Donald Trump, possibly upsetting Fox News' role in Republican politics
August 24, 2015 1:08 PM   Subscribe

Following the GOP presidential candidates' debate on Fox, the presidential hopefuls were asked tough questions that could serve to weed out the weaker candidates, but the big news came from Trump lashing out at Fox, and winning. It's no secret that Fox is "the engine that drives the GOP agenda" and bolsters the careers of conservative politicians, including 40% of those in the early August debate, and Trump has appeared as a guest on Fox News programs some 200 times in the last five years. But when Trump gets more attention on the nightly news than his 16 rivals combined, Fox finds itself in an interesting position: if Trump doesn't need Fox News, could other Republicans buck the Fox media machine?
posted by filthy light thief (518 comments total) 27 users marked this as a favorite
 
Bonus Matt Taibbi: Donald Trump Just Stopped Being Funny
posted by Gelatin at 1:13 PM on August 24, 2015 [27 favorites]


According to Nielsen TV data through mid-January 2014, the average age of Fox News viewers is 68-years-old. No candidate needs Fox News.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 1:14 PM on August 24, 2015 [3 favorites]


if Trump doesn't need Fox News, could other Republicans buck the Fox media machine?

No. Trump is in a pretty unique position in the Republican field. His wealth allows him a lot of independence, since he doesn't need to rely on the party machinery or Fox to run his campaign. And because of his independence, he can be as bombastic as he wants, guaranteeing him intense coverage.

The other candidates can't take those kinds of risks. Bush, for example, has to toe the line, he could never hope to win if he went to war with Fox and the party brass.
posted by Sangermaine at 1:16 PM on August 24, 2015 [11 favorites]


Trump doesn't need Fox or the major networks or other conservative media channels, because he says things that get him free publicity through those outlets. Criticism is still free publicity. The other bozos need Fox and friends, because they all say the same boring stuff and have to pay for the privilege of advertising to bring their noise above the threshold.
posted by a lungful of dragon at 1:18 PM on August 24, 2015 [10 favorites]


According to Nielsen TV data through mid-January 2014, the average age of Fox News viewers is 68-years-old. No candidate needs Fox News.

The average age of a Tea Party voter coincides with the demographic you just listed. Whether the GOP candidates truly "need" that demo (and Fox News) or not, they sure as hell act like they do, as much as an addict needs that next fix.
posted by blucevalo at 1:18 PM on August 24, 2015 [1 favorite]


According to Nielsen TV data through mid-January 2014, the average age of Fox News viewers is 68-years-old. No candidate needs Fox News.

According to the US Census, "In the United States in 2014 only 17.1 percent of 18-to-24-year-olds voted, compared with 59.4 percent of those 65 and older."

In absolute terms, 14.9 million 18-34 year olds voted (note the wider age bracket) compared to 26.2 million 65+ year olds.
posted by jedicus at 1:21 PM on August 24, 2015 [56 favorites]


Trump is in a pretty unique position in the Republican field. His wealth allows him a lot of independence, since he doesn't need to rely on the party machinery or Fox to run his campaign.

Moreover, the so-called "liberal media" just loves to cover Trump.
posted by Gelatin at 1:22 PM on August 24, 2015 [3 favorites]




At this point I will be a little surprised if the next Republican candidate debate doesn't devolve into a running gunfight.
posted by CynicalKnight at 1:25 PM on August 24, 2015 [9 favorites]


I'm hoping it's still early enough that the circus will run out of steam, or the head clown will get bored and go find something else to do.

I mean, I always enjoy anything that might hurt Fox News, but in a Trump v. Murdoch fight, there is no one to root for.
posted by emjaybee at 1:29 PM on August 24, 2015 [5 favorites]


what if they utterly destroy each other
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 1:33 PM on August 24, 2015 [48 favorites]


There are 17 major Republican primary candidates right now. The debates should be a series of pit fights, each ending when one candidate is killed, until only one is left.
posted by Sangermaine at 1:33 PM on August 24, 2015 [8 favorites]


Bonus Matt Taibbi: Donald Trump Just Stopped Being Funny

See...Here's the thing. I live in the vast flyover land, in a state that glows bright, blood red. Once I heard him speak, I never thought Trump was funny, or a joke. He sounds exactly like so many of my fellow flyover denizens. I just knew he would catch fire, and it's always puzzled me how blind so many pundits could completely miss the guy's appeal.

Honestly, everyone should be scared as holy shit that this guy just might be elected President. Because, if he is, he will own the Republican party, and their Senate and House majorities. They'll really have no other option than to fall in-line with the guy. He truly, literally will have a bully pulpit.
posted by Thorzdad at 1:34 PM on August 24, 2015 [73 favorites]


I would prefer a Fox News/Trump
battle that has no winners, only losers.

(Well, aside from America, which would win big time).
posted by MoonOrb at 1:34 PM on August 24, 2015


what if they utterly destroy each other

Their corpses will both vanish in a puff of ichor and be replaced with entities even more odious.

There are those who suggest that that's how we were blessed with those two in the first place.
posted by delfin at 1:35 PM on August 24, 2015 [18 favorites]


Trump also has a credible threat to run 3rd party that none of the rest of the clown car does. He has the money to self-finance it with or without the RNC's approval, and he's got a lock on the crazy 20% just be being the craziest of the nutbags.

Trumpism is a ready made 3rd Party platform in the European parlimentary mold of Goldern Dawn or the Party for Freedom. Who would you vote for, the guy who admits compromise just might be required to govern? Or Trump, who Promises To Win and Make Everyone Who's Not Trump Submit and Also Deport All the Illegals! Even if he only captured a few % in the general, every one of those votes will come at the expense of the Official FOX/Republican candidate.
posted by T.D. Strange at 1:35 PM on August 24, 2015 [3 favorites]


The other candidates can't take those kinds of risks.

Indeed. Snotty Wawa had to cut his own switch and got taken out behind the woodshed by a campaign donor.
posted by Pogo_Fuzzybutt at 1:37 PM on August 24, 2015 [1 favorite]


There are 17 major Republican primary candidates right now. The debates should be a series of pit fights, each ending when one candidate is killed, until only one is left.

Every four years, each District shall send a Tribute to fight to the death. Henceforth these shall be known as the Trumper Games.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 1:37 PM on August 24, 2015 [27 favorites]


Further, Trump is upstaging all the white resentment, nativist, race baiting, dog whistle fear-mongering that has been the Republican playbook since Nixon. Previously those have been the tools of the party elite to whip the base into supporting Republican politicians, who go on to enact the policies of the 1% that their plutocratic overlords paid for. Trump is cutting out all the dog whistles and saying it right in the open, combined with some actual populist stances like *gasp* NOT slashing Social Security *gasp*. He's taking the playbook to the people and undercutting the oligarchs.

I think there's a non-trivial chance that it actually works.
posted by T.D. Strange at 1:40 PM on August 24, 2015 [38 favorites]


Trump's campaign website has exactly one entry under positions: Immigration Reform. There's nothing else on his site.
posted by octothorpe at 1:40 PM on August 24, 2015 [3 favorites]


Someone - god, it might even have been Lindsey Graham - observed last week that the other Republicans have to try to climb over each other to be more and more outrageous just to get noticed in the Trump shadow. I thought that was pretty astute, and then saw it proved this week as Cruz and Walker seem to be having an asshole-off publicly kicking Jimmy Carter in the wake of his diagnosis. That level of dickery only makes sense if you're competing for attention with an over-the-top caricature of a boor.
posted by the phlegmatic king at 1:40 PM on August 24, 2015 [10 favorites]


I think Trump is the Ebola of this news cycle: his threat to the US is wildly overblown. He is ahead in a 17-way primary. That is name recognition. Most of those in his camp don't know his history on abortion, his orgy-watching, his bankruptcies, etc. And those things will matter, the way they weeded out Gingrich years back. If he is the Republican nominee, he will get 20% of the vote. He'll probably get four Republicans to run against him as independents, because they hate the guy.
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 1:41 PM on August 24, 2015 [16 favorites]


I recently got an unsolicited Facebook message from a long time acquaintance that has worked for the GOP for 5 or so years (college republican, now an East Coast GOP state operative). He's a really good guy. A nice young person who is kind to people, but also one of those guys who gets away with the bullshit "fiscally conservative, socially liberal" tag that is utterly meaningless. More or less, he's pro gay marriage and doesn't want to kill poor people for sport. So he's a moderate, I guess.

Anyway, we've had a years long back and forth about politics, mostly with me assuring him he has no idea what he is actually supporting and him saying he and his millenial-ilk were going to bring about a new, shiny GOP that loved puppies and black people and yadayadayada.

I'd sent him "The Paranoid Style in American Politics" and tried to explain how unhinged the GOP had been since before his birth and that this was all basically a scheme to sell bullshit to idiots.

His message from 5 days ago:

"Everything you've said has been right. Trump is a Frankenstein we created ourselves. Cooked up by 45 years of anti-abortion rhetoric, apocalyptic rhetoric, and cash for gold commercials."

It was one of the proudest and saddest moments of my adult life.
posted by lattiboy at 1:42 PM on August 24, 2015 [220 favorites]


Gelatin: Bonus Matt Taibbi: Donald Trump Just Stopped Being Funny

Related New Yorker: The Fearful and the Frustrated (aka: the White Power bloc)
...Trump takes an expansive view of reality. “I play to people’s fantasies,” he writes in “The Art of the Deal,” his 1987 memoir. “I call it truthful hyperbole. It’s an innocent form of exaggeration—and a very effective form of promotion.”
An old quote, but it looks to be too true to this day.
posted by filthy light thief at 1:44 PM on August 24, 2015 [17 favorites]


"Everything you've said has been right. Trump is a Frankenstein we created ourselves. Cooked up by 45 years of anti-abortion rhetoric, apocalyptic rhetoric, and cash for gold commercials."

Even then, notice the careful self-absolution-by-omission of demonization and scapegoating.
posted by George_Spiggott at 1:45 PM on August 24, 2015 [6 favorites]


the phlegmatic king: That level of dickery only makes sense if you're competing for attention with an over-the-top caricature of a boor.

I think you mean "King Truth-Talker."
posted by filthy light thief at 1:47 PM on August 24, 2015 [1 favorite]


I think this is something the Left really misses. There seems to be this idea that the People are angry, and if we just awaken and empower the People, then we'll get social justice and progress.

What's being forgotten is the ugly side of populism. An angry population may also go the other route, and embrace bigotry and hatred and control, and I think it's already happening. People like Trump are the harbingers.

Sure people are mad as hell and not going to take it anymore, but that might mean they lash out at the poor and non-white and non-straight and let people who say they have a plan to fix it all rule over them.
posted by Sangermaine at 1:49 PM on August 24, 2015 [53 favorites]


Goddamnit, Jon Stewart, how could you leave us just when we needed you most?
posted by Ryvar at 1:49 PM on August 24, 2015 [10 favorites]


"Everything you've said has been right. Trump is a Frankenstein we created ourselves. Cooked up by 45 years of anti-abortion rhetoric, apocalyptic rhetoric, and cash for gold commercials."

Even then, notice the careful self-absolution-by-omission of demonization and scapegoating.
posted by George_Spiggott


And also excuse me but Frankenstein is actually the doctor not the AAAAAAAAAA
posted by the phlegmatic king at 1:50 PM on August 24, 2015 [49 favorites]


It struck me yesterday that Trump is the price America is having to pay for electing Barack Obama, the pound of flesh being excised by the idiotariat. Hopefully the price won't end up being too high.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 1:52 PM on August 24, 2015 [8 favorites]


Honestly, everyone should be scared as holy shit that this guy just might be elected President. Because, if he is, he will own the Republican party, and their Senate and House majorities. They'll really have no other option than to fall in-line with the guy. He truly, literally will have a bully pulpit.

With all the separation of powers, President Trump wouldn't have a completely free hand. It's one thing to be a little bit theatrical when campaigning; it's pretty likely that he'd govern a bit more moderately. For example, Obama campaigned theatrically as a candidate of Hope and Change - he's governed from the center as a fairly balanced moderate.
posted by theorique at 1:52 PM on August 24, 2015 [3 favorites]


Goddamnit, Jon Stewart, how could you leave us just when we needed you most?

He is more urgently needed in Canada
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 1:52 PM on August 24, 2015


I bet Stephen Colbert gives Trump a call regularly to cheer him up and encourage that he stay in the race.
posted by sammyo at 1:54 PM on August 24, 2015 [2 favorites]


And those things will matter, the way they weeded out Gingrich years back.

Voters seem generally okay with ignoring big flashing warning signs. Carly Fiorina ran HP into the ground in the early 2000s and lost about 30,000 people their careers. And yet she is still somehow running a campaign on being a successful businesswoman, that we need to take her seriously because she can run the US like a business. And only few in the media question her past and what she did to destroy HP.
posted by a lungful of dragon at 1:54 PM on August 24, 2015 [25 favorites]




Rebrand?
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 1:56 PM on August 24, 2015 [90 favorites]


Yet....I'd almost rather have Trump than Walker as president, if worse came to worst.
posted by Windigo at 1:57 PM on August 24, 2015 [15 favorites]


Trump's campaign website has exactly one entry under positions: Immigration Reform. There's nothing else on his site.

That's what works for him, because then the people who want him to be everything they ever dreamed of can fill in those blank spaces with whatever they want. They can lie on their beds gazing at the ceiling, where they have his poster, and say to themselves "I bet the Donald would agree with me that it's wrong to let the gays be on TV, and that women just need to keep their legs closed instead of having abortions, and also we should nuke Iran. I can tell just by looking at him that he'd think that. I bet he'd be fun to hang out with, he'd take me out to one of his ranches and we could hunt elephants he flew in or something, and have butlers bring us food and laugh about the liberal idiots. God, that would be so great."
posted by emjaybee at 1:59 PM on August 24, 2015 [22 favorites]


From that Hollywood Reporter interview:
Do you believe in legislating equal pay?

Well, it's a very tough subject. I want women to be paid. But you know when you start tinkering with the free market and you start having mandates put down, it's a very dangerous subject because we're competing against the world. We have something happening called corporate inversion. Corporations are leaving the U.S. You know, with minimum wage, it's wonderful to say everybody should get $5,000 an hour. The problem is, you have companies leaving now. They're buying companies that are much smaller than them in Ireland and other places [and incorporating there].
So that's a no, then.
posted by emelenjr at 2:01 PM on August 24, 2015 [7 favorites]


[Jon Stewart] is more urgently needed in Canada

Jon Stewart was even more urgently needed last night in Brooklyn.
posted by delfin at 2:04 PM on August 24, 2015 [25 favorites]


y'all so fucked. i'll say it again: he's your next president.
posted by andrewcooke at 2:08 PM on August 24, 2015


Don't worry. Christopher Walken is going to climb into the rafters with a rifle and everyone will see Trump shield himself with a baby.
posted by Mr. Yuck at 2:10 PM on August 24, 2015 [47 favorites]


With respect to Taibbi, if you have even passing familiarity with 20th century politics, Trump has never been funny. When politicians whip people up, encouraging them to ignore reason and give in to their racism and anger, bad shit happens. It's not far from arguing that people need to be stripped of their citizenship and forced out of the country for having Hispanic parents to spinning up the war machine and demanding military action against Mexico. I give it about a 50% chance that somebody running for president will propose it. Hardliners will demand outright "boots on the ground" invasion and the moderate position will be limited airstrikes.
posted by LastOfHisKind at 2:11 PM on August 24, 2015 [4 favorites]


Jon Stewart was even more urgently needed last night in Brooklyn.

This is exactly how I want the next Republican debate to be.
posted by Sangermaine at 2:12 PM on August 24, 2015 [1 favorite]


You mean an overchoreographed piece of theatre aimed at pacifying the masses?
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 2:13 PM on August 24, 2015


andrewcooke, I gotta disagree with you on two points:
1)Nnnnnnnope, the crazification factor's not nearly high enough to get him in the white house.
2)"Y'all"? A hypothetical President Trump would shit in your cereal unless you live on Europa.
posted by The Gaffer at 2:14 PM on August 24, 2015 [4 favorites]


I understand the focus on Trump, but the reality that his stances differ from the other 16 only in slight degrees of cruelty and bigotry.
posted by zombieflanders at 2:14 PM on August 24, 2015 [7 favorites]


> His message from 5 days ago:

> "Everything you've said has been right. Trump is a Frankenstein we created ourselves. Cooked up by 45 years of anti-abortion rhetoric, apocalyptic rhetoric, and cash for gold commercials."


I'm sure you're trying to be gracious, but at some point you need to mention that he left out racism. Lots and lots and lots of racism. Usually not paraded around in public, occasionally leaking out, but very frequently lurking just outside of camera range. Tell him he can now listen to this song, and find some bleak humor in the chorus of "this is where the party ends".
posted by benito.strauss at 2:15 PM on August 24, 2015 [3 favorites]


Who would have thought that the eerily prescient Hollywood version of our present situation wouldn't be A Face in the Crowd but rather Citizen Kane?
posted by Bromius at 2:16 PM on August 24, 2015 [3 favorites]


i'm just trying to speak your lingo.

unless you live on Europa

cough
posted by andrewcooke at 2:16 PM on August 24, 2015 [16 favorites]


huh

If he gets elected, can I attempt a landing there? It'll be just me, the wife, the pup, and two cats.
posted by The Gaffer at 2:19 PM on August 24, 2015 [3 favorites]


if you supply the popcorn. we're going to need quite a bit....
posted by andrewcooke at 2:21 PM on August 24, 2015


The best conservative cartoonist (and the only one at the currently comatose Nib) J.J. McCullough did a cartoon essay about Trump's recently born-again conservatism. Trump has always aimed at providing a good show for the largest possible audience (although failing in later seasons of The Apprentice). After his run for the Reform Party nomination in 2000 as a "Moderate" (defeated by Pat Buchanan), he obviously learned a valuable lesson which he is putting into practice. Nobody has forced him into saying whether (and if so, why) he changed his mind on most of the issues in his old book "The America We Deserve" (no, I won't give it an Amazon link), but it could be interesting, considering his one-note policy in his own campaign website. My conjecture is that his "anti-immigrant" emphasis is being used to build a base of both White Racists and Whites-Who-Don't-Want-To-Be-Seen-As-Racists and do so without mentioning the existence of Black People. And he could go far with that... all the way to the White House? It depends on how rotten America is at its very core, so I'll say 'maybe'.
posted by oneswellfoop at 2:22 PM on August 24, 2015


> With all the separation of powers, President Trump wouldn't have a completely free hand. It's one thing to be a little bit theatrical when campaigning; it's pretty likely that he'd govern a bit more moderately. For example, Obama campaigned theatrically ....

Wrong Presidential comparison. GWBush campaigned as a compassionate conservative, and look what we got.
posted by benito.strauss at 2:22 PM on August 24, 2015 [5 favorites]


Wrong Presidential comparison. GWBush campaigned as a compassionate conservative, and look what we got.

Yes - a whole lot of neocon empire building, not much classical conservatism, and minimal compassion.a

spinning up the war machine and demanding military action against Mexico. I give it about a 50% chance that somebody running for president will propose it. Hardliners will demand outright "boots on the ground" invasion and the moderate position will be limited airstrikes.

The medical doctor, Ben Carson, has proposed drone strikes as a tool to be used against illegal migration, I believe.
posted by theorique at 2:27 PM on August 24, 2015 [3 favorites]


If he wins, I'm thinking of taking the first flight off the planet. As THE DECIDER C-in-C with his beliefs, the rest of the world won't be too great either.
posted by infini at 2:28 PM on August 24, 2015


It's not perfect until Trump hosts a champagne and chandelier-themed fundraising dinner under the heading "Crystal Night."
posted by GuyZero at 2:31 PM on August 24, 2015 [39 favorites]


"Everything you've said has been right. Trump is a Frankenstein we created ourselves. Cooked up by 45 years of anti-abortion rhetoric, apocalyptic rhetoric, and cash for gold commercials."

And I'll bet he still ends up voting GOP.
posted by 2N2222 at 2:33 PM on August 24, 2015 [8 favorites]


y'all so fucked. i'll say it again: he's your next president.

And I will say it again as well, if you're willing to put your money where your mouth is. I'd bet you $500 USD Trump is not the next President.

And that, children, is how a little site called MeFi became the new InTrade way back in 2015.
posted by Xavier Xavier at 2:35 PM on August 24, 2015 [19 favorites]


He's not even trying to dogwhistle politics anymore, and gets a boost in popularity by doing so. To borrow a joke from The Simpsons... "Trump: Not racist, but #1 with racists!"
posted by fifteen schnitzengruben is my limit at 2:38 PM on August 24, 2015 [1 favorite]


In other "news"...
@FoxNews Donald Trump discusses the stock market turmoil and more TONIGHT on the @oreillyfactor at 8p ET

So FoxNews loves Trump once again.
posted by oneswellfoop at 2:38 PM on August 24, 2015


I hate Fox News, but the idea of Trump defeating them scares me in the way the thought of ISIS defeating Assad scares me.
posted by univac at 2:42 PM on August 24, 2015 [14 favorites]


@xavier, i was going to take you on, at decent odds (like, 10:1). but i just looked and a big uk bookies has him at about the same odds as jeb bush already. i should have done something sooner.
posted by andrewcooke at 2:44 PM on August 24, 2015 [1 favorite]


he's your next president.

Nah, I think he's running a false flag campaign on behalf of the Clintons.
posted by fuse theorem at 2:46 PM on August 24, 2015 [4 favorites]


So you'd take the bet on an outcome you're assuring us is inevitable, on the grounds that oddsmakers think he's not inevitable?

This is my surprised face.
posted by Xavier Xavier at 2:46 PM on August 24, 2015 [3 favorites]


they lash out at the poor and non-white and non-straight and let people who say they have a plan to fix it all rule over them

It has always been thus, and year after decade I shake my head at liberals who have always lived in such a deep blue bubble they have no idea the level of crazy bigotry still out in the country.

No matter how well-educated, many conservatives I encounter (or am friends with/related to) down deep seem to be a stream-of-consciousness-on-a-loop full of fear and/or anger about miscellaneous icky Different People!!! ruining things.

And between that and the GOP election trickery, I never count on having a big blue landslide across the country come election years.
posted by NorthernLite at 2:48 PM on August 24, 2015 [5 favorites]


Nah, I think he's running a false flag campaign on behalf of the Clintons.

BREAKING: White House spokesman says Obama's choice of Biden as VP indicates president's view of Biden's capability for presidency.
posted by infini at 2:48 PM on August 24, 2015 [2 favorites]


Trump is the American Berlusconi.
posted by joedan at 2:49 PM on August 24, 2015 [12 favorites]


Trump is the American Berlusconi.

Very true. I'm expecting a campaign ad from him like this one any day now. (The video is a clip from a documentary about Berlusconi's media manipulations in Italy.)
posted by dnash at 2:56 PM on August 24, 2015 [3 favorites]


Sangermaine: "What's being forgotten is the ugly side of populism. An angry population may also go the other route, and embrace bigotry and hatred and control, and I think it's already happening. People like Trump are the harbingers."

Quite a few years ago - around 2007 I think, this phrase came to me ... "The greatest enemy of 'The People' is the idea of 'The People'"

I quite often think that's true, and I think this sort of points to that.

I'm not saying populism is bad. I think we don't make progress without it, but I definitely think there are dark sides to it that need to be watched and checked.
posted by symbioid at 2:56 PM on August 24, 2015 [2 favorites]


CynicalKnight: At this point I will be a little surprised if the next Republican candidate debate doesn't devolve into a running gunfight.

feckless fecal fear mongering: what if they utterly destroy each other

That is what I'm predicting.
posted by brundlefly at 3:00 PM on August 24, 2015


According to Nielsen TV data through mid-January 2014, the average age of Fox News viewers is 68-years-old.

The average age of my mom, dad, uncle, and grandmother (who all leave Fox News on in the background all day long) is 67.75. I don't even know what to say.
posted by phunniemee at 3:01 PM on August 24, 2015 [2 favorites]


I don't believe that Trump actually has any organization on the ground. He may get a lot of attention from the media, but will caucus goers in Iowa vote for him? I think not. It reminds me of all the Hillary hype in 2008--she had lots of fanfare, and lots of money, but no party organization. Obama beat her by being better at campaigning. Let Trump win a primary, then I'll believe it's real. There were quite a few attention-grabbing nincompoops in 2012, too. Cain, Bachmann, Perry.
posted by feste at 3:05 PM on August 24, 2015 [3 favorites]


I'd bet you $500 USD Trump is not the next President.

Are those pre- or post-Prez-Trump USDs?
posted by a lungful of dragon at 3:07 PM on August 24, 2015 [4 favorites]


Pre. Because it's never going to happen. :D
posted by Xavier Xavier at 3:09 PM on August 24, 2015 [1 favorite]




Pre. Because it's never going to happen. :D

TrumpBux
posted by a lungful of dragon at 3:15 PM on August 24, 2015


I wonder how long until the actual honest-to-goodness irredentism comes out, and some Republican contestant starts making noises about some part of Mexico/Canada historically/spiritually/by-the-will-of-God really belonging to the United States and its present place outside the borders being an insult to America's honour, and vows to restore that honour and exalt America to its rightful glory, or something like that. Because that sort of rhetoric surely can't be far off.
posted by acb at 3:17 PM on August 24, 2015 [1 favorite]


Trump also wants to include your granny in the nursing home in the unemployment rate. After all, she IS unemployed.
posted by Existential Dread at 3:18 PM on August 24, 2015 [3 favorites]


Huh, so I got curious and went and looked at who Trump's campaign manager is. Turns out it is Corey Lewandowski.

According to that link, in 2011, Lewandowski went to work for Americans for Prosperity, which, in case you were not aware, is a non-profit "grassroots" lobbying/advocacy group founded by... David and Charles Koch.

He left Americans for Prosperity in late 2014, apparently at the invitation of Trump himself to do the initial start-up research for Trump's presidential run. I am wondering who else from Americans for Prosperity are part of the campaign team. That would be for some interesting reading.

I am currently trying to dig up any sources for who else is working on the campaign.
posted by daq at 3:18 PM on August 24, 2015 [21 favorites]


Just in case the current clown car occupants aren't enough, Bill "Eat a bag of salted dicks" Kristol has opined as to who ELSE he'd like to see in this race.

Kristol's picks for dark horse candidates include Mitch Daniels, Paul Ryan, Tom Cotton, Trey Gowdy, an unspecified "saner and sounder version of Trump," and... Justice Samuel Alito.

Yup.
posted by delfin at 3:19 PM on August 24, 2015


Basically for the last 8 years -- and probably a long time before that, but it really went runaway train with the Obama candidacy -- the Republicans have been playing out a kind of silent-movie-era gag about trying to get to each other's right, complete with rinky-dink piano score.

Now Trump has raised the game; where "right" has been replaced with a savory blend of assholery and Louie Gohmert-grade stupid-as-fuck wingnuttery. They're just trying to get some attention and not even thinking about the General election when they have to move back toward the middle. You can't get there from where they're all going. Even the American electorate will notice if you try.
posted by George_Spiggott at 3:23 PM on August 24, 2015 [4 favorites]


This thread is great because people get to use the same jokes they used in the last Hey Why Is Donald Trump Doing So Well In The Polls thread.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 3:23 PM on August 24, 2015 [10 favorites]


Brian Stelter

Min:sec on ABC/NBC/CBS nightly news since 8/6:
Trump 36:30
Bush 9:22
Kasich 2:29
Rubio 1:35
Carson :11
Cruz :03
http://cnnmon.ie/1JKbSzU
posted by andoatnp at 3:27 PM on August 24, 2015 [2 favorites]


lmao three seconds for Cruz? That pretty much breaks down to "Ted Cruz was also at the debate."
posted by cobra_high_tigers at 3:32 PM on August 24, 2015 [3 favorites]


On one network
posted by cobra_high_tigers at 3:32 PM on August 24, 2015 [1 favorite]


Don't tell me you've joined the Trump-is-plausibly-president caucus, (Arsenio)!
posted by Xavier Xavier at 3:36 PM on August 24, 2015 [1 favorite]


It's plausible that he wins the nom, which potentially gives him a chance at the top spot. It's nice that you're so dead sure, and I really hope you're right, and it is by no means a done deal that he cannot win it.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 3:37 PM on August 24, 2015


There's so much about all of this that disturbs me, but maybe the most troubling part is realizing just to what degree racism against Latinos is given a pass in the American psyche. Like it's a different animal or something.
posted by Navelgazer at 3:38 PM on August 24, 2015 [9 favorites]


(Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates: "This thread is great because people get to use the same jokes they used in the last Hey Why Is Donald Trump Doing So Well In The Polls thread."

YEAH METAFILTER IS BASICALLY THE CATSKILLS OF INTERNET HUMOR THREE SHOWS A NIGHT AND YOU'D GET PAID IN ROOM PLUS TWO TRIPS TO THE BUFFET IT WASN'T GREAT BUT WE WERE ALL MAKING OUR CHOPS SO WHAT DID WE KNOW

cobra_high_tigers: "lmao three seconds for Cruz? That pretty much breaks down to "Ted Cruz was also at the debate.""

And seriously, looking at Ted Cruz he's basically an angry wad of silly putty with "why-wont-you-sleep-with-me" sad eyebrows.
posted by boo_radley at 3:40 PM on August 24, 2015 [9 favorites]


Min:sec on ABC/NBC/CBS nightly news since 8/6:

I wonder if Trump gets as much airtime as he does, so as to let the networks put pressure on the other candidates to pay higher ad rates. Basically, a smaller supply of airtime ensures artificial scarcity, which in turn drives up the prices.

It's funny in a way. Trump is the ultimate representation of the modern GOP, going beyond racism, beyond sexism, and past bigotry, to the point of pushing every exploitative business ideal they promote and squeezing every last dollar out of them all.

If he's a mole for the Democrats, he should get a Nobel Peace Prize. Or maybe a humanitarian award from the UN, just to really fuck with the Republican fringe.
posted by a lungful of dragon at 3:43 PM on August 24, 2015 [1 favorite]


Trump's campaign website has exactly one entry under positions: Immigration Reform. There's nothing else on his site.

If you've made a habit of reading campaign web sites for, oh say the past 20 years or so, you'll have noticed that they go way, way out of their way to ensure that there are 0% actual political positions or details outlined or even mentioned anywhere on the site.

The sites are cleverly designed to be as near to content-free as humanly possible.*

By the standard the typical politician's web site of 2015, having even one actual position outlined in any detail is something rather unusual and amazing.

*Reason is that any actual stated fact or position gives people a concrete reason to vote against you. So you avoid anything like that, like the plague.

By contrast, flags, red-white-and-blue-happy-spouse-loving-children-standing-in-a-cornfield-with-a-tractor type stuff and maybe mentioning your political party a little here and there, plus the fact that you're upstanding, god-fearing, church-going, and lived whatever area you're supposed to be representing for $X decades/centuries/whatever will reassure those who agree with your platform that you're all over it, and maybe give those who would disagree with your position that general idea that you're a good guy/gal who they could sit down and drink a beer with, and maybe somebody they could like and vote for regardless of the niggling details of political platforms and all that.

In short, mentioning any particular political stance is all downside and no upside, whereas showing a picture of you and your grandchildren in front of a bunch of cows or whatever is all upside and no downside.

So on any given politician's website you get 0% of the one and 100% of the other.

posted by flug at 3:53 PM on August 24, 2015 [4 favorites]


I'm not saying populism is bad. I think we don't make progress without it, but I definitely think there are dark sides to it that need to be watched and checked.

Edwards: Why the big secret? People are smart. They can handle it.
Kay: A person is smart. People are dumb, panicky dangerous animals and you know it.
--MiB, QFT.
posted by The Bellman at 4:00 PM on August 24, 2015 [11 favorites]


I will give anyone 3-1 odds that Trump will not be elected president next year. memail to book.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 4:01 PM on August 24, 2015 [3 favorites]


I will give anyone 3-1 odds that Trump will not be elected president next year. memail to book.

Elected, or chosen by the Supreme Court?
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 4:03 PM on August 24, 2015 [5 favorites]


I'm pretty sure that the actually candidate nominated next year will be JEB!. He's a terrible candidate but so was Romney and he eventually got the nod.
posted by octothorpe at 4:08 PM on August 24, 2015 [3 favorites]




I think this is something the Left really misses. There seems to be this idea that the People are angry, and if we just awaken and empower the People, then we'll get social justice and progress.

Well doesn't Trump's success prove that this anger exists?

The sad thing about the establishment left is that it doesn't even try to tap into the populace's anger. Liberals aren't interested in popular mobilization. (Perhaps they're scared -- rightly so -- that the excited mob may turn on them for their complicity in the nation's sad state of affairs?)

What's being forgotten is the ugly side of populism. An angry population may also go the other route, and embrace bigotry and hatred and control, and I think it's already happening. People like Trump are the harbingers.

Well, that's why it's important to provide aggrieved people who are looking for answers a progressive ideology. It's possible, and it has worked in the past. But don't expect to see Obama, Clinton and their ilk on a street corner soap box anytime soon.
posted by Noisy Pink Bubbles at 4:12 PM on August 24, 2015 [3 favorites]


Yes, At the moment, Trump is having his time in the spotlight, but everyone seems to forget just how similar this is to 2012.

Click here for a look at 2012 polling. Perry, Kain (every inch as crazy & unqualified as Trump), Gingrich and Santorum all held the lead for a while, and then Romney took the nomination after barely ever leading in a poll. And they all held it in 2011, just like Trump is holding it now.

Of the also-rans Gingrich was the high water mark, at 35%. Trump is currently at 26%. And as this chart points out, Trump hasn't even been at the top of the polls all that long, relatively speaking.

Yes, he's a loud mouth. Yes, he's an expert at getting the media's attention. But if, right now, you think he's going to win anything, it's a hard case to make. Let him poll above 35%, or dominate the field for more than a month. Then it's time to talk about Nominee Trump.
posted by Frayed Knot at 4:12 PM on August 24, 2015 [20 favorites]


Don't tell me you've joined the Trump-is-plausibly-president caucus, (Arsenio)!

Far from it, friend. This thing is going to explode spectacularly; in the meantime I'm rooting it to go on for as long as possible.

My favorite two moments from the past couple of weeks were Trump saying 1) he gets his military advice from generals on TV; and 2) we need to restructure capital gains taxes because the hedge funds are making out like bandits.

He says the most wonderfully unRepublican things, and I cannot wait for voters to actually start listening to the things he says.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 4:15 PM on August 24, 2015 [11 favorites]


It's plausible that he wins the nom, which potentially gives him a chance at the top spot.

Yeah, I think it's very unlikely he will be President, but not impossible. As you say, if he manages to get the nomination (which I think will be tough _even_ if he had enough popular support, since I assume the behind the scenes guys will do everything they can to rig stuff against him), then he becomes a nonzero chance if the Democratic Party nominee self-destructs (especially if that happened in like October 2016 with no chance to recover). It would require several things to happen just at the right time for him, but its possible. I would bet against it though.
posted by thefoxgod at 4:26 PM on August 24, 2015


Click here for a look at 2012 polling. Perry, Kain (every inch as crazy & unqualified as Trump), Gingrich and Santorum all held the lead for a while, and then Romney took the nomination after barely ever leading in a poll. And they all held it in 2011, just like Trump is holding it now.

That is not at all what that shows. Romney held a clear lead from February until the end of August. Then came a series of short spikes from other candidates before the GOP returned to Romney. If you are looking at 2012 to as evidence that the guy leading in the summer before election year isn't going to make it, the data says otherwise. In fact, Romney's numbers at the same time in the cycle are very close to Trump's now, only (1) Trump will likely hold the lead longer (the Perry spike began around August 25) and (2) Trump is holding comparable numbers in spite of the fact that there are a lot of other options.

At this point, I have to believe Trump is a real threat. It's not likely that he's going to get more offensive than he already has, and it's not hurting him so far at all. Unlike some of the vanity candidates of the last cycle, Trump has no reason to quit. He's impervious to financial considerations. His ego, if nothing else, will keep him fighting. People keep saying that the party elders won't let it happen, but the party elders can't overrule an impassioned base that turns out to vote for him in the primaries. Sure, it might not happen, but there is nothing about the 2012 cycle that indicated it won't or can't.
posted by Pater Aletheias at 4:26 PM on August 24, 2015 [10 favorites]


Guys, you have to remember we are talking about modern Republicans. These are the folks who voted for W twice and then put up this billboard while Obama was trying to clean up the financial and military mess he left us. They don't think like you do.
posted by Pater Aletheias at 4:29 PM on August 24, 2015 [13 favorites]


“What Are The Gobshites Saying These Days?” Charles P. Pierce, Esquire Politics Blog, 24 August 2015
Being our semi-regular weekly survey of the state of Our National Dialogue which, as you know, is what Lennon and McCartney would have come up with, had they composed "Love Me Derp."
Which introduces Pierce's new nickname for Trump courtesy of Maureen Dowd: The Libidinous Visitor.

“Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders Are Calling for a Revolution,” Id.
posted by ob1quixote at 4:30 PM on August 24, 2015 [4 favorites]


Kristol's picks for dark horse candidates include Mitch Daniels, Paul Ryan, Tom Cotton, Trey Gowdy, an unspecified "saner and sounder version of Trump," and... Justice Samuel Alito.

Wow, that's interesting to me. Has anyone ever run for office after being made a Supreme Court Justice? Could you do it without resigning first? Because if you have to resign first I think we should do everything we can to get Antonin Scalia to run for President.


There's so much about all of this that disturbs me, but maybe the most troubling part is realizing just to what degree racism against Latinos is given a pass in the American psyche. Like it's a different animal or something.

My husband and I are reading Warlock and this is what the bad guys do: they cross the border and kill "greasers" and steal the cattle. I think there was a lot of that in the old West. I guess it was as easy as killing the native Indians because their brown skin made them less than human.

That's why Trump will never call for a wall between the US and Canada-- Canadians don't look different enough.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 4:35 PM on August 24, 2015 [3 favorites]


Every week Trump stays in the race gives us enough material for at least one attack ad against Jeb! (whom I still think will be the nominee, unless Mitt steps back in the race). The clip of Jeb! saying "anchor babies" is going to run on a loop, maybe accompanied by his "clarification" today that he was only talking about Asian immigrants (because that's somehow better...?).

But I also agree very strongly with Navelgazer -- way too many people are so busy LOLing at Trump that they don't seem to realize how acutely painful his open racism could be to immigrants and/or people with Hispanic roots. He's stirring up xenophobes in a pretty terrifying way. We should quit taking it lightly not because he's unlikely to be the nominee, but because it *already is* harmful to a hell of a lot of people.
posted by sallybrown at 4:38 PM on August 24, 2015 [17 favorites]


Romney held a clear lead from February until the end of August.

Here's this year.

Bush's lead is nowhere near as commanding at Romney's, but he held it from April until the end of July, until Trump took over. And Walker held it before Bush.

And you can also see that, while he's still out front, Trump is trending downward as we come up to the end of a month of All Trump All the Time.
posted by Frayed Knot at 4:39 PM on August 24, 2015


I am wondering who else from Americans for Prosperity are part of the campaign team. That would be for some interesting reading.

Daq, are you intimating that Kochs are doing an endrun around their own party since they can't can't control it?
posted by eclectist at 4:40 PM on August 24, 2015


The party comes in to play when voters have to get to the polls, and if Trump stays in till Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina, I will be very surprised. It's the nitty-gritty work, staffing offices, putting the real machinery in place that I don't believe Trump can do. He'll be real when we see more than carnival shows. You can't just "hire a guy." I think a lot of those guys already have jobs.
posted by feste at 4:40 PM on August 24, 2015 [1 favorite]


And, on non-preview, I agree with sallybrown 100%. Trump is a serious, serious problem. His success terrifies & sickens me.

But he's not going to get the nomination, never mind the Presidency.
posted by Frayed Knot at 4:41 PM on August 24, 2015 [1 favorite]


It appears I'm not the first person to notice Trump resembles "President Johnny Gentle" from David Foster Wallace's Infinite Jest.
posted by dnash at 4:41 PM on August 24, 2015 [4 favorites]


Saying this as a portend: You know we are going to have the Richard Nixon dollar next year.

(President G.W. Bush signed a bill to replace Sacagawea with 40 males and, eventually, with G.W. Bush).
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 4:44 PM on August 24, 2015


feste: "I don't believe that Trump actually has any organization on the ground. He may get a lot of attention from the media, but will caucus goers in Iowa vote for him? I think not."

He's hired a guy with actual on-the-ground experience and is organizing a ground game. My local democratic circles have been hearing a bit of gossip about midwestern Trump hires; we assume they're going to Iowa.

boo_radley: " looking at Ted Cruz he's basically an angry wad of silly putty"

Dude, no, he's Count Chocula.

Trump is sucking up so much air that we don't even get to talk about Ben Carson's apparently terminal case of Engineer's Disease. Dude is the Platonic Ideal of what Socrates was talking about in his apology.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 4:47 PM on August 24, 2015 [9 favorites]


It appears I'm not the first person to notice Trump resembles "President Johnny Gentle" from David Foster Wallace's Infinite Jest.
posted by dnash


Point of order: Trump has yet to twirl his mike around by its cord, or to close a press briefing with a showtunes medley. Yet.
posted by the phlegmatic king at 4:47 PM on August 24, 2015 [3 favorites]


sallybrown: "But I also agree very strongly with Navelgazer -- way too many people are so busy LOLing at Trump that they don't seem to realize how acutely painful his open racism could be to immigrants and/or people with Hispanic roots. He's stirring up xenophobes in a pretty terrifying way. We should quit taking it lightly not because he's unlikely to be the nominee, but because it *already is* harmful to a hell of a lot of people."

Yeah, my parents' Catholic church, in the rural south, was set on fire over the weekend by an arsonist. Everyone's hoping "meth head or bored teenagers" but everyone's secretly thinking, "racists getting het up about the GOP campaign coming after the 80% Latino immigrant Catholic church." It was right after Trump's swing through Alabama, and the anti-immigrant rhetoric in this campaign has ratcheted up SO. FAST. My parents are white professionals and like third-generation-ish Americans, but most of the people who go to their church are migrant laborers or recent immigrants from Latin America, many of whom speak limited English. They hear the rhetoric that's suddenly turned way up, and they're scared. Some of them want my parents to reassure them that America is not that crazy and America doesn't hate them and their children (my parents being their primary contact with "mainstream" America), and my parents kind-of don't know what to say. "Lots of Americans are awesome and accepting, but unfortunately there is a terrifyingly large number of wingnuts and around here they are mostly armed"? That's not reassuring.

My parents are life-long Republicans, but my dad voted Obama both of the last two elections, and my mom refused to vote McCain after he picked Palin. (I don't know who she voted for, or if she cast a vote for president. She is not an Obama fan.) They're both disgusted and angry about the GOP primary so far, and after the church arson ... well, cross your fingers for meth-heads. The alternative is too upsetting to contemplate.

I don't think Trump has a real chance at the nomination, but he's already done a great deal of damage that can't be undone.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 4:57 PM on August 24, 2015 [44 favorites]


I would like to ask all those people on the street who love Trump "because he tells it like it is" and "he speaks the truth" etc, etc, how do you envision a Trump presidency? How will he interact with heads of state? How will he interact with congress? What kind of legislation will he attempt to pass? Who would he put into his cabinet?

Watching clips of his rallies it appears as though most of his speechifying is about how everyone else is stupid and a loser. Especially Jeb Bush, he does love to put Jeb Bush down. Always to wild applause.



I can't get my head around wanting someone for President because they are rude and obnoxious.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 4:59 PM on August 24, 2015 [5 favorites]


“What Are The Gobshites Saying These Days?” Charles P. Pierce, Esquire Politics Blog, 24 August 2015

Ken Burns from that column:
The birther movement, of which Donald Trump is one of the authors of, is another politer way of saying the N word. It's just more sophisticated and a little bit more clever. He's 'other,' he's different. What's actually 'other' and different about him? It turns out it's the same old thing. It's the color of his skin."
posted by octothorpe at 4:59 PM on August 24, 2015 [2 favorites]


I can't get my head around wanting someone for President because they are rude and obnoxious.

It's the people who wanted to be best friends with the bully in middle school
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 5:12 PM on August 24, 2015 [3 favorites]


It's the people who wanted to be best friends with the bully in middle school

Or just were the bullies in middle school.
posted by Caduceus at 5:18 PM on August 24, 2015 [3 favorites]


I can't get my head around wanting someone for President because they are rude and obnoxious.

I couldn't get my head around "I'd rather sit and have a beer with G.W. Bush" either. Look how that turned out.

We've turned "running for President" into a reality TV show. It's not actual politics anymore, it's The Real Candidates of America.
posted by dnash at 5:18 PM on August 24, 2015 [11 favorites]


Trump is such a fascinating candidate, because other than the hugely racist attitude towards Hispanics, most of his suggestions have been startlingly progressive.
He's for single payer healthcare!
Supports funding Planned Parenthood! (except the abortion parts)
Wants to increase taxes on the rich!
Is barely religious!
And he still gets 30% of the vote! Which makes that much of the party hardcore racists?
posted by graventy at 5:27 PM on August 24, 2015 [4 favorites]




So it's Big Brother to elect Big Brother?
posted by delfin at 5:31 PM on August 24, 2015


Graventy, you're making the mistake of assuming that a demagogue with no recognizable ideology (short of self promotion) gives two shits about anything he's said in the past about policy.
posted by Xavier Xavier at 5:32 PM on August 24, 2015 [5 favorites]


The debates should be a series of pit fights, each ending when one candidate is killed, until only one is left.

Let's just do it in one go -- we'll call it The Great Outdoor Fight.
posted by aramaic at 5:32 PM on August 24, 2015 [10 favorites]


I feel like I should be more upset at all of this, but to be honest, I don't really feel much of an attachment to "Real America" where Trump and his kind play well.

I harbor no illusions that my vote will count for anything, given that I live in a safe-for-one-party urban center, and even though areas like mine contain the majority of the population, the way the government is set up is intensely broken thanks to Sherman's Great Mistake of 1787.

But I'll grin and bear it, I guess, as I have since I could start voting, even if it's an empty gesture.
posted by qcubed at 5:32 PM on August 24, 2015 [2 favorites]


I don't really see Trump's appeal as any mystery. The McCain crowd from '08 has been mad as hell and just getting madder for 7 years now. In this time, at no point have they been given any actual ideas or solutions, and their '12 candidate was Milquetoast Mitt. "Independent" candidates are very very compelling to a large portion of the Republican base (and I have to admit I admire that impulse... out of context, at least) and Trump is both embodying that and making his entire campaign be about, if not ideas or solutions, then telling a huge group of boiling-red-angry people which marginalized minority they should take out their anger on, and as I said above, it's a minority that the American media doesn't call anyone on attacking.

Does it matter that undocumented immigrants in the U.S. are a net positive for the tax and entitlements system? Apparently not. Does it matter that they are absolutely vital to the economic infrastructure of the country, such that nobody really has a good clean answer on what to do on this issue? Of course not - nuance is for wonks and liberals! Does it matter that the same people who saw a sea of children on rafts clinging to their lives and said, "no quarter here," are the ones singing "Christian values" to the rafters?* Consistency is the hobgoblin of small minds, I guess.

What matters, if you've been frothing with impotent rage, is having an outlet. Trump is giving them that, with a decades-on-television sheen.

*A ton of the people helping the refugees were also Christian. Probably a majority of those helping, actually. The world is large and varied and strange.
posted by Navelgazer at 5:34 PM on August 24, 2015 [8 favorites]


nuance is for wonks and liberals!

This is going to be the name of my next death metal band.
posted by Talez at 5:41 PM on August 24, 2015 [2 favorites]


Graventy, you're making the mistake of assuming that a demagogue with no recognizable ideology (short of self promotion) gives two shits about anything he's said in the past about policy.

A (god-forbid) Trump administration would be almost a total blank slate on actual policy. Which means he'd be open to every manner of Kochpublican fantasy white paper turned-Oh-hey-we-have-to-staff-this-administration-and-now-youre-the-Associate-Commissioner-of-the-Interior.
posted by T.D. Strange at 5:41 PM on August 24, 2015 [3 favorites]


boo_radley: METAFILTER IS BASICALLY THE CATSKILLS OF INTERNET HUMOR THREE SHOWS A NIGHT AND YOU'D GET PAID IN ROOM PLUS TWO TRIPS TO THE BUFFET IT WASN'T GREAT BUT WE WERE ALL MAKING OUR CHOPS SO WHAT DID WE KNOW

A violent argument erupts over who gets to be Shecky Greene.
posted by dr_dank at 5:42 PM on August 24, 2015 [2 favorites]


(Oh, and it's just gravy, of course, that Trump getting unlimited free media to make the race all about Immigration reform also puts JEB! into a hell of a fork. Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio are probably mostly okay - to the not-overtly-White-Supremacist part of the far-right, they are assimilated proof of the American Dream. JEB!'s wife is Latina, though. He speaks fluent Spanish. He's been relying on the Latino vote long before he ever announced. Trump's single issue is well chosen to snipe at the erstwhile frontrunner where he really can't afford to move rightwards at all.)
posted by Navelgazer at 5:42 PM on August 24, 2015 [1 favorite]


Does it matter that the same people who saw a sea of children on rafts clinging to their lives and said, "no quarter here," are the ones singing "Christian values" to the rafters?*

Yeah I was pretty confident that he would not get the nod because no way the Christian Right would ever vote for him. The man talks about watching hookers fuck. He has had 3 wives and countless mistresses. He has built several casinos. He is the whoremongering, greedy King of Sin City.

Then at his Alabama Pep Rally he announced that the Bible was his favorite book. I could be wrong about his lack of appeal to the Christian Right.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 5:43 PM on August 24, 2015 [1 favorite]




A (god-forbid) Trump administration would be almost a total blank slate on actual policy. Which means he'd be open to every manner of Kochpublican fantasy white paper turned-Oh-hey-we-have-to-staff-this-administration-and-now-youre-the-Associate-Commissioner-of-the-Interior.

I actually don't think Trump would bow down to the Kochs. He surrounds himself with subservient yes-men and always has, and part of his appeal is that he is unapologetically THE BOSS. He would appoint people on a whim and then refuse to listen to them and go with whatever his gut said that day. It would be like having a toddler play President. Except with real nuclear weapons.
posted by sallybrown at 5:50 PM on August 24, 2015 [12 favorites]


graventy: "And he still gets 30% of the vote! Which makes that much of the party hardcore racists?"

To be fair that's 30% of likely Republican primary voters who are willing to respond to phone polls. The only people who have opinions this far in advance of the primary are a) party stalwarts who stand for precinct committeeman and walk door-to-door and follow the politics closely and b) NUT JOBS. So basically all we have learned is that 30% of likely primary voters are COMPLETE AND TOTAL NUT JOBS, and since the floor for nut-jobbery in a general election is around 27%, 30% is not actually all that high for complete and total nut jobs this far in advance of a primary.

It's one of those things that really shows the limitations of "horserace" election reporting. Seventeen candidates is probably too many, but we should be hearing platform and policy proposals and learning about the candidates now, with only a minimum of polling reporting. But that kind of reporting is harder and candidates don't want to be pinned down to specific proposals this early, so we get horserace stuff.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 5:50 PM on August 24, 2015 [9 favorites]


Yeah I was pretty confident that he would not get the nod because no way the Christian Right would ever vote for him. The man talks about watching hookers fuck.

Newt Gingrich was married 3 times and having an affair at the same time as impeaching Clinton for the exact same thing, what's your point? That the Christian Right requires their alleged principles to be demonstrated daily by their political leadership? Man, that's a good one.
posted by T.D. Strange at 5:51 PM on August 24, 2015 [11 favorites]


I'm buying a lot of "Biden No" and "Trump No" over at PredictIt. The "Trump No" is because I just want to make money, and the "Biden No" is a hedge against what I truly want -- Elvira in the White House.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 5:54 PM on August 24, 2015 [4 favorites]


He would appoint people on a whim and then refuse to listen to them and go with whatever his gut said that day.

Probably day-to-day, but the Federal government is massive, the President can't weigh in on the hundreds of thousands of decisions that get made every single day. My point is that Trump has no policy staff, no network of advisers, no history of working with actual policy people to even know the landscape of 95% of the executive. All those people that make up a functioning administration have to come from somewhere, and that somewhere would be the rightwing fever swamp. Imagine Trump appointing whoever Jim Demint recommended as the director of the Congressional Budget Office, and Jeff Sessions' pick as Commissioner of Homeland Security.
posted by T.D. Strange at 5:56 PM on August 24, 2015 [1 favorite]


TD Strange, you don't think that Trump is a bit more out there with his Frat Boy personae? Gingrich, like most politicians gave at least the appearance of respectability and sober church-going businessman. Trump plays golf on Sunday and probably snorts blow off a hooker's back on Sunday night. He doesn't even pretend to be a good boy. Well, at least he didn't until he busted out that Bible thing.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 5:57 PM on August 24, 2015 [1 favorite]


omg that bible thing. can you even imagine the contempt Trump has for these people as he utters something that nakedly cynical? "look at these yokels just lap it all up!"
posted by indubitable at 6:01 PM on August 24, 2015 [11 favorites]


I would like to ask all those people on the street who love Trump "because he tells it like it is" and "he speaks the truth" etc, etc, how do you envision a Trump presidency? How will he interact with heads of state? How will he interact with congress? What kind of legislation will he attempt to pass? Who would he put into his cabinet?

One thing is that while Trump obviously relishes being a personality guy and a figurehead guy, he's run large organizations before, and "gotten things done". So he's not going to be as gonzo as people think. He might do the odd unpredictable thing, but there's a large federal bureaucracy that acts as a counterweight to anything too crazy. He will also be surrounded by a large and undoubtedly highly experienced staff.

I suspect he would interact with heads of state the same way he has worked with counterparties in business deals in the past.

I have no idea how he would interact with Congress - but I'm sure it would be interesting, and I'm sure he would shake up "business as usual".

Based on all this talk about illegal migration, I suspect his signature legislation (at least for a first term) would be expulsion of illegal aliens and building up border security to prevent further in-migration. This could obviously extend into other areas - for example, verification of citizen or lawful resident status for a range of public services. He would probably face a lot of resistance to this, much as Obama faced for Obamacare, so it would take a lot of work.

(In an unrelated matter, I hope he would withdraw troops from the ongoing efforts in Iraq and Afghanistan but since he hasn't discussed this too much, I'm not hopeful that his actions in this area would differ radically from the past couple of presidents.)
posted by theorique at 6:03 PM on August 24, 2015


How will he interact with heads of state? How do they interact now? When they sit down in front of the cameras at teatime, is that really how they interact? Do people think they just sit and reason politely and demurely with each other? Who believes this?

How will he interact with congress? Ever worked in the government? Lots of screaming, yelling, grandstanding, backbiting, personality clashes, intrigues, etc. It's like Game of Thrones except most of them aren't in good enough shape to fight with a sword. It's not for milquetoasts. He'd be fine.

What kind of legislation will he attempt to pass? Who knows? What kind of legislation will Jeb or Hillary pass? Like Trump says - they're puppets. They aren't writing their own legislation anyhow. And does anyone really believe their little 14-point plans on their websites bear any resemblance to what would happen should they be elected?

Who would he put into his cabinet? Who would Bush or Clinton put in there? Do you expect anything except more of the same? the spoils system, cronies, former and future lobbyists, etc. That's who gets in there under an establishment candidate.

Do you see how these questions are either irrelevant, red herrings, or both? How come "ignorant" redneck LumpenTrumpen get it but so many smart liberals don't? When what you want is a bull in a china shop, you don't care exactly what it breaks - just that it gets in there.

When a politician gets up in front of a teleprompter and reads off some script, or when he robotically answers all questions with scripted talking points that were emailed to him that morning - don't you ever get sick of it? Don't you just wish they'd cut it out and talk like a fucking human being? Remember when Obama accidentally said what he really thought, that Republican working-class families were made up of bible-thumping gun-clinging mouthbreathers? What if he just stood up and said it, and said "I meant it!" and wouldn't apologize or back down? Instead of what he did, I'm sorry, so sorry-ing, pathetically and falsely: "Obviously, if I worded things in a way that made people offended, I deeply regret that" - that apology wouldn't even fly on Metafilter! It's now how you worded it, it's the content! Anyhow, can you imagine? It's like that.

A lot of this Freshman 101-psychoanalyzing is really silly, the they want to be friends with the bully stuff. This is the thought process of Trump supporters, here's the deal: They don't believe what the GOP talking heads have to say, they don't care what "intellectuals" like Krauthammer and George Will think... Republican working class and other right-wing voters have been getting chumped over and over by their candidates. Trump speaks directly to them, in their language, about issues they care about. And (Taibbi gets at least this right) he doesn't engage in the puling, simpering, mendacious apology cycle that every single other politician does. He's not the best candidate, he's probably not even conservative! But why vote for Jeb when you know he'll just throw you under the bus, more of the same, like the rest of them have?

"He's mean and yells a lot." What do you think happens in high-stakes politics? Where $200,000 in lobbyist spending can yield millions and millions in profit - tea parties and patticake? Trump is so mean, he vanquished FOX in a single weekend! Who can stop Trump if not FOX? Even the mighty John Stuart couldn't manage that!

Trump/Sanders 2016!!
posted by mrbigmuscles at 6:09 PM on August 24, 2015 [12 favorites]


He will also be surrounded by a large and undoubtedly highly experienced staff.

I heard this before when it was something that people said to console themselves when GWB got elected. Didn't turn out well then, either.
posted by indubitable at 6:09 PM on August 24, 2015 [18 favorites]


My Pre-Trump $0.02 USD:
Trump sees this as working the biggest, baddest deal in the world. He has 16 competing 'vendors' on his side of the table, and on the other are the Media and , in one small seat over in the corner, the (R) voters. He's not worried about actually having to do the job at this point - that's for other people to handle after the deal is sealed. He's going to do what he's built his image/career on: win.

It doesn't matter that he doesn't have any positions. It doesn't matter that he answers a question both ways. It doesn't matter that he is transparently, beautifully narcissistic. It only matters that he 'wins the deal'.

When it becomes obvious that he's not going to 'win', or that his ego is no longer getting the appropriate up-and-down stroking motions , he'll call it a loss and walk away from the table. He doesn't want the presidency as much much as he needs the biggest win in the world. After that it's all details.
posted by HannoverFist at 6:10 PM on August 24, 2015 [4 favorites]


Secret Life of Gravy: "Yeah I was pretty confident that he would not get the nod because no way the Christian Right would ever vote for him. The man talks about watching hookers fuck. He has had 3 wives and countless mistresses. He has built several casinos. He is the whoremongering, greedy King of Sin City. "

Here's the thing about the Christian Right -- a lot of lefties thought that when Bristol Palin's daughter announced she was pregnant, the Christian Right would turn on the Palins, and were upset when they did not and took it as evidence of hypocrisy. But in fact premarital sex, gambling, divorce, teen pregnancy, etc., are red state problems in the United States -- the bluer your state, the more stable families typically are. So first of all, the Christian Right wants to talk a lot about solving divorce, solving teen pregnancy, etc., because those are the problems that they have, to a much more significant degree than blue states. My parents were blown away when they moved down south and all these thrice-divorced super-Christians with pregnant teenaged daughters were inviting them to come join their Baptist church and talking about Jesus non-stop. (They're like, "YOU'RE JESUSING WRONG!") Which segues to my second point: an awful lot of the Christian Right is super-religious and moralizing at everyone not because they're saints, but because they're sinners, struggling to cope with all these temptations and problems. ("Why don't they vote for blue state policies that actually seem to solve these problems?" is a totally different question and plenty's been written about it, i.e. What's the Matter with Kansas?) The Christian Right embraced Sarah Palin when they found out about Bristol's pregnancy because it is the kind of issue their families deal with and they recognize. They didn't see hypocrisy; they saw a family struggling with the same issues they struggle with. (And, in the only nice thing I will ever say about Sarah Palin, that family did a pretty damn good job backstopping Bristol and supporting her through the media firestorm.)

Donald Trump being the sinniest sinner who ever sinned is not necessarily a disqualifying problem! It might even make him more relateable and endearing! Yes, some of the Christian Right is going to be like "a man like that should not be standing for high public office." But some of it is going to say, "This is a man who understands what sin is like, he gets it, he will understand our problems, he will sympathize, he's been to Sodom and Gomorrah." Especially if he starts talking about a big conversion and how experiencing all that stuff made him see the light -- "I sinned and sinned and sinned, hit rock bottom, repented, and now look how awesome my life is" is such a foundational American story that it underpins not just the First and Second Great Awakenings, but Bill Clinton's rhetoric around his run for the presidency, GW Bush's run for the presidency, Billy Graham's entire ministry, 90% of inspirational football movies, the book "Unbroken," and every single episode of Behind The Music on VH1, which are all structured exactly like every single Protestant fall-and-redemption narrative in the history of America. (Everything's good; they write genius music and get famous and get too proud and too excited. The drugs get them after the first commercial break. Between the second and third commercial break they hit rock bottom. But in the last quarter-hour, something changes, they get clean, and they find redemption and new music that sells again.) If Trump starts talking like that -- and this "my favorite book is the Bible" stuff says maybe he will -- watch out. You will never, ever go broke selling Protestant redemption narratives to American audiences.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 6:11 PM on August 24, 2015 [144 favorites]


the Federal government is massive, the President can't weigh in on the hundreds of thousands of decisions that get made every single day.
Trump ran 4 corporations that filed for bankruptcy while he made a profiit. He may have (or THINK he has) a way to make that work for him with the U.S. Treasury.

All the people who say Trump "tells it like it is" and "speaks the truth" need to see my previous link by a very conservative cartoonist (the only public figure he made look more ugly and bloated was the late Edward Kennedy). Of course, The Truth is not in his repertoire. He has always been the embodiment of "fool all of the people some of the time and some of the people all of the time and that'll be enough".

The possibility of this being a Long Con is very real. He seeded his campaign with "his own money", that is LOANS to his campaign that went to expenses, the majority of which were from companies HE OWNS. If anybody can make a killing on a failed political campaign, he can (he did it with 4 failed corporations, remember?)
posted by oneswellfoop at 6:13 PM on August 24, 2015 [8 favorites]


Nnnnnnnope, the crazification factor's not nearly high enough to get him in the white house

I'm old enough to remember people saying exactly that about Reagan.
posted by flabdablet at 6:17 PM on August 24, 2015 [11 favorites]


an awful lot of the Christian Right is super-religious and moralizing at everyone not because they're saints, but because they're sinners, struggling to cope with all these temptations and problems.
...an awful lot of them are very simply hypocrites who are repulsed by honest answers to real problems

"Why don't they vote for blue state policies that actually seem to solve these problems?"
Maybe because they don't want the problems they're causing to get solved. Then they won't be able to get away with all their hypocrisy.
posted by oneswellfoop at 6:17 PM on August 24, 2015 [4 favorites]


Trump/Sanders 2016!!

OK, I'm officially super tired of this comparison/conflation. Their messages couldn't be more different; the only thing they have in common is that they aren't bought-off liars. It was an interesting point when Robert Reich first raised it, but it's since become a talking point to make Sanders look ridiculous.

Cornel West nailed it in his endorsement of Bernie Sanders the other day: Why I Endorse Brother Bernie and Reject Brother Trump. "Brother Bernie and Brother Trump are authentic human beings in stark contrast to their donor-driven opponents. Yet only Bernie has authenticity and integrity, whereas Trump is for real but not for right."
posted by dialetheia at 6:18 PM on August 24, 2015 [17 favorites]


But some of it is going to say, "This is a man who understands what sin is like, he gets it, he will understand our problems, he will sympathize, he's been to Sodom and Gomorrah." Especially if he starts talking about a big conversion and how experiencing all that stuff made him see the light -- "I sinned and sinned and sinned, hit rock bottom, repented, and now look how awesome my life is"

I agree with pretty much everything you said, Eyebrows McGee, but I just can't picture Trump being able to actually sell himself as a born-again (in spite of his record of being able to sell pretty much anything else).
posted by AlonzoMosleyFBI at 6:27 PM on August 24, 2015


but i just looked and a big uk bookies has him at about the same odds as jeb bush already.

That's not really the consensus though. Ladbrokes is probably one of the biggest bookies and their odds of a Trump presidency are currently 10/1, with Jeb at 4/1 and Hilary 1/1. He won't even win the primary, in which case there's a good chance he'll run as an independent, which is something I can definitely get behind. I might even consider donating to an independent Trump run!
posted by triggerfinger at 6:28 PM on August 24, 2015 [2 favorites]


I'm familiar with the appeal of a good redemption story however in order to have redemption you need to have a redeemer. Trump never talks about God. He never talks about Jesus. He doesn't proclaim himself a sinner and I don't believe he ever will because I don't think Trump's massive ego would ever allow him to say he has been wrong, but now sees the light.

Palin talked about God and Jesus all the time-- it was all part of her down home country girl schtick. Can you imagine Trump leading a prayer?

How will he interact with heads of state? How do they interact now? When they sit down in front of the cameras at teatime, is that really how they interact? Do people think they just sit and reason politely and demurely with each other? Who believes this?


There is a certain etiquette involved and a need for cultural sensitivity. Trump might be able to schmooze certain businessmen who hold similar backgrounds and interests-- that doesn't mean he would be able to carry on a meeting with the leaders of India or China or Mexico without coming across like a boor and a bully. George Bush at least tried to be ingratiating and polite. I can't imagine what Trump would do.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 6:29 PM on August 24, 2015 [2 favorites]


Their messages couldn't be more different; the only thing they have in common is that they aren't bought-off liars. It

Well, I'd settle for Sanders/Trump. He could be the Biden to Bernie's Obama. And isn't not being a bought-off liar a quality all its own? And anyhow, are you sure about that?

After all:
He's for single payer healthcare!
Supports funding Planned Parenthood! (except the abortion parts)
Wants to increase taxes on the rich!
Is barely religious!

and I'd add:
They both think immigration is bad for working class wages!
Employs more high-level women than men, and pays them more!
Both want student loan reform!
Bernie wants to stick it to TBTF banks, Trump personally stuck it to the banks, at least 4 times!

It goes on and on...

meeting with the leaders of India

He's already in. Think you can build a pair of multi-million dollar towers without dealing with the leaders of India? I won't bother with examples from China and Mexico, I'm sure they're legion and easy to enough to find on your own.
posted by mrbigmuscles at 6:37 PM on August 24, 2015 [4 favorites]


He's for single payer healthcare!
Supports funding Planned Parenthood! (except the abortion parts)
Wants to increase taxes on the rich!
Is barely religious!


That was in 2000, when he was running for the Reform Party nomination as a Moderate and lost to Pat Buchanan. He's not going to make those mistakes again.
posted by oneswellfoop at 6:44 PM on August 24, 2015 [3 favorites]


Petyr Baelish is on record as being in favor of Eddard Stark, Sansa Stark, House Tully in general, and in his tenure of Master of Coin was able to find money as if from nowhere.
posted by Navelgazer at 6:50 PM on August 24, 2015 [11 favorites]


Their messages couldn't be more different; the only thing they have in common is that they aren't bought-off liars.

Also the nativism.
posted by save alive nothing that breatheth at 6:50 PM on August 24, 2015


They both think immigration is bad for working class wages!

Not even close. That's an extremely generous understatement of Trump's disgusting overtly racist commentary, and a complete misreading of Sanders's position.
posted by dialetheia at 6:56 PM on August 24, 2015 [10 favorites]


Trump is Romney with personality. He can run the exact same playbook Romney used to get the GOP nomination in 2012.
posted by humanfont at 7:00 PM on August 24, 2015


He's mean and yells a lot.

Speaking for myself only here, but this sounds very much like something that would be said by a person who has never had to deal with the very real-world effects that words can have. When a person as influential as Donald Trump throws out some goddamn bullshit like - women on their periods, amirite?!? because Megyn Kelly asked him a completely reasonable question; when someone like him says something like that, it plays into a nasty narrative that society has about women being irrational/emotional/crazy, which in turn affects how all women are treated in their day-to-day life. And I hope I don't have to tell you that that is just one of the many, many little microaggressions that women have to deal with all the fucking time. And that these things affect women in real ways. And when you and Donald Trump and everyone else who supports him get all handwavey about how everyone is just so PC these days, you're absolutely denying the actual lived experiences of real people and ignoring the fact that words actually matter. They affect the social environment, they affect the social norms of people, and they affect how people actually act in reality.

Support Donald Trump all you want, but please stop acting like we lack the intellectual complexity to understand his appeal to his supporters or that we don't like him because our feelings are hurt or because we think he's just being mean. For fuck's sake.
posted by triggerfinger at 7:00 PM on August 24, 2015 [41 favorites]


AlonzoMosleyFBI: " I just can't picture Trump being able to actually sell himself as a born-again (in spite of his record of being able to sell pretty much anything else)."
Secret Life of Gravy: " I don't believe he ever will because I don't think Trump's massive ego would ever allow him to say he has been wrong, but now sees the light."

In my experience, much of (but not all of) the Christian Right is pretty respectful of "I'm spiritual but not religious." He may be able to swing it by talking about how he's had a conversion of thought without having to specifically talk about Jesus. Obviously Jesus is the bigger seller, but talking about repentance from former error may be good enough, especially if he talks about liking God of the Bible (but not necessarily Jesus of the Christianity).

But, again, I don't think he can get the GOP nomination, and some of that is because of his lack of religion (slash involvement in blatant "immorality"). I just think that if he starts telling redemption narratives, it will help him with that demographic. But his "negatives" in polling are far too high for him to get the nomination. He may just be able to bring over a few more neutrals and increase his positives.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 7:21 PM on August 24, 2015


Trump is pretty rotten generally, but if he splits off to a third party and ends up costing the conservatives the next election, basically becoming their Nader, I will love the Donald forever.

The conservative candidates have been flat-out ridiculous for a while now. I mean, they seem like sketch comedy characters, more than real people. Sarah Palin and the 999 guy and Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum and Ted Cruz and especially Trump, they all seem like broad, schticky characters who escaped from Mad TV somehow. (Not SNL or SCTV. Definitely Mad TV; they have that desperate, hacky, not ready for the Not Ready for the Primetime Players feel.) The stuff they say, the way they look and act, their crazy eyes and weird manners and goofy nonsense soundbites... You are now watching Mad TV.
posted by Ursula Hitler at 7:29 PM on August 24, 2015 [19 favorites]


And definitely Mad TV, definitely not 'MAD on Cartoon Network' which has done a pretty good of re-creating the magazine in animated form.
posted by oneswellfoop at 7:34 PM on August 24, 2015 [2 favorites]


Welp, despite all Trump's crazy opinions, at least he didn't vote for the Iraq War, a lapse in judgment so egregious that it should immediately remove one from consideration as the nation's top executive by all right-thinking citizens.
posted by king walnut at 7:40 PM on August 24, 2015 [5 favorites]


Trump's tweets tonight: first, he says he preferred Megyn Kelly's show while she was on (what he calls "unscheduled") vacation, and then he retweets a line calling her a "bimbo."
posted by sallybrown at 7:43 PM on August 24, 2015 [1 favorite]


He's for single payer healthcare!
"It works well in Canada," Trump said when pressed to explain his previous support for single-payer health-care systems, while saying that it wouldn't work well in the United States at this point.
Not exactly sounding like a champion of the cause there.

Supports funding Planned Parenthood! (except the abortion parts)

What the fuck does this even mean? In other news, The U.S. supports defending its allies, except for the parts that involve using the military.

Wants to increase taxes on the rich!
But Trump has not always stuck up for the less well off in his tax reform proposals.

As recently as 2011, in his book Time to Get Tough, he actually called for lowering the tax rate on capital gains income as well as dividends. He also called for eliminating the estate tax — which is already a massive giveaway to the wealthiest Americans — and getting rid of the corporate tax rate altogether.

He also proposed changing income taxes so that income over $1 million would only ever be subject to a 15 percent rate, while taxing lower incomes at 1, 5 or 10 percent, depending on the bracket. As Richard Phillips of Citizens for Tax Justice has written of the plan, “the lower tax rate structure would provide the wealthy with huge tax cuts.” Those plus the changes to the corporate tax rate, capital gains and dividends, and the estate tax would create a “multi-trillion dollar hole” in tax revenues, he added.

More recently, Trump has floated other tax reform ideas that could constitute a big benefit for the best off. In an interview with Time Magazine, he voiced support for a flat tax or fair tax. Different details of a flat tax would produce different results, but an analysis of one such plan put forward by Texas Governor Rick Perry (R) found it would raise taxes for Americans at the bottom of the income scale by $102 to $462, while reducing the tax burden for those making more than $1 million a year by about a half million dollars.
Is barely religious!

Separation of church and state should be a two-way street -- being religious should neither qualify nor disqualify anyone for the office.

Folks, please stop it with the credulous "Trump might govern from the center-left" horseshit. Just because he doesn't need the party apparatus to bankroll his campaign doesn't mean anything about his policy positions. Calling him "startlingly progressive" is either willful blindness or a sign of someone who started following politics last week.
posted by tonycpsu at 7:47 PM on August 24, 2015 [15 favorites]


Eyebrows McGee: ... the floor for nut-jobbery in a general election is around 27%.

I'm disappointed, but amused, that that link doesn't go to the immortal Crazification factor post.
posted by RedOrGreen at 7:52 PM on August 24, 2015 [8 favorites]


BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. — With Donald Trump’s presidential bid generating news as well as comedy gold, Stephen Colbert is itching to get his share of the laughs once he returns to the air Sept. 8 as host of CBS’ “The Late Show.”
“Every night I light a candle that he stays in the race until Sept. 8,” Colbert says. “But I also hope that nobody gets that candle too close to his hair.”

In the meantime, off the air and with no venue, “I’m just dry-Trumping,” Colbert added...
posted by jjwiseman at 8:00 PM on August 24, 2015 [4 favorites]


1. Who would he put into his cabinet?
2. Trump might be able to schmooze... [but] that doesn't mean he would be able to carry on a meeting... without coming across like a boor and a bully.

I met Donald Trump once, which is obviously not enough exposure to draw any meaningful conclusions. But the experience suggests to me that #1 above is the bigger problem. The setting: a large NYC financial institution with numerous conference rooms and someone assigned to keep track of them. My group was in a meeting when suddenly the doors burst open and there's Donald Trump and his team along with a very confused conference room booker. Our two groups had been assigned to the same room. The booker hustled off to figure it out.

Trump's group--a flock of 25-30 year old men with nearly identical corporate mufti and grooming--immediately went into high dudgeon, competing with each other to express indignation about how "Mr. Trump" was being treated, the evident incompetence, etc. The word "outrage" was bandied about. But Trump himself was fine. He made small talk with us, asked about our project (we had architectural drawings spread around) without pretending to already know about it and stayed calm. Meanwhile the minions were claiming turf by suggesting that we pack up so we could vacate the premises more quickly.

The booker returned with a new room assignment for the Trump group. The minions went into yet more competitive dick swinging, asking questions designed to make sure that "Mr. Trump" was getting the best one. It was insanely juvenile. Trump ignored all of it, which is the king's prerogative of course, but he wasn't obnoxious at all and made cordial goodbyes.

But. Trump chose to surround himself with these horrible people--toadies and sycophants, every one, and not too bright either--and let them ride roughshod over everyone in the vicinity... for a clerical error none of us caused. He had to be rewarding or at least encouraging that kind of behavior or it wouldn't have been the minions' default setting. Shudder.

Note: Trump's daughter, Ivanka, who I think is a legitimate business talent, wasn't there. I wouldn't have recognized either of his sons.
posted by carmicha at 8:17 PM on August 24, 2015 [31 favorites]


Slightly off-topic, but the best description I've heard so far for Ted Cruz is: "looks like a crooked mortician in cowboy boots."


Trump, of course, will always be "Fuckface von Clownstick" to me.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 8:22 PM on August 24, 2015 [5 favorites]


Whether you agree with his politics or not, "President Fuckface von Clownstick" rolls off the tongue rather nicely.
posted by davelog at 8:28 PM on August 24, 2015 [6 favorites]


lattiboy: His message from 5 days ago: "Everything you've said has been right. Trump is a Frankenstein we created ourselves. Cooked up by 45 years of anti-abortion rhetoric, apocalyptic rhetoric, and cash for gold commercials."

I was looking for some reviews of Trump's campaign versus Ross Perot's, and found Talking Points Memo's write-up titled Is Donald Trump The New Ross Perot? Not Quite. This isn't surprising, but the article includes some interesting points on Trump's prior stances versus what he says now:
While Senor is right that Perot is best remembered for his “nationalist and protectionist” policies, including curbing illegal immigration and opposing free trade, Perot was surprisingly liberal on a number of issues. He supported abortion rights; Trump used to be pro-choice, but is now pro-life. He promoted higher taxes, specifically on wealthy Americans, as part of his ambitious plan to reduce the deficit. He emphasized the need for more education funding; Trump emphasizes school choice. He argued against the right to own machine guns; Trump has supported some gun control in the past, but now does not. Perot also made a striking plea for stricter environmental regulation (Trump’s disdain for the environment is one of the only constants in his long public career) and proposed large cuts in defense spending (Trump proposes the opposite).
He's not the only Republican candidate to become more conservative to appeal to the vocal conservatives (and get more attention in the process), only to change again when it suits him. I wonder how much of the Trump Show is just a show for ratings, which happens to boost his polling.

In other words, Trump is a self-made Frankenstein('s monster), who changes his message to cater to the crowd. He's riding the momentum created by the GOP, but what he's said has changed over time.
posted by filthy light thief at 8:29 PM on August 24, 2015 [5 favorites]






Man, I sure wish R. Crumb's Trump takedown from Hup comics was online. It's full of Crumbian lefty outrage and includes delights like Trump getting a "swirly" from a couple of amazons.
posted by Ursula Hitler at 8:54 PM on August 24, 2015 [2 favorites]


filthy light thief: I'm reminded of two separate Dan Carlin bits (both of which I will paraphrase because damn)

From his Common Sense podcast: That as crazy as both Clinton and Bush made Perot look on the issue in the '92 campaign, Perot was right about how NAFTA would work out.

From his Hardcore History podcast: A story about a teacher or professor he had in high school or college, who was German and had lived through the rise of the Third Reich, and showed the class videos of Hitler's early speeches, which the class laughed at a bit. The Teacher reportedly responded that yes, the little man shouting in that shrill voice is funny, if you aren't German, because that was German fascism, and fascism wraps itself up in the iconography and national identity of wherever it takes root, and so American fascism would look different, and be clad in the image of John Wayne or the like.
posted by Navelgazer at 8:58 PM on August 24, 2015 [10 favorites]


Let's see Hillory do this.
posted by idiopath at 9:23 PM on August 24, 2015 [6 favorites]


Let's see her do that to the Republicans in Nov 16.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 9:26 PM on August 24, 2015 [2 favorites]


I just hope we start to think about serious candidates like Sanders over pro wrestler wannabies and Iraq War voters.
posted by a lungful of dragon at 10:01 PM on August 24, 2015 [3 favorites]




My conjecture is that his 'anti-immigrant' emphasis is being used to build a base of both White Racists and Whites-Who-Don't-Want-To-Be-Seen-As-Racists and do so without mentioning the existence of Black People.
As a nation, we began by declaring that 'all men are created equal.' We now practically read it 'all men are created equal, except negroes.' When the Know-Nothings get control, it will read 'all men are created equal, except negroes, and foreigners, and Catholics.' When it comes to this I should prefer emigrating to some country where they make no pretence of loving liberty--to Russia, for instance, where despotism can be taken pure, and without the base alloy of hypocracy.
-- Abraham Lincoln
posted by kirkaracha at 10:31 PM on August 24, 2015 [14 favorites]




Anyone wanting to stop "illegals" from entering the US is a racist, pure and simple. Without migrants, this country gets a lot less done, and pay a lot more for what does get done (which we should see happens anyway). Unless you're an indigenous American (and not 3% Cherokee or whatever that silliness is), we're all migrants.

That this is even an issue that can be played by politicians is a sad statement about our society.
posted by maxwelton at 12:10 AM on August 25, 2015 [3 favorites]




Anyone wanting to stop "illegals" from entering the US is a racist, pure and simple.

Suggesting that people should cross the border lawfully and be interviewed by a USCIS agent, and that all workers hired should be checked to make sure they have the legal right to work in the country, is racist.
posted by theorique at 3:45 AM on August 25, 2015 [4 favorites]


A retrospective on the presidency of Donald Trump.

This article missed out his first US/UK summit with Prime Minister Corbyn. They didn't get along.

(Corbyn's a rough British equivalent of Bernie Sanders, Much to everyone's surprise, he has a very good chance of winning the Labour Party leadership and hence becoming one of the country's two rival candidates for PM next time around. These are interesting times on both sides of the Atlantic.)
posted by Paul Slade at 4:28 AM on August 25, 2015


In my experience, much of (but not all of) the Christian Right is pretty respectful of "I'm spiritual but not religious."

They're less antagonistic to people who do not overtly reject Jesus and Christian fundamentalism, or who do not stand in the way of Dominionist efforts to insert Christianity into secular life. Not the same as "respectful." At all.

See how far being "spiritual" gets any politician if they refuse to let fundamentalist sacred cows be imposed through legislation on non-Christians against their will. The moment (t)Rump refuses to accept that Creationism should be taught as science, comes out as pro gay-rights, pro-choice, pro-equality and pro-anything else that threatens the fundies, they'll attack him.
posted by zarq at 4:35 AM on August 25, 2015 [2 favorites]


Suggesting that people should cross the border lawfully and be interviewed by a USCIS agent, and that all workers hired should be checked to make sure they have the legal right to work in the country, is racist.

This is not what is being suggested by any GOP candidate, though. Their policies range from building a wall and treating certain nations worse than others for no reliably factual reason (ineffective, expensive, racist) to full-on repeal of the 14th Amendment, drone strikes, and the return of slavery (even more ineffective and expensive, cruel, morally horrifying).
posted by zombieflanders at 5:20 AM on August 25, 2015 [6 favorites]


The moment (t)Rump refuses to accept that Creationism should be taught as science, comes out as pro gay-rights, pro-choice, pro-equality and pro-anything else that threatens the fundies, they'll attack him.

It's going to happen soon, and it's going to be fantastically fun to watch.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 5:20 AM on August 25, 2015 [3 favorites]


Without migrants, this country gets a lot less done, and pay a lot more for what does get done (which we should see happens anyway).

See, this is where emotion runs up against logic and loses. Supply and demand rules. More labor, lower wages. Imposed wages, fewer jobs. You can't have it both ways.* This is why Bernie was (for a time) tough on immigration, he saw it as a problem for the local working stiff.

As an aside, I worry that incessant charges of racist are going to erode the power of the word and not to good effect. "Fine, okay. Racist. Now get out of my face."

*(I understand that the White House econs claim the opposite to be true, that the US economy is booming because of immigration. Other econs are refute this and I doubt the man in street believes it. Econs in any event are dime a dozen and have the enviable position of never being called to account for failed predictions.)

The moment (t)Rump refuses to accept that Creationism should be taught as science,

I wouldn't be so sure. He's got one thing right - stay on message. Reagan did the same thing. No more than three issues, max, and keep hammering home. Whether this issue can stay hot for the next year is an open question, but I think he's got the strategy right. What, by contrast, do the Democratic candidates stand for? Or any of the other Republicans, for that matter?
posted by IndigoJones at 6:00 AM on August 25, 2015 [2 favorites]



(Corbyn's a rough British equivalent of Bernie Sanders, Much to everyone's surprise, he has a very good chance of winning the Labour Party leadership and hence becoming one of the country's two rival candidates for PM next time around. These are interesting times on both sides of the Atlantic.)


Which may make him Britain's Gough Whitlam. Or Salvador Allende.
posted by acb at 6:07 AM on August 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


This article missed out his first US/UK summit with Prime Minister Corbyn. They didn't get along.

Indeed they didn't.
posted by acb at 6:13 AM on August 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


I just finished Richard Wright's Native Son, and my edition has a neat thing where Wright explains how he developed the book.

Since it was written in WWII era, Wright was fascinated with fascism and how one could see the roots of fascism in America. He wrote about people being terrified of losing what they have, and as a result they demonize the other and look for a leader that will get rid of the other. He wrote about it in terms of the character Bigger (the black man who murders two women) and how race issues lead to a similar sort of fear that wants a leader to beat back the other.

Anyway, I guess it isn't surprising that with changing demographics, you're going to have a Trump-style phenom. With changing demographics, people are scared.

I don't know, I just thought that we'd have a less ridiculous fascist.
posted by angrycat at 6:28 AM on August 25, 2015 [7 favorites]


I don't watch Fox much but with CNN Breaking News currently the Trump channel I clicked a few spot checks and saw not the briefest mention of the donald. Also not one for conspiracy theories but the intense coverage by the "liberal" network gives pause that perhaps Trump is a false flag candidate.
posted by sammyo at 6:29 AM on August 25, 2015


As an aside, I worry that incessant charges of racist are going to erode the power of the word and not to good effect. "Fine, okay. Racist. Now get out of my face."

He is Actually Racist. Has said things that are in fact, Actually Racist. Has done things that are in fact, Actually Racist.

Calling someone racist when he is indisputably, beyond a shadow of a doubt an Actual Racist is not going to "erode the power of the word."
posted by zarq at 6:33 AM on August 25, 2015 [23 favorites]


> According to Nielsen TV data through mid-January 2014, the average age of Fox News viewers is
> 68-years-old. No candidate needs Fox News.

But we're all going to live (and vote) for another 80 or 90 years. Ha, surprised you!
posted by jfuller at 6:34 AM on August 25, 2015


When Alabama cracked down on illigal immigrants farmers let crops rot in the fields as they were unable to pay Americans to do that work.
posted by the man of twists and turns at 6:44 AM on August 25, 2015 [9 favorites]


The conservative candidates have been flat-out ridiculous for a while now.

A lot of us thought that in 2000, too. Look what happened.
posted by winna at 6:47 AM on August 25, 2015


Calling someone racist when he is indisputably, beyond a shadow of a doubt an Actual Racist is not going to "erode the power of the word."

And for reasons both ethical and grammatical, the insistence of using the word "illegals" is definitely racist. There's also very good arguments as to why "anchor babies" is pretty damn racist, too.
posted by zombieflanders at 6:56 AM on August 25, 2015 [7 favorites]


I wouldn't be so sure. He's got one thing right - stay on message. Reagan did the same thing. No more than three issues, max, and keep hammering home.

Cato the Elder he ain't.

If Trump were to restrict his focus on the economy and only the economy, he'd do better with the public and his current party. He might even manage to get the GOP nom. His candidacy announcement focused on foreign and domestic economic issues, and many of his stump speeches do as well. But social issues are his perennial third rail, and he does not know how to keep his trap shut about them.

Whether this issue can stay hot for the next year is an open question, but I think he's got the strategy right. What, by contrast, do the Democratic candidates stand for? Or any of the other Republicans, for that matter?

Quite a bit. While Trump's circus sideshow has been dominating the airwaves, Democrat and Republican hopefuls have been making speeches and statements about policies and the issues that he's flubbing, or ignoring entirely.
posted by zarq at 7:00 AM on August 25, 2015


As an aside, I worry that incessant charges of racist are going to erode the power of the word and not to good effect. "Fine, okay. Racist. Now get out of my face."

Maybe you could let us know when it's okay to use the word? If Donald freaking Trump doesn't pass your test, then I'm assuming it has to involve a racial slur, or possibly a noose.
posted by tonycpsu at 7:10 AM on August 25, 2015 [3 favorites]


Meanwhile, Jeb! Bush ties himself in knots trying to out-Trump Trump.
posted by tonycpsu at 7:17 AM on August 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


As an aside, I worry that incessant charges of racist are going to erode the power of the word and not to good effect. "Fine, okay. Racist. Now get out of my face."

I posted about this on the "Cuckservative" thread. I'm definitely seeing more and more a trend of people online responding to the charge of "you're being racist" or "what you said is racist" with some variation on "OK. And?". I think there are a few different reasons for this.
posted by theorique at 7:17 AM on August 25, 2015 [2 favorites]


Meanwhile, Jeb! Bush ties himself in knots trying to out-Trump Trump.
posted by tonycpsu

[...]

Jeb Bush Clarifies What He Meant By "Anchor Babies": "Frankly, It's More Related to Asian People"


Absolutely bizzare.
posted by rosswald at 7:22 AM on August 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


Jeb Bush Clarifies What He Meant By "Anchor Babies": "Frankly, It's More Related to Asian People"

Absolutely bizzare.


That is what flop sweat sounds like. It will be amazing to watch whichever Republican wins the nomination try to swing back to the middle.
posted by Elementary Penguin at 7:28 AM on August 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


So who would be the best running mate? Carly for the female? Ben for the ethnic vote? Sure won't be Jeb!
posted by sammyo at 7:34 AM on August 25, 2015


Trump attacks Jeb. Considering the topic, one would think that a guy is so devoted to vilifying illegal immigrants would latch onto the issue with both hands. I guess Trump is only concerned about Mexicans. Other groups who game the system are apparently okay.

There isn't really any debate whether a Chinese birth tourism industry exists. It does, and specifically targets Hong Kong, Canada and the US. It even has its own Wikipedia page. Every Congressional session, some CongressCritter introduces legislation to abolish the US' automatic citizenship by birthright rule. This year, it's Senator David Vitter. Republican leadership never bites. But DHS has been cracking down this year.
posted by zarq at 7:37 AM on August 25, 2015 [2 favorites]


I can't hear Jeb! without hearing Crow or Servo sing out Jeeeeeeeeeeeeeeb! What was that, The Giant Spider Invasion? Jeeeeeeeeeeb!
posted by angrycat at 7:38 AM on August 25, 2015 [5 favorites]


Poor Jeb!. This was supposed to be his year!
posted by Elementary Penguin at 7:45 AM on August 25, 2015 [2 favorites]


'Welcome to Maternity Hotel California' (Rolling Stone--Wenner wrote that title personally)
posted by box at 7:52 AM on August 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


There's been a slow trickle of news coverage about Trump's decision to accept donations, albeit not from those he deems to be lobbyists or special interests, through his Make America Great AgainTM organization. As word gets out to the faithful, will it tarnish some of the luster?

He's also turning hedge fund managers into this election cycle's demonized profession; see also, rapacious trial lawyers and faceless bureaucrats.
posted by carmicha at 7:55 AM on August 25, 2015


He's got one thing right - stay on message. Reagan did the same thing. No more than three issues, max, and keep hammering home.

Tony Blair's chief spin-doctor, a guy named Peter Mandelson, used to call this process "punching the bruise". His point was that it's only when a politician is sick to death of parroting any given slogan that he can hope that slogan might just be starting to make the tiniest mark on most people's consciousness. To make it stick requires doubling down on the repetition yet again, and that's what Mandelson meant by "punching the bruise".
posted by Paul Slade at 8:35 AM on August 25, 2015 [3 favorites]


Holy moly, Jeb! is HORRIBLE at this. How did he ever win any race at all?!
posted by sallybrown at 8:39 AM on August 25, 2015 [3 favorites]


Jeb Bush Clarifies What He Meant By "Anchor Babies": "Frankly, It's More Related to Asian People"

Absolutely bizzare.


Man, it's good to know that I was an anchor baby before it was cool. Then again, mom was actually in the country legally, but then shit happened and well.

Fuck you, Jeb.
posted by qcubed at 8:50 AM on August 25, 2015 [2 favorites]


Holy moly, Jeb! is HORRIBLE at this. How did he ever win any race at all?!

florida_tag.jpg
posted by Xavier Xavier at 8:52 AM on August 25, 2015 [9 favorites]


Holy moly, Jeb! is HORRIBLE at this. How did he ever win any race at all?!

He's winning the white race.
posted by GuyZero at 9:22 AM on August 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


If Trump isn't in this to win it, I just might be convinced his role is to knock Jeb! out.
posted by drezdn at 9:24 AM on August 25, 2015


"When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in a toupe and carrying a chip on its shoulder."
posted by symbioid at 9:31 AM on August 25, 2015 [9 favorites]


Am I naive in thinking this is still not a big deal? I'm with Eyebrows in seeing all this furor confined to a minority within one party (and it being the party with the smaller base); if somehow Trump carries the Republican nomination (which... won't happen), the Democrats could put a cabbage on the ticket and most voters would still swing their way.
posted by psoas at 10:00 AM on August 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


Roger Ailes Calls on Donald Trump to Apologize for Megyn Kelly Criticism.

GOOD EVENING. TONIGHT ON 'IT'S THE MIND', WE EXAMINE THE PHENOMENON OF DEJA VU. THAT STRANGE FEELING WE SOMETIMES GET THAT WE'VE LIVED THROUGH SOMETHING BEFORE, THAT WHAT IS HAPPENING NOW HAS ALREADY HAPPENED.
posted by sparkletone at 10:07 AM on August 25, 2015 [3 favorites]


If Trump were to restrict his focus on the economy and only the economy, he'd do better with the public and his current party.

I agree with this. I generally ignore most of Trump's bloviating, but during the debate, what he said about bankruptcy was spot on and probably the only thing I agreed with him on (on the other hand, his statement about health care was rambling, all over the place and kind of nonsensical, so). He would really need to reign himself in and show a lot more self-control if he were ever to be a serious contender and I don't actually think that's possible for him. It seems to go against the very core of who he is, which is first and foremost a showman. I think that a person needs to have a bit of showmanship in them to run for the presidency, but it really needs to be tempered by at least some measure of diplomacy and I have never seen any evidence that Trump has that, at all.

Also, thanks to (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates for mentioning PredictIt upthread. A politics betting site to take the place of InTrade? Yes, please!
posted by triggerfinger at 10:08 AM on August 25, 2015 [2 favorites]


*Maybe you could let us know when it's okay to use the word?

You miss my point. I was not discussing Trump, I was discussing economics. And psychology in general. (See Theorique's comment.)

There are plenty of arguments against large scale immigration that have nothing to do with race (even Bernie Sanders acknowledges this, as did Cesar Chavez before the 1988 amnesty) and it's disingenuous to suggest otherwise. So to haul out the racist insult when it does not necessarily apply simply erodes the word's value when it does.

Basically, ad hominem attacks (like sarcasm) may be emotionally satisfying , but they are not a good strategy for truly winning hearts and minds. And it comes at a price.
posted by IndigoJones at 10:18 AM on August 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


So to haul out the racist insult when it does not necessarily apply simply erodes the word's value when it does.

Can you give an example of when it has been used and doesn't apply?
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 10:23 AM on August 25, 2015 [3 favorites]


You miss my point.

No, I think your point was well taken, it's just that you blamed others for being too "emotional" compared to your logical assertion that was apparently so obvious that it was completely unsupported and discounted in advance any evidence against it as biased.

So to haul out the racist insult when it does not necessarily apply simply erodes the word's value when it does.

I think ample proof of actual racism in relation to the points being made has been offered, so I'm puzzled to how it doesn't apply here.

Basically, ad hominem attacks (like sarcasm) may be emotionally satisfying , but they are not a good strategy for truly winning hearts and minds.

It's not an ad hominem attack to point out that a racist argument is based on racism, especially when you haven't even offered up a long-discredited piece from the Heritage Foundation or somesuch to bolster what you're saying.
posted by zombieflanders at 10:35 AM on August 25, 2015 [4 favorites]


He's already in. Think you can build a pair of multi-million dollar towers without dealing with the leaders of India? I won't bother with examples from China and Mexico, I'm sure they're legion and easy to enough to find on your own.

Yeah, given that the current leader of India is Modi, the current leader of Canada is Harper, the current leader of Russia is Putin, the current leader of Israel is Netanyahu, a hypothetical Trump presidency would simply be the U.S. catching up to with the rest of the world in terms of electing an inflammatory strongman to power.
posted by Apocryphon at 10:36 AM on August 25, 2015 [13 favorites]


There are plenty of arguments against large scale immigration that have nothing to do with race (even Bernie Sanders acknowledges this, as did Cesar Chavez before the 1988 amnesty) and it's disingenuous to suggest otherwise. So to haul out the racist insult when it does not necessarily apply simply erodes the word's value when it does.

You posted in a thread about Donald Trump in the midst of an ongoing conversation about his nativism and xenophobia. If you intended to make a more general argument divorced from his specific appeals to racism, then it's your job to make that clear, not our job to read your mind.
posted by tonycpsu at 10:46 AM on August 25, 2015 [5 favorites]


This article missed out his first US/UK summit with Prime Minister Corbyn. They didn't get along.

The Daily Mail is on the case! Awfully.
posted by Apocryphon at 10:48 AM on August 25, 2015


>> The conservative candidates have been flat-out ridiculous for a while now.

> A lot of us thought that in 2000, too. Look what happened.


Sigh, 1980.
posted by benito.strauss at 10:54 AM on August 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


zarq: " But DHS has been cracking down this year."

This led me down a rabbit hole of reading about birth tourism, to students from China at US Universities, to eventually ending up at this Chinese ranking of world universities, which is basically the US News rankings, but for China, and very influential there ... it's like a mirror-world university ranking where your liberal arts programs count for SHIT, so Dartmouth ranks below Colorado State and just above Florida State, Yale's fallen out of the top 10, and the Universities of Michigan and Wisconsin outrank NYU, Duke, and Northwestern. The rankings count Nobel Laureates, Fields Medalists, publications in "Science" and "Nature," how many of 3,000 highly-cited researchers are on your staff, and total count of papers in the science citation index. Having an ag school pushes you waaaaaaay up the rankings (it counts ag in with life sciences), accounting for the many amusing elevations of US cow-town schools into the elite stratopshere, but literally nothing in the liberal arts counts at all, and you seem to suffer quite a hit for not having a med school. Search the list for your alma mater and smirk because someone appreciates how great your school is or scoff because the ranking totally misunderstands the purpose of a university education.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 10:58 AM on August 25, 2015 [17 favorites]


That link would make for a good different FPP, because it would open multiple cans of worms: 1) the increasing American emphasis on STEM yet 2) American tech being obsessed on hiring H-1Bs, while 3) many foreign nations, esp. Asian ones, having favored STEM all along, thus leading us to ask 4) how do these cultural differences arise, 5) liberal arts vs. STEM, 6) BRICS vs. the West, 7) the rise (and recently, fall) of the Chinese Century, 8) American universities increasingly being dependent upon international students to pay 9) exorbitant amounts of tuition, 10) the shift of academia from being about classical educations and the cultivation of the human spirit into job training centers for big business.
posted by Apocryphon at 11:11 AM on August 25, 2015 [10 favorites]


Also it could explain what color the sky is in the universe where Penn State outranks Carnegie Mellon?! Seething.
posted by Elementary Penguin at 11:14 AM on August 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


Yes, let's panic. In the last election cycle, the Republican candidate who was the frontrunner at this time was Michele Bachmann, who was polling at 23 percent, and, my God, she destroyed all the other Republican candidates and then demolished Obama, and her presidency has been one for the history books.
posted by maxsparber at 11:16 AM on August 25, 2015 [6 favorites]


I don't think Trump is necessary the fire, but he is the smoke before the flame. I've said it before and I'll say it again: the left needs to figure out how to connect with the people. That TNR article earlier does really cool historical coverage of Hofstadter’s work and foibles, but the author spends most of the time focusing on that, after handily dismissing Trump's rise as a localized phenomenon. Seems like Heer's making Hofstadter's same mistake, in reverse- focusing on the academic work of elite intellectuals, instead of examining the mass movement in detail.
posted by Apocryphon at 11:26 AM on August 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


Also it could explain what color the sky is in the universe where Penn State outranks Carnegie Mellon?! Seething.

I'm a graduate of the former and current employee of the latter, so this is an interesting question. Looking at their methodology, it appears some of the components simply count the number of citations or papers published by authors affiliated with the institution, which means the rankings would tend to get skewed toward larger schools.
posted by tonycpsu at 11:27 AM on August 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


Bachmann / Palin 2016
posted by zarq at 11:27 AM on August 25, 2015


Trump will do what he says "Because it's on his hat."

He's totally nailed the novelty-hat-trusting demographic.
posted by fifteen schnitzengruben is my limit at 11:29 AM on August 25, 2015 [11 favorites]


Sarah Kendzior tweeted: "Danger of Trump is not so much a win, which is unlikely, but the mass platform that allows inflammatory lies to circulate"
posted by exogenous at 11:57 AM on August 25, 2015 [4 favorites]


Impotence/Rage 2016
posted by Existential Dread at 12:52 PM on August 25, 2015 [8 favorites]




Comparing Trump to any of the Republicans who led in the polls for 15 minutes in 2012 is as stupidly premature as believing The Donald has it all locked up. The fact that he has stayed 'on top' for this long in the face of multiple 'should-be-fatal gaffes' is befuddling the keepers of the Conventional Wisdom who, based on past patterns, still believe the "GOP Establishment" will pick the nominee. Of course the Conventional Wisdom never saw Carter, Clinton or Obama coming, but that's the Democrats and they've had a good record with the GOP since after Reagan. Still, the rise of the Billionaires since the Tea Party and Citizens United cannot be underestimated, and an ultimate face-off between Trump and The Koch Chosen One seems more likely than Brother Bush being even in the running after the first primaries.
posted by oneswellfoop at 1:13 PM on August 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


Read the comments.

From the comments:

"I'm sick of bad, anti-American leadership from a wanna be dictator. At least, Trump, unlike Obama, doesn't want to create the basis for a one party dictatorship by allowing the rest of Mexico, and all places south, to illegally invade the USA."

I think it'll be okay. After all, no one who is that breathtakingly, mindnumbingly stupid could possibly be capable of operating a voting machine.
posted by zarq at 1:22 PM on August 25, 2015 [2 favorites]


2004 called and wishes to disagree with you, zarq
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 1:24 PM on August 25, 2015 [12 favorites]


Ye gods, we're fucked.
posted by zarq at 1:26 PM on August 25, 2015 [4 favorites]


GOP pollster’s legs ‘shaking’ after Trump focus group

Ha! And that's not just any pollster, that's Frank Luntz.

There are some amazing gems in that article, and by 'gems' I mean I'm launching myself into space if Trump gets elected: "We know his goal is to make America great again,” another woman said. “It’s on his hat. And we see it every time it’s on TV. Everything that he’s doing, there’s no doubt why he’s doing it: it’s to make America great again."

I mean, come on, guys, what more is there to know? It's on his hat.
posted by dialetheia at 1:26 PM on August 25, 2015 [11 favorites]


From Golden Eternity's article:

"We know his goal is to make America great again,” another woman said. “It’s on his hat. And we see it every time it’s on TV. Everything that he’s doing, there’s no doubt why he’s doing it: it’s to make America great again.”

Well, I mean of course, if it's on his hat.
posted by the phlegmatic king at 1:26 PM on August 25, 2015 [7 favorites]


damn you, dialetheia
posted by the phlegmatic king at 1:27 PM on August 25, 2015 [2 favorites]


Ha! And that's not just any pollster, that's Frank Luntz.

And David Duke just gave Trump his sieg heil endorsement.

I don't know. I'm all for making fun of Trump butter faces, but when the Ron Paul brownshirts jump ship and pledge their allegiance to someone this high in the polls, maybe it's time to rethink this buffoon's buffoonery.
posted by a lungful of dragon at 1:28 PM on August 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


I mean, come on, guys, what more is there to know? It's on his hat.

Well, I mean of course, if it's on his hat.

Malibu Trump with NEW hat!
posted by Talez at 1:28 PM on August 25, 2015


Well, I mean of course, if it's on his hat.

obligatory
posted by tonycpsu at 1:29 PM on August 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


Note to self: buy hat with GIVE ME MONEY on it. Walk around Trump events.
posted by Xavier Xavier at 1:30 PM on August 25, 2015 [6 favorites]


I'm all for making fun of Trump butter faces

whaaaaaaaaargarbl it's not bloody butter it's bloody margarine butter is made from cows or sheep or goats it's not butter ffs whaaaaaaaaaargarbl
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 1:30 PM on August 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


I do not like Trump even a tiny bit, but if he's made Frank Luntz queasy, he's done an inadvertent good deed.
posted by the phlegmatic king at 1:30 PM on August 25, 2015 [3 favorites]


Trump has said something to the effect of "you know how long it's been since America's military has had a real victory?"
Yes, it was when we wiped out two cities with two bombs in 1945. THAT's making America great.
posted by oneswellfoop at 1:30 PM on August 25, 2015



whaaaaaaaaargarbl it's not bloody butter it's bloody margarine butter is made from cows or sheep or goats it's not butter ffs whaaaaaaaaaargarbl


WE* FOUGHT WARS OVER THIS!

*We == the people of Wisconsin.
posted by drezdn at 1:40 PM on August 25, 2015


"We know his goal is to make America great again,” another woman said. “It’s on his hat. And we see it every time it’s on TV. Everything that he’s doing, there’s no doubt why he’s doing it: it’s to make America great again."

It's got what plants crave. It's got electrolytes.
posted by rocketman at 1:50 PM on August 25, 2015 [12 favorites]


The truly scary thing about Black Monday
The scariest thing about Black Monday wasn’t the stock market fluctuations. Those will hopefully be temporary enough in the United States. No, the scariest thing was how one day of financial volatility was enough to make four presidential candidates — Christie, Sanders, Trump, and Walker — say really stupid things about the Chinese economy and the Sino-American relationship.
posted by peeedro at 1:52 PM on August 25, 2015 [2 favorites]


Comparing Trump to any of the Republicans who led in the polls for 15 minutes in 2012 is as stupidly premature as believing The Donald has it all locked up.

But they didn't just lead the polls briefly. This wikipedia page shows the polls from mid-2011 and for the entire summer, Romney was in first place almost every single week and Perry was in second a majority of the time, occasionally switching places with Michele Bachmann. Bachmann actually jumped into first place in several polls throughout June and July. Trump only started polling as a possible front-runner this year in mid-July.

I listened to a podcast yesterday where Nate Silver was interviewed and he said that polls at this stage are all but meaningless and he gives Trump around a 2% chance of becoming the GOP nominee. He says that what's happening with Trump has happened before and is actually pretty predictable. Here are his "Six Stages of Doom":

Stage 1: Free-for-all
Stage 2: Heightened scrutiny
Stage 3: Iowa and New Hampshire
Stage 4: Winnowing
Stage 5: Delegate accumulation
Stage 6: Endgame
posted by triggerfinger at 1:53 PM on August 25, 2015 [4 favorites]


All these "make America great again" people. I'd like some details on their definition of "great" and why, specifically, they believe America isn't it anymore. Because people have been whinging that whinge since Archie Bunker and before. And I think it's usually code for "back when the blacks knew their place and the gays stayed in the closet and the women stayed in the kitchen barefoot and pregnant."

Either that or it's a more benign, if still ignorant "the country was great back when I was a little kid and not involved enough with the world of adults and politics to have any idea what was actually happening."
posted by dnash at 1:57 PM on August 25, 2015 [14 favorites]


So, how do I wind up with that 2 percent estimate of Trump’s nomination chances? It’s what you get3 if you assume he has a 50 percent chance of surviving each subsequent stage of the gantlet (sic)

Basically, Nate Silver is flipping a coin at each stage — by flipping a fair coin, he admits he has no (statistical) information that informs Trump's odds at any step. I'm surprised Silver would publish a piece where he says he has literally no idea what will happen.
posted by a lungful of dragon at 2:00 PM on August 25, 2015


And I think it's usually code for "back when the blacks knew their place and the gays stayed in the closet and the women stayed in the kitchen barefoot and pregnant."

Winner, winner, chicken dinner.
posted by Talez at 2:01 PM on August 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


If I wanted to make a quick buck, I'd start selling hats saying "MAKE AMERICA WHITE AGAIN".

Or if I wanted to make an honest buck, "MAKE AMERICA GREAT... FOR ONCE"
posted by oneswellfoop at 2:04 PM on August 25, 2015


these people are basically wishing that we could go through the Great Depression again and then fight a war against sophisticated existential threats. Plus, Jim Crow! Yeah, that sounds GREAT.
posted by angrycat at 2:04 PM on August 25, 2015


Basically, Nate Silver is flipping a coin at each stage — by flipping a fair coin, he admits he has no (statistical) information that informs Trump's odds at any step. I'm surprised Silver would publish a piece where he says he has literally no idea what will happen.

What he's doing is being extremely generous to Trump by offering him 50-50 odds to get through each stage of the nomination process, but still pointing out that the product of all those chances (0.5 x 0.5 x 0.5 x 0.5 x 0.5 x 0.5 ≈ 0.02) means that this particular outcome is still very highly unlikely.

Also, I must contest your use of [sic]; that is a perfectly standard use of "gantlet."
posted by psoas at 2:13 PM on August 25, 2015 [3 favorites]


these people are basically wishing that we could go through the Great Depression again and then fight a war against sophisticated existential threats. Plus, Jim Crow! Yeah, that sounds GREAT.

One out of three. They want to go back to 1950 not 1930. They want to be part of the greatest generation in the greatest time in America's history. The generation that beat the shit out of those kraut Nazis. The generation that beat the Soviets to the moon. We built infrastructure! It was an investment in America! Back to a time where a man could come out of school, get an honest job and afford a house, a car and two kids and not have to worry about healthcare costs, gas costs, college costs for their kids.

I mean apart from the patriarchy and racism getting back to 1950s America probably doesn't sound like a bad deal. And when you're a white male guess what you don't give a shit about? I'll give you a hint. It sounds like matriarchy and patriotism.
posted by Talez at 2:18 PM on August 25, 2015 [3 favorites]


If Trump isn't in this to win it, I just might be convinced his role is to knock Jeb! out.

This is not an implausible possibility.

From New York Magazine:

While Trump assured me that he thinks Bush is “a nice person,” he has told friends in private that his animosity is personal. According to one friend, Trump blames Bush and Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim for Univision’s decision in June to cancel a $13.5 million contract with Trump to televise his Miss USA pageant. Five days later, Slim scrapped a deal with Trump to develop shows in Mexico. Trump responded by filing a $500 million lawsuit against Univision. “Trump believes it all goes back to Jeb,” the friend says. “He thinks Jeb and his wife, Columba, are close with Carlos Slim and Univision got pressure from Slim operatives.” In a move that further confirmed Trump’s suspicions, Univision has hired Miguel Estrada, a Washington lawyer with deep Bush ties.

When — if? — Trump withdraws from the campaign, he will no longer have a ready landing pad on television. (His Apprentice deal with NBC has been canceled, too.) This is a prospect that is likely terrifying for Trump — and should, in turn, be terrifying for Bush. In a recent phone call with a longtime friend who has been acting as an informal adviser, Trump warned: “If I’m going down, then Bush is going down with me. He’s not going to be president of the United States.”

posted by permiechickie at 2:26 PM on August 25, 2015 [9 favorites]


All these "make America great again" people. I'd like some details on their definition of "great" and why, specifically, they believe America isn't it anymore.

Details aren't the point. A slogan like that is a Rorschach ink-blot for what you think is wrong and what you want to fix.

Of course, we can guess that since DT is running on a "reduce illegal immigration" platform, most of the people who would vote for him have a conception of "great" that would suggest "fewer illegal aliens".
posted by theorique at 2:41 PM on August 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


dnash: And I think it's usually code for "back when the blacks knew their place and the gays stayed in the closet and the women stayed in the kitchen barefoot and pregnant."

That's it exactly. Same thing as, "I want our country back!"
posted by brundlefly at 3:00 PM on August 25, 2015 [2 favorites]


As much as I hate the stupid red hat he's wearing all the time, and the clearly racist undertones and overtones, "MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN" is a simple and seemingly positive message. It allows people to feel like they are supporting something rather than hating against something. Whereas backing Bush means backing, what, exactly? Or Cruz? Or whichever other nameless, bland and forgettable candidate? The vagueness of "MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN" lets it embody whatever a potential voter wants, be it greater economic opportunity, or greater feelings of safety, whether their fears are other countries, other religions, or immigrants. When Trump stokes those fears, there's his stupid hat to bring back a hope and a positive association.

Trump comes across as a buffoon and an bloviator to most of us that are paying attention, but do not think for a second he does not know exactly what he's doing, or that this amount of support is just some fluke.

Think of high school classroom politics, because that's what's going on. Trump washes the floor with all the other Republican establishment in that sort of game. Trumps's starting out as the person that everybody knows (from reality TV or absurd 80s antics), and has some amount of popularity and name recognition. Everybody else in the primaries is starting from a disadvantage as a bit player on the side of the scene. And because Trump always has the witty comeback, or the aggressive tone, or the snappy soundbite, he's not let anybody get a bit of an edge on him. Or he has an absurd proposal delivered with such outlandish confidence that people stop and go, "hey, why not?" without realizing that there are lots of very good reasons for why not if you actually knew anything about policy.

When the media reports are all about the horse races---who's expected to do well, who gossiped about who, what feud is going on, who's cool and who's not---rather than actual policy, Trump's strategy wins.
posted by Llama-Lime at 3:20 PM on August 25, 2015 [3 favorites]


I thought the hat was to protect the hair from wayward, y'know, gusts of wind when getting on and off helicopters and whatnot.

Seriously, I'm pretty sure I read that someplace.
posted by box at 3:40 PM on August 25, 2015


A little update from the same person I mentioned upthread. I kept the Facebook formatting this time:

"Did you read [Frank] Luntz's article?

Basically he said after conducting several focus groups of trump supporters...he said there is no effective attack that can be launched against him

Said he's never seen anything like it in 30 years

Basically trump could get caught fucking a goat and his supporters wouldn't budge a fucking inch

Unless a shit ton of candidates GET OUT of this field and the establishment coalesces around one single alternative

We are wholly fucked

This shit is for real
"

Here's a link to the article he was referencing. Although to my knowledge Luntz is basically a celebrity at this point and no real pol has used him in decades.
posted by lattiboy at 3:47 PM on August 25, 2015 [2 favorites]


Surely this...

Trump ejects Univision reporter from press conference
posted by goHermGO at 5:17 PM on August 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


David Duke Endorses Trump: ‘He Understands The Real Sentiment Of America’

@ABC: "Trump tells Jorge Ramos 'go back to Univision' after he asks question w/out being called on; security escorts him out"

@ninguna: "Several of his fans on Twitter are saying Trump 'deported' Ramos to the parking lot."

Trump, Hillary are distant relatives, experts say
“John of Gaunt, 1st Duke of Lancaster, married Katherine Swynford, Duchess of Lancaster, and John and Katherine are Donald and Hillary’s shared 18th great grandparents,” reports “Extra.”

Author A.J. Jacobs, who studied the Geni.com research, told the television program of the two 2016 hopefuls, “Their 19th great grandfather is King Edward III so there is precedent for ruling a country; it’s in their genes.”
posted by Golden Eternity at 5:24 PM on August 25, 2015 [2 favorites]


John of Gaunt, 1st Duke of Lancaster, married Katherine Swynford, Duchess of Lancaster, and John and Katherine are Donald and Hillary’s shared 18th great grandparents,” reports “Extra.”

Great. The Wars of the Roses. Just what we need.
posted by Huffy Puffy at 5:30 PM on August 25, 2015 [2 favorites]


Huffy Puffy: "Great. The Wars of the Roses. Just what we need."

But think of the fantastic multi-volume grimdark epic that will get written about the campaign in 500 years when an author adds dragons and zombies to political machinations and, BAM, bestselling series AND top holocast of the year!
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 6:42 PM on August 25, 2015 [5 favorites]


Uneasy is the head that wears a toupee.
posted by Huffy Puffy at 6:49 PM on August 25, 2015 [5 favorites]


The mummer's hairpiece
posted by Apocryphon at 6:50 PM on August 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


In the game of trumps, you win, or you're a loser, a jerk, a real piece of work, get out of my hotel.
posted by cortex at 7:31 PM on August 25, 2015 [9 favorites]




If Trump reminds me of any fictional president, it'd probably have to be Buzz Windrip. Let's hope that level of success remains fictional.
posted by feloniousmonk at 8:28 PM on August 25, 2015 [2 favorites]


I wouldve gone with President Comancho
posted by T.D. Strange at 8:49 PM on August 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


David Duke Endorses Trump: ‘He Understands The Real Sentiment Of America’

You know what they say about great minds!
posted by andoatnp at 8:53 PM on August 25, 2015


After a quick search it looks like no one has yet asked Edwin Edwards for his thoughts on the endorsement but I'm looking forward to the answer.
posted by Room 641-A at 11:29 PM on August 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


Just for the record, I made my previous comment about selling hats saying "MAKE AMERICA WHITE AGAIN" as a JOKE, and BEFORE the David Duke endorsement, but dang, it's looking like a pretty good business opportunity now!
posted by oneswellfoop at 11:48 PM on August 25, 2015


T.D. Strange: Trump trolling Jeb! with his own mom is kind of fantastic.
"Trump, the current GOP front-runnner for the nomination, and Bush have exchanged several barbs recently."
See what happens when you start exchanging Barbs?
posted by taz at 1:04 AM on August 26, 2015 [9 favorites]


I'm getting caught up on China IL and here's Brad Neely's depiction of "Trump's Kid" drinking limoncello.
posted by edeezy at 1:38 AM on August 26, 2015 [1 favorite]


So to haul out the racist insult when it does not necessarily apply simply erodes the word's value when it does.

Can you give an example of when it has been used and doesn't apply?


Trump is apparently giving voice to a segment of the populace that feels ignored and taken for granted, especially within the GOP - average, white, mainstream America. Since the mid-1960s there have been demographic shifts in the US population, through legal and illegal migration, away from white, and toward a variety of different ethnic groups, foremost among which is (Spanish-speaking) mestizo.

From an election strategy standpoint, the Republicans are in a bind and have been for years. Republicans only poll well among whites, and disastrously poorly among pretty much every nonwhite minority group [1]. Projections suggest that whites will lose a numerical majority around 2040. All other things being equal, Republicans will find it harder and harder to win national elections again unless efforts are made increase the white percentage of the electorate.

Increasing ethnic diversity through importing new voters is a crucial component in the Democrats' election strategy and has been for decades: The 1965 Immigration Reform Act promoted by President Kennedy, drafted by Attorney General Robert Kennedy, and pushed through the Senate by Ted Kennedy has resulted in a wave of immigration from the Third World that should shift the nation in a more liberal direction within a generation. It will go down as the Kennedy family’s greatest gift to the Democratic Party. (Patrick Reddy, Democratic Party consultant, 1998)

Maybe noticing this kind of thing and speaking frankly about it is 'racist', but I would be extremely surprised if "real talk" like this was not used extensively in political strategy meetings at municipal, state, and federal election races across the country.

[1] This gives rise to the joke: "What do you call a black guy at a CPAC conference?" "The keynote speaker"
posted by theorique at 3:40 AM on August 26, 2015 [1 favorite]


If Trump reminds me of any fictional president, it'd probably have to be Buzz Windrip. Let's hope that level of success remains fictional.

I forget who I'm stealing this joke from, but I'm waiting for Trump to pull a Dead Zone and use a toddler as a human shield or something.
posted by brundlefly at 3:56 AM on August 26, 2015 [2 favorites]


South Carolina will keep Trump off the primary ballot if he doesn't pledge not to run a 3rd party campaign.
posted by Chrysostom at 5:27 AM on August 26, 2015


Basing an immigration conspiracy theory on a quote from an utterly obscure "consultant" writing decades after the law commented on was passed is remarkably weak. Especially when googling reveals that that supposedly democratic consultant writes a column for pjmedia, a conservative news outlet.

That theory also ignores the fact that Hispanic voters were and are thought to be a swing demographic, making the electoral motivation for one party to increase their share of the electorate murky at best. And the theory absolves the Republican party of responsibility for its increasing unpopularity with Hispanic voters - they're natural Democrats because they're from the third world, not because of decades of Republican racist demagoguery against them.
posted by burden at 5:37 AM on August 26, 2015 [11 favorites]


The generation that beat the Soviets to the moon. We built infrastructure! It was an investment in America! Back to a time where a man could come out of school, get an honest job and afford a house, a car and two kids and not have to worry about healthcare costs, gas costs, college costs for their kids.

And the tax rate on the wealthy was 84%.
posted by Gelatin at 5:51 AM on August 26, 2015 [6 favorites]


And the tax rate on the wealthy was 84%.

You think wealthy people back then paid 84% taxes? The 84% was for the upper middle class who couldn't access the tricks the wealthy have. Don't want to pay CGT? Just take a loan using shares as collateral and use that instead. Want to reduce your tax bill? 31 days prior to a share sale grab an identical number of some under water shares you have, buy a put, sell a call, then 30 days later sell those under water shares. Boom! You can use that loss to offset your CGT gains without changing your position!

Income tax is for suckers and the upper middle class. My wife and I pay more % of our income in taxes than any of the super rich. The super rich only pay enough tax so the IRS doesn't have to come after their heads on behalf of the rest of the country.
posted by Talez at 6:07 AM on August 26, 2015 [1 favorite]


You think wealthy people back then paid 84% taxes?

I would hope nobody here thinks that, considering that's not how a tiered progressive income tax system works.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 6:55 AM on August 26, 2015 [13 favorites]


You think wealthy people back then paid 84% taxes?

Doubtless the effective tax rate was lower, but if the wealthy weren't paying higher taxes back then, there wouldn't have been, and continue to be, the decades-long campaign to keep lowering taxes on the rich -- not just income taxes, but also capital gains, corporate taxes and the rest. The anti-tax fervor is so pervasive and total that Republicans simply can't propose raising taxes, ever.

And as the current supply-side debacle in Kansas demonstrates, it isn't because low taxes on the rich work economic magic. There is an effect of constantly lowering taxes on the rich, but it's hardly the one they advertise.
posted by Gelatin at 7:02 AM on August 26, 2015 [8 favorites]


Masters in Business: Nate Silver of fivethirtyeight.com

Two hour podcast at ritholz.com. Lots of sports stats but if you are also interested in sports stats you won't mind drifting through that to get to the discussion of Hillary's .85 P (nomination) and Trump's .02 P (nomination).
posted by bukvich at 8:32 AM on August 26, 2015


> I'm surprised Silver would publish a piece where he says he has literally no idea what will happen.

I know. It's so weird to see an actual honest statistician who will say that the data they currently have has no statistically reliable predictive power. I like it.
posted by benito.strauss at 8:52 AM on August 26, 2015 [7 favorites]


Bobby Jindal: No, I'm Not An 'Anchor Baby'.

It's always an ambivalent feeling for me. I wish the stupid racist stuff would go away, but seeing someone who thought they could use it to their own advantage have it turned against them feels very like a twisted form of justice.
posted by benito.strauss at 9:03 AM on August 26, 2015 [3 favorites]


> I'm all for making fun of Trump butter faces, but when the Ron Paul brownshirts jump ship and pledge their allegiance to someone this high in the polls, maybe it's time to rethink this buffoon's buffoonery.

Yeah, this shit is not funny.
posted by The Card Cheat at 9:45 AM on August 26, 2015 [1 favorite]


From Trump ejecting Jorge Ramos:
Trump quickly defended Ramos' ejection, claiming that he had nothing to do with the move.

"I didn’t escort him out. You’ll have to talk to security, whoever security escorted him," Trump said. "He just stands up and starts screaming, so maybe he’s at fault also."

"He was out of order. I would take his question in two seconds, but he stood up and started screaming," Trump continued later. "He’s obviously a very emotional person."
wow, those hot-blooded latins, huh? is there any amount of race baiting of Hispanics that doesn't get a pass in American politics?
posted by indubitable at 9:54 AM on August 26, 2015 [3 favorites]


Donald Trump eerily reminds me of the Greg Stillson character in Stephen King's "Dead Zone".
posted by Hairy Lobster at 9:56 AM on August 26, 2015


He's funny to watch but he scares the fuck out of me.
posted by Hairy Lobster at 9:56 AM on August 26, 2015


So with Charlie Daniels shitting on the Republican Politicians and David Duke praising trump - is it going to be Trump/Duke or Trump/Daniels?
posted by symbioid at 1:24 PM on August 26, 2015


I remember (is it that long ago?) that Republicans thought they could get the Latino population into their fold because so many of them were Catholic and "social conservatives", pointing at the Evil Democrats' support of Evil Abortion, among other things. But even now there exists quite a few (a 'bloc'?) long-naturalized or American-born Hispanics who seriously dislike the "Aliens" (the naturalized for 'having it easier than I did' and the born-here for 'getting me lumped in with them'). Not to mention those of Cuban and other Latin American background who consider themselves 'better than the Mexicans' (especially the deeply anti-Commie Cuban Exiles). If Trump united all them in opposition with his "deport 'em all" rhetoric, it could be very good news for the Demos.

But the charge that the Demos support "Illegals" in order to build their voter base is classic John Birch Society disinformation. I am saddened to see it used in this discussion.
posted by oneswellfoop at 1:26 PM on August 26, 2015 [3 favorites]


come on, man
posted by tonycpsu at 3:09 PM on August 26, 2015 [1 favorite]


Bobby Jindal: No, I'm Not An 'Anchor Baby'.

You made your bed, you sleep in it.
posted by a lungful of dragon at 3:10 PM on August 26, 2015 [4 favorites]


come on, man

He's gone full Republican.
posted by a lungful of dragon at 3:10 PM on August 26, 2015 [1 favorite]




Doubtless the effective tax rate was lower, but if the wealthy weren't paying higher taxes back then, there wouldn't have been, and continue to be, the decades-long campaign to keep lowering taxes on the rich -- not just income taxes, but also capital gains, corporate taxes and the rest. The anti-tax fervor is so pervasive and total that Republicans simply can't propose raising taxes, ever.

I don't think the decades-long campaign is as much a backlash against the higher tax rates they may have paid at one point as much as it is about good old-fashioned greed. And the reason they can't propose raising taxes ever is because of Grover Norquist (though there are signs that the pledge may not be as solid anymore as it has been for the last several decades).
posted by triggerfinger at 4:22 PM on August 26, 2015 [1 favorite]


Stephen Colbert has announced the guests on his first Late Show (Tuesday Sept 8)... George Clooney and Jeb Bush... is that a slap at Trump or a dare?
posted by oneswellfoop at 4:52 PM on August 26, 2015 [1 favorite]


Patrick J. Buchanan: Is Trumpism the Rebirth of Nationalism?

I've long wondered what it would take for a global hegemon to disengage and go into isolationism, if it's even possible in such a connected world. Turns out it just takes one populist demagogue and a decade and a half of muddled war.
posted by Apocryphon at 4:56 PM on August 26, 2015


Patrick J. Buchanan: Is Trumpism the Rebirth of Nationalism?

Uh... no? Not unless we're talking about some twisted version of the American stereotype.

Dude is egomaniacal. He's self-centered to such an extreme degree that even Narcissus would have gone "Whoa." His entire philosophy is about Getting All The Toys, Being The Most Impressive and Fucking Over Everyone Else. Selfish Capitalism Incarnate.

Trump's a product of America, sure. That doesn't mean we have to claim him as one of our own, or consider him an iconic representative.
posted by zarq at 4:59 PM on August 26, 2015




I've been trying to read some of my political news on Univision this year to improve my Spanish, and it's fascinating how much more aggressive the Spanish-language press is at holding politicians to account for campaign promises, and how much advocacy is injected into immigration stories. Latino voters are reading a very different account of the race so far than English-speakers are.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 8:46 PM on August 26, 2015 [5 favorites]


Patrick J. Buchanan: Is Trumpism the Rebirth of Nationalism?
You know who else who ran on a campaign of National-something-ism? (yes, I went there, I swear to Godwin)

But also notable that Patrick J. Buchanan was the guy who beat Trump for the Reform Party nomination in 2000 before effectively destroying that organization...
posted by oneswellfoop at 8:52 PM on August 26, 2015 [1 favorite]


But also notable that Patrick J. Buchanan was the guy who beat Trump for the Reform Party nomination in 2000 before effectively destroying that organization...

There's a story by Mark Ames about how supposedly Trump and Roger Stone conspired to destroy the Reform Party.
posted by drezdn at 9:11 PM on August 26, 2015 [2 favorites]




Can Trump vs. Norquist be the next Wrestlemania?
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 4:50 AM on August 27, 2015 [1 favorite]


Make America white? You know white is more reflective of solar radiation. This could be a solution to global warming. In fact, I would go so far as to say that black people are causing global warming.
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 6:39 AM on August 27, 2015


Grover Norquist is on my list of treasonous Americans.
posted by Room 641-A at 6:49 AM on August 27, 2015 [5 favorites]


Make America white? You know white is more reflective of solar radiation. This could be a solution to global warming.

Trouble is, white people don't stay white after exposure to sun. They turn a sort of pinkish-red, so their albedo shifts substantially. The equation becomes extremely nonlinear and it gets harder to model. The more so if you attempt to solve with the input light wavelength as a variable parameter.
posted by theorique at 7:51 AM on August 27, 2015 [2 favorites]


Are there any other presidential candidates talking about corporate inversion?
posted by Apocryphon at 9:24 AM on August 27, 2015 [1 favorite]


Top Racists And Neo-Nazis Back Donald Trump

Rand Paul must be pissed. All of the support he and his father showed for these guys and this is the thanks they get?
posted by Golden Eternity at 9:45 AM on August 27, 2015 [7 favorites]


Ivanka Trump is Jewish, converted from marriage. Trump's grandchildren will be Jewish. That's (yet another reason) what's so crazy about this.
posted by Apocryphon at 9:57 AM on August 27, 2015


Donald Trump Gets Earful in Spanish as Latino Outlets Air Disdain (NY Times)
From the beginning, Spanish-language TV has been covering Donald J. Trump’s presidential campaign more critically than the mainstream news media, especially after his remarks on immigrants.

Ricardo Sánchez, known as “El Mandril” on his Spanish drive-time radio show in Los Angeles, has taken to calling Donald J. Trump “El hombre del peluquín” — the man of the toupee.

Some of Mr. Sánchez’s listeners are less kind, referring to Mr. Trump, who has dismissed some Mexican immigrants as “rapists” and criminals, simply as “Hitler.”

Mr. Sánchez says that he tries to focus on the positive in presidential politics, but he, too, at times has used harsh language to describe Mr. Trump, according to translations of his show provided by his executive producer.

“A president like Trump would be like giving a loaded gun to a monkey,” Mr. Sanchez said in one broadcast. “But a gun that fires atomic bullets.”
English media isn't picking up on this split view of Trump, but he know's who's who:
The adversarial relationship between Mr. Trump and the Spanish-language news media, which has simmered publicly since he announced his candidacy in June, boiled over on Tuesday at a news conference in Dubuque, Iowa, when the candidate erupted at Jorge Ramos, the main news anchor at Univision and Fusion, when he tried to ask a question without being called on. Mr. Trump signaled to one of his security guards, who removed Mr. Ramos from the event.
...
Mr. Ramos, who has been called the Walter Cronkite of Latino America for the tremendous influence he holds with Hispanic viewers, said that he could not recall Spanish-language news media covering a story as aggressively as it has Mr. Trump’s candidacy.
Wow.
posted by filthy light thief at 10:50 AM on August 27, 2015 [4 favorites]


"He was out of order. I would take his question in two seconds, but he stood up and started screaming," Trump continued later. "He’s obviously a very emotional person."

indubitable: wow, those hot-blooded latins, huh? is there any amount of race baiting of Hispanics that doesn't get a pass in American politics?

Trump needs to look in a mirror before talking. He's not mister calm and collected. Anyway, he's trying to undermine the legitimacy of complaints from Jorge Ramos, who holds so much sway with Latino Americans, but is not well known elsewhere.
posted by filthy light thief at 10:56 AM on August 27, 2015


Ivanka Trump is Jewish, converted from marriage. Trump's grandchildren will be Jewish. That's (yet another reason) what's so crazy about this.

This is only marginally more crazy to me than Gamergate deciding they love Trump. But then, given how many people that still associate themselves with that hate mob are themselves flagrantly racist (if not outright proudly white supremacist)... Not too big a stretch from there.
posted by sparkletone at 10:56 AM on August 27, 2015




Ivanka Trump is Jewish, converted from marriage. Trump's grandchildren will be Jewish. That's (yet another reason) what's so crazy about this.

Why?
posted by zarq at 12:21 PM on August 27, 2015 [1 favorite]


Gamergate deciding they love Trump.
Zero surprise to me. Expecting Vox Day's announcement of "Rabid Puppies for Trump" in 3... 2...
(the good news is a Rabid-Puppy-like campaign may be as successful at the GOP Convention next year as they were at the final Hugos ceremony)
If Trump can ultimately unite all the Worst Assholes of the Right into a single campaign, it may be scary, but we'll finally see clearly exactly how much of a threat they truly are.

Trump's grandchildren will be Jewish.
Not a problem. Most of the good racists in America today support Israel as part of hating the Muslims.
posted by oneswellfoop at 12:29 PM on August 27, 2015


Because some of his endorsements aren't from run-of-the-mill nativists and regressives, but from actual bonafide anti-Semitic white supremacists.
posted by Apocryphon at 12:37 PM on August 27, 2015


Huh? Jews would be okay with nazis as long as they "support Israel as part of hating muslims?" Okay. Last I checked the majority of jewish Americans supported the Iran deal, which according to many Israelis means they are against Israel. Whatever.

This is weird:
Last April, perhaps in a surge of Czech nationalism, Ivana Trump told her lawyer Michael Kennedy that from time to time her husband reads a book of Hitler’s collected speeches, My New Order, which he keeps in a cabinet by his bed. Kennedy now guards a copy of My New Order in a closet at his office, as if it were a grenade. Hitler’s speeches, from his earliest days up through the Phony War of 1939, reveal his extraordinary ability as a master propagandist.

“Did your cousin John give you the Hitler speeches?” I asked Trump.

Trump hesitated. “Who told you that?”

“I don’t remember,” I said.

“Actually, it was my friend Marty Davis from Paramount who gave me a copy of Mein Kampf, and he’s a Jew.” (“I did give him a book about Hitler,” Marty Davis said. “But it was My New Order, Hitler’s speeches, not Mein Kampf. I thought he would find it interesting. I am his friend, but I’m not Jewish.”)

Later, Trump returned to this subject. “If I had these speeches, and I am not saying that I do, I would never read them.”
posted by Golden Eternity at 12:41 PM on August 27, 2015


[One comment deleted. theorique, don't needle people with Holocaust imagery, period. In fact, take a day off.]
posted by LobsterMitten (staff) at 12:47 PM on August 27, 2015 [9 favorites]


@HeerJeet: "Ben Carson, polling well among GOP voters, recently said: 'other immigrants came here involuntarily in the bottom of slave ships'"

Oh god:

Ben Carson: There may be a ‘war on what’s inside of women, but not a war on women’
posted by Golden Eternity at 2:02 PM on August 27, 2015


That's why you can't use the line against any of the candidates: "well, he/she's no brain surgeon". THAT idiot IS a brain surgeon.
posted by oneswellfoop at 2:40 PM on August 27, 2015 [3 favorites]


Accepted for graduate studies at Purdue University, [Herman] Cain received a master of science in computer science there in 1971, while he also worked full-time as a ballistics analyst for the U.S. Department of the Navy as a civilian.

Literally a rocket scientist.
posted by Apocryphon at 2:54 PM on August 27, 2015 [2 favorites]


Most of the good racists in America today support Israel as part of hating the Muslims.

See also: Fundies supporting Israel because its ascension is understood as a prerequisite for the Rapture.
posted by carmicha at 3:06 PM on August 27, 2015 [3 favorites]


It's not just that Ivana is Jewish, she is also a native of Czechoslovakia and Trump's 3rd wife, Melania, is a native of Slovenia. So white European immigrants-- hot marriage material, brown American immigrants--bad for the country. Remember that every time that Trump talks about "immigrants", he married two of them.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 3:24 PM on August 27, 2015 [2 favorites]




Remember that every time that Trump talks about "immigrants", he married two of them.

They're doing the jobs Americans just won't do.
posted by the man of twists and turns at 7:32 AM on August 28, 2015 [31 favorites]




oneswellfoop: Dang it, somebody else is using my great hat idea.

Wait, you also think we should Make America White Again, or you think Trump should wear such a hat? [jk lol]

Anyway, I am pleased that someone made that joke into a political cartoon, because that means it was published in news papers, and people will read that and think about it, hopefully to realize that it is a racist idea, not a good idea.
posted by filthy light thief at 10:24 AM on August 28, 2015


(On the other hand, I totally support native people wearing "make America brown [or red] again" or something along those lines)

[And on this tangent, I have a native co-worker who calls roadblocks from the bureaucracy the one we both work in/for "white tape," because it's rules the white people make up, nothing to do with the red people.]
posted by filthy light thief at 10:27 AM on August 28, 2015 [3 favorites]


When Trump is talking about immigrants, its a shadow puppet show for talking about brown immigrants. Nobody has ever complained about white Canadians, for example, even when one of them confronts Ted Cruz. There is no law to prevent white Canadians from taking American jobs, there is no fence across the border with Canada, and only in the works of David Lynch does Canada appear as a criminal world infesting ours.

When Trump is talking about immigrants, he's not talking about his two wives, because they are white. "Immigrant" is just the polite way he can be racist in a national debate.
posted by maxsparber at 10:39 AM on August 28, 2015 [4 favorites]


I can't stop reading about Trump... There are now some really interesting pieces coming out about how he fits into American politics and how he manages to stay immunized to the gaffe.
posted by spaceviking at 11:36 AM on August 28, 2015




Surely he has memorized the neck verse.
posted by bukvich at 6:44 PM on August 28, 2015


So Donald Trump visited the Greater Boston Area tonight, courtesy of car dealer Ernie Boch Jr.. People can adjust their car-buying accordingly.
posted by benito.strauss at 7:43 PM on August 28, 2015


well, what models do his locations sell... I remember long ago when Johnny Carson Punchline Cal Worthington expanded from a Dodge dealership to an additional Ford lot... I was surprised he never got Chevy and Toyota.
posted by oneswellfoop at 8:06 PM on August 28, 2015


"I wouldn't want to get into it. Because to me, that's very personal," he said. "The Bible means a lot to me, but I don't want to get into specifics."

Trump, who once referred to communion as "my little wine and my little cracker," was asked if he prefers the New or Old Testaments.

"Probably equal. I think it's just incredible," he said.


He's the Little League Brian Regan of religion:
GRAPE! I'm gonna get grape, or cherry. They're both... favorites, so either one is good, but if they have both, I'll get grape, because grape is a little more favorite. But if they don't have grape it's like alright its fine, cause cherry's favorite anyway. It's like another favorite, but not as much. Not as much favorite. But they're both good. They're both good.
Or, he's the Sarah Palin of the bible:
COURIC: And when it comes to establishing your world view, I was curious, what newspapers and magazines did you regularly read before you were tapped for this — to stay informed and to understand the world?

PALIN: I’ve read most of them again with a great appreciation for the press, for the media, coming f—

COURIC: But like which ones specifically? I’m curious that you—

PALIN: Um, all of 'em, any of 'em that, um, have, have been in front of me over all these years. Um, I have a va—

COURIC: Can you name a few?

PALIN: I have a vast variety of sources where we get our news too.
He's playing a great game of Conservative Candidate Bingo - Government Reform, Illegal Immigrants, Tough on Crime, Mock Hillary, and The Bible - BINGO!
posted by filthy light thief at 9:08 PM on August 28, 2015 [4 favorites]


Or if you want to an easy reminder of how be a good conservative candidate, stick with BINGO:
Bible - it's a great book, really, it's all great
Immigrants - keep 'em out, especially the brown ones who steal good 'murican jobs
Nationalism - America, fuck yeah! Greatest nation in the world, let's keep making it awesome!
Guns - they're ours to keep, gotta keep your family safe
Other party - look at those clowns, what a bunch of clowns

Don't worry about the details, shout about these topics often enough, and your supporters will make enough noise to drown out the follow-up questions.
posted by filthy light thief at 9:19 PM on August 28, 2015 [1 favorite]


Do not fret because of those who are evil or be envious of those who do wrong; for like the grass they will soon wither, like green plants they will soon die away.
posted by a lungful of dragon at 11:09 PM on August 28, 2015 [2 favorites]


Palin meets Trump .... on Fox. She was a contender, he is a contender. Together they fight Lieberals crime.

I am not an American, nor can I vote, but this is the least critical interview I have seen since Lisa Simpson picked up a mic.

(From a deleted thread, because.. politics, but it really is the uncanny valley of journalism)
posted by Mezentian at 10:11 AM on August 29, 2015


Was it Fox? I thought it was a plucky new upstart TV network even further to the right.

I probably feel some pity for Fox, having fallen victim to the spiral of radicalism it helped kick off and now on the cusp of being denounced as too “liberal” and moderate, but I'll be damned if I can find it under all this schadenfreude.
posted by acb at 10:56 AM on August 29, 2015


You are correct. It's something called the One America News Network, which has a "stated focus is delivering a credible source of national and international news 24/7".
posted by Mezentian at 2:53 AM on August 30, 2015


Huh, apparently I get OANN on my cable system. Yet another reason to ditch cable.
posted by octothorpe at 7:40 AM on August 30, 2015


"stated focus is delivering a credible credulous source of national and international news 24/7".
Yeah, totally a FTFY...

But a headline today:
Trump’s deportation idea similar to 1930s mass removals
It made me think "you know WHO ELSE did mass removals of certain groups in the 1930s?" But then I learned from the article that, yes, our proud United States did it too. An estimated 500,000 to 1 million Mexican immigrants AND Mexican American CITIZENS. Just another piece of "Anti-American" history they don't want taught in schools.
posted by oneswellfoop at 2:22 PM on August 30, 2015 [3 favorites]




Worth noting that Scott Fuckhead Walker is saying it's a legitimate issue.

Oh wait oops that issue is about building a wall along the US-Canada border.

Which reminds me of a joke. A Quebecois and an Anglo run into a genie, who grants each of them a wish. The Quebecois says "Build a wall twenty feet tall around Quebec to keep the Anglos out." POOF! There is such a wall. The genie turns to the Anglo, and says "Your turn.."

"Fill it with water, eh."
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 6:18 PM on August 30, 2015 [2 favorites]


Moar liek One News America Network amirite
posted by flabdablet at 2:12 AM on August 31, 2015 [3 favorites]


But then I learned from the article that, yes, our proud United States did it too. An estimated 500,000 to 1 million Mexican immigrants AND Mexican American CITIZENS.

And then, as soon as we need them again, "Hey, how about we let in a bunch of Mexicans to do manual labor we don't want to?", but only until we decide we don't need them, at which point we'll do it all over again.
posted by Etrigan at 2:27 AM on August 31, 2015


The US-Canada border barrier is a crazy idea, and nobody's taking it seriously. Walker is just attempting (clumsily) to steal Trump's thunder about the border protection issue. However, it won't work because there's no issue with illegal immigration from Canada, or with Canadians working for $8/hour and flooding the low-wage/high-effort job market.
posted by theorique at 2:50 AM on August 31, 2015


It won't work because Republicans aren't irrationally xenophobic against Canadians. Trump is cannily tapping into some seriously deep-seated racism against Mexicans and/or Hispanics that just doesn't exist against any other immigrant class.
posted by octothorpe at 6:28 AM on August 31, 2015 [1 favorite]


However, it won't work because there's no issue with illegal immigration from Canada, or with Canadians working for $8/hour and flooding the low-wage/high-effort job market.

If American citizens would do the jobs that immigrants (legal and illegal) do, there wouldn't be any jobs for immigrants. When whatsit, Arizona (? Alabama?) cracked down on illegal immigrants, farmers were letting stuff rot in fields because no American citizens would do the work for the money on offer.

Illegal immigrants don't steal jobs, they do the jobs citizens refuse to do.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 7:58 AM on August 31, 2015


It won't work because Republicans aren't irrationally xenophobic against Canadians. Trump is cannily tapping into some seriously deep-seated racism against Mexicans and/or Hispanics that just doesn't exist against any other immigrant class.

Yeah, (English) Canadians are probably the most easily assimilated immigrants to the US, except for possibly immigrants from the UK or Australia. Since Mexicans are ethnically and linguistically different from the American majority, it's harder for them to blend in.

If American citizens would do the jobs that immigrants (legal and illegal) do, there wouldn't be any jobs for immigrants. When whatsit, Arizona (? Alabama?) cracked down on illegal immigrants, farmers were letting stuff rot in fields because no American citizens would do the work for the money on offer.

Illegal immigrants don't steal jobs, they do the jobs citizens refuse to do.


We hear that trope all the time, but it's a genuine problem with the job market. If the only way a given job in the USA can be completed is by exploiting poor foreigners at unacceptably low wages, it doesn't make it moral for us to break the law and hire people who can't legally work in the country.

No doubt the farm lobby has a lot of good reasons why they can't use American labor and why they are "forced" to break the law. But if the only alternative were to let the crops rot every year, farms would either figure it out or else cease operations (for example, Australia has substantial agricultural industry, and no pipeline of illegal farmworkers to keep their costs down).
posted by theorique at 8:34 AM on August 31, 2015 [1 favorite]


The scenarios described here cannot be calculated with the precision of the hard sciences; Trumpology is a field bearing more resemblance to abnormal psychology than, say, physics. Any number of things could change the equation. In deference to the chaotic possibilities, assume a Trump independent run is not probable. Maybe it’s a one-in-five chance. Or one-in-ten. Whatever probability of each party winning you drew up at the beginning of the summer, it needs to be rewritten at the end of the Summer of Trump.
posted by the man of twists and turns at 8:41 AM on August 31, 2015


We hear that trope all the time, but it's a genuine problem with the job market. If the only way a given job in the USA can be completed is by exploiting poor foreigners at unacceptably low wages, it doesn't make it moral for us to break the law and hire people who can't legally work in the country.

I never said anything about 'moral.' The fact is that the economy of the USA is predicated on slave labour, and that American citizens refuse to do much of the work that illegal immigrants do, because it doesn't pay enough. And it doesn't pay enough because everyone else won't pay the real cost of things.

So, again, illegal immigrants don't steal jobs.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 8:43 AM on August 31, 2015 [1 favorite]


So, again, illegal immigrants don't steal jobs.

I'm not saying that they do. But they do make it harder for legal laborers in many industries to organize and demand better wages.

Suppose we had a border that actually obstructed illegal migration, and physically removed the existing pool of illegal aliens. Then there would be no release valve of cheap, exploitable marginal labor. The market would reconfigure to deal with the labor shortage, either by automation, hiring citizens at better wages (and raising prices), companies going out of business, or some other means.

Obviously, since many powerful forces benefit from illegal labor (primarily certain employers in certain industries), not everyone wants to see an end to illegal migration.
posted by theorique at 9:13 AM on August 31, 2015


Since Mexicans are ethnically and linguistically different from the American majority

I am not sure if that is even true anymore
posted by rosswald at 9:18 AM on August 31, 2015 [1 favorite]


you're kinda missing the part where Americans will not pay better wages because other Americans will not (and/or cannot) pay the resulting higher prices for consumer goods but hey, xenophobia ('illegal aliens' is gross) don't care for facts.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 9:19 AM on August 31, 2015


Obviously, since many powerful forces benefit from illegal labor (primarily certain employers in certain industries), not everyone wants to see an end to illegal migration.

I would change your parenthetical to "(primarily Americans who eat food)", but yeah, the real consequences of an impermeable border and mass deportations would be staggering.
posted by Etrigan at 9:24 AM on August 31, 2015


Suppose we had a border that actually obstructed illegal migration, and physically removed the existing pool of illegal aliens. Then there would be no release valve of cheap, exploitable marginal labor. The market would reconfigure to deal with the labor shortage, either by automation, hiring citizens at better wages (and raising prices), companies going out of business, or some other means.

You'd also need hardline protectionism; no more shirts sewn in Bangladesh or the Honduras by people earning a bowl of gruel a day, or iPods made on Chinese assembly lines by workers who live in dorms with suicide nets. Clothing would become so expensive that it had damned well better last more than a fashion season (which would reduce the influence of fashion; wearing what's “in” would be a status symbol for the profligately wealthy 1%ers, like wearing only box-fresh sneakers or something). Electronics would become expensive as well; remember the 1980s, when a home computer cost several months of wages, or a record player was an expensive investment? Which would wreak havoc with the Moore's Law-driven culture of regular upgrades, freezing device capabilities (you can't count on your next year's phone having twice the RAM and a vastly more powerful graphics engine, at least not unless you're wealthy and profligate).
posted by acb at 9:26 AM on August 31, 2015 [2 favorites]


You'd also need hardline protectionism

I should be more specific - cheap, exploitable marginal local labor. International trade is a somewhat different issue, but with similar implications. It's definitely easier for people to stomach exploitation when it's taking place thousands of miles away, as opposed to down the road from your own neighborhood.
posted by theorique at 9:37 AM on August 31, 2015 [1 favorite]


So you realize that what you're advocating is impossible in multiple ways, yes? That the entire American economy is predicated on exploitation of an underclass, and without that underclass to exploit, everything goes kaboom?
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 9:42 AM on August 31, 2015


That sounds like a defeatist attitude, if I've ever heard one. So what, should we just give up on worker's rights and social safety nets and raising up an underclass?
posted by Apocryphon at 9:47 AM on August 31, 2015


Raising the underclass, step one: Build a big wall to keep the underclass out
posted by Rustic Etruscan at 9:49 AM on August 31, 2015 [4 favorites]


That sounds like a defeatist attitude, if I've ever heard one. So what, should we just give up on worker's rights and social safety nets and raising up an underclass?

Of course not, don't put words in my mouth. Amnesty, now, for all illegal immigrants. Building a wall around your country will do nothing beneficial for the country except act as a sop for the shrieking racists who will suddenly be bewildered that they can't afford food anymore.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 9:52 AM on August 31, 2015


I think amnesty and pathways to citizenship should be instituted for those that want to switch their allegiance and country to the US, but that is in contrast to the belief that America needs cheap domestic labor. If those 11 million become citizens, they'll be further immune to the pressures of cheap labor and exploitation.

The American economy—like others—is addicted to cheap labor to keep prices artificially low. It will be hard to break that addition, but it still needs to be done. The South's economy once relied on slavery, but it still had to end, regardless of how much economic havoc it wrecked.
posted by Lord Chancellor at 11:14 AM on August 31, 2015 [3 favorites]


[Folks, this is looking more and more like a small-group sideline - please let it go for a while. Thanks. ]
posted by restless_nomad (staff) at 11:27 AM on August 31, 2015




best trumpmeme of the day
posted by idiopath at 6:57 PM on August 31, 2015 [6 favorites]


Speaking of Il Duce, it worked for Italy in the 1930s!
posted by andoatnp at 10:53 PM on August 31, 2015 [1 favorite]


Speaking of Il Duce, it worked for Italy in the 1930s!

I remember the first time I saw the photo of that building with the face on it, I thought it was photoshopped for sure. Talk about a personality cult - even Hitler didn't go that far!

Also came across a new Trump meme that references a certain Greek political party.
posted by theorique at 5:19 AM on September 1, 2015


PPP: Trump Supporters Think Obama is A Muslim Born in Another Country
Our new poll finds that Trump is benefiting from a GOP electorate that thinks Barack Obama is a Muslim and was born in another country, and that immigrant children should be deported. 66% of Trump's supporters believe that Obama is a Muslim to just 12% that grant he's a Christian. 61% think Obama was not born in the United States to only 21% who accept that he was. And 63% want to amend the Constitution to eliminate birthright citizenship, to only 20% who want to keep things the way they are.

Trump's beliefs represent the consensus among the GOP electorate. 51% overall want to eliminate birthright citizenship. 54% think President Obama is a Muslim. And only 29% grant that President Obama was born in the United States. That's less than the 40% who think Canadian born Ted Cruz was born in the United States.

Trump's supporters aren't alone in those attitudes though. Only among supporters of John Kasich (58/13), Jeb Bush (56/18), Chris Christie (59/33), and Marco Rubio (42/30) are there more people who think President Obama was born in the United States than that he wasn't. And when you look at whose supporters are more inclined to think that the President is a Christian than a Muslim the list shrinks to just Christie (55/29), Kasich (41/22), and Bush (29/22). Bush's inability to appeal to the kind of people who hold these beliefs is what's keeping him from succeeding in the race- his overall favorability is 39/42, and with voters identifying themselves as 'very conservative' it's all the way down at 33/48.

Trump is winning his fight with Megyn Kelly. When we last polled her in December of 2013 her favorability with Republicans nationally was 44/9. Her favorability is in a similar place now at 42% but her negatives have shot up to 20%, largely because she's at 20/43 with Trump's supporters. Meanwhile Trump's popularity with GOP voters has just continued to grow. Last month before the debate his favorability with them was 48/39, now it's improved to 56/30. Fox News as a whole isn't suffering for the feud though- in February we found 66% of Republicans said they trusted the network, and now we find 66% say they have a favorable opinion of it.
posted by zombieflanders at 8:32 AM on September 1, 2015


zombieflanders, you missed the best part of that poll: While only 29% will concede that Obama was born in the U.S. (he was), 40% believe that Ted Cruz was born in the U.S. (he wasn't).

I want them to dig deeper. The next poll should include the question "In a Planned Parenthood office, is water wet?". I'm betting they'd get less than 50% "Yes".
posted by benito.strauss at 9:49 AM on September 1, 2015 [6 favorites]




Trumpism: The Ideology
What’s distinct about Trumpism, and the tradition of thought it represents, is that it is not leftist in its cultural and political outlook (see how he is praised for rejecting “political correctness”), and yet still totalitarian in the sense that it seeks total control of society and economy and demands no limits on state power.

Whereas the left has long attacked bourgeois institutions like family, church, and property, fascism has made its peace with all three. It (very wisely) seeks political strategies that call on the organic matter of the social structure and inspire masses of people to rally around the nation as a personified ideal in history, under the leadership of a great and highly accomplished man.

Trump believes himself to be that man. He sounds fresh, exciting, even thrilling, like a man with a plan and a complete disregard for the existing establishment and all its weakness and corruption.

This is how strongmen take over countries.
posted by the man of twists and turns at 12:07 PM on September 1, 2015 [6 favorites]


If you enjoy watching Trump attack Jeb, this video on Instagram is worth 12 seconds of your time.
posted by peeedro at 5:46 PM on September 1, 2015 [1 favorite]


That article is what I've been saying all along. Fascism, or at least populism of a nationalist sort, is what arises when the left fails the people.
posted by Apocryphon at 6:03 PM on September 1, 2015 [3 favorites]


Matty Yglesias makes a good point in a relatively balanced, low-snark article: essentially, Trump is popular because he is bringing up ideas and issues that are (1) popular among the people and (2) unpopular among the political donors.

"Trump is succeeding because he is articulating views that are widely held among American voters but normally suppressed in the political system due to the power of the donor class. The voting bloc that he's tapping into has been tapped previously, and will be tapped again in the future — possibly in more effective ways by more conventional politicians."
posted by theorique at 4:14 AM on September 2, 2015




On the other hand, Dick Cheney refuses to endorse Donald Trump.
posted by Room 641-A at 7:37 AM on September 2, 2015


I don't think Dick Cheney even endorsed Bush, so not sure if that matters much.
posted by GuyZero at 7:45 AM on September 2, 2015


It reduces the chance that Trump will ask Cheney to head the VP search committee, so there's that.
posted by Room 641-A at 9:56 AM on September 2, 2015 [2 favorites]


Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is also not a Trump fan
posted by Noisy Pink Bubbles at 12:22 PM on September 2, 2015 [8 favorites]




Did Trump mail that in?
posted by Noisy Pink Bubbles at 7:44 PM on September 2, 2015


If Trump mailed me a letter calling me an idiot, I'd frame it and hang it on the wall.
posted by peeedro at 7:56 PM on September 2, 2015 [6 favorites]


Ending the letter with "Best Wishes" is a nice touch.
posted by drezdn at 8:21 PM on September 2, 2015


"I think you and your ideas are crap. WISH YOU WERE HERE XOXO"
posted by JHarris at 8:43 PM on September 2, 2015 [4 favorites]


Maybe he thought this would be a way to get some liberal Bostonites over to his side.
posted by Room 641-A at 2:17 AM on September 3, 2015


Trump will sign GOP loyalty pledge.

Looks like Democrat dreams of Trump 3rd party run are being squashed. Even more terrifying, maybe this means the GOP will rally around their new Il Douche and we might see him in the general. *shudder*.
posted by dis_integration at 8:24 AM on September 3, 2015


Trump will sign GOP loyalty pledge.

Looks like Democrat dreams of Trump 3rd party run are being squashed.


If he gets close to the nomination and gets "screwed over" -- e.g., he's in the delegate lead but doesn't have a majority and Jeb ends up winning on the eighteenth ballot, or if he would have won if more states were winner-take-all, or if he would have won if more states were proportional, or any other excuse -- I can still see him wanting to punish the GOP.
posted by Etrigan at 8:33 AM on September 3, 2015


Unless it's a legally binding contract, there's nothing stopping him from doing whatever he wants. Somehow I doubt it's something that will hold up in court.
posted by zombieflanders at 8:38 AM on September 3, 2015 [1 favorite]


My understanding is that Trump has agreed to pinky-swear with Reince Priebus not to do a thing that Reince Priebus wants him not to do, based on the idea that if Trump went back on his word on that it'd be a big gaffe and would really upset the organization that, at that point, would already be completely not supporting him in his blustery bid for office.

I don't know if hope is the right word for what I feel about the idea of a Trump third-party run, but in any case this doesn't seem likely to say much of anything about whether it'd happen. Trump's not trying to ingratiate himself to the GOP establishment in hopes of getting support a few years down the road; he doesn't give a shit about them being happy with him. Pissing the RNC off by calling backsies on a dumb promise is hardly the sort of thing that's going to keep him up at night, all else aside.
posted by cortex at 8:50 AM on September 3, 2015 [4 favorites]


The piece "The GOP can make Trump take a loyalty pledge. But they can’t make him honor it" was written before Trump decided to agree to the loyalty pledge and doesn't have much legal analysis. I'm sure that if Trump reneges and tries to run as a third party candidate, that the GOP will seek injunctions in all the relevant states. This is not even close to my area of practice, but I don't see why such a contract would not be binding. I'm assuming it says something like "I agree that in exchange for the GOP listing me as a candidate in their primary election, I will not seek to appear as a candidate in the general election except as the GOP candidate." Illegal purpose maybe?
posted by exogenous at 9:10 AM on September 3, 2015


I don't know if hope is the right word for what I feel about the idea of a Trump third-party run, but in any case this doesn't seem likely to say much of anything about whether it'd happen.

Exactly. What would be the biggest downside for Trump of reversing his promise of a 3rd party run if the RNC screwed him? Assuming that he actually got maneuvered out of the nomination through manipulation, it would just be righteous payback to the RNC and the party insiders for a dirty trick. Most of his supporters would probably applaud such an action.
posted by theorique at 9:15 AM on September 3, 2015


I'm assuming it says something like "I agree that in exchange for the GOP listing me as a candidate in their primary election, I will not seek to appear as a candidate in the general election except as the GOP candidate." Illegal purpose maybe?

It doesn't. The full text is "I [name] affirm that if I do not win the 2016 Republican nomination for president of the United States I will endorse the 2016 Republican presidential nominee regardless of who it is. I further pledge that I will not seek to run as an independent or write-in candidate nor will I seek or accept the nomination for president of any other party."
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 9:23 AM on September 3, 2015 [1 favorite]


Huh. I think they'll have a tough time trying to make that stick.
posted by exogenous at 9:35 AM on September 3, 2015


Yeah, given that Trump's voter base has shown that they do not give a single solitary fuuuck about his being a hypocritical flip-flopping douchebag as long as he's saying what they want to hear now, there's no way that breaking this affirmation peels off more than a dozen of his voters.
posted by Etrigan at 9:37 AM on September 3, 2015 [2 favorites]


How could the Republicans punish him if he broke that contract?
posted by drezdn at 10:24 AM on September 3, 2015


How could the Republicans punish him if he broke that contract?

They could sue to have him removed from the ballot, but I doubt it would get very far, and Trump can write a personal check to out-lawyer the RNC. Plus it would be most likely to work in states that are already heavily enough Republican that it wouldn't really gain them anything.
posted by Etrigan at 10:32 AM on September 3, 2015 [1 favorite]




Signing the pledge costs Trump nothing. In the short term, he's taken a weapon out of the hands of the RNC and other candidates. In the long term, if he wins the nomination, he's fine. If he loses, he just has to allege party shenanigans (which, let's face it, are not unlikely), and say that the party broke the contract and he's no longer bound by it.
posted by Chrysostom at 10:47 AM on September 3, 2015 [1 favorite]


I think the Trump's third-party bluff is an empty threat. It is no trivial thing to get your name on the ballot. All 50 states have different rules and its hard to get the required signatures. That is why third party candidates are so rare. Trump doesn't seem to have the ground game to pull that off. He's pretty much a one-man show. Ross Perot was a rare exception, but he had the benefit of an army of young college libertarians. I don't think Trump's base is going to get out of their barcaloungers to go banging on doors for the required petition signatures.
posted by JackFlash at 10:50 AM on September 3, 2015


Third Party candidates are actually pretty common, it's just rare for the media to talk about them. Nader was on all 50 ballots in 2008 and the libertarian candidate was on the ballot in 45 states. Both got more than 500k votes but less than a million.
posted by drezdn at 10:59 AM on September 3, 2015


Nader was on all 50 ballots in 2008

Not quite — scroll down to "Ballot Access" and it says he was on the ballot in 45 states and in DC. Still, that's plenty to change the outcome of an election.
posted by exogenous at 11:59 AM on September 3, 2015 [1 favorite]




I don't think Trump's base is going to get out of their barcaloungers to go banging on doors for the required petition signatures.

Well, as someone who leans pretty far left and despises Trump, I dunno if I'd knock on doors for him, but I'd sign the shit out of that petition.
posted by indubitable at 12:18 PM on September 3, 2015


Shit, you'd get the Democratic party gathering signatures for him, as the Republicans did for Nader (NYT link).
posted by exogenous at 12:28 PM on September 3, 2015


One obstacle to Trump running as an Independent is the presence of sore loser laws which in some states (particularly Ohio) make it prohibitively difficult for a candidate participating in a party election to then later decide to run as an independent.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 1:25 PM on September 3, 2015 [1 favorite]


Also, Jeb Bush cautiously, timidly experimenting with pushing back against Trump is tremendously cute. Every time he tweets at Trump with some little jab, I can't help but think, "Oh bless your heart, you sweet thing." Did he just never encounter any sort of opposition during his campaigns in Florida?
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 1:27 PM on September 3, 2015 [1 favorite]


Did he just never encounter any sort of opposition during his campaigns in Florida?

My read on this is that jeb is taking the smart strategy of not provoking Trump more than necessary while working behind the scenes with the party to shut him out of the nomination. Trumps polls don't mean much if he can't get the delegates come convention time. I'd be ignoring him too.
posted by dis_integration at 4:55 PM on September 3, 2015 [1 favorite]


“Trump's America,” The Economist, 05 September 2015
posted by ob1quixote at 5:31 AM on September 4, 2015 [2 favorites]


My read on this is that jeb is taking the smart strategy of not provoking Trump more than necessary while working behind the scenes with the party to shut him out of the nomination.

Fair enough. And maybe I'm reading him incorrectly, but he just seems to be very wrong-footed by Trump. The perception I have of Jeb! right now is not that he's exercising discipline by not going after Trump, but that he's actually confused and flustered that someone is attacking him. Granted, that's a very snap judgment; I haven't really been watching Jeb!s press conferences or following his campaign that closely.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 9:12 AM on September 4, 2015


While it seems unlikely, there are some people who think Jeb! doesn't actually want to win.
posted by drezdn at 9:53 AM on September 4, 2015 [1 favorite]


(A)h(W)O, that's Rachel Maddow's analysis too. She's been floating the idea that "Jeb's just not very good at his job (of running for political office)."
posted by benito.strauss at 10:16 AM on September 4, 2015 [1 favorite]




Colin Powell 2016. The only person who can save the GOP.
posted by Golden Eternity at 12:53 AM on September 5, 2015


Signing the pledge costs Trump nothing. In the short term,

Australian politicians have done this recently, like the prime minister.

Every single promise: broken.

So these things are not worth the paper they are printed on.
posted by Mezentian at 4:44 AM on September 5, 2015




-Are Republicans For Freedom Or White Identity Politics?
-America is waking up to the fact that it's not actually a white ethnic nation-state #realtalk!
  • 1/Something very weird and slightly scary is going on in American politics. Trump is just one manifestation. What's going on?
  • 2/My uneducated, oversimplified guess is this: I think America is waking up to the fact that it's not actually a white ethnic nation-state.
  • 3/Now, of course, many Americans already realized this. I always did. But a large number of people are realizing this for the first time.
  • 4/Traditionally, a nation-state is 5 things: 1) a plot of land, 2) an army, 3) a set of institutions, 4) a culture, and 5) an ethnic group.
  • 5/By allowing immigration and by promoting equality under the law, America is an experiment to see if a nation can get by without (5).
  • 6/So far, the American experiment - the idea of a nation of all races - has been tested several times, with mixed results.
  • 7/The two big previous waves of immigrants - German/Irish and East/South European - were both absorbed into the catch-all "white" ethnicity.
  • 8/But black Americans were always excluded, and after a period of disruption, the white/black dichotomy always reestablished itself.
  • 9/"Italians, Poles, Jews and Irish have all joined up and buried the hatchet — in the blacks." - Saul Alinsky
  • 10/That's unlikely to happen this time. Asians and some Hispanics can't be classified as "white" under the old British "Five Race Theory".
  • 11/This time, the diversification of America can't be papered over by redefining "white". This time, it's multiracial nation or bust.
  • 12/People who always thought of America as a white ethnic nation-state realize this, and are desperately afraid of the "new" reality.
  • 13/This explains Trump. It explains Obama-phobia. It explains the Tea Party, the scramble to buy guns, the explosion of online racism.
  • 14/So what's going to happen? Maybe America will disintegrate. Maybe nations really can't get by without ethnic solidarity. But I doubt it.
  • 15/Another possibility is that Hispanics and Asians eventually coalesce into a "non-black" ethnic bloc, from which blacks remain excluded.
  • 16/A third possibility - my favorite - is that the vast bulk of Americans simply stop relying on race to define their nationhood.
  • 17/Anyone who has lived in New York City knows that this isn't impossible. It's a peaceful, functional city with maximum diversity.
  • 18/But in the short term, we'll have to deal with ever-crazier eruptions of Trumpism until white nationalism gives up the ghost. (end)
-Trump = proof that parliamentary system is inferior :P
posted by kliuless at 9:56 AM on September 5, 2015 [3 favorites]


Trump Pretends To Domesticate Himself - his support for tax hikes on hedge fund managers, his tepid pseudo-support (or rather, lack of renunciation) of the Iran treaty, and the 'magnanimity' of saying that he would "possibly" accept fleeing Syrian refugees is him subtly making himself look more reasonable.

The Donald foreshadowed the arrival of this new, semi-domesticated self two months ago, long before rumors arose that he would sign a pledge of allegiance to the GOP. He did it by saying that he was running in the name of a new “Silent Majority.” In saying so, Trump was telling the world that his GOP role model was Richard Nixon, not Patrick J. Buchanan.

Trump knows the history.

In 1992, “Pitchfork Pat” upset then-President George H.W. Bush in the New Hampshire GOP primary with a gut-punching, openly xenophobic populist attack. But his style and speech, which contained touches of Savonarola and Joe McCarthy, made him obviously unelectable.

In 1968, by contrast, Nixon was the ultimate party man (former GOP representative, senator and vice president). And he ran in the name of a newly discovered “Silent Majority,” who merely wanted “law and order” -- a shrewdly benign slogan in which to wrap an appeal to racial fear.

Nixon’s core supporters were angry about and fearful of social changes rocking the U.S. in the '60s, led by the push for racial equality. But even as he played to those fears, Nixon calmly promised the country that he would “bring us together.” He cleverly didn’t ever say who “us” was.

Trump is now moving toward his own version of the same thing. Having secured the lowest fetid ground, he is edging upward.

posted by Apocryphon at 12:40 AM on September 6, 2015 [2 favorites]


Donald Trump Stumbles and Bristles During Foreign Policy Interview

Quds force != Kurds

The Politics of Distraction
We begin, as many discussions about politics today should, with an analogy to pro wrestling. Consider the ‘‘foreign object’’ routine: One combatant produces a concealed item, usually from under his tights — a pointed stick or some hand-size tool of menace — and proceeds to jab his opponent with it. He perpetrates this atrocity in full view of everybody except the referee, who remains oblivious because a complicit third party (perhaps a tag-team partner or a manager) is distracting him.

Now consider our current Republican primary battle royale. Foreign objects might not exist literally in modern campaigns. But there are figurative devices, known as ‘‘shiny objects,’’ that rely on the same principles of distraction, outrage and misdirection. They also involve a hapless dupe in the middle of it all — in this case, us.
posted by the man of twists and turns at 11:12 AM on September 6, 2015


Will Donald Trump get the black vote?

"But if Trump could replace Latino votes with those of another large minority group that traditionally votes Democratic, he might have a fighting chance at victory. And even without changing his message, black voters could be that group.

African Americans have long been receptive to the anti-immigrant concepts behind Trump’s campaign. Simply put, the jobs, housing and other opportunities that immigrants take come largely at the expense of blacks who were born in the United States."
posted by theorique at 4:18 PM on September 6, 2015




It's that goddamn crazification factor again.
posted by JHarris at 5:41 PM on September 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


Donald Trump Stumbles and Bristles During Foreign Policy Interview

Full transcript here. Choice quotes:

"I will be so good at the military, your head will spin.... I think what is really important is to pick out, and this is something I’m so good at, to pick out who is going to be the best person to represent us militarily, because we have some great people, militarily. I don’t know that we’re using them".

HH: If China were to either accidentally or intentionally sink a Filipino or Japanese ship, what would Commander-In-Chief Donald Trump do in response?

DT: I wouldn’t want to tell you, because frankly, they have to, you know, [someone] said there’s a certain unpredictability about Trump that’s great, and it’s what made him a lot of money and a lot of success.

HH: How do you define assault weapon? This is important to our 2nd Amendment friends out there.

DT: Well, yeah, I think that you know, the word assault weapon, and a lot of people, there’s been a lot of controversy, but I wouldn’t give you exact, I am in favor.
posted by Pink Frost at 6:15 PM on September 6, 2015 [5 favorites]


Yikes.
posted by JHarris at 7:13 PM on September 6, 2015


Pitting black voters against Latino voters is the new pitting poor white voters against black voters. Probably the next step after that would be putting Chicano voters against voters of Central American descent, or second generation+ Hispanic voters against newer arrivals. (The GOP establishment has been already doing this to some extent by favoring anti-communist Cuban exiles but not Chicanos.) This playbook isn't merely racist. It's ethnicist and tribalist. Divide and conquer is a more sophisticated strategy than one would expect, and one needs to understand it in order to successfully combat it.
posted by Apocryphon at 11:44 PM on September 6, 2015 [2 favorites]


For secretary of defense Trump is going to pick Andrew Dice Clay
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 2:51 PM on September 7, 2015 [1 favorite]






Sarah Palin: ‘Native Americans Should Go Back to Nativia’

Ha ha Daily Currant and all, but it pays to remember that there really are people who really have expressed pretty much exactly the same opinion and that their vote counts just as much as yours does.
posted by flabdablet at 9:15 PM on September 7, 2015


ha ha FUCK PALIN
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 10:20 PM on September 7, 2015


no like seriously she is the worst
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 10:21 PM on September 7, 2015 [2 favorites]


I really like Sarah Palin. I think she should be President. She would do an excellent job.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 5:07 AM on September 8, 2015


Ha ha Daily Currant and all, but it pays to remember that there really are people who really have expressed pretty much exactly the same opinion and that their vote counts just as much as yours does.

I'm pretty sure that there is no election in which Griffin McMaster's vote counts the same as mine.
posted by Etrigan at 5:45 AM on September 8, 2015


Ha ha Daily Currant and all, but it pays to remember that there really are people who really have expressed pretty much exactly the same opinion and that their vote counts just as much as yours does.

At first I assumed that link went to the Onion. I'm not familiar with the Daily Currant, but Sarah Palin is such a moron I still don't know if she really said that. I don't really want to know, either.

Anyhoo, Sarah Palin: I'd like to be the secretary of energy in a Donald Trump administration
In an interview with CNN's Jake Tapper on Sunday, Palin explained why she'd want to put in charge of the that department: to promote business development and eventually shut down the department altogether.


Please note: tonight the role of Ron Swanson will be played by Sarah Palin.
posted by Room 641-A at 5:58 AM on September 8, 2015 [3 favorites]


At first I assumed that link went to the Onion. I'm not familiar with the Daily Currant, but Sarah Palin is such a moron I still don't know if she really said that. I don't really want to know, either.

For those unfamiliar, the Daily Currant is also a satire site.
posted by maxsparber at 9:52 AM on September 8, 2015


I've been reading old Person of Interest reviews and stumbled across this, from 2013:
During last year’s presidential election, some pundits explained that Republican candidates who might personally like to avoid contact with Donald Trump had to suck it up and treat him gingerly, because he had a special appeal to an important segment of the party base: Obnoxious, ill-informed blue-collar guys who enjoyed watching Trump make a braying ass of himself on TV related to him, because he was their fantasy of what kind of rich guy they’d like to be.
posted by the man of twists and turns at 10:45 AM on September 8, 2015


For those unfamiliar, the Daily Currant is also a satire site.
Remember when the Daily Currant guy tweeted "Maybe you should Wikipedia satire. The first 2 paragraphs say satire doesn't have to be funny."
"Satire doesn't have to be funny. It just has to trick teenage libertarians into sharing an article on Facebook." - @TheDailyCurrant
Boring as Heck: Daily Currant Article Funny
“Good satire punches upwards,” said The Daily Currant’s founder, Daniel Barkeley, “Amazing satire doesn’t punch at all. It hardly even registers as like, a touch or a flick. Amazing satire tricks you into thinking it’s real. It’s actually smarter than regular satire, the kind with jokes.”

When asked if he thought his website would continue being funny, Barkeley smirked and said, “People overdosing on weed. That answer your question?”
posted by Rustic Etruscan at 10:51 AM on September 8, 2015 [3 favorites]


Room 641-A: "Anyhoo, Sarah Palin: I'd like to be the secretary of energy in a Donald Trump administration"

Business Insider fails at journalism because: "I think a lot about the Department of Energy, because energy is my baby — oil and gas and minerals, those things that God has dumped on this part of the earth for mankind's use instead of us relying on unfriendly foreign nations, for us to import their resources," Palin said. "And if I were head of that, I'd get rid of it, and I'd let the states start having more control over the lands that are within their boundaries and the people who are affected by the developments within their states," she added. "It'd be a short-term job, but it would be really great to have someone who knows energy and who is pro-responsible development to be in charge."

It's the Department of the Interior that manages federal lands and controls natural resource exploitation. The DoE manages nuclear material handling, energy conservation, genomics, and research on new forms of energy.

Maybe she had so much trouble getting that kind of thing done in Alaska because she kept submitting her applications to the wrong department. "This is the DoE, not the Office of Surface Mining! Why does Alaska keep asking us if they can mine coal?" "I dunno, Mitch, are they trying to do it with nuclear bombs?" "Maaaaaaybe, but maybe they're also trying to sequence its genes?" "Someone should tell them coal doesn't have genes." "Nah, just put it in the circular file. Bunch o weirdos up there. Comes from the 6-month nights."
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 11:34 AM on September 8, 2015 [10 favorites]


Donald Trump is brilliant revenge: The GOP’s demise looks a lot like this
He is the perfect exorcist to drive a stake through the heart of the modern Republican Party. But he is not the first in history to perform this operation. The same crisis hit the party in the 1890s.

When it was over, the nation had a reformed Republican Party, and a new historical era.

...

Younger Republicans recognized that their party could no longer embrace an ideology that served the wealthy alone. Moreover, they recognized that catering to the super rich was changing the nature of the nation, threatening to turn it from a democracy to an oligarchy. The leader of this Republican reformation was a young upstart named Theodore Roosevelt, and he, and his Progressive Republicans, ushered in the Progressive Era.
Also talks about Trump signalling the end of "movement conservatism."
posted by Golden Eternity at 11:36 AM on September 8, 2015


The DoE manages nuclear material handling, energy conservation, genomics...

[record scratch]

Wait, why genomics?
posted by Etrigan at 11:36 AM on September 8, 2015


Etrigan: "Wait, why genomics?"

I think just because so much physical science funding flows through the DoE and they manage so many legacy laboratories from the Manhattan Project. Wikipedia knows more.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 11:43 AM on September 8, 2015 [1 favorite]


For those unfamiliar, the Daily Currant is also a satire site.

I'm glad to hear it. I was afraid to find out it was real.
posted by Room 641-A at 11:57 AM on September 8, 2015 [1 favorite]


Everything I feel I need to know about American Politics, I learned from careful study and observation of Professional Wrestling.

Trump is currently playing the heel. His job is to break rules, be obnoxious, attract a lot of attention, and make his opponents seem more heroic by comparison.

He is a fitting front runner for the GOP, which I believe exists solely to be so loathsome as to make the Democrats somehow acceptable.
posted by mrjohnmuller at 12:25 PM on September 8, 2015 [2 favorites]


I'm glad that, of the current GOP crop, he's the front runner. His issue positions are actually the least frightening and odious of the bunch.
posted by LooseFilter at 12:42 PM on September 8, 2015


Pardon? His positions on immigration are the least odious? Really?
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 12:58 PM on September 8, 2015


I think just because so much physical science funding flows through the DoE and they manage so many legacy laboratories from the Manhattan Project.

I would not be very surprised if DoE ran bioweapons labs on the idea that they already have well-developed skill sets for dealing with weapons of mass destruction and have the necessary supercomputers just sitting around when they're not exploding pretend nukes.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 1:33 PM on September 8, 2015


Pardon? His positions on immigration are the least odious? Really?

No, I meant in general. He's not trying to impose Christian law (that puts him ahead of at least half of the pack); he recognizes that oligarchy is bad and that the rich should pay their fair share of taxes; he thinks the financial sector needs greater regulation; he supports planned parenthood and seems--despite how he actually treats them--to support women's health and workplace equality; etc. Yes, his positions on immigration are odious--actually, I find all of his positions on almost everything somewhere from odious and reprehensible to offensive to well-OK-maybe-sort-of, but my point is that, in that crew, yes, he seems least odious overall.

But it really doesn't matter, I don't think. His national support will max out somewhere just under 30%, I expect, and my read is that he's running because he's a raging narcissist and megalomaniac anyway, and doesn't necessarily want the job, just the prestige and power.
posted by LooseFilter at 2:41 PM on September 8, 2015


Pardon? His positions on immigration are the least odious? Really?

Love them or hate them, his immigration stance does represent a swath of public opinion that hasn't been captured by the mainstream GOP or by the Democrats. Granted, Sanders seems to deliver a bit of populist fire with his suggestion that de-facto open borders and illegal immigration is not good for unions, tradesmen, or the average American worker. But most of the Republican slate is in the pockets of businesses that view labor as an expense to be minimized, and the Democratic slate is in the pockets of major donors like Zuckerberg (FWD.us) or Soros (and others whose names are less recognizable).

He is a fitting front runner for the GOP, which I believe exists solely to be so loathsome as to make the Democrats somehow acceptable.

It does seem a little bit tinfoil-hat crazy, but the major parties do fine if the GOP plays the controlled opposition role and pretends to be conservative, while the Democrats push the envelope leftward. At least socially. Even the moderate Democrats seem to have to bomb people now and then (e.g. Obama and his drone war).
posted by theorique at 3:56 PM on September 8, 2015


The GOP’s Trump Trouble . . .
. . . And how to handle it
In addition, Trump has expressed two powerful feelings churning in the hearts of the Republican rank and file, and no candidate can succeed if he can’t give more coherent and civil voice to those deep emotions than Trump’s primal scream (and the party is beholden to Trump for making clear what grassroots Republicans believe but mainstream candidates won’t say)
Is Trump the Candidate Reform Conservatives Are Seeking?
There happens to be a Republican candidate for president who wants less immigration but also thinks it’s “outrageous” how little tax some rich people pay, and he’s doing pretty well in the polls. Is Donald Trump the candidate the reformocons have been waiting for?

“No,” Mr. Frum said.

But.

“He may be the jolt that the Republican Party needs to compromise its pro-plutocratic agenda,” he said.
posted by the man of twists and turns at 4:43 PM on September 8, 2015




Don't cross the streams.
posted by the man of twists and turns at 5:09 PM on September 8, 2015 [1 favorite]


“He may be the jolt that the Republican Party needs to compromise its pro-plutocratic agenda,” he said.

Jesus, straight talk from David Frum, what is the world coming to.
posted by GuyZero at 5:15 PM on September 8, 2015 [3 favorites]




McAfee is a straight shooter
posted by flabdablet at 7:15 PM on September 8, 2015


Golden Eternity: "Yes, That's a 'Make America Great Again' Hat in Tom Brady's Locker"

As if I didn't have enough reasons to hate the Patriots.
posted by octothorpe at 7:35 PM on September 8, 2015 [2 favorites]


Jonah Goldberg: No Movement That Embraces Trump Can Call Itself Conservative, NRO
If I sound dismayed, it’s only because I am. Conservatives have spent more than 60 years arguing that ideas and character matter. That is the conservative movement I joined and dedicated my professional life to. And now, in a moment of passion, many of my comrades-in-arms are throwing it all away in a fit of pique. Because “Trump fights!”
Kevin Drum: Sorry, Conservatives: You Deserve Donald Trump, Mother Jones
But surely Goldberg understands that this is the right-wing base that he and his colleagues have built? I don't expect any conservative writer to acknowledge this in public, but surely in the occasional dark night of the soul they understand what they've done? For years they've supported the worst know-nothing bombast of Drudge and Limbaugh, the casual reality distortion of Fox News, and the resentment-based appeals of people like Newt Gingrich and Sarah Palin. And they've turned a blind eye to even worse: birthers, Agenda 21 lunacy, Cliven Bundy's army, and much, much more. It was handy at the time, and helped win a few elections.
posted by the man of twists and turns at 9:27 PM on September 8, 2015 [8 favorites]


Software pioneer McAfee files paperwork to run for president

"What's your foreign policy experience?"

McAfee: "Well, I fled Belize once because I was wanted for questioning in a murder. The Prime Minister said I was paranoid and bonkers. Later, I was arrested in Guaemala and kept in a detention center for entering the country illegally."

But this is all burying the lede. He's decided to run not for any existing party but to run as a candidate for the CYBER PARTY (all caps-ing is mine.... for now).
posted by sparkletone at 11:06 PM on September 8, 2015 [1 favorite]


Great. Once installed in Office, McAfee can't be removed.
posted by JackFlash at 11:27 PM on September 8, 2015 [27 favorites]


Jonah Goldberg bemoaning the lack of ideas and character. Jonah fuckin' Goldberg.
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 3:26 AM on September 9, 2015 [3 favorites]


Trump/McAfee 2016: Let's Make Antivirus Software Great Again
posted by a lungful of dragon at 3:38 AM on September 9, 2015


Jonah Goldberg bemoaning the lack of ideas and character. Jonah fuckin' Goldberg.

Come on now. That was a very serious, thoughtful, argument that has never been made in such detail or with such care.
posted by Chrysostom at 5:12 AM on September 9, 2015 [2 favorites]


> Jonah Goldberg: No Movement That Embraces Trump Can Call Itself Conservative, NRO
> posted by the man of twists and turns a


If you're going to post stuff like that you need to add a caution label, like "For Novelty Use Only". I accidentally spent time trying to treat seriously and find the logic in an article by Jonah Goldberg and now I feel bad.
posted by benito.strauss at 8:54 AM on September 9, 2015 [1 favorite]


Well, I fled Belize once because I was wanted for questioning in a murder

But if there's no statute of limitations on murder, can McAfee's trial period ever expire?
posted by cortex at 9:00 AM on September 9, 2015 [8 favorites]


> Come on now. That was a very serious, thoughtful, argument that has never been made in such detail or with such care.

That was the single stupidest article I've read in quite a while. The only good thing I got out of it was the image of William F. Buckley's corpse adding another couple thousand RPMs to its rate of spin.
posted by benito.strauss at 9:01 AM on September 9, 2015 [1 favorite]


If you're going to post stuff like that you need to add a caution label, like "For Novelty Use Only".

I did, I abbreviated it NRO - notably ridiculous opinion.
posted by the man of twists and turns at 9:03 AM on September 9, 2015 [2 favorites]


I was alluding to something stupid Goldberg did a few years back. Maybe it's too obscure of a ref at this point.
posted by Chrysostom at 9:27 AM on September 9, 2015


> I was alluding to something stupid Goldberg did a few years back. Maybe it's too obscure of a ref at this point.

Possibly. Or maybe focusing on just one stupid thing Goldberg did is as impossible as picking out one minnow from a shoal.

(Oh, okay, I'll bite. Link to the particular stupid thing, please?)
posted by benito.strauss at 9:37 AM on September 9, 2015


He wrote a load of tripe in the mid-2000s called Liberal Fascists, in which he sought to prove that American liberals are basically direct intellectual descendants of Hitler. When people pointed out that this was a bit...absurd, he responded that it was, "a very serious, thoughtful, argument that has never been made in such detail or with such care." ...Right.

Unsurprisingly, that particular quote was subsequently used quite a bit in the left-leaning blogosphere whenever Goldberg said anything thereafter. I suppose I'm showing my age bringing it up.

Sorry for the derail.
posted by Chrysostom at 10:10 AM on September 9, 2015 [5 favorites]


Trump supports the US taking in Syrian refugees
posted by Noisy Pink Bubbles at 5:47 PM on September 9, 2015


@BillKristol: "BREAKING: Dick Cheney & @SenTomCotton will be together at GOP fundraiser in AR Monday evening. Speculation mounts about Cheney-Cotton 2016."
posted by Golden Eternity at 7:39 PM on September 9, 2015




angrycat: "I can't hear Jeb! without hearing Crow or Servo sing out Jeeeeeeeeeeeeeeb! What was that, The Giant Spider Invasion? Jeeeeeeeeeeb!"

It was 802 - The Leech Woman.
posted by Chrysostom at 8:37 PM on September 9, 2015 [3 favorites]


tonycpsu: Meanwhile, Jeb! Bush ties himself in knots trying to out-Trump Trump.

Damn you, Stephen Colbert, for making Jeb! look like a reasonable person in your Late Night interview, and thank you, tonycpsu, for setting me straight.


Anyway, while listening to NPR this morning, I heard a real Trump gem (amid some bonkers comments from the public against the Iran nuclear deal*: If he's elected, "We will have so much winning." The NPR clip left off the rest of that sentence -- "We will have so much winning when I get elected that you will get bored with winning."

And then you will wish for losing! But no, I will KEEP ON WINNING.

So much winning (Trump doge image search, you're welcome)
posted by filthy light thief at 7:29 AM on September 10, 2015 [3 favorites]


@BillKristol: "Trump played a tough guy on TV. Cheney and Cotton are actually tough.
Let's REALLY make America great again.
Cheney-Cotton 2016."
posted by Golden Eternity at 12:46 PM on September 10, 2015


@BillKristol

American meritocracy in action, people
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 7:14 PM on September 10, 2015 [2 favorites]


Donald Trump mocks rival Carly Fiorina's face: 'Look at that face, would anyone vote for that?' (not satire)

That's gross. Let's not forget that Fiorina has done the same thing to Hillary Clinton, though. Both Trump and Fiorina are equally unfit for the office they seek. Well, maybe "equally" is a stretch but when we're talking about degrees of "massively unfit" it's close enough.
posted by Justinian at 8:35 PM on September 10, 2015 [2 favorites]






'We will never have another chance to point out that [Rick Perry] named his boots “Freedom” and “Liberty.”'

It was the only way he could remember which way was fright and left.
posted by JackFlash at 9:35 AM on September 12, 2015 [14 favorites]


Chuck Tingle weighs in on the current situation with PRESIDENT DOMALD LOCH NESS TROMPS POUNDS AMERICA'S BUTT.
posted by sparkletone at 12:31 PM on September 13, 2015 [4 favorites]




Every he speaks I think, "there's no way that Huckabee could be a worse asshole" and then the next time he talks, he's even worse.
posted by octothorpe at 6:32 AM on September 14, 2015


Trump and Obama: A Night to Remember from the New Yorker.
posted by readery at 9:19 AM on September 14, 2015 [1 favorite]


The good news is that Trump's successor on Celebrity Apprentice can't run for President.

Yet.
posted by Etrigan at 10:00 AM on September 14, 2015 [1 favorite]


from A Night To Remember, linked above:
The outsiders are swamping us, and the insiders are mocking us—this ideology alters its local color as circumstances change, but the essential core is always there. They look down on us and they have no right to look down on us. Indeed, the politics of Trump, far from being in any way new, are exactly the politics of Huck Finn’s drunken father in “Huckleberry Finn”: “Call this a govment! Just look at it and see what it’s like . . . . A man can’t get his rights in a govment like this.” Widespread dissatisfaction with all professional politicians, a certainty of having been “sold out,” a feeling of complete alienation from both political parties—“Not a dime’s worth of difference between them” was George Wallace’s formulation, a half century ago—these are permanent intuitions of the American aggrieved.
posted by the man of twists and turns at 3:41 PM on September 14, 2015 [1 favorite]




How Roland Barthes and pro wrestling explain Trump

That.... almost makes sense to me, and I haven't even clicked yet.

Damn my state subsidised education!
posted by Mezentian at 4:03 AM on September 16, 2015 [1 favorite]


Yeah the Barthes thing is a good explanation. TLwon'tRead: celebrities who succeed are godly. Trump is a trickster figure so not only can he get away with mistakes, his schtick is largely to make big mistakes. He is not a pro wrestling heel at all like some have suggested. He is more like Bugs Bunny. Would that not make for a great looneytune if Bugs was threatening to nuke the Russians?

This NYTimes magazine article is linked as godfather TV recap link & is an excellent summary.
posted by bukvich at 6:25 AM on September 16, 2015


Conservatives Start Air Assault Against Donald Trump (NPR)
A deep-pocketed conservative group is going on the attack against Donald Trump, spending $1 million on TV ads in Iowa in an effort to weaken the GOP presidential front-runner.

The anti-tax group Club for Growth — ironically known for taking down establishment insiders in favor of more conservative outsiders in Senate and House races — is now turning on Trump, who it sees as a closet Democrat.

Club for Growth Action, the group's political arm, will launch two 30-minute TV spots on broadcast, cable and digital platforms to hammer home to Hawkeye State voters — where Trump's lead has slipped thanks to an insurgent Ben Carson — that the reality TV star is simply an entertainer who will say anything to get elected.
But "Thus far, television advertising in the primaries has been more a sign of weakness than a sign of strength," says Elizabeth Wilner, who oversees the monitoring of political advertising for Kantar Media, an ad-tracking firm. (Also from NPR.) I wonder how attack ads from non-candidates fit into this reaction for the public.
posted by filthy light thief at 10:13 AM on September 16, 2015


How Roland Barthes and pro wrestling explain Trump

Donald Trump actually appeared in WWE during 2003. So he knows the kayfabe of wrestling, which is a lot like the kayfabe of politics.
posted by theorique at 3:54 PM on September 16, 2015 [2 favorites]


trumpbot.gif
posted by exogenous at 7:06 AM on September 17, 2015 [1 favorite]


I was amused by the story of Trump speaking at the Veterens for Strong America rally which turned out to be a fundraiser for a SuperPAC. Trump proclaimed that he was pleased to receive the endorsement of the "hundreds of thousands of members." There is only one member of the group, Joel Arends. The question is did Trump know that, was he part of the fraud or was he taken in by Arends?
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 4:24 PM on September 18, 2015




Well, that involved fewer burning coals, rotisseries and skewers than I expected, although I am sure Trump would be bad eating.
posted by Mezentian at 1:29 AM on September 20, 2015


President Obama roasts Donald Trump at the White House correspondents dinner.

I have been hearing about Donald Trump since the Spy Mgazine days, but since that speech Trump's name will always bring to mind the image of that sad, little, humorless man sitting stone-faced in a room full of laughing people. The WHCA dinner during a Trump presidency.
posted by Room 641-A at 6:09 AM on September 20, 2015 [2 favorites]


Frank Rich: In Praise Of Donald Trump
There is indeed a lighter way to look at Trump’s rise and his impact on the country. Far from being an apocalyptic harbinger of the end-times, it’s possible that his buffoonery poses no lasting danger. Quite the contrary: His unexpected monopoly of center stage may well be the best thing to happen to our politics since the arrival of Barack Obama.

In the short time since Trump declared his candidacy, he has performed a public service by exposing, however crudely and at times inadvertently, the posturings of both the Republicans and the Democrats and the foolishness and obsolescence of much of the political culture they share.
I actually think I have a model that lends some insight into the rise of Trump, but it's still pretty incoherent.
posted by the man of twists and turns at 1:38 PM on September 21, 2015 [1 favorite]






@realDonaldTrump: "I am having a really hard time watching @FoxNews."
posted by Golden Eternity at 7:12 PM on September 21, 2015


The first time I've ever agreed with Trump.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:51 PM on September 21, 2015 [1 favorite]








Meet the Trump Truthers: Media figures insist bigoted Trump questioner was just a liberal plant

I swear, if there were a tenth as many false-flag operations in American politics as people think there are, you wouldn't be able to swing a dead socialist without hitting one.
posted by Etrigan at 6:21 AM on September 24, 2015 [1 favorite]


From the article posted by Octothorpe: Broadly speaking, the men and women who wrote fall into two categories: Those who earnestly believe that Trump is the best choice to lead America and those who are motivated by giddyness at the chaotic spectacle of his success.

So basically....anarchists. "Things aren't going well so let's tear this motherfucker down for fun." Hey, I can sympathize but I'm not really ready to burn the country to the ground for shits and giggles. As typified by this excerpt:

“I'm a young guy who is immature, a bit antisocial, and with no plans for kids or a wife ever. At some level, I don’t really care how things go with America as long as it’s fun to watch.”

posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 7:42 AM on September 24, 2015


Nihilists, really. Say what you will about the merits of anarchism, at least it's an ethos.
posted by maxsparber at 10:29 AM on September 24, 2015 [3 favorites]


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