Friday, September 23, 2016

"Ich bin ein Skittle!!" (©

UPDATE:  "This fear-based thinking was echoed by Donald Trump Jr., who on Monday tweeted a photograph of a bowl of Skittles and the caption: “If I had a bowl of skittles and told you just three would kill you. Would you take a handful? That’s our Syrian refugee problem.”

The tweet left me more worried about our educational problem than our refugee problem. Trump Jr. failed to capitalize Skittles, a brand name — surprising for someone whose whole career involves maintaining the Trump brand (or is that the “trump” brand?). The punctuation is wrong, leaving the message to start with a sentence fragment of the kind corrected in elementary school grammar classes. The photo of the Skittles was taken by a former refugee from Cyprus and used by Trump without payment, even though it was copyrighted. So Trump Jr. condemns refugees while exploiting them — and his math is as bad as his grammar. According to a report last week from the Cato Institute, a conservative think tank, the odds of an American being killed in a terrorist attack by a refugee is 1 in 3.64 billion in any given year. That means you’d have to eat 68.7 million handfuls of Skittles before you found Trump Jr.’s poisoned one."

Read the Washington Post, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar: Trump is so scared that he wants us to dismantle the Constitution.

In the debates, Clinton should comment about how all those different colors of Skittles together are so good.  Who wants a bag of just hateful angry Skittles?"

Then hand Trump some Skittles!

Inspired by the Washington Post, Skittles gave the perfect response to Donald Trump Jr.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Trump is a Con Man, and His Supporters are Chumps

UPDATE II:  "A week ago, a panhandler in Times Square sat holding a sign reading, “Give me a dollar or I’ll vote for Trump,” and people laughed and reached into their pockets. His bucket overflowed. He stuffed the bills into his jacket, and other panhandlers looked at him with admiration. The man could’ve sold franchises and retired to Palm Beach.

The panhandler knows what every New Yorker knows, which is that the biggest con job since the Trojan horse is taking place in our midst. Millions of Americans are planning to cast their votes for a man who has lived his life contrary to all of their most cherished values. They are respectful, honest, generous, loyal, modest, church-going people with no Mafia connections and good credit records who try not to spout off about things they know nothing about. . .

Trump is a man whom few Republicans would care to invite into their homes. So what’s going on here? An epidemic of hippocampus poisoning from bad enzymes in cheap beers? The man is a fraud, a compulsive liar and a clueless playboy whose presidency would be an unmitigated disaster for the country. If you would make us the laughingstock of the world just to irk your liberal sister-in-law, you are someone who should not be allowed to come within 500 yards of an elementary school.

The success of Trump would show our children the exact value of education, which is: not that much. It would mean that fact-based journalism had very little bearing in America and a Manila-born Ceylonese child could aspire to the highest office in the land. So here’s a dollar in the beggar’s bucket. Good luck to democracy. Hang in there. 

Read the Washington Post, The biggest con job since the Trojan horse.

UPDATE: "Trump has said he is a populist, and his heart-stoppingly expensive hotel at times has the casual vibe of the amusement park you’d drive one hour to visit but not two. Six Flags Trump, the spiritual home of the carnival-barker presidential candidate."

Two days after my stay, I will learn that Priceline is advertising Deluxe rooms like mine for $376 a night. "

Read the Washington Post, For $805 a night at the Trump Hotel, you deserve what you get

If you doubt it read the Washington Post, Trump’s new hotel offers everything he claims to hate.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Don't Vote Hate

See UPDATE VII (09/19/16) below.


Lord knows we need reform in this country. This blog explains why.

And I had great hope that The Donald could be a reformer.

But now I believe that The Donald is a narcissistic, egomaniacal, religiously bigoted, misogynistic, racist, xenophobe. (Did I miss anything?)

He is our Hitler, and all good Americans have a duty to fight him and defeat him.

God will accept nothing less.


UPDATE:  "'Kill her.'

'Trump that bitch!'

'Build a wall — kill them all.'

New York Times reporters have spent over a year covering Donald J. Trump’s rallies, witnessing so many provocations and heated confrontations at them that the cumulative effect can be numbing: A sharp sting that quickly dulls from repetition.:

Read The New York Times, Voices From Donald Trump’s Rallies, Uncensored.

Or watch the video:

UPDATE II: You must read this article by a conservative columnist Jennifer Rubin with the Washington Post, New campaign shake-up, same old awful Trump, which notes:

"Republicans have deluded themselves long enough. He’s not stable, coherent or knowledgeable. The man who never apologizes and thinks he has run a perfect campaign will not shift gears. If anything, he is doubling and tripling down. If Republicans cannot declare him ready right now to govern and recommend Trump as he is right now — not after being sprinkled with presidential pixie dust — they should leave him to his own devices and get on with the business of trying to save the House and Senate majorities." (Emphasis in original.)

The rats are abandoning ship.

UPDATE II:  Another must read article by a conservative columnist Jennifer Rubin with the Washington Post, Trump flunks the commander-in-chief test, which notes:

"Hillary Clinton did not have a great night at NBC’s Commander-in-Chief Forum on Wednesday. Donald Trump had a horrendous one. It was in that sense a microcosm of the race: Only against Trump could Clinton seem far and away the most responsible contender. . .

 None of that — if you can believe it — was anywhere as awful as Trump's rambling, incoherent and at times jaw-dropping performance. He once again fawned over Vladimir Putin, who has invaded his neighbors and repressed his citizens. Besides, Putin has an 82 percent approval! (That's like saying Bashar al-Assad is the world's most popular ruler since he gets 99 percent of the vote.) He declared, "I think I would have a very, very good relationship with Putin. And I think I would have a very, very good relationship with Russia." He went back to the topic shortly thereafter: "If he says great things about me, I'm going to say great things about him." It's a telling comment: Trump's sole concern is himself; the interests of the United States don't come into consideration.

Trump repeatedly insulted the military. . .

He repeated his nonsensical position that we should take Iraq's oil . . .

Trump nevertheless is going to demand that the generals come up with a plan for beating the Islamic State. Trump told us he has a plan but apparently he does not, or wants to compare notes with the generals. But they'll be different from the ones reduced to rubble, I guess.

Trump also seemed unaware in discussing sexual assault that there is a military system of justice. ("And the best thing we can do is set up a court system within the military. Right now, the court system practically doesn't exist.") He also objects to women serving next to men in the military.

It is obvious that Trump has learned nothing in more than a year of campaigning. Perhaps that is because, as he acknowledged, he is still running his business. (Blind trust? Conflict of interest?) Maybe it is because he is surrounded by sycophants of Putin. Then again, it may be that he is ignorant and cannot process information that might contradict the rubbish occupying his brain. . .

The worst of the worst, however, might go to the hapless Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus, who tweeted that Clinton was "angry and defensive" and didn't smile. No, really, he wants the lady to smile more. Is there some kind of contest at the RNC to see how big a gender gap a Republican can achieve? Priebus is a constant reminder that the GOP may be, after this election, unsalvageable."

Read also, the Washington Post, Don’t be fooled — Donald Trump’s foreign policy is as scary as ever, which noted:

"Trump’s vision of foreign policy seems to be a kind of authoritarian “big guys” club — stealing other countries’ oil, sacking generals, politicizing intelligence and buddying up to a Russian leader who’s running a covert action against the U.S. political system."

UPDATE IV:  What type of Trump supporter are you?

"If you are 'very enthusiastic' about a candidate who has based his campaign on scapegoating immigrants, Latinos and African Americans, talked of banning Muslims from the country, hesitated to disown the Ku Klux Klan and employed anti-Semitic imagery — well, you might be a racist. But if you are holding your nose and supporting Trump only because you think him better than Clinton, that doesn’t put you in the basket.

The new Washington Post-ABC News poll finds the two groups roughly equal: Forty-six percent of Trump supporters say they are 'very enthusiastic' about his candidacy. The rest were 'somewhat' or not terribly enthusiastic."

Read the Washington Post, Yes, half of Trump supporters are racist.

BTW, early in the campaign I was the second type of Trump supporter, until I finally realized that even if Trump wasn't racist he was clearly appealing to fear, anger and hatred to win the election.

UPDATE V:  "Hitler was a psychopath. Trump is just a con man. . .

There’s a difference. Trump is a two-bit con man. He’s playing the fools.

Whether he’s jacking up room rates 400 percent when his campaign uses his hotels, or spending campaign money to buy his own books, or blowing racial dog whistles and then accusing his rival of being a bigot, or lying about crime rates to win African American votes, or just plain old running out on his bills — it is all, top to bottom, one long con. A scheme. A grift. To make a buck, to get out of hock, to get some fame, to get his own TV network — the ignominious ends always justify the ignoble means. Even his run for president is a con, a way to gain even more power than this millionaire’s son was already born with. It certainly isn’t to implement any deeply felt ideas. It can’t be. He hasn’t got any. It’s all about the con.

And give the man credit, by the way — he’s good at it. He is, as he says, the best. The white nationalists are eating it up, and they are a tough, tough room. The guy is a fantastic con man.

But he’s no Hitler. Not even close. . .

Is Trump a megalomaniacal demagogue? Yes. Is he a sociopath? Undoubtedly. Is he dangerous? Maybe.

Which bring me to the second reason the comparison of Trump to Hitler bothers me: This isn’t the comparison that matters. It’s the easy comparison, the one that leaves us — We The People — safe from criticism.

The comparison that matters is not, “Is Donald Trump like Hitler?” but, “Are we like Hitler’s willing executioners?”

Will we look the other way, say we didn’t know, stand silently by while millions of our neighbors are rounded up, while women who get abortions are “punished,” while immigrants are given “ideology tests” and our leader heaps praise on oppressive tyrants?

Well? Will we?

Are we that terrified? Are we that hateful? Are we that frightened, that cowardly, that selfish, that helpless, that cold-hearted, that dumb, that easily manipulated, that easily provoked? Are we so bereft of answers, so pathetically hopeless, that all we can come up with is easy scapegoating and blind fealty to Our Great Leader? Are We The People really going to fall for the dumbest, oldest, easiest trick in the book?

Because if we are, then we won’t need an Adolf Hitler to embrace that darkness. Even a two-bit con man like Donald Trump will be enough."

Read the Washington Post, Don’t compare Donald Trump to Adolf Hitler. It belittles Hitler.

UPDATE VI:  And another must read article by a conservative columnist Jennifer Rubin with the Washington Post, Who will hold the right-wing media charlatans accountable, which notes:

"David Rothkopf writes that instrumental in Donald Trump’s rise was the 'chorus of toxic commentators … the Rush Limbaugh phenomenon and the Black Helicopter guys. They have embraced smear, conspiracy theories, inflammatory language, and gross incivility to drum up ratings and stir up emotions.' They’ve sown not skepticism but hatred and unwarranted distrust of all government. They’ve indulged in climate-change denial and economic nincompoopery.

For a while, they played the ideological purity game. Anyone who deviated from the Heritage Action script or the NRA scorecard or the anti-gay-marriage hymnal was a 'RINO.' (The problem with Jeb Bush, you see, was that he was too liberal.) Trump, it must be said, revealed all of these folks to be frauds. The media chorus that hounded impure conservatives now embraces Trump and the worst excesses of the welfare state (subsidized health care for Ivanka Trump?!). They’ve decided that large swaths of America are made up of victims, driven to madness by elites who refused to say 'Merry Christmas' and deprived them of $30-per-hour jobs that required no college education. They have gone from hawking traditional marriage to embracing a thrice-married adulterer. . .

They used to resent racial- and gender-grievance mongering. Now they coddle non-college-educated white males whose lives have been ruined by … what? Free trade that saves them hundreds of dollars a year at Walmart? By the idea that the rich have gamed the system? (It may be objectionable, but crony capitalism did not stymie the job prospects of high school dropouts in Appalachia.)

The conspiracy generators — Sen. Mitch McConnell sold them out! 9/11 was an inside job! President Obama was born in Kenya! — assumed that their audience was stupid. They then concocted a brew of urban myth and racial resentment that made their audience even stupider. It used to be that Republicans were the ideas party (Milton Friedman! James Q. Wilson!), while the Democrats were the coalition party (minorities, unions, etc.). Now the Republicans’ 'big idea' is that whites are persecuted and Christians get no respect. The right-wing media rails about public schools that don’t teach history adequately — and then spews a fractured fairy tale about U.S. history and make mincemeat of the Constitution when it suits their purposes. . .

They are, on the whole, far less informative, honest and fair than the mainstream media (which has its own problems). They sure are less civil. After the election, it will be a good time to name names, to end the Fox News network monopoly on evening conservative news-ish programming, to debunk the false narratives and grotesque sexism and simply to tune out the gibberish. Shining a bright light on charlatans and encouraging more speech have always been the antidote to noxious, false and destructive speech."

UPDATE VII:  "Trump has virtually no qualifications to be president, repeatedly failed as a businessman, has no history of public service, is the target of multiple investigations into possibly illegal activities, has regularly expressed racist and misogynist views throughout his career and during this campaign, and has deliberately and systematically reached out to groups that can only be described as “deplorable” — including white supremacists, anti-Semites, and other hate-mongers. Further, he has repeatedly expressed (including on Russian-state TV) his admiration for Vladimir Putin, a man who has systematically suppressed democracy in Russia, invaded his neighbors, scoffed at international law, and sought to undercut the interests of the United States. Worse, he has hired top aides who worked closely with the Moscow regime and sought to take advantage of a shockingly overt campaign by Russian intelligence to interfere in the U.S. election cycle.

Trump has repeatedly insulted and attacked the U.S. military and intelligence community, its leadership, and performance — while showing such utter contempt for the electorate that he has made no visible effort to come to understand America’s situation in the world or how foreign policy works. What is more, he has demonstrated his derision for the First Amendment to the Constitution and regularly sought to block, quash, and intimidate the press. If there were a more textbook example of the narcissistic, brutal personality type from which authoritarian thugs are made, it is hard to imagine. Trump is not just an American Berlusconi, he is our Putin- or Mugabe-in-waiting.

In an election year in which inequality and economic insecurity rank atop the list of voter concerns, Trump is a billionaire who has made his money by gaming the system and stiffing the little guy. He is odious and offensive; a poster child for everything wrong with the U.S. system. Indeed, the fact that he is not broke or in jail is powerful testimony to the special and unfair advantages the very rich have in America today. (See, for example, the evolving pay-to-play corruption scandal involving him and Florida’s attorney general.)

In fact, by any rational calculus the only federal office for which Trump seems suited is one with bars on the windows. The notion that somehow he has become a champion for Joe Lunch Bucket is beyond ludicrous. . .

Theories about how we got here are plentiful. We could trace the rise of Trump back to Goldwater or Reagan and the rise of the modern right wing in America. We could trace it to Gingrich and the obstructionists who first shut down the government in the 1990s, proponents of a political scorched-earth policy that has only grown worse in the years since. (The Democrats, it must be said, are not without blame here. After all, it was a Democratic effort to shape the Supreme Court that gave us the verb “to bork.”) We could trace it to the concurrent emergence of the fringe right that stretches from Pat Buchanan to Pat Robertson, from Michele Bachmann to Rick Santorum, from Sarah Palin to the Tea Party. And certainly, elements of all of these movements led us here.

So, too, has the chorus of toxic commentators played a role in this — the Rush Limbaugh phenomenon and the Black Helicopter guys. They have embraced smear, conspiracy theories, inflammatory language, and gross incivility to drum up ratings and stir up emotions. They have a special role to play in moving the media world along the spectrum from light to heat. But cable news networks (Fox and MSNBC) and websites (Drudge, Breitbart, and the liberal equivalents) have all seen their success and aped it, valuing conflict over insight, cage-matches over thoughtful, unbiased analysis.

There is a special place in this demonology, by the way, for the right-wing newspaper commentators who developed a strategy and a series of code words that made them sound patriotic but in actuality were dog whistles for the haters. . .

Something catalyzed all these forces and produced this inexplicable outcome. Determining it scientifically is impossible, of course. The rise of the echo-chamber-within-an-echo-chamber media phenomenon has helped isolate groups from one another and has deepened the us-versus-them mindset. The nonstop Twitter and social media conversation — wherein many of us get most of our news from friends, with whom we share values — is also to blame.

But something else has happened. The 15th anniversary of 9/11 underscores this for me. The entire country endured a psychic shock unlike any other in modern history as we collectively watched a human atrocity and national tragedy unfold. This made us feel more vulnerable and at risk than ever before. It created a level of fear that surpassed that all but the darkest days of the Cold War. This despite the fact that then, as now, we are probably safer than at any time since World War II. We’re stronger. We face no real strategic threat (except those from within our own borders). And the enemies we face, while awful, are weak, small, disparate, and doomed to fail.

The lingering sense of vulnerability indicates the severity of the trauma. It also suggests that subsequent shocks — notably the global financial crisis — deepen the psychological damage. We, as a country, are still suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder. And Trump is a symptom of our distress."

Read Foreign Policy, Donald Trump Is the Symptom of Our PTSD.

UPDATE VIII:  "No matter what Hillary Clinton’s faults — and they are many — it is hard to seriously argue that a man who would lead a racist conspiracy theory and then try to blame his opponent is fit to be president. Trump, like a small child caught misbehaving, simply denies the evidence or blames someone else or lashes out in anger. (He also this weekend called former defense secretary Robert Gates a “clown” in response to Gates’s well-reasoned argument that Trump is unfit to serve as commander in chief.) Again and again he’s proven his views so extreme (e.g., rounding up 11 million people), his judgement so egregious (e.g., embracing Vladimir Putin) and his character so twisted that only someone in deep denial or blinded by partisanship could defend him and insist he is worthy of the office.

As for the fate of the GOP, the evidence mounts that it cannot go merrily on its way after the election. A party that would sanction people who call out a racist deserves to go out of business. A party whose congressional leaders remain supportive of a nominee who incites violence, perpetuates racism, blatantly, and traffics in conspiracy theories loses the moral authority to govern.

In essence, birtherism is a lenient dividing line."

Read the Washington Post, The GOP died this weekend.

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Will There Be an October Surprise to Benefit Trump, Courtesy of Russian Operatives?

UPDATE:  Read the Washington Post, U.S. investigating potential covert Russian plan to disrupt November elections.

The article focuses on cyber disruptions, but physical attacks designed to undermine public confidence are not out of the question.

"Russian President Vladimir Putin wants to see Donald Trump become the next president of the United States. To that end, Putin and his government have taken unprecedented steps to influence our electoral process to help the Republican Party’s nominee. Whether Russia’s interventions will succeed is not obvious. But it’s clear that Putin’s government has the motives — and the means — to try."

Read the Washington Post, Why Putin wants a Trump victory (so much he might even be trying to help him).

And "[i]n American political jargon, an October surprise is a news event deliberately created or timed (or sometimes occurring spontaneously) to influence the outcome of an election, particularly one for the U.S. presidency. The reference to the month of October is because the date for national elections (as well as many state and local elections) occurs in early November, and, therefore, events that take place in late October have greater potential to influence the decisions of prospective voters."

Anybody remember those Russian apartment building bombings in 1999, which some speculate were "perpetrated by the FSB in order to legitimize the resumption of military activities in Chechnya and bring Vladimir Putin to the presidency."

Read also National Review, The Unsolved Mystery Behind the Act of Terror That Brought Putin to Power.  

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Why BlackLivesMatter, And What White People Don't Understand

UPDATE:  Incident #1:  'Two men were lying in a pool of blood. 19-year-old Austin Harrouff was making 'guttural sounds and animal noises,' and not only appeared to be killing John Stevens — he was also chewing off chunks of the 59-year-old victim’s face with his teeth.  The stun gun’s paralyzing bursts had no effect. A flurry of punches and a powerful kick to the head didn’t, either.'

Incident #2: 'Charles Kinsey, an unarmed behavioral therapist who was lying on his back with his arms raised while he attempted to assist an autistic patient.'

Which one did the police shot?

Hint:  Austin Harrouff is white, Charles Kinsey is black.

Read the Washington Post, Police killed the black ‘Miami zombie.’ So why did a terrifying, face-eating white teen live?

Wait patently, seal off area, arrest/try to arrest the terrorists, then give them trials.

Read the Washington Post, Authorities seal off Oregon refuge after leaders of occupation arrested. 1 killed in gunfire.

Why is the organization BlackLivesMatter necessary? Because that's not how black people get treated. 

Read Gawker, Unarmed People of Color Killed by Police, 1999-2014.

Read also Vox, This chart explains why black people fear being killed by the police.

And it is not just black people being shot by the police.  Remember Trayvon MartinSandra Bland, Victor Stein, Flint Michigan.

I could go on for days.

Some people call BlackLivesMatter racist, but they don't remember, or want to remember, how minorities are and have been treated.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Right-Wing Media Hypocrisy

"Former Fox News host Andrea Tantaros has filed a lawsuit against the network, claiming that she was sexually harassed by former network chairman Roger Ailes and that Ailes’s lieutenants punished her for her complaints. . .

'Fox News masquerades as a defender of traditional family values, but behind the scenes, it operates like a sex-fueled, Playboy Mansion-like cult, steeped in intimidation, indecency and misogyny,' her lawsuit says. . .

Since Carlson’s suit was filed July 6, more than 20 women have told her attorneys that they were harassed by Ailes during his long career in television, dating as far back as the mid-1960s."

Read the Washington Post, Former Fox News host Andrea Tantaros sues Ailes and network.

Friday, August 5, 2016

The Donald is Putin's Puppet

UPDATE III:  "Former CIA director Michael Morell endorsed Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton and blasted GOP rival Donald Trump, accusing him of becoming an unwitting agent of Russian President Vladimir Putin in an op-ed on Friday. . .

He noted that Putin is a trained intelligence officer, and he suggested that the Russian leader has been using Trump's personality for his own gain. In the primaries, Morell said, Putin 'played upon Mr. Trump's vulnerabilities' by complimenting him.

Among the traits Morell said would make Trump a 'danger' to national security: 'his obvious need for self-aggrandizement, his overreaction to perceived slights, his tendency to make decisions based on intuition, his refusal to change his views based on new information, his routine carelessness with the facts, his unwillingness to listen to others and his lack of respect for the rule of law.'"

Read the Washington Post, In endorsing Clinton, ex-CIA chief says Putin made Trump his 'unwitting agent'.

UPDATE II:  At the same time, his VP pick said "If it is Russia and they are interfering in our elections, I can assure you both parties and the United States government will ensure there are serious consequences."

Read the Washington Post, Pence: Consequences if Russia is interfering in U.S. election.

So while Pence understands the seriousness of the possibility that a foreign power is directly interfering in the U.S. presidential election, Trump is encouraging the interference.

Pence should withdrawal as Trump's VP.

UPDATE:  "Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump on Wednesday said he hoped that Russia would hack into Hillary Clinton’s email server to find “missing” messages and release them to the public."

Read the Washington Post, Trump urges Russia to hack Clinton's emails and release them publicly.

Donald Trump is dangerously insane!

"Donald Trump never met a conspiracy theory he didn’t like — until now.

He has dabbled in, among other things, the notion that President Obama is a Muslim born in Kenya, that Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia was murdered and that Ted Cruz’s father was involved in the JFK assassination.

But on one topic, Trump is conspicuously incurious: the suggestion that he is complicit in a plan by Vladimir Putin to influence the U.S. election."

Read the Washington Post, A Trump-style speculation on the GOP and Putin, which lists the many troubling connections between Putin and The Donald.

Thursday, June 30, 2016

The Republi-CON-Hedgehog News Benghazi 'Stand Down' Myth

UPDATE:  "You’ll never guess who comes off as a hero of the Republican-drafted House Benghazi committee’s majority report: President Obama.

Within 90 minutes of the Sept. 11, 2012, surprise attack on a U.S. diplomatic compound that killed Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens and an aide, the report tells us, Obama had told his secretary of defense and the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff to do everything possible, implicitly including using military force, to protect Americans.

These were 'very clear directions,' according to Peter Roskam (R-Ill.), one of Obama’s harshest critics on the panel.

How different from the version of the president’s conduct propounded on right-wing talk radio and TV in the aftermath: that he and his aides coolly watched live video of the mayhem in Benghazi, supplied by drones flying overhead, but declined to order a rescue mission.

Not only does this new Republican report debunk that smear, but it actually shifts blame from Obama to 'a rusty bureaucratic process not in keeping with the gravity and urgency of the events happening on the ground.'"

Read the Washington Post, The dangerous delusion that the Americans in Benghazi could have been saved.

"A just-released Senate Intelligence Committee report . . . explored claims that there was a 'stand down' order given to the security team at the Annex. Although some members of the security team expressed frustration that they were unable to respond more quickly to the Mission compound, 12 the Committee found no evidence of intentional delay or obstruction by the Chief of Base or any other party.The situation on the ground that night was chaotic and unclear: A call to the CIA annex near the under-attack diplomatic compound came in at 9:40 p.m., and it took the security personnel about 25 minutes to move in.

The original Fox News 'stand down' story still hangs on the Fox News Web site, unmolested by these factual challenges."

Read the Washington Post, Benghazi: More 'stand down' fallout for Fox News.

That article has links to twenty other articles regarding the many 'stand down' lies by the Republi-cons and their masters at Hedgehog News.

Read also, Republi-CON Political Opportunism and Hypocrisy

Friday, June 17, 2016

The Repbli-CON Plan to Destroy the Economy, Kansas Edition

UPDATE VI:  "In 2012, voters in California approved a measure to raise taxes on millionaires, bringing their top state income tax rate to 13.3 percent, the highest in the nation. Conservative economists predicted calamity, or at least a big slowdown in growth. Also that year, the governor of Kansas signed a series of changes to the state's tax code, including reducing income and sales tax rates. Conservative economists predicted a boom.

Neither of those predictions came true. . .

California's economy grew by 4.1 percent in 2015, according to new numbers from the Bureau of Economic Analysis, tying it with Oregon for the fastest state growth of the year. That was up from 3.1 percent growth for the Golden State in 2014, which was near the top of the national pack.

The Kansas economy, on the other hand, grew 0.2 percent in 2015. That's down from 1.2 percent in 2014, and below neighboring states such as Nebraska (2.1 percent) and Missouri (1.2 percent). Kansas ended the year with two consecutive quarters of negative growth -- a shrinking economy. By a common definition of the term, the state entered 2016 in recession.

Other effects of the Kansas tax cuts, which were meant to spur entrepreneurship, are well-documented.

While state officials anticipated that the reductions would create a shortfall in the state budget, tax revenues have been consistently below even those expectations. Standard & Poor’s and Moody’s Investors Service have signaled that they could reduce Kansas’s credit rating, indicating there is a chance the state cannot pay its bills."

Read the Washington Post, The interesting thing that happened when Kansas cut taxes and California hiked them.

UPDATE V:  The Republi-con modus operandi:  tax cuts for the rich, deficits and budget crisis, tax increases on the poor, repeat.

Read the Washington Post, Kansas lawmakers want the poor to pay for tax cuts for the rich.

UPDATE IV:  "What's the matter with Kansas now? Oh, you know, just a small budget crisis brought on by its Republican governor's radical tax cuts. This week, the state discovered it would have to cut $279 million by June in order to balance its books, then slash another $436 million during the following fiscal year. For Kansas, this is a hefty amount of money. The entire state budget legislators approved in May was just $6.3 billion.

Back in 2012, the state's recently re-elected Republican governor, Sam Brownback, turned Kansas into a petri dish for conservative fiscal policy after he signed into law a massive tax cut that dropped rates for top earners and eliminated taxes entirely for some businesses. Brownback and conservative tax guru Arthur Laffer promised that the cuts would bring "enormous prosperity" to the state by making it more competitive. But jobs growth has lagged in Kansas, and this summer, the state government found itself nearly $300 million short on revenue. To cope, it began burning through its reserve funds, and Moody's in turn downgraded the state's credit rating."

Read Slate, Thanks to Massive Republican Tax Cuts, Kansas Is Facing a Budget Crisis.

UPDATE III:  "There might be a worse idea than cutting spending during a depression, but I doubt it. . .

That's right: cutting spending in a slump might actually make debt problems worse."

Read the Washington Post, Austerity has been an even bigger disaster than we thought.

So much for the Republi-con myth of expansionary austerity.

UPDATE II:  "In 2010, after two and a half terms in the Senate, Brownback made a bid for the governor’s mansion. Riding the Tea Party wave, he swept his opponent in a landslide, promising a new age for Kansas politics.

Brownback didn’t just keep his promise, he embarked on a radical 'real live experiment' in conservative governance. As he later explained to the Wall Street Journal, 'My focus is to create a red-state model that allows the Republican ticket to say, 'See, we’ve got a different way, and it works.' '

With advice from Arthur Laffer—the long-discredited guru for supply-side economics—and support from a new band of conservative lawmakers in the Kansas statehouse, the newly minted governor pursued a path of rigid orthodoxy. His signature move was a massive tax cut: He eliminated the top income bracket of 6.45 percent, reduced the middle bracket from 6.25 percent to 4.9 percent, reduced the lowest bracket from 3.5 percent to 3 percent, and ended taxes on certain kinds of small-business income. This, he promised, would increase disposable income and create thousands of jobs.

In reality, however, Kansas’ job growth stagnated in 2012 and income growth fell. Far from a stimulus plan, Brownback’s tax cuts were a massive program of redistribution for the rich. . .

In 2013 he proposed another round of tax cuts that would eliminate income taxes and maintain a high sales tax. Critics blasted the plan, noting the extent to which it was a massive tax increase on the poorest Kansans: For instance, replacing 50 percent of income tax losses with a sales tax would raise taxes on the lowest earners by 2.5 percent. But Brownback promised new revenue ($777 million in state earnings) and broad prosperity. 'We’re on a path of growth and job creation, so I say, 'Come to Kansas,' ' he said. 'We’re paving the way to make Kansas the best place in America to raise a family and run a business.'

A year later Kansas is among the most dysfunctional states in the country. Even after cuts in schools, colleges, libraries, and social services, Kansas can’t keep up with expenses. This year, it faced a huge shortfall in personal income tax receipts, and had to end tax rebates for food and child care to help fill the hole. And overall, it faces a $900 million budget shortfall by 2019, even as the top income tax rate is scheduled to decline to 3.9 percent by 2018. Both Moody’s and S&P have downgraded the state’s bond rating, and economic growth has been poor. Far from giving Kansas a bright new future, Brownback plunged it into chaos."

Read Slate, The Kansas Miracle.

In Kansas they drank the kool-aid.

UPDATE:  "[R]ecently, Kansas went all-in on supply-side economics, slashing taxes on the affluent in the belief that this would spark a huge boom; the boom didn’t happen, but the budget deficit exploded, offering an object lesson to those willing to learn from experience. . .

In 2012, however, Democratic dominance finally became strong enough to overcome the paralysis, and Gov. Jerry Brown was able to push through a modestly liberal agenda of higher taxes, spending increases and a rise in the minimum wage. California also moved enthusiastically to implement Obamacare. . .

Needless to say, conservatives predicted doom. . .

What has actually happened? There is, I’m sorry to say, no sign of the promised catastrophe.

If tax increases are causing a major flight of jobs from California, you can’t see it in the job numbers. Employment is up 3.6 percent in the past 18 months, compared with a national average of 2.8 percent; at this point, California’s share of national employment, which was hit hard by the bursting of the state’s enormous housing bubble, is back to pre-recession levels. . .

And, yes, the budget is back in surplus. . .

So what do we learn from the California comeback? Mainly, that you should take anti-government propaganda with large helpings of salt. Tax increases aren’t economic suicide; sometimes they’re a useful way to pay for things we need. Government programs, like Obamacare, can work if the people running them want them to work, and if they aren’t sabotaged from the right. In other words, California’s success is a demonstration that the extremist ideology still dominating much of American politics is nonsense."

Read The New York Times, Left Coast Rising.   

I've often suggested that Obama should just call the Republi-con bluff -- implement some of their wacky ideas and watch CONservative ideas implode.  Well in Kansas they drank the kool-aid

"Governor Sam Brownback is facing an organized revolt from centrist Republicans, over 100 of whom just endorsed the presumptive Democratic nominee for governor, so disgruntled are they with the effects of Brownback’s rule.

In many ways, Brownback’s term has been a perfect experiment in Republican governance. Take a crusading conservative governor, give him a legislature with Republican super-majorities so he can do pretty much whatever he wants, and let him implement the right’s wish list. The result was supposed to be a nirvana of economic growth and budgetary stability. But the opposite happened.

The disastrous results of Brownback’s economic and fiscal policies demonstrate that it’s one thing for your average Republican to go around saying things like 'cutting taxes raises revenue!' even if nearly every economist agrees that the idea is absurd (Greg Mankiw, chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers under George W. Bush, famously called the purveyors of this idea 'charlatans and cranks'). It’ll never really be tested, at least not in a context where there aren’t so many other variables at play that any inconvenient results can be explained away. Republicans know that it’s bogus, but they like the way it sounds; after all, who wouldn’t love a free lunch? But if you bet a single state’s future on the idea — and you have the power to take it to an extreme — you’re going farther than anyone in Washington ever has to go.

That’s what Sam Brownback did. In 2012 and 2013, Brownback and Republicans in the legislature cut income taxes twice, eliminated taxes on corporate profits that are “passed through” to individuals (making it the only state that does this), and since they’re Republicans, made changes to the tax code that had the effect of raising taxes on the poor (the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities has a good explanation of the tax changes and their effects). The governor has said his goal is to eventually eliminate the income tax completely.

And what happened? At a time when most states are seeing higher revenues as the country recovers economically, Kansas’ revenues have plummeted. The result has been cuts to schools, cuts to higher education, cuts to libraries, and cuts to local health centers. Kansas’ job growth and income growth are lagging the nation’s. In response to the fiscal difficulties, Moody’s recently lowered the state’s bond rating. . ."

When he was elected governor, some Washington conservatives touted Sam Brownback as a future presidential contender. Once he implemented the conservative economic agenda and showed what a dynamic economy and pleasing government balance sheet it produced, he’d be able to take the message nationwide as a demonstration of the power of conservative ideas. Nobody’s saying that anymore. Brownback is trailing his probable Democratic opponent. In a state as conservative as Kansas (where Mitt Romney beat Barack Obama by 22 points), you have to screw up pretty badly to be in that position. And saying, 'hey, didn’t we all agree that tax cuts raise revenue?' probably won’t bail him out."

Read the Washington Post, GOP governor implements GOP economics, disaster ensues

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Are You An Easy-To-Scare-&-Manipulate Ebola-Bedwetter?

UPDATE IX:  "Watching the excellent documentary “Ebola in America: Epidemic of Fear” is to relive the confusion and controversies of the summer of 2014: the initial public health mistakes, the divided and unclear responsibilities, the hysterical coverage on cable TV. But it is the political role played by Republicans and conservatives that stands out, and not in a good way."

Read  the Washington Post, The Trump train is fueled by conspiracy

Read also An Example of The Fear, Anger, Hatred Industry.

UPDATE VIII:  Read also the Washington Post, Why your bathtub is actually far scarier than Ebola.

UPDATE VII:  In the past two years, has ebola caused 6,000 emergency rooms visits, 750 hospitalizations (half required intensive care), and two confirmed deaths?

No, but since their introduction in 2012 through the end of 2013 "colorful, single-load" laundry detergent pods have.

Read The New York Times, Detergent Pods Pose Risk to Children, Study Finds.

UPDATE VI:  Your chances of dying from ebola:  1 in 309,629,415 yearly, 1 in 3,934,300 in your lifetime.

Your chances of dying from  your pajamas catching fire:  1 in 77,407,353 yearly, 1 in 983,575 in your lifetime.

Read the Washington Post, How likely is it that you will die from . . . ?   

UPDATE V:  "Ebola has so far killed one person on U.S. soil.

Over 10,000 children a year are killed or wounded by guns on the same soil."

Read the Daily Mail, A math question for the US media: What’s going to kill more American kids this year? Ebola or guns? 

UPDATE IV:  It’s been 21 days and none of the people in closest contact with Thomas Eric Duncan in the days before he was hospitalized has gotten sick. That includes his fiancée Louise Troh and her children, who were in a small Dallas apartment with an increasingly ill Duncan for days, and forcibly kept inside for days afterward.

No one else has carried Ebola into the country yet, and since Wednesday, no more nurses or other health care workers who took care of Duncan have been infected.

What has been seen is what the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other experts predicted would happen — that someone might carry Ebola into the United States, and that they might even infect a few other people. What CDC has always promised is that it would stop there.

Read NBC News, Ebola in America: Has the Fever Broken?

Read also, CNN, Ebola hysteria: An epic, epidemic overreaction, which notes that"[w]hile the threat of Ebola is very real in Africa, the paranoia it's generated in the United States is unreal."

UPDATE III:  Ebola "isn’t, as reported by Forbes and the Daily Mail, a low-tech weapon of bioterror for ISIS. It isn’t the final refuge of a lone wolf on a suicide mission, in the words of Fox News. It isn’t a U.S.-built race-targeting bioweapon, as the leader of the Nation of Islam declared. . .

[T]his outbreak isn’t a recipe for a bioweapon. Not unless you want to be the most incompetent bioterrorist in history."

Read Slate, Ebola Is Not a Weapon

UPDATE II: "So far, none of the 48 Dallas residents who had contact with Duncan while he was symptomatic have shown signs of Ebola, Texas officials said on Tuesday. . .

[H]ealth officials have persistently argued that the United States is not facing an Ebola epidemic. The CDC, for example, continues to stress that most Americans aren’t at risk for Ebola."

Read Forbes, Ebola Came To America Last Week. Since Then: 5,000 False Alarms. Zero New Ebola Cases.

UPDATE:  According to the CDC, in 2010 more than 53,000 people died in the United States from this infection.

Name the infection.  (Hint, it is not ebola.)

Read PBS, These six diseases should worry you more than Ebola

"The reproduction number, or "R nought," is a mathematical term that tells you how contagious an infectious disease is. Specifically, it's the number of people who catch the disease from one sick person, on average, in an outbreak.*

Take, for example, measles. The virus is one of the most contagious diseases known to man. It's R0 sits around 18. That means each person with the measles spreads it to 18 people, on average, when nobody is vaccinated. (When everyone is vaccinated, the R0 drops to essentially zero for measles).

At the other end of the spectrum are viruses like HIV and hepatitis C. Their R0s tend to fall somewhere between 2 and 4. They're still big problems, but they spread much more slowly than the measles.

And that brings us back to Ebola. Despite its nasty reputation, the virus's R0 really isn't that impressive. It typically sits around 1.5 to 2.0."

Read NPR, No, Seriously, How Contagious Is Ebola?

Read also USA Today, Even germaphobes don't need to fear Ebola, which notes:

"Unlike the common cold or viruses that cause food poisoning, Ebola does not spread through casual contact.

Ebola spreads through direct contact with bodily fluids, primarily blood. It can only spread after someone develops symptoms, such as a fever. So if you're exposed to Ebola, the odds are that you are going to know it.

So what has allowed Ebola to ravage West Africa?

Extreme poverty, a broken public health system and the trauma of countries newly emerged from years of brutal warfare.

These conditions aren't present in the USA. They aren't even present in much of Nigeria, where the Ebola epidemic appears to be over. Nigeria, which is considerably more developed than many of its neighbors, was prepared for the possibility of Ebola and took quick action to limit its spread."

Monday, May 2, 2016

The 2016 Election: "Wrath of the Conned"

"Both parties make promises to their bases. But while the Democratic establishment more or less tries to make good on those promises, the Republican establishment has essentially been playing bait-and-switch for decades. And voters finally rebelled against the con.

First, about the Democrats: Their party defines itself as the protector of the poor and the middle class, and especially of nonwhite voters. Does it fall short of fulfilling this mission much of the time? Are its leaders sometimes too close to big-money donors? Of course. Still, if you look at the record of the Obama years, you see real action on behalf of the party’s goals. . .

Maybe you think Democrats could and should have done more, but what the party establishment says and what it does are at least roughly aligned.

Things are very different among Republicans. Their party has historically won elections by appealing to racial enmity and cultural anxiety, but its actual policy agenda is dedicated to serving the interests of the 1 percent, above all through tax cuts for the rich — which even Republican voters don’t support, while they truly loathe elite ideas like privatizing Social Security and Medicare.

What Donald Trump has been doing is telling the base that it can order à la carte. He has, in effect, been telling aggrieved white men that they can feed their anger without being forced to swallow supply-side economics, too. Yes, his actual policy proposals still involve huge tax cuts for the rich, but his supporters don’t know that — and it’s possible that he doesn’t, either. Details aren’t his thing.

Establishment Republicans have tried to counter his appeal by shouting, with growing hysteria, that he isn’t a true conservative. And they’re right, at least as they define conservatism. But their own voters don’t care.

If there’s a puzzle here, it’s why this didn’t happen sooner. One possible explanation is the decadence of the G.O.P. establishment, which has become ingrown and lost touch. Apparatchiks who have spent their whole careers inside the bubble of right-wing think tanks and partisan media may suffer from the delusion that their ideology is actually popular with real people. And this has left them hapless in the face of a Trumpian challenge.

Probably more important, however, is the collision between demography and Obama derangement. . .

The point, in any case, is that the divergent nomination outcomes of 2016 aren’t an accident. The Democratic establishment has won because it has, however imperfectly, tried to serve its supporters. The Republican establishment has been routed because it has been playing a con game on its supporters all along, and they’ve finally had enough.

And yes, Mr. Trump is playing a con game of his own, and they’ll eventually figure that out, too. But it won’t happen right away, and in any case it won’t help the party establishment. Sad!:

Read The New York Times, Wrath of the Conned.

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

The Republi-CON 'Hillary Will/Will Not Be Indicted' Myths

"If you’ve spent any time inside the conservative information bubble, among the things you know is that not only did Hillary Clinton commit all manner of nefarious crimes with relation to the emails she sent and received as Secretary of State, but she will be indicted for those crimes soon, and that indictment will throw the 2016 to the Republican presidential nominee. If you inhabit the world outside that bubble, you may know that the chances of such an indictment are infinitesimal.

But conservatives hold on to the possible indictment like a life raft amid swelling seas, the one thing that can save them from the horror of a Clinton presidency. . .

Just to be clear, I’m not defending Clinton’s decision to set up her own email server. That was a violation of departmental policy, and she shouldn’t have done it. But that’s very different from saying it was a crime, or even that it jeopardized national security in some way (there’s been no evidence that Clinton’s server was hacked or that anyone even tried to hack it, unlike the State Department’s own systems, which are constantly targeted by hackers).

But if you’re a Republican pundit, you know that the idea of Hillary Clinton being led away in handcuffs is just too tantalizing for your audience to resist. . .

For the most part, the Clinton email story has been a disappointment to Republicans. They were desperately hoping that the emails would reveal some kind of ghastly malfeasance on Clinton’s part, some smoking gun that would make all Americans realize that she should never be elected president. When that turned out not to be the case, they pinned their hopes on the idea that she would just have to be charged with a crime eventually. . .

But having gone this far, they need to keep up appearances, and they also know that just talking about her emails serves to convince people that something scandalous must have happened. So they are laying the groundwork to argue, if and when she doesn’t get indicted, that it must only be because Barack Obama’s corrupt administration quashed the investigation and hid the truth from the public.

And down where the conservative rank and file get their information — the talk radio rants, the right-wing blogs, the breathless chain emails — these two contradictory ideas are both widely circulated. Clinton is about to be indicted, and Clinton won’t be indicted because the fix is in. The assumption in either case is that of course she committed crimes, even if no one can say exactly what they were. Because she’s Hillary Clinton, right? What more do you need to know?"

Read the Washington Post, Republicans know Hillary Clinton is not going to be indicted. They just can’t say so.

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Revolution 2016: I am a True Trump Believer and Supporter Now

Newest UPDATE: #14 (04/07/16)

Also UPDATE 10 was amended (02/17/16).

IMPORTANT information on how to help The Donald: see UPDATE 11 below (Because of the importance of this notice, it is now a separate post, which I have updated)

WARNING, WARNING: read this disclaimer first:

DISCLAIMER:  By reading this you agree that this blog and all posts are governed by the laws of the State of Florida first, and the United State of America, where not in conflict with Florida. 

Venue for any lawsuit shall be Escambia County, LA (OK, legally it's FL, but practically it's Lower Alabama, believe me, I know). (In any case, file here.)

This blog is an expression of my First Amendment rights, et al., under the constitution and laws of the United State of America and the State of Florida. 

It's mostly opinions, but if I am factually wrong, please send me a certified letter.  If I agree, I will make any necessary factual correction(s). 

However, if you are just try to bully me because you don't like my opinion(s), sue me.  But good luck with that, I know a good lawyer (they claim he's crazy, ask around).

And don't waste your time -- I don't care if you agree with me -- so no bellyaching letters or comments. (That includes you, Pastor You-Know-Who.)

Otherwise, enjoy.

And if you find that you like what I have to say, check back frequently.  I think you'll find it worth your time.

I heard Glenn Beck on the radio this morning (02/27/16).  It must have been God's wish, really, because I never listen to 'Bonkers'.

But seriously, and I mean seriously, I am now a Trump supporter.

Just wanted to get this posted, but check back later as I explain why I will support and vote for Trump, and why you should too.

UPDATE:  Welcome to those of you who found this website through my new domain name Revolution16.US.

It wasn't my first choice, those were not available, but it will work -- by forwarding (no masking) to this blog post.

For those of you who are new to, look around, it's pretty comprehensive and gives you an idea of who I am and what I believe.  You can navigate chronological and by label (subject).

Most posts are summaries of other material, and all posts are intended as opinion.

Of course, some posts and comments are intended to be jokes and/or satire.   (The links are to further information if you wish to pursue.)

Also, you might notice the formatting of this post is a bit different, chronologically the newest material is at the bottom.  Also, only my . . . [seems I got interrupted and nnow I can't remember what it was]

Check back later as I explain why I will support and vote for Trump, and why you should too.

UPDATE 2 (02/28/16):  Be patient, I haven't forgotten this post, more to follow as God, time and the wife allow.

If I remember, I'll indent every-other update, so it is easier to follow.

And forgive the grammar and spelling issues [see, I meant errors, it might have been spell check, curse you spell check, except when you are right], I talk better than I write.

I'll also list the next pending update. . .

Until I disappear.

Check to see if I'm at Gitmo.  (Check here, not there. If I'm there, leave me be, I might be working, you never know.)

Call Stephen, and ask for his help. But not old Stephen, he was one of them, distracting us with his truthiness. (Curse you too old Stephen.)

If I am dead, take up my cause. (NO GUNS please, more later.)

And check back later and frequently, share links to this post, boost my page count, and make me famous and rich.

Please help, and join me for Revolution16.US.

Donations welcome for my legal defense fund, or my widow(er) [as the case may be]. (Later maybe.)


Veritas liberabit vos!!!

Enough now, time for supper.

Homework assignment:  listen to talk radio -- everything you need to know.

UPDATE 3:  Page count up, a bit.  Keep spreading the word, several big announcement coming -- when the time is right -- to explain Revolution16.US.

Regarding the GUNS, see the Washington Post, Authorities seal off Oregon refuge after leaders of occupation arrested. 1 killed in gunfire.

Don't give them an excuse -- keep your powder dry.

Yes, revolutions sometimes turn violent, but not for Revolution16.US.

NOT YET in any case.

So NO GUNS please, even more later.

UPDATE 4 (02/29/16):  So what started this post, I heard Glenn Beck on the radio this morning (02/27/16).

Bonkers, my term for Beck because he acts bonkers sometime times (or arguably most of the time), opined that Trump had made a big mistake taking on Roger Ailes, who, as owner of Chairman and CEO of Fox News and the Fox Television Stations Group, is the King of hysterical conservative media.

Bonkers clearly just didn't get it, Trump is not crazy, he is brilliant at manipulating and de-fanging his opponents, even those as powerful and Ailes.

And the added benefit of taking on Ailes was an excuse not to attend the Fox News hosted debates just before the Iowa caucuses, where Trump would have been the target of every other candidate and their surrogates in the press.

It was Trump-Brilliant (©!!!!

Today I heard on the radio that Clinton now says that if Trump is the GOP nominee, he will win the election. (I'm looking for a printed confirmation of said statement.)

So even Clinton now understands how Trump-Brilliant (© The Donald is.

Trump will win, if we help.

And I'm not saying this because Trump pays me to say it.

(Message to Trump: hire me, I can help in the transition. I understand and will worship you for Revolution16.US. And so will our children and grandchildren, I HOPE. (Note: revolution are great, except when they turn violent.)).

More later.

Still to come, why Trump. (Brief hint:  because no one else can take on the entrenched corrupt interest in our political system. Even the Rogue Diva knows this, ergo the endorsement.)

Remember, (forgive me if I repeat this frequently) he will need our help for Revolution16.US.

UPDATE 5:  If Trump is the nominee, only Clinton might beat him, and it's not lookin good for Hilary.

And in support of what I said in the last update regarding The Donald's Trump-Brilliant (© move, read the Washington Post, In Trump vacuum, Cruz emerges as top target at Iowa Republican debate.

Told ya so. [I like to gloat sometimes.]

The Donald is a master tactician.

Maybe we should read The Art of the Deal. [Sorry, it's Trump: The Art of the Deal. You could probably just read the Wikipedia summary. And if he is elected POTUS, get ready for the Trump Schools, the Trump Roads, etc., etc., etc. ]

Nobody is as great as Trump, just ask him. [And it may be true, the elections results will tell.]

UPDATE VI (02/01/16): Want to understand the Trump spectacle, listen to last weekend's This America Life, 578: I Thought I Knew You, starting at the 7:54 mark.

The segment is an interview with conservative radio host Tony Beam in South Carolina, host of the radio show Christian Worldview.  Tony “is completely baffled by the candidate his audience has decided to get behind this election season.”

The listeners are evangelical Christians, like Jean and Barry.

Jean supports Trump, likening him to Jehu, sent by God to punish the wicked (in 1st and 2nd Kings it was Jezebel, who "had allowed pagan temples to exist in the kingdom." 

Trump, like Jehu, is "a warrior against a corrupt culture."

Tony is "stunned" that after 10-20 years of hysterical talk radio, his listeners are "crazy".  He thinks that supporting a candidate like Trump is "not who we [evangelical Republicans] are."

Obviously Tony doesn't listen to much talk radio, where radio talk show host, with the help of party 'leaders', have whipped Republicans into a frenzy for years.

And now Tony, and the party, have lost control of Jean and Barry, who have 'gone in a different direction', responding to the dog whistle of fear, anger, and hatred.

Take a listen to what talk radio has wrought:

Near the end, did you hear the talk of guns, and potential violence. More later.

UPDATE 6 (02/02/16): Conspiratorial delusions, and talk of violence and the apocalypse are nothing new in evangelical circles and on talk radio.

Take Jade Helm 2015, complete with the option of a comet or asteroid impact. Or the Blue Moon 'prophesy'.

And it never matters that the prophesies never happen.  The End of the World Is Near, always and again, and again and . . .

It scares, and it sells. Who cares the harm done to society.

UPDATE 7 (02/06/16):  Pardon the break, I was trying to tell people how to get a FREE MATTRESS.  Back to the campaign.

Why Trump?  He's the only candidate who can bring true reform to D.C.

Hilary won't, she part of the political establishment.  (Sanders won't be nominated, he'd be destroyed in November by any Republican nominee. If Hillary falters, the Dems will nominate somebody else, like Biden, or even Romney, before they nominate Sanders.)

And as first noted in mid-January (and modified on an update), the likely Republican nominees are:  The Lying Canadian (©, Bubble Boy (h/t to Christie), or Franken-Trump/Trumpenstein (©

Neither The Lying Canadian (© or Bubble Boy (h/t to Christie) alone could beat Hillary.

(I'm thinking they might join forces to knock off Franken-Trump/Trumpenstein (©, but only after it become clear who the favorite is among the two.  (The favorite will claim the presidency, the other the VP slot or an important cabinet post.) If I had to predict, I say Rubio-Cruz near the end, very much like Bush-Cheney, one seemingly nice and sweet, the other the enforcer and real power in the White House.)

Only Franken-Trump/Trumpenstein can beat Hillary and bring reform to D.C.

And don't despair, The Lying Canadian (© only won Iowa because the state's demographics substantially favored him from the beginning, and then only by lying (which he does frequently to win elections) about Carson.

Remember Iowa is not that important in the final result -- the Iowa caucus winner is usually not the nominee, especially for the Republican party.

And Franken-Trump/Trumpenstein (© is a thrice-married, casino owning, foul-mouth, husband of an alleged former porn star. (Whether Melania Knauss-Trump was a porn star is very hard to confirm, I heard that Trump and friends work hard to remove material from the web, including by buying copyrights to the movies.) So a respectable second with no ground game real remarkable.


Trump is the best hope for D.C. reform.

UPDATE 8 (02/07/16): Another possible alliance might be the 2016 GOP candidates who were Republican governors + Rubio: that is Bush, Christie, and/or Kasich + Rubio, with Gilmore, Huckabee, Jindal, Pataki, Perry and/or Walker in some cabinet positions.

Such an alliance would be formidable, and put the Republican establishment candidates back on top, effectively defeating Trump and paying back Cruz, who is hated by almost everyone.

Such an alliance might also defeat Hillary.

UPDATE 9 (02/08/16): After the most recent GOP debate, Bubble Boy's bubble has popped, which is what happens when you heat a bubble, or poke it with a sharp object, in this case Christie.

Read the Washington Post, The governors exact their revenge on Marco Rubio.

And you must read this take down of The Lying Canadian (© at the Washington Post, Ted Cruz needs an intervention, which notes how despised Cruz is:

"If Cruz does not make it to the presidency, he will no doubt blame the “establishment.” But whether he recognizes it or not, his wife and political advisers surely understand that alumni, roommates, law clerks, former staffers in the George W. Bush campaign and White House (and the president himself), members of Congress and others who have known Cruz — lots and lots of people — consider him socially awkward, nasty, dishonest, a blatant apple-polisher and all-around creepy guy. You can write off a few of these critics as jealous of his success, or liberal antagonists, but all of them? There is something badly amiss here. Cruz, who so obviously lacks emotional intelligence, cannot recognize it, but those closest to him surely must see that something is awry. . .

Politics is about building alliances and trust, having your team’s back and refusing to grandstand to your side’s detriment. It’s also an additive exercise. Drawing bold lines is fine, but you lose unless you can bring people over to your side. Simply inveighing against others will not do it, nor will playing the persecuted victim. . .

[I]f all you have is ambition, the burning desire to climb over others, it becomes evident to voters and colleagues alike. You know the type — the guy always looking over your shoulder to scan for a more important person in the room to engage; the fellow convinced whatever job he has is not big enough for him; and the person so intellectually dishonest, he is willing to rewrite history, deny his own statements and look you in the eye to say “Black is white” and “Up is down.” (Even when apologizing to Dr. Ben Carson for his team spreading a rumor on caucus night that Carson was dropping out, Cruz felt compelled to lie, claiming CNN initially reported Carson was dropping out. CNN blasted back: “What Senator Cruz said tonight in the debate is categorically false. CNN never corrected its reporting because CNN never had anything to correct. The Cruz campaign’s actions the night of the Iowa caucuses had nothing to do with CNN’s reporting. The fact that Senator Cruz continues to knowingly mislead the voters about this is astonishing.”) These behaviors do not sit well with people, who soon catch on that you are using them for selfish ends. Superiors see you are an annoying kiss-up, and other see you as desperate or phony.

Cruz’s shortcomings make it hard to build a winning coalition — or to function in the Senate. The great irony is his ambition may be the biggest barrier to obtain what he thirsts for and has schemed so long to obtain."

If Franken-Trump/Trumpenstein (© wins big tonight, it is hard to see how he'll be stopped.

(It seems at this moment, as noted earlier, that only an alliance of the 2016 GOP candidates who were Republican governors + Rubio (maybe they will include Bubble Boy (h/t to Christie)) -- that is Bush, Christie, and/or Kasich + Rubio, with Gilmore, Huckabee, Jindal, Pataki, Perry and/or Walker in some cabinet positions -- might stop Franken-Trump/Trumpenstein (©

UPDATE 10:  (This update is now a separate, expanded post, focusing on the problem of corrupt crony capitalism and the need for fundamental and systemic change to D.C. (and elsewhere)).

New Hampshire proves it is Revolution16.US.

The anti-establishment candidates, Franken-Trump/Trumpenstein (© and that Socialist Guy, trounced the status quo.  It was especially "hard to imagine the New Hampshire primary going any worse for establishment Republicans."

Even if Hillary bounces back and wins the nomination, the voters who want real fundamental and systemic change won't vote for her. This also explains why the 2016 GOP candidates who were Republican governors can't win.

So who can bring fundamental and systemic change to D.C.  The only candidate who might is Franken-Trump/Trumpenstein (©, he understand why Americans have had it.

On MSNBC's Morning Joe today The Donald "explained his — and Bernie Sanders’s — big wins in New Hampshire this way:
'We’re being ripped off by everybody. And I guess that’s the thing that Bernie Sanders and myself have in common. We know about the trade. But unfortunately he can’t do anything to fix it, whereas I will. I have the best people in the world. We’re losing hundreds and hundreds of billions of dollars a year. And we will fix it. And we’ll make it good. And we’ll bring our jobs back. Bernie Sanders can’t even think in terms of that. The only thing he does know, and he’s right about, is that we’re being ripped off; he says that constantly; and I guess he and I are the only two that really say that.'" (That Socialist Guy gets it too, read his victory speech.)

You have to recognize and acknowledge a problem before change can occur.

UPDATE 11 (Because of the importance of this notice, it is now a separate post, which I have updated):

So what can you do to help bring fundamental and systemic change to D.C.

HELP The Donald win the nomination.

Everyone should check your status as a voter with your local election's office. You can also find contact information for your local election office here.

If you are already a properly registered voter and have chosen to affiliate with the Republican party, VOTE for The Donald.

If you are already a properly registered voter and live in a state with an open presidential primary, VOTE for The Donald.  Check with your local election's office, but according to Wikipedia, those states are:

Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Massachusetts (open for ‘unenrolled’/unaffiliated voters only), Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, North Carolina, North Dakota, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Vermont, Virginia, and Wisconsin

All others, register to vote as a member of, and/or change your party affiliation to, the Republican party, before the voter rolls close for the 2016 Presidential primary election.

In Florida, "Tuesday, February 16, 2016 is the last day to register to vote or change party affiliation for those who wish to cast a ballot in the March 15, 2016 Presidential Preference Primary Election."

Then VOTE for The Donald

Don't wait, JUST DO IT!

Check your status as a voter with your local election's office and VOTE!! (And again, you can also find contact information for your local election office here.)


UPDATE 12 (02/12/16):  Want to better understand what millions of American workers have learned through personal experience, that the rigged economy is cheating the American middle class out of good paying American job, then watch 1,400 US workers learn their jobs are moving to Mexico.

This is just one example how of 'Republican party policies have failed Donald Trump’s voters'.

UPDATE 13:  Can The Donald reform D.C.?

The Donald has shown he is an alpha male.  He "appeals fairly broadly in South Carolina — many opponents of Trump I talked with in the state report having some relative who loves him. But there are lots of angry, rural white males at his rallies. They have reason to feel disadvantaged in our economy and overlooked in our politics. This is mixed here (as elsewhere) with baser motives. On racial matters, according to one senior South Carolina Republican, Trump is using 'not a dog whistle but a train whistle.' His Muslim immigration ban was announced in Charleston Harbor, aboard the USS Yorktown aircraft carrier. His questioning of Ted Cruz’s faith because 'not too many evangelicals come out of Cuba' was taken as an argument that Cruz is foreign, not one of us. And the Trump campaign’s willingness to associate with Jake Knotts — the former state senator who famously called Gov. Nikki Haley (R) a racial epithet — has been taken as a signal."

So, you might worry about that last part -- whether The Donald is a racist -- but I don't think he is.

He is a brilliant strategist and, whether he knows if or not, he practices the principles of Sun Tzu. (The Donald's book, The Art of the Deal (again that mistake, it's Trump: The Art of the Deal) is a modern but simplistic restatement of Sun Tzu's The Art of War.)

I don't know if The Donald has wrestled or practiced judo, but he is brilliant at using an opponents strengths and weakness to win.

And The Donald has brilliantly been using Republicans' fears, anger & hatred to win their votes.

Birtherism is just one example, The Donald is too smart to actually believe Birther delusions, The Donald is just playing along. Yet crowds are whipped into such a frenzy, they never realize what The Donald is doing.

A recent example, The Donald "threatened to sue Ted Cruz for 'not being a natural born citizen' if the Texas senator 'doesn't clean up his act'."  This is brilliant, he leverages Birther delusions to control Cruz and siphon off the votes of a few true-believer Birthers

I sometimes call The Donald Franken-Trump/Trumpenstein (© because the Republi-CONs have lost control by creating an environment, especially through hysterical talk radio, that allows The Donald to thrive.  It's too late to talk reason to Republi-CONs, so The Donald uses their fantasies and delusions to control them. 

Absolutely Trump-Brilliant (©!!!!

So, if The Donald can't reform D.C., who could.

The only concern I have is how long The Donald can keep up the con.

 Ergo, The Donald might need help to close the deal, aka win the nomination.

So Vote for The Donald.

UPDATE 14:  Lord knows we need reform in this country.  This blog explains why.

And I had great hope that The Donald could be a reformer.

But now I believe that The Donald is a narcissistic, egomaniacal,  religiously bigoted, misogynistic, racist, xenophobe. (Did I miss anything?)

He is our Hitler, and all good Americans have a duty to fight him and defeat him.

God will accept nothing less.


NO MORE UPDATES:  I never got to explain: What could go wrong?  Are there dark clouds on the horizon?  More later.