Category Archives: Trump 2016

3rd thought on tomorrow’s debate

This picture almost makes me forget how glad I was to have Barack Obama take George W. Bush’s place. Compared to today’s Republican nominee Bush was a saint. This remarkably able, and wholesome First Lady married another good guy who has been the subject of eight years of scurilous, vindictive, demogogic excoriation that will seem almost as incomprehensible to historians of the future as this year’s Republican nominee.

This picture is also a wonderful salve at a time of “Birther” leavened racial hurt.

2nd thought on tomorrow’s debate

For those of you who use the phrase “X may be a son-of-a-bitch but he’s our son-of-a-bitch.” Think twice before you put Donald Trump’s name in it.

If you’re a blue collar worker who lost your job to the developing world remember that before he was against trade pacts Donald Trump made use of them to set up shop everywhere else besides the United States.

If you’re a small business person remember his long record of declaring bankruptcy leaving small business on the hook for his failed investments.

If you’re ambitious and struggling remember how he made a spectator sport of mocking losers with his television mantra “you’re fired.” And don’t forget how he took his true believers who enrolled in this sham Trump University to the cleaners.

If you believe in Christian charity remember how he has used his charitable donations to pay off debts and buy political favors.

And if, like me, you value Presidential honesty remember that compared to Hillary’s failure to be candid about whether she ever failed to treat a classified email as a state secret you have in just the last week from Donald Trump a wealth of bullshit and lies that will continue for the next four years should he be elected President of the United States.

We need to think carefully about just whose son-of-a-bitch Donald Trump really is. He’s David Duke’s son-of-a-bitch. He’s Vladimir Putin’s son-of-a-bitch. Is this who American needs to be their son-of-a-bitch?

The abandonment of true journalism

Donald Trump is, among other things, a fellow who has profited mightily by the faltering of twentieth century journalism. In its place is a dizzying array of Internet data dumps available for inspection by the curious and curated by interested persons from the honest to the nefarious. Somewhere in between are all the organizations which have a special interest in winning the public to their side. For the unwary and for people without the luxury of time to deeply investigate this inexhaustible library of data its far easier to let their tribal pals spoon feed them formulas.

My buddy is always telling me I’m being tribal when I bad mouth the Republican Party. I’m not sure what tribe this makes me a part of. I did attend Democratic precinct caucuses for about eight years never really becoming part of their machinery. For ten years before that I played gadfly in an increasingly purge happy Republican Party. Prior to that I quietly voted for Democrats when unappetizing Republican candidates won the primaries or GOP nominations. If I have a tribe to a large extent it could be called the tribe of the “Man without a Country.”

Here’s Wikipedia’s summary of this famous short story’s plot:

The protagonist is a young United States Army lieutenant, Philip Nolan, who develops a friendship with the visiting Aaron Burr. When Burr is tried for treason (historically this occurred in 1807), Nolan is tried as an accomplice. During his testimony, he bitterly renounces his nation, angrily shouting, “I wish I may never hear of the United States again!” The judge is completely shocked at this announcement, and on convicting him, icily grants him his wish: he is to spend the rest of his life aboard United States Navy warships, in exile, with no right ever again to set foot on U.S. soil, and with explicit orders that no one shall ever mention his country to him again.

I was haunted by the story which I read in an English class. That was the hope of the author Edward Everett Hale. Until perusing Wikipedia just now I had no idea who the author was or the circumstances for his the writing of the book. It was composed in the middle of the Civil War, a ripe time for an American to agonize about national identity. Lincolndemocrat takes particular note of the author’s being the nephew of Edward Everett, the orator and statesman, famous for the long forgotten speech that preceded Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address and being the “grand-nephew of Nathan Hale (1755-1776), the Revolutionary War hero executed by the British for espionage.”

If I have a tribe its probably confined to my office. I will admit that it is a bit more capacious than the ship’s stateroom to which the story’s protagonist is confined for the rest of his life. Like the protagonist I have bits and pieces of evidence of my nation tacked to my walls. BTW – here’s the story long out of copyright. I didn’t reread it in full but just cut to the end to compare it to my memory of it.

About that end. I was probably 15 when I read the book and far less knowledgeable about the American history that had taken place prior to the story’s conclusion. That it was written during the Civil War and contemplation about what the union meant may not have registered with me quite as it does now.

My Buddy is no doubt right when he tells me the US will soldier on if Donald Trump is elected President. I suppose we would have survived if Huey Long had been elected or Joseph McCarthy but what a shame it would have been. The Presidents they would have supplanted were superior individuals. Its true that neither of these men were Adolph Hitlers but neither was Hitler early in his career. The great irony of Germany and the Reich was that a nation of such cultivated and sophisticated people could descend to the gas chamber, the charnel house and ruin. We seem to have past the time for a nuclear holocaust but our technology certainly leaves room for an even worse case scenario than that which transpired at the end of World War II. I can’t help but see seeds of destruction in today’s political tribal culture and campaign rhetoric and, frankly, its probably too late to stop Greenland’s icecap from melting.

I am troubled that the notion of American exceptionalism is often waved about by folks who mistake it for America’s wealth and power and not for the intangibles locked into our Bill of Rights. One of those intangibles is the right of a free press. Donald Trump can’t wait to get elected President so that he can change the libel laws like he plans to change the Generals and sue every newspaper that looks at him cross-eyed. Then he can enjoy the sort of freedom his good buddy Vladimir Putin enjoys behind the Kremlin’s walls. Donald Trump is just an eight hundred pound Albertson.

Yeah, compared to electing Trump, elevating Hillary Clinton to the Presidency would be a disaster. Remember Benghazi – or at least what the pretend newsman Roger Ailes wanted you to think happened there. That way you will be anesthetized to the coming of a White House with five letters tackily emblazoned on it in Gold leaf.

Highs and lows.

After my Congdon visit this morning I served lunch at the Damiano Soup Kitchen. Chicken gravy over fresh mashed potatos. It was very popular. Tomorrow, Saturday, I’ll be painting our church. I’ll be grateful for the distraction. American politics and ISD 709 weigh me down.

After watching PBS News Hour tonight I told Claudia that we needed to go see Bridget Jone’s Baby. Its a comedy which has been given favorable reviews and I recall enjoying the first of the Jones movies nearly twenty years ago. I told Claudia I was in no mood to see any more news and off we went. That’s something we probably haven’t done on a Friday night for a decade.

The movie was a hoot but when I got home I looked at my cell and saw a Facebook post from reliable journalistic pariah for the Republicans, Dan Rather. I agreed with evertything he said critical of Donald Trump. His jerimiad was about the threat to First Amendment press rights Trump would be. He left out one of the threats; Trump’s desire to lower the standards of libel so that he could sue reporters for defaming him. Its a good thing he has no shame (as witnessed today by blaming Hillary Clinton for starting the Birther movement) because he descends deeper into the lunitic fringe. Those are the myopians who believe he is telling it like it is. This is what the Republican Party of Lincoln has descended to. No wonder I’m depressed. Every day Trump gains another point in the polls is another blow to the idea of American exceptionalism. Naw, we’re susceptible to Hugo Chaves’s and Duterte’s and Putins. Far too few Republicans are standing in his way lest they lose the Congress. Ah yes! Better they lose their souls than a death grip on a paralyzed Congress. Its jaw dropping to watch preachers supporing this abombination over a Methodist who stuck by her cheating man. The remind me of Pat Robertson saying American deserved the 911 attack because we had been so ungodly as a nation. I guess Trump is the next plague for an undeserving nation.

I danced at Condon. I sang while serving lunch. I howled at Bridget Jones. Then I came home to an email message from our administration forbidding me and the other school board members from talking to the press about a delicate topic. I wrote a stern email back suggesting that it was high time for the school board to have a closed session to discuss said topic. I may only be one of onehundred-fifty million voters in November. But on the School Board I’m one of seven votes. Sanity seems tantalizingly close here in Duluth.

I joked with my Buddy a few weeks back saying that whoever wins the Presidency will force half of America to seek asylum in Canada. Thank God Canada hasn’t built a wall.

I feel another sleepless night coming on. I hope I don’t fall off of my ladder while painting tomorrow.

Newsweek’s story on Trump’s 500 overseas tentacles

US Grant was derided for years as an incompetant President who presided over a corrupt nation. Recent scholarship is much more charitable. Lincoln was indebted to him. That’s good enough for me.

Chester Authur was a corrupt political hack who reformers were appalled to see succeed a towering James Garfield when the later was assassinated. At the time he was given credit for surprising contemporaries by cleaning up his act and not encouraging corruption when he unexpectedly took the Presidency.

Warren Harding was a nonentity who was maneuvered into the Presidency by super Boss Mark Hanna to prevent a successor to the trust busing Theodore Roosevelt from entering the Oval Office. He kept company with scores of crooks during the Roaring Twenties. He had the good sense to die before the scandals broke out leaving him the reputation as the worst President of all time. Other than fathering a child out of wedlock I don’t recall his being accused of sharing in the ill gotten gains of his crooked friends.

Richard Nixon, only the second President to face Impeachment, high tailed it out of Office to avoid being punished by Congress for numerous abuses of power. Personal financial gain was not one of his serious failures. A failed President he nonetheless pushed through a wealth of domestic and international actions that profoundly improved the world for the better.

Hillary Clinton, a First Lady and faithful spouse, stuck by her husband when his infidilities were exposed during his Presidency – the first to have them exposed publically since Grover Cleveland a hundred years before. After a succussful term as a United States Senator and a competant Secretary of State she and her husband attempted to redeem a savaged reputation by raising hundreds of millions of dollars from numerous sovereign nations and wealthy individuals to help impoverished people throughout the world. She made herself available for innocent discussions to these contributors while Secretary of State with little evidence that her contributors benefited from the interchanges. She recieves nothing from the Clinton Foundation but does make money giving speeches like a great many recently retired Presidents.

Then there is Donald Trump. Here’s Newsweek’s recent expose of a handful of the 500 or so problematic relationships. Many of them would call into question a President Trump’s financial conflicts of interest. “Unscrupulousness” hardly begins to cover the national security threat to the United States.

One of the more distressing aspects of this story are the many defenders of Donald Trump and their comments following the story. It reminds me when supporters of Barack Obama in 2008 were accused by Republicans of treating Obama as though he was a Messiah who walked on water. Now Trump’s supporters are proving to be similarly inclined despite ample evidence to the contrary.

Shaking my head and shaking Trump’s hands

I’ve made clear that I will support Hillary Clinton this year for President. I recently wrote to my Buddy and told him I was so busy I would not be emailing him so much…….that’s proving hard to do. His email to me last night:

From: [Your Buddy]
To: “Harry Welty”

Subject: Clinton Never Learns That the World Sees Every Stumble – Bloomberg View – Megan McArdle

From https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2016-09-12/clinton-hasn-t-learned-that-the-world-sees-every-stumble:
First the veracity of Fox was questioned . . .
But:
If Gabriel Rossman perfectly summed up the spin cycle yesterday, David Axelrod perfectly summed up the problem beneath it: “Antibiotics can take care of pneumonia. What’s the cure for an unhealthy penchant for privacy that repeatedly creates unnecessary problems?”

Unfortunately, there’s now a possibility that even if such a cure is found, for Hillary Clinton, it will come too late.

To which I replied:

I mostly just shake my head at this stuff. I don’t think the stumble is the problem its the excessive spin. Clinton may have infected her whole campaign with paranoia. She should have learned from Nixon that the cover up is what kills you. Don’t know if its too late for a vaccination but I’m beginning to sense Trump has taken a shot to keep his foot out of his mouth.

By coincidence last night I watched a PBS show about how in 1953 Winston Churchill kept his severe debilitating stroke out of the news. Ah the good old days.

PS. I should note that in an earlier email to my Buddy on this thread I mentioned that I got pneumonia when I was just past 50 and it knocked me for a loop. That lasted a week or two and its bugs haven’t gotten to me since. I know that Clinton shakes lots of hands and presumably got the walking pneumonia on the hustings. Trump better watch out or he might be next. But then again I’ve read that Trump is phobic about that kind of thing _ shaking hands.

Yeah, I’m no fan of Bill Clinton

I think this is a riposte from my Buddy.

From: [Your Buddy]
Sent: Saturday, September 10, 2016 7:21 AM
To: Harry Welty
Subject: Photos Show Bill Clinton and Donald Trump Hanging Out

Harry:

Not even The Donald and The Big He are always tribal.

Your Buddy

http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer/2016/09/photos-show-bill-clinton-and-donald-trump-hanging-out.html

And I’ll acknowledge that this tidbit is worth acknowledging. In fact, today’s Trib has dueling viewpoints on what a First Husband Bill ought to look like here and here. I didn’t read them but I have a lot of strong thoughts where William Jefferson Clinton is concerned.

Oh he’s a rascal all right but I’m not amused or besotted by his charm. I devoted one of my best snow scultures to him right after he was first elected and said nice things about him. I even pissed off untold numbers of Ross Perot supporters I’d been working with when I decided Perot wasn’t up to the Presidency and hopped off his bandwagon.

I’m sure if you type Bill Clinton into my search engine you will find a couple disparaging remarks I’ve made about him. In my emails to my Buddy I passed on my suspicion that our ex President raped a woman while he was Arkansas’s Attorney General. A few years ago reading my favorite blogger Andrew Sullivan I was directed to a story suggesting that both Trump and Clinton hobbed nobbed together on some Multimillionaire’s Caribbean island where underaged girls were available.

If my Buddy thinks my disgust with Bill Clinton’s mores will put me off of Hillary he’s wrong. Don’t get me wrong. They put me off but people are endlessly fascinating. Clinton was a competent President and I believed him years ago when he said Hillary was even smarter than he is – just not as publically charming and facile.

Hillary’s sins were often petty as for instance when she told reporters that she wanted to do more than bake cookies. As a house husband myself when she said this I was mortally wounded but I got over it. Yeah, she didn’t make evidence on Whitewater easily available and she and Bill obviously bent the rules to make ends meet and she turned a blind eye to his infidelities. For Republicans, as I told my Buddy, the primary sin of the Clintons was acting like Republican policy makers. That undermined the whole GOP schtick about bleeding heart liberals bankrupting America. He reformed Welfare for God’s sakes! Who did he think he was? Ronald Reagan!

I’ve also told my Buddy many times that I was tired of the Clintons and wanted them to just go away. Ditto the Bushes although Donald Trump makes all the Bush’s look like saints by comparison. I stopped talking to my wife about Hillary. She was wounded eight years ago when I was rooting for Barack Obama and disparaging Hillary. My wife can’t help but see a lot of dyspeptic mysogyny in the way Hillary has been treated and Claudia identifies with it. Claudia’s elementary school teacher wouldn’t let her give a little speech about her desire to be a space scientist. She was told to give a speech about being a nurse or a teacher. Claudia refused to give the speech her teacher wanted. Its high time for a competent woman to be President of the United States and no one in our benighted age is as smart as Hillary Clinton like her or not.

Even in 2008 I had to give Hillary credit for having earned a shot at the Presidency. She was no longer a First Lady but a United States Senator from the Empire State – New York. All her Republican Senate colleagues made it clear that she was a hard worker and whip smart.

The great irony of the 2008 campaign was that the pundits of the GOP, especially Rush Limbaugh, said wonderful things about Barack Obama to stick it to Hillary who had been their bogey woman for years. The political calculation was crude and obvious. If the Democrats were stoopid enough to nominate a “N” America wouldn’t elect him to the Presidency and their Republican candidate would win the day despite a disaserous end to the George W Bush Presidency. America fooled them.

For the past few years I’ve told Claudia that Hillary had a shot at the Presidency. She kept tellling me it was too late – Hillary was too old. I wasn’t really eager to have Hillary be the candidate and I’m still tired of the Clintons. I’ll probably feel that way in 2020 if Hillary runs for reelection – if she gets past voters who consider her a “B.” But I am finding myself rooting for her to beat the Dickens out of Republicans who have made governmental dysfunction their calling card. They couldn’t stand that ugly word “compromise” any more than they could stand my being a RINO after they took over my party and threw out old liturgy.

I always sympathized with the Republicans of my Grandfather’s Era having to put up with the sainted Franklin Roosevelt and enduring his four successive Presidential wins. But I don’t blame the voters of either 1940 or 1944 for sensing that changing a horse in midstream during the world war was a bad idea. I won’t blame voters this year if they decide an insecure man who makes fifth graders sound smart by his repetitive use of two sylable words is not quite the brilliant fellow he constantly tells us he is. Frankly, I’m in awe of Hillary Clinton, both Clinton’s really, for their tenacity, durability, intrigue and ultimate success. By contrast Donald Trump is a dumb-as-a-stump chump who, treats his customers with W.C.Field’s disdain, “Never give a sucker an even break,” or P.T. Barnum’s guile, “There’s a sucker born every minute.” As for his panache? I’m afraid its only some rainbow sherbert he dripped on his Gucci sports coat.

That’s what people voting for Donald Trump should expect – a nonexistant degree from Trump University. As the Donald might say: that would be a horrible, horrible, horrible, thing. Ooh. that’s a three sylable word. I’m impressed, impressed, impressed.

BTW: I decided there was more work to do on Bill Clinton after I busted him. This was the finished product:

Clinton, like Trump, could toot his own horn.

Sully two

After I went to bed last night something popped in my head that made me question Eastwood’s motives for making the movie Sully. Did Eastwood want to throw darts at incompetent, uncaring big government as some sort of message for the American electorate? The movie makes much of the suspicion and hostility of the NTSB in investigating whether Sully didn’t have other safer and prescribed alternatives to landing in the North River.

My quick answer after doing a little googling is No. I don’t think so.

I base this on this story from the Denver Post about what the real Sully thought of Eastwood’s movie and the fact that this movie started life well before Donald Trump was imagined as anything other than a media celebrity with the tag line “Your fired” attached to his reputation.

According to the article Eastwood when considering the story wondered who the antagonist could be in a five minute miracle landing. Of course, as the screenplay made clear to Eastwood, it had to be the officials second guessing Sullivan’s hasty decision.

I don’t know if Eastwood ramped up their overbearing a notch or not but Sullivan explains that his heartbeat was still racing months after his landing and his appearace of calm, by the books, confidence. And Sullivan bears no ill will to the NTSB which according to the movie he had to set straight on the realities he faced in the cockpit. In fact, as the movie makes clear, he was in the process of transistioning after retirement to safety consultantcy – just what the National Transportation Safety Board is all about. Its their duty to unearth the facts after tragedies no matter the tender emotions of the victims.

All this does is confirm my first judgement of the movie. I give it four stars.

SULLY

Claudia suggested a movie today. She had finished her homework and wanted a change of pace. I gave up the idea of cleaning up my office. (Tough decision that) and looked up what movies were in town. I saw that Eastwood’s Sully was here and checked Rotten Tomatoes to see how the critics and audience rated it. 84% approval is usually a tip off for a good movie. I did note one sour critique, to wit:

Sully is fascinating as a study of Eastwood’s persecution complex, his fear that not everyone in the world adequately worships an accomplished white man.

I once panned Clint Eastwood for his performance at the 2012 GOP National Presidential Nominating Convention. It ticked me off as much as it appalled Mitt Romney who is frankly a nice guy. Its pretty tame stuff by Donald Trump’s standards and it obviously still sticks in some people’s craw today.

We went and enjoyed the movie very much. Ironically Sully’s demeanor reminded me of Barack “No drama” Obama’s demeanor. I don’t care if an old white guy does something heroic and Eastwood did him justice. I think we should all celebrate a fine movie.

I was about to write that as far as I knew Eastwood hadn’t said anything good about Trump then I thought better of it. Easy enough to Google. Well, I guess Clint still has it in for President No Drama. Pity that.

My Buddy and I quibble with each other

From: [Your Buddy]

Sent: Fri, 9 Sep 2016 14:20:14 -0500
Subject: Re: Mongering, Fish, War, Clinton, take your pick | lincolndemocrat.com
Harry:

By your saying that Hillary doesn’t scare the shit out of you or offend your intelligence, are you implying that Trump does? Oh, boy. There is shit, and there is shit. The tragic American military venture in Vietnam began with Kennedy, continued with Johnson, and eventually ended with Nixon. More than 50,000 American military lives were lost, and presumably many more Vietnamese lives were lost; and for what? Senator Hillary voted to authorize President Bush to invade Iraq. Do you suppose that Trump would do anything to scare you more, or to more offend your intelligence, than what any of the aforementioned persons other than Trump have done?

Talk is cheap, Harry — for Hillary, for Trump, for Dick Morris, and for you.

If you bet your farm that Hillary will be elected, that won’t scare me; but I think that that would be foolish. Blabber on.

To which I replied:

Buddy,

There aren’t many folks I could vote for who voted against the Iraq War. Paul Wellstone is about it. His death was a great loss to an important national debate. BTW. Obama opposed the war. As I recall you weren’t too impressed with him. Fat lot of good his being prescient did for him where you were concerned.

Although he has lied and denied it even Trump supported the war. Hell, I did too having bought into the argument that we ought to help bring democracy to the Middle East. Damn me. As I’ve written many a time when I was twelve my Grandfather told me the worst mistake of his life was to vote for a Democrat (Woody Wilson) because he promised to keep us out of war. Then Woody laid the foundation for today’s neocons with the slogan. “Make the World safe for Democracy.” Sadly that line of thinking was always popular with southern democrats (who only objected to the democracy part where black voter registration was concerned) and they brought it into the GOP when Barry Goldwater welcomed them into the party.

I’ll admit that Senator Clinton voted for the war and in doing so demonstrated sheep-like behavior for an old Vietnam War protester. That said, she simply demonstrates a lot more sober mindedness than Trump,

Talk is cheap. My blog only costs me $66 a quarter. Reading it is even cheaper. Lucky you.

Harry

Ten years ago when my wife was helping clean out her Uncle’s farmhouse she encountered this picture of Woodrow Wilson that had been awarded to the family by the long defunct Farmer’s Wife magazine headquartered in St. Paul. I mischieviously enjoyed cleaning it up and hanging it up in my office as a bit of a memorial to my Grandfather’s worst mistake. Today I have it hanging in our basement laundry room. I’m sure my grandfather would approve his demotion.

Not a fan of Hillary

I can always count on my Buddy to dis my digs at the GOP: My Buddy thinks I’m “tribal.”

From: “Your Buddy”
To: “Harry Welty”

Sent: Fri, 9 Sep 2016 04:32:41 -0500
Subject: Mongering, Fish, War, Clinton, take your pick | lincolndemocrat.com

Yeah, Harry, take your pick.
Regarding http://lincolndemocrat.com/?p=17515, see Trump Aces Forum; Clinton Looks Pathetic, by Dick Morris, at http://www.jewishworldreview.com/0916/morris090916.php3. But what does a former political advisor to Bill Clinton, know?

Who can pick ‘em?

[your Buddy]

To which I replied:

Buddy,

Dick Morris is a smart man but a little like Anthony Weiner. His petard got hoisted when he bragged to a prostitute or a girlfriend about his connections to President Clinton and the world found out about it. I don’t remember the details but it was something like that. Ah. Got to love Google. Here’s a sample: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/local/longterm/tours/scandal/morris.htm

In more recent years I’ve read his prognostications and read a lot of self serving spin in them. He was a GOP consultant before his fling with Clinton and now he’s back in the GOP fold – sort of.

In this case Morris’s analysis isn’t much different than mine. We each saw what we wanted to see. But in Morris’s case he has to make sure he impresses the folks who will hire him again to give them political advice. The people likely to hire him will be Trumpians, of course. If he was in the pay of Hillary he could turn the tables on Trump. I’d call that an AC-DC consultant – not all that different from an attorney for that matter.

Whatever my motives they are not mercenary. Its hard to be a fan of Hillary but she doesn’t scare the shit out of me or offend my intelligence – my scruples maybe – but not my intelligence. She worked hard to be worthy of the Oval Office. Trump has worked hard to polish up his crass to make it look like brass. Of course, if he was really a billionaire he would be gold and not just an amalgam of copper and zinc. We’ll just have to wait till he releases his taxes to see if he’s lied about his fortune.

Harry

Mongering, Fish, War, Clinton, take your pick

I have meant to say a lot more about this year’s sorry election spectacle. Half of America will have to move to Canada whatever the outcome. Good thing they haven’t put up a fence yet.

Hillary is taking it on the chin over her emails. After Snowden released everything under the sun on purpose I am not sure why were are raising so much hell about a secretary of state erasing email that is supposed to be secret. Oh yeah. I almost forgot. Its because Hillary Clinton was driven paranoid by the “Vast Republican Conspiracy” to get rid of Bill Clinton before he appropriated too many Republican ideas and got popular as a result. Bill called it triangulation and now Hillary is doing the same darned thing.

Anywho…..The Trumpster caught my attention at the Commander and Chief Forum last night when:

He said our officer corps had been turned to “rubble” by Obama and then asserted he’d get a bunch of new generals as though promotions wern’t the military’s job.

He said, for the umpteenth time, that he had a secret plan to crush ISIS in much the same way Richard Nixon boasted of his secret plan to end the Vietnam War when he was running in 1968.

He said if it had been up to him he would have taken all of Iraq’s oil. Ironically stopping the same kind of theft is why we invaded Iraq in the first place – to stop them from taking oil out of Kuwait after invading them. Surely doing what Trump wants would require a more super power to invade the United States and put an end to our theft.

He reiterated that Putin was great and a signifant improvement over Obama……..even though Putin’s critics are all assassinated. Putin’s a role model all right.

Where HL Mencken when we need him?

Meanwhile our incompetent President (and my favorite for the past thirty years) visited Laos and shook his head over all the bombs we dropped on them during the Vietnam War. It was more bombs, two million ton’s worth, than we dropped on the Axis Powers during World War II. One of their key industries today is making prostheses for people who keep blowing off their legs in rice paddies.

Coincidentally, last week I watched the Australian movie The Rocket about an enterprising young Lao boy who should never have been born according to his tribal customs. (He had a twin) Everywhere his family travels, after an Australian conglomerate and the Laotion government build a massive reservoir which displaces them, is littered with old American ordnance much of it still live. It was nice to hear our Commander and Chief offer financial help to Laos to remove it. Trump would just charge Laos the same way he plans to charge Mexico for our wall.

Trump distractions via Internet

My Brother, a businessman, sent me this link today. It was on Politico and will no doubt be all over lots of other web pages before the week is out. It will probably be on the Olympics before its over as have several other Clinton ads.

I clicked an image on politico site thinking it might be a link to the ad before the real video showed up a few seconds late and was surprised to see the most unflattering of picture of Hillary on it photo-shopped to look like she was in prison with an accompanying link to more Hillary dirt. I laughed at how clever the Trumpsters were to sabotage a site that would do so much damage to Trump.

In the world of magicians this kind of diversion is critical to fooling the audience. Its a little like the last few weeks news. The Donald smears his reputation with little crappola hints suggesting that the Obama team recruited for ISIS or gun rights supporters might pull off a Lee Harvey Oswald on Hillary in front of enthusiastic audiences that olfactory challenged. I think its a losing strategy but he’s already laid out his excuse for the pummeling it looks like he’s about to take in November. “The system is rigged.”

If he means that he himself has laid IED-like trip wires all over his own campaign I can’t help but agree. Like others it leads me to suspect he only wanted free press when he began this project last year. For more and more people, including lots of black Americans who once had positive feelings about him, he’s replaced the T at the beginning of his last name with a CH.

Email fencing over 2016 politics – Round 4

Once more from my Buddy:

From “Your Buddy”
Sent: Fri, 5 Aug 2016 13:06:06 -0500
Subject: Donald Trump, postmodern candidate – Victor Davis Hanson

Harry:

I submit this to you for your consideration, although I get the impression that you are not a fan of Victor Davis Hanson.

Your Buddy

From http://www.jewishworldreview.com/0816/hanson080416.php3:
The bible for modern politicians is political correctness. They must defer to every imaginable hyphenated group and “community,” employing euphemisms or self-imposed censorship while sidestepping race, class and gender land mines as much as possible.

Again, not Trump. He says what he pleases. If he blows himself up with a politically incorrect outburst, what is left simply flows back together, as if Trump were some sort of political version of the Terminator.

Trump was supposed to fade last summer. His crudity was said to guarantee that he would lose Republican primaries.

Then, pundits said Trump’s vulgar style of primary campaigning would not translate well to the general election.

Now, even seasoned politicos confess there are no rules that apply to Donald Trump. He just keeps shouting that things are getting worse and no one will admit it.

and I return the volley:

I am not a fan of Davis Hanson although I enjoyed the first half of his history of the wars between Sparta and Athens.

Without reading the full essay I can’t help but agree with this portion. But to my thinking Trump’s candor reflects the paucity of dissent in the Party until he tossed his hat in the ring. My Grandfather used to bemoan the Democrat’s penchant for getting us into foreign wars. I’ve been amused that Trump has been given kudos for that kind of talk. His whole “America First” shtick is torn from the pages of the Republicans of the 1920’s and 30’s.

To suggest that the Republicans didn’t have their own version of “political correctness” is baloney. I was pushed to the margins because my Rockefeller Republican ways were verboten. Hell, even Barry Goldwater became a joke when he suggested that the GOP ought to live and let live where gay’s were concerned. No dissent has survived the PC onslaught of the GOP take over artists.

I’ve enjoyed watching Trump make a hash of the Party by being the first politically incorrect “Republican” in a generation. That said, I’m not willing to let him make hash of the good old US of A. Victor Davis Hanson is being far too sympathetic with the Devil. He must have listened to Rolling Stones albums too much for his own good when he was a teenager.

Harry

Email fencing over 2016 politics – Round 3

And my Buddy again:

From “your Buddy”
Sent: Fri, 5 Aug 2016 12:50:02 -0500
Subject: Re: Althouse: Have you watched last night’s Libertarian town hall?

Harry:

I wouldn’t bet any money that Hillary will be the next president of the United States. See http://www.nytimes.com/2016/08/05/opinion/the-perils-of-writing-off-mr-trump.html?action=click&pgtype=Homepage&clickSource=story-heading&module=opinion-c-col-left-region&region=opinion-c-col-left-region&WT.nav=opinion-c-col-left-region&_r=1.

What could happen between now and November? For example, who knows who has copies of Hillary’s e-mails; who knows which of them will be released; and who knows how damaging to her some of the contents might be? If Hillary had nothing to hide, why was she apparently bent on hiding something? You and Warren Buffett might trust her. I don’t.

Was a challenge to Rush Limbaugh and his imitators, the sole responsibility of the Republican Party and its pundits? If there was meritorious challenge to be made, where the f*** was the Democratic Party and its pundits?

I choose to not be a member of any political tribe (cult?). Animal Farm?

If Roger Ailes was a pig with women, I don’t condone that. However, we are fortunate to have had Fox News, as an antidote to the general “liberal” bias of the “mainstream” media.

Your Buddy

and back from me:

Buddy,

I agree. Trump could win. Then again, so could Gary Johnson.

It will be interesting to see how many of Hillary’s secrets get swept into the open or whether she ultimately turns off her current supporters. How ironic that she failed to learn the key lesson of the man she helped investigate out of the White House, Richard Nixon, that its the cover-up that will kill you not the crime. Of course, she didn’t learn that from Bill’s impeachment either.

The leaders of the GOP hid from Rush and his ilk the more the ilk killed off the Weld’s of the Party. Pretty soon no one with any stones was left. Main Street Republicans were content to have their business interests represented even if they held their nose at the social agenda of the leaders of the putsch.

No cause is worth much if it tolerates no internal dissent. The Democrats could only carp about the new GOP from the sidelines which is as far their responsibility over Republicans go and complain they did. Both parties had flourishing dissenters for a hundred years and more until Rush emerged from the mire.

As for FOX news, it could have been a good antidote to the liberal media but its always put its thumb on the scale far more shamelessly than the Networks ever did. Cutting away from Mr. Khan who held the Constitution up to Trump was classic Fox. As for Aisles. I had no idea he was a cad only that he populated the news desk with pretty girls as eye candy. Then again that wasn’t much of a surprise. The Station’s owner, Rupert Murdoch, made Page 3 http://www.page3.com/sol/homepage/page3/ standard fair in the Sun. Fox was just the place to play Hollywood casting director.

Perhaps because you disdained Party politics you did not feel the injury I felt being marginalized by the GOP’s Stepford Wive’s mentality. Say what you will about the Democrats they have always had a rump of rabble-rousers. The biggest group of them defected to the GOP with Strom Thurmond and succeeded over thirty years in crushing social moderates and calling us RINO’s even when, like me, we had been part of the party for generations before the South’s conversion. That’s been a pretty bitter pill to swallow.

Harry

Email fencing over 2016 politics – Round 2

And my Buddy back to me:

From: “Your Buddy”
Sent: Fri, 5 Aug 2016 11:36:19 -0500
Subject: Re: Althouse: Have you watched last night’s Libertarian town hall?

Harry:

I got the same impression. However, I got the impression that Althouse is positive about Johnson at Weld. At http://althouse.blogspot.com/2016/08/the-great-big-open-loving-william-weld.html, she said:
And I just want to say that Weld is an elegant guy. Weld is great. I’m loving Weld.
I have been depressed by the bullshit from Hillary and The Donald, but that depression was appreciably reduced after I watched the CNN interview of Johnson and Weld. I felt that I could comfortably vote for those guys, and let other persons choose between Hillary and The Donald.

Your Buddy

And my reply:

Buddy,

I will be one of those “other persons” but I don’t blame you for voting for Weld. He’s one of my heroes. I loved it when he went after Teddy for the Senate. Weld scared the hell out of the Mass. Dems when he did.

Sadly, the ideologues who took over the GOP and insisted on purity , meaning turning their back on practical, middle-of-the-road governing, turned primaries into purges of moderates even at the cost of electing Democrats in their place. They have made Hillary the next President of the United States. Talk about making your own worst fears come true. Weld was one of their victims. Now they’ve crippled the GOP for a generation. They may become the next Whig Party.

I have no sympathy for the Party. They and their pundits were all afraid to challenge Rush and his imitators. There was no room for dissent and randy Roger Ailes helped make that possible. There is not an Abe Lincoln anywhere in their midst although, to his credit, Mitt Romney has taken a stab at it. Too little. Too late.

Harry

Email fencing over 2016 politics – Round 1

In in a healthy email argument with “My Buddy” over the Presidential race. We’ve had a pretty heated series of emails that like this election threatened to lead to civil war but these have been useful.

I’ve had a lot of thoughts on this election that haven’t made it into posts. I think this series of tit for tat goes along way to explaining my thoughts. Here’s my Buddy’s first salvo:

A lot of her readers don’t…..seem to appreciate them.

—————————————–

From: “Your Buddy”

Sent: Fri, 5 Aug 2016 07:32:35 -0500
Subject: Althouse: Have you watched last night’s Libertarian town hall?

If the two major party presidential candidates have got you down, maybe you will appreciate Johnson and Weld.

http://althouse.blogspot.com/2016/08/have-you-watched-last-nights.html

and my succinct reply:

A lot of her readers don’t…..seem to appreciate them.