Thursday, October 20, 2016

A Classic Example

Last night proved beyond a doubt that Donald Trump has his foot to the floor and is headed to the wall. He has offended women mightily. Last night's vow to repeal Roe v. Wade will add to the Access Hollywood debacle. But, along with women, he's also mobilized Latinos and African Americans against him. E.J. Dionne writes:

The states on Clinton's new target list include Arizona and, of all places, Texas. In Nevada, the polling is mixed, though Clinton seems to have gained ground. A Monmouth University Poll released Tuesday put Clinton ahead of Trump here by seven points. Trump was up by two points last month. But a new Washington Post-SurveyMonkey poll, which showed her in a commanding position nationally, had her still down here by four.

All these states have something important in common: They include large numbers of Latino voters, who are clearly mobilizing to defeat Trump. He is also suffering from profound weaknesses among African-Americans, college educated voters of all backgrounds, and the young.

After its second loss to Barack Obama, the Republican Party took a hard look at itself and concluded:

The nation's demographic changes add to the urgency of recognizing how precarious our position has become," its authors wrote. "If we want ethnic minority voters to support Republicans, we have to engage them, and show our sincerity."

They went on: "If Hispanic Americans perceive that a GOP nominee or candidate does not want them in the United States ... they will not pay attention to our next sentence. It does not matter what we say about education, jobs or the economy; if Hispanics think we do not want them here, they will close their ears to our policies."

One wonders if Trump read the report. He's certainly not following its recommendations. There is still disagreement about whether or not Albert Einstein was the source of the classic definition of insanity.

But Donald Trump is a classic example of it.



Dana said...

Trump doesn't read reports nor does he pay attention to party or campaign advisors unless they echo him. That was made clear some time ago.

I can't help but feel there is something terribly, terribly broken in the US that a man of such questionable substance and irrelevant experience could capture the presidential nomination of a major political party in such a destructive fashion. Then that he could continue to lay waste to one democratic tradition after another with impunity and yet still have polling numbers that appear to indicate that a very sizeable minority of voters think he would not be a constitutional nightmare on multiple levels. I understand that those supporters don't give a fig about the rest of the world, if indeed they are even aware that such a thing even truly exists and isn't just another leftist hoax. But they are proposing to elect a president who has essentially vowed to shred the US Constitution and the Bill of Rights and make the fundamental philosophy behind the Declaration of Independence irrelevant if not criminal.

That all indicates to me that the civic and social character of the USA is so badly damaged that a recovery is impossible and an implosion, probably violent and possibly extremely so, is all but assured.

Steve said...

Owen I do not disagree Trump is a deranged ahole, but what if as I believe Hillary is worse. And I have got to say the evidence of fact is moving me that way.

Owen Gray said...

I've said before, Steve, that Americans don't have a terrific choice this time around. I simply believe that Trump doesn't have the temperment to be president. Hillary -- with all her warts -- does.

Owen Gray said...

From what I read, Dana, Chris Hedges would agree with you. If that happens, the world will become a much more dangerous place.

The Mound of Sound said...

What truly scares me, Owen, is that Trump has no idea of how fragile America really is today. It has 18 trillion dollars in debt, much of it held by other countries. It depends on their willingness to keep lending it their money and, critically, in US dollars - in effect on America's terms. This scheme depends on those foreign lenders maintaining a high level of confidence in the US and its leadership. There's a huge goodwill factor in all of this.

There is already some pressure to switch the world's reserve currency from the US dollar to a basket of currencies representing the major economies: China, the EU and the US. For a debtor state like America, the cost of borrowing in USD would soar. The alternative, borrowing in a blended reserve currency, would prevent Washington from using its monetary policy as a hedge.

I fear that Trump could make this scenario a reality if/when he chose to throw America's weight around with her rivals and allies alike. Trump seems oblivious to how beholden the US is to the world and how dependent it is on maintaining the goodwill of her foreign creditors. The sort of response this blowhard might provoke would harm the global economy. No nation, including our own, would be spared.

The Mound of Sound said...

In response to Dana's comment, he might be on the money. As Hedges claims, America may be in a pre-revolutionary state. The deployment of active duty, regular forces across the US in flagrant breach of the posse comitatus rule suggests Washington recognizes what's coming and is prepared to meet it with military force if necessary. Today's militarized police departments seem to corroborate this possibility.

I agree with Hedges that the sort of unrest that is building often goes horribly wrong. The inevitable result of years of wedge politics is a society riven along political, economic, ethnic even sectarian lines. It's a pot literally boiling over with fear, distrust, grievance and hatred. The people who flock to Trump rallies reveal the gamut of base instincts. They are submissives to his authoritarianism as he promises to punish their perceived persecutors, avenge the wrongs they have suffered. He holds their baseball bat and how he swings it doesn't much matter so long as he connects.

Trump has legitimized the role of political violence and, among his supporters, there must be more than a few ready to act if they perceive their will thwarted. Can anyone say that wouldn't spark a greater conflagration? Perhaps an insurgency of sorts?

Owen Gray said...

Trump is the classic Ugly American, Mound. He and his supporters revel in that sobriquet -- and they have no clue about the international ramifications of their actions.

Dana said...

Mound said, "Today's militarized police departments seem to corroborate this possibility."

The Fraternal Order of Police, 330,000 strong endorsed Trump so all that military hardware might no be more useful to Trump than to anyone else.

Anonymous said...

Hillary Clinton is not a "flawed candidate." She is an actual fascist and an actual monster.

Why is Hillary Clinton an actual fascist? Politicians like the Clintons believe that if they are entrusted to run the government by winning an election, that entitles them to sell access to oligarchs domestic and foreign. The Clintons have taken in over $100-million in speaking fees from the private prison industry, the military industrial complex, Wall Street, Big Oil, the healthcare insurance industry. You name it, they have leeched free money from it. They have taken money from the Saudis for arms. They have taken money from the "evil Russians" for uranium.

So what would you call this pay-for-play captured government the Clintons have championed over the past 25 years? It's certainly not democracy. It's not communism. All that's left is fascism. (If someone has a more appropriate name for it, please enlighten me. I'm always looking to expand my horizons.)

Next, why Hillary is a monster? She portrayed Black youth in inner-cities as "super-predators." Said they have: "No conscience. No empathy." Said, "We can talk about how they ended up that way, but first they must be brought to heel." I.e., she called for a police crackdown so the Clintons' "three strikes" legislation could fill private prison sweatshops with virtual slave labor (life sentences for minor drug offenses.) This produced the era of mass incarceration, a militant police force filled with racist thugs and cowards and the Black Lives Matters movement.

A businessman with an eye on African mining rights — and regime change — made a $10-million donation to the Clinton Foundation while Hillary was Secretary of State. She, then, exempted South Sudan from the ban on child soldiers. (One can see why Hillary data-shredded 33,000 emails on her illegal email serve AFTER an FBI subpoena and smashed old smartphones with a hammer.)

The Clintons raided aid money to Haiti after a devastating earthquake leaving the country in shambles.

The Clintons deregulated Wall Street for promissory bribe money that allowed crooked bankers to screw over investors and homeowners. Millions of people lost their homes and life savings. It destroyed families. Many people committed suicide.

She opposes sensible healthcare reform for kickbacks from the healthcare insurance industry. Tens of millions of people suffer and die from inadequate healthcare.

She's a neocon war-hawk because the more business she drums up for the military industrial complex, the more $250k speeches she gets from them. This had caused the deaths of thousands of innocent civilians.

It's not hard to imagine how "hear no evil, see no evil, speak no evil" produces a banality of evil.

Tal Hartsfeld said...

The Trump campaign can slam Clinton for "displaying elitist arrogance" all they want, but what is Trump himself?
Also a god-damn elitist.

Owen Gray said...

I suspect that the adjective "Trumpian" may well become a synonym for "hypocritical," Tal.