Patterico's Pontifications

10/17/2022

Low Expectations

Filed under: General — Dana @ 7:30 pm



[guest post by Dana]

Never let an opportunity go to waste. This especially if you’re a candidate who made a big “misstep” and your campaign needs to turn around slipping poll numbers. And fast:

[Herschel] Walker, a Republican, is now showing the badge, one of at least two he has from Georgia sheriffs, in TV interviews. He plans to tout it in a video cut for social media with Johnson County Sheriff Greg Rowland, who gave him the badge. And Walker’s campaign told NBC News that it has ordered 1,000 imitation plastic law enforcement badges that say “I’m with Herschel” as a fundraising tool.

It hopes to hand some of them out at a crime-themed event with law enforcement officers Thursday in Macon if the props arrive in time.

“Herschel Walker has been a friend to law enforcement and has a record of honoring police,” said Gail Gitcho, the Walker campaign strategist who ordered the badges Saturday.

“If Sen. Warnock wants to highlight this, then bring it on,” Gitcho added. “It just gives us a chance to talk about Herschel’s support of law enforcement and law enforcement’s support for him. It’s a great issue for us.”

P.S. I put quotes around misstep because I wasn’t quite sure what to call the bizarre and unbelievably sad moment during the debate when Walker pulled out his fake badge. I believe Walker has taken one too many hits to the head, and that he is currently being exploited by the GOP. However, he willingly signed up for it…

—Dana

339 Responses to “Low Expectations”

  1. This just seems like such a sad and desperate moment representative of today’s MAGA GOP.

    Dana (1225fc)

  2. He and Roy Moore must have toys from the same cowboy sheriff play set.

    urbanleftbehind (153056)

  3. Oh, yeah? Well, when Officer Friendly came to my school he had real bullets on his belt and he let me touch them one time!

    nk (970889)

  4. I disagree that he is being exploited, Dana. What bigger and better things was he capable of as a football player, and what bigger and better things is he capable of now? Even as a mere candidate, this is already the high point of his life.

    nk (970889)

  5. I hear you, nk, but I don’t think he is in full control of his faculties anymore. And it feels like a much more savvy and calculating group of vultures is preying on him. I find it really awful.

    Dana (1225fc)

  6. ” And it feels like a much more savvy and calculating group of vultures is preying on him. I find it really awful.”

    Its more common than it should be for sure

    EPWJ (650a62)

  7. I do suspect that the real reason Trump put him in is to be a drag on the rest of the Republican ticket, in particular Kemp and Raffensperger.

    Where’s Appalled when you need him? Appalled, how are the other Republicans on the ballot treating Walker? Embracing him, keeping their distance, …?

    nk (b1069d)

  8. On cnn tonight polls just out say rethugliKKKans are regaining some support they lost over the summer on the abortion issue. Could mean rethugs take senate seats in nevada, wisconsin, ohio, pennsylvania, north carolina and georgia. The house is going rethugliKKKan already. Good news for the left as it will be moderate croporate establishment democrats in the house who go down to defeat. Also initiative will now be needed in states that have them to protect abortion rights. In az they got 156,000 signatures in less then a month before time ran out in june.

    asset (f83d9e)

  9. He just has to win. Everything after that the handlers will deal with.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  10. I think it’s cute how Democrats assert that the KKK was Republicans. If pressed, they’ll point to Strom and all the other Democrats (right down to race-baiting Jimmy Carter) hiding behind him.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  11. Spin and run versus sniff and lick: Walker has more ‘on the ball’ than Squinty McDrippycone.

    DCSCA (115bbf)

  12. @10 Southern democrats were KKK southern rethugliKKKans who replaced them are KKK! The black one from south carolina puts up with it so he can be vice presidential nominee. LBJ said when he signed the 1964 civil rights bill the democrats lost the south. Left democrats have been running racists out of the party ever since ;but it has taken awhile as the corporate establishment likes their votes. Rethugs traded lincoln for strom thurmond in 1964 I know I was around then when the deep south went for goldwater for voting against the civil rights bill.

    asset (f83d9e)

  13. I’ll tell you, asset, you got me to thinking. The kind of Southerners you seem to know don’t like black people who are smarter than they are. Herschel Walker just might be doing exactly what it takes to get them to vote for him for Trump’s sake if not for his.

    nk (825385)

  14. Herschel reminds me of Dwayne Elizondo Mountain Dew Herbert Camacho, except the latter is smarter and more articulate.

    Paul Montagu (753b42)

  15. #4 Kemp is embracing Walker. Raffensparger is keeping a low profile but he has said he’d vote for Trump in the general if he runs again. I think that’s your answer on Walker.

    Walker still could win this. Don’t think he will. The abortion revelation made no difference in his polling, though. The news was hardly a surprise (except maybe to his official son).

    Appalled (e743d4)

  16. Thank you, Appalled.

    nk (825385)

  17. The abortion absolutist and racist thanks you for your kind contribution.

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  18. Um… I saw the whole thing.

    What was the issue?

    I took it as a pointed statement of his support of Police and they’re “endorsement” as well.

    whembly (b770f8)

  19. It doesn’t count without the rest of the outfit.

    nk (825385)

  20. I guess if a conservative voter prefers Warnock, and is happy with his performance in the Senate so far, they can always vote for him.

    mikeybates (dd20f5)

  21. Um… I saw the whole thing.

    What was the issue?

    I took it as a pointed statement of his support of Police and they’re “endorsement” as well.

    whembly (b770f8) — 10/18/2022 @ 7:13 am

    Debate rules didn’t allow for props.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  22. I guess if a conservative voter prefers Warnock, and is happy with his performance in the Senate so far, they can always vote for him.

    mikeybates (dd20f5) — 10/18/2022 @ 8:44 am

    Or not at all, which is what I would do if I was in Georgia.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  23. If Herschel Walker can be saved by Grace, so can Raphael Warnock.

    But more to the point, Raphael Warnock will not ask: “Grace who? I don’t believe I know the lady.”

    I read The Marching Morons, decades and decades ago, and I never understood how the legislators in the book could be as stupid as their constituents. Now I do. Thank you, Mr. Trump.

    nk (825385)

  24. but I don’t think he is in full control of his faculties

    He must have got overused at UGA and with the NJ Generals. By the time he was in the NFL, Walker struck me as more of an elusive runner who evaded a lot of contact not only with his jukes but by being taller than most running backs (harder to hit head to head)

    urbanleftbehind (972a61)

  25. Well, whether he can pass a cognitive test or not, he is certainly going to be one for Georgia voters.

    Good grief! Republicans used to at least pretend to hold themselves to a higher standard.

    nk (825385)

  26. Non-paywalled link:

    Record Turnout on First Day of Early Voting in Georgia

    On its first day of early voting, Georgia saw record in-person turnout. In-person turnout for the November election surged more than 40 percent above the previous record set on the first day of in-person voting ahead of the 2016 November elections.
    ………
    128,590 Georgians cast ballots in-person on the first day of early in-person voting for the November 2020 general election. This represents a 42% increase over the 90,688 voters who cast a ballot in-person on the first day of early, in-person voting during the November 2016 elections, the last record first day of early in-person voting.

    So far, county elections officials around the state have accepted 1,581,365 absentee ballot requests from Georgia voters. 473,812 of those absentee ballots by mail have already been returned and accepted by county elections officials. Only 90 absentee ballots by mail have been rejected for an unprecedented 0.019% absentee ballot rejection rate.
    ……….

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  27. Or not at all, which is what I would do if I was in Georgia.

    And in so doing, helping Warnock win. With all the consequences that entails.

    mikeybates (dd20f5)

  28. @10 Southern democrats were KKK southern rethugliKKKans who replaced them are KKK!

    Never mind that Republicans kept proposing civil rights bills and anti-lynching laws and Democrats (including people like JFK) kept voting them down.

    Never mind that Jimmy Carter won his Gubernatorial nomination by claiming his Democrat opponent hung out with MLK and other “radicals.”

    Never mind that those Southern Democrats in the Senate remained Democrats unto their dying day (except Strom, which is really the only one you want to talk about). Sam Ervin was a racist. William Fulbright was a racist. LBJ was a racist. JFK was a racist (until he saw advantage in not being one).

    But whatever lets you sleep at night.

    Kevin M (f9f2ee)

  29. Frankly, I don’t see a great deal of cognitive difference between Warnock and Walker. Warnock is smarter, but believes stupid things. Pretty much a wash there. So, I’d go with “whose on my team?”

    Kevin M (f9f2ee)

  30. *who’s

    again wishing for an edit function

    Kevin M (f9f2ee)

  31. Good grief! Republicans used to at least pretend to hold themselves to a higher standard.

    They might still. They just have a different set of standards than you. For example: “For third-trimester abortions? Y/N”

    Kevin M (f9f2ee)

  32. I see that 538 is doing it’s patented drift towards bad news. Topline: 63% chance Dems hold senate. Bottom line (50-50 + 1). Maybe the trend will change, but I don’t expect it to. Sometime early next month the truth will come out.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  33. Good grief! Republicans used to at least pretend to hold themselves to a higher standard.

    Good grief; when:

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

    DCSCA (7bd329)

  34. They just have a different set of standards than you. For example: “For third-trimester abortions? Y/N”

    Decent, intelligent, educated persons can be pro-life, too. Don’t shut down Jack Daniels and tell me my “binary choice” is bathtub gin or Sterno.

    nk (1180d2)

  35. The abortion revelation made no difference in his polling, though.

    Appalled (e743d4) — 10/18/2022 @ 6:08 am

    “New polling data suggests that Herschel Walker’s abortion controversy may have cost him *some* support so far in the Georgia Senate race.”

    lurker (cd7cd4)

  36. Just a reminder that many of those claiming Walker is brain damaged and not up to voting supported the current dementia patient in chief and are silent on the actual guy who cannot process information running in Pennsylvania.

    But still claim to be conservative.

    NJRob (d1992b)

  37. There’s nothing conservative about Walker. And it’s a segment of Trumpland which opposes Dr. Oz (you know, the guy running against the guy with the stroke?). I don’t have anything against him. He is the kind of person we want in the Senate, Dr. Oz that is, even if Trump endorsed him.

    nk (1180d2)

  38. Biden is a dim bulb whose wattage diminishes daily. Props to Rob for making him look good by juxtaposing him to Herschel Walker. Compared to Walker, Biden is Thomas Fricking Jefferson.

    lurker (cd7cd4)

  39. Trump’s fake Time covers and empty Top Secret folders and Walker’s fake police badges.

    nk (2ae68c)

  40. The bling and the juju of two loud noises.

    nk (2ae68c)

  41. As for Fetterman, what his stroke seems to have left him with is an auditory processing disorder. He does not understand what he hears*. It should be no handicap at all in the Senate. Everybody whose ear catches a politician talking suddenly becomes afflicted with the same disorder.

    *(but he understands just fine what he reads)

    nk (2ae68c)

  42. Nk,

    Have you heard him try to communicate? He’s damaged and a socialist. That’s a double whammy.

    NJRob (eca3e5)

  43. If you vote for Walker, you are voting for a reliably pro-GOP leadership vote that won’t exercise any independent judgment on any issue. If that’s what you want, then scandals don’t really matter.

    If you vote for Fetterman, I suspect you are making the same calculation. The candidate does not matter — only the vote. (Or the fact the candidate isn’t Dr Oz)

    I don’t like making judgments on anyone’s diminished capacity, including Walker’s. Actually, particularly Walker’s — since we really don’t have a baseline for him (like we do for Biden). He could just be bad at public speaking or thinking on his feet. He does have self-confessed struggles with multiple personality disorder.

    I am interested on how broad the difference between the Kemp vote and the Walker vote is going to be. That will likely tell us how many independents we have.

    Fibal thought — polls routinely screw up Georgia. I have no reason to believe they are any more accurate this time around.

    Appalled (03f53c)

  44. I am rooting for Dr. Oz, NJRob.

    nk (2ae68c)

  45. @44

    If you vote for Walker, you are voting for a reliably pro-GOP leadership vote that won’t exercise any independent judgment on any issue. If that’s what you want, then scandals don’t really matter.

    If you vote for Fetterman, I suspect you are making the same calculation. The candidate does not matter — only the vote. (Or the fact the candidate isn’t Dr Oz)

    Appalled (03f53c) — 10/19/2022 @ 7:26 am

    Achem…

    That’s exactly how I’m voting. The not-Democrats, and trying to ensure it’s the GOP that has control.

    We really don’t have the luxury to Calvin ball this, as we’ve seen how destructive the Democrat policies are. With respect to Walker, if we were to believe that he’s “reliably pro-GOP leadership vote that won’t exercise any independent judgment on any issue. ” That’s a far better Senator than Warnock.

    IF one of your desired attributes of a Senator to be independent of party leadership, the time to make that heard is prior/during the primaries.

    whembly (b770f8)

  46. Speaking of low expectations, Liz Truss seems to have fulfilled them.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  47. If you vote for Walker, you are voting for a reliably pro-GOP leadership vote that won’t exercise any independent judgment on any issue. If that’s what you want, then scandals don’t really matter.

    Well-stated. Shorter is “are you voting for the team, or the players?”

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  48. Whembly

    You violated the long standing rule to not use “Calvin Ball”. You see it triggers the hosts inner child, so the fine is 8.50 cents or you have to say DCSCA is right 8.5 times, personally I’d hit the donation box..

    EPWJ (650a62)

  49. Just a reminder that many of those claiming Walker is brain damaged and not up to voting

    None of this would be said out loud if his opponent was white.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  50. Decent, intelligent, educated persons can be pro-life, too.

    Sure, but they didn’t win the nomination. Bathtub gin did.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  51. “Embrace false dichotomies, because the only alternative is cannibalism.”

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  52. @49 EPWJ (650a62) — 10/19/2022 @ 9:59 am

    Imma ’bout to embrace something powerful.

    No.

    😉

    whembly (b770f8)

  53. #50

    I don’t have much patience for the “oh he’s got dementia; he’s got brain damage” crowd. They claimed that with Reagan (and see the results). They claimed that with Trump. (no, his problem isn’t cognition). They claim it wth Biden (whose has a career long propensity for saying stupid stuff) “They” seem to be lacking the necessary medical degrees to address this.

    It’s football rather than race that’s empowering folks. Gerald Ford was subject to the same sort of insults back in the day.

    Appalled (03f53c)

  54. @54. I don’t have much patience for the “oh he’s got dementia; he’s got brain damage” crowd.

    “Start.” – George Patton [George C. Scott] ‘Patton’ 1970

    _____

    OFGS Biden IS brain-damaged– was forced to have multiple operations on his melon – [at taxpayer expense BTW]: ‘Joe Biden had brain surgery twice [that we know of] due to an aneurysm in the late eighties.’

    https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/13136315/president-elect-joe-biden-brain-surgery-2020/

    And the American people, the electorate- hell, the WORLD– is in the dark as to any medications the dementia riddled stumble bum– w/a finger on the nukes and starts his 81st year on Earth in 32 days- is required to take for it.

    Psychiatrist: Biden Has Symptoms of Dementia, Likely He Is ‘Almost Just Holding On’

    https://www.westernjournal.com/psychiatrist-biden-symptoms-dementia-likely-almost-just-holding/

    DCSCA (4a805b)

  55. 9. Kevin M (eeb9e9) — 10/18/2022 @ 12:10 am

    He just has to win. Everything after that the handlers will deal with.

    You can make out, in spite of his word salad, what policy position he’s trying to state when he speaks, but imperfectly comprehends, (yes, you can recognize where he is supposed to be going and what it is supposed to be because you’ve heard it before) but what you don’t know is, if he is asked to vote on a bill or an amendment that does what his statement or his promise proposes, he’ll understand that it does.

    It’ll all be up to his handlers.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  56. 44. Appalled (03f53c) — 10/19/2022 @ 7:26 am If you vote for Walker, you are voting for a reliably pro-GOP leadership vote that won’t exercise any independent judgment on any issue.

    That’s about it, except for the question of who does he regard as his leader. He would probably go for the consensus.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  57. Here’s a question for all who think that it’s more important to avoid hypocrisy than gain a Senate vote:

    Back in 1964, when Strom Thurmond, unrepentant Dixiecrat, joined a GOP that professed a desire for civil rights laws (and voted overwhelmingly for them), should the GOP have spurned his defection? Should they have tossed Goldwater out of the party in 1965, when he voted against the 1964 Civil Rights Act? The Act is protrayed as Democrat victory, since LBJ was president, but it was a Republican victory if you look at the vote totals.

    I mean, how do Walker’s faults compare with Barry and Strom?

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  58. * Should they have tossed Goldwater out of the party in 1965, after he lost, because he voted against the 1964 Civil Rights Act?

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  59. Kevin M (eeb9e9) — 10/20/2022 @ 12:32 pm

    I mean, how do Walker’s faults compare with Barry and Strom?

    Walker’s are personal (integrity and ability) Barry’s and Strom’s are policy – maybe also integrity in some people’s opinion ad Strom eventually became disabled.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  60. Say it ain’t so, Joe?! Say it ain’t so…

    Electric vehicles are exploding from water damage after Hurricane Ian, top Florida official warns

    Florida’s chief fire marshal and financial officer said there are a ‘ton of EVs disabled’ from Hurricane Ian. A top Florida state official warned Thursday that firefighters have battled a number of fires caused by electric vehicle (EV) batteries waterlogged from Hurricane Ian. EV batteries that have been waterlogged in the wake of the hurricane are at risk of corrosion, which could lead to unexpected fires, according to Jimmy Patronis, the state’s top financial officer and fire marshal.

    “There’s a ton of EVs disabled from Ian. As those batteries corrode, fires start,” Patronis tweeted Thursday. “That’s a new challenge that our firefighters haven’t faced before. At least on this kind of scale.” – FoxNews.com

    “Meet the future.” – Butch Cassidy [Paul Newman] ‘Butch Cassidy & The Sundance Kid’ 1969

    DCSCA (2b8ddb)

  61. Kevin M (eeb9e9) — 10/20/2022 @ 12:32 pm

    Voters are entitled to prefer scoundrels and idiots. If Walker wins he’ll be neither the first nor last in either party. And the parties in turn are entitled to violate their professed principles by welcoming miscreants into their fold. They have before and they will again. Walker is an unqualified imbecile, a serial liar and a hypocrite, among other peccadilloes such as possible mental illness and violent criminality. The GOP embrace of him is hypocritical. If their calculation is that hypocrisy is a lesser evil than Democratic governance, fine. Make that argument. Just don’t pee down my leg and tell me it’s raining.

    lurker (cd7cd4)

  62. In case my subtext was too subtle, when parties routinely elevate will to power over principle, don’t be surprised when some of us decide that neither party is worth the sacrifice of our principles, so we simply vote, one election at a time, for the better candidate.

    lurker (cd7cd4)

  63. The GOP embrace of him is hypocritical.

    The GOP’s embrace of Strom Thurmond was beyond hypocritical. The part had, for the previous 100 years, been the party pushing civil rights laws — always stymied by the Democrat’s need to keep the Dixiecrats on board. The party overwhelmingly voted for every civil rights, voting rights and public accommodation law in the 60s (and before). On most votes, the GOP was 80% in favor of these laws and the Democrats were more evenly split, with Southern Democrats mostly voting against.

    For the GOP to then welcome Thurmond into the fold was terrible. Goldwater’s position, which was mostly supported by white southerners led to GOP defections that make the reaction to Trump seem tame.

    It was not “policy” that was the difference here, but more “moral turpitude.”

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  64. In case my subtext was too subtle…

    That’s not my point. It’s that you conflate a defect of character with outright ongoing political heresy. Thurmond joining the GOP then would be like Sanders joining it now, while advocating 90% income tax rates and a wealth tax. There is a line to what is acceptable and Walker is nowhere near the line that was crossed back then.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  65. “Hypocrisy” does not mean a lot to me as applied to Walker. He’d have to know better to be a hypocrite and I don’t think he knows better. He’s an ex-football player who can’t keep it in his pants saying the things his handlers tell him to say, and that’s all he is.

    Similarly, “hypocrisy” is not strong enough as applied to the GOP this election season. “Sold their souls” is closer. To Trump and his bloc. To keep their seats and their leadership* positions.

    *Which term is farcical in itself since they are exercising all the leadership of the contents of a flushed toilet.

    nk (f2f5ed)

  66. We can look at this a little deeper if you like. We can start with what “consent of the governed” means in practical terms. Like, Trump had a lot of people who did not consider him “their President”. We have a bunch of folks right now who claim the Supreme Court is not legitimate. And we’ve got me who says “Herschel Walker ain’t fit to be the boss of me.” People need to feel that their government is worthy of governing them.

    nk (f2f5ed)

  67. He’s an ex-football player who can’t keep it in his pants saying the things his handlers tell him to say, and that’s all he is.

    Unlike Ronald Reagan- who only pretended to play a football player in the movies, said the scripted things his handlers at WB and the RNC told him to say, and couldn’t keep it in his pants, as knocking up Nancy w/Patti proved a case in point. But you know better…

    You Know Herschel Walker as a Heisman Trophy Winner, but Remember When He Joined the Olympic Bobsled Team?

    Former Heisman Trophy winner Herschel Walker didn’t just want to score touchdowns when he played professional football. He wanted gold medals. Football fans know Walker for dominating defenses at the University of Georgia and earning All-Pro honors in the NFL. But at one point in the early 1990s, the three-time SEC Player of the Year tried his hand at another sport, and it wasn’t one linked to the four major North American sports.

    Herschel Walker participated in the 1992 Winter Olympics. Historically, most modern two-sport athletes in North America have been those, such as Bo Jackson and Deion Sanders, who had careers in Major League Baseball and in the NFL. Others, including former Boston Celtics general manager Danny Ainge, played baseball and basketball.

    Walker, then in the middle of his NFL career, had a different idea. The Pro Bowl running back participated in the 1992 Winter Olympics in France as a bobsled team member. He served as the brakeman, or pusher, in a two-man sled with Brian Shimer.

    Considering his background in football, it’s admirable and impressive that he and Shimer finished seventh out of 46 teams. Switzerland’s Gustav Weder and Donat Acklin captured gold in the two-man event.

    https://www.sportscasting.com/herschel-walker-heisman-trophy-winner-joined-olympics-bobsled-team/

    DCSCA (1fb349)

  68. @62 @63

    If their calculation is that hypocrisy is a lesser evil than Democratic governance, fine. Make that argument. Just don’t pee down my leg and tell me it’s raining.

    lurker (cd7cd4) — 10/20/2022 @ 4:03 pm

    Wouldn’t dare tell you that’s pee on your leg and tell ya it’s raining.

    But, yes, I’ve been making that argument that this is a “will to power” scenario, and this is a lesser “evil” than Democratic governance.

    whembly (b770f8)

  69. @67

    We can look at this a little deeper if you like. We can start with what “consent of the governed” means in practical terms. Like, Trump had a lot of people who did not consider him “their President”. We have a bunch of folks right now who claim the Supreme Court is not legitimate. And we’ve got me who says “Herschel Walker ain’t fit to be the boss of me.” People need to feel that their government is worthy of governing them.

    nk (f2f5ed) — 10/20/2022 @ 4:58 pm

    Then voters need not be so lazy and get engaged during the grassroots/primary phase of the election season.

    Don’t let someone else pick your candidates.

    If you just, laissez faire your way into the General Election, don’t get too upset when there are poor candidates.

    whembly (b770f8)

  70. People need to feel that their government is worthy of governing them.

    When was that the case? Whether it was Clinton, W, Obama, Trump or Biden the “Not My President” contingents are fairly constant in size. Same with the hard-core pro/anti groups on any major issue.

    Maybe, in a brief shining moment in mid-1945 people had a good opinion of the powers that be. But they sure trashed Truman pretty fast.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  71. No fair, you guys, turning my The Marching Morons on me. I hope we’re not that far gone yet.

    whembly, the primary in this instance was Trump. And I alluded to the utter abdication of the GOP in putting up and backing a realistic alternative to Walker. Isn’t that their job?

    Kevin, sure, but it’s a matter of depth and breadth. Personally, of the thirteen Presidents in my lifetime, Trump is the only I considered not fit to be President, and of the others, I do not consider any of them faultless but I could accept the decision of the majority of my fellow citizens.

    nk (f082c5)

  72. thirteen Presidents in my lifetime

    Strictly speaking, ten. My political awareness, and draft card, came with Nixon.

    nk (f082c5)

  73. Biden voters nk and lurker seem very upset an imbecile, liar and hypocrite is a candidate in a major election

    JF (57ffaf)

  74. @72

    And I alluded to the utter abdication of the GOP in putting up and backing a realistic alternative to Walker. Isn’t that their job?

    nk (f082c5) — 10/20/2022 @ 6:41 pm

    No.

    It is NOT their job.

    It’s the voter’s job.

    We shouldn’t expect the party leadership to foist a coronation on us.

    whembly (b770f8)

  75. Similarly, “hypocrisy” is not strong enough as applied to the GOP this election season. “Sold their souls” is closer. To Trump and his bloc.

    Oh, for sure. When you’ve abandoned all principle, hypocrisy’s the least of the problem. It’s just the issue on which the Walker debate has been framed.

    Kevin, sure, but it’s a matter of depth and breadth. Personally, of the thirteen Presidents in my lifetime, Trump is the only I considered not fit to be President, and of the others, I do not consider any of them faultless but I could accept the decision of the majority of my fellow citizens.

    Bingo.

    lurker (cd7cd4)

  76. We shouldn’t expect the party leadership to foist a coronation on us.

    whembly (b770f8) — 10/20/2022 @ 7:19 pm

    It’s astounding that the neocon faction still doesn’t get that, after clearing the table for McCain in 2008, Romney in 2012, and then trying to do it again with Jeb in 2016. They simply are incapable of fathoming that the voters don’t want what they’re selling anymore, either displaying complete denial or acting like sour grapes-consuming middle-school girls. They might as well be hearing the message in ancient Sumerian.

    Factory Working Orphan (bce27d)

  77. Oh, for sure. When you’ve abandoned all principle, hypocrisy’s the least of the problem. It’s just the issue on which the Walker debate has been framed.

    The principle is challenging the left’s institutional monopolies. That means having people who aren’t on the left in office. Someone other than Walker could have been nominated if they laid out specifically how they were going to fight the left. Kemp’s benefitting wildly from the fact that the Dems nominated Tank Abrams, whose smug, alienating persona was political suicide in a mid-term election where the backlash against wokism has been bubbling for months.

    And the exercise of the political double-standard has been a keystone of left-wing ideology since Marcuse published “Repressive Tolerance.” It’s been wildly successful in weaponizing the right’s principles against them while excusing every failure to live up to their own due to “systemic inequities.” The house rules have been set, and the left is now having a panic attack because the right decided to play by them.

    Factory Working Orphan (bce27d)

  78. @77. Which is why they’ll keep getting their arses kicked well into the middle of the century– as they die out.

    DCSCA (a9ccc4)

  79. No fair, you guys, turning my The Marching Morons on me. I hope we’re not that far gone yet.

    I hear that some new electric cars will make motor sounds. Vrooom! Vrooom!

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  80. Kevin, sure, but it’s a matter of depth and breadth. Personally, of the thirteen Presidents in my lifetime, Trump is the only I considered not fit to be President, and of the others, I do not consider any of them faultless but I could accept the decision of the majority of my fellow citizens.

    Yeah, I have to agree with that. Except this: People were so pissed off they didn’t care about Trump. They knew. They just didn’t care. THAT is a failure of some of the other 12.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  81. My political awareness, and draft card, came with Nixon.

    Eleven for me. Strictly speaking, my awareness of things at that level began as LBJ was sworn in.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  82. BTW, if the Brits are desperate, they can have Trump as PM.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  83. “Except this: People were so pissed off they didn’t care about Trump.”

    But was it rational anger? My image is of the red-faced 4-year-old kicking and screaming on the ground in the middle of the grocery store aisle…demanding his Co-Co Puffs. The suggestion here is that adults tepidly walking by should conclude — hey, maybe he’s right…maybe we should eat sugary cereal for dinner. What could go wrong?!

    No one would put their 4-year-old in charge of their taxes or planning the family travel budget, but somehow rage justifies putting a 4-year-old in charge of foreign policy, trade policy, crisis management, and executing our laws. Well, grumble grumble, there are other people and it’s not like people acted on every tantrum that boiled over, right? Sure, grown-up John Kelly would say “no”; H. R. McMaster would say “no”; James Mattis said “no”; Rex Tillerson would say “no”, Gary Cohn would say “no” — but we also saw people not as good at saying “no” to letting the loons like Guiliani and Flynn rile up the 4-year-old.

    What if good people no longer step forward and, instead, enablers give in to the serial cereal extortion? No Puffs, no peace! Right-wing media successfully incubated the tantrum, but did it think much beyond filming the kicking and screaming?

    The HORROR of a Romney or Jeb! Presidency! We would certainly have lost our sacred fluids. We might have acted like actual Americans in the same f-ing boat, instead of ninnies screaming at our neighbors about trans and crt. Yeah, yeah, yeah, I know, I’ve learned nothing about the existential angst of 2015. I know “we were deperate”….we needed a champion….what could go wrong?

    AJ_Liberty (15d88c)

  84. AJ,

    You had your temper tantrum with Biden and we are all suffering for it.

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  85. Yeah, yeah, yeah, I know, I’ve learned nothing about the existential angst of 2015.

    It goes back a lot longer than that, but that’s why your faction never learned anything from it–because you didn’t give a sh*t to begin with. You just expected the GOP base to continue to fall in line, no matter how ineffectual and indolent your leadership became.

    Now you’re on the outside looking in, and you only have yourselves to blame.

    Factory Working Orphan (bce27d)

  86. The truly hilarious part is the pretense that Jeb actually would have beaten Hillary. The party was already on the brink of splitting; the fact that the GOP establishment quickly fell in line behind him, when the Bush name was still politically toxic, was proof to the party’s voters that the bosses weren’t going to do anything more but put up token resistance to Her Inevitability.

    And of course, there’s the fact that Jeb’s candidacy was the final catalyst for Trump to declare his own. Maybe he would have declared anyway, but the establishment getting behind Jeb gave Trump a big, juicy target for the voters to direct about 10 years of increasing frustration with the people in charge and the policy makers. As I’ve stated many times before, it’s not an accident that Trump declared the very next day after Jeb did. If Jeb stays out, it’s a lot more likely one of the younger Tea Party candidates–Cruz, Rubio, or Paul–ends up being the nominee instead. But it certainly wouldn’t have stopped the voters’ populist direction. Those three would have understood that a lot better than Jeb or Romney would or ever will.

    Factory Working Orphan (bce27d)

  87. @85, you lost to the guy in the basement and you have to blame someone. I get it. Maybe your guy just wasn’t that popular…and for every 2 he motivated to vote for him, he produced 3 that hated his guts. Some would deduce something from that.

    “that’s why your faction never learned anything from it…You just expected the GOP base to continue to fall in line”

    Nahhh, I expected the base to nominate someone competent, experienced, and stable. There were plenty of right-wing options that were perfectly fit for the office. The goal was not neocon versus right winger, it was unqualified jerk vs qualified non-jerk.

    “Now you’re on the outside looking in”

    You’re in a boat furiously paddling on the right side going in a circle. I’m on shore shaking my head. Which of us is better off?

    AJ_Liberty (5f05c3)

  88. AJ,

    Kasich and the fake right pushed Trump to stop Cruz. They thought he would easily lose to Hillary. They were wrong. Now they are doubling down and rejoining the left. Such a shock.

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  89. Nahhh, I expected the base to nominate someone competent, experienced, and stable. There were plenty of right-wing options that were perfectly fit for the office. The goal was not neocon versus right winger, it was unqualified jerk vs qualified non-jerk.

    No, it wasn’t. That’s what you continually fail to understand. It WAS neocon versus right-winger. You don’t get to define the terms of the conflict.

    You’re in a boat furiously paddling on the right side going in a circle. I’m on shore shaking my head. Which of us is better off?

    More sour grapes from the faction who tucked tail and ran whenever the left said “boo!”

    Factory Working Orphan (bce27d)

  90. Kasich and the fake right pushed Trump to stop Cruz.

    That’s not what happened. The Bush wing was never that politically cunning, even when Cheney was in office operating behind the scenes. Trump was amplified specifically by the Democrats’ media mouthpieces, particularly the Morning Joe show, because we know from the Dem email dump that Hillary’s campaign managers were running the Todd Akin strategy with him–same as they’ve done in Congressional races for years now. Hillary and her staff assumed they’d get a Reagan 1984-style wipeout if Trump was the nominee.

    We’ll see if the mid-terms this time around convinces the Dems that funding and amplifying populist candidates on the right might not be the best strategy for maintaining their political monopolies and keeping the establishment wing of the right compliant and in charge.

    Factory Working Orphan (bce27d)

  91. FWO,

    I’m referencing when Cruz won some primaries and it was clearly down to Trump vs Cruz and Kasich stayed in with the support of the establishment to keep Cruz from getting the not-Trump vote.

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  92. Can populism exist in pockets? Because I have yet to see Trump get a majority of the popular vote. What we have is a political drought in the GOP, with a particularly loud bullfrog hopping from puddle to puddle to throw his weight around.

    I don’t question the existence of the sentiment. I discount the prevalence.

    nk (6ab934)

  93. It’s not going to be any –ism that gives the GOP the House. If. It will be the (R)s in Districts drawn to have more (R)s than (D)s. The (T)s might have helped some (R)s to get the (R) in some places, but it will be the (R) that will beat the (D). Party loyalty, not Trump loyalty. Trump is strictly intramural.

    nk (6ab934)

  94. nk,

    I guess we’ll see. But where are people going to get their diet of neo-Buckley conservatism, or just the conservatism inc stuff. Fox is Hannity or Tucker, which is bullfrog toadyism, or Orban-o-rama.

    I see an attempt to move from Trump love to something that outlasts Trump among the GOP populist branch. We’ll see how that goes. I can’t stand the philosophy (which is a cousin to fascism whether the populists like the label or not). These days, I can at least recognize that there seems to be one.

    Appalled (0a211b)

  95. I can’t stand the philosophy (which is a cousin to fascism whether the populists like the label or not).

    It’s really not, but leftists have been self-soothing themselves with that narrative for well over 50 years now.

    Factory Working Orphan (77600b)

  96. Fwo, this article from the federalist is fascistic. Not saying it’s universally agreed to but it hardly a fringe POV on the new right.

    “Put bluntly, if conservatives want to save the country they are going to have to rebuild and in a sense re-found it, and that means getting used to the idea of wielding power, not despising it”

    Time123 (8409ec)

  97. FWO:

    You guys want the government to enforce cultural standards. Sorry, that’s essentially what the fascists wanted to do. We associate fascism with invading other countries and totalitarian tactics, which I don’t think our populists want. I said cousin to fascism for a reason.

    Appalled (b8593a)

  98. Both fascism and populism use democratic rhetoric to justify authoritarian leadership.

    DRJ (820c8a)

  99. FWO, I wanted to add, absent labels, I’d be really interested in your take on that article. Do you think it’s correct? Do you agree with the premise that an expansion of government power is justified in the pursuit of culture war wins?

    I respect your views and opinion so if you have time to read and respond I’d be greatful and interested in reading it.

    Time123 (8409ec)

  100. That’s why Trump admires authoritarian leaders so much.

    DRJ (820c8a)

  101. You guys want the government to enforce cultural standards.

    Now do EDI.

    BuDuh (eaef9b)

  102. @100

    FWO, I wanted to add, absent labels, I’d be really interested in your take on that article. Do you think it’s correct? Do you agree with the premise that an expansion of government power is justified in the pursuit of culture war wins?

    I respect your views and opinion so if you have time to read and respond I’d be greatful and interested in reading it.

    Time123 (8409ec) — 10/21/2022 @ 8:50 am

    Can I ask you a question then?

    How do you propose we “stop” our political adversary from “expansion of government power is justified in the pursuit of culture war wins?” without using the SAME tactic as they do?

    How do you ensure some sort of penalty, or at the very least, some M.A.D. principles here?

    I can tell you right now: The days of turning cheeks and “moving on” is over.

    whembly (b770f8)

  103. DRJ,

    and apples and oranges are fruits. Hitler and Churchill were both men. When you make such generalizations, it isn’t helping your argument.

    If the establishment didn’t spend the Reagan peace dividend bending over to the cultural left and letting them call our culture and society evil, we wouldn’t be where we are today. But don’t expect people to willingly submit to the Maoist left and their racist tyranny.

    NJRob (b3241f)

  104. BTW, if the Brits are desperate, they can have Trump as PM.

    “BTW,” they’re even considering the pretzel moves necessary for a return engagement of the fella they just jettisoned- Boris Johnson.

    The Brits do it better. A ‘Prime Minister Squinty McStumblebum would have been sent packing last year after his long trip up a short flight of stairs.

    DCSCA (ab15f0)

  105. But was it rational anger? My image is of the red-faced 4-year-old kicking and screaming on the ground in the middle of the grocery store aisle…demanding his Co-Co Puffs. The suggestion here is that adults tepidly walking by should conclude — hey, maybe he’s right…maybe we should eat sugary cereal for dinner. What could go wrong?!

    After 20 or 30 years of disappointments and the wrong end of the stick, it may have been anger, but at some point red-hot anger is rational. The most glaring statistic among Trump voters was education — those who did not have a college degree had been relegated to an underclass for decades. The rest of us thought everything was going just fine, as we imported workers to mow our lawns and remodel our houses and were astonished at how well our investments were doing with globalization.

    But the former carpenters, auto workers, plumbers and other trades and manufacturing workers not so much. And they said the were “mad as hell and would not take it any more.”

    That they were inflicting an assh0le on us was a bit of a plus. And it’s OUR DAMN FAULT we let this go on so long, insulated in our smug comfort.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  106. We might have acted like actual Americans in the same f-ing boat,

    Yes, you might have. You didn’t.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  107. To be fair, it was really the Democrat Party that broke the dynamic. Bill Clinton turned the party away from the politics of Dick Gephardt, becoming a me-too party of Wall Street cheerleaders instead of champions of Labor. After all, where were the big checks coming from?

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  108. The point is not that Trump was a good president. He wasn’t. But the rest of the GOP field hadn’t noticed that the base had changed, or were unconvincing in their appeals to it. And Hillary, for gawdsakes, was the poster girl for everything that was wrong.

    You get “populism” when the people in charge have fracked up so massively that the common man puts down the TV remote and the sports pages and comes out into the streets. That takes SERIOUS malgovernance to accomplish. Populism is not the absence of Democracy, but it’s purest, rawest form. The GOP tried to pretend it wasn’t there by suppressing the Tea Party and what they got was predictable.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  109. Nahhh, I expected the base to nominate someone competent, experienced, and stable. There were plenty of right-wing options that were perfectly fit for the office. The goal was not neocon versus right winger, it was unqualified jerk vs qualified non-jerk.

    That would have been wonderful. Except all those people were blathering on with the same platform that had, in the eyes of the huge disaffected bloc, repeatedly failed them.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  110. Can populism exist in pockets?

    Sure. For example, it can exist in fly-over country and not on the more expensive coasts. But more to the point, it is ephemeral. Once the demons are set loose, the drive to set more loose diminishes. I am a bit surprised that Trump did so well in 2020, nearly winning. Probably due to his opponent being so weak and the other party being nearly as crazy.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  111. @84. Jeb? Pierre Delecto?? You really don’t get it, Agarn. Are you French? ‘Good people’ have stepped forward, brushed the neoconnning ideologues out of the tail that no longer wags the dog and will not tolerate incompetents in either party. Some so pissed, they literally storm the castle, with the speech-ripper-up queen crowing to protect her podium, threatening to punch out citizens while safely barking into her government funded cellphone. You talk Coco-puffery while they’re pouring poop on you and catapulting Joy Behars your way…

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x1TGsFCDrjQ&t=4s

    “Your mother was a hamster and your father smelled of elderberries!”

    DCSCA (ab15f0)

  112. You guys want the government to enforce cultural standards.

    I very much doubt that had much to do with Trump’s appeal. It may have been a factor in Biden’s lack of appeal. And what does that mean, anyway? We have government attempting to FORCE “gender-affirming care” on children (who are incapable of consent). Is opposition to that “enforcing cultural standards”?

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  113. Both fascism and populism use democratic rhetoric to justify authoritarian leadership.

    Except that “populism” has no such characteristic. Populism is a blunt instrument, and often is chaotic, but it’s main characteristic is “No mas!”

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  114. The point is not that Trump was a good president. He wasn’t.

    Except he was. And just think, if you’d relected him, you’d only have two more years ot prosperity to endure. Fattening bank accounts, no inflation, gasoline and energy prices down, grocery store prices stable; the Abraham accords, a leashed NorKo, deadbeat NATO bit-h slapped to start paying up, Xi on notice over Taiwan and an uncratered Ukraine w/a perplexed Vlad stewing. Good times! 😉

    DCSCA (ab15f0)

  115. Elitism is far more likely to lead to authoritarianism than populism. Witness Fauci. Witness global warming. Witness California’s energy policies and auto mandates. What did Trump do that compares?

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  116. Good news! Current deficit half that of 2021! Only 1.4 Trillion!

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  117. 108/109/110/111/113/116/117…. Had some sugar in your coffee with your Coc-Puffs this morning, eh Kev.

    DCSCA (ab15f0)

  118. You guys want the government to enforce cultural standards.

    The lack of self-awareness in this statement is nuclear-level. It’s not the enforcement part that bothers you, it’s that the left’s cultural monopoly is being challenged, so the y use the same old “uuughhghhh we’re sliding to fascism!” complaint they’ve used for decades whenever it happened. “Counterrevolution and Revolt” based its entire argument on the premise.

    It’s circular reasoning par excellence, nothing more.

    Factory Working Orphan (77600b)

  119. Whembly, I think there’s a huge and important distinction between people choosing leftist things and the government forcing / threatening them to make those choices.

    From my POV the left was able to persuade (often in a bullying way) ppl that their preferences were better. Cathedral institutions become work from that. Not from government force or threats.

    Now the right wants to using the government to punish ppl for making choices they don’t like.

    Time123 (0e41e8)

  120. Do you agree with the premise that an expansion of government power is justified in the pursuit of culture war wins?

    I think the question of justification in this environment is circumstantial. Culture wars are inevitable in hyper-diverse, low-trust societies, particularly when one side has been explicit about their desire to subvert, disrupt, and dismantle the “cultural hegemony” in place. In such a state, a struggle for authority, influence, and resources will always emerge.

    Look at the recent brouhaha with the LA city council. There aren’t enough white people in LA proper anymore to be considered a dominant presence to challenge. That’s led to inter-council sniping over political control amongst various ethno-nationalistic factions. The only reason they got in trouble for mocking the white guy is because the white guy is gay and his adopted son is black.

    The bottom line is that we had a very clear civic consensus on American social and cultural mores after World War II, and the left has spent the ensuing decades tearing that down and replacing it with their own utopian vision, until they gained enough control in socio-cultural arenas to start enforcing it at the point of a gun. The reason they’re freaking out is because the new right doesn’t play by the same gentleman’s agreement the neocons had, and that right wing politicians might actually be serious about doing the same thing.

    Factory Working Orphan (77600b)

  121. “the wrong end of the stick, it may have been anger, but at some point red-hot anger is rational”

    I’m not sure if I feel like reploughing this field, but I’m uncomfortable ceding the idea that Trump meaningfully addressed questions of economic uncertainty. What do conservatives believe is the answer to globalization? Is it building a 30-foot border wall? Does that solve immigration or is the problem more complex with the details and legislation critically important?

    Do we solve the changing nature of manufacturing jobs by initiating trade wars with China? What exactly is the alternative to creative destruction of capitalism and don’t we already have a party that wants government more involved in planning and regulating the economy?

    AJ_Liberty (5f05c3)

  122. @120

    Whembly, I think there’s a huge and important distinction between people choosing leftist things and the government forcing / threatening them to make those choices.

    From my POV the left was able to persuade (often in a bullying way) ppl that their preferences were better. Cathedral institutions become work from that. Not from government force or threats.

    Now the right wants to using the government to punish ppl for making choices they don’t like.

    Time123 (0e41e8) — 10/21/2022 @ 11:45 am

    I don’t mean to be snarky, but you don’t know what time it is.

    Bannon is facing a 4 month jail term for failing to respond to a subpoena. Yet, an FBI agent literally lied to push a FISA warrant against a political opponent and barely got a slap on his wrist.

    Eric Holder, refused to respond to a subpoena and the DOJ didn’t bring charges.

    The IRS, had history of abuses that primarily went in one direction politically.

    Democrats, trivialized the impeachment process because of purely political malice.

    The FBI, is sending swat teams to arrest pro-life protestors by using extremely stretched/novel interpretation of old statutes.

    The FBI, still haven’t done anything about those protestors in front of SCOTUS Justices homes.

    I could go on…

    None of these is “people choosing leftist things”. ALL of these *is* “Government forcing / threatening” for political purposes.

    I’m telling you this – this didn’t start with Trump, as he was simply a symptom. This REALLY get it’s legs during the Tea Party movement.

    Trump, and by extension those “populist right” are the NICE response to our political adversary.

    If the left don’t recognize what time it is, don’t be surprised with the response isn’t NICE.

    That’s where some on the right are advocating to respond with the same fire and same fervor as that left has been doing. And that include wholesale purges in government.

    If the two sides can’t mend fences, face the real possibility that we’re going to see chaotic upheaval in government every 2-4 years when political parties changes control.

    whembly (b770f8)

  123. FWO, thank you for the reply. Where I disagree with your that the left has been making their gains through force. But I do appreciate your perspective.

    Time123 (0e41e8)

  124. “I can tell you right now: The days of turning cheeks and “moving on” is over.”

    Breaking: Christianity is supplanted by the existential exigencies of a pluralistic society. Who would have thunk? Do unto others before they do it unto you. Some heavy editing and rationalizing going on. I just don’t remember all of the caveats to loving your neighbor. Was it always sop or did it become that with the emergence of the 24/7 news cycle?

    AJ_Liberty (5f05c3)

  125. From my POV the left was able to persuade (often in a bullying way) ppl that their preferences were better

    If they were accomplishing it through bullying, then they weren’t actually persuading. They were brow-beating people in to submission via threats of social ostracization, loss of livelihood, etc., and mistook decisions to capitulate in order to keep the peace, as full agreement. Abortion is a great example –after 50 years of Roe, the left STILL could not get more than 20-25 percent support for abortion on demand. So they’ve used the euphemism “women health ‘ to try and brute-force it into law. That’s not persuasion, it’s mendacity and emotional blackmail.

    The universities are another good example–New Left professors and their progeny deliberately acted as gatekeepers by supporting an intellectual environment where only leftism is tolerated. Try to go in to academia as a conservative, and you’ll find doors closed to you as a matter of course. The whole system is currently set up specifically to reward people who vow to follow the dogmas of the modern seminary. It’s not built to support anything that doesn’t assimilate into that mindset.

    Factory Working Orphan (77600b)

  126. @125

    “I can tell you right now: The days of turning cheeks and “moving on” is over.”

    Breaking: Christianity is supplanted by the existential exigencies of a pluralistic society. Who would have thunk? Do unto others before they do it unto you. Some heavy editing and rationalizing going on. I just don’t remember all of the caveats to loving your neighbor. Was it always sop or did it become that with the emergence of the 24/7 news cycle?

    AJ_Liberty (5f05c3) — 10/21/2022 @ 12:09 pm

    I’m going to say this a kindly as possible.

    Please go pound sand with that.

    No one, gets to use religion to shame me into doing what you want.

    Furthermore, the Democrats/leftist/progessive here WANT their opponents to be shamed into backing down. They want unfettered powered without meaningful response from their opponents.

    No.

    Don’t allow your values to be used against you.

    whembly (b770f8)

  127. I just don’t remember all of the caveats to loving your neighbor

    God loves everyone, including sinners, but that doesn’t mean he won’t throw them in the lake of fire at the end if they don’t repent of those sins. The first apostles risked their lives and became martyrs specifically because they forcefully condemned the sinfulness and idolatry of the Roman world, and Christianity became the dominant religion in Europe precisely because they refused to go along to get along.

    Factory Working Orphan (77600b)

  128. FWO,& Whembly, I don’t like the heavy handed, Bullying tactics that the left uses. But I don’t think responding to that by increasing government intrusion into our lives is going to make that better. In addition to being an escalation it just creates another tool for the left to eventually use.

    Time123 (0e41e8)

  129. For all the AJs out there…

    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=6gRnM9CoBlI

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  130. @Time123 and @AJ_Liberty

    Consider this story:
    https://www.nationalreview.com/2022/10/grassley-chinese-government-front-company-paid-biden-for-work-done-while-he-was-vp/

    The claim that millions of dollars in CEFC payments to the Biden family in 2017 were, in part, meant to reward Joe Biden for using his influence to help CEFC while he was vice president is obviously explosive. President Biden has denied even discussing business with Hunter Biden, let alone being involved in his close relatives’ enterprise of using his political influence to make money from foreign regimes. Those implausible denials have not withstood scrutiny, but the degree to which the president may have profited is an open question — one that warranted an investigation it didn’t get prior to the 2020 election, and still warrants an investigation now.

    To me, this deserves an actual Select Committee to investigate the Bidens, and if warrented, start impeachment.

    But, beside that: play hypothetically here with me…

    Replace the word “Biden” with “Trump” in this story, and please describe to me what would the Democrats and media (but I repeat myself) would do?

    whembly (b770f8)

  131. @129

    FWO,& Whembly, I don’t like the heavy handed, Bullying tactics that the left uses. But I don’t think responding to that by increasing government intrusion into our lives is going to make that better. In addition to being an escalation it just creates another tool for the left to eventually use.

    Time123 (0e41e8) — 10/21/2022 @ 12:41 pm

    I’ll ask a second time…

    What would you have the GOP do instead? How would you convince the Democrats/progressive/leftist to not use these heavy handed, bullying tactics.

    whembly (b770f8)

  132. The bullying, or potential bullying, affects many many people.

    Scholars recently concluded, based on newly examined archives, that an accusation against Chaucer of rape was the result of a misinterpretation of a piece of paper discovered in 1873.

    But a whole library of feminist scholarship has been built upon it. The debunkers were careful to say this doesn’t undermine that scholarship.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2022/10/13/books/geoffrey-chaucer-rape-charge.html

    Chaucer the Rapist? Newly Discovered Documents Suggest Not.

    That the author of “The Canterbury Tales” had been accused of rape was long a staple of Chaucer studies. But scholars now suggest it was based on a misreading of court papers from 1380.

    ….In recent decades, the suggestion that Chaucer had been accused of rape helped inspire a rich vein of feminist criticism looking at sex, power and consent in stories like “The Wife of Bath’s Tale” and “The Miller’s Tale,” which contain depictions of sexual assault (or what to modern readers appears like it).

    But this week, two scholars stunned the world of Chaucer studies with previously unknown documents that they say show that the “raptus” document was not in fact related to an accusation of rape against Chaucer at all.

    The new documents, the two scholars say, establish that the one that surfaced in the 1870s had been misinterpreted. Instead of stemming from a rape case, they argue, the document had been filed as part of a labor case, in which another man charged Chaumpaigne with leaving his household to work in Chaucer’s before her term of labor was over.

    It’s an explosive claim in the world of Chaucer studies. And in a telephone interview, Sebastian Sobecki, a professor of English at the University of Toronto, who did the research with Euan Roger of the British National Archives, summed it up carefully, while emphasizing that the discovery should not be seen as invalidating decades of important feminist scholarship.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  133. Remember how homosexual marriage got its foothold? A judge unilaterally overturning the will of the people to benefit himself and the left doxing donors and going after them.

    Now the left is trying to castrate kids. Don’t buy Time’s the right is just trying to bully people

    NJRob (325e67)

  134. No one falls for that NeverTrump swill, Rob.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  135. The Left and their media operatives let loose the pitbullies during the Summer of 2020. They can bugger off, the swine.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  136. Polls are showing rethugliKKKans slowly growing momentum again May sweep out moderate corporate establishment democrats who help the DNC and pelosi contain the left base of the party. AOC and the left will start to take over the democrat party. Not good news for the donor class and corporate establishment democrats who will no longer be able to control the black community from arming and being led by militants. The trump crazy’s who will get elected are evil and self destructive and will remind voters why they hate rethugliKKKans as biden and pelosi remind them why they hate democrats. The deep state may have to step in to prevent conflict.

    asset (77e65f)

  137. So nice to see asset and NeveTrump talk about Trump voters the same way. So much in common.

    NJRob (0319ea)

  138. I know these ignorant white trash populists as I am NON ignorant southern white trash and part native american okie myself and live among them. Nancy pelosi is so confident about the mid term elections she has asked biden about ambassador to Italy! Supposedly communist china paid vice president joe biden millions to be paid after he left office we will see where that goes.

    asset (77e65f)

  139. The HORROR of a Romney or Jeb! Presidency! We would certainly have lost our sacred fluids.

    AJ_Liberty (15d88c) — 10/21/2022 @ 3:16 am

    You’re in a boat furiously paddling on the right side going in a circle. I’m on shore shaking my head. Which of us is better off?

    AJ_Liberty (5f05c3) — 10/21/2022 @ 5:12 am

    Big laughs on both of these. You’re not just a good writer. You’re funny!

    norcal (a1f318)

  140. “If the left don’t recognize what time it is, don’t be surprised with the response isn’t NICE.”

    “The left better shape up or we’ll start killing people.”

    Absolutely demented.

    Davethulhu (129a95)

  141. Probably the most offensive comment I have ever seen from Davethulhu.

    That is an impossible interpretation of Whembly’s comment.

    I would throw you off the blog if it were mine.

    BuDuh (005c02)

  142. @141. Doesn’t take much effort to make a joke out of a pair of jokers, norcal.

    DCSCA (722f95)

  143. @142./@143. Ashli Babbitt remains unavailable for comment.

    DCSCA (722f95)

  144. “That is an impossible interpretation of Whembly’s comment.

    I would throw you off the blog if it were mine.”

    What do you think he meant?

    Davethulhu (129a95)

  145. I think he meant for you to read the full comment.

    You are extremely dishonest here.

    BuDuh (005c02)

  146. “I think he meant for you to read the full comment.

    You are extremely dishonest here.”

    Whembly says “That’s where some on the right are advocating to respond with the same fire and same fervor as that left has been doing. And that include wholesale purges in government.”

    The qanon movement (for example) is fully behind the idea that Democrats should be rounded up and summarily executed.

    So, tell me, what do YOU think he meant?

    Davethulhu (129a95)

  147. Blueanon… only people I’ve read or heard talking about qanon are lefties. It’s a thing with them. Another something to grab onto to delay their drowning in the red tsunami.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  148. I may get kicked off for calling you a contemptuous idiot, and I will accept that penalty.

    You are smart enough to know exactly what you got wrong. You are dumb enough to try and have a “conversation” after the fact. Your problem is that you get all fired arguing with the caricatures you create in your mind instead of the actual people here who put time and thought into what they write.

    Whembly has been here long enough that if you were a serious person you would never consider him condoning that kind of violence. You are not serious.

    Here is the obvious part from what you quoted:

    respond with the same fire and same fervor as that left has been doing.

    Is the “fire” and the “fervor” from the left a good description of the left killing everyone who doesn’t agree with them? If it isn’t, then Whembly cannot possibly be suggesting that. But you knew that and now you are hoping for an escape hatch.

    You are loathsome.

    BuDuh (005c02)

  149. Guys, guys, guys; c’mon. Throttle down. We’re within the 30 day window of the midterms; so more heat than light will be generated. Find a good book, watch a Gilligan’s Island marathon and just chill. The jello is in the fridge firming up.

    ___________

    60 years ago today, October 21, 1962- THe Cuban Missile Crisis; tick-tock, tick-tock…

    By this day, the poop was hitting the fan willy-nilly:

    After attending Mass at St. Stephen’s Church with Mrs. Kennedy, the President meets with General Walter Sweeney of the Tactical Air Command who tells him that an air strike [by the U.S.] could not guarantee 100% destruction of the missiles.

    President Kennedy’s fourth draft of the speech he would deliver to the nation was completed by Ted Sorenson around 11:00 a.m. that day. The letter to Khrushchev that would be delivered one hour prior to the speech was prepared and transmitted to Ambassador Kohler at the American Embassy at Moscow. Additionally, a draft resolution for the UNSC was transmitted to Ambassador Stevenson. The letter to Khrushchev highlighted the position of the United States on the discovery of missiles in Cuba. Kennedy expressed his concern that Khrushchev may “not correctly understand the will and determination of the United States,” and simultaneously assumed that Khrushchev would not advocate nuclear war which “is crystal clear no country could win”.

    Kennedy reminded Khrushchev that he desired to find solutions to problems through peaceful negotiation but not at the cost of an upset to the “over-all balance of power.” Kennedy clearly asserted that the US would not back down from its obligations to West Berlin.

    Finally, Kennedy declared that “the United States is determined to remove this threat [that the missiles in Cuba pose] to the security of this hemisphere.” He pointed out to Khrushchev that “the action we are taking is the minimum necessary to remove the threat to the security of the nations of this hemisphere. The fact of this minimum response should not be taken as a basis, however, for any misjudgment on your part.”

    The resolution that was transmitted to Ambassador Stevenson announced the concern over the developments in the Caribbean and the imposition of a quarantine line around Cuba. This resolution declared that the situation could result in conflict and called for the removal of all missiles and offensive weapons from Cuba under the auspices and guarantees of United Nations observers. The resolution further called for a summit between the United States and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics.

    Admiral Anderson briefed President Kennedy on his concept for the naval blockade. He had forty Navy ships in position and twenty-seven more on the way and required no call-up of Naval Reserve forces at this time. He envisioned the enforcement of the blockade with a cruiser intercepting any incoming ship in accordance with international rules. Anderson recommended a 24-hour grace period to allow the Soviets time to transmit instructions to their ships and to better position the U.S. Navy. The subject of rules of engagement came up and Secretary McNamara indicated he favored responses with force against hostile action.

    Still not aware that the Americans knew about the missiles in Cuba, the GRU (the Main Intelligence Directorate of the Soviet General Staff, the Glavnoje Razvedyvatel’noje Upravlenije) noted a significant increase in military activity in the United States. They reported aircraft convoys headed towards Puerto Rico, an increase in the number of SAC bombers airborne, and a growing US Navy presence in the Caribbean. They were even aware that McNamara had ordered senior military officers to remain “near the Pentagon to participate in a series of intensive meetings.”

    https://microsites.jfklibrary.org/cmc/oct21/

    http://www.october1962.com/21oct.html

    DCSCA (722f95)

  150. “The left better shape up or we’ll start killing people.”

    Absolutely demented.

    Davethulhu (129a95) — 10/21/2022 @ 3:18 pm

    Dave, you are a reasonable and respectable voice from the left, and I appreciate your comments.

    This one, however, went off the rails. It’s a mischaracterization of whembly’s point. Patterico has emphasized over and over not to do this.

    I’ve read enough of whembly to know not to impute that meaning to him.

    norcal (a1f318)

  151. @151 DCSCA, you lost me at “jello”.

    norcal (a1f318)

  152. Dave, I think you misconstrued whemblys comment, badly and in an insulting way. You should apologize.

    Time123 (0e41e8)

  153. @135 SSM got legal recognition long after public opinion had turned supportive and many large employers were offering SSP benefits.

    You lost that one long before the courts got involved.

    Time123 (0e41e8)

  154. Churchill was a man, NJRob, but he wasn’t an authoritarian like Hitler (or Trump) because he believed in individual liberty.

    DRJ (a6f255)

  155. SSM got legal recognition long after public opinion had turned supportive and many large employers were offering SSP benefits.

    You lost that one long before the courts got involved.

    Time123 (0e41e8) — 10/21/2022 @ 4:25 pm

    This.

    State legislatures were voting, one after the other, to approve gay marriage before the Supreme Court’s decision.

    At this point, people who rail against gay marriage are comically reactionary. It’s like still grumbling over the Civil Rights Act.

    norcal (a1f318)

  156. @153. Not a jello man, eh? Pudding perhaps. Nancy’s an ice cream gal.

    Chill to firm up.

    DCSCA (722f95)

  157. Not a jello man, eh? Pudding perhaps. Nancy’s an ice cream gal.

    Chill to firm up.

    DCSCA (722f95) — 10/21/2022 @ 4:46 pm

    No, I’m not. One of the things people ridicule in Mormon culture is the prevalence of Jello. Mormons even joke about it themselves. The absolute pinnacle of mockery is green Jello with shredded carrots, topped by Cool Whip.

    Pudding is an upgrade, but still isn’t my favorite.

    I guess I have two things in common with Pelosi: support for Taiwan, and a love of ice cream.

    norcal (a1f318)

  158. @159. I guess I have two things in common with Pelosi: support for Taiwan, and a love of ice cream.

    Two breasts as well; but you likely don’t pour out of a bathing suit top lon a beach stroll like she does:

    https://www.foxnews.com/politics/pelosi-hits-italian-beach-luxury-vacation-husband-faces-dui-charge

    DCSCA (722f95)

  159. “Two breasts as well; but you likely don’t pour out of a bathing suit top lon a beach stroll like she does:”

    Don’t sell him short.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  160. DRJ,

    what actions did Trump take that was authoritarian? Did he sic the FBI on leftist protestors? Did he use the IRS to bankrupt people? Did he wield power purely to benefit his people? Share with me why you believe this statement?

    Actions speak louder than words.

    NJRob (2dc83d)

  161. SSM got legal recognition long after public opinion had turned supportive and many large employers were offering SSP benefits.

    You lost that one long before the courts got involved.

    Time123 (0e41e8) — 10/21/2022 @ 4:25 pm

    California proves you just spout falsehoods.

    NJRob (2dc83d)

  162. Norcal,

    Ignoring the slippery slope as the boulder runs over the next generation.

    NJRob (2dc83d)

  163. @BuDuh, @norcal and @Time123:
    Just wanted to let ya’ll know that you’re appreciated, but I got this. 😉

    @Davethulhu

    “I think he meant for you to read the full comment.

    You are extremely dishonest here.”

    Whembly says “That’s where some on the right are advocating to respond with the same fire and same fervor as that left has been doing. And that include wholesale purges in government.”

    The qanon movement (for example) is fully behind the idea that Democrats should be rounded up and summarily executed.

    So, tell me, what do YOU think he meant?

    Davethulhu (129a95) — 10/21/2022 @ 3:44 pm

    How ’bout this, explain to me what the left is doing when I stated:
    the same fire and same fervor as that left has been doing

    …and we’ll go from there, okay?

    Because if your initial impression is true, do you really believe the left is demandign the right to “better shape up or we’ll start killing people.” Because, that’s the only interpretation that would give your initial statement something of a veneer of a rational response.

    whembly (b770f8)

  164. “How ’bout this, explain to me what the left is doing when I stated:”

    How about, instead, since I am clearly unable to read your mind, you tell me what you meant by “If the left don’t recognize what time it is, don’t be surprised with the response isn’t NICE.”

    What response did you envision as being not “NICE”?

    As a bonus, what do you envision as “wholesale purges in government.”

    Davethulhu (129a95)

  165. A love of rich deserts is probably the only populist value Trump shares. I’ll be glad to hear of another, but if you tell me opposition to same sex marriage, don’t let his friend and megadonor Peter Thiel and his husband hear you.

    nk (6ab934)

  166. I would not tell him jack. He is playing a game.

    BuDuh (005c02)

  167. Look, comrades, Trump has no values, no vision, no ideas, no plans.

    He does not get things done. He bets that things will happen.

    He hung around for 70 years being a Fifth Avenue trust fund baby, then he saw a bunch of people unhappy with the way they were and said “I bet those dodos will elect me President”.

    He does not lead them. He watches where they’re and cuts to the front of the line with constant glances over his shoulder and always the question “You still like me, right?

    nk (6ab934)

  168. He watches where they’re *going”

    nk (6ab934)

  169. People are angry at politicians because the politicians convinced people of the importance of things that weren’t actually that important and then people, of course, got mad because the politicians didn’t effectively move on any of those issues (because they weren’t actually that important).

    Nic (896fdf)

  170. Davethulhu (129a95) — 10/21/2022 @ 5:46 pm

    Sorry to pile on, Dave, but it seems to me the natural meaning of “same fire and same fervor as that left has been doing” equates whatever you’re accusing whembly of wanting with whatever the left is already doing. So unless you’ll willing to concede that the left is threatening to kill people on the right — you’re not, are you? — you should really take the L, apologize, and move on.

    lurker (cd7cd4)

  171. Everyone is picking out this phrase “same fire and same fervor as that left has been doing” and ignoring everything else he said. So for nobody has clarified what exactly a not “NICE” response would be, or what “wholesale purges in government” means. Purge has a pretty well known meaning, and it matches the goals of Qanon.

    Davethulhu (129a95)

  172. Only one person here thinks whembly is plagiarizing a qanon script.

    🧐

    BuDuh (005c02)

  173. Davethulhu (129a95) — 10/21/2022 @ 6:40 pm

    no one should apologize for self parody

    JF (14adb5)

  174. Thulu is the same guy who loves supporting and defending Antifa. Remember that.

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  175. Antifa, or QAntifa?

    JF (14adb5)

  176. what actions did Trump take that was authoritarian?

    Trump claimed that, as President, his authority is total. He has no concept of Constitutional checks and balances, and craves absolute power likes the authoritarian he is.

    He also doesn’t think he needs to be consistent on policy matters. Authoritarians want what they want.

    DRJ (a6f255)

  177. Whatever “not nice” and “wholesale purges” may mean in a vacuum — they’re both ambiguous to me — “safe fire and fervor” sets a ceiling of what the left is already doing.

    lurker (cd7cd4)

  178. Which is why he was for gun control before he was against it, for abortion before he was against it, etc., etc.

    DRJ (a6f255)

  179. @179: *same* fire and fervor…

    lurker (cd7cd4)

  180. As for actions speaking louder than words, IRS targeted Trump’s foes.

    DRJ (a6f255)

  181. DRJ,

    they both came in to large sums of money. Are you going to claim with a straight face that the IRS did that at the behest of Trump when he was no longer President?

    Now if you want authoritarianism, here you go

    https://pjmedia.com/columns/hansavonspakovskyandzacksmith/2022/10/21/the-justice-department-gets-smacked-down-n1638739

    or how about this:

    https://thefederalist.com/2022/10/06/fbi-raids-another-pro-lifers-home-in-federal-prosecution-against-11-peaceful-opponents-of-state-sponsored-child-killings/

    Trying to be helpful and show you what a criminal regime actually looks like.

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  182. DRJ,

    scary when a politician actually follows what he promised to do and what his constituents voted for.

    Which is why he was for gun control before he was against it, for abortion before he was against it, etc., etc.

    DRJ (a6f255) — 10/21/2022 @ 7:16 pm

    You’re making my case, not yours.

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  183. In his private life, I expect Trump is every bit the arrogant elitist that Romney, McConnell, Biden, etc are. But he was smart enough to read the room and actually try and do what he promised his voters he would do that got them to vote for him. Scary that a politician would follow through instead of just being Lucy with the football and playing the base for rubes.

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  184. The idea that populism = authoritarianism is absolutely unsupportable.

    Yes, some populist movements are hijacked (e.g. Iran, Mussolini, etc) but authoritarianism comes most naturally from elites, and most elitists drift into it sooner or later. They rationalize their diktats with the idea that they are, of course, right and go on to talk about omelets.

    That Authority has democratic trappings doesn’t change anything. When they start dictating — as, for example, California has — the public has to decide whether to accept their place or rise up.

    When they rise up, it’s called “populism.” Or maybe insurrection.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  185. Social norms and government force: When the government comes and forbids female genital mutilation, is that pushing their belief system on a minority, or does a culture have the right to insist on a standard of behavior?

    If you don’t like that, what about polygamy? Or shoplifting?

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  186. Trump claimed that, as President, his authority is total. He has no concept of Constitutional checks and balances, and craves absolute power likes the authoritarian he is.

    Luckily, he was also incompetent as an authoritarian. The only person who successfully issued diktats during his term was Fauci.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  187. nk (6ab934) — 10/21/2022 @ 5:58 pm

    Well, yeah. It’s a pity though that no one could beat him at that game.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  188. Want less government? Defund the police! That is less government. Want a balanced budget? Defund the military, That will slow down wasteful spending. You only want to cut medicade and welfare spending. Trump despite his many flaws being a liberal republican (except on abortion) on social issues and conservative democrat populist on every thing else was what the voters wanted not a doctrinaire buckley/ freidmen economic libertarian free trade conservative. Voters liked his populist message ;but worried about the messenger. Their fears were proven correct. He still only lost by 44,000 votes in az,ga. and wi. in 2020 with democrat party kicking the green party off the ballot in those 3 states. Trumps populist message except for abortion is far more popular then biden’s energy and inflation policy. He only got the nomination in 2020 with luke warm support from older black women in the south and hillary clinton supporters and still the DNC had to manipulate the primary process under the guise of covid to drag this beached whale over the finish line by throwing a few crumbs to the left base of the party. Voters don’t care about climate change when they are paying anywhere from 4 to 7 dollars a gallon! With grocery prices double are more making it worse with the gay guy saying buy a tesla! The rethugliKKKans wont do any thing ;but oil companies and businesses like their tax policy so their will be some short term relief. Biden couldn’t be a moderate clinton democrat as he had to pay off the special interests who got him the nomination. So trump’s populist policy was popular ;but his personality was toxic to non trumpsters who in the words of Malcolm X “By any means necessary!” to get rid of him.

    asset (f90c0c)

  189. I’d rather defund the schools. Not because I don’t want schools but because separation of School and State is as important as separation of Church and State, and for almost identical reasons.

    Give every kid a voucher and let them go where they will. If their parents want to send them to a coven school, fine. They probably go to one now. Make the schools earn their funding.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  190. I find it’s odd that people think the oil companies and Republicans are arm in arm. In California, the refiners owe their huge profits to Democrat rules.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  191. 191 we have vouchers in my state for many years and rate usually with mississppi in test scores and unlike public schools the private schools hire sex offenders because they can pay them less. Also private schools don’t have the same requirements and charter schools keep going bankrupt costing the state millions of dollars instead of funding public schools. (192) That doesn’t mean the refiners like democrat rule. they don’t. What incentive would democrats have when an unarmed black person was shot by the police to call for non-violence if republicans were in charge? Remember trayvon martin when the black community held back so as not to cause problems for president Obama? Why should they hold back for rethugliKKKans. Democrat party says don’t buy a gun and start shooting back at racism we will end racism with non-violence. This is why the corporate establishment wants cities run by corrupt democrats who will do what their told. Like stoping the black community from buying assault rifles to shoot back with.

    asset (3153de)

  192. Kevin M (eeb9e9) — 10/21/2022 @ 11:51 pm

    I like this idea.

    nk (6ab934) — 10/21/2022 @ 7:08 am

    I agree. In a “fair” fight, he W comes with support from more than just a base.

    felipe (484255)

  193. NJRob at 184 & 185. That’s an interesting perspective.:

    And in return he got:
    — “Russian collusion”
    — “Emoluments Clause”
    — Accusations of sexual misconduct
    — Ukrainian impeachment
    — State AG persecution
    — Worst of all a “stolen and rigged” election
    — Adding insult to the multitude of injuries a search warrant on his home

    I’d be yelling “Where’s my BLM?” too.

    nk (bb1548)

  194. And he’s still got the GOP by the [Access Hollywood tape]. It’s too bad I can’t stand him. I could almost admire him.

    nk (bb1548)

  195. I am trying to find the shortest correct search combination to see how many main stream news outlets are concerned about Biden’s health after his episode during his recently released MSNBC interview.

    As a balance if you search “Trump ramp” there are countless stories regarding Trump’s health concerns.

    I got it down to “Biden dozes” but you have to cut the search to the last 24 hours to get rid of a lot of nonsense. Even then it is crazy conspiracy sites that find it interesting including the NY Post.

    I’m certain what happened is normal and other world leaders are not going to take advantage.

    BuDuh (005c02)

  196. nk (bb1548) — 10/22/2022 @ 6:05 am

    The other “in return” was lies and incompetence in dealing with a pandemic that cost thousands and thousands of American lives, a tax cut that added over a trillion to our national debt, etc.

    Paul Montagu (753b42)

  197. Paul Montagu (753b42) — 10/22/2022 @ 7:24 am

    clearly trump’s second term isn’t going well

    JF (14adb5)

  198. Hope for the best, expect the worst
    Some drink champagne, some die of thirst
    The way it’s going, the bullsh*t’s flowing
    Hope for the best, expect the worst!

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  199. 191 we have vouchers in my state for many years and rate usually with mississppi in test scores

    We have no vouchers in my state, and official hostility to charter schools. Recent increases in public school funding have gone, as usual, to administration which may or may not hire perverts but definitely hires embezzlers. And our test scores are 49th in the country.

    But here’s the thing: Kids are not statistics, and increasing opportunity and choice helps any kid (and their parents) get ahead. The average isn’t interesting unless it’s your kid being forced to be “average.”

    AND YOU MISS MY POINT. We have separation of Church and State because the State should not be in charge of moral education. Yet it is no secret that the State is doing the exact same thing in public schools.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  200. Another Trump promise, another failure to deliver.

    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.

    “[I]n return” the tariffs other nations imposed on US farm exports cut our exports so much that Trump had to bail out US farmers with “more than $23 billion in aid”.

    I had low expectations of Trump when he took office — and he managed not to meet even those. (His record would have been even worse but for the grownups who were able to restrain him, to some extent.)

    Jim Miller (85fd03)

  201. The best schools in any state, at any level, are private schools.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  202. Xi’s removal of former leader Hu Jintao was as blunt and clunky as it was clarifying as to who’s the Boss China Man, but we do have an update.

    Xinhua clarifies that Hu Jintao is actually on a big farm upstate with lots of room to run around.

    As usual, Ms. Horta e Costa has a superb weekly review, and none of it is good news for the ChiCom economy.

    Paul Montagu (753b42)

  203. Jim, comparing numbers for any year, and 2020, ignores the HUGE asterisk on any data from 2020 (or 2021). The article doesn’t seem to care about that.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  204. Kevin,

    He won’t care. Just like those who lie when they claim Biden has increased oil leases ignore those leases were actually signed under the former President and went into effect in 2021. They will also ignore the collapse in leases in 2022 thanks to Biden’s intentionally destructive policies.

    NJRob (89886e)

  205. Biden fans giving thumbs down on Trump’s performance as president sounds like an Onion headline

    JF (cb4f79)

  206. Moby Miller always seems to err in one direction.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  207. 207… they’re pulling all stops now.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  208. Closing in, teh desperation is palpable…

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

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  209. Trump found people with the miseries and sold them paregoric. If he’d stayed away after the sheriff ran him out of town, people wouldn’t be looking to heat up the tar again. But he’s still around, peddling snake oil and thimblerigging the rubes.

    nk (c21018)

  210. Haiku, notice Rip hasn’t been around posting bogus polls showing how the left is going to win in November. Wonder how it is.

    NJRob (89886e)

  211. Here are the US trade deficits for Trump’s four years:

    U.S. trade balance for 2020 was $-651.19B, a 9.21% increase from 2019.
    U.S. trade balance for 2019 was $-596.26B, a 0.01% increase from 2018.
    U.S. trade balance for 2018 was $-596.19B, a 10.42% increase from 2017.
    U.S. trade balance for 2017 was $-539.93B, a 6.65% increase from 2016.

    I am not sure what point Kevin was trying to make, perhaps that the deficits would have increased even more were it not for the COVID recession?

    If other commenters have data that contradicts my main point, that trade deficits increased while Trump was in office, they should link to that data, and provide a brief summary, rather than making ad hominem attacks.

    Jim Miller (85fd03)

  212. Jim Miller (85fd03) — 10/22/2022 @ 10:23 am

    october is a good month to pick cherries, Jim Miller

    trade deficit LOL

    and, we haven’t had a recession since bush’s Great one so claiming that there was a “covid recession” under trump is just flat out fibbing

    JF (14adb5)

  213. I am not sure what point Kevin was trying to make,

    icymi, the article you linked to was BS.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  214. 212… his media matters contract is up.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  215. #214 From the Wikipedia list:

    The economic effects of the pandemic were severe after the first quarter of 2020. More than 24 million people lost jobs in the United States in just three weeks in April.[85] Official economic impact of the virus is still being determined, but the recession was one of the shortest on record, helped in part by online purchases, zero interest rates, and printing of huge amounts of money by the Fed to prop up the stock market.

    (Links omitted.)

    Oh, and I grew up on a farm where we raised cherries. We never picked any in October, nor did any of our neighbors.

    Jim Miller (85fd03)

  216. 60 years ago today, October 22, 1962- The Cuban Missile Crisis; tick-tock, tick-tock…

    The world is told; if you were alive at the time to hear/view JFK’s televised speech, it remains a chilling and sober address that echoes across the decades…

    President Kennedy phones former Presidents Hoover, Truman and Eisenhower to brief them on the situation. Meetings to coordinate all actions continue. Kennedy formally establishes the Executive Committee of the National Security Council and instructs it to meet daily during the crisis. Kennedy briefs the cabinet and congressional leaders on the situation. Kennedy also informs British Prime Minister Harold Macmillan of the situation by telephone.

    President Kennedy writes to Nikita Khrushchev, Premier of the Soviet Union, prior to addressing the American public on live television: … I have not assumed that you or any other sane man would In this nuclear age, deliberately plunge the world into war which it is crystal clear no country could win and which could only result in catastrophic consequences to the whole world, including the aggressor.

    At 7:00 p.m. Kennedy speaks on television, revealing the evidence of Soviet missiles in Cuba and calling for their removal. He also announces the establishment of a naval quarantine around the island until the Soviet Union agrees to dismantle the missile sites and to make certain that no additional missiles are shipped to Cuba. Approximately one hour before the speech, Secretary of State Dean Rusk formally notifies Soviet Ambassador Anatoly Dobrynin of the contents of the President’s speech.

    https://www.c-span.org/video/?308689-1/president-kennedys-cuban-missile-crisis-oval-office-address

    https://microsites.jfklibrary.org/cmc/oct22/

    DCSCA (52d249)

  217. … and this October 22… where’s today’s ‘Jack’?? Squinty is on the rack in Delaware. Again. Time for another weekend of tune-ups w/more meds and fresh blood, eh Joey. Be sure they rotate your ass from your head and both feet from your motormouth. After all, you are a ‘car guy.’ Ain’tcha.

    DCSCA (52d249)

  218. Trump is the one who made trade deficits an issue, stupidly so because we’ve had healthy economic cycles for decades with sizable trade deficits, and his promise to cut or eliminate our trade deficits came up short.
    Like I’ve said, on any given issue, he has one idea (and more often than not, it’s not even a good idea), and his one idea for the Xi regime was taxing ourselves with tariffs on ChiCom goods, as if that was going to help.

    Paul Montagu (753b42)

  219. Instead of going back to BoJo, there is another potential candidate who made eight promises that Britons can bank on.

    Paul Montagu (753b42)

  220. “what actions did Trump take that was authoritarian?”

    This got me pondering about what are some of the irritating signs of illiberalism that are poking about these days looking for oxygen. Trump is obviously an imperfect authoritarian, limited by a lack of discipline and true creativity, but he’s been trying his best…along with the GOP….to replicate the Hungarian nationalist takeover. A sort of re-imagining of power, how to secure it and most importantly how to maintain it, indefinitely.

    As I work through this, I’m aware that both sides seek power and make ideologically favorable changes to the political landscape. I mean gerrymandering and election law tweaks have always been with us. So have fear and anger peddling to rouse and activate the base. Is it true as some here assert that the GOP is just taking off the boxing gloves and defending both cheeks (all four!?) for a change?

    It’s difficult to draw the line between the GOP and Trump. Trump himself has beat the drum of the existential threat of election steals and how he has been personally wronged. And despite 60-something courtroom losses and independent election reviews that have turned up empty, the messaging continues….and it works, at least at the superficial polling level (if you say something enough times….). This has then led to states nominating secretaries of state who proudly say, despite evidence, that they would have de-certified the election….ostensibly throwing the election into chaos. Authoritarian? Certainly a coordinated step in that direction.

    Trump’s attack on our investigatory agencies (unprecedented FBI raids indeed!), the justice department, and the mythical deep state….and his background goal of purging civil servants via Schedule F….all are aimed at either lessening trust in system safety-valves or seeding the ground for enablers who won’t say “no”. Exaggeration or foreshadowing into the Orban-ization of our government institutions? We’re told, “now do Biden”…so, look somewhere else, please.

    Is DeSantis’ slap down of Disney a move away from traditional GOP liberalism? Are the laws controlling K-12 teacher speech in the liberal tradition? Not Trump moves, but are they fruits of Trumpism? Trump is fine with making the Courts more political because that makes them less authoritative….less problematic for future stresses on the Constitutional order. If no one trusts the Court, why expect broad acceptance (Andrew Jackson’s enforcement lament indeed!).

    Is it coincidence that Hungary is deeply anti-immigrant, anti-Muslim, weirdly anti-LGBT, and obsessively anti-Soros? An authoritarian needs an “other”. Do we see that with Trump and the new-Right? Do we see a coarsening of our public discourse, an air of existential panic that has pulled even Evangelicals to the other side of the character question? Do we see a growing murmur about using the military as a show of force to collect voting machines, military parades, odd refences to “my generals”?

    I don’t think we’re Hungary, but we have been shown to be susceptible to propaganda and the Tucker’s out there know how to push buttons. It’s annoying for some to hear about Trump and Trumpism. I guess, just don’t talk about it and it will magically disappear. We don’t hope that cockroaches will voluntarily leave. “If only we don’t talk about them!”. “Now talk about the ants marching across the counter”. Indeed.

    AJ_Liberty (15d88c)

  221. Huh?

    BuDuh (005c02)

  222. @222. OFGSALL capitalist corporatist/businessmen are authoritarians, Agarn. Corporations are not democracies or republics any more than the military structure is And hard data culled on this trend in the U.S. over several cycles through the decadres indicates a pattern in America for more and more businessmen/corporatist types to seek and attain political gigs as their initial elected offices. Citizens want cost-effective efficiencies from government services; not catastrophes like wasting, blowing and abandoning $80 billion in goods and services to Afghanistan, selling aircraft carriers for a penny rather than budgeting to refit for use as disaster/storm relief vessels– or freely gifting billions to corrupt Ukraine.

    DCSCA (4ba551)

  223. AJ, usually I appreciate much of what you have to say, but this last is unhinged paranoia.

    What acts of authoritarianism, actual overt acts, can you point to? I see you complaining about populist, in-your-face distrust of the “organs of State”, but from time to time those are necessary as the State is never to be trusted. Jefferson said as much. Do you consider Jefferson to have been authoritarian and/or illiberal? Slavery aside, of course.

    The only authoritarian acts of his entire administration were in reference to COVID, and mostly by Fauci. The worst authoritarian measures were ordered at the state level and mostly by liberal Democrats. Certainly not DeSantis.

    That Trump doesn’t like Muslims doesn’t make him authoritarian, and the entire election this was after his power was broken. If that was an attempted coup (rather than a hissy fit) is was the world’s worst coup.

    I think that you are “trumping” up charges because you dislike Trump and would cast any aspersion at hand. That you then smear the entire GOP with wanting King Donald is an additional level of nutbar.

    Get a grip.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  224. As far as DeSantis and Disney, it was a needed response to corporate overreach. We had corporations sanctioning states and it had to stop. And it did. We will find that there is little follow-through — the bit*h-slap was sufficient.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  225. Haiku, notice Rip hasn’t been around posting bogus polls showing how the left is going to win in November. Wonder how it is.

    NJRob (89886e) — 10/22/2022 @ 10:04 am

    First you complain about my posting polls, now you complain that I’m not. Feel free to post any poll results you want.

    Rip Murdock (138b20)

  226. Kevin, correct me if I’m wrong, but haven’t you declared Trump guilty of insurrection for which you believe he should be tried and imprisoned? How does a sitting President commit an insurrection that isn’t authoritarian?

    lurker (cd7cd4)

  227. Getting my popcorn now.

    BuDuh (005c02)

  228. In absence of a Weekend Open Thread:

    Judge: Trump signed court document that knowingly included false voter fraud stats
    ……….
    U.S. District Court Judge David Carter wrote in an 18-page opinion that emails from attorney John Eastman, an architect of Trump’s last-ditch effort to subvert the 2020 election, needed to be turned over to the Jan. 6 select committee. Those emails, Carter wrote, “show that President Trump knew that the specific numbers of voter fraud were wrong but continued to tout those numbers, both in court and to the public.”
    ………..
    “The Court finds that these four documents are sufficiently related to and in furtherance of the obstruction crime,” wrote Carter, who is based in California.
    ……….
    “Although the President signed a verification for [the Georgia state court filing] back on Dec. 1, he has since been made aware that some of the allegations (and evidence proffered by the experts) has been inaccurate,” Eastman wrote in an email to colleagues. “For him to sign a new verification with that knowledge (and incorporation by reference) would not be accurate.”

    “President Trump, moreover, signed a verification swearing under oath that the incorporated, inaccurate numbers ‘are true and correct’ or ‘believed to be true and correct’ to the best of his knowledge and belief,” added Carter, an appointee of President Bill Clinton. “The emails show that President Trump knew that the specific numbers of voter fraud were wrong but continued to tout those numbers, both in court and to the public. The Court finds that these emails are sufficiently related to and in furtherance of a conspiracy to defraud the United States.”
    ……….

    Rip Murdock (138b20)

  229. Rip, how many petitions did you sign fraudulently?

    JF (a0f587)

  230. Fox Hosts Trash GOP’s ‘Rotten Idea’ to Impeach Biden
    ……..
    (Rep. Elise Stefanik, R-NY Insurrectionist) the third-ranking House Republican, recently told the New York Post that GOP lawmakers could take up impeachment proceedings on the president next year following investigations into the Biden family’s business dealings.
    ……….
    Congresswoman Elise Stefanik says Republicans could move to impeach Biden next year. I think that’s a rotten idea, Brian (Kilmeade) (Stuart) Varney exclaimed. “I don’t think people want another impeachment fiasco. I am opposed to it. What do you say?”

    Kilmeade, also a Trump acolyte, endorsed his colleague’s remarks before noting that Congress “would just vote on partisan lines” and that it’s a “waste of time” for the most part.

    “Unless, of course, you have obscene corruption,” he continued. “And I would love to see that cycle of ‘we don’t like that person so let’s impeach him’ stop! I mean, what they did to Trump—it’s bad for the country.”
    ………

    But imagine the ratings! Varney’s and Kilmeade’s bosses can’t be pleased with their comments.

    Rip Murdock (138b20)

  231. Rip, how many petitions did you sign fraudulently?

    JF (a0f587) — 10/22/2022 @ 2:20 pm

    None this election cycle. 😉

    Rip Murdock (138b20)

  232. Under new rethugliKKKan voter suppression law in georgia rethugs can challenge registered democrats right to vote which they are doing in black areas and around college areas. Legitimate citizen voters who have been voting in the same place for years are not allowed to vote except with provisional ballot Voter is not told why they are being challenged by rethugliKKKan party operatives and have to go to election office to find out why they are being challenged! Biden better send in the troops under civil war reconstruction laws or democrat will lose many of their votes. (DU)

    asset (df2b10)

  233. Trump is a would-be authoritarian. The fact that he came closest to it as a baby wailing his little lungs out until his nanny changed his diaper makes it a matter of interpretation.

    Does desire alone make a person an authoritarian, or must he also have the intellect, discipline, focus, and strength of ideas to impose his will?

    It is The Triumph Of The Will, kameraden, not The Wishfulness For The Triumph.

    nk (c21018)

  234. ‘We’ll Sue Him’: Trump Claims Bob Woodward Audiobook Interview Tapes ‘Belong To Me’
    ……..
    “We’ve already hired the lawyers to sue him,” Trump told Fox News host Brian Kilmeade Friday on his radio program. “Bob Woodward’s a very sleazy guy,” he added of the famed Watergate journalist.
    ………
    Trump appeared to concede that Woodward was the one who set up the tapes and recorded the interviews, but insisted the rights to use the tapes belong to him.

    “In many ways, I like the tapes, I insist on tapes, but I also say the tapes belong to me,” Trump told Kilmeade. “So that means Woodward has to get whatever deal he made, you know, we’ll probably end up in litigation over it. Because we gave tapes for the written word, not tapes to sell, and that’s always made clear,” he said.

    Trump insisted he told Woodward “these tapes are for the written word, these tapes are for your [previous] book, these are not to be sold, these are tapes for your book, to help you. I like that because it’s more accurate,” he added.

    “So now he’s making an audiobook out of it, so we’ll sue him,” Trump said.
    ………

    “Trump insisted he told Woodward…….”

    Unless there is a written agreement, Trump’s word means nothing.

    Rip Murdock (138b20)

  235. #235 nk – I think you put it well with that “would-be”.

    And, for more evidence just look at three leaders Trump gets along best with: the Saudi king, Kim Jong-un, and “Czar” Putin. None of them are big supporters of free and fair elections.

    Or his claim that he deserves the kind of loyalty he thought (thinks?) German generals gave Hitler. (Apparently Trump did not know about those assassination attempts. For that matter he may still not know, since when told about them, he didn’t accept the correction.)

    Jim Miller (85fd03)

  236. It is the weak who admire strength, Jim. The strong know its limitations.

    It is the Beta who looks up to the Alpha. An Alpha sees another Alpha as a challenger.

    nk (c21018)

  237. I agree too that “would-be” is an apt description. But I’d also make the argument to which nk alludes in passing that another word for a would-be, failed authoritarian is just plain old “authoritarian.”

    noun

    a person who favors or acts according to authoritarian principles.

    lurker (cd7cd4)

  238. Actually, lurker, I think your interpretation is closer to the mark. An authoritarian can himself be under authority.

    For I am a man under authority, having soldiers under me: and I say to this man, Go, and he goeth; and to another, Come, and he cometh; and to my servant, Do this, and he doeth it. — Matthew, 8:9

    nk (c21018)

  239. Typical TDS. You can’t even berate Trump without quoting from his third favorite book. I wonder if they even sold any copies before he talked it up.

    lurker (cd7cd4)

  240. lurker: “Kevin, correct me if I’m wrong, but haven’t you declared Trump guilty of insurrection for which you believe he should be tried and imprisoned? How does a sitting President commit an insurrection that isn’t authoritarian?”

    Yeah thanks lurker, that’s my memory as well. I’m not sure how Kevin squares it. He seems to have pivoted over to it was just all badly planned and nothing to really worry about. I’ll stick with my current grip thank you very much.

    AJ_Liberty (15d88c)

  241. Uh oh. I forgot “Tee-Dee-Ess” (unexpurgated) is a moderation trigger. Since Dana appears to be on the Patterico yacht today, I’ll just let it go. Suffice it to say, I said something very clever. (It wasn’t.)

    lurker (cd7cd4)

  242. First you complain about my posting polls, now you complain that I’m not. Feel free to post any poll results you want.

    Rip Murdock (138b20) — 10/22/2022 @ 1:57 pm

    No. I complain that you only post polls when they show leftists in a favorable light. It’s meant to demoralize conservatives that read thus site.

    NJRob (d2c9a0)

  243. It’s meant to demoralize conservatives that read thus site.

    I didn’t know that Rip was intending to hurt Trumpists’ feelings. Interesting.

    Paul Montagu (753b42)

  244. lurker: “Kevin, correct me if I’m wrong, but haven’t you declared Trump guilty of insurrection for which you believe he should be tried and imprisoned? How does a sitting President commit an insurrection that isn’t authoritarian?”

    I square it with differentiating acts before the election with a loss of the plot afterwards.

    If all you can point to is something that happened at the utter tail end of his administration, unrelated to his governance, then you fail. Clear?

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  245. Shorter: Words mean things. Too many people use “fascist” or “authoritarian” or even “liberal” as if they are just darts.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  246. a person who favors or acts according to authoritarian principles.

    How did Trump order you to do something? Compare that to Biden or, for a Californian, to Newsom.

    Did he order you to buy government health insurance? Obama did that to me.

    Did he order you to wear a mask outside the house, or stand in line in the effing snow outside a Walmart because no more than 50 people could be inside the store? Lujan Grisham did that to me.

    Did he order car companies to stop producing gasoline vehicles? There’s quite a line behind that one.

    Did he order state workers to get immunized? While I think they should, it’s sill an authoritarian action, again with many hands. None of them Trump’s or DeSantis’s.

    Did he unilaterally cancel an oil pipeline that had been approved by multiple democratic boards and committees? No, Biden did that.

    Did he cancel hundreds of billions in debt owed to the government? No, Biden did that.

    I am fed up with (justified) Trump-hatred being used to make wild and unsupportable claims. Aren’t there enough facts to use that you don’t have to make up lies?

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  247. What act of authoritarianism, other than a pitiful inability to accept people didn’t like him, did Trump commit? Name one before November 2020.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  248. I think the point is that Trump has authoritarian instincts or, if you will, has authoritarian aspirations. Heck he openly admires true authoritarians in China, Moscow, and PyongYang.

    Wikipedia: Authoritarianism is a form of government characterized by the rejection of political plurality, the use of strong central power to preserve the political status quo, and reductions in the rule of law, separation of powers, and democratic voting

    Trump’s whole current political relevance is based on the fact that he believes he was actually elected President, that large segments of the previous vote should be disregarded, and that current GOP candidates support this. Now call it what you will…maybe delusional….maybe master grifting….but throughout his term, he pushed on the various institutions of our democracy…testing what prevented him from getting his way. Do you think he will put more “yes” men in key positions next time? Would you bet on it?

    AJ_Liberty (15d88c)

  249. @Kevin@248 (I don’t think he was particular good at being an authoritarian, mostly because he isn’t very competent and because the people around him often wouldn’t do the things he wanted to do, the following list is not in order of importance.) However, when he failed to get congressional approval for his ineffective and poorly designed border-wall spending, he took it from the military budget. He fired Comey for investigating without pledging personal loyalty. He fired a bunch of other people who discouraged his possibly illegal attempts to take a variety of government actions. He encouraged his supporters to physically attack the press. He required praise from members of his cabinet. He attempted to interfere with lawfully tendered foreign aid to get dirt on a political opponent. He said that Article 2 of the Constitution let him do anything he wanted.

    Nic (896fdf)

  250. If all you can point to is something that happened at the utter tail end of his administration, unrelated to his governance, then you fail. Clear?

    Kevin M (eeb9e9) — 10/22/2022 @ 9:46 pm

    No, it’s not clear, Kevin.

    First, as DRJ, AJ, nk and Nic have collectively pointed out, Trump’s presidency was marked throughout by aspirations toward, (mostly failed) attempts at, and fawning words for authoritarian rule and its most notorious practitioners. Per the definition I pasted earlier, that makes him an authoritarian.

    But even assuming for the sake of argument he only committed one blatantly authoritarian act and he did it near the end of his presidency, so what? Imagine my wife caught me in bed tomorrow with another woman. How do you think it would go if I said, “I’ve been faithful for decades, and for all we know I may be dead tomorrow. If all you can point to is this one unfortunate incident, then you fail. I’m no adulterer. Clear?”?

    I’ll tell you how it would go. I would be dead tomorrow, and I would die an adulterer. Because I’d have committed adultery. Trump tried to overthrow a free and fair election to hold onto power beyond his term. It doesn’t matter when he did it. It’s the epitome of authoritarianism.

    lurker (cd7cd4)

  251. So much absurdity spouted as if it was fact. Trump was permitted to fire his underlings. It’s even more appropriate when it was individuals working against his administration who were trying to undermine his Constitutional authority. He followed the legal process in moving funds to pay for parts of the wall that was undermined in a purely partisan vote. The same partisans refused his goal of adding to the Strategic Oil Reserve when oil was $20/barrel.

    It’s also why I harped upon DRJ to give me actions and not words. Because the left takes authoritarian actions against citizens to turn them into subjects. But many on here pretend to be conservative while deliberately obfuscating as to the reality on the ground because their goal is to increase political power for leftists and not the truth.

    NJRob (d2c9a0)

  252. I was driving one day in the future and had a flat tire in front of the state mental hospital for the criminally insane. I had no spare. So I had to roll the tire down to the tire store to get it fixed. When I got back I found my lug nuts were missing. As I stood their donald trump came up to the fence and said if you take a lug nut off of each other wheel you will be able to drive to parts store to get them replaced. Gee I said thats smart! As I was doing this to men in white coats dragged donald trump back into the building. I turned and said what is an intelligent person like you doing here? Trump replied I am here because I am criminally insane not because I am stupid!

    asset (93ddbc)

  253. First, as DRJ, AJ, nk and Nic have collectively pointed out, Trump’s presidency was marked throughout by aspirations toward, (mostly failed) attempts at, and fawning words for authoritarian rule and its most notorious practitioners. Per the definition I pasted earlier, that makes him an authoritarian.

    Again, name one authoritarian act that didn’t come to you in a dream. You can’t, so I win. I’m done with this crap.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  254. I note that not one of the “Fascist Trump” faction has a thing to say about the many, repeated, and unapologetic authoritarian acts committed by Obama and Biden and any number of Democrat governors during Covid.

    It is not to defend Trump that I say this, but to defend English.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  255. asset (93ddbc) — 10/23/2022 @ 12:13 am

    Very old joke.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  256. @256 still gets the point across. Kari lake campaign on indigenous peoples day to get out the native american vote calls indians blood thirsty savages who believe in human sacrifice! One indian casino has put up sign kari lake is wrong we want you here to play are slots not for human sacrifice. Evan mecham II for those who remember the first one.

    asset (93ddbc)

  257. @Kevin@254 I named several? (though I’ve never called Trump a fascist) There are actual tangible bits of badly designed wall down on the border build by funding that was approved for other things. They can’t be that far from you, you could probably go look at them.

    Nic (896fdf)

  258. Again, name one authoritarian act that didn’t come to you in a dream. You can’t, so I win. I’m done with this crap.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9) — 10/23/2022 @ 12:49 am

    Declare victory then stick your fingers in your ears. Very mature. If you’re not listening, there’s no point in my talking, is there?

    lurker (cd7cd4)

  259. Nic, presidents have repurposed funds, and particularly defense funds since Washington. It is not completely insane to say that what is going on on the southern border is a threat to national security (borders themselves being the first line of defense). It is no more a usurpation than repurposing defense money to put down the Whiskey Rebellion or instruct the Barbary states that kidnapping Americans was a bad idea.

    There were probably some golf courses that didn’t get built, but them’s the breaks.

    Now, compare this to “repurposing” $100 billion in debts owed to the Treasury to buy votes from college graduates.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  260. Also, “never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity.”

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  261. Declare victory then stick your fingers in your ears. Very mature. If you’re not listening, there’s no point in my talking, is there?

    There is no point in my listening to your repeated lack of argument. Show me actual acts of authoritarianism.

    You know, like where he made self-employed people (who largely had health insurance) buy triple-priced health insurance from state-run exchanges so that deadbeats would get subsidized without affecting most of the voters.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  262. If I call someone a thief, it is my job to point out acts of thievery. If I call someone a cheat, I have to point out those acts, too. It is an adequate defense against such charges to note that no such examples are forthcoming.

    For example, If it called Trump stupid, or incompetent, or an assh0le or a bigot, I would have no problem listing things of that sort. But for the life of me all I hear about Trump is that “he wanted to be an authoritarian because I have really good telepathy!”

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  263. * if I

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  264. I am not a trump hater and voted third party so I didn’t have to vote for biden. (hillary clinton II) Separate babies from their moms and incarcerating them which got AOC elected in 2018 comes as close as I can think of for authoritarianism or asking the military to shoot down protesters in washington (they refused) like kent state. Still trump was no worse then biden in results. Had trump won AOC would have become president in 2024 now she will have to wait.

    asset (93ddbc)

  265. Kevin, you’ve been given several examples which you evaded by whatabouting Obama and Biden. But if it will make you happy I’ll repeat the example which by itself is more than enough to prove Trump an authoritarian. He attempted to overturn an election to stay in office beyond his term.

    lurker (cd7cd4)

  266. Re: Kevin vs “everybody”

    Not to take a side, but one party is attacking the message, while the other is attacking the messenger. You know on what side you are.

    felipe (484255)

  267. lurker (cd7cd4) — 10/23/2022 @ 2:23 am

    He attempted to overturn an election to stay in office beyond his term.

    Very bad, but not quite authoritarian. He needed other people to do it for him (and it actually was for a new term) and he had to lie a lot to try it, and he didn’t succeed.

    Authoritarian would have been acting like Philippine president Ferdinand Marcos did in 1972 when facing the end of his second and last allowed term, or following Mike Flynn’s (Putin inspired?) advice to declare martial law .(Even that would only have been as only a sure-to-fail attempt to seize voting machines after the ballots had been counted and certified.)

    (What can be said is that Trump did not respect democracy after the 2020 election)

    Sammy Finkelman (b434ee)

  268. Yes, “guilt by association” is most unfair, and I sympathize and will condole with you while sustaining your just objection.

    felipe (484255)

  269. Sammy Finkelman (b434ee) — 10/23/2022 @ 6:45 am

    This is how to attack the message. Thanks, Sammy, you set a good example.

    felipe (484255)

  270. In the spirit of comity, I will agree with Kevin that Democrat policies tend to be more authoritarian in nature, whether its controlling the means of self defense, the size of soft drink containers, or how we procure health care. I will also concede that both sides push the boundaries on using Constitutional power and seeking electoral advantage. Biden was no less wrong in pushing for people in “big” companies to be vaccinated than Trump was wrong in trying, via fiat, to ban all Muslims from entering the country. Both exceeded Constitutional authority

    Both sides use fear and exaggeration of the other side to win votes and power. Trump appeals to nationalism; Democrats appeal to social justice. Both lie and distort, though some may be more brazen than others. It doesn’t excuse it.

    Much of the problem with Executive over-reach is because hyper-partisanship has paralyzed Congress and it addresses little through the consensus of normal business. Something will fill this power vacuum. We the people aren’t demanding compromise and finding middle ground…which has consequences.

    But I still see Trump as unprecedented because he openly shows little regard for what is legal or constitutional, what norms he abandons, which institutions he damages, and how much polarization he aggitates in the country. Rules and truth are inconveniences that inhibit his ambitions. It is explicit and obvious. People latch onto this and it starts to influence what they consider proper. It moves the Overton Window.

    Call it what you want, but it’s a severe bar-lowering by the GOP that shouldn’t be excused by reflexively pointing at the other side. Character matters. There are so many examples of where Trump pressured associates and others to do the wrong thing. For Kevin to not want to meaningfully address this…..is……well…..disappointing.

    AJ_Liberty (15d88c)

  271. Character matters

    so do words and their plain meaning

    misappropriating funds to build a border wall is authoritarian, while flaunting the rule of law at the border for political gain is not

    firing subordinates is authoritarian, but firing thousands of subordinates for refusing to get injected with a covid vaccine is not

    pressuring electors to reject the outcome of an election in 2020 is authoritarian, but in 2016 it wasn’t

    leveraging foreign aid to get dirt on a political opponent is authoritarian, but using $1million of taxpayer funds to buy dirt from foreign sources is not, and pressuring an oil producing country to delay production cuts until after the election is not

    dumbing down plain english is just another reflex the usual suspects here have in common with the left and actual authoritarianism

    JF (df2703)

  272. and, if commenters here are to be believed, waging war against a foreign country without declaring war is not authoritarian in the least

    JF (df2703)

  273. Yes, Christian nationalism is a thing.

    Paul Montagu (753b42)

  274. Paul Montagu (753b42) — 10/23/2022 @ 8:12 am

    Yes. Anti-Christian nationalism is a thing.

    JF (df2703)

  275. I am not a trump hater and voted third party so I didn’t have to vote for biden.

    Voting for a third party that has no chance of winning is the same as voting for the eventual winner.

    You did indeed vote for Biden.

    BuDuh (c9f752)

  276. JF, I do wish you can get your SHIFT key fixed so you can find the joy of using the exclamation mark on some of your sentences.

    That said, let me come at this from a different angle…because the logical conclusion from what you wrote is that both sides are either authoritarian (equally?) or neither side is authoritarian. My larger point is that we no longer demand that our politicians act honorably and that has consequences for future corruption….and changing our democracy.

    Few here would say Trump did not try to obstruct the Mueller investigation….the worst case being when he asked Don McGahn to draft a memo falsely saying that Trump never asked him to fire Mueller. Few would say the Ukraine extortion call was in fact a “perfect call” or that doing nothing while his protesters rioted at the Capitol was doing was his job. The consensus on the Right was that these things were wrong…on some level, just not impeachable.

    But where the Overton Window has moved is that the overwhelming majority of Republicans will not unequivocally reject Trump from a return to the Presidency (he still leads most polls and rakes in contributions…he is the de facto king-maker!). They are fine with supporting someone who likely broke the law multiple times and should have been impeached…and may yet be indicted. Think how extraordinary that is. It would be like if the GOP pushed for Nixon to return and replace Carter (modulo the Constitutional hurdle….but in existential times, why even let that get in our way).

    Is this authoritarian to want a candidate with so little regard for rules, laws, norms, and institutions…unrestrained by the need to get re-elected…and who has shown so little respect for the need for peaceful election transition? RealClearPolitics has Trump with over a 2:1 advantage over DeSantis in EVERY poll, with everyone else in single digits. This tells me the GOP wants someone who will NOT follow the rules….how is this NOT authoritarian….or does it just not matter?

    AJ_Liberty (15d88c)

  277. Few here would say Trump did not try to obstruct the Mueller investigation

    the mueller investigation, by its very existence, to dig for trump russia collusion, moved the overton window

    i agree trump didn’t play along with a rules section written just for him, which is authoritarian, whereas the fishing expedition which leveraged federal prosecutorial power wasn’t

    got it

    and six years later he still hasn’t been prosecuted for anything

    we’re dealing with a new normal, further towards the bottom of public civility and respect for institutional power, and trump didn’t drive us there

    JF (df2703)

  278. You did indeed vote for Biden.

    False. A protest vote is every bit a vote for Trump as it is for Biden, and we have an Electoral College.

    Paul Montagu (753b42)

  279. Paul wrong again?

    Big surprise.

    A protest vote for someone who is sure to lose is actually a vote for the eventual winner. It is indisputable.

    BuDuh (c9f752)

  280. Yes. Anti-Christian nationalism is a thing.

    JF (df2703) — 10/23/2022 @ 8:27 am

    Whether it’s a thing or not is probably incidental to the fact that some commenters seem to be unaware that Christianity was so deeply ingrained in to the culture of the US at its founding, that states had established churches for decades after the Revolution, and that church attendance after World War II was consistently in the low 70% rate up until 2000. Not coincidentally, it’s fallen off a cliff since then as many of the Protestant churches in particular began adopting the ideology of the college campus, as Christians saw their churches bow to the demands of the world rather than act as a bulwark against it, while supposedly “conservative” churches adopted the philosophy of the Prosperity Gospel and tried to make church “hip” for young people rather than cleave to its centuries of scripture-based ministry.

    Which was really the whole point of the secular left infiltrating these institutions to begin with–let’s not forget, for example, that the Episcopelian Church was protecting FALN in the 1970s when that group at the height of its domestic terrorist activities.

    For those who imply that Christian nationalism is some sort of insidious threat to the US is to give the game away. It’s not Christian nationalism that’s the threat, but universities who act as seminaries for various forms of marxist-inspired ideology (a quick reminder that Marx hated religion, but Christianity in particular, as have his intellectual progeny such as Gramsci and Marcuse), and the churches became the mouthpiece of the Antichrist.

    Factory Working Orphan (bce27d)

  281. @271

    But I still see Trump as unprecedented because he openly shows little regard for what is legal or constitutional, what norms he abandons, which institutions he damages, and how much polarization he aggitates in the country. Rules and truth are inconveniences that inhibit his ambitions. It is explicit and obvious. People latch onto this and it starts to influence what they consider proper. It moves the Overton Window.

    Call it what you want, but it’s a severe bar-lowering by the GOP that shouldn’t be excused by reflexively pointing at the other side. Character matters. There are so many examples of where Trump pressured associates and others to do the wrong thing. For Kevin to not want to meaningfully address this…..is……well…..disappointing.

    AJ_Liberty (15d88c) — 10/23/2022 @ 7:27 am

    Here’s my frustrations with these debates, and I’m sure it’s part of what’s animating Kevin M as well.

    First, there’s very, very little, if at all that Trump did that was unprecedented. ALL Presidents pushed the extremity of their executive powers. In fact, the *only* thing that I’d argue that was unprecedented in his entire term that he bears 100% responsibility was his delayed response in J6 that looked like the riot was about to sack the Capital. I’ve mentioned before, that was inarguably impeachable. But the time to conduct the impeachment was the day-after J6, not the months later that Democrats used for entirely partisan purposes (to drag the GOP party). Having said that, I would argue that Obama’s entire Presidency, was far more destructive and damaging than Trump has ever done. The differences are that Obama had a very compliant media and his party providing absolute fealty to the “idea” of Obamaism, whereas Trump was always strongly checked by his adversary.

    Here’s my frustration (and likely Kevin’s): Whatever you think of Trump, put that aside for a moment please. The frustration is that during Trump’s administration, much of the overton window was shifted NOT by Trump, but by his critics.

    This is not whataboutism designed to deflect from Trump’s malfeasance.

    But we ought to recognize that much of the overton window’s movement, is driven by the absolute insane zealotry to undermine and destroy Trump’s presidency.

    You want examples? Fine:
    1) The Russian Collusion Hoax, not one of you can defend it any more. And the damage of the FBI’s reputation is incalculable. ‘Tis where many on the right are now in favor of either disbanding or at the very least, massive reorganization.

    2) The media incessant lies to controversialize Trump: It’s where the insipid mantra “Fake News” ran rampant. The worst part of this, imo, was that Trump did legit things worthy of criticism. But because of this Fake New mantra that’s entirely the media’s fault, Trump got away with a lot. Everytime a “big” anti-Trump story was written and spread and was found out later it was a mistake, most media wouldn’t correct or if they did, the correction was buried. The damage was already done… which was the point. You want examples? Fine:
    a) The MLK bust removal – lie.
    b) Trump killing koi fish – lie.
    c) Muslim ban – lie.
    …and so forth.

    3) The Democrat’s J6 committee hearing: Whatever you may think of how GOP shot themselves in the foot with other opportunity, don’t defend what Nancy Pelosi did by refusing McCarthy’s pick. That’s a massive precedential change that going forward when GOPer does the same thing, Democrats has no arguments to complain.

    4) Whatever you think of the merits of the two impeachment of Trump, it’s inarguable that Democrats and Trump-critics has watered down the severity of the process, such that going forward it’s almost meaningless (as I don’t see one party having 67 member control for quite some time). That’s a HUGE overton shift.

    Again, this is not an attempt to “circle wagons” over Trump, or any deflections.

    This is may trying to “tap the sign” that JUST because Trump did a bad thing, THAT doesn’t mean it justifies to use any means possible to stop him.

    Why is that?

    Because when power changes, past actions/precedents that otherwise wouldn’t be considered, will be on the table.

    whembly (b770f8)

  282. *67 Senate member control for quite some time.

    whembly (b770f8)

  283. “the mueller investigation, by its very existence, to dig for trump russia collusion, moved the overton window”

    Life is too short to explain this to you again. Suffice to say, you’ve been misinformed. Russia did interfere in the election, including hacking the Democrat server,… which motivated investigation. Team Trump had Russian connections and business associations that had not been vetted, since the GOP chose a political neophyte for the highest office. Only extreme partisans would presume that any investigation is unfair. None of it gives team Trump the right to mislead the investigators.

    “and six years later he still hasn’t been prosecuted for anything”

    Four years of which he was President and could not be prosecuted (according to most legal opinionators). Great standard for the GOP: Haven’t got him….yet….Trump/Greene 2024! It’s who we deserve!

    AJ_Liberty (5f05c3)

  284. @277

    JF, I do wish you can get your SHIFT key fixed so you can find the joy of using the exclamation mark on some of your sentences.

    That said, let me come at this from a different angle…because the logical conclusion from what you wrote is that both sides are either authoritarian (equally?) or neither side is authoritarian.

    Or better yet, “authoritarian” is a poor substitute for describing “things I don’t like”.

    My larger point is that we no longer demand that our politicians act honorably and that has consequences for future corruption….and changing our democracy.

    Here’s the thing.

    The time to do that is during the grassroots/primary phase of any election. Once a candidate is selected, it’s too late because most people vote for party or single-issues, not the candidate. (note, I’m not saying that the quality of the candidate doesn’t hurt/harm their chances, just opining that for most voters it’s for party or single-issues).

    Few here would say Trump did not try to obstruct the Mueller investigation….the worst case being when he asked Don McGahn to draft a memo falsely saying that Trump never asked him to fire Mueller.

    I don’t consider that obstruction. Frankly, I’m in the camp that Trump had absolute authority to shut down the SCO for any or no reason at all.

    Few would say the Ukraine extortion call was in fact a “perfect call”

    I would argue many wouldn’t consider that impeachable though.

    or that doing nothing while his protesters rioted at the Capitol was doing was his job.

    I guess I’m different then. Trump had authority, even to break a statute that prohibit the military from engaging in domestic unrest (Posse Comitatus) as he’d have an argument to defend the capitol by any means in that case. That’s an easy call that Trump should’ve made.

    The consensus on the Right was that these things were wrong…on some level, just not impeachable.

    Yeah, I agree with this assessment.

    But where the Overton Window has moved is that the overwhelming majority of Republicans will not unequivocally reject Trump from a return to the Presidency (he still leads most polls and rakes in contributions…he is the de facto king-maker!).

    I’m not sure this is where the overton window is being moved. You’re basically take the position where you’re arguing about facts not presented in evidence.

    They are fine with supporting someone who likely broke the law multiple times and should have been impeached…and may yet be indicted.

    : laughs in Obama :

    Think how extraordinary that is. It would be like if the GOP pushed for Nixon to return and replace Carter (modulo the Constitutional hurdle….but in existential times, why even let that get in our way).

    What’s amazing here, is that the Russian Collusion Hoax is in the same ballpark as what Nixon did with Watergate.

    Is this authoritarian to want a candidate with so little regard for rules, laws, norms, and institutions…unrestrained by the need to get re-elected…and who has shown so little respect for the need for peaceful election transition? RealClearPolitics has Trump with over a 2:1 advantage over DeSantis in EVERY poll, with everyone else in single digits. This tells me the GOP wants someone who will NOT follow the rules….how is this NOT authoritarian….or does it just not matter?

    AJ_Liberty (15d88c) — 10/23/2022 @ 8:55 am

    No, that’s not authoritarian, and I wish the Trump-critics would stop latching onto that.

    It’s becoming the new “that’s racist!” mantra that the left uses when you don’t have a strong argument.

    Pick a better label.

    Or, better yet, just list out WHY you don’t like Trump and WHY you won’t vote for him. That’s all good and kosher.

    You don’t need to stretch the meaning of a scary sounding word, authoritarian, in order to make you point.

    That’s the whole point of @272 JF (df2703) — 10/23/2022 @ 8:05 am was trying to make.

    Same with those whole cavalierly uses the word “insurrection” to describe the riot on J6.

    Stop playing word games, and maybe we can facilitate a more meaningful, insight debate.

    whembly (b770f8)

  285. we’re dealing with a new normal, further towards the bottom of public civility and respect for institutional power, and trump didn’t drive us there

    True. You drove Trump there. He would have been content with calling Rosie O’Donnell a fat pig and groping Hollywood starlets. To have you “still like him, right?” he needed to attack everybody you have a gripe with. From Muslims up to his own Vice President. He is the pus oozing from the boil on America’s butt which is MAGA.

    nk (bb1548)

  286. “Stop playing word games, and maybe we can facilitate a more meaningful, insight debate.”

    Sorry, I fear we just don’t share enough common facts to have a useful conversation. If you believe there was a Russian Hoax, then certainly that will color all further analysis. But have a great day!

    AJ_Liberty (5f05c3)

  287. @284

    “the mueller investigation, by its very existence, to dig for trump russia collusion, moved the overton window”

    Life is too short to explain this to you again.

    But it isn’t too short to re-write history?

    Suffice to say, you’ve been misinformed. Russia did interfere in the election,

    I don’t think no one is stating that.

    The real debate, is whether or not they had much of an impact and I’d have to say, I’m not ready to say that they did.

    including hacking the Democrat server,…

    So says the heavily Democrat-connected hired investigator who has all the reasons to shape the narrative to help the Clintons/Democrats.

    Oh, by the way, refused to give the FBI investigators the source logs. (Cloudfire only gave the FBI the ‘report’)

    which motivated investigation.

    It’s indisputable that anti-Trump animus motivated to keep the investigation ongoing for partisan purposes in order to create a pall of shadow over the Trump campaign.

    Team Trump had Russian connections and business associations that had not been vetted, since the GOP chose a political neophyte for the highest office.

    Which such investigations should’ve been closed in short order. In fact, some rank-and-file investigators TRIED to close it, only for it to be maintained by FBI leadership, in obvious partisan abuse.

    Only extreme partisans would presume that any investigation is unfair. None of it gives team Trump the right to mislead the investigators.

    It was unfair, and I’m not a Trumper.

    When you have investigations based on faulty premise that turned out to be lies funded by the Clinton campaigns for the SCO to switch their investigation FROM the Russian collusion narrative TO whether or not Trump obstructed, that should all that you need to know how weak the rationale for the SCO was.

    “and six years later he still hasn’t been prosecuted for anything”

    Four years of which he was President and could not be prosecuted (according to most legal opinionators). Great standard for the GOP: Haven’t got him….yet….Trump/Greene 2024! It’s who we deserve!

    AJ_Liberty (5f05c3) — 10/23/2022 @ 10:25 am

    AJ,

    Not every alleged government mis/malfeasance breaks penal laws.

    That’s not a GOP standard, but a legit legal framework in our society.

    Now, for those alleged government mis/malfeasance that cannot be prosecuted, what else is there to hold those folks accountable?

    Politics. Robust Checks and Balances. Voting.

    That’s how you hold them to account.

    Like I mentioned in my previous posts, and I’ll restate in a different way, the biggest Overton Window shift wasn’t anything Trump had done. It’s the various ways that all the Trump-critics has done, without any concerns for setting new precedents, in order to bring down someone they don’t like politically.

    whembly (b770f8)

  288. As for Christian nationalism, plate-passing jackleg skanks with dollar signs for eyes, are neither Christian nor nationalist. It’s just a label on the snake oil that they sell and that the rubes buy.

    nk (bb1548)

  289. Hmm. Let’s try this again:

    As for Christian nationalism, plate-passing jacklegs with dollar signs for eyes, are neither Christian nor nationalist. It’s just a label on the snake oil that they sell and that the rubes buy.

    nk (bb1548)

  290. @287

    If you believe there was a Russian Hoax, then certainly that will color all further analysis. But have a great day!

    AJ_Liberty (5f05c3) — 10/23/2022 @ 10:44 am

    Probably one of the bravest thing you’ll face about this, is admitting that you were wrong. (and note, this doesn’t exonerate Trump in any way, just open your eyes to the malfeasance that happened against Trump as well)

    I’m going to link a recent NR article by Andy McCarthy, frequent harsh critic of Trump, but definitely cleared eye about the Russian Collusion Hoax:
    https://www.nationalreview.com/2022/10/waiting-for-durham/?itm_campaign=headline-testing-waiting-for-durham&itm_medium=headline&itm_source=nationalreview&itm_content=It%20All%20Comes%20Down%20to%20the%20Durham%20Report&itm_term=It%20All%20Comes%20Down%20to%20the%20Durham%20Report

    The special counsel’s looming report is the only chance the American people will ever get to hold the Clinton campaign and the FBI accountable for Russiagate.

    Special counsel John Durham performed a valuable public service by bringing to cold, stark light the FBI’s Russiagate abuses and the imperative that the bureau — its reputation in tatters — be subjected to intense congressional scrutiny and reform. Nevertheless, the prosecutions by which he has thus far made his record could be its ultimate undoing.

    In a four-year investigation, Durham has established collaboration — mostly of the nod-and-wink variety — between Hillary Clinton’s 2016 campaign and the government’s law-enforcement-and-intelligence apparatus, in an effort to baselessly frame Donald Trump as a clandestine agent of the Kremlin. What grates is that, far from being held accountable, the significant participants are still celebrated.



    Still, there is something even more galling, not just to Trump fans but to many other Americans, including former FBI agents and law-enforcement officials, who are chagrined by what’s become of the bureau: The culprits who were fired, suspended (e.g., Auten), demoted, or otherwise encouraged to “spend more time with their families” (e.g., Thibault) seem always to fail upward, landing book deals, cable-TV gigs, or other lucrative new jobs, and so on.



    To be sure, Durham’s apparent failures — not just the acquittals but the lack of prosecutions of Russiagate’s prime movers — are simply the nature of the beast. As I explained in my 2019 book about the Trump–Russia investigation, Ball of Collusion: The Plot to Rig an Election and Destroy a Presidency, government abuses of power do not readily lend themselves to redress by criminal prosecution. They cannot — at least, not if we want to have national security and the rule of law.



    Where did the FBI get the “evidence” to support the sham? Mainly from the Clinton campaign. Bureau officials knew the Trump dirt was partisan opposition-research, knew it was bogus and unverifiable, and knew it would be explosive if anyone ever found out how aware of all this the FBI had been. So they used FISA to pursue their aims, guaranteeing that everything would be classified and Congress could be stonewalled — at least until the bureau caught Trump red-handed, as its leadership was oh so sure it would, at which point no one would care how it had gotten the goods on him. Meantime, the FBI let DNC lawyer Michael Sussmann pretend he was just a concerned former government official and patriot — rather than a well-paid Clinton-campaign emissary — when he came peddling skewed anti-Trump data. And FBI officials pretended that their old pal Chris Steele was not a hack being paid by other partisan hacks to smear Trump on behalf of Clinton, but merely a former British intelligence officer and respected colleague in the defense of the West whose every utterance about Russia had to be taken with utmost seriousness (notwithstanding that Putin cronies were a significant source of his income).



    The report has always been John Durham’s primary job. There was never a realistic chance that he could make a comprehensive Russiagate record in a major prosecution. Hillary Clinton and her campaign aides had First Amendment leeway to use hyperbolic rhetoric against a partisan adversary — Clinton and Trump may be unseemly figures, but we don’t want law-enforcement agencies policing our politics. Of necessity, the FBI has a very low threshold of suspicion for opening a national-security investigation, and its discretion regarding the exploitation of legal authorities (such as FISA) in conducting such investigations is expansive. If anything, the CIA has even more discretion and the imperative of secrecy makes its operations practically uncheckable — and certainly not checkable by court prosecutions. When candidates and public officials must be given broad discretion, there is unavoidably lots of opportunity for abuse that cannot be addressed by the criminal law.

    The only chance we have ever had to find out what really happened to spawn Russiagate was for Durham, with compulsory access to all the relevant players and intelligence, to write a comprehensive report. He took a calculated risk by bringing comparatively trivial cases against minor players, before what were sure to be hostile jury pools. He has gotten the predictable results: acquittals across the board. And now, as night follows day, Democrats and other Trump antagonists are mobilizing to preempt Durham’s coming report — urging Attorney General Merrick Garland to “pause” its public release, on the argument that the acquittals illustrate that Durham, heretofore of stellar bipartisan reputation, is an unreliable Trump lackey.

    You want to say Durham has himself to blame for this predicament because he brought indictments that shouldn’t have been brought? I won’t argue the point, except to say that (a) the people he charged (including FBI lawyer Kevin Clinesmith, who pled guilty to falsifying key information in connection with the bureau’s preparation of a sworn FISA application) do appear to have provided false information; and (b) it was in the public interest to expose the evidence of government misconduct that emerged in these proceedings.

    Regardless, though, we still need Durham’s report. It is the only real chance we’ll ever have to hold the Clinton campaign and its government collaborators accountable for Russiagate.

    If you have NRPlus, its worth reading this (they do have monthly sneak peaks, so hopefully you having burned through yours this month already… but if you did, it’s worth going back to this link in Nov.)

    whembly (b770f8)

  291. it’s funny (and typical) that nevertrump bloviates on and on about all the criminal and authoritarian acts trump committed, without a single prosecution to point to

    but Durham’s failure to get more than one conviction is proof there was no russia hoax

    JF (df2703)

  292. And to be fair, asset,

    AOC is the fungal infection you get when you take too much penicillin to treat the MAGA boil.

    nk (bb1548)

  293. “True. You drove Trump there. He would have been content with calling Rosie O’Donnell a fat pig and groping Hollywood starlets. To have you “still like him, right?” he needed to attack everybody you have a gripe with. From Muslims up to his own Vice President. He is the pus oozing from the boil on America’s butt which is MAGA.”

    Let’s hear some of that classic, unlucky-in-love, pus-filled misogyny about the former First Lady Melania!

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  294. and, if commenters here are to be believed, waging war against a foreign country without declaring war is not authoritarian in the least

    JF (df2703) — 10/23/2022 @ 8:10 am

    Congress hasn’t declared war on any country since World War II, and the US was involved in many foreign interventions (such as the Banana Wars) during the early 20th century that were not approved by Congress.

    Rip Murdock (a8bd31)

  295. Like I mentioned in my previous posts, and I’ll restate in a different way, the biggest Overton Window shift wasn’t anything Trump had done. It’s the various ways that all the Trump-critics has done, without any concerns for setting new precedents, in order to bring down someone they don’t like politically.

    whembly (b770f8) — 10/23/2022 @ 10:46 am

    It’s not the president, it’s the people who criticized him, that are the problem.

    Voting for a third party that has no chance of winning is the same as voting for the eventual winner.

    You did indeed vote for Biden.

    BuDuh (c9f752) — 10/23/2022 @ 8:31 am

    Trump was owed your vote, and if you took that vote, Trump’s property, away from him, you did indeed vote for Biden, even if you didn’t literally vote Biden. You took Trump’s vote away from him!

    Maybe you even criticized him!

    ———

    This kind of thing is hilarious. Trump didn’t solve immigration, he didn’t balance the budget, and instead he printed out checks and made sure his name was on them, mailed them to everyone he could. He flailed in COVID and made some massive (and disturbing) mistakes with the Kurds, with the Taliban, with Russia, that we’re going to be paying for with American blood.

    No conservative owed Trump their vote. Trump governed by executive order, deficits, and grandiose foreign policy. He’s a lefty, he’s been a democrat almost his whole life, and if you thought or think conservatives owe Trump some kind of loyalty, you are mistaken.

    Trump fans gave us President Biden in 2016. They all know it.

    It’s frustrating. I understand the anger with the GOP, the Mitt Romneys and Jeb Bushes, that caused a lot of good people to decide to prefer Trump, out of outrage, to send a clear message of rejection for what seems like a one party political system. Most Trump fans I know in person are genuinely very good people. Not racists, not supporters of Trump’s horrible spending, not backstabbers like we were to the Kurds. Good people who feel they have nowhere to turn except a vote to upend a dumb system.

    But we do have better options than Trump. Desantis is better, as usual Texas’s governor isn’t bad, Nikki Haley is better, Liz Cheney is obviously more honorable and conservative. We have a lot of options and are told we don’t by the industry that loves to see us tear our own country apart.

    Of course, years into this mess, the folks who pretend otherwise are just trying to get a rise out of the rest of us. Which whatever, it’s generally too pretty on weekends for me to sit on the computer or phone, so hope everyone is having a better one and enjoying life before inflation ruins everything.

    Dustin (a87c64)

  296. Awesome comment, Dustin.

    DRJ (8a860b)

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    ** not to include any that are currently or have been in Chapter 8, 9, or 10 proceedings
    *** Never-Trump busting begins anew 6am tomorrow, please send in your $19.95 to reserve your spot today!

    AJ_Liberty (5f05c3)

  298. Liz Cheney is obviously more honorable and conservative.

    Is it honorable and conservative for Cheney to declare that she would vote for a late term abortionist?

    BuDuh (eaef9b)

  299. Is it honorable and conservative for Cheney to declare that she would vote for a late term abortionist?

    BuDuh (eaef9b) — 10/23/2022 @ 12:55 pm

    Take the worst thing Trump has done in your opinion. Apply that gotcha to every Trump voter. Tell me that’s how you really consistently analyze honor or political conservatism.

    Objectively, Liz Cheney’s conduct as a house member was more conservative than Trump’s conduct as president, or indeed most Republicans in the house or Senate. This isn’t an opinion, it’s just a fact. Your gotcha serves only as a clumsy dismissal, and frankly I know you’re smarter than that.

    Dustin (a87c64)

  300. Why of course it is, BuDuh. Sometimes one has to forget “muh principles” to better prep for the decline.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  301. It truly is a gotcha because you are stumped for an answer. I didn’t ask for a comparison to Trump. I didn’t pick on your other key conservatives. I only asked about Liz and her current support for a late term abortionist.

    Is that a honorable and conservative position?

    Or are you suggesting that some conservatives get a pass?

    BuDuh (eaef9b)

  302. @295

    Like I mentioned in my previous posts, and I’ll restate in a different way, the biggest Overton Window shift wasn’t anything Trump had done. It’s the various ways that all the Trump-critics has done, without any concerns for setting new precedents, in order to bring down someone they don’t like politically.

    whembly (b770f8) — 10/23/2022 @ 10:46 am

    It’s not the president, it’s the people who criticized him, that are the problem.

    Dustin (a87c64) — 10/23/2022 @ 12:35 pm

    I didn’t bloody say that. That’s an outright LIE.

    Why are you lying Dustin?

    I’ve stated, numerous times and various different ways that there are legit things to criticize Trump.

    My goal in this conversation is for some of you to at least bloody CONSIDER that the some of the critics went overboard and it crystalized bad precedents.

    Please correct your statement and apologize. Either that, if that’s what you got what I posited earlier, the very least thing you could do is engage with me with questions in an attempt to clarify my positions rather than engaging in some “poop-n-swoop” by either lying or at the very least, the most unflattering interpretation of what I’ve stated.

    whembly (b770f8)

  303. LOL

    Dustin (a87c64)

  304. Whembly

    Dustin, has served his country – he has commented here for a decade or more, He is passionate, doesnt sit on a fence, try to convince him not insult him.

    EPWJ (650a62)

  305. @304

    Whembly

    Dustin, has served his country – he has commented here for a decade or more, He is passionate, doesnt sit on a fence, try to convince him not insult him.

    EPWJ (650a62) — 10/23/2022 @ 1:31 pm

    I’ve put far more work in having an intellectual debate here.

    If anyone’s insulting, that’s on him for lying.

    whembly (b770f8)

  306. LOL

    Dustin (a87c64) — 10/23/2022 @ 1:29 pm

    Awesome comment, Dustin.

    BuDuh (c9f752)

  307. Mischaracterization aplenty, as always.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  308. “Is that a honorable and conservative position?”

    Depends what the candidates’ other positions are. Looking at her record, Cheney has been pretty solid pro-life. Perhaps she believes that the first test is whether a candidate is fit to serve and if there is anything disqualifying. For someone deemed irrelevant, she sure gets a lot of consideration here. It just burns you that she didn’t take the knee….

    AJ_Liberty (5f05c3)

  309. I too liked and appreciated your comment, Dustin. That said, as long as you keep saying,

    “he’s been a democrat almost his whole life”,

    I suppose I’ll have to keep pointing out that it’s incorrect. Over the period for which we have records of his party affiliations, 1987-now, he’s been a Republican 24 years, a Democrat for 8, and an independent or no registration for 3. Even if he was a Democrat his whole life before we had registration records — unlikely as the records begin with 12 years as a Republican — he’d still only have been a Democrat half his adult life.

    lurker (cd7cd4)

  310. It just burns you that she didn’t take the knee….

    ?

    I would ask the question differently if I thought you and Dustin had actual conviction.

    Instead it is tripe.

    Apparently you two are pro late term abortion.

    BuDuh (eaef9b)

  311. Mischaracterization aplenty, as always.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0) — 10/23/2022 @ 2:49 pm

    He condemned Trump critics, then freaked out that this comment was characterized as defending Trump. He’s a coward, like most trolls, and I don’t really have a lot of time to waste on trolls.

    I suppose I’ll have to keep pointing out that it’s incorrect. Over the period for which we have records of his party affiliations, 1987-now, he’s been a Republican 24 years, a Democrat for 8, and an independent or no registration for 3.

    Interesting point, but actually Trump is an outspoken and ridiculous democrat, and has been for years, that’s why my warning during the 2016 primary that he would govern like one turned out to be accurate. What you’re saying is only barely an argument Trump was a republican, but it’s also just campaign stats. Here’s reality, undeniable:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dtplCupGxZA&ab_channel=GOODMagazine

    Watch Trump tell you who he is. He was indistinguishable from Ted Kennedy in how he treats women, the same as Hillary on limited executive power, the same as Obama on branding himself as the center of the country I pointed out he would spend like crazy, fail on policy, and give us no tangible legislative victory (especially on immigration). And I was right. I’m sorry, but Trump gave the GOP very little to account for the damage he did to the party. Except on judges (no small thing), but note that Trump (and his supporters) gave us Biden and those judges, which is going to be a big deal in years to come.

    I’m not sure anything I say speaks louder than Biden campaigning terribly and yet crushing Trump, but the real problem isn’t that he tried to govern like a true conservative and lost a hard fight. The problem with Trump has always been he is no conservative at all. On the nuclear family, on religion, on safety, on foreign policy, on limited spending or role of the fed, he just isn’t conservative. So many issues have shifted so wildly to the left that Biden is bragging he’s lowering the deficit even though spending is at insane levels.

    If you want a conservative outcome you really need to pick someone who doesn’t think Hillary was the best secretary of state ever.

    Dustin (a87c64)

  312. Trump supporters throwing around words like “honorable” and “conservative” was anticipated more than four centuries ago:

    “The devil can cite Scripture for his purpose.
    An evil soul producing holy witness
    Is like a villain with a smiling cheek,
    A goodly apple rotten at the heart.
    O, what a goodly outside falsehood hath!” William Shakepeare, The Merchant of Venice

    nk (bb1548)

  313. A protest vote for someone who is sure to lose is actually a vote for the eventual winner. It is indisputable.

    What’s indisputable is that a 3rd-party vote is non-vote for Biden just as much as a non-vote for Trump, and I mentioned the Electoral College for a reason.

    Paul Montagu (753b42)

  314. The Russian Collusion Hoax, not one of you can defend it any more.

    It’s not a hoax, for a start.

    Paul Montagu (753b42)

  315. Liz Cheney picked country over party, democracy over policy.

    Paul Montagu (753b42)

  316. Dustin (a87c64) — 10/23/2022 @ 3:30 pm

    Most of what you say about Trump is true, including that much/most of what he did in office was antithetical to what we’ve long understood as conservatism. But being a terrible Republican doesn’t make one a Democrat, and vice versa. I assure you that liberals have at least as many valid reasons why Trump is the antithesis of liberalism as you do of his apostasy to conservatism. Indeed, if you ask the Bernie Bro/Squad faction of Democrats, the majority Obama/Biden wing of the party is indistinguishable from the GOP. Likewise, as evidenced here daily, AntiAntiTrumpers will tell you that self-identified Republican opponents to Trump are at best RINOs, and more likely Moby leftists. ISTM that we either accept how people self-identify politically or the categories become useless moving targets. There’s no self-identified Democrat or Republican who some other Democrat or Republican doesn’t want to No-True-Scotsman out of the party.

    lurker (cd7cd4)

  317. You are so hung up on Trump, Paul. Take a breath and work through this one.

    If only A or B can possibly win the race that you are tied to no matter what*, and you vote for C, you still get credit for helping either A or B win.

    *Any one who is eligible to vote is tied to election races whether or not they vote stupidly or not at all.

    Once you figure this concept out, or reasonably debate it without your Trump histrionics, we can move on to see how it applies to the Electoral College you desperately want to talk about.

    BuDuh (c9f752)

  318. @295. No conservative owed Trump their vote.

    Except they did: three conservative SCOTUS judges.

    But the ungrateflu, disloyal fleas have fled the tail cuz they hacve learned to their horror, they no longer can wag the dog. Enjoy the wilderness years.

    Glorious.

    DCSCA (008210)

  319. I voted for McMullin in 2016:

    McMullin ran for president in the 2016 election as an independent backed by the organization Better for America. He received support from some members of the “Never Trump” movement,[6] and polling taken late in the campaign showed him ahead of major party nominees Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton in his home state of Utah.[7] McMullin received 21.5% of the vote in Utah, taking third place in that state behind Trump and Clinton.[8] Nationally, he received 0.53% of the popular vote.[9]

    He now has a good chance of beating Mike Lee for the Senate. “Binary choice” is for people who can only count from zero to one.

    (Not that the concept of zero was not considered revolutionary in its time, let’s give credit where credit is due.)

    nk (bb1548)

  320. @315. Liz Cheney picked country over party, democracy over policy.

    From 2017-2021, Daughter Darth voted in line with Trump’s position 92.9% of the time, according to FiveThirtyEight’s tracker, while Stefanik voted with the former president just 77.7% of the time.

    Yeah, Daughter Darth’s a regular Wernher Von Braunn: ‘A gal whose allegiance is ruled by expedience…’

    =Halliburton= Gesundheit!

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QEJ9HrZq7Ro&t=5s

    DCSCA (008210)

  321. @311 Dustin (a87c64) — 10/23/2022 @ 3:30 pm

    Please do elaborate on how is it that I’m a coward?

    whembly (b770f8)

  322. @314

    The Russian Collusion Hoax, not one of you can defend it any more.

    It’s not a hoax, for a start.

    Paul Montagu (753b42) — 10/23/2022 @ 4:33 pm

    So, you have information that the Mueller Special Counsel didn’t find that Trump’s campaign was colluding with the Russian regime to influence the election?

    whembly (b770f8)

  323. You are so hung up on Trump, Paul. Take a breath and work through this one.

    I’d say you’re so hyperpartisan that you’re not one to judge. The logic is unassailable that my non-vote for Biden was a vote for Trump, and vice versa.

    Paul Montagu (753b42)

  324. It’s funny, because I got into these same arguments with hyperpartisans on the Left when I said I was voting for Gary Johnson.

    Paul Montagu (753b42)

  325. So, you have information that the Mueller Special Counsel didn’t find that Trump’s campaign was colluding with the Russian regime to influence the election?

    The Mueller report stated that there was evidence of such a conspiracy but insufficient for indictments.

    Paul Montagu (753b42)

  326. More than that, if I recall correctly. For the indictment of a sitting President.

    nk (bb1548)

  327. The logic is unassailable that my non-vote for Biden was a vote for Trump, and vice versa.

    But it isn’t an argument relevant to what I said.

    BuDuh (c9f752)

  328. I’ll try it this way. My position is from the perspective of working backwards from the outcome. Everyone eligible to vote has skin in the game as they will all be subject to the outcome. The vast majority of the time our general elections come down to only two possible outcomes. Anyone choosing to vote for an impossible outcome is really lazily voting for the eventual outcome. They did nothing proactive to stop that outcome.

    Try to get Biden and Trump out of your head long enough to check me on my reasoning.

    BuDuh (c9f752)

  329. @276 Tell that to the eventual winner hillary clinton or al gore that voting for nader and jill stein was voting for the eventual winner.

    asset (6dd309)

  330. Hillary and Al were both Presidents…

    Weird sarcasm that misses the point.

    A vote for Stein was a vote for Trump and a vote for Nader was a vote for Bush.

    It is a simple concept, if you vote like you don’t care about the only two possible outcomes the you are responsible for the result.

    BuDuh (c9f752)

  331. The Mueller report stated that there was evidence of such a conspiracy but insufficient for indictments.

    Paul Montagu (753b42) — 10/23/2022 @ 6:07 pm

    no it said there was NO evidence – thats the spin the left put on it – made it sound like real news

    Doesnt mean you dont have legitimate criticism of Trump, but he didnt collude at all with russia – Hillary and the FBI did though…

    EPWJ (650a62)

  332. no it said there was NO evidence – thats the spin the left put on it – made it sound like real news

    No, it didn’t. The report stated that they did not establish such a conspiracy, and this is how Mueller described “did not establish”. Quote:

    The report describes actions and events that the Special Counsel’s Office found to be supported by the evidence collected in our investigation. In some instances, the report points out the absence of evidence or conflicts in the evidence about a particular fact or event. In other instances, when substantial, credible evidence enabled the Office to reach a conclusion with confidence, the report states that the investigation established that certain actions or events occurred. A statement that the investigation did not establish particular facts does not mean there was no evidence of those facts.

    Emphasis mine. To repeat, if there were no evidence, Mueller would’ve said “absence of evidence”. Instead, he said “did not establish”, clearly meaning there was evidence of a criminal conspiracy but not enough to “reach a conclusion with confidence”, i.e., be able to render indictments.

    Paul Montagu (753b42)

  333. BuDuh, seriously, I had liberals whining at me that my vote for Gary Johnson was a vote for Trump, using your same flawed logic, and you’re still not getting that a candidate still has to earn my vote. I don’t do automatic or default votes for the Republican just because I’m a Republican, not since I returned to the party four years ago.
    And you’re still not understanding the Electoral College. A vote for Trump in WA State was every bit as impossible as a vote for Gary Johnson or Larry Hogan, where Trump lost by 16 in 2016 and 19 in 2020.

    Paul Montagu (753b42)

  334. Blaming it on the State doesn’t change the fact that you voted for someone who could not possibly win and thereby threw your vote towards the winner.

    You need to take the names of the candidates out of the discussion so the concept dawns on you. Assuming you haven’t already done that and are sweating the corner you have painted yourself into by simple admission of the truth about throw away voting.

    BuDuh (eaef9b)

  335. BTW, no one forces you to live in a Blue State. That is why “my hands are tied by the Electoral College” excuses don’t work.

    BuDuh (eaef9b)

  336. You really don’t get it, BuDuh. Moving on.

    Paul Montagu (753b42)

  337. Please do.

    BuDuh (eaef9b)


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