who’ve been waiting for an opportunity to defend what they think of as their dying heritage.

Can you imagine such a world?

That’s the world Molly Weasley found herself in.
posted by ChuraChura at 9:38 PM on December 2, 2016 [12 favorites]


Who knows what Trump actually told him; he's left himself open to utter nonsense like this.

I would ask which “he” has left himself open to utter nonsense like this, but I know that either works.
posted by Fongotskilernie at 9:38 PM on December 2, 2016 [1 favorite]


Various folks are suggesting that Twitter replace "While you were away" with "Oh god, what did he do now?" or "hello, what fresh new horror is this?"

Because I was out to dinner tonight and that's honestly how I felt when I saw the last two tweets.
posted by zachlipton at 9:40 PM on December 2, 2016 [25 favorites]


man they are never gonna let my pinko ass back into peru at this rate

Now is when I wish identity documents were like Pokémon and I could just swap you Nicaragua for Peru.
posted by corb at 9:43 PM on December 2, 2016 [2 favorites]


I took a nap, so: have the Chinese closed the strait of Taiwan yet
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 9:46 PM on December 2, 2016 [5 favorites]


honestly im looking at property right on costa rica's northeastern border so mistakes are already being made
posted by poffin boffin at 9:48 PM on December 2, 2016 [2 favorites]


The response from the Chinese foreign minister (parsed here by Eric Hundman) shows the difference between amateurs and professionals: point the finger at Taiwan, reassert the core principles of the US-China relationship in terms of state-to-state relations that transcend individuals or specific administrations, and strongly imply that Beijing expects some grown-ups to remain in charge of things come January.
posted by holgate at 9:55 PM on December 2, 2016 [14 favorites]


Ok, I found my video that I mentioned above. I embellished a tad. It starts here at approx 50:55. I don't blame anyone for not watching but his whole speech is a master class in idiocracy. The fool is dangerously insecure.
posted by futz at 10:00 PM on December 2, 2016 [2 favorites]


>> What kind of protests and demonstrations are planned for Inauguration Day, in Washington DC? Things could get really lively if enough angry people get together to make their voices heard.

> Vuvuzelas, y'all.

I think what the protesters need is a simple universal rallying chant. Something that will get under his thin skin. Not too lewd. Not too clever. Something Trump may have even come up with himself. I offer:

TRUMP IS A CLOWN.
TRUMP IS A CLOWN.
TRUMP IS A CLOWN.
posted by bunbury at 10:01 PM on December 2, 2016 [3 favorites]


"SHUT THE FUCK UP DONNY"
"SHUT THE FUCK UP DONNY"
"SHUT THE FUCK UP DONNY"
posted by quonsar II: smock fishpants and the temple of foon at 10:08 PM on December 2, 2016 [4 favorites]


"YOUR MONEY IS WORTHLESS"
"YOUR MONEY IS WORTHLESS"
"YOUR MONEY IS WORTHLESS"
posted by E. Whitehall at 10:10 PM on December 2, 2016


Jon Stewart Finally Went Long About The Election And Donald Trump

“Not everybody that voted for Trump is a racist,” he said at one point. “I don’t give a fuck what any of you say to me. You can yell it at me, you can tweet it at me. They’re not all racists. Or they’re not giving tacit support to a racist system ... We all give tacit support to exploitative systems as long as they don’t affect us that badly.”

He brought up a conversation with another person who argued that “by saying that [Trump supporters] are not all racists, they are giving tacit support to a man of racist language.” Stewart then pointed out that many of Americans are complicit in exploitative and damaging systems, asking the person to pull out his iPhone.

“I was like, ‘Guess how those are made, guess who makes them?’” Stewart said. “’Oh yeah, but that’s ... ‘ What, what is it? It’s not different, we all do that. All of our shit stinks and getting beyond that takes incredible work.”

posted by philip-random at 10:25 PM on December 2, 2016 [14 favorites]


Prejudice, "Political Correctness," and the Normalization of Donald Trump
To put it another way, “political correctness” is not an ideology, nor is it a specific set of behaviors. It is simply a slur that people utter when they want to dismiss an expression of social justice activism that they do not like. One person’s “political correctness” is another person’s common decency or righteous activism.
A much, much more nuanced and thoughtful essay on privilege, oppression, "political correctness" and growing lashings out at same in our current situation than the pull quote there would suggest. There is too much to smush down into a little snippet.
posted by byanyothername at 10:29 PM on December 2, 2016 [17 favorites]


Shorter John Stewart's career: "both sides, amirite?"
posted by T.D. Strange at 10:47 PM on December 2, 2016 [22 favorites]


they thought the white house came fully staffed.

Wait'll they find out it doesn't come furnished.
posted by kirkaracha at 10:55 PM on December 2, 2016 [4 favorites]


Election post mortems are natural and all but irrelevant now. The shit is hurtling towards the fan blades.
posted by Burhanistan at 10:56 PM on December 2, 2016 [4 favorites]


How long is the campaign? A year and a half? I assume [television media is] talking right now about who’s running in 2020. They don’t give a flying fuck about governance, they care about campaigns and that’s where the fun is for them. That’s devastating. And not only is it devastating news-wise, it’s devastating to all of us.

Stewart is better at skewering the media than most; oliver and wilmore and sam bee are implementing this "make funny out of the actual governance" better than the daily show did; but it's going to take a lot more work to take that funny and make democracy out of it
posted by eustatic at 11:08 PM on December 2, 2016 [3 favorites]


Wait'll they find out it doesn't come furnished.

What, you mean Donald and Melania will be doing the decorating?

Oh, the humanity!
posted by JackFlash at 11:09 PM on December 2, 2016 [3 favorites]


Election post mortems are natural and all but irrelevant now. The shit is hurtling towards the fan blades.

Worse, the USS Roomba is trundling towards an enormous pile of shit.
posted by Jon Mitchell at 11:11 PM on December 2, 2016 [28 favorites]


Wait'll they find out it doesn't come furnished.

It does though right? They could move in and not have to buy anything. Congress gives them an allotment but they can't just deck out the WH in whatever dictator decor du jour.
posted by futz at 11:11 PM on December 2, 2016


The fine print on decorating, from 2008. There's a committee.
posted by holgate at 11:27 PM on December 2, 2016


Someone might want to ask Mr. Stewart what would happen to his beloved first responders if they didn't try to help everyone in a burning building, regardless of race, and picked and chose those they would assist. It's kinda the nature of the job that, at least for the moment, you're supposed to help everyone or you'll end up facing discrimination lawsuits. Now that might change under Trump, but right now it's hardly any more laudable than any other person serving customers without prejudice.

That is, by the way, the whole point of objecting to a president who openly expressed racist and sexist views. His supporters don't get a pass because they are. allegedly, not "really" racist for opting for someone with no real qualifications for the office other than his expressed views, which again, were racist. And pointing out we're all complicit in systemic racism too is kinda the whole freaking point of the left's critique on the issue, which Trump and his supporters, and in this case his supporters supporter conveniently deny. So, yeah, maybe comedian pundits aren't exactly the best way forward and maybe it time for "hero" worship from Stewart and of Stewart to disappear.

(And that isn't even going into his faux equivalency about people on the left allegedly thinking Obama was perfect or his empty analogy around football uniforms, which might be a little more clear if one jersey had a KKK insignia and the other BLM, since that's what the R and D's are currently standing for.)
posted by gusottertrout at 11:37 PM on December 2, 2016 [17 favorites]


As Trump said, Mattis is the closest thing to General Patton,

And I should believe Trump because he based this on something other than Mattis' nickname and callsign? The British Gen. Slim in Burma is probably the best WWII general for comparison.

The seven year rule is a good argument to bypass him, but at the moment I'm liking having him in between Trump and SAC or the boomers sooner than later.

Other downsides to him could be, he seems weak on WESTPAC and South America. Maybe he's too focused on the Persian/Arab split. He disagrees with other Trump people about the Iran Nuke Treaty, saying it gained 5 to 10 times as much breathing room as a military action would have.
He was right about Iranian missile tests.

He convinced his Marines risking more casualties to improve relations with the Iraqi people was worth it, then just wrote off his drone attack on the wedding as the best call that could be made at the time, nailed an officer for abuse of prisoners, then cut some enlisted Marines a lot of slack right before they went to the brig.

There could be something totally disqualifying, most of this is just from talking to friends and their kids that served under him.

Anyway, I really object to comparing someone that put their ass on the line under Carter, Clinton and Obama to shit or Patton, because...reasons.

On preview: A Nazi. Wow, because reasons too, l assume.
posted by ridgerunner at 11:48 PM on December 2, 2016 [3 favorites]


And that isn't even going into his faux equivalency about people on the left allegedly thinking Obama was perfect or his empty analogy around football uniforms, which might be a little more clear if one jersey had a KKK insignia and the other BLM, since that's what the R and D's are currently standing for.

Black Lives Matter does not endorse the Democratic Party. David Duke does, however, endorse Donald Trump.
posted by atoxyl at 11:58 PM on December 2, 2016 [8 favorites]


No, but the Democrats stood up for the BLM during their convention, so it was a value they claimed. (No telling of course whether that will continue given the stupid "debate" over identity politics, and no claim that even during the convention the Democrats were the ideal partners for BLM, but the support for their cause was a part of what Clinton ran on.)
posted by gusottertrout at 12:10 AM on December 3, 2016 [2 favorites]


"Shorter John Stewart's career: "both sides, amirite?"

You know, the problem is we have to flip as many Trump supporters as possible. Alienating them now won't help. They didn't listen during the campaign, so as a practical matter, different tactics should be tried now.
posted by clockworkjoe at 12:29 AM on December 3, 2016 [4 favorites]


You know, the problem is we have to flip as many Trump supporters as possible

It's actually just about 100K. In 3 states.
posted by great_radio at 12:53 AM on December 3, 2016 [15 favorites]


Uh... I don't think BLM is advocating lynch mobs and racial segregation - that is to say KKK = bad, BLM = good. So the D's associating themselves with BLM is smart! because they're good as anyone who ... Uh ... isn't... uh ... can see... sigh.

KKK are scum, please don't pretend they are equivalent to BLM, or vice versa... it's just... do we really have to explain all this? Sigh.

This is why we need schools that work and teach how to reason and argue.
posted by From Bklyn at 12:54 AM on December 3, 2016 [22 favorites]


> government paying $8,750 per job on behalf of the specific people retaining them

Hey! You start paying me $8,750 per job and I'll start creating all the jobs you want! Just let me know how many jobs you want, send over a check, and I'll get right on it!

NB: Aforementioned jobs will pay $8,000, or less. I can do this all day long--just keep those checks coming!

Am I doing it right? Is this how the new Trump Economy works?
posted by flug at 1:11 AM on December 3, 2016 [13 favorites]


This is why we need schools that work and teach how to reason and argue.

Ignoring the rest of the conversation and jumping off of this, I have to say how grateful I am for my education. I went to a private (Catholic) high school. My favorite teacher was my English teacher for Junior and Senior year AP English. The funny thing is EVERYONE hated her my Junior year, including me. We studied literature and she would just FUCK with us. Every time someone would say "Well I feel like..." she'd snipe back "I don't CARE how you FEEL. Tell me what is TRUE or don't open your mouth." She pushed us and pushed us to defend our positions with facts, quotes, stuff from the text. People thought she was the biggest bitch.

One day she got the whole class worked up by saying negative things about the movie Dead Poets Society. We were basically the target age market for that movie, and we were the AP English class, so it was pretty universally beloved. She had the class just yelling at her while she went on about what a sentimental piece of crap that movie was, how stupid it was to make a movie about a teacher that got kids to care about literature.

And that was when I finally knew...she was FUCKING WITH US. She could hardly keep a straight face that day. She knew exactly what she was doing, and she intentionally picked fights to get us to learn how to argue.

We had her again the next year, but she was totally different. She was chilled the hell out, and class was really like just hanging around talking about books (and writing papers that were graded REALLY harshly). She used to ask my opinion on books and movies and we'd chat after class. But I'd occasionally see the Junior class and she'd be mean as hell to them.

I studied literature and psychology and anthropology in college and never had a harder teacher, never had anyone I worked harder to impress and please. Kids need more teachers willing to piss them off and challenge them. Kids need to be told it doesn't matter how you feel if you can't prove you're right.
posted by threeturtles at 1:16 AM on December 3, 2016 [52 favorites]


I should note that basically all life on Earth will be destroyed in ONE billion years, as the sun is already very gradually heating up. The oceans will boil away in one billion years: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timeline_of_the_far_future

Things will be far worse in 7 billion years, but life will have already ended.

Fortunately, one billion years is plenty enough time to figure out what to do about it.
posted by Sleeper at 1:22 AM on December 3, 2016 [1 favorite]


KKK are scum, please don't pretend they are equivalent to BLM, or vice versa... it's just... do we really have to explain all this? Sigh.

I hope you don't think that was my point, rather it was my criticism of Stewart's analogy of Democrats and Republicans fighting being like fans of the Cowboys and Giants fighting, where the only difference is the logo on the shirt. I'm saying the would be logos in this case actually do matter since the two groups aren't the same at all.
posted by gusottertrout at 1:22 AM on December 3, 2016 [2 favorites]


Regarding the Laffer Curve, let's not pretend to be Republicans. Laffer himself acknowledged the limits to his idea. It was conceived in an era where the top marginal income tax rate was 70%+, and it did seem to be correct that lowering that rate to some degree did stimulate greater economic activity.

The problem the Republicans have is that we have not had a tax code like that in 40 years, and with rates where they are the Laffer Curve is total bullshit. They know this, but they lie out of their ass anyway because it makes them appear to have actual justification for their desired policy beyond the actual motivation of giving the whole farm to the rich.

In reality, I'm pretty convinced that one of the best possible things we could do to deal with the offshoring of jobs and improvements in productivity in what work remains here is to either jack the top marginal income tax rate back up somewhere near 100% or institute strict overtime for the sorts of workers that have high unemployment rates. Do that along with an increase in the minimum wage and it will force companies to hire more workers, much as many voluntarily cut hours rather than laying people off during the Depression.

There is zero need for any individual to work 40+ hours a week. The work needs to be spread around because there simply isn't enough work to be done to achieve full employment any more, and the problem is only getting worse. It is getting to the point where individual workers doing even 40 hours a week of work is a net negative to our economy..
posted by wierdo at 1:31 AM on December 3, 2016 [25 favorites]


I'm agreeing with you, gusottertrout - and reacting to this weird thing where these two totally not similar things, like apples and coal, are being conflated.
It's like the Tomi Lahren thing in that other post, this woman says words that approximate grammar but don't actually have any grammar to them... it's disorienting
posted by From Bklyn at 2:48 AM on December 3, 2016


An interesting and subtle take on the election from a German perspective:
Much has been written by now in attempt to explain the outcome of the recent US presidential election. Some recent interventions pitted the Democrats' "identity politics" against economic issues and have charged the Left with neglecting hard economic realities by focusing on supposedly marginal or imaginary problems. Such an opposition misses the point, however, that the relevant economic questions are inherently connected to problems of identity.
Katrin Trüstedt, Taking Offense, 3quarksdaily (28 November 2016).
posted by Sonny Jim at 3:28 AM on December 3, 2016 [10 favorites]


Things will be far worse in 7 billion years, but life will have already ended.

Fortunately, one billion years is plenty enough time to figure out what to do about it.


You are Gary Johnson and I claim my five pounds.
posted by kewb at 3:45 AM on December 3, 2016 [6 favorites]


There's also no need for Calexit because California will separate itself from the rest of North America on its own. Eventually.
posted by XMLicious at 3:50 AM on December 3, 2016 [5 favorites]


There's also no need for Calexit because California will separate itself from the rest of North America on its own. Eventually.

Maybe it always was separate! #teachthecontroversy
posted by kewb at 3:56 AM on December 3, 2016 [7 favorites]


We need to think beyond the North Atlantic Treaty Organization and the Trans-Pacific Partnership. After all, in a billion years' time, both those oceans will have boiled off into space. Vote: Deep Time Democrats, 2020.
posted by Sonny Jim at 4:03 AM on December 3, 2016 [4 favorites]


I should note that basically all life on Earth will be destroyed in ONE billion years, as the sun is already very gradually heating up.

And yet Chuck Grassley (one of the American politicians I've met, and definitely not one of my favorites) will still be a Senator for Iowa...
posted by Wordshore at 4:03 AM on December 3, 2016 [2 favorites]


Vote: Deep Time Democrats, 2020.

It looks like they've devolved into sycophantic prostration to the WWC, but in fact their coalition is bigger on the inside.
posted by XMLicious at 4:15 AM on December 3, 2016 [2 favorites]


Jill Stein reports that some of the voting machines in WI have been tampered with.
posted by pxe2000 at 4:33 AM on December 3, 2016 [29 favorites]


> but I can take comfort, I guess, in the knowledge that in another decade nobody will remember a blessed thing about the Trump years either.

Because everyone will be dead? I joke (sort of), but the other night I had the first nightmare about nuclear war I've had since I was a kid in the mid-'80s.
posted by The Card Cheat at 5:09 AM on December 3, 2016 [3 favorites]


> but I can take comfort, I guess, in the knowledge that in another decade nobody will remember a blessed thing about the Trump years either.

Nobody?

Surely, you jest.
posted by Mister Bijou at 5:40 AM on December 3, 2016


Jill Stein reports that some of the voting machines in WI have been tampered with.

Um, hey. That at seems kinda bad? Someone should look into that.

SOMEONE SHOULD LOOK INTO THAT.
posted by Mister Cheese at 5:42 AM on December 3, 2016 [20 favorites]


@GovHowardDean:
Wendy, St. Croix County irregularities in Wisconsin more serious than thought.
posted by Wordshore at 5:48 AM on December 3, 2016 [19 favorites]


Holy. Shit.
posted by odinsdream at 5:57 AM on December 3, 2016 [4 favorites]


Holy. Shit.

Yeah. I have a background in financial services/auditing and the only appropriate response this is a full on end-to-end audit of every piece of hardware, every piece of software, and every vote.
posted by mikelieman at 6:02 AM on December 3, 2016 [47 favorites]


Holy. Shit.

Reminder that 2016 still has about 28 days left. Buckle up, everyone, this year isn't done with us yet.
posted by C'est la D.C. at 6:08 AM on December 3, 2016 [20 favorites]


queenofbithynia: take comfort, I guess, in the knowledge that in another decade nobody will remember a blessed thing about the Trump years either.

In a decade we will, I think, be in Ivanka's second term. Think how much more reasonable she seems than him, then realize we're fucked. I pray for a colossal scandal or fuck up that will so taint the Trump name in the first four years that this isn't possible, but I don't know what that could be that doesn't involve a large number of dead people somewhere in the world.
posted by bluecore at 6:10 AM on December 3, 2016 [1 favorite]


I wonder if any of the following was said/ alluded to in China's call to the White House:

-- WTF
-- Barry you could just stay no I know but think about it.
-- WTF man
--- you have heard about our cultural revolution
-- does Trump know we have nukes
-- does Trump know what a nuke is
--- have you shown Trump the movie Threads
---WTF
posted by angrycat at 6:10 AM on December 3, 2016 [32 favorites]


It's most likely that some warranty work was done, and the tech didn't bother to replace the seal - those are seals put there by the company who builds/maintains them, not by an election authority.

Even so, it needs to be investigated, soonest, and a hand recount undertaken.

There's no precedent as to what to do if machines in precincts that do not have a paper trail are found to be tampered with...
posted by Slap*Happy at 6:12 AM on December 3, 2016 [3 favorites]


What do we do with the news of tampering in WI? Is there any action we can take?
posted by pxe2000 at 6:13 AM on December 3, 2016


but I can take comfort, I guess, in the knowledge that in another decade nobody will remember a blessed thing about the Trump years either.

Nobody?

Surely, you jest.


man if you'd told me last decade that everybody was going to forget George W. Bush's presidency, including but not limited to his Cabinet appointments and the great fun they had doing awful things, I'd have thought you were jesting too. but here we and "Mrs. McConnell" are, somehow.

Maybe everybody who would have remembered is dead? Maybe I am just out of ideas because I was not entirely mentally prepared for feeling like an Old for remembering a time before eight years ago.
posted by queenofbithynia at 6:16 AM on December 3, 2016 [13 favorites]


Regardless of whether or not the voting machines story leads to a recount, or whether it changes the electoral outcome (it won't for all sorts of reasons), or whether it is even actually tampering or not - this is one more step in an escalating crisis of legitimation, one that's been going on for decades now.

Republicans have spent a lot of time trying to delegitimate Democratic elected officials, and got to the point of simply refusing to hold perfectly ordinary hearings on a wide range of judicial nominees, up to and including a Supreme Court vacancy.

The Electoral College has now twice failed to reflect the popular vote, along with a more general sense among progressive voters that the flood of money into politics and the nature of gerrymandering has created an unreflective system.

One side believes that there's rampant voter fraud, the other side sees rampant voter suppression. One side sees elections being bought and sold and districts being shaped by incumbent parties at the state level, and the other sees the attempted marginalization of exurban and rural voters by urban voters. And third-party voters, as well as a lot of aggrieved primary voters, see the whole thing as rigged.

And a significant minority of voters have thrown their support to a candidate who consistently ran against most of the institutional norms that were tied to legitimacy. they felt underrepresented, neglected, forgotten, that their country had largely been stolen from them already.

Among many other things, Trump is a very visible symptom of something much deeper, and he and his crew will not be the totality of that transformation, which is overdetermined as such historical crises always are.
posted by kewb at 6:20 AM on December 3, 2016 [54 favorites]


What do we do with the news of tampering in WI? Is there any action we can take?

We can place bets now on Trump tweeting something ludicrous today that totally buries
this story.
posted by Rykey at 6:25 AM on December 3, 2016 [13 favorites]



Holy. Shit.

Yeah. I have a background in financial services/auditing and the only appropriate response this is a full on end-to-end audit of every piece of hardware, every piece of software, and every vote.


Are those paperless machines?
posted by ocschwar at 6:37 AM on December 3, 2016 [1 favorite]


Well, if the tampering turns out to be nothing, I hope the Democratic leadership meets it with a vocal, honest, level-headed response - you know, the same way the Republican rank and file reacted to that birtherism thing.
posted by klarck at 6:38 AM on December 3, 2016 [7 favorites]


That is class warfare in its essence.

Workers of the world, unite! And win a free iPhone!*

*terms and conditions apply
posted by spitbull at 6:40 AM on December 3, 2016 [1 favorite]


The possible tampering is interesting in light of the GOP's panicked attempts to prevent/stop the recounts.
posted by Pope Guilty at 6:42 AM on December 3, 2016 [22 favorites]


The election was rigged! And under no circumstances must we find out how!

The correct thing to do is to hire the firebreathingest, kick-assingist bunch of lawyers you can and set them to force as deep an enquiry/audit as the law permits. The very correct thing to do would be for the GOP itself to set this in motion.

But correct action is antithetical to the current trajectory.
posted by Devonian at 6:44 AM on December 3, 2016 [11 favorites]


man if you'd told me last decade that everybody was going to forget George W. Bush's presidency,

Everybody?

Ask an Iraqi.
posted by Mister Bijou at 6:46 AM on December 3, 2016 [10 favorites]


We can place bets now on Trump tweeting something ludicrous today that totally buries
this story.


Remember back when people were all saying "I just don't see what Twitter is good for"?
posted by thelonius at 6:47 AM on December 3, 2016 [2 favorites]


Don't get me wrong: I damn well want to know what happened in Wisconsin. But I am under no illusions that the answer will be accepted widely no matter what it is, nor that this is not part of something bigger than this election.
posted by kewb at 6:48 AM on December 3, 2016 [1 favorite]


Some of us are still saying that about Twitter.
posted by Too-Ticky at 6:48 AM on December 3, 2016 [6 favorites]


Are those paperless machines?

They are paper ballot scanners.

What Stein seems to be saying is that at some point, someone opened some of the machines they are using to rescan the ballots and thereby voided any warranty that might remain. I am not sure this is anything interesting given the ever present countertheory of "Jill Stein is a dingbat."
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 6:49 AM on December 3, 2016 [3 favorites]


Are those paperless machines?

There's still hardware serial numbers, component serial numbers, and software of the entire stack from firmware through applications to verify.

That said, the biggest and most egregious DDOS in voting is still a 3 hour wait in meatspace before you even get to the machine.
posted by mikelieman at 6:51 AM on December 3, 2016 [30 favorites]


Man, the Times is killing it with tough investigative journalism on Trump. A month late, but wouldn't have wanted to interfere with all those email stories.

Trump’s Tough Trade Talk Could Damage American Factories
posted by chris24 at 6:58 AM on December 3, 2016 [2 favorites]


Ha, at least seeing Trumpsters in despair makes the load a little easier to bear. This comes a day after his lamentations about Trump appointing Goldman execs rather than draining the swamp.

@WalshFreedom
Somebody please talk to President-Elect Trump and explain to him how the free market works. How capitalism works.
Please.
posted by chris24 at 7:03 AM on December 3, 2016 [4 favorites]


I should note that basically all life on Earth will be destroyed in ONE billion years

In fairness, life as we know it (which is to say, life more complex than mats of essentially single-celled organisms) has been around for considerably less than a billion years, with the most interesting stuff only going back 560 milliion years or so, so life on Earth has plenty more chances to do something interesting. Heck, it only took 65 million years for us to come about after the KT event did a far more effective job of killing nearly every living thing on the surface than we are ever likely to manage, even with Trump having the nuclear football.
posted by Bringer Tom at 7:03 AM on December 3, 2016 [3 favorites]


Well, let's not forget, Trump did tell us this election was going to be rigged.
posted by From Bklyn at 7:09 AM on December 3, 2016 [11 favorites]


The photo doesn't give any indication how breaking the seal is supposed to interfere with an accurate count. I would be in favor of just about any level of audit, and in favor going forward of smashing all the machines and just going back to paper ballots, but magical thinking isn't going to help Democrats figure out how to stop Trump in the short term or win some tough, upward-battle elections in 2018 and 2020.

At least a public bullhorn campaign begging the Electors to pick literally any other Republican -- my preferred magical-thinking last-minute miracle -- could actually happen, technically, institutionally. There is no way Stein's recount can prevent Trump's election, because there's no way a recount can reverse the outcome in Pennsylvania either legally (it's a total mess), pragmatically (most of the machines don't even have a paper trial), or probabilistically (it's a frankly huge margin to overturn).

This didn't happen to us because the machines were hacked, it happened because the Democrats blew the work of governance from 2008-2015 and then blew the work of politics triple-time in 2016. Making up a story where this isn't anyone's fault won't help us.
posted by gerryblog at 7:14 AM on December 3, 2016 [1 favorite]


@WalshFreedom
Somebody please talk to President-Elect Trump and explain to him how the free market works. How capitalism works.
Please.


Wealthy people engineer the system in their own favor, and the rest of us kindly stay the fuck out of the way? Friend, that's exactly how free-market capitalism works.
posted by Rykey at 7:15 AM on December 3, 2016 [24 favorites]


it happened because the Democrats blew the work of governance from 2008-2015

What? or LOL Wut? if you prefer.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 7:22 AM on December 3, 2016 [17 favorites]


Wealthy people engineer the system in their own favor,

BTW, in case you haven't been keeping track, this will be the richest Cabinet in history. Just an accident, right? that DJT only knows billionaires who can do the job.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 7:24 AM on December 3, 2016 [3 favorites]


> Making up a story where this isn't anyone's fault won't help us.

Neither will comments that state your beliefs as to why Trump won as settled facts.
posted by tonycpsu at 7:26 AM on December 3, 2016 [4 favorites]


I saw the typo "POUTS" on another listserv yesterday. It seemed fitting.
posted by notsnot at 7:27 AM on December 3, 2016 [12 favorites]


it happened because the Democrats blew the work of governance from 2008-2015

What? or LOL Wut? if you prefer.


Democrats were swept into office in huge waves in 2006 and especially 2008, after which they had both houses of Congress (including, for a while, a supermajority in the Senate), and a popular two-term president. Since Obama's election -- despite his reelection and his ongoing personal popularity -- they have lost ground at a catastrophic clip at every level of government, culminating in an almost unthinkable shut-out of nearly every position of power in the country at the national level and in most states. That's "blowing the work of governance." The Obama years are a stunning case of party collapse, and Trump is only the worst part of it.

Neither will comments that state your beliefs as to why Trump won as settled facts.

Touche.
posted by gerryblog at 7:30 AM on December 3, 2016 [5 favorites]


it happened because the Democrats blew the work of governance from 2008-2015

What? or LOL Wut? if you prefer.


2008 Bush was president.

2008 Prior to Obama's inauguration, McConnell declares his intent to do anything to make Obama a one-term president and Republican leadership meets to decide to deny him anything, even if it's something they agree with him on.

2009-10 they had a filibuster proof majority only 4 of the months thanks to the Franken recount, Byrd's illness and Kennedy's death. They still managed to pass Obamacare, the stimulus and the auto bailout. So they saved the auto industry, the economy, and insured 20 million.

2011-16, Republicans controlled at least one of the houses of congresses.

But sure, they blew it.
posted by chris24 at 7:32 AM on December 3, 2016 [76 favorites]


Democrats were swept into office in huge waves in 2006 and especially 2008, after which they had both houses of Congress (including, for a while, a supermajority in the Senate), and a popular two-term president. Since Obama's election -- despite his reelection and his ongoing personal popularity -- they have lost ground at a catastrophic clip at every level of government, culminating in an almost unthinkable shut-out of nearly every position of power in the country at the national level and in most states. That's "blowing the work of governance." The Obama years are a stunning case of party collapse, and Trump is only the worst part of it.

Democrats at no point had a supermajority. They held 58 at best during six months of 2009 and two independents that would caucus when it was convenient held the two others. One of these independents held the ACA to ransom to stop the public option.

Once the 2010 election kicked in and Democrats solidly lost the house it was over for the rest of the two terms. Every other piece of progress was accomplished through either the courts or executive action.
posted by Talez at 7:34 AM on December 3, 2016 [5 favorites]


The machine seals probably mean nothing practically except incompetence. Usually the way election machines work is that if you have to service them and it involves breaking a seal like that , there's a procedure to validate the machine is ok and such seals are replaced. Odds are then that these machines had to get fixed and the local elections officials didn't go thru the right procedure. That doesn't mean tampering. Just incompetence. That's bad enough since, duh, those rules and procedures are part of ensuring trust in the system.
posted by R343L at 7:37 AM on December 3, 2016 [3 favorites]


But sure, they blew it.

Yes, they blew it: Trump is president and the GOP controls everything. It wasn't magic, it wasn't fate, it wasn't gremlins, we got beat. The only way forward now is to face up to it and figure out a gameplan to go forward. Contextless photos of broken seals on voting machines, conspiracy theories, and other modes of ego-preserving magical thinking aren't just a distraction from that, they actually prevent us from coming to terms with what happened by enabling our denial.
posted by gerryblog at 7:37 AM on December 3, 2016 [10 favorites]


... And they lost in 2010 because the economy was still shifty. FDR had the good luck to be elected at the bottom of the depression instead of at the beginning of the slump.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 7:38 AM on December 3, 2016


Oh though looking close at those stickers they say something about a warranty? Those probably aren't actually tamper-detection seals then that are part of elections procedure then. Sigh Dean. I mean maybe they are relevant and supposed to be there but it seems unlikely.
posted by R343L at 7:39 AM on December 3, 2016 [1 favorite]


Man, I'm fucking done with armchair experts who don't show their work.
posted by Burhanistan at 7:39 AM on December 3, 2016 [6 favorites]


As someone who wants Democrats to win, I'm okay saying that they should have done better. What I'm not okay with is doing so without acknowledging the major structural advantages that Republicans have, many of which have been talked about at length in these threads. These are not excuses -- the Democrats still have an obligation to win even when faced with these strong headwinds -- but if you fail to account for those headwinds, then you will likely end up learning the wrong lessons about why they lost.
posted by tonycpsu at 7:40 AM on December 3, 2016 [36 favorites]


Warranty seals work on the same principle as tamper seals- that nobody who isn't authorized to do so (i.e. in possession of replacement stickers) should ever open the device, and to prove that that has happened. If the devices have been opened by such a person, that creates doubts as to the integrity of the machines, regardless of why they were opened or why the stickers were there in the first place.
posted by Pope Guilty at 7:42 AM on December 3, 2016 [21 favorites]


Fwiw, I'm pretty strongly in the camp that finding actual evidence of a hack (where it matters) could destroy the "American experiment" as it's sometimes put. Voter suppression efforts, sadly, don't since there's a long history of doing that (esp to black people) and it's done out in the open.
posted by R343L at 7:42 AM on December 3, 2016


So. As for Mattis, I like him. Some of the quotes that ridgerunner mentioned above I really agree with. I think the War on the Rocks piece is mostly correct in that he's not an ideal choice for SecDef, but it's probably better this way around than if Flynn gets SecDef. And I still think Flynn is nuts, but he's got a track record of being good at coming up with effective ideas. So there's that.

As for the substantive part of my comment. Be warned - this part will be pretty frickin' Christiany. Skip it if you don't need that kinda thing right now.

Assuming there's no really bad shenanigans with vote counts and Trump is inaugurated, there's a very specific stance and role that Christians have at that point. I've personally spent a lot of time mulling over the relationship between Christians and power, the state, and leaders. It's one of the more obscure aspects of Christianity (including the stuff inherited from Judaism) and it doesn't get covered very well in theology courses nor in Sunday sermons, AFAICT. That doesn't mean you accept my position as is - do your own homework and so on. But consider.

A consistent theme running through both Testaments is that of God's people ending up in (often really bizarre) situations where they have a direct relationship and conversation with the most powerful people in their region/state/empire. Following the course of events as they unfold, this looks random and completely unpredicted. But if you take a more abstract view of the narrative, it's usually clear that God intended this relationship and conversation to occur, and quite deliberately. Some Old Testament personages here are (primarily) Joseph and Daniel, and also Moses to an extent (though there's some implications to ignore in the context of 2016 - Moses is a bit of a special case. He directly challenged state power, but that was a one-off, and is no longer appropriate today). In a New Testament context, the main example is the Apostle Paul. Perhaps second to him in the topical respect is the Apostle John.

All these people got caught up in historical events, and ended up in a position to speak to the ultimate power of the land. Usually this had a specific purpose: there was an issue of governance that needed to be addressed, and God saw fit to step in to make sure people didn't die needlessly, or there was an issue with the leaders' personal relationship with God and God wanted to address it directly but without scaring the shit out of people by showing up in person (yes really - better some crazy prophet; even the crazy prophets who experienced God in person tended to be unsettled by the experience. Not always fun, in other words). In Joseph's case, he helped prevent a famine wreaking havoc. In Paul's case, he needed to appear before Caesar, for a variety of reasons.

So what do Christians now do with Trump? Unfortunately, this is likely to be annoying to most people here, but I'll at least back it up with some scripture, since that seems to suffice for arguments against Trump as well.

I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men;
For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty.
1 Tim 2:1-2

Do not speak evil about the ruler of your people. Exodus 22:28, quoted in Acts 23:5

Render therefore unto Caesar the things which are Caesar's; and unto God the things that are God's. Matt 22:21, KJV

Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. Romans 13:1

Frustratingly, for people that oppose Trump, and who claim Christianity, that's the imperative. To boil it down to a phrase: the job is now to respect Trump and help him be a good leader. (I note this is what Obama is already doing and advocating.)

Yes, if you own the label "liberal," this is pretty infuriating. But if you're a Christian it's also essential. When Jesus says to love your enemies, it's for good reason: when the shit hits the proverbial fan and you (say) have a leader that absolutely disgusts you, that's when the commandment is really important to follow. Because following it results in the best outcome. The best outcome, and I believe the one advocated by the Bible, is that you suck it up and be gracious, because that's the high road, to use Clinton campaign vernacular. In my experience this results in progress and healthier relationship between adversaries and actual compromise. The alternative is just to fight and obstruct, which leads to less progress.

The other thing I want to work in here is that (in my experience as a Christian) the thing works. I've seen friends turn from assholes to unbelievably generous individuals, and I can't attribute that to anything other than Christianity. For myself - without becoming a Christian I'd either be dead or be a really worrying person. But while I still have a temper, both the previous possibilities are precluded now. I've seen Christianity turn bad men to good ones. And so when it comes to a Trump presidency, I'm not having a freakout. I have hope, and I have uplifting and personally encouraging things to say to Trump if I should ever meet him, however unlikely that may be.

So what I want to call people to is this. The high road. Grace. Helping Trump be a good leader when perhaps he doesn't deserve the help. Advocating for causes that are right by helping your leaders to empathise, even when it fucking sucks and seems like way too much emotional labour to be worth it. Supporting the political health of your country, not by violent resistance, but by steady, steadfast involvement, by supporting your institutions and your government (though it appals you) and your leaders (ibid). Think Lech Walesa, not Lenin.

That, perhaps annoyingly in 2016, is the message of the Bible. That like it or not, the authorities and leaders that rule are appointed by God, in an explicitly spiritual sense. Nations get the leaders they deserve (usually). So if you're not happy with the results for the next several years, work to improve the spiritual (more important) and political (less important) health of your country. That's the key to progress, in the small-l liberal sense. It's worth saying explicitly that a) violent resistance b) political secession are not on. Neither of these are appropriate goals for Christians. Spent your time and intellectual and spiritual energies elsewhere, where you're more likely to reap higher returns on your efforts.

What I believe in is this. God speaks to everyone, leaders included. If Trump and his administration won't hear God themselves, hear God for them. Be the prophetic voice they need. Save your country from the proverbial famines. Work for justice where only you can as as Christian.
posted by iffthen at 7:48 AM on December 3, 2016 [6 favorites]


What I'm not okay with is doing so without acknowledging the major structural advantages that Republicans have, many of which have been talked about at length in these threads.

I assume that's for me, but I completely agree. But the Constitutional order is what it is: if Democrats conclude they can't win under these terms and want to advocate for a new Constitution -- which is actually my position! -- then let's face up to that and start that work. If they think they can win under the current order by changing strategy/tactics/direction, do that. Obama was ostensibly a demonstration of the superiority of the second opinion, back when; I don't think he really looks that way anymore.

My point is that it's a fight and we're getting beat; the whole reason I posted anything is because the thread was convincing itself that Stein's photo of a broken seal meant something meaningful about these results. It just doesn't.

Man, I'm fucking done with armchair experts who don't show their work.

I think that's for me too, but the funny thing is it could be for anyone in five months of these threads.
posted by gerryblog at 7:48 AM on December 3, 2016 [2 favorites]


iffthen: All I can say to that is apparently the overwhelmingly Christian Republicans don't subscribe to that interpretation considering how they responded to Obama.
posted by R343L at 7:56 AM on December 3, 2016 [42 favorites]


Yes, they blew it: Trump is president and the GOP controls everything.

You might've noticed winning three in a row is a bit of a rarity. Also, Clinton has a 2.5 million lead in the popular vote. If it wasn't for Comey ratfucking the vote, or the bad luck of having a significant lead that was just barely poorly located, Dems control the presidency and the Supreme Court.

Mistakes were made, the recounts are not going to save us, but acting like everything was a catastrophe over 79,000 votes in MI, WI and PA is an overreaction. Many more people voted for the most progressive platform in history. If you want to fix things going forward, being realistic on where we are and how we got here is important. And while there are people who are probably too hopeful of a deus ex machina, being too negative on the other side of the coin can be just as damaging going forward.
posted by chris24 at 7:58 AM on December 3, 2016 [22 favorites]


iffthen: As a Christian of probably a very different sort from yours, I really hate that sort of proof-texting that has led you to what seems to me to be a truly bizarre conclusion. You can go through the Bible and find individual verses that say all kinds of things. But if you read the words of Jesus, one thing he was very clearly consistently on was the importance of speaking out against the powers that be and standing up for the least among us, the poor, the hungry, the thirsty, the imprisoned. He hung out with the despised. He identified himself with the words of Hebrew prophets who called their own people to do the same. He spent a lot of time arguing with the religious leaders of his day. He did not spend any time sucking up to rulers of any sort.

All that said, you do you and you do your interpretation of Christianity. I'll be over here with the least among us, following Jesus.
posted by hydropsyche at 8:01 AM on December 3, 2016 [63 favorites]


acting like everything was a catastrophe over 79,000 votes in MI, WI and PA is an overreaction

But that's what I'm saying. It's not (just) Clinton (barely) losing a winnable race, mostly through the bad luck of arbitrary state boundaries. It's eight years of party collapse, centered precisely on the Obama years that we weren't and still aren't seeing clearly.
posted by gerryblog at 8:03 AM on December 3, 2016 [8 favorites]


Do not speak evil about the ruler of your people. Exodus 22:28, quoted in Acts 23:5
The President is merely the most important among a large number of public servants. He should be supported or opposed exactly to the degree which is warranted by his good conduct or bad conduct, his efficiency or inefficiency in rendering loyal, able, and disinterested service to the nation as a whole. Therefore it is absolutely necessary that there should be full liberty to tell the truth about his acts, and this means that it is exactly as necessary to blame him when he does wrong as to praise him when he does right. Any other attitude in an American citizen is both base and servile. To announce that there must be no criticism of the President, or that we are to stand by the President, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public. Nothing but the truth should be spoken about him or any one else. But it is even more important to tell the truth, pleasant or unpleasant, about him than about any one else.
Teddy Roosevelt
posted by kirkaracha at 8:04 AM on December 3, 2016 [62 favorites]


It's eight years of party collapse, centered precisely on the Obama years that we weren't and still aren't seeing clearly.

The issue with this analysis is that it starts with 2008. So in other words, Obama is punished for losing seats he helped win in 2008. The numbers are less when compared to where things stood in 2006.

It also fails to take into account the whitelash that occurred in the last 8 years in response to a black president, culminating in Trump's election. I mean, sure, you can blame Obama for this as well if you want for being black. But every single civil rights advancement in this country has been met with a huge backlash. Reconstruction - Jim Crow. CRA - the Southern Strategy and Reaganism/5 Republican landslides in 6 elections.
posted by chris24 at 8:11 AM on December 3, 2016 [11 favorites]


It’s true that racism is a powerful and durable force in our politics. But it is also true that Donald Trump is an incompetent clown who ran an amateurish campaign rife with mistakes. The Democrats should have won this election in a landslide. They did not, and there is no nobility or reassurance for them in a narrow loss in the electoral college or a win in the popular vote. And continuing to insist that a Donald Trump win was either some kind of strange fluke or completely inevitable is a recipe for repeated defeat.
Ezekiel Kweku, Skin in the Game, MTV.com (17 November 2016).
posted by Sonny Jim at 8:12 AM on December 3, 2016 [6 favorites]


But it is also true that Donald Trump is an incompetent clown who ran an amateurish campaign rife with mistakes.

Or, he ran a new kind of campaign the flummoxed and bypassed the media. Or worse, pandered to their worst instincts and got him $2 billion in free coverage that won him the primary and gave him a huge advantage in the general.
posted by chris24 at 8:17 AM on December 3, 2016 [20 favorites]


There are two different ways to look at this: one is that the Dems overachieved in spite of an unprecedented campaign to delegitimise Democratic-led governance and fix elections against them; the other is that if you don't create things capable of surviving a change in power, then it doesn't matter what good you did during the time you were in power.

Mitch McConnell broke this shit from the safe confines of Kentucky. (Well, not Kentucky, since he's basically a DC resident who makes contractual-obligation appearances back "home".) There ought to be an effort to gather thousands of people in the state who lose access to healthcare and have them blockade his DC house.
posted by holgate at 8:25 AM on December 3, 2016 [15 favorites]


When one side places a strong value on established laws, rules, and norms, and the other side doesn't and willfully violates those same laws, rules, and norms, the working system is no longer in balance. The side choosing to commit those violations has an asymmetrical advantage that the other side can't match and still hold the beliefs and values it claims. Score that how you will, but the "winning is everything" model has some serious drawbacks to it too.
posted by gusottertrout at 8:37 AM on December 3, 2016 [33 favorites]


Whom she married has nothing to do with her qualifications for office.

Well, she certainly provides an exception to the Romney Rule in regards to Trump related marriages.
posted by y2karl at 8:39 AM on December 3, 2016


iffthen, I'd argue that you're only touching on one side of a tension that exists in Scripture. I echo what hydropsyche says about caring for the 'the least of these'. While Christians collectively should not be partisan -- the Church is not and should not be either 'the Republican Party at prayer' or 'the Democratic Party at prayer'; the Church is nevertheless inherently political because it is concerned with the well-being of humans. It is involved; it has a stake; it takes sides -- and the side it takes, always, if it is truly being the Church, is with the people who are disempowered and marginalized.

While this moment is many other things as well, from a Christian point of view it is a theological crisis. I point you to the work of evangelical Anglican theologian (and former Bishop of Durham) Tom Wright (emphases mine):
[The] Caesar-cult was fast-growing, highly visible, and powerful precisely in its interweaving of political and religious allegiance. As various writers have recently urged, you don’t need such a strong military presence to police an empire if the citizens are worshipping the emperor. Conversely, where Rome had brought peace to the world, giving salvation from chaos, creating a new sense of unity out of previously warring pluralities, there was a certain inevitability about Rome itself, and the emperor as its ruler, being seen as divine.... Rome had power... to create an extraordinary new world order. Rome claimed to have brought justice to the world... The accession of the emperor, and also his birthday, could therefore be hailed as euaggelion, good news.... The emperor was the kyrios, the lord of the world, the one who claimed the allegiance and loyalty of subjects throughout his wide empire. When he came in person to pay a state visit to a colony or province, the word for his royal presence was parousia.

With all this in mind, we open the first page of Paul’s letters as they stand in the New Testament, and what do we find? We find Paul, writing a letter to the church in Rome itself, introducing himself as the accredited messenger of the one true God. He brings the gospel, the euaggelion, of the son of God... the Lord, the kyrios, of the whole world. Paul’s task is to bring the world, all the nations, into loyal allegiance —hypakoē pisteos, the obedience of faith — to this universal Lord. He is eager to announce this euaggelion in Rome, without shame, because this message is the power of God... Why is this? Because in this message (this ‘gospel of the son of God’), the justice of God, the dikaiosynē theou, is unveiled. [This introduction to the book of Romans] must have been heard in Rome, [and] Paul must have intended it, as a parody of the imperial cult.
I've elided much of the detail of Bp Wright's argument here for the sake of the thread's length, and the full article (which is required reading, I think, for anyone concerned about Protestant theology in a time of empire or fascism) is freely available here. His basic point, though, is that much of the theological vocabulary of the New Testament (parousia / glorious appearance; euanggelion / evangelical, gospel; kyrios / Lord and even the basic creedal affirmation "Jesus is Lord") was, to its first hearers, a clear (though sotto voce) appropriation of imperial vocabulary: "Jesus is Lord and Caesar isn't". I'm convinced that from a theological perspective, large swathes of the white evangelical American church have fallen headlong into the ancient idolatry of nationalism and civic religion, having (to quote Scripture again) 'a form of godliness, but denying its power'.

Will white American Christianity bend the knee to our new Caesar? Much of it already has. Those Christians who have not cannot stay silent, cannot retreat to a stained-glass world of niceties and pious hopes for salvation in the world to come; we have to speak and we have to act as if this world, too, is loved by and wept over by God. If we don't believe that, we don't truly believe in the Incarnation.
posted by tivalasvegas at 8:44 AM on December 3, 2016 [33 favorites]


I'll be over here with the least among us

now, I don't always think very highly of Metafilter either but there's no need for this kind of

anyway what I learned from the bible is sometimes God hardens Pharoah's heart, for fun. If God chooses or has chosen to use a greater or a lesser Trump as his instrument, as it were, that will not be good for any of us, probably.
posted by queenofbithynia at 8:45 AM on December 3, 2016 [4 favorites]


Frustratingly, for people that oppose Trump, and who claim Christianity, that's the imperative. To boil it down to a phrase: the job is now to respect Trump and help him be a good leader.

You are, in my opinion and in my reading of scripture, conflating two things that do not necessarily need to go together - the need to try to make Trump a better ruler, and an incorrect need not to rebel against him and his dictates. I am a #NeverTrump Republican, and my reading is strongly different from yours. (Everyone who hates religious talk may want to skip to the next comment)

A little further down in Romans 13 we also have:
Render unto all men therefore their dues. Tribute, where tribute is due; custom, to whom custom; fear, to whom fear; honor to whom honor. Owe no man any one but to love one another; for he whom has loved his neighbor has fulfilled the law.
What are the dues which Trump is due? What is Trump due? Well, the Bible also has an answer for that. What is Trump? What has he shown us of himself?
Matthew 7:16- By their fruits ye shall know them. Do men gather a bunch of grapes from thorns, or from thistles figs? Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit, and the evil tree bringeth forth evil fruit. A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can an evil tree bring forth good fruit. Every tree that bringeth not good fruit shall be cut down and shall be cast into the fire.
Trump is due, as a Christian, our prayers for his salvation - the love one owes a neighbor - but he is not due our mindless obedience simply as an authority. The idea that everyone owes obedience to authority is true only insofar as it does not conflict with a higher authority. Who is the highest authority? Where does God stand in all of this? Where is Christ placed?
Ephesians 1:21- Above all principality, and power, and virtue, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come.
Are you seriously arguing from a theological perspective that obedience to earthly authority should ever take precedence over obedience to God?
posted by corb at 8:50 AM on December 3, 2016 [32 favorites]


My favorite thing about God is the beard

Look, she's getting old and can't be bothered to pluck her chin every morning. Stop the judginess!
posted by tivalasvegas at 8:52 AM on December 3, 2016 [20 favorites]


Are you seriously arguing from a theological perspective that obedience to earthly authority should ever take precedence over obedience to God?

Only Republican earthly authority surely since the same people often didn't feel the same compulsion when Obama was in office.
posted by gusottertrout at 8:56 AM on December 3, 2016 [10 favorites]


So, I've got a new concern with regards to our nuclear defense and I don't think it's the concern many people have had.

I don't think MAD works under Trump. He has too many international assets that he has obviously and publicly put on a higher level than his obligations to the country. So I don't know for sure that he would retaliate and I don't really want to think about how likely he would be to retaliate. I don't think the man has any deterrence value.
posted by Slackermagee at 9:05 AM on December 3, 2016 [1 favorite]


That's in Paul's First Epistle to the Republicans.
posted by kirkaracha at 9:06 AM on December 3, 2016 [6 favorites]


There's also the professional classes reliance on technological and scientific breakthroughs to provide relief to the least well off. It's a form of materialism that allows folks to callously put off action now, put off sacrifice for now, and wait for some vague device that will make everything better.

Techno-utopians are worshippers of mammon in Christian vernacular.
posted by Strange_Robinson at 9:11 AM on December 3, 2016 [2 favorites]


i think the lesson of the discussion so far is that you can't predict how any particular Christian is going to act based on scripture, because you don't know their frame of interpretation.

as far as Trump is concerned, Christians en masse will probably react similarly to previous presidencies: Evangelicals will keep their traps shut as long as they can sense progress on their particular moral hobbyhorses, liberal Catholics will continue to be liberal, etc.
posted by murphy slaw at 9:18 AM on December 3, 2016 [3 favorites]


I don't think MAD works under Trump. He has too many international assets that he has obviously and publicly put on a higher level than his obligations to the country. So I don't know for sure that he would retaliate and I don't really want to think about how likely he would be to retaliate. I don't think the man has any deterrence value.

It's the almost orthogonal point but one of the most chilling things I saw on Twitter in the last month was the realization that there are now buildings all over the world personally owned by the US president, with his name emblazoned upon them, none of them situated or having been constructed with an eye towards defensibility (the way an embassy might be). It seems like a recipe for disaster.
posted by gerryblog at 9:20 AM on December 3, 2016 [4 favorites]


Look, I don't even know what this means, but if he's going to tweet everything can someone please teach him how to RT?
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 9:20 AM on December 3, 2016


the lesson of the discussion so far is that you can't predict how any particular Christian is going to act based on scripture, because you don't know their frame of interpretation.

You can if you listen. Here's a good shorthand: the more they rely on the Old Testament, the more likely they are a fundamentalist. Those folks would burn me at the stake as a heretic. Which is why I've never blindly thrown in with Republicans, far too many of whom think Leviticus still applies.
posted by Strange_Robinson at 9:22 AM on December 3, 2016 [4 favorites]


He has too many international assets that he has obviously and publicly put on a higher level than his obligations to the country. So I don't know for sure that he would retaliate and I don't really want to think about how likely he would be to retaliate.

I can genuinely assure you that Trump *not* nuking someone in response to a nuclear attack is among the least of my worries. Him nuking the wrong people in response to a nuclear terrorist attack is far more likely and chilling.
posted by Candleman at 9:22 AM on December 3, 2016 [2 favorites]


...I'd add "nukes somebody in response to a non-nuclear terrorist attack" or "nukes an ISIS encampment to show he means business" to my list too, now that we're being so honest.
posted by gerryblog at 9:24 AM on December 3, 2016 [1 favorite]


I can genuinely assure you that Trump *not* nuking someone in response to a nuclear attack is among the least of my worries. Him nuking the wrong people in response to a nuclear terrorist attack is far more likely and chilling.

It's not that him not nuking someone as an action that worries me, it's whatever happens when someone decides that he probably won't and they can go for X.
posted by Slackermagee at 9:25 AM on December 3, 2016 [1 favorite]


You can if you listen. Here's a good shorthand: the more they rely on the Old Testament, the more likely they are a fundamentalist.

i guess what i'm saying is that having mefites quoting scripture at each other as if that is going to tell us anything about how Christians at large are going to act is hopeless, because Christians aren't a monolithic entity at any scale you care to use.
posted by murphy slaw at 9:26 AM on December 3, 2016 [3 favorites]


Donald Trump's New Defense Secretary Will Keep Ties with Theranos

Donald Trump's New Defense Secretary Will Keep Ties with Thanos

Slight correction, for the record.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 9:26 AM on December 3, 2016 [10 favorites]




I reacted a little strongly because it sounded like outright dismissal. Christians, as an identity block, are not monolithic. It's just like any other identity that way.
posted by Strange_Robinson at 9:35 AM on December 3, 2016


In Joseph's case, he helped prevent a famine wreaking havoc.

You conveniently omit Genesis 47:20-21

So Joseph bought all the land of Egypt for Pharaoh; for all the Egyptians sold their fields, because the famine was severe upon them. The land became Pharaoh's; and as for the people, he made slaves of them from one end of Egypt to the other.
posted by bukvich at 9:38 AM on December 3, 2016 [5 favorites]


If I were on the team at Google News, I would sure be tempted to do some manual tweaks to the news feeds of Trump staffers.
posted by LobsterMitten at 9:39 AM on December 3, 2016 [7 favorites]


I've made the point that Trump seems to quote the Satanist's bible rather than the Christian Bible.

Trump stated what was his favorite verse: Eye for an eye.
And similar Trump quote: Get even with people. If they screw you, screw them back ten times as hard. I really believe that.
Satanic bible: Eye for eye, tooth for tooth -aye, four-fold, a hundred-fold!

Trump: You can't be too greedy.
Satanic bible: A Satanist knows there is nothing wrong with being greedy.

Trump brags of his orgies and praises violence.
Speaking of his son, Barron. "He's strong, he's smart, he's tough, he's vicious, he's violent — all of the ingredients you need to be an entrepreneur."
Speaking of a foursome he had, "I wouldn't say 300 [pounds], I would say could be about 375. I figure 125 a piece as opposed to 100."

From the Satanic bible:
Satanism is a blatantly selfish, brutal religion.
And,
The seven deadly sins of the Christian Church are: greed, pride, envy, anger, gluttony, lust, and sloth. Satanism advocates indulging in each of these "sins" as they all lead to physical, mental, or emotional gratification.

Of these, Trump does not have sloth.
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 9:44 AM on December 3, 2016 [7 favorites]


There was nothing complicated at all about the Christian vote for Trump. He took the clearest possible stance against Roe v. Wade, including an (unprecedented) list of potential Supreme Court nominees each one of whom is a reliable (seeming) vote to overturn Roe. As I previously argued in response to a post on the green, this may well have been his single most important move, because it completely nullified Clinton's efforts to get traditional values voters to stay home or vote third party out of distaste for Trump's divorces and language about women.
posted by MattD at 9:58 AM on December 3, 2016 [10 favorites]


(This being a subset of Trump's overall most important contributor to victory, which is that the vast majority of Republicans voted for him despite a large percentage of Republican leaders seeming to be against him.)
posted by MattD at 9:59 AM on December 3, 2016


it's whatever happens when someone decides that he probably won't and they can go for X.

If the past months have taught us anything, it's that Trump is unpredictable. There's relatively few actors out there with weapons of mass destruction and I can't imagine any of them would reach the conclusion that there'd be no retribution because of real estate values.

There was nothing complicated at all about the Christian vote for Trump. He took the clearest possible stance against Roe v. Wade, including an (unprecedented) list of potential Supreme Court nominees each one of whom is a reliable (seeming) vote to overturn Roe.

It's untrue that he took a clear stance against Roe v. Wade, but he did make it clear he didn't really care about the issue and that he'd happily trade away women's rights for votes.

Don't conflate anti-abortion voters with Christians. There are many Christians that voted against him because of his racist rhetoric and advocating murder and torture, among other reasons. And others that were torn between wanting to end abortion and being against other things he advocated for and ultimately came down on the wrong side. It's definitely complicated and dismissing winning Christian votes as impossible as long as the Democrats are pro-Choice is a losing strategy.
posted by Candleman at 10:15 AM on December 3, 2016 [6 favorites]


They still managed to pass Obamacare, the stimulus and the auto bailout. So they saved the auto industry, the economy, and insured 20 million.

Passing Obamacare without any GOP input was the fatal flaw.
posted by 922257033c4a0f3cecdbd819a46d626999d1af4a at 10:17 AM on December 3, 2016


Passing Obamacare without any GOP input was the fatal flaw.

The GOP wanted no input. They were the party of no the entire time.
posted by Talez at 10:19 AM on December 3, 2016 [61 favorites]


It’s true that racism is a powerful and durable force in our politics. But it is also true that Donald Trump is an incompetent clown who ran an amateurish campaign rife with mistakes. The Democrats should have won this election in a landslide. They did not, and there is no nobility or reassurance for them in a narrow loss in the electoral college or a win in the popular vote. And continuing to insist that a Donald Trump win was either some kind of strange fluke or completely inevitable is a recipe for repeated defeat.
Ezekiel Kweku, Skin in the Game, MTV.com (17 November 2016).


On the one hand, absolutely. But, on the other hand, the other folks in the GOP primary also thought he couldn't possibly win until suddenly it became horrifyingly clear that he would.

Passing Obamacare without any GOP input was the fatal flaw.

The GOP declined to participate; they could have had plenty of input. Also the plan is basically RomneyCare, so...
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 10:19 AM on December 3, 2016 [10 favorites]


> Passing Obamacare without any GOP input was the fatal flaw.

You can't be serious. There were zero GOP votes, but the entire construction of the exchange model was RomneyCare 2.0. Democrats tried and begged to get GOP members of Congress to sign on, but they simply dragged the proposal to the right while contributing zero votes.

Also, let's grant for the sake of argument that they could have gotten some GOP votes without neutering the bill even more than it was by the Mary Landrieus and Ben Nelsons within the Democratic caucus that made it more conservative without Republicans having to participate -- what would a handful of these votes have changed about the way the rest of Obama's presidency played out? Do you really think that the GOP would have been a valuable partner for anything at all?
posted by tonycpsu at 10:24 AM on December 3, 2016 [42 favorites]


i guess what i'm saying is that having mefites quoting scripture at each other as if that is going to tell us anything about how Christians at large are going to act is hopeless, because Christians aren't a monolithic entity at any scale you care to use.

Every fourth person you see walking down the street is a white evangelical and 81% voted for Trump. That is about as monolithic as you are going to find.
posted by JackFlash at 10:36 AM on December 3, 2016 [14 favorites]


It's definitely complicated and dismissing winning Christian votes as impossible as long as the Democrats are pro-Choice is a losing strategy

welcome to reality. Trump got the same 80% of the evangelical vote that Romney and Bush did.

To put that in perspective, that's the vote split of billionaires, orthodox jews, and also the strongest "Red" counties.
posted by Heywood Mogroot III at 10:37 AM on December 3, 2016 [1 favorite]


The GOP wanted no input. They were the party of no the entire time.

While true, the electorate didn't see it that way. They saw midnight passage and backroom deals.
posted by 922257033c4a0f3cecdbd819a46d626999d1af4a at 10:46 AM on December 3, 2016


Republican voters might have seen it as midnight passage and backroom deals, every Democratic I know sees Republicans as the party of obstruction.
posted by maggiemaggie at 10:48 AM on December 3, 2016 [10 favorites]


Trump got the same 80% of the evangelical vote that Romney and Bush did.

Evangelicals are all Christians but not all Christians are evangelicals, so to dismiss all Christians as 80% unwinnable is foolish.

That other 20% is also not an insignificant voting block, so retaining them is important.
posted by Candleman at 10:49 AM on December 3, 2016 [3 favorites]


the electorate didn't see it that way.

You can't entirely blame the Democrats for not winning the messaging war with the part of the electorate that reads and believes Brietbart.
posted by C'est la D.C. at 10:50 AM on December 3, 2016 [14 favorites]


Some protestants cheered when Kennedy was killed. The papist had been removed from leadership.

Maybe bringing the tensions within Christianity to the surface would be a good long term strategy to counter the right. For example, the left sure could use some Christians to call out the spiritual arrested development of evangelical leaders.

When Bush two claimed he heard god wanted endless war in the Middle East, it sure would have helped to have a prominent left Christian say something like, 'There's a difference between one's own ego and the voice of god. Taking lives is a direct violation of the Ten Commandments, and if murder must occur, it must be throughly justified.'
posted by Strange_Robinson at 10:50 AM on December 3, 2016 [2 favorites]




> While true, the electorate didn't see it that way.

What's your counterfactual here? Obama and Democrats partner with the GOP who began Obama's term saying their #1 priority was to make him a one-term President. Do you expect a good healthcare bill to come out of that process? Do you think the public was going to reward them for trying just because they included some Republicans? Are you remembering to also count the millions within the Democratic base who would have revolted at Democrats failing to fight for the true healthcare reform that Obama campaigned on?
posted by tonycpsu at 10:52 AM on December 3, 2016 [5 favorites]


And others that were torn between wanting to end abortion and being against other things he advocated for and ultimately came down on the wrong side. It's definitely complicated and dismissing winning Christian votes as impossible as long as the Democrats are pro-Choice is a losing strategy.

In my understanding, there's no daylight at all between Mormon Christians and (trinitarian) evangelical Christians* on the abortion issue; and Mormons were one of the few conservative groups that did move substantially against Trump, whether by switching to Clinton, by protest-voting for Egg or by staying home. So I think that abortion, like 'economic anxiety', is another red herring. Not that people don't genuinely believe themselves to have been motivated by that single issue: but the question is, why did Mormons turn on Trump when Evangelicals didn't?

One possibility is simply the presence of a validator (Evan McMullin) within the community who presented a politically viable alternative -- by which I mean, not that he was going to be anything but a spoiler, but he demonstrated that one could be a 'good Mormon' and also vote against the Republican nominee. There wasn't a similar evangelical leader to validate an anti-Trump vote in this way, I don't think. So a lot of evangelicals felt they only had one choice that was consonant with their subculture, even if they had reservations; and now that they have identified themselves with him, they're doing the very human thing of retroactively justifying their decision.

Another possibility is that Mormons share a collective history of actual religious oppression at the hands of mainstream Protestant Americans that makes them more wary of authoritarianism -- that they have theological and cultural resources that white evangelical Protestants, who do not have a history of having been oppressed (and are always trying to find ways to play the martyr card anyway) can't draw on to resist fascism.

Thirdly, it may be that the quiet opposition (or at least surprising neutrality) of the Church hierarchy is much more powerful among Mormons than among evangelical Protestants as a whole. It's odd to me since I'm used to thinking of conservative Protestants as typically much more decentralized; moderate Protestants as being somewhat more hierarchical (think Presbyterian or Methodist), and of course Roman Catholics and Eastern Orthodox as being the most formally hierarchical of all. But Mormons, to my limited understanding, have a fairly strict and powerful ecclesiastical structure as well.

I'd love for people more familiar with the LDS than I to weigh in. I think it's an interesting and useful thing to compare.

*I'm not sure whether Mormons consider themselves evangelicals, hence my parenthetical
posted by tivalasvegas at 10:54 AM on December 3, 2016 [12 favorites]


Democratic base who would have revolted

I had a chuckle at that. The Dems would just keep electing the same people over and over, hoping this time they'd win something.
posted by 922257033c4a0f3cecdbd819a46d626999d1af4a at 10:56 AM on December 3, 2016 [2 favorites]


Jack Mormon here. I'd bet most Mormons are keenly aware at how much the evangelicals hate them. It's one of the few ways I've been involved in shaping religious dialogue among my peers.
posted by Strange_Robinson at 10:59 AM on December 3, 2016 [4 favorites]


> I had a chuckle at that.

If you don't think Obama would have lost significant support if he signed a health reform bill that could get Chuck "Death Panels" Grassley's vote, then we're not living in the same reality. And you dodged the rest of my question about how exactly you think getting GOP votes (a) would have been possible and (b) would have helped.
posted by tonycpsu at 11:01 AM on December 3, 2016 [4 favorites]


Member of Putin's party: 'United Russia won the elections in America'

Russia's government denies that it tampered in the U.S. election or even took sides. But now that the results are in, members of President Vladimir Putin's United Russia party aren't holding back.

"It turns out that United Russia won the elections in America," Viktor Nazarov, the governor of Omsk, Russia, declared in a radio interview.

posted by futz at 11:04 AM on December 3, 2016 [9 favorites]


The national and state parties would have spent huge amounts of money primarying any GOP Rep/Senator who voted for the PPACA.
posted by Pope Guilty at 11:04 AM on December 3, 2016 [2 favorites]


Evangelicals are all Christians but not all Christians are evangelicals, so to dismiss all Christians as 80% unwinnable is foolish.

That other 20% is also not an insignificant voting block, so retaining them is important.


That last 20% doesn't vote as a block so there is no clear path to reaching them, while the 80% does vote as a block so they are wooed by conservatives. The differences between the Evangelicals and other Christians has really little to do with Christianity per se, as "Christian" is a fundamentally incoherent marker of values at this point, meaning virtually nothing but who you are choosing to group yourself with in its more extreme manifestations. Beyond that and some vague concept of Christ near the center of their religion, there isn't much else for common elements, with even Christ's nature and role being seen differently by various believers. The value sets Christian voters rely on are more about their worldly associations than their religious ones.
posted by gusottertrout at 11:04 AM on December 3, 2016


There was nothing complicated at all about the Christian vote for Trump. He took the clearest possible stance against Roe v. Wade, including an (unprecedented) list of potential Supreme Court nominees each one of whom is a reliable (seeming) vote to overturn Roe.

Not all Christians think overturning Roe is the single most important issue in the world. In fact, many of us are pro-choice. I am a pro-choice Christian. I think God would much rather have babies born to people who love them and want them. And I am really sick of so-called Christians who devote all this energy to saving fetuses but do not give a shit when it comes to living, breathing fully developed human beings. Jesus said not one word about abortion, but he talked constantly how we were supposed to care for the living, breathing fully developed human beings all around us.
posted by hydropsyche at 11:04 AM on December 3, 2016 [15 favorites]


This is something. NYT: Will Ivanka Trump Be the Most Powerful First Daughter in History? (yes it's in the Style section, because, you know what go to hell that's not where this should be)
When Nancy Pelosi, the minority leader of the House of Representatives, called Donald J. Trump shortly after the Nov. 8 election, they talked about domestic policy and infrastructure. But when Ms. Pelosi raised the specific subject of women’s issues, the president-elect did something unexpected: He handed the phone over to another person in the room — his 35-year-old daughter, Ivanka.
Women's issues came up and he passed the phone to Ivanka? I honestly don't know whether to be horrified or reassured.
posted by zachlipton at 11:05 AM on December 3, 2016 [25 favorites]


Arrrgh. Obamacare is the Republican input. It's functionally indistinguishable from the sort of health care reform the Republicans would have put forward in the 80s. And it still got 0 Republican support.

I have no idea what the Rs are planning to do with health care and, frighteningly, I don't think they know either. My guess is they're going to stumble into blowing up the whole system through repealing subsidies and price controls without repealing the regulations which make those things necessary. But I don't actually know. And neither do they!
posted by Justinian at 11:06 AM on December 3, 2016 [42 favorites]




Unofficial BART Notice Calls Out Racism, Etc., Tells Riders To 'Get Your S**t Together' [photo, San Francisco Bay Area public transit]
posted by zachlipton at 11:09 AM on December 3, 2016 [24 favorites]


I have no idea what the Rs are planning to do with health care and, frighteningly, I don't think they know either. My guess is they're going to stumble into blowing up the whole system through repealing subsidies and price controls without repealing the regulations which make those things necessary.

They'll probably listen to the insurance industry and "fix" the ACA in ways that lead to more profits for insurers while providing some fig leaf of care they can sell to voters as important change. At least that's the way they usually work, profits for the rich, slogans for the poor.
posted by gusottertrout at 11:11 AM on December 3, 2016 [9 favorites]


But it is also true that Donald Trump is an incompetent clown who ran an amateurish campaign rife with mistakes.

He did run an amateurish campaign, but maybe Donald wasn't trying to run a campaign. At least running a political campaign was secondary to his primary goal, which was to create an entertaining and riveting show, with him as the audience surrogate, underdog, protagonist, and eventually hero.
posted by FJT at 11:13 AM on December 3, 2016 [5 favorites]


There is zero need for any individual to work 40+ hours a week. The work needs to be spread around because there simply isn't enough work to be done to achieve full employment any more, and the problem is only getting worse.

I feel like it would be easy sell. Just get on TV and ask those who can to take, like, three Fridays off in a row (or Mondays). Not everyone at once or anything but when it makes sense for you. Those three weeks could be your life.

I'm coming around to the idea that the whole point of civilization is to get us all to a point where no one needs to work and everyone has everything they want. Like a natural communism let's say. I think a transition to a 32 hour work-week would be a good first step.
posted by VTX at 11:14 AM on December 3, 2016 [2 favorites]


What's your counterfactual here? Obama and Democrats partner with the GOP who began Obama's term saying their #1 priority was to make him a one-term President. Do you expect a good healthcare bill to come out of that process?

* Don't pass as ambitious a bill.
* Eliminate the filibuster first, pass a more ambitious bill with the 50th Dem senator as opposed to the 60th.
* Pass an equivalently ambitious bill, but on a different non-Romneycare-based economic model.
* Pass a bill with salutary effects that are visible to the typical voter.
* Pass a bill whose salutary effects take place immediately, not in a staggered manner.
* Pass the popular fixes one by one rather than all at once, moving the burden of "compromise" to the GOP.
* Table healthcare altogether until the economic crisis has stabilized. Use your honeymoon and supermajority period to borrow money at zero or subzero interest rates and spend it on infrastructure and jobs (you know, exactly what Trump is going to do).

There are a world of other possible actions for Obama to have committed himself to. I think the last one is probably best, and the one he chose is probably one of the worst, both tactically and strategically -- ACA bought the Democrats a world of problems while sacrificing, rather than advancing, a core liberal agenda item, and now is likely to be overturned entirely with few or no long-term consequences. I'm hopeful that the preexisting condition exclusion and no lifetime limits will survive Trump's ego -- I don't think he wants a parade of disabled children and veterans staging die-ins on the Capitol steps for the next four years -- but I don't know that I'd bet on it.
posted by gerryblog at 11:15 AM on December 3, 2016 [3 favorites]


@kevinroose:

Twitter should rename "While you were away" to "Oh god, what did he do now?"
posted by Wordshore at 11:15 AM on December 3, 2016 [6 favorites]


Henry Kissinger visits China to ease concerns amid Trump transition

Kissinger was in China yesterday for the Taiwan debacle. Is Kissinger acting in an official capacity? The article doesn't make it clear.
posted by futz at 11:18 AM on December 3, 2016 [4 favorites]


They'll probably listen to the insurance industry and "fix" the ACA in ways that lead to more profits for insurers while providing some fig leaf of care they can sell to voters as important change. At least that's the way they usually work, profits for the rich, slogans for the poor.

Apropos of what I said about, I think the most likely outcome is that the preexisting condition exclusion and no lifetime limits will stay, as well as something like a rebranded version of the mandate, but insurance companies will be able to sell garbage policies. Maximum profits, minimum benefit, everything bad that happens as a result is Obama's fault, forever and ever amen.
posted by gerryblog at 11:19 AM on December 3, 2016 [2 favorites]


* Table healthcare altogether until the economic crisis has stabilized. Use your honeymoon and supermajority period to borrow money at zero or subzero interest rates and spend it on infrastructure and jobs (you know, exactly what Trump is going to do).

There are a world of other possible actions for Obama to have committed himself to. I think the last one is probably best, and the one he chose is probably one of the worst, both tactically and strategically -- ACA bought the Democrats a world of problems while sacrificing, rather than advancing, a core liberal agenda item, and now is likely to be overturned entirely with few or no long-term consequences.


Interesting. You generally see people criticize Obama for his naïveté with the Republican opposition, but here you're advocating for more of it? The Dems were going to lose the house in 2010 for no other reason than it was a mid-term election, so the end of that year is basically your deadline to do anything. Whose definition of the economic crisis being "over" do you use? Because if you come out and say that you're not dealing with healthcare until that's taken care of then as far as the Republicans are concerned, the crisis is never going to be over.
posted by LionIndex at 11:22 AM on December 3, 2016 [8 favorites]


Vox Donald Trump’s huge, ambitious school voucher plan, explained
Together, DeVos and Trump want to oversee the biggest change to American public education in half a century. Trump’s plan for his first 100 days includes a $20 billion federal voucher program for children living in poverty, a program he’d likely pay for by dismantling the biggest existing system of federal support for public schools.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 11:24 AM on December 3, 2016 [4 favorites]


@DanaZkat His Majesty King Abdullah today made a phone call with US Vice President-elect @mike_pence
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 11:27 AM on December 3, 2016 [1 favorite]


There are a world of other possible actions for Obama to have committed himself to. I think the last one is probably best

Congress had just spent a considerable amount of money on infrastructure as part of the stimulus. That part was already taken care of. Your proposal is that President Obama and the Democrats should have ignored health care, one of the primary things they ran on and one of the biggest issues Americans were complaining about. They saw a window of opportunity and went for it, and even if they hadn't, odds are good they never would have gotten another such opportunity.

The ACA as passed was also never intended to be the end all and be all. The plan was to make tweaks and corrections in follow-up bills as the market adjusted. But then it became a giant political issue and nobody could touch it, even when some changes would have generally made sense to everyone. That's why the Administration stretched things as far as they could (if not much farther in some cases) administratively.

I'm hopeful that the preexisting condition exclusion and no lifetime limits will survive Trump's ego

Guaranteed issue is not feasible without some kind of subsidy and mandate. All three parts work together, or there simply won't be insurers in the exchanges. Some Republicans have a kind of harebrained scheme to replace the mandate with "continuous coverage," where you get screwed over if you're uninsured for any period of time (perhaps because you couldn't afford the premiums) and the subsidies with less generous tax credits. There's a lot of reason to believe this won't really work--too many people will fall out of the market--, but it may be irrelevant if they move forward with a repeal without a replacement, because insurers will flee in droves first.
posted by zachlipton at 11:29 AM on December 3, 2016 [4 favorites]


I guess the Jordanian government know's who's driving.
posted by murphy slaw at 11:30 AM on December 3, 2016 [3 favorites]


having mefites quoting scripture at each other is in itself one of the strangest things I've experienced on this site, and maybe a sign of the apocalypse.

As an agnostic, I sometimes find comfort in reading the Bible, for many reasons. Some things have never changed for humans, because we are human. But when it comes to politics and governance, things have actually changed the last couple thousand years. If you don't think so, you need to give the bible studies a break and read some history.
These last few decades have been the most peaceful in the history of humanity. More people have been able to sustain themselves. More people have been able to depend on the rule of law. More people have had access to healthcare and to education. More people have lived in democracies. And all of this progress has been the direct result of democracy, of international law, of international trade and communication.
The worst thing about the current situation is that we are about to loose everything we have achieved because of a relatively small minority who choose to believe obvious lies.
Don't imagine that anyone, in their deepest heart, does not know climate change is real and man-made.
Don't imagine that anyone, in their deepest heart, does not know abortion can be necessary and had been so forever
Don't imagine that anyone, in their deepest heart, does not know universal healthcare is cheaper and better
Don't imagine that anyone, in their deepest heart, does not know that all men and women are created equal and are entitled to equal rights
(well, I could go on and on but so can you)
A lot of the discussion now is disingenuous - wether it is throwing scripture at one another or chasing the elusive WWC. We are in the middle of a global sea change, and a lot of people are scared and confused. That is fair enough. But our leaders should be leading and they are not.
posted by mumimor at 11:32 AM on December 3, 2016 [12 favorites]


Because if you come out and say that you're not dealing with healthcare until that's taken care of then as far as the Republicans are concerned, the crisis is never going to be over.

I don't think it's a formal announcement, of course not. But 2009 was a massive opportunity to pass laws to advance the project of long-term Democratic dominance under the banner of economic emergency, including jobs programs, Green Economy spending, infrastructure spending, mortgage bailouts, etc. Any evaluation of the actions Obama took has to be evaluated in that context, and if we're looking for counterfactuals, we should be imagining actions Obama might have taken then that would have made the period 2010-2016 less of a total bloodletting. In part that's important so we know what to do if we ever get in power again, but it's also important so we know what actions of Trump we should commit ourselves to blocking with the same vituperation that they fought Obama/Romneycare. As many have said in this thread, they committed themselves on Day One to making Obama's a failed presidency, and they did it. Schumer, in contrast, is already signaling he'll working with Trump on the Trump jobs plan...
posted by gerryblog at 11:32 AM on December 3, 2016 [3 favorites]


. But 2009 was a massive opportunity to pass laws to advance the project of long-term Democratic dominance under the banner of economic emergency, including jobs programs, Green Economy spending, infrastructure spending, mortgage bailouts, etc. Any evaluation of the actions Obama took has to be evaluated in that context, and if we're looking for counterfactuals, we should be imagining actions Obama might have taken then that would have made the period 2010-2016 less of a total bloodletting.

They did pass most of that too. There was a stimulus full of green job initiatives, a mortgage refinance program, infrastructure, all of it. This revisiting of 2009 has made no mention of Lieberman or Ben Nelson. Or that we're talking about a 6 month window from Al Franken's seating to Scott Brown's victory. The Democrats didn't have 60 votes for any of more that shit than what they got either, they were relying on traitors in their own party facing total and bad faith resistance from the republicans and the complicit media. Blaming 2016 on revising 2009 is little better than citing baseless polls that Bernie would've won.
posted by T.D. Strange at 11:39 AM on December 3, 2016 [10 favorites]


While true, the electorate didn't see it that way. They saw midnight passage and backroom deals.

I would be utterly astonished if the percentage of the electorate that had any reasonable idea at all about the methods used for passing the ACA was out of the single digits.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 11:40 AM on December 3, 2016 [1 favorite]


Donald Trump says there is no need for full wall between Mexico and US due to ‘mountains’ and ‘vicious rivers’
posted by futz at 2:51 PM on December 3

It's breathtaking to be ignorant about virtually everything.
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 11:48 AM on December 3, 2016 [15 favorites]


I would be utterly astonished if the percentage of the electorate that had any reasonable idea at all about the methods used for passing the ACA was out of the single digits.

My Trump-votiing mom told me that Obama prohibited members of Congress from reading the ACA before voting on it. Not that there wasn't enough time to read it or blah blah blah, but that he literally prohibited people from viewing any of its contents.

She voted for Obama in 2008 because she felt Sarah Palin was a scarily irresponsible choice for Vice President.
posted by lalex at 11:50 AM on December 3, 2016 [3 favorites]


I don't think it's a formal announcement, of course not. But 2009 was a massive opportunity to pass laws to advance the project of long-term Democratic dominance under the banner of economic emergency, including jobs programs, Green Economy spending, infrastructure spending, mortgage bailouts, etc. Any evaluation of the actions Obama took has to be evaluated in that context, and if we're looking for counterfactuals, we should be imagining actions Obama might have taken then that would have made the period 2010-2016 less of a total bloodletting.

A considerable part of the problem was simply that Obama and the Democratic Party very much came in intending to fix the "economic emergency," but read that emergency as something distinct from a number of the other issues under discussion. Obama, in particular, seems to have seen health care and green initiatives as long-term, incrementalist projects, in contrast to "emergency measures" like the continuation of TARP and the auto industry bailout.

Theirs was fundamentally a "big institutions" view of the economy, a genuine belief that "too big to fail" means too big to fail." And, of course, there was also the sense of "political capital" as a finite resource. Perversely, they didn't see the situation as a top-to-bottom state of emergency in quite the way a lot of ordinary people did. Obama governed with an eye to maintain as many norms of DLC-inflected/liberal consensus political norms as possible, because he and most other Democratic politicians essentially came up in a period when that was how Democrats won.

His models were the Clinton presidency and, subsequently, the Democratic gains of the previous election cycle that put Obama himself in the Senate and gave Democrats those majorities, the narrative they were working on was one in which you run Blue Dog (conservative) Democrats in "conservative" states and run the party from the top down once in office. (They deliberately disbanded their turnout operation because it was *too* grassroots.)

Nearly every decision they made in that first year in office was fed by these sensibilities, and by a more general sense that the end of Bush 43's presidency was a call for the restoration of "normalcy." The historical narrative of the New Deal they believe in is that FDR "saved capitalism" from communism and fascism; this was their chance to do the same, to save the market from itself. Because that is "how things work."

And, of course, they fully accepted the new foreign policy structure, the permanent emergency of terrorism, in a way they did not see the market effects -- or, frankly, the coming racialized backlash -- as similarly fraught. The Democrats of '09 were a party governed by the logics of tacking towards the center as they understood it and by the notion that things had changed irrevocably in 1989 and 2001, but not in 2007.

To propose counterfactuals is to imagine not merely different political actions, but fundamentally different political actors. It is to put genuine radicals with a total vision of the country in place of self-defined "sensible" technocrats who saw their role as the restoration and maintenance of business as usual.

To the extent that Obama's actions changed over the course of his two terms towards some of the moves he made in the last two years of his presidency, my sense is that this was the result of a gradual and often granular view of issues, growing if belated understanding that the norms were eroded or gone.
posted by kewb at 11:59 AM on December 3, 2016 [16 favorites]


Don't imagine that anyone, in their deepest heart, does not know climate change is real and man-made.
Don't imagine that anyone, in their deepest heart, does not know abortion can be necessary and had been so forever
Don't imagine that anyone, in their deepest heart, does not know universal healthcare is cheaper and better
Don't imagine that anyone, in their deepest heart, does not know that all men and women are created equal and are entitled to equal rights


You mean inside the bubble, right?
posted by Rykey at 12:07 PM on December 3, 2016 [1 favorite]


* Eliminate the filibuster first, pass a more ambitious bill with the 50th Dem senator as opposed to the 60th.

How would we be feeling right about now if the Democratic Senate had followed this course? Terrified or very terrified?
posted by Justinian at 12:07 PM on December 3, 2016 [6 favorites]


My Trump-votiing mom told me that Obama prohibited members of Congress from reading the ACA before voting on it. Not that there wasn't enough time to read it or blah blah blah, but that he literally prohibited people from viewing any of its contents.

This was a stupid "OH YEAH, WELL" comment I heard a lot in defense of HB2, which was passed under objectively shadier circumstances (within one day, minutes after the legislators first heard of it or got their hands on it, and in an emergency session the public wasn't aware of before it was underway). I don't know what HB2 has anything to do with ACA, but apparently Republicans saw it as permission to go tit-for-tat in forcing through weird laws that many people believe are harmful.

And was this another failure in messaging, and/or is the Fox News phenomenon to blame? They way I and other liberals heard about it was via time-honored sources like NYT and NPR; we read stories about families who'd been ruined by medical costs and patients who died needlessly because they were denied coverage, and kept up with months of negotiations before it was signed into law. On the other side, I guess they were beating the drum of death panels and listening to hysterical listener calls on Michael Savage; then, one day, they got to act all surprised that it became law. It makes me wonder if we shouldn't have gone for a single-payer option anyway, because opponents have already convinced themselves that's the case. I think we should have gone harder in the direction of socialism when we had the chance.
posted by witchen at 12:08 PM on December 3, 2016 [5 favorites]


A bit more on Mormons now that I've got a proper keyboard to compose from:

Mormons are exceptionally family centered. This is in a way that evangelicals really aren't. Evangelicals will more or less overlook anything as long as the individual in question professes to have found god. Mormons, by contrast, will excommunicate over divorce, per-marital sex, abortion, the whole nine yards. There is definitely some local discretion in these matters, but folks who deviate in any public way will be shunned and marginalized, whether they are thrown out or not.

Mormons fall within the works divide of the works vs grace divide. This largely means Mormons must be an example. It's not enough to ask for god's forgiveness, one also has to live correctly. They are a lot more like old school Irish Catholics and Mexican Catholics.

The persecution stuff mentioned here is relevant too. Please don't underestimate one of the few peoples who stood up to the US military and won.

Trump's multiple marriages, and his locker room talk, along with the growing rabidness of prior evangelical allies, would definitely be enough to split the Mormon vote. You've also got Harry Reid as an example of a Democratic Mormon to help matters.

A final note, Mormons vary somewhat by region, and has its own rather complicated pecking order. For instance, Utah Mormons tend to look down on Mormons outside Utah. Genealogical connections to the early church also count like minor royalty.
posted by Strange_Robinson at 12:09 PM on December 3, 2016 [14 favorites]


Also, while Mormon leadership is very hierarchical, it is also mostly amateurs. I'd have to check for where the line gets drawn, but I think the prophet and apostles would be the only professional class leaders.
posted by Strange_Robinson at 12:13 PM on December 3, 2016


How would we be feeling right about now if the Democratic Senate had followed this course? Terrified or very terrified?

I am certain the GOP will pull the plug on it the minute they feel like it would advantage them to, so I'd be equally terrified. I also think it's unlikely that Trump gets elected, and perhaps even that Dems lose the House, in a context in which the Democrats can pass legislation post-Scott-Brown.
posted by gerryblog at 12:14 PM on December 3, 2016 [2 favorites]


The idea that people weren't "allowed" to read the PPACA comes from Hillary Clinton's joke, in response to the torrent of malicious lies, slander, and libel about the bill, that we'd have to pass it to see what was in it. The Republicans removed the context they were creating and presented it as fact, because the Republican Party long ago discarded morality and truth as for the weak.

(This ties into my overall "The Republican Party has chosen to be the party of Satan" theory- glad I don't believe in any such being, or else I'd be making much, much darker conclusions.)
posted by Pope Guilty at 12:16 PM on December 3, 2016 [1 favorite]


It was Pelosi's joke, not HRC's.
posted by gerryblog at 12:17 PM on December 3, 2016


Ah, that's my mistake.
posted by Pope Guilty at 12:18 PM on December 3, 2016


Trump is the antithesis of Mormon values. And the history of persecution is a core memory of the church and something taught from the earliest age.

Along with the personal morality issues and persecution based on religion in his campaign, Mormons do a lot of work internationally to help the poor, and have been active in the refugee crisis (therefore do not believe the framing of terrorist refugees): Mormon Church Responds to Refugee Crisis
In his talk, Elder Kearon made this remarkable observation:

“The Savior knows how it feels to be a refugee—he was one. As a child, Jesus and his family fled to Egypt to escape the murderous swords of Herod and at various points in his ministry, he found himself threatened and his life in danger, ultimately submitting to the designs of evil men who had plotted his death. Perhaps then, it is all the more remarkable to us that he repeatedly taught us to love one another, to love as he loves, to love our neighbor as ourselves. Truly, pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this: to visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction and to look to the poor and the needy and administer to their relief that they shall not suffer.”
posted by rainydayfilms at 12:25 PM on December 3, 2016 [13 favorites]


* Don't pass as ambitious a bill.

What does this mean? Which parts would you have cut? You can't just say "do less" as a counterfactual because the specifics affect how the bill would have been received

* Eliminate the filibuster first, pass a more ambitious bill with the 50th Dem senator as opposed to the 60th.

Yes, that would have gone over well. When Democrats threatened the nuclear option to stop Bush 43's judicial nominees the country did not support them. To kill it not just for nominees but normal legislation was not a political possibility in 2009.

* Pass an equivalently ambitious bill, but on a different non-Romneycare-based economic model.

Again, specifics are necessary here for your counterfactual to be compelling. What model? Exchange and subsidy is the only way I'm aware of to retain the private medical insurance companies' role, which was a requirement not just for Republicans but also a majority of Democrats. Single payer was simply not possible.

* Pass a bill with salutary effects that are visible to the typical voter.

Many of them were. Some weren't because healthcare delivery costs are going up and nobody really notices when things are getting more expensive, but at a slower rate.

* Pass a bill whose salutary effects take place immediately, not in a staggered manner.

If you look at the provisions, what you'll find for the most part is the ones that were easier to implement were done first and the ones that were harder were back-loaded.

* Pass the popular fixes one by one rather than all at once, moving the burden of "compromise" to the GOP.

Was never going to happen. Remember the "Gang of Six" negotiations? The three Republicans tanked any and all of the popular fixes because they would have given political advantage to Obama.

* Table healthcare altogether until the economic crisis has stabilized. Use your honeymoon and supermajority period to borrow money at zero or subzero interest rates and spend it on infrastructure and jobs (you know, exactly what Trump is going to do).

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act was signed on February 17, 2009. The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act was singed on March 23, 2010. He did in fact use his "honeymoon" to pass stimulus, but not the kind of stimulus you're talking about here, because of course Republicans didn't want that kind of stimulus. They wanted it to be mostly tax cuts, not new spending. If you believe he could have gotten a better stimulus, please make your case.
posted by tonycpsu at 12:27 PM on December 3, 2016 [12 favorites]


China has lodged a formal diplomatic protest while Chinese diplomacy experts call to end relations with the US if he does it again.

Shen Dingli is not a radical, he's one of the leading international relations and diplomacy experts in China.
posted by T.D. Strange at 12:34 PM on December 3, 2016 [18 favorites]


The Forward: REVEALED: The Full Keith Ellison Tape Shows He Was (Mostly) Praising Israel — Not Trashing It

The original clip was released by Steven Emerson's "Investigative Project on Terrorism," basically one step behind Pamela Geller-level Islamophobia, who cut down a long speech to just a short clip to attack Ellison. Eventually Emerson released the full 22-minute speech.

I think it's nuanced and I don't love everything he has to say, but I also don't need a DNC chair to be in 100% agreement with AIPAC on US-Israel relations (most American Jews aren't in 100% agreement either, thankfully). Ellison's main point is that Muslim-Americans should be more politically organized, which is more than reasonable and exactly what you'd expect him to say at such an event, and he was hit by an anti-Islam group with a out-of-context short clip.

There are some good questions about whether the DNC chair should be a full-time job, not to mention the proxy fight over how left the party should be, but I wish the party was having that debate instead of making it all about Israel.
posted by zachlipton at 12:37 PM on December 3, 2016 [9 favorites]


If you believe he could have gotten a better stimulus, please make your case.

Actually, please don't, and instead read the literally 1000s of comments at the time for why it wasn't on the table. The threads are still here.
posted by T.D. Strange at 12:37 PM on December 3, 2016 [15 favorites]


In National Security Adviser Michael Flynn, Experience Meets a Prickly Past
Days after Islamist militants stormed the American diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Libya, in 2012, Lt. Gen. Michael T. Flynn reached a conclusion that stunned some of his subordinates at the Defense Intelligence Agency: Iran had a role in the attack, he told them.

Now, he added, it was their job to prove it — and, by implication, to show that the White House was wrong about what had led to the attack.

Mr. Flynn, whom President-elect Donald J. Trump has chosen to be his national security adviser, soon took to pushing analysts to find Iran’s hidden hand in the disaster, according to current and former officials familiar with the episode. But like many other investigations into Benghazi, theirs found no evidence of any links, and the general’s stubborn insistence reminded some officials at the agency of how the Bush administration had once relentlessly sought to connect Saddam Hussein and Iraq to the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.
...
Many of those who observed the general’s time at the agency described him as someone who alienated both superiors and subordinates with his sharp temperament, his refusal to brook dissent, and what his critics considered a conspiratorial worldview.
This feels like the kind of thing that got Flynn fired, and since it's the same thought process that got us into Iraq, it's the kind of thing that gets many many people killed.
posted by zachlipton at 12:40 PM on December 3, 2016 [16 favorites]


China has lodged a formal diplomatic protest while Chinese diplomacy experts call to end relations with the US if he does it again.

Putin must be loving this shit. He has a bunch of pals in Trump's administration and they're busy destroying relations with one of his biggest regional rivals. Is there a Russian equivalent saying for 'killing two birds with one stone'?
posted by PenDevil at 12:43 PM on December 3, 2016 [9 favorites]


China has lodged a formal diplomatic protest while Chinese diplomacy experts call to end relations with the US if he does it again.

During the campaign, Trump made a huge deal out of the way Obama was greeted at the airport in China when he arrived for the G20 summit and says he would have turned around and left if he was treated that way (I wonder if he knows the plane has to be refueled). To him, this was some deep national shame that we could not endure.

Surely Chinese foreign policy officials are well aware of Trump's obsession over this incident. What are the chances they use it to embarrass him?
posted by zachlipton at 12:45 PM on December 3, 2016 [10 favorites]


It's the almost orthogonal point but one of the most chilling things I saw on Twitter in the last month was the realization that there are now buildings all over the world personally owned by the US president, with his name emblazoned upon them, none of them situated or having been constructed with an eye towards defensibility (the way an embassy might be). It seems like a recipe for disaster.

Not that it negates your point, but the Trump Organization doesn't actually own much of anything internationally. Other than a handful of golf courses the buildings that have his name on them are all licensing deals where the actual owner of the building pays the Trump Org a yearly fee to slap his name on it.

Domestically their holdings are more extensive. Golf courses make up the bulk, along with a handful of properties and joint ventures in NYC and LA.
posted by zrail at 12:47 PM on December 3, 2016 [2 favorites]


One possibility is simply the presence of a validator (Evan McMullin) within the community who presented a politically viable alternative

Mitt Romney vocally speaking out against Trump early on probably also played a part in it.

As Strange_Robinson and rainydayfilms note, if you leave aside the Mormon Church's LGBT and racial issues (yes, I realize these are huge issues, but can we not re-litigate them in this thread?), individual Mormons likely have more in common with the average MeFite than the average Evangelical does. I've met far more Evangelicals that endorsed George W.'s use of torture than Mormons, for example.

We also know (or think we know) that a strong subset of Trump voters (and Republican voters in general) want authoritarianism. I would conjecture that the Mormon church fulfills much of that need for structure and order in the lives of its followers that want it, whereas the much more decentralized and less structured Evangelical churches do not, so their followers look for it in government.

And was this another failure in messaging, and/or is the Fox News phenomenon to blame?

My parents switched from relatively real news to mouthpiece news (the Washington Times in this case, IIRC) around the time of Obama's election. One thing that sticks out vividly in my memory of reading a hit piece on Oregon's health care system circa the death panels talking points. It told the tale of a woman who didn't qualify for Medicaid but was covered by Oregon's health plan for next to free. It had paid for her cancer treatment the first time around, but it had come back and she'd been denied coverage for a very expensive experimental treatment that showed marginal improvement over traditional treatments, and this was trotted out as proof that socialized medicine was evil.

And people like my parents ate this up, despite the fact that the woman in question would have been dead or bankrupted years before without the program, as she couldn't have gotten treatment at all when she first had cancer.

Surely Chinese foreign policy officials are well aware of Trump's obsession over this incident. What are the chances they use it to embarrass him?

What are the chances he then embarrasses us?
posted by Candleman at 12:48 PM on December 3, 2016 [3 favorites]


I think: China, evil; Russia good, is hardwired into the Trump mentality. They are behind the global warming scare (Trump said this, really). This is why Trump wants to suspend the TPP.

Trump believes by breaking off trade with China we will bring back U.S. jobs. This is why we will have a recession/depression/World War in the first year of Trump. (Not all three, just the best to worst scenarios.)
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 1:01 PM on December 3, 2016 [3 favorites]


the general’s stubborn insistence reminded some officials at the agency of how the Bush administration had once relentlessly sought to connect Saddam Hussein and Iraq to the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.

This is so painful to read, yet so unquestionably true

..
..
Don't imagine that anyone, in their deepest heart, does not know that all men and women are created equal and are entitled to equal rights

You mean inside the bubble, right?


Well, yes, mostly I do, which is why I wrote about our leaders leading. It is so outrageous to hear people (both politicians and pundits) speaking against their own better knowledge every day. But I also believe that most of the people know better. My trumpist FB friends almost all know better, they are trolls who get a kick out of provocation and who are mostly driven by petty grievances against women and in some cases POC. I have a couple or more FB friends who are among the 27%: incredibly ignorant and vulnerable to all forms of manipulation. They would be equally susceptible to a liberal populist (see how many trumpists in news reports tell they voted for Obama).
Most of my friends are European, and among them, the people who voted for Brexit or vote for racist, populist parties follow the same pattern, but in Europe I know some people I don't know in the states: rural working and middle class conservatives. They all know they are being racist and hateful and that is wrong, and they are more angry at the urban elites than at the immigrants and refugees. They also understand the economy very well thank you, and they (somewhat rightly) feel they have been deliberately abandoned by the mainstream politicians and media.
Where they are dramatically wrong is that they feel they are managing all on their own, and that it won't make any difference if they lose the EU subsidies, the welfare, the education and the healthcare they have now. But I get why they feel that.
Right here where I am, authoritarianism will not find fertile ground, because even though people feel disenfranchised, they also feel they can fire and hire the politicians as they like. Corruption is relatively low. If that were to change, I could easily see how people would prefer an (in their mind) not corrupt strongman to a corrupt politicians.
As a consequence, I believe the unravelling of Trumps various conflicts of interest will be his undoing. I don't think Trump voters had thought this through when they voted, not least because of the media failure of reporting it. But I also don't think this is acceptable for the general public.
posted by mumimor at 1:06 PM on December 3, 2016 [3 favorites]


To propose counterfactuals is to imagine not merely different political actions, but fundamentally different political actors. It is to put genuine radicals with a total vision of the country in place of self-defined "sensible" technocrats who saw their role as the restoration and maintenance of business as usual.

While I largely agreed with kewb's history, I would push back just a touch on this as it reminds me of why some on the left view some aspects of politics as disdainful. The opposition of "genuine radicals with a total vision of the country" against ""senisible" technocrats" maintaining business as usual strikes me as a bit idealistic rather than actually a view of how the world works in a way. The importance of corporate backing and support from corporate ownership, finance, and other top level capitalists shouldn't be underestimated in either getting things passed or in the amount of opposition that will be raised should they object. Setting aside ideals over what might be better for all, the world as it works is currently joined at the hip to the workings of global capitalism, so it isn't something that can be ignored by whoever wants to get anything accomplished in Washington. Fixing that even a little will be an enormous process in itself, not something that can be seen as an add on or alternative point of view with reasonable probability of success.

I'm not against reform in that area at all, but it's one of the things that gets glossed over by some on the left when talking about progressive economic reform. It isn't just going to be voting for a "real" lefty over a technocrat, it'll require much much more than that to pass even basic reforms unless there is a dire situation already at hand, in which case the government has to focus on fixing the problem first, often under blackmail like conditions from banks and firms, who threaten to fight the change at the expense of the people unless certain strategic values are left in place. That's why it's far more important people like Warren are in the senate fighting for smaller reforms all the time rather than running for president hoping they'll get a chance to pass comprehensive reform all at once. The amount of political and economic force that would be arrayed against truly bold radical reform would be staggering, so it's better not to wishcast it as likely to happen if only the right person would be voted in.
posted by gusottertrout at 1:10 PM on December 3, 2016 [7 favorites]


China, evil; Russia good, is hardwired into the Trump mentality

What I don't quite understand is that hasn't China allowed trump and his family to produce their products more cheaply? And what about China's cheap inferior steel that trump loves?

What draws him to Putin? Is it Putin's alpha male manliness? I mean the US has always had touchy relations with russia so why does trumple love them so much? Is it essentially love of dictators?

I am generalizing here but it does it come down to racism against the Chinese? Both countries are authoritarian and trump seems to like that...
posted by futz at 1:18 PM on December 3, 2016 [3 favorites]


Post Deleted; so I'll throw it into the pile...

Title: No Stranger to Truth and Bullshit

On my local NPR station (WNYC) this weekend the angst over the #newpresident persists, and, to my mind, has taken a very thoughtful turn. From PBS's This Week In Politics: On [the #newpresident] and His B.S. (8 min), and from On The Media: How Talking About [the #newpresident] Makes Him Normal In Your Brain (12 min) with George Lakoff.

Seems NPR is having it's own existential crisis and is building understanding from the bottom up...

After the fold:
In the second program, Brook Gladstone asks, "How can we cover the [#newpresident] without covering him?". Berkeley Professor George Lakoff's answer is both linguistic and cognitive (suggesting at one point, if the #newpresident was named "Twimp" nobody would have voted for him).

And in the first program, Quinta Jurecic, a research assistant at the Brookings Institution, introduces her blog readers to a 1986 essay by philosophy professor emeritis Harry Frankfurt republished by Princeton University Press in 2005. Quinta suggests we can understand the #newpresident better by considering Professor Frankfurt's distinction between Truth and B.S.

In the broad context of the history of the presidency, "mainstream" media and the personal publishing revolution, Quinta's article underscores the tone of several big themes:"Clearly, we as a culture are having a metaphysical moment".

Metafilter is no stranger to Professor Frankfurt, previously: (2005), (2011) and highly quoted in Metafilter comments: We cannot defend freedom abroad by deserting it at home (11/2015), in Opening lines of philosophy articles (2013), in The Nobelity of the Igs (9/2016), in "I have difficult news" (2012), in After the 2016 US election (11/10/2016).

Also, comments point to another article discussing Professor Frankfurt's work:, [the #newpresident] Is Not a Liar by Jeet Heer. New Republic (12/1/2015).
posted by xtian at 1:38 PM on December 3, 2016 [11 favorites]




I think Russia has supported Trump's investments when virtually nobody else would. He has had a history of advisors who have been pro-Russian. The alt-right has had a pro-Russian section for years and Trump feeds off of this.
They are Caucasian and not slanty-eyed.
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 1:39 PM on December 3, 2016 [4 favorites]


There's talk about which Bible Trump is using as his base, but are we sure he's not actually using the Rules of Acquisition? A sample:
  • Once you have their money, you never give it back.
  • Never spend more for an acquisition than you have to.
  • Greed is eternal.
  • A deal is a deal.
  • Never place friendship above profit.
  • War is good for business.
  • Peace is good for business.
  • Employees are the rungs on the ladder of success. Don't hesitate to step on them.
Yes I keep coming back to Star Trek in these threads. It all applies so well!
posted by Servo5678 at 1:39 PM on December 3, 2016 [12 favorites]


There certainly are liberal pro-choice Christians but that's not a consequential political category. They don't vote based on faith, and when politics and faith come into conflict (e.g. gay marriage) it's their faith that changes.

It's pro-life Christians who vote based on abortion and Trump ticked the box, just like he ticked the box for white women and high earners outside of solid blue metros and every other can't-lose Republican demographic. It was that careful and deliberate base-building element of his campaign that got him to the point that the small shifts in five states could make him President.
posted by MattD at 1:42 PM on December 3, 2016 [2 favorites]


Trump didn't win because of what he supported (pro-life?). He won because he attacked vulnerable groups, groups that fearful people fear. Latinos, immigrants, refugees, Muslims. He entered a fishing contest and threw a hand grenade in the pond. It wasn't sophisticated, it wasn't moral. It was destructive. But look at how many fish he caught.
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 1:48 PM on December 3, 2016 [37 favorites]


Reminder, which shouldn't be necessary: not all Christians are white. The voting behavior of black, Latino and Native American (and possibly Asian? I don't know about that) Christians is very different from the voting behavior of white Christians.
posted by ArbitraryAndCapricious at 1:50 PM on December 3, 2016 [28 favorites]


Regarding climate change: almost all my rural white friends who didn't acknowledge climate change five years ago do now. And from my limited experience in rural USA, the people I once met in Virginia were way ahead on this. Preppers are weird, but the ones I met had a clear understanding of how climate change might radically alter or fundamental conditions. They didn't agree with the Bush administration on this.

Identity politics determine elections because what is being threatened is peoples' identities.
posted by mumimor at 1:59 PM on December 3, 2016 [1 favorite]


They are behind the global warming scare (Trump said this, really). This is why Trump wants to suspend the TPP.

Trump is a manchild pawn of course, but this makes me wonder if Putin hasn't made a calculated decision that climate change is likely to be a net benefit for Russia. Not having warm-water ports means their great cities are not at sea level at risk of immediate inundation, and they are already used to what most of the world considers insanely crappy weather. Most of the immediate problems of climate change will affect the US and China a lot worse and more directly than they will Russia. To someone of Putin's manly-man temperament kneecapping the effort to stop climate change could seem like a bold chess move.
posted by Bringer Tom at 2:21 PM on December 3, 2016 [2 favorites]


The education proposals linked above will devastate public schools. Seriously, I am concerned that my son won't have a high school to go to that isn't a 30 minute drive. All of the private schools in our area are fundy xtian who believe the Flintstones are a documentary. The closest private school with a good education is 3 towns over in the rich folks part of the world, and they already have tuition in the 22,000 range, and have almost full enrollment. I am a smart, educated woman, and I am not even vaguely qualified to teach a gifted kid in all AP classes. And this will destroy things like music and art classes, if the majority of federal funding is stripped and the plan requires that the state make up the shortage. It is the end of public education in the U.S.

There have been many times when I've offhand joked about leaving the states, but realistically it's not a rational thing, I own real property, a small business, a fuckton of animals, and I'm damn near retirement age as far as finding new employment is concerned. And yet, if the trumpets are going to gut my son's only chance to success, wtf do I do?

All of this assuming we don't die in a whoopsie holocaust. This is not okay.
posted by SecretAgentSockpuppet at 2:25 PM on December 3, 2016 [49 favorites]


Most of the immediate problems of climate change will affect the US and China a lot worse and more directly than they will Russia

I don't know about that - the permafrost melting all over Siberia is likely to have very extreme consequences, similar to those of the ice-cap melting, but with extras such as methane pockets opening.
Russia is far too dependent on export of fossil fuels for it to be a healthy economy, and the Putin administration has done nothing to diversify. Who has ever seen a Russian product? AFAIK, they aren't even self-sustaining regarding basic foods. (Come to think of it, that might be a part of the Ukraine conflict, Ukraine is a huge agricultural power).
Putin and the GOP are soulmates because they are in the same situation: their model of the world is wrong, and they can only govern through propaganda and other lies. Till now, the GOP has pretended to be on board with the fact that Russia is an adversary. But Trump pulled that silk screen away.
posted by mumimor at 2:33 PM on December 3, 2016 [9 favorites]


Deplorable Donald didn't need to be "normalized"... he was safely in the Main Stream from the day he got "The Art of the Deal" published. From then on it was just a matter of successful Branding. And the Main Stream Media never realized how much Political success in the 21st century depended on the same kind of Branding as selling consumer goods (which Trump sucked at) or real estate or Reality TV (which he was more successful at). And how much they had contributed to it over the last 4 decades (Donald's entire Public Career). It was only when he started "saying outrageous things" (things Republicans usually only whispered) that he became, in the eyes of an out-of-touch Media Class (that even included part of the Right Wing Press) "not normal".

Trump is not any "New Normal", just an optimized version of Normality that has been evolving since Reagan.
posted by oneswellfoop at 2:35 PM on December 3, 2016 [6 favorites]




It was that careful and deliberate base-building element of his campaign that got him to the point that the small shifts in five states could make him President.

Trump caught flak for muffing an interview with Jake Tapper in 2015, where he said "I'm pro-choice" before correcting himself and saying "I'm pro-life." And then he took criticism *from pro-life organizations* in April, 2016, when he initially suggested that women who get abortions should be punished. His campaign quickly had to issue a press release bringing the candidate's official position into line with the usual "punish the doctors, the women are dupes" argument.

In your comments on the election, you consistently push the line that Trump's victory is evidence of a successful, rational strategy and that his voters made rational , tactical decisions built solely on clear, internally consistent ideological commitments. And in contrast, you seem to have decided (long ago, by all indications) that all liberals and the Democratic candidate have thought and acted in bad faith all along and suffered for it. It's a weird set of poorly justified assumptions that seems to undergird pretty much all of your post-election commentary, and it's trivially false.

To claim that Trump was carefully staking out specific positions and sending clever, clear signals to specific chunks of the GOP base all along is basically to ignore 90% of what he actually said and did during his campaign, to willfully block out all the scrambling press releases, the flip-flops on issues and positions visible from space, the vague or absent details of policy implementation, the constant campaign staff reshuffles, and the self-contradictions and pure word salad that littered his speeches.

Trump's one consistent signal was anti-establishment, "not business as usual." That was his successful appeal. But it was primarily an emotional appeal, not a position or policy-based one.

2016, of all years, demolishes the axiom of successful political behavior as rationality; this is in no small part why this is being viewed as such a seismic political and cultural shift.
posted by kewb at 2:45 PM on December 3, 2016 [38 favorites]


And yet, if the trumpets are going to gut my son's only chance to success, wtf do I do?

You send him to school but you supplement. You sit him down to watch science programs with you, take him on field trips, sign him up for piano lessons. You are lucky in that there are so many inexpensive or even free educational experiences out there to anyone with broadband and some discipline. Lots of people have gone to crappy schools in backwoods areas and been accepted into good universities.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 3:01 PM on December 3, 2016 [10 favorites]


WashPo: "Yes, you can blame millennials for Hillary Clinton’s loss"

*sotto voce*
It's internecine, then.
posted by Apocryphon at 3:06 PM on December 3, 2016 [6 favorites]


If I were looking to profit from the Trumpocalypse, I would definitely start a chain of for-profit online K-12 schools that could offer bogus "school choice" to kids in areas with no private school. Sort of like Trump University: Junior High edition. You could probably make a fortune.
posted by ArbitraryAndCapricious at 3:15 PM on December 3, 2016 [3 favorites]




WashPo: "Yes, you can blame millennials for Hillary Clinton’s loss"

2017: Kickstarter to fund the production of Nerf bats with the word "overdetermination" printed on the side, which will then be used to gently correct journalists, campaign staffers, and pundits making claims about the 2016 election.
posted by kewb at 3:17 PM on December 3, 2016 [6 favorites]


Kewb, I'll actually agree with you that Trump's primary campaign departed from expected patterns in profound ways that surprised everyone and with which political scientists will grapple with for many years.

But as for the general election, your math is upside down. You don't get to the last million votes in half a dozen swing states until you get to the 60+ million base votes, and those base voters are about signal, not noise. All of the Tweets and the controversies and debate zingers were the noise -- the signal was tax and regulation cuts for the business class, pro-life judges for (politically identified) Christians, some form of protectionism for those who feel threatened by globalization, etc. etc., which made Trump a better choice than Clinton any Trump misgivings aside. In other words, Trump was, to what is by far most important extent, elected by the same people and for the same reasons as George W. Bush was elected in the 2000s, and the Republican Congressional and legislative majorities were elected.
posted by MattD at 3:19 PM on December 3, 2016 [4 favorites]


The Daily Beast: Steve Bannon, Donald Trump’s Campaign CEO, Once Wrote a Rap Musical

We have reached post-peak Hamilton.
posted by Apocryphon at 3:25 PM on December 3, 2016 [7 favorites]


Russia is likely to benefit more from global warming than other countries, but that doesn't mean it won't suffer some serious negative consequences as well. Melting permafrost seriously messes with anything built on permafrost with the assumption that it will remain frozen. There's also increased drought and increased insect outbreaks across Russia's vast forest, which will lead to more wildfires. It's ironic and potentially catastrophic that more warming means they have greater access to fossil fuel reserves in the Arctic.
posted by mollweide at 3:29 PM on December 3, 2016 [4 favorites]


I got contacted about being a Michigan recount observer, so I signed up for some shifts. I mean, it's not going to change anything, but if the recounts happen, people need to observe them, so why not?
posted by FelliniBlank at 3:30 PM on December 3, 2016 [35 favorites]


That's weird, if I were going to assign blame for the Clinton loss, Robby Mook would be a lot higher on the list than Millenials
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 3:32 PM on December 3, 2016 [12 favorites]


As for the liberal candidates, I think that Clinton's signal was fine and her campaign was in perfectly good faith. You knew what she wanted to do, and why, and could have reasonable confidence she would try to achieve it. And it worked! She got her base out too, with few if any defections for her email server or Benghazi malpractice.

As for losing the battle for the last critical million votes, I think that there was a lot of complacency and over-confidence, which led to a fatal failure to realize that the small number of people Trump was actually adding to the coalition were of greatly-outsized importance in Electoral Vote terms. Thus she watched Trump gathering tens of thousands of people to rallies throughout the upper midwest in the week before the election and it never occurred to her to say "maybe I should just get on a plane and go out there for a few days and match him rally for rally."
posted by MattD at 3:33 PM on December 3, 2016 [3 favorites]


WashPo: "Yes, you can blame millennials for Hillary Clinton’s loss"

I read about this topic earlier today and thought about it all afternoon. I love Hillary Clinton and will always thing she would have made a fantastic President, but now that we know how many young people stayed home maybe running a 70 year old woman with low charisma was not the best choice. Maybe it needs to be like the Supreme Court pick-- the youngest best candidate you can find.

In my opinion I think the Democratic Party can skip over the Evangelicals and the WWC and go right for the next generation. Go Left. Go even farther Left than that. Free child care. Free college. Single payer. Sensible gun control. $15.00 minimum wage to start. And number one on the list with a flying bullet: Climate Change treaties, laws, and regulations.

Screw the trickle down crap-- go right for the wealthiest. Close loopholes. No more business tax avoidance schemes, no more offshore banking. Tax capital gains.

Put more people into the government. We need more park rangers, more food inspectors, more people at OSHA. Invest in long term science research. Increase educators and pay them more. Expand the CDC. Double the size of the EPA and make sure any business that damages the environment in any way pays for the damage they caused.

The Republicans are winning with their extreme views so we need to stop pussyfooting around. We need visionaries that can explain their visions in clear language-- not the language of politicians-- so that this new Democratic Party can get people excited about all the ways our government can help people and make lives better.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 3:38 PM on December 3, 2016 [76 favorites]


It has been IMO very incorrectly stated that 'most elected Republicans' were Anti-Trump. Maybe privately, but damned few were open enough to be seriously observed as 'running away' from him any more than were 'running away' from Romney in 2012. And the Republican Machine was working its hardest to deliver every possible vote to every downticket Republican, many of them moving money and resources from the Presidential races to Congressional races. And the voters brought into the polling places to vote for their beloved local R or just to vote against that awful local D are most likely going to vote for the R in other races, right? So unless the 'beloved local R' was openly and obviously anti-Trump, their success would contribute to his.

This election was a Prefect Storm of factors that combined into an unprecedented disaster, slightly but adequately overbalancing the factors trying to prevent it.
posted by oneswellfoop at 3:40 PM on December 3, 2016 [2 favorites]


All of the Tweets and the controversies and debate zingers were the noise -- the signal was tax and regulation cuts for the business class, pro-life judges for (politically identified) Christians, some form of protectionism for those who feel threatened by globalization, etc. etc., which made Trump a better choice than Clinton any Trump misgivings aside.

Trump emitted so much noise that I think it's just as valid to argue that the various sectors of the GOP base indulged in apophenia simply to *find* a clear, specific signal, and that Trump gradually adjusted to the feedback he got from his crowds.

For example, it's hard to explain why the business class weren't significantly alarmed by the protectionism signal, for example, and there are other examples of Trump sending potentially contradictory messages. (Claiming he'd bring back coal and simultaneously promising to open up fracking in the same speech, for example.) Nor does it effectively explain why some of the noise -- "Two Corinthians," for example -- didn't meaningfully interfere with the signals being heard during the primary process.

But I'd agree that by August, when it mattered most, he and his campaign staff had gotten most of the signaling down. (I also suspect that this was more in the vein of wrangling the candidate than being directed by the candidate, but that isn't something I can support.) There's a line to be drawn to people like Ailes and Bannon joining the campaign; their media savvy supplemented Trump's own in significant ways, and they both had experience merging political messaging with spectacle. And this meant that neutral or hostile coverage were as good as positive coverage; the spectacle was the attraction for most people, and the (by now refined and directed) signaling could get through to the base.

My sense is that there are a lot of reasons for the election outcome. One of them is that question of spectacle. I'm not sure Hillary Clinton could have run a rally of the sort Trump did; political candidates generally don't and don't have to. Among other things, my sense is that the lesson future campaigners will draw is that it is better to be a TV character than a traditional candidate, or even a Reaganesque or Obamaesque "communicator."

I suppose part of why I remain unconvinced that this was a deliberate strategy, rather than a showman constantly modifying his pitch on the fly, is the degree to which his post-election signaling has been so contradictory and all over the map. And I'm still convinced he's going to do a lot of damage -- not merely to "progressive" principles, but actual damage to valuable institutions, to foreign relations, and to the economy -- as president.
posted by kewb at 3:41 PM on December 3, 2016 [9 favorites]




One of them is that question of spectacle.

Assuming that Trump isn't impeached, this is the biggest problem facing any Dems who are considering a run at the Presidency in 2020. How do you run against this guy when he consumes all the oxygen in the room? The GOP primary contenders couldn't do it. Hillary couldn't do it. How does one do it?
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 3:50 PM on December 3, 2016 [4 favorites]


I suppose locking the door and sealing the windows is right out?
posted by SecretAgentSockpuppet at 3:53 PM on December 3, 2016 [4 favorites]


I'd say that people should be upset their champion of the working man is attending a costume party for billionaires where they give away Rolexes, but the same people elected a billionaire with gold seatbelts on his private jet, so they really should know what they were getting into there.
posted by zachlipton at 3:54 PM on December 3, 2016 [17 favorites]


The Bloomberg article Politico linked to has contradictory info on Trump's appearance:
"Conway said Trump will be traveling on a nationwide “thank you” tour and that members of his family also aren’t expected to attend.".
posted by Sweetdefenestration at 3:57 PM on December 3, 2016


How do you run against this guy when he consumes all the oxygen in the room?

HuffPo: Oprah for President, 2020
posted by Apocryphon at 3:57 PM on December 3, 2016 [5 favorites]


The original clip was released by Steven Emerson's "Investigative Project on Terrorism," basically one step behind Pamela Geller-level Islamophobia, who cut down a long speech to just a short clip to attack Ellison. Eventually Emerson released the full 22-minute speech.

OK, I read the full speech. Weirdly, although The Forward criticises The Investigative Project on Terrorism for only releasing an excerpt, they actually link to the complete speech on TIPT's website. They might have pointed this out explicitly.

First, you could do a lot worse than read David Schraub's typically thoughtful response to it, as well as his earlier post from before the speech was made public. I think Schraub's right when he says that they are worrisome remarks; I also think he's right when he says that they're not disqualifying.

One reason the speech is disappointing is because it's conspiratorial and stupid. US policy in the Middle East does not revolve around Israel. The USA did not invade Iraq because of Israel; it does not have a presence in Bahrain because of Israel; nor does it have a presence in Jordan, and Saudi Arabia, and a bunch of other places in the Middle East. Its response to the Arab Spring was not focused on Israel's interests, or its relaxation of sanctions on Iran, or its presence in the Gulf and Red Sea. This should be obvious, and it is exactly what you would expect: Israel is a small country and the USA is a great one, and the USA's interests are its own. So it's disappointing because you would expect someone like Ellison to be more thoughtful.

Secondly, the speech is worrying because it traffics in antisemitic tropes. In Ellison's speech he says that "United States foreign policy in the Middle East is governed by what is good or bad through a country of 7 million people". It's an awkwardly-worded statement, which makes it hard to criticise. Did he mean that US policy is governed by what is good or bad for Israel, which is factually incorrect but within the realm of civil rhetoric? Or did he mean that US policy is governed through Israel? Because that's not acceptable; it's a classic antisemitic slander; and IMO would totally justify the ADL's response.

The other objectionable thing Ellison said in that speech is "that country [i.e., Israel] has mobilized its Diaspora in America to do its bidding in America". Once again, you can take that either way: Ellison's basically saying that Muslims should be as politically active as Jews. On the other hand, it's also saying that Jews are Israel's operatives in the USA, that they do its bidding. That's the old dual-loyalty slur, and like the :"Israel dictates to the USA" it's part-and-parcel of classic antisemitic ideology.

I feel that this would probably be less offensive to me if Ellison didn't have a background in the Nation of Islam. His direct involvement was around two decades ago, although a piece in The Tablet says that his association with NOI continued until 2006. The Nation of Islam is a religiously antisemitic organisation, in the sense that the World Church of the Creator is a religiously racist organisation, and (as I said in an earlier thread) my first exposure to organised antisemitism in the USA was when I saw an NOI booth selling copies of The Protocols of Zion.

So I'm a bit conflicted over this. By all accounts Ellison's been a good representative, and he wrote a thoughtful letter about his past with the NOI, addressed to the Minnesota JCRC. Nobody suggests that he's a current member or supporter; and race relations in the USA being what they are, I'm not surprised that an African-American leader would have some association with it. On the other hand, would I cut the same slack to someone who was a member of other antisemitic groups?

So what it comes down to is, I believe there are real and substantial reasons for concern over Ellison's nomination. It's not so much that I think he would be a bad leader, as that the US needs to have a conversation about antisemitism in political discourse (even unconscious antisemitism) and people are so desperate to find a Democratic savior that they're downplaying some very genuine problems. I don't know that his background and views should be disqualifying, but that's partially because of my fear that we'd end up with a circular firing squad and there would be even fewer African-American leaders with standing in the Democratic Party.
posted by Joe in Australia at 3:59 PM on December 3, 2016 [11 favorites]


Trump voters are immune to charges of Trump's hypocrisy, they voted for him precisely because he's rich, but it's an aspirational rich rather than Romney's elite smart-guy rich they hated even while he tried to sell them the right policies. They want to be Trump, have Trump's money, and act with Trump's fuck you attitude in a way they never wanted to be boring, kind-of-whiny-liberal-sounding-drinks-wine-not-Bud Mitt Romney. Trump is how they would act if they every won the $billion Powerball. That's why they'll never care about his hypocrisy, or conflicts, or ethical violations, or any of it. They long to be him and do the same things.

Pointing out his gross conflicts may be necessary to defeat him, but it was never going to be sufficient in 2016, and won't be in 2020.
posted by T.D. Strange at 4:01 PM on December 3, 2016 [22 favorites]


> They want to be Trump, have Trump's money, and act with Trump's fuck you attitude

You forgot "and grab women by the pussy", but otherwise, yes, I agree.
posted by RedOrGreen at 4:05 PM on December 3, 2016 [3 favorites]




Trump voters are immune to charges of Trump's hypocrisy, they voted for him precisely because he's rich, but it's an aspirational rich rather than Romney's elite smart-guy rich they hated even while he tried to sell them the right policies.

But not all Trump voters are Trump superfans. And we can't appeal to the superfans anyway, so fuck 'em. But there exist people who voted for Obama in 2008, and voted for Trump in 2016. If what they liked about Trump was that he wasn't one of those "corrupt political insiders", then pointing out the instances where he's being more corrupt might help get them to Trump-fatigue soon. The margin by which we lost was narrow.

Hell, Sarah Palin and Ann Coulter have already started attacking him a little. Those two bottom feeders always know which way the wind's blowing.
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 4:13 PM on December 3, 2016 [9 favorites]


US policy in the Middle East does not revolve around Israel

Israel is a small country and the USA is a great one, and the USA's interests are its own

Thing is, they have a lobby here, and their influence on our politics far outweighs their size.

I think you're missing here the evangelical right's interest in Israel's future (evangelicals have been programmed to care a lot about Israel), plus the general neocon interest.

I don't mean to say neocons are a jewish catspaw here, but Israel [along with Jordan of course] is a main buddy nation we can generally rely on to give us some geostrategic footing in the Eastern Med.

The adventure of 2003 was to convert Iraq to our camp, too, but the neocons got mixed results with that.
posted by Heywood Mogroot III at 4:14 PM on December 3, 2016 [3 favorites]


Green Party drops statewide Pennsylvania recount
Hot Rod: The Matrix?
Ultra Magnus: It's gone...
Kup: And with it all hope.
posted by Talez at 4:14 PM on December 3, 2016 [2 favorites]


In contrast to what is sometimes called idealism, the realist position holds that the political world is governed not by morality but by clear and calculable interests. Alliances and conflicts turn into transactions with predictable outcomes. The realist reasoning is applied most clearly and most often to international relations, but it has seeped into all political life, turning virtually every conversation into a discussion of possible outcomes.

Realism is predicated on predictability: it assumes that parties have clear interests and will act rationally to achieve them. This is rarely true anywhere, and it is patently untrue in the case of Trump. He ran a campaign unlike any in memory, has won an election unlike any in memory, and has so far appointed a cabinet unlike any in memory: racists, Islamophobes, and homophobes, many of whom have no experience relevant to their new jobs. Patterns of behavior characteristic of former presidents will not help predict Trump’s behavior. As for his own patterns, inconsistency and unreliability are among his chief characteristics.

...We cannot know what political strategy, if any, can be effective in containing, rather than abetting, the threat that a Trump administration now poses to some of our most fundamental democratic principles. But we can know what is right. What separates Americans in 2016 from Europeans in the 1940s and 1950s is a little bit of historical time but a whole lot of historical knowledge. We know what my great-grandfather did not know: that the people who wanted to keep the people fed ended up compiling lists of their neighbors to be killed. That they had a rationale for doing so. And also, that one of the greatest thinkers of their age judged their actions as harshly as they could be judged.
Trump: The Choice We Face by Masha Gessen, who wrote the Autocracy: Rules for Survival piece that's made the rounds and is already worth a reread, particularly Rule #1: "Believe the autocrat." He really is as bigoted and unintelligent as he appears, and speculating about his secret intentions is a wasted effort.
posted by byanyothername at 4:14 PM on December 3, 2016 [21 favorites]


How do you run against this guy?

Here's my optimistic thought. This guy consistently polled with more negatives than his opponent. The fact his opponent was also in the negatives gave him an opening. His popularity dropped regularly when he was encouraged to speak freely. His popularity dropped when consistent attention was paid to his scandals. One of the problems of the late-breaking Comey crap was not just the Clinton-specific scandal but was also that much less attention was being paid to Trump.

As President, he's going to be the center of attention for four years. His incoherent word salad is going to be on repeat constantly. He's not going to be competent. There will be at least one guaranteed scandal and undoubtedly many more. Republicans are going to trash, or attempt to trash, services Americans depend on. If he's above 30% approval in 2020, I'll be surprised. 54% of voters went against him. Most of those voters are not going to change their mind in four years, absent a miracle or national crisis. He's going to be imminently beatable.

That doesn't mean the Democrats can't snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. They're very good at that. But I don't understand why Mr. 46% vote and 42% current approval is considered invincible just because he managed a very slim edge in a handful of states.
posted by honestcoyote at 4:23 PM on December 3, 2016 [15 favorites]


How do you run against this guy when he consumes all the oxygen in the room?

George Clooney/Catherine Zeta-Jones 2020!

Or Gavin Newsom/Kamala Harris 2020
posted by kirkaracha at 4:24 PM on December 3, 2016 [3 favorites]


But I don't understand why Mr. 46% vote and 42% current approval is considered invincible just because he managed a very slim edge in a handful of states.

It's not so much "invincibility" as it is that the ( risk of thing ) * ( horribleness of thing ) result is so off the charts with this dude...
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 4:27 PM on December 3, 2016 [5 favorites]


But I don't understand why Mr. 46% vote and 42% current approval is considered invincible just because he managed a very slim edge in a handful of states.

Many of us are also expecting that millions of people who voted against him this time will not be permitted to vote against him next time, or ever again. The Voting Rights Act is dead under Jeff Sessions. People who try to register voters will be prosecuted, he's done it before. There could be a national ID law and any number of further restrictions they can dream up. None of it will be overturned by the Republican Supreme Court. Trump will control the 2020 Census.
posted by T.D. Strange at 4:39 PM on December 3, 2016 [24 favorites]


But I don't understand why Mr. 46% vote and 42% current approval is considered invincible just because he managed a very slim edge in a handful of states.

Because he ran a dumpster fire of a campaign, was incoherent through most of his campaign speeches, ran against the most qualified candidate in history, and he still won.
posted by Talez at 4:45 PM on December 3, 2016 [11 favorites]


You're right to be very seriously worried about voting rights, but let's hold on to our real reasons for hope: we do not need to wait for DOJ/AG to bring suits under the VRA, and organizations like NAACP and LCCRUL bring them all the time; the case out of Wisconsin with a new test for partisan gerrymandering may get a SCOTUS majority behind it, which could unsnarl a lot of states within just a few years and prevent fuckery after the next census; the recent case out of NC may help win further victories in the disenfranchisement arena.

This is an incredibly important issue, but we are not helpless.
posted by prefpara at 4:45 PM on December 3, 2016 [17 favorites]


So part of the other problem in disqualifying Ellison for his affiliation with the Nation of Islam two decades ago is that if you are talking about people who have worked with black communities two to three decades ago (especially black communities in northern US cities), it is very difficult to find people who didn't have some ties to Farrakhan, because there were so few organizations that had the power and the drive to advocate for black communities in the 80's and 90's that the Nation of Islam seemed like an okay group to sidle up with - because at least they had the money and the pull to get some things done.

Obama (through Reverend Wright) supposedly had ties to the Nation of Islam through Farrakhan, because Wright had worked with him. Jesse Jackson had to deal with that in his campaign. Al Sharpton had worked with Farrakhan on some marches and probably some other civil rights campaigns in the past.

The Nation of Islam is a horribly antisemitic institution and Farrakhan himself is as bad as Trump if you're talking about corruption and misplaced worship of dictators. But it's a horribly antisemitic institution that was allowed to thrive through widespread neglect of black communities for decades.
posted by dinty_moore at 4:49 PM on December 3, 2016 [15 favorites]


the case out of Wisconsin with a new test for partisan gerrymandering may get a SCOTUS majority behind it,

And it may not. We have a empty seat on the Supreme Court, remember, and I don't think the Republicans are above stacking it with an extra few seats if it comes to that.

That's what concerns me.

That, and the fact that Russia has made it clear that the Democratic party can and will be hacked at any time. It's like Watergate, except it goes on forever.

And liberal fools on the left treated Wikileaks as though it had any redeeming qualities.
posted by steady-state strawberry at 4:52 PM on December 3, 2016 [8 favorites]


> If what they liked about Trump was that he wasn't one of those "corrupt political insiders", then pointing out the instances where he's being more corrupt might help get them to Trump-fatigue soon.

Excellent point. This is definitely a demographic to go after.

But there's the problem of outrage fatigue. Dumb Donny's going to keep gish galloping around the Ghina shop like a radical oxidizer. Are likely voters going to be outraged at stuff that doesn't affect them directly?

An effective counter to Trump, I think, needs to include some direct connection to how Dumb Donald's actions/innactions negatively affects everyone/target audience directly.

Given the observations limited to the last decade/coupladecades, incrementalism is a grueling fight, it has to be a "Gotcha!" that everyone agrees is a gotcha. How Dumb Donny plowed through every gotcha thrown at him is retarded*.
posted by porpoise at 4:52 PM on December 3, 2016 [1 favorite]


Wait. The Green Party couldn't afford the bond? What happened to all the money Stein raised?
posted by 922257033c4a0f3cecdbd819a46d626999d1af4a at 4:58 PM on December 3, 2016 [7 favorites]


Has anyone besides Ellison said that they wanted the DNC chair? The main other name I heard being bandied around was Howard Dean, and he explicitly said he didn't want it.

It's hard to tell if he's the best choice if we don't know what the other options are.
posted by dinty_moore at 4:58 PM on December 3, 2016


Has anyone besides Ellison said that they wanted the DNC chair

Ilyse Hogue from NARAL, and Tom Perez's names have come up too.

Edit: Ah, here, Wikipedia's got a page too.
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 5:01 PM on December 3, 2016 [1 favorite]


We have a empty seat on the Supreme Court, remember, and I don't think the Republicans are above stacking it with an extra few seats if it comes to that.

They can't under current law, which sets the Supreme Court as "a Chief Justice of the United States and eight associate justices." Of course they could always change the law.
posted by kirkaracha at 5:02 PM on December 3, 2016 [1 favorite]


*retarded: proposed action in response to political retardation would be to accelerate voter education and voter engagement and voter turnout

The DeVos appointment re: "school choice" - this is doubling/tripling down on the "reforms" of the 70's. Less young adults will have reasoning skills to compete in the global workforce, much less the local workforce - but that's not a bug but a feature - another easily manipulable voting bloc.

But even in Canada, I know lots of people who basically abrogate what they were taught about history (well, most of these assholes now run the "family business") and dropped out of college/University because they thought it wasn't worth the effort for the partying that came with it. As "business owners" they could have the same parties, only hookers and blow were easier to come by.

Even if the Perfect Education Suite (We guarantee $80,000, or your money back!) isn't bullshit, I see a large chunk of people who don't value education/knowledge/facts/striving-for-better at all.
posted by porpoise at 5:04 PM on December 3, 2016 [1 favorite]


So part of the other problem in disqualifying Ellison for his affiliation with the Nation of Islam two decades ago is that if you are talking about people who have worked with black communities two to three decades ago (especially black communities in northern US cities), it is very difficult to find people who didn't have some ties to Farrakhan [...]

I did say that, although admittedly it was near the bottom of the Great Wall O' Text. Yes, this is a problem, which is why I'm glad he's been frank(ish) about his association and willing to have a conversation about it. It sounds weird to say that a similar association should be more problematic for a white politician, but there are many more white politicians and they've enjoyed many more paths to success.
posted by Joe in Australia at 5:06 PM on December 3, 2016 [1 favorite]


But I don't understand why Mr. 46% vote and 42% current approval is considered invincible just because he managed a very slim edge in a handful of states.

Because he ran a dumpster fire of a campaign, was incoherent through most of his campaign speeches, ran against the most qualified candidate in history, and he still won.


In addition to those bleak words, he also ran with a historically, unprecedentedly disunified Republican Party -- at least at the level of the party leadership, but also at a grassroots level-- and as someone who manifestly, undeniably didn't look and act like a president, and he still won. In 2020 he'll have the whole party behind him, they'll have spent the last few years of united government running up the national debt buying off interest groups in the Rust Belt, and it won't seem preposterous that he's president anymore, it'll seem like a totally normal thing. If his advisors are able to keep him from causing a genuine disaster in a way that can be successfully pinned on him even given the sorry state of our media -- and maybe even if they can't -- the sad fact is he'll be tough to beat in 2020.
posted by gerryblog at 5:15 PM on December 3, 2016 [9 favorites]


Hey kewb, you keep using the term "overdetermination", what do you mean by that? Is this meant in the mathematical sense, and if so, how?
posted by indubitable at 5:16 PM on December 3, 2016


Wait. The Green Party couldn't afford the bond? What happened to all the money Stein raised?

Wisconsin raised the filing fee from 1.1 million to 3.5 million and now they're dealing with lawsuits in all three states, which (I'd wager) may have been expressly meant to, idk, decimate their coffers.

(Pennsylvania also had arcane filing rules requiring 3 voters from each district to file a recount request which might have been logistically impossible.)
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 5:16 PM on December 3, 2016 [8 favorites]


Trump heading to donor’s 'Villains and Heroes' party. The president-elect is expected at the annual costume party hosted by his top donors.

A plutocrat costume party? What do they do, sacrifice virgins?
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 5:42 PM on December 3, 2016 [3 favorites]


Hey kewb, you keep using the term "overdetermination", what do you mean by that? Is this meant in the mathematical sense, and if so, how?

It's not meant in the mathematical sense, but is rather borrowed from Freud via Louis Althusser. Basically, the idea is that a big event does not have a single, simple cause, but multiple complex causes, any one of which might have been sufficient to bring it about no one of which can be singled out as "the" cause.

Put another way, it's an argument against looking for reductive explanations of big events.
posted by kewb at 5:43 PM on December 3, 2016 [19 favorites]


A plutocrat costume party? What do they do, sacrifice virgins?

Trump literally told you on the Hollywood Access tape.
posted by Talez at 5:44 PM on December 3, 2016 [4 favorites]


UberRiche/Politicians LARPing? WTH?

Damn you 2016. Damn you you damned dirty year!
posted by porpoise at 6:02 PM on December 3, 2016 [1 favorite]


From 2014, but probably worth retweeting...
posted by Mchelly at 6:04 PM on December 3, 2016 [5 favorites]


A plutocrat costume party? What do they do, sacrifice virgins?

obviously they dress up like nazis, but fancy dress nazis, not everyday nazis
posted by poffin boffin at 6:26 PM on December 3, 2016 [5 favorites]


Takes a few paragraphs to get going, but wow:

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie in The New Yörker: Now Is the Time to Talk About What We Are Actually Talking About
posted by Joe in Australia at 7:29 PM on December 3, 2016 [22 favorites]


The New Yörker

I see what you did there.
posted by tivalasvegas at 7:43 PM on December 3, 2016 [7 favorites]


Jay Rosen suggests comparing Adichie's excellent New York article with Liz Spayd (NYT Public Editor)'s not-so-excellent When the Language of Politics Becomes a Minefield
Satan, a rakish former employee of God who some say is fast and loose with morality - the Times' Public Editor rewrites Dante's Inferno
--@dcbigjohn
posted by zachlipton at 7:46 PM on December 3, 2016 [13 favorites]


Liz Spayd (NYT Public Editor)'s not-so-excellent When the Language of Politics Becomes a Minefield

ctrl+f "true" Phrase not found

ctrl+f "truth" 1 of 1 match

"They wash out the grays, which is usually where the truth lies."

I didn't realize that the pursuit of truth was a minefield for journalism. I don't know how one can write an article about how journalism moves forward in an era that "many people" are calling post-truth without addressing that question.
posted by tivalasvegas at 8:28 PM on December 3, 2016 [3 favorites]


Would ordering a copy of Buried by the Times and having it overnighted to Liz Spayd's office be an appropriate response to her column's discussion about grays and "360-degree view[s]" and "open doors to understanding?"
posted by zachlipton at 8:43 PM on December 3, 2016 [2 favorites]


those base voters are about signal, not noise. All of the Tweets and the controversies and debate zingers were the noise -- the signal was tax and regulation cuts for the business class, pro-life judges for (politically identified) Christians

These guys would vote for a gerbil with an R by its name as long as it doesn't look in the camera and say over and over, "I'm pro choice and love taxes."

Trump's election was proof of their idiotic, amoral loyalty in the face of a shitbag candidate, not proof that the shitbag candidate reached them with subtle messaging.
posted by fleacircus at 8:45 PM on December 3, 2016 [33 favorites]


Just tried watching Saturday Night Live - unwatchable! Totally biased, not funny and the Baldwin impersonation just can't get any worse. Sad
--@realDonaldTrump

It never stops.
posted by zachlipton at 9:20 PM on December 3, 2016 [11 favorites]


Do you guys think we could be living inside an SNL skit in some larger macro-universe, where this all makes sense as a poorly conceived, poorly written joke? Be honest.
posted by gerryblog at 9:21 PM on December 3, 2016 [2 favorites]


at least when he's watching shows that make fun of him* he's not setting off an international incident

*not because he's mad, it's actually funny that you think he's mad because he's so not bothered
posted by murphy slaw at 9:32 PM on December 3, 2016 [4 favorites]


Such a small and insecure man. Sad. For us.
posted by tonycpsu at 9:32 PM on December 3, 2016 [11 favorites]


As an aside I rather liked the Christian discussion earlier in this thread, to be honest. I agree with some of the other discussion, that the left could stand to make more morally-motivated arguments; not just based in Christian morality, but certainly including it.
posted by Rainbo Vagrant at 9:32 PM on December 3, 2016 [7 favorites]


at least when he's watching shows that make fun of him

He got back at the Tower of Doom at 11:48pm, probably to watch it.

SNL should do a skit where he's hit on the head by a falling piece of gold-plated fascia and becomes a competent and thoughtful person and Kellyanne Duckspeak starts hitting him with random ornaments to bring the real him back.
posted by holgate at 9:41 PM on December 3, 2016 [23 favorites]


I love Kate McKinnon dearly, but SNL needs to stop stop stop playing Kellyanne Conway as a sympathetic character. It only serves to normalize what is very much not normal.
posted by Ruki at 10:20 PM on December 3, 2016 [58 favorites]


The SNL skit was apparently about his random unhinged tweeting, so we are now officially living in Inception.
posted by holgate at 10:21 PM on December 3, 2016 [10 favorites]




Nolite te bastardes carborundorum.

I was actually thinking of getting that as a discrete tattoo (actually to cover up a very 90's tattoo), but then I saw in the Wikipedia article that John Boehner had that on his desk, so way to ruin everything, Boehner.
posted by Ruki at 10:44 PM on December 3, 2016 [8 favorites]


I love Kate McKinnon dearly, but SNL needs to stop stop stop playing Kellyanne Conway as a sympathetic character.

Yeah, she's playing her as someone with a conscience and soul.
And Bannon should've just straight-up been in a Nazi uniform. C'mon, SNL!
posted by kirkaracha at 11:19 PM on December 3, 2016 [10 favorites]


Huh. This may mean nothing at all, but I've never seen it before (and it's not happening with other words I've tested just now). I did a define: Google search to check my spelling on a word, and the result from Merriam-Webster included this:

What made you want to look up seditionist? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

I'm rarely paranoid, but.

Uncanny.
posted by vers at 11:42 PM on December 3, 2016 [17 favorites]


I'm rarely paranoid, but.
It looks like they take their SEO for unusual or rare words from a 'Seen and Heard' section underneath the definition. Any random rare word will bring it up.
posted by Thella at 1:03 AM on December 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


[One deleted. Please don't do cut and pastes of long articles / sections of articles or multi-part tweets; a link to the original with some explanatory text is much better. Thank you!]
posted by taz at 1:10 AM on December 4, 2016


Here's the SNL cold open mocking Trump for tweeting, which he then promptly tweeted about, thus bringing us so far through the looking glass that maybe irony really is like rain on your wedding day, because who the hell knows anymore in 2016?
posted by zachlipton at 1:15 AM on December 4, 2016 [22 favorites]


Hold me. Today I saw on TV right-wing Australian senator Cory Bernardi wearing a "Make Australia Great Again" cap, a gift he received while in New York recently on secondment to the UN. I fervently hope I never see another one.
posted by valetta at 1:30 AM on December 4, 2016 [7 favorites]


Damn, from the New Yorker piece.
Identity politics is not the sole preserve of minority voters. This election is a reminder that identity politics in America is a white invention: it was the basis of segregation. The denial of civil rights to black Americans had at its core the idea that a black American should not be allowed to vote because that black American was not white. The endless questioning, before the election of Obama, about America’s “readiness” for a black President was a reaction to white identity politics. Yet “identity politics” has come to be associated with minorities, and often with a patronizing undercurrent, as though to refer to nonwhite people motivated by an irrational herd instinct. White Americans have practiced identity politics since the inception of America, but it is now laid bare, impossible to evade.
posted by threeturtles at 1:53 AM on December 4, 2016 [57 favorites]


Now I finally inderstand the expression 'Fuck you and the horse you rode in on'.
Kellyanne is the horse.
posted by Too-Ticky at 2:06 AM on December 4, 2016 [14 favorites]


It is really amazing how much people complain about identity politics as if it's somehow a new phenomenon that's gotten out of hand. Today's white supremacists talk as though they've just invented the concept of whites acting and voting as an ethnic group, while more mainstream conservatives often decry that people keep mentioning race as though they can will our problems away if we all work really hard to pretend they don't exist.

White identity politics was baked right into the Constitution; just look at the 3/5ths compromise. The Klan was a profoundly effective political machine devoted to identity politics. It's only called "identity politics" when minorities are involved; white identity politics have, through our history, just been called "politics," even when they advance an explicitly white supremacist agenda.
posted by zachlipton at 2:21 AM on December 4, 2016 [45 favorites]


I'm wondering if a VAGINA DENTATA sign to be carried in the 1/22 march would help or hurt the cause
posted by angrycat at 3:19 AM on December 4, 2016 [7 favorites]


"Don't try to grab unless you want to lose a finger"
posted by crocomancer at 4:11 AM on December 4, 2016


I find Kellyanne Conway as repulsive as the rest of them. Every single thing she says is a lie. She covers over horrible things with the thinnest veneer of 'niceness' and I can't believe anyone gives her a pass at all.
posted by maggiemaggie at 4:35 AM on December 4, 2016 [17 favorites]


Kellyanne Conway has a veneer of niceness? She seems straight up evil to me.
posted by rainydayfilms at 4:42 AM on December 4, 2016 [21 favorites]


Kellyanne reminds me of Serena Joy.
posted by pxe2000 at 4:44 AM on December 4, 2016 [10 favorites]


I think many of us find it difficult to parse women as horrible. See Ivanka.
It's just another delightful feature of internalized misogyny.

Interestingly, trumpists seem to have no such problem with Hillary Clinton.
posted by Too-Ticky at 4:49 AM on December 4, 2016 [8 favorites]


The tweeticle Golden Eternity had posted linked to this long Atlantic piece: How Democrats killed their populist soul. It's a policy-historical analysis I hadn't come across before, very interesting read.
posted by progosk at 5:30 AM on December 4, 2016 [11 favorites]


Stoller's related series of tweets started here; as he introduces it, it's "about why people have such a hard time understanding Trump. It's because they don't understand Obama."
posted by progosk at 5:48 AM on December 4, 2016 [3 favorites]


White identity politics was baked right into the Constitution; just look at the 3/5ths compromise.

Just took at the Electoral College.

"At the Philadelphia convention, the visionary Pennsylvanian James Wilson proposed direct national election of the president. But the savvy Virginian James Madison responded that such a system would prove unacceptable to the South: “The right of suffrage was much more diffusive [i.e., extensive] in the Northern than the Southern States; and the latter could have no influence in the election on the score of Negroes.” In other words, in a direct election system, the North would outnumber the South, whose many slaves (more than half a million in all) of course could not vote. But the Electoral College—a prototype of which Madison proposed in this same speech—instead let each southern state count its slaves, albeit with a two-fifths discount, in computing its share of the overall count.

Virginia emerged as the big winner—the California of the Founding era—with 12 out of a total of 91 electoral votes allocated by the Philadelphia Constitution, more than a quarter of the 46 needed to win an election in the first round. After the 1800 census, Wilson’s free state of Pennsylvania had 10% more free persons than Virginia, but got 20% fewer electoral votes. Perversely, the more slaves Virginia (or any other slave state) bought or bred, the more electoral votes it would receive. Were a slave state to free any blacks who then moved North, the state could actually lose electoral votes.

If the system’s pro-slavery tilt was not overwhelmingly obvious when the Constitution was ratified, it quickly became so. For 32 of the Constitution’s first 36 years, a white slaveholding Virginian occupied the presidency."
posted by chris24 at 5:53 AM on December 4, 2016 [43 favorites]


I'm wondering if a VAGINA DENTATA sign to be carried in the 1/22 march would help or hurt the cause

If you pair it with VAGENDA OF MANOCIDE you can't go wrong.
posted by dis_integration at 6:17 AM on December 4, 2016 [3 favorites]


Keith Ellison has offered to quit congress in order to lead the DNC.

DJT went on a twitter rant at 7:30 this morning to say that he will drastically cut taxes and regulations for US businesses but if they try to leave the country he will hit them with a 35%tax in retribution. He said they could cross state borders-- which is so nice for them.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 6:38 AM on December 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


I really want to know what pro-Trump business leaders think of that.

Plus, wouldn't it encourage companies that don't already have a presence here to not move to the U.S. for fear that if they ever move again, they'd face harsh tariffs.

On top of that, Trump has started calling out individual companies, which seems very distasteful for a president to do.
posted by drezdn at 6:49 AM on December 4, 2016 [5 favorites]


Kellyanne Conway has a veneer of niceness? She seems straight up evil to me.

That why she has the veneer of niceness. Pleasant voice, pleasant tone, insincere smile. That's what makes it a veneer.
posted by Talez at 6:54 AM on December 4, 2016 [3 favorites]


Wow that tweetstorm of Trump's this morning.
The U.S. is going to substantialy reduce taxes and regulations on businesses
I wonder if that includes the minimum wage. If so expect Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina and Tennessee to power a new renaissance in American manufacturing.
posted by Talez at 6:59 AM on December 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


Between the Taiwan gaff and now his calling out specific companies I can't imagine who (among those that 'run things'/actually work in government and see to its function) wants to put up with this crazy shit.

That is, I want to assume they have a containment program for him to keep his shit from flying all over and screwing up everyone's good time.

Because can you imagine if no one has a plan in place to deal with this? (Where this = Trump and his decidedly knee-jerk way of getting through life.)

he he he ha Hah ha . it's not that funny
posted by From Bklyn at 7:02 AM on December 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


Holy cats, this series of responses to t-rump's SNL snitty pout on Twitter is wonderful.
posted by vers at 7:12 AM on December 4, 2016 [35 favorites]


@HeerJeet
USA finally has a president who wants to destroy capitalism & American global hegemony. And he's a Republican! What a world.
posted by chris24 at 7:31 AM on December 4, 2016 [10 favorites]


The U.S. is going to substantialy reduce taxes and regulations on businesses, but any business that leaves our country for another country,

fires its employees, builds a new factory or plant in the other country, and then thinks it will sell its product back into the U.S. ......

without retribution or consequence, is WRONG! There will be a tax on our soon to be strong border of 35% for these companies ......

wanting to sell their product, cars, A.C. units etc., back across the border. This tax will make leaving financially difficult, but.....

these companies are able to move between all 50 states, with no tax or tariff being charged. Please be forewarned prior to making a very ...

expensive mistake! THE UNITED STATES IS OPEN FOR BUSINESS


(I figured this was important enough that we should have all the tweets here for reference.)

First the part about cutting regulations gives me pause-- no wait, it scares the shit out of me. Are we talking about working conditions? pollution? environmental impact studies? Regulations are not put into place lightly or randomly-- they are all there for good reason.

But lets cut to the chase.

A 35% tariff on all foreign goods? Does he honestly thing this would work? I'm stunned. What about Carrier? Will they be able to sell the air conditioners that they are making in Mexico in the United States with a 35% mark up? Did they know this before?

Is there any way this does not affect companies already manufacturing abroad? For example, what happens to Ivanka's 100 million dollar business? All of her goods are manufactured overseas. Surely you can't have a tariff for one company but not another.

Surely you can't have a tariff that affects only American companies but not foreign countries. What happens now to imported cars? What about all of the goods that are sold in WalMart? Does he not understand that most Americans cannot afford shoes that are made in America?

Does this also apply to food? Will we be paying 35% more for fruits and vegetables?

Finally does he not understand if the USA slaps a substantial tariff on foreign goods, they will hit American made goods with the same tariff?

I bet every American manufacturer/importer/exporter woke up to a headache this morning. Jeet Heer seems to think this is toothless and congress will never agree to this but how scary is it to have a PEOTUS firing off crazy ideas that pop into his head.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 7:32 AM on December 4, 2016 [21 favorites]


I think Republicans in Congress are the ones having a headache this morning. It's going to be uncomfortable to wriggle out of a proposal that is so specific.
posted by ArbitraryAndCapricious at 7:35 AM on December 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


It isn't specific though. "Any business that fires its employees"? Any employees? Or a certain number in a certain timeframe? What about firing employees, hiring "independent contractors" in the US then firing those workers and moving overseas? What if you open a foreign factory first then fire the American factory workers?
posted by melissasaurus at 7:41 AM on December 4, 2016


@megancarpentier
So, in case it's unclear: targeting exports from one company, US or not, in another country is a violation of the WTO agreement/any FTA.

A blatant violation like this would allow the country in question to leverage retaliatory tariffs on an equivalent $ amount of US exports.

This shit is precisely why countries after WWII signed the GATT, which, after several rounds became the WTO: it limits harmful trade wars.

So it's not just forcing Americans to essentially pay higher prices for goods, but will result is US companies paying tariffs abroad.

For example, he could slap tariffs on whatever Rexnord makes, and Mexico could slap tariffs on whatever furnace Carrier makes in Indiana.

Historically, once this tit-for-tat started, it didn't stop until everyone slapped tariffs on everything. (This would be a clusterfuck.)

Prices go up, demand goes down. Depending by how much, in the medium- to long-term, companies may start making shit here to fill demand.

But that shit will be more expensive than now, and they will seek from the government continued tariffs etc in order to stay in business.

Upside(ish): It will probably break Americans' of our consumerist ways, long term and possibly after mass personal bankruptcies.

And if they don't teach this at Wharton (Trump) and Harvard Business School (Bannon), I don't know what the fuck they do teach at the Ivies.
posted by chris24 at 7:46 AM on December 4, 2016 [38 favorites]


Do you think trump supporters understand that a tariff is a tax? A tax that will effect them most of all, since our entire low-end consumer economy is based around cheap goods produced through outsourced labor. That's a rhetorical question, of course they don't. It's really hard to not be grimly satisfied at the prospect of these people dying of preventable diseases because they don't have government funded health benefits as they struggle to pay 100 dollars for a Mexican made walker in the aisle of the Walmart.
posted by codacorolla at 7:46 AM on December 4, 2016 [8 favorites]


Oh, it isn't specific enough to be possible, and it will never, ever, ever happen, for like a hundred and twelve reasons. (Reason number one: nobody in the Republican party but Trump wants it to happen.) But it's specific enough that Congress isn't going to be able to say "well, we kind of did something that's in the spirit of that, so good enough."
posted by ArbitraryAndCapricious at 7:46 AM on December 4, 2016


And what is an "American company"? Is Apple? What about Toyota?
posted by T.D. Strange at 7:48 AM on December 4, 2016 [5 favorites]


It's really hard to not be grimly satisfied at the prospect of these people dying of preventable diseases because they don't have government funded health benefits as they struggle to pay 100 dollars for a Mexican made walker in the aisle of the Walmart.

Personally, I find it very easy not to be grimly satisfied about this, but then I have friends whose families from Trump land, and I have family in Indiana, so "those people" are real individuals to me. I'm plenty mad at them and scared of what they've wrought, but a lot of them have very hard lives already. They're people who already can't get much health care, they're people who already struggle to afford things at Wal Mart and...I don't know, this awful future of vastly increased and totally unnecessary human suffering brings me no grim satisfaction whatsoever.
posted by Frowner at 8:00 AM on December 4, 2016 [31 favorites]


I'm gonna see if I can get Millionaire Sex Predator Donald Trump to stick
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 8:01 AM on December 4, 2016 [11 favorites]


For example, he could slap tariffs on whatever Rexnord makes

The plant that's closing makes bearings, so if you are a US manufacturer who makes anything that requires bearings they'll be 35% (or however much) more expensive. So now offshoring looks even more attractive, you can manufacture your product somewhere where both labor and bearings are considerably cheaper.
posted by peeedro at 8:01 AM on December 4, 2016 [4 favorites]


It's breathtaking to be ignorant about virtually everything.

A convenient untruth provides so much more elbow room.
posted by y2karl at 8:02 AM on December 4, 2016


I'm sure there's a well reasoned policy paper backing up the 35% number, not just a large sounding penalty he pulled out of his ass.
posted by T.D. Strange at 8:04 AM on December 4, 2016 [3 favorites]


The Economist on Trump's Taiwan phone foolishness, via @JamesFallows. Last 2 sentences:
If all this seems a lot of fuss over a phone call, it is. But it is also a fuss about a man who is about to govern the most powerful country on earth, who makes impulsive moves and seems not to understand their full significance.
posted by kingless at 8:10 AM on December 4, 2016 [21 favorites]


via Tom Wright of the Brookings Institute: Significant @KellyannePolls comment: Sec State must "adhere to pres elect's America First foreign policy & be loyal to his view of world." It suggests Trump is worried about being boxed in by mainstream. His challenge is finding a loyalist for Sec State who is confirmable. Also possible Trump blames advisors (incl J Bolton) for manipulating him into Taiwan phone call & is now looking for a loyalist as Sec State
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 8:15 AM on December 4, 2016


Guys, if you have GOP reps or senators, this trade war business would be a good thing to write to them about. The Taiwan & Pakistan phone call clusterfucks too. They may not do anything now, but doesn't hurt to start prodding them early.
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 8:25 AM on December 4, 2016 [7 favorites]


Pence bombed this morning on ABC's "This Week" (video)
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 8:29 AM on December 4, 2016 [1 favorite]




Even Austria is better at rejecting fascists than we are.

@AFP
#BREAKING Austria far-right concedes defeat in presidential race
posted by chris24 at 8:33 AM on December 4, 2016 [35 favorites]


The folks near the bottom will pay for the increased costs through their improved pay. That would be the optimistic reading.

From a labor point of view, a tariff would be used to help US competition. How can any American compete with the race to the bottom standards of global competition?
posted by Strange_Robinson at 8:36 AM on December 4, 2016


how scary is it to have a PEOTUS firing off crazy ideas that pop into his head.

Very scary, but in this particular case, with its impracticality and unseriousness, it's an obvious distraction from the actual and serious problem he created for himself with not only the diplomatic fallout from taking a jaw-dropping ill-advised phone call from Taiwan's president, but also the massive potential conflict of interest with the Trump Organization's expansion into Taiwan.

Trump tweeting diversionary bullshit is becoming so predictable that even SNL is mocking it.
posted by Doktor Zed at 8:39 AM on December 4, 2016 [5 favorites]


A rather maddening post from Richard Mayhew at Balloon Juice:
That Replace bill will cost money. It won’t cost as much money as the ACA but it will cost money.

That is a major problem as the major funding streams from the ACA (Cadillac Tax and high income tax surcharges) are gone. [...]

The Replace plan will cost money. And here is where we run into the Norquist problem. It is Republican orthodoxy that once a tax cut is passed it can never be re-enacted. [...] Assuming Norquist is still a major political enforcer of Republican orthodoxy, my best bet is that any Replace Bill will be like the 2003 Medicare Modernization Act (MMA) in that it is almost completely deficit financed.
The maddening part is not just that Republicans are going to run up the deficit after years of hectoring Democrats about fiscal responsibility, but also that it always plays out that way. Fiscal responsibility is for losers, I guess.
posted by tonycpsu at 8:40 AM on December 4, 2016 [21 favorites]


Man, that Pence video. He cites the Pew Research study, like, six times as support for the "illegals are voting by the millions" assertion. I had a pretty good idea of what the study probably said, but just to make sure, I went back and read the brief, and it says pretty much exactly what I thought it said: that states are lousy at updating their records. That means there are a lot of dead people on the rolls, a lot of people at the wrong addresses, and a lot of people who are registered both in the state they live in and a former state of residency. Pretty much none of these voting inaccuracies can or do lead to actual voter fraud: I suppose there might be a handful of folks impersonating dead people, and a few submitting dual ballots when they're double-registered, but I would be very much surprised if the total number of such cases topped, say, 500 nationwide.
posted by jackbishop at 8:46 AM on December 4, 2016 [15 favorites]


Coming soon: the Eastern Ohio Special Economic Zone.

The Organization's sniffing around Taiwan is a reminder that it doesn't have a presence in Hong Kong or Macau and probably never will.
posted by holgate at 8:48 AM on December 4, 2016 [3 favorites]


Pence is right: I do find it very refreshing having a president-elect that tells us what he believes is true.
Offer does not include actual refreshment.
posted by kirkaracha at 8:53 AM on December 4, 2016


Coming soon: the Eastern Ohio Special Economic Zone.

Yep. The Agenda 21 people who voted for Trump are going to flip their shit.
posted by Talez at 8:58 AM on December 4, 2016




From a labor point of view, a tariff would be used to help US competition.

You mean from the company's point of view. If Carrier is a sign of how this works, then companies will just keep the minimum amount of workers and work hours to not trigger the tariff, and then use technology and automation to further cut down labor costs. And then with "less regulations" they may be able to keep wages low, have no paid overtime, and skirt around a bunch of other stuff for those who do work.
posted by FJT at 9:14 AM on December 4, 2016 [7 favorites]


This tariff thing is beyond nuts. I know we're not going to get the glorious fully automated luxury communism we need in my lifetime, but in the meantime why can't we at least get semi-rational capitalism? Where are the goddamn all powerful globalist masters of the universe when we need them? Calling all Bilderbergers: fix this mess.
posted by dis_integration at 9:19 AM on December 4, 2016 [6 favorites]


If so expect Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina and Tennessee to power a new renaissance in American manufacturing.

It's probably a mistake to try and read anything coherent into the scrambled-egg twitterbot but the typical GOP meaning of "you can move to any state tariff-free!" is "move to a southern non-union state with low minimum wage, while forcing state and local governments to compete in terms of grants and tax giveaways." That isn't much comfort to the people of Bleaksville, OH who voted for jobs to appear on their doorstep, unless the aim is to turn the Rust Belt into Northdixie, a boss-ruled wage-slave oligarchy. Which may well be the aim.
posted by holgate at 9:23 AM on December 4, 2016 [6 favorites]


Commentary: What have we done? - Oklahoma Gazette
This is the unmasking of evangelical religion in America. It is not, in the end, about character or virtue. It is not about what love does to transform the human heart. It is about power, it is about fear, and Donald Trump tapped into widespread economic frustration and a smoldering rage about the displacement of the working class, especially less-educated white workers. They believe that Trump is the strongman who can save them. He is the first president ever elected who has never held office or served in the military and does not seem to understand why nuclear weapons cannot be used.
posted by Talez at 9:27 AM on December 4, 2016 [40 favorites]


Calling all Bilderbergers: fix this mess.

I have this impossible dream that somehow a consortium of smart, rational, rich private citizens and global players will come together and make an unrefusable offer to t-rump to NOT take the presidency. I mean, surely he can be bought off at some price, right?

Please, please. I am begging here, and I know I'm not alone.
posted by vers at 9:27 AM on December 4, 2016 [12 favorites]


Also possible Trump blames advisors (incl J Bolton) for manipulating him into Taiwan phone call & is now looking for a loyalist as Sec State

Man, I wish I had the power to plant leaks in the mainstream media. I remember that during Obama's first term, there was a constant stream of low-level stories about comments various advisers claiming that he didn't understand issues or know how to lead during meetings.

If I had the power, I would do something like that to Trump, except I wouldn't attack him directly at all, ever. Instead, I'd go after his need for "loyalists" and sycophants in his inner circle. I would sow chaos among them fools.

Stories like "A source inside the WH claims that Pence and Ryan have both indicated that they believe themselves to be much smarter than Trump and can bend him to their will."

Then the following day I'd leak "Kushner, Conway war with Bannon over influence with President" and "Despite claims to contrary, signs of growing rift between Trump, Ryan." Then "Multiple sources claim Bannon the one really calling the shots; McConnell 'totally lacking in input on Republican agenda'" and "WH Insider: Kushner/Conway split threatens stability of Trump's staff" and "A source in Congress describes Mattis as running DoD with no oversight from White House."

Now that I think about it, I wouldn't be surprised to see Putin's team doing this kind of psyop to strengthen their hand in the battle to hold Trump's puppet strings and to force the WH to keep Mattis on an extremely short leash.

Hell of a time to be on this planet, I'll tell you what.
posted by lord_wolf at 9:52 AM on December 4, 2016 [18 favorites]


From the Oklahoma Gazette piece: If you vote for someone who violated all 10 [commandments], then obviously something else matters a lot more to you than the religion you are wearing on your sleeve.

I get that that is hyperbole, but I'm pretty sure that Donald Trump hasn't killed anyone yet. He's probably also a big fan of the fifth (or fourth, depending how you count): honoring your parents is the only way to get a big fat inheritance, after all.
posted by jackbishop at 9:57 AM on December 4, 2016 [5 favorites]


Someone should've told Trump that "wisdom" should not be your D&D dump stat.

Also, I'm being really astounded with the various R senators and congressmen who are all "IT'S REALLY GOOD THAT THE CURTAINS ARE ON FIRE" after the Taiwan phone call. I mean, I knew they were craven fools, but this exceeds even my low expectations.
posted by rmd1023 at 10:17 AM on December 4, 2016 [14 favorites]


it says pretty much exactly what I thought it said: that states are lousy at updating their records. That means there are a lot of dead people on the rolls, a lot of people at the wrong addresses, and a lot of people who are registered both in the state they live in and a former state of residency. Pretty much none of these voting inaccuracies can or do lead to actual voter fraud:

So I think that a lot of the problems are - what do we mean when we say voter fraud? Do we mean any time people vote illegally? Only when they intentionally vote illegally? Only when they intentionally vote illegally in an attempt to change an election? Only when they intentionally vote illegally in an organized attempt to change an election?

Because I would argue that there are in fact millions of minorly fraudulent votes across the US, that in no way have the ability to fix the Presidential election.

For example: when someone fails to register their new living situation with the elections board, and then votes according to their old residence - which they may have no idea is illegal - they are voting fraudulently, but it's not necessarily for nefarious reasons. They may view the place they're living as transient, they may view the place they used to live as their "true home", they may be afraid to have official documentation tying them to their current residence. But this very rarely takes place across state lines - it's usually even within the same city, so people don't think it matters, because they don't understand how legislative districts work. And so Joe City Councilman may get some more votes than they are supposed to - but for the most part, people don't really know how wrong that is and they're not doing it on purpose. And they generally know voting across state lines is wrong, so this doesn't really affect the Presidential much.

You also have issues where people don't really know when they're allowed to vote and when they're not allowed to vote because of felonies. So people may vote when they're not supposed to, but it doesn't mean they're a Felony Voting Conspiracy, it may just mean they don't really know. That could affect the Presidential, but I don't think it's high enough numbers to affect the Presidential election - maybe local races.
posted by corb at 10:19 AM on December 4, 2016 [3 favorites]


hasn't killed anyone yet

"Look, I don't know that that is a false statement, George, and neither do you."
posted by holgate at 10:21 AM on December 4, 2016 [4 favorites]


> Because I would argue that there are in fact millions of minorly fraudulent votes across the US, that in no way have the ability to fix the Presidential election.

Then please actually argue it instead of simply stating it as a premise. With only ~130 million registered voters in the US, your belief that at least 1% of them ("millions") move between precincts in a given year, fail to update their registration, and are not checked to ensure that they're registered in the new precinct is simply not something anyone should take seriously without some shred of evidence.
posted by tonycpsu at 10:23 AM on December 4, 2016 [5 favorites]


How many more of these inanities does he have to spout before the folks in the republican smoke-filled room start calling the electors?

trick question, infinity is not a number
posted by murphy slaw at 10:27 AM on December 4, 2016 [5 favorites]


via Tom Wright of the Brookings Institute: Significant @KellyannePolls comment: Sec State must "adhere to pres elect's America First foreign policy & be loyal to his view of world." It suggests Trump is worried about being boxed in by mainstream. His challenge is finding a loyalist for Sec State who is confirmable. Also possible Trump blames advisors (incl J Bolton) for manipulating him into Taiwan phone call & is now looking for a loyalist as Sec State
- roomthreeseventeen
Along these lines, Josh Marshall's missive yesterday draws parallels to the early Bush II administration's bungling of the North Korea nuclear issue, scrapping the Clinton-era dance of supplies-for-compliance and going for dumb, direct confrontation. The end result, as we know, is that NK is now a nuclear-armed state. I'm concerned we may see a similar situation play out with Iran considering many of the same bellicose idiots are sinking their claws into Trump.
posted by indubitable at 10:31 AM on December 4, 2016 [12 favorites]


The discussion on voting "irregularities" sort of misses the point, which is that state regulation and local administration of elections is a shambles, and everything moderately shambolic on the voter side proceeds from that. The Stein recount underlines this: you can assume "cockup before conspiracy" with those broken warranty seals and still conclude that nobody on the ground gives enough of a shit about the integrity of the infrastructure.

An actual fix would involve verified uniform standards and something like Canada's national voter register. No prominent elected Republican wants an actual fix, because no prominent elected Republican actually believes in free and fair elections. Plus, large chunks of the GOP base believe that federal databases are the mark of Satan and that cobbling together half-arsed and discriminatory state-level shit is superior because it delivers GOP victories.
posted by holgate at 10:34 AM on December 4, 2016 [20 favorites]


So apparently Vladimir Putin called Millionaire Sex Predator Donald Trump "clever"
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 10:35 AM on December 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


corb: Fair enough; I'll posit that the number of people voting in the wrong jurisdictions is higher than my "vanishingly-rare" estimate, but calling this fraud dilutes the definition of fraud past anything sensibly useful to talk about. Fraud typically involves intentionality by someone. If I make an effort to bamboozle cashiers into giving me the wrong change, that's retail fraud committed by me. If the cashier either gives me the wrong change deliberately or doesn't ring up some purchases and pockets the difference, that's retail fraud committed by the cashier (possibly with my collusion). But if my order is rung up wrong or the wrong change is given by an authentic accident which neither of us notices, is that fraud? At worst it's incompetence.

I'll admit a precinct shift might have influence on local elections, but I think the number of people intentionally exploiting that aspect is probably on par with my previous estimate of "vanishingly rare".
posted by jackbishop at 10:36 AM on December 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


your belief that almost 1% of them ("millions") move between precincts in a given year

I'm not saying most of them move in a given year and "forget" to update their voter registration. I'm saying most people I know - within my own communities - register to vote once and then leave it alone. They only update it when they move to a different state. Maybe that's not how people in your community act, but it is how people in my community do. My grandmother has voted from a different borough for the last twenty years. It is inconvenient for her. I'm pretty sure it's illegal. But that's where she's voted since she became a citizen and she will not stop. I tear my hair out about it on the regular. In my experience, most people do not care about precincts. In fact, I would wager real, hard money, that if you asked every single person you encountered in the course of your day what voting precinct they belonged to, less than 5% of them would be able to answer you without checking their phone.
posted by corb at 10:39 AM on December 4, 2016 [4 favorites]


The distance between the idea of lazy inter-district registration laggery and the straightforward claim Trump has been making of millions of illegal votes propping up Clinton in blue states is so huge that it makes zero sense to bother talking about the former in response to the latter. It may be an interesting subject in isolation but in context it's basically accomplishing nothing but legitimizing by association what I think we agree is bald-faced and malicious idiocy on Trump's part.
posted by cortex at 10:44 AM on December 4, 2016 [28 favorites]


In my precinct, I have to give them my name and they go through a box with cards in it until they find my registration record, and they do not have registration records for people registered in other precincts, so if someone tries what you say your grandmother is doing, they will not be allowed to vote here. That may not be how it's done in NY, but it's how it's done here, so extrapolating from what you say a family member is doing to the rest of the country, including places that actually check registration status, is not valid.
posted by tonycpsu at 10:44 AM on December 4, 2016 [4 favorites]


How many more of these inanities does he have to spout before the folks in the republican smoke-filled room start calling the electors?

The republican electors are all literally insane. Like, Christian dominionist, anti-vaxx, BENGHAZI!!!, blue lives matter types. They are not going to help, here.
posted by odinsdream at 10:44 AM on December 4, 2016 [5 favorites]


corb, does your grandmother have a driver's license? Or do the people you know not change their licenses when they move, either? In my state when you move to a new address you normally do update your driver's license and when you do that your voter registration gets updated at the same time, and then next election you get a little postcard with your precinct info on it and if you try to vote any place else you'll have trouble.
posted by dilettante at 10:45 AM on December 4, 2016 [5 favorites]


If people don't update their voter registration when they move to a different precinct, how do they get the thing in the mail that tells them where their polling place is? And if they did manage to get to the right place, they'd be signing the registry book next to their old address. What they do in some places, if you show up at the wrong precinct and aren't on the list, is give you a provisional ballot and then, assuming your registration checks out, they count it only for the contests you're eligible to vote for, so you can't vote for the wrong city council district or whatever, but you can vote for President or Senate or Governor. Many states will simply throw out provisional ballots cast in the wrong precinct, which is pretty awful.

I'm sure there are a bunch of people who do manage to vote in the wrong precinct for various reasons, out of ignorance or laziness, but that's utterly irrelevant to the Presidential election; nobody is letting you vote in the wrong state or even in the wrong county.
posted by zachlipton at 10:53 AM on December 4, 2016


Data point, I am a NYC resident and have moved a bunch times in the past decade. I have, out of laziness, not updated my address and once or twice voted in a different precinct. I don't drive regularly, though I have a driver's license, but the address on it is from 3-4 moves ago. The totality of our voting process is in a state of disarray, and I think we risk lending credulity to the fraudulence issue by nit-picking at these details.
posted by Sweetdefenestration at 10:56 AM on December 4, 2016 [7 favorites]


Having worked at the polls here in August, it is not possible to vote if your current address does not match the one in the voter roles. Or, more accurately, you can submit a provisional ballot, but once it is verified as having been cast in the wrong precinct, it will be voided.

Even if different systems do make it possible to vote in the wrong precinct, that in no way allows a person to vote more than once, which is what most of the voter fraud claims seem to suggest.
posted by Superplin at 10:58 AM on December 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


so with today's result in austria, hitler's birthplace has done a better job of rejecting fascism than we did.
posted by murphy slaw at 10:58 AM on December 4, 2016 [23 favorites]


Data point, I am a NYC resident and have moved a bunch times in the past decade. I have, out of laziness, not updated my address and once or twice voted in a different precinct. I don't drive regularly, though I have a driver's license, but the address on it is from 3-4 moves ago.

I will vouch that this is extremely common behavior in NYC (people just vote wherever they've always voted, which they can easily do because they never change the address on their voter registration, and we do not require ID to vote), though I'm not sure the relevance to the discussion at hand.
posted by unknowncommand at 10:59 AM on December 4, 2016 [4 favorites]


so with today's result in austria, hitler's birthplace has done a better job of rejecting fascism than we did.

And thank fucking god for that, Europe is riding the right wing xenophobic horse with gusto enough as it is.
posted by lydhre at 11:02 AM on December 4, 2016 [28 favorites]


People voting at their old precinct but in the same state doesn't affect the presidential outcome (except maybe in NE and ME where they split the EC votes). So if this is what Trump "really means" then he's only casting doubt on the state and local races (that favor Rs) not the presidential race.

But I think there's a very very small chance that what he "really means" is bureaucratic inefficiencies and a very very large chance that what he "really means" is that women and POC shouldn't be allowed to vote, unless they're voting for him.
posted by melissasaurus at 11:04 AM on December 4, 2016 [15 favorites]


The AP had to pull reporters off the Trump campaign due to the way they were treated in the press pen and one "dangerous situation," but apparently decided that "reporter's safety in danger while covering US Presidential campaign" wasn't a newsworthy story and didn't tell us about it.

Sarah Kendzior has more on the AP trying to clean up for Trump.
posted by zachlipton at 11:05 AM on December 4, 2016 [33 favorites]


Meanwhile, here's Conway on Fox being asked about her comments about Romney, and she literally responds by saying that Trump flip-flopped all week.

In other news, Trump has this to say: "The Green Party just dropped its recount suit in Pennsylvania and is losing votes in Wisconsin recount. Just a Stein scam to raise money!"

Just as Stein announced she will hold a rally and press conference outside Trump Tower.
posted by zachlipton at 11:13 AM on December 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


Hills: smart enough to have millions of illegal voters, not smart enough to have them vote in the right places.
posted by kirkaracha at 11:13 AM on December 4, 2016 [14 favorites]


Hills: smart enough to have millions of illegal voters, not smart enough to have them vote in the right places.

And she's been lost in the woods for weeks now! Buy a map, lady!
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 11:23 AM on December 4, 2016 [9 favorites]


NBC: Top transition source indicates @JonHuntsman is in the mix for Secretary of State job. Adds that Mitt Romney has "definitely fallen back."
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 11:29 AM on December 4, 2016


So is he giving them all random weapons and letting them loose on an island full of bombs? I wonder if Romney ended up with the frying pan.
posted by lydhre at 11:36 AM on December 4, 2016 [5 favorites]


lol, hope it was worth it, mitt.

would sending him an 8x10 glossy of him submitting to trump in that restaurant be tacky
posted by murphy slaw at 11:37 AM on December 4, 2016 [8 favorites]


Huntsman is reasonably qualified, which seems to be something of a miracle for the Trump administration. I wonder if he'd take it. Being Trump's SoS seems like a complete nightmare.
posted by ArbitraryAndCapricious at 11:39 AM on December 4, 2016 [10 favorites]


would sending him an 8x10 glossy of him submitting to trump in that restaurant be tacky

Walk up to him with it and ask for an autograph.
posted by Talez at 11:43 AM on December 4, 2016 [15 favorites]


For example: when someone fails to register their new living situation with the elections board, and then votes according to their old residence - which they may have no idea is illegal - they are voting fraudulently, but it's not necessarily for nefarious reasons.

Heck, Steve Bannon himself was committing voter fraud by using an unoccupied house in Florida as his address.

In NC you don't have to show ID but you do have to audibly tell them your name and address when you arrive at the polls so that they can check them off before giving you a ballot. I suppose you could lie if you have moved but continue to tell them you live at the previous address.

About the promise to repeal regulations on businesses, I wonder if the Federal minimum wage will be one of those regulations as someone speculated above and if so-- how low could wages fall before people refuse to do the job? For example a new factory opens in Louisiana and they offer $5.00 an hour, will people out of work take that job if other safety nets like food stamps are cut? How about $3.00 an hour? What is the lowest possible wage a business could offer before even the most desperate people will walk away? How horrible that we have to even ask this question.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 11:43 AM on December 4, 2016 [6 favorites]


Incidentally, in addition to having been Obama's ambassador to China, Huntsman was a senior trade negotiator under George W. Bush. He also served his Mormon mission in Taiwan. He's got to be the person in the world best situated to realize what a clusterfuck the Trump administration is going to be internationally. I wonder if that makes him more or less inclined to take the job.
posted by ArbitraryAndCapricious at 11:45 AM on December 4, 2016 [14 favorites]


would sending him an 8x10 glossy of him submitting to trump in that restaurant be tacky

I'm thinking billboards in San Diego County and the D.C. area. And wherever else Romney spends a lot of time these days.
posted by Lyme Drop at 11:47 AM on December 4, 2016


Considering that Trump is almost guaranteed to break diplomacy as we know it by being too ignorant to even play Risk and yet still have access to a telephone, my inclination is that no SoS, save maybe Clinton herself, is going to be able to help us.
posted by lydhre at 11:48 AM on December 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


I was outside a little earlier where there was a white guy in his mid-twenties ranting about Trump, the Bushes, race, war, dead babies, in a non-stop string of conspiracy claims. This is now a familiar sight and vocal background in areas around many homeless and mentally unstable people in my neck of the woods. The Trump candidacy and election has dramatically increased both the literal volume of these rants and frequency of their presence. It's reshaped the forms of belief among the disturbed to different pathways of explaining their world. The anger/fear is palpably stronger and more volatile in how it's being expressed.

Many of the threads that informed at least this kind of expression of mental illness and likely its growth are being tied together in frightening ways. Nazis, trilateral commissions, 9/11, Agent Orange, Jews, blacks and other extremist fears connected in elaborate strings of half fact and fantasy have been common place mutterings for many unwell people here for as long as I've been here, but this increase in volume is new and disturbing since it suggests that people have a new found validation for their conspiracies which is causing actual damage to them and likely to those that might represent what they fear.

This election and the Trump presidency is creating a real mental health emergency. I don't mean this hyperbolically, I mean an actual pandemic which is going to keep inflicting damage and spreading if we can't find ways to address the situation in order to tone down the level of anxiety that is present everywhere. This is not just a political problem, this is a ever growing existential crisis for the US and the world. It isn't just Trump and this election either, it's the accumulation of forces and information that made his rise possible. If we can't find a way to address these issues, then I'm not sure what kind of future we can expect, but if we continue down this path it will almost certainly be bleak.
posted by gusottertrout at 11:49 AM on December 4, 2016 [28 favorites]


There's a fierce rivalry between the Romney and Huntsman clans, and it'd be pretty hilarious if what had happened was that Trump forced the former to pull a Christie, making nice in submission, only to pull away the football at the last second to give the position to the latter.

Huntsman speaks fluent Mandarin and is simpatico on cross-strait relations, so maybe there's a chance with him at State, Trump's America unexpectedly ends up with less tensions with some parts of the world.
posted by Apocryphon at 11:57 AM on December 4, 2016 [4 favorites]


Here's Brian Stelter, nailing it:
Let's tell some truths about lying, because the way Donald Trump lies has people rethinking some of the basic premises of journalism, like the assumption that everything a president says is automatically news. When President-elect Trump lies so casually, so cynically, the news isn't so much the false thing he said, it's that he felt like he could just go ahead and say it, go ahead and lie to you. That's the story. Why does he bend and flex and twist and warp and distort the truth? Personally I'm curious because I think Trump does it differently than past presidents. His lies are different and deserve scrutiny.

[...]

That's why I think fact-checking is important, but the framing of these stories is even more important. Take Trump's promotion of this voter fraud conspiracy idea. He said on Twitter "I won the popular vote if you deduct the millions of people who voted illegally." The journalistic impulse was to say something like "Trump claims he won the popular vote." I would suggest to you that better framing is "Trump lies again, embracing a far-right-wing conspiracy theory." See, focusing on the falsehood creates more confusion and gives the lie even more life. And that's the wrong way to go

posted by windbox at 11:58 AM on December 4, 2016 [56 favorites]


Evan McMullin has a 10 point plan for dealing with Trump's authoritarian government. It starts here: 1. Read and learn the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights. Know that our basic rights are inalienable.

#2 is find several credible news sources and keep well informed.



Huntsman speaks fluent Mandarin and is simpatico on cross-strait relations, so maybe there's a chance with him at State, Trump's America unexpectedly ends up with less tensions with some parts of the world.


Yes, but how is his Russian?
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 12:00 PM on December 4, 2016 [15 favorites]


Yes, but how is his Russian?

Huntsman wouldn't need to know Russian, that's what Manafort and Bannon are for.
posted by qcubed at 12:06 PM on December 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


Walk up to him with it and ask for an autograph.

Pair it with a copy of Romney's No Apology book. Hardcovers available from $0.01!
And the title of Romney's book is a reference to Obama's mythical "apology tour." Trump's not the only one that propagates conservative bullshit.
posted by kirkaracha at 12:10 PM on December 4, 2016 [5 favorites]


There's a fierce rivalry between the Romney and Huntsman clans, and it'd be pretty hilarious if what had happened was that Trump forced the former to pull a Christie, making nice in submission, only to pull away the football at the last second to give the position to the latter.
It raises the further, kind of delicious, possibility that in an effort to humiliate Romney, Trump is going to appoint an establishment, moderate SoS whose pro-trade, internationalist ideology is exactly the opposite of Trump's supposed views. If this weren't real, it would be funny as hell. Sadly...
posted by ArbitraryAndCapricious at 12:15 PM on December 4, 2016 [6 favorites]


DJT went on a twitter rant at 7:30 this morning to say that he will drastically cut taxes and regulations for US businesses but if they try to leave the country he will hit them with a 35%tax in retribution. He said they could cross state borders-- which is so nice for them.

This really shows that Trump doesn't give a damn about wage earners. When Boeing moved their assembly plant from Seattle to South Carolina they did not create a single new job but they did transform existing jobs into lower paying non-union jobs.

If we really wanted to prevent the race to the bottom we could put the equivalent of tariffs on companies that move jobs to states providing subsidies. It would be a simple matter of the IRS taxing companies the same amount as the state subsidy thereby offsetting it. This is much like the way companies are now taxed for forgiven debt -- they could be taxed for forgiven state taxes. This would be a dollar for dollar tax debit, not an expense, since state taxes are already a deduction for federal taxes.
posted by JackFlash at 12:16 PM on December 4, 2016 [12 favorites]


SNL skit involving Trump tweeting about watching "Trump" on SNL skit could be the most meta skit ever.
--@maneatscereal

Please tell me they're already writing this today.

Start with an exact recreation of last night's Trump tweets sketch, but it's interrupted by Baldwin's cell phone going off.
He breaks character and checks it, announcing a tweet from the President-elect. He shows it to Kate McKinnon, who suggests Baldwin read it out loud since he's got the impression down, after all.
Baldwin reads Trump's tweet and they both look at each other in silence for a bit. Cut to the high school kid and the other random retweetees, who are also staring at their phones in silence.
McKinnon turns to Lorne Michaels, standing off camera, and asks if they should finish the sketch. He says that there's no reason, Trump made the point better than they ever could. Baldwin emits a lone "Sad!" McKinnon asks if parody is dead.
They sit quietly for a moment, contemplating all this, when Baldwin's phone buzzes again. It's a tweet from President Obama, which he shows on camera: "Live from New York, it's Saturday night."
posted by zachlipton at 12:17 PM on December 4, 2016 [34 favorites]


Why can't we have an Obama-hosted SNL in January? Let's do that. He can be his own musical guest.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 12:19 PM on December 4, 2016 [18 favorites]


trump's lies are interesting because they resemble the way that russian state propaganda works. this is described in some detail in nothing is true (pomerantsev). from a certain pov it's pretty neat - it gives them a lot of flexibility and control. i think you could also argue that it's a natural outcome of (response to) a more academic (game theory) approach to politics because it undermines the assumptions made there.

having said that, i think much comes naturally to him (i don't think he was coached by russia, for example!). but the above helps explain why it works. it also suggests there will be more, from others, in the future. and it's going to be interesting how it affects international relations. taiwan was, presumably, just the start.
posted by andrewcooke at 12:20 PM on December 4, 2016 [8 favorites]



Why can't we have an Obama-hosted SNL in January? Let's do that. He can be his own musical guest.


ha, 01/21/17 is a saturday
posted by poffin boffin at 12:25 PM on December 4, 2016 [17 favorites]


Evan McMullin has a 10 point plan for dealing with Trump's authoritarian government.

i really try not to be cynical, but right now, the best way to tell whether or not a republican will display any principles at all is to measure the distance between them and the merest chance of a taste of the trump administration's power
posted by murphy slaw at 12:44 PM on December 4, 2016 [15 favorites]


murphy slaw, I'm sorry, but I can't parse that. What do you mean?
posted by Too-Ticky at 12:47 PM on December 4, 2016


The less likely they are to gain from the administration, the more likely they are to have principles

or "principles" since they are not being tested
posted by Rainbo Vagrant at 12:48 PM on December 4, 2016 [6 favorites]


It reads to me as "Trump would never consider McMullin for a cabinet post, so he's free to say what he wants." I think that's rather unfair to ol' Egg, who seems to have been pretty consistent about Trump during the campaign, and probably wouldn't have been on Trump's list either way, so nothing gained nor lost.
posted by tonycpsu at 12:49 PM on December 4, 2016 [8 favorites]


I thought Egg's 10 point plan was pretty good, especially for sending to #NeverTrump conservative family members.
posted by maggiemaggie at 12:52 PM on December 4, 2016 [5 favorites]


The Comet restaurant in DC, which was a target of a fake news story, was just the target of an attack where a SWAT team was called in to deal with a man who walked in with an assault rifle. (Twitter thread)
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 12:53 PM on December 4, 2016 [10 favorites]


i really try not to be cynical, but right now, the best way to tell whether or not a republican will display any principles at all is to measure the distance between them and the merest chance of a taste of the trump administration's power

Examining the great taste of Egg in particular, it's worth noting that his campaign started well after the point where it could have been advantageous to him personally; best case he won Utah, blocked a Trump victory, was roundly hated by the GOP (no job forever) and was treated as a principled Republican by the HRC administration (who still wouldn't give him a job). As it is right now, he is merely severely on the GOP shitlist, and is thus unlikely to get any future job as he isn't a team player.
posted by jaduncan at 12:53 PM on December 4, 2016 [7 favorites]


Evan McMullin has a 10 point plan for dealing with Trump's authoritarian government. It starts here: 1. Read and learn the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights. Know that our basic rights are inalienable.

"memorize the constitution"? news flash, egg: a piece of paper doesn't do you any good when the institutions charged with enacting it are subverted.

for someone whose head resembles a light bulb, he's remarkably dim.
posted by indubitable at 12:59 PM on December 4, 2016 [3 favorites]


Windbox's quote from Brian Seltzer above (today 2:58 eastern us) ties into something I've been pondering for a couple of days that I feel is simultaneously obvious and not addressed.

Yes, the media reports poorly on Trump and gave him waaaaay more time than Clinton. But we liberals (we Metafilter election thread followers; we, Coffeespoon & and friends and family) are complicit too. We click on the articles starting with the word "Trump" at an astounding frequency to enjoy the shadenfraude, worry, discuss how tweets are diversions. We help promote the "celebrity" of Trump by responding like that. We feed the clickbait beast.

Instead, I think we should consciously and carefully do the following (and encourage friends, family, newspapers, blogs, etc.) to do the same:

1. Talk about the incoming Trump administration instead of Trump. As in "Incoming Trump administration taps Wisconsin billionaire to lead department of education. then discuss Betsy De Voss" rather than "Trump asks De Vos..." This depersonalizes him and strips the veneer of celebrity. It acknowledges that what is coming is real, and frames the discussion in the correct context - politics - instead of celebrity." It's agonizing, but it's also true.

2. Focus more on actual actors instead of attributing to Trump personally. People like De Vos, Carson, and the Wall Street foreclosure Kings will be placed in charge of institutions they have an interest in dismantling. Trump may smirk and gloat, but they are the ones causing damage. Jessie what's her name said "there's no such thing as truth." It's deadly serious.

3. Ignore the tweeting diversions. Mockery just gets his attention and plays into the celebrity feedback machine. To the extent they raise substantive issues, do as someone said upthread - talk about as potential policy not "tweets". Or frame as "far right conspiracy theories".

4. Stop using his name. I like Holgate's option [] - complete erasure. Nicknames like Orange Cheeto feed into the celebrity machine in our minds and others. I haven't read it yet, but I think xtian's Lakoff article linked above will make that point.

Anyway, that's how I'm pulling out of my post-election slump this week. Suggesting to beloved Facebook "friends" that if they post politics, to focus on substance, not celebrity. (It'll be a hard sell.) Writing a letter to the editor of the WaPo, my newspaper. Writing to various NPR shows I occasionally listen to. I encourage you to do the same, and maybe we'll create a little reframing movement and start starving the beast of celebrity.
posted by Measured Out my Life in Coffeespoons at 12:59 PM on December 4, 2016 [37 favorites]


The correct cynical move for Egg would have been to STFU and then publicly endorse Trump on national security with his CIA career as bona fides. Given the treatment of every other wingnut idiot who did so pre-victory, it would maybe even have got him an extremely senior CIA job.

That is, to put it mildly, not the tack he took. I don't agree with him about much, but I do genuinely respect his stance.
posted by jaduncan at 1:00 PM on December 4, 2016 [14 favorites]


Yeah, Egg only became a candidate to try and prevent a Trump presidency, so I can't see holding his opposition as less than heartfelt. If Trump, for whatever reason did decide to offer him a role in his administration I'd see his thoughts on accepting or declining it being roughly in line with a reasonable Democrat's thoughts on whether or not they felt they could make a meaningful difference by accepting, otherwise they'd refuse. At this point it seems pretty clear McMullin has staked a strong position on trying to do what he thinks is best for the democracy, not the party.
posted by gusottertrout at 1:01 PM on December 4, 2016 [6 favorites]


If you want good news, I'm reading reports on Twitter that the Army Corps of Engineers has announced the Dakota Access Pipeline will not run through the Sioux reservation.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 1:04 PM on December 4, 2016 [12 favorites]


news flash, egg: a piece of paper doesn't do you any good when the institutions charged with enacting it are subverted.

You know what? At this point, we are all trying to protect that piece of paper because the alternative is guerilla warfare.
posted by C'est la D.C. at 1:06 PM on December 4, 2016 [12 favorites]


I thought Egg was setting himself up to run for Orin Hatch's senate seat in 2018.
posted by peeedro at 1:08 PM on December 4, 2016


If you want good news, I'm reading reports on Twitter that the Army Corps of Engineers has announced the Dakota Access Pipeline will not run through the Sioux reservation.

It already wasn't being routed through the reservation — just directly along the northern border and then across the river upstream of them.
posted by indubitable at 1:09 PM on December 4, 2016


It already wasn't being routed through the reservation — just directly along the northern border and then across the river upstream of them.

MSNBC is reporting that construction on the whole thing will stop.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 1:10 PM on December 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


CNN has a roundup of further allegations about Keith Ellison's past, and links to his response: Listening more. Talking less.

As before, I find the allegations disturbing (particularly his defense of Kwame Ture's speech), but I don't think you could ask for a better response from Ellison.
posted by Joe in Australia at 1:19 PM on December 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


sorry, i didn't mean to impugn mcmillen, i was commenting more on how mos republicans who spoke out about trump before the election have been between silent to simpering if they think there's any chance of a piece of the action.

egg has been a good, uh, egg during the whole ordeal. his example would be humiliating to the rest of the party if they had any shame reserves left.
posted by murphy slaw at 1:20 PM on December 4, 2016 [5 favorites]


A librarian (now EdTech) friend who joined twitter early on and got a frequently-misused handle is anticipating future incidents on social media. Also, related Twitter exchange.
posted by Wordshore at 1:31 PM on December 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


Reminder that the Italian referendum vote is today. A "no" vote could be very bad.

Italy’s referendum: what’s at stake and what you need to know.
posted by triggerfinger at 1:34 PM on December 4, 2016




Even Austria is better at rejecting fascists than we are.

They rejected him the first time by half a point. This time it was 6 points.
posted by Talez at 1:38 PM on December 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


Futz: Pence defends Trump’s false claims of voter fraud as self-expression

I don't know about Indiana, but where I come from describing someone's views as "refreshing" means that they're blunt and ignorant. Also "just his opinion" is like the weakest possible defense of any statement ever.
posted by Joe in Australia at 1:40 PM on December 4, 2016 [4 favorites]


You know, with the whole Mitt thing, I was like *bet he's being set up to be humiliated* and I laughed at the dinner pictures as much as the next person, but seeing the actual shiv go down, I just feel week and sad and lost.

I mean, I have enough respect for the man to believe that he felt that it was his duty for God and county to abase himself to a man he clearly detests.

Cruz's celebration of Trump's Taiwan gaffe though, seriously, fuck that guy all over the place.
posted by angrycat at 1:41 PM on December 4, 2016 [18 favorites]




Y'know, I'm starting to think Trump is kind of a dick.
posted by kirkaracha at 2:07 PM on December 4, 2016 [17 favorites]


No is going to win by a huge margin in Italy. Exit polls at the moment suggest 58-42. I'm an expat (and dual US citizen) and I voted absentee. I voted YES but I knew it was futile: it was a necessary reform that got turned into a referendum on the government and, in Italy, no one ever likes the sitting government. That's why we go through so many, like cheap clothes or single ply tissues.

The EU might be fucked and I am heartbroken over it.
posted by lydhre at 2:08 PM on December 4, 2016 [10 favorites]




Peter Thiel showed up at the Mercer costume party dressed up as Hulk Hogan.
posted by zachlipton at 2:32 PM on December 4, 2016


Uh, Mr. Trump is currently tweeting his hatred of China.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 2:33 PM on December 4, 2016


Uh, Mr. Trump is currently tweeting his hatred of China.

Holy fucking shit. This is my fault. I sent a tweet to Holly Johnson saying we need a new version of Two Tribes for Trump vs Jinping. I didn't think reality would go ahead and fucking do it.
posted by Talez at 2:38 PM on December 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


The EU might be fucked and I am heartbroken over it.

This referendum was a pretty opaque occasion for Italian voters to voice their wants/needs. It's kind of hard to tell how Italy's sistema will be shaken up specifically in consequennce, there's a systemic resilience to the old boot that's pretty hard to really upset. In addition, in real terms
M5S have so far proven a somewhat shambolic "new way", so what's really up next is pretty difficult to tease out of what's currently happening. Keep an eye on the banks, for now.

But yeah, Europe is really in for a scrape, if it's to make it through this, and the upcoming French presidentials...
posted by progosk at 2:39 PM on December 4, 2016


Uh, Mr. Trump is currently tweeting his hatred of China.

This map keeps looking more and more relevant every day.
posted by T.D. Strange at 2:40 PM on December 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


What the DAPL news means: They will be performing an environmental impact statement (EIS). The pipeline is still going to be completed, but they will be looking at alternate routes. This doesn't necessarily take the original route off the table, nor do alternate routes resolve all of the problems inherent with the Standing Rock route.

In the past year I commented extensively on a Park Service draft EIS and became somewhat familiar with the process. I intend to comment on the DAPL EIS as an individual, but if anyone can connect me with a group where I can put my skills to better use, please drop me a line. I am happy to volunteer my time doing research, looking for holes that open the project to litigation, and drafting comments.
posted by compartment at 2:42 PM on December 4, 2016 [9 favorites]


Pence defends Trump’s false claims of voter fraud as self-expression

Millionaire Sex Predator Donald Trump needs a basic class in epistemology.
posted by mikelieman at 2:42 PM on December 4, 2016 [6 favorites]


This is reality. This is fucking reality. I don't think the hordes screaming for blood in the trade vendetta quite realize that war with China wouldn't be televised on TV. It would be total fucking war. Every piece of US infrastructure, every citizen would be a legitimate target.

I'm not sure who would actually come to our aid if we provoked the sleeping dragon on that one. I would heartily expect NATO to come back with "you broke it, you buy it".
posted by Talez at 2:43 PM on December 4, 2016 [9 favorites]


The Predator-Elect.
posted by Too-Ticky at 2:44 PM on December 4, 2016 [8 favorites]


Looks like Stein might keep a bunch of that sweet recount money after all. The federal PA lawsuit ain't going anywhere.
posted by Justinian at 2:45 PM on December 4, 2016 [3 favorites]


Deplorable Donald's China Tweets.

Whose turn was it to hold the phone today? You had one job.
posted by Joe in Australia at 2:47 PM on December 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


In among the Comet Ping Pong conspiracy reports (false flag! false flag!) is the discovery of stars and moons at the corners of the Comet sign-- clearly Islamic or satanic!

The sign is from an old-fashioned Jewish deli. Of course, that will just be incorporated into the conspiracy.
posted by zennie at 2:51 PM on December 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


I'm about to go to bed, luckily the Southern Hemisphere tends not to have many ICBM targets so the nuclear fallout should be manageable when I wake up. Cheers!
posted by PenDevil at 2:53 PM on December 4, 2016


I'm about to go to bed, luckily the Southern Hemisphere tends not to have many ICBM targets so the nuclear fallout should be manageable when I wake up. Cheers!

Yep. As soon as any war breaks out I fully intend to pack my wife in the car, drive to Canada, and be on the first plane to Australia.
posted by Talez at 2:55 PM on December 4, 2016


I live a clean mile from Trump Tower. This is going really well.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 2:57 PM on December 4, 2016 [9 favorites]


The thing that gets me about the Taiwan call and the subsequent tweets is Trump insisting that the most important thing was that it was a call to congratulate him. This dovetails into the observations of how Trump's psychology is particularly unsuited to the job he is facing.

I have a friend who used to be married to a real problem drinker. When he fucked up, it was just like how Trump reacted in those tweets. "Sure I passed out in the back yard and missed your mom's birthday dinner; but I had a hard day at work, what was I supposed to do?" or "Sure I totaled your car last night; but my car was low on gas but it was my company Christmas party, what was I supposed to do?" Anything could be justified because his addiction had to be fed.

These latest China tweets are like my friend's ex-husband doubling down to blame the tree because it was planted so close to the road. Except the tree can only wreck your car if you run into it, it doesn't have the power to wreck the world economy or launch a nuclear strike.
posted by peeedro at 3:00 PM on December 4, 2016 [10 favorites]


Talez: Yep. As soon as any war breaks out I fully intend to pack my wife in the car, drive to Canada, and be on the first plane to Australia.

I don't think you'll get very far. The next war, at least the next big one, will destroy digital infrastructure first. The Chinese and Russians both have satellites which kill other satellites. So cell phones and other digital communications down. GPS satellites destroyed (to hinder cruise missile guidance) which will affect travel too. Power grid most likely hacked. Any internet infrastructure left standing would be DDOSed by rival botnets.

This is all without a single ICBM leaving the silo. A future Cuban missile crisis standoff won't involve actual missiles. I don't think "the security aspect of cyber is very tough" Trump gets this. Hardliners in China could simply come to the conclusion that we're too erratic a society and digitally bomb us back to blinking cursors at a DOS prompt.
posted by bluecore at 3:17 PM on December 4, 2016 [6 favorites]


I live a clean mile from Trump Tower. This is going really well.

I live about two miles away from Trump Tower at the moment. Shortly after the election, I turned down a chance to move into a nice studio near Columbus Circle (general traffic, inconvenience, etc.). Best of luck to you.
posted by Leslie Knope at 3:18 PM on December 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


I wonder if there's a point at which the sitting President simply says "Nah, this jackass ain't ready for the Game," and decides to have the PE taken out of the equation.
posted by Mooski at 3:22 PM on December 4, 2016


Yes there is, it is the point at which a country becomes a authoritarian tyranny.
posted by Justinian at 3:24 PM on December 4, 2016 [14 favorites]


A quick reminder: the relatively impressive shitshow that US-China relations is likely to be for a while has been caused a month before he even starts the job. Moving from the Chinese blaming the Taiwanese for the call to his response of just directly listing China's misdemeanours, that's a pivot right?

Again, all is fine. We've always been at [diplomatic] war with Eastasia.
posted by jaduncan at 3:27 PM on December 4, 2016


Yes there is, it is the point at which a country becomes a authoritarian tyranny.

Don't necessarily disagree, I just wonder what I'd do when I've got definite authoritarian idiot vs. possible discovery of measures taken to prevent the idiot from assuming power.
posted by Mooski at 3:28 PM on December 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


Plus they'll probably *love* it when (if Trump does all the things he's indicated he will) the Trump Administration pulls out of the Paris Agreement, does some ostentatiously heavily armed freedom of navigation exercises in the South China Sea with various regional allies, and demands that Japan and South Korea pay more towards their defence and/or get more military kit themselves. Well, possibly they won't. Hard to guess, apparently.
posted by jaduncan at 3:29 PM on December 4, 2016


@TheKevinDent 41 minutes ago
@realDonaldTrump It's hard to believe that people held concerns about your diplomatic skills.
posted by jaduncan at 3:31 PM on December 4, 2016 [11 favorites]


Is there really no one who can make him understand that it's reckless to just ad hoc start Twitter fights with countries? Would he listen to, I don't know, Arthur Kade?
posted by thelonius at 3:33 PM on December 4, 2016


At this point, I'm starting to assume that he's actively trying to get himself disqualified for the position before he has to start.
posted by porpoise at 3:35 PM on December 4, 2016 [8 favorites]


Even Austria is better at rejecting fascists than we are.

They rejected him the first time by half a point. This time it was 6 points.


Nate Silver opined earlier that Trump might be making fascism more unpopular in Europe since he is so hated there.
posted by chris24 at 3:35 PM on December 4, 2016 [35 favorites]


Can we get him to pick fights with anonymous electors before the electoral college vote?
posted by rmd1023 at 3:35 PM on December 4, 2016 [20 favorites]


Italy has, as expected, rejected the referendum and Renzi has resigned.
posted by zachlipton at 3:37 PM on December 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


I actually don't think that "all is fine."
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 3:39 PM on December 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


The distance between the idea of lazy inter-district registration laggery and the straightforward claim Trump has been making of millions of illegal votes propping up Clinton in blue states is so huge that it makes zero sense to bother talking about the former in response to the latter. It may be an interesting subject in isolation but in context it's basically accomplishing nothing but legitimizing by association what I think we agree is bald-faced and malicious idiocy on Trump's part.

Sorry, I just realized I got deep into the weeds on details and didn't explain my actual premise very well. So that's actually kind of exactly what I'm trying to hone in on - this kind of, oh, I don't know, like...trump l'oeil fuckery? Like, there exists a reasonable interpretation of what he said - whether it's "yeah there probably are a few million votes cast wrongly but it's actually NBD on the presidential level" or "yeah there are some reasons we should open public dialogue with Taiwan but thata's not the way to do it" - but that reasonable interpretation is not what Trump meant and not what Trumpkins are going to take from it.

I don't really have a good name for how to describe it - like, the cover of the original people? Because all of those are reasonable positions that can be disagreed with or not but aren't, like, the insane idiocy of Trump. But when people hear it reported, or hear the talking heads talk about it, or politicians repeate it, they are talking about it as though it were coming from the reasonable people, and thus by extension as though Trump were a reasonable person. It's kind of this - I don't know if deliberate or not, but it's a muddying of the waters.
posted by corb at 3:40 PM on December 4, 2016


trump is going past the point of "disqualifying" himself and walking up to the line of getting himself[redacted] by the CIA
posted by murphy slaw at 3:46 PM on December 4, 2016 [3 favorites]


I suppose this is what we get when we say the President has bigger issues to deal with than SNL

[sigh]
posted by Mchelly at 3:47 PM on December 4, 2016 [3 favorites]


So this is it, we are literally going to end up in either a nuclear war or some kind of apocalyptic cyber conflict some time during Trump's term because he can't control himself on Twitter and no one around him can stop him, right? We have put actually stupid people into the highest offices of the land and no one can say them nay. They're not even evil but canny, they're just dumb and mean.

Until these China tweets I had pretty much bracketed all that "Trump will get us into nuclear war" stuff as unlikely. But he's going to do it, isn't he? He's going to provoke one of the nuclear powers until there's an actual war, out of sheer stubborn stupidity.

When I was little I was really afraid of the bullies at school because I figured they were too dumb not to, e.g., push me down steep flights of stairs or into traffic - they wouldn't actually mean to kill me, of course, they'd just be too dumb to keep the bullying to survivable limits. I did not expect a return to this feeling as an adult.
posted by Frowner at 3:47 PM on December 4, 2016 [51 favorites]


trump is going past the point of "disqualifying" himself and walking up to the line of getting himself[redacted] by the CIA

I was just wondering a few minutes ago if his continued survival is playing hell with JFK conspiracy theorists.
posted by dilettante at 3:50 PM on December 4, 2016


Corb, maybe the term you're looking for?:
Dog-whistle politics is political messaging employing coded language that appears to mean one thing to the general population but has an additional, different or more specific resonance for a targeted subgroup. The phrase is often used as a pejorative because of the inherently deceptive nature of the practice and because the dog-whistle messages are frequently distasteful to the general populace. The analogy is to a dog whistle, whose high-frequency whistle is heard by dogs but inaudible to humans.

The term can be distinguished from "code words" used in some specialist professions, in that dog-whistling is specific to the political realm. The messaging referred to as the dog-whistle has an understandable meaning for a general audience, rather than being incomprehensible.
Dog whistles are the way to deniable say the things you want to say. You can always drop back to the innocent meaning, even though everyone knows you're almost certainly lying. See Trump later clarifying he didn't say *all* Mexicans are rapists.

One can be racist/sexist/authoritarian as all get out and then insist that you meant that in the incredibly tortured way in which it could possibly mean something else if you ignore the very clear implications of what was actually said. Then, for bonus points, you can criticise the PC police or something.
posted by jaduncan at 3:50 PM on December 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


I wonder if trump can even tell the difference between Chinese and Hindi script, let alone speak coherently for more than one second about anything geopolitical about either.
posted by Burhanistan at 3:51 PM on December 4, 2016


Some information about our relationship with China, published a couple of months ago. (Source: The White House)

Christ, I'm scared.
posted by _Mona_ at 3:51 PM on December 4, 2016


Yeah, I've gone back and forth on the likelihood of surviving the next 4 years and these China tweets pretty much convince me we're so fucked. He's deliberately provoking an antagonistic nuclear power because he made a stupid protocol mistake on the Taiwan call and can't/won't back down or admit error. He's not even fucking president yet and this is about as minor a situation as you can get.

At least I live two blocks from NYSE so I won't have to live through the radioactive dystopian landscape afterwards.
posted by chris24 at 3:53 PM on December 4, 2016 [6 favorites]


Fearing abandonment by Trump, CIA-backed rebels in Syria mull alternatives
Three years after the CIA began secretly shipping lethal aid to rebels fighting against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, battlefield losses and fears that a Donald Trump administration will abandon them have left tens of thousands of opposition fighters weighing their alternatives.

Among the options, say U.S. officials, regional experts and the rebels themselves, are a closer alliance with better-armed al-Qaeda and other extremist groups, receipt of more sophisticated weaponry from Sunni states in the Persian Gulf region opposed to a U.S. pullback, and adoption of more traditional guerrilla tactics, including sniper and other small-scale attacks on both Syrian and Russian targets. [...]
OK, it was already a horrible situation, but it appears that it can get worse.
posted by Joe in Australia at 3:54 PM on December 4, 2016 [4 favorites]


jaduncan, yeah, it strikes me like there's some additional level I'm not catching - the specific element of wanting the 'innocent' level to catch a bunch of defenders who will then find themselves talking about the innocent stuff - but you may be right to just keep it simple. That certainly is a real thing he does.
posted by corb at 4:02 PM on December 4, 2016


[I am now redacting your dreams about [redacting] people because y'all know we don't do overt threats here and it's getting too close to the line.]
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 4:02 PM on December 4, 2016 [12 favorites]


Let's say a group of concerned citizens raised a billion dollars or so via Kickstarter or something, and promised to pay it to Trump personally upon his resignation from the Presidency on or before January 20th. Would that be illegal? It sets an ugly precedent, to be sure, but what doesn't these days?
posted by contraption at 4:03 PM on December 4, 2016 [10 favorites]


Does Pence have Trump's phone number? Can he like, call him or something?
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 4:04 PM on December 4, 2016


It's stuff like this where I feel like what's even the point in marching or protesting or trying to save Medicare, because we're heading into a geopolitical situation that is going to be so terrible, dangerous and unstable that actually getting through it at all seems difficult. I really feel like the world has ended - not in the "there will be no more humans ever" sense, but in the sense that peace and safety and predictability have ended. Because of this clown and his buddies. They've single-handedly put the world on track to ruin and they're so dumb that not even "you can't be rich in a nuclear hellscape" deters them.

Lots of people are lots dumber than we thought, basically, and they were restrained from acting on their stupidity by a belief that they couldn't get away with it and the belief that they were isolated. Consider that guy who went into the fake-Clinton-scandal pizza restaurant with an assault rifle today - pure human stupidity and malice, and purely the product of this election.

It's a terrible day when I think "maybe Henry Kissinger can do backdoor deals and settle things down".
posted by Frowner at 4:05 PM on December 4, 2016 [24 favorites]


did he just complain about the US not taxing China?
posted by boo_radley at 4:06 PM on December 4, 2016


Yeah. You want it to be just plausible enough that people who want it to be innocent can believe it is, and will be annoyed when it's suggested that it isn't. The Mexican thing was a bad example for me to give, it's too unsubtle. Think welfare queens, maybe. For people who were racist, it was a reference to black people. For other people, it's truly about dependency on the state even if they then happen to think it's black people.

You actively need it to have two meanings so that people can select the one that makes them happiest.
posted by jaduncan at 4:06 PM on December 4, 2016 [3 favorites]


Does Pence have Trump's phone number? Can he like, call him or something?

According to Kellyanne Conway the best way to communicate with him is to go on TV.
posted by kirkaracha at 4:08 PM on December 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


This photo was taken six months ago.
posted by progosk at 4:09 PM on December 4, 2016 [3 favorites]


So Mike Pence will be playing Mike Pence on SNL every weekend for the next four years.
posted by peeedro at 4:09 PM on December 4, 2016


Lee Atwater on dog-whistling:
 You start out in 1954 by saying, “Nigger, nigger, nigger.” By 1968 you can’t say “nigger”—that hurts you, backfires. So you say stuff like, uh, forced busing, states’ rights, and all that stuff, and you’re getting so abstract. Now, you’re talking about cutting taxes, and all these things you’re talking about are totally economic things and a byproduct of them is, blacks get hurt worse than whites.… “We want to cut this,” is much more abstract than even the busing thing, uh, and a hell of a lot more abstract than “Nigger, nigger.”
posted by kirkaracha at 4:11 PM on December 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


Matteo Salvini ‏@matteosalvinimi
Viva Trump, viva Putin, viva la Le Pen e viva la Lega!


Well the Northern Fascists are happy. Maybe they won't stop at destroying the EU and will reduce Italia back to its component city states occasionally warring each other over some slight.
posted by Talez at 4:15 PM on December 4, 2016


so, like i really thought that the trump administration was going to be like reagan 2.0 with exponentially more overt graft

but he's actually stupider and/or more senile than reagan and his handlers will not take away the direct line from his roiling id to the public internet

i was expecting the iraq war, once more with feeling edition

i really think we are on the brink of direct confrontation with the most populous nuclear power in the world because a spoiled rich kid has lost his marbles and won't shut the fuck up

i grew up in a town that was on all the maps as a soviet first strike target due to a major trans-pacific cable terminating there. i used to dream of nuclear annihilation all the time. i haven't had one of those dreams since the clinton administration

the nausea i feel right now tells me those dreams are all coming back in a big way
posted by murphy slaw at 4:16 PM on December 4, 2016 [12 favorites]


Why would there be a nuclear war?

Isn't it more that the US will be increasingly isolated by stepping out of international agreements and imposing tariffs on everyone and everything. In the beginning, it will be really tough for the rest of the world, after all, the US is the second largest market in the world. But waging a war against the US won't sell Chinese products, so more likely they'll just work harder on cultivating growing markets in South America, Asia and Africa. They also won't go for Taiwan now. Maybe if we get a second term of Trump, or the Ivanka presidency, but at that point, the US will be a failed state with no chance of waging war in South East Asia.

Europe will take a dip again, and the populists will rise, but in spite of cracks in the EU, the Euro will become increasingly attractive as the international currency, and eventually that will help Europeans get back on foot. The European Nationalists are semi-fascist, but I don't see they are out to enter more wars, they just want a fence in the middle of the Mediterranean. Many of them like Putin and will happily give him back those pesky Poles.

Trump has already handed Russia Syria, and they will gradually move back into some of the pre -89 territories, but the US with Trump at the helm won't rush in to save the old Eastern block countries, the UK has brexited, and Europe alone can't and won't take on Russia.

The most worrying thing IMO is the scramble of Iran war-hawks in Trump tower. But Putin will do what he can to prevent it. So will the Germans, who don't have any say with Trump, but might talk down the ayatollahs. I'd imagine the US armed forces will be resisting more firmly as well, after Iraq.
posted by mumimor at 4:21 PM on December 4, 2016 [7 favorites]


Why would there be a nuclear war?

Because if there's one thing Chinese leaders are known for it's being laid back and chill.
posted by Talez at 4:21 PM on December 4, 2016 [9 favorites]


Why would there be a nuclear war?

I'm inclined to think this way, too, keeping in mind that everyone, including Chinese leadership, is generally more motivated by money/profit/capitalism/expansion than by bloodlust. Right?
posted by witchen at 4:23 PM on December 4, 2016 [6 favorites]


You're right. The Chinese are widely known for being quite happy and willing to lose face in the face of an adeversary.
posted by Talez at 4:25 PM on December 4, 2016 [6 favorites]


because the president will be an unstable simpleton with a mean streak a mile wide and he's willing to risk a goddamn trade war over a phone call. i would be unsurprised if he reacted to, say, Pyongyang's next bout of chest-thumping extortion for aid with a couple of cruise missiles. from there, all out war with the chinese is left as an exercise to the interested student
posted by murphy slaw at 4:25 PM on December 4, 2016 [9 favorites]


Here's my worry re nuclear war: The idiots in the Trump administration say so much dumb shit, and pass so many dumb laws with international implications, and do so many dumb things on the financial front that there is a destabilizing effect in one of the nuclear powers, and then a shooting war which heats up and results in a limited nuclear exchange - our fault whether literally begun by us or not. With a worst case scenario being that our idiots in Washington progress from a limited nuclear exchange to a full-on war.

I'm not worried that the Chinese government is going to respond to Trump's tweets by launching bombs - I have a lot of confidence in the Chinese state from a "values stability and a firm grip on power" standpoint. I'm worried that Trump's tweets and Trump's policies are going to have knock-on destabilizing effects which will lead to nuclear war.

There's a book by Jo Walton, My Real Children, which suffers from too rapid and undeveloped a middle but which has a near future with a couple of Hiroshima-level nuclear exchanges - the planet isn't destroyed but a lot of people die. I worry about that too.
posted by Frowner at 4:28 PM on December 4, 2016 [17 favorites]


McCrory, the shit weasel, is going to pack the courts on his way out the door.

Slate NC Gov. Calls Special Legislative Session, Setting Up Possibility of Court-Packing Power Grab
Of course, McCrory asserts that the session’s purpose is to help communities ravaged by Hurricane Matthew. But we have seen this chicanery before. In 2013, North Carolina House Republicans took up a straightforward motorcycle safety bill—and turned it into an anti-abortion measure that placed ridiculously onerous requirements on abortion clinics. The Republican-controlled state Senate sat on the bill until late in the last full day of the legislative session, then swiftly passed it with minimal debate. McCrory promptly signed the bill into law, breaking a campaign promise not to further restrict abortion access. Democrats were caught entirely off guard and never fully mobilized.

Could Republicans pull a similar trick with a court-packing bill, waiting until the last minute of the upcoming special legislative session, then cramming through a bill that secures their control over the state’s highest court? Of course. Will they? It all depends on what they think they can get away with.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 4:31 PM on December 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


You know all those shootings in inner cities Trump was so deeply concerned about during the campaign? It turns out that the ACA is really useful in getting gunshot victims access to healthcare.
posted by zachlipton at 4:31 PM on December 4, 2016 [4 favorites]


i'm just grateful he doesn't have the nuclear codes yet. yet.
sob
posted by localhuman at 4:32 PM on December 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


Next up on Trump's Cavalcade of Twitter Shit: "Manchuria: China knows it belongs to the Japanese!"
posted by Talez at 4:32 PM on December 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


the US will be a failed state with no chance of waging war in South East Asia.

We have a bigger military budget than the next 10 biggest combined. We have thousands of nuclear weapons. There's no way we won't have the ability to wage war anywhere in the world for the next 4-8 years no matter how bad Trump leaves our economy and world standing.
posted by chris24 at 4:33 PM on December 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


Boston Globe Republicans looking to tighten New Hampshire election laws
the state could see a handful of election law changes now that Republicans are in charge at the State House.

Gov.-elect Chris Sununu wants to eliminate Election Day registration, while fellow Republicans in the legislature have long sought a 10- or 30-day residency requirement. They say the changes would give voters more confidence in New Hampshire’s election systems.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 4:35 PM on December 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


Because if there's one thing Chinese leaders are known for it's being laid back and chill.

In terms of wars outside their borders, yeah, they definitely have been for the last half-century or so. Luckily, China definitely isn't dumb enough to start a serious shooting war with the world's greatest military power, and aren't going to start throwing around nukes or carriers. The leadership is, if nothing else, not going to want to have their 30 years of economic growth ruined, and a serious war would go badly for all concerned.

They could just make it hard for US businesses to get permits and licences, or maybe just ensure that suddenly joint ventures are being inspected for tax violations. Maybe stop trade with Taiwan, put the squeeze on US allies politically or economically. I just think they'd try very hard indeed to tamp down on even a shooting war, and won't go nuclear absent some kind of massive invasion. They, unlike Trump, did not get into the leadership by being loudmouthed and insecure, and are sane enough to know they'd lose heavily militarily.

Especially given that they could just threaten to sell up USD holdings, call in their US Treasury debt, or do so at times when the market's already volatile. There's plenty of ways to generate pain. Why do so in the one area where they are definitively outgunned?
posted by jaduncan at 4:39 PM on December 4, 2016 [15 favorites]


I'm worried that Trump's tweets and Trump's policies are going to have knock-on destabilizing effects which will lead to nuclear war.

Within four years? That's a big push. Which nuclear powers would be up for an exchange, and why?
posted by jaduncan at 4:42 PM on December 4, 2016


Why do so in the one area where they are definitively outgunned?

One thing that China does not fuck around with is sovereignty. 1996 almost came to war over a fucking ROC president going to a school reunion.
posted by Talez at 4:43 PM on December 4, 2016 [6 favorites]


hmmmmm...how about a Gates Foundation analog for Voting Rights instead of malaria? The effects of the obstacles (gerrymandering, voter id, roll-purging...) have straightforward responses: Register the people and take them to the polls. This takes money, time, and people. Get some stat PhDs to figure out where.
posted by j_curiouser at 4:43 PM on December 4, 2016 [18 favorites]


NYT Business Since Birth: Trump’s Children and the Tangle That Awaits

It turns out that as Ivanka Trump attended the meeting with her father and Japan's Prime Minister, a Japanese apparel company who's largest shareholder is the Japanese government was working on a licensing deal for Ivanka's clothing line.

The article goes into more detail on the conflicts of interest and their history.
posted by zachlipton at 4:45 PM on December 4, 2016 [16 favorites]


how about a Gates Foundation analog for Voting Rights instead of malaria? The effects of the obstacles (gerrymandering, voter id, roll-purging...) have straightforward responses: Register the people and take them to the polls.

Anyone doing this needs to recognize that the GOP will attack and that they will fight dirty. Remember ACORN and the O'Keefe video? Not a reason not to do it, just that everyone involved will have to be on guard for shenanigans at all times.
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 4:46 PM on December 4, 2016 [3 favorites]


Not a reason not to do it, just that everyone involved will have to be on guard for shenanigans at all times.

Agreed, though I think you've just described situation: normal.
posted by Mooski at 4:48 PM on December 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


re: nuclear saber rattling. will someone do a test before 20 Jan?
posted by j_curiouser at 4:50 PM on December 4, 2016


Globe Republicans looking to tighten New Hampshire election laws

Remember that stupid essay about how we can tots not vote for Clinton this year, it's not like we won't have another election?

For a lot of people, there won't be.
posted by steady-state strawberry at 4:51 PM on December 4, 2016 [8 favorites]


Within four years? That's a big push. Which nuclear powers would be up for an exchange, and why?

Maybe none! Maybe I'm too anxious, which would be great. And maybe we aren't looking at eight years of Trump.

But what is going to happen when Trump etc meddle in the India/Pakistan relationship? Or Trump lobs some bombs at North Korea or Iran? Iran doesn't have nuclear weapons, of course, but it would destabilize the region.

What happens if Trump decides that we're going to recognize Taiwan ? Obviously not "China says 'bombs away'", but surely that would generate an actual military conflict?

Hopefully we can scratch Russia off the list since Trump and Putin are BFFs now.

I mean, to me in retrospect the Cuban Missile Crisis looks unlikely and foolish. I worry about some similar kind of brinksmanship over Taiwan or resulting from the India/Pakistan situation but handled by Trump and his gang of self-interested fools.

But I mean, I'm not attached to these worries - if they're all totally stupid and unlikely I'm not going to cry in my bed or anything.
posted by Frowner at 4:54 PM on December 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


What is all this about China being aggressive? I'm no apologist for China, but I haven't seen them waging any wars on the other side of the globe, ever, and I truly can't imagine they would want to. Like Russia, they have another perception of what constitutes their sphere of interest than most people and governments in the West, but that can only turn into nuclear war if the US is the aggressor. And even though Trump is stupid, I can't see why he would want to attack China (during his first term).

Wut? We have a bigger military than the next 10 biggest combined. We have thousands of nuclear weapons. There's no way we won't have the ability to wage war anywhere in the world for the next 4-8 years no matter how bad Trump leaves our economy and world standing.

Well, to wage war, weapons and soldiers are not enough. You also need to maintain those weapons and feed those soldiers. And that can be really difficult if you run out of cash. And the US will run out of cash if it opts out of the international community as Trump is proposing. Don't imagine big American corporations staying on in the US if Trump blocks their access to global trade. Don't imagine the rest of the world won't impose equal tariffs on American products if the US does it first. Already today, I have very few Made in The USA products. If they are taxed with 35% on top what they cost today, I can find something else.
If the world stops trading in dollars, that debt crisis you have becomes something else altogether. Think Argentina.

Many dictators have decided to wage wars in that type of situation, as a desperate last move with the double goals of distracting their own population and robbing the other country. If Trump finds himself thinking of that, it would be more practical for him to invade Canada or Mexico than to invade China, because China is on the other side of the Pacific and it would require immense resources to get the soldiers and weapons over there. It would also fail, without any doubt. Trump could bomb all the main cities in China, and there would still be hundreds of millions of people resisting an American army.
posted by mumimor at 4:57 PM on December 4, 2016 [5 favorites]


Which nuclear powers would be up for an exchange, and why?

Trump would be. He can start it. We don't need someone else to be up for it. We already know Trump's fixation with nukes and his attitude of why have them if you're not going to use them.
posted by chris24 at 4:58 PM on December 4, 2016 [7 favorites]


One thing that China does not fuck around with is sovereignty. 1996 almost came to war over a fucking ROC president going to a school reunion.

There's a big difference between pushing ROC around with some sabre rattling that did happen and is within the normal levels of geopolitical handbags, even a very limited exchange with the ROC that isn't normal for PRC/RoC (say, a Korea style mutual bombing of strategically nothingburger fields or two navel vessels very unenthusiastically shooting at each other like two dogs ostentatiously growling) and going up, say, against a nearby US carrier group.

The difference in ability to hit back is astronomical, as is the knowledge that no matter how far the PRC go, they know that they can't knock out the boomers and indeed probably most of the land ICBMs. They also lose a conventional war heavily once the other carriers turn up, and don't have the ability to project force into the US even as the US has massive amounts of war materiel in Japan and RoK that are handily nearby, including nuclear weapons, a heavy deployment of USN, land based air power, men and heavy ground troops all within a couple of weeks. Plenty of planes within 12 hours of air strikes on the Chinese mainland. What even vaguely sane military would want that war?

It's literally impossible to win, and their military and civilian leadership aren't idiots. They also depend economically on selling stuff into the US, so they'll be concilliatory enough that that doesn't stop. The PRC care, more than anything else, about domestic stability. A pointless serious war doesn't give them that, whereas demonstrating that they have a bigger geopolitical dick than Taiwan never really plays too badly domestically, and given Taiwan's lack of allies internationally, generally has no real international consequences other than a USN carrier group ostentatiously sailing past. Everyone understands the subtle rules of that, and PRC aren't going to shit that bed by unexpectedly carpet bombing Taipei or attacking US forces.
posted by jaduncan at 5:00 PM on December 4, 2016 [5 favorites]


Well, to wage war, weapons and soldiers are not enough. You also need to maintain those weapons and feed those soldiers. And that can be really difficult if you run out of cash. And the US will run out of cash if it opts out of the international community as Trump is proposing. Don't imagine big American corporations staying on in the US if Trump blocks their access to global trade.

In 4 to 8 years we will not be a country unable to keep the lights on enough to push a launch button. Or send a carrier group. Or fly some B-52s or drones. American industry will not be relocated out of country in 4-8 years.
posted by chris24 at 5:02 PM on December 4, 2016


This is exactly what it's like to live with an alcoholic :(
posted by maggiemaggie at 5:04 PM on December 4, 2016 [36 favorites]


or heroin addict...the lies
posted by j_curiouser at 5:08 PM on December 4, 2016 [4 favorites]


Speaking of the lies: "Paul Ryan, when asked if Trump is correct that millions voted illegally, says: "It doesn't matter to me."

You would think that the integrity of elections would matter somewhat to the Speaker of the House.
posted by zachlipton at 5:10 PM on December 4, 2016 [50 favorites]


In 4 to 8 years we will not be a country unable to keep the lights on enough to push a launch button. Or send a carrier group. Or fly some B-52s or drones. American industry will not be relocated out of country in 4-8 years.

Oh, of course you can push a launch button etc. But waging war against China - or even Iran - would imply sending hundreds of thousands of troops into huge quagmires for long periods of time. If you are waging war against your biggest lender that will be a very brief experience. Specially if you have a record of defaulting on your loans.

Re.: American industry: you will be very surprised at how fast big multinationals can move if tariffs are imposed. All the American IT companies already have gigantic headquarters in Asia and Europe. It's not a big deal to get the rest out, leaving a small section for the American market.
posted by mumimor at 5:11 PM on December 4, 2016 [3 favorites]




the knowledge that no matter how far the PRC go, they know that they can't knock out the boomers and indeed probably most of the land ICBMs.

China has always had the good sense to have a limited nuclear arsenal, basically a minimal credible deterrent against the US and USSR/Russia. They have something like 50-75 icbms that can reach the US at all. Probably because that's enough to inflict unacceptable damage to the US in a second strike.

I don't mean that in a "sure, we'd get our hair mussed" way, only to note that the PRC has always been pretty sober and conservative about nukes.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 5:16 PM on December 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


You have to think that President Obama is having these "please ignore the complete moron, we'll try to fix it" conversations with China and other countries now.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 5:22 PM on December 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


The most worrying thing IMO is the scramble of Iran war-hawks in Trump tower.

James Mattis’ 33-Year Grudge Against Iran
In fact, Mattis’ anti-Iran animus is so intense that it led President Barack Obama to replace him as Centcom commander. It was a move that roiled Mattis admirers, seeding claims that the president didn’t like “independent-minded generals who speak candidly to their civilian leaders.” But Mattis’ Iran antagonism also concerns many of the Pentagon’s most senior officers, who disagree with his assessment and openly worry whether his Iran views are based on a sober analysis or whether he’s simply reflecting a 30-plus-year-old hatred of the Islamic Republic that is unique to his service. It’s a situation that could lead to disagreement within the Pentagon over the next four years—but also, senior Pentagon officials fear, to war.

“It’s in his blood,” one senior Marine officer told me. “It’s almost like he wants to get even with them.”
Funny how we have a grudge when we're the ones who overthrew Iran's democratically-elected government in 1953.
posted by kirkaracha at 5:24 PM on December 4, 2016 [13 favorites]


Trump would be. He can start it. We don't need someone else to be up for it. We already know Trump's fixation with nukes and his attitude of why have them if you're not going to use them.

I would, in all seriousness, like to think that in the event of a first strike order absent an improbably massive serious war people will tell the CiC or indeed whatever deity may or may not outrank him to fuck off, possibly by declaring him insane and having President Pence then agree it's a good idea not to randomly nuke people.

Pence is a terrible person. He isn't that terrible a person. Do I think a conversation discussing this possibility has already happened? Absolutely yes.
posted by jaduncan at 5:26 PM on December 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


You have to think that President Obama is having these "please ignore the complete moron, we'll try to fix it" conversations with China and other countries now.

The same Obama who consistently and repeatedly said "I remain confident that Donald Trump will not be the next president"?

I don't think he's in a position to be believed by world leaders now.
posted by tivalasvegas at 5:26 PM on December 4, 2016


Going back to 7:03 in this thread, is there any way at all for this excellent idea to have legs? As I said earlier, there has to be a price that would be unrefusable.
posted by vers at 5:27 PM on December 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


I would, in all seriousness, like to think that in the event of a first strike order absent an improbably massive serious war people will tell the CiC or indeed whatever deity may or may not outrank him to fuck off, possibly by declaring him insane and having President Pence then agree it's a good idea not to randomly nuke people.

At this point relying on any Republican to stand up to him is insanity IMO. They have cowered and pandered and aided and abetted since he led his first poll. They are craven opportunists and/or raging lunatics.
posted by chris24 at 5:30 PM on December 4, 2016 [10 favorites]


The amount we can raise in that hypothetical Kickstarter is far less than what the Looter-in-Chief is going to grift his way into over the course of four years.
posted by tonycpsu at 5:32 PM on December 4, 2016 [10 favorites]


This election and the Trump presidency is creating a real mental health emergency. I don't mean this hyperbolically, I mean an actual pandemic which is going to keep inflicting damage and spreading if we can't find ways to address the situation in order to tone down the level of anxiety that is present everywhere.

I was struck this afternoon that the last time I've seen such widespread self-reporting of spiraling anxiety IRL and on online forums was mid-to-late September 2001.
posted by BrashTech at 5:33 PM on December 4, 2016 [10 favorites]


Three years after the CIA began secretly shipping lethal aid to rebels fighting against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad

oh wow, when did this Orwellian little turd roll into the WaPo stylebook?

WEAPONS. we're shipping WEAPONS to al qaeda "rebel groups".
posted by indubitable at 5:34 PM on December 4, 2016 [14 favorites]


The amount we can raise is far less than what the Looter-in-Chief is going to grift his way into over the course of four years.

Also, it would be bribery, which is illegal. In fact it's one of the "high Crimes and Misdemeanors" mentioned in the US constitution.
posted by Joe in Australia at 5:34 PM on December 4, 2016


Anyway, in non-nuclear conflagration news...

@joshtpm
2016 was a higher turnout election than 2012. 58.8% ('16) of the voting eligible population vs 58.6% ('12). Likely will go a bit higher.
posted by chris24 at 5:35 PM on December 4, 2016 [11 favorites]


You would think that the integrity of elections would matter somewhat to the Speaker of the House.

Reek. His name is REEK.
posted by corb at 5:35 PM on December 4, 2016 [20 favorites]


> Also, it would be bribery, which is illegal. In fact it's one of the "high Crimes and Misdemeanors" mentioned in the US constitution.

Wait, I thought we were writing fanfic.
posted by tonycpsu at 5:40 PM on December 4, 2016


From the writer of the Art of the Deal.

@tonyschwartz
Always remember: two guiding principles drive Trump's behavior: getting richer and getting positive attention. There isn't much else.
posted by chris24 at 5:41 PM on December 4, 2016 [13 favorites]


And I thought laws against bribery had been more or less tabled.
posted by contraption at 5:42 PM on December 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


he ain't the potus yet. Buyout '16.
posted by j_curiouser at 5:42 PM on December 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


At this point relying on any Republican to stand up to him is insanity IMO. They have cowered and pandered and aided and abetted since he led his first poll. They are craven opportunists and/or raging lunatics.

I'm actually not buying President Pence as unexpectedly nuking some state. Especially with several extremely enthusiastic military officers advising him that it is going to pointlessly lead to a few million deaths and quite possibly electoral losses for several cycles.

I used to work in nuclear warfare related comms. I will absolutely say that I'm confident we'd have done absolutely everything possible to prevent what is as close as close can be to negligent discharge of nuclear weapons, including a claim that insanity makes invalid orders. Nobody but nobody is going to think that first strike is a good idea, and people are going to try really quite impressively hard to prevent it. I don't have a super high opinion of Pence, but he isn't insane.

Tl;dr: really not seeing an actual nuclear strike for many reasons.
posted by jaduncan at 5:42 PM on December 4, 2016 [10 favorites]


"High crimes and misdemeanors" is not defined in American law, as far as I know; and anyway its prosecution depends on the will of the House. It means whatever Paul Ryan wants it to mean.
posted by tivalasvegas at 5:42 PM on December 4, 2016 [3 favorites]


> DAPL pipeline is still a go, but they're looking at other routes now

Related threads.
posted by homunculus at 5:48 PM on December 4, 2016


Tl;dr: really not seeing an actual nuclear strike for many reasons.

I agree I don't see President Pence nuking someone, I worry about President Trump nuking someone before someone invokes Section 4 of the 25th Amendment. Pence isn't at Trump's side at all times. And nutjobs like Flynn as head of NSA don't help.

But I hope your inside knowledge and confidence that the system won't allow it is correct.
posted by chris24 at 5:51 PM on December 4, 2016 [4 favorites]


Also, it would be bribery, which is illegal. In fact it's one of the 'high Crimes and Misdemeanors' mentioned in the US constitution.

What if we just make a donation to the Trump Foundation?
posted by kirkaracha at 5:58 PM on December 4, 2016 [13 favorites]


We're reduced to debating whether there's going to be a second Great Depression caused by Trump's twitter-trade war, or if he's actually going to launch a first strike nuclear war. #MAGA
posted by T.D. Strange at 6:01 PM on December 4, 2016 [15 favorites]


Donald Trump Just Gave Chinese Hawks a Great Talking Point on the South China Sea For hawks in China, where a domestic debate exists on the correct path forward for the country in the South China Sea, Trump’s tweets will be a welcome development. Here you have the incoming president of the United States implying that Beijing would have to ask for U.S. permission to undertake activities in what China regards as its sovereign territory.

For Chinese proponents of further unilateral actions in the South China Sea, including, but not limited to, the declaration of an air defense identification zone, additional land reclamation activities, or the overt militarization of the Spratly artificial islands, Trump’s tweet will be an important data point. (I’d expect to see commentaries in the Global Times and other Chinese outlets seizing on this as well.) Trump, with his insinuation, may vindicate certain voices in China who’ve long argued that territorial hegemony is the United States’ final goal in the South China Sea and the U.S. Navy’s plan for the Asia-Pacific’s maritime environs more broadly.

posted by T.D. Strange at 6:11 PM on December 4, 2016 [3 favorites]


So the Trump team is now spinning this as all intentional. Not sure what's worse, bungling us into war or intentionally provoking it.

WaPo: Trump’s Taiwan phone call was long planned, say people who were involved
Donald Trump’s protocol-breaking telephone call with Taiwan’s leader was an intentionally provocative move that establishes the incoming president as a break with the past, according to interviews with people involved in the planning.

The historic communication — the first between leaders of the United States and Taiwan since 1979 — was the product of months of quiet preparations and deliberations among Trump’s advisers about a new strategy for engagement with Taiwan that began even before he became the Republican presidential nominee, according to people involved in or briefed on the talks.

The call also reflects the views of hard-line advisers urging Trump to take a tough opening line with China, said others familiar with the months of discussion about Taiwan and China.
posted by chris24 at 6:13 PM on December 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


I'm not claiming special authority here and not saying anything classified, just saying that people in those roles aren't there because they take launching nuclear weapons in a relaxed way. The prospect of someone making the order whilst mentally incapacitated is not something that hasn't been considered. Absent some clear reason for immediate launch, I'm quite sure that would be investigated. Very few people who want to nuke the world make it to four star general, either.

There's less of a culture of absolute deference than one might expect in these matters, and it's possible to be as procedurally difficult as one can while people work out how not to kill the world. Look at Petrov, for example, or the way that James Blunt (yes, the singer) just flatly queried and played for time to avoid obeying the order - directly from the NATO Supreme Allied Commander Europe, no less - to start a hot war with the Russian troops in Pristina until someone sane came on the radio.

In addition, firing nukes without a reason to justify deployment of WMD is clearly a war crime, and all bets are off for illegal orders as they don't have to be obeyed. An awful lot of people would have to agree it's a good plan before nukes actually started flying, and I just suspect that whatever would have to be done to cover up that the order was ever made would be done. It's not the Republicans I'd be betting on to stop this here, it's the active service military.

Not that it's a safeguard I think is likely to be used.

Also authoritarians can have much more fun invading somewhere that can't really fight back and then having a mental victory parade. For starters, the Pentagon might just tell you bombing Iran seems an achievable plan and give you five options on how to do it.
posted by jaduncan at 6:18 PM on December 4, 2016 [13 favorites]


I dunno, I trust the WaPo generally more than most, but that sounds like post-hoc rationalization to me.
posted by Rumple at 6:18 PM on December 4, 2016 [4 favorites]


yeah, no. that is grade A bullshit.
posted by j_curiouser at 6:19 PM on December 4, 2016 [13 favorites]


I'm not claiming special authority here

I hope my comment didn't come across as snark. I appreciate your knowledge and truly hope you're right.
posted by chris24 at 6:21 PM on December 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


So much misinformation. Shows how easily you can create your own post-fact world. Just flood reality with as much bullshit as possible and nobody knows what's going on. That way if someone calls you on it you can pick and choose and deny everything else.
posted by Talez at 6:21 PM on December 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


Given how 2016 has played out, I extrapolate that not a single one of our predictions is going to be entirely correct but that something even more extraordinary happens, and is allowed to.
posted by porpoise at 6:25 PM on December 4, 2016 [6 favorites]


Sure, definitely months of planning and then "Taiwan called to congratulate me, was I not supposed to take the call?"
posted by jason_steakums at 6:26 PM on December 4, 2016 [22 favorites]


Given how 2016 has played out, I extrapolate that not a single one of our predictions is going to be entirely correct but that something even more extraordinary happens, and is allowed to.

So instead of nuking China, it'll actually be Sweden. We can't rule anything out
posted by T.D. Strange at 6:27 PM on December 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


Alex Baldwin to Trump on his impersonation...

@ABFalecbaldwin
...@realDonaldTrump
Release your tax returns and I'll stop.
Ha
posted by chris24 at 6:35 PM on December 4, 2016 [25 favorites]


So instead of nuking China, it'll actually be Sweden. We can't rule anything out

But where will I get my meatballs from? BibleThump
posted by Talez at 6:35 PM on December 4, 2016


>>Given how 2016 has played out, I extrapolate that not a single one of our predictions is going to be entirely correct but that something even more extraordinary happens, and is allowed to.

So instead of nuking China, it'll actually be Sweden. We can't rule anything out


Trump was assembling his IKEA furniture for the White House residential quarters, and those Swedish assholes forgot to include the gold leaf in the box! The fuck was he supposed to do, drive all the way back to College Park, MD and wait in line at the service desk? No way, José!
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 6:37 PM on December 4, 2016 [6 favorites]


it'll actually be Sweden. We can't rule anything out

I only hope that its just a spat between US and Sweden's Woman's Soccer that Ivanka gets upset at and provokes her da to have a trade spat with the country.

Stuff we can't predict like the dissolution (or more likely) ignorance-caused violations of trade agreements (with unexpected partner) and the (unexpected) partner getting vicious (and possibly winning, if only minds and hearts), leading to the crumbling of an important US supporting industry/product.
posted by porpoise at 6:38 PM on December 4, 2016


Look at Petrov, for example, or the way that James Blunt (yes, the singer) just flatly queried and played for time the order - directly from the NATO Supreme Allied Commander Europe, no less - to start a hot war with the Russian troops in Pristina until someone sane came on the radio.

jaduncan, can you link to a source for the James Blunt thing? Not because I don't believe you, but because I really really would like, at this moment, to read an account of sane humans intervening to stop a sudden crisis from blossoming into a catastrophe.
posted by tivalasvegas at 6:43 PM on December 4, 2016 [4 favorites]


Singer James Blunt 'prevented World War III'

I had to google it myself because I've never heard of this singer or this incident.
posted by great_radio at 6:46 PM on December 4, 2016 [9 favorites]


Absolutely:

Singer James Blunt has told the BBC how he refused an order to attack Russian troops when he was a British soldier in Kosovo. Blunt said he was willing to risk a court martial by rejecting the order from a US General.
[...]he said: "I was given the direct command to overpower the 200 or so Russians who were [at Pristina airfield]. I was the lead officer with my troop of men behind us. The soldiers directly behind me were from the Parachute Regiment, so they're obviously game for the fight. The direct command [that] came in from Gen Wesley Clark was to overpower them. Various words were used that seemed unusual to us. Words such as 'destroy' came down the radio."

He said he had been "party to the conversation" between senior officers in which Gen Clark had ordered the attack.

"We had 200 Russians lined up pointing their weapons at us aggressively, which was... and you know we'd been told to reach the airfield and take a hold of it. And if we had a foothold there then it would make life much easier for the Nato forces in Pristina. So there was a political reason to take hold of this. And the practical consequences of that political reason would be then aggression against the Russians."

Asked if following the order would have risked starting World War III, Blunt, who was a 25-year-old cavalry officer at the time, replied: "Absolutely. And that's why we were querying our instruction from an American general.
"Fortunately, up on the radio came Gen Mike Jackson, whose exact words at the time were, 'I'm not going to have my soldiers be responsible for starting World War III', and told us why don't we sugar off down the road, you know, encircle the airfield instead.

[...]

If Gen Jackson had not blocked the order from Gen Clark, who as Nato Supreme Commander Europe was his superior officer, Blunt said he would still have declined to follow it, even at the risk of a court martial.

He said: "There are things that you do along the way that you know are right, and those that you absolutely feel are wrong, that I think it's morally important to stand up against, and that sense of moral judgement is drilled into us as soldiers in the British army."

Bonus: Wikipedia on the broader context of the Pristina action.
posted by jaduncan at 6:51 PM on December 4, 2016 [24 favorites]


Whoa, Wesley Clark?
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 6:52 PM on December 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


Taiwan City Planning a Makeover Says a Trump Agent Showed Interest
Investors are welcome, and on Sept. 8, a Taiwanese-American woman named Chen Siting, or Charlyne Chen, arrived, claiming to represent a very prominent businessman: Donald J. Trump. She had been referred to the Taoyuan mayor by Annette Lu, a former vice president of Taiwan, the mayor’s office said in a statement on its website.

“I told them: Isn’t Mr. Trump campaigning for president? Isn’t he very busy?” the mayor, Cheng Wen-tsan, said in a television interview that aired on Nov. 18, referring to Ms. Chen’s group. “They said she is a company representative. His company is still continuing to look for the world’s best real estate projects, and they very much understand Taiwan.”

“She had authorization documents issued by the Trump company,” he said, without specifying.
...
On Friday, Amanda Miller, a spokeswoman for the Trump Organization, said that there were “no plans for expansion into Taiwan” and that there had been no “authorized visits” to Taiwan to push for a development project.

Asked on Sunday for clarification about the company’s relationship with Ms. Chen and knowledge of her activity in Taiwan, Ms. Miller did not respond to specific questions. She instead repeated in a statement that there had been “no authorized visits to Taiwan on behalf of our brand for the purposes of development, nor are there any active conversations.”
Somebody is lying here, or at least stretched the English language well past its ability to rationally convey information.
posted by zachlipton at 6:52 PM on December 4, 2016 [4 favorites]


On a lighter note...

Some of you may remember that during the election, I invited Tim Kaine to busk with me on some harmonica/ukulele Replacements duets. After 9 November I sent him one of the signs I had in my tip jar, along with a note thanking him for his service, wishing him well, and inviting him to busk with me if he's ever in New England.

Yesterday I received a form letter from him, thanking me for my correspondence.

Initially I felt a little disappointed that I just received a form letter, especially after seeing some of the kind notes Hillary sent her supporters during the campaign, even though I realized how snotty and entitled that emotion was. The more I thought about it, though, the more I realized that my attempt to busk with Tim Kaine was to my political activism what Dumbo's feather was to his attempt to fly. It led me to become more politically involved than I ever had been in my adult life. After the election I began reaching out to my elected officials in a way I might not have in years prior; I'm also donating all my busking tips to local charities and looking for others in my community who are doing similar work. Even though I didn't achieve my goal of busking with Tim Kaine, that effort inspired me to find ways to be more politically active. I view my attempt as a success, and I think America's Dad would be proud of me.
posted by pxe2000 at 6:54 PM on December 4, 2016 [62 favorites]


Somebody is lying here, or at least stretched the English language well past its ability to rationally convey information.

I just read that and I am very sure of who was lying and I will believe that it is the Rump camp until proven otherwise. Unlike the trumplethinskins, I am open to being proven wrong.
posted by futz at 6:56 PM on December 4, 2016 [3 favorites]


Even though I didn't achieve my goal of busking with Tim Kaine, that effort inspired me to find ways to be more politically active. I view my attempt as a success, and I think America's Dad would be proud of me.

Turned out Tim Kaine was busking inside your heart all along!
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 6:58 PM on December 4, 2016 [36 favorites]


Yep, that Wesley Clark. To your implied comment, yeah, very much idiotic. The utterly untrue representation made by Clark that 'the secretary general has told me you should fire' (he'd actually just been handed command) is a widely unreported but frankly excitingly dishonorable addendum to that order once he'd been politely refused the first time.

He didn't exactly cover himself in glory, unlike Blunt, who frankly earned himself a medal that will never be given for obvious reasons. His spiritual medal is that he didn't get in the shit for telling NATO SACE Clark to go fuck himself.

...and my apologies for the derail.
posted by jaduncan at 7:01 PM on December 4, 2016 [9 favorites]


Try going back to 1968 or 1981 and explaining what Twitter is and why the President Elect of the United States is probably going to start WWIII with it. Sometimes it really dawns on you that we're living in the future, which is basically a mashup of Snowcrash, 1984 and Dr. Strangelove.
posted by T.D. Strange at 7:03 PM on December 4, 2016 [18 favorites]


You would think that the integrity of elections would matter somewhat to the Speaker of the House.

Reek. His name is REEK.


I think that's inordinately cruel. Reek's suffered enough, and besides, Reek still had more honor, dignity, and self-respect immediately after his castration than Paul Ryan ever has.
posted by qcubed at 7:05 PM on December 4, 2016 [7 favorites]


trump's lies are interesting because they resemble the way that russian state propaganda works. this is described in some detail in nothing is true (pomerantsev). from a certain pov it's pretty neat - it gives them a lot of flexibility and control. i think you could also argue that it's a natural outcome of (response to) a more academic (game theory) approach to politics because it undermines the assumptions made there.

having said that, i think much comes naturally to him (i don't think he was coached by russia, for example!). but the above helps explain why it works. it also suggests there will be more, from others, in the future. and it's going to be interesting how it affects international relations. taiwan was, presumably, just the start.


[] (I like this!) is an opportunistic virus infecting a weakened body politic (including the 4th Estate). Our defense systems are not set up to deal with this sort of person in government, and so we are vulnerable. The system only works when the people in power have an incentive to fall somewhat within the norms. Now, anyone SHOULD have an incentive in the sense of "if we destroy everything I too will suffer," but apparently there's a kind of madness/blindness inherent in [] and many others that renders this ineffective.
posted by emjaybee at 7:19 PM on December 4, 2016 [7 favorites]


Singer James Blunt has told the BBC how he refused an order to attack Russian troops when he was a British soldier in Kosovo. Blunt said he was willing to risk a court martial by rejecting the order from a US General.
Well, if no one else will say it,
"James, for saving the human race, you're beautiful. You're beautiful. You're beautiful, it's true."
And I absolve you forever for that song.
posted by dannyboybell at 7:20 PM on December 4, 2016 [18 favorites]


and that there had been no “authorized visits” to Taiwan to push for a development project.

It doesn't even reach the subterfuge of the Cuban visits, when a mid-ranking employee calls it a work trip on Facebook and now has been Meredithed away when journalists seek comment.
posted by holgate at 7:21 PM on December 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


Nobody but nobody is going to think that first strike is a good idea, and people are going to try really quite impressively hard to prevent it. I don't have a super high opinion of Pence, but he isn't insane.

General Flynn, on the other hand, is exactly that crazy
posted by Ber at 7:41 PM on December 4, 2016 [4 favorites]


Everyone, such as Maggie Haberman here is trying to figure out what to make of the WaPo story re Taiwan. As I see it, they're either lying now by claiming it was a totally planned intentional effort months in the making, or they were lying when they said it's no big deal, just a quick congratulatory call, doesn't mean anything policy-wise. It can't be both no big deal and a months long deliberate policy shift at the same time.
posted by zachlipton at 7:43 PM on December 4, 2016 [9 favorites]


Trump Says He Doesn’t Want Military Interventions. So Did Bush.
Like George W. Bush 16 years ago, Donald Trump will take office having promised both a larger defense budget and a more-restrained attitude toward the use of military force. Like Bush, Trump seems to be in the process of surrounding himself with national-security advisors much more inclined to shoot and ask questions later.

What could go wrong?
posted by kirkaracha at 7:44 PM on December 4, 2016 [5 favorites]


Wisconsin recount observers cite broken warranty seals

“The seals were broken by the technician who came to install the modem in each machine after purchase,” wrote Reid Magney, public information officer for the Wisconsin Elections Commission. “The technician was supposed to replace the seals when he was finished, but neglected to do so.”

The label reads “removal of seal voids warranty.” It is unclear what impact, if any, the tearing of the seal would have on tabulating votes.


Probably a non story but can you imagine what an uproar this would cause in TrumpleTown if he had lost and this had happened?
posted by futz at 7:45 PM on December 4, 2016 [7 favorites]


KKK celebrates Trump victory with brazen parade

...News of the rally brought out hundreds of protesters at dozens of counter-demonstrations held elsewhere in the southern state, dwarfing the size of the KKK’s event.

...Many wore black shirts emblazoned with patches declaring their lifetime membership of the "Invisible Empire". They rode in vehicles sporting their insignia of a white cross on red background. The weather was too cold for a march, organisers said.

...Earlier in the day, Amanda Barker, one the organisers, said Mr Trump shared many of the values of the KKK. "We actually kind of have the same views. A lot of white Americans felt the same way about the wall, immigration, terrorism," she said.

...She brushed off accusations of racism, saying the group’s aim was in line with mainstream policy from the recent past, such as Operation Wetback in the 1950s to deport Mexican illegal immigrants, a policy later condemned for civil rights violations.

posted by futz at 8:04 PM on December 4, 2016 [3 favorites]


Craig Silverman has an analysis into how Pizzagate was spread

It all started with fake reports claiming that the NYPD and FBI linked Clinton to child sex crimes through Anthony Weiner's laptop, which were spread around by the usual suspects, including our new National Security Advisor, which primed the pump for people to pour through Wikileaks emails looking for "evidence," concluding that there are secret sex trafficking code words contained therein, and then we were off to the races.

To be clear, because there's been a bunch of confusion on Twitter, Flynn did not link a pizzagate story, but linked a True Pundit story (that Silverman discusses in his article), one that claims to have its own anonymous FBI and NYPD sources, that was part of the original wave of nonsense that started all this. Flynn's son (and former chief of staff), however, still seems to be sort of a believer (in follow-up tweets, he's all " I'm not suggesting anything did or didn't happen. Way to many coincidences however to ignore").
posted by zachlipton at 8:07 PM on December 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


trump's lies are interesting because they resemble the way that russian state propaganda works.
"Never believe that [liars] are completely unaware of the absurdity of their replies. They know that their remarks are frivolous, open to challenge. But they are amusing themselves, for it is their adversary who is obliged to use words responsibly, since he believes in words. The [liars] have the right to play.

"They even like to play with discourse for, by giving ridiculous reasons, they discredit the seriousness of their interlocutors. They delight in acting in bad faith, since they seek not to persuade by sound argument but to intimidate and disconcert. If you press them too closely, they will abruptly fall silent, loftily indicating by some phrase that the time for argument is past."
Sartre, in 1943, where "liars" above was actually "anti-semites".

All the conservative side has now is bullshit. Which is handy when you just want to implement your program and not have to have any intelligent debate about it.
posted by Heywood Mogroot III at 8:07 PM on December 4, 2016 [39 favorites]


Re: that KKK march. A friend closer to the area knows someone who'd infiltrated and was updating as the "parade" unfolded: "She posted a video of what the whole thing turned into: 7-9 vehicles decorated with Confederate and KKK flags driving once through downtown Roxboro with one guy yelling 'white power' one time."

Not to minimize the significance of the KKK's new confidence, but I'd hate to miss any chance to show these groups as the ineffectual small-potatoes bullies that they are. They're not making any kind of majestic comeback on a large scale. They're flailing, directionless, and they have stupid-ass nicknames. And, happily, the counter-protests in North Carolina have vastly overshadowed what the hate groups had planned for themselves.
posted by witchen at 8:13 PM on December 4, 2016 [16 favorites]


Not to minimize the significance of the KKK's new confidence

Remember, the last time the Klan tried to have a resurgence, they were defeated by a comic book character!
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 8:16 PM on December 4, 2016


It's not the regular old KKK that just won a seat in the White House, it's the new brand of Nazis-are-trendy alt-right lead by actual supervillain Steve Bannon. I'd be a lot more sanguine about the 'alt-right' resurgence if it were just a local chapter with a larger parade than normal. Brietbart is not so quietly radicalizing white men across the nation that have never been to a Klan rally and wouldnt know or care to call up and find their local Grand Dragon. And that media outfit is set to become the de facto state run media branch of the US government.
posted by T.D. Strange at 8:22 PM on December 4, 2016 [6 favorites]


Not to minimize the significance of the KKK's new confidence, but I'd hate to miss any chance to show these groups as the ineffectual small-potatoes bullies that they are. They're not making any kind of majestic comeback on a large scale. They're flailing, directionless, and they have stupid-ass nicknames.

Completely agree witchen! I had a much longer comment about what a farce it was but cut it way back due to the mods request to keep things brief. Damn you mods! The kkk is so thin skinned that they had (lol) to stay in their trucks because it was too cold to march...my sides hurt from guffawing.
posted by futz at 8:23 PM on December 4, 2016


Sartre is describing not just lies but trolling. And, reading his comment, I realized that the comments section of every news site is another place we've ceded to the liars.

Maybe it's time we reclaim that, too.
posted by steady-state strawberry at 8:24 PM on December 4, 2016 [5 favorites]


Why would there be a nuclear war?


Why would a country elect Donald Trump?
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 8:25 PM on December 4, 2016 [12 favorites]


Everyone, such as Maggie Haberman here is trying to figure out what to make of the WaPo story re Taiwan.

There's now even less clarity about the intended meaning, and that matters. As Sen. Chris Murphy said, a new administration has broad latitude to adjust or even reverse foreign policy, but doing so amid competing narratives and court intrigue and an old man yelling through his tweeterphone is not how that should happen.

(In passing, the WSJ piece "The Last Diplomat" feels like an indictment of Comey's FBI as a bunch of blinkered desk jockeys who have no conception of how State does its work.)
posted by holgate at 8:27 PM on December 4, 2016 [5 favorites]


That WSJ piece is a giant public middle finger to Comey from the State Department, and it was really easy to start inserting the Clinton email narrative into it.
posted by zachlipton at 8:30 PM on December 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


It's not the regular old KKK that just won a seat in the White House, it's the new brand of Nazis-are-trendy alt-right lead by actual supervillain Steve Bannon. I'd be a lot more sanguine about the 'alt-right' resurgence if it were just a local chapter with a larger parade than normal. Brietbart is not so quietly radicalizing white men across the nation that have never been to a Klan rally and wouldnt know or care to call up and find their local Grand Dragon. And that media outfit is set to become the de facto state run media branch of the US government.

This is why it's so, so critical for anyone left of George HW Bush to think about what rhetoric is shown to actually work with respect to racism.

One of the things that drives me nuts on the left is our frequent insistence on saying things the most-emotionally-cathartic way even when it's counterproductive. We can't afford that. It doesn't matter if we think it's unfair or irrational that people hear certain messages in counterproductive ways; humans gonna human, and we have to approach people as they actually are, and not as we wish they would be.
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 8:31 PM on December 4, 2016 [23 favorites]


*The Comet restaurant in DC, which was a target of a fake news story, was just the target of an attack where a SWAT team was called in to deal with a man who walked in with an assault rifle. (Twitter thread)

Whoa. I didn't realize that shots were fired.
posted by futz at 8:31 PM on December 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


Futz, I saw on preview that you did emphasize the larger counter-protests--sorry to have overlooked that! I just get so sickly fascinated by these groups in North Carolina and so tickled when they embarrass themselves. I typed faster than I could check myself. These fools are just so inept, anytime they do something my second reaction (first is horror) is "Oh, THESE fuckin' guys, smh."

But yeah, also, the "alt-right" thing is an impressive feat of re-branding and it's much more frightening than the rural rinkydinks in Roxboro. My master's thesis was on the Klan (,archival materials generated by) and in researching I was shocked over and over by a) their shitty web design, and b) how much they stew over the legitimacy question. There were, for example, some interesting things written by the creator of the white supremacist publication Instauration about intellectualizing racism. I don't know if it's still in publication, and I certainly don't have the stomach to look it up now, but it's a fascinating read. The rise of Alt-Right in our national discourse is a massive victory for their legitimization fantasies (which is why it's important as ever to ridicule and mock them).
posted by witchen at 8:33 PM on December 4, 2016 [5 favorites]


Is there a nonpaywall version of the wsj last diplomat story? Google workaround is failing me.
posted by SecretAgentSockpuppet at 8:40 PM on December 4, 2016


Here's a couple of random frightening thoughts:

I recall when China and Japan get into fights over something like disputed islands in Senkaku or Yasukuni Shrine, there's suddenly an uptick of protests and even violence against Japanese owned businesses and Japan's consulates/embassies in Mainland China. If Donald keeps poking China, what prevents China to hit the US back (and also score some easy points domestically) by turning protests towards US businesses and embassies? Harass US students, businessmen, reporters? Also recall that during the Olympic torch relay/Tibetan protests there were lot of Chinese students and expats that counter-protested in the US too, so that's another possibility.

And in turn, what's to prevent President Donald from making life tougher on Mainland Chinese folks studying, doing business, investing, and making a living here? Remember, there's been a lot of property investment and tourism by Mainland Chinese folks here in Southern California. What if Donald were to some way put pressure on these folks (like how he was gonna freeze undocumented immigrants from sending money back home), making it harder for these liberal California cities, these sanctuary cities from collecting taxes and keeping their budgets stable?

Someone please tell me this is outlandish and impossible. Please?
posted by FJT at 8:41 PM on December 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


[ SecretAgentSockpuppet: try searching for the title in Twitter and clicking on the top links.]
posted by holgate at 8:42 PM on December 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


All the people who spread Pizzagate because they claimed they wanted to protect children came entirely too close to getting actual children shot today.

Of course, it looks like some of the pizzagate people now think this was a false flag operation, so we've got that to deal with now.
posted by zachlipton at 8:43 PM on December 4, 2016 [5 favorites]


And in turn, what's to prevent President Donald from making life tougher on Mainland Chinese folks studying, doing business, investing, and making a living here?

I don't have an answer for you here, but it reminded me of something. One of my best friends was born in China, and her parents happened to be here during Tienanmen Square because her dad was admitted to grad school in the US.

George H. W. Bush allowed Chinese students in the US to more easily get get green cards, first by executive order and later by law. Which meant her family had the option to stay here, and she's totally awesome, and America is better off for her and her parents' presence.
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 8:48 PM on December 4, 2016 [4 favorites]


Yes, of course it was a false flag. All the evidence, of which there is a ton, points to that conclusion.
posted by rhizome at 8:48 PM on December 4, 2016


And in turn, what's to prevent President Donald from making life tougher on Mainland Chinese folks studying, doing business, investing, and making a living here? Remember, there's been a lot of property investment and tourism by Mainland Chinese folks here in Southern California. What if Donald were to some way put pressure on these folks (like how he was gonna freeze undocumented immigrants from sending money back home), making it harder for these liberal California cities, these sanctuary cities from collecting taxes and keeping their budgets stable?

Someone please tell me this is outlandish and impossible. Please?


What's to prevent Trumpists from targeting anyone who looks Chinese in such a circumstance?

It's things like this that make me think long and hard about what would make me leave the country.

Yes, yes, I know, stay and fight or what have you, check my privilege. Here I am doing the hand wank motion, and please, with all due respect, take that sentiment and shove it up your lily white ass; I don't give a shit what you think unless you look like Xi or me (or really, have skin that doesn't burn if you're outside less than an hour without sunscreen). I am not confident in the next four years, that if something went sideways between the US and China, that I'd feel safe here, in the land of my birth and the one and home I've ever really had--and I'm not an ABC or really, connected with China in any way.

I just look similar enough to them that most Americans can't tell the difference--nor will they bother to find out. I mean, it's not like they bothered to find out that Vincent Chin wasn't Japanese. It's not like they bothered to find out that a Sikh is not a Muslim is not an Indian is not a terrorist.
posted by qcubed at 8:52 PM on December 4, 2016 [26 favorites]


When a chunk of the family business relies upon the Chinese supply chain, you don't have to make it overt. You just have local officials get the memo that in an entirely plausible health-and-safety initiative, factory inspections and shipping bureaucracy are to be carried out to the letter and maybe that means a temporary shutdown or a bunch of containers have to go out on the next ship.
posted by holgate at 8:54 PM on December 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


I just look similar enough to them that most Americans can't tell the difference

When I hear the very real fears and vulnerabilities that you and other mefites express, I am brought to tears. I am so sorry.
posted by madamjujujive at 9:02 PM on December 4, 2016 [15 favorites]


So the son of the new National Security Advisor - and who's his chief of staff - still thinks there's something to Clinton being connected to a pizza parlor pedophilia ring.

@mflynnJR:
Until #Pizzagate proven to be false, it'll remain a story. The left seems to forget #PodestaEmails and the many "coincidences" tied to it.
posted by chris24 at 9:10 PM on December 4, 2016


Remember, the last time the Klan tried to have a resurgence, they were defeated by a comic book character!

I was hoping it was Ziggy.
posted by mazola at 9:11 PM on December 4, 2016 [4 favorites]


Until #Pizzagate proven to be false

Ah yes, burden shifting. If you made the allegation, now make with the evidence.
posted by rhizome at 9:14 PM on December 4, 2016 [18 favorites]


Yes, of course it was a false flag. All the evidence, of which there is a ton, points to that conclusion.

Wait, so which part of it is a fake thing designed to discredit the anti-Clinton people?
posted by fleacircus at 9:14 PM on December 4, 2016


uh, didn't you learn in undergrad that 'proven to be false' is not a thing?
posted by j_curiouser at 9:17 PM on December 4, 2016 [4 favorites]


A good tweetstorm starts here on how issuing a single visa for someone to speak at their alma mater led to an international incident with China including them live firing missiles during impromptu military exercises off the Taiwan coast and the US sending two carrier battle groups to the Taiwan Straight.

@prchovanec:
1. As a little bit of context, it's worth reviewing what the 1995-96 Taiwan Straits Crisis was all about: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Third_Taiwan_Strait_Crisis
posted by chris24 at 9:22 PM on December 4, 2016 [3 favorites]


Now Flynn's son (and former chief of staff) is picking a fight with Jake Tapper, and another reporter has dug up what purports to be a review of Cernovich's by Flynn Jr. book that uses his dad's position.
posted by zachlipton at 9:54 PM on December 4, 2016 [5 favorites]


Tracking how many key positions Trump has filled so far
The Post and Partnership for Public Service, a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization, are tracking these 662 executive branch appointments through the nomination process. These positions include Cabinet secretaries, deputy and assistant secretaries, chief financial officers, general counsel, heads of agencies, ambassadors and other critical leadership positions. All require Senate confirmation.

The Senate confirmation process can begin when the newly elected 115th Congress convenes on Jan. 3, 2017 — two weeks before Trump’s inauguration. The Senate can begin holding hearings to confirm Trump’s eventual nominees during this period.

651 awaiting announcement
11 nominee announced
0 confirmed
posted by kirkaracha at 10:51 PM on December 4, 2016 [9 favorites]


What are the odds that Flynn minor has a very active Reddit account that covers the full shitty spectrum of MRA / goobergob / [ ] interests? It feels very much as if the lower-tier players belong to a sphere that a relatively small number of internet venues helped vomit up over the past few years.
posted by holgate at 10:57 PM on December 4, 2016 [17 favorites]


@mflynnJR:
Until #Pizzagate proven to be false, it'll remain a story. The left seems to forget #PodestaEmails and the many "coincidences" tied to it.


Until @mflynnJR PROVEN not to be involved in theft of #mymissingsock, he will remain my nemesis.
posted by jaduncan at 11:12 PM on December 4, 2016 [10 favorites]


About the same odds as Eric and/or Donnie jr having similar accounts? So, pretty good...
posted by Burhanistan at 11:12 PM on December 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


God, Twitter is an open sewer.
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 11:12 PM on December 4, 2016 [4 favorites]


What is going on here???

Breaking Report: Trump Campaign Allegedly Violated Constitutional Law to Alter Election Results. Penalties Include Prison Time if Charged.

HuffPo glitch in the matrix? Sensational click bait?
posted by futz at 11:30 PM on December 4, 2016 [4 favorites]


It's some pretty good rabble rousing, per the last paragraph:

Charges for potential violation of these laws can only be brought by United States Attorney General Loretta Lynch. As such, the Strategic Institute for Intersectional Policy is asking for people to call her at the Department of Justice at 202-353-1555 or TTY/ASCII/TDD: 800-877-8339 and leave a message asking her to press charges against the members of the Trump Campaign for voter purging.
posted by Burhanistan at 11:33 PM on December 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


It's a HuffPo contributor story, so there's pretty limited review. There's plenty of reason to report on voter suppression, but that's an awful way to do it, and HuffPo's continued willingness to hand its name and platform over to just about anyone is troublesome.
posted by zachlipton at 11:39 PM on December 4, 2016 [7 favorites]


If we have entered the "Post-Truth" era, we are obligated to fight fire with fire.
posted by oneswellfoop at 11:41 PM on December 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


I called, asked for a speedy investigation. Let a judge decide whether a tarmac conversation with a former president has any relevance to the AG filing voter purge charges against [] and fellow conspiracists.
posted by riverlife at 11:43 PM on December 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


Yeah, it doesn't look like there's anything new, as such, in that article -- it looks to be a pretty fiercely-written piece tying voter suppression efforts to the Trump win.

Is it fighting fire with fire, or is it just sinking into the morass of blanket statements, fighty headlines and unsourced assertions of connections and conspiracies? I really don't know.

(on preview: I typed the phrase 'fighting fire with fire' before seeing oneswellfoop's above comment: this isn't a direct response to that comment.)
posted by tivalasvegas at 11:45 PM on December 4, 2016


I think fighting fire with fire was the intent and it's also part of the half truth morass we're all drowned in.
posted by Burhanistan at 11:47 PM on December 4, 2016 [3 favorites]


Re-reading my comment from a few weeks ago:
Even if you choose to do your own thing, you'd be crazy to jump on a call like that without taking advantage of the information provided by the experts who do this for a living. Otherwise, you can easily "uh-huh" your way into agreeing with a dangerous or even deadly position.

Just look at how Bannon got Trump to change his positions live on his radio show through some shaping and suggestion. It's pretty to imagine the same process being carried out over the sovereignty of Ukraine or control of Taiwan or any number of things where an uninformed, unprepared, and uninterested President-elect can carry life-or-death implications.
Guys, I was basically being sarcastic about the control of Taiwan part! And it's been so much worse than I imagined. He uh-huh'd himself into an official visit to Pakistan and Duterte is claiming that Trump endorsed his death squads.

Even Trump's use of the phrase "President of Taiwan" in a tweet was major news in the papers there, and I'm pretty darn positive he had no idea what statement he was making using those words.
posted by zachlipton at 11:50 PM on December 4, 2016 [5 favorites]


I searched the thread and did not see this linked yet, but forgive me if someone posted it above and I missed it.

I just read a very interesting piece on Medium by Larry Lessig: The Equal Protection argument against “winner take all” in the Electoral College. I'm not a lawyer so I can't comment on the technicalities of his argument, but he made some points that struck home - it's a well considered argument.
posted by mosk at 11:50 PM on December 4, 2016 [6 favorites]


I mean, it's likely an eyes-closed last-minute 100-yard Hail Mary into the wind, but fuck it. Maybe we should all start calling the White House all day every day and saying, "Oh hell no!! The Crazyfication Percentage of our population is NOT getting its way!!! Do what you must. Unroll the secret 7.3rd Amendment, whatever ya need to. Discover the Secret Revelation of Joseph Smith that was intended for this time only. Break the L. Ron Hubbard 'In Case of National Fire' glass, release and play backwards the secret Manson/Unabomber opus they've been collaborating on all these years, whatever, any/all of this shit is preferable, DO NOT LET THIS STAND!!!"

(1st Amendment protected Art speech. Fuck you fascist haters.)
posted by riverlife at 11:56 PM on December 4, 2016 [5 favorites]


As much as I, too, want to imagine that there is some way to reverse the election results, to do so (whether by Electoral College machinations or any other quasi-legal petitioning thing) would have a nonzero chance of starting a civil war.
posted by tivalasvegas at 12:07 AM on December 5, 2016 [4 favorites]


Duterte is claiming that Trump endorsed his death squads.

Kerry did that six months ago, and gave Duterte $32 million.
posted by Coda Tronca at 12:17 AM on December 5, 2016 [4 favorites]


nonzero chance of starting a civil war

Agreed. I don't want war. I am beginning, unfortunately, to believe that consciously or not [] will bring it with him. If so, what is the best, or failing that, egad, least bad manner to prevent that happening? Is a horrific civil war in the U.S. preferable to the incineration of the species?

I can't even believe this shit is coming out of my mouth. I'm a pacifist, I won't be killing anyone, and yet here I am talking this way, calculating lives against lives.

This guy and these fucking people. I'm already tired of winning so much, so he can go home now.
posted by riverlife at 12:25 AM on December 5, 2016 [9 favorites]


There isn't enough time to argue out the Equal Protection thing, because (as he touches on briefly) if we're tossing out the current tradition, each state would have to deliberate on how they divvy up their votes. And I'm not sure the courts can simply order them to do so? Even if they'd filed it on Nov 10th there might not have been time.

It's worth arguing for next time, but I'd be worried about diluting the blue anchors of CA and NY; currently-red states have a lot of methods in place to avoid that dilution. (like, voter suppression, and no shame.) Politicians and generals and businessmen and people in general have a habit of figuring out how to win the previous battle, and learning lessons that don't necessarily work for the next one.
posted by Rainbo Vagrant at 12:31 AM on December 5, 2016 [1 favorite]


also anyone thinking hopefully about civil war (as I was a second ago) had better think hard about how close they'd be to the front lines.
posted by Rainbo Vagrant at 12:32 AM on December 5, 2016 [1 favorite]


I just read a very interesting piece on Medium by Larry Lessig: The Equal Protection argument against “winner take all” in the Electoral College. I'm not a lawyer so I can't comment on the technicalities of his argument, but he made some points that struck home - it's a well considered argument.

I saw that earlier (linked from Facebook, I think, not MeFi) but it seemed to be another quixotic electoral reform proposal which, while probably better than the system we have now, has no practical plan to get from where we are to where Lessig wants us to be.

And I'm also not a lawyer, but it seems to me that the outlined argument conflates one-person-one-vote on the national level with one-person-one-vote at the state level. It cites a Supreme Court ruling which states, in part:
And, if a State should provide that the votes of citizens in one part of the State should be given two times, or five times, or 10 times the weight of votes of citizens in another part of the State, it could hardly be contended that the right to vote of those residing in the disfavored areas had not been effectively diluted.
But this is not what is happening. Each vote does have an equal weight within the state election for President -- it's just a winner-take-all system where the electoral college delegation with the majority of votes takes their seats in the national electoral college meeting.

There's a better case to be made, I think, that the Electoral College itself is in violation of one-person-one-vote because of the disparity between the ratio of state population to number of electors among the states, but that's not the argument that's being made here.

The author anticipates this argument:
Of course the state could argue that there is a single slate of Electors is up for election. But therein lies the rub, the State is not free to disregard the one man one vote rule by arbitrarily framing the election of 16 Electors as though it is an election of a single office holder. That argument would be a pretext designed to deny any voice to the voters for the candidate not winning the plurality of the vote within the State, even though in reality multiple representatives are being selected to vote in a second election for a single candidate.
But that's not... a very convincing rebuttal. It amounts basically to an argument that the federal courts should intervene on what has traditionally been the very clear domain of the states to determine their own elections laws and procedures, subject only to explicit laws like the Voting Rights Act, and it comes close to begging the question. I could be wrong, but I think this would get laughed out of court.
posted by tivalasvegas at 12:35 AM on December 5, 2016 [1 favorite]


Agreed. I don't want war. I am beginning, unfortunately, to believe that consciously or not [Trump] will bring it with him. If so, what is the best, or failing that, egad, least bad manner to prevent that happening? Is a horrific civil war in the U.S. preferable to the incineration of the species?

The breakdown of civil order in the US would not be good for the prospects of avoiding nuclear war, either. So I'll take the possibility of a war in the medium-term over the possibility of civil war next month.
posted by tivalasvegas at 12:43 AM on December 5, 2016 [3 favorites]


Tl;dr: really not seeing an actual nuclear strike for many reasons.

It would be wild if this was an elaborate Russian psyop to get the U.S. to unilaterally pursue nuclear disarmament, either because the outgoing Obama administration does a crash course in scaling back the ability of the POTUS to command nuclear strikes, or because Trump starts START III on behalf of the Kremlin. The ensuing world war then does not happen while he's in the White House, but maybe a presidency or two after him, after the U.S.'s atomic missile gap is sufficiently wide enough. Red Dawn 2027.
posted by Apocryphon at 1:20 AM on December 5, 2016


Hillary Clinton's lead hit 2.4 million and 2% today. 2%. Looks like she will have a bigger popular vote % lead than 11 elected Presidents after all. Everything is terrible.
posted by Justinian at 2:29 AM on December 5, 2016 [35 favorites]


Numbers from Lawyers, Guns, & Money: The Electology.org poll, part 1/3: how could Trump have won?
posted by Joe in Australia at 3:02 AM on December 5, 2016


Sorry for pedantry but 2.6m and 2%. You can see all the details state by state here.

Dave Wasserman of 538 and Cook Political Report maintains this and tweets the latest vote updates a few times daily.
posted by chris24 at 3:08 AM on December 5, 2016 [2 favorites]


I dunno, I'd be right on the front lines in a civil war, but maybe that would be preferable to, well, all of this. I'm just so, so scared, and I want more than anything to be back in Chicago, because at least that's in the bubble. I don't know how people are still like, walking around and doing things as if everything is okay.
posted by dogheart at 3:36 AM on December 5, 2016 [3 favorites]


November 15th:
Retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson has told President-elect Donald Trump that he isn't interested in serving as secretary of Health and Human Services, a Carson ally confirmed to The Hill on Tuesday. [...] "Dr. Carson feels he has no government experience, he's never run a federal agency. The last thing he would want to do was take a position that could cripple the presidency."

December 5th:
Trump Taps Ben Carson For Secretary Of Housing And Urban Development

(Also relevant: FiveThirtyEight: Stop Treating HUD Like a Second-Tier Department)
posted by Rhaomi at 3:46 AM on December 5, 2016 [8 favorites]


Trump to nominate Carson as HUD Sec'y [WaPo]:
President-elect Donald Trump intends to nominate retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson to run the Department of Housing and Urban Development, an unconventional choice that underscores Trump’s willingness to forgo traditional policy expertise in some Cabinet positions to surround himself with allies.
posted by Westringia F. at 3:51 AM on December 5, 2016 [1 favorite]


Trump’s Threat to the Constitution by Evan McMullin (NYT)
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 5:05 AM on December 5, 2016 [10 favorites]


Y'know, Republican Electors, you could do a lot worse. *sighs a deep sigh*

Every time I read McMullin I am simultaneously inspired and disheartened, that we could have had a Republican nominee like that instead of the Orange Tyrant.
posted by corb at 5:23 AM on December 5, 2016 [19 favorites]


The horrible thing most likely to happen in the next four years is Trump starting a war with Iran. Flynn is obsessed with Iran and will do anything to make it happen.
posted by drezdn at 5:32 AM on December 5, 2016 [8 favorites]


We'll probably get another chance. I have a feeling Egg is going to primary Trump, if he's still in office, and will do his best to tear Trump down. If not egg himself, he'll be supporting someone out to do the same. I just hope he can keep finding more Republicans to stand with him.
posted by gusottertrout at 5:35 AM on December 5, 2016 [5 favorites]


we could have had a Republican nominee like that

I'm guessing that's exactly McMullin's strategy for 2020 or 2024—be the not-crazy R candidate waiting in the wings when Trump and Pence fail spectacularly. Not sure how valuable his brand will be by then—you have to have a republic to be the president of that republic, and who know what the USA will look like in four years—but at least somebody's still working the "fuck Trumpism" angle.
posted by Rykey at 5:37 AM on December 5, 2016 [8 favorites]


The horrible thing most likely to happen in the next four years is Trump starting a war with Iran. Flynn is obsessed with Iran and will do anything to make it happen.

That would be counter to Flynn's pal Putin's interests in the region.
posted by PenDevil at 5:37 AM on December 5, 2016 [1 favorite]


The horrible thing most likely to happen in the next four years is Trump starting a war with Iran. Flynn is obsessed with Iran and will do anything to make it happen.

War with Iran, trade/cyber war with China, Russia getting a free hand in Ukraine and other former Soviet states, tensions increasing between Pakistan and India, and a horribly disproportionate response to some act or acts of terrorism, not excluding the possibility of use of a nuclear weapon should it be traced, or "traced", to someplace like Yemen or another country without strong response capabilities or ties to US infrastructure needs.
posted by gusottertrout at 5:39 AM on December 5, 2016 [2 favorites]


The Senate confirmation process can begin when the newly elected 115th Congress convenes on Jan. 3, 2017 — two weeks before Trump’s inauguration. The Senate can begin holding hearings to confirm Trump’s eventual nominees during this period.

651 awaiting announcement
11 nominee announced


I was going to make a joke about "at this rate, he should have the positions filled by three months after he leaves office", but does anyone have any information on how this compares to any other administration, Democrat or Republican?
posted by dannyboybell at 5:41 AM on December 5, 2016 [2 favorites]


It bothers me a lot when people bring up the possibility of civil war as a reason not to pursue legal political action. It's an example of what those articles about how to resist fascism are talking about when they warn you not to obey in advance - if there's a legitimate possibility of changing the outcome of the election, and we don't take it because we're scared of how the other side will act, then they've won, straight up. We've turned over the system to the worst of us, abandoned people who need us, and surrendered our rights because we are afraid.

The rabid Trump supporters love to swing their balls around and shout on social media about how they better get what they want because they're the ones with all the guns so we better give them what they want or here comes the uprising.

Okay, you armchair warriors, you want to reasonably talk to me about civil war? Talk to me about financial resources. Talk to me about the numbers on both sides. Talk to me about how you're going to take over the military. Talk to me about your plans to resist the surveillance state when you can't even keep your lunatic leader in line on Twitter. Talk to me about what this Donald Trump-led civil war would actually look like, because otherwise, you're just winning the argument by being the side that's willing to escalate to spit-flying crazy talk and shout death threats until all the reasonable people leave the room.

They're used to winning arguments that way, and we're used to letting them. But I will be good goddamned if I will avoid exercising my constitutional rights because of what I'm afraid of what the blowhards and the bullies on the other side will do. We've got to be better than this and tougher than this, you guys. Come on.
posted by pretentious illiterate at 5:46 AM on December 5, 2016 [113 favorites]