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Brace Yourselves for the Age of Trump

November 22, 2016

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Here in Philadelphia, a sudden cold snap brought an abrupt end to a long and dazzling Indian summer. As the wind skittered across our garden and sent the dead leaves flying, I stepped outside and took a fond last look at the annuals. They were still bursting with blooms, but tonight would bring the first frost. Tomorrow they’d most likely be defunct, and a long winter lay ahead.

I left the flowers to their fate and thought about the despondent mood shared by so many Americans in the wake of Donald Trump’s improbable victory. It’s as if we were on the eve of a killing frost, and those of us who loved the warmth and color of American life had gone into mourning.

He did it. He really did it. The most unconventional, intemperate, uncouth and narcissistic presidential candidate in memory snatched an electoral triumph from the anointed one, the articulate and female one — the well-connected progressive globalist in the smartly tailored pants suit.

Who would have believed it a year ago? Who can believe it now, two weeks after the election? We’ve witnessed one of the most stunning upsets in American political history, and it’s still sinking in.

Sometimes, in my darker moments, I feel as if we’ve drifted into uncharted waters during the Age of Exploration. Many of us are wondering if we’ll soon be sailing over the edge.

Hillary Clinton won the popular vote by a comfortable margin, so how did she blow the election? Simple: her campaign essentially snubbed the pivotal (and populous) Rust Belt states. Even more disastrously, she snubbed the downwardly mobile, demoralized, mostly white workers who used to constitute the rock-solid core of the Democratic base. Joe Biden never would have made that mistake.

Meanwhile, the Democrats focused on cementing their bond with minorities and the progressive elite — an unlikely urban alliance of the underprivileged and overprivileged: inner-city poor, well-educated people of all colors, student activists and affluent coastal chardonnay-sippers. They encouraged the ironclad grievance narratives of blacks, feminists, gays, transgender people and other self-conscious subsets of American society.

Identity politics surged to the forefront of Democratic discourse. The social justice warriors glowed with righteous (and frequently self-righteous) passion. Solidarity with progressive social causes became almost mandatory for admission to the more desirable social circles. Stepping off the “reservation” on any issue could mean ostracism, an unceremonious unfriending on Facebook and the gnashing of teeth.

Democrats like to style themselves as the party of diversity, and that’s fine. But their brand of diversity hasn’t extended to evangelical Christians, blue-collar workers, old white men, rural Americans, cultural conservatives and other untouchables. On the contrary, the social justice warriors blame these outcasts for most of society’s ills: not only racism, misogyny and homophobia, but gun violence, xenophobia, religious intolerance and stubborn opposition to science.

Many of these accusations are true enough, but they all depend on the kind of sweeping negative stereotypes that good liberals revile when they’re aimed at non-Christians and people of color. It doesn’t seem to matter. In some circles, whiteness itself is to be reviled and white history systematically stripped of honor. Down with Columbus, Jefferson, Robert E. Lee, Woodrow Wilson and even that noble slaveholder George Washington!

Eventually the conservative white outcasts had all they could take. What happened next? They forged their own renegade brand of identity politics. They became conscious of their whiteness and their increasing marginalization by the forces of demographic and cultural change. You could say the Klan went mainstream; call it KKK Lite. It was an understandable reaction to being despised by the Democrats and threatened by the future, but it wasn’t pretty.

Even before Trump’s victory, we saw signs that a white resistance movement was brewing. The far right’s populist Tea Party revolt should have been a tip-off. Ditto for the perverse gun mania that proliferated across the republic, especially after well-publicized mass shootings. Ditto for the Obama Derangement Syndrome that afflicted so many opponents of the 44th president from day one.

Granted, much of the Obamaphobia was based purely on political differences. And yes, Obama could have used his bully pulpit to heal America’s deepening racial rift instead of reflexively siding with every Black Lives Matter grievance. But I still wonder how a thoughtful, mildly liberal biracial president could have provoked such over-the-top hostility from the right. The fact that Obama was smart, dignified, classy and morally above reproach seemed to infuriate his enemies all the more.

Suddenly Trump arrived on the scene as a conduit for their rage, and Trump Nation was born. Trump’s own racist propensities have been greatly exaggerated. He hasn’t maligned blacks, he doesn’t plan to harass Muslim Americans, and his proposed vendetta against illegal immigrants extends mainly to criminals and gang members. At least that’s what he tells us.

Still, it’s no exaggeration to say that Trump liberated a few decades’ worth of pent-up racial and religious animosity within the white outcast class. The orange-faced billionaire hustler from Queens broke the dam that had been holding all that resentment in check. His crass bluntness suddenly made America safe for bigotry.

The stormfront has been blowing in from the right. Exultant Trumpistas have been rampaging across the countryside with random acts of vandalism, fascist graffiti and verbal abuse. Neatly dressed Neo-Nazis have been hailing Trump and calling for the establishment of an Aryan state. This is not a joke, and the civilized world is aghast.

Trump publicly warned these fanatical hatemongers to “just stop it,” but it’s anyone’s guess if they’ll listen — or if he genuinely wants them to. Meanwhile, the president-elect has been filling his inner circle with an assortment of hard-line archconservatives and alt-right provocateurs. There’s not a single Mister Rogers among them. These dudes (and so far they’re all vintage white dudes) mean business.

Now the left is in full panic mode. Salon, Daily Kos, Huffington Post, MSNBC and all the other left-leaning news sources in the Western world are rushing to cite each new nugget of evidence that Trump’s triumph represents the second coming of the Third Reich. Children of illegal immigrants wonder if they’ll be yanked out of school and deported. American Muslims worry about internment camps.

Does The New Moderate insist that “it can’t happen here”? Not exactly. You could lose money betting on the sanity of a president who tweets at 3 a.m. and asks for equal time on Saturday Night Live. But I trust even a conservative Republican Congress to override President Trump if he starts emulating Herr Hitler.

The president-elect might not know his Constitution, but the saner heads in Congress do. Besides, I suspect they wouldn’t mind handing the sceptre of power to a level-headed right-winger like Mike Pence if Trump goes ballistic on the job.

Where do we go from here? Until further notice (or an unprecedented sleight of hand by the Electoral College in December), we have to accept Trump as our president. That’s the nature of a democratic (small d) republic. We can hope he makes good on his promise to revive American manufacturing jobs, restore our crumbling infrastructure and undercut the influence of lobbyists in Washington. As for the rest of his agenda, not so much.

Trump’s relatively magnanimous victory speech, his civil meeting with Obama and his reassuring demeanor on 60 Minutes gave me reason to hope that his ugly campaign was mere vulgar showmanship designed to bedazzle the disaffected masses. He’s been backpedaling on some of his signature wingnut positions: building the Mexican wall, locking up Hillary Clinton, denying manmade global warming. But no, some of his recent antics (e.g., insisting that theaters should be “safe spaces”) have convinced me that Trump will always be Trump.

Yes, I’m concerned about the Trump presidency that looms ahead. Many of us (myself included) feel that we’re entering a bleak dystopian world spun from the imagination of Orwell or Philip K. Dick. I’m not despairing just yet, but I’m keeping my eyes open.

As a diehard moderate, I’m even more concerned about the gaping divide between progressives and conservatives in this country. Their chronic antagonism, a long and venerated American tradition, has deepened into blind hatred. Both sides isolate themselves in their comfy ideological cocoons; they tend to read only the opinions that confirm their biases. And they’ve adopted a zero-tolerance policy toward the opposition.

Reinforced by hysterical fake-news headlines, one-sided Facebook memes and a chorus of like-minded peers in their amen corners, their biases have been growing into strange, malevolent creatures with lives of their own. It’s almost as if the left and right are evolving into separate and incompatible species, and all of us should be alarmed by this trend. We need to merge again, desperately.

Meanwhile, behold the sad ruins of what used to be a lush and vibrant garden. The frost is spreading, and the flowers are dying. Unless all of us can rally around the common ideals that used to make us Americans, I’m afraid we’re headed for a brutal winter.

 

Rick Bayan is founder-editor of The New Moderate.

 

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1,107 Comments leave one →
  1. Dennis Gauss permalink
    November 22, 2016 4:20 pm

    Echoes of “The rise (& fall maybe)of the Third Reich

  2. November 22, 2016 6:10 pm

    “But I still wonder how a thoughtful, mildly liberal biracial president could have provoked such over-the-top hostility from the right. The fact that Obama was smart, dignified, classy and morally above reproach seemed to infuriate his enemies all the more.”

    This is way more glowing than I would put it. He wasn’t without virtue but certainly much more liberal than most of America and I think my definition of “morally above reproach” must be a touch more stringent than yours.

    If he had been as you just described him I guarantee Trump wouldn’t be president elect.

    • November 22, 2016 11:11 pm

      Amen. Obama created Trump. That will be his legacy.

    • December 14, 2016 6:12 am

      Maybe Trump’s win is not for the standard reasons the media discusses. Let’s consider people vote on the overall effectiveness of the economy, and current POTUS + obstructionist congress did not do enough. Professor Alan Lichtman predicted Trump’s win due to a pattern he has studied since Abraham Lincoln. He argues political parties do not hold office term after term. In short, people are TIRED of government not working for them, just the 1%. Americans want change.

  3. Grand Wazzoo permalink
    November 22, 2016 8:03 pm

    Home run Rick, you nailed it, my hat is off.

    My band just played 2 gigs deep in trump country, (what in Vermont? Yes, the VFW and an opening day of deer hunting bash at a very rural restaurant and bar). There I was, all surrounded by trumpites without question and they could not have been nicer, more enthusiastic, more decent. I am not afraid of trump’s followers as individuals in most cases. Its the group psychology, basically very decent people following their leader, who’s life has already shown a character so dubious that it seems that at least 1000 editorial boards, including those of perpetually conservative papers, stated that he does not have the character to be president. Be that as it may he is president and whatever character he has that is what we are stuck with. Where trump leads they will follow, and there is nothing, NOTHING, so bad that he could do that many of his followers would notice or care. The Germans were a decent people with a highly civilized culture and then… Oh well it was just a one-off right? Well, the communist revolution happened and how its results looked 1 day, 1 week, 1 month, 1 year, 1 decade and 100 years later were all very different things. Its going to be that way with the trump revolution. Perhaps it will be held in check here by the Constitution and the basic decency of Americans. Perhaps.

    Watching people who should know better rationalize and turn a blind eye to what’s happening (which you described perfectly and pulled no punches, my hat is off to you) so far with trump and the most extreme set of his followers and advisers/appointees is too depressing. I have had trump, trump, trump for a year now, I’m not letting my life become one long contemplation of trump and his followers.

    I bought a vintage Fender Deluxe as consolation. Anyone who wants to blog about vintage Fender amps, tennis, Soviet films, or gardening, happy penguins, cute kittens etc. is welcome to contact me. Debating trump and the trump era with his converts is not going to swallow me. Time will tell what he will do, whether he will somehow improve us or degrade us even further.

  4. November 22, 2016 11:11 pm

    I will so interested in how this all plays out. At the least. it will not be business as usual.

  5. November 22, 2016 11:13 pm

    “Yes, I’m concerned about the Trump presidency that looms ahead. Many of us (myself included) feel that we’re entering a bleak dystopian world spun from the imagination of Orwell or Philip K. Dick. I’m not despairing just yet, but I’m keeping my eyes open.

    No, I am not worried. If the Republic can survive Barack Obama, it can survive Donald Trump.

  6. November 23, 2016 1:16 am

    Rick I usually agree with most all your thoughts and positions, but describing Trump White Middle class as;

    “They became conscious of their whiteness and their increasing marginalization by the forces of demographic and cultural change. You could say the Klan went mainstream; call it KKK Lite. ”

    I find this more unacceptable than Hillary calling Trump supporters “deplorables”. Being deplorable can involve any number of unacceptable positions contrary to liberal teachings. Accepting any teachings of the KKK is far worse and describing the white middle class voter that is tired of laws not being enforced as required by the constitution, infringing on rights of the white straight people while giving fringe groups more rights than is guaranteed, taxing the middle class while giving breaks to the rich and well connected, looking out for burger flippers and $15.00 an hour while ignoring trade agreements that ship $35.00 an hour job overseas and insuring the uninsured while raising rates on families and taking away the provider networks they once had is not being KKK lite. That is being pissed off at the leaders they elected to represent them and they have not received any representation for more than 8 years. One can say it has been 30+ years that some of the wage and income issues have developed, but it has been the last 8 years where the minorities (legal and illegal)have been given rights never guaranteed by the constitution as interpreted by the white middle class. And they were willing to fire the party that is not looking out for them and casting a vote for someone who just might make a difference.

    • November 23, 2016 2:52 pm

      Well said, Ron. Of course, we do not have the right to object to being called names. This is 2016, don’t you know.

  7. November 23, 2016 9:22 am

    First let recommend this read for a more accurate picture of many Trumpers: http://forsetti.tumblr.com/post/153181757500/on-rural-america-understanding-isnt-the-problem

    I live in rural Appalachia. My roots are DEEP here. Before that in o-so-red Texas for 21 years. This article is true for a huge segment of the population. We may have overcome overt racism, but overcoming hidden racism will be much more difficult. For one thing, most of my white friends truly believe they are not racist. But when I taught in inner city Dallas, most of them showed what was really in their minds. Although I taught there and never had any problems, most of my white friend thought I was crazy even though I’m the one who went there everyday…there was no convincing them that it wasn’t dangerous. Too many years of news programs focusing on the “terrible” inner city (black people).
    My country friends, who only know the handful of blacks we have here…think they are experts on the black community and again my knowledge is false. My white friends here tell me racism is over with…but my former inner city students (now in their late 30s-early 40s) tell me different. Which ones do you think I believe?

    And on the minds of the white people that read my words…I would bet my bottom dollar that they are thinking the majority of these “kids” had babies as teens, live on drugs and welfare, live in prison or die in gang shoot outs. Your first thought was probably not that they have college degrees, yes, even some masters & PhDs, that they own businesses and some have ministries.

    I am so grateful for the 5 years I spent in inner city Dallas, for they opened my eyes. I realized I was racist in some ways. I’ve worked to educated white people since then. Unfortunately alot of them don’t want to be educated.

    Thankfully, as those born before 1960 die off, we will have less of this insanity.

    • Grand Wazzoo permalink
      November 23, 2016 9:49 am

      And a home run for you. Beautifully said and explained. Those who don’t want to see that there is this side will just keep their eyes closed. Some very excellent people will do this. What could be more frustrating?

    • November 23, 2016 10:45 am

      I read your article. I also grew up in a small town in Kansas. Your article describes a sliver of that population and I am certain rural populations elsewhere. It is not an accurate picture. Really I do not understand why it’s OK to describe white rural people in this way, if people stereotyped Muslims or a Hispanics in this way it would be considered incredibly offensive.

      These people are not some monolithic straw man of backwardness. They like the people you know and work with have many diverse beliefs. They are like people everywhere. A mixture of liberal and conservative, educated and uneducated, rich and poor, religious and fully the opposite. If you wish to understand a people the worst way to do it is to describe them in the way that article did, as a stereotype.

      The notion that people in flyover country are somehow less intelligent, less introspective, less open to ideas, less intellectually agile then the people on the coasts is beyond idiotic. I’m sure that article managed to describe at least one family somewhere deep in west Virginia, but it certainly doesn’t cast much light on anything else.

      • November 24, 2016 9:58 am

        I didn’t think I stereotyped rural Americans here. If anything, I sympathized with them for being snubbed by the Democrats.

      • Anonymous permalink
        November 25, 2016 8:48 am

        Rick your article was pretty solid, the KKK lite was a little over the top, but you threw Molotov’s at both sides.

        I was referring to Moogie’s linked article. It painted everyone right of the aisle in an unthinking clings to religion can’t think for themselves stereotype. Moogies thoughts were actually much more intelligently written. I’m not sure why she linked to an article so devoid of merit.

    • Anonymous permalink
      November 24, 2016 1:35 pm

      This is, without question, one of the finest statements on race in America that I have ever encountered. Like you, so many of my friends do not think of themselves as racist, even when they say things like, “I stopped shopping at that mall when it became too dark.” I also agree with your statement about “flyover country.” The Rust Belt states have been slow to recover and that was an enormous boost for Trump. However, Midwesterners such as myself have been slow to recognize our transition away from a manufacturing economy to a service economy. Perhaps once the “outcasts” (not a term I favor) come to realize Mr. Trump is not going to bring back jobs lost to technology there will be a reconsideration of their viewpoints.

  8. November 23, 2016 11:03 am

    Rick,

    I’ve been praising your writing AND your moderate messages for several years now.

    In this “Brace Yourselves…” post your writing prowess is there, of course. The imagery of flowers fading to an oncoming frost is a nice touch at the outset and closing of the piece that elevates your writing above most political commentary. Also there is the usual Bayan Bravery to call a spade a spade, in nicely formed phrases, after looking at multiple angles and sides of a situation.

    Nonetheless, I’m somewhat disappointed that too much of it comes across as more of a liberal misunderstanding and a liberal lament, and not enough of a moderate summary.

    When you poke a bit at one side with “…the well-connected progressive globalist in the smartly tailored pants suit” and the “affluent coastal chardonnay sippers,” it demonstrates that you are nimble, and NOT in a closed-minded amen camp, and it gives you a well-deserved license to poke at the other side as “conservative white outcasts” and “KKK lite,” et cetera. Bravo for the bravery, but you stay focused at the extremes, the most salient features, like the mainstream media did during much of the campaign, and I think you miss the true undercurrent. Too much with the whiteness and the rage. That’s a misunderstanding.

    Remember how many disliked both candidates? The Electoral victory was much more about a rational, pragmatic choice away from past decades of policies destructive to America, than it was about fringe white groups. If in September and October there had been a strong third candidate with an “America First” type of message, then he or she would have beaten both Trump and HRC in a landslide. This comment of mine is long enough, so I won’t elaborate there.

    Like you I am very concerned about the gaping divide between progressives and conservatives. I see it more as a systemic inability for both sides to see the forest for the trees, and then the communication failures that exacerbate the misunderstandings.

    • November 24, 2016 9:55 am

      Your observations are all fair, Pat — yes, there was much more to Trump’s victory than racial resentment. But I thought I covered that ground when I accused the Dems of having snubbed their traditional white working class base. And I also said I hoped Trump would make good on his promises to restore manufacturing jobs and boot the lobbyists out of Congress.

  9. November 23, 2016 11:28 am

    dtriebel, I am sure that, as someone who grew up in the heartland, you embody the sort of unconscious racism that Moogie describes. You are clearly neither bright nor self-aware, and I am sure that, had David Duke or that alt-right Spencer guy been on the ballot, you would have voted for one of them. Unknowingly, of course, with eyes closed.

    Those enlightened folks here at TNM do pity you, however, for not realizing that you are one of the ignorant unwashed, and, along with Moogie, they hope that you – and others like you – will die soon. Although most of them hope that your death will be painless. They are kind. And empathetic. And very, very inoffensive.

    Perhaps, someday, there will be a form of conversion therapy that will bring heartlanders to a heightened, righteous state of awareness. Or perhaps an perfect pleasure drug that might take the place of that overrated feeling that you get from freedom. Just as medieval clerics understood that medical problems were, in truth, a form of demonic possession, liberals and social justice warriors understand that conservative thought is merely a by-product of latent racism and severe homophobia.

    Seriously, you may be a dupe, but the circumstances of your upbringing are likely to blame.

    • November 23, 2016 12:04 pm

      Wow, that was offensive Priscilla. It’s clear that you don’t understand me and have stereotyped me as something I am not. Something I said clearly struck a nerve.

      I think it’s serious problem that people on both sides see others, not as they are, but as caricatures. I certainly don’t discount that racism exists and that it is often less in your face and more hidden. It exists in many flavors. I didn’t disagree with a lot of what Moogie said, but I think she traded looking at one group of people as a stereotype for another. Many in flyover country have unconscious views that you could call racist, many on the coasts do too. That wasn’t my point, my point is people everywhere are a mixture of ideas and beliefs. Some take what there parents are social circles tell them as hard fact and never think further. Others question everything. This is true for people everywhere.

      It is clear you very much missed my point and saw my words through the prism of your own world view. I can assure you I did not vote for Trump but I do take offense when the people I know are painted with a brush that doesn’t even come close to reflecting who they are.

      • November 23, 2016 12:13 pm

        Fear not — Priscilla was just being ironic.

      • November 23, 2016 12:24 pm

        LOL, the sad thing is, on the internet these days it’s so hard to tell unless you know the person. It’s tough to distinguish those who mock a position from those who have an easily mocked position.

      • November 23, 2016 2:50 pm

        That was sarcasm, my friend.

      • November 24, 2016 10:33 am

        My apologies, dtriebel. In truth I agree 100% with your point. I find it very ironic that those who claimed the we all needed to give Barack Obama a chance to succeed are now freaking out over Donald Trump, and treating anyone who voted for him, or even wishes him well as the new president, as moronic white supremacists, as if the lies that the media tells about him are actually true.

        For the record, I was once a daily reader of Breitbart. com….I started reading it when the great Andrew Breitbart was still alive. I deleted it from my list of bookmarked blogs during the GOP primaries, when it became obvious that it had become extremely biased toward Donald Trump~ often doing hit pieces on Rubio, and then, sfter he dropped out, on Cruz. Ben Shapiro, who is a brilliant writer and speaker, actually left Breitbart during this time, and started his own online publication, The Daily Wire. Shapiro was a nevertrumper, but he was also a neverclinton. I now subscribe to TDW and am a daily reader.

        Shapiro is an orthodox Jew, and, as he says, “I’ve pretty much worn a yarmulke every day of my adult life”. The editor-in-chief if Breitbart is also an orthodox Jew, Joel Pollack, hired for his position by then owner Steve Bannon, the so called “anti-Semitic, white supremacist” owner of Breitbart. Far from being anti-Semitic, it is philo-Semitic.

        The movement of those who want a return to more constitutional government, as well as a return to an American position of leadership in the world are now calling themselves the NEW Right, in order to distinguish themselves from the tiny, poisonous neo-nazis group that has been given a platform by the mainstream media. In a country of 350 million plus, this group would not even fill a football stadium. But, true to form, the left has decided to claim that they are ascendant in a Trump administration.

        No wonder people are frightened, They are being lied to daily.

        P.S. Lena Dunham is still living in the U,S,

    • November 23, 2016 12:10 pm

      I had a feeling my latest would raise some hackles, but I pictured the blowback coming from my liberal friends on Facebook. After all, I eviscerated their identity politics and essentially said, “You want identity politics? Now you’ve GOT identity politics — but not the kind you expected!”

      I thought I was careful in explaining that we’re looking at a collective backlash to decades of hearing that “white is wrong.” Granted, “KKK Lite” sounds flip, and it certainly wasn’t meant to describe all Trump voters… but I think Trump has unlocked some latent nastiness that we’ll be dealing with for years to come.

      In addition to the white identity issue, I called out the Hillary campaign for ignoring blue-collar workers and their plight. Instead, they pursued the strange alliance between elites and minorities.

      If I made a mistake here, it was my obvious relish in razzing the extremists in both camps when I should have focused more on creating common ground. But after the ugliest campaign in my memory, I just had to take potshots at those responsible for polarizing us. Maybe I’ll be kinder and gentler in my next column.

      • November 23, 2016 1:08 pm

        Rick: the occupational hazard of being a Moderate; you inevitably get attacked from the Left and the Right.

        Political truth is a tight rope balance act – with both extremes trying to trip the high-wire walker. Your evaluation of Trump’s election showed Philippe Petit legerdemain…

        (Do you follow Damon Linker? He has the same POV you do on liberal and Conservative excesses, and gets attacked from both sides as well)

      • November 23, 2016 2:27 pm

        Thanks, Jay. I think the “KKK Lite” wisecrack got everyone’s knickers in a twist, when I was simply pointing out that many whites now justifiably think of themselves as a special-interest group. (And we know what the historic incarnation of that group was called.) Anyway, I’ve never heard of Damon Linker, but I’ll have to google him now.

    • November 23, 2016 2:51 pm

      That was just classic my friend. You have a gift, which is of course, you were allowed to develop by virtue of your white privilege.

  10. November 23, 2016 1:57 pm

    Rick–I’ve been a big fan for many years, but your assessment of whites reacting to years of marginalization by government and cultural forces as “KKK Lite” is hard to swallow. I reserve judgement at this point as to whether the silver spooned narcissist who was our only alternative to Hillary can change his stripes.

    • November 23, 2016 2:32 pm

      RP: Remember, the operative word is Lite. Granted, only a portion of Trump fans fit this description, but some are even more radical (the alt-right Neo-Nazis in his camp, for example). And of course, a goodly percentage are respectable center-right thinkers like Priscilla and Pat Riot. It’s a spectrum.

      • dduck12 permalink
        November 23, 2016 4:08 pm

        I think it is cool that you are attacked from the left and the right. It is sort of a badge and in my own small way try to do the same. Keep it up and someday a real moderate will also attack you. 🙂

      • Rick permalink
        November 23, 2016 4:19 pm

        Ha… thanks, dduck (I think). Glad to have some company here in no man’s land, even though we’re always caught in th crossfire. As a college friend once said to me, “Rick, you wouldn’t have it any other way.”

      • November 24, 2016 11:26 am

        This is true, Rick. And dduck is possibly your most like-minded fan,

        A really well-written piece, even if it raised my hackles 🙂

  11. November 23, 2016 2:43 pm

    “You could say the Klan went mainstream; call it KKK Lite. It was an understandable reaction to being despised by the Democrats and threatened by the future, but it wasn’t pretty.”

    Rick,

    One of the dumber statements you have yet written.

    You seriously don’t know your history if that is what you really believe.

    Do better, my friend.

  12. November 23, 2016 2:44 pm

    Tell the truth, you don’t really know what alt-right means, you are just parroting CNN.

  13. November 23, 2016 2:49 pm

    “I just had to take potshots at those responsible for polarizing us.”

    That is the difference between you and me. I don’t believe intelligent people can be manipulated into being polarized! They do get pissed by being jumped on all the time, criticized, scrutinized, and assumed to be guilty until proven innocent.

    Then, they vote for someone who isn’t doing that.

    Don’t confuse voters being pissed with groups like the KKK. You destroy your credibility.

    • Rick permalink
      November 23, 2016 4:10 pm

      I didn’t mean that Trump supporters would go around lynching blacks or burning crosses on their lawns, just that the relentless identity politics of the left finally triggered the rise of white identity politics. In other words, it was a Frankenstein monster created by all those insults hurled against whites for so long. And you have to admit that some of the backlash has been scary: did you see the video of the white nationalists’ meeting that culminated in the speaker shouting “Hail Trump! Hail victory!” while half the audience gave Nazi salutes? Not typical by any means, but still pretty alarming.

  14. November 23, 2016 2:53 pm

    “Thankfully, as those born before 1960 die off, we will have less of this insanity.”

    Don’t count on it, my man.

  15. Grand Wazzoo permalink
    November 23, 2016 5:33 pm

    There is this semantic difficulty that seems to have an enormous impact on communicating about politics. Qualifiers.

    Does “trump supporters” mean all of them, some of them, or a very small minority?

    Even when I or others like Rick make it monotonously clear that we speak of a minority or a small minority all too often it is read as having made a blanket condemnation and all trump supporters have just been called some name.

    There was just an election in which by the accounts of anyone who was paying attention involved white anger and resentment, in fact it was the key element of the trump electoral college victory. But god forbid anyone, especially a liberal, should mention race or racism in connection with this election or mention harassment of minorities by a segment of trump voters.

    Conservatives are nurturing their anguish because the word deplorables was used to describe some trump supporters (you know, such as the ones chanting “throw her in prison” about his opponent). They feel like an aggrieved community

    Yet they just can’t wrap their heads around the idea that blacks have their own consciousness that involves anger over real things, like burning of black churches with various things including trump graffiti, the N-word, the KKK marches. What is wrong with those #$@^% blacks and their liberal sympathizers that they can’t just be happy americans and ignore such little things? Its the great question of many aggrieved self labeling deplorables, as they cry bitterly over having perhaps been called deplorable.

    Rick did not damn all trump supporters, he does not think like that and does not write like that. But he did come right out and say the things that some of us feel about the new tone that is acceptable to many in this country post trump election. Bravo Rick!

    I have read the posts on the National Review comments to articles by proudly self labeling alt-right white supremacists, very disgusting blatantly vile stuff. How many of them are there? Answer: enough for trump to bow to them by choosing Bannon. Enough so that their support is worth the trade off of losing moderate support which is a large number of voters. So, its not such a small number, those white supremacist voters who are cheering for Bannon et al.

    Oh well, kum-bay-ya, racism is all but dead, if only blacks and liberals would see that.

    • November 24, 2016 9:46 am

      Thank you, GW.

    • November 24, 2016 10:23 am

      Run on over to the BLM site and check back with us. Want to hang out with those choir boys?

    • November 24, 2016 10:53 am

      Conservatives are nurturing their anguish, GW? It’s just the other way around.

      The sort of nonsense and mendacity that we are seeing from the Left, the Democrats and the media is a product of their anquish at losing power. True to form, they are rioting, demanding an end to the Electoral College (the only constitutional imperative that keeps the whole country from being California, albeit with worse weather), and claiming that the Russians hacked the election. By the way, only Trump was asked if he would accept the results of the election, and, when he demurred, Hillary fired back at him viciously. I guess maybe Chris Wallace should have asked her, huh?

      Bannon is not a white supremacist, period. He is not an anti-Semite, period. Go ahead and fill your head with frightening images of Nazis and KKK running the federal government, but you will be doing it to yourself, without having ever checked to find the truth.

    • November 24, 2016 11:07 am

      Rick, I do know what you were getting at here, although I think that, in trying to balance the scales, you may ave inadvertently put your thumb on the liberal side.

      It’s understandable. Trump is a president the likes of which we have never seen, and certainly never expected to see. But he is not the product of WHITE nationalism, no matter what the left claims. He is a product of nationalism, fear of radical Islam and sharia-supporting immigrants, frustration with political correctness, and desire to get the healthcare system fixed (Obamacare, despite claims, made things worse, at least for the middle class).

      I do believe that many Americans misunderstand populism, because they have not seen it ascendant (just used that word in my response to GW, heh) in their lifetimes. And populism is anti-elite, sometimes offensively lower-class. So, liberal elitists are horrified. But the Obama administration purposefully turned its back on the working class, ignored the fears of Americans as terror attacks by radical Muslims increased and issued regulations as if Obama was the king instead of the president.

      It was all too much, and there was bound to be an equal and opposite reaction. It’s not KKK-lite. It’s democracy.

      • November 24, 2016 1:05 pm

        Well said (as usual), Priscilla. All the factors you named came into play, and they were justifiable reasons for supporting Trump. I still wouldn’t overlook the white identity issue, though. Yes, some of ese folks are white supremacists, but most simply started identifying with whites in response to the intense onslaught of leftist identity politics. Can’t blame them. It used to be that whites simply saw themselves as a “default” group, but BLM and other identity groups forced the issue by making us conscious of our whiteness. It backfired on them.

      • November 26, 2016 10:42 am

        That’s a great point, Rick. The constant reminders of “white privilege” and latent racism have done far more harm than good. There have absolutely been cases of reverse racism directed at whites, particularly on college campuses. Some whites now have reason to feel as they are the persecuted “minority” even though they are are a majority in number.

        Andrew Breitbart always said that “politics is downstream from culture,” and worked toward getting those on the right to understand that they had to tell a story and not merely talk about principles and values. Trump told a very simple story: “America is not winning any more. We need to start winning again.” It resonated.

        And, not a coincidence that Trump was a pop culture icon before he became the story teller. Just as the iconic “HOPE” poster worked for Obama’s story in ’08, the “Make America Great Again” red cap worked for Trump.

  16. November 23, 2016 6:20 pm

    GW, surprise, I strongly disagree.

    You said: “…white anger and resentment, in fact it was the key element of the trump electoral college victory.”

    I strongly disagree. It was one of the elements, not the key element. Those involved in creating and perpetuating Liberal media hysteria want to make it the key element. They can’t get enough of it.

    We’ve got infrastructure to build, and an economy to get rolling, and all races will be a part of it.

    • November 23, 2016 6:28 pm

      Spot on, Pat.

    • November 23, 2016 6:33 pm

      No, Pat, you are wrong. All 59M voters for Trump were white, male, and of course, racists, homophobes, xenophobes, etc. etc. etc. Mostly likely, a number of them were agoraphobes as well.

      You are just in denial.

  17. November 23, 2016 6:30 pm

    “Oh well, kum-bay-ya, racism is all but dead, if only blacks and liberals would see that.”

    They, of course, being immune from such thoughts. How convenient.

  18. November 23, 2016 6:36 pm

    “And you have to admit that some of the backlash has been scary: did you see the video of the white nationalists’ meeting that culminated in the speaker shouting “Hail Trump! Hail victory!” while half the audience gave Nazi salutes? Not typical by any means, but still pretty alarming.”

    Did you see the videos of the “protests” after the election, with streets, blocked, Trump supporters attacked, flags burned? You must have missed that? Was that alarming as well?

    Have the BLM protests alarmed you at all?

    Apparently, you have a double standard.

    • November 24, 2016 9:43 am

      No, I’ve given the BLM folks plenty of heat. This piece was about Trump — and even here, I couldn’t resist taking a potshot at “ironclad grievance narratives.”

  19. dduck12 permalink
    November 23, 2016 6:42 pm

    Rick, your “no mans land” reminded me of one of my favorite movies: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ypsnv50Af_I

    • November 24, 2016 9:40 am

      Ha, good one. I hadn’t heard of the movie, but I could see doing a video featuring a few guys caught in the middle between enemy camps, with the narrator explaining, “They refused to take sides. Now they’re paying for their mistake.”

  20. November 23, 2016 7:02 pm

    “RP: Remember, the operative word is Lite. Granted, only a portion of Trump fans fit this description, but some are even more radical (the alt-right Neo-Nazis in his camp, for example). And of course, a goodly percentage are respectable center-right thinkers like Priscilla and Pat Riot. It’s a spectrum.”

    I do love how you make these assertions with NO DATA upon which to make them. Seriously, your musings are now getting annoying, as you seem to think that if you think its true, it is!

    I suppose that is all you need here, an opinion.

    • Mike Hatcher permalink
      November 23, 2016 11:08 pm

      JB- This is data driven research. Don’t you remember hearing that in exit polls .05% of voters self identified as racist, bigoted Trump supporters which translates to about 65,000 people. While only .02% of voters self identified as racist bigoted Hillary voters. However, as there was a huge California White Supremacy rally at the same time as the national election, members of that group had to all use absentee ballots, and now with about one half of all absentee ballots being cast by pro-Hillary white racists, she actually leads the popular white supremacy vote by 72,901 over Trumps 65,444. Yes, Yes, very scientific, and very well documented. Errr, no, a few openly white power people endorsing Trump and perhaps a couple of supremacy group rallies filmed with Trump posters. Here is a true statistic, the highly biased Southern Poverty Law Center lists 892 hate groups (including some that are pro-black) they don’t count a group merely by having a website, it has to be more substantive, like publishing materials or having rallies or such. The problem is they really don’t know how many members each group has or even if one person could be a member of multiple groups. What they know and admit is that these groups like to try to inflate their numbers and try to project being more powerful than they are. For all we know, there could be only 9,000 in a country of about 400 million. Even if every single one of them were pro-Trump, that would be an itty bitty tiny fraction of Trump supporters.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        November 24, 2016 9:59 am

        Mike I agree with you that extremist groups inflate their numbers, like campus radicals, it was like 20-30 far left kids at UVM, out of 8000 students but they sounded like the main group at times.

        The very worst are a small number, Sadly, people one or a few shades less vile are not a small number and the proof is that Breitbart has a going business and trump used bannon to play to that demographic, at the loss of millions of moderates. They know their audience and they know its size.

        So, I agree with you about the very worst ones being rare but their ideas, only slightly diluted, have power over many millions of other people. Even somewhat diluted (or even rather diluted) its the same basic nasty destructive poison.

        On a happier note, I wish you a happy Thanksgiving and the same goes for all here.

      • November 24, 2016 10:22 am

        Well done. It is nice to see someone at least try to quantify these broad generalizations as to crucify one candidate or another. As much as I despise HC, I have no idea what “hate groups” she appeals to.

        Nor do I care.

    • November 24, 2016 9:31 am

      I didn’t claim specific percentages for the various types of voters who went for Trump. That would have been reckless without data to back me up. As I said, it’s a spectrum, ranging from center-right thinkers to traditional conservatives to the alt-right and Neo-Nazis on the extremist fringe. How is this wrong?

      • November 24, 2016 10:19 am

        You say that, yet you refuse to define “spectrum.” If there are .005% Trump voters on the right that are extreme, say that. You imply (when you say spectrum) an even distribution. Are these folks one or four standard deviations form “moderate.”

        What you do actually elevates both extremes in importance. Are there some lefties who out and out Commies? Sure, but I have no idea how many. To label this as part of a spectrum suggests an normal distribution, or at least a sizable percentage.

        Do you have data to support that? If not, stop that; it indicates lazy thinking on your part.

        If you imply an even distribution, back it up with data or remain silent.

      • Mike Hatcher permalink
        November 24, 2016 10:34 am

        “,,,,lefties who are out and out Commies?” I think you are making a valid point JB, and while I have my concerns about people like Bannon being in positions of power, one could probably just as easily make a case that some of Obama’s appointees were extreme too. So I agree with you on this issue JB, albeit perhaps four standard deviations milder and gentler in tone. 🙂

  21. November 24, 2016 1:57 am

    Rick, artful writing. Everybody got whacked in this post. Well done.

    • November 24, 2016 9:33 am

      Thank you. I thought it was “fair and balanced” whacking, too.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        November 24, 2016 10:07 am

        It was absolutely balanced. I totally agree with the whacking of both left and right. Our righties are not pleased, oh well. Moderate is moderate, it isn’t right or left. In my view its flat out opposed to right and left extremes.

      • November 24, 2016 10:12 am

        Nice rationalization, there Rick. You have a lefty blind spot. You can’t see it, but others do.

      • Mike Hatcher permalink
        November 24, 2016 10:50 am

        GW and Rick: Of course I agree with GW that the extreme are few and the less extreme shades are greater in number, but what I think you may have missed the spectrum of Trump is actually broader than you reflected, specifically I’m pretty sure that their were some extreme lefties that were so angry of the Democrats treatment of Sanders, that they voted for Trump, whereas, less extreme lefties showed their distain by voting 3rd party or simply not voting at all. So, as Ron P brought up earlier, Hillary lost votes from some Black voters just because she wasn’t Obama, and she lost angry Sanders supporters, how much of each? It is really hard to say, which IMO dilutes the attempt to describe any spectrum of voters on either side.

      • November 24, 2016 11:19 am

        jb: If I have a lefty blind spot, how is it that the readers of The Moderate Voice usually criticize my pieces for being too conservative? From your perspective, of course I’ll seem like a lefty.

      • November 24, 2016 11:23 am

        Mike: Good point about the atypical Trump voters, although I can’t imagine too many Bernie folks voting for Trump to spite Hillary. (They probably would have opted for Jill Stein.) But of course anything’s possible.

  22. Mike Hatcher permalink
    November 24, 2016 11:00 am

    There has been a lot of talk about Trump having a problem with conflicts of interest with his business investments. What complicates this is the he makes a lot of his money with branding his own name. Therefore, to remove all conflicts, I propose Trump change his name. Perhaps to Patrick Alowishus Magillicutty. We could call him PAM for short. Or perhaps we could just refer to him as the B.S. Artist formerly known as Trump.

    Happy Thanksgiving all!

    • November 24, 2016 11:13 am

      Lol, Long live PAM!

      Happy Thanksgiving to all!

    • November 24, 2016 2:20 pm

      Mike.
      Trump has over 100 companies in a large number of counties. I suspect the left would jump on your idea about changing his name as another “Trumpist” move. Any number of media “experts” have said the only way to eliminate any improprieties is for him to liquidate his assets, turn them into cash and let a blind trust handle the investments. That just shows how ignorant some “experts” actually happen to be. You don’t just liquidate real estate holdings world wide overnight and if you try, you get a hair cut that makes your bank account bald. It could take years to liquidate all of his companies.

      And I also do not believe he will ever do anything where the “anti-trump” will accept he has removed himself from knowing what is happening with his assets. I now understand why for years when I asked why we could not get successful business leaders to run for president. No one that was not willing to put themselves through what Trump is going to go through would ever run, leaving the country run by incompetent lawyers and community organizers.

      So here is something to chew on. After inauguration, the cabinet is in place, his 100 days action plan is put into operation and he has things moving in the direction that he promised during the election, Trump calls a new conference and announces “I am resigning the Office of President of the United States due to the extreme negative impact my continued presence in the office would have on my businesses where my family is no longer able to run my business empire and the YUGE losses in net worth that will be suffered by my family and myself should I continue in that position and sale of these assets is required. Mike Spence will be sworn in at 12:00 on XX/2016 and I will return to NYC to resume as President and CEO of my companies”

      • Mike Hatcher permalink
        November 25, 2016 9:47 am

        Ok, Ron P, I apologize in advance in my often crazy whims have gone even crazier today. Building off of Trump resigning, prior to his resignation, Pence falls ill and steps down, then Trump runs a reality show to fill in his empty vice-president, which, since we know Trump will be stepping down, will become POTUS. Oh the ratings that POTUS apprentice would get!.

      • Anonymous permalink
        November 25, 2016 9:50 am

        POTUS Apprentice!!! What a way to jump start Trump TV!!!

      • November 25, 2016 10:59 am

        First contestant: Mitt Romney, a former governor and former POTUS candidate. Mitt is attempting to secure the job of Secretary of State, even after he called Trump a “con-man” and a ‘liar”. Tune in tonight, to POTUS Apprentice, to see if Mitt gets his dream job, or if Trump tells him “You’re Fired!”

      • November 25, 2016 6:24 pm

        Trump, the Liar in Wait, said he WOULD insulate himself from his businesses when he was campaigning, remember that? If it was ‘impossible’ to do that why did he say he would?

        And what about Mike Bloomberg, a multi billionaire much wealthier than Trump (that will change now that scammer Trump has already started to debauch the presidency for financial gain). Bloomberg, a man of patriotic rectitude, set up blind trusts, and other regulatory apparatus, to keep from committing conflicts of interest as Mayor of New York City. Some of those blind trusts involved real estate he was renting to the city and other federal agencies. If Trump gave a crap about propriety, about rectitude, about correct behavior from elected officials, he could at least make an honest attempt to do what businessman Bloomberg did. But that’s now doubtful: Trump is a deceitful greedy rat; and he has a massive mountain of government cheese to feast on.

        I am of nature a romantic who yearns for stories of personal redemption. I cherish movies like Rain Man whose abrasive and greedy and selfish yuppie, Charlie Babbitt, is transformed into a more caring person through interaction with his autistic savant brother. Will living in the hallowed historical White House as president have positive transformative influence on Liar Elect Trump, and reform his crassly narcissistic despicable persona? Also doubtful in my opinion (he doesn’t even want to reside there full time; will he be redesigning the US flag next?).

        Electing Trump to the presidency is like placing someone with pedophiliac inclinations in charge of an orphanage, do we give the pedophile the benefit of the doubt, and say let’s wait and see how he does? No, we intensely scrutinize him 24/7′ until it’s made manifest he’s not reverting to
        Prior behaviors. Its Trump’s responsibility to REMOVE the onus of doubt his previous behavior has elicited, and we’re entitled to the benefit of doubting him, until proven otherwise

        The Double-Talk President Elect has a chance to prove he’s on a redemptive path. The Secret Service is responsible for providing 24/7 protection of Trump and his wife and children wherever they live or travel. Now it’s costing taxpayers about $2 million a day for that protection, plus another $million a day to the NYC Police Dept when Trump is in town.

        Those numbers will go up once he’s sworn in, as will the number of Secret Service agents and support personnel, expected to exceed 900. The SS is now negosiating with Trumps people to rent two floors in Trump Tower for a permanent base of security operations. That rent will cost an estimated $3 million a year, if the standard building rental per foot price is charged to the government – money that will go to Trump’s own corporation.

        According to news reports in various newspapers, 40% of Trump Tower commercial space is empty, not leased. Will billionaire Trump gobble up that money and put it in his corporate pockets, or do we give him the benefit of the doubt that he’ll show us he’s not a slobbering money grubbing greedy hypocrite and lease the empty space to the secret service for a token $1 a year?

  23. November 24, 2016 12:26 pm

    “jb: If I have a lefty blind spot, how is it that the readers of The Moderate Voice usually criticize my pieces for being too conservative? From your perspective, of course I’ll seem like a lefty.”

    Perhaps being a moderate means you lack conviction?

    Who knows, I have no data.

    • November 24, 2016 2:32 pm

      Well now JB I am going to have to speak up for Rick on that one. Both the far left and far right say anyone who will look at two sides of an issue and choose the best outcome for the task at hand lack conviction if it does not fit their political persuasion.

      Rick does seem to me to trend to the left of “true” moderate, while many who post here could be considered right of ” true” moderate. But when anyone sits where they will give the opposition a piece of what they want in return for a piece of what they want themselves (ie Reagan), they are now considered lacking conviction.

      How ironic that it only took 30 years for what is considered one of the most effective GOP presidents to now be in a category of lacking convictions if he were in politics today.

  24. November 24, 2016 7:33 pm

    Scientists have confirmed what ancients already knew: being grateful is good for one’s health. Happy Thanksgiving everyone.

  25. dduck12 permalink
    November 24, 2016 8:32 pm

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=17ocaZb-bGg Now it’s Rick hunting season.
    I hope all those without blind spots and long horned pink Unicorns also have a great Thanksgiving.

  26. November 25, 2016 11:41 am

    Regarding Trump’s blindside victory:

    It was not as if Trump didn’t spend the campaign traversing across the nation, speaking to YUGE crowds of supporters, and hammering the same few policy points:border security, job growth, international leadership. Far from eloquent, he was very plain-spoken and unsettlingly demagogic in his delivery. But he remained simple and consistent in his message.

    So, as I watched the coverage of his campaign, on every network and cable news station, I heard the same thing: Trump was being far outspent in advertising, he was wasting his time campaigning in blue states, and his ground operation paled in comparison to Hillary’s. These observations continued right up until about 9:30 PM on Election Day, when, it became obvious that Trump was going to do much better than expected, and – gasp!!- might actually win.

    It’s obvious that the Democrats counted their chickens before they hatched. It may be as simple as that. Hillary had no message, other than that Trump had a bad temperament. She made no positive case for a second Clinton Administration She counted on certain identity group support that did not materialize. The mainstream media was so obvious and ham-handed in its bias that it ceased being an influence on voters, who began listening to the candidates themselves.

    And, only one candidate was saying what they wanted to hear.

    • November 25, 2016 12:06 pm

      It was quite wonderful to see how wrong all of the major media outlets were (including Fox) in criticizing Trump’s strategy. I expect them to follow suit for the next four years.

      Meanwhile, he sends Youtube videos directly to the voters. Personally, I like hearing what he has to say without editing, or editorializing. I am an adult, I don’t need and interpreter to understand what he says.

      If I like it, I like it. If not, I can figure that out too.

      Either way, it is a lot better than having Wolf or Megyn tell me how I should feel.

      • November 25, 2016 5:31 pm

        FDR reinsured the people during the depression and later through his fireside chats He had about 3-4 of those per year and was not monitored or filtered by any media or slanted by the media. No questions were asked to keep the subject matter going in one direction or the other. Now after years of media manipulation of “press conferences” and presidents “picking” the journalist that is most kind to their cause, it appears Trump is going to use a modified “fireside chat” though the use of Youtube. With our inattentive society today, these should be no longer than 5 minutes or he will lose the audience, He can speak on a subject, the viewers can view it and share it on social media to millions that may not have known it existed. This gets the message out, is not slanted by left or right wing media and there is no after press conference or speech analysis for viewers to have to watch. And this is a 70 year old man that should not even know about all this new internet stuff.

        by the way, anyone notice the recent pictures of Hillary, one yesterday when she went shopping. It is marvelous what makeup artist can do for peoples looks. She looked like she was in her 50’s during the campaign. Yesterday she looked like a 70 year old grandmother with wrinkled skin, bags under her eyes, hair with gray roots and generally looked like any average grandmother that is not in the limelight. Wonder who does up Trump?

      • November 26, 2016 10:10 am

        Ron, my son saw Trump at the Central Park Horse Show this past Spring. He couldn’t get very close (I think Trump already had Secret Service protection at that point), but he did mention that, in the sun, Trump’s hair was a very unnatural shade of gold, and because he towered over most of the people around him, it seemed as it his hair had sort of a life of it’s own.

        Trump has definitely undergone somewhat of a transformation. His hair color is more natural now, and the styling is less…..unique. The fake tan is gone too. So, overall, he has tried to lessen the Liberace look.

        I have noticed how Hillary has totally forgone make up, since the election. It is a dramatic change.

  27. November 25, 2016 12:00 pm

    This is oh so good. I particularly like the fact that the Dems are turning to Keith Ellison to lead the party. It seems they learned nothing from this election, but to double down on moving left.

    To the GOP, that must be making them quite giddy!

    http://www.frontpagemag.com/fpm/264885/progressive-disintegration-bruce-thornton

  28. November 25, 2016 12:02 pm

    An excerpt:

    “In contrast to symbolic politics, real politics is grubby hard work: knocking on doors, registering voters, and not just preaching to the choir, but converting new voters. Follow Obama’s advice to Republicans three years ago: “You don’t like a particular policy or a particular president? Then argue for your position. Go out there and win an election” (HT Cal Thomas). By the way, you won’t win many elections by demonizing nearly half of voters as ignorant, racist, sexist, homophobic, Islamophobic, and cisgendered “irredeemable deplorables.”

  29. November 25, 2016 12:32 pm

    Take from a Harvard lawyer, the left learned nothing from this election:

    http://www.foxbusiness.com/politics/2016/11/18/alan-dershowitz-has-message-for-left.html

    • dduck12 permalink
      November 25, 2016 1:32 pm

      Good link and a good bit of advice from AD, thanks.

  30. November 26, 2016 9:23 am

    JB, I believe I share your dislike for “progressives.” The worst progressives to me are the passionately atheistic, anti-traditional, social engineering types who think their top-down central planning ideas will save us from the barbarism of past history. In my opinion these people have a little bit of knowledge and consequently are some of the most dangerous creatures on Earth. In their mild form at the local level, this group includes the busybodies who, in their misguided zeal to save everyone from any harm, install “no diving” and “no swimming” and “no ball playing” signs down at the lake. Insurance companies have complicated the scene, but most rational people understand that good old-fashioned personal responsibility and common sense would suffice in many situations instead of another thousand pages of restrictive legislation. At the federal level and global level, ah, pick your own examples of liberty-choking, economy-stifling cookie-cutter progressive nanny-state extremism.

    Also, I probably share a bunch of conservative ideals with you regarding personal responsibility, work ethic, etc.

    But here are two questions: Do you see any valuable points on the so-called left, and do you see where conservative ideals and principles begin to fall apart when taken to some extents?

    • November 26, 2016 10:59 am

      Great questions, Pat.

      I think that those on the left have become reactionaries. It has happened over time, as conservatives have been marginalized in the culture, and have been shut out of the political debate.

      The progressive left has become powerful. And because of that power, they have become reactionary. A reactionary reflexively opposes anything that will change the status quo. As the status quo has become dominated by ever-growing government control and political correctness, progressives have become increasingly intolerant of any attempt to roll back big government or to call out the ludicrous hypocrisies of PC culture.

      So, liberal ideas of the 50’s and 60’s, exemplified by the civil rights movement and the anti-Viet Nam war protests, which brought about needed change in both politics and culture, have morphed into divisive identity group politics and the denigration of American military power. It’s time for the pendulum to swing back. Bill Ayres needs to retire.

      • November 26, 2016 11:56 am

        Amen. Try to start a rational debate about illegal aliens with a progressive. You won’t get five words out of your mouth before you are a called a series of names.

        So, who bothers to articulate at the costs and benefits of illegal immigration.?

        No one.

        Ditto, any issue the left holds sacrosanct. I recently posted a video of a baby that was delivered by C-section with the sac intact. It was quite remarkable and moving. So, if you were to posit to the progressive that it just MIGHT be murder to abort a baby in waiting (also called a fetus) you would get quite the blow back. Clearly, I am a misogynist and worse, right?

        No rational debate, just name calling.

        I could go on, but I think we have all been there. Diversity? To be worshiped, More name calling.

        And so it goes.

  31. November 26, 2016 10:29 am

    “But here are two questions: Do you see any valuable points on the so-called left, and do you see where conservative ideals and principles begin to fall apart when taken to some extents?”

    Sure, these labels paper over all forms of variation and nuance. Certainly, I prefer things and practices that work over time, vs. things that sound nice in theory. Dr. Sowell is fond of saying that the past 40 yrs in Western culture has been one of replacing what works with what sounds good on paper.

    The extreme form of that would be the managed communist economy over capitalism. As Milton Friedman used to point out, capitalism isn’t perfect, it is simply better than any other option out there.

    So, while I sympathize with the objectives of some on the left, I am bemused by their inability to recognize when their policies fail and that doing more of the same might be a bad idea. In my opinion, the left prefers to sacrifice long term gain over short term relief.This might be why we have some many more “homeless” people on the streets than we had during the Great Depression.

    The right certainly has its loons as well, but overall, if one favors small government and fewer restrictions, these loons can cause less trouble than those on the left who want a law to encourage this and a law to discourage that.

    To wit: In Denver, you cannot smoke in or near a eatery. It is my understanding that Denver will be allowing residents to smoke dope in those same eateries.

    Well, that makes sense, right?

    I rest my case. The loons are the left have it!

  32. November 26, 2016 6:15 pm

    Ah, but wait!! Bad Hillary has emerged from her slumbers and is now demanding recounts, after giving Jill Stein millions to front the effort.

    This election was constitutional and fair. If the Clintons and the Democrats attempt to overthrow the will of the people, there will be hell to pay. To say it would cause a constitutional crisis would be an understatement.

    These people care absolutely nothing for the country. Nothing at all.

    • November 26, 2016 6:37 pm

      I can’t think of anything that is clearer than that. The egos of the Clintons is monumental, so now surprise here.

      Hey, it is a free country, maybe.

    • November 26, 2016 6:37 pm

      I can’t think of anything that is clearer than that. The egos of the Clintons is monumental, so no surprise here.

      Hey, it is a free country, maybe.

      • November 26, 2016 10:58 pm

        You’re not seriously suggesting that if their situations were flip flopped – Trump won the popular vote by two million but Clinton won the electoral vote, and information came to light there was a possibility voting machines were tampered with or hacked, that Trump wouldn’t be demanding a recount?

        Don’t skip, don’t jump, answer the question.

      • November 27, 2016 11:34 am

        Here’s what I’m suggesting, Jay. That there is no evidence that the election was hacked. That the “peaceful transition of power” which Hillary insisted was essential to our democratic system is now being undermined by the Democrats. Whether this attempt to subvert the system, with death treats to electors or ballots found in car trunks, a la Al Franken, causes civil unrest, or merely further poisonous division among Americans, my point is the same.

        To wit, the Clintons and the Democrat Party don’t give a rat’s ass. They want power and they’ll try to claw their way back to it, even if it means destroying the country. Here is a truism that can help you understand your party ~ almost everything that the Democrats accuse the Republicans of being, generally turns out to be pure projection, and is true of them instead.

        My answer to your question is that, if there was actionable information to suggest that outside influences effected tens of thousands of votes to be miscounted, then either side would be foolish not to ask for a recount. But that is not the case. The Democrats have said that they have no such evidence.
        http://www.businessinsider.com/hillary-clinton-recount-jill-stein-wisconsin-2016-11

        Now , as far as my blood pressure. I am touched by your concern for my health. You are truly a caring person.

      • November 27, 2016 2:12 pm

        I don’t know if any election results were hacked or not. I do believe that any money that Jill Stein raises for this effort and does not spend should be returned in some form to either the sender or a charity (like St Judes Hospital for Children or Shriner’s Hospital for burn victims) that have no political associations at all, but we all know that will never happen. She will use this money for some cause the left believes in and I think that is drives her effort today.

        BUT>>>>With the ease of hackers to get into almost any electronic site, would it not be a good idea to copy some of the procedures states go through now in a candidate requested recount to verify the vote and put some random sampling into place in subsequent elections so no candidate can claim third party manipulation of any election. The problem with out governments (state and federal) is they are all reactionary and not proactionary. What good does it do to do anything after the fact?

      • November 27, 2016 11:35 am

        Haha, death “threats”, not “treats”. What a difference an ‘H’ makes.

    • November 26, 2016 9:52 pm

      Now now, Pricilla, calm down, there’s nothing unconstitutional about a recount, as numerous previous recounts attest. And where did you come up with the accusation that Hillary financed loony Jill’s recall fundraising? The $2.5 million was mostly raised online. And was the election really fair? Let’s not forget the hacking of the Dems computers, and the Russian leaks interference with our so-called democratic election. Or the improper FBI announcement of newly discovered Clinton emails, giving the impression only two week before the election they contained a trove of additional classified documents: that announcement in fact caused a the negative downturn in Clinton’s poll numbers, which immediately dropped 2 to 4 points, depending on the poll.

      Relax: high blood pressure spikes can be fatal; It’s doubtful the partial recount planned will change the election results in those three battleground states; experts are saying only a full recount of all the data will reveal substantial irregularities. And if indeed the voting machines were hacked, the procedures used to do it may be too sophisticated for quick detection or understanding by our ‘experts’. Remember Stuxnet, the malware used by the US and Israel to sabotage Iran’s nuclear program? It took years for that technology to be uncovered. Therefore it’s possible that ALL the pollsters who predicted a Clinton victory were right – but the election results were tampered with, invalidating their prognostications. It’s certainly within reason that external hacking information skewed polling algorithms that have proven accurate for decades. And in the same light, it’s possible Brexit was tampered with as well, and if so, obvious the Russians would be behind it as they have the most to gain in destabilizing Europe.

      And so it’s possible Trump didn’t win fair and square. If that’s true, I’m sure a constitutional adherent like you wouldn’t want to crown his orange head with an undeserved victory wreath.

      • Pat Riot permalink
        November 27, 2016 9:34 am

        If Trump had won the popular vote, but HRC won the Electoral College and the office, the uproar and demand for reform and recount (from the populist movement with or without Trump) would have been much louder and probably much uglier. Absolutely.

      • November 27, 2016 11:36 am

        By the way, Jay, are you aware that voting machines and paper ballots are not connected to the internet?

      • November 27, 2016 5:22 pm

        You don’t have to be on the internet to hack a voting machine, Pricilla. You can build in bugs in operating firmware components that can be activated by mobile devices from a distance.

        The Diebold voting machines, the ones most used across the nation, “can be easily hacked and controlled remotely using an 8th grade science-level education. It’s even easy for someone to put a memory card inside of it and tamper with it.”

        This all came out when Trump cried about election rigging. Multiple sources investigated, and many warned about the vulnerabilities. Google ‘ hacking voting machines’ and you’ll find a spectrum of opinion pro and con, but some very worrisome.

        Also, though Tin Hat, there are the three companies that make computer voting machines: Diebold, Sequoia and Election Systems and Software (ES&S). All are owned by big GOP contributors who have donated big bucks to Republicans in the past. Smaller Tin Hat: though the voting machines are assembled here in the US, it’s unclear where the electronic components are designed or made.

        And remember, Trump won by razor thin margins in the three battleground states that determined the election outcome: about 107,000 votes in the three states combined, all by tiny percentages as well. That means it wouldn’t take much tampering to flip flop the outcome.

        Is it likely that happened? Probably not. But is it possible? A lot of smart people think it’s feasible.

  33. November 26, 2016 7:34 pm

    Didn’t the Left and Democrats give the U.S. its labor unions? And didn’t the labor unions fight for 8 hour workdays instead of 10, 12, and 14-hr days? And 40-hour work weeks, and a few paid holidays, and benefits? Didn’t the Left fight to get children out of the anthracite mines?

    And what about regulations? We right-leaning Americans certainly don’t want over-regulation, but it is delusional to think markets will regulate EVERYTHING on their own. Surely we need SOME common sense regulation.

    I look forward to the possibility that Trump will enable some U.S. industries to overcome inertia and get rolling again. To use one of Dhli Dave’s favorite words, there are a “myriad” of ways that the economy can be jump started, including reducing some overly-restrictive regulations. But certainly we don’t want our rivers and streams turning black and burning again. It’s not simply right or left. It is the right amount of moderation.

    And so, we should definitely not be bashing “the Left” in general. Who agrees? You left-leaning TNMers out there, what else has the Left provided that is vital?

    And hopefully we will not waste valuable time and money chasing after the Clintons. The were corrupt people working within a corrupt system, with plenty of blame to go around, right and left.

    The best way for the Right to succeed is to work with the Left and GET THINGS DONE. Conservatives have had to endure some pervasive smugness and self-righteousness from liberals and a liberal media. Now are conservatives going to seek revenge or find common ground and GET THINGS DONE?

    Enough with the Left against Right. Enough with the Right against Left. Time to cooperate.

    • November 26, 2016 8:46 pm

      “Enough with the Left against Right. Enough with the Right against Left. Time to cooperate”

      And next jbastiat will accuse you of living in a fantasy world.

      The only way it happens is if we’re under threat as a nation where our survival is at stake: an all out war with Russia or China or both, or nuclear attacks from terrorist cells, or a viral epidemic in which millions die.

      The Great Depression of the 1930s minimally united the nation, but it took WWII to bond the people in common purpose. The country has become too diverse; too many warring cultural tribes with Incompatible Differences to meld us together without an external threat of extinction.

    • November 27, 2016 12:41 am

      PR.. What you are describing is a very different democrat party than the one that exist today. That democrat party had as its primary goal the American worker and creating an environment where the next generations were better off than the current generation. Remember, the democrats after the war were a very fractionalized party. And that democrat party believed in lower taxes to promote the economy and that is one major reason why Kennedy defeated Nixon. That democrat party promoted civil rights legislation with the help of the GOP membership since so many southern democrats refused to support that legislation. Southern democrats and northern democrats were as opposite as the establishment GOP and the Tea Party GOP.

      Todays democrat party is basically the party of minority interest. What is best for blacks, LGBT, illegal immigrants and others at the cost of the white working class male they helped so greatly in the 50’s and 60’s is what they support today. Thus the beating they took in the election.. The regulations of the old democrats did not walk over the rights of Americans with regulations, while today’s democrat party does not care about individual rights if it promotes a cause. How often do you read about farmers not being able to plant in a field that years ago had and inch or two of water in certain areas, but has been dry for 25 years. It is still considered a watershed area and the farmers are fined when they plow that part of the field. In addition, they make rules to protect a small fish, but then allow wind turbines that kill migrating birds because wind turbines fit into their “cause” nicely, while the use of the land that impacts the fish is something they believe harms the environment.

      Bring back the democrat party of Truman and Kennedy and I could become a democrat again.

    • Grand Wazzoo permalink
      November 27, 2016 3:12 pm

      Well, I am the “left leaner” here and I just voted for a GOP governor and was pleased to get him. I think I am more of an ex-lefty than a lefty. I am liberal on race issues, family heritage, which I am proud of. Its about my last remaining really liberal point of view.

      I have been going back and rememorizing that US presidents. I got interested in the idea via the question of the badness of certain recent presidents and how they compare with historical badness of a presidency. Short answer, there have been more presidents who have been accounted unsuccessful than successful. A lot of that is because race was the biggest issue in the US prior to the civil war and still the biggest issue for many years after it and it was impossible to resolve. It has never left us and never been really resolved. Give the left the credit or most of it for the Civil Rights movement. Most conservatives were indifferent or opposed, there are of course notable exceptions. One who comes to my mind is Bush I, who voted for civil rights legislation as a Texas congressman because he recognized the contribution of black soldiers to the war effort and thought they deserved better treatment. Not well received by his voters, and a brave political act.

  34. Pat Riot permalink
    November 26, 2016 7:41 pm

    What are America’s top priorities right now? What are the top five initiatives you would undertake, after you’d chosen all your appointees and team, if you were President Trump?

    • November 26, 2016 10:09 pm

      America’s top priority should be to rid itself ASAP of the clown it appears will assume the presidency, and tarnish the image of the president forever. Can you image parents using Trump as an icon of behavior for their kids?

      MOM to CHILD: And remember, George Washington admitted chopping down the cherry tree. And Honest Abe Lincoln returned money to a customer who overpaid. And Donald Trump grabbed vaginas whenever he had a chance…

    • November 26, 2016 11:34 pm

      1-Deal with illegal immigration. Either change the laws, stop the influx, or botyh.

      2. Renegotiate the trade deals, make them more equitable for American wordkers.

      3. Reinstall the police force as something to be admired, not attacked.

      4, Reduce regulation and free up the potential of capitalism to produce economic growth.

      5. Reform the SC, nominate conservative judges who don’t make new laws based on their own bias.

      • November 27, 2016 5:25 pm

        I agree with 1 thru 4.

        No sensible person wants a regressive SCOTUS tilted rightward.

  35. November 26, 2016 11:29 pm

    Jay, somebody has to break it to you. The “Presidential Image” you are trying to hold onto has been long gone for years. The Presidential Image you’re lamenting the end of with Trump has been phony for years.

    Even the most racist white folks have had to shake their heads and admit that Obama is one smooth talker, but meanwhile the drones go out in covert operations, billions of dollars go to Iran, and large swaths of America crumble. Phony. One persona for the Plebs, and one for covert ops. Is slick phoniness what you miss? All the Clinton scandals? Or Reagan’s special forces sniping South Americans and making arms deals. Smile for the Plebs. Do you miss Nixon and Watergate. Things have been a mess for some time.

    And what about the Plebs? What of our culture? Such a strange, warped double-standard we’ve had in this country, wanting our leaders to be squeaky clean and well presented while Americans revere the likes of Tony Soprano, Al Pacino’s scarface, etc, etc, etc.

    I too regret that our culture has morphed from Leave It to Beaver and Father Knows Best to Saw 1, 2, and 3, a multi-billion dollar porn industry that includes real life sex trafficking slavery, and cops being assassinated on our streets. We have a multitude of problems, and we needed a battering ram to break through the phony bullshit smiles and pressed suits.

    Donald Trump the candidate was the battering ram. Donald Trump the President is already more moderate. He wants a legacy. If you can’t turn the dial down on your worry and Trump loathing, then at least stop fantasizing about a Camelot that is not only long gone, but that also was not quite what it seemed anyway.

    I applaud that passing away of the PC dog and pony show. It’s now getting more real, a closer match to the mess we’ve got in real life. Good riddance to the phony pomp. Time to spit and roll up our sleeves.

    • November 26, 2016 11:31 pm

      Well said, Pat. Alas, we are wasting our efforts on Jay. He is a man of limited capacity.

  36. November 26, 2016 11:30 pm

    “And next jbastiat will accuse you of living in a fantasy world.”

    Boy, you are dumber than dirt. My father and my four uncles all served for 5 years in WW2. They shared a bond that you could never know. They also carried the physical and mental scars from those 5 years.

    My Dad died in a VA hospital, with substandard care from a government that could have cared less, likely from an illness he developed in 1944.

    Don’t pretend to know me, nor my history, not my thoughts.

    Tend to yourself and get out a bloody mirror.

    It must truly suck to be you.

  37. Mike Hatcher permalink
    November 27, 2016 2:02 am

    OK, by time line, I have the last post prior to this one was Ron P _Nov 27-12:41 am. As of that time and comment I have an award for the commenter with the most personal derogatory statements about other commenters on this thread. While Priscilla, using satire, seemed to pull out to a seemingly insurmountable lead with her tongue in cheek insults of dtriebel, JB slowly caught up over time. In fact he tied Priscilla with an attack upon himself a the Nov 26, 11:56am, calling himself a misogynist. Then he pulled ahead with a comfortable lead. So without further ado, I hereby bestow the coveted, Ad Hominem Attacker of this Thread award to: J !!! Baaaaastiat !!

    • November 27, 2016 10:24 am

      To be fair, check Jay’s posts. I think we are even.

      • Mike Hatcher permalink
        November 27, 2016 11:04 am

        In my method of counting, as subjective as it was, a) I did not count generalized attacks, thus if someone said “Liberals are idiots” that would not count under my method, or if they insulted a person that wasn’t a commenter, such as “Trump is a buffoon” also would not be counted. I only counted this thread, had I gone to the previous article I don’t know the numbers despite the fact that comments were coming in on both relatively the same time. I did have a tough time with some statements, For example: Jay told Priscilla to relax, and a warning about high blood pressure. I really wrestled with that one, as telling someone to relax in and of itself isn’t ad hominem IMO, but ultimately I awarded him a point for it as I decided it somewhat implied a personal flaw in Priscilla’ health. For all we know, someone could have blood pressure so low that a rise in BP might be beneficial. Anyway, my main “defense” and/or biggest flaw of my number count is it only counted this article and did not count perhaps an equal or greater amount of insults that occurred at relatively the same time under the previous article.

        JB: I really appreciate your Nov 27, 10:23am statement to Pat. It gives me hope that perhaps these discussions can be more constructive than destructive.

    • November 27, 2016 11:40 am

      Mike, if parody and irony are now considered ad hominem, I plead guilty.

      • Mike Hatcher permalink
        November 27, 2016 12:05 pm

        Priscilla: It was obvious to me you were being ironic with dtriebel. Yet in a perhaps a vain attempt to use “blind justice”, I tried to count things by what was literally said, rather than implied, any dabbling with trying to judge what someone meant rather than actually said, just seemed too tedious of a task to undertake. Believe me, it was difficult enough just trying to be literal.

    • dduck12 permalink
      November 27, 2016 3:35 pm

      Love the AHA, MH, and thanks for your dedication to duty. Do you have an award
      around here for excess verbosity, like the EVA? Seriously you guys are great on TNM.

      • Mike Hatcher permalink
        November 27, 2016 5:03 pm

        dduck: If there was an excess verbosity award, I am afraid you would not be in contention. You are concise to a fault. I might nominate myself for excess verbosity, but I think it just kind of looks tacky giving an award to yourself.

  38. November 27, 2016 9:10 am

    AHA!

    The dreaded Ad Hominem Attacker (AHA) award. Yes, Mike Hatcher, cleverly said. Well of course it’s not actually an award here at TNM but rather a criminal charge with a mandatory fine that I will describe momentarily.

    JB, we’re online, and I don’t know you personally, and I like your 5 priorities above, and want to talk more about those, AND SPECIFIC WAYS THOSE GET ACCOMPLISHED–HELL YEAH I’M EXCITED ABOUT THOSE, LIKE THE STOCK MARKET IS “EXCITED” and I want to discuss and explore other U.S. priorities, but the discussions are going to be thwarted, stymied, squashed if we resort to personal attacks.

    JB, point blank, man to man, I happen to be in strong agreement with some of your views, but you’ve got to control those personal attacks here at TNM or you’re going to lose respect here at TNM. We have to engage the Left in worthwhile discussion, here and in the world at large. That can’t happen with personal attacks.

    You said, “Boy you are dumber than dirt” and “You sad, sad man. May you rest in Peace” and “Jay is a man of limited capacity.” All of these are not only untrue but illegal here, and you don’t like illegals. I’ve spent some time in the penalty box myself, and so must you.

    By the power vested in me by the Guardians of Discussion Club, Local 6.5, in order to regain the respect needed to have meaningful discourse here, here is your fine:

    You must name one thing wherein the Left has it correct.
    You must name one thing wherein the Right screws things up.

    Can you do it?

    • November 27, 2016 10:23 am

      Fair enough, Pat. I will try to refrain.

      Thanks,

      JB

    • November 27, 2016 11:54 am

      Pat, I’ll put in a good word for JB here.

      He gives as good as he gets. Jay is often a nasty and rude provocateur, makes things personal all the time. Refuses to acknowledge the fair points made by others. It’s difficult to get under my skin….very, very difficult, but Jay has done it, on a few occasions. And I’m sure he considers that a compliment, so he may take it as such.

      My preference is to not get into these sorts of flame wars. My preference is to keep the attacks directed at politicians and other villains, and to stay fact-based and analytical.

      But, honestly, if JB wants to call Jay a sad, sad little man? In this instance, fine by me.

      • November 27, 2016 12:19 pm

        And, I will acknowledge that, in this thread, I have been less than sunny. Less than fact-based and analytical.

        Certainly, Moogie’s comment got the ball rolling for me, but sarcasm is not generally the way to go, and I went there.

        Here is what I believe…. that Hillary’s supporters are angry that she didn’t fight harder and dirtier to overturn the election results. That Trump would have and street-fighting is now the way to go. This recount effort is to show that she is fighting.

        To win, she would need to overturn the results in all 3 states in which she is going to contest. 2 out of 3 won’t do it. The chances are infinitesimal that she can succeed, unless something truly unbelievable is proven. Unbvelievable being the operative word.

        So, my point is this ~ if Hillary and the Democrats are willing to sacrifice the orderly transition of power, and gin up anger and division, to lift the spirits of their base? If they are willing to suggest that outlandish conspiracy theories are true? Then they don’t care one bit about the country. I don’t care if people think that Trump would have done it too. Two wrongs don’t make a right.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        November 27, 2016 12:35 pm

        Learn to learn qualifiers Priscilla. You speak in absolutes about monolithic groups, especially ones you dislike. And you ignore it when others use qualifiers, you respond as if they never took the time to be careful and NOT slander entire groups and find shades of grey. It matters, it matters a lot. Its right at the root of America’s troubles.

      • November 27, 2016 2:16 pm

        Thanks Priscilla,

        Yes, my skin is thin in certain areas as you well know. Many of you may not know that Priscilla and I know each other from our HS days. She is very hard to upset, but it has happened here. Jay is not without fault, nor am I.

        I will try to do better. If I can learn not to curse and swear, I can do that. That said, if Jay throws first, I will throw second.

        I am from Jersey, so some things can’t change.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        November 27, 2016 2:57 pm

        JB, Jay has been my one consistent ally on this election here so it has been hard to criticize his tone, I did it mildly a few times. But yes, as one watching you and jay go at it I would give equal share of the tone to both of you and I do not blame you in a one sided way for those exchanges, they have been even. And yes, he went over the line with Priscilla more than once and I made some mild comments. Its hard to jump on your only ally. If it is flames and insults, no matter how much I enjoy some of the posters opinions here the bitter atmosphere is too much for me. So, I do thank you for being big about this, pretty cool really.

      • November 27, 2016 3:22 pm

        Heh, GW, you and I have had our battles, but you speak from the heart as well as the mind, and, as much as I hate to admit it, 😉 you are often right.

        I think you’re probably right about my frequent lack of qualifiers. More often than not, I’ll put an opinion out here, knowing full well that it will be vigorously disputed by some very smart people who vigorously disagree with me. I suppose that I figure that the qualifiers can come later. But maybe not.

        Anyway, kumbaya and all that, thanks to Pat for being the peacemaker, and ….wait! Pat, I did try to answer your question about the left and right! Civil Rights and war protests…good ideas on the left. Safety nets,child labor laws, women’s suffrage, social security.

        Full stop. Peace.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        November 27, 2016 4:50 pm

        Geez, that flattery, its a passive-aggressive attack! This is just too much this time; this barbarity will not stand!

        What I really mean is, Aw, shucks, Bravo Priscilla. And thanks and the same right back at you!

        Now if I take a month off or two it won’t be in umbrage, I’ll just be just chillin and practicing.

    • November 27, 2016 1:28 pm

      Pat: Thanks for making peace (or at least a truce) in my absence. I like your challenge for our more ideologically slanted regulars to name one positive thing about the opposition and one negative thing about their own group. You led the way, and I wish more Americans would try to view politics from the other guy’s perspective.

      • Anonymous permalink
        November 27, 2016 1:38 pm

        Pat: I agree with Rick, you should be thanked for trying to bring more peace. I was also, as previously stated, happy at JB’s response earlier. Mike H

  39. November 27, 2016 5:13 pm

    This is Jay’s response to your request for a return to civility.

    I rest my case.

    “What’s sad is your aging deteriorating sense of humor, old man, that was a cleaned up paraphrase ( I substituted vagina for pussy grabbing) 0of a joke that got a loud audience laugh on late nite tv.
    As your mind atrophies, both reason and humor are early symptoms of mental decay. JB are you listening? Stop playing with your toe.”

    • Grand Wazzoo permalink
      November 27, 2016 5:32 pm

      I dunno, in Jay’s latest post he agreed with you on 4 out of 5 of your American goals. GIve it (peace) a chance.

      • Pat Riot permalink
        November 27, 2016 5:56 pm

        As usual, I totally agree with the Wazzoo: give peace a chance!

      • November 27, 2016 6:28 pm

        I don;t believe that was Jay.

  40. November 27, 2016 5:54 pm

    The refs didn’t see it. The refs didn’t see Jay’s return shove. The clock times that get attached to these posts are not always accurate, so it is inconclusive whether Jay saw the white flags waving before he retaliated.

    I put on the headset and went up to the guy in the booth upstairs, which is Mike Hatcher of course with all his charts trying to count points and half-points from previous posts, haha, but he was trying to determine if nasty invective claimed to be humor should be 3/5 of a subtracted point or what?

    I tried to consult with Priscilla, but she likes it a little edgy. She’s not about to be accused of being the soft woman who wants everything too nice, despite the red rose icon, so she just downed another straight shot at the sports bar and left me hanging out there on my own(haha). She’s thinking of changing her icon to a view of the thorns on the stem of the rose, with a caption of “Oh, deal with it and stop whining.” (haha)

    Well of course we all know what happens on most comment sections on the, uh, entire Internet. The retaliation is what happens, and it spirals down from there. It becomes Hatfields and McCoys, tit for tat, eye for an eye until everyone is blind with anger, and foaming at the mouth and falling over backwards, and suddenly talking about abortion and God when the original post was about seat belts.

    • November 27, 2016 6:28 pm

      From here on in, I am just going to ignore him. Seems prudent, as nothing is gained with arguing with someone like him.

  41. Grand Wazzoo permalink
    November 27, 2016 6:09 pm

    Well, humor has returned, can spring be far behind? (Yes, it can!) Anyway, that (humor returning) is a good thing.

    I noted at the time of a Pat Riot reply to a recent verbose post of mine that contained a whole complex of very serious ideas and accusations that he strongly disagreed with me! His strong disagreement was to replace one word, “the” (one of a thousand words in my post) with “a”. Which gave me a chuckle but I was too busy being irate to note the humor. Nice one Pat!

    I rarely drink these days but I believe I will go and have one now. I am testing the theory that I will have a better violin vibrato if I relax a bit with a shot or two and my wife is out shopping. It breaks a rule I have about never drinking alone (the dog does not count). So, if one of you would like to have a shot of something right about now I won’t be drinking alone.

    • Pat Riot permalink
      November 27, 2016 6:18 pm

      virtual drinking buddies. I like it. Like the Founding Fathers in the taverns, except we’re in our McMansions with our laptops, haha.

  42. Pat Riot permalink
    November 27, 2016 6:16 pm

    JB’s #4 priority: “Reduce regulation and free up the potential of capitalism to produce economic growth.”

    There’s one that calls for input from the Left and the Right. How do we do that without destroying the environment and trampling on human rights, etc.?

    If we leave it up to the extremists on the Left, we’ll all be unemployed and watching the thriving spotted owls and baby sea turtles. If we leave it up to the extremists on the Right we’ll have jobs, jobs, jobs, and oil, oil, oil, and no air to breathe or water to drink.

    Crass exaggerations, but how do we find a balance? How do we compromise? It’s a waste of time and energy to just keep fighting, like an endless game of King of the Hill.

    When my “hipster” son was younger, he and his friends were using the word “industry” like it was inherently evil. I had to defend free enterprise and industry. “Nature itself is industrious, I declared, “just look at the bees, and the…”

    Apparently we allowed the hole in the ozone to significantly correct itself with a switch away from certain types of aerosol fluorocarbons. We can build on victories like this? Is there a moderate agency out there trying to get the two sides to communicate? Or is it just the two sides forever locked in battle? That’s a serious question. Is there a reasonable, moderate agency that is aiming for a pragmatic balance? I’d like to join it. Or be a founding member if necessary, but I’m kinda busy for re-inventing the wheel if it’s already out there.

  43. November 27, 2016 6:26 pm

    “Apparently we allowed the hole in the ozone to significantly correct itself with a switch away from certain types of aerosol fluorocarbons. We can build on victories like this?”

    Yes, we can. I remember this legislation and candidly, it didn’t appear to generate much of a reaction. Global warming (if it exists) is much more contentious.

    I don’t believe any of us that want less regulation wants people to die needlessly. I can tell you that in healthcare, that very same legislation is injurious to you pocketbook, your health, or both.

  44. November 27, 2016 6:28 pm

    I agree, I’ve become obnoxious and abrasive with insult.

    I fear I have contracted Trump Virus, a contagious illness of mind that mimics Trumpian obnoxiousness.

    I need a cold turkey cure, and so I’ll disconnect from the New Moderate and curl up with my Annotated copy of Don Quixote (and a bottle of Jamison’s Irish Whiskey) and hope the polite civility of the Man of La Mancha exorcizes the disrepectful spirit of the Groper from Trump Tower.

    A Merry Happy Holiday Season to all… And to all goodnight!

    • Grand Wazzoo permalink
      November 27, 2016 7:00 pm

      If I know Priscilla, she will be the first to tell you to come back when you are happier. I’d say it myself but I’ll abstain in order to test my theory that she will be the first.

      And, any minute now I myself am going to begin a break, I swear it!

  45. Mike Hatcher permalink
    November 27, 2016 7:10 pm

    Wow, three posts all within the same minute of 6:28pm, And it appears that however briefly it lasts, peace reigns. I looked up the name of the Japanese soldier who did not get the message about the WWII ending, Hiroo Onoda. Hopefully we don’t have any Hiroo Onodas out there. Let us all remember that any insult directed towards a fellow commenter is a wasted insult that could have been better spent on the greedy legislature, self-aggrandizing executive branch, or over-reaching judicial system.

  46. November 28, 2016 11:17 am

    I see that Jay has returned today, so I missed being able to tell him au revoir! And, Jay, I acknowledge your point about bugs in voting machines. One of my son’s best friends at Swarthmore (does it seem as if I have 10 sons? Only 2 – but they get around.) was one of the students who sued Diebold back in 2004, so I am aware of that. I’ll address in a separate comment. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Online_Policy_Group_v._Diebold,_Inc.

    I did spend some time thinking about Ron’s comment regarding the current state of the Democrat Party. It’s pretty far up on the thread now, pushed down by yesterday’s squabble, so here it is:

    “Bring back the democrat party of Truman and Kennedy and I could become a democrat again.”

    And, I think that this is the thing that disturbs me. What happened to the loyal
    opposition? It was not that long ago that, once an election was over, the process of pursuing an agenda, complete with opposition and compromise began. Now, the only hope is that all 3 branches of government be of the same ideology, or else nothing will get done.

    Or, more specifically, nothing for “we the people” will get done. Those in power will do plenty for themselves.

    Democrats have a legacy of being the party of the working man. One of the things that Obama did was to destroy that particular legacy, and replace it with a coalition of identity groups, many of whom have little in common, other than their shared sense of victimhood. Many individuals have no sense of belonging to one of these groups at all. For example, I’m a woman, but I don’t buy The GOP War on Women, nor do I believe that Democrats have done anything for me as an American. I think that there may be a few million others like me.

    The GOP has always been the party of business ~ that’s their legacy “What’s good for business is good for America.” Over time, they have become less the party of business, as much as the party of “we-don’t-really-know-what-we-are” or, as some angry conservatives have noted, the Democrat-Lite party.

    Enter Donald Trump, bull in the china shop. Taking over the party that has lost its way, and taking on the party that has repudiated its legacy.

    Qualifier: Just my thoughts, riffing off of Ron’s comment. No thorns.

    • November 28, 2016 1:12 pm

      Priscilla, you made the points about the democrats much better than I did or could have. We hear this same discussion on some media outlets and how the democrats are doing an internal review of their situation, but then we hear that Pelosi has lined up enough support to continue as minority leader (west coast elite) and Ellison is a strong possibility for DNC chairperson (Black, Muslim with strong socialistic tendencies). This does not sound like a party that is looking to recapture the white working class union member American. It sounds to me to be a further push for victim identity politics like we have seen for the past 8 years.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        November 29, 2016 2:18 pm

        Have to agree Ron. I just looked up Ellison and you have not exaggerated. Good grief.

        A crazy party and a silly (but also dangerous) party. I give up on both.

        Anyone want to join me in more online drinking?

      • November 29, 2016 9:57 pm

        You started drinking early, GW. But I’m catching up. A dry Riesling…..

    • Pat Riot permalink
      November 29, 2016 12:48 pm

      “Loyal Opposition” Yes. The dissension necessary to have a healthy, functional democracy (or democratic republic or constitutional democracy), but with a loyalty to the higher good of remaining functional, or something like that. Passionate disagreement, staunch opposition, but ultimately all Americans moving forward.

      Jay may be correct in saying that it will take a big catastrophe to unite us. I’d like to think we could unite in order to prevent and avoid the big catastrophe. A house divided against itself cannot stand. Enemies of the U.S. just love our division. That’s enemies foreign and domestic.

      “victim identity politics” Ug. Tired of it. I’m not opposed to fights for justice, but It’s gotten out of proportion and out of context. I’m sorry but everyone’s idiosyncrasies can’t be the priority.

  47. Pat Riot permalink
    November 29, 2016 1:06 pm

    Democrat, Republican. Two words. What do they really mean?

    What is the process by which Angus King of Maine and Bernie Sanders of Vermont became Independent Senators? I need to understand that whole situation better.

    What would the consequences be if most Senators became Independents?

    Here are just a few of the many now defunct U.S. political parties:

    Federalist Party 1789-1820
    Democratic-Republican Party 1792-1824
    National Republican Party 1825-1833
    Socialist Party of America 1901-1972
    Proletarian Party of America 1920-1971
    Communist Workers Party 1969-1985

    • dduck12 permalink
      November 29, 2016 3:15 pm

      Added: “Image result for know nothing party
      The Know-Nothing Party, also known as the American Party, was a prominent United States political party during the late 1840s and the early 1850s. The American Party originated in 1849. Its members strongly opposed immigrants and followers of the Catholic Church.”

  48. Pat Riot permalink
    November 29, 2016 1:09 pm

    Senators and Reps. Independent. Not owing affiliation to any party. Tell me why this would not be going in the right direction?

    • November 29, 2016 1:52 pm

      PR..You could strip all the party labels, all the titles and any other identification, even the independent label and nothing would change as long as the special interest and lobbyist run Washington D.C.

      To be truly independent, one must be total devoid of any special interest support and that will never happen with the government we have today. I doubt Sanders is truly independent, he has received moneys from some special interest (Alphabet, Microsoft, etc), so how can he be considered independent if something comes up that is adverse to technology?

      • Pat Riot permalink
        November 29, 2016 3:27 pm

        You’re right that money is a crucial factor. The system doesn’t have to be completely devoid of monetary influence, but it could have a different limited structure. Trump banned lobbyists for 5 years? Not sure all the details on that, but it sounds like a start, a few steps toward Mount Everest.

      • November 29, 2016 5:44 pm

        Trump requires anyone joining his administration to be banned fro lobbying for 5 years after leaving their positions. I understand how non-compete clauses of employment contracts work for individuals like doctors, lawyers and other professionals that could have a detrimental impact on their employer if they left, but how does one make it contractually impossible to go from government to lobbying?

        Good lawyers will write a good contract for a cabinet secretary, but a better lawyer will find a way to break that contract. And does a cabinet position legally have a contract to begin with. They serve at the discretion of the President and he can fire them at any time. A contract might impede that ability.

    • dduck12 permalink
      November 29, 2016 3:19 pm

      RonP beat me. I call it the Money Party. They run/ruin any chance we have for a truly “Independent” party. The best we can hope for is a quasi-independent party, I was hoping Bloomberg’s money could do that.

      • Pat Riot permalink
        November 29, 2016 3:39 pm

        dduck12, ah yes the money. Control the Money and the Press and control a nation. So true, but not unbeatable. We can do anything we put our minds to, but getting enough minds to it is some trick.

        When our choice became Trump or Clinton, and voting for an alternative was perceived as throwing a vote away, or helping the other side, my son had an idea:

        have a mock election beforehand. Let’s see how many people would have voted for alternatives if they didn’t have to worry about wasting their vote. Also half the country didn’t vote at all, some because they didn’t like either choice and figured why bother? A mock election might show that a much larger number of people would vote for the alternatives, and that would at least change the dialogue…

      • November 29, 2016 5:46 pm

        PR, 1/2 the country never votes because they could care less, then they are the first ones to complain if decisions are made they don’t like.

      • November 29, 2016 9:43 pm

        Now that Jill Stein has raked in millions for her going-nowhere recount, maybe the Green Party can become the Greenback Party.

  49. Pat Riot permalink
    November 29, 2016 3:24 pm

    Yes it’s that time again folks–time for another Pat Riot analogy story!! Wait, where is everyone going? OK, a summarized version:

    My father indoctrinated my brother and I into freshwater fishing at a very early age, like four years old. I have pictures.

    When my brother and I encountered the inevitable line tangles, my father would hand us a working rod and reel while he patiently untangled the snarl. Some of these bird nest snarl-tangles took a half hour to correct, but he was a very patient man. Stubbornly patient. He was a fixer and a re-user. Of course he was, his parents had been teens during the depression and they saved little bits of everything–half a shoe lace, lamp cord in the end table drawer, scraps of paper with only one side written on. (Hey, not wasting paper is still a good idea.)

    One day my Uncle Brian is fishing with us. Brian gets a big nasty tangle. He snips the line with a pair of fingernail clippers, puts the tangled scrap in his pocket, and re-ties his fishing lure, all in about 12 seconds.

    “I’m here to fish,” my Uncle said. “I ain’t got time to waste figuring out which loop goes through which loop which is twisted around what loop.”

    Let’s apply the analogy to the Democratic and Republican parties. There has been numerous EXPLOSIONS of information in recent decades. Encyclopedia Britannica and World Book seem laughable now regarding the amount of information compared to what’s available online. So much of our culture and life has changed. We’ve talked about market fragmentation here before: a handful of TV channels to thousands of cable channels, more versions of products than we can count, and also the fragmentation of social groups, etc.

    Is it feasible to untangle and piece together all the factions into Democrat and Republican again? Are they relevant anymore? Trump isn’t really a Republican. Maybe we should start over with new party names and new stated political philosophies? Maybe we should get rid of parties altogether and just have an elected Senate and elected House of Reps, all independent, debating each issue without party affiliation?

    • Anonymous permalink
      November 29, 2016 4:13 pm

      Ok Pat and all. Time for a holiday sing-a-long to the tune of “Rudolph”. ….. But do you recall, the most famous party of all? Teddy’s Bull Moose party had a very funny name. And if you ever saw it, you would even think it lame. All of the other…..

      Mike H

      • Pat Riot permalink
        November 29, 2016 6:11 pm

        Mike, have you been long-distance drinking with GW again?

        Maybe I should switch from the magic mushrooms that have me tripping about the absence of political parties.

        I have a dream…

    • November 29, 2016 5:38 pm

      PR, you said very nicely and easily understandable what I have tried to say for a number of months since this election has begun. I will only add to your information that I think the democrats are the party that you could compare to the snarl where you can pull the line up, swing the line around a couple times, pull here and pull there and its fixed. The democrats are much more a party with all the members in line like the school children waiting to enter the classroom following Pelosi and Reid. There are not too many classroom clowns causing trouble and not following the teacher like Joe Manchin, but there are many who would traditionally vote for candidates with his positions if given the chance. .

      Then you have the republican party that when you pull that line up your dad would be working the whole fishing trip untangling the line. He may never get his line in the water trying to figure where to start the process. Tea Party, Alt-right, establishment, Christian conservative, moderate right libertarian and many others that have some like positions, but the entanglement between all the lines of “republican” makes it almost impossible to identify what being a republican is anymore these days and where to begin the process.

      Trump took those in the republican party willing to compromise some of their positions, combined those with many from the democrats that support more Manchin like issues and got elected.

      • November 29, 2016 9:38 pm

        Ron, a lot of people are speculating that Joe Manchin is going to switch parties before his re-election bid in 2018, now that WV is dark red (went almost 70% for Trump).

        If he does, who will we use as our example of a moderate Democrat?

      • November 30, 2016 12:56 am

        Well I had to do some digging but I found one liberal website, The Progressive Punch, that rated all the senators. Heidi Heitkamp, North Dakota, elected in 2012 and up for reelection in 2018 has a lower progressive score for the period 2015-16 than joe Manchin. She supported the progressives on what they considered their critical issues 40% of the legislation while Manchin support was 43.75% for the same period. The closest Republican was Rand Paul at 34.2% which is understandable given the libertarian views on social programs and government snooping that he has. So I guess if he flips, then she will lead by example until she decides to flip, given she also comes from a very deep red state. ND went 63% for Trump and 6% for Johnson. Hillary got 27%.

        http://progressivepunch.org/scores.htm?house=senate

  50. Pat Riot permalink
    November 29, 2016 3:59 pm

    I know, too out-of-the-box for most people.

  51. November 29, 2016 7:25 pm

    “PR, 1/2 the country never votes because they could care less, then they are the first ones to complain if decisions are made they don’t like.”

    For sure. Really, how hard is it to vote?

  52. November 29, 2016 7:34 pm

    “Priscilla, you made the points about the democrats much better than I did or could have. We hear this same discussion on some media outlets and how the democrats are doing an internal review of their situation, but then we hear that Pelosi has lined up enough support to continue as minority leader (west coast elite) and Ellison is a strong possibility for DNC chairperson (Black, Muslim with strong socialistic tendencies). This does not sound like a party that is looking to recapture the white working class union member American. It sounds to me to be a further push for victim identity politics like we have seen for the past 8 years.”

    I have to say that this doesn’t surprise me. Since the 1960’s, the Dems have believed (and promised) that all manner of social ills (real and imagined) would be remedied by federal legislation and so-called social programs. More education, more help, more money, more laws.

    Well, 50 yrs later, the tune has not changed, in spite of the results of these programs. I attended a lecture today on the need for MORE sex education in schools, which now must included gender identification training (that is what I was told).

    Hmm. So, the last 50 years of sex ed has resulted in a huge increase in unwed teen pregnancies, STD’s and the like. Apparently, this has NOTHING at all to do with the initiation of sex education (at least that is what I was told), but an unwillingness of schools to do it “right.”

    This is but one example of the unwillingness to at least consider the possibility that the direction the left follows JUST MIGHT need some major rethinking.

    I could go on, but you get the picture.

    • November 30, 2016 1:33 pm

      I find Trump’s manipulation of the far left lunatic media refreshing. I could be way off base and if this does not pass then I could be called a lunatic myself for believing what he says are his decisions, but Trump tweets this, tweets that, and at 2am or 3 am will find something else to tweet like he can run the country and his businesses without any problems. He is playing the liberal media like the marionette at the ends of his strings. Then after they have had a cow, he makes the wise decision. And at 70 he would be turning the company over sooner than later, so why not now.

      The one that he is playing now with the far right, establishment GOP and other insiders of the GOP is the secretary of state pick. He is dangling 4 names, talking to these four and sitting back and watching the GOP have a cow because Mitt Romney is the “favorite” at this time. He will make the wise decision that fits his needs and he could care less what the insiders want. It appears he could also care less who called him what. he can take it as good as he hands it out if Romney is his pick. And my personal opinion is Romney would be a good choice as he would balance out the positions of his security team concerning Russia. A good leader wants people that offer differing views.

      And as this goes on, the house voted something like 134-63 to retain Pelosi’s leadership for the democrats. While the GOP is voting for jobs, the democrats are voting for bathroom access over access to jobs.

      • dduck12 permalink
        November 30, 2016 6:15 pm

        Tim Ryan must really be bad or else the D’s are s bad as some are saying.

      • Anonymous permalink
        November 30, 2016 7:31 pm

        Well I would say the D’s are as bad as some are saying. 1. Over 30% of their caucus comes from 2 states, California and New York. Add in Illinois and you are over 1/3rd of their caucus from 3 states. That crates a very limited agenda and why one can see the social issues being more important than jobs. And (2) one can look at how Pelosi runs her caucus and there have been reports that if you cross her, you are like you have a fatal infectious disease. One has to wonder just what kind of assignments Tim Ryan will get after challenging her. At least the ones voting for Ryan was a secret ballot, so they can say they voted for her and keep their assignments on committees.

      • November 30, 2016 7:17 pm

        Well said, Ron.

      • November 30, 2016 8:24 pm

        Ron, I agree with your take on Trump’s tweets (whenever I say that, I feel like I should say “Twump’s” tweets, lol). Since the GOP primiaries, people have been saying “Oh my god, he’s really done it now, he’s through!” or “He must be crazy (“cwazy”?) to be tweeting at 3AM.

        I think he drives his own staff crazy sometimes, but he’s crazy like a fox. He drives the news cycle, often over more important stories, he energizes his base, and he distracts from negative press directed at him that might actually be difficult to explain ~ such as a couple of weeks ago when he settled the Trump University lawsuit, but spent the weekend tweeting about the “Hamilton” cast’s rude treatment of Mike Pence. The media couldn’t stop huffing and puffing about the fact that he called the production “overrated” …meanwhile, by Monday, the whole thing was old news and barely anyone knew about his $25M payout to get rid of a potentially embarrassing situation.

        As far as 30% of the Dem caucus being from NY and CA, I was reading today that the Republicans won their House majority this year by almost 3 million votes, coming closer to an actual national majority than Hillary did, without having to rely on only 2-3 states to get it.

        If the Democrats do what they appear likely to do, which is to choose a former Nation of Islam member as the DNC chair, I don’t see how they will get back to being a party that can win a national election. I suppose if they can somehow get rid of federalism and the elctoral college, it would be possible, but otherwise, they’re gonna need their own “bull in a china shop” to shake things up.

      • December 1, 2016 12:20 am

        I also wonder how Trump will change the dynamic between the White House news staff and the White House itself. As of this administration, the press secretary holds a daily briefing each morning to update them on important issues. I think Trump has enough contempt for them to handle many important issues through Twitter or some other electronic means, holding the daily briefing after any important news has already been communicated. That way, many people will see first hand what he said, not what the press said he said.

  53. November 30, 2016 11:32 pm

    Ron, Priscilla, I agree with your agreement about Trump’s reckless tweets. It is refreshing.

    I am currently sipping a white Russian: roughly equal parts Irish crème and Absolut vodka, 2% milk, ice, Hershey’s dark Chocolate syrup. Apparently Trump has a deal with Carrier AC to remain in Indiana instead of moving to Mexico. That brings me actual JOY. Will anyone share a long-distance drink with me? A toast to the Carrier deal, and to many more!

    • December 1, 2016 12:28 am

      Toast to you. Not one with hard liquor (too late to mix) but a beer in hand. And I think I would have to refrain from a russian anyway, sounds way to rich for me (ingredients, not cost).

      Now you say “reckless tweets”.Could be, or could it be planned and not reckless? Only one man knows and he ain’t talking (other than his tweets). Its interesting when something important is going on his twitter is tweet free. How can he not say something about the appointment for state?

    • December 1, 2016 12:28 am

      Toast to you. Not one with hard liquor (too late to mix) but a beer in hand. And I think I would have to refrain from a russian anyway, sounds way to rich for me (ingredients, not cost).

      Now you say “reckless tweets”.Could be, or could it be planned and not reckless? Only one man knows and he ain’t talking (other than his tweets). Its interesting when something important is going on his twitter is tweet free. How can he not say something about the appointment for state?

    • December 1, 2016 12:11 pm

      Ha, well, it’s only 11 AM and I missed last night’s toast!

      Having gone through the closing of a large corporate manufacturing facility, I was surprised that this was achieved so quickly, and before Trump’s inauguration. Of course, the fact that Pence is still the governor of Indiana helped…….

      But, regardless of how this deal went down, it was a brilliant pr move, as well as great news for the 1000 or so families who were facing a pretty grim holiday season. It was a deal that said “Wait until January 20th ~ there’s a new sheriff in town.”

      • December 1, 2016 12:50 pm

        Yes it is good PR, but already the left is going after this as a big mistake. Bernie Sanders says the 1000 jobs saved is not worth the future cost to keeping companies in the USA and keeping them from moving. They see Trump giving corporate welfare to Carrier and that will create the environment for others to threaten to move to Mexico to get some incentives to stay.

        However, sometimes PBS Newshour has some interesting stories and provides information that other news media outlets do not. Watching the part concerning Delphi Automotive group, I had to ask myself if I ran a business and the average manufacturing union job costs $60K or more (plus benefits) and I could move my plant from Ohio to just across the border from El Paso Tx and pay for the same job $12.00 per day, would I not do that? And if I did and the Trump administration threatened to do something to restrict the flow of products (tariffs, etc) and almost 100% of all cars produced in the USA used my products, would I be afraid of their threats. If they placed a 30% tariff on the product, that just adds 30% to the cost of a car sold in the country, so that increases inflation, inflation creates higher interest rates, higher interest rates increase the deficit and the deficit increases debt. And that reduces the amount of money to spend on infrastructure.

        http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/trumps-trade-policy-affect-jobs-u-s-abroad/

        It is going to be very interesting how Trump changes anything with Mexico and companies moving there when the can replace $60K a year jobs with $3-4K per year jobs. And the thing is, products coming from Mexico are about as good as anything made here. It is not like the Chinese crap like Ryobi tools found in Home Depot that fall apart after a few months of use and no replacements parts to fix them or the stuff found in Walmart.

      • December 1, 2016 7:21 pm

        And how many times have Obama intervened for the good of the folks in Indiana and those like them?

        Well, that would be zero.

  54. December 1, 2016 12:53 am

    It could very well be that Trump is two steps (or three) ahead of the press and the Dems. Think about it. He had NO chance to win the nomination and he did. Then, he had no chance to beat HC and the media. and he did.

    He might be toying with the left and its allies.

    Wouldn’t that be a hoot?

  55. dduck12 permalink
    December 1, 2016 12:43 pm

    A little arm twisting and a little bit of threatening, what could be the harm; after all it is for a good cause.

  56. Grand Wazzoo permalink
    December 1, 2016 2:13 pm

    Well, off subject I suppose but I have been reading my early American history and wasn’t American politics hopelessly fractured, divided and completely nasty right from the get go?!? Even Washington got involved in denunciations of democrat politicians during his time. Both elections involving the Adams family were highly nasty affairs, Alexander Hamilton and Raymond Burr fought a duel as an offshoot in which Hamilton was killed. Reading of the Adams-Jackson election in which Jackson prevailed is not at all unreminiscent of the trump-Clinton race, who was the worst instead of who was the best. Tempers and intemperate opinions have raged right from the beginning of our political system. I look forward to several years of reading on the presidents, their campaigns and the party systems. In general for American history, most of the not large amount I once knew has left me. To be repaired. Now I have what to read at night.

    • December 1, 2016 8:12 pm

      GW, have you read the Ron Chernow book on Alexander Hamilton, that inspired the Broadway show? It’s really excellent. Madison comes across badly in it, as does Burr, of course (Aaron, not Raymond ~ he was Perry Mason, remember, lol?). Jefferson and Adams also take a hit. I figure I’ll read biographies of all of them, to get the other side of the story.

      The one thing, though, that is clear throughout, is how all of them, despite how they may have hated each other, loved the country.

      But, yeah, imagine if Trump and Hillary went up to a cliff in Weehawkin, NJ and dueled. Who would survive? I’m going with Trump – again- based on Hillary’s distaste for guns. I also read somewhere that Trump has a concealed carry permit, so he must have learned to shoot.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 2, 2016 10:45 am

        Ha, 3 books on each president for fairness, that will keep my busy. And some others on the series of political systems and foreign policy (Like Meade’s book on foreign policy that I did read, hmmm it must be in the house somewhere…). Thanks for the suggestion of Chernow. Yes, I do remember Perry Mason, most of all the theme music, but Burr as well.

  57. December 2, 2016 1:13 am

    Well I have been very impressed with the choices that Donald Trump has made so far. But there are two names on the list that I think would be a disaster if he chooses them for any position.

    1. David Petraeus-Secretary of State. He is still on parole and reports say he would have to check in with the parole officer when accepting this position. How can he be provided top secret information after exposing secrets and being convicted of this. And how can Trump even consider someone remotely associated with leaking information when that was one of the key attacks on Clinton during the election. Giuliani may work out for state if they can get by his foreign investments. And the other three are good picks, even if Romney and Trump went at it during the election. Both are big men and can put aside anything that happened earlier.

    2. Sara Palin for Director of Veteran Administration. What the …. does Palin know about Vets? That air head probably thinks they take care of animals. Alternative name is Pete Hegseth, former director of Vets for Freedom and CEO of Concerned Veterans of America has spent years fighting for veterans after his career in the Army (2003-2014). Awarded the Bronze star twice and the Army commendation medal twice. Multiple tours to war zones.

    3. For interior secretary, the name of joe manchin has come up. Energy state, Democrat (with a conservative tilt to voting record), up for reelection in 2018. And his appointment would not change the senate split since WVA has a democrat Governor who would appoint the replacement.

    Hopefully Trump does not have some reason for putting someone in a position they may not be qualified for.

    • Grand Wazzoo permalink
      December 2, 2016 10:41 am

      “Sara Palin for Director of Veteran Administration. What the …. does Palin know about Vets? That air head probably thinks they take care of animals.”

      Oh, bless you. Made my morning.

    • December 2, 2016 11:01 am

      I would hold opinion until he actually makes the pick.

      • December 2, 2016 1:56 pm

        JB..Sorry, guess I lost my self restrain with that one. But when I heard a report that Sara Palin was being considered for the Directors position for the Veterans Administration, I guess I lost it. So ended up voicing opinions on possible candidates.

        I am one that always believed that even with the economic downturn, McCain did grave damage to his candidacy when he picked Palin for VP. She was unqualified then and she is unqualified now. The veterans need someone that will work tirelessly in getting changes through for the veterans health care and I have no thoughts the Palin could do any good in that respect. The vets need someone who knows the problems and knows how to get things done.

        Knowing where Russi is does not qualify one for that position.

    • dduck12 permalink
      December 2, 2016 4:46 pm

      Palin, ugh, for Russia watcher. Give her binoculars and a cell phone.
      For Vets: Tulsi Gabbard (a Dem) would be terrific.
      Plus, Romney might be able to “inform” dumb Trump about the evil/dangerous Russians.
      I used to like Rudy back in 2001, but not now.

      • December 2, 2016 7:49 pm

        Dumb Trump was elected, Mitt was not. I think General Mattes will be up on the Russians as well. Not to worry.

      • December 3, 2016 1:15 am

        Now that I never thought of. A new cabinet level position. Chief Russian Watcher. Palin could keep an eye out her back window.

        Tulsi Gabbard seems like a good choice. But is she a politician or someone who is not scared of pissing people off to get stuff done. Hegseth is more of that type.

        But then nothing is going to change until they get rid of the “transfer rule for incompetent employees” and start firing people. One of the worst veterans hospitals is Tomah Veterans Hospital in Wisconsin. They have had numerous violations of healthcare policies and .Dr. David Houlihan, the Chief of Staff was not fired nor was the CEO when the hospital was cited for dispensing opioids where many patients were overdosed during their stay. They were merely reassigned to other facilities.

      • December 3, 2016 11:36 am

        Sounds like what the Catholic Church did with pedophile priests.

    • January 14, 2017 3:38 am

      So, I searched the phrase, “were mattis and petraeus drinking buddies?” and I found this great article that explains everything that is wrong with the state of our society today. Now, let’s see if Mattis is not the one who would stab Donald Trump in the back. After all, he is one of four top generals who the White House has eliminated within the past decade. He is at risk of turning against the White House that stripped him of the only thing he valued in his life, namely his military career. We all know Trump’s poor track record on respecting other people’s emotions, especially someone like Mattis who shares very little in common with him. In addition, Mattis will not tolerate Congressional interrogation sessions that last several hours in duration as well as Dempsey tolerated it. Cheers. Okay, I hope there is no one chasing me around with a .38-six revolver tomorrow.

  58. December 2, 2016 7:50 pm

    Guliani would be great in Homeland Security, the FBI, or Justice.

    • dduck12 permalink
      December 2, 2016 8:28 pm

      State and Defense would be better if BOTH understand the Russian risks.

      • December 3, 2016 12:09 pm

        I for one, am not concerned about Russia as a security threat. Putin is the ultimate capitalist and they rarely concern me, as I understand how they think (being one myself).

        The mullahs in Iran? They concern me, as do the nut jobs in Saudi Arabia (oh, you know, our Allies?).

        With friends like them ……

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 3, 2016 1:26 pm

        ” for one, am not concerned about Russia as a security threat. Putin is the ultimate capitalist and they rarely concern me, as I understand how they think (being one myself).”

        An incredible statement. Then you know enough about Putin and Russian expansionism and european history to fill a thimble. The most unbelievable nonsense you have ever written here.

  59. December 2, 2016 11:12 pm

    The transition is like a reality show. It could be called “Cabinet Secretary Apprentice”. Candidates step into the gleaming chrome and brass lobby of Trump Tower, and ride the elevator up to the umpteenth floor, to meet Reince, Steve, and the President-elect Himself.

    Will they emerge as Secretary of Something? Only The Donald knows.

    I have kind of a soft spot for Sarah Palin. McCain never should have picked her, and she never should have accepted, but, good lord, she got put through the media meat grinder like no other, and she’s still standing. I don’t think she’s an idiot, although I will admit that she has said some idiotic things. She did criticize Trump the other day for the Carrier deal ~ called it crony politics. Which is true, I guess, although I don’t know how else these things get done…..

    • December 3, 2016 1:40 am

      Well she may not be an idiot, but anyone like her that I ever interviewed for any job in finance never got the job. The closest I can relate her to anyone else in politics was Dan Quayle when he was VP. He may have been qualified, but anything that came out of his mouth never made much sense to me.

      Good for Palin to criticize Trump about Carrier. Maybe that will seal the deal to remove her from consideration. If she wanted the job, it appears she may be an idiot to criicize Trump at this time.

      As for the deal reached and why it is done. Carrier gets $7 million in tax incentives from the state (not the feds) . Carrier retains about 1000 jobs in Indiana with a total payroll of a reported $68,000,000. These workers pay 3.23% state income tax and when they buy stuff they pay 7% sales tax.. That is a total tax of 10% or so per year. Lets say they have deductions and savings or buying out of state of 25% of their total income, so the total taxable income is about $51,000,000. That results in the state taking in $5.1M per year, so the payback period for the investment the state made in keeping those jobs that cost $7M is 16-17 months. There are very few financial people that would not invest in anything that gives a payback within 16-17 months. Had Carrier left, the state would have lost 5M per year, 25M over 5 years and 50M over ten years.

      And remember, Rick Perry who was held in high esteem as a governor for sometime used incentives to lure companies from Illinois and California. Every state does it when they can, even NY with their small business incentives.

    • December 3, 2016 11:16 am

      Exactly, Ron. And this is one of the main places where I part ways with movement conservatives ~ how the hell does anything happen without deal making? As long as the deal making is open and above board, there should be no reason why tax incentives can’t be offered to insure that US corporations stay in the US and employ American workers.

      The problem comes when the government bails out failing corporations in order to prop up a government-created bubble, or to reward big corporate donors who have made bad business decisions. The Carrier deal doesn’t seem to fall under either of those categories, and, while I understand the conservative anxiety over government intervention in corporate decision-making, there should be some recognition that tax policy is a legitimate way to create or maintain business growth.

      For many years, conservatives have been saying that we should elect a businessman as POTUS, and, now that we have, some of them are screaming about the way business is done. Go figure.

      Between that, and the “shocking’ call between Trump and the President of Taiwan, there seem to be many in the media who can’t even wait for Trump to be inaugurated before trying to destroy him. Perhaps Obama will help out by pardoning Beau Bergdahl, and everyone can scream about that for a while.

      • December 3, 2016 12:03 pm

        Indeed. We all respond to incentives (except the saints that are the media). If I am incentivised to move jobs to Mexico, likely I will. If I don’t and my competitors do, I am likely toast.

        Most libs don’t get this (or don’t like it) because they deny that THEY would do such a thing. In their minds, this is a morality play and they hold the moral high ground because of course, they care.

    • December 3, 2016 12:07 pm

      I too have empathy for Palin. I doubt she ever had a chance, regardless of what she said. A self-made woman who didn’t go to Yale or Harvard on a free ride (hello Obamas).

      Palin worked her way to a Bachelors degree on her own nickle and it took her years. Such is life of the blue collar workers in Alaska.

      What kind of a “symbol” could she be for the left?

      More of a target I would say.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 3, 2016 1:20 pm

        As Priscilla noted, she says dumb things, a lot of them. She is self intoxicated as well. And she quit her position of civic responsibility, apparently out of boredom, a good reason to doubt the wisdom of giving her another position of responsibility. But she is conservative so that alone will do for many conservatives.

        Seriously, there is only so far you can go saying liberal, liberal, liberal to paper over real issues, such as Palin’s lightness of being. Liberal blah, blah, blah, bogeyman, liberal, blah, blah, blah is not the answer to every situation, there are others in this world. Liberal hubris led to the mistake of obama care and more overreach following the disastrous 2008 election, The same will repeat after this latest disaster election, only conservatives will now have their chance at hubris and I will not bet on them missing the opportunity. Enjoy the ideological intoxication while it lasts. Reality looms in the future, what goes up must come down.

      • December 3, 2016 3:01 pm

        GW, I agree that the biggest mistake of Palin’s career wasn’t agreeing to become McCain’s running mate, but quitting as governor of Alaska, long befre her term was up. It validated a lot of the criticism leveled at her from the left, and, worse, angered many of her supporters on the right, who felt genuinely embarrassed to have stuck up for her.

        I suppose Alaska is a boring state to govern, and, if offered a plum role as a Fox News commentator, anyone would be tempted to go for fame and fortune, as opposed to slogging it out in frozen tundra land . But the smart move would probably have been to finish out the 2 years (maybe less) that she had left, and retain her credibility as a politician and public servant.

        It will be interesting to see how Trump negotiates the mine field that will be his presidency. I am encouraged by his cabinet choices on Cabinet Secretary Apprentice, so far. But, he’s also going to be tested by international leaders of ill-repute, and that’s why he needs to get up to speed on the kinds of things that could get him in trouble early on. I do believe that his phone call with the Taiwanese president was intentional, regardless of who called whom, and meant to lay a marker down for mainland China. And I think it was a smart move…the US has for years acted as if talking with Taiwan is tantamount to an act of war. This move was a gentle reminder that the POTUS is still the leader of the most powerful nation on the planet, and doesn’t need to cower before the ChiComs. I don’t see it as particularly provocative, the way many do, but more along the lines of giving notice that the US is not a submissive patsy nation.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 3, 2016 3:29 pm

        Priscilla, I have no love of the Chinese govt. its form, trade policies, internal oppressions, Tibet policy, unenthused but real support of N. Korea, etc. But they have been by far the most peaceful of the great powers, meddled least, stuck to their own country, and that in spite of a history of being treated badly by the west and Japan, from the forced opening by our fleet, to the British opium war, to the Japanese aggression, the rape of Nanking, etc. They may simply be biding their time but they seem content to run their own country and not interfere greatly in the world. They are nothing like the perpetually aggressive expansionist Russians. Of course, Taiwan is a much freer place than mainland China, and the US has supported freedom as the path to a better safer world, I get that. All the same it is easy for me to understand the Chinese point of view on Taiwan.

        So what the hell are we doing in the South China sea with our navy? Would we put up with the Chinese patrolling our borders? Taiwan is a sore point for good reason to them, its their historic country. What language do they speak in Taiwan for the most part, English? They speak a Chinese dialect because they Are Chinese. I cannot see any place where the US has more taken the role of world cop overboard than China. Taiwan is China, not America. The US as a submissive patsy nation vis a vis the Chinese? Here the aggression is historically all ours. They are the one swallowing continual pride.

        We have enough trouble spots in the world that force themselves on our consciousness without finding a fight to pick with the worlds most populous nation over the principle that we will patrol their sea and support their rebellious province, as they see it. If there were any common sense in the world we would be finding a way to bring Taiwan backing into China with self government and use that as a chip against bringing a non-crazy government to N. Korea as a quid pro quo. (which I am aware is like just calmly saying that we should cure cancer if we had any common sense.)

      • December 3, 2016 4:14 pm

        GW, I don’t pretend to be any expert on Sino-American relations, but I do believe that we have backed down to China quite consistently for decades, in the interest of expanding trade with them. I also think that we have failed to adequately protect our strategic partnerships with Vietnam, Singapore, the Philippines, and other countries in Southeast Asia. I think that those partnerships and alliances explain our naval presence in the South China Sea.

        In the meantime, China has hurt the US economy through currency manipulation, as well as an increasing trade deficit. And the Chinese have also been aggressive toward our allies in the South China Sea, basically daring us to do anything about it. And, of course, as you mentioned, they’ve done nothing to rein in the crazies of NK, as the South Koreans have grown increasingly panic-stricken over our willingness to protect them. I suppose I think that it’s well past time for us to stop acting as if the Chinese are going to nuke us every time we do something to protect our own interests, and to start using some of the quid pro quo leverage that we have.

        (I qualify all of the above by saying that I’m not sure that I know what I’m talking about.)

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 3, 2016 4:50 pm

        (I qualify all of the above by saying that I’m not sure that I know what I’m talking about.)

        Bravo! Me neither! (regarding knowing what I am talking about). Which makes the two of us much more capable of having some kind of sane discussion than two know it alls. Its always a pleasure to converse with a person who knows how much they don’t know. Would that all of us knew how much we don’t know. Of course some (I’m thinking of some of those in the political world, not posters here), don’t know more than others don’t know.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 3, 2016 4:58 pm

        In fact, one embarrassing case of me not knowing what I am talking about is the idea that our fleet opened china. That was of course Japan that we opened, which is another asian country in roughly the same area and I’m an American so my geography is sketchy, and I’m old so I confuse and conflate things.

  60. Mike Hatcher permalink
    December 3, 2016 1:13 am

    My place of employment has got a lot of attention recently. It is very interesting seeing news stories mix facts with spin and vicious distortions. I’m not going to name the company, (for fun? paranoia? luck?). But it will be obvious in a moment. The person Trump has picked for Secretary of Treasury, bought my company with a few other notable investors and recently sold it for a huge profit. As of the writing of this post, that same selected cabinet member owns a chunk of my company in the form of stock. In order to attack Trump’s selection, stories of how terrible my company is/was are flying around. Some facts, but a lot of misinformation. I will be happy to discuss if anyone has any questions.

    • December 3, 2016 11:22 am

      Is it OneWest, Mike? I read that some are criticizing Mnuchin for buying it out of bankruptcy, and then selling for a big profit. Not sure what the beef is….

      • December 3, 2016 12:01 pm

        The beef is that one is not supposed to make a profit when one takes a risk. Don’t you know that just proves you are wicked and posses inside info? Of course, NONE of these deals lose money, but if they do, the investors deserve to lose.

        Heads I win, tails you lose.

        That is the American drumbeat which is the liberal media.

        And for sure, the media earns their income honestly and with humility. They are doing God’s work.

        Time to get with the program my dear Priscilla!

      • Anonymous permalink
        December 3, 2016 11:31 pm

        Hey Priscilla , it just occurred to me the liberating power , in some situations of being anonymous. Yes, that Mike H. guy, I believe he works at OneWest Bank. The aquistion of Indymac Bank was pretty shady. The bank was definitely in a bind because of a lot of bad loans, however it was when Chuck Shumer started hollering that Indymac was going to fail that caused a run on the bank which caused the Feds to take over. Once the Feds owned the bank, they obstructed some others interested in potentially buying and agreed to a sweetheart deal with Mnuchin and his investor group that included Soros and Paulson. I will share more in a while.

      • Anonymous permalink
        December 3, 2016 11:55 pm

        Banks never “want” to foreclose on a property. At the very best, banks can only break even on a foreclosure sale. So OneWest was a foreclosure machine only in the sense that it had a bunch of bad loans.

      • December 4, 2016 10:09 am

        Ha! George Soros is everywhere! It’s like in “It’s A Wonderful Life, when Clarence says “Every time you hear a bell ring, it means that an angel just got his wings.” It seems that every time there’s a shady deal, George Soros is involved.

        And, yes, I watched that movie for about the 500th time last night, We need some holiday spirit!

    • December 3, 2016 11:57 am

      The media never stops. I suggest that this song says it all:

  61. December 3, 2016 12:11 pm

    I know he wouldn’t take the job, but I would ask Jack Welch to come on board to fix the VA. Neutron Jack would get that job done.

  62. dduck12 permalink
    December 3, 2016 1:50 pm

    Tulsi Gabbard is a fighter, both in and out of uniform ( Captain) and in Congress, a Dem (can’t hurt) and not an old white guy. : http://gabbard.house.gov/index.php/priorities/military-veterans-affairs
    Palin is not qualified at all, not that that would stop Trump.

    Besides, NK, Putin is the biggest threat to the world. A little Ukraine, a little Baltic States, a little Syria/Iran/Hamas tangoing. Puhleez, let Romney in, Rudy is over the hill and an ass kisser.

    Whether they worked there way up the ladder or had a gold spoon to suck on, DT and SP are both low-class cretins.

    And to the Dems, I am NOT one: “Well, here’s another nice mess you’ve gotten me into”

    • December 3, 2016 2:52 pm

      We don’t agree about Putin. Put him up next to the Mulahs? I will take him very time.

      • dduck12 permalink
        December 3, 2016 5:12 pm

        General Mattis believes, for instance, that Mr. Trump’s conciliatory statements toward Russia are ill informed. General Mattis views with alarm Moscow’s expansionist or bellicose policies in Syria, Ukraine and the Baltics. And he has told the president-elect that torture does not work

    • December 3, 2016 4:00 pm

      There is nothing wrong with old white guys. I am an old white guy!

      • dduck12 permalink
        December 3, 2016 5:25 pm

        JW is 81. I hope he is doing well, and most white guys do get better medical care, but he does have a 50% chance of getting Alzheimer’s by age 85.
        He may be sharp now and be able to jump from VA hospital to hospital, but does he understand the things that vets have been through and continue to go through. Selling microwaves is an art, but veterans affairs is more complicated.
        PS: I’m an old white guy too, so don’t give me the job. 🙂

    • Mike Hatcher permalink
      December 4, 2016 2:08 pm

      dduck12: I had not heard of Tulsi Gabbard until recently. I would love it for Trump to give her a spot. I would make her Sec. of State. I detest identity politics, however I know if I were in power, I would have to be working with a lot of people that worship identity politics. Gabbard checks off a lot of the opposition’s wish list. I greatly respect Gabbard for stepping down from her position in DNC to support Bernie, this shows integrity that others that supported Clinton did not show. I also have the idea that with her Military Police and combat experience, if Trump ever forgot himself and laid an inappropriate hand on her, we would have a POTUS with a taped up busted nose. Wouldn’t the spin doctors have their work cut out with that?

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 4, 2016 2:53 pm

        “if Trump ever forgot himself and laid an inappropriate hand on her, we would have a POTUS with a taped up busted nose. Wouldn’t the spin doctors have their work cut out with that?”

        Heh, a great image, but that is what spin doctors do, they are like tobacco lawyers, they thrive on tough sells, its what makes them valuable. Spin doctors would salivate over the chance to do that work. They’d stand in line and shout “pick me.”

  63. December 3, 2016 5:53 pm

    Well, of course, Welch is not the only guy to get this done. Perhaps he would want to consult? Remember, one of GE’s biggest divisions is Medical Systems. JW knows that game too.

    No, I can see any number of folks who have the skill set and energy to fix the VA, and I do think Trump can shame the Congress into springing some dough to get the job done. I think it is called the bully pulpit.

  64. December 3, 2016 5:55 pm

    Specific to Syria, it is my contention that a deal could be done with Putin to drop Syria like a bad dream. Putin needs to be dumping money into Syria like he needs a hole in his head. He might be evil; he is not stupid.

    • dduck12 permalink
      December 3, 2016 6:36 pm

      Russia and Syria relationship goes back to 1946. Also: The Russian naval facility in Tartus, Syria, was established during the Cold War under a 1971 agreement with Syria. It is Russia’s only naval facility in the Mediterranean region and the only remaining military facility outside the former Soviet Union. Money and arms will continue to flow.
      The bad dream will remain as the R/S/I gains strength.
      “Not stupid” and ruthless yes.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 3, 2016 7:41 pm

        Putin is not stupid but those who have worked with him say he has a nearly entirely uneconomic mind. I’ve read this in both English speaking and Russian journalism. He has no interest in the cost of his plans; he lives very well and his associates do too. He does not think in terms of economics, that is someone else’s thankless job. The people who have to make the actual economy run and pay for things have little pull with Putin.

        Instead, his mind is directed at politics, most particularly the geopolitics of putting his “country” that “disappeared overnight” much to his bitterness back together. Of course, his country did not disappear, Russia is intact, it was the Soviet Union that dissolved, which was not a country but a forced union of communist slaves living very badly in most cases.

        Moral: Putin does not care about the cost of his policies, the Russian people will just have to be strong and suffer. People who I know and love in Moscow are in fact suffering economically for his attempts to re-glue the USSR.

        So, he’s smart but uninterested in the cost of Syria, it is a geopolitical success, as are the aggressive tactics of his air force in all kinds of places. Being a troublemaker is a success for him, now perhaps trump will give him what he wants, the end of determined western opposition and sanctions etc. in hopes that he will play nice. Its a mistake.

      • December 3, 2016 10:48 pm

        Deals are made to be broken, if the next deal that comes along is better. Putin knows this better than most. How many former buddies of his are now in Russian prisons?

  65. December 3, 2016 10:46 pm

    I would disagree. Putin is only in power because he DOES understand economics. The power center id ALWAYS interested in the money and who can generate the most for those who would benefit the most.

    I suggest you may want to re-think this. Yes, Putin is not that concerned about the economics of the little people. He can control them. It is the other power brokers he must keep happy.

    • Grand Wazzoo permalink
      December 3, 2016 11:26 pm

      I give you a high mark for being calm and nicer than I was in poking you above.

      But honestly, Putin is in power because Boris Yeltsin choose a man as opposite of himself as he could to replace his chaotic, disorganized and generally drunken and catastrophic rein to try to atone for making a mess out of his brief attempt at a Russian democracy. Putin stayed in power because he seized the media and because he speaks calmly, modestly and well. Ruthlessness and those prisons helped too, along with the fact that almost any economy will stabilize eventually to some extent after it has suffered a shock, whether the president has an economic mind or not. Most Russians are hyperpatriotic nationalists and yearn for their superpower status to be returned and their USSR, and Putin is right there with them at the head of the line on that. Plus his barechested antics.

      Those are the reasons from the top of my head of why Putin got into power and stayed.

      • December 4, 2016 10:16 am

        All of that may be true. That said, he IS in power and IMHO, can be negotiated with and will keep his word if he gives it. I think there is common ground.

        The US is the largest consumer market in the world. We also have the best military in the world. The US and Russia have common interests (energy, commerce, and Israel) for starters. The Russians don;t trust the Chinese and can’t compete with them. I think they are wise, as I don’t trust them either (N.Korea).

        I can’t believe that Putin thinks a nuclear N. Korea is a good idea. Ditto, a nuclear Iran (although he does like to sell them stuff). Perhaps if he could sell stuff to us, he would walk away. I think it is worth a chat.

        I see a deal to be made. Putin needs the mideast like he needs cancer. We don’t need them anymore either (thank you frackers).

        As I said, there are deals out there to be made. I think entire civilized world is sick of terrorist islam. I know I am.

        PS-I know Putin runs a dictatorship (light) so I know he is no choir boy. Then again, who is?

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 4, 2016 11:12 am

        Though there are some major things I could quibble with, that was quite good.

        But I stick to my belief that Putin’s Russia is a serious security threat. I will add that we are also a threat seen from the perspective of many outside America. Too much power is a dangerous thing. Who can use it wisely?

      • December 18, 2016 4:56 pm

        GW- You need to think outside the box on this one. Do you really think I don’t know about the obvious things you just mentioned? The scenario I referred to is legitimate and possible. If you don’t want to read the book, here is a hint: What would happen if our entire electrical grid and all appliances were irreparably fried with less than two minutes warning? How quickly would our country self destruct without electricity? This condition could be created much more easily than you might think, and, under the scenario described in the book, could be untraceable.

  66. December 4, 2016 10:10 am

    I always loved this song. The last eight years have made me appreciate it more:

    Play “De Do Do Do, D…”
    Powered by Stream-it.online
    “De Do Do Do, De Da Da Da”

    Don’t think me unkind
    Words are hard to find
    The only cheques I’ve left unsigned
    From the banks of chaos in my mind
    And when their eloquence escapes me
    Their logic ties me up and rapes me

    De do do do, de da da da
    Is all I want to say to you
    De do do do, de da da da
    Their innocence will pull me through
    De do do do, de da da da
    Is all I want to say to you
    De do do do, de da da da
    They’re meaningless and all that’s true

    Poets, priests and poiticians
    Have words to thank for their positions
    Words that scream for your submission
    And no one’s jamming their transmission
    ‘Cos when their eloquence escapes you
    Their logic ties you up and rapes you

    De do do do, de da da da
    Is all I want to say to you
    De do do do, de da da da
    Their innocence will pull me through
    De do do do, de da da da
    Is all I want to say to you
    De do do do, de da da da
    They’re meaningless and all that’s true

    (De do do do, de da da da
    Is all I want to say to you
    De do do do, de da da da
    Their innocence will pull me through
    De do do do, de da da da
    Is all I want to say to you
    De do do do, de da da da
    They’re meaningless and all that’s true)

  67. Grand Wazzoo permalink
    December 4, 2016 1:41 pm

    Back to carrier. The below is an antidote to the idea that its just liberals who have a beef with the carrier rescue. I personally am not smart enough to know whether it was a good or bad idea. Its not my point. My point is that going after those #@$%^ liberals as if they invented all the bad ideas in the world is way oversimplifying. I’m hardly a liberal, really, but my parents are and my kids are (not my fault, I’ve been loudly moderate ever since they were small) so I am going to take on the task of reacting to oversimplified blaming of moderates and piling on in honor of my parents and kids. They are not at all stupid, some of them are staggeringly well informed as well. Liberal and conservative ideas have existed forever and the persistence of both is due to the fact that there is something in both.

    “Trump’s Carrier intervention may just send an equally loud, but nearly opposite signal: that the White House is going to pick winners and losers, that it can be rolled, that industrial policy is back, that Trump cares more about seeming like a savior than sticking to clear and universal rules, and that there is now no major political party in America that rejects crony capitalism as a matter of principle. After all, don’t expect the GOP to recycle the language it used for the bailouts, Cash for Clunkers, Solyndra, etc., when it comes to Carrier. The RNC belongs to Trump….

    I don’t begrudge Trump his distrust and/or ignorance of the free market. He ran on dirigisme, protectionism, and a cult-of-personality approach to issues of public policy (“I alone can fix it!” and all that B.S.). He has spent his entire professional life working, bribing, and cajoling politicians for special deals — and he’s been honest about it. But Mike Pence is supposed to be one of us. He’s supposed to be, if not the chief ideologist of the Trump administration, at least the mainstream right’s ambassador and emissary in the West Wing. And here he is casually throwing the “free market” under the bus in order to elevate crony capitalism, industrial policy, and rule of man over rule of law. Does Pence really believe that America loses in the free market every time? Really?”

    Read more at: http://www.nationalreview.com/g-file/442719/donald-trump-carrier-intervention-golden-ticket-promise

    • Grand Wazzoo permalink
      December 4, 2016 1:42 pm

      “oversimplified blaming of moderates” Good grief, oversimplified blaming of liberals.

  68. dduck12 permalink
    December 4, 2016 2:05 pm

    I don’t know if Trump sleeps (when he sleeps, which is probably not enough), with a Putin doll, but I hope the doll does not turn into a “Chucky” doll: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=95fNouFMMiM
    Thank goodness for Mad Dog Mattis as a counter balance.

  69. December 4, 2016 2:21 pm

    “And here he is casually throwing the “free market” under the bus in order to elevate crony capitalism, industrial policy, and rule of man over rule of law. Does Pence really believe that America loses in the free market every time? Really?”

    I don’t agree and I don’t think America loses in a “free market.” The question is, what constitutes a free market?

    For example, is it OK to have Mexico export its poorest and neediest citizens to the US (illegally I might add) and for Ford to ship Mexico well paying jobs? Does that constitute a free exchange?

    If that is OK, then you have to go explain to the displaced workers about comparative advantage. Tell them how them how they are better off now than before NAFTA.

    The thing is, is it a bad thing that states compete against each other for companies that want to relocate? Should Washington state pass whatever law it wants and the companies be required to stay there rather than find a friendlier state?

    So, if Indiana were to give Boeing an incentive to move there, how is the Carrier deal any different?

    For the record, I am free market advocate, but this assumes the game is not rigged, Many workers who lost their jobs feel that it is and that Obama could have cared less in his 8 years in office.

    • Grand Wazzoo permalink
      December 4, 2016 2:48 pm

      That is a matter for you to take up with Mr. Goldberg. My point is that that some conservatives are against this on conservative principle, the lets all laugh at the liberals response is not giving credit to that.

      “For example, is it OK to have Mexico export its poorest and neediest citizens to the US (illegally I might add) and for Ford to ship Mexico well paying jobs? Does that constitute a free exchange?”

      Sounds like a lousy exchange but even I know that Mexico is not making such an exchange, A. the Mexican government is not sending their people, the difference in teh standard in living is moving people and B. You leave out what America gains from NAFTA, markets and thus jobs. I’m not defending NAFTA, I’m not smart enough to know whether it is net good or bad, but lets not pretend that we only lose. But again, take that up with Mr. Goldberg, and in this case, Mrs. Palin as well it seems.

      My point is, again, that the “blame the liberals for every wrong” theory is way oversimplified.

      • December 4, 2016 8:42 pm

        “My point is, again, that the “blame the liberals for every wrong” theory is way oversimplified.:”

        As well it is. Good liberals have been getting kicked around for a while now. My personal belief is that liberalism was hijacked, some time ago, by the hard left. I know that many liberals would say that the same is true of conservatives; that is, that the far right – or, as it is now labeled, the “alt-right” (regardless of the fact that virtually no one can specifically define what that means) – has hijacked good, old-fashioned conservatism. I would disagree with that, for a few reasons, some of which I’ve already mentioned earlier in this thread.

        Here is a hypothetical of what I mean as far as liberalism and the left. Imagine if, in 1992, Bernie Sanders had run in the Democratic primaries against Bill Clinton. How long do you figure Bernie’s “movement” would have lasted? Anybody willing to guess longer than a month?

        Yet, this year, not only did the poor DNC have to “rig” the primaries against our socialist hero, but he still gave Hillary a run for her money. George McGovern, by comparison, was considered a radical by many in his own party, and he was further to the right than Sanders. And Sanders is routinely described as a “populist.” William Jennings Bryan, he’s not. More like Norman Thomas. But Thomas was not a mainstream politician.

      • December 5, 2016 9:05 am

        Sorry, but they are indeed, sending them to the USA. There is zero enforcement on their side. They do nothing to stop human trafficking, knowing full well that hundreds die every year trying to cross the border.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 5, 2016 1:22 pm

        Priscilla, regarding your post of 8:42 (to borrow a technique from Mike) I can find little there to dispute depending on what one means by the hard left. I will note that there was a real prog candidate who offered the real prog ideology and she got 1%, which is at least one result that came out this year they way I would have predicted it. I doubt if many liberals are really of what I call the hard left, many are just economically naive and like the sound of promises and as you have noted Bernie’s sincerity, honesty, and little guy funding were a way to send a message. You noted yourself that even republicans liked him. So I am not going to believe as yet that his real democratic-socialist beliefs are going to be the flavor of the dem party. Although Ellison is a bad sign that I may be wrong about that.

        If only everyone had to pass an economics class with a C to graduate high school…. Better yet, 2 economics classes micro and macro with international economics thrown into macro.

    • December 5, 2016 11:31 am

      Re: the Carrier deal…I don’t think that the deal itself presents a problem. The problem is Trump saying that there will be “consequences” for “any” American corporation that chooses to leave the US, in order to maximize profit.

      Peggy Noonan compared the Carrier deal with the deal that JFK made with US Steel, getting it to agree not to implement a planned price increase. JFK was a fiscal conservative, but he interfered in that particular situation in order to burnish his image as a fighter for the people.

      Conservatives like Barry Goldwater slammed JFK’s move, but it was very successful. As Noonan says ” A little muscle, judiciously applied, can be a unifying thing.” I guess we’ll have to wait and see if Trump uses his muscle judiciously going forward.

      • jbastiat permalink
        December 5, 2016 12:12 pm

        Yes, but Priscilla, that was different. JFK was a democrat, and the media love Democrats, even those of 50 years ago.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 5, 2016 1:11 pm

        “Yes, but Priscilla, that was different. JFK was a democrat, and the media love Democrats, even those of 50 years ago.”

        JB, In your bitterness about the media and liberals you have missed my point. The National Review is a conservative media outlet. Jonah Goldberg is a conservative. So is Palin. This not a simple matter of the biased liberals and their media jumping on your poor trump, there is more intellectual and philosophical and ideological meat here than your simple sarcastic story.

  70. December 5, 2016 9:07 am

    Here is the trade data. See for yourself:

    https://www.census.gov/foreign-trade/balance/c2010.html

    • Grand Wazzoo permalink
      December 5, 2016 1:42 pm

      Interesting data. Trade growing on both sides, which is good. In 2015 we exported 235 billion to Mexico. That is a hell of a lot of employment for Americans. They exported even more to us. Good, its money being made in Mexico, growth of the Mexican economy is good, it keeps Mexicans home. Net migration has been negative for quite a few years now.

      Your data tell me the NAFTA is working and creating both Mexican and American jobs.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 5, 2016 1:42 pm

        235 billion worth of goods that is.

  71. December 5, 2016 9:08 am

    Bernie is and will always be, a socialist. The populist label is for show.

  72. December 5, 2016 9:12 am

    My point is, again, that the “blame the liberals for every wrong” theory is way oversimplified.

    These labels are sloppy and loosely applied. That said, what is good for the goose and all that. If all conservatives are labeled as (fill in the blank) the favor gets returned in due course. If all Caucasians are (fill in the blank).

    Don’t blame me, I didn’t start it.

    • Anonymous permalink
      December 5, 2016 11:18 am

      JB: I believe the ” I didn’t start it.” argument is flawed. When Hutus committed genocide against Tutsis , it was a predominantly Tutsi force with some Hutu moderates and foreign assistance the militarily defeated the group committing genocide. After the Tutsi victory, some violence continued, sometimes Hutus were raped and murdered by Tutsis. Quite predictable, much smaller in scale, but still wrong. I don’t object to opposing and defeating an opponent. But adding anything extra, because “they” did it, is not an effective deterrent, IMO it only ecouraged more bad behavior. Mike H

      • jbastiat permalink
        December 5, 2016 12:10 pm

        I think liberals and conservatives should grow thicker skins. All this outrage is getting old.

      • jbastiat permalink
        December 5, 2016 12:13 pm

        Next you will tell me I am worse than Hitler. That has already been done.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 5, 2016 1:35 pm

        “I think liberals and conservatives should grow thicker skins. All this outrage is getting old.”

        Yeah, that would be great, but we are who we are and certain digs and patterns lead downhill sooner rather than later.

        Ironically immediately followed by

        “Next you will tell me I am worse than Hitler.”

        Thin skin already fully exposed, with barely a pause for a breath?

        What if we don’t go full Left Vs. Right war this time? That is being done everywhere on the internet, most posters here at TNM seem to feel that full scale ideological food fight is boring and appreciate it when that tired old war is avoided here. This is the New Moderate. Got anything ideologically moderate to say? Priscilla does, maybe you could learn something from her?

  73. Anonymous permalink
    December 5, 2016 12:47 pm

    If something is not wrong, then it isn’t wrong. Poker players, for example say things to mislead, intimidate, insult, or otherwise misinform, and that is generally considered an acceptable part of the game. I am not intending to be a buzz kill to political jokes or jabs as part of a debate. I simply find someone saying that a bad behavior becomes acceptable because an opponent did it. I am of the opinion that even violence and killing is necessary at times because of what an opponent does. But one aught to ask 1) Is this acceptable even if the opponent does not do it, such as bluffing in a card game? Is it necessary even though “bad” such as bombing an enemy that is killing innocent people. If it is neither, if the only justification is “they did it first” then I don’t support that. I am not the boss of anyone else’s moral compass, but I am not afraid to share my view. Mike H

    • jbastiat permalink
      December 5, 2016 12:52 pm

      If you need to win this one, so be it. I have moved on, as I live in the real world. If you equate name calling with mass murder, you are free to do so. It is still a reasonably free country.

      Happy now?

      • Anonymous permalink
        December 5, 2016 1:46 pm

        I try to make up in words what I can’t express in tone. Yes, you are right that I equated name calling and mass murder when it comes to what I saw as flawed logic. Please note that I did not accuse you of name calling or mass murder, I accused you of previously stated flawed argument. I find it quite gracious when someone allows another to have the last word. I feel like you did that in this case and I thank you for that. That, being said, I invite your feedback on this post, but I’m comfortable to end it here or listen to your feedback,either way. Mike H

  74. Anonymous permalink
    December 5, 2016 1:54 pm

    Wait, I erred, I had accused you of name calling in the past. The AHA award. What I meant was I was not saying anything you said recently was wrong, I was limiting it to your argument. Sorry, I should have clarified that also.

  75. jbastiat permalink
    December 5, 2016 4:01 pm

    “Next you will tell me I am worse than Hitler.”

    That was a joke. Since we have no emoticons to use, I had to let it speak for itself.

  76. December 5, 2016 7:48 pm

    “That, being said, I invite your feedback on this post, but I’m comfortable to end it here or listen to your feedback,either way. Mike H.”

    I am good, Mike. Thanks.

  77. December 5, 2016 10:36 pm

    I agree with JB that a Democrat and a Republican can do the very same thing, and somehow, the Democrat will be praised for it, and the Republican will be treated as a demon from Hell, attempting to destroy everything that is good in this earthly paradise. I don’t doubt for a moment that Trump will be flogged by the media regardless of what he does.

    In some ways, our democracy works better when there is a GOP president, for precisely this reason. The liberal media starts doing its job instead of making excuses and/or fawning over a president that they like, and the conservative media is never satisfied with any president, because no president is ever conservative enough for them.

    On the other hand, all of those excuses and fawning didn’t get Hillary elected, so maybe the voters are smarter than we think, or the media is dumber. Or both. In any case, the media’s credibility is growing dangerously weak. I saw a Politico headline today: “Trump inherits Obama Boom.”

    Sheesh. First we hear that the bad economy of the past 8 years is Bush’s fault, and now we’re in a boom? What’s the over/under on how many years the Obama Boom will last?
    Seriously, the media needs to stop with the narratives, and start reporting the facts.

    • Mike Hatcher permalink
      December 5, 2016 10:49 pm

      Priscilla- I’m quite in harmony with you on the economy thing. If Trump were somehow able to create a miraculous financial boon, it would be credited to “seeds” Obama planted, while every economic set back will be directly attributed to Trump ineptness. I can’t see the media losing any credibility in my eyes, they have none to lose. My opinion, the President has great influence on foreign affairs but far less influence, good or bad, on the economy. Of course like Dave, I wish the President and Congress would have even far less influence on the economy than what they do have.

      • dduck12 permalink
        December 6, 2016 10:58 am

        Good comments Priscilla and MH.

    • Mike Hatcher permalink
      December 5, 2016 11:39 pm

      Here is what some tough investigative reporting by the Washington Post found out about the damage Trump has already caused.

      https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/soloish/wp/2016/12/05/trumps-election-stole-my-desire-to-look-for-a-partner/?utm_term=.b7f52ea98ee7

      • dduck12 permalink
        December 6, 2016 11:01 am

        🙂

      • jbastiat permalink
        December 6, 2016 12:45 pm

        I hope to God that is satire, because if it isn’t……..

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 6, 2016 3:43 pm

        I think the article was probably a tremendous personal success. She is likely now receiving marriage proposals from wan professors of English and Sociology from all over the country, male, female, and indeterminate. She can pick and choose among choice progressives, female studies students, activists of any flavor, whatever she wants.

  78. jbastiat permalink
    December 6, 2016 1:15 pm

    I wonder is it even possible for the media in the US to be less useful? Certainly, MSNBC, CNN should turn in their press credentials (Fox at times, as well).

  79. December 6, 2016 4:44 pm

    “DALLAS — I am a Republican presidential elector, one of the 538 people asked to choose officially the president of the United States. Since the election, people have asked me to change my vote based on policy disagreements with Donald J. Trump. In some cases, they cite the popular vote difference. I do not think presidents-elect should be disqualified for policy disagreements. I do not think they should be disqualified because they won the Electoral College instead of the popular vote. However, now I am asked to cast a vote on Dec. 19 for someone who shows daily he is not qualified for the office.

    Fifteen years ago, as a firefighter, I was part of the response to the Sept. 11 attacks against our nation. That attack and this year’s election may seem unrelated, but for me the relationship becomes clearer every day.”

    http://www.nytimes.com/2016/12/05/opinion/why-i-will-not-cast-my-electoral-vote-for-donald-trump.html?smid=tw-share&_r=0

    • December 6, 2016 4:51 pm

      James Madison in Federalist 63: “There are particular moments in public affairs when the people, stimulated by some irregular passion, or some illicit advantage, or misled by the artful misrepresentations of interested men, may call for measures which they themselves will afterwards be the most ready to lament and condemn. In these critical moments, how salutary will be the interference of some temperate and respectable body of citizens, in order to check the misguided career, and to suspend the blow meditated by the people against themselves, until reason, justice, and truth can regain their authority over the public mind?”

      He was anticipating that an asshole like Trump (artful misrepresentations, illicit advantage, misguided career) could be elected.

      Kasich for more rational, acceptable substitute!

  80. December 6, 2016 5:43 pm

    TweetyTrump at it again with petulant exaggerations to discredit critics. This time with Boeing :

    “Boeing is building a brand new 747 Air Force One for future presidents, but costs are out of control, more than $4 billion. Cancel order!” the Bozo Elect tweeted.

    This soon after Boeing’s CEO said they were concerned about Trump trade policies; so Petulant Donnie threatens to cancel the contract, to silence criticism and depress
    Boeing stock prices.

    http://www.complex.com/life/2016/12/trump-cancel-boeing-air-force-one

    As usual, Despicable Donald distorted the numbers. There isn’t a $4B cost overrun because the planes aren’t in production yet. If the Liar in Wait really wants to save taxpayer money, why is he refusing to live full time at the White House, burdening us with a billion dollars of extra costs securing him and his family in NYC?

    • Anonymous permalink
      December 6, 2016 6:05 pm

      My understanding is the Texas guy is within his rights and the rules to not vote Trump in the electoral college. I fault him for the mistake, not a crime, to pledge to do one thing and not do it.

      I don’t see anything wrong with Donald asking to cancel to Boeing contract. I don’t think he actually has the power, even after inauguration, to cancel it unilaterally.

      Do we have any stats on the number of days other Presidents spent in the White House? Any cost analysis?

      Jay, I believe you are really stretching to complain about nit picky stuff, I trust Trump will make far worse errors than trying to cancel a contract or taking a Taiwan phone call. I plan to rest my lungs for a while as I am sure I will have something to scream about soon enough.

  81. December 6, 2016 6:31 pm

    Even people at Carrier have wised up to the BS that flows constantly from the lips of soon to be President Lies-Thru-His-Teeth.

    “Jones, president of the United Steelworkers 1999, which represents Carrier employees, felt optimistic when Trump announced last week that he’d reached a deal with the factory’s parent company, United Technologies, to preserve 1,100 of the Indianapolis jobs — until the union leader heard from Carrier that only 730 of the production jobs would stay and 550 of his members would lose their livelihoods, after all. 
    At the Dec. 1 meeting, where Trump was supposed to lay out the details, Jones hoped he would explain himself.

    “But he got up there,” Jones said Tuesday, “and, for whatever reason, lied his a– off.”

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2016/12/06/he-got-up-there-and-lied-his-a-off-carrier-union-leader-on-trumps-big-deal/?tid=pm_business_pop&utm_term=.91eb7b34aed0

    And United Technologies still plans to send 700 factory jobs from Huntington, Ind, to Monterrey, Mexico. Liar Trump promised to keep ALL Carrier jobs in the state:

     “They’re going to call me and they are going to say ‘Mr. President, Carrier has decided to stay in Indiana,’” Trump had said at the April rally. “One hundred percent — that’s what is going to happen.”

    He saved LESS than 50% of the Carrier jobs. And never said a damn thing in commiseration to those who lost their jobs. Nor did the lying cockroach follow through on his threat to tax the 1,300 jobs Carrier is exporting to Mexico.

    President Pussy Grabber will soon take office. America is henceforth a soiled nation

    • December 6, 2016 6:41 pm

      Laid Off Carrier Workers Thank You Song To Devious Donald:

      • Mike Hatcher permalink
        December 6, 2016 9:50 pm

        I missed these short, kind of hard hitting funny posts, that you are so good at Jay. Welcome back.

  82. dduck12 permalink
    December 6, 2016 6:33 pm

    As he tweets (or squeaks) from his aerie on top the Trump Castle in Trumpsylvania, the world will wish for that boring third Obama term we could have had. So what if the Clintons cadged a few million here and there, grabbed a couple of the WH’s silver pickle forks and the “Foundation” sold selfies with world leaders from the government and private sector. Chump change compared to a not even president yet, that can tell his friends to sell short as he berates some company while casting himself as the guardian of the public purse.
    This has to be the greatest piece of fiction that is actually reality.

    • Grand Wazzoo permalink
      December 6, 2016 7:06 pm

      Yes, dduck, yes.

    • Mike Hatcher permalink
      December 6, 2016 10:12 pm

      dduck12 – “Chump change compared to……friends to sell short..” A year ago, Boeing stock was at about 148 in Feb of this year it hit a low of 108 and has climbed back up the low 150’s right now. So you think Trump has some rich friends that sold short for the 16 minute window when the stock dropped one half of one percent and then closed up for the day. And how much volume did they push through in those 16 minutes? Certainly enough to buy a pizza, but not enough to start an SEC investigation. I guess I started a day of silliness with that post of a woman not dating because of Trump, and the silliness has continued all day.

      • dduck12 permalink
        December 6, 2016 10:36 pm

        Just kidding. Not Boeing, just projecting possibilities for the fictional best seller: “How Trump Trumped The World”.
        BTW: short sellers are very adept and fast when the game is rigged. Not that all short sellers cheat.
        Next time I will use a :-). 🙂

  83. December 6, 2016 8:45 pm

    Oh, you Trump despisers still don’t get it. You loathe him based on old notions of propriety and refinement that ceased to be practical, functional, and truthful, but you’re not getting it. How can I explain it to you faithful lovers of old-world refinement and genteel caution?

    Let’s try this: you know how we’ve had Saturday Night Live and The Today Show and other shows lampooning our leaders, mocking our leaders, and meanwhile other cultures have been appalled and disgusted at such horrid behavior? In other cultures they aren’t permitted to express such public criticism. We laugh at such “backwardness”. We laugh at our comedians and then we get back to our every day lives as decent human beings. What are those stiff, rigid people from other cultures so afraid of?

    Our political culture got to such a degree of PC phony that speech writers would labor for hours to wordsmith for shades of meaning lest they offend someone. Like lawyers talking. Like Hillary talking. She chooses each word like a person dodging unseen projectiles. Like Bill asking what is the meaning of “is”. Good riddance!

    Let’s project into the future. Trump is asked in a press conference what he thinks about the Russians becoming active in such and such region. Let’s imagine Trump says, “Maybe they should sip some of that vodka they’re famous for and chill out a bit.” Trump supporters chuckle and cheer his brashness. Putin and half of Russia probably shakes their heads and chuckles a bit. What a knucklehead, that Trump! It’s actually a bit disarming, in a good way. Screw the perfect wordsmithing that has meant little to nothing for decades, that has not matched reality for decades. The actions and the results will communicate.

    Meanwhile, some who fancy themselves discerning intellectuals and holders of other high perches of refinement will continue to shudder in disgust. How could such a bonehead be in charge? Some still won’t get it. They will want the running back who runs 90 yards for a touchdown to be able to recite a sonnet. They will want the fireman who runs into a burning building to be able to name the architectural styles of the buildings he’s running into.

    About half of the American People wanted a game changer, but many of the Trump loathers want a President who acts “Presidential”.

    It doesn’t mean good deeds are a thing of the past. It doesn’t mean ethics and morals are a thing of the past. But leaders acting noble and speaking smoothly, while behind the scenes selling us out, yes, that can be in the past. Will Trump line his pockets along the way? We don’t care.

    I touched on it a bit, but didn’t quite say exactly what I wanted to say, but I’m at a Starbucks and I’ve got to get home now, so it will have to do.

    • dduck12 permalink
      December 6, 2016 9:31 pm

      I hope Trump doesn’t get burned by a hot Starbucks’s coffee and sink their stock.
      I have rarely voted Dem, this is the first time in more that 25 years. I am far from an intellectual “believe me”and shuddering with disgust. I think the Dems stink on ice, and I’m not looking for “presidential’ just someone NOT like a Caligula.

      • Pat Riot permalink
        December 6, 2016 10:49 pm

        I hear ‘ya, dduck. I was looking for a candidate less Trump-like too. Something between “Presidential” and Caligula is a fair and moderate desire!
        Bernie seemed honest at least, but he disappointed me in several ways.

        But the shock and dismay at every other tweet or unconventional move by Trump is ridiculous. To many, me included, the break from stale and phony is refreshing. I realize Trump is a poser too, but a different kind. If he turns his back on the populist movement, they’ll turn on him too. He’s like a quarterback with a hot arm. A few interceptions here and there are okay. If he makes the American working class start losing again, then the honeymoon will be over.

    • December 6, 2016 11:22 pm

      While Trump haters spin their wheels on recounts and attacks on the electoral college, Trump just keeps beating them at their own game.

      Example: The Boeing tweet. Boeing was a big, you might say YUGE, winner in the Iran deal. Iran badly needs an updated air force as well as a civilian fleet. It now has the billions needed to buy them, thanks to us, and Boeing and Airbus have been granted licenses to sell to our ally….oops, I mean our enemy. Boeing also has Defense Dept clearance to sell fighter jets to Qatar and Kuwait. Suffice it to say, the Obama administration has been very, very good to Boeing.

      Trump wants Boeing on notice that things may be different under his administration, and giant defense contracts with Boeing may not go forward, if cost overruns are part of the process. Trump has also said that he will review, and likely make changes to the Iran deal. So, after meeting this week with John Bolton and Henry Kissinger, Trump sent out a tweet, saying that an order for 2 new Air Force One planes should be cancelled.

      So, while everyone in the media hoots and hollers about how Trump’s “dumb” tweet caused Boeing’s stock to nosedive, how dumb is it really, to let this particular corporation know that it’s not calling the shots anymore?

      • jbastiat permalink
        December 7, 2016 1:38 pm

        Indeed. When is the last time Obama did anything constructive other than criticize police and anything that MIGHT smack of race?

    • Grand Wazzoo permalink
      December 6, 2016 11:30 pm

      “Will Trump line his pockets along the way? We don’t care.”

      I Thought the revolution was all about ending all that kind of special rules for the rich and powerful?!? So much for the reform angle! The rich get richer, the workers hear some BS about saving 1100 jobs that consists of trump lying his ass off.

      Pat, you are describing a shit sandwich and saying how much you like it. I wonder how long you can keep that up?

      This is going to turn out like “What did the Romans ever do for us?” but only in reverse, the revolution Didn’t bring the modern equivalent of sanitation, wine, roads, keeping order, etc. but the true believers are still in ecstasy.

      • Mike Hatcher permalink
        December 6, 2016 11:46 pm

        GW: I loved that post, the way some (yes- a qualifier there) seem to be gushing over every little thing Trump does. Oh, Trump tripped on the sidewalk- Genius! He did that strategically to show the need to build better streets.

        Rose: You do realize Boeing stock did not nose dive? I am with you that he is sending a good message that they better not think they are going to ride an unaccountable gravy train, but this talk of Trump causing Boeing stock to plummet is just false. It did not plummet, it moved around like a lot of stocks do in a day and ended higher for the day.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 7, 2016 12:33 am

        Heh, I think I remember Mike that you have the Python addiction like I do. In case my comment was inscuteable to anyone here is the clip. Now, imagine it in reverse what has dt ever done for us well he didn’t build the wall etc.:

      • December 7, 2016 1:23 am

        Mike, I do know that Boeing stock didn’t nosedive. My point, imprecisely made 😉 was that the press was obsessing all day over the fact that 1) Trump tweeted and 2) Oh God, doesn’t he know this is damaging Boeing’s stock, and the sky is falling and Taiwan is calling!

        I’m not one of those who believes that Trump is playing 3-dimensional chess, while everyone else is playing checkers. I don’t see him as a genius or gush over everything little thing he does. On the other hand, he does appear to be getting an awful lot done, despite the exploding heads all around him. And he has been using Twitter very effectively, ever since the beginning of his campaign, to drive the news cycle wherever he wants it to go, and to communicate his thoughts, such as they are, to the world, unfiltered.

        I’m beginning to find that a refreshing change from the meaningless crap we’re used to getting, from the “White House communications staff” (who tell us what the President thinks, while the actual President plays golf).

        I think it’s clear that this will be a very different sort of presidency. I agree with Pat that the self-styled arbiters of “presidential behavior” are unhappy with this man that they see as uncouth. Some (qualifier) will fight him every step of the way, to prove that we would have been better off with the utterly corrupt Clintons.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 7, 2016 10:39 am

        “Some (qualifier) will fight him every step of the way, to prove that we would have been better off with the utterly corrupt Clintons.”

        Good qualifier. But I think that there may be a few other reasons to fight him.

        I have never known a president who had an extensive honeymoon other than Ford. The grab women by the crotch, claim that millions of illegals voted with no proof guy, who only got 46% of the vote and who lies his ass off so often that we just don’t believe he ever means anything seriously is not likely to be an exception to having opposition. Its not all coming from nutty date-traumatized ready to swoon onto a chaise lounge and perhaps die there WP loons.

      • December 7, 2016 11:32 am

        GW, the way that the media reacts to Trump’s Tweets® reminds me of the way that the international media once decoded (and, I guess, still do) the Kremlin news announcements. I think the “millions of illegals voting” was part defensive posturing, and part a shot across the bow, to put Stein (and Clinton) on notice that, if they were going to demand recounts, maybe he would ask for some investigation of exactly how many non-citizens and dead people, among others, voted. It was never gonna happen, just like this recount nonsense was never gonna change the outcome of the election. Disappointed Democrats need to move on. The loyal opposition needs to do more than sit in the corner and pout.

        Apropos of nothing, I saw an interesting breakdown of the 2 party popular vote, minus just California, over the last several elections:

        Going back to 1988, the GOP candidate has won the popular vote in ’88, ’04, and ’16, and in ’00 won 50.4%.

        When you add in CA, the GOP loses its popular vote share by .03% in ’88, .07% in ’00 and ’04, and 1.7% in 2016. So, without CA, Trump won the popular vote, with CA he lost it. In 2000, the PV was essentially a tie, but with CA, Gore won it, There is a genuine “California effect” on electoral politics, specifically in its ability to drive the popular vote. A good argument (in fact, very similar to Hamilton’s original argument) for the electoral college.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 7, 2016 1:18 pm

        Well I don’t really get the minus California argument. California is underrepresented in electoral college votes in relation to the small population states, which are mostly conservative. And Dems can play the same game, subtract Texas, or subtract the deep south as easily as the GOP can play subtract California, or we can subtract a number of small population western and southern states that add up to California’s population. If we throw out California and balance it with extremely conservative states with an equivalent population then the liberals would win every presidential election I am confident.

        It comes down to Dems/liberals are packed in tight in cities in the east and west coasts where they can have universities and theaters and all that cultural stuff that liberals love while GOPvoters/conservatives are spread out in low density states where they can have farms and rodeos and country music and all that rural cultural stuff with an occasional religious university thrown in. Yeah I know, I am slandering everyone, its a joke, sort of.

        The popular vote just counts Americans, your sister in California is an American, she just is underrepresented in popular votes (like the people is Texas and NY etc. As well.)

        I am not expecting the electoral collage to be removed although its original form was considered so imperfect that we have an amendment, the 12th that reworked it. I guess removing the electoral college can be another fruitless issue for people like Pelosi to uselessly beat. What I am saying is that trump lost by 2% 46% to 48% making conservaitves happy with the electoral collage yet again. 50,000 people in 3 states changing their minds would have given the popular vote and the electoral vote to Clinton. That is NOT a mandate to turn the world upside down for trumpers. The GOP lost ground in the Senate and the house. Likewise no GOP mandate.

        trump’s character and behavior and the most extreme ideas of the GOP are better material for the Dems than their own most discussed issues, free collage, transgender bathrooms, repealing the 2nd amendment (which I have to now admit is a thing since Ellison is in contention to be the chair) so they are going to run on that, they will be the party of no in the next 2-4 years.

        Opposition to trump is not going to fade away, which is fine with me. I’d rather it was intelligent opposition, but you get what you get from 320,000,000 people armed with the internet. I think that there actually are intelligent people in politics on the right and left who worry about serious things with some understanding of the actual mechanics of issues of debt, trade, entitlements, foreign policy etc. , but those things are detailed and wonky and the average person is not interested beyond a superficial level and not informed enough to understand those issues. So we get trivial and superficial shit and personalities as our public discussion in the media, who sell soap etc. by giving the readers what they want.

        This will contain 24 typos but I won’t see then till I reread it as a published post.

      • December 7, 2016 4:10 pm

        We are all at the mercy of WordPress’s refusal to allow us to edit our comments. Just this morning, I put a comma in the “nothing new under the sun” and it haunts me now.

        California provided the entirety of Hillary Clinton’s popular vote margin. There is no other state that you could subtract out of the equation and have the same thing be true. Texas was reasonably close by comparison. The electoral college may not be directly democratic, but it’s a good system for a national election, because the outcome can’t be dominated by just a few states, and candidates can’t say things like “We’re gonna put a lot of coal miners out of jobs” and expect to win in places like WV and PA.Plus,California has become abnormally partisan, and its motor voter automatic registration encourages illegal voting.

        I maybe could get on board with a direct voting system, if we had national voter ID, eliminated most early voting and had verified paper records of all votes. I’m sure there must be some technology out there that could use biometric voter ID, but how to implement it constitutionally?

        I’m fine with opposition to Trump, too. I’ve said all along that one major advantage that I felt he had over Hillary was that he was impeachable and she was not. In fact, James Comey could have save us all a lot of trouble, if he had recommended indictment back in July. We would now likely be preparing to inaugurate President Joe Biden. But Hillary was and would have remained untouchable. Her problem was that she was also unelectable.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 7, 2016 6:43 pm

        “Just this morning, I put a comma in the “nothing new under the sun” and it haunts me now.”

        I give you the James Thurber whimsical grammatical commentary word for that beautiful sentence.

  84. Pat Riot permalink
    December 6, 2016 11:06 pm

    And something interesting about the “American Worker,” and yes that’s a sweeping category and I won’t be talking about everybody here. They don’t even need to necessarily gain directly. What do I mean? Consider the average cheering fan at an NFL football game. Is the fan sharing in the profits? No. They’re cheering their team, their city. They’re sort of okay, or okay enough, with the players being millionaires, as long as the players hustle and play hard for the team, for the city, for them. And so Trump needs to make America look good again so the average Joe can feel proud of America again. Some shiny bridges, some manufacturing deals, some new competitive edges with China, etc. They want to belong to something good again, even if it is not a windfall for them personally. Funny people those working class blokes!

    • Mike Hatcher permalink
      December 6, 2016 11:33 pm

      On the one hand, I see Trump as a one-trick pony, that trick is bad mouthing to get concessions. Much like the used car dealer that says: “How much you want for that piece of garbage?” However, it seems that one trick works well a lot of times in a lot of situations, and the Democrats and Republics seem to be Zero trick ponies. Both spending money like crazy and making things worse. Somewhat over generalized, but Republicans on Military intervention, Democrats on dependency creating social programs. I concede I kind of like what Trump has done post election, but like the post I forgot to put my name on earlier, I’m just resting my lungs because I fully expect I’ll be hollering about the bad things Donald does once he takes office.

      • December 7, 2016 1:31 am

        Haha, “Zero-Trick Ponies.” You nailed it.

    • Grand Wazzoo permalink
      December 7, 2016 12:14 am

      Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh (born Chandra Mohan Jain, 11 December 1931 – 19 January 1990), also known as Osho, Acharya Rajneesh,[1] or simply Rajneesh, was an Indian “Godman”[2] and leader of the Rajneesh movement. During his lifetime he was viewed as a controversial mystic, guru, and spiritual teacher. …In 1981 efforts refocused on activities in America and Rajneesh relocated to a facility known as Rajneeshpuram in Wasco County, Oregon. Almost immediately the movement ran into conflict with county residents and the State government and a succession of legal battles concerning the ashram’s construction and continued development curtailed its success. In 1985, following the investigation of serious crimes including the 1984 Rajneeshee bioterror attack, and an assassination plot to murder US Attorney Charles H. Turner, Rajneesh alleged that his personal secretary Ma Anand Sheela and her close supporters had been responsible.[8] He was later deported from the United States in accordance with an Alford plea bargain.[9][10][11].

      The same stuff repeats itself, there is nothing new in the world.

      • December 7, 2016 10:38 am

        My favorite history professor in college used to always say “There is nothing new, under the sun.”

        Some old things take new forms, but basically I believe that.

  85. dduck12 permalink
    December 6, 2016 11:51 pm

    He’s a loud mouth braggadocio, I don’t know what anyone on the left or right thinks he will be doing except playing to the crowd and massaging his own super-sized ego. Oh sure, he will do some nice sounding stuff, a la the Carrier kabuki, and then make droning speeches that are getting boring and sounding more like Mussolini.
    At this point as a moderate, I am just hoping for a few good things and no major screw ups. As to the sports analogy bit, I would not say he rises to the level of most NFL players fans or cheerleaders. To me the whole mess is more like soccer hooligans. I hope some of his advisers can guide him a little to a better path, otherwise we are in for a horrible four years with much hand wringing by liberals, moderates and some conservatives.
    My holiday wish is he at least stops tweeting. My three cents.

    • December 7, 2016 1:26 am

      Eh, he’ll never stop tweeting, dd. Twitter is his Fireside Chats. Fireside Tweets.

    • jbastiat permalink
      December 7, 2016 1:35 pm

      I try to judge actions, not style. Obama has all the style in the world, with nothing behind it.
      Regan? People hated Ronnie’s folksy humor. Great POTUS.

      So, I see Trump off to a flying start (actions) and his style is not to my liking. I could care less.

  86. Anonymous permalink
    December 7, 2016 10:06 am

    GW: It had been so long since I saw that Monty Python clip, it was like seeing it for the first time. I don’t follow all their British humor but some of it surpasses any other comedy I know.

    Rose: I get you, and after a night’s sleep I even got a good laugh myself from the term “0 trick pony” 😀

  87. December 7, 2016 10:23 am

    Trump and a supporter confronting the establishment in 16 seconds:

    • December 7, 2016 10:44 am

      Heh.

    • Grand Wazzoo permalink
      December 7, 2016 11:01 am

      If only life were a movie with a script. I think of trump sometimes as inspector Clouseau. The pink panther plot was basically is Clouseau an idiot or is he a genius? (he was an idiot). He always came out on top in spite of being an idiot, leaving competent people gnashing their teeth or losing their minds. That was the story line, it was going to happen. This is life, we don’t know what going to happen. I’d rather not have the most powerful nation on earth (where I live) be headed by a guy who you have to ask yourself, is he a complete idiot or is he a genius?

      • December 7, 2016 11:48 am

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 7, 2016 1:28 pm

        Yeah, they just don’t make movies like that anymore. And not just in the US.

        Priscilla, here is a non-political question for you: You are a woman, do you sometimes declare war on an article of your husband’s clothing, say, a bathrobe or a comfortable coat and conduct a guerrilla war until it is finally eliminated despite the owner’s affection for it? If so, why? Why do women do that, if they do do that? Husbands don’t do that, I don’t believe.

        Why won’t my wife let me throw anything out, unless I don’t want to throw it out? Is there an understandable reason based on gender? Does this happen to other people or just me?

      • December 7, 2016 4:21 pm

        Well, I gave up on throwing out my husband’s ratty old robe a long time ago, after trying to gift him with more aesthetically pleasing ones, and having him insist that “this one is fine and I like it.” And I’m the one that usually wants to throw things out, and HE won’t let ME. So, I’m guessing it’s not only gender, but personality. Like spenders and savers….some traits seem hardwired.

        I do think that women are sneakier, though. I’ve tried to throw things out and feigned surprise when he objected. “Oh, honey, I didn’t know you wanted to keep that!” (“Drat, he caught me!”)

  88. dduck12 permalink
    December 7, 2016 1:22 pm

    A good message for moderates: “When you grow up in the middle, you see that life is more in the middle than it is on the sides. The majority of people are in the middle, the margin of victory is almost always in the middle, and very often the truth is there as well, waiting for us.”

    • jbastiat permalink
      December 7, 2016 1:33 pm

      That is ironic, coming from the NY Times. They NEVER try to pick sides.

      • dduck12 permalink
        December 7, 2016 1:44 pm

        As Noah once said: Just look straight ahead until we get to the other side” (or something like that).

  89. jbastiat permalink
    December 7, 2016 1:32 pm

    “However, now I am asked to cast a vote on Dec. 19 for someone who shows daily he is not qualified for the office.”

    Yes, by picking a strong cabinet, trying save US Jobs, and by trying to reduced wasteful spending, clearly this POTUS elect is not fit to run the country.

    Bias, anyone?

    • Grand Wazzoo permalink
      December 7, 2016 1:39 pm

      And the American socialist party will claim that they are merely the kind people who brought Americans the weekend/5 day work week. Nothing more to them than that, totally innocent of any other ideas that might be more controversial or unpopular. Its an old trick, find a deeply flawed and unpopular political entity and advertise it by mentioning only its most acceptable qualities as if all that other stuff people object to did not exist.

      • jbastiat permalink
        December 7, 2016 2:12 pm

        Your point being, what?

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 7, 2016 2:17 pm

        Your point being, what?

        “Yes, by picking a strong cabinet, trying save US Jobs, and by trying to reduced wasteful spending, clearly this POTUS elect is not fit to run the country.”

        Its an old trick, find a deeply flawed and unpopular political entity and advertise it by mentioning only its most acceptable qualities as if all that other stuff people object to did not exist.

  90. jbastiat permalink
    December 7, 2016 1:36 pm

    “I concede I kind of like what Trump has done post election, but like the post I forgot to put my name on earlier, I’m just resting my lungs because I fully expect I’ll be hollering about the bad things Donald does once he takes office.”

    As long as you keep and open mind. Some won’t.

  91. dduck12 permalink
    December 7, 2016 1:40 pm

    75 years ago the biggest disaster hit the U.S. NYT today nary a mention on it’s front page and in the editorial pages. Interesting, no.

    • jbastiat permalink
      December 7, 2016 2:13 pm

      No surprise here. Why waste time on American history when you can just make stuff up to fit with our narrative.

    • dduck12 permalink
      December 8, 2016 1:13 pm

      NYT update: Today, 12/8/2016, they did have one item on PH. It was a picture, inside page, of a scene at the Intrepid in NYC from yesterday with a caption. That’s it.

  92. jbastiat permalink
    December 7, 2016 2:15 pm

    Meanwhile, Clinton ally wastes campaign donations on a worthless endeavor. The Dems loudly proclaim there is no evidence of voter fraud in the US, UNTIL they think they can steal an election.

    Nice!

    http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2016/12/07/recounts-barely-making-dent-in-election-results-trump-gains-in-wisconsin.html

  93. jbastiat permalink
    December 7, 2016 2:22 pm

    “Its an old trick, find a deeply flawed and unpopular political entity and advertise it by mentioning only its most acceptable qualities as if all that other stuff people object to did not exist.”

    Yeah, you and your open mind.

    • Grand Wazzoo permalink
      December 7, 2016 2:30 pm

      Here, I’ll make you a deal, you open yours and drop all your current objections to liberal politicians and ideas and I’ll open mine and drop all my objections to conservative ones. Whoever gives up their ideological ideas and biases first wins the Open Mind and Lack of Bias Award that I’m sure either Pat or Mike will be happy to create in their wood shop.

      • jbastiat permalink
        December 7, 2016 4:05 pm

        Typical non answer. Thanks for nothing.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 7, 2016 6:45 pm

        You can just say “no thanks, I’ll pass” without trying to pretend that you did not understand the conversation. But that would not be grumbly enough I guess.

  94. jbastiat permalink
    December 7, 2016 2:29 pm

    From Trump.Meanwhile, nothing on the WH web site.

    Today being the 75th anniversary of Pearl Harbor – is a milestone that marks the ultimate sacrifice of those who wear the uniform. It is a reminder, too, of the valiant efforts of America’s fighting men and women who have liberated millions from tyranny and oppression.

    We remember and honor those who lost their lives 75 years ago today in the Attack on Pearl Harbor

  95. Pat Riot permalink
    December 7, 2016 8:07 pm

    Fyi, I was having the OM-LOB plaque fabricated in the wood shop, (Open Mind-Lack of Bias plaque), but my millennial employee said he had to go home because his cat was depressed. He said he needed to sit with her to help build the cat’s self-esteem. I had a fit, told him he was soft, that he had been ruined by an overly-permissive society, and I fired him. On his way out he said I was biased and would never win the OM-LOB Award.

    • Grand Wazzoo permalink
      December 7, 2016 8:13 pm

      Well, it sounds like a jolly time was had by both of you. Congrats. I hope the paperwork on the firing does not take up all of your Christmas time.

      Show him this if he is still talking to you:

      • December 7, 2016 10:50 pm

        You must link you are clever? You are not.

      • December 7, 2016 11:01 pm

        My grandmother used to call parakeets “budgies.” It’s one of those words that makes me laugh.

    • dduck12 permalink
      December 7, 2016 9:20 pm

      LOL

    • Anonymous permalink
      December 8, 2016 12:10 am

      Pat: I was going to nominate the cat for that award. You would have thought it would have jumped on the side of your employee after he had sat with it all that time. Or it could have been persuaded by the tears of your former employee after being fired. But to the cat’s credit, it calmly just sat there waiting to be fed. Mike H

  96. December 7, 2016 10:52 pm

    I know Terry personally. He will do a fine job. I am sorry to be leaving him.

    http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2016/12/07/trump-picks-iowa-gov-branstad-as-ambassador-to-china.html

    • December 7, 2016 11:03 pm

      I didn’t realize that he was the country’s longest serving governor. Did you mean “losing” him, or are you moving to MA?

      • December 8, 2016 9:12 am

        I meant losing him as our Gov. MA? Hmm, that is another story, indeed. I will send you an update via FB personal message.

  97. December 8, 2016 1:35 pm

    DEVIOUS DONALD KLEPTOCRACY WATCH:
    (leveraging newfound political power for private gains)

    RNC Christmas Party Will Be at Trump’s Hotel

    “The Republican National Committee is putting its money directly into Donald Trump’s pockets by hosting its annual Christmas party at his Trump International hotel in Washington, D.C.
    The Huffington Post broke the story and notes, “in moving the proceedings to Donald Trump’s downtown D.C. hotel, which only opened this past fall, the committee risks furthering the perception that the president-elect is leveraging his newfound political power for private gains.”
    The hotel is in the early days of becoming a very visible symbol of corruption under a Trump presidency. Foreign leaders and dignitaries coming to Washington to do business have begun patronizing the hotel, and since Trump is refusing to divest his businesses, the money spent at the hotel will go into his pockets.
    Trump’s entangling and overlapping businesses, combined with his disregard for the appearance of conflicts of interests, is contributing to an image of rampant corruption before he even takes the oath of office.”

    http://oliverwillis.com/corruption-rnc-holding-christmas-party-trump-hotel/

  98. December 8, 2016 1:36 pm

    DESTRUCTIVE DONALD WATCH:

    Trump’s Carrier deal is the opposite of conservatism
    George Will:

    “When, speaking at the Carrier plant, Vice President-elect Mike Pence said, “The free market has been sorting it out and America’s been losing,” Donald Trump chimed in, “Every time, every time.” When Republican leaders denounce the free market as consistently harmful to Americans, they are repudiating almost everything conservatism has affirmed…”

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/trumps-carrier-deal-is-the-opposite-of-conservatism/2016/12/06/ccbb1732-bbe4-11e6-94ac-3d324840106c_story.html?postshare=3771481210583747&tid=ss_tw&utm_term=.0282eb4eec37

    • jbastiat permalink
      December 8, 2016 3:34 pm

      So, Jay, you are a big fan of George Will? Who knew.

      You must really be beside yourself if you resort to using a Will piece.

      I am enjoying this SO much.

      Meanwhile, Hill is STILL not going to be President.

      Four more years.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 8, 2016 4:26 pm

        Can’t take any negative information, just can’t process it? So at this point I note the unless I missed something Jay never mentioned you but you are doing the usual JB make it personal stuff.

        Polish up that award you got.

  99. December 8, 2016 1:37 pm

    DUMB DOPE DONALD TWITTER WATCH:

    Union Leader Says He’s Getting Threats After Donald Trump Attacked Him on Twitter
    http://fortune.com/2016/12/08/carrier-union-leader-threats-donald-trump/

    • jbastiat permalink
      December 8, 2016 3:31 pm

      Perhaps, the union leader should focus a bit more on saving union jobs?

  100. December 8, 2016 1:48 pm

    POTBELLIED PREZ ELECT PRIORITY WATCH:

    Trump continues to skip intelligence briefings, but faithfully watches Saturday night live to whine about Alex Baldwin’s satiric impersonation

    http://www.theverge.com/2016/12/4/13832894/donald-trump-tweeting-saturday-night-live

    ( I thought the mashed potatos was the best bit)

    • dduck12 permalink
      December 8, 2016 3:09 pm

      What, no Weight Watch yet?

      • December 8, 2016 4:33 pm

        How about POMPOUS PETULENT PERSONALITY WATCH, as in the pouting similarities of Trump & Mussolini

  101. jbastiat permalink
    December 8, 2016 3:29 pm

    It really is sad watching someone in denial. The next President of the United States: Donald Trump.

    How does that make you feel, Jay?

    • December 8, 2016 4:30 pm

      I’m not in denial. It’s frightening clear what a disreputable dunce we will have besmirching out nation’s reputation and standards of presidential competence. I’ve accepted the fact that we will have the most boorish, untrustworthy, untruthful, mentally immature president in our nation’s history. And as a rational, balanced Moderate who fears the nation’s core beliefs and institutions will disintegrate if this narcissistic idiot is allowed to consolidate power without opposition, I’m going to continue to confront his lies past and present as a patriotic duty to our history of defying tyrants and fools.

    • December 8, 2016 6:05 pm

      A good choice! Andy Puzder, CEO of Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s, is my kinda guy.

      I particularly like his plan to replace restaurant workers with robots, to keep labor costs down, and eliminate the human element, for higher profits. Maybe he can promote that idea to reduce Trump’s cabinet. That would be GREAT for America! Trump wouldn’t have to attend cabinet meeting – he could Tweet to Seri-like disembodied voices that connect him directly to Internet opinion sites. But I sure hope Pudzter doesn’t robotize the TV commercial spokespersons before he takes his leave of absence from Carl’s (or will he pull a Trump on that?) and replace Charlotte McKinney with an R2D2 ‘Au Natural.’

      I’m a fan of Carl’s Jr. There’s one near my Oil & Lube center & I stop there for a Double Cheeseburger while waiting for the oil change. The Carl’s Jr. employees are all Hispanic; most barely speak English; I’m sure some are illegals. But when Duplicitous Donald does his token illegal roundup (enough grabbed to claim he’s fulfilling his pledge; not enough to elicit a constitutional showdown) I’m sure now that Puzder has paid to play, Carl’s and Hardee’s will be off limits for that media spectacle, and I won’t have to worry about a temp Carl’s shutdown until the robots are on line to replace them.

  102. December 8, 2016 4:13 pm

    TREACHEROUS TRUMP HYPOCRACY WATCH:

    After unending bitching and moaning about the Clinton Foundation engaging in political Pay For Play donations, Donald Trump has named former World Wrestling Entertainment CEO Linda McMahon to head the Small Business Association. In addition to the $millions in PAC money she contributed to get him elected, she has donated $5 or $6 million to the Trump Foundation – the largest outside donation they ever received.

    Where’s the outrage from those who like Trump accused Clinton of running a “vast criminal enterprise” worse than Watergate, alleging pay for play underlined it while Clinton was Secretary of State? All we hear from Trump and his supporters is the Silence of Hypocrisy and Denial.

  103. jbastiat permalink
    December 8, 2016 4:30 pm

    Poor baby. Four years in hell. I feel bad for you. Well, no, that was a lie.

    • Grand Wazzoo permalink
      December 8, 2016 6:07 pm

      “Poor baby. Four years in hell. I feel bad for you. Well, no, that was a lie.”

      All over the internet thousands of miserable little people are composing this kind of boring insipid mindless shit. How old are you? How educated are you? This is a pathetic level of communication it is not even communication its only point is aggravation. No awards this time, just grow the F*** up or F*** off.

      • dduck12 permalink
        December 8, 2016 6:24 pm

        ” its only point is aggravation.” Try to keep that in mind, and don’t fall for it: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-DIETlxquzY

      • Mike Hatcher permalink
        December 9, 2016 2:31 am

        GW: If you think about how difficult it is to truly change who you are, the difficulty in changing someone else has to be exponentially more difficult than that. Some of JB’s comments I find indigestible. Certainly I often find much worse on the web, but I see this site as a community of friends rather than mere political opponents. Rather than ask him to change, I’m going to try to change my own behavior by not consuming his comments. Perhaps there is a better solution, but that is the best I can come up with until such time when or if I’m better at handling things I perceive as so mean spirited towards my friends.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 9, 2016 10:11 am

        dduck and Mike, you are both of course correct, but its so hard to actually do.

      • Anonymous permalink
        December 9, 2016 12:16 pm

        GW : I used digestion and consume because I think food can easily be compared to reading information. Someone may benefit from eating vegetables even if they hate the taste. That’s like reading opposing views. Some people may enjoy chocholate while it may make others sick. Then there is stuff that is toxic to all. If one food, commenter, keeps making you ill, avoid that food, others may be able to eat it all day and enjoy it. Where is the temptation for you to continue to eat it? Be well my friend.

    • December 9, 2016 11:52 am

      Jay is a provocateur, who claims to be a moderate and then goes ahead and smears all Trump supporters by calling them hypocrites and deniers.

      Do I take that personally? Of course I do ~ he means it to be personal, just as he gloated over the fact that I might lose friendships if I voted for Trump.

      But, it’s Jay, so I don’t take it seriously.

      I agree with Mike that its’s important to dial down the insults. But that goes for the passive-aggressive insults as well. Politics makes strange blogfellows, but we should all make the effort. (I offer penance for my nasty sarcasm in response to Moogie, which unfortunately was taken personally by dtriebel).

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 9, 2016 12:04 pm

        Jay is a provocateur yes. He has gone well over the line and gotten personal in the past (well, as have I). He took a small break (TNM is addictive!) and has stayed in bounds since he returned. He could also use more qualifiers. His claims to be a moderate are totally valid, as far as ideology, he is to the right of me I believe and has lots politically in common with you and Ron, he just hates trump (and cruz) and stomached Clinton better than the rest of us.

        JB has no claim whatsoever to being any kind of a moderate, unlike every other regular here. The bulk of his output is sarcastic one liners, links and personal attacks. The deep bitterness never ends from him, even when his side wins. I don’t think that describes Jay, he is no more worked up about trump than I am, and there are damn good reasons.

      • December 9, 2016 1:04 pm

        GW please tell me what I may have in common with Jay and I will try my best to make changes.

      • December 9, 2016 1:01 pm

        If I remember correctly. Jay is either in the LA area or lived there for years. A moderate in that area is like saying you have a little cold while in the hospital for double pneumonia.

        If Jay is a moderate, that puts me at the right wing wacko fringe elements on the political scale.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 9, 2016 1:26 pm

        Jay is definitely to the right of me on border control, muslim issues, including entry into the US, and BLM related black grievances. He is absolutely in harmony with the basic TNM point of view on these issues, and they are highly contentious ones! and I am the odd man out, more liberal.

        What issue do you believe that Jay extremely liberal on? He believes in human aggravated Climate change as I do, if there is any wildly liberal issue Jay pushes then I have missed it.

        You guys are just upset that he defended Clintons (in my opinion most of his points were rational there, too) , and I think you are confusing that with being liberal. I can’t stand the Clintons, I’m happy to see them leave the stage at last, but conservatives went way over the top in their attacks of the actual faults of the Clintons. Jay and I agree, he was just louder about it.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 9, 2016 1:33 pm

        And I can add Ron that you have a strong distaste for the religious right, the Cruz world that Jay has as well and up until the election you two had the same opinion of trump, (along with me, Mike and dduck.)

        Your issue is with Jays style and Clinton support, not his ideology it seems to me.

      • December 9, 2016 3:27 pm

        GW. I have a very hard time reconciling Jay’s support for Clinton and he and I having much in common. If one would have me list my preference for voting and I had to list them, it would have been Johnson–Trump–Write-in–no preference—Clinton. And his constant attacks on Trump now are like the constant attacks by the right on Obama for 8 years. I agreed with many of those positions and do not support much of what Jay now posts about Trump. Maybe in a couple years what he has stated will come true.

        Now that trump has begun the transition, I am very impressed with all of his picks for cabinet and high level positions except for maybe Ben carson at HUD. I would have liked to have seen him at HHS, but Price is a good pick there to dismantle the ACA and come up with something else. Jeff Sessions will have some hard questions concerning statements he made 30+ years ago from the same democrats that most likely will support Keith Ellison for DNC chair, the same Ellison that supported Louis Farrakhan and his anti semitic nation of islam and many other anti jewish positions of the Muslim mullahs in America. I suspect trump will pick a stanch conservative for SCOTUS, but would prefer a Sandra Day O’Conner type with more moderate positions, but anything is better than another Obama like judge placed on SCOTUS.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 9, 2016 4:13 pm

        “And his constant attacks on Trump now are like the constant attacks by the right on Obama for 8 years.”

        Fair enough but only a few months back or less you were saying the same things, trump was the worst ever candidate, disgusting.

        Scott Pruitt climate change denialist for EPA? If I remember correctly you are not in the denialist camp on warming so you may see why I am disgusted over that pick. Then, there is Bannon, that is the big one.

        I like his pick for Defence, if Mad Dog Mattis can only reverse trumps idea’s about trusting putin.

      • December 9, 2016 5:43 pm

        “Fair enough but only a few months back or less you were saying the same things, trump was the worst ever candidate, disgusting.”

        Yep that is exactly what I was saying. But I will make that conditional since clinton was the worst candidate EVER. Trump was just the worst GOP candidate ever at the time. So right now, I am seeing a president elect that is very different than the candidate. I am seeing business like strategic planning going on right now to bring in the right people. So far I do not see anything I do not like, including Bannon.

        I like the generals that he putting into place. Dems are having a cow with so many military people, but who better for defense, homeland security and NSA?

        If you re-read my comments about climate, I do not doubt the global temperatures are rising from a cool period thousands of years ago. That is hard to deny when modern technology can show proof that is is happening. But what I find hard to accept is the United States being the cause of the global temperature rise when the oceans have risen 1 ft per 100 years since the founding of Jamestown in 1607. Was there that much activity in the 1600’s, 1700 and 1800’s to create a 1 ft rise each 100 year period? Nature might have something to do with that!

        I am all for Trumps pick for EPA as I am sick of hearing where farmers have been fined for plowing fields that flood every 100 years or so and the EPA comes in and designates their land as water shed. If the land has been farmed for 100’s of years, it should not be designated by the EPA now. The EPA is screwed up when it goes off on small farmers and ranchers, but allows what happened in Flint Michigan or the Gold King mine waste water disaster.. Arizona’s canal systems, drainage systems, ditches, and private property will be subject to federal government control, which limits the states ability to manage water allocation and usage locally. How can the EPA know what is best for water allocation in Arizona? And there are many other issues of over reach by the EPA since Obama has allowed agencies to legislate through regulatory mandates and not congressional action.

        What i am seeing is a man who has run a massive business empire, who has placed the right people into positions to insure each endeavor is successful and is the leader of that empire making the final strategic decisions, but is not involved with the minutiae of daily activity. There is no politician that has done this at this level before and I am seeing a different Trump from the ass that ran for the office.

      • December 9, 2016 7:54 pm

        Yeah, GW, I have to agree with Ron that Jay is moderate for someone who lives in California, which is to say, not all that moderate. I always recall the day that my then HS aged son and I toured Swarthmore, and at the end of the tour, the student guide offered to answer any and all questions about the college. It just so happened that every kid in our tour group was a boy (as was the guide), which must have emboldened one to ask “Are there many pretty girls here?” To which the guide answered “Well…..there are some pretty girls. Pretty for Swarthmore, that is.” We all knew what that meant.

        The Senate race in California this year didn’t even have a Republican in it. This was the US Senate race, mind you, not the state senate.

        The Pruitt pick is a good one, if for no other reason than that the EPA is a rogue bureaucracy which is highly politicized and has done more harm than good. The number of false alarms created by the EPA over the years is notable: radon, alar ( I still remember Meryl Streep’s PSA about the dangers of apple juice), and ozone to name a few. The pendulum needs to swing the other way for a bit. But, I recognize that he is the latest bogey-man to the green lobby.

        If the Democrats hadn’t nuked the filibuster for presidential appointments, he probably couldn’t get confirmed.

  104. Grand Wazzoo permalink
    December 8, 2016 8:10 pm

    Oh, John Glenn. My hero. All those guys were my heros. “Hurry up and light this candle.” etc. I go to the Smithsonian and every time I linger in the Space museum in front of the space capsules. Giants.

    • Pat Riot permalink
      December 8, 2016 9:16 pm

      John Glenn, first American to orbit the Earth, Rest in Peace.

      First American in space: Alan B. Shepard.

      First person in space: Yuri Gagarin, Soviet, April 12, 1961.

      Mercury Missions. Apollo Missions. Shuttle Missions. Giants, yes, agreed.

    • December 8, 2016 11:21 pm

      Trump supporters are reported as having booed John Glenn when Trump mentioned his name at today’s rally. A real American hero who risked his life 4 us. They booed.

      • Mike Hatcher permalink
        December 9, 2016 12:14 am

        I found a tweet by someone named Eichenwald and what appears to be a story that has been pulled by the daily KOS. Do you have a link? I’d like to try to verify the booing within context of what actually happened.

      • December 9, 2016 2:26 am

        Eichenwald was my source too, Mike.
        He’s a respected journalist: I trust what he says.

        (His Wikipedia profile):

        Alexander Eichenwald (born June 28, 1961) is an American journalist who serves as a senior writer with Newsweek, a contributing editor with Vanity Fair and a New York Times bestselling author of four books, one of which, The Informant (2000), was made into a motion picture in 2009. He was formerly a writer and investigative reporter with The New York Times and later with Condé Nast’s business magazine, Portfolio. Eichenwald had been employed by The New York Times since 1986 and primarily covered Wall Street and corporate topics such as insider trading, accounting scandals, and takeovers, but also wrote about a range of issues including terrorism, the Bill Clinton pardons controversy, Federal health care policy, and sexual predators on the Internet.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 9, 2016 10:18 am

        Glenn and trump. Opposite ends of the class spectrum. Class dies, crass prospers, what a year.

        “Where have you gone Joe Dimaggio, a nation turns its lonely eyes to you” was running through my head this morning as I woke up. I am consumed by nostalgia for the long lost glory of a simpler better time, when water was wetter and people created good things. Dave may come along and save me from my old person’s delusions about the days of his youth at some point.

      • December 9, 2016 11:09 am

        I actually watched the Trump speech in Iowa, in its entirety (or at least saw some and heard it all, as I was decorating the tree with C-SPAN on). That’s just plain bunk. I heard no boos, except when some protestors interrupted the speech. That may have been around the time that he mentioned John Glenn, but I wasn’t paying close enough attention to verify. You seriously believe that a crowd in Iowa would boo an American hero? Come on.

        There was a kid sitting directlly behind Trump, with a MAGA cap on, who looked a bit like Michael Moore, and whose reactions to the speech were hysterically off-the-charts funny. I expect to see him in some humorous internet memes going forward.

        Trump Derangement is truly off the charts these days.

      • December 9, 2016 12:40 pm

        The left may have heard the boos. They also may have not heard the heckler. OR>>>> this may be as close to fake news as you can get without it being fake. Lets call it TWISTED NEWS. They heard the heckler, they heard Glenns name and then heard the boos. Most everyone would relate the boos to the hecklers. Leftist relate the boos to the name.

        And the unintelligent left that can’t determine this on their own buys the left wing twisted news. These people would follow Jim Jones if he were still alive today. Oh yeah, they are also heading for Keith Ellison as their party leader. Not much difference in my mind.

      • December 9, 2016 11:55 am

        GW, I did not watch the Trump speech in Iowa. I was in NJ.

        That will haunt me all day 😉

      • Anonymous permalink
        December 9, 2016 11:58 am

        I finally found a link to the clip. Trump mentioned Glenn, had a short pause, the crowd was quiet. Trump mentions something about Glenn’s combat experience and still the crowd is quiet, the when he mentions the Mercury mission, the boos start in what seems to be one area of the crowd. Off camera protesters? People who strongly opposed the Mecury mission? It seems like another attempt to make chicken salad out of chicken squat. Mike H

  105. Grand Wazzoo permalink
    December 8, 2016 11:01 pm

    Why do we think of these astronauts as heroes? They were, of course, but any soldier in combat is no less heroic. We think of these men as heroes because the space program up to the moon landings was the last time that the nation was united around some positive national achievement that uplifted everyone and made everyone proud to be American. Since then its been increasing American division with only negative events like 911 uniting us briefly and partially.

    Am I forgetting any moment of complete national pride over an enormous achievement since then?

    • December 9, 2016 11:18 am

      GW, Glenn served in WWII and Korea as a fighter jet pilot, and flew well over 100 combat missions. He was also a test pilot, back in the days when test pilots had a pretty short life-expectancy. And, the original 7 astronauts were essentially participating in semi-suicide missions, since at the time, the science and technology of space flight was incomplete, and we were rushing to keep up with the Russians. When Alan Shepard and John Glenn were helped into their ridiculously small space capsules, the team that helped them, would drive 3 miles away, before the launch countdown began, because they were afraid of being incinerated by the gigantic rocket launch fireball blast.

      I think Glenn was a hero for other reasons, as well. But, if nothing else, he was insanely brave and extremely patriotic.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 9, 2016 11:54 am

        Since Glenn is an absolute god in my universe I would love to hear about the other reasons. Yes, insanely brave they were. The space shots mixed science, courage, imagination, beauty (the earth seen from space), patriotism, just everything. I wish I could travel back in time and savor it it all. My grandmother lived in Del Ray beach Florida, we were there visiting at the time of some of those launches, I can remember watching the countdowns on her little TV.

        I can’t believe that one can actually just stand in front of some of those capsules at the smithsonian. I’d probably stand in front of them for 8 hours if I was not there with family.

        If it had not been for the Vietnam war and assassinations that era would be remembered as the peak of the golden age of America. Even the turmoil was productive, the civil rights movement, the environmental movement, when it was fighting big things like nearly biologically dead Great Lakes and rivers on fire, etc. And the music, god the music.

        I want a time capsule for Christmas.

      • December 9, 2016 7:57 pm

        Me too!

  106. December 9, 2016 2:17 am

    DEMEANING OFFICE OF PRESIDENT WATCH:

    Trump to continue as executive producer of The Apprentice. And continue to get paid by MGM and NBC.

    Really, this isn’t an Onion satire news headline. The President of the United States will continue to produce a reality TV show while governing the nation. Unbelievable but true. Will he be tweeting advice or warnings to the contestants while he’s getting national security briefings? Oh, right, he’s skipping the briefings, so that shouldn’t be a problem. Will he belittle Arnold Swartzenneger if the show ratings plummett and call him insulting names? Or blame the Democrats for rigging the ratings? I can’t wait for the cartoonists to respond to this one.

    • Grand Wazzoo permalink
      December 9, 2016 10:26 am

      You are absolutely on target with this series of posts.

      An army of conservatives seemed to have spent every waking moment thinking of Obama these last 8 years. I am trying to avoid their fate, I thought of Obama perhaps once a week, that’s how much I’d like to think of trump. So far, fail. At some point it must get better.

      I particularly liked this:

      “And as a rational, balanced Moderate who fears the nation’s core beliefs and institutions will disintegrate if this narcissistic idiot is allowed to consolidate power without opposition, I’m going to continue to confront his lies past and present as a patriotic duty to our history of defying tyrants and fools.”

      But, be careful, don’t misplace the rest of your happy life.

    • December 9, 2016 11:36 am

      I think that there will likely be many instances of Trump being accused of conflicts of interest, if for no other reason than that he has hundreds of business holdings, and the idea that he would liquidate and sell them all is somewhat absurd and unrealistic. Presidents are not required to sell their businesses.

      That said, it will be very important that we have serious and balanced coverage of these possible conflicts, so that it’s possible to determine whether a true conflict exists. I don’t know enough about the Celebrity Apprentice franchise to know if it is owned by NBC or by a group of exec producers. And executive producers often have nothing to do with the actual day-to-day operations of the show.

      I’m sure that the investigative press will be on this relentlessly, as they should be. Like I said, we’re often better off with a GOP president, because the news media tends to do its job, rather than act as the PR wing of the White House. Or, in this case, Trump Tower…..

      • December 9, 2016 12:56 pm

        Another red herring the left is throwing up. For years we have heard many many people say, both in our private conversations and on media programs that this country needs someone from the world of business to come in a clean house. We do not need more lawyers that become politicians to continue the build up of the government and the continued waste in money the government spends each year. The lawyers become politicians and then become lobbyist and that is not good for the whole country.

        So now we have elected a businessman and that businessman is going to continue just like any businessman with real estate holdings world wide would do. It would take him years to divest his holdings without taking a huge loss and we did not elect him to do that.

        Now why would he want to continue with his name on Celebrity Apprentice. I go for (1), he want to keep stirring the SH*) and sticking the lefts noses in it or (2) his ego wants to keep his name on the program even if he is not paid.

        By the way, Trump will not accept a salary while President.
        http://www.snopes.com/trump-refuse-salary/

      • December 9, 2016 9:56 pm

        Ron: “It would take him years to divest his holdings without taking a huge loss and we did not elect him to do that.”

        Was he elected to get obscenely rich as a consequence of getting elected president? He’s going to leverage billions for himself and family. Like his personal taxes, those transactions will be buried from public scrutiny, and the
        Federal Election Commission who is charged with overseeing government conflicts of interest is now in the hands of a strum apointee who had been predisposed to ignore the kind of ‘Swamp’ influence Trump promised to address. Surprise, surprise!

        Bloomberg, who took conflict of interest seriously, had substantial real estate holdings in addition to his other businesses, including property he was renting to NYC and to the Federal Government, but he managed to insulate himself from those conflicts without selling them. And to avoid impressions of impropriety. But he’s an honest man, with a history of propriety. Opposite of Devious Donald.

      • December 9, 2016 10:32 pm

        Jay, does it ever occur to you to wait and see how Trump handles his potential business conflicts before you fly off the handle?

        FYI, Mike Bloomberg was accused of a huge conflict of interest when it turned out that he had not stopped being involved with his financial news media company, as he had promised during his mayoral campaign. A media company that he named “Bloomberg.” Go figure… rich guys apparently like to put their names on things.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 10, 2016 11:31 am

        I like what you are saying about trump Jay and agree with almost all of if. The thing of it is that the people you and I should be trying to change are the liberal nuts who are destroying the democratic party. The ones who will choose Ellison as chair. The ones who think that they can use the same ideas to win Ohio as campus activists use to excite college kids.

        I, at least, have noticed what your ideological preferences really are, they are to the right of mine and I am not even very liberal myself. If the dems had those ideas they would be a lot better off than their campaign to make southern states let men pee in womens public bathrooms. Ellison has said that the democrats should talk about repealing the second amendment. Great, now fiction has become fact, that idea is a dead loser. GOP politicians are licking their chops, they seem him as a giant turkey they are going to eat.

        Trying to change the ideology of conservatives is not our business. Its futile and just gets everyone bent out of shape. We should writing our rhetoric to liberals, letters to liberal political figures who are about choose Ellison. That sort of thing. What little power one persons voice has should be directed strategically. trump is here, Ellison is part two of the poison, but not here yet.

      • December 10, 2016 12:16 pm

        GW, before we have Rick do a Dakota Pipeline article, I think he needs to do a 20-25 question article on key government issues and let everyone answer to get an idea where everyone does fit into the political spectrum. For some unexplained reason, I sure as heck can not see Jay being moderate with everything he has posted before and specifically after the election. Everyone knows I was never a Trump supporter, but once the election happened I was happy that Hillary lost. But being a moderate to me means that we sit back, watch what he does and wait until he does something asinine like Obama with Obamacare and the way it was designed before we begin attacking him like Jay is doing. That is what the far left does or what the far right did to Obama.
        (Note Asinine: A penalty of $695 or 2% of taxable income thinking it is going to incentivize younger healthy individuals when the average cost for single coverage is $386.00 a month according to zanebenefits.com).

        As for your statement concerning the dems, you are right on with those. From social issues to environment, they are one the far left fringe these days. They are the ones that support the EPA and its heavy handed approach to government taking over private property and banning farmers from plowing fields. They are the ones that support government regulations that require car companies to produce cars that a huge number of people do not want or can’t use, so the trucks were converted into SUV’s that did not have standards applied and now we have millions of those on the road that give less gas mileage than the cars did 10-15 years ago. The dems are the ones that promoted the crappy light bulbs that cost 3 times what a 100 watt incandescent bulb cost that gives 1/2 the light and does not last any longer. So they promote things that the average American does not want, that many Americans will find a way around (buying SUV’s or splitters in lamp sockets to support two bulbs) and the people on the right fight tooth and nail to defeat. Maybe some common sense would play a huge part in making America great again. Yes we need the EPA to regulate waterways the air and the environment, like prohibiting garbage companies from dumping garbage collected in NYC into the Atlantic Ocean off the coast, but do we need them regulating the vast watersheds and canals in Arizona?
        http://www.latimes.com/nation/la-na-sej-water-rules-20150525-story.html

        Problem is, everything in Washington is group agenda and not common sense agenda.

      • December 10, 2016 6:46 pm

        I still spend as much time arguing with the PC loonies on HuffPost, etc. as I do with the rationalization robots who are lockstep apologists for Blusterpuss Trump. I don’t see a Democratic shift To the Center (as you and I define it) happening anytime soon. Nor a balanced shift toward the center from Republicans. The divide is going to continue to grow wider with Trump in office. Temprement is congenital. He will continue to be a narcissistic chaffing insulting irritant to reconciliation. Whatever government transparency is left in place when Sneeky Tax Concealer Trump takes over will be obliterated when his cohorts of obstructionist secrecy obstruct access to information they want concealed.

        My Christmas Holiday Carol:
        Ya better not cry…
        Ya better not pout…
        Because Trump’s Military General Hunta Cabinet
        Is coming to Town!

  107. Pat Riot permalink
    December 9, 2016 1:43 pm

    “…with a GOP president, because the news media tends to do its job, rather than act as the PR wing of the White House.”

    That has been so true, and such a phenomenon of our political culture these past decades. Sure there were some exceptions at both ends, especially when someone in the media could gain from something especially juicy. The media will turn on its favorite pets like a circle of wolves if it’s a juicy enough story. But the normal has been a bell curve with the big bell in the graph being the predominantly liberal media treating people they liked favorably and attacking who they perceived as the opposition. Not always (another qualifier) but in such lopsided proportions. The year of Hillary’s steady and certain coronation might have been the climax of that.

    Why have there been so many liberals in the media? Hey, let’s do some generalizing, stereotyping, and profiling! I think much of this phenomenon can be explained by looking at the people who are drawn to be part of the media, whether in front of a camera, behind a camera, as a writer or investigative reporter, etc, in contrast to a guy who, say, decides he’s pretty darn good at replacing sink faucets and tub drains and can make a living as a plumber, or by framing houses, or driving a truck, or running a grocery store, or….(there’s a whole other level to this with the gals, ladies, and chicks, and I’m already in some deep enough muck here).

    Can we at least say that in some lines of work people are more or less “fitting into the system,” finding a niche to feed their families, and this is in contrast to other professions such as in the media where it’s about observing the system, analyzing the system, challenging the system, questioning the system, pushing the edges of the system, exploiting the system, etc.? I don’t have time to cover all the ground necessary here, so I’ll just leap to an opinion of mine:

    For me it is plain to see that people who first become educated in our traditional system of higher education, then who are good enough with linguistics and “liberal arts” to choose a career of processing information and discovering nuances about the world to share with others through various media outlets/forms, would tend to consider themselves “above average” human beings, i.e. not “trapped” in old, traditional belief systems or mindsets, and would then start to self-identify as “thought leaders” and “progressives,” etc. And so they are going to like other newly polished varieties of humanity, and tend to look down on the traditional and old-fashioned. And so progressives loved Obama the Articulate, and they loathe Trump the throwback. The big problem is that much of this love and hate is about self-identification and ego, and mostly separate from any real understanding of policies, and how the policies work in different contexts, and what the consequences are.

    Disclaimer: the above observations are not a defense of Trump or his policies. Trump is a wild card pushed through in desperation.

    Anyway, the whole bell curve is being shattered, as is the role of social media and media in general. We are in uncharted waters. Jay you are going to be further appalled. Rick, Jay needs a topic other than Trump, please!

    • Grand Wazzoo permalink
      December 9, 2016 2:09 pm

      Pat, I am really sorry that this election pushed us into a low point of our internet relationship. I think we are over that? Humor and perspective have returned to all of us (mostly) and I have liked a whole lot of what you have written in the last week or two, including the fishing line analogy, which I got, it was not outside the box at all.

      I can agree a lot with what you just wrote. Example, when my kids were in high school liberals got the complete upper hand of the Vt government and on top of that a laughably bad Vermont supreme court ruling overturned the school funding formula and led to a state wide property tax to produce “equal funding” that led among other things to me become a semi famous vermont conservative firebrand, political writer, and pitchfork waver. Howard Dean was the governor, he faced a challenge from an intelligent conservative lady, Ruth Dwyer (who wrote me a long handwritten intelligent letter once) and the liberals including the media all disgraced themselves attacking her personally, fanatically, very nasty stuff. One of these liberals was my daughter’s high school journalism teacher, my daughter came home one day and told me that he had called Ruth Dwyer a Nazi. I went ballistic and was going to march on the school but she begged me not to. I should have but she was terrified the teacher would hate her (my daughter, not Ruth Dwyer).

      So, yeah, that exists.

      At the same time that mildly (in my opinion) liberal bias by the old world of the Huntley-Brinkley report, Peter Jennings etc. was one of the glues that used to hold us together. Congrats, its been demolished, I think that we lost something and are flying apart faster because of it. Ah, no one here is going to agree with me on that, I think I’ll have to sulk and stop feeding my cat.

      • Anonymous permalink
        December 9, 2016 2:31 pm

        Actually I strongly agree with you that we have lost something and are flying apart, and I am concerned and troubled. Maybe a difference is that I thought we already had lost it, were falling apart, but were pretending we weren’t with false public personas.
        I like to think that you and I weathered the storm and are good online friends from way back. I value being able to find common ground when sometimes looking from such different angles.
        Rick, how about the Dakota pipeline thing? Surely there is room for moderate viewpoints between pro water and pro oil extremes. We could use a break from Tru…you know who.

    • December 10, 2016 10:55 am

      “Trump is a wild card pushed through in desperation.”

      Yes. Exactly this. Jim Geraghty from National Review (another former nevertrump NR guy you might like, GW.) wrote in his latest column:

      “President Obama’s second term has been a terrible failure for the country. A nation that is pleased with the status quo — a nation that feels prosperous, safe, and confident about the future — doesn’t choose to roll the dice with Donald Trump.”

      http://www.nationalreview.com/article/442925/barack-obama-second-term-complete-failure

      Blaming Donald Trump for the circumstances that led to his rise is exactly what the Democrats should not do, but many of them (qualifier) seem incapable of the introspection that would inevitably lead to the conclusion that, despite the inadequacies of Trump as a candidate, Hillary was, by a majority of non-Californian Americans, considered worse.

      It’s the reason why the Access Hollywood tapes injured, but did not kill his candidacy. It’s why Trump received more votes from women, blacks and Hispanics than either McCain or Romney. It’s not because all Trump supporters were deplorable racist morons (although, her “basket of deplorables” remark did major damage to Hillary). It’s because they wanted a halt to the policies that they believed were running counter to the long-term benefit of the country.

      Rather than give him a chance to succeed, the Democratic Party is trying to torpedo him before he takes the oath of office, and de-legitimize not only Trump, but all of the people who supported him. Keith Ellison has already said “Trump had his chance, it’s time for Democrats to fight.”

      I’m old enough to remember when the Republicans “fought” the policies of an inexperienced, agenda-driven young Democratic President, they were racist obstructionists.

      And, now, as Mike says, it’s time to talk about the Dakota Pipeline!

      • December 10, 2016 7:59 pm

        Dec 9, 2:31 Anonymous (Dakota Pipeline suggestion) was me, Pat. My phone didn’t give me the usual chance to sign in.

        3:17 Anonymous to Ron P. also me. Technology is quirky. Great when it’s working. Got to love it when a millennial cashier can’t make change or figure 20% off without the computer doing it for them. And this recent testing of driverless trucks scares the hell out of me. Human drivers certainly are not flawless, but big rigs on the highway controlled remotely? Oy veh. What will all our truck drivers do? Help build the wall?

      • December 11, 2016 10:12 am

        The Dems are trying but Trump has found a way to circumvent them and their media buddies. Trump is accused of being dumb. He likes that the elites feel that way. It keeps them thinking he will play their game the old way.

        He won’t and he is running the table with the Dems. In the wings, Keith Ellison. Oh, I so love it.

    • December 11, 2016 10:15 am

      Jay’s season in hell is just beginning. He will not like what is about to happen.

  108. Anonymous permalink
    December 9, 2016 3:17 pm

    Ron P, I think you are on it….part is your 1) he wants to stir the SH and rub noses in it. Revenge against the elites who excluded him. And it plays into the media controversies, and we’ve seen how he can ride those.

  109. Anonymous permalink
    December 9, 2016 3:25 pm

    Ron P: Remember that Jay was/is also opposed to the Iran deal, although it has been so long since we discussed it, I forget the specifics. Mike H

    • December 9, 2016 3:30 pm

      Mike (Anonymous)…Like they say, even a broken clock (non-electric) is right a couple times a day.

      • December 9, 2016 7:49 pm

        I’m not right all the time, but I’m righter than you are most of the time.

  110. December 9, 2016 5:25 pm

    Newsweek senior political reporter Kurt Eichenwald is backing away from his report that supporters of Donald Trump booed when the president-elect eulogized the astronaut John Glenn at an Iowa rally Thursday night.

    “I believe I was in error that Trump supporters booed Glenn. This seems to be 2 events at same time: Ppl booing Trump as he mentions Glenn.”

    I just listened to the tape and when Trump is mentioning Glen you can hear the boos. trump then says to the booers, “We have to respect John Glenn,” which gives the impression he was chiding them for booing Glen. But apparently not. Other witnesses have said They were independently booing Trump at that moment, and apparently he was telling them not to interrupt his Glenn eulogy.

  111. dduck12 permalink
    December 9, 2016 6:14 pm

    @ Priscilla 11:35: “I was in NJ.
    That will haunt me all day😉”
    I often feel that way too 🙂

  112. December 9, 2016 7:51 pm

    MORE KLEPTOCRACY WATCH:

    Donald Trump’s Mobster Mentality

    “Before running for president, Donald Trump was what we might consider a mid-to-high-level grifter. Despite his bogus claimsabout being the largest developer in New York, his media profile was much larger than his actual influence in the real estate world. As such, he was always looking for ways to scoop up extra cash and avoid liabilities in whatever quantities available — bilk struggling people out of $10,000 here and $20,000 there with phony real estate seminars, sell some steaks at Sharper Image, stiff the contractors who did work for him, get his “foundation” to pay off lawsuits against him, and so on. “My whole life I’ve been greedy, greedy, greedy,” he said. “I’ve grabbed all the money I could get. I’m so greedy.”
    But now there’s no longer any need for small-time cons. Trump is truly the boss, and just like it is with the mob, everybody has to pay the boss.”

    http://theweek.com/articles/666154/donald-trumps-mobster-mentality

  113. dduck12 permalink
    December 10, 2016 6:43 pm

    Submitting pictures of pets (living or gone) of highly emotional commenters has been found to be non-political on some blogs; it even humanizes the bloggers (a little). 🙂

  114. December 11, 2016 10:09 am

    More good news. GOP adds to majority in the Senate. The Republic is indeed, improving day by day.

    http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2016/12/11/louisiana-votes-to-send-republican-john-kennedy-to-u-s-senate.html

  115. December 11, 2016 10:17 am

    “Trying to change the ideology of conservatives is not our business. Its futile and just gets everyone bent out of shape. We should writing our rhetoric to liberals, letters to liberal political figures who are about choose Ellison.”

    One of the funnier statements made here to date. Go try to change the ideology of your liberal friends and let us know how that goes.

    • December 11, 2016 10:33 am

      I have to agree with GW here, though, JB. I said essentially the same thing, from a different perspective. Good liberals need to seriously evaluate whether or not the Democratic Party is working in the interests of the voters, or simply trying to divide the country so that they can win ~ or destroy the Trump administration, which I suppose is the same thing to some of them.

      • December 11, 2016 11:55 am

        I think it is fair to say that the Dem strategy is to find groups who are disaffected (in their view) bind them together and blame the other groups so designated as “bad” for the plight of all.

        This includes the deplorables that HC so named. After a while, the “out groups” start to get annoyed and support someone who stops calling them names. These names always end in “ism” and “ist” or my favorite, “phobe.”

        Enter Donald Trump, who was created by the Dem strategy. ‘Tis a pity, but they made him, now, they have to deal with him.

        BTW-By nominating Ellison, I think they indicate no change in strategy. For we conservative types, this is such good news. Christmas has come early this year.

        Thank Almighty God.

        And yes, we can still say Christmas and God here. At my U, I am not so sure that isn’t a micro-aggression.

  116. December 11, 2016 10:20 am

    “Other witnesses have said They were independently booing Trump at that moment, and apparently he was telling them not to interrupt his Glenn eulogy.”

    You see what you want to see, hear what you want to hear.

    The guy could save your mother’s life and you would fine a ulterior motive. Admit it, nothing that he does will be acceptable to you.

    I think they call that bigotry.

    • December 11, 2016 11:16 am

      What bigotry?

      I repeated what was reported in the news story.

      A story that refuted the original description of Trump supporters booing Glen.
      That, of course, is what legitimate reporters and media do: correct mistakes as new information arises.

      And that’s what I did, truthfully corrected my original comment when I learned it was wrong.
      Unlike you, a rigid fool with his head up his ideologal ass, who will defend someone as detrimental to basic American values of truthfulness and trustworthiness and character as Trump to promote a political party agenda.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 11, 2016 3:25 pm

        “Unlike you, a rigid fool with his head up his ideologal ass, who will defend someone as detrimental to basic American values of truthfulness and trustworthiness and character as Trump to promote a political party agenda.”

        The same rancid stuff I saw from JB. And I have the same comment. There are thousands of people talking this shit on thousands of websites. Go there if you want to use that kind of mindless insults. TNM is better than that almost all of the time. 100% of the time is a great goal. Two provocateurs hurling dung at each other is the most common wretched use of the political blog web.

      • December 12, 2016 6:28 pm

        Rude obnoxious insults in the name of Liberty against foolish ideas and fools who propose them, is no Vice, GODDAMMIT!

  117. December 11, 2016 10:25 am

    The gray lady admits bias, but defends it.

    http://heatst.com/politics/trump-fairness/

    • December 11, 2016 12:44 pm

      ““We didn’t do much reporting on the Clintons’ finances because their personal finances were not in the league with Donald Trump, and they weren’t running as successful business people,” he said.”

      That’s not unfair coverage, that’s journalistic fidelity.

      If 10 of Trump’s properties burned down under suspicious circumstances, and he received insurance patients in excess of their value, and the Clinton’s similarly had one building burned down, only a blithering Partisan idiot would say both should receive equal media scrutiny.

      Trump bankruptcies: many
      Clinton bankruptcies: none
      Trump sued by disgruntled business contractors and partners and customers: hundreds
      Clintons: none
      Trump tax transparency: almost zero
      Clintons: full

      Only a petty-minded disgruntled political partisan who puts party over Patriotism would suggest Trump’s media coverage was unbalanced. Trump, with outlandish behaviors, DEMANDED media attention, and intentionally so by his own admission.

      Huckster Trump is the political reincarnation of P.T. Barnum. Two Barnum quotes sum up Sideshow Barker Trump’s philosophy:

      Nobody ever lost a dollar by underestimating the taste of the American public.” And “There’s a sucker born every minute.”

      • December 11, 2016 12:56 pm

        And what about Foundation coverage?

        During the election cycle the NY Times published over two dozen articles on the Clinton Foundation and charges against it but only about 5 on Trump’s misuse of his Foundation.

        See the similarities with previous fair coverage of noteworthy news coverage, or are you too lacking in common sense to get it?

  118. December 11, 2016 10:28 am

    I forgot to mention that our U has as “Day of Unity” two weeks ago. The U president wrote a letter about our need to “heal” and come together as a U.

    30 folks showed up, about 10 were staff.

    We had about 1400 students and 300 staff on campus that day.

    To be candid, it was quite hilarious.

    • December 11, 2016 12:58 pm

      It find it hilarious that the divide is deepening?
      That speaks volumes about your character.

  119. December 11, 2016 10:34 am

    On a lighter note, I must see this comedy. Unlike some here, I am fine about Bob being a lefty. He is also a great, great actor.

    http://heatst.com/culture-wars/robert-de-niros-new-film-the-comedian-is-defiantly-politically-incorrect/

    • December 11, 2016 1:51 pm

      There ya go again, categorizing anyone whose not a Conservative clone as a Lefty.

      If he’s against PC restrictions on comedy, he’s a Centrist-Moderate.

      If he has the urge to punch #DeplorableDonald in the nose, he’s with the MAJORITY of Americans who would like to do the same.

      Trump is like a large oozing pimple on the nose: the urge to squeeze it is irrestible!

      • December 11, 2016 2:59 pm

        Yuk. That’s gross, Jay. Try to restrain your anti-Trump similes.

      • December 11, 2016 5:30 pm

        Robert Di Niro is a life long Democrat. This is no secret. He is also a wit and a talent and a great actor. Don’t be a bigot, Jay. Just because he is a lefty does not make him a bad human being.

  120. December 11, 2016 11:47 am

    “Unlike you, a rigid fool with his head up his ideologal ass, who will defend someone as detrimental to basic American values of truthfulness and trustworthiness and character as Trump to promote a political party agenda.”

    Oh, the lack of civility. Did you forget your pledge to be nice? Apparently, so.

    So, here is what bigotry is all about. If Obama saved my mother’s life, I would be grateful and thank him for a job well done.

    If Trump did likewise for you, you would find a way to criticize him.

    If that is not so, by all means, correct the impression that you have left here.

    BTW-If Trump were to nominate Mitt Romney for S of S, I would criticize the move.Mitt Romney would be inappropriate for the job, based on his lack of experience.

    • December 11, 2016 1:09 pm

      JB…Romney may be inexperienced, but no where near Tillerson. If I were a senator in either party, he sure would not get my vote. Negotiating a oil business contract is much different than negotiating peace in a region of the world. Defending rights, freedoms, liberties and other guarantees that democracies provide is not based on friendships and the “good ‘ol boys” network to make sales. Had John F Akers (IBM President and CEO in 1984) been SoS when George Shultz was SoS, I doubt seriously that the Berlin wall would have fallen. Selling and negotiating the sale of computers world wide also would not have qualified Akers for that position.

      And remember, Romney is smart enough to know Russia is not our friend that will do anything to rebuild the soviet empire and harm democracies. Tillerson does not seem to understand this and supports Trumps position that Putin is a great leader and is respected worldwide. Trumps ego seems to be getting in the way with this apparent pick. I base that on Trumps comment about Putin “If he says great things about me, I’m going to say great things about him.”

      I am prejudging the SoS pick, but if what is being reported is not fake news, then I know what I think about the pick. It stinks! Worse than Kerry and that is hard to accomplish.

      But this could be another “Trumper” to turn the media into the dog chasing the fake rabbit around the track in order to get them following a story for a couple days all while Trump is doing something else he does not want them noticing. Could be romney is his pick so when he announces it many say “thank god, at least it is not Tillerson”.

      • December 11, 2016 1:27 pm

        I would have literally BEGGED Condi Rice to take the job back (I read that Trump actually did that, but there is no verification thereof).

        Personally, I would also have liked Gingrich as well. We shall shall see how this new guy does. After Clinton and Kerry, well, my expectations are really low.

      • December 11, 2016 1:39 pm

        “But this could be another “Trumper” to turn the media into the dog chasing the fake rabbit around the track in order to get them following a story for a couple days all while Trump is doing something else he does not want them noticing.”

        Right. And it’s working to deflect from Trump contradicting the CIA and other government agency confirmation that Russia used cyberwar hacking to undermine our election process. And now Trump is undermining our own government security apparatus. What kind of jerk, prior to presidential ascension, publically disrespects the government organizations meant to protect the nation? Why is this Turd Brained Joker caviliarly dismissing the charges of Russian cyber espionage? Do the Putinites have something on him? Something other than Trump loans they’re holding? Like video proof of actual groping? Or more explicit XXX Rated vignettes?

        The consensus of opinion confirming that the Russians are hacking us to undermine our institutions doesn’t only eminate from givernment sources. For months now independent computer security organizations, in universities and private consulting firms, have been saying the same thing. Here’s one report authenticating that: although it’s impossible to verify with 100% accuracy, the cumulative circumstantial evidence is nearly as certain:

        http://www.darkreading.com/vulnerabilities—threats/russian-cyber-espionage-under-the-microscope/d/d-id/1317643

      • December 11, 2016 2:18 pm

        Jay, I am smart enough to know if you put something in written form, in an e-mail, in a tweet, in a letter or any other written form of communication that you most likely are going to be exposed if you are a public figure. So my gripe right now is on the stupidity of Clinton and her minions that did not understand that.

        The Russians are trying daily to get into different computers to find information on anyone. It has been shown they tried to get into the RNC’s files, but failed.

        The Russians did not cause Clinton to lose. Clinton caused Clinton to lose. The democrats caused Clinton to lose. If most voters were like myself, I was not paying attention to any more e-mail crap that was being discussed when the Wiki stuff was released since I was like Sanders, “sick of hearing about her damn e-mails”. And if voters voted for Trump because of the Russian wiki leaks, then Clinton, the DNC and anyone else that had comments released caused her defeat because they were morons and wrote down what they should have communicated verbally, leaving no trace to leak.

        The dems lost because they represented the fringe elements of society and forgot about middle America.

      • December 12, 2016 6:21 pm

        Half right, half wrong, Ron.

        Yes, there is little guarantee of communication privacy for public officials, or private citizens. But there is an expectation of privacy. Like the old fashioned telephone party lines where anyone who picked up a receiver could snoop ongoing conversations, eavesdropping was considered improper, but subscribers continued to gossip anyway, often revealing intimate information.

        Who’s more at fault, the snoop or the snooped? Saying the Democrats should have known better is like blaming a person who leaves a door unlocked for carelessness but ignores the thief who snuck inside and stole the family jewels.

        Why would you assume Republican emails were/are any more secure than Democratic emails? Republicans WERE hacked as well. This Republican says so:
        http://www.mediaite.com/online/breaking-gop-congressman-says-russia-hacked-republicans-too/

        And news media reported that “FBI and Department of Homeland Security have provided numerous classified briefings in recent months to Capitol Hill staffs about the hacks. The briefings described targeting of both parties, primarily by accessing the private email accounts of operatives, one senior Capitol Hill staffer who attended the briefings told NBC News on Thursday.”

        That revelation brought an outcry from numerous sources that Russia withheld releasing any of the Republican hacks to hurt Clinton, thereby interfering with our election process.

        I agree the Democrats blew what should have been a landslide victory, for many of the reasons you stated. But Trump only won by razor thin margins in three swing states that swung the election: Michigan, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania. The election outcome was effectively decided by 107,000 people in those three states. That amounts to 0.09 percent of all votes cast. Therefore it’s not inconceivable the long slow steady release of only negative emails disparaging to Clinton changed voting results in those states. We know from polling numbers her ratings incrementally declined over the time span of those leaked emails; Comey’s announcement of ‘newly discovered emails relevant to the investigation’ produced an immediate three point drop, with no bounce back after the ‘found’ emails proved to be duplicates already examined.

        An election decided by a minuscule minority of voters like this was doesn’t prove much of anything. If the election was held again next week it would be just as close, with no guarantee Trump would squeak it out. To win in 2020 the Dems only need a small increase in registered voters, or recover the Only Bernie voters who dropped out of the last election- assuming that is we still have a democratic Republic and not a Military Trumptocracy in charge

      • December 13, 2016 12:59 am

        I guess I have a very different expectation on privacy than many who rely on electronic information today. My expectation of secure information if it resides on any computer anywhere to be secure and private on a percentage basis is 0%. My expectation is anything on a computer is going to get hacked if it has any importance at all. If it can happen to the office of personnel management, it can happen to anyone.

        So that is where I have little compassion for the Democrats that believe this election was won by Trump because of Clinton and Podesta’s e-mails. If it can come back to haunt you, don’t put the crap in writing!!!! But I don’t believe this is the first election swung by breach of privacy. It is just the second that has been identified. It could be said the first was Nixon and the Watergate burglars. So two things need to happen now. The government needs to activate a public-private commission to work on cyber security for everything and anyone with questionable communication should do it over voice phone where a snoop would have to have a device to hear the communication at the time it occurred. Putting anything in writing is moronic in this day and age.

        ” To win in 2020 the Dems only need a small increase in registered voters, or recover the Only Bernie voters who dropped out of the last election”. This is why I accuse you of severe liberal leanings. Would it not be easier to run a moderate democrat, develop a platform that places emphasis on the rights and needs of the middle class and win back the voters Clinton lost in all areas of the country except in upper Atlantic states and the west coast than to try to increase the registered voters on the far left like they have the last couple elections and rely on those people to vote? Bathroom access over jobs will never sell to the middle class white guy in the mid west.

      • December 11, 2016 3:13 pm

        I have to agree that this resurrection of Cold War rhetoric by the Democrats is over the top, Jay. John Cornyn, one of the most moderate GOP members of the Senate said that Russia has been interfering in our elections for years, but has yet to influence the outcome. This is nothing new. Most of their interference has been in the form of pushing propaganda and biased news stories, often picked up by lazy but legit media outlets. They were apparently able to hack into the DNC system pretty easily, but failed to get into the RNC one. That said, I don’t know how many people really followed all of the Podesta emails, or were influenced by them. Hillary was a terrible candidate; no charisma, corrupt, married to an admitted sex offender, no significant achievements of her own, etc. That, in addition to the Democrats economic failures, identity politics focus, support for hate groups like Black Lives Matter, and refusal to acknowledge the rise of radical Islamic terrorism as a national security threat was the reason that they lost. The Russians didn’t do it. Which the FBI agrees with. The CIA leaks are not official, and probably represent a faction from within the Agency.

        Anyway, why is it that Obama is never called out for blaming the CIA, which he has done on several occasions, most recently just last week, when he blamed a lack of intelligence date for his missing and minimizing the rise of ISIS ~ or ISIL as he insists on calling it.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 11, 2016 6:48 pm

        Well, I was cutting and pasting phrases to praise in this post, when it got to be almost the whole thing I gave up.

        “But this part is my favorite. Romney is smart enough to know Russia is not our friend that will do anything to rebuild the soviet empire and harm democracies. Tillerson does not seem to understand this and supports Trumps position that Putin is a great leader and is respected worldwide. ”

        A+

        How many years of the efforts of presidents from Truman on have been spent, how many dollars, how many lives opposing the Russian low freedom society model from swallowing europe and other places? Oh, well, nothing there that needs to be defended, let the guy who’s government armed nuts who shot down a passenger airline and then lied about it and everything else connected with Ukraine be hailed as a strong and virtuous leader, just let those efforts be undone in a short time, no big deal.

      • December 11, 2016 9:19 pm

        These Trump apologists have had their memories short circuited.
        They’re victims of their own suppressed Obama frustrations.

        I see Trump declaring military law whe the protests following his executive decisions on illegal roundups, penalaties to sanctuary cities, and NAFTA abrogation go into effect and end up flooding the streets with protestors, some who will be violent.

        Those Generals are on his cabinet for that very reason. If any Moderate US Generals refuse to enforce the military law edicts, Trumpo as Commander in Cheif will replace them with his own obedient Generals.

        Bye bye American Democracy.
        Hello Hunta.

      • December 11, 2016 8:56 pm

        GW, doesn’t it seem as if it would be counterproductive to use aggressive language when trying to deal diplomatically with someone like Putin? That said, I don’t think that Trump did himself any favors by calling Putin a strong leader, because, regardless of how he meant that, it muddied the waters as far as what type of diplomacy he would favor.

        He has been speaking regularly with both Romney and Kissinger, both of whom are on record as believing that we cannot establish a “worldwide equilibrium” without Russia.

        Right now, largely due to our failure to negotiate from a position of strength with Russia, the tension between our countries is very high. The anti-Russian rhetoric coming from the Democrats ~ the people who got us to the this place, with their naive “reset button” and feckless response to the Ukrainian crisis ~ is dangerous and stupid.

        It’s ironic that Trump’s taking a call from the Taiwanese president caused Democrats to haul out the fainting couches and proclaim that we were going to start a war with China, but those same pearl-clutchers are beating war drums over their belief that Russia caused Hillary to lose. I think that we all need to get some perspective on this. And I say this, knowing that you are far more knowledgeable on Russia (and certainly you wife is) than the average person.

        But, really, people have to stop freaking out.

      • December 11, 2016 10:25 pm

        Jay, you are one of the people that needs to stop freaking out.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 11, 2016 10:53 pm

        “Right now, largely due to our failure to negotiate from a position of strength with Russia, the tension between our countries is very high.”

        I have no idea what you are talking about. Its just a partisan slogan. The people who came up with it can find arguments to support it but it is all channelled through a partisan machinery. I don’t see that we failed to act from a position of strength. I believe that Obama took all the actions that were available and sane on Crimea. Its hurting Russian pretty badly and has disrupted their oil revenue empire. We can’t bomb them or fight them, sanctions is what there is.

        The tension between the countries is high for so many reasons that I would type a post like 10 times longer than my usual verbose stuff. The most obvious is the failed courtship between Europe and Ukraine and Russia for some kind of mutual trade relationship. Every one of the many players was naive about the intentions of the others. The US got drawn in after the fact, not before it as Russians believe. Its a tragedy.

        “The anti-Russian rhetoric coming from the Democrats ~ the people who got us to the this place, with their naive “reset button”

        Sure that wasn’t W who looked into putin’s eyes and trusted who got us here? This is the partisan version you are giving. Its a thousand times more complex.

        “He has been speaking regularly with both Romney and Kissinger, both of whom are on record as believing that we cannot establish a “worldwide equilibrium” without Russia.”

        Its absolutely true that we cannot establish a “worldwide equilibrium” without Russia. But that does not mean that we are equal, which is the problem. We have roughly the same number of nukes and the same number of seats on the UN security council. We have similarly large countries. We were the two superpowers once. Regarding our economies and standard of living they lose badly. They are so far behind us in their scientific infrastructure and funding and results it is not funny. The Russian population is declining and they have a brain drain. And on and on. The medical system for average people is pitiful. You sure as hell would not want to be old and poor there.

        Here is how it looked from the Russian perspective pre Ukraine. THe West and China have the worlds largest and most robust economies and do the best in trade. Any time some action in going on Russia gets elbowed out. So they say, screw it, we will make our own economic sphere and to hell with waiting to be granted favorable trade agreements. Which had to be done with “soft power” in much of the former USSR. Which put them on a collisin with the west in trade and NATO. Its way more complicated really, all the economic, ideological and military competition stretches back to WWII and even earlier. History put the US and Russia on different and competitive paths. WWII elevated both countries. Our systems clash. We don’t trust each other, for good reasons. If Russia were to prosper it would be a safer world in some ways and a more dangerous one in others. We are still waiting for them to change their methods, we took Gorby and Yeltsin as a sign they would. That post communism economic transition was a disaster for them, naturally, and now there is little enthusiasm for liberal (western) reforms. We want to believe the someday they will fall into the western pattern. Meanwhile decent educated Russians still love Stalin even knowing the details. These are two cultures that are doomed to misunderstand each other.

        Seriously, I think I could type about 50 somewhat incoherent pages out here of my impressions and factoids. Of course a stable world power sharing system includes Russia and China, how could it not? We fear Russia more than China for many reasons. Look up how many ICBMs Russia has and how many China has. Has China been buzzing US navy vessels and the English channel etc?

        China is powerful in trade. Russia not so much. Russia is powerful in its military abilities and its willingness and ability to risk due to its semi-dictatorial form of government. We have have contained them since WWII. its a frozen conflict that has spilled over into proxy wars, Syria is the latest. There are millions of Russian ex pats in the US. well, I’m babbling factoids that all fit together in my mind but bringing all this together into a coherent picture would be the life’s work of quite a number of Ph.Ds.

        Priscilla you are being quite partisan here, When W gazed into Putins eyes, when trump is seriously considering a very pro Russian (or maybe I mean pro putin) SOS, you call the Obama response to Crimea by Obama (and the west) feckless?!? That is pure politics. Its a huge problem that just got worse with Russian hacking and Assange. This is a funny time to repeat W’s look into putins eyes.

        And who knows, it (a putin friendly SOS) may work. Nothing else has other than containment and outspending them. Both countries are trapped by history in a wrestling match to meddle in each others politics.

        OK, on paper I can say that a military spending binge, hawkish generals and defence advisors, and a friendly SOS could actually work on paper. The carrot and the stick. Or it could be a bigger than usual decline in containment of the Russian admiration and support of soft (sometimes) dictatorships. I have no idea really. No one does.

        At least 50 typos I wager, some really haunting.

      • December 11, 2016 11:41 pm

        Well,GW, I am partisan on matters of politics. I try to be less so on matters of foreign policy. And, for what it’s worth, I do believe that W was a fool to trust Putin. But so was Obama a fool to give Russia the impression that we would try to be “more flexible” in dealing with them. Clinton was largely responsible for the fact that Russia now controls about 20% of our uranium , despite warnings from congressmen and diplomats that allowing the uranium deal to go through was a very bad idea.

        I agree with a lot of what you say about Russia being only the shell of the superpower it used to be. But Putin seems to be the kind of strongman leader that doesn’t give a f**k, and will behave aggressively if he believes he can get away with it. Russia and Iran have been propping up Assad, while we’ve been giving away the store to Iran, so that it can buy Russian weapons and technology. I see that as weak. Am I wrong?

        I don’t believe that Trump trusts Putin. But I think that he sees Putin as a egoist, maybe similar to himself, and seeks to disarm him (not literally) by calling him a strong leader. I don’t know, no one does. If he’s seriously considered Romney and Bolton for State, then I think it’s unlikely that he’s looking to have a pro-Russian agenda.

        So, anyway, I will admit to being partisan in my perspective, but I think it’s clear that the Democrats were not insisting that we stand up to Russia until they became convinced that the Russians tried to “help” Trump. Despite the lack of evidence that they did.

        Not saying they didn’t. Just wondering what the evidence is to dispute the FBI’s claim that there is not.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 12, 2016 12:42 am

        “Russia and Iran have been propping up Assad, while we’ve been giving away the store to Iran, so that it can buy Russian weapons and technology. I see that as weak. Am I wrong?”

        You are taking a hugely complex set of events that are beyond your understanding, or mine, or any one person’s and trying to place them in a very simple convenient partisan form a sound bite. As you said, you were once a very partisan democrat, had you remained so I guess you would do the same only the opposite. It still would not work.

        W looked into putin’s eyes because the west, as you noted, does have to include Russia in our plans and cannot just be 100% against them all the time. Long term we have to draw them into western patterns. So, I was being facetious when I blamed W. We oscillate, because we have to, we are trapped between bad and worse alternatives. They have the advantage of being free to do what they want for long periods of time, with no checks and balances from their citizens. All of our Presidents are handcuffed by politics and public opinion. We should have really helped the new Ukrainian government with their economy, a comparatively little amount of money would go a long way there. That would have been a serious development for Russia. But congress would not go for it and that is because the average american would not. The Russians have us there, they can use their limited military and economic resources much more freely. Putin will just make the mothers of the dead soldiers who died in Ukraine (even though Russia was not in Ukraine), even poorer and more miserable if they complain, etc. And decent Russians will eat it up and believe him.

        Foreign policy just goes on and on, the state dept lifers provide continuity. There are difference between presidents but more similarities on foreign policy. Falling into some simplified politically based narrative where one administration was effective and did the correct things and the next was “feckless” cannot possibly do the baffling complexity justice. The difference between your approach and mine is that yours allows you to sound very sure of yourself, you talk of a situation that sounds very clear and understandable it a narrative that is easily understood, Obama=feckless, GOP=strength. In my approach I am sure of almost nothing other than the fact that its an impossibly complicated ill-fated job to be running foreign policy.

        But I am sure that Putin meddled in our election. Because I know him. We have been meddling in their politics, albeit much more openly, and he HATES that. This is his revenge. They have the means and the motive. They have world class hackers. They hate Clinton and Obama (which ought to make you possibly rethink just how ineffective Obama’s Russian policy has been.) This I know because I read their news at times and have seen their TV coverage or heard about it through my wife’s family. They think trump is great and clinton terrible because their news told them so daily. Why? Who controls that? Obama hurt them. They are pissed as hell at the west and our meddling in their internal politics and in Ukraine, which really is historically their land and the home of their culture. They fought back in the way that they do things. Look up all the details of the radiation poisoning of Alexander Litvinenko.

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

        This hacking and releasing to Assange is exactly the Russian way of fighting back. The information war is being done with their latest technology, and I encounter its dishonest product quite often, pitiful lies that work. They did what they were able to do, which is quite a lot, to punish us for intruding in their sphere.

      • December 12, 2016 11:40 am

        GW, I think that we are looking at Putin and Russia from two different, and admittedly jaded, perspectives. You and your wife have a well-grounded and justifiable hatred of Russia, based on it historical as well as it current behavior regarding Europe and NATO. I will stipulate that my knowledge of that is weak,

        I use the Middle East as a barometer, and what I see is the opportunistic Putin taking advantage of a vacuum of leadership there. It’s one thing to pull back from the neverending wars in that area, another to remove sanctions and pay billions to a bad actor state like Iran, and allow it to become dominant in the region. It’s doubly dangerous, because Putin has surmised that we are not willing to stop him from developing a de facto alliance with that bad actor state. Russia wasn’t even a major player in the ME before Obama. Now it is.

        So, it’s possible that Obama has tried to extricate us from foreign wars, without taking into consideration the diesrution of the “worldwide equilibrium” that that would create. I think that is my point (but remember, I often don’t know what I’m talking about 😉 )

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 12, 2016 12:23 pm

        “You and your wife have a well-grounded and justifiable hatred of Russia,”

        Heavens NO! We love Russia and Russians (not all but many). We hate its form of government.

        The poor long suffering Russian people have been on the wrong end of history and have paid in misery for all the accomplishments of its leaders. Who have never been much different from Tsars in their methods, not matter what period of history. The two leaders who were different presided over an economic collapse, so they went back to the Tsar format.

        “Russia wasn’t even a major player in the ME before Obama. Now it is.”

        Good Grief! Heavens no as well! They are practically a middle eastern nation in much of their holdings in the stans and have been since colonial times. They have had a navel base in Syria since at least since 1944, as dduck noted, in Tartus:

        Syria
        The facility was established during the Cold War to support the Soviet Navy fleet in the Mediterranean.[5] During the 1970s, similar support points were located in Egypt, Ethiopia, Vietnam and elsewhere.

        Libya
        Diplomatic contact between Russia and Libya has always been close and productive[citation needed]; seeing as both countries have had and continue to see volatile relations with the United States. Leader Muammar al-Gaddafi was a close ally of the Soviet Union, despite his country’s membership in the NAM; also Russia regards Libya as its strongest ally in the Arab world.

        Iran
        Since the fall of the Soviet Union, the two neighboring nations have generally enjoyed very close cordial relations. Iran and Russia are strategic allies[3][4][5] and form an axis in the Caucasus alongside Armenia. Due to Western economic sanctions on Iran, Russia has become a key trading partner, especially in regard to the former’s excess oil reserves. Militarily, Iran is the only country in Western Asia that has been invited to join the Collective Security Treaty Organization, Russia’s own international treaty organization in response to NATO, while much of the Iranian military consists of Russian weaponry.

      • December 12, 2016 8:53 pm

        Ha! As I drove to work today, I kept thinking to myself, “Oh, jeez, GW is going to nail me on that ‘major player’ thing.” And I was right (as I generally am)! Well, about a few things, anyway. You, of course, correctly nailed me on a gross and incorrect generalization. Well done, sir.

        What I meant was that Russia had ceased being a major player in Middle Eastern power politics after its military failure in Afghanistan and its withdrawal from most of the geopolitical maneuverings after the beginning of the Gulf War, which largely coincided with the decline of Russia as a super power. Putin has used the Syrian conflict as a vehicle for the re-emergence of Russia. First, with the U.S.-Russian diplomatic effort, and more recently with its military intervention, under the guise of fighting ISIS. In this re-emergence, Obama has played the role of dupe, going so far as to mock Mitt Romney for calling Russia our geo-political foe (remember “The 80’s called and wants its foreign policy back”?). The Iranian deal has been a travesty not only because of the betrayal of Israel that it represents, the secret dealings that have virtually guaranteed that one of the world’s most eveil regimes will obtain nukes, and the sheer magnitude of the financial benefit that Iran has realized….but because Russia and Iran are on the same side. Well, at least for now.

        As far as you hating Russia ~ that was shorthand for hating the Russian government. Sorry if that was not clear.

        Bottom line on this Russia thing: I think it is altogether possible to believe that Russia was responsible for the DNC hack and to also believe that Trump beat Hillary fair and square. Remember that Putin complained that Hillary, as SecState, encouraged US-backed interference in his last election. It’s fair to guess that he might want to pay her back for that with the embarrassing and damaging info that came out.

        But the other point on that is that no one has disputed that the DNC and John Podesta actually wrote these emails. Plus, just as Trump’s voters were not swayed by allegations of sexual misconduct and lying about his tax returns, I don’t believe that Hillary’s voters were swayed by the emails. It certainly didn’t sway you or Jay.

        So, I think the “Russia Elected Trump!” nonsense is just that. Now, whether Trump is going to go too easy on Russia is another story. But, for that, we have to wait and see.

    • December 11, 2016 1:54 pm

      I’ll stop being uncivil when

      A: You stop putting Party Ideology over Country Patriotism
      Or
      B: When Trump releases his full taxes for examination

      • Anonymous permalink
        December 11, 2016 2:23 pm

        Jay: Let me give you a hypothetical, followed by what I think your point of view would be, and then you grade and/or correct me as to how accurate my description was.

        Some Mexican hackers steal/hack U.S. and Trump personal system and expose Trump tax returns and other information that provide irrefutable proof that Trump is heavily involved with Russian business ventures and is in literal financial debt to Russian mobsters connected to the Russian government.

        I’m guessing your position would be that you would still consider the hack/theft illegal and if possible the actual hackers should be prosecuted, but at the same time, the information stolen should be published and acted upon as it had the benefit of shedding light on Trump’s compromised position.

        How right or wrong am I about your position on that hypothetical?

        Mike H.

      • December 12, 2016 12:15 pm

        100% accurate.

        And if the hackers were government sponsored, I’d consider that a hostile act of war by Mexico, and respond accordingly.

  121. December 11, 2016 11:48 am

    “who will defend someone as detrimental to basic American values of truthfulness and trustworthiness and character….”

    Consider the case of Hill Clinton?

    Hmm.

  122. December 11, 2016 11:56 am

    “I’m not right all the time, but I’m righter than you are most of the time.”

    No, Jay, you are right ALL of the time. Just ask you wife; she knows.

    • December 11, 2016 1:09 pm

      Let’s see how right I am about Double-Talking Donald continuing to break election promises to his supporters.

      Next hedged broken promise: to cancel the Iran deal.

      “.@boeing confirms sale of 80 planes to #Iran. Says contract supports 100,000 jobs in the US.”

      • December 11, 2016 1:32 pm

        Of course, not being POTUS, he can cancel anything right now. But then, you know that.

        Call Barry if you are unhappy about the sale. I am sure he will make it right.

      • December 11, 2016 2:07 pm

        ???
        What are you babbling about here?
        I didn’t say I was against the deal.
        I did say Trump Would change his tune about Iran WHEN he became prez.
        Unless, that is, someone at Boeing says something Trump doesn’t like (his combover is worrisome, etc). Then 100,000 US jobs won’t matter. He will Kabosh the deal in the name of ( details forthcoming when necessary).

    • December 11, 2016 8:58 pm

      Which is why he demeaned McCains military record. And didn’t bother to say ANYTHING to Vets on Vetern’s Day or show up at any ceremonies, and skipped out on service during Vietnam Nam. Fie on your hypocracy.

  123. December 11, 2016 1:31 pm

    “It find it hilarious that the divide is deepening?
    That speaks volumes about your character.”

    If the vast majority of my campus doesn’t feel the need for holding hands and just goes about their business, then I suggest the “divide” is all in the heads of about 30 people, and perhaps yours?

    You love to judge other people’s character. From what position of sanctitude do you gain your moral superiority?

    • December 11, 2016 1:59 pm

      “From what position of sanctitude do you gain your moral superiority?”

      Proximity to your lack of objective balance

  124. December 11, 2016 1:34 pm

    “And what about Foundation coverage?
    During the election cycle the NY Times published over two dozen articles on the Clinton Foundation and charges against it but only about 5 on Trump’s misuse of his Foundation.”

    You are arguing with me? The guy from the NY Times said it. If you are unhappy, give him a ring?

  125. December 11, 2016 1:39 pm

    The GOP will not automatically cave to Trump. I see this as healthy.

    http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2016/12/11/gop-senators-challenge-trump-on-secretary-state-prospects-russia-ties.html

  126. December 11, 2016 2:13 pm

    “What are you babbling about here?
    I didn’t say I was against the deal.
    I did say Trump Would change his tune about Iran WHEN he became prez.
    Unless, that is, someone at Boeing says something Trump doesn’t like (his combover is worrisome, etc). Then 100,000 US jobs won’t matter. He will Kabosh the deal in the name of ( details forthcoming when necessary).”

    Let me remind you of your promise to be civil.

    I would be happy if we stop any deal with Iran and re-froze their assets. That would include any oil we might import from them (if any). To me, they are the most dangerous country on earth (assuming they get nuclear weapons). I am not alone in that assessment.

    Unlike you, I cannot foretell the future, so I will wait to see what Trump does. Demonizing someone for something he has yet to do is strange behavior to say the least.

    You might want to look at that.

  127. December 11, 2016 2:14 pm

    “Proximity to your lack of objective balance.”

    I would be most happy to compare my statements to yours and let others judge how objective you are.

  128. December 11, 2016 2:16 pm

    “You stop putting Party Ideology over Country Patriotism.”

    So, you will be civil when I agree with you. Hmm, gee, what an offer.
    You did actually type that statement?

  129. December 11, 2016 2:19 pm

    “Trump is like a large oozing pimple on the nose: the urge to squeeze it is irrestible!”

    You want to squeeze Trump? So, you are sweet on the Donald. Ah, it is much clearer now. This is a lover’s quarrel.

    Thanks, no need to clarify further.

    PS_ I do so love your “objectivity.”

  130. December 11, 2016 2:21 pm

    Three generals? Oh, the humanity!

    http://heatst.com/politics/trump-too-many-generals/

  131. December 11, 2016 2:22 pm

    Jay,

    “Never bring a knife to a gun fight.” You have and it is going badly for you.

  132. December 11, 2016 3:28 pm

    attack ideas. I don’t attack people. And some very good people have some very bad ideas. And if you can’t separate the two, you gotta get another day job.”- Justice Scalia

  133. December 11, 2016 3:33 pm

    “A Constitution is not meant to facilitate change. It is meant to impede change, to make it difficult to change.” – Justice Scalia

    • December 11, 2016 4:06 pm

      Which is both a strength and a weakness

      • December 11, 2016 5:03 pm

        You may to go write your own. Then, you will be happy!

  134. Grand Wazzoo permalink
    December 11, 2016 4:20 pm

    Here is an observation that I made years ago that did not impress anyone then and may not impress anyone now. But, what the hell.

    What do the Nixon, Reagan, and W Bush presidencies have in common? Well, lots of things but two are that they all drove democrats/liberals into a frothy frenzy and they were all re-elected.

    Now, what do the Ford and Bush I presidencies have in common? They were not divisive to any great extent and were not the object of any madness on the part of Dems/liberal. And they were 1 term presidents.

    Dem presidents in my lifetime follow the same pattern Carter was not loved but not wildly despised either, 1 term. Bill Clinton and Obama drove GOP/conservatives into a frenzy and got reelected.

    Based on that pattern where goes trump?

    Frothy anger does not win when it comes to preventing the reelection of a despised candidate, at least not in my lifetime.

    If dems think they are going to win next time based on passionate anger and outrage, they need to rethink. Of course dems are not a monolithic group, in fact, they are a big diverse collection of groups and no one can control what they do en masse. Ellison is an example of playing a stupid game of chess, but no one can prevent him being chosen by people who have not observed my little rule. Call it Ian’s rule: Be calm and you are more likely to win. Go into a frothy frenzy and you are more likely to lose.

  135. December 11, 2016 5:02 pm

    “Ellison is an example of playing a stupid game of chess, but no one can prevent him being chosen by people who have not observed my little rule. Call it Ian’s rule: Be calm and you are more likely to win. Go into a frothy frenzy and you are more likely to lose.”

    Wise words, indeed.

  136. December 11, 2016 5:06 pm

    “B: When Trump releases his full taxes for examination”

    Or, when Obama releases his college transcripts.

    • December 11, 2016 6:30 pm

      Do you realize how idiotic that comparison is at this point in our precarious national history?

      How about we wait for OJs confession before we hold the SOON TO BE PRESIDENT accountable?

      Anyone with half a brain ( have I excluded you?) knows Trump is hiding something crucial in the taxes – something that possibly could have cost him the election. Proof of direct ties to Putin? Settling multiple discrimination or sexual assault charges by employees? But Trump was right when he said he could shoot someone in plain sight on 5th Avenue and his Trumpbots like you wouldn’t care, If there’s a chance to stack SCOTUS with right wing justices with him in office. As long as Trump promises in Mussolini mode he will ‘make the trains run on time’ the ends justify the means for his defenders.

      Like Mussolini, Trump is a rogue, dishonest and unprincipled. When rogues lead nations, bad things happen.

      • December 11, 2016 7:59 pm

        GW, you need to remind Jay about qualifiers.

        Jay, on the one hand, I agree with you that, in an ideal world, it makes perfect sense to require prospective presidents to release their returns. On the other, we know that it’s not an ideal world, that the average person doesn’t understand the tax code, and that tax returns are reported on very differently, depending on whether the candidate has a “D” or and “R” after his/her name.

      • December 12, 2016 2:10 am

        Like the audio Groping tape, the released taxes would be open to wide scrutiny. Forensic tax experts would examine the data and report the findings. If nothing stinks to high heaven that would end the accusations of hidden impropriety.

        Why isn’t he releasing them? He’s hiding something he doesn’t want revealed. Doesn’t that concern you? Those of you who elected him have literally put your lives in his hands. Are you afraid to see the nature of the genie that might pop out of the bottle revealed? Those of you who put him in office should be demanding that transparency now.

      • December 12, 2016 1:42 pm

        Jay, the issue of the taxes are not important to the average American that voted for Trump. 1) They do not care what is in his tax returns.
        2) They do not care what pronoun is used to address another person.
        3) They do not care if a baker wants to follow their christian beliefs, refusing to decorate a gay couples cake.
        4) They do not care if a transgender male feels uncomfortable in a male restroom or locker room
        5) They do not care if Boeing opens a non-union plant in South Carolina.
        6) What they care about is a secure job.
        7) What they care about is a good education for their kids that has been destroyed by unions and federal interference .
        8) What they care about is a secure nation free from terrorists and the right to protect oneself.
        9) What they care about is a government that follows the laws of the country and enforces those laws 100% without the president ordering a stand down and supporting sanctuary cities.
        10) What they care about is all manufacturing going to a foreign country due to bad trade agreements.

        So when you look at the electoral map, you will find that the majority of the country voted for Trump because the democrats place all of their attention on the first 5, while Trump focused on the second 5. The liberals in California and New York say we need job retraining programs to teach people computers and other electronics. A 50 year old machinist in Ohio or Michigan who has worked with his hands for 30 years is not interested in computers. He wants to work with his hands and build things. Schools led by the elite and unions have decided that all kids need to prepare for college. Some kids don’t want to go to college, they want to build things and make things. Their interest are artistic, woodworking, welding and other trade like work where they work with their hands, not sitting on their asses behind a desk for 8 hours a day.

        So when the democrats get back on the right path that the Truman and JFK like Democrats represented and not the Sanders/Warren/Pelosi wing of the party represents, then maybe people will begin to look at the issues you keep bringing up and everyone here is ignoring and begin voting for the democrat candidate again. The founding fathers were extremely intelligent when they looked at Boston, Philadelphia and NYC and decided those three cities could not dictate the Presidential elections, so the put into place the electoral college to give the smaller colonies a voice. Today, the only a handful of counties in the country, mostly in California and New York, would dictate our presidential election if it were not for the electoral college.

        So your emphasis and others like you should be on changing the direction of your party and not the attempt to destroy Trump. The change where it represents the majority of voters throughout the country and not just isolated pockets of population in coastal areas as well as a handful of larger cities that it carries 70% to 80% in an election. A change where the rights of the majority is not infringed upon by the rights of the minority. Once those changes occur, you will then have someone elected president and a Trump will not be able to defeat that candidate.

      • December 12, 2016 11:30 am

        Of course it concerns me, Jay, and I have said as much. On the other hand, when Trump’s ’95 taxes were illegally given to the NYT, which, of course published them, there was a lot of hyperventilating over his $916 loss, but very little commentary over the fact the 1) he did actually lose that much in the real estate collape of the 90’s and 2) claiming the loss against taxes owed was perfectly legal.

        I think that the point that Trump has made consistently is that rich people have many ways to avoid paying taxes, and that many of those ways should be eliminated in order to bring their effective tax rate closer to what it should be.

        I’ll read the article that you posted below and comment later….have to rush out ( i.e.,not ignoring you)

      • December 12, 2016 11:30 am

        $916 MILLION, lol.

  137. December 11, 2016 5:33 pm

    “Nobody ever lost a dollar by underestimating the taste of the American public.” And “There’s a sucker born every minute.”

    This is why Trump won (among other things). You lefties actual abhor the average American. They know it, and interestingly enough, are not that thrilled with you elites right now.

    How does that feel?

  138. dduck12 permalink
    December 11, 2016 7:13 pm

    Before there was JB and Jay, there was Bugs and Daffy. Oh, and Elmer as the befuddled witness. https://www.google.com/search?q=it%27s+duck+season&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8 🙂

    • December 11, 2016 7:21 pm

      Thanks for that major contribution. If you don’t like it, don’t read it. How hard would that be?

      • dduck12 permalink
        December 11, 2016 8:23 pm

        Now, I could say as hard as your head, but I won’t.

  139. December 11, 2016 7:20 pm

    “Do you realize how idiotic that comparison is at this point in our precarious national history?
    How about we wait for OJs confession before we hold the SOON TO BE PRESIDENT accountable?
    Anyone with half a brain ( have I excluded you?) knows Trump is hiding something crucial in the taxes – something that possibly could have cost him the election.

    Civility reigns. Oh, yes, and objectivity as well.

    I will say this: you are very easy to jerk around. In the ring, they would say you are a sucker for a left hook!

    • December 11, 2016 9:49 pm

      In my younger years I was a Golden Gloves boxer. I could kick your ass then physically, and kick your ass mentally now. You’re like a rigid target in a midway shooting gallery. No subtilty to your thinking. Little ability to predict the future based on mountains of evidence. I told you Trump would hedge his electioneering promises months ago, and he has done just that. I told you months ago he would wiggle out of providing his taxes for examination, as he promised, and he did just that. HUNDREDS of critics, Republican, Democrat, independent, from government, Universities, business, have warned he is unstable, and incompetent to hold the office of president. Dozens of investigative news reporters, doing what the American Press has done from Boss Tweed to Watergate, have unearthed dozens of unsavory stories about Trump’s veracity, business shananagans, sexual improprieties, and yet you continue to rebuff those charges and pretend he’s suitable to be president. You’re like the sinners of yore who ignored the warnings of the Prophets and plunged their people into infamy. Trump is Mussolini in a comb-over. Short term he will placate the public with minor positive acts to gain trust and approval. But lie and hide negative events from view, as he has done countless times prior to his many bankruptcies. When the provincial shit hits the fan it will be too late to do anything. But Trump will skate free and clear, just as he did on the bankruptcies. Like everything else I prognosticated about him that came true, I guarantee he walks away from the rubble BILLIONS of dollars richer, while Americans are left to pay for the wreckage.

      • December 11, 2016 10:33 pm

        Just as a point of argument, Jay, the whole point of bankruptcy is to end up free and clear. You love Warren Buffet for using our laws to increase his wealth and pay a lower tax rate than his secretary. Show some love for The Donald.

      • December 12, 2016 1:51 am

        Read this with an open mind:

      • December 12, 2016 9:44 pm

        Ok, so I did read the article, Jay. And, I tried to keep an open mind, but I do think that it was largely a hit piece, and not as balanced as it could have been. But that’s the NYT for you. Interesting though…here are my takeaways:

        Real estate developers like Trump borrow a lot of money, and if their projects don’t work out, they end up with tremendous debt that they then try to unload through the bankruptcy courts.

        Trump’s ego and confidence is such that he was willing to borrow at very high interest rates, believing that he could turn AC around and make it the Las Vegas of the East.

        He was wrong, not only because he could not turn it around, but his miscalculation was exacerbated by a national real estate bust that took down many developers, and also caused Trump to lose millions on his NYC properties.

        Many of the investors and contractors that were involved in Trump’s AC casinos lost a lot of money. Investors were furious at what they saw as unrealistic revenue projections, which they believed were lies. Contractors were furious that they never got paid, and believed that Trump cheated them. I feel sorry for the contractors, not so much for the investors, who knew what the risks could be, and also knew that much of Trump’s failure – not all – was due to circumstances beyond his control.

        Trump is no boy scout. No real estate developer is. Trump may be worse than most, because he took bigger risks with other people’s money…although it was money that they gave him to take risks with. He may be a reckless risk taker, but he appears to genuinely believe that he can succeed where others have failed.

        He believed he could be elected president, which was pretty crazy.

      • December 12, 2016 11:00 pm

        Your assessment is the same as mine- a risk taker who doesn’t care who gets screwed as long as it isn’t him.

        Is that the kind of person we want running our government?

        Because if his judgement is as faulty as it was in the casino business (and the football business, and the network business, and the university business, and the shuttle airline business, and the mortgage business, and the steak business – ALL of those failed you know – who do you think will get left holding the bag? He’s going to come out of this obscenely richer than he is now, you know that, right? But while the nation unravels, we’ll be left in the dark, like the creditors and casino employees who lost their savings ( they were pressured to invest in Trump casino stock) until it’s too late to do anything about it. Like obfuscating his taxes, he will shut down transparency to the media and to the agencies responsible for monitoring the government. There will be no oversight of Trump administration conflicts of interest, and what do you think is going to happen to Trump’s tax audit now? You think the IRS will diligently pursue any irregularities now? Internal Revenue Service is a bureau of the Treasury Department, an executive agency within the federal government, and the president nominates the head or chief executive of the IRS, and has the authority to remove that individual at will. Or if Trumps taxes do have something fatal to his reputation they won’t be altered or vanish?

      • December 13, 2016 12:16 am

        Well, I don’t know if we totally agree, but there’s some overlap. I don’t think that Trump tried to screw anyone, and he certainly didn’t force investors like Carl Icahn to give him money, nor did he force the banks to give him loans.

        What I think is that Trump has a giant ego, and thinks that he can accomplish amazing things. Salvaging Atlantic City from the god-forsaken dump that it is, was not something he could do, although it wasn’t for lack of trying.

        And, yeah, once the gig was up, he did whatever he had to do to save his own company, and it wasn’t pretty.

        I hope that you’re wrong about Trump. I hoped that I was wrong about Obama.

      • December 13, 2016 1:34 am

        But he didn’t save the casinos. He bled the bankruptcies for his own profit.

        And those big investors and banks he screwed learned not to trust him after that.

        His reputation became so bad among American bankers he hasn’t been able to get American financing from them since then. Most of his recent loans are from RUSSIANS or Russian affiliated conglomerates.

        He’s a con man and a liar. Remember his assurances he was going to announce tomorrow or Wednesday his non conflict of interest business plan?

        This just now announced by the campaign: “■ President-elect Donald J. Trump is postponing until January his announcement about how he will handle his private business interest.”

      • December 13, 2016 9:27 am

        How do you know that all of his recent loans are from Russia? Is there actual evidence to indicate that? I’m not being snarky here, I just haven’t heard anything but speculation on that issue, and I’d be interested in seeing solid evidence.

        I was able to find this, from Time Online:
        “But the real truth is that, as major banks in America stopped lending him money following his many bankruptcies, the Trump organization was forced to seek financing from non-traditional institutions. Several had direct ties to Russian financial interests in ways that have raised eyebrows. What’s more, several of Trump’s senior advisors have business ties to Russia or its satellite politicians.”

        Sort of weasel worded, don’t you think? His major bankruptcies were some time ago, mostly in the 90’s, and his organization has recovered since then. And the whole “non-traditional institutions with direct ties to Russian financial interests in ways that have raised eyebrows” ? I don’t know…..

        I’m not surprised that eyebrows have been raised, but is there any real evidence of The Donald being- currently – in hock to Russia up to his eyeballs (or maybe his eyebrows)?

      • December 13, 2016 12:03 pm

        “Is there any real evidence of The Donald being- currently – in hock to Russia up to his eyeballs (or maybe his eyebrows)?”

        If he released his taxes we could answer that in the affirmative or negative. But once he takes over the IRS we’ll never know one way or the other.

        Some advice: invest in Exxon.

      • December 13, 2016 12:12 pm

        And there’s this of course from Donald Trump Jr.: “Russia makes up a significant amount of the family business. “

  140. December 11, 2016 9:07 pm

    “Now, I could say as hard as your head, but I won’t.”

    But you did.

    • dduck12 permalink
      December 11, 2016 9:52 pm

      Whoops. 🙂

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 11, 2016 11:21 pm

        You are a funny guy dduck. They are going to wind up being identical twins in the mirror if they continue much longer.

  141. December 11, 2016 9:09 pm

    “Fie on your hypocracy.”

    You are quite the moralist.

    • December 11, 2016 9:51 pm

      And you’re quite the intellectual sinner.

  142. December 11, 2016 9:10 pm

    Well I am going to let everyone know how ignorant I am concerning electronic data and ask some questions.
    1. Was Hillary’s e-mail hacked and e-mails released through Wikileaks?
    2. When Comey was being questioned, didn’t he say they could not determine who hacked her e-mails?
    3. When the DNC was hacked, was there not an electronic trail that the CIA followed to find the information that Russia did it?
    4. If the hacker going into Clintons e-mail was Russian (which is what is now being thought) and they were smart enough not to leave a trail, why would the hackers into the DNC not also be smart enough to not leave a trail?
    5. If this were a Russian Government attack on our systems, would they not train all their high level hackers the same so they all knew how to not leave an electronic trail?(Seems like basic training at that level to me)
    6. Could it be the hackers into Clinton’s e-mail and the DNC were the same, but not Russians who wanted to leave “fake trails” behind so the Russians would be blamed (ie the Iranians, Chinese, etc). Hack hers to find out what was in it, then hack the DNC and leave the identifiers so the Russians would be blamed.
    7. If you do not want to be traced and there is no way to avoid an electronic trail, could you not buy a computer somewhere in the world, fly to some spot that has wifi and use that to hack into the DNC, leaving a trail that leads nowhere? Or better yet, for a smart hacker, jump from computer to computer on the web and hide trough multiple layers of computer IP addresses and even erase those after getting into the DNC files and downloading them?

    I am not smart enough to know all the issues with this, but if someone can hack clinton’s server and not leave a trail, then it seems like anyone hacking into the DNC could also do that easily and not leave a trail. That did not happen.

    And if the Russians did the hacking and left the trail knowing it was there, why would they do that if they wanted Trump as President? Seems like that would cause a lot of problems on our end and make his presidency less effective, meaning whatever favor they would achieve would be negated when this became an issue.

    • December 11, 2016 11:04 pm

      Ron, I’m with you on this. The FBI has been saying for months that there is no evidence that the Russians were the hackers. Leaks from the CIA seem to say the opposite. As far as I know, the CIA hasn’t officially said anything. Obama has asked for an investigation to be completed by the time he leaves office…..I assume that means that no investigation has yet taken place, although there could be some in the CIA who believe, for reasons known to them, that it was Russia.

      But, yeah, why would they leave a trail? WikiLeaks has said it wasn’t Russia, but anonymous hackers, causing mischief. It is well-known that Julian Assange hates the Clintons. So much intrigue here that I think it’s foolishly jumping the gun to say “Oh, yeah, definitely the Russians.” But it would also be foolish to say “Oh no, it’s not the Russians.” I’m sure they’re thrilled about all of this angst, whether they were directly responsible for the DNC hacks or not.

      And, I’m thinking that we should be relieved that a former Secretary of State who did not take this cyber-threat seriously did not become president.

      • December 12, 2016 11:21 am

        Apparently, the CIA has said officially that there is circumstantial evidence that Russia was involved. I think we need more than that to declare cyber war on Russia……

  143. December 11, 2016 9:10 pm

    Just when you think you are rid of him, he comes right back at you. You think 8 yrs of failure would have provided some humility?

    http://heatst.com/politics/obama-white-house/

  144. Anonymous permalink
    December 11, 2016 10:49 pm

    Consider insulting others like smoking. Do we want to pass a law against smoking? No, but here at TNM we are trying to have a “no smoking” room. Two problems with that, 1) we have no mechanism to enforce the rule (Rick could but he doesn’t have the time, nor perhaps the inclination). 2) It would at times, be subjective. If I said: “Sally, I like you, but your idea is dumb.” Is that an insult? I am sure there are even more grey areas than that. So all are free to do what they will, I’m comfortable to just avoid commenters I want to avoid. Yeah, I saw Jay’s insults, for whatever bias or subjectivity I have, he has not gone past my ability to tolerate them. If he does, oh well, it will be just less stuff for me to read and it will not impede anyone.

    I may be wrong, but I truly believe if we just ignored people that we found offensive, the blog would clean itself up. I misplaced my password and reset my computer, so I’ll just stay with anonymous for awhile until I get around to resetting things. Mike H.

    • December 11, 2016 11:54 pm

      Mike, why would we want to ignore something better than the preview of a WWE match. When someone is as far out on one fringe or the other, the fun begins when you know you can get under their skin and make them itch. Say something and they come back and you can find the soft spots to poke at and they will respond in the manner you desire.

      Now this can lead to one losing it and they begin name calling, sticks and stone things and then you know you have hit pay dirt. And once that occurs, the salt is poured into the wounds since they are not basing any comments on anything but an emotional response and that just increases the distress they are in.

      I know, I was once in that position on another “moderate” site that was not moderate at all. They got to me good. So now I try to follow your thoughts of ignoring someone for the most part, but I do like watching a good show as it happens and know what is taking place.

      • Anonymous permalink
        December 12, 2016 1:53 am

        Cool, yes, if people are having fun, far be it for me to get in the way I am just suggesting that there are alternatives other than putting one person or another “on trial”. However, it is unfortunate that political blog “smokers” refuse to let “non-smokers” ever have a room to themselves, they always have to come in and stink the place up. Mike H.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 12, 2016 8:11 am

        “However, it is unfortunate that political blog “smokers” refuse to let “non-smokers” ever have a room to themselves, they always have to come in and stink the place up.”

        Amen

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 12, 2016 8:48 am

        “Yeah, I saw Jay’s insults, for whatever bias or subjectivity I have, he has not gone past my ability to tolerate them.”

        I like Jay, I like his ideas, I’m glad he is here but he can be very rude, especially to Priscilla, even mean. Once one poster can be rude it gives JB free rein. JB has a real mean streak, bitterness, and not a vestige of moderation. When he gets going its like chalk on a blackboard to many. Jay gets him going. Depending on their politics posters may tolerate Jay or JB better. Personally, I find Jay much more substantive.

        Jay, like Dave, cannot accept that others have a different idea. He reverts to nuclear powered rhetoric to try to convert others away from their own beliefs. That never works. JB is similar but operates in the world of one liners and links that don’t take much effort, while Jay writes thoughtful essays full of irritation and even damnation with posters who don’t agree. Different styles.

        Some of this can be the meat of what makes a discussion interesting, if they keep the anger and insults out of it and stick to substance. That never lasts long though.

        I like dducks approach, point some humor at the spectacle.

  145. December 12, 2016 12:14 am

    By the way, I find it so interesting that the democrats are all in a tizzy since the Russians may have hacked into various databases and manipulated our election in favor of Trump, but when the GOP has said anything about voting, photo iD’s and other issues to insure a clean election, the dem’s have had a cow and said that is a violation of civil rights.

    And the same GOP that swears something is being manipulated to increase liberal turnout is the same GOP that says nothing happened this election that caused Trumps election.

    If it looks like poop, smells like poop, then it most likely is poop. And if one computer can be hacked that may have changed an election, then so could another.

    • December 12, 2016 11:17 am

      Well, I do agree with those who say that the problem, if there is one, is not in the counting of votes, but in determining voter eligibility. This is not the problem that Jill Stein’s recount will reveal.

      If non- citizens and dead people are voting, that’s a problem. If college students are registering to vote in two different states, or even in two different districts of the same state, that’s a problem, If senior “snowbirds” are voting in Florida as well as in their home state, that’s a problem.

      Much of this is facilitated by early voting, voting by mail, internet voting, and motor voter registration. It’s complicated by the use of touchscreen voting machines, which produce no paper record of votes. The lack of a national system of voter ID may also facilitate it, although I believe it would be unconstitutional for the federal government to issue that ID.

      But, yes, hypocrisy on each side is often revealing. Donald Trump no longer energizes his base by talking about rigged elections. And Hillary apparently no longer believes that it is “horrifying” to disrupt the peaceful transition of presidential power…..

  146. December 12, 2016 9:03 am

    As a shareholder of Exxon, I think I might be getting the worst end of this deal. Then again, it is for America, so I guess I can let him go.

    http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2016/12/12/trump-to-nominate-exxonmobil-ceo-tillerson-secretary-state-transition-sources-say.html

  147. December 12, 2016 9:08 am

    “That never works. JB is similar but operates in the world of one liners and links that don’t take much effort, while Jay writes thoughtful essays full of irritation and even damnation with posters who don’t agree. Different styles.”

    Jay write thoughtful essays?

    Well, your standards are your own business. I write one liners because to be quite frank, that is what he deserves. Why waste time on someone who is obsessed with hating Trump or, me, and who retorts to insults at the first sign of disagreement.

    I write long research journal articles for my profession. Do you really think I have the time to waste on Jay, or any blog for that matter? I come here for amusement and to read what certain people write. If you can’t bear that, you don’t have to read what I write.

    It is still a free country in that regard.

    • Grand Wazzoo permalink
      December 12, 2016 9:39 am

      Jay was insulting to you and went to war with your conservative orthodoxy straight away when he arrived. That pissed you off. I understand that (you being pissed off). Yes, Jay is substantive, he involves facts and logic, nor is he rigidly orthodox ideologically. If you think he is some kind of far lefty you really have not been paying attention. There are lots of cultural issues where he agrees with you, border control, muslims, BLM.

      I have no doubt of the competence of your long articles in your field.

      Here you get into wars with folks as different as Jay, me, and Dave. The worst of them, the most bitter was with Dave your fellow libertarian. One thing I will say for Dave, he will drive you nuts but he will very rarely directly insult. You get very personal, you want those who disagree with you to suffer pain. Its too much. Jay did that too, with Priscilla. Its nasty and I am calling it as I see it with both of you.

  148. December 12, 2016 9:26 am

    Excerpt:

    Palmieri’s complaint echoes the most infamous moment of Mrs. Clinton’s campaign, when she told a September LGBT for Hillary gala: “You know, to just be grossly generalistic, you could put half of Trump’s supporters into what I call the basket of deplorables. Right? They’re racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, Islamophobic—you name it.”

    CNN reports that at the Harvard conference Robby Mook, Mrs. Clinton’s campaign manager, acknowledged that the “deplorables” comment “definitely could have alienated some voters.” But, he said, “Hillary apologized right away after that and said that she misspoke and that she regretted the comment.”

    That’s less than a half-truth. Mrs. Clinton put out a statement pointedly admitting only that “I regret saying ‘half’—that was wrong.” As we noted at the time, she didn’t even say if she thought “half” was an under- or overestimate.

    But the Times reported two days after Election Day that immediately after making the “deplorables” comment, Mrs. Clinton “told one adviser that she knew she had ‘just stepped in it.’ ” She was right about that, though she might have felt—or been advised—that a real apology would not undo the damage and would risk alienating Democratic base voters such as the audience members who responded to her antagonism toward the “deplorables” with literal applause.

  149. December 12, 2016 9:28 am

    More:

    The latter, after all, was Mrs. Clinton’s message in September, when she said of the so-called deplorables: “They are irredeemable, but thankfully they are not America.” That’s wrong. Even Americans who hold the most odious views, those whom Trump has rightly disavowed, are still Americans. We all are.

  150. December 12, 2016 9:49 am

    “In my younger years I was a Golden Gloves boxer. I could kick your ass then physically, and kick your ass mentally now.”

    On the web, someone was always something back in the day. Perhaps when you supposedly were a boxer, you took too many shots to the head? I don’t know, but insults don’t constitute intellectual discourse.

    Fantasy is wonderful to those who live it. If you believe you are mental giant or were a boxer, who am I to disagree?

    Then again, protesting how tough you are merely begs the question: if you are so accomplished in things intellectual, why don’t we see more it?

    That is visible, your past history is not.

    So, show some moxy and drop the insults. We get that you hate DT and me. I think you have made that clear.

    Do you have anything else to say other than he is the devil? I don’t think he is, but I am open to the possibility that he may muck things up.

    Are you open to that he will not?

    Once again, let me remind you, you have four more years of bile to look forward to if you don’t let it go.

    PS-Anyone can enter the Golden Gloves. It is no big deal.

  151. December 12, 2016 10:27 am

    This might help ease the anxiety for some. Of course, they do want your money!

    http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2016/12/11/terrified-by-trump-activist-groups-stoke-fears-raise-funds-on-incoming-administration.html

  152. December 12, 2016 10:43 am

    “Its nasty and I am calling it as I see it with both of you.”

    That is your right.

    I do miss Dave. I disagreed with him (as you stated) but he was a bright guy and I considered his ideas seriously, even if he drove me to drink.

  153. December 12, 2016 10:49 am

    This just in. DT will still be POTUS.

    Recount is 95 percent complete.
    Posted in News
    After Friday’s counting, 65 of 72 counties are now complete. All are on schedule to finish by Monday.

    2,826,909 ballots have been recounted, approximately 95 percent of all presidential ballots cast (2,975,313).

    The net change is now +1,442 votes: Trump/Pence +628, Clinton/Kaine +653, Castle/Bradley +17, Johnson/Weld +76, Stein/Baraka +68, Moorehead/Lilly +14, and De la Fuente/Steinberg -14.

  154. Anonymous permalink
    December 12, 2016 5:13 pm

    Rose: Yes, hypocrisy to such a high degree on both sides it seems we need new words to describe it, like mega-hypocrisy or giga-hypocrisy.

    Jay/Ron- Trump tax returns, it is a valid case of Trump in a documentable lie and should not be forgotten as to verifying Trump’s character as a liar. Other than that, the actual content of his tax returns are not relevant. It is not a legal requirement, you could make the same case that your doctor should release tax returns to see if she or he has any pharmaceutical holdings, police officers, judges, ect. At this point it isn’t going to change anyone’s opinion of Trump regardless of what is in them.

    GW: Thanks for your expressed understanding of the non-smoking analogy
    Mike H

  155. December 12, 2016 5:37 pm

    Re: Trump’s tax returns. I assume he has complied with all applicable tax laws, If not, the IRS would be all over him. Ditto, HC and her “foundation.”

    Then again, I am still waiting on Barry’s college transcripts. The guy made himself out to be a genius (hmm) but his one claim to fame has never been verified. Yes, he graduated. How well did he do? Ah, he won’ tell you.

    Oh, but he was a Constitutional Scholar. Hardly, but he did pretend to be one at the U of Chicago, where he was an part-timer.

    I have all my transcripts in my office files. Pretty easy to document how I did in my various college programs.

    • December 12, 2016 6:06 pm

      JB, like my non-interest in Trumps tax returns, I have the same interest in Obama’s transcripts. For you see I had a very successful 40 year career in Healthcare Financial Management, achieving Fellowship status in the Healthcare Financial Management Association all after 4 years in Uncle Sams Navy. This was achieved after a 2.0 grade point average from a state university in California.

      For you see there are many reasons one may have a low GPA. Mine was due to working 30-35 hours a week, attending a college I lived 45 minutes away from and driving to and from that daily, (over an hours drive both ways since this was southern California traffic),working after classes, all while worrying that the next letter in the mail box was a notification that Uncle Sam wanted me for his campaign in Viet Nam.

      So a grade point average has little impact on ones ability to achieve levels of accomplishments and providing companies with human assets that provide a very positive impact on their operations. What allows one to provide these benefits is common sense and the ability to motivate people to achieve their maximum efforts, all while keeping them happy even in a job that may not be the most financially generous they could fill.

      Obama may or may not have a high GPA and I could care less. What he lacks is common sense, thus the stupidity of his executive orders that circumvent a large number of laws on the books.

      • December 12, 2016 6:30 pm

        Cool, my career has been entirely in healthcare. I am FACHE and I teach Healthcare Finance, Health econ, and policy.

        The issue is not the high GPA per se, just that the “great intellect” wouldn’t share his grades. After all, up to that point, that was all he had accomplished.

        That said, it is irrelevant. His record speaks for itself.

    • December 12, 2016 7:30 pm

      “Re: Trump’s tax returns. I assume he has complied with all applicable tax laws, If not, the IRS would be all over him. Ditto, HC and her “foundation.””

      If he clearly complied with applicable tax laws he wouldn’t constantly be under audit.
      If he had clearly complied with applicable tax laws, why isn’t he releasing them?
      Complying with tax laws isn’t the issue: but unsavory associations or settlements or proof of lies he’s told the public or conflicts of interest with holding public office. If for instance he was sued by a employee for sexual harassment and settled, the payment and legal fees are tax deductible, and would be listed as a business loss. Is that something that should have been revealed during the campaign if true or not? If. In fact he was illegally doing business in Cuba before the sanctions were lifted, is that something that the public should know, or not?

      “Then again, I am still waiting on Barry’s college transcripts. The guy made himself out to be a genius (hmm) but his one claim to fame has never been verified. Yes, he graduated. How well did he do? Ah, he won’ tell you.”

      “Oh, but he was a Constitutional Scholar. Hardly, but he did pretend to be one at the U of Chicago, where he was an part-timer.”

      Are you serious? You equate college grades with refusing to produce tax information? Trump has publically refuted allegations that he has a small penis. At a presidential debate he stretched his hands wide apart to indicate his penis size and said he guaranteed “there’s no problem.” Are you waiting on him to verify that too?

  156. December 12, 2016 6:32 pm

    Good news for me. I do have more than a few shares of oil company stock.

    http://www.foxbusiness.com/markets/2016/12/12/fmr-gulf-oil-ceo-oil-to-reach-75-barrel-by-years-end.html

  157. dduck12 permalink
    December 12, 2016 8:14 pm

    “As a recent visitor to TNM, I hesitate to be too pushy, as I realize just as with the other “moderate” blog that RonP accurately described, you are a “family” after many years of discoursing over the “turkeys” on the dining room table. I realize that tribalism leads to differences in outlook which can lead to animosity and sand box insulting. I have done it and will continue to when the devil on my shoulder kicks the crap out of that angel on the other shoulder.
    So, feelings will be hurt on any political blog (I don’t know about cooking blogs: butter or oil?). My solution is MOB, the blog for registered masochists only. Who can hurt the feelings of MOB bloggers, they would relish that. MOB has no registration or ID requirements, but beware that you could be thrown out if you are a phony.

    • Grand Wazzoo permalink
      December 12, 2016 9:24 pm

      “As a recent visitor to TNM”

      You’re a visitor? It seems to me you have moved in pretty good to our Victorian home. (Where the hell are my slippers?)

      • dduck12 permalink
        December 12, 2016 10:37 pm

        I’ll try not to snore or a schnorrer.

  158. Grand Wazzoo permalink
    December 12, 2016 10:24 pm

    “Bottom line on this Russia thing: I think it is altogether possible to believe that Russia was responsible for the DNC hack and to also believe that Trump beat Hillary fair and square. ”

    Priscilla, I’m giving up on trying to get the the bottom of that thread to reply.

    With such a narrow margin of victory there are 100 things that one could claim turned the election.

    Russia
    Assange
    transgender toilets
    BLM
    Bernie Sanders
    Clintons total lack of charisma
    Bills obnoxious behavior
    It was time for a GOP president
    The various terrorist acts during the election year

    And on and on. Any one of a hundred and one things can claim to be the thing.
    The point (for me) is that the first two items don’t rightfully belong on such a list.

    %$#@ Putin and &^%$ Assange.

    • December 12, 2016 11:56 pm

      Don’t forget Comey’s last minute announcement about the email investigation. That was a huge blow to Hillary’s campaign, right before the election. Comey is persona non grata with the Democrats for a reason. He may be more responsible that Putin!

      Also, the fact that Hillary failed to campaign much in the rust belt, and literally did not personally set foot in Wisconsin after the Dem Convention.

      I agree with you on Putin and Assange, but the reality of the DNC’s astonishing negligence, in the protection of its electronic communications can’t be overlooked.

      We can probably come up with more reasons.

      • December 13, 2016 12:35 am

        GW: “With such a narrow margin of victory there are 100 things..” ok, technically you are right, but the big picture IMO you are completely wrong. There was only one thing that kept Hillary from winning, and that was Hillary Clinton. You know that was the lady that set up those fake Iowa coffee shop visits, called people a basket of deplorables, picked an uninteresting running mate. Despite all her fakeness and deceit, she couldn’t fake being generous by leaving a tip in the tip jar at Chipotle’s. Ok, I’ll confess I have shirked responsibility at times, I had an important meeting and I had to drop my kid off at child care (years ago) I played chess online for hours and pushed my departure time to the last minute, then when my kid caused a 2 minute delay in getting out the door, I got angry at him for making me late. If I had lost a job interview for being a minute late, how pathetic to blame it on the two minutes lost by my kid. I need to accept the consequences of MY actions. Hillary, who lambasted Donald for not committing to accept the results of the election, is proving again that neither she or Donald where qualified for that office. She had a job interview for POTUS with the people of the United States and she was late.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 13, 2016 9:38 am

        Yep, Hillary is the main reason Mike. I have no argument with that. But the Russian/Assange factor cannot be left to lie.

        I have always been repulsed by Assange, now, quadruple that. No bigger hypocrite or phony alive.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 13, 2016 9:40 am

        I’m no expert Priscilla, but I think that nothing is hack proof. People just gonna have to stop using e-mail to do anything more than send link to happy penguins.

  159. December 12, 2016 11:14 pm

    “At a presidential debate he stretched his hands wide apart to indicate his penis size and said he guaranteed “there’s no problem.” Are you waiting on him to verify that too?”

    No, I think it is clear who has a thing for the Donald. I think it is time for you to come out of the closet and admit, you have a thing for the Donald. We all know it, you are the last to realize it.

    Please, tell you wife before it is too late!

    • December 13, 2016 1:38 am

      Familiar with the psychological term “projection?”

  160. December 12, 2016 11:25 pm

    “And on and on. Any one of a hundred and one things can claim to be the thing.
    The point (for me) is that the first two items don’t rightfully belong on such a list.”

    I think I am with you on this.

  161. December 12, 2016 11:27 pm

    “Trump has publically refuted allegations that he has a small penis. ”

    Ah, I think we have gotten to the bottom of this. Penis envy.

    Hmm.

  162. December 13, 2016 1:01 am

    I live close to Austin, Texas, but south of it and only a little over 3 hours drive to Houston. I heard on a Houston radio show that on Friday a man who confessed to burning a mosque in Houston was sentenced to 4 years in jail. Turns out he was…….drum roll……you probably guessed it, a Muslim, one that attended the mosque, not just every once in awhile, but 5 times a day, 7 days a week religiously. (Talk about a new meaning to “religiously”)

    http://kxan.com/2016/12/09/houston-man-sentenced-to-4-years-for-christmas-day-mosque-fire/

  163. December 13, 2016 1:28 am

    Army cake! When we went to field exercises or deployed overseas, we sometimes had field kitchens that also deployed with us. One of their staples was this marble cake that was chocolate with yellow swirl. It really looked delicious, problem was that it tasted like chalk mixed with saw dust. First time I tried it, yuck! But then I thought, maybe they just made a bad batch, so I would try it on another deployment, yuck! I avoided it for years, then one day, I was probably just really hungry, had avoided it for years, and I tried it again-ugh! Same terrible taste as the very first one.

    Well for about 4 and a half days I averted my eyes from JB’s comments. Then I up and decide to lift my eyes and I read his Dec 12- 11:27pm post. Yuck! For those who like it, you can have your piece of cake and can take the one off my tray as well, otherwise it is just going into the garbage.

  164. December 13, 2016 9:44 am

    Well for about 4 and a half days I averted my eyes from JB’s comments. Then I up and decide to lift my eyes and I read his Dec 12- 11:27pm post.

    For clarification sake, it is Jay who referenced DT’s penis. It is not the first time. I was only pointing out the obsession.

  165. December 13, 2016 9:46 am

    “She had a job interview for POTUS with the people of the United States and she was late.”

    Spot on.

  166. jbastiat permalink
    December 13, 2016 4:14 pm

    Newsweek doesn’t like DT. Whoa, who would have guessed?

    • December 13, 2016 4:34 pm

      Doctors don’t like the Zika Virus – who woulda guessed?

  167. December 13, 2016 4:47 pm

    TRUMP TRAITOR WATCH COMMENTARY:

    “Trump won’t attend daily U.S. intelligence briefings. Apparently, they’re a schedule conflict with his Russian intelligence briefings.”

    -Stephen Colbert

  168. December 13, 2016 5:29 pm

    How do we really feel about this hacking stuff? Do we love it when it helps our side, but hate it when it hurts? Or do we think that it’s objectively wrong? Or overblown as an issue and not that important?

    If hacking is wrong, or dangerous, then….well, then, it’s wrong or dangerous no matter who it hurts or benefits. Marco Rubio said something to that effect when the WikiLeaks emails first came out ~ sort of a “what goes around comes around” warning to Republicans who were a little too gleeful about them.

    On the other side of that coin, what is seen cannot be unseen. I was once on the jury for a locally infamous murder trial, and the judge admonished us not to read the paper or she would have to sequester us. Of course, the trial made headlines every day, and it was pretty hard to avoid seeing them, which all of us on the jury privately confided to each other, but never told the judge. I honestly don’t think that the headlines or articles had any effect on my vote to acquit. But the headlines were there, and I broke the rules and looked.

    So maybe, now that we live in the age of cyber-warfare, it’s just something that candidates and voters will have to factor in, among all of the other things. As GW commented, nothing is hack proof these days…..or is it?

    • December 13, 2016 5:54 pm

      1) Spying has been going on for years. I suspect information gathering has been happening in elections for years. It just so happens that Nixon and the Russians? got caught doing it. (Wonder how that makes the Russians feel to be in the same class as Nixon?)
      2.It just amazes me that in our political arena, you can take a position one time on one side of the issue and then take the same issue and be on the other side. The intelligence that was given to 43 unequivocally said that Saddam had weapons of mass destruction. Men and women died in Iraq because of that intelligence. The Democrats went ballistic once they found out it was not true. Now that same organization is pointing fingers at the Russians and saying unequivocally the Russians are responsible. REALLY?? How sure? As sure as they were with Saddam??

      The democrats are working to undermine Trump, make him a one term president and try to recapture the white house at the expense of the United States. The Republicans did nothing while they were in control of congress to make Obama look bad at the expense of the country. I just wonder when the good of the many will become more important than the good of the few and control of power in the government. Neither party has the country as the top priority and that is why Trump steamrolled the establishment GOP and the Clinton..

      • dduck12 permalink
        December 13, 2016 7:40 pm

        “The democrats are working to undermine Trump, make him a one term president and try to recapture the white house at the expense of the United States. The Republicans did nothing while they were in control of congress to make Obama look bad at the expense of the country.”
        Did nothing?
        And what else should the Dems do? DT is far worse on a non-partisan scale, IMHO than Obama. Hold on for a rocky ride. Rick Perry for Energy, WTF.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 13, 2016 8:14 pm

        “The Republicans did nothing while they were in control of congress to make Obama look bad at the expense of the country.”

        I’m thinking this is a typo, unless Ron has suddenly turned much more partisan in his analysis than usual and than I expected.

        I can only say Good Grief, historical revisionism, it it isn’t a typo.

      • December 14, 2016 12:52 am

        GW.. The only major accomplishment that Obama got through congress was his SCOTUS appointments before 2011 and the ACA. McConnell stated he wanted to make Obama a one term president and did little to pass legislation good for the country since that time, even after Obama was reelected. I think then it was to make the democrats incapable of winning in 2016.

        So now we have all the issues with DT before the election, the fact he did not win the popular vote and the CIA released info that Russia released emails form the DNC that may have changed the vote. So my thinking is they are going to do everything possible to make DT a one term president.

        And when that happens, little good comes out of congress that benefits the common person.

      • December 13, 2016 10:07 pm

        I think that some things are objectively against the best interests of the country, such as, I don’t know, trying to disrupt the peaceful transition of presidential power, or de-legitimize an election by implying that the Russians “hacked” it? Or that anyone hacked the actual vote, as opposed to hacking the emails of one of the campaign CEO’s.

        Jill Stein says that people went around with floppy disks (!!) to “re-program” voting booths in states. This is some crazy stuff that the Democrats have signed on to. Do they even make floppy disks anymore? And how do these roving bands of floppy disk hackers get access to the machines? And did anyone hear them speaking Russian?

      • December 14, 2016 12:58 am

        The only floppy disk I know of the government still uses is on the Nuclear weapon missile systems that are buried in the ground in various locations throughout the country. to reprogram the systems, they have to insert the floppy disk into the old computers used in those locations

        Thank god, at least they can’t get hacked from a foreign location!
        http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2614323/Americas-feared-nuclear-missile-facilities-controlled-computers-1960s-floppy-disks.html

      • December 13, 2016 10:42 pm

        “Neither party has the country as the top priority and that is why Trump steamrolled the establishment GOP and the Clinton..”

        Absolutely correct, Ron.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 13, 2016 10:59 pm

        I would be horrified if anything transpired to deny trump at this point, it would lead to a real breakdown of our society, it would be against the good of the country.

        I have not been reading much news, are any elected democrats in congress buying Stein’s loon ideas and trying to overturn the election? Or are we needing to ship out a supply of appropriate qualifiers?

        A quick search I did just now found nothing substantial other than various far left loons hyperventilating in their usual conspiracy theory way about their hated Clinton stealing the election from trump.

        38 red state electors are going to switch votes? Really? That is the plan that democrats are supposed to be lining up behind? Perhaps the Sphinx will come to life and lumber over to the US and sit on DT in a cosmic protest. About as likely a way of prevent DT from taking office as red state elctors defecting. We have people hyperventilating about people hyperventilating about people hyperventilating. We are become a basket case, more nervous and unstable than the stock market.

        People like McCain and Graham are asking for an investigation of the computer hacking and Russian involvement, which is obviously needed, as well as a proportional and painful response via embarrassing hacks of putin and his associates.

        The Russians clearly meddled in the campaign and favored trump, but its at this point nuts to think they changed votes in machines.

        I’d put the odds that they fed Assange the hacked embarrassing documents of only one party and Assange was interested only in the hacked documents of one party at better then 95%

        I am going to find it rather ironic and be rather pleased if this blows up on Putin and Assange in the long run, which to me is the point of investigating the hacks of computers.

        Hacks of voting machines is for loons like Stein. Far left, uggg, they are getting more repulsive every year. trump is going to screw everything up so badly they hope that it will bring the far lefties to power and we will get free collage and single payer and all the other scandinavian goodies. Millennials will take over, That is their theory. Its a weird world but not that weird, not yet.

      • December 14, 2016 1:04 am

        1) Priscilla posted a comment much earlier that comey dod more damage when he spoke about Clintons e-mails than the Russian hacking the system, but the left is not talking about that. They are trying to weaken Trump well before he take office.
        2) If the left loon’s were able to get 38 or so electors to change their vote, then it goes to the house for the presidential election and the senate for the VP selection according to a couple different reports I have heard. Who thinks the house will vote for Clinton or anyone other than Trump?

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 13, 2016 11:03 pm

        I’d really like a free collage, I could hang it up in the living room over the piano.

        Free collages for all students. The artist full-employment act.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 14, 2016 9:38 am

        Ron, It would only go to the house if there were more than 2 candidates that got electoral votes, as happened in the surprise Quincy Adams election over Jackson. Jackson won the popular AND electoral votes but only had 99 electoral votes in the 4 way race. Adams was selected by the House in a corrupt bargain.

        With only 2 candidates one of them is going to get the required number of votes. trump will be president and even I want that outcome, since the alternative is 38+ red state electors flipping to give Clinton the win (which has no chance of happening and is just another melodramatic fantasy to work up partisan fury.) If it did happen we would not survive.

  169. Grand Wazzoo permalink
    December 13, 2016 11:35 pm

    “This is some crazy stuff that the Democrats have signed on to.”

    All of them? Its what your sentence implies!

    I found an article that said two dem members of the house are that stupid. Feed those two into a wood chopper, fine, I’ll help load them, but blaming “the democrats”?!?

    • December 14, 2016 10:18 am

      I meant that the Clinton campaign signed on to the Stein recount, and provided workers to help monitor it. I don’t think that it was their idea ~ lord knows, if crazy Jill Stein hadn’t been in the race, the 1% that she won in close states might have made the difference in flipping the election to Clinton.

      Now, whether the Clinton campaign is synonymous with the Democrats anymore is another question. The campaign is actively involved with the machinations to change the electoral college vote and undermine our entire system……on the other hand, Obama hasn’t said much, other than that he wants an investigation of Russian interference. Obama’s position seems prudent.

      But, point taken, the Democrats as an organization may no longer be the same organization as Hillary’s Campaign. If not, then they at least haven’t signed on to looney Jill’s wandering band of floppy disk hackers hypothesis, lol.

      Whew.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 14, 2016 10:28 am

        “Democrats as an organization”

        If the democrats are an organization then all the cats in America are an organization.

  170. December 14, 2016 12:21 am

    Good discussion guys. I am tired so I’m not even going to try and pretend to say anything intelligent tonight. I just want to encourage the continued exchange of ideas.

  171. December 14, 2016 12:45 am

    “Did nothing?”
    So tell me exactly what the GOP has done over the past 6 years to make this country better. Cut deficit? Significantly cut spending? Reformed entitlement programs that are going broke? Written legislation that would have undermined Obama’s executive orders on a multitude of issues so law enforcement and ICE could enforce the laws on the books? I could list more, but won’t.

    Everyone that is going to be living 15-20 years from now can thank our current government for the shit they are going to be going through since we are doing so much to make the changes now required.

    One only needs to look at the crap the veterans are going through today that began years ago to see what the rest of society is in for in the years to come. It won’t be f*&^ed up healthcare treatment like the veterans are getting now, but it will be just as bad or worse because the vast majority of people will be suffering. But knowing there is a problem and doing nothing about it is worse than being ignorant of a problem existing in the first place..

    • Grand Wazzoo permalink
      December 14, 2016 9:25 am

      Ah, I see, that sentence is tricky and can be interpreted 2 ways. Now I see that your meaning is the one I would expect from you. But I read it the opposite of your intention, that congress did not try to (did nothing to) make Obama look bad. We are good.

      • dduck12 permalink
        December 14, 2016 7:10 pm

        Me too.

  172. December 14, 2016 10:26 am

    Wow, our nukes are controlled by floppy disks! Maybe Crazy Jill is on to something!

    • December 14, 2016 1:20 pm

      Soon out Nukes will be controlled by a Floppy Brained narcissist too lazy or distrintrested in national security to sit in on the briefings.

      • Mike Hatcher permalink
        December 14, 2016 2:37 pm

        “Lazy or disinterested..” Jay: I believe the possibilities are more than just those two. Have you considered that prior to inauguration , a daily brief, as opposed to weekly, is a waste of time. For example, we constantly watch North Korea, and we should, but the latest report is our nightly pass over xyz showed no change and the latest drone pass from three hours ago showed nothing new. Even if that brief is only ten minutes in length, the time to travel there and back, security coordination and check points, probably cost an hour even if he is in town. They don’t just hold those briefs in a coffee shop or send them by email like Hillary would. Trump is busy bringing healing and unity by meeting with Hillary supporters like Mitt Romney and Kanye West.

  173. December 14, 2016 1:27 pm

    Years back, After Ed Koch was Mayor of NYC, he’d occasionally drop in to the old 2nd Avenue Deli on 10th Street – he liked the pastrami sandwiches. Sitting at the cramped tables he was always accessible for speechifying conversation with other customers. One time I remember him saying the danger that should worry Americans most of all was “a Government of Gonniffs.” He laughed and said that was a paraphrase from Lincoln. We laughed too at the thought of Honest Abe speaking Yiddish.

    Years later I came across this quote from Lincoln, which may be the one he meant:
    “America will never be destroyed from the outside. If we falter and lose our freedoms, it will be because we destroyed ourselves.”

    Now we are seeing the nation sliding down that slippery slope, under an administration that will undermine traditional ethical restraints with the grease of sundry grafts:money, influence, access, celebrity.

    We are in for a long sad decline. A heaping pastrami sandwich will only help in the short run. But leave off any Russian dressing. Sigh.

    http://editorialcartoonists.com/cartoon/display.cfm/156579/

    • Grand Wazzoo permalink
      December 14, 2016 2:19 pm

      Jay I feel your pain and I have the same assessment of his character (as do Mike and dduck).

      But congress and the GOP will try to make him fit in to some kind of workable mode, I can imagine that the GOP leaders are desperately worried right about now but are putting on their best face. He may be no worse than Carter or the worse aspects of Reagan. Who knows something good may even come out of this due to the complicated rules of unintended consequences, which can be good as well as bad.

      Goethe from Faust: “I am part of that power which eternally wills evil and eternally works good.” Nor do I actually think trump is trying to do evil to America, although many of his morals clearly stink.

      Moderate liberals or moderates period are going to have to wait to react to things that actually happen once he is in office instead of hyperventilating about things that may happen. Obsessing on the worst possibilities won’t do me any good and I have so many things that need my attention.

    • dduck12 permalink
      December 14, 2016 7:20 pm

      GW, If you buy a pastrami sandwich at the new location 33st Third and Lex, you may think the gonniffs have already taken over the 2nd Ave Deli. We prefer, non-kosher, Sarge’s on Third Avenue.

      MH: Haven’t they built that pigeon coop on top of The Trumpsylvania Tower yet? The Russians and Assange will s____ a brick when it’s operational.

      • December 15, 2016 1:49 am

        dduck: I’m writing this ostensibly to counter your reference to sending messages by pigeon to Trump tower, but really my main motivation is to try to showoff my background knowledge of top secret procedures and perhaps provide some not to pertinent insight. Top Secret information is broken into many compartments. For example someone with access to top secret satellite photographs may work in a room 20 feet away from another room with people working on intercepted phone calls, neither has permission or access to the other room, very tightly controlled, then there are people that get reports from those rooms and fuse the information together, they don’t get to see all the details of how the information was obtained, just the reports. The idea of course, is that if anyone in the process either deliberately betrays our country, or carelessly talks to a love interest, the amount of damage is limited. Of course all the reports keep combining with other reports, composites of Navy Intelligence merge with Army Intelligence merge with CIA and more agencies, some that did not even exist when I was in the loop. Anyway, it is difficult to piece it all together, that is why the CIA and Pentagon have such large buildings and are all clustered in relatively the same part of the country near Washington D.C. (Only about 19 miles between Ft. Belvoir Maryland and Arlington Virginia, and only about 5 miles from Arlington to the White House.) Anyway, so it is humans that mash all these reports together to make their briefs to the highest positioned people in the country, and those “mashers” live and work in D.C and to my knowledge they don’t make house calls. If something major happens and the POTUS is somewhere else, sure they send an encrypted message, but the real piecing together and analysis happens only in one general area. And that analysis is NOT sent by PIGEON, you are Wrong dduck. 🙂

        While we are on the subject of spying and political interference, anyone want to guess how many countries we have tried to interfere with? (I don’t know the number but I’m sure it is a double digit number). And while we might not directly target friendly or allied countries, some of our intelligence collecting operations may pull in information on countries with which we have warm relations while pulling for other targets. That information would be sorted and stored as well. We can be as hard as we want towards countries that do it to us, but let us not forget we do the same thing. Only when we do it, it is always for a good cause.

  174. December 14, 2016 2:33 pm

    During WWII my father was a precision machinist who helped build Norden Bombsights, top secret tachometric devices that provided high degrees of accuracy for day bombing at high altitudes. The devices were considered so important to the war effort that pilots and crews swore oaths to destroy the instruments, and their own lives if necessary, to keep them from falling into enemy hands. My father also signed a secrecy pledge – though he was circumspect when I asked him it it included a suicide agreement. He didn’t have a copy of that paperwork, but he did get ‘A Certificate Of Award’ from Carl L. Norden, the bombsight inventor and manufacturer, with thanks from Noreen and the United States Army and Navy, “in recognition of outstanding efforts in the production of materials vital to the public defense.”

    And so I’d like to take this opportunity to offer on behalf of the nation ‘A Certificate of Thanks’ to all of those who had a small part in the enabling of the destruction of our democratic. Institutions, in Electing Donald Trump President-Incompetent. Your continued blindness and rationalizations to the dismemberment of our traditional institutions of governance are also appreciated, as is your deafness to the shrill squeaking warning noises of Boss Tweed style government, soon to be elevated to the national level. For a few sops of social conservative pabulum you are welcoming deals with dictators and devils and Trickle-down corruption from the highest office in the land, an inheritance of cynicism for generations of Americans to come.

    A thankful nation turns it’s eyes to you – in disgust.

    • December 14, 2016 2:35 pm

      Sorry about typos – hard to catch on small tablet screen.

    • Grand Wazzoo permalink
      December 14, 2016 3:00 pm

      Jay, He will be far from the first incompetent president, try Johnson among others, or the first venal one, you can start with Jackson and work forward. The president is not the country, 3 branches, remember? Plus the rest of us. For gods sakes I agree with you about trump but your drama level is beginning to make my head spin. It will take more than one bad presidency to destroy us, we have had lots of them and are still standing. Read through the history of the presidents again it may sooth your nerves.

      You sound like an old time preacher bring thunder and damnation down on the heathen.

      • Mike Hatcher permalink
        December 14, 2016 4:39 pm

        GW: I hold the belief (emphasis on belief over scientific knowledge ) that this planet could go “Book of Eli” type crazy at any time. Trump might just set it off too. However, sounding the alarm over every little fly that buzzes around the outhouse only makes us deaf to the alarm.

        Some of us think Republicans would only talk about restraining government but often did the opposite, while Democrat politicians would talk anti-war and such but be just as quick to use the military, and of course cronyism on both sides. Sometimes in sports you have to bench your star players because of bad behavior and put in the scrub that can’t hit a pitch to save his life. Wake up politicians, if you don’t act with integrity we might keep putting in garbage players.

    • Mike Hatcher permalink
      December 14, 2016 4:15 pm

      Jay: That is pretty cool about your dad. I have read about the Norton bomb sighting. It was said that it was so accurate that they could drop a bomb into a pickle barrel. Of course they had snarky people back then as well, who asked: “Why would you want to drop a bomb in a pickle barrel?”

    • December 14, 2016 6:33 pm

      Jay, channel your inner “Noo Yawk City” boy, and don’t let the California Crazy get you down!

      There are an awful lot of people who think that Obama has been pretty incompetent, and that it would be difficult to outdo him in that department. I personally think that he lacked the qualifications and experience necessary to be POTUS, but, if you’ll recall, he had the good fortune to run against a certain Senator from NY, who has since been shown to lack good political instincts…..

      If my Facebook feed is to be believed, most Democrats consider Obama to be one of the greatest presidents ever. I disagree rather strongly with that assessment (surprise!), but I will say that he and Michelle have conducted themselves with considerable personal dignity. Policy-wise, I think he’s been a disaster. And he has further divided a country that was already divided over the policies~ especially the foreign policy ~ of George Bush, who also conducted himself with dignity.

      I think that Trump is unlikely to be as dignified as either Bush or Obama. But, I think that he has a golden opportunity to be a bigger policy success than either of them… Remember, the game is played on the field. You haven’t even given the Trump Administration a chance to suit up and come out of the locker room (although, I’m sure there’s some “locker-room talk” going on in there!).

      • December 14, 2016 9:11 pm

        I already gave him numerous chances, Priscilla. When he first became a candidate I defended him here. That was when GW was Roby, and I touted Trump with the same wait and see benefit of the doubt you’re still proselytizing; and got reamed by Roby/GW for it.

        Trump quickly revealed himself to be a liar, and a blustering buffoon, who would say anything no matter how contrary to the truth for attention. He incited his supporters with the same vulgar rhetoric used at professional wrestling matches, and continued to spread lies and insult and misinformation without remorse. This is not a person who should be president of our nation. He has already smeared the office with his oafish behaviors, and will be a stain on our national character for decades to come.

        Wait and see – I will be proven right. Bad Karma awaits nations that entrust their governance to con artist narcissists like him.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 15, 2016 10:58 am

        Jay, no matter how many times you or I point out that you are not the raving liberal the conservatives here are making you out to be and that your post history proves it, its just to much fun to label you as a LA-livin Hillary lovin Lefty. You are stuck with it.

        My old buddy Roby did Not ream you for supporting the possible idea of trump, he reamed you out for suggesting that we commit genocide by obliterating a few middle eastern cities to prove a point. That is a hideous idea that even trump did not go so far as, not that he would not have been forgiven by his supporters if he had proposed it and probably still elected president.

        No, we do not do that, we do not commit genocide on civilian cities to send a message, at least not since Hiroshima/Nagasaki, when we at least had the motivation of saving the lives of a huge number of US troops. Which I still think was genocide.

        In today’s world we will accept lots of collateral civilian damage while going after military targets, that is an ugly reality, but pure terrorism against civilian targets, let alone huge ones, is the kind of thing the Islamic extremists do, not what we do. If we did what they do, we would be them and I Would stop paying my taxes. Which is pretty much what Roby said, with a few F words thrown in out of pure shock and disbelief. Roby was enjoying your posts up until that one, even the trump considering ones, I am pretty sure.

  175. December 14, 2016 6:33 pm

    http://www.mercatus.org/publications/debt-and-deficit-under-obama-administration

    Is thee anyone with a good understanding of the constitution that can tell me how the president got all the power to tax and spend? For all the years since I went to school and learned about our government i was led to believe that house created the monetary bills for revenue and expenses, the senate voted on those or made recommendations and the president signed that legislation. So if the president is the one creating deficits, what the hell is the responsibility of the House?

    I understand the president making recommendations. In 2009 he recommended certain things and the house took action to make that happen. But is the inaction of the house concerning rising expenditures for entitlements in anyway responsible for the rising 2016 though 20?? deficits?

    I guess I have been living in a different time warp when the president was suppose to have limited powers and the house and senate had equal powers. I guess we do live in a country where the president is king and can do anything they want.

    • December 14, 2016 6:50 pm

      The Constitution says that all bills raising revenue should originate in the House. But, it also says that the President should recommend whatever he thinks is necessary (or a good idea).

      Since the 70’s, the federal budget process has started with the President presenting a budget to Congress. If I am not mistaken, he is required by law to do so by a certain time, although Obama missed that deadline more often than not, setting up budget standoffs with Congress.

      Technically, the Congress should have “won” these standoffs, by simply saying, “Hey, Obama, we’re going to shut down the government, until you do your job,” and forcing a negotiation.

      But, we know how that has turned out……

      • December 15, 2016 1:15 pm

        Priscilla, you are correct in your statement that the president is required to submit a budget. That started in 1921. The president submitted a budget and congress acted on it, making changes they thought appropriate. But in the 70’s, Nixon began circumventing congress, refusing to spend money they budgeted, so congress actually did something you would not see them do today. They took control from the President and created the congressional budget office and began developing budgets of their own. The two are now put together and reconciled, but the congressional budget is the one they begin with for the most part.

        My point in that post was to point out how people have bought into the idea the president is a king (or queen someday) and how they rule the roost with little congressional input. Obama did not spend the trillions that went into debt the last 8 years, congress did. Bush did not spend the trillions that went into debt for 2000-2008. congress did. If congress does not want to deficit spend, they can fix that now.

        but we all know that will not happen. We are going to get trillions in tax cuts, billions in spending increases, trillions in additional debt and after I am long gone and forgotten, the greatest of the greatest financial catastrophes will occur.
        To bad I will not be able look (up?) or (down?) and be able to say “I told you so”.

      • December 17, 2016 10:39 am

        No doubt, you are right about the expansion of presidential authority, Ron. Congress has been largely reduced to squabbling around the edges, while the King rules.

        As far as I can tell, there is no longer a major party in this country that supports the free market, or believes that it can cut spending, without losing political power. Even Gary Johnson shied away from supporting real free market reforms.

        So, it looks like President Trump will lead off by supporting a huge infrastructure bill, to be paid for by……oh, what the hell, it will just increase the deficit and create more debt. I suppose a boom in the economy will help some (assuming that happens). At this point, not nearly enough.

    • dduck12 permalink
      December 14, 2016 7:32 pm

      Yup. Erosion of powers.

  176. Mike Hatcher permalink
    December 14, 2016 10:19 pm

    Jay your latest comment posted on, pehaps appropriately 9:11, I read , then re-read, and am in complete harmony with you. I would advance a subtle difference that I think Trump IS our punishment for prior wrongs done by politicians and less directly, by people voting for them. This rather than saying Karma will punish us in the future.

    That being said, I will not retreat from my prior position of thinking it is wasteful if not actually counter productive to fuss about little things like DT not attending Intel briefs everyday or his attack of a Boeing contract.
    Speaking badly of that one contract was nothing compared to what Chuck Shumer did with trash talking Indymac Bank, causing that bank, which I worked for at the time and essentially still do despite name and ownership changes, to collapse and be “captured” by the fed government then sold in a sweetheart deal to friends of politians. Anyway, I have probably cried enough about “Chuck You” Shumer on this blog so I’ll shut up about that.

    • December 14, 2016 11:28 pm

      Mike, although I don’t agree with you and Jay that we are doomed (Doomed, I tell you!!) as a result of Trump’s election, I do agree that we have arrived here at the Trump presidency, due to a toxic mix of corrupt, crony politics and media dishonesty, complicated by what many voters see as simple solutions. Or, if not exactly simple, pretty obvious.

      Like immigration. Big problem, getting worse. Vast majorities of average Americans say we should secure the borders, deport people who are in the country illegally, and be extremely careful, even skeptical, about admitting refugees from the Middle East. Oddly enough, politicians from both parties kept saying just the opposite. Almost as if the politicians didn’t really give a crap what the people thought! Same thing with the economy. How many times have we heard that the economy is doing just great? Peachy, even. Only, it doesn’t feel that way to most people.

      People just figured that it was hopeless, no one was listening. And then Trump. While the media was calling him racist and sexist and homophobic and all the other deplorable things, an awful lot of formerly hopeless people were thinking, “hell no, he’s making sense.”

      The great danger of Trump in my eyes is that his understanding of our Constitution is weak, and his commitment to many of its ideals is even weaker. As the successor to a former con law professor who hasn’t hesitated to ignore the Constitution when it suits him, Trump may think he can do the same. Luckily for us, he’s a Republican, so he probably won’t get away with it.

      • December 15, 2016 12:27 am

        Priscilla: Thanks for the feedback. On a tangential subject, there is no shortage of refugees in the world, Southern Sudan has about 600,000 available in Uganda. According to this story 86% women and children. How many cases of Southern Sudanese going to other countries and committing terrorist acts? Why not take more of them and less from countries with a history of exporting terrorists? I would answer that question, but I would not want to be accused of playing the RACE card.*

        https://www.yahoo.com/news/onward-struggle-refugee-crisis-uganda-slideshow-wp-060141851.html

        *To shoot down my own insinuation, I will note that it seems we have in the past accepted quite a few refugees from both Somalia and Liberia. Still, I think we could do a better job in our refugee selection, there is obviously far more than we can take, why not make safer choices?

      • December 15, 2016 10:36 am

        We can make safer choices, and we should. That doesn’t mean that we should continue to turn away from the mass atrocities in Aleppo, but it may mean that we should set up safe zones “refugee camps” if you will, rather than accepting tens of thousands of people who may include jihadis. It certainly means that we need to see Putin for the double-dealing creep that he is.

        Mostly, we need to stop thinking that everything is a binary choice. The election was, but that’s over. Now, Trump supporters have to shake off the thrill of victory, and judge his actions in light of his promises, and “objective” reality (if there is such a thing). It’s no good anymore to just say that he’s better than Hillary.

        My fear is that the Democrat’s inability to move on from the agony of defeat, and to understand that their job is not to destroy Trump, but to oppose him, if his actions justify opposition.

        It’s exactly as you say….if they go bananas over every little tweet, or continue to plot “revenge” for Hillary’s loss, they’ll never stop seeing things as a binary choice. The election campaign, with all of its destructive rhetoric, will never end.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 15, 2016 10:41 am

        Like immigration. Big problem, getting worse. Vast majorities of average Americans say we should secure the borders, deport people who are in the country illegally, and be extremely careful, even skeptical, about admitting refugees from the Middle East.

        I could not find polls to back this up. We seem to be divided about 60-40 Against the wall.

        Can you find me polls that say that vast majorities want the border secured and the illegals deported

        I am not aware of any politicians who said who should not be careful about admitting refugees from the middle east. Democratic politicians for some reason of PC could not pronounce Islamic terrorist and wanted to admit syrians but always carefully screened not willy nilly.

        Here is one poll that seems to contradict your statement. There is a small 50-44 preference for support in this question,

        “Do you support or oppose suspending immigration from ‘terror prone’ regions, even if it means turning away refugees from those regions?”

        http://www.pollingreport.com/immigration.htm

        “Which comes closest to your view about illegal immigrants who are currently living in the United States? (A) They should be allowed to stay in the United States and to eventually apply for U.S. citizenship. (B) They should be allowed to remain in the United States, but not be allowed to apply for U.S. citizenship. (C) They should be required to leave the U.S.”

        Deporting is favored by 25% letting them stay got 60% in the latest of a long series.

        I think that your statement refers to conservatives, not average americans.

        trumps understanding of the Constitution, not to mention his interest in understanding it or caring) I can agree with you on.

      • December 15, 2016 10:55 am

        I wrote in some generalities, GW. Nailed me on that again. 😉

        On the other hand, I don’t place a great deal of credibility in surveys anymore. The way that a question is asked often begs the answer, and, frankly, after the election season, I’m polled out.

        But, I do believe that it would be naive of Democrats to believe that only Republicans want secure borders and law enforcement. Trump likely won among many people who have voted Democrat in the past, and even if that is not true, it is even more likely that many Democrats chose to sit on their hands and allow him to win, by not voting for Hillary.

        60-40 in today’s society, is about as vast a majority as we could get. Unless, we are talking about approval ratings for Congress or the media.

        And Obama, although I presume he has a great understanding of the Constitution, has shown a similar inclination to ignore and violate it. I don’t know which is worse. Both bad……but, we have yet to inaugurate Trump. So, he gets a grace period from me, anyway.

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 15, 2016 11:18 am

        A nice post Priscilla but I am going to be dogged here and point out that it was 60-40 AGAINST the wall. Which you just explained is a vast majority. So a vast majority are against the wall, which I will be fair and note is not the identical concept as securing the borders, which more people may possibly support, show me some polls.

        I am done squawking about trump until he is in office and does something for me to jump up and down about. I’m with Mike. Mike and I have near identical trump policies. The Glock and Bible Texan and Vermont moderate liberal rock and roll guy agree on trump.

        As a tangent jumping off from that thought, the Tillerson idea I am actually beginning to warm to as long as it comes with a big Reagan like increase in military spending and generals and advisors who are in complete understanding on Putin’s version of Russia, which is helping Assad to commit genocide in Syria as we speak for the sake of their naval base and geopolitics.

        As a purist, I would say we should disdain putin on every level, which the west did after Crimea, kicked him out of G20, G7 (I think), sanctions, blunt denunciations, everything but actually investing in the Ukrainian economy.
        As a realist, one has to engage putin, some of his grievances with the west are real and ordinary Russian people who’s only sin is to be programmed life long to believe state propaganda are suffering.

        Somehow that equilibrium that includes Russia must be found. Tillerson might be a brilliant success, or a brilliant failure, I’m willing to think it (an economic negotiator SOS) should be tried. The down side as I see it is that that is a potentially brilliant move only with respect to Russia and not with respect to the whole other world of SOS duties. Why would Tillerson know what to do with the Arab spring or anything like it?

      • December 15, 2016 1:32 pm

        T&T obviously see the world like this, and believe BigBusiness is the common denominator of all foreign policy:

        (Sorry about advertisement intro)

      • Mike Hatcher permalink
        December 15, 2016 11:25 am

        Priscilla: You confessed too soon! Here I was going to rescue your comment by saying that you meant the median average as opposed to the mean or the mode. As we all know the middle of the United States is Lebanon Kansas. Of the roughly 200 residents, those in favor of the wall were a 6 to 1 ratio. 😏 Well, I tried.

      • December 15, 2016 1:12 pm

        It was a valiant effort, Mike, and I salute you!

  177. Grand Wazzoo permalink
    December 15, 2016 11:52 am

    I am going to have to break my promise, already. THIS is just too much:

    • December 15, 2016 1:07 pm

      This, on the other hand, is not a joke:
      http://nypost.com/2016/12/14/electors-are-being-harassed-threatened-in-bid-to-stop-trump/

      “For Michael Banerian, a senior at Oakland University in Michigan and a Republican elector, the harassment comes with a dark side.
      He said he’s been getting death threats via email, snail mail, Twitter and Facebook.
      “Somebody threatened to put a bullet in the back of my mouth,” Banerian, 22, told The Post on Wednesday.”

      Soliciting electors, death threats and hundreds of harassing emails a day? And TRUMP is the bad guy? Sorry, not buying it. This crap is way worse than anything that Trump said on the Access Hollywood bus. This is a concerted attempt to de-legitimize an election. It won’t succeed, but it will keep the fires burning.

      Haters gonna hate…..

      • December 15, 2016 1:42 pm

        This is not a joke either:

        https://www.yahoo.com/news/least-55-electors-demand-briefing-180735382.html

        Do you think they wont be getting an avalanche of death treated too?

      • Grand Wazzoo permalink
        December 15, 2016 1:49 pm

        ” Soliciting electors, death threats and hundreds of harassing emails a day? And TRUMP is the bad guy? Sorry, not buying it. This crap is way worse than anything that Trump said on the Access Hollywood bus. This is a concerted attempt to de-legitimize an election. It won’t succeed, but it will keep the fires burning.”

        Clearly that is sick.

        But yes, trump IS a still a bad guy, regardless, and he himself began this I’m delegitimizing the election business, the election is going to be stolen, the election is rigged, I may not accept the results, as a candidate, followed by millions of illegals voted after he was already the president elect. Now he is going to be the president, unlike those other anonymous cranks. Jeez, they are a bit reminiscent of crazy conservative Ted Nugent prior to his meeting with the secret service. Yes, haters will hate and you know how many sick examples of that I can find on the conservative side. Doesn’t matter now. trump matters now.

        Cranks doing it is one thing, a candidate and now the president elect doing it is something completely different. And the old “that bad behavior is nothing to worry about because I can find someone even worse” routine does not cut it. at all. trump started this assault on our democracy and now that out of control bomb throwing person is about to be the POTUS, still allegedly the most powerful person in the world. Yeah, I am being repetitive, not one of my better pieces of writing.

        But, we should not worry about trump, we get distracted and worry about anonymous cranks.

        I’m sorry Priscilla if you don’t see that trump burned down civility and respect for our democracy this time around in a way that no candidate ever did before then I don’t know what to say to you. Different universes for us again. In fact he started long before the election delegitimizing with his birther crap. But conservatives could care less, he is on your side.

        (And just when I was trying to calm down about trump…)

      • December 15, 2016 3:36 pm

        I believe, GW, that I wrote a post just today, about Republicans NOT giving in to the temptation to support anything he does, just because he’s from their side. I doubt very much that conservatives like Jonah Goldberg, Ben Shapiro, Charles Krauthammer and others will have a problem with that.

        Stay calm, it might be a long 4 years……..(and keep reading National Review. I would also recommend Shapiro’s Daily Wire. If I have to read HuffPo and Vox, it’s the least you can do)

      • December 15, 2016 7:14 pm

        “Republicans NOT giving in to the temptation to support anything he does, just because he’s from their side.”

        If anyone thinks Senators Cornyn and Cruz will reduce federal expenses and demand a reduction in the price of the F-35’s built in the Forth Worth area, think again.

        Republicans love to talk about cutting expenses until the cuts are in their state. Will happen all over when Trump decided to tweet another defense contractor.

    • Mike Hatcher permalink
      December 15, 2016 1:14 pm

      Yes! Bob Barker would approve!

      • December 15, 2016 3:17 pm

        Who knew I would be agreeing with Ah-nuld??

      • December 15, 2016 3:21 pm

        Skip to the end, if you don’t want to listen to the whole thing, and hear his suggestions for how he will replace Trump’s signature “You’re Fired!” line.

        My favorite: “Get to the chopper!”

  178. December 15, 2016 1:38 pm

    And Dunderhead Donald is once again concentrating on matters important to the national welfare with prescient Tweets:

    @realDonaldTrump: “Has anyone looked at the really poor numbers of @VanityFair Magazine. Way down, big trouble, dead! Graydon Carter, no talent, will be out!”

  179. December 15, 2016 1:53 pm

    Best smile at a politician description:

    “Rudy Giuliani, who had so come to resemble a bad-tempered Rottweiler that he did everything but howl at the moon.”

    • December 15, 2016 3:19 pm

      That’s actually pretty funny, Jay. I love Guiliani, but I think he’s gotten a little crazy. Happy that he’s not SOS. And, Mitt, much as I like and admire him, couldn’t even stand up to Candy Crowley. I think we need tougher stuff at the state department these days.

  180. December 15, 2016 9:23 pm

    THE ART OF MISDIRECTION WATCH:
    Let’s pretend we are going to same manufacturing jobs.
    Let’s pretend we will stomp our foot if Carrier sens ANY jobs to Mexico
    Let’s pat ourselves on the back and boast we’ve saved those Carrier jobs Carrier is even upgrading the plant for those workers.

    Carrier CEO: “Carrier is using the $16.5m investment in the Indiana plant to automate it, which will lead to more layoffs.”

    • December 16, 2016 1:47 pm

      Jay, I see that Obama has vowed to retaliate – really, seriously, we’re gonna do it!! – against Russia for possibly hacking DNC emails, and revealing that the primaries were rigged against Sanders.

      For a guy who had almost no reaction to the recent Chinese hacking of millions of US personnel files, complete with background check information and security clearances, he sure seems to get real energized over partisan politics, huh?

      When it comes to the art of misdirection, it would be hard to outdo our current Prez.

      • December 16, 2016 6:11 pm

        For the umteenth time, two wrongs don’t make a right.

        Obama is on the way out – good!

        Trump is on the way in – HORRIBLE.

        Obama was slow and reluctant to react to everything requiring forceful response, the hacking included.

        Trump BLUSTERS and shoots from the lips; or DOZES in deep pools of ignorant denial, as he has with Russia in general and the hacked emails in particular.

        I wonder if we can expect angry tweets of denial directed at both the CIA and FBI when he sees this just released news story

        http://nypost.com/2016/12/16/fbi-supports-cias-conclusion-russia-interfered-with-election/

        Russia is our geopolitical enemy. They will do everything in their power under Putin’s leadership to undermine us, and the European democracies who have been our allies for half a century or more. Trump has turned the Republican base into Sheeple who now are vociferously embracing and defending Putin and his policies, just as Trump is. The enemy of their enemy (Clinton, Democrats, Liberals) is now their friend. The Trumptards on the Internet are now in lockstep with Trump in Russian accommodation.

        What’s truly frightening about this is how quickly public opinion can be molded by demagogic rants over the Internet, reinforced by media political commentators in lockstep with that demagogue, to obliterate long held beliefs and loyalties that have withstood the test of time.

      • December 17, 2016 1:17 am

        Well, ok, Jay, we do agree on some things ~ two wrongs DON’T make a right.

        I don’t think you are thinking clearly on this Russia thing. Look back at the past 10-15 years , and what you’ll see is a pattern of accomodation and strategic blundering by both the Bush and the Ob