Real things that are happening

A very long time ago, events in this Presidential campaign grew too absurd to be properly assessed through sober, rational thought. So for a while we coped by using humor and snark.

As we spiraled deeper into madness, humor transitioned toward alarm.

Now, words fail. There’s little we can accomplish with descriptions, reasoning, thought or even panic. We can only sit back and watch. And vote.

Here are a few images and comments culled from the StormTrumpers themselves over the past few days. I have nothing left to say about this. These people deserve to get what they are asking for, but unfortunately we would all have to share their hell. Our only alternative is to outvote them. Go vote.

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https://twitter.com/Bencjacobs/status/786733379567820800/photo/1

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And finally, from the producers of the filmThe 13th, this lovely montage of National Greatness Restored. Trump fans then and now:

 

88 Comments

  1. The GOP voter suppression machine is in high gear. Read what is happening in IN. I guess this is part of the 50 state RedMap strategy within 30 days of election….I surely hope the DOJ investigates, but they’d better hurry!

    Wow, we need SCOTUS to run the country through judicial fiat for all legislation that Republicans can’t muster through Congress, and we need the DOJ to police our states for everything from police intimidation to voter suppression?

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/post-politics/wp/2016/10/15/group-accuses-mike-pence-of-voter-suppression-after-state-police-raid-registration-program-in-indiana/?tid=hybrid_collaborative_3_na

  2. I see pro-Trump supporters passing around this copy-and-paste text. See if you can count the errors:

    “In defense of Donald Trump : Try to keep this in mind, Donald Trump did not steal your money. Donald Trump did not raise your taxes. Donald Trump did not quadruple the price of food. Trump is not stirring a race war. Trump did not leave any US soldiers in Benghazi to be slaughtered and desecrated by Muslims. Trump did not send the US Navy to fight for Syrian Al-Qaeda. Trump did not arm ISIS and systematically exterminate Christians throughout the Middle East. Trump did not betray Israel. Trump did not provide financing and technology to Iran’s nuclear weapons program. Trump did not give our military secrets to China. Trump did not remove our nuclear missile shield in Poland at the behest of Russia. Trump did not shrivel our military, and betray our veterans. Trump did not cripple our economy. Trump did not increase our debt to 20 trillion dollars. Trump did not ruin our credit, twice. Trump did not double African American unemployment. Trump did not increase welfare to a record level for eight years. Trump did not sign a law making it legal to execute, and imprison Americans. Trump did not set free all of terrorists in Guantanamo bay. Trump did not steal your rights, violate US Constitutional law, or commit treason, hundreds of times. Yet Trump is being ripped apart in the news, non stop. Barrack Hussein Obama, Hillary Clinton and the criminals occupying our government, are not. The media is the Democratic Party. Save our culture. Stop listening to them..!! Please copy and Paste”

    Yep, the GOP is finished.

    1. This part is especially hysterical:

      “In defense of Donald Trump : Try to keep this in mind, Donald Trump did not steal your money..”

      You people might want to check the court docket here; there are absolutely people claiming that Trump stole from them.

      As for Trump getting ripped by the media, I too have a complaint. My complaint is that this wasn’t happening a year ago. He deserves every nasty bit of it, and more!!

    2. And yet I keep hearing arguments about how we should take them and their situation seriously.

      Oh I take them perfectly seriously, seriously enough to where I want their ideology and the sick disease that is their pathology crushed beyond all recognition. Those who throw away their self-respect and their duty as citizens by elevating a bigot to within a heartbeat of the presidency will not be excused nor forgiven. Not now, not ever.

      1. I am confused and probably need a tutorial….if HRC is leading white women by 14-20 points and trump only ahead 3-5 with white men how are we getting these polls of 47-40.

        I guess my specific question is if Trump is only getting 18% latinos, 8% African American losing white women bigly and only up 3-5 with white men how are we getting these polls numbers….something isn’t adding up for me?

        You steered me (correctly) to the 538 website but when I dump in the naked numbers from say the recent Monmouth poll I get an avalanche…yet these states are polling close or in Trump’s column….what gives?

    1. WOW…….that said it all. An amazing review of why this is happening and the problems that remain unaddressed.

      “Duped for a generation by a party that kowtowed to the wealthy while offering scraps to voters, then egged on to a doomed rebellion by a third-rate con man who wilted under pressure and was finally incinerated in a fireball of his own stupidity, people like this found themselves, in the end, represented by literally no one.”

      “The party spent 50 years preaching rich people bromides like “trickle-down economics” and “picking yourself up by your bootstraps” as solutions to the growing alienation and financial privation of the ordinary voter. In place of jobs, exported overseas by the millions by their financial backers, Republicans glibly offered the flag, Jesus and Willie Horton.”

      “The only thing that could get in the way of real change – if not now, then surely very soon – was a rebellion so maladroit, ill-conceived and irresponsible that even the severest critics of the system would become zealots for the status quo.”

      “In the absolute best-case scenario, the one in which he loses, this is what Trump’s run accomplished. He ran as an outsider antidote to a corrupt two-party system, and instead will leave that system more entrenched than ever. If he goes on to lose, he will be our Bonaparte, the monster who will continue to terrify us even in exile, reinforcing the authority of kings.”

      “If” he goes on to lose………Powerful piece by Taibbi

    2. Creigh, Don’t know if you subscribe to the WSJ, but this is a good piece on Paul Ryan and his “Better Way” plan. As I have noted in prior posts, supposedly, if Republicans hold majorities in Congress, Ryan has boldly announced his intention to use a rare parliamentary provision to implement his plan.

      Ryan’s “Better Way” plan would be an excellent topic for this section of the blog. Better that all read it now and know its details. It’s been a while since I have done so. Here’s a link that compares Ryan’s Better Way plan with Trump’s tax plan.

      http://www.economist.com/news/united-states/21702522-speakers-policies-are-best-divided-party-has-offer-better-what

    3. “This [concerns about the impacts of globalization] sounds sensible enough, but it stops computing when you get to the part where the solution to the vast and complex dilemmas facing humanity is Donald Trump, a man who stays up at night tweeting about whether or not Robert Pattinson should take back Kristen Stewart. (He shouldn’t, says Trump: “She cheated on him like a dog and will do it again – just watch. He can do much better!”) This is a man who can’t remember what he did 10 seconds ago, much less decide the fate of the nation-state.”

      That sums up the the problem nicely. Trump is acknowledging their problems, but he’s the worst choice for actually solving them.

      Defeating Trump is a respite, not a final victory.

  3. Here’s one perspective on it:

    http://www.cracked.com/blog/6-reasons-trumps-rise-that-no-one-talks-about/

    “To those ignored, suffering people, Donald Trump is a brick chucked through the window of the elites. “Are you assholes listening now?””

    […]

    “You’ve never rooted for somebody like that? Someone powerful who gives your enemies the insults they deserve? Somebody with big fun appetites who screws up just enough to make them relatable? Like Dr. House or Walter White? Or any of the several million renegade cop characters who can break all the rules because they get shit done? Who only get shit done because they don’t care about the rules?

    “”But those are fictional characters!” Okay, what about all those millionaire left-leaning talk show hosts? You think they keep their insults classy? Tune into any bit about Chris Christie and start counting down the seconds until the fat joke. Google David Letterman’s sex scandals. But it’s okay, because they’re on our side, and everybody wants an asshole on their team — a spiked bat to smash their enemies with. That’s all Trump is. The howls of elite outrage are like the sounds of bombs landing on the enemy’s fortress. The louder the better.”

    I think part of the #WomenWhoVoteTrump thing is still, at base, about celebrity and representation. To me it’s one of the lesser surprising moments of this election, as there’s always enough people in a nation of 320million to make it seem like there’s a representative sample of “Americans who…” behind every ludicrous act.

    Most of those women can say they wouldn’t mind being groped by Trump BECAUSE they never have to worry about it happening. He’s still just a figurehead for an attitude that expresses them, not an actual person they have to deal with in their real lives.

      1. It does sync with my impression of Trump voters, however, usually people who might appreciate a bully champion in a tough spot would still not expect nor support that bully to be POTUS. I guess we’ll find out Nov. 8th. Compartmentalization of expectation, perhaps.

        In the meantime, Vox had an interesting article about exactly this anomaly – that is, that finally, the citizenry are engaged, and “this leaves us, at long last, with government driven by the profound desires of the people. The evidence, however, suggests something rather different and darker — that as the balance of power shifts away from party establishments and toward the mass public, we will get government driven by the whims of the inattentive and uninformed, and there won’t be much beyond dumb luck standing between the republic and a telegenic demagogue who happens to secure the backing of the minority of people who bother to vote in primary elections.”

        Staggering in its hypothesis, isn’t it? All this intelligent discussion and the “deciders/deplorables” will simply “flip a coin”. The article further states that most successful democracies have a parliamentary system of government which results in incremental change rather than the major shifts inherent in the US political system.

        http://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2016/10/14/12663318/bartels-achen-democracy-for-realists

    1. Wow Mary. Thanks for linking the Vox article. There’s so much there to disect, but I only have time to say that this reminds me of the piece , from the Atlantic I believe, that suggested transparency in the political process has left the parties with limited ability to not only make deals with each other but to control the nomination process as well.

      1. Here’s more unbelievable news. A post-second debate poll shows only a 4 point difference between the candidates…even more striking are the responses from likely voters to this polling question:

        “There’s a videotape recorded 11 years ago in which Trump talks about his sexual advances towards women. Given what you’ve read or heard about it, do Trump’s comments on this tape won’t make any difference to you? 64% – no difference; 45% Dems; 84 Repubs; 60% Independents…NO DIFFERENCE!!!

        https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/washington-post-abc-news-poll-clinton-holds-four-point-lead-in-aftermath-of-trump-tape/2016/10/15/c31969a4-9231-11e6-9c52-0b10449e33c4_story.html?wpisrc=al_alert-COMBO-politics%252Bnation

        It’s a whole new world out there, folks! 27 days seems like an eternity. Think debates don’t matter? Who knows…maybe nothing matters….Debate #3 – last one (-; Wednesday night, 8pm cst.

    2. “You’ve never rooted for somebody like that? Someone powerful who gives your enemies the insults they deserve? Somebody with big fun appetites who screws up just enough to make them relatable? Like Dr. House or Walter White? Or any of the several million renegade cop characters who can break all the rules because they get shit done? Who only get shit done because they don’t care about the rules?”

      I’ve been entertained by people like that, sure.

      “”But those are fictional characters!” Okay, what about all those millionaire left-leaning talk show hosts? You think they keep their insults classy? Tune into any bit about Chris Christie and start counting down the seconds until the fat joke. Google David Letterman’s sex scandals. But it’s okay, because they’re on our side, and everybody wants an asshole on their team — a spiked bat to smash their enemies with. That’s all Trump is. The howls of elite outrage are like the sounds of bombs landing on the enemy’s fortress. The louder the better.”

      Snark is one thing, access to the nuclear codes or being in charge of the DOJ is in a whole different universe. It’s not like this group doesn’t have their own asshole entertainers: Limbaugh, Hannity, etc.

      The city looking down on the country thing is real, and it’s a fair point. But the country folks have their own beam in the eye, the “my ignorance is as good as your knowledge” attitude that they flaunt.

      1. “Snark is one thing, access to the nuclear codes or being in charge of the DOJ is in a whole different universe. It’s not like this group doesn’t have their own asshole entertainers: Limbaugh, Hannity, etc.”

        For the record, I think Jon Stewart would be a better president and more trustworthy with nuclear codes than Donald Trump, but I can totally see liberals voting him into the Democratic nomination despite the fact he has no business facing the office of POTUS.

      2. Liberals voting for…..Jon Stewart? Or Donald Trump? I’m assuming you meant Stewart…..If those were the two choices, damn straight I’d vote for Stewart – as would other Democrats. He may be an entertainer, but he has a serious interest in politics and his opinions and ideas aren’t batshit crazy. Come to think of it, the only person I’d have a hard time voting for instead of Trump would be Ted Cruz….That would require some real soul-searching (Teddy would be proud…)

        Not quite sure where you were headed with your thought…comparison of two entertainers? If so, Donald Trump in his wildest dreams could never touch Jon Stewart in depth and coherence. Maybe you could develop your comment a little more?

      3. “For the record, I think Jon Stewart would be a better president and more trustworthy with nuclear codes than Donald Trump, but I can totally see liberals voting him into the Democratic nomination despite the fact he has no business facing the office of POTUS.”

        I wouldn’t think much of their judgment either. This notion that somebody with zero experience in elected office becoming President, which is one of the most demanding and difficult jobs on the planet, is the solution to any of our problems, is stupid. Gobsmacking, facepalming, neural circuit blowing asinine stupid. Experience matters. Expertise and knowledge matter. Temperment matters. I am not in favor of putting any restrictions on voters, because that can and will be abused, but the major parties can do something about unqualified outsiders hijacking the Presidential nomination process. They can set their rules. Whatever is left of the GOP should be thinking about that after this election.

      4. Yes, we certainly agree on qualified candidates, but, “if” it were a Jon Stewart vs a Donald Trump? That’s not even hard, Fly…..That’s the choice we were offered in the post.

        I think as worrisome as the possibility of a President Trump is the damage we are doing to our young and already disenchanted voters. This election has clearly demonstrated the “worst” in politics – the candidate selection process, the money factor, the lengths to which parties go to secure outcomes (Hanging chads, swift boats look positively juvenile compared to the tactics in this election), the toxic rhetoric, voter suppression!!!

        The last one is the most egregious. Many states are making it very difficult for our students to vote while away from home gaining an education – forcing them to travel home to exercise their voting rights rather than vote on campus!!! Our minorities and poor are systematically being hammered by one brazen tactic after another…with the courts having to step in in state after state to restore rights (Due to Hurricane Matthew, early voting/registration was directly impacted. Republican governors in FL, GA, SC, NC refused to extend deadlines to register and vote early which had to be appealed and reversed many times by the courts.) The newest Trump campaign tactic is to disburse poll watchers at voting sites who intimidate and challenge voters’ credentials. Why put yourself through this experience if you’re a young person or a working person?

        This is sending a message to our young who are already jaded about the democratic process, and to the world through the blessings of media, that America’s democracy is hardly as pure as we propound. Our political process is profoundly broken. Winning is everything. We are turning off a generation of voters if those in leadership are allowed to continue to abuse our democratic process. To a great extent, they have sadly been very successful. It will take major change to do something as simple as ensure voting rights. What a shame. This has been going on for a long, long time, and continues, as the two links below substantiate. I could have linked literally hundreds of articles on this subject. Isn’t that sad.

        http://www.bostonglobe.com/news/nation/2016/10/15/toxic-election-damaging-seed-corn-democracy-young-voters/JzKuUHURTkpKjPTSbhttp://www.bostonglobe.com/news/nation/2016/10/15/toxic-election-damaging-seed-corn-democracy-young-

        http://www.huffingtonpost.com/john-wellington-ennis/confronting-voter-suppres_b_9812612.html

      5. “Yes, we certainly agree on qualified candidates, but, “if” it were a Jon Stewart vs a Donald Trump? That’s not even hard, Fly…..That’s the choice we were offered in the post.”

        I wasn’t reading that as a “choose between Stewart vs Trump” challenge, but rather a statement of “it’s real easy for you to denounce Trump because you aren’t GOP/ conservative ITFP. What if the shoe was on the other foot?” I answered that in the old GOP Lifer blog, and I’ll restate it here. Let’s say that Trump had run as a Democrat, and he managed to get the nomination, playing to that same base. Let’s also assume that Trump gets baited by all that bad press in the same way. If I’m looking at my ballot and I must choose between him as a Dem, and someone like Jeb or Rubio, I’m holding my nose and voting GOP. I’m making that vote completely aware that I’m not going to like their SCOTUS picks or their economic plans. But I also know that they are not dangerously ignorant and don’t have the temperment of a spoiled toddler. I have a reasonable expectation that they would not be abusing the powers of the office for payback against anyone who opposed them. It would be a matter of oppose them were I disagree and work towards the next election.

      6. Thanks for the clarification. I was too superficial in my analysis.
        It’s simply unfathomable that we are even having to “have” this conversation, isn’t it? Yet, all we can hope is that out of the destruction comes something finer.

      1. Not to sound like a conspiracy nut but a good deal (though not all) of the problem is the politicization of social sciences and heavier influence of postmodernism. I deeply recommend Daniel Farber and Shelby’s (both liberal professors) book Beyond All Reason which, in a weird leftist analogy to right-wing “originalist” groups like the Federalist Society, documents attempts by the political far left to shove their views through via the social sciences and rejecting the actual notion of reality.

        Here’s the first chapter for some juicy quotes from the radicals http://www.nytimes.com/books/first/f/farber-reason.html

      2. This isn’t just a problem in social science. It’s also true in biology and psychology. The driving problem is not bias but the requirement for positive results in combination with expensive experiments. Scientist must find positive results on a regular basis or they lose their jobs. As a result, they get them – even though they’re really not there. Intentional fraud is the exception, but there’s a lot of self-delusion. Mostly the results come from re-analyzing the data enough ways to find something – you’ll always find something if you look at the data enough ways – and it will almost always be spurious, too, as we’re finding in replication.

      3. Here’s a current example. In the Houston Chronicle, there was an article that reviewed testing of the need for routine/regular mammograms. After an extensive evaluation, the recommendation is: no. Not that mammograms aren’t a valuable tool for diagnosis of tumors, but that they reveal very small tumors which medical practitioners feel need to be addressed. The findings were that many of these tumors do not and in fact that active treatment of an invasive nature (surgery/radiation) caused more problems than simply monitoring the tumors.

        The same finding for men occurred with prostate tests and more recently (and less serious) the value of dental floss…Dental floss!!! Why we are spending any time studying dental floss blows my mind.

        We are becoming a society that is so technologically advanced that we question everything…the danger in that is that we seem to be forgetting to apply common sense. “To floss or not to floss, that is the question!!!”

        Really, folks!

      4. Several years ago my software firm was contracted to miniaturize ‘known working’ med tech that measured blood sugar without pricking fingers. Seemed like a no brainer. The prototype was in clinical trials and had a long history of ‘working’. My job was simply to port the software onto new, smaller, electronics. That, of course, entailed getting familiar with the current software. I was alarmed when I got to the bottom of some very circular and convoluted math to discover the machine did, literally, nothing with the measured value from the sensor. It’s output was totally dependent upon the input of the charlatan running the test. When I pointed this out, and proved it with several pages of math reductions and code refactoring, no one involved was the least bit interested. I don’t think they were so much dishonest as just really wanting it to work so badly that they saw what they wanted to see. Needless to say, eventually the truth came out and the investors took a bath. Really opened my eyes to what can go on out there.

      5. I recall hearing about a revolutionary blood testing process that took the market by storm…only problem, it really didn’t work like they said it did. (can’t recall name but it’s a start up that garnered lots of attention with a female CEO). In the case of the investors taking a bath, think of the patients whose glucose management was compromised….which might have been a tad more important than any financial losses an investor might have experienced! At least the investors may have had legal recourse, the patients could have died. Minor difference (-;

      6. I think the problem lies mostly in the soft ‘sciences’. Biology is testable without convoluted statistics, and reproducible. Medicine is as well, but is properly referred to as a technology, rather than a science. It is also deeply wedded to a massive and growing industry, and as such inherits another set of problems.

    1. That was a great link, Griff….especially if one can extrapolate to the political arena. Consider years of indoctrination by FOX News, Rush Linbaugh without opposing viewpoints being presented. The old saw, hear the same thing enough times and it will begin to be perceived as truth….

      The rise of technology has improved our lives immensely, but I’m afraid it has also given people an excuse to stop thinking.

      1. It’s definitely easier to form echo chambers now. This can cause people and groups to become more radicalized at a quicker rate than they used to, which often used to require something on the scale of actual mass desperation.

  4. Chance of Trump running again in 2020 and getting the GOP nomination once again? It would be easy to say that since hes lost his “I WIN AT EVERYTHING” appearance he couldn’t do it, but if he manages to convince enough of the base that it was stolen from him and he was the rightful winner, and the GOP is fractured again, who knows…

    1. Trump will be forgotten by Christmas. He will have just as much influence as Sarah Palin, Joe the Plumber, Terri Schiavo’s family, Ted Nugent, and every other flash in the pan right wing superstar.

      And to top it off, I’m pretty sure his business empire will be ruined by early next year and he might be in jail by 2018. Collapse.

      1. Mary years ago I was talking to a coworker that we better learn to get along as we would be together forever. I could tell my black friend was puzzled. I told him that there was no black heaven and white heaven. It was integrated. Jesus a Semitic Jew was most likely of dark skin. That would be a shock to most of those people supporting Trump.

      2. “If” Heaven is integrated, only the “good” blacks will be allowed to enter. After all, you can’t have just “anybody” hanging out with you for infinity, especially when you sacrificed so much to get here (-;

        Oh, must be Friday. My cynical day….the end of the week when I need to pull a Tutta and turn it all off before I say something I’ll regret forever…(but I can’t…I’m weak)…

      3. >] “And to top it off, I’m pretty sure his business empire will be ruined by early next year and he might be in jail by 2018. Collapse.”

        A conspiracy by the elites, a corrupt media establishment and HILLARY CLINTON to silence the people’s voice to subvert our democracy, steal our First Amendment rights and force their authoritarian dictatorship down our throats.

        I’m not worried about Trump. I’m concerned about fringe figures like Steve Bannon, Alex Jones and others who are using the Orange Wonder as a useful idiot to take their message onto the national stage and do their dirty work for them. Off-the-top-of-my-head insane rants like the one above will just be the start.

  5. V L

    So for the last couple of hours or so I’ve engaged in a fruitless discussion about the economic problems of rural Americans and Trump’s rise.

    Apparently if you live in an economically depressed rural area, with issues of drug use, crime, suicide, etc. it’s okay to elect a fascist.

    I’m not scared though. I see some of you talking about how scared you are. Please don’t be. Citrus Satan and his minions are going to get their butts kicked on November 8th.

    There is another America that is larger, underpolled and largely unheard that will keep these idiots out of office.

    1. This has absolutely 0 to do with “economic problems.” That’s a desperate attempt to paint some kind of legitimacy over this horror show. This is about the declining relative power of white people in our political system. That’s the 1st issue on these people’s agenda, and it’s the next 15 issues on their agenda. It’s the whole agenda.

      1. V L

        Yep. When I challenged the Trumpkins on how the economic problems of rural areas were going to be solved by banning muslims, deporting all immigrants, giving a bigger tax cut the the rich, etc. all I got was silence.

        They kept saying over and over again it was about how urban voters are listened and catered to while rural voters are ignored.

        I then asked how is it that black Americans can at once live in, as Trump described them, violent urban hell holes and be waiting on hand and foot by the political establishment. More silence followed.

        There is no hope for these people.

      2. There is either an incredible level of hypocrisy, or, an incredible lack of rational thought being expressed today…note I didn’t say “stupidity” because many of these people are educated and thus have at least enough intelligence to graduate high school or college. They have blocked any rational thought of any kind in order to reinforce their decision to support Trump. Why? Because Hillary is worse! To hear an audience hollering “lock her up” in response to titillation by Trump is such a rote display of malicious emotional behavior that it shocks me. To hear an audience roar with approval when Trump dismisses charges of highly inappropriate behavior as more Hillary-hate, shocks me.

        Here’s what else it does. It offends me. No woman, Hillary or otherwise, deserve this treatment. For that matter, the other GOP candidates who shared the primary stage with Trump didn’t deserve how they were talked to either. Recall Trump stating that Jeb! mooned some people? That Carly Fiorina had an ugly face? That “little Marco” was whatever…How can people watch and hear these things and not understand that this man is demented?

      3. My family both sides have been here since before the Revolutionary War. Like millions of us I have ancestors off of the MayFlower. We have adapted since day one. I am not worried about sharing power. Looking at my family history (very diverse) I can predict what will happen. We will meld together, pick up some new customs but our basic ideas of governance and language will remain. There really is nothing to be afraid of. In my area interracial friendship, dating and marriage is common and the old southern bigotry is dying out. If things can hold for about half a decade more I think like the uproar over Catholics, Irish, Italian and other non-english immigrants during the late 19th to early 20th century will die out.

      4. Economic distress does have something to do with it. People are more willing to support extreme causes in times of extreme hardship, and most of the fascist movement took power during significant economic distress – Hitler and Franco in the depths of the Depression, Mussolini during the post-WWI recession.

        Generally speaking the leadership and core membership has the same opinions regardless of the economics, but they can get more follower when times are hard and people are desperate. The nation as a whole has had a passable recovery from the Great Recession, but working class and rural areas have not done as well, and they were already squeezed by housing and healthcare prices.

      5. I agree, Fair Economist. Trump astutely tapped into people’s deepest fears and anger. Regardless how this election turns out, my hope is that the problems that have legitimately surfaced – racism, poverty, jobs – will be addressed. It would be criminal to bundle these issues up with Trumpism and throw them all away. America needs to deal with these problems – the question is, if Republicans retain their Congressional majorities, Paul Ryan has already clearly signaled his intention to invoke parliamentary procedure to bypass the President to implement his Better Way agenda….an agenda which if you aren’t familiar with it, you better study because it’s sweeping.

      6. >] “Economic distress does have something to do with it. People are more willing to support extreme causes in times of extreme hardship, and most of the fascist movement took power during significant economic distress – Hitler and Franco in the depths of the Depression, Mussolini during the post-WWI recession.

        Generally speaking the leadership and core membership has the same opinions regardless of the economics, but they can get more follower when times are hard and people are desperate. The nation as a whole has had a passable recovery from the Great Recession, but working class and rural areas have not done as well, and they were already squeezed by housing and healthcare prices.”

        You’re right that people are more susceptible to extremism during times of extreme distress, but that doesn’t speak to Trump’s success. Gallup ran a comprehensive study a few months back and found that those who viewed the Orange Wonder favorably, on average, weren’t likely to have lower incomes than other Americans nor have they been disproportionately affected by trade or globalization.

        Trump’s supporters are overwhelmingly white and, this is key, who feel that their children have less economic mobility than they did.

        Let that sink in for a minute. Put bluntly, an old white guy who feels his children don’t have the economic advantages he did is by far more likely to be a Trump supporter.

        And while this will surprise absolutely no one, one other key factor is that those who live in white enclaves with little immigrant or minority contact are considerably more likely to favor Trump than those who do.

        Also, fun fact. It wasn’t in the Gallup report, but I remember reading recently about how those who’ve lived in their home towns all their lives were more likely to support Trump than those who actually got out, traveled and saw the world.

        https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2016/08/12/a-massive-new-study-debunks-a-widespread-theory-for-donald-trumps-success/

        All of this just leads back to the same disturbing truth. This isn’t about economic distress and it never was. This is about white people who feel that their world has been taken away from them and they’re pissed about it.

        And you know what? They’re right. I’m one of those young white “Millennials” who feels a profound sense of disgust that any demographic should have a built-in advantage over another. I sincerely believe that one’s standing in life should have an equal opportunity to go as far as their efforts will take them, regardless of the color of their skin or what they believe, and I’m ready to take the hammer to the old world and send it into the dust bin of history where it rightly belongs.

        I won’t acknowledge Trump’s supporters as having a legitimate case to make. They don’t. Period.

      7. I wish we had more detail on the white demographic that are Trump supporters. The average income (as I recall from the study) was approximately $72K/year…which I agree is pretty darn respectable. I have become so jaded in trying to reason this election out that I wonder if the children of white people element has anything to do with student debt (that these parents might be on the hook for) or concerns that their kids won’t be able to help them when they get old. That may be reaching but everything is so upside down that I simply keep trying to invent reasons that have some logic.

    2. Today’s Atlantic/PRRI poll. Note the bar graphs as to where Trump’s support is largest (not greatest!). No real surprises there, but more kudos for women generally getting it right. We talk about national priorities in America with one being education. If ever there has been a litmus test of why educating the masses is important, this election is it.

      https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2016/10/11/trumps-scorched-earth-campaign-probably-wont-rally-support-to-his-cause/?wpisrc=nl_fix&wpmm=1

      https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2016/10/11/trumps-scorched-earth-campaign-probably-wont-rally-support-to-his-cause/?wpisrc=nl_fix&wpmm=1

      1. It appears that the GOP down-ballot strategy is working. Trump is not affecting these other races as much as one might have expected….Also, it was pointed out that Trump is running about 5 points nationally below Clinton which if this holds, will keep her from having a sweeping win.

        The NH senate race in particular has flipped back and forth and Trump is doing very well in the state…
        http://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2016/10/14/far-ayotte-divorce-from-trump-hasn-hurt-helped-her/jiDkRzsuc2Ik0ZY3dv4vPJ/story.html?

        And, this for a broader perspective than Mass.
        http://www.nytimes.com/2016/10/15/upshot/is-gop-dodging-a-landslide-trumps-polling-hasnt-collapsed-yet.html?

  6. Watching the clip “in the good ol’ days” brought back bad memories. I lived through this time and this clip is a clean up version of that time. Vote as Chris says. We must not let this Fascist pig become our president or the mob blindly following him loose to rampage in an American version of the night of the broken class.

  7. Chris, I have been lurking on your blogs for about a year now and have always been impressed by your reasoned conversations. In fact, these days, it is one of the few places one can read true dialog.

    Today’s words and videos epitomize our dilemma. I have acquaintances and some family who support Trump, and I have been increasingly wary of wandering into the swamp with them when it comes to choices. People, who until recently I respected their judgement, are clinging to Trump because HRC is the devil…

    Words fail me. And, I have withdrawn from the fray. EXCEPT to cast my vote! And, to encourage sane voters everywhere to not stay at home on this one.

    1. Bette, places like this make for good therapy. I have close family members who are religious, conservative, and long time GOP voters. I do not know who they are going to vote for, but I will not broach the subject, based on past experiences. If they broach the subject of how I’m voting, I’ve decided to simply say that the choice was between sane and insane, and see if they care to leave it at that. If not, my reasoning is very well practiced, and they asked.

    2. You’re not alone. I think my mom and I are the only ones in my family that don’t support Trump. Dad just shrugs and says he can’t believe Clinton and Trump are the best the country could find for this election. My grandparents (on both sides of the family) have left me with the impression that even if Trump announced he’d have the military put every Muslim and illegal immigrant in an internment camp and execute them, they would still vote for him…because he’s a Republican, and “he’s saying what we’ve all been thinking”.

      I’ve been following the news on the election since the Primary campaigns started, and I can honestly say I’m terrified, more so than on September 11. Terrified that the old saying ‘If you don’t know history are doomed to repeat it’ is exactly what’s happening. I fear the same forces that allowed Fascism to rise in Europe have allowed Trump to rise here. The sad part is that this is the only place I can think of to express this terror without being reminded of Hilary Clinton murdering people and hiding e-mails.

      1. And that fear is exactly what I am trying to get people to be honest about. IT’s ok to feel however you want, your opinion and all, but if we are going to have an intelligent conversation about hating the Clintons, let’s get down to details. I honestly don’t understand the extreme hate that people have for her in relationship to the reasons they cite, and that bothers me. It will not change my support for her but I want to know what it is that I am missing in fact.
        The Clintons do believe government can help solve the nation’s problems, they did mature at a time when government worked (or at least worked a whole hell of a lot better than it does today). That belief may be outmoded in today’s digital economy by those who, like Grover Norquist, want government to be so small it will drown in a bathtub, but it is a far cry from making unsupported statements that Hillary is worse than Trump because……”she lies, she’s an enabler, Benghazi, courts Wall St”. Let’s talk about the real reasons people “hate” Hillary Clinton. If this isn’t a safe forum for that, it won’t happen anywhere.

        I’ll start. Hillary Clinton is a professional politician. Many of her views are calculated to win votes and inconsistent over time (30 years!) She wasn’t able to bring the large number of jobs she promised as a senator to NY (never mind we were in the Great Recession, she couldn’t/didn’t get it done). She was not as effective as a SOS (based upon what, exactly?), she used poor judgement in setting up a private email server and she lied about it (that has been scrutinized by the FBI…oh, the FBI is covering up for her?), and she has been an enabler of Bill’s sexual escapades to the point that she destroyed his “victims”….

        What else, folks? Do you just not like her because…….

      2. I would love to see this as a topic. There’s too much equivocation by intelligent people on this question. Put it out there or be honest and admit you just don’t like her because she’s a woman or married to Bill or whatever. I’m weary of hearing excuses that do not make sense.

        Go for it, unarmed! Let’s see if our fellow commentators have to say.

      3. I’m not sure if I can start a thread, privileges and all that. I was suggesting that you start it, knowing that you have started a thread and the desire for answers. I just have a few thoughts on the subject.

      4. I would be happy to do so, unarmed, but let’s get clarification from Chris as to “who” can start a thread on Off Topic. We all need to know this. If it is limited, you betcha I’ll be happy to start a Hillary – thread (-;

        Chris, what’s the answer to unarmed’s question?

      5. I think this is a very interesting topic. “Hillary is even worse” appears to be the justification most otherwise rational people seem to be using for voting for Trump, finding some resonance on the far-left as well as the right.

        So I find myself scratching my head wondering what I am missing, and whether I am caught in the partisan idiot-trap myself.

        Of course I’m moderately-inclined and my view of history is that “blowing things up” will backfire 95% of the time. So maybe it makes sense that Clinton doesn’t seem so awful to me.

        Certainly she’s a politician, and maybe a *little* more willing than most to blow with the wind than the average, but I don’t think too much more (see e.g. this last week in the GOP). In regard to some of the shifts that have gotten the most attention (e.g. TPP) I remain unconvinced (although open to evidence-based persuasion) that her core judgment was wrong.

        Of course she has an ego, but really anyone willing to put themselves forward as president must have a sizable ego, and probably needs it to survive. I see this too in Romney, for example, but would draw a contrast with all-consuming narcissism ala Trump.

        She’s had some questionable judgments. I thought it was disgraceful how 80% of the Dems (and the “liberal media” to boot) were stampeded into supporting the Iraq War by Bush, an act of cowardice that seemed like the nadir of the left to me at the time.

        She is more cozy than I would like with Wall Street and the rich in general. But, again, I don’t see much unique about that. It’s an inherent danger in any political system which requires constant vigilance. I liked that her leaked speech comments at least signaled some self-awareness on it.

        It seems like so much comes down to what one thinks of the emails. So far the Wikileaks of Podesta’s mail doesn’t suggest she had any truly deep dark secrets, but rather that she does have a tendency to over-caution and defensiveness, and (not inaccurately) anticipated the way rough edges and missteps could be nitpicked to death. I think you can critique a certain sense of self-importance, or “entitlement” I guess it is called, in the sense that she was a busy, important person and wanted the technology to get out of her way and not get blindsided by something later. Maybe some new revelation will come out to change this view, but all-told it seems like a comparatively minor error in judgment.

        On the other hand, I find it pretty credible that she is compassionate (in a fairly wonkish, cerebral way) and is sincere in wanting to build up the middle class. In other words, I think there is definitely a positive side to her motivations (again, in contrast to the all-consuming narcissism). She’s certainly not infallible, but she seems to be competent and have a fairly moderate, reasonable approach to things.

        Am I in the bubble? Or sane?

      6. Lincoln’s words ring true: “America will never be destroyed from the outside. If we falter and lose our freedoms, it will be because we destroyed ourselves.

        That said, and for all the rancor and bile of a disgusting campaign, we can all take solace in that when push comes to shove, the America people won’t allow a bigot to ascend to the presidency. Trump’s going to lose in November in one of the most humiliating losses in American history and we’ll all be smiling when that happens (to which I’ve already requested the whole day off).

        For as vile as Trump is a human being though, I am honestly grateful to him for unearthing a lot of what’s been wrong in America. We’re now going to grapple with our racial heritage in a way that we’ve avoided for a long time, and for all the pain that that entails, it’s not a fight that we could’ve avoided forever nor should we.

        And Republicans should be grateful too. Seeing the GOP break apart as it is is certainly heartbreaking to many and understandably so, but this fracture should give thoughtful, earnest center-right politicians the chance they need to build something better from the rubble. For those hoping for a bright future for this country, that’s something to be applauded.

      7. “For as vile as Trump is a human being though, I am honestly grateful to him for unearthing a lot of what’s been wrong in America. We’re now going to grapple with our racial heritage in a way that we’ve avoided for a long time, and for all the pain that that entails, it’s not a fight that we could’ve avoided forever nor should we.”

        Catharsis is our best case scenario. It won’t be pleasant, but we would be better as a nation for it. Worst case is too many people digging in on what they want to believe, rather than reality.

      8. People digging in rather than face reality…

        That is what I fear most, Fly. That this entire debacle will leave our nation so bruised and angry that people will just say, screw it and entrench. That.solves.nothing. especially when the other major party is obviously proceeding as though Trump is a despicable anomaly, (but “their” anomaly) and life goes on….to a “Better Way” agenda.

        I urge all of you to read Paul Ryan’s plan. (linked above – Creigh). The changes are profound. Let me be clear: there could be positive ideas in this plan but on whole, it changes so much so broadly that there needs to be much more public discussion in Congress and greater understanding by the citizenry of how the impact of the Better Way will impact the status quo. That has not happened, and if Ryan has his way, won’t happen.

  8. EJ

    An atmosphere of self-congratulatory hatred?

    A constant assertion of superiority which, when challenged, gets defended by claims that the culture belongs to them and not to anyone else?

    Loathing which constantly threatens to descend into violence against any individual whose nonconformance is too visible?

    It’s official. The GOP has decided to treat everyone outside its ranks exactly like they’ve been treating gay people for… well, their entire history.

    What’s puzzling is that people think they’ve gotten more hateful. I would argue that no, they haven’t: they’ve just decided to become less particular about their targets.

    1. Precisely, EJ. I submit that this type of narrow thinking has always existed within the GOP but was carefully packaged to avoid public scrutiny. Look at the laws and policies Republicans have passed in the name of “protecting” women and small business and individuals – all in the name of doing something “good” but in essence, they achieved more narrowly focused, targeted objectives which flew under the radar. Donald Trump has blown the lid off this duplicity. He did so not to directly harm the Republican Party (which was always just a means to an end), but because he perceived these issues would build his base. If the GOP suffered in the process, so be it.
      Many of Trump’s supporters have legitimate complaints but they refuse to acknowledge that the party they are choosing to support is the party that has been driving the bus all along! Working class interests have never been the priority of the Republican Party except at election time. Nothing has changed there and if DJT were to be elected, they would once again be relegated to the back room. It’s a pity that people cannot see through the rhetoric and false promises, but some forty million people cannot, and that is a major problem going forward.

  9. But don’t you DARE call them deplorable!!

    Giving Trump and his vile brand of hate and fearmongering a decisive electoral beatdown is essential, but it’s only a dodge of the first bullet. How the hell do you have a meaningful conversation with the people you see above? How can you work on any type of policy with people who turn their backs on reason?

    I truly wonder if a member if the press is going to get injured or even killed? That’s the sort of thing that happens in corrupt 3rd World dictatorships, not America. Until possibly now.

  10. V L

    Speaking of voting did you know Google is a great resource for basic voting in your state?

    If you google your state name + “voting”, a helpful guide pops up giving instructions on how to vote, voting requirements, etc.

    I know in many places it’s too late to register but if you have someone in your life that needs some guidance tell them to just google it.

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