Patterico's Pontifications

8/28/2017

President Trump: Once A Reality Star, Always A Reality Star

Filed under: General — Dana @ 7:38 pm

[guest post by Dana]

Earlier this month, an article looked at how “ratings” drive President Trump:

“Wow, the ratings are in and Arnold Schwarzenegger got ‘swamped’ (or destroyed) by comparison to the ratings machine, DJT. So much for . . .”

It was quickly followed by this: “being a movie star-and that was season 1 compared to season 14. Now compare him to my season 1. But who cares, he supported Kasich and Hillary.”

The reaction was utterly predictable. Democrats — and even some Republicans — wondered why Trump was fixated on the ratings for “The Celebrity Apprentice” on the day that he was set to receive a briefing from intelligence officials about the depth and breadth of Russian hacking during the 2016 election.

Adding to the evidence of him being consumed by ratings and numbers, one really only has to consider Trump’s obsession with the size of crowds – whether at campaign rallies or at the Inauguration. It makes sense for a reality star and showman. And to this day, even while seated in the Oval Office, Trump remains the reality star and showman.

However, understanding that about the president does not make his decision to announce the pardon of Joe Arpaio on Friday night when Hurricane Harvey made land fall any less disturbing:

Addressing the specific timing of his pardon — which seemed to embody a classic “news dump,” coming as the nation focused on the impending storm — the president said he actually imagined the controversial pardon would have attracted even more media attention, because of the Harvey coverage.

Upon facing criticism about the timing of his announcement, the president admitted that he intentionally made the announcement then because lots of people would be watching the news:

“I assumed the ratings would be far higher than normal with the hurricane just starting,” Trump said.

(Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.)

–Dana

116 Responses to “President Trump: Once A Reality Star, Always A Reality Star”

  1. it’s such a great pardon I love it so much

    i saw a picture of Sheriff Joe today he had a smile big as christmas!

    and you know why?

    Cause of President Trump!

    Sheriff Joe was feeling mighty low cause obama and his sleazy justice department did political prosecution on him.

    But President Trump lifted Joe up!

    He soothed Old Joe’s cares and unshackled him from his troubles!

    That’s some mighty fine presidentin you axe me

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  2. That briefing was a joke not worth the name of intelligence, like the script of predator 2, whreasthe actual findings re the miniaturized warheads night as well been screened by basenghis

    narciso (d1f714)

  3. Well, he’s nothing if not consistent.

    However, if President Obama had behaved so selfishly and taken advantage of a natural disaster while American lives were at risk, we would all be screaming bloody murder about it. And rightfully so.

    Dana (023079)

  4. Dollars to donuts*, he was trolling the media with that remark about the Arpaio pardon. He announced it when he did it, when else should he have? Or should he have held off on the pardon until after Harvey was over?

    *That’s an expression from when a donut was a penny, and a dollars was a hundred pennies not five**.
    ** Yes, the dollar is around 1/20th of its value of a hundred years ago.

    nk (dbc370)

  5. Between a ratings spike and not telling the difference between Finnish blond reporters seated side by side [they all look the same, eh Donald] it was quite a brief-ing show.

    Wait ’til sweeps week in November; perfect time to threaten thermonuclear war w/North Korea.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  6. Nit surprising dim journolister cilizza doesn’t have a clue. They’ve been trolled by munch for eight months now. Fahrenhold is perhaps lead chimpm

    narciso (d1f714)

  7. “not telling the difference between Finnish blond reporters…” Holy mother of God, really? He’s that horrible? Quick, quick, impeach the bastard.

    By which I mean that the man lives in your heads, like a noisy, clever little alien and he’s eating your brains.

    Fred Z (05d938)

  8. #3
    I did complain about Obama’s pardons, etc., but the media ouldn’t care less.

    AZ Bob (a6f476)

  9. No, the alien ants (that show is actually relevant now, then before the election) chewed up what remained. Yes we All did but as far as the media, that went down the memory hole like Jones aaraibs and Rutherford*

    Big brothers collobarators in pre revolutionary Britain.

    narciso (d1f714)

  10. Re this:

    And to this day, even while seated in the Oval Office, Trump remains the reality star and showman.

    Absolutely true, but still second-order.

    Ratings are very important to him because they’re a key component of determining the on-going market value of the “Trump Brand,” which is to say, the total package of hype and lies and BS which collectively persuades people to overspend for underperformance so long as they’re paying for something with the “Trump” name on it. That translates into money, but I don’t think that’s how he keeps score, actually. Ultimately, he keeps score by the number of people he is able to con. And the ratings, like the money that flows in from the Trump Brand, are just markers for that.

    It’s about getting away with it.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  11. You can’t on the one hand complain about sanctuary cities, and on the other hand lock up a Sheriff who when he gets hands on an illegal detains him and turns him over to the Border Patrol. Unless you’re a person who also does other things with his hands that you don’t want other people to know about.

    nk (dbc370)

  12. Nk,

    When Trump does something that is hisotrically consistent with his personality and public persona, the go-to defense is a reflexive “he’s trolling the media”. Why not: this is just Trump being unabashedly and consistency Trump: self-interested, self-promoting, and completely tone-deaf?

    Dana (023079)

  13. President Trump’s kind, and he’s merciful

    if i wanted to say otherwise I couldn’t

    cause it would be a dirty lie

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  14. The interesting thing to me is that Trump’s metric of success hasn’t changed – not even after becoming president. He remains entrenched in a competitive numbers-rating system of success. He doesn’t seem to grasp that success as a president is an entirely different animal altogether. I’m not sure he ever will be able to make that distinction, let alone adjust his methodology to achieve a new measurement of success. He doesn’t seem built that way.

    Dana (023079)

  15. I guess you can nk, why isn’t sheriff dupnik in jail, as accessory before the fact, how is it the the awan bros investigation went on 15 months before a proforma indictment. Why are Ryan Cohen and flake so woefully uniformed about the political warfare that has been going on since the innaugural

    narciso (d1f714)

  16. Happyfeet,

    You realize, you spent countless hours during the Obama administration excoriating his followers for their fealty to the president, and yet now that appears to be exactly the same regard with which you hold the current president.

    Dana (023079)

  17. And in just naming those three, you have a slow motion insurgency waged in bloody real space like Berkeley and cyberspace, ask Ann barnharht about that. But the news is as real and relevant as those phimy covers in kingsman.

    narciso (d1f714)

  18. Um because they wee ding real damage to this country and they still do in the bureacracirs among the thinktanks and political hackfactories Luke media matters, in the educational institutions and the nominally actual news

    narciso (d1f714)

  19. Were doing, they follow the same playbook against every moderately successful center right Sarkozy fillon berlusconi most recently netanyahu.

    narciso (d1f714)

  20. Dana, I assure you, defending Trump is not a reflex with me.

    Why am I saying he’s trolling the media this tine?

    1. Because there was absolutely no reason for him not to announce his pardon of Arpaio right when he made it and on the heels of the Phoenix rally, Harvey or no Harvey. Or to leave Arpaio hanging once he had made the decision to pardon him. He was messing with the media’s perception that everything people do is centered around them, as exemplified by the “Friday news dump” meme.

    2. He did the same thing just a little bit back in response to the Russians expelling some of our diplomatic personnel. He said the Russians were helping us cut down the government payroll. I had said the same thing, here, jokingly, the day before. The media headline for that story was “Trump Praises Putin”.

    nk (dbc370)

  21. When they can’t put someonr in jail, directly they exact their pound of flesh as with Mitchell and Jensen, remember them they helped prevent the library tower in la, from becoming a heap of glass steel and dead bodies about 15 years ago, the aclu and the levick crew much like the ones who enabled Barcelona, made sure no good deed went unpunished. The lesson here is don’t volunteer to help your country.

    narciso (d1f714)

  22. Maybe he made the announcement at a time when lots of people were watching because lots of people are interested in the Arpaio outcome.

    I think you are reading too much into this .

    Q! bert (fc15db)

  23. my love for president trump is the same astonished affection one might have for a shooting star chanced upon in the late summer sky

    or a last lonely loaf of homemade banana bread you find in your mom’s deep freeze after her funeral

    we’ll never see his like again and this is not fear or anxiety speaking oh no it’s a certitude

    his every awkward yet wholly american impertinence is a delight and a wonder

    you’ll understand in your time, Dana

    when you see what comes after you’ll understand

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  24. As I’ve pointed out before the propriety of w’s dignified response to the lawfare waged Lewis Libby, doesn’t consider the left took a pawn of the table, and is reusing the playbook

    narciso (d1f714)

  25. How successful is the memecwarfare , the death if 16 and the wounding of a 100 didn’t even register in a Spanish language award show.

    narciso (d1f714)

  26. Now the more trump temporizes on the wall, mcturtle and company don’t get their keester in gear on tax reform, he keeps firing those officials that believes innthe vision he set out in the campaign, that is the little death as they said in dune.

    narciso (d1f714)

  27. Two blondes walk into White House press briefing
    — Obama White House — one is Bruce Jenner and the other is Bradley Manning.
    — Clinton White House — Bill invites them to stay for pizza and cigars.

    nk (dbc370)

  28. “I assumed the ratings would be far higher than normal with the hurricane just starting,” Trump said.

    Did he, now…

    “They gonna make a TV star out of you. Just like Archie Bunker. You gonna be a household word.” – Laureen Hobbs [Marlene Warfield] “Network” 1976

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  29. That’s the kind of bullsh!t “fake news” from WaPo that triggers my “reflex”. I’ve done the same thing with two people out of a group. I’ve had myself mistaken for another person in a group. More than once.

    nk (dbc370)

  30. And nearly forty years later, Angela Davis still haunts us like a poltergeust

    narciso (d1f714)

  31. And Washington isn’t obsessed with ratings, although their gauges seem to be made by Michael mann.

    narciso (d1f714)

  32. “Ratings are very important to him because they’re a key component of determining the on-going market value of the “Trump Brand,” which is to say, the total package of hype and lies and BS which collectively persuades people to overspend for underperformance so long as they’re paying for something with the “Trump” name on it. That translates into money, but I don’t think that’s how he keeps score, actually. Ultimately, he keeps score by the number of people he is able to con. And the ratings, like the money that flows in from the Trump Brand, are just markers for that.”

    JUST. STOP.

    Ratings and their fluctuations are literally what EVERY media personality lives and breathes on, before truth, before justice, and well before the American Way. Accepting, FROM THE MEDIA THEMSELVES, that talking about your ratings is somehow BEYOND THE PALE is the most rank hypocrisy imaginable.

    You know what REALLY offended them? That someone might actually make a JOKE about their particular Most Holy of Management Metrics, like some cubicle drone snarking about Total Quality Six Sigma Management.

    Dysphoria Sam (4071c5)

  33. Or possibly some upstart young attorney saying ‘yeah, I’ll trust the gotdam process when the sausage that comes out is worth eating’

    Dysphoria Sam (4071c5)

  34. Ashley parker, the Romney haircut gal from 5 years ago, good grief.

    narciso (d1f714)

  35. Its an honest venue it just looks they dismiss everyone to the right of zelaya
    https://www.google.com/amp/s/panampost.com/adriana-peralta/2017/08/28/guatemalans-demand-resignation-of-president-morales/amp/

    narciso (d1f714)

  36. @15 Dana

    Dick Morris did polls or focus groups for the Clintons to figure out where to go on vacation.

    Pinandpuller (704cbc)

  37. So other administrations had Dick Morris, Karl Rove and David Axelrod behind the scenes crunching numbers. Trump just boils it all down to ratings.

    Pinandpuller (704cbc)

  38. @6 DC

    Are you a big fan of The Catcher in the Rye?

    Pinandpuller (704cbc)

  39. @40. No, PeePee. I’m a Lennonist.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  40. Dana– And yet there’s this:

    Donald Trump Job Approval by Party Identification, Aug. 21-27, 2017

    Weekly average from Gallup Daily tracking:

    Republicans: 78%

    Clearly Gallup finds the ‘party’ identifying w/Trump. Go figure, eh?!

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  41. seems to me the republican house and senate are afraid of ratings from the T.V. bosses that rule them. issa and gowdy screwed up the Benghazi investigation on purpose. Gowdy has stated he doesn’t
    even now who the Awan bros. are. The republicans are a bigger threat to ruining this country than the democrats. They have control and purposely killing the voters wants and needs. Die .Die.Die republican party.

    mg (31009b)

  42. This just in –
    Mitt Hitler to lead ANTIFA.

    mg (31009b)

  43. I’m a Lennonist.

    Yeah. Gotcha. Nice word play. You’d probably hate me but I’d share a lemoncello with you.

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  44. This just in –
    Mitt Hitler to lead ANTIFA.

    mg (31009b) — 8/29/2017 @ 3:13 am

    If fascism was to come to America it would masquerade as anti-fascism.

    I have lived to see it.

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  45. Rex Tillerson should be replaced, pronto. But he won’t be.

    mg (31009b)

  46. How could he not know about the pashto chowders, I do know he was part of operation footprint, that explained his soft shoe re Libya.

    narciso (d1f714)

  47. 47.Rex Tillerson should be replaced, pronto. But he won’t be.

    Everybody named “Rex” should be replaced immediately. And “Chip” and “Brad” are on the table for review.

    Rev.Hoagie® (630eca)

  48. In an exclusive call-in to Fox’s Trump & Friends this morning, the President was insistent that “All chopsticks remain on the table” regarding North Korea, and vowed “reasonably immediate retaliation” against “all Northern Korean restaurants and other eateries.” When pressed for further clarification, the White House responded that while “the President’s words speak for themselves”, it was “obvious that the President was speaking about an appropriately limited response – targeting all such locales north of the Mason-Dixon line.” Pundits on CNN and MSNBC suggested that the particulars of the President’s plan amounted to little more than “crass political pandering” to Texas and other Southern States, prompted in great part by Harvey and the President’s upcoming trip over to Texas.

    Q! (267694)

  49. Sure he did.

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  50. Maybe someday he’ll wake up finding a news piece that isn’t about him. That will be a bad day at Big Rock.

    Ben burn (3d526b)

  51. ““the President’s words speak for themselves”

    Specially when he goes off teleprompter.

    Ben burn (3d526b)

  52. Bloomingbirds..

    “President Donald Trump is planning to kick off one of the most important sales pitches of his presidency this week — getting Americans fired up about rewriting the U.S. tax code.

    But there’s no plan to sell.”

    And that debt ceiling is all torqued up over Harvey’s Red State Infrastructure plan. Hundreds and hundreds of billions in Texas Pork.

    Ben burn (3d526b)

  53. @55. Look at the election map from Texas; they elected him and will welcome him.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_presidential_election_in_Texas,_2016

    The clouds will part and their Savior will descend on aluminum wings from the heavens and make his grand entrance:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TvkPxxDC-jo

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  54. @57 DCSCA — Now really, D!; that’s being needlessly provocative, doncha think? We all love you like a brother, but Godwin’s Law and all still applies in Texas (even when it’s sodden).

    Q! (267694)

  55. 51, and Bill Nye-fluffer Rachel Bloom is best-case scenario or “after” Lena Dunham

    urbanleftbehind (5eecdb)

  56. @58- LOL Suspect Fearless Leader wouldn’t think so at all!

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  57. That’s the thing, Q – Texas inched up for the Ds (or at least had enough people sample Egg McMuffin), wouldnt “wrath” be better directed at rural parts of Big 10 country that switched or the ghettos where people didnt turn out?

    urbanleftbehind (5eecdb)

  58. He dood it on porpoise, just like he thought Fridays Bastille Day would have better ratings…lol!

    http://www.politico.com/story/2017/08/29/trump-shrink-government-laura-ingraham-242128

    Ben burn (3d526b)

  59. “I assumed the ratings would be far higher than normal with the hurricane just starting,” Trump said.

    than normal for a Friday night.

    But it would be printed in the newspapers with the least circulation – Saturday morning – and
    the major media would still chew over it less.

    Trump actually may not so much want to publicize it as to avoid any publicity about Arpaio going to jail. The reason he didn’t wait was to get this out of the way.

    Sammy Finkelman (b70df4)

  60. Dana, at 3: of course you would have … and those of us on the left would have suspected that it was nothing other than hollow partisanship, attacking someone who isn’t part of your tribe for something you would forgive coming from someone in your tribe.

    As applied to the majority of Republicans, we would have been right.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  61. Trump’s even more inarticulate in his answers than our previous most inarticulate president, George W, but it sounded like he was pushing back against the idea that he was burying the pardon story by dumping it on Fri night and was instead saying he put it out while everybody was watching for maximum coverage not minimum coverage.

    Love him, hate him, agree or disagree with the decision but nobody’s going to hide a pardon by launching a twitterstorm in the middle of a hurricane. Instead the media gets all wrapped around the axle about an assertion that’s demonstrably false.

    crazy (11d38b)

  62. That would seem plainly obvious except at amazon foods.

    narciso (d1f714)

  63. amazon’s getting to be really hard to shop for food at you have all these sleazy people selling a jar of pickles for $39 so you have to pick through all that garbage

    and then you can’t filter out the “pantry” or “fresh” results so you have to pick through all that crap

    and then after that you can find a really oddly limited variety of choices

    and even if you find what you want it’s likely an “add on item” so you have to buy crap you don’t really need to get it

    dirty white supremacist walmart’s jet.com is actually way better

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  64. I’ve been looking for the most appropriate thread to post this on, so here goes:

    Judge throws out Palin defamation suit against NYT…

    …surprising exactly zero people who know basic defamation law.

    Leviticus (efada1)

  65. The New York Times had an op-ed piece on Sunday about babysitting trump – how his day goes or how some of his people manage him

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  66. Yes they practiced reckless disregard, sail goodman in order to excuse a derelict law enforcement official and to whitewash an assassination attempt diesnt sound so noble does it.

    narciso (d1f714)

  67. About as noble as bringing a frivolous defamation lawsuit for the sake of publicity because you’re too incompetent to hold an actual job.

    Leviticus (efada1)

  68. And so you remove all doubt again, thanks for playing.

    narciso (d1f714)

  69. I trust no one will misunderstand this, like say Ali Mohammed Ali

    libertyunyielding.com/2017/08/29/facebook-oks-post-black-nationalists-advocating-mass-murder-trump-supporters

    narciso (d1f714)

  70. zuckertwat’s a fascist i think he very much approves of political violence if it’s in the service of fascism

    it’s one his things

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  71. Dana has the Devil biting on his elusive behind.

    http://www.cnn.com/2017/08/29/politics/kfile-rohrabacher-rendezvous/

    Ben burn (3d526b)

  72. I see him waving tentacles like the robot in Lost in Space.

    “Danger! Danger Will Robinson!”

    Ben burn (3d526b)

  73. @ aphrael,

    Dana, at 3: of course you would have … and those of us on the left would have suspected that it was nothing other than hollow partisanship, attacking someone who isn’t part of your tribe for something you would forgive coming from someone in your tribe.

    As applied to the majority of Republicans, we would have been right.

    Personally, I am equal opportunity critic of any and every president . I believe we have an obligation to be so, frankly.

    Dana (023079)

  74. criticism is all well and good but not at the expense of love and fealty

    President Trump’s the last chance we’ll ever have to be America again

    he needs our every sympathy and yes yes all our prayers as well

    lest our freedoms and liberties tumble into a crucible to be recast as an implacable effigy of fascism and despair

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  75. I’m with you, Dana. Worshipping any politician is dangerous, and antithetical to American principles.

    Now, when any politician does something good, indeed we all need to say so.

    But when a politician does stupid nonsense, that needs to recognized, too.

    Every politician is responsible for his or her actions. Good or bad.

    I remember a friend of mine in graduate school when Reagan was President. There was nothing Reagan could say or do that he did not criticize with a sneer. I made a joke of it: “John, if Reagan gave you 100 bucks, you would be pissed off it wasn’t 200.”

    Yet that same friend of mine later thought everything Clinton did was awesome. Ditto Obama, even more.

    That’s not supporting a politician. That’s idolatry.

    So many people are interested in scoring points in arguments. I keep hoping that Trump will start wising up and not reacting like a teenager to provocations. Maybe someday. I hope so.

    Simon Jester (82e4e0)

  76. Which provocations Simon, he is handed this bag of dog pop that masquerades as intelligence, the same jackasdes who made deal deals with the revolutionary guard, who have probably killed as many Americans as Al queda, who were hundreds of millions of dollars for naught who made a similar deal with north Korea, the details of their nuclear devrlopmrnt had been hidden for four years

    narciso (d1f714)

  77. Narciso, I seldom get all of your references, but I was making a general statement about DJT’s Twitter addiction.

    I liked DJT’s Supreme Court appointment. I have no trouble writing that.

    But good dear Lord, can he say some silly stuff. And respond to childish taunts with taunts of his own.

    “There you go again,” is very much on my mind, as an alternative to the way DJT normally responds.

    Anyway, to each their own.

    Simon Jester (82e4e0)

  78. @80… I keep hoping that Trump will start wising up and not reacting like a teenager to provocations. Maybe someday. I hope so.

    Hope springs eternal, Simon.

    But he is 71. How many 71 year olds have you known to suddenly change their ways. And the way he is got him all the way to the White House.

    There doesn’t seem to be any incentive to motivate change there. He’ll be the center of attention– even when the nation gives him his state funeral on Uncle Sam’s dime.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  79. Restrained civility working through authorized channels what did that avail the huntress Simon, how about Steven scalise, whose attempted assassination has almost gone unremarked,

    narciso (d1f714)

  80. I bring up facts, hated facts and you cite memes a choice snippets, I thought maybe a nineveh type event might focus the mind (noah is so cliché, and about the gnostic mess with arononvsky the less said the better) but were back to the same carp with disco stu and Dana wards id.

    narciso (d1f714)

  81. @85. You’ve got a rival, narciso; spooned out a bowl of Campbell’s Alphabet Soup and the letters nearly matched one of your postings.

    Some of it was actually comprehendible.

    Tasty, too.

    You outta sue.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  82. Dana, at 78: that’s entirely fair. There are certainly some on the conservative side to whom my comment at #65 does not apply, and my sense based on our interactions is that you are among them.

    But … this conversation, between partisans who are willing to talk and listen to each other and to try to stand on principle and not on tribal membership … this conversation is the exception. :{

    And my point was, that for many members of *my* tribe, the fact that many conservatives appear to have abandoned their principles in rabid support of a man who appears to embody many of my tribe’s stereotypes of the right … that fact is having the effect of reinforcing the belief that the principles were a sham and the stereotypes were right, all along.

    Even as I understand why it’s happening — I feel the emotional tug of the argument, absolutely — I think it’s bad for the country; communication is much, much harder when one tribe has something that it *reasonably* interprets as evidence that the another tribe has been lying about its views.

    “Lying” is of course uncharitable; it’s much more charitable, for example, to think of it is an earnest belief that turned out to be wrong. But most people’s willingness to be charitable extends more to those they think of as within their tribe, and less to those they think of as without; and charity of this sort — imagining your opponents as having the best motivations you can come up with, rather than the worst — is in short supply all around these days.

    Anyhow, I’m rambling.

    Our mutual distrust for one another is a poison. It springs from real hurts and injuries felt on both sides — but it’s consuming us as a people, and there is a real danger it’s going to end in bloodshed … and there are two few who will call it for what it is, on either side: almost everyone is interested in trying to make the other tribe look worse.

    I listened to a man, on Saturday, talk about despair, and how every time in his life he’s despaired the despair has turned out to be wrong. He’s had a lot of opportunity to despair in his life, and he was talking to an audience which was primed to be receptive to him; and intellectually I take his point. But it’s hard not to.

    aphrael (3f0569)

  83. Despair aphrael, your tribe as you called it applauded Obama as he stole trashed the health plans of tens of millions and left them with trash they can’t use, spent billions in clean energy scams, let loose a plague of locusts from Egypt to the Niger river basin, turned a young Peruvian man into a scapegoat to boost his vote total, broke the law 30 ways from sunday, those are just something’s he did

    narciso (d1f714)

  84. Armed the cartels through fast and furious enabled Islamic state to metastasize despitrcthe blood and treasure spent to prevent that end, attacked the fundamental institution of this nation, empowered a cabal of butcher inn Tehran with the means for them to complete their genocidal projecg

    narciso (d1f714)

  85. Here is the court opinion in the Sarah Palin defamation suit: https://assets.documentcloud.org/documents/3983063/8-29-17-Palin-Opinion.pdf

    Expecting Jed Rakoff to rule against the New York Times would have been like expecting Roland Freisler to rule against Der Sturmer. If ever a judge went out of his way for his tribe …. He held a “special evidentiary hearing” on a motion to dismiss the complaint on its face (What do you think about that, Leviticus?) and paid lip service to Twombly while turning it on his head. Basically, he held a mini trial and usurped the jury function before the Palin could put her case on.

    Nonetheless, he did find that the NYT “opinion” was defamatory fact and not non-actionable opinion-opinion.

    What he also found was that not bothering to look at your own paper’s stories on this and writing whatever came into your head because you were pressed for time was not reckless disregard for the truth. That was the basis of the dismissal. I gotta try that sometime: “Your Honor, I had to be at work in five minutes and I didn’t have time to check whether that the light was red or green.”

    And if you thought that “actual malice” meant … well, you know, malice — WRONG, WRONG, WRONG! It’s irrelevant that the NYT hates Sarah Palin, according to Judge Rakoff. Fuhgeddaboudit!

    I hope she appeals.

    nk (dbc370)

  86. Despair aphrael, … narciso (d1f714) — 8/30/2017 @ 5:17 am

    That was most unkind of you, narciso. You could have made your point without wishing anyone despair.

    felipe (b5e0f4)

  87. I offer my criticism, narciso, out of fraternal charity and not out of a need to be “the politeness police.” Had the offense been offered by one of the spammers, I would not have wasted any time on them.

    felipe (b5e0f4)

  88. We always NJ, that this e the way Carlos slims (the respectable Mexican oligarch) chimps conducted their work, we saw how Liz alvarez was a party to the Sanford kangaroo tribunal with France’s Robles providing backup.

    narciso (d1f714)

  89. Thanks Felipe admitted I don’t know the details if someone had lost a family member, had been struck with some incurable illness

    narciso (d1f714)

  90. Wait what, so agreeing not to compete. Is not a violation of antitrust, those words they are using..

    narciso (d1f714)

  91. “Basically, he held a mini trial and usurped the jury function before the Palin could put her case on.”

    – nk

    What do you mean? There was no function for a jury here, because the facts weren’t disputed. Factually, her “case” was made when the NYT published the op-ed. Factually, their defense was that they retracted it within hours. “Actual malice” is a legal determination, and the judge found that immediate retraction was more in keeping with negligent inadvertence than actual malice. This was not judicial activism – this was a judge making an obvious decision based on settled law.

    Leviticus (efada1)

  92. Narciso: thank you for proving the point. Each tribe is largely more interested in nursing grievances and demonstrating the other tribe to be the bad guy, and the mutual preference for that is destroying us as a people. Congratulations.

    aphrael (3f0569)

  93. there’d be nothing at all wrong if the NYT chose to fire the slanderous dickwad propaganda slut what was responsible for the offending edit in that editorial

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  94. The reason for the “special evidentiary hearing,” by the way, was that Palin’s complaint was legally deficient in targeting “The Times” rather than specific individual(s). So I think that’s the judge being charitable to Palin, not biased against her. He could have simply dismissed her case on those grounds.

    “On its face, the complaint plainly suffered from several material deficiencies. For example, it failed to identify any individual at the Times who allegedly acted with actual malice, positing instead a kind of collective knowledge unrecognized by the law in this area. But while the Court might have dismissed the complaint on such grounds, the editorial in question was signed by “The Editorial Board of the Times, and in such a situation the Court believed it could not carry out its prescribed role of ascertaining whether the numerous allegations in the complaint to the effect that “the Times knew this, or intended that, could, when taken most favorably to the plaintiff, be attributed to a specific individual or individuals without the Court’s knowing a modicum of factual background. Accordingly, the Court ordered a brief evidentiary hearing on August 16, 2017 to ascertain who was (or were) the author(s) of the offending statements and other basic facts that would provide the context for assessing the plausibility or implausibility of the complaint’s allegations.”

    Leviticus (efada1)

  95. am I correct in my impression that the NYT has yet to apologize for it’s slur against Sarah Palin

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  96. oops i mean *its* slur against Sarah Palin that apostrophe was unwarranted sorry

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  97. For me there’s a big difference between “members of your tribe have done great harm by being wrong” and “members of your tribe have deliberately done great harm because they are evil, and as a result everyone in your tribe deserves to suffer.”

    Right now *both* the left and the right are dominated by voices expressing a variant of the second thought. That’s a disaster for America.

    aphrael (3f0569)

  98. ““Actual malice” is a legal determination, and the judge found that immediate retraction was more in keeping with negligent inadvertence than actual malice.”

    – Leviticus

    Let me rephrase: actual malice can be a legal determination if (under the Twombly/Iqbal standards) it is completely implausible that anyone bearing actual malice would immediately retract a mistake statement.

    I see your point, nk, upon a more careful reading of your comment, but I still think the fact justifying dismissal on the pleadings is the immediate retraction.

    Leviticus (efada1)

  99. Without the immediate retractions, Palin would obviously have been able to allege “actual malice” in a plausible way, and would have reached a jury.

    Leviticus (efada1)

  100. “For me there’s a big difference between “members of your tribe have done great harm by being wrong” and “members of your tribe have deliberately done great harm because they are evil, and as a result everyone in your tribe deserves to suffer.”

    Right now *both* the left and the right are dominated by voices expressing a variant of the second thought. That’s a disaster for America.”

    One side is justified in thinking so, the other is not. The only question is whether the bloodshed falls hardest on the elite party bosses (good!) or the party footsoldiers (probably bad!)

    Andrew Jackson did imply that he could have stopped the Civil War if he had shot Henry Clay and hung John C. Calhoun, so it’s good to see that we have someone attentive to his history in the executive branch! The people willing to be the face men and more-in-sorrow-than-in-anger loot-grabbers for international interests may even be lucky enough to get off with federal prison if they’re smart enough to keep their mouths shut.

    Dysphoria Sam (4071c5)

  101. There was no function for a jury here, because the facts weren’t disputed.

    He believed Benet when he said that he had not read the NYT’s previous stories. A reasonable jury could find that the retraction was because he got caught.

    As for the misnomer, that’s a different motion. The remedy is for leave to amend the complaint to name the NYT and Unknown Named Agents and Employees. Then, through discovery, you find the who the individuals are and you serve them. That’s done with 1983 cases involving cops and other unidentified government employees all the time.

    It is news to me that there is no respondeat superior in defamation.

    nk (dbc370)

  102. Dysphoria Sam, at 105: both sides feel they are justified and both sides feel the other one is not.

    aphrael (3f0569)

  103. Ahistorical, aphrael.

    The so-called ‘feelings’ of one side are shown to fluctuate within their entire party within a single day, and to vanish without a trace once the ability to litigate those feelings for cash is taken away. Pelosi and the Democrat party bosses can turn on a dime regarding antifa because they have no strongly held position on moral justification, only what they can get away with at the time.

    I’m sure that when it looks like they and the other elites in trouble, they’ll throw as many minority and failed collegiate human shields in front of the guns to escape. Whether the slaves choose to die for their masters or not is their own perogative. I’d recommend you not.

    Dysphoria Sam (4071c5)

  104. … both sides feel they are justified and both sides feel the other one is not.

    Maybe, but only one side has a rating system.

    https://a.disquscdn.com/get?url=http%3A%2F%2Face.mu.nu%2Farchives%2Finnazis.jpg&key=aOicee5_7tfWamN80t1ijA&w=600&h=500

    Rev.Hoagie® (630eca)

  105. Before alepho starts equivocating and moralizing more, I do encourage people to actually take a look at party dynamics on both sides (note: cousin-match.com is the wordfilter for ‘Afghanistan’):

    http://mpcdot.com/forums/topic/9965-the-gop-garbage-since-1932/#entry376263

    “The other way an individual Congressman can be useful is as ideological salve to his voters. Voters largely have no idea what happens in Congress, and the most passionate of them simply want to know their Congressman has been true to principle. As long as he’s visibly out there talking about how evil abortion is or how important shrinking the government is, it doesn’t matter that Roe v. Wade is still the law and the government grew again this year. His people will love him, and he’ll keep his seat. Besides, he’s one less vote the ruling party has to get something it wants and a reliable filibuster vote.

    A ruling party, by contrast, requires a different kind of man. It requires a man who is willing to lie to his constituents whenever necessary in order to advance the agenda of the party. Not only that, but this party requires men who have little doctrine of their own and will change their beliefs whenever it suits the party. If the party says immigration must be restricted to help the American worker and keep our parks pristine, the man is a full-throated nationalist. If the party says the floodgates must be opened to secure a new electoral majority, the man will enthusiastically back an amendment to pave over the national forests and build immigrant housing projects. Today, he is certain that only a fool thinks democracy would work in cousin-match.com. Tomorrow, he is equally certain that is the solemn duty of the United States to build democracies in cousin-match.com. His loyalty to the party must be so thorough that he forgets that he even had his own beliefs; he has always believed in trans-butthole surgery for teenagers!

    The best example of this was Ben Nelson (D-Nebraska). It was obvious to everyone during the 2010 vote on Obamacare that he desperately wanted to be loyal to his party, yet feared the wrath of the voters. The Democrats, always rewarding loyalty, cooked up a ridiculous scheme to allow him to pretend Obamacare would not pay for abortions and a massive cash subsidy to the state’s Medicaid program. After polls showed he had unrecoverably sabotaged his reelection, the Democrats rewarded him by securing for him a position at the top of a national regulatory body.

    [b]That isn’t how Republicans function. Their fringe (whether of the McCain type or the Amash type) has neither desire nor incentive to be loyal. The GOP is not set up to be a ruling party.[/b]”

    And that’s why I dismiss everyone who talks about holding to principle.

    Dysphoria Sam (4071c5)

  106. Maybe, but only one side has a rating system.

    https://a.disquscdn.com/get?url=http%3A%2F%2Face.mu.nu%2Farchives%2Finnazis.jpg&key=aOicee5_7tfWamN80t1ijA&w=600&h=500

    “Actually, only a few of us are Nazis” – The Republican Party

    Davethulhu (fab944)

  107. Dysphoria Sam: amusingly enough, i’m having a conversation this morning with someone on another forum who decries the fact that Democrats are always the ones who have to compromise their values and make nice with evil for the better good, and why can’t that responsibility fall on the Republicans for a while.

    My point is this: both sides think their injuries are real and the other’s injuries are illusory, and both sides think they have the moral high ground and the other side doesn’t.

    I’m saying: drop that entire conversation, it’s not getting us anywhere and can’t because most people don’t react well to people they perceive as tribal outsiders trying to persuade them that the outsiders are right or that the insiders are wrong.

    So … let’s focus on the common ground we can find, and on seeing the good in each other rather than the bad in each other.

    This isn’t something that most people on the left are willing to do for people on the right, and it’s not something that many people on the right are willing to do for people on the left, AND it’s essential if we’re to prosper and be happy as a people.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  108. “It is news to me that there is no respondeat superior in defamation.”

    – nk

    As a general matter, defamation is an intentional tort, it would typically be considered to be outside the scope of employment for respondeat superior purposes.

    Leviticus (efada1)

  109. Amen, aphrael.

    Patterico (e7189f)

  110. narciso @88 and 89 I don’t think that’s a fair summary of what Obama did.

    I think the Democrats are far worse in wanting everything about Republicans to be not only bad, but the worst they can make it. And they want Republicans or Cabinet members, to denounce Trump and everyone to resign. Democrats are really basing their campaign on how evil Trump is.

    They won’t mention the places where he is really evil, though, because it’s too popular. Everything becomes racism.

    And nobody tries to figure out how this or that happened. Trump did not mean to say or imply that neo-Nazis or white supremacists were fine people. And there are bad people on both sides, although you could get a higher degree of badness on the demonstrator side in Charloittsville.

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  111. Really I think I was being charitable, just because the rizzotto press doesn’t speak it diesnt mean that’s what he did.

    narciso (d1f714)

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