Patterico's Pontifications

7/28/2022

Constitutional Vanguard: Redefining Morality

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 8:23 am



What happened to you?

That is the question people who support Donald Trump like to ask of those of us who don’t.

But it’s the wrong question, as I explain in the latest newsletter:

The funny thing is: the very people who ask “what happened to you” seem not to realize that nothing happened to us . . . but that a very significant question remains:

What happened to them?

Because these people, who often (like the guy above) deny being Trump fans, are very obviously Trump fans. Or, if they are not, then they are the sort of non-Trump fans who never criticize Trump with vigor, always find a “whatabout” whenever Trump’s failings are discussed, and inevitably save their nastiest commentary for anyone who is a real Trump critic.

These people all voted for Trump, and will again. Nothing Trump has ever done really bothers them all that much. His immorality merits nothing more than a shrug. Were these people always this morally callous and disinterested?

What happened to them?

I suspect the answer is: nothing. This is how they always were. It just took Donald Trump to bring their true character into focus.

Read it here. Subscribe here.

P.S. I’m still working on the case law about the Independent State Legislature Doctrine. It’s interesting but kind of daunting.

130 Responses to “Constitutional Vanguard: Redefining Morality”

  1. I suspect the answer is: nothing. This is how they always were. It just took Donald Trump to bring their true character into focus.

    In my case, you’re right: I’m an anti-progressive, anti-communist.

    If the choice is between voting for Trump vs. anyone in the modern Democrat party?

    Well, my choice is pretty simple.

    However, I’m not one who’ll defend Trump like his fan. I’m just someone who don’t need the president to be someone we need to put on a pedestal, as I view it as a politician who’s simply a temporary caretaker of the office.

    My vote is distilled to simply: which candidate would advance my preferred policies?

    In 2016, between Trump and HRC, it was a very close vote because I didn’t quite believe Trump would find a home pushing mainly GOP policies once in the Whitehouse. I thought he’d let Democrats walk all over him in his desire to be liked by everyone. Whereas a HRC administration, practically none of my preferred policies would be advanced.

    So, my choice was really simple at the end.

    Now? I don’t want him to run for office ever again. This is why I bang so hard on the drum that for those who don’t want Trump to occupy the Whitehouse again, then you better be engage at the grassroots/primary phase of the next election to ensure that you are doing your damnedest to convince other GOP primary voters to consolidate behind a strong non-Trump/GOP primary candidate (ie, Youngkin/DeSantis/Haley).

    But, again, if the choice is between Trump vs. Biden/Harris… I’d crawl over broken glass to vote for Trump and will do my damnedest to convince you all to do the same.

    -in before any jumps on me bring up J6-
    While I agree that was a sordid event that should disqualify Trump from ever running for office, he hasn’t been official disqualified.

    I simply disagree with folks on this board, including our host, that all of that was “insurrectiony” or “seditionous”.

    It was simply a political tantrum that the current SYSTEM actually STOPPED what Trump wanted to do. (ie, pressure states to reject Biden, etc…). Not so much different then when Democrats were on the losing end of the election.

    The system worked. Admirably so, as Trump was thwarted. (it could be strengthened for sure!)

    So, to circle back on my positions. I view Democrats much more of a threat to our way of life.

    I really, REALLY hope Trump isn’t the GOP candidate for 2024. But, if my choice is between Trump and X Democrat… then for me at least, my choice is simple.

    whembly (b770f8)

  2. I will go read that when I have the time, but I offer this argument in favor of the Trump fan: Trump did America a service. He did more than that, and much of that “more” was unwelcome, but he did a few things that needed doing and none of his 2016 competition seemed willing to perform.

    1. He removed our blinders regarding the hollowing out of this country by a bipartisan agreement to move our industry abroad.

    2. He championed those that had been harmed by this, as both parties continued to ignore them (for different reasons).

    Now, I happen to think that this was mere opportunism on Trump’s part, but whatever it was needed doing. There needed to be something more than the stock market going up as a measure of the political system’s success.

    I didn’t vote for him then, and I am unlikely to vote for him in the future (but never say never — there are worse candidates). As bad as the Trump presidency was, outside of Jan 6 a Hillary presidency would have been worse.

    Such are the prospects the incumbent parties have to offer.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  3. Patterico, I expressed my opinion on this in an email. Thank you for this essay. I wanted to say that before The Usual Suspects descend and prove you correct yet again.

    Simon Jester (8a01f1)

  4. Obviously, I don’t mean peopl like Kevin M and whembly.

    Simon Jester (8a01f1)

  5. A good friend of mine is a fellow Republican and he voted for Trump simply for economic reasons, all the while knowing his character flaws and dishonesty, and I can respect that. I do have trouble respecting all the defenses of Trump’s obvious and patent lies and immoral acts.
    This is a two-party system, but there is a third option, IMO, and that’s a protest vote, opting for any other candidate who’s more qualified, and it serves as an objection to the candidates that the major parties nominated as their standard bearers. The Dems nominated Sh-t Sandwich in 2016 and 2020, and the GOP answered with Giant D0uche, and it’s why I worry more than ever about where this great country is going.

    Paul Montagu (062b7e)

  6. As a paleo-existentialist, I lean towards Dostoyevsky’s view. People are not comfortable with their freedom to make moral judgments and be responsible for the consequences. So they surrender it to a leader, a higher authority, a fetish, a hundred other words, which will carry the burden for them.

    And some are just plain mean and dumb.

    nk (1ea1f4)

  7. In 2016, I advised social conservatives to vote for Trump, because of the Supreme Court. I advised foreign policy conservatives to vote for Hillary Clinton, who seemed to have finally figured out that Putin is not our friend. I advised economic conservatives to vote for the Libertarian, Gary Johnson.

    I did so knowing that neither Trump nor Clinton had the character needed in an American president. (Or a dog catcher, for that matter.) But those were the choices we had in the general election.

    Thanks, in part, because of the failure of our journalists, especially our TV journalists, who gave Trump far more coverage than he deserved.

    But, like our host, I am still disturbed by the continuing unwillingness of “Trumpistas” to admit that their maximum leader is, among other things, a pathological liar. And a loser.

    (Me? In 2016, I cast a write-in vote for Mitt Romney, knowing there was no way my vote would make a difference here in Washington state. That gave me the freedom that those in “swing” state did not have.)

    Jim Miller (406a93)

  8. ‘Morality’ is a transient. The most ‘moral’ and pious POTUS we’ve endured since post-war times was Jimmy Carter. That went well. =sarc=

    A CEO, a POTUS, a general; any leadership gig has to be more a pragmatic SOB to be successful– like a Nixon bombing Hanoi over Christmas– and less a devoted moralist, like a Georgia governor, who only lusted in his heart– to get things done in this cold, cruel world. Even Walt Disney ruled w/an iron hand creating and running ‘the happiest place on Earth.’

    DCSCA (94ea85)

  9. A far more likely reason is that both sides moved, at least to some extent.

    I am in a similar camp as whembly, but I have no need to ever vote for Trump as I live in a state that will never give him its electoral votes. I appreciate many of the things that Trump did while in office (particularly his Supreme Court nominations), but I have no love for him as a person.

    My parents (both scientists) taught me to approach elections from a very practical perspective, looking at which candidates will best advance the policies I agree with most, and failing that which candidate will hurt my priorities the least. They taught me to evaluate candidates on their own merits and proposals, and to explore the nuances inherent in every individual.

    Trump broke something in them. I remember a visit from them where I expressed my support for Trump’s Supreme Court nominees, as they have issued what I believe to be well-reasoned originalist rulings for the most part. In response, my mother would not stop criticizing Kavanaugh as a rapist because of Blasey-Ford’s unsubstantiated allegations. This was coming from the woman who taught me the importance of the principle of “innocent until proven guilty”, and taught me how to critically examine the credibility of evidence.

    My professional specialty is cybersecurity. In discussing the 2020 election with my father, I expressed my professional opinion that there were likely significant irregularities, but I lack sufficient data to say whether it would have impacted the outcome one way or the other. Trump’s team has made valid points about illegal votes (such as those in Georgia who moved before the election but voted at their old address), but those have been overshadowed by their invalid claims. Even when I emphasized that ultimately Biden won the election that mattered (the electoral vote, as certified by each state), my father accused me of blindly following Trump instead of doing what he taught me to do.

    Have I changed over the years? Yes, I have. If anything, I have become more practical in how I vote, in large part by virtue of having lived in heavily blue areas where my vote is largely ineffective. But I’ve tried hard to stay true to what my parents have taught me in how to evaluate issues and data. From what I have seen, they have largely abandoned those principles because of Trump.

    Again, I do not like Trump. I have no plans to ever vote for him in the future, if he decides to run. January 6 was a disgrace. But that doesn’t mean that the current January 6 hearings aren’t also a disgrace, and that doesn’t mean that Liz Cheney is a paragon of virtue. She, like my parents, has abandoned conservative values through her actions on the 1/6 Committee. She is actively participating in a show trial meant to hamstring a political opponent by presenting one-sided evidence, rather than letting the truth come out through an adversarial confrontation of ideas and evidence.

    There are no clean hands on any side when it comes to politics. You simply have to decide which type of dirt you will deal with.

    Observer (246524)

  10. Nothing Trump has ever done really bothers them all that much. His immorality merits nothing more than a shrug. Were these people always this morally callous and disinterested?

    Americans love their ‘bad boys’ like Trump; the rule breakers– they entertain; in runs in all walks of life. JR Ewing- a character invited into millions of living rooms weekly for over a decade. Quarterbacks cheat; pitchers toss spitballs; boxers bite ears, etc., etc., sports are festooned with ’em. And so? Reagan was divorced and knocked up Nancy. At one time such taboos were career enders for any public official. Times changed; people ‘really weren’t bothered all that much’ about it in the 1980’s as in the 1950’s. Morality is a just transient. We’ve even had gay astronauts! That’s now accepted righteous stuff?!?! OMG!

    … and dead Sally Ride smiled.

    DCSCA (94ea85)

  11. A sidecar: “Redefining ‘Reality’“: Biden denies America is in a recession on live TeeVee as data confirms U.S. is in a recession.

    Guess it’s like inflation – and morality: ‘ It’s transitory.’ 😉

    DCSCA (94ea85)

  12. “He removed our blinders regarding the hollowing out of this country by a bipartisan agreement to move our industry abroad”

    But did he really? To me, all he did was, with Bannon and Miller stoking it, weaponize nationalism. He was not doing a careful accounting of what we lost and what we gained by broadening trade agreements, he was looking for foreign bad guys to scape goat. Whether it was Chinese, Muslims, Mexicans, or people from sh*t h*le countries, he wanted to tap into and exploit nativist fears for political gain. He did his best DCCCP railing against trade agreements and then proceeded to not do much substantively different. If NAFTA was the worst ever, then why is USMCA 95% the same as NAFTA? Was it easy to beat the Chinese in a trade war or did tariffs end up costing us with higher prices and bailouts? Was abandoning TPP in our long-term interest or was it a political lever to boost nationalism?

    https://www.cato.org/blog/5-years-later-united-states-still-paying-tpp-blunder

    It’s not exactly been the wild west in this country. Capitalism destroys and creates. It may sound appealing to offer government as the big protector, but then politics distorts the market. Do we need more Solyndras or more know-nothing Senators picking economic winners and losers? Just take the demise of the US steel industry as an example. Was the problem the government or was the problem how the steel companies were operated and that unions over-played their hands? Is it unfortunate? Sure, but government can’t fix stupid…and more often than not, it just compounds it.

    Did Trump find rhetoric that appealed to blue collar voters…many of which are disillusioned by Democrats obsession with identity politics? Certainly, but at its base he was exploiting ignorance and in many cases irrational fear. Yes, there are people who have lost opportunities because of globalization…and there may be a role for government in there, but Trump never really had a plan to do much beyond jingoism. He wanted a wall because politically he could go off about that. He could boldly claim to win a trade war without doing much. He could sign a GOP tax plan without contributing any original ideas or addressing the deficit implications.

    Trump brought the simplicity of far-right talk radio to the election trail….and right wing media, talk radio, and the religious right let him get away with it because each saw enhanced revenue and influence because of it. There’s nothing there that I find especially good….

    AJ_Liberty (ec7f74)

  13. “What happened to them”

    People no longer have to go to Cronkite to get their news or wait for 3 days to get a non-anonymous letter to the editor printed. All you need is access to the internet and you can be “politically active”. And if you’re retired, you can spend your entire day going from outrage to outrage, with zero requirement of discovering the truth or establishing whether something is being exaggerated. You can always find an insular-enough bubble to reinforce whatever biases you have…and find talking points. Outrage is peddled and people fall prey. Trump is a master manipulator. That’s why you find so many politicians in awe of him….even though they may detest the lying and childishness. If you believe the end is coming and the country is about to fail, then Trump’s authoritarianism somehow becomes acceptable….heck, even preferred. Do it to them before they can do it to you. I keep seeing some version of that in comments. It’s hard to critically reason through complex issues…most people want short cuts…and Trump gives them the ultimate short cut.

    AJ_Liberty (ec7f74)

  14. Observer (246524) — 7/28/2022 @ 10:17 am

    In response, my mother would not stop criticizing Kavanaugh as a rapist because of Blasey-Ford’s unsubstantiated allegations. This was coming from the woman who taught me the importance of the principle of “innocent until proven guilty”, and taught me how to critically examine the credibility of evidence.

    The problem here is the desire to believe that at least one side of the political divide must be honest (they are dishonest in different ways) , and casual reading of biased news sources.

    I expressed my professional opinion that there were likely significant irregularities,

    I don’t know. Trump didn’t bring it out. But it could be in some place they didn’t look.

    Trump’s team has made valid points about illegal votes (such as those in Georgia who moved before the election but voted at their old address),

    But we know the exact number – Trump’s team greatly exaggerated the number because they used change of address forms which may not indicate changes of legal address.

    but those have been overshadowed by their invalid claims.

    Their best case was in dealing with when election rules were perhaps wrongly changed but 1) he didn’t object to them in court before the election and 2) the remedy can’t be throwing out hundreds of thousand and even millions of honestly case votes.

    There are no clean hands on any side when it comes to politics. You simply have to decide which type of dirt you will deal with.

    Sammy FInkelman (1d215a)

  15. I am pretty much with whembly, I dislike Trump but I absolutely loathe the alternative. It’s like the choice of drinking a liter of piss or polonium-laced water. Bad as the piss is, it’s still better than polonium.

    Soronel Haetir (6ef4cf)

  16. Okay, that is funny, really.

    And if you’re retired, you can spend your entire day going from outrage to outrage, with zero requirement of discovering the truth or establishing whether something is being exaggerated

    Simon Jester (8a01f1)

  17. Soronel, my late father had a saying: “Life is a crap sandwich. It all depends on how much bread you have.” But two things: (i) he didn’t say “crap,” and (ii) I’m not sure he knew that “bread” was slang for money.

    Simon Jester (8a01f1)

  18. I think some people defend Trump so vociferously because they believe that to not do so is to give ground to the “enemy”. And if the “enemy” gets in, the country will cease to exist. I do not personally hold this viewpoint. For the most part the country keeps trundling along as long as most of the people in government are in kind of a reasonable range of actions and policies, regardless of party. However, a large number of people make a lot of money off of telling people this and if you tell people something often enough, they will tend to believe it, especially if it fits within their own confirmation bias and the further people dive into the people confirming their own confirmation bias, the more they seem to think the world will end if the other guy gets in.

    Like Kevin, there are things that Trump did that I agree with (especially the examples he gave) though I suspect I also disagreed with Trump’s policies more often than Kevin did. Unfortunately, Trump did not fall within what I would say was a “normal” range of political actions and he attempted to remove everyone in his administration who did. There were very specific things that made him absolutely objectionable to me and impossible for me to vote for him, almost regardless of his opponent.

    I do not always vote for the person that has the most of my preferred policies. Sometimes there are a few things that outweigh how much I agree with someone on other things, but they aren’t always the same issues, it varies by candidate and current issues. There is no “enemy” party. We are all Americans trying to do what we think is right for the country, even if we don’t agree on what those things are.

    Nic (896fdf)

  19. She is actively participating in a show trial meant to hamstring a political opponent by presenting one-sided evidence, rather than letting the truth come out through an adversarial confrontation of ideas and evidence.

    It isn’t a trial. The committee has no power to prosecute anyone. Those who call it a “trial” are not credible critics. If Trump is ever put on trial, all the normal legal processes will be operative. One Trump cultist on the jury would be enough to block a (well-deserved) conviction and let Trump campaign as the hero who’s always being persecuted by the Deep State.

    As for “one-sided”: Almost every one of the witnesses has been a Republican who voted for Trump, and mostly people who worked in the administration up to the end — or at least until he whipped up a mob in an attempt to remain in power illegally. If Republicans think those people became traitors by seeing that as crossing a red line, it just illustrates the moral degradation of the party.

    As is well known, Republicans could have had a nonpartisan commission. Dems granted every condition they asked for. Then Republicans rejected it. McCarthy could have seated 5 members on the select committee who were NOT material witnesses to the events being investigated. He apparently wanted people on the committee with a vested interest in covering up what happened and why.

    It’s obvious that McCarthy then assumed that boycotting the committee would let him say it’s nothing but a partisan witch hunt. That was a patently cynical ploy.

    As for Cheney trying to “hamstring a political opponent,” that is not a good-faith argument. She was not a “political opponent” until she observed that Trump had committed an egregious offense against the Constitution. She has accepted the almost certain loss of her Senate seat in order to take a stand. While she has hinted that running for president might be a possibility someday, she knows very well that she has only a tiny constituency in the Trumpified GOP and not much more outside of it. Being conservative on policy but not a Trump cultist is not popular right now.

    I suspect that many people who try to pin self-serving motives on her know deep down that she actually took a stand on conscience, but for some reason they’re uncomfortable admitting it.

    Radegunda (7c3e8d)

  20. a large number of people make a lot of money off of telling people this

    This is a key point. Telling people that the country is on the brink of destruction and it will be gone if the other party wins the presidency is a way to whip of votes. Hammering on an “us vs. them” narrative is also a way of grabbing and maintaining an audience.

    The irony is that people who told us we must elect Trump in order to save the constitutional republic have veered into defending unconstitutional means to keep Trump in power. Some even seem to question fundamental features of the Constitution, is it permits policies they dislike.

    Radegunda (7c3e8d)

  21. What happened to trade deficits while Trump was president? They “soared”:

    The U.S. trade deficit over the four years of President Donald Trump’s presidency soared to its highest level since 2008, despite his tough tariff tactics intended to bring it down, a new Commerce Department report showed on Friday.

    The combined U.S. goods and services trade deficit increased to $679 billion in 2020, compared to $481 billion in 2016, the year before Trump took office. The trade deficit in goods alone hit $916 billion, a record high and an increase of about 21 percent from 2016.

    (Link omitted.)

    A competent president could have done better. But instead we elected what in my youth we would have called a “BS artist”.

    Jim Miller (406a93)

  22. when it comes to politicians, appeals to personal morality are the ultimate conceit

    what matters is the collective morality of the country, as represented by its policies, so a politician’s policies and voting record are of much more significance than if they are good moral people who advocate immoral policy

    the significance of that had been on display all around us for more than a year

    JF (5a4027)

  23. @13. People no longer have to go to Cronkite to get their news or wait for 3 days to get a non-anonymous letter to the editor printed. All you need is access to the internet and you can be “politically active”. And if you’re retired, you can spend your entire day going from outrage to outrage, with zero requirement of discovering the truth or establishing whether something is being exaggerated.

    AJ, Cronkite retired from anchoring the CBS Evening News over 41 years ago. What you’re crying out for is something we call, an editor.

    Walter Cronkite was the Managing Editor of the CBS Evening News and had final say on all copy and stories aired on the newscast: ‘…and that’s the way it is.’

    DCSCA (5005ed)

  24. Here you go, Miller… the site used to be verboten at this site before the great reset.

    https://www.politico.com/amp/news/2021/02/05/2020-trade-figures-trump-failure-deficit-466116

    Colonel Haiku (55c643)

  25. The year 2020 seems to figure quite a bit in their calculations.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  26. But instead we elected what in my youth we would have called a “BS artist”.

    In my profession, we simply called them ‘plagiarists.’

    DCSCA (5005ed)

  27. @19 Radegunda (7c3e8d) — 7/28/2022 @ 12:34 pm

    Dems granted every condition they asked for.

    That’s fundamentally not true, even though you followed up with:

    who were NOT material witnesses to the events being investigated. He apparently wanted people on the committee with a vested interest in covering up what happened and why.

    Which is irrelevant.

    Pelosi wasn’t interested in an adversarial process.

    They were more interested in forming a narrative.

    whembly (b770f8)

  28. @ those whom are animated against Trump, I’m genuinely interested in your perspective.

    Here’s a hypothetical.

    Would we have a J9 hearing, and all the calls for impeachment and DOJ prosecution had the following occured?
    -Everything leading up to J6, including the Stop the Steal™ nonsense.
    -Trump’s speech on J6.
    -But, unlike in the real world, not one protestor set foot within the capitol and that there weren’t any riots on capitol grounds.

    whembly (b770f8)

  29. Happy Rockefeller: Divorcee whose marriage to Nelson Rockefeller ended his ambition of becoming United States President

    ‘The U.S. public was not ready for a divorcee in the Oval Office. Yet her divorce in 1963, quickly followed by remarriage to Nelson Rockefeller, almost certainly destroyed the chances of that scion of one of America’s wealthiest and most famous families of winning the White House in 1964 – the prize he yearned for above all, and to which he would never come close again.

    Half a century ago, despite the loosening social mores of the 1960s, the US public was not ready for a divorcee in the Oval Office, least of all so recent a one, who like his wife had abandoned a family, surrounded by the “scandal” headlines that the Rockefeller name guaranteed. Nelson, then governor of New York, had broken up with his wife of over 30 years, who had borne him five children.’

    https://www.independent.co.uk/news/people/happy-rockefeller-divorcee-whose-marriage-to-nelson-rockefeller-ended-his-ambition-of-becoming-united-states-president-10268295.html

    Fellas like French or Will and assorted fellow travelers, now out-of-favor opinionators and pundits, brushed out of the tail that no longer wags the dog, reaffirm their own angst by poorly masking their real issue w/Trump; his brand of ‘populism’ has shuffled the National Review establishment types out of party and message control and placed them at the bottom of the deck– or out of the game completely. This discontentment has been simmering to the boil for decades. And it’s not going to cool any time soon.

    DCSCA (5005ed)

  30. In an alternate-history detective story by Randall Garrett, “Too Many Magicians”, the detective, Lord Darcy, is able to solve the mystery in part by listening to the murderer give his list of suspects, all of whom, in the murderer’s opinion, had financial reasons for the murder.

    Which, it turns out, is what motivated the murderer. (He had big gambling debts.)

    Similarly, when I see people reject personal morality, or talk only about power politics, I think they often are telling us something about themselves.

    Jim Miller (406a93)

  31. whembly:

    The fear I have is that Trump will repeat his second term in his first term — particularly his corrosive bs about elections that don’t go his way and the institutionalization of threats against people who are thwarting him.

    Appalled (fa627b)

  32. “Pelosi wasn’t interested in an adversarial process.”

    Yes she was. Republicans showed that they were opposed to any sort of investigation no matter what.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/January_6_commission

    (This is a link to the original 1/6 commission proposal, not what we ended up with)

    Davethulhu (c93f9f)

  33. @whembly@28 I don’t think so, at least not as we see them today. I think the people pushing into the Capitol was, for many people, an very visible offense against the entire American system of elections. It was impossible to ignore and one of those situations where Something Had To Be Done. There might’ve still been a DOJ investigation, because there seem to have been some Very Sketchy things being done behind the scenes, but without the very visible events of Jan 6, I don’t think they would’ve had the very visible hearings.

    Nic (896fdf)

  34. Similarly, when I see people reject personal morality, or talk only about power politics, I think they often are telling us something about themselves.

    Of course they are. Some are trying to justify themselves. Others that they’re in the room and won’t you, won’t you, won’t you, give all your attention to them?

    nk (1ea1f4)

  35. Record inflation, Biden in bed with China for billions, Manchin agreeing to soak the taxpayer for trillions and cause inflation to go ever higher.

    And some voted for this. Explains a lot.

    NJRob (217863)

  36. Nic (896fdf) — 7/28/2022 @ 2:46 pm

    without the very visible events of Jan 6, I don’t think they would’ve had the very visible hearings.

    Because Trump’s ploy would have lost, and that was that.

    Even with the danger of a repeat, there wouldn;t be the interest in

    Sammy FInkelman (1d215a)

  37. And best of all, the media going full Pravda and saying the word recession no longer means what you think it means.

    I can’t blame them. They successfully did the same to marriage and woman for starters. Why not embrace the Newspeak.

    NJRob (217863)

  38. NJRob (217863) — 7/28/2022 @ 2:57 pm

    Biden in bed with China for billions,

    Joe Biden wasn’t in bed with China. Hunter Biden was, in 2023. The 2017 connection was with a person who was purged, is now in the Chinese Gulag and had his company destroyed and I think Hunter was lying to the Chinese concerned about his father having a secret 10% stake. I mean that should be obvious, even.

    Miranda Devine thinks his drug addiction was finally cured by ketamine at the beginning of 2019. (but no so completely cured that he didn’t abandon his hard drive with the recovered files –

    https://nypost.com/2022/07/24/ketamine-is-so-effective-at-helping-addicts-it-even-got-hunter-biden-clean

    Sammy FInkelman (1d215a)

  39. NJRob (217863) — 7/28/2022 @ 2:59 pm

    And best of all, the media going full Pravda and saying the word recession no longer means what you think it means.

    It actually never did. We don;t use that historically.

    But the quick and dirty definition of a recession is two consecutive quarters of negative economic growth.

    Which we use until the National Bureau of Economic Research comes out with its start month and end month.

    Sammy FInkelman (1d215a)

  40. government can’t fix stupid…and more often than not, it just compounds it

    AJ_Liberty (ec7f74) — 7/28/2022 @ 11:14 am

    I’m totally stealing that line, AJ.

    We are all blind men feeling and describing various parts of the elephant, but you have more of the elephant mapped than most.

    norcal (da5491)

  41. 32. There were tooo many bad things about Donald Trump – and his election claims – that the commission would have dealt with for Trump to tolerate it, even if it cleared him from intentionally instigating the rampage, and dismissed some of the wilder allegations against him.

    Sammy FInkelman (1d215a)

  42. With respect to voting I think there are two types of people:

    1. Voters who make a rational choice between the lessor of two evils, are fully aware of it, and don’t need further rationalization.

    2. Those who do something they think is close to what the first group does, may not be fully aware of their internal processes, and need to resolve a variety of internal conflicts.

    People in both groups exist on all sides of the political spectrum.

    frosty (ef3596)

  43. Also

    That is the question people who support Donald Trump like to ask of those of us who don’t.

    Does that really happen often? I’d think at this point there’s not a single person on the planet who doesn’t know why people don’t support Trump. Maybe people in remote parts of the Amazon?

    frosty (ef3596)

  44. Observer (246524) — 7/28/2022 @ 10:17 am

    Welcome to this blog, and thank you for your comments.

    I agree about making a rational policy calculation when it comes to voting.

    However, Trump threw a wrench into the traditional policy evaluation. With Trump, things that heretofore had not been considered “policy” came into play.

    Take the peaceful transfer of power, for example. To me, the most important “policy” is a willingness to acknowledge the results of an election. It’s the most fundamental policy of all. Why? Because a president with bad policies will be shown the door at the next election, unless one of his policies is not to respect election results.

    There is no point in debating other policies if people can’t agree on this fundamental principle. Trump knows that everything hinges on this, and it’s why he’s pushing the Big Lie so hard.

    norcal (da5491)

  45. “Rational policy calculation.” Yeah, right! More like “Trump, I believe! Help thou my unbelief!”

    In 2016, both parties effectively disenfranchised me. Neither gave me a Presidential candidate I could vote for. In 2020, Biden was running unopposed as far as I was concerned. Since we’re justifying.

    And I’ll tell you something else, too, comrades. America is too great a nation to have a Fifth Avenue fancy boy as our national embarrassment. Can’t we find some more Indian land to steal or something? Bring back slavery maybe?

    nk (e17bfd)

  46. Telling people that the country is on the brink of destruction and it will be gone if the other party wins the presidency is a way to whip of votes. Hammering on an “us vs. them” narrative is also a way of grabbing and maintaining an audience.

    The “fire and brimstone” pitch works w/religion, too— and, of course, half-time locker room rallying by a coach three touchdowns behind… you know– ‘…win one for the Gipper.’ 😉

    DCSCA (2f9ea7)

  47. @45 It is a great nation, but it has far too many people with questionable discernment. Witness “pro” wrestling, Peeps candy, tattoos, and false eyelashes.

    norcal (da5491)

  48. <e

    m>Record inflation……

    NJRob (217863) — 7/28/2022 @ 2:57 pm

    Not quite.

    ……..
    Overall, consumer prices rose in 2021 at the fastest pace in 39 years, meaning this is the worst inflation experienced by anyone not on the cusp of retirement or older.

    But, as those older Americans can tell you, as unwelcome as it is for consumers, today’s price increases are nowhere near as bad as they were in the 1970s and early 1980s.
    ………
    Inflation hit 12.2% in late 1974, soon after (President Ford) took office, nearly twice the annual pace of increase through November of last year. The inflation rate hit a record high of 14.6% in March and April of 1980. It helped to lead to Carter’s defeat in that fall’s election. …..
    ……..
    Today the annual inflation rate stands at an unadjusted 7.1%, the highest 12-month change since June of 1982.
    ……..

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  49. It is a great nation, but it has far too many people with questionable discernment.

    Witness Henry Ford instead. Yeah, that ‘freedom of choice thingy’ is a real PITA for ‘ya. Genuine authoritarian and pro-Nazi types like Ford had your POV in mind when he declared you can have the Model-T in any color you want— as long as it’s black. 😉

    DCSCA (2f9ea7)

  50. @48. Inflation is transitory; there is no recession; Putin’s days of tyranny and trying to intimidate U.S. and Eastern Europe are over; Kabul would not turn into the fall of Saigon, etc., etc., etc. so why does getting smacked in the forehead with a 2X4 keep hurting…

    DCSCA (2f9ea7)

  51. Telling people that the country is on the brink of destruction and it will be gone if the other party wins the presidency is a way to whip of votes. Hammering on an “us vs. them” narrative is also a way of grabbing and maintaining an audience.

    Supporting the guy who said “they gonna put ya’ll in chains” is surely a rational decision.

    NJRob (330d80)

  52. Rip,

    Now do “like to like.”

    NJRob (330d80)

  53. There is no point in debating other policies if people can’t agree on this fundamental principle. Trump knows that everything hinges on this, and it’s why he’s pushing the Big Lie so hard.
    norcal (da5491) — 7/28/2022 @ 3:33 pm

    voting policy has been debated here and here and here

    but that was then, and back then Trump wasn’t around to motivate a radical change in a “fundamental principle”, as in doing a complete 180 by those who think they haven’t changed

    funny how a “fundamental principle” has become so fluid

    JF (b4e351)

  54. But did he really? To me, all he did was, with Bannon and Miller stoking it, weaponize nationalism. He was not doing a careful accounting of what we lost and what we gained by broadening trade agreements, he was looking for foreign bad guys to scape goat.

    Yes, he did. We were continuing to shambolically drift towards total dependence on Asia in all manufacturing, and design was beginning to follow. Now, we aren’t. But as I said, Trump is an opportunist, so his motives for doing so aren’t clear.

    But … the CHIPs Act passed today, to fund a rebuild of America’s semiconductor industry which has mostly gone to Taiwan, the other China, and South Korea. Something that became apparent as the Pacific became a parking lot and used cars tripled in value.

    This would never have happened in the world of 2012. To coin a phrase, “What’s good for Intel is good for America!” Especially as Taiwan teeters on the verge of forced reunification.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  55. It’s not exactly been the wild west in this country. Capitalism destroys and creates. It may sound appealing to offer government as the big protector, but then politics distorts the market. Do we need more Solyndras or more know-nothing Senators picking economic winners and losers? Just take the demise of the US steel industry as an example.

    Solyndra had nothing to do with Congress picking winners. It had to do with bureaucrats picking winners, often benefiting investors who had contributed to the president’s election. And it was a learning opportunity — instead of government guaranteed loans to startups for unproven technologies, subsidies to buyers of a class of devices, or support for a proven company building factories within their core competency make sense, if we need those technologies to be made here for reasons other than mere economics.

    The problem with the pure economic analysis is 1) it uses a single criterion to separate good and bad, and 2) some of the things it ignores, such as people needing to eat, are hard to make work in a representative democracy. It’s glib to talk about retraining and the efficiency of the marketplace, and when you’re 53 and you’re out of work you may not be willing to listen.

    Telling a 53-yo carpenter to “learn to code” is best done from a considerable distance.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  56. -But, unlike in the real world, not one protestor set foot within the capitol and that there weren’t any riots on capitol grounds.

    NO.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  57. What a foolish question! Whats more you suspect actually you already know nothing! I always thought you conservatives were smarter then democrats and are edge was conservatives are evil and self destructive. I am starting to wonder. Once or twice a week I tell you, trumpsters are former white trash democrats invited into the party with nixon’s and reagan’s southern strategy and and lee atwater’s racist populism. You are economic libertarian conservatives. You only overlap on social conservatism if your not social libertarians. You and they don’t make “we”! As has been said many times the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again expecting a different result! Also they breed a lot faster then you ;but not as fast democrats.

    asset (97587f)

  58. This is a bit of a segue, but I was catching up on The Boys (I’m in the middle of Season 2) when Stormfront said, “When you see it on your uncle’s Facebook page, then you know it’s working,” and it reminds of how successful Putin has been at his propaganda efforts. Similarly, Trump’s efforts.

    Paul Montagu (062b7e)

  59. “Yes, he did. We were continuing to shambolically drift towards total dependence on Asia in all manufacturing, and design was beginning to follow. Now, we aren’t. But as I said, Trump is an opportunist, so his motives for doing so aren’t clear.”

    He got it done, but the important thing is motivation? Good to know.

    Colonel Haiku (33bead)

  60. we’ll find that the same commenters won’t support DeSantis, cuz he stole an election or something

    JF (a6d404)

  61. In az trumpster news kari lake is already claiming election fraud and the election isn’t till tuesday.

    asset (97587f)

  62. Larry Elder tried that ploy, and failed badly.

    Paul Montagu (062b7e)

  63. In az trumpster news kari lake is already claiming election fraud and the election isn’t till tuesday.
    asset (97587f) — 7/28/2022 @ 7:29 pm

    well no the election started July 6, when early fraud mail in voting began

    JF (a6d404)

  64. Independent state legislature doctrine if taken up by the supreme court will need republican control of presidency and congress as senile old joe biden and his friends in the corporate deep state establishment would be able to stop what would happen next.

    asset (97587f)

  65. @63 Despite republicans spending millions of dollars on investigating democrat voter fraud in az they can only find republicans committing voter fraud. The rethugs did their own tax payer funded audit of the 2020 election to prove that more people voted for trump then was counted ;but found more biden votes then trump votes and trumpsters were doing the counting!

    asset (97587f)

  66. AZ has had early, no-excuse mail in voting since 1991. It hasn’t had any significant fraud issues.

    Nic (896fdf)

  67. @66 Republican party in az disagrees with you including a majority of republican voters. Look what is happening to rusty bowers.

    asset (97587f)

  68. Patterico–I really have to commend you on this article. It’s the best one I’ve read about our political schism.

    I linked it at a BYU sports board I frequent (which has a political category for subscribers). I hope to see some comments about it. Hopefully it will resonate with some of the tribalists there.

    As for it having any effect on some of the usual suspects here, I’m not going to hold my breath.

    norcal (da5491)

  69. @67 I can disagree with NASA and believe the moon is made of green cheese, that doesn’t mean that it is.

    Nic (896fdf)

  70. Nic (896fdf) — 7/28/2022 @ 8:04 pm

    cuz if fraud had ever happened it would just jump out and tell you

    JF (a6d404)

  71. I mean, the moon isn’t going around telling me it isn’t made of green cheese.

    Nic (896fdf)

  72. The fear I have is that Trump will repeat his second term in his first term — particularly his corrosive bs about elections that don’t go his way and the institutionalization of threats against people who are thwarting him.

    He does carry a grudge; unless he can thoroughly humiliate them in public or on Page Six instead- as with dining on frogs legs w/mormon-of-the-people-Pierre Delecto– or keeping a warm spot up his tailpipe for the likes of Canadian Tedtoo. But it’s a cinch he’ll mention Ivana a helluva lot less- if ever- than Joe does of Beau. The spotlight in the center ring shines for only one.

    ‘Welcome back my friends; to the show that never ends…’

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C_zo0FiNheI

    DCSCA (643ad0)

  73. “Telling a 53-yo carpenter to “learn to code” is best done from a considerable distance.”

    If I recall correctly, that 53-yo carpenter also chooses to not work in a union shop, artificially reducing his job opportunities and placing himself more in competition with illegal aliens. Did Trump’s policies make him more employable?

    I’m not going to make the argument that illegal immigration is not important….just that Trump’s signature focus on a wall was cynical and perhaps a distraction from other more important policies. For instance, were more employers sanctioned for hiring illegals during Trump’s term and were the penalties more severe? I don’t think so

    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/05/31/us/illegal-immigration-employers-prosecutions.html

    Trump suspended H2B guest worker visas but not H2A (agriculture) guest worker visas. Why was that you think? I think Trump’s rhetoric frequently ran up against reality.

    Trump made claims that China had to be punished for currency manipulation….throughout the 2016 campaign and then as part of his trade war. But was it true? Probably not or at least not when Trump was claiming it

    https://www.politico.com/story/2019/08/09/imf-report-trump-currency-manipulation-1653096

    I’m not arguing that the economy is not tough for some people or that they just need to learn how to code. My point is that you suggest that Trump needs to be given credit, but I see most of what he said was deceptive and that his policies were not really solutions…and there’s no point in making them a model for future GOP candidates. They appealed to nationalism and hatred of foreigners in order to get elected and then re-elected.

    Again, I see no point in praising someone for poisoning the political environment for self gain…..whether it’s Bernie or Trump. The fundamental question is whether protectionism actually works in the long run….or does more open trade lead to more growth and jobs across the board? You seem to suggest that the lesson of the past 70 years is that we need more protectionism. You need to show your work and not just rely on anecdote…..

    AJ_Liberty (c82e21)

  74. The morons that didn’t vote Trump are responsible for this countries downfall. Now go to Canada where you belong and take the vaccines with you.

    mg (8cbc69)

  75. Whembly @28

    I think the plot to use lies about the election being determined by fraud as a pretext to delay certification until the Trump admin could pressure GOP state legislatures into sending fraudulent electors to declare Trump the winner of an election he lost is the bigger offense.

    I don’t know if the plot would have captured public attention enough to support congressional investigations if hundreds of Trump supporters hadn’t violently attacked the police and seized the US capital in furtherance of that plan.

    All of it’s bad, but I don’t think either would be as big a deal without the other.

    The attack without the plan is just a particularly noxious riot.
    The plan without the attack lacks imagery needed to to capture the attention of the US public and would be easier to write off as sour grapes / whining.

    I hope that answers your question.

    Time123 (1dc124)

  76. JF, Maybe we should eliminate all mail in voting and require everyone to go to one or two central locations so we can really make sure we have the best physical security. Multiple polling locations lead to many separate opportunities for fraud. Going to just 1 would really allow the states to focus on top notch security for that 1 location.

    Given infrastructure and convenience we should put that 1 polling location in each states largest city with lots and lots of voting booths to reduce wait time. But if you’re not in line before the polls close that’s too bad. We should aggressively check all documentation. If you don’t have the right documents you can drive home and get them.

    This would be totally fair as everyone gets to vote at the same time in the same place. One plan for everyone. So we’re treating everyone the same. Some people might say that asking rural voters to give up a day and drive hundreds of miles is an impediment to them vomiting but everyone has to travel to vote so people don’t want to do that they clearly don’t care very much.

    If this just so happens to make it very hard to older and rural voters that would just be a coincidence that has no impact on outcome.

    /snark

    Time123 (1dc124)

  77. I largely concur with posts #1 by Whembly and #74 by mg.

    It is a contest, so I have no problem with Donald
    Trump running in 2024 (who is better?) and may
    the best person win. See below linked American Thinker column I WAS WRONG ABOUT TRUMP by M.B. Mathews.

    The plot & coup that the Dems (the SWAMP) ran against Trump, Flynn, et. al., in 2016 – was a plot & coup and treasonous. Yet no one paid a
    price. In fact many were rewarded: Joe Biden is
    president; the NY Times & WaPo got Pulitzers for their false reporting on Trump/Russia collusion; Comey and McCabe escaped prosecution from IG Hororwitz criminal referrals for lying (AG Bill Barr gave them free pass; not Barr’s 1st job was working for the CIA). Of course, then there is the major disinformation operation to discredit the Hunter Biden’s laptop from hell: somebody had to think that up, get SWAMP green light approval, get SWAMP funding and get 50 former high level intelligence officers to sign on like lap dogs and NPR (our tax money) to say it was another/more Russian disinformation – so it was not going to cover/report on the story; clear interference in an election which was said to clearly effect the outcome of the 2020 prez election. (The above are examples are illustrative and not exhaustive of the Dem party, Lame Stream Lying Cabal Media and Deep State/SWAMP abuses of power. Their bag of tricks is rather big, if not endless.)

    I WAS WRONG ABOUT TRUMP by M.B. Mathews.
    https://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2022/07/i_was_wrong_about_trump.html

    Liberty & Truth require constant vigilance. GLZ.

    Gary L. Zerman (4fafb3)

  78. Republican party in az disagrees with you including a majority of republican voters. Look what is happening to rusty bowers.

    That’s an argument for mass delusion, not massive fraud, which says plenty about the state of the GOP in AZ and its ongoing servitude to Trump.

    Paul Montagu (062b7e)

  79. Time123, maybe filling out a form is too much trouble for some people, and not everyone has access to #2 pencils and black or blue pens. And, it’s hard! Plus, a 30 day window to mail it may be too restrictive. I mean, if someone wants to vote in July for the general election, why the hell not? So many rules here.

    And why do we have to go through the trouble of mailing it? Let’s have a team of poll workers go to everyone with a pulse, on demand, to their bedroom if necessary so they don’t have to even get up, so that no one is excluded. These poll workers need to also be able to speak every language.

    And, as our host mentioned in one of the links I included, next we do this for registration not just voting. I’m sure you’re down with this cuz otherwise it’s vote suppression, and ( )ist and ( )phobic and we know that’s what everyone else is about, not you.

    /snark

    JF (a6d404)

  80. Yes JF, there need to be a balance between access, effective elections, and security. You’re starting to get.

    Now if you can make the leap to using data to understand the difference between actual risks and figments of your imagination you’ll really be cooking with gas.

    Time123 (3472e9)

  81. Time123, maybe filling out a form is too much trouble for some people, and not everyone has access to #2 pencils and black or blue pens.

    You think you’re joking, JF, but would you like to consider that every Trump voter could vote exactly the same way that Biden voters did, and Trump actively discouraged them (ordered them, practically) from doing so?

    Told them not to vote by mail and that’s not all; he further told them that if they did vote by mail to go down and cause chaos at the polling place by demanding to see if their vote-by-mail had been received. Which made his voters waiting in line to vote very happy obviously.

    Like George C. Scott told Jackie Gleason, the guy’s a loser.

    nk (de5158)

  82. Time123, you forgot the snark tag. And, what data?

    Or, hey, why not do voting like just about every other advanced industrialized first world nation does it?

    We know why. Cuz they’re all just ( )ist and ( )phobic.

    JF (a6d404)

  83. @75 Time123 (1dc124) — 7/29/2022 @ 5:40 am

    Thanks for the response, and yeah that helps.

    For me, I can separate the J6 violence from all the other Stop the Steal shenanigans.

    Others cant.

    And Democrats/Media has worked really hard to infer a strong link between the two, because of obvious political opportunities.

    But regular voters are seeing the black & white differences how government treats J6 rioters (and non violent protestors!) vs the damage and chaos perpetuated by the riots in other cities whom where given colorable “cover” by Democrats/media.

    You can argue, till you’re blue, that J6 was infinitely more dangerous, but many voters simply views J6 as a legit protest where a small subset of that crowed went too far. These same voters understood that while those who perpetuated the violence should be held to account, but the country and even the “transition of power” was no where near at risk. The institutions, post-election, was robust enough to deal with the Stop the Steal tantrum.

    Whereas people lost their lives, and livelihood over the summer of riots, are not going to care all that much with J6 nor is going to be receptive to the political narratives that the Democrats/Media are trying to advance, especially in the face of certain Democrat electoral defeat in the mid-terms. Especially in the face of this disasterous Biden Administration and the recessions that they’re currently facing.

    In short, the political junkies of the world is going to care about Trump’s mis(mal)feasance and J6. But these political junkies are a very small minority of US voters and I’m not sure Trump’s 2020 tantrum/J6 would be as much as a factor in the future in the face of the current disasters that is the Biden/Democrat policies.

    whembly (b770f8)

  84. JF, that last one wasn’t snark. It’s nice to you see you tacitly acknowledge that some risk mitigations aren’t justified. Next step would be to look at what the actual risks are to election integrity based on the real world examples of fraud and error.

    Time123 (1dc124)

  85. Oh, come on! Let’s get real! This is a guy that nobody wants to play golf with because he thinks every drive he misses is a mulligan and every putt is a gimme if the ball is on the green.

    The changes in voting rules is not what went wrong for Trump. What went wrong for Trump is 1) that his daddy did not include the Presidency in his trust fund, and 2) he could not edit the election script like he could on the apprentice.

    All his life he saw himself a winner because he was foaled on the finish line, and all his life he has lost every time he was faced with a real race. Rigged? The only rigging were the circumstances of his birth that got him as far as he got in the first place.

    nk (de5158)

  86. Whembly, part of what made our institutions resilient to the GOP’s attempt to steal the presidency is that it’s wrong, and parts of it were illegal.

    Saying “no harm no foul” weakens both of those.

    I agree that the violent Trump supporters were a small subset of all Trump supporters that day and I’m fine with treating them as such rhetorically. That’s harder to do when the bulk of the Trump supporters hold them so close by comically minimizing what they did, excusing it with comparisons to unrelated bad acts, and pretending that any investigation of their actions is ‘Soviet Style show trials.’

    Trump and the GOP had plenty of chances to take a “I understand their frustration and while peaceful protests are a right I condemn violence and want to see anyone that broke the law held accountable.” Approach. Trump and the GOP chose a different path.

    McCarthy could have had a bipartisan independent commission structured almost exactly as he’d asked for. He turned it down, likely because he knew the facts made the GOP look bad. So now we have a Bipartisan congressional commission that’s producing extensive evidence of how Trump was trying to steal the election and how the violence on that day furthered that plot, and could have had even larger impacts had the plot been executed more capably.

    I understand where you’re coming from. I also understand and support the the strong norm against criminalizing politics and prosecution of the outgoing administration.

    But Trump lied about the fraud. His supporters at the state levels sent fraudulent electoral votes to congress (a criminal act). Trump repeatedly pressured state level GOP to certify him as winning an election he lost. His allies in congress attempted to stop the transfer of power and eventually his supporters on the street violently attacked the US capital to prevent the certification.

    I’d like to see everyone that broke the law in the 2020 riots punished and Trump’s DOJ tried to do that. But the fact that they failed doesn’t in any way excuse what Trump tried to do.

    Trump’s and old man with no shame and a high tolerance for risk. He’s not going to be deterred. The many scumbags that supported him could bee and there needs to be a clear cost to trying to steal the US presidency that includes prosecution for any laws you break in the process.

    I might be less adamant on that and more willing to move on if there was some political cost and Trumps actions were generally condemned. But they’re not. He’s the GOP front runner by a long ways and even smart, good people such as yourself are willing to vote for him despite what he tried to do.

    The GOP has no monopoly on this type of behavior and if it’s normalized it won’t take long for more competent people (of one part or the other) to pull it off.

    Trump came *extremely* close.

    -Had any one of the key people (Pence, Pelosi etc.) been killed or injured in the attack or intimidated into asking for a delay this could have gone very differently.

    I’m glad he failed, but I’m legitimately concerned both at how close he came, and how acceptable this was to his supporters and the GOP in general.

    So yes, I’m glad this is being investigated and publicized even if it helps a political party I share very few policy preferences with.

    Time123 (1dc124)

  87. please, please DeSantis please win the nomination

    oh please, lord, please

    then we’ll see folks “move on” from Trump

    LMFAO

    JF (a6d404)

  88. then we’ll see folks “move on” from Trump

    Yup. And maybe those Ukrainians will move on from Putin, too. And the Border Patrol will move on from those poor migrants. And the alarm companies will stop harassing those poor burglars.

    Who do you think you’re fooling?

    nk (de5158)

  89. @87, Not a Desntis fan. I like candidates that uphold our rights more then ones that attack them for cheap political points. Any idea what Youngkin is planning?

    Time123 (1dc124)

  90. Not a Desntis fan.

    spoiler alert!!

    JF (a6d404)

  91. I’ve been clear about that and why. I’m not interested in a big government authoritarian from either the left or the right. I’m not a populist. I’m not a culture warrior.

    Given all that why would I be any more excited about him then you would be for paul Ryan?

    Time123 (3472e9)

  92. >It was simply a political tantrum that the current SYSTEM actually STOPPED what Trump wanted to do.

    Yes. we got lucky. Trump and his allies have spent the intervening years working on replacing the people in the system who stopped what he wanted to do, and there’s *zero* good reason to believe that the next time, the system will be able to stop him.

    Trump and his allies are the biggest threat to the American body politic since the civil war. I believe this so strongly that I, a gay liberal, *voted for Ted Cruz in 2016*, and it’s only gotten worse, and more clear, since then.

    The Democrats who are supporting Trumpists in Republican primaries are playing with fire and risking the destruction of the Republic for short-term partisan gain, and it’s contemptible.

    aphrael (4c4719)

  93. whembly,

    You had a thought experiment upthread about what if Trump did what he did, but 1/6 never happened. My own answer is that Trump would have acted no differently, except nobody would have muzzled his Twitter, so his thoughts would have been with us endlessly. There would have been no 1-6 committee. I think there would have been agitation for a Big Lie Denunciation Committee in the House, but it would have eventually gone nowhere. I’m not sure how unending Trump tweet would have played over the past two years, but I do think he would likely be in better shape re 2024 and his effective leadership of the GOP Those who want no more of him (like me) would not be happy about that.

    Does 1-6 disqualify Trump? I’m the wrong guy to ask. I already felt he was disqualified. BUT, since you ask — yes, it does. His refusal to act during the riot is simple dereliction of duty, at best. At worst, it’s of a piece with his rally where he urged people he knew to be armed to go up to the Capitol. He wanted that threat there, at a minimum.

    Appalled (bcbc18)

  94. Time123 (3472e9) — 7/29/2022 @ 8:03 am

    i voted for Paul Ryan and Romney, and I’d enthusiastically vote for Ryan over any democrat

    so, there’s that

    what do you like about Youngkin? That he stands up to school boards?

    i don’t think you know much about him, maybe cuz WaPo hit pieces have focused on DeSantis

    once that changes, or he runs and gets the nomination, you’ll be against him

    just trust me on this one, Time123

    JF (a6d404)

  95. > we’ll find that the same commenters won’t support DeSantis, cuz he stole an election or something

    I disagree with DeSantis on almost all policy issues, and consider him a normal politician and therefore per se vastly preferable to Trump.

    aphrael (573f15)

  96. Dems putting money behind MAGA candidates demonstrates to me that they do not understand the danger and/or are complicit in it.

    There is very little they could do which would alienate me more, or do more to underwrite my belief that the Republic is already doomed and we’re just quarrelling over which way it will die.

    aphrael (4c4719)

  97. aphrael (573f15) — 7/29/2022 @ 8:21 am

    aphrael, you’re an honest and up front liberal

    meaning my comment wasn’t directed at folks like you

    JF (a6d404)

  98. @93

    whembly,

    You had a thought experiment upthread about what if Trump did what he did, but 1/6 never happened. My own answer is that Trump would have acted no differently, except nobody would have muzzled his Twitter, so his thoughts would have been with us endlessly. There would have been no 1-6 committee. I think there would have been agitation for a Big Lie Denunciation Committee in the House, but it would have eventually gone nowhere. I’m not sure how unending Trump tweet would have played over the past two years, but I do think he would likely be in better shape re 2024 and his effective leadership of the GOP Those who want no more of him (like me) would not be happy about that.

    Does 1-6 disqualify Trump? I’m the wrong guy to ask. I already felt he was disqualified. BUT, since you ask — yes, it does. His refusal to act during the riot is simple dereliction of duty, at best. At worst, it’s of a piece with his rally where he urged people he knew to be armed to go up to the Capitol. He wanted that threat there, at a minimum.

    Appalled (bcbc18) — 7/29/2022 @ 8:04 am

    That’s where I’m at too… I think.

    I could be convinced that Trump’s 2nd impeachment should’ve centered simply on his dereliction of duty on J6 aftermath. That’s strictly a political act worthy of impeachment/removal imo. Instead, Democrats tried to use some legal “seditious” or “incitement” arguments, that was doubious enough that would definitely wouldn’t get the support needed to remove him from office. Only think I can surmise, is that Democrats saw an opportunity to hang this on Republican’s feet as a whole for purely partisan reasons, rather than some good faith efforts to hold Trump accountable.

    whembly (b770f8)

  99. @86 Time123 (1dc124) — 7/29/2022 @ 7:16 am

    Time, I don’t think I’m arguing “no harm, no foul”.

    I’m arguing that there are lot of competing interests here, and the things you’re advocating for (ie, committee hearings, investigations) are not going to have the deliverables you’ve been demanding.

    The further removed we are from J6, the less impactful it’ll be in the ’22 elections, and definitely in ’24.

    In my eyes, the time to hold Trump (and his peeps) accountable was in the immediate aftermath, and Congress dun f’ed that up.

    whembly (b770f8)

  100. In my opinion, some people just like to caper and gibber about carry on.

    https://youtu.be/efHCdKb5UWc

    Some folks are being honest, and are discussing the pros and cons of each possibility in a calm and reasoned way. I appreciate every one of those posts. I don’t begrudge the Usual Suspects their capering and gibbering—it is indeed their right—but I don’t care to read endless repetitive iterations of the same nihilism.

    I often ask people: is it possible in your view that Candidate X is a decent person whom you just don’t want to be President? Or are we a nation of exaggerating cheerleaders?

    I mean, my students used to rail about how horrifically right wing and vile Romney’s views and actions were.

    Heh.

    So I think (again, me) that this business of deification and demonization needs to stop. I have always felt that I was holding my nose when I vote, but things are getting out of hand.

    As Greg Lukianoff puts it, the Overton Window is the Overton Peephole these days.

    So thank you again to the people with constructive thoughts.

    Simon Jester (8a01f1)

  101. @95

    > we’ll find that the same commenters won’t support DeSantis, cuz he stole an election or something

    I disagree with DeSantis on almost all policy issues, and consider him a normal politician and therefore per se vastly preferable to Trump.

    aphrael (573f15) — 7/29/2022 @ 8:21 am

    THIS. Is the political calculous we need and we should encourage GOP primary voters to be engaged with.

    GOP primary voters and donors MUST act now to get behind a candidate that can not only beat Trump in primary, but win in ’24.

    If GOP primary voters and donors simply laissez faire their way into ’24, I fear we’re going to get more Trump.

    whembly (b770f8)

  102. 147 Republicans in Congress, 8 Senators and 139 Representatives, objected to the certification of the election. After the invasion. There is collective guilt, no reason to believe that they would have turned against Trump in a “limited” impeachment, and even less reason to let them off the hook.

    For crying out loud, look at how many of them are still chanting om mani padne rigged election om, om padne mani stolen election om right now?

    nk (de5158)

  103. And I’ll tell you something else, too, comrades. America is too great a nation to have a Fifth Avenue fancy boy as our national embarrassment. Can’t we find some more Indian land to steal or something? Bring back slavery maybe?

    Invading Mexico again is more likely. Perhaps a Central American intervention. Send the Marines!

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  104. we’ll find that the same commenters won’t support DeSantis, cuz he stole an election or something

    There are always “live-long Republicans” who can never vote for the Republican on the ballot for yet another disappointing reason (e.g. he once put his dog on the roof of the car), then, more in sorrow than in anger, cast their vote uncritically for the Democrat.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  105. In az trumpster news kari lake is already claiming election fraud and the election isn’t till tuesday.

    To be fair, if I were in AZ I’d already be working to cheat her of victory.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  106. Independent state legislature doctrine if taken up by the supreme court will need republican control of presidency and congress as senile old joe biden and his friends in the corporate deep state establishment would be able to stop what would happen next.

    It depends. A rational view of “ISL” suggests that state/federal courts cannot write their own state election laws, but it doesn’t say they cannot strike down bad ones. It also doesn’t say that the governor cannot veto election laws s/he doesn’t like.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  107. If I recall correctly, that 53-yo carpenter also chooses to not work in a union shop

    Not exactly a “choice.” And being in a union shop may get you a good rate of pay when you work, but you only work on jobs where the government forces people to hire you. Not exactly “choice” there either.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  108. That’s an argument for mass delusion, not massive fraud, which says plenty about the state of the GOP in AZ and its ongoing servitude to Trump.

    The alternative is for them to believe that a large number of GOP voters rejected Trump, and ALSO rejected the non-Trumpian candidates down-ballot. I have no problem believing the first part of that, but the second part I struggle with.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  109. @89, Not a DeSantis fan either, at this point. But I’d vote for him. I cannot see voting for any of the Democrats as the center of that party is anathema to me, let alone their fringe. It’s not likely they’d nominate Manchin or some other actual centrist.

    But I do hope for better than DeSantis.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  110. Yes. we got lucky.

    No, it was the system preventing it, like it always has. Trump has never understood the way the government works, why is it any surprise that he’d be unable to bend it to his will now?

    It was a stress test for the Republic, and the Republic was up to the test. That doesn’t mean that Trump gets a pass, just that his target was a lot harder than he thought. What’s new about Trump being wrong?

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  111. @102

    147 Republicans in Congress, 8 Senators and 139 Representatives, objected to the certification of the election. After the invasion. There is collective guilt, no reason to believe that they would have turned against Trump in a “limited” impeachment, and even less reason to let them off the hook.

    For crying out loud, look at how many of them are still chanting om mani padne rigged election om, om padne mani stolen election om right now?

    nk (de5158) — 7/29/2022 @ 9:04 am

    Yeah, I don’t buy into “collective guilt” argument, which frankly, is lazy.

    Trump was impeached the 2nd time. You telling me a “limited” impeachment focused on his dereliction of duty wouldn’t have found 11 GOP Senators for removal? (Or is it 10?).

    I’d argue that there would’ve been a STRONGER possibly then to get the requisite number of GOP Senators (whom many were retiring too), under that dereliction of duty premise, than what they ultimately did in ’20.

    whembly (b770f8)

  112. It’s not about collective guilt. It’s their words and actions indicating that they support his efforts to steal the election. Or at best that it’s a smaller problem then seeing public policy they disagree with legally enacted.

    I can’t vote for that and it will be very hard to find a worse candidate to vote against.

    Time123 (1dc124)

  113. Whembly, wanted to add I’m enjoying the conversation and getting a lot out of it.

    Time123 (1dc124)

  114. whembly: “Only think I can surmise, is that Democrats saw an opportunity to hang this on Republican’s feet as a whole for purely partisan reasons, rather than some good faith efforts to hold Trump accountable.”

    This is dizzying logic. If the GOP wanted him impeached and convicted, they could have met with the DEMs and agreed on a proper charge. There’s no indication that there were 16 GOP senators begging for a more appropriate charge. Rather, it seems like too many Republicans were either tainted by the steal (I’m looking at Cruz and Hawley specifically) or afraid of the base…and were neutered.

    AJ_Liberty (5f05c3)

  115. You telling me a “limited” impeachment focused on his dereliction of duty wouldn’t have found 11 GOP Senators for removal? (Or is it 10?).

    Ten was enough to save Sodom and Gomorrah. Removing a President requires two-thirds of the Senate, which means at least seventeen Republicans in this Congress.

    And I’m also asserting that judging by its actions before, during, after, and now, the entire Republican Party does deserve to be made dirty, or as you said “to hang this on Republican’s feet as a whole”. They have not let go of Trump.

    nk (de5158)

  116. I’d hold my nose but, as of now, I’d pick DeSantis over Biden. Easily. He may not be governing as a conservative in FL, but Biden less so.

    Paul Montagu (062b7e)

  117. Paul Montagu (062b7e) — 7/28/2022 @ 9:32 am

    his is a two-party system, but there is a third option, IMO, and that’s a protest vote,

    They’ve prevented that, except for write-ins, in the New York State race for Governor, and we also get Democrats, in certain elections in certain states, getting candidates to withdraw <b even after the voting has started!

    https://www.nytimes.com/2022/07/27/us/politics/alex-lasry-senate-wisconsin.html

    With less than two weeks to go before the state’s Aug. 9 primary, Mr. Lasry concluded he could not win the race.

    “It’s become clear in the last few weeks that Wisconsin voters have decided they want Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes to be our Democratic nominee,” Mr. Lasry said on Wednesday.

    Actually, he was polling pretty close:

    https://www.wispolitics.com/2022/lasry-campaign-new-poll-shows-primary-voters-believe-alex-lasry-is-the-best-candidate-to-beat-u-s-sen-johnson-primary-still-a-statistical-tie

    According to the polling memo: “Democratic primary voters continue to believe that Alex Lasry is the Democrat who can beat Ron Johnson. More voters (36%) believe that Alex Lasry has the best chance to beat Ron Johnson, while just 28% say that describes Mandela Barnes and even fewer Sarah Godlewski (11%).”

    The poll also shows the race remains a statistical tie as a result of Lasry’s significant momentum. Lasry trails just 30% to 33%, a gap well within the margin of error for this poll.

    The polling memo also notes that Lieutenant Governor Mandela Barnes has failed to increase his support despite starting his paid television advertising in the past several weeks. Further, the poll shows State Treasurer Sarah Godlewski’s campaign losing some of its support from the last time this poll was conducted.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  118. More on the Wisconisn Senate race from the NYT:

    Mr. Lasry formally endorsed Mr. Barnes at an event outside the Bucks’ arena in downtown Milwaukee on Wednesday afternoon. Mr. Lasry’s decision was first reported by The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

    Another candidate, Tom Nelson, the Outagamie County executive, who ran a spirited but underfunded campaign, dropped out on Monday and endorsed Mr. Barnes. Mr. Lasry was Mr. Barnes’s chief rival for the nomination, though Sarah Godlewski, the state treasurer, and several other candidates remain in the race…

    ….But Mr. Barnes, 35, has ample political vulnerabilities of his own. He has been cited for paying his property taxes late and has taken a variety of positions on immigration, at one point holding an “abolish ICE” shirt and more recently opposing the Biden administration’s proposal to end Title 42, a Trump-era policy that was introduced during the pandemic and was used to turn away migrants at the Mexican border.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  119. norcal (da5491) — 7/28/2022 @ 3:33 pm

    However, Trump threw a wrench into the traditional policy evaluation. With Trump, things that heretofore had not been considered “policy” came into play.

    Traditionally, corruption and dishonesty isn’t considered “policy” but I think it’s just anther thing you like or dislike that someone would do.

    The question is the amount and the boundaries a person would cross.

    But what Trump wanted to do is just about the worst “policy” you could have in that respect, but it’s the same thing.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  120. Here’s some breaking news. The DOJ just indicted a Russian FSB agent for engaging in a “years-long malign influence campaign targeting American politics — alleging that he used American groups in Florida, Georgia and California to sow discord and push pro-Russia propaganda.”

    Ionov “allegedly orchestrated a brazen influence campaign, turning U.S. political groups and U.S. citizens into instruments of the Russian government,” Matthew Olsen, head of the Justice Department’s national security division, said in a written statement.

    In 2017 and 2019, Ionov allegedly monitored and supported the campaigns of two Americans running for local office, identified in court papers only as Unindicted Co-Conspirator-3 and Unindicted Co-Conspirator-4. Before the 2019 primary, Ionov allegedly wrote to a Russian official that he had been “consulting every week” on one campaign. After one of the candidates advanced to the general election, a Russian intelligence officer allegedly wrote to Ionov that “our election campaign is kind of unique” and asked, “are we the first in history?” Ionov later sent the intelligence officer details about the election, referring to that candidate as the one “whom we supervise.”

    In 2016, according to authorities, Ionov paid for the St. Petersburg group to conduct a four-city protest tour in support of a “Petition on Crime of Genocide Against African People in the United States” — a document the group had previously submitted to the United Nations at Ionov’s behest.

    Charging documents did not identify the group, but officials familiar with the case said it was an organization known as Uhuru House, which is run by the African People’s Socialist Party. Uhuru House did not immediately respond to messages seeking comment.

    It’ll only be a matter of time before the other traitorous groups and individuals are identified.

    Paul Montagu (062b7e)

  121. Oops, shoulda put that in the open thread.

    Paul Montagu (062b7e)

  122. Time123 (1dc124) — 7/29/2022 @ 7:16 am

    So now we have a Bipartisan congressional commission

    It’s only bipartisan in that you have both Democrats and Never Trump Republicans on it. The Never Trump Republicans have not organized themselves into a separate political caucus because party lines are so frozen. But they really do amount to a different party. But this is a minor point

    that’s producing extensive evidence of how Trump was trying to steal the election and how the violence on that day furthered that plot,

    Here is where you go astray because you are making an assumption – that Trump wanted the attack and that therefore it must have made sense.

    No, it did not make sense, and Trump wanting to be there at the time made even less sense if he expected violence and that means actually it was unexpected to him.

    The violence on that day did not further the plot — it absolutely put an end to that plot. That is one of the most obvious things about January 6 (which was more serious than the George Floyd riots, because of the place attacked.)

    If the assault on the Capitol had not happened, and Trump had lost, as expected, all of the votes he forced in Congress, Trump would have looked for some way to further pursue his claim to a second term – maybe some court case that some lawyer shyster could interest him in.

    and could have had even larger impacts had the plot been executed more capably.

    The plot by Trump to steal the presidency was doomed from the start, because of the people who occupied various positions of power at the time. Trump faced checkmate, and there was no way for him to avoid it, even unconstitutional violence. He might have gotten more people killed, and even himself, but he could not have won the game, no matter what he did..

    Trump tried it because he felt he didn’t have anything to lose. If he conceded, he would no longer be president come January 20 – and if he tried and lost, well the worst that could happen to him would be that he would no longer be president if he didn’t do something extremely stupid, like Mike Flynn tried to tell him to do on December 18 – and maybe he had an outside chance of winning he thought.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  123. But Trump lied about the fraud.

    Number one thingwe can be really certain about, because he also lied about whether other people believed there was fraud.

    https://www.rev.com/blog/transcripts/trump-video-telling-protesters-at-capitol-building-to-go-home-transcript

    Donald Trump: (00:00)

    I know your pain. I know you’re hurt. We had an election that was stolen from us. It was a landslide election, and everyone knows it, especially the other side, but you have to go home now. We have to have peace. We have to have law and order. We have to respect our great people in law and order. We don’t want anybody hurt. It’s a very tough period of time. There’s never been a time like this where such a thing happened, where they could take it away from all of us, from me, from you, from our country. This was a fraudulent election, but we can’t play into the hands of these people. We have to have peace. So go home. We love you. You’re very special. You’ve seen what

    On the other hand, he never broke character, and hasn’t till this day.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  124. His supporters at the state levels sent fraudulent electoral votes to congress (a criminal act).

    I dont think that’s ever been held to bean criminal act. I think for there to be fraud there has to be some attempt to fool people.

    Although the less it mattered, the more Republicans co-operated, he didn’t get all. Foutrr Trump electors in Georgia (out of 16) dropped out

    Trump repeatedly pressured state level GOP to certify him as winning an election he lost.

    Pressured almost entirely without any success. It’s more likely in 2024 and later.

    His allies in congress attempted to stop the transfer of power

    He didn’t have enough of them. So long as even one third of a political party remains loyal to the constitution and their oath of office, it is hard to imagine any set of circumstances where it would succeed.

    and eventually his supporters on the street violently attacked the US capital to prevent the certification.

    Maybe they thought they were doing that, but all that preventing the certification would do, if it could be prevented through January 20, would be to make Nancy Pelosi Acting President on January 20, per the 20th amendment and laws enacted by Congress.

    Trump needed to WIN in Congress.

    Now people thought on that day that maybe they wanted to take members of Congress hostage but there were no such plans in the works. Nor would Congress be intimidated or led into surrender by some leader. This was not 1022 in Rime.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  125. Time123:

    I might be less adamant on that and more willing to move on if there was some political cost and Trumps actions were generally condemned. But they’re not.

    They are generally condemned, but there are some 35% of the voters who do not. Not that they approve either because large numbers of them believe the lie and.or are ignorant of the constitutional provisions.

    The GOP has no monopoly on this type of behavior and if it’s normalized it won’t take long for more competent people (of one part or the other) to pull it off.

    Not more competent — better positioned.

    And also there is less stigms.

    Trump came *extremely* close.

    No he didn’t. He tried to draw an inside straight Except that he didn’t even the chances of that happening. But Trump knew he was no expert.

    -Had any one of the key people (Pence, Pelosi etc.) been killed or injured in the attack or intimidated into asking for a delay this could have gone very differently.

    Delay doesn’t help him – just makes the Speaker of the House Acting president. Nor could he pull off a coup, like Ferdinand Marcos in the Phillipines. He’d get a very short Civil War which he would quickly lose at the end of which he would find himself dead or in jail..

    I’m glad he failed, but I’m legitimately concerned both at how close he came, and how acceptable this was to his supporters and the GOP in general.

    The danger is that someone else could try it later.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  126. AJ_Liberty (5f05c3) — 7/29/2022 @ 10:15 am

    There’s no indication that there were 16 GOP senators begging for a more appropriate charge.

    But there is an argument that the impeachers wanted to overcharge and wanted was few Republican votes as possible.

    Trump could be impeached for his persistent lies about the election and attempting to get people to act upon it.

    It won’t happen unless he agrees.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  127. Republicans in Congress, 8 Senators and 139 Representatives, objected to the certification of the election

    That’s 8 out of 51 Republican Senators or 15.7% – less than 1 out of 6. Eight per cent of the entire body. McConnel haad been trying to keep the number of Senators objecting to the vote to zzero.

    This says the vote by Rrpublicans in the House was 138 to 64.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/graphics/2021/politics/congress-electoral-college-count-tracker/

    30.8% (at that time) stayed loyal to the constitution – and not so many were needed/ My estimate of 1.3 is in the worst possible circumstances since one party is unlikely to have ore than a 2/3 majority in Congress. (it actually can go slightly higher)

    But all this is when thisis anew issue, andit gets worse.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  128. https://www.nytimes.com/2022/07/26/opinion/elise-stefanik-trump.html

    The transformation of Ms. Stefanik, who is 38, is among the most dramatic and significant in American politics. Her political conversion is a source of sadness and anger for several people I spoke to who were colleagues of hers — as I was in the White House of George W. Bush, although I did not work with her directly — and who were, unlike me, once close to her. To them, Ms. Stefanik’s story is of a person who betrayed her principles and her country in a manic quest for power. ..\\…Because of her previous beliefs, she had to reassure Trump supporters. So last year she appeared on the podcast of the right-wing provocateur Steve Bannon, a popular figure with the Republican base who served as Mr. Trump’s chief strategist, to make her case to replace Liz Cheney as chair of the House Republican Conference. Ms. Stefanik was supported in her effort to supplant Ms. Cheney by Mr. Trump, who issued a statement giving his “complete and total endorsement” to Ms. Stefanik. And understandably so. She voted to invalidate the 2020 election and has repeated his false claims about election fraud.

    You wonder how many people would sell out their principles, or prove they never had them, if the situation presented itself, but it never came up in their case.

    OPORTUNITY ORESENTED ITSELF.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  129. “Why Ron DeSantis isa shallow minded stupid idiot # 269177. Fist he goes after mivkey Mouse, now drag queens:

    DeSantis, citing a 1947 law on crossdressing, seeks to revoke a restaurant’s liquor license after a video surfaced of children attending a drag brunch

    Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has filed a complaint against a Miami restaurant that hosts a weekly drag brunch after children were seen at the event. According to The Hill, the video was posted by LibsofTikTok, a right-wing social media account. In the complaint obtained by the news organization, DeSantis alleged R House violated state law and cited a 1947 state Supreme Court ruling that “men impersonating women” in a “suggestive and indecent” fashion is a public nuisance.

    https://www.businessinsider.com/desantis-files-complaint-at-miami-restaurant-drag-brunch-2022-7

    Has he ever heard of Key West??? It’s in F-L-O-R-I-D-A. Wanna shut that tourist haven and drag queen metropolis too?? Can you read a map, Ron?

    https://www.dragqueenshow.com/key-west-drag-queen-show.html

    DCSCA (3588e4)

  130. For me, it was always about the lesser evil. In November 2020, that’s what Trump was. Let’s all hope that the country does not completely deteriorate by November 2024, and that we can vote in the general election for someone very good who has a real chance of winning and doing a great job.

    Andrew (df0942)

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