Patterico's Pontifications

8/6/2017

Trump Is Not The Victim Of A Slow-Rolling Coup; He Is The Victim Of His Own Incompetence

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 1:00 pm

The Strongman is never at fault.

When things go well for The Strongman, all credit goes to The Strongman. When things go poorly, it is not because he is ineffective and feckless. No, that cannot ever be true of The Strongman. If The Strongman fails, it is because Large Shadowy Forces are arrayed against him.

So when a leader portrays himself as a Strongman, there is one sure-fire way to know that he is failing: you start reading pieces arguing that he is being Undermined by Large Shadowy Forces.

And indeed, the notion of a “coup” against Trump has been popular lately, with one high-profile writer even publishing a fictional two-part series describing an actual military coup against Trump. The latest example of paranoia porn comes to us from Derek Hunter and it is titled: “We’re Witnessing A Slow-Rolling Coup”:

Whatever ends up happening there, one thing is for sure – the “resistance,” as it likes to call itself, is conducting a coordinated, slow-rolling coup against President Donald Trump.

The story won’t be that Trump was forced from office so much as it will be that Republicans let it happen. Which is just what the Democrats were counting on.

What is the evidence of a “coup” cited by Hunter? Basically, it’s a) leftist media bias and b) leaks from inside the government. Heavens to Betsy! Such things have never happened to Republicans before!

It’s not that leftist media bias doesn’t exist. I seem to recall it being a problem for one George W. Bush, and one George H.W. Bush, and one Ronald Reagan. I don’t think the media cared for Gerald Ford too much. Why, Deep State leaks and uniform journalistic hostility to the occupant of the Oval Office might have been present to some degree during the presidency of one Richard Nixon, don’t you think? Just a wee bit? Does that mean his resignation was the result of a coup? Um, no.

It’s time to acknowledge that maybe, just maybe, President Trump’s failure to date has been largely his own fault. Contemptuous of the notion of familiarizing himself with even a superficial level of policy detail, he can’t make the case for ObamaCare repeal the way Obama made the case for the law in the first place. Having created an absurdly chaotic White House by dint of his own lack of discipline and his obsession with television, praise, and his image, Trump is unable to fashion a legislative agenda that garners the votes he needs in Congress. The release of transcripts of his conversations with world leaders make him sound like an uninformed idiot . . . because he is an uninformed idiot.

But any admission of fault does not suit the image of The Strongman. Garry Kasparov, who knows something about the behavior of actual strongmen like Vladimir Putin, who (unlike Trump) use government to murder people, warned about Trump’s tendencies in March of 2016:

Trump doesn’t talk much about policy and is incoherent when he does. This makes it difficult for the pundits to make useful policy contrasts with the other candidates. This is by design. When Trump’s lies and flip-flops are pointed out, he presses on twice as loudly as before. What Trump does talk about relentlessly, instead of policy, are simple words with positive connotations. “Strength”, “power,” “greatness”, “energy”, “winning”, “huge”, “amazing.” Trump delivers these words, over and over, with the bravura of a carnival barker and the righteous anger of the oppressed, the trademark combination of the populist demagogue.

Trump also refers regularly to how he will demolish any and all critics and obstacles, from entire nations like Mexico to elected officials like Speaker Paul Ryan. He doesn’t talk about boring things like legality or procedure or how any of these threats and promises will be carried out. Before anyone can even ask, he’s on to the next audacious claim. “It will be taken care of!” “He’d better watch out!” “We’ll take the oil!” “They’ll pay for it all!” “It will be amazing!” Bold, decisive, fact-free, impossible, who cares? His followers love it.

All of these rhetorical habits are quite familiar to me and to anyone who has listened to Russian media—all state controlled—in the past decade. The repetition of the same themes of fear and hatred and racism, of victimhood, of a country beset by internal and external enemies, of how those enemies will be destroyed, of a return to national glory. How the Dear Leader apologizing or admitting error shows weakness and must never be done. Inspiring anger and hatred and then disavowing responsibility when violence occurs. It’s a match. As is the fixation with a leader’s personal strength and weakness, intentionally conflated with national strength and weakness.

There lies the clearest and most dangerous similarity between Trump and Putin: the authoritarian instinct, the veneration of power over the values that direct it. Trump has repeatedly praised not just Putin himself for his “strength,” but other tyrants as well. In 1990, in an interview with Playboy, Trump criticized Mikhail Gorbachev for not having a “firm enough hand” and spoke with admiration for the Chinese government’s massacre of protesters in Tiananmen Square.

This was all obvious at the time, yet people seem to be shocked that this 70-year-old man acts the same way as President that he has acted his whole life.

I come back to Trump’s praise for the Chinese mass murder at Tiananmen Square again and again, because I think it’s an important window into his soul — or lack thereof. That, more than anything else, tells me that Trump sees himself as The Strongman. And Kasparov’s observation that “the Dear Leader apologizing or admitting error shows weakness and must never be done” is one of the key features of The Strongman. He is never at fault.

All of these pieces about a “coup” against Trump are just rank propaganda to protect the nation from considering the real reasons for Trump’s failure. If we have identified a common enemy, we can rally the forces against that enemy, and we need not have any talk about whether Dear Leader might have some blame for his own ineffectiveness.

Is the media biased against Trump? There is no doubt. Are there “Deep State” forces that have declared him the enemy? I am quite sure they have.

But the media and the Deep State did not hold a gun to Trump’s head and tell him: “Do not learn about policy. Do not build a well-functioning White House. Instead, act like a narcissistic dummox. Watch television 24/7, tweet stupid nonsense as often as possible, and do your best to come off like a self-obsessed, amoral buffoon, so that your approval ratings tank and you can’t get anything done.”

That’s all on Trump.

[Cross-posted at RedState and The Jury Talks Back.]

184 Responses to “Trump Is Not The Victim Of A Slow-Rolling Coup; He Is The Victim Of His Own Incompetence”

  1. I cannot imagine a Democrat blogger of some repute dissatisfied with Obama’s many errors writing such a vituperative post.

    Fred Z (05d938)

  2. Fred, your Trump support could hardly be more consistent if you were paid for it. Frankly, I don’t really care what you think you can imagine, or what you think about anything.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  3. “I cannot imagine”…

    “Cannot” or “will not?” (sorry, I couldn’t resist.)

    Fred, our esteemed host is not a Republican blogger. He, not unlike me, didn’t so much leave the Party as the Party left him; he simply acknowledged the reality of the situation.

    felipe (023cc9)

  4. I think a major part of the problem is that very few people seem to be able to grasp that a major engine of anti-Trump sentiment is that a lot of people find him to be incompetent and quite likely will leave this country worse off than it was when he entered office.

    There is of course Leftist opposition to what might be called the Trump agenda, and there is of course opposition among the bureaucrats and politicos both because of what they perceive as a danger inherent in his populism, and because they disagree on principle or are threatened by his nationalist/isolationist tendencies (or both). It shouldn’t be confused, however, with those people who actually support at least some of Trump’s agenda, but think that he himself is hurting that agenda far more than helping. Opposition to a POTUS because he is not really capable of handling the job seems to be something the Trumpniki seem unable to comprehend.

    kishnevi (bb03e6)

  5. I cannot imagine a Democrat blogger of some repute dissatisfied with Obama’s many errors writing such a vituperative post.

    You’re right, actually: because most of what you call his errors are what they would call good policy choices. Trump is making unforced errors, own goals, because of his personality and psychology. Obama didn’t.

    kishnevi (bb03e6)

  6. this are too many strawman

    i’m a need some time to process this

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  7. This is a good illustration of the loss of linkage to reality, in Schlichter’s piece:

    There was no guarantee they would retake power in 2020, or even 2024, were Ivanka to run.

    The Trumpian movement was propelled by opposition to an establishment for which the Bush and Clinton dynasties were the prime examples, yet Schlichter seems okay with the idea of a dynasty named Trump.

    kishnevi (bb03e6)

  8. felipe and kishnevi have some very sharp insights there.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  9. irrespective of President Trump’s comport in office we’ve learned the justice department is filled with lawless harvardtrash traitor-pigs like Rod Rosenstein

    irrespective of President Trump’s comport in office we’ve learned the FBI is a neurotic, incompetent joke filled with criminal turdboys who act outside the law to undermine the American government

    irrespective of President Trump’s comport in office we’ve learned that a p.o.s. war hero John McCain shopped a wholly bogus document filled with sleazy lies in the hopes of damaging and perhaps even eliminating the president of the united states

    irrespective of President Trump’s comport in office we’ve learned america’s disgusting sleazy Coast Guard is a den of cowardly social justice trashpigs what care more about smelly trannies and climate change than they do about their assigned mission

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  10. oops i meant for to say a p.o.s. war hero *named* John McCain shopped a wholly bogus document

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  11. Wow — an entire post of clap-trap.

    There is no effort by the “Administrative State” to resist Trump’s exercise of authority as President? Really? Its a made-up?

    If the “Executive Branch” resists the policy desires of the newly-elected “Executive”, what do you call it?

    Hell, Sally Yates basically called on career employees of the Justice Department to demonstrate their independence by continuing the policy desires of their Obama Administration appointees who have departed, and the Obama Administration career supervisors who remain.

    If I had 6 hours to give you, I could cataloge about 50 similar examples of the “Administrative State’s” passive-aggressive resistance to WH direction.

    And the only significance you and find in the leaks of the transcripts of Trump’s calls to foreign leaders is they are unflattering to Trump?? How about the reluctance that might now set in with other world leaders to talk to any US officials over the telephone for fear that their own comments will be leaked by US intelligence “resistors”.

    Fact — in just the first 6 months, the number of referrals to DOJ for criminal investigations of leaks of classified information are up 3 fold. Such investigations only get started based on a referral from an intelligence agency that classified information held by that agency has been inappropriately disclosed either in the media or to some unauthorized third party.

    A 3 fold increase isn’t indicative of institutional resistance? Trump’s campaign stump rhetoric is to blame?

    Really, there’s too much here to attempt to deal with in one 5 minute comment.

    I had no idea that Gary Kasparov has ascended to the 21st Century equilavent of Alexander Solzhenistyn. I just thought he was always a great chess player with the ability to get his political views into the mainstream by virtue of his celebrity. I didn’t know I should be studying him as a leading 21st Century political scientist.

    shipwreckedcrew (d58e4f)

  12. shipwreckedcrew says:

    Wow — an entire post of clap-trap.

    There is no effort by the “Administrative State” to resist Trump’s exercise of authority as President? Really? Its a made-up?

    From the post:

    Are there “Deep State” forces that have declared him the enemy? I am quite sure they have.

    It’s this sort of misrepresentation of my posts that causes me to declare that I will not be responding to shipwreckedcrew further on this post. My responses will be to people who argue in good faith. Step One is not twisting what I said beyond all recognition. People who do that forfeit any claim on my time or attention.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  13. “act like a narcissistic dummox”

    It has always worked for him merely because of this urban legend that he’s this idiot savant, who seems dumb like Colombo, has turned $5 million dollars into a small fortune.

    As a consequence of his being born on 3rd base and considers it a HR when he is walked home, he had never been held accountable. (Never grown up).

    Remember the Twilight Zone where Billy Mumy terrorized his family with his extraordinary power?

    Ben burn (d38849)

  14. He was targeted by fusion gps which is actually on retainer from the Russians and has gone after vanderslip and daleiden. They are in partnership with derwick associates who has gone after Venezuelan dissidents. That is the basis fir the dossier that the bureau was diligently focused on they missed anchorage and Columbus if not Orlando.

    narciso (d1f714)

  15. The Trumpian movement was propelled by opposition to an establishment for which the Bush and Clinton dynasties were the prime examples, yet Schlichter seems okay with the idea of a dynasty named Trump.

    When it comes to the most ardent Trumpers, there is no misconduct or bad practice that they claimed to have opposed on the left that they won’t excuse in Trump.

    There’s always a slight caveat — and when Trump’s presidency finally sinks so low that everyone wishes to disassociate themselves from him, history will be revised such that the caveats become all these people ever said. Some of us will remember it all, though.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  16. The release of transcripts of his conversations with world leaders make him sound like an uninformed idiot … because he is an uninformed idiot.

    Did you read the transcript?

    Cause Ann Althouse, who is smart and pretty, she read them…

    Why are we not seeing more? I noticed some stories claiming the transcripts show Trump is an idiot, but every day I see stories saying Trump is an idiot. And from what I’ve read of the transcripts (not every word), I don’t think they show idiocy, and I think they’re going to take careful reading to understand how Trump was trying to work with the 2 leaders. I suspect that Trump-haters who undertook serious study of the language have decided it’s best not to try, that a close examination of the text will only help Trump, and therefore the transcripts have rapidly become a non-story.

    […]

    Now, what if anything is there in all of that to use against Trump? Really, the only thing is that he cares about his personal political success and doesn’t mind referring to it directly, even when the other guy insists that it’s all only about the public good. There’s nothing in there about Trump perhaps not really wanting to build a physical wall. He seems dedicated to that. You can’t see him conceding that Mexico won’t pay for the wall. What you see is some complicated, political structuring of a way to get the wall paid for that will probably satisfy the people who heard that promise and wanted it kept. But what can his antagonists grab onto? They can’t very well oppose crushing the drug gangs or better trade deals. So it’s no wonder they went big with Oh! He insulted New Hampshire! And that’s it for the transcripts. Don’t encourage people to actually read them. They might think Trump did just fine.

    p.s. I’m not saying you’re not smart and pretty

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  17. Then you have crowdatrike which the FBI vouched for, sponsored by the Atlantic council whose. And coming stooge you tried to block from the pentagon, the lead official was the cybrrcrime head for the bureau installed by Mueller.

    narciso (d1f714)

  18. My new rule is that the first time I have to say “that’s not what I said” to a person is the last time I speak to them in that thread.

    It’s a pretty mild form of rebuke, but it will have to do for now.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  19. Did you read the transcript?

    Transcripts. Every word. Yes.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  20. link to Ann A’s reporting on the transcripts, which she read

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  21. I also remained baffled by the fact that in this post you seem to lay the blame for the failure to repeal Obamacare at the feet of Trump.

    The GOP Congress — as you have repeatedly pointed out — campaigned for multiple election cycles on repealing Obamacare, and has over a period of 6 years had the opportunity to assemble a comprehensive policy to take its place. Trump came on the political scene 18 months ago, and simply adopted the policy position of the GOP Congress.

    But now the failure is, according to you caused in part by the fact he was “Contemptuous of the notion of familiarizing himself with even a superficial level of policy detail, he can’t make the case for ObamaCare repeal the way Obama made the case for the law in the first place.”

    He’s got GOP leadership in each house of Congress that have based their careers on being at the center of the repeal/replace effort, but he’s to blame because he can’t take a crash course in Medicaid/Insurance Exchanges, etc.

    shipwreckedcrew (d58e4f)

  22. yes yes transcripts plural i did poor word choice

    or i forgot to type an s or something

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  23. link to Ann A’s reporting on the transcripts, which she read

    Link to my reporting on the transcripts, which I read. (Link goes to this post, where I observed that the transcripts make Trump sound like an idiot.)

    Patterico (115b1f)

  24. 12 — another Patterico example of wanting to have it both ways by inserting a few words meant to pre-empt the criticism he knows will be coming his way, while dedicating several hundred words to an argument that are precisely contrary to the caveat he puts in place.

    shipwreckedcrew (d58e4f)

  25. the way Obama made the case for the law in the first place

    Obama made the case for obamacare by lying about it like a filthy murkowski-pig

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  26. But the media and the Deep State did not hold a gun to Trump’s head and tell him: “Do not learn about policy. Do not build a well-functioning White House. Instead, act like a narcissistic dummox. Watch television 24/7, tweet stupid nonsense as often as possible, and do your best to come off like a self-obsessed, amoral buffoon, so that your approval ratings tank and you can’t get anything done.”

    That’s all on Trump.

    LOL! And he’ll gladly take all the credit.

    Because Americans don’t want to be governed they wish to be entertained.

    And so far, he’s been doing just that. What a show.

    __________

    Today’s Beldar the Bitter ‘Watergate, Watergate, Watergate’ Words of Wonder:

    “Goldwater put it in context. He said, ‘Well, for Christ’s sake, everybody bugs everybody else.’ We know that.” – President Nixon using conservative Senator Barry Goldwater’s comments to rationalize Watergate break-in and assorted illegal domestic surveillance plans with H.R. Haldeman, Secret White House Oval Office tapes, September 15, 1972

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  27. Because Americans don’t want to be governed they wish to be entertained.

    Reading the same thing from you in every comment thread is kinda the opposite of entertainment.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  28. If I might ask…

    Just as I would ask Trumpets what behavior(s) would sour you on him…I comparatively ask never Trumpers…

    If he were to sanitize the package and grow up, what would you object to about the man?

    Ben burn (d38849)

  29. Its disingenuous and dishonest to say a critic of your a post is “twisting what I said beyond all recognition” by relying on 17 words inserted which reflect some “acknowledgment” in your post of the position of those who disagree with you.

    And, the “Deep State” and “Administrative State” are not synonymous, though you seem to equate them.

    shipwreckedcrew (d58e4f)

  30. whatever brings down the republican party is fine with me.
    I’m for a new party called The White Privilege Party.

    mg (31009b)

  31. i don’t care

    we won when mr. trump the donald was elected

    all these years, all these decades

    when i did not get a raise and the bus was late and the boxboy crushed my hot dog buns by putting them at the bottom of the bag under the bananas

    i could not do anything about it, i was helpless

    but now president trump the donald will make them pay, yes he will

    MAGA! MAGA! COVFEFE!

    nk (dbc370)

  32. swc, you seem to be a good example of the failure of comprehension I referred to in my comment at 4.

    If someone thinks Trump will harm this country and the conservative agenda simply because of the way he operates/does not operate–because of his personal failings, are they supposed to simply loyally shut up because the “enemy” attacks him? Are they supposed to ignore his failure to do what a POTUS can and should do to get rid of Obamacare? Or any of the other examples of his incompetence/lack of interest?

    kishnevi (bb03e6)

  33. @27. That’s an exaggeration; haven’t used it in quite a while, Patterico– but the self-evidence of it really hits home, for better or worse. These past six months have been the longest two years in decades. But certainly not boring.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  34. Adam credo has pointed out the same collaborators with rhofes and his mouthpiece price, worked with niacs Paris that would be ratney, nourazedeh, baumann qeissgold re Benghazi, those are the figures Matt’s hAS kept in place, and any critic, Cohen ratnick, Higgins lovinger mcfarland tiwnley have all been purged. One accident twice coincidence thrice enemy action bow the most recent figure was Derek Harvey prescient about al queda and the sunny insurgency in Iraq. I don’t go by sentiment, names places times events are my thing.

    narciso (d1f714)

  35. yes yes yes just the fact that so many americans looked at the establishment turds they were offered and said no thank you

    this is the stuff what revolutions are made of

    this brilliant insouciant obstinance

    it’s the last best safeguard of our liberties and freedoms

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  36. If someone thinks Trump will harm this country and the conservative agenda simply because of the way he operates/does not operate–because of his personal failings, are they supposed to simply loyally shut up because the “enemy” attacks him? Are they supposed to ignore his failure to do what a POTUS can and should do to get rid of Obamacare? Or any of the other examples of his incompetence/lack of interest?

    I agree with the rhetorical thrust of these questions, but for me it goes further. The talk of a “coup” is so melodramatic and overwrought as to be laughable.

    Sure, Trump has to contend with a biased news media. Sure, he has institutional elements inside government arrayed against him. So? He still has many, many problems of his own making. Are we allowed to discuss those too?

    Another point: we supposed to assume that is always bad to have the deep state opposing Trump, but I’m not so sure it is in every case. In fact, some used it as a selling point during the campaign — Hillary won’t be constrained by the bureaucracy, but Trump will! Yay!

    Many of the very same people who made that argument are now decrying as a bug the thing that they told us during the election was a feature.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  37. 35
    Except the contractor they called in to do the work exhibits Closeau-ian levels of ineptitude.

    kishnevi (bb03e6)

  38. “Any effort to go after Mueller could be the beginning of the end of the Trump presidency, unless Mueller did something wrong,” Graham added.

    sounds like princess lindsey already bought a lovely new dress for the coup

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  39. If he were to sanitize the package and grow up, what would you object to about the man?

    Nothing really. I disagree with some of his “policies” but I’d have no objection to his way of doing things.

    But of course there is much virtue in an if, and short of divine intervention, he won’t come close to doing that.

    Which is why, in the real world, my preferred outcome would probably be President Pence being re-elected in 2020.

    kishnevi (bb03e6)

  40. @27. That’s an exaggeration; haven’t used it in quite a while, Patterico

    True. I checked. The last time was June 27. But this instance was the 54th time you have said that in a comment. I counted. (Don’t worry, it took only a moment to do so.) So yeah, it gets to be the opposite of entertaining.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  41. The talk of a “coup” is so melodramatic and overwrought as to be laughable.

    Or a non-denial denial.

    Certainly far right factions within the GOP or Deep Staters wouldn’t want to sully their rep with that stain. The secret to Trump is he lives in and for the moment. Yesterday is gone; meaningless to remind him of what he said as that was then, this is now. Tomorrow hasn’t arrived but it’s full of promise so all that matters is the stagecraft of today.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  42. i don’t like people who are victims of slow-rolling coups

    i like people who win

    nk (dbc370)

  43. What I like about you, Mr. feets, is you know youre full of sh**.

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  44. the real reasons for Trump’s failure.

    the filthy corrupt lying republican congress can’t pass anything

    pervy Mitt Romney’s slicked up lil boy toy Paul Ryan can’t gitter done

    and McConnell’s #1 priority was installing his corrupt piggy wife in a cabinet job – mission accomplished

    and that’s the biggest thing holding up President Trump’s agenda

    an inept republican Congress wholly lacking in honor and integrity

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  45. @40. It’s gonna be a long 4– perhaps 8 years for you– or until he resigns to protect the family business.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  46. In terms of policy, Russians major allies are Cuba venezuelsin this hrmidphere, Syria and Iran in the middle east they ate tied together in a string of pearls configuration, Obama did nothing about any of those countries except enable that tiny cohort if Syrian rebels who almost entirely defected to al queda.

    narciso (d1f714)

  47. Mr. 57 thank you

    it’s nice to hear that sometimes

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  48. 39

    I have no response.

    Ben burn (d38849)

  49. That cost 500 million dollars for a cohort of 50 fighters, a steal really a BFF as our last vice president did. Since they were sponsored by turkey erdogan being Obama best friend till taksim square, his trotsky counterpart ‘turned this country into a jail’* purging the Turkish state in search of the Grey wolves

    narciso (d1f714)

  50. I should add that if someone opens their comment with a statement like “Wow — an entire post of clap-trap” … that is very unlikely to garner more than one comment’s worth of response in a thread. Whether or not they misrepresent what I say. (Although such a comment is often a good signal that a field of strawmen is about to be lit on fire.)

    One more point: while I have stated my “rule” in terms of my behavior on one thread, it should be obvious that comments like that have a long-term effect on my view of such a commenter in general, and consequently, on the frequency with which I will respond to them in future threads. I am increasingly coming to view extended interaction with a commenter as a perk that must be earned through good faith — because it takes my time, and people not ordering in good faith are not worth that time, which is the most valuable commodity I possess.

    Patterico (8cb7cc)

  51. Mr. 57 thank you

    it’s nice to hear that sometimes

    happyfeet (28a91b) — 8/6/2017 @ 2:41 pm

    On August 10tn I’ll renew my CPR/AED training. What have you done?

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  52. Also the kingdom, and the statelet of Qatar that funded bel hadj the Ac boss of ttipoli, who’s proxy sarraf, general hafter is in conflict with. The old army chief general younis was executed on orders of belhadj making way for ansar al sharia to dominate, with the assistance of abu cabal.

    narciso (d1f714)

  53. i learned how to cook squash friday it was sooo good i made it again yesterday

    it’s not pretty but spread on a crusty sourdough it’ll make you cry it’s so good

    here’s how i learned

    very very very special recipe and pairs marvelously with ham or chicken

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  54. The problem I have with the anti-Trump folks, on both sides of the aisle, is that they are whistling past the graveyard.

    It is NOT ENOUGH to be against Trump. Trump is a symptom of a disease that has been festering since 1992, at least. He is the guy who said that both sides have had their heads up their ass for the last couple of decades and half the country agreed with him DESPITE suspecting that he was an imperfect leader. Some of the people who voted for Hillary agreed with him, but could not get past the imperfect leader bit. Some like me knew the system needed blowing up, but wanted someone who knew what the f the were doing putting it back together, and voted NOTA.

    But the Democrats think they lost because Trump cheated and they propose more of the same, or worse.

    The Conservatives talk about “conservative principles” not realizing that those (at least those that have been bandied about since Reagan) are what the nation yearns for.

    Not true. What they want is someone who will tell the truth, get things done, and squash the assholes into jelly who get in the way. And repair the system right. They have no idea what “right: is, but they KNOW that the two paths repeatedly offered are not it.

    So, Trump cannot do it. Pretty clear. But getting rid of him and putting the old left or old right back in power WILL NOT WORK. Treating the symptom does not cure the disease.

    The system still needs blowing up.

    Kevin M (752a26)

  55. *not realizing that those (at least those that have been bandied about since Reagan) are NOT what the nation yearns for.

    Kevin M (752a26)

  56. oh btw i cheated with a pinch or two of brown sugar the first time – i tossed the squashers with it before adding to the skillet

    the second time i added a tablespoon and a half or so of french dressing

    i’m kinda one of those people what can’t leave well enough alone –

    but both times it was super good how it came out

    yesterday’s leftovers i used to slow-cook some chunked cabbage in

    that came out amazing as well

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  57. And at this point I once again wish for an edit function,

    Kevin M (752a26)

  58. My take: It’s a coup, aided and abetted by an incompetent target. Usually, when you “come at the king, you best not miss”, but when the king is a doofus you get many shots. Lowers the risk.

    Kevin M (752a26)

  59. @54. The system still needs blowing up.

    It’s exploding before your eyes– just in slo-mo. Trump’s merely a transient.

    America today is Britain circa 1900.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  60. The system still needs blowing up.

    President Trump’s done more to expose and also kneecap failmerica’s disgusting CNN Jake Tapper fake news propaganda slut media than any single person in history

    he’s a powerful force for good in this little country that’s for sure

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  61. Why has Sessions not opened an investigation into the Clinton Foundation?

    Truthbetold (1ab5c1)

  62. Past is prologue, the last impeachment led to the boat people year zero and the cbo, like the three witches in the Scottish play. This is gornisch orchestrated by the Russians.

    narciso (d1f714)

  63. I give Patterico credit for lamenting- as do I- the triumph of image over substance in the discourse across our culture today. But the irony is the fella who cemented it into place is the one conservatives revere most: Ronald Reagan.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  64. Narc

    You are still ignoring the real reason Ashcroft recused himself.

    Truthbetold (1ab5c1)

  65. And the venezuelans who used derwick associates partners with fusion. To defame thorn halvorsen, the Andean kasparov and navalny if you wish,

    narciso (d1f714)

  66. Thems fightin words DCSCA.

    Let’s talk Obillary.

    Ben burn (d38849)

  67. I am so happy to learn about you and squash.

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  68. Trump is unable to fashion a legislative agenda that garners the votes he needs in Congress.

    president food stamp couldn’t pass anything either in his last 6 years or so

    but he sure got those filthy trannies all up in our war-losing tranny-polluted military didn’t he?

    and that makes for a stark contrast with how President Trump is approaching this important issue does it not

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  69. Now as a new round of kangaroos are seated in caracas

    http://nypost.com/2017/01/10/how-venezuelas-corrupt-socialists-are-looting-the-country-to-death

    narciso (d1f714)

  70. That’s what I thought Narc. You know that bit of information blows the whole false narrative of your pal Clarice Feldman.

    That makes her a purveyor of “Fake News”

    Truthbetold (1ab5c1)

  71. Re this:

    “Do not learn about policy. Do not build a well-functioning White House. Instead, act like a narcissistic dummox. Watch television 24/7, tweet stupid nonsense as often as possible, and do your best to come off like a self-obsessed, amoral buffoon, so that your approval ratings tank and you can’t get anything done.”

    You left out one that’s important, Patterico:

    Act exactly like you have committed terrible, impeachable crimes that must be concealed through an active, obvious cover-up indistinguishable from that which someone truly guilty and truly stupid would engage in.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  72. yes yes Mr. 57 plus them lil squashers is on sale now at the Mariano’s

    it’s them lil yeller crooked-neck kind

    i use them a lot but usually more in like a pasta prima vera

    I always think of Mr. Ric Locke when I make them

    he was averse to them

    there was a hard year back in Texas where them squashers was just about all they had for the table

    and he got to where he couldn’t stand the sight of them no mores

    i miss him

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  73. Just because we’re paranoid, doesn’t mean they’re not out to get him.

    Daiwa (a69530)

  74. Narc

    What do you think of Feldman defending James Alefantis?

    Truthbetold (1ab5c1)

  75. @66. Let’s talk Nixon instead. Wingtips on the beach are so… enchanting.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  76. I give Patterico credit for lamenting- as do I- the triumph of image over substance in the discourse across our culture today. But the irony is the fella who cemented it into place is the one conservatives revere most: Ronald Reagan.

    Attaboy, DCSCA. If you’re going to lie, lie big.

    nk (dbc370)

  77. @78. Reagan 101.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  78. Robot pastor who ironically was inspired by young sdser David horowitz similarly to the way Hillary drew inspiration from oglesby tried to broker a Cuban regime apprichment but Marie got in the way

    narciso (d1f714)

  79. Was Reagan lying when he used charts and drawings of much larger, though inferior hydrogen-fuel ICBMS and our smaller superior solid-fuel saying..

    “The Soviets, as you can see have an advantage, so you see we need the PEACEKEEPER!”

    Ben burn (d38849)

  80. @78- Postscript. You could consult Mike Deaver and Lyn Nofziger about it– but then, they’re both dead.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  81. Which is why, in the real world, my preferred outcome would probably be President Pence being re-elected in 2020.

    if wholly unremarkable turd mike pence were still in the sleazy senate

    is there any doubt he’d be blocking the agenda President Trump ran and won on just like sleazy war hero John McCain, the formidably perverted Jeff Flake, lying corrupt tundra-pig Lisa Murkowski and all the rest of the filthy lying republican senate trash?

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  82. Narc

    You sure do your best to stay away from the facts that prove your pal Clarice Feldman is a swamp shill.

    Truthbetold (1ab5c1)

  83. I trust Mr. narciso why?

    he’s earned it is why

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  84. Seriously? The image I have of Reagan is that he was a friendly, even-tempered, humorous person but not a pushover. He wouldn’t take sh!t from anybody but he never wallowed in it, either, and what was thrown at him did not stick or missed altogether. Every President should have that image. Is it your theory that any image of a President is per se a bad thing?

    nk (dbc370)

  85. Patterico, you mistake me as a supporter of Trump.

    When one is lost at sea in a terrible storm, as the USA seems to be these days, with the food infested with bugs and running low, with no direction home, one might reasonably choose a new leader, a new President, with a gamble, a game of chance.

    Sitting despairing in the cabin of foundering ship of state, watching the first two weevils crawl out of my bread, I merely bet on the lesser of them.

    Fred Z (05d938)

  86. Mueller at the bureau began the process of purging islamist detecting training manuals
    That comedy followed through on, I guess this furthered his little stunt back in 2004, that gave the atocha train station plotters to succeed.

    narciso (d1f714)

  87. happyfeet

    Do you trust your own eyes and ears.

    Facts are facts.

    Truthbetold (1ab5c1)

  88. no, facts are not always facts

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  89. Comfy also fumbled the anthrax investigation, allowed the late sandy burger to skate, was a party to the blame shatamam that put Judy miller in jail, forestalled any movement toward reversing Clinton justice department policies re the us attys.

    narciso (d1f714)

  90. Weevils, whether in larval or adult stage, are not harmful to humans or animals. Although it may seem unsavory to you, they can be eaten along with any food they have infested without causing any ill effects. The biggest problem weevils pose is to food producers, who sometimes have to take action to keep them out of crops and processes. In some cases, weevils benefit humans by serving as test subjects to determine whether residue from pesticides remain in harvested grains. If weevils eat the grains and die, observers know pesticides are present.

    the more you know

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  91. You left out one that’s important, Patterico:

    Act exactly like you have committed terrible, impeachable crimes that must be concealed through an active, obvious cover-up indistinguishable from that which someone truly guilty and truly stupid would engage in.

    It’s funny; I was convinced that I had put that concept in the post somewhere — but re-reading it, and looking at some of the various revisions, it appears I didn’t. It’s a good point. I know I made it somewhere recently. And you’re exactly right.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  92. Here is a couple facts for you.

    1)Ashcroft recused himself.
    2) Ashcroft was gaging Sibel Edmonds at that time.

    Do you agree those are facts, happyfeet?

    Truthbetold (1ab5c1)

  93. Patterico, you mistake me as a supporter of Trump.

    Nah. You’re a non-supporter of Trump, who attacks any and all criticism of Trump, anytime he sees it, anywhere. But you have that deniabliity, so that in the future, when everyone wants to claim they always warned about Trump, you can pretend you were part of the crowd issuing the warnings.

    I bet you’ll be able to convince yourself. But again: your record speaks for itself.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  94. More and more human weathervanes are starting to turn. If you look closely you can see it.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  95. The image I have of Reagan is that he was a friendly, even-tempered, humorous person but not a pushover. He wouldn’t take sh!t from anybody but he never wallowed in it, either, and what was thrown at him did not stick or missed altogether.

    LOL He took plenty of crap from Jack Warner. That’s the image he projected: after all, he was an actor.

    GOP family values: you’ve gone from a man on his second marriage who called his wife a “Mommie”…
    to a man on his third marriage who calls his first daughter a “hottie.”

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  96. Not a non-supporter? Indeed not, you mistake me.

    Much of the substance of your criticism of Trump is justified.

    I criticize your nasty, vituperative tone and manner.

    I think I have asked you this before, but here goes again: When you appear in front of a judge who seems to you to be making serious, careless mistakes as a result of his ego, or other personal failings, have you ever called him a “narcissistic dummox”?

    I doubt very much you ever have or ever would, and there are plenty of judges who are in fact narcissistic dummoxes, and worse, and I’m sure you’ve appeared before a few.

    Surely the principle applies to criticizing Trump.

    Fred Z (05d938)

  97. Funny thing about the facts in the “Plamegate” dog and pony show.

    Both Demorats and Republicans are uncomfortable addressing them.

    Truthbetold (1ab5c1)

  98. Now, now 97, don’t drive angry.

    Ben burn (d38849)

  99. He kept communist from dominating hiccasp, he proselytuzrd. Free nmarkwt capitalism through he he vainly warned against the perils if national Healthcare, he used a velvet glove approach to protesters in Berkeley, he didn’t go along with the Rockefeller committees witchhunt he brought team b into got.

    narciso (d1f714)

  100. Narc

    Tell us what you think of George H W Bush?

    Truthbetold (1ab5c1)

  101. This was all obvious at the time, yet people seem to be shocked that this 70-year-old man acts the same way as President that he has acted his whole life.

    Actually he’s 71.

    The weathervanes are getting a little creaky, too; Peggy Noonan will be 67 in September; George Will is 76.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  102. Sorry about the typos, but you get the gist.

    narciso (d1f714)

  103. Reagan neutered the media, reducing them to shills for dog food and feminine hygiene sprays, who had to resort to faking Texas Air National Guard documents, and that was almost as good as bankrupting the Soviet Union.

    nk (dbc370)

  104. Much of the same carp was said by strobe talbott who owed his career to kgb fixer victor Louis, Stalinist fan Bo Robert schemer who departed to truthdig when the dog trainer want crazy enough.

    narciso (d1f714)

  105. i would submit that John Ashcroft was an over-promoted coward with no genuine appreciation for democracy and fairness, not unlike the execrably useless Jeffy Sessions

    both of them come off as being a tad racist as well

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  106. @101- LOL He did ‘Papa Rat’ w/Hoover at SAG and ‘Brother Rat’ w/Wyman at Warner Bros.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  107. Ashcrift is now lobbying for Qatar, as are firmer trump aides brookover and Bennett. (Who were moles when they were Dr. Catsons campaign) is is appatebtly tillerson, against Jordan Egypt the use and the kingdom.

    narciso (d1f714)

  108. happyfeet

    You are not addressing the real reason Ashcroft recused himself.

    Truthbetold (1ab5c1)

  109. @40. Postscript- how many pre-versus post Election Day. Just wondering.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  110. Yes the same communists who enabled Hitler to partition poland, seize the Baltic, who toppled the social democrats since they we in the way.

    narciso (d1f714)

  111. Peel who don’t realize the nuclear freeze was soviet dezinformatya, lol, which Reagan parried back.

    narciso (d1f714)

  112. do we know the “real reason” Ashcroft recused himself

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  113. Not a non-supporter? Indeed not, you mistake me.

    Much of the substance of your criticism of Trump is justified.

    I criticize your nasty, vituperative tone and manner.

    I think I have asked you this before, but here goes again: When you appear in front of a judge who seems to you to be making serious, careless mistakes as a result of his ego, or other personal failings, have you ever called him a “narcissistic dummox”?

    I doubt very much you ever have or ever would, and there are plenty of judges who are in fact narcissistic dummoxes, and worse, and I’m sure you’ve appeared before a few.

    Surely the principle applies to criticizing Trump.

    I don’t see how it does. The two tasks are so wildly different I wouldn’t even know where to start in detailing the differences. But let’s put that aside for the moment. I have a couple of questions for you.

    1) Do you think the principle applies to your criticism of me, Fred Z?

    2) If not, why not?

    3) Care to share your profession with me, so I can hold forth on the topic of whether your Internet commenting style fails to live up to the highest ideals of your profession?

    Patterico (115b1f)

  114. Kennedy actually used gene tunnel as a back channel to andropov, much like his brother bobby used a fellow with the guru bolshakov who lied to hum about the missiles in Cuba.

    narciso (d1f714)

  115. Yes we do.

    Truthbetold (1ab5c1)

  116. well I’m completely ignorant of this knowledge i will have you know

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  117. Ashcroft recused himself because he was in court invoking the “State Secrets Privilege” on FBI whistleblower Sibel Edmonds at that time.

    Truthbetold (1ab5c1)

  118. pls to explain what that has to do with CIA slut Valerie Plame’s poncey poofterboy husband

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  119. Do you know who Sibel Edmonds is?

    Truthbetold (1ab5c1)

  120. Much as reality winner, Mrs Edmonds a one time trw contract linguist (yes the same firm that forty so e years ago hired Christopher boyce, heard voices that mark grossman had told some Turkish officials back in 1999, about Valerie’s cover gig credit delphine, sorry that was alias Jen garner before she net Ben affleck.

    narciso (d1f714)

  121. Narc

    If you’re trying to say Edmonds is not credible. Then explain why she was gagged by Ashcroft and FISA court Judge Reggie Walton. The same judge who presided over the Libby trial.

    Truthbetold (1ab5c1)

  122. Because she was a nutcase, like Barbara honegger in the 80s,

    narciso (d1f714)

  123. That’s real weak Narc.

    If she was a nutcase why did Ashcroft go back to Walton and invoke State Secrets on the congressman that Edmonds told what she knows?

    Truthbetold (1ab5c1)

  124. Sammy

    Are you paying attention?

    Truthbetold (1ab5c1)

  125. Wonder if Nancy and Ronald Reagan’s Social Security and Medicare cards are on display w/credit cards and other personals at the Simi Valley library/museum.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  126. That’s all you got Narc. She’s a nutcase?

    Truthbetold (1ab5c1)

  127. i remember she was sort of a tabloid name a long time ago but what does she have to do with ashcroft doing recuse on the whiny lying cia slut case (where p.o.s. US Army general Colin Powell was laughing behind his deeply dishonest low-class hand the whole time like a filthy coward)

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  128. happyfeet
    If you really want to know. Do your homework.

    Truthbetold (1ab5c1)

  129. that’s not homework that’s extra credit at best

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  130. In a stretch, Kate beckinsale could play her, she played a Judy miller type character in a blame docudrama some years ago.

    narciso (d1f714)

  131. Then remain ignorant to the facts.

    Truthbetold (1ab5c1)

  132. Edmonds also testified about Dennis Hastert’s pederast activities years ago.

    What say you about that Narc?

    Truthbetold (1ab5c1)

  133. It’s not a coup. It’s more like a conspiracy or if you prefer collusion.

    crazy (11d38b)

  134. just keep repeating to yourself

    it’s not a coup

    it’s not a coup

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  135. That’s real weak Narc.

    he has a lot of credibility what he’s earned Mr. Truth

    i mean c’mon he’s Mr. narciso

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  136. I put the pieces together, thus is a travesty of a mockery if sham, if they win the Russians the Iranians and Tommy boy maduro, abs the less acneed Noriega wannabe cabelli wins

    narciso (d1f714)

  137. And just how did he earn that credibility, happyfeet?

    Truthbetold (1ab5c1)

  138. perseverance to where a solid track record was evinced

    kinda like how Powers Boothe did it

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  139. Did he tell you why Ashcroft recused himself? No.

    Truthbetold (1ab5c1)

  140. well you told me why but your answer didn’t make a whole lot of sense you said he did recuse cause of some sleazy fbi trashcan what can’t spell sibyl

    but the whole valerie plame thing was about a filthy lying cia slut named valerie what married a homosexual named “JoJo”

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  141. You’re right happyfeet.

    It may be beyond your ability to understand. Nevermind.

    Truthbetold (1ab5c1)

  142. oCuld you repeat yourself.

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  143. The late Hugo Chavez was part of a group called red flag, which espoused maousm, I’m cereal.

    narciso (d1f714)

  144. There’s a lot of now.

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  145. no you are not cereal.

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  146. This is what happens when the reaiatance is emPowered:
    https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/4182593/venezuelan-crisis-latest-valencia-military-base-gunfire/

    narciso (d1f714)

  147. happyfeet

    In all seriousness, I’ve been sinking some money into means of production und means of consumption.

    I got a new LP gas grill. I also got this cool pizza/bread oven that sits on top.

    The other night I put spaghetti sauce on tortillas topped with shredded mozzarella and Parmesan cheese and ground bison and onions. It was great.

    I can’t wait to get back on bread. The lead singer of Tool was saying on JRE that they produce a lot of heirloom wheat around Phoenix. I hope they ship. I also bought a cast iron mill.

    Pinandpuller (943389)

  148. happyfeet

    I actually forgot about it till now but you can take raw wheat, throw it on a hot skillet and pop it. It doesn’t turn inside out like popcorn but it’s still pretty good.

    Pinandpuller (943389)

  149. I’m late to the party, but the original post is poetic brilliance. Bravo, sir.

    Dave (445e97)

  150. happyfeet

    Did you hear about Caitlyn Jenner’s residual white male privilege?

    Is Lava soap good at getting rid of that? Or maybe Bill O’Reilly’s loofa?

    Pinandpuller (943389)

  151. If the thundersorm didn’t wake me up my dog sure as h#ll did.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XRQ_3R0_rSA

    MSG Roy Benavidez speech 1991

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  152. Those who say Reagan began image over substance………..

    “According to the Museum of Broadcast History, radio listeners considered Nixon’s answers to questions to be more substantive and gave Nixon the advantage over Kennedy after the first debate. By contrast, television viewers gave Kennedy the edge, as their impressions were based on how the candidate looked as much as what he said.”

    http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/kennedy-and-nixon-square-off-in-a-televised-presidential-debate

    harkin (a7e08c)

  153. so many things to respond to number one the pizza oven sounds like a smart choice for america i wanna roast some cauliflower for my next one i do, but that seems very ambitious from the vantage point of monday morning

    the wheat thing sounds fun especially when kids are involved

    you can roast garbanzo beans to a snacky effect too but it’s lame as a snack which you’ll figure out after a couple bites but it can make a serviceable salad topping

    Caitlyn Jenner is weird for me cause he’s a tranny but also cause where i work we had a role in the whole caitlyn thing – not me it was just a small team and i had nothing to do with it except we would hear updates that were really kind of odd takes on the whole

    they liked to call it “the phenomenon”

    and it always made me feel kind of embarrassed for the people on that team

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  154. Patterico:

    1. “The two tasks are so wildly different I wouldn’t even know where to start in detailing the differences. But let’s put that aside for the moment.” No, there is only one task, criticising someone who is more or less on your side, or at least more on your side than are Hillary and the Dems, and persuading that person to change their behaviour for the better.

    2. “Do you think the principle applies to your criticism of me, Fred Z?” Yes, but you’ll note I did not call you a narcissistic dummox, or anything close to it, nor would I even if you were, see below.

    3. “Care to share your profession with me, so I can hold forth on the topic of whether your Internet commenting style fails to live up to the highest ideals of your profession?” I’m a residential rentals landlord who buys and renovates such properties, employing a permanent crew of 3 tradesmen for the renovations. When projects are at critical points I hire more people and use quite a few independent tradesmen. There are a lot of very coarse words and phrases in my day to day jargon, none which I would dream of using towards people I was trying to persuade.

    Tone and manner my dear Patterico, it’s right to say I’m wrong, but wrong to say I’m a narcissistic dummox, or some of the other things you have called Trump.

    This is especially true if the person is those things. Late last year I bought a property from a lying narcissistic dummox named Wayne. It took me months of negotiation to get the property at a fair price. He kept telling me he had fictitious offers from third parties, one of whom I knew, called and got a denial of any negotiations at all much less an offer. Had I told Wayne what I really thought of him, I would have gotten nothing. Likewise, yesterday I persuaded a narcissistic dummox, a grossly overweight, illiterate, personally unclean and smelly ignoramus of a backhoe operator to give me a 20% discount for cash. Not once did I call him happyfeet’s favorite name, stinkypig, even though he certainly is. He’s also got a fantastic talent for running huge equipment. He can pick up an egg with his machine, no breakage.

    And this: https://amgreatness.com/2017/07/25/shrill-vituperative-critic-context/

    Fred Z (05d938)

  155. kishnevi@32 and beldar@71, also great points.

    KevinM@54, I strongly disagree with your premises (I would apologize for the length of what follows, if I thought anyone would actually read it…):

    It is NOT ENOUGH to be against Trump. Trump is a symptom of a disease that has been festering since 1992, at least. He is the guy who said that both sides have had their heads up their ass for the last couple of decades and half the country agreed with him DESPITE suspecting that he was an imperfect leader. Some of the people who voted for Hillary agreed with him, but could not get past the imperfect leader bit. Some like me knew the system needed blowing up, but wanted someone who knew what the f the were doing putting it back together, and voted NOTA.

    I see things much differently. There was nothing fundamentally wrong with our political system going into 2016 (I’m not talking about which party was or wasn’t in power, but the system’s legitimacy in reflecting the divided views of the country).

    The country is closely divided on many issues. That means it is difficult assemble an effective governing coalition (House + 60 senators + White House). The Democrats pulled it off for less than one year (2009), and passed a handful of significant legislation. When you do not hold all the necessary cards, there are only two options: gridlock or compromise. For the last seven years of his term, Obama essentially signed continuing resolutions (compromise on the budget was inevitable, since neither side had the ability to impose dramatic changes to the status quo on the other) and otherwise tried to govern by executive order.

    During the so-called period of “GOP betrayal”, after 2009, federal spending as a percentage of GDP declined significantly (raw spending stayed roughly constant, and came nowhere close to the compounding of inflation + real GDP growth over those seven years):

    2009: 24.4%
    2016: 20.9%
    reference: Donald Trump’s White House website

    The average for the Reagan years (1981-88) was 21.8%; the average for the Clinton/Gingrich years was 19.2%; for Bush 43, 19.0%.

    The point being, although maybe ever dollar wasn’t being spent exactly how you or I (or Barack Obama) would have liked, by 2016 federal spending could not be considered out of control by any reasonable historical standard. In fact, the GOP congress, by keeping the raw budget basically constant, imposed significant fiscal discipline on a president who used his opportunity in 2009 to significantly increase spending, and who would have happily spent even more going forward. But an echo chamber full of dishonest zealots somehow managed to convince people that the continuing resolutions were some kind of massive defeat or betrayal.

    The system did not need “blowing up”. That anyone could seriously think putting a complete moron, who is not on speaking terms with the truth and has no principles other than “what’s good for me is good for me”, in charge shows the extent to which a significant fraction of GOP primary voters had taken leave of their senses.

    In a 51-49 country, with a 52-48 senate, there was no hope of dramatic, transformative change. Our system is not intended to produce dramatic change in such cases. It’s not a bug, it’s a feature. It’s why the last seven years of Obama’s administration were a complete cipher. Yet somehow the dishonest media zealots convinced people that they could get 100% of what they want in a 51-49 country, and if they didn’t, it meant they had been somehow betrayed. They convinced people that political allies who agree with them on 70 or 80% of the issues, but not 100%, are “traitors”.

    What we needed was someone who could:

    a) Start incrementally steering the ship away from the direction Obama wanted to go and back toward fiscal responsibility, economic opportunity, individual liberty. Not every desirable change would be immediately possible, but some would be, especially with a competent president who worked hard to marshal public opinion behind his short-term agenda items.

    b) Build political support with presidential leadership and communication, and a solid record of making peoples’ lives better in practice, eventually broadening the base and bringing more ambitious goals into the realm of possibility.

    Not true. What they want is someone who will tell the truth, get things done, and squash the assholes into jelly who get in the way. And repair the system right. They have no idea what “right: is, but they KNOW that the two paths repeatedly offered are not it.

    The problem is that everything you claim they “know” is untrue. No politician or party in America has the power to extirpate the half of the country that disagrees with them. Thank god!

    The level of bad judgment on display is revealing. You claim that people who wanted someone who will tell the truth decided Donald Trump was just the man for the job! If they’re capable of that level of self-delusion, why should we take them seriously when the next “remedy” that looks good to them is “blowing up” the most successful political system in the history of the world?

    Politics is not about domination. There is no quick fix, no matter how many times Donald Trump promised one (of course, the Democrats also overpromise their constituents, but no politician in American history has overpromised as falsely or ignorantly as Trump did in 2016).

    So, Trump cannot do it. Pretty clear. But getting rid of him and putting the old left or old right back in power WILL NOT WORK.

    What you mean is that it won’t satisfy people who have been lied to and lied to until they believe things that are obviously false.

    Treating the symptom does not cure the disease.

    The disease is large numbers of poorly educated, poorly informed and/or resentful people believing things that are completely untrue because other people have lied to them repeatedly. This has been the problem on the LEFT for over half a century. That it has now also infected the RIGHT is the most frightening political development in my lifetime.

    The system still needs blowing up.

    An irresistible urge to smash or destroy something that refuses to behave in exactly the way you want it to is a child’s logic.

    I think you have a better mind than that.

    Dave (445e97)

  156. 159 – “no politician in American history has overpromised as falsely or ignorantly as Trump did in 2016″.

    Financially and domestic policy-wise, all of Trump’s promises are a drop in the ocean compared to If you like your plan, you can keep it, and The price for a family of four will drop $2,500, but then you can’t blame ignorance because Obama knew he was lying.

    Also very relevant were those who said N Korea will never use the nuclear technology to build weapons……unsurprisingly the same guarantee employed after sending nuke tech (plus boatloads of cash) to the Iranian mullahs. I’m still trying to figure out if those deals were born from ignorance or treason.

    harkin (fcaff0)

  157. rabidly anti-semitic US Army general HR McMaster says the biggest flaw with the Iran deal is we failed to send enough cash to facilitate nuclear genocide on Israel in a timely-enough fashion

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  158. rabidly anti-semitic US Army general HR McMaster says the biggest flaw with the Iran deal is we failed to send enough cash to facilitate nuclear genocide on Israel in a timely-enough fashion
    happyfeet (28a91b) — 8/7/2017 @ 7:59 am

    I disagree. He’s not rabid. He’s casual about his Jew hatred. He probably doesn’t know he has it.

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  159. Any criticism of Israel is Auntie Semitic.

    Ben burn (d38849)

  160. poor man

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  161. It’s necessary for Israel to kill the Law Covenant, in order to save it.

    Ben burn (d38849)

  162. I don’t demand other people to live up to what I expect or other people.

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  163. *Of other people. Duh!1

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  164. Stabbers..
    Ben burn (d38849) — 8/7/2017 @ 8:26 am

    elcome to the mispelling club.

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  165. I’d like to meet a captcha coder.

    Ben burn (b3d5ab)

  166. I’d beat him to death.

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  167. Ok i wouldn’t.

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  168. If PresiPence is a wise man, he will make an example of Kurt Schlicter in the first few days.

    urbanleftbehind (166c3b)

  169. Pence: Alien Hybrid in 2020

    Ben burn (d38849)

  170. Elder abuse is as bad as child abuse.

    http://thehill.com/regulation/healthcare/345411-fight-over-right-to-sue-nursing-homes-heats-up
    Ben burn (d38849) — 8/7/2017 @ 8:59 am

    Yeah!

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  171. But as Insta-glenn insinuated this morning, this was a very late 22nd term Obama order, hell, much of the corporal applicators of these abuses, if not the admistrative structures that countenance them, are core Dem constituencies.

    urbanleftbehind (166c3b)

  172. 2nd term, don’t give the man in the chair ideas!!

    urbanleftbehind (166c3b)

  173. Dave (445e97) — 8/7/2017 @ 6:48 am

    The country is closely divided on many issues. That means it is difficult assemble an effective governing coalition (House + 60 senators + White House).

    The reason it is difficult to do anything is not that the country is divided.

    It is that the parties are too strong

    So there is no middle ground, and majoroity put togetehr by taking some people from one party and some from the other.

    And each party, and especially the Democratic Party, because blame is not evenly divided, is dedicated to proving the other party unaccceptable. Wrong evil and incompetent. It wants members of the other party to feel that they have no accomplished anything and so not run for re-election. It doesn;t want them to be able to say to their supporters that they did anything.

    The solution is to separate camapign finance from the parties. Parties can give larger contributions tahn individuals, and campaign committees can doinate to other campaign committees. Ever since that started to become a big trend, partisanship has increased.

    No party will ever get a big enough majority, even if that’s what you wanted..

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  174. 126. Truthbetold (1ab5c1) — 8/6/2017 @ 5:38 pm

    Sammy

    Are you paying attention?

    I didn’t get a chance. I was trying to use Optimum Wifi with windows 10 but maybe because I tried an automatic logon it wouldn’t work,

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  175. 61. Truthbetold (1ab5c1) — 8/6/2017 @ 3:12 pm

    Why has Sessions not opened an investigation into the Clinton Foundation?

    No predicate.

    If Trump wants that, let him appojint an Election Campaign or Corruption Commission empowered to look into things – maybe it needs legislation.

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  176. The reason it is difficult to do anything is not that the country is divided.

    It is that the parties are too strong

    So there is no middle ground, and majoroity put togetehr by taking some people from one party and some from the other.

    I’m surprised you would make that claim. I think the political parties’ power today is probably near the lowest it has been since the Civil War, actually. Party discipline is rarely enforced, and when it is, it is rarely effective. If you don’t believe me, ask Senator Joe Miller (R-Alaska) or President Jeb Bush. Or read that Obamacare repeal that Trump just signed into law.

    I realize you, Sammy, are not a passenger on the Trump bandwagon, but the complaint of the “blow up the system” types is essentially that the Republican party is not powerful enough – there are still (gasp) people who only vote with the party 80% (Collins) or 85% (McCain, Murkowski) of the time! They will settle for nothing less than 100% rubber-stamp loyalty. Compromise is synonymous with betrayal to such people.

    Dave (445e97)


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