January 26, 2016

"Individually, the candidates are flawed grandfathers without the necessary tools to get the job done."

"But they are also patriots more than they are politicians. All three men have reached the point in their lives in which they are focused on giving back. I say we take them up on the offer. I want all three of them."

Writes Scott Adams, examining Sanders, Trump, and Bloomberg, and ultimately supporting a Trump presidency with both Sanders and Bloomberg on his team. And he warns you against "arguing in the weeds about healthcare expenses, socialist policies." That's "goal" thinking and missing the point of what he says we need: a "systems approach puts the smartest people from all sides in the same room and shines a light on it."

147 comments:

Bob Ellison said...

"But they are also patriots more than they are politicians. All three men have reached the point in their lives in which they are focused on giving back."

What evidence do we have of that? They're patriots who want to give back?

They're all three atheists for whom "Après moi le déluge" is the unspoken shout.

Henry said...

Broken link? This worked for me: http://blog.dilbert.com/post/138023808851/the-second-american-revolution-what-then

Michael K said...

Adans has been writing about a "talent Stack" and the seems to be in that vein.

Paul said...

Yes we need a "smart" communist and a "smart" nanny statist to leaven the debate.

Sorry Scott I was with you up until now.

jr565 said...

"That's "goal" thinking and missing the point of what he says we need: a "systems approach puts the smartest people from all sides in the same room and shines a light on it."

That's what congress is for.

buwaya said...

The more important question here is the nature of the "job".
If the three of these gentlemen are making the decisions, I'm not sure if the resulting job is worth doing.

Lyle Sanford, RMT said...

So what does Althouse think? !!! Youth wants to know.

chuck said...

The problem is Scott's idea of "smartest people". The correct answer is "None of the above".

jr565 said...

which president has not engaged in goal thinking? What is the state of the union but priorities the president wants to make. If you dont' think about goals then what are you voting for people for?

BDNYC said...

I have known many tech/engineering types who believe strongly in a government model of close "scientific" management of the economy, as if all the various economic actors can be activated or manipulated by central planners as inputs to create economic growth. Like chess pieces or something.

They truly believe there is undeniable logic in this sort of arrangement and ignore the aversion most individuals feel to being micromanaged by bureaucrats. Their narrow minds simply cannot fathom spontaneous order from private consensual economic activity. People cannot govern themselves.

Jim Nicholson said...

Because all the other attempts to insure we were ruled by "smart" people with great systems worked so well.

hombre said...

"Flawed grandfathers" doesn't begin to cover it. I can't get the link to work, but is this guy implying these guys are among the smartest? Really?

M Jordan said...

I've been reading Scott Adams' blog for several months now. He's made some astute observations. His problem is, he's a nut case. He believes in hypnotism to a level that is just plain absurd. He supposedly was going to hypnotize his readers into have the best orgasm of their lives over New Years. Well, here's one reader it didn't work for.

Now he's moving into a new level of crazy. To me, this latest piece, which Althouse gives us a piece of, smacks of the Eugenics crowd on the first part of the 20th century. It's actually made me pull back from supporting Trump.

I'm sick of con men. Positive thinking is a big con game that enriched Dale Carnegie. Most of the self-help books on the store shelves are simply cons.

If you read Scott Adams enough, you get to know a megalomaniac and a con man.

robother said...

And what, pray tell, are their grandfatherly flaws? Overly vigorous pinching of toddler cheeks? Spoiling the kids while the parents are out? Teaching them to hitch rides on City garbage trucks?

coupe said...

Trump said something that made me think he is a smart man.

When discussing the issue of the protesters who have taken over the federal offices in Oregon, he said he thought the government should hold onto the land.

...once people are allowed to take over federal property, "you don't have a government anymore."

As a real estate man, he would be peeing all over himself to get land at pennies on the dollar, but there is a higher reasoning here.

The USA is about $101 trillion in unfunded liabilities, including $65 trillion of debt.

The books have to have an assets and debt column. If the USA sold its assets, it couldn't borrow money. The banks would go out of business.

Trump is for keeping assets, and I think that's the right position to be in.

I think the US Air Force should use drones and kill all those people trying to steal our precious assets for their own wallets...

eric said...

I've been reading Scott Adams for awhile now. Even before you picked up on him. And this is by far the dumbest thing I've read by him. It's so bad, I almost think he is punking us.

Henry said...

Adams is entertaining as a kind of Baron Von Munchausen of political theory. "I am a trained hypnotist", he warns us.

Sometimes he sounds astute. But then I read something like this post and wonder if everything he writes is a Siri transcription of a man trying to hypnotize his dog:

I don’t think Sanders can beat Trump in the general election. Remember, Trump hasn’t turned his canons on Sanders yet. And Sanders looks like a target-rich environment for Trump. But Sanders does have a puncher’s chance if he stays in the top layer of persuasion like this.

The malapropism of "canons" for "cannons" is a thing of beauty. It is only matched by the mixed metaphor that follows. The boxer as meadow fights his way to the top of the persuasion cake.

In the biome stands a boxer
And a target by his trade
And he carries the remainders
Of every canon turned on him
like scripture or Star Wars
or a cake left in the rain:
"I'm persuading, I'm persuading"
but the fighter still remains
Lie-la-lie...

Michael K said...

"I have known many tech/engineering types who believe strongly in a government model of close "scientific" management of the economy,"

I agree and think this explains the Silicon Valley support of Obama.

This was the original Progressive model. It doesn't work.

Sigivald said...

What makes him think any of those three are "the smartest people"?

Adams is occasionally sort of clever (and writes a comic I quite enjoy), but he's not a policy guy.

Sean Gleeson said...

I, for one, am absolutely behind the proposal to put Trump, Sanders, and Bloomberg all in one room!

Ann Althouse said...

Sorry about the screwed up link. Thanks for telling me. Fixed.

Qwinn said...

Yes, because the first thing I think of when I hear the word "patriot" is "supported the Sandinistas".

Appalled said...

Adams post is so removed from any objective, observed reality, that it is difficult to respond to it without using scatological descriptives that offend people.

Suffice it to say that system thinking will generally go very badly wrong because the logic of the system and the incentives for the people within it will take you very far from what the people actually want. I guess the idea is to use those Dilbert hypnotic skills to keep the people in line with what the brilliant but cranky outsider grandpas want (after watching sufficient you tubes, and keeping a close watch on twitter.)

This is the sort of thinking I would expect from the pointy haired boss.

Mark said...

I think Scott got it right years ago.

elkh1 said...

"giving back", what? Stupid and ludicrous.
Give their wealth to the US Treasury, to take care of the homeless, to their underpaid overworked employees?

They have sucked up billions of wealth, by hook and by crook, and by three bankruptcies, now is time to grab power.

jaydub said...

"systems approach puts the smartest people from all sides in the same room and shines a light on it."

Anyone who uses the words "socialist" and "smartest" in the same paragraph is an economic moron.

rhhardin said...

The Intern with Anne Hathaway has an insight about old guys.

I'd put it that old guys like to see other people getting credit.

I don't know that these three candidates are good examples.

tim maguire said...

Sure, a triumvirate worked great for Rome, why not try it here? (If you don't mind 20 years of civil war, that is.) As for his, "get the best minds in a room" approach to governance, I'd love it if he could cite an example of that being a good thing.

If we've learned anything from the last 100 years of presidential politics, it's that you don't pick your president by IQ test. Unless you want him to be an ineffectual ninny.

Sebastian said...

What if the smartest men don't like systems thinking? What evidence do we have that Sanders could pass Econ 101 or Con Law 101? Is it smart to think that intelligence will produce correct policy?

traditionalguy said...

Has Scott Adams been reading my comments on Citizen Trump? He also says we should use Trump's off the charts communications ability when these desperately times to lead us back from the cliff edge where Obama has craftily positioned us.

Later when all is fixed, then we can crow about how rude that man was was and tut tut about how crude we always knew the commoner Trump was.

But we need Trump's leadership in today's desperate times the same way The Wehrmacht needed Heinz Guderian and Erwin Rommel's leadership sending Panzers in lightening attacks that no one else had ever seen done before.

n.n said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jim said...

'Sanders is a long term visionary' Um, no. NO. NO. and his last thought, that all of it will still have to be run by Congress? You mean the same Congress that long ago abrogated responsibility to the courts, and the executive branch?
The same Congress that allowed Obama to dictate policy and circumvent them at every turn?
Ok, lets turn the Government into a reality show. Bread and circus for everyone. What could go wrong.
scientific socialism comes to mind here. yeah, that worked out great.

n.n said...

BDNYC:

The closed system model enables a good initial guess, but it is inadequate to predict and conserve an optimal state in a chaotic (i.e. unwieldy, nonlinear) system.

I favor a supervised, organic system realized through a limited government, constitutional republic, that reconciles two moral axioms (i.e. first principles): individual dignity and intrinsic value, with natural imperatives.

garage mahal said...

The problem we face is that we haven't given the rich enough tax cuts in the past 30 years and corporations not enough power. We fix those two things and America can be great again.

bagoh20 said...

I'm confident that together they would give us a single soda choice of the appropriate size with a bold "TRUMP" logo. The fight would be about how to get the logo yuuuge without a bigger cup. Maybe a small cup with a large TRUMP balloon attached filled with hot air.

Christopher said...

I've been reading Scott Adams since Althouse pointed at him (thanks for that) and for me it's a useful fresh voice.

But major fail describing that micromanaging nanny-state totalitarian Bloomberg as a centrist.

Hey nobody's perfect, I'll keep reading him.

Rick said...

Who thinks these are the smartest people of their "side" whatever you think that is?

tim in vermont said...

I remember the '70s. If going back is what you are selling garage, I am not sure it will work out the way you want.

Nonapod said...

I've posted this before, I think, but Adam Smith commented on this a few hundred years ago in the "The Theory of Moral Sentiments":

“The man of system, on the contrary, is apt to be very wise in his own conceit; and is often so enamoured with the supposed beauty of his own ideal plan of government, that he cannot suffer the smallest deviation from any part of it. He goes on to establish it completely and in all its parts, without any regard either to the great interests, or to the strong prejudices which may oppose it. He seems to imagine that he can arrange the different members of a great society with as much ease as the hand arranges the different pieces upon a chess-board. He does not consider that the pieces upon the chess-board have no other principle of motion besides that which the hand impresses upon them; but that, in the great chess-board of human society, every single piece has a principle of motion of its own, altogether different from that which the legislature might choose to impress upon it. If those two principles coincide and act in the same direction, the game of human society will go on easily and harmoniously, and is very likely to be happy and successful. If they are opposite or different, the game will go on miserably, and the society must be at all times in the highest degree of disorder.”

Rick said...

coupe said...

The USA is about $101 trillion in unfunded liabilities, including $65 trillion of debt.

The books have to have an assets and debt column. If the USA sold its assets, it couldn't borrow money. The banks would go out of business.

Trump is for keeping assets, and I think that's the right position to be in.


This isn't right at all. The USA's "asset" which justifies borrowing is the tax revenue stream from its citizens. Assets like land are irrelevant to the process.

Jack Bunce said...

Ah, yes... back to the 70s with "The Best and the Brightest" in charge. That worked real well! Can anyone say Vietnam...

Fabi said...

My Labradoodle is much smarter than Sanders. Smells better, too.

Fabi said...

Also more attractive. Can't believe I forgot that!

Jason said...

None of these people have any chops as committed civil libertarians. The only civil "liberty" all three of them have a track record of supporting is the liberty to murder the unborn.

If you're not committed to civil liberties for its own sake, you aren't a "patriot." You fundamentally misunderstand why the country was founded the way it was, why the Constitution is framed the way it was, and how it's rooted western philosophy.

These guys are all meddling little tin pot tyrants in their own way, and should be kept as far away from government as possible.

Bloomberg and Sanders are absolutely committed nanny statists and if Trump is conservative, it's only by accident. He has no ideology at all, really, that I can discern, except maybe nationalism. That's fine, but not a sufficient model for efficient, reliable governance. No one would be able to predict what a Trump Administration would do next month, because Trump is liable to wake up one day and shoot from the hip.

At least, unlike the other hip-shooter, Obama, he is 50 percent likely to shoot in the right general direction, if only by the luck of the draw. But it still keeps investors on the sidelines, unwilling to put money to risk in investment when the POTUS is all over the map.



Jason said...

And Sanders? He is in no way "smart." He's an idiot who can't even understand why secured debt is cheaper than unsecured debt, doesn't understand collateral (and by extension, doesn't understand the credit markets), and doesn't understand that he can't just appoint a SCOTUS justice and tell him to make it his first order of business to attack Citizens United.

And since he opposes Citizens United and wants it overturned he is a fundamental enemy of freedom of the press. He is a threat to civil liberties. His candidacy should, by all rights, be considered a laugh line. The only reason he got any traction at all is because Hillary is such a dislikable shrew and a known incompetent sociopath, even among Democrats.

pdug said...

"3. Trump adds women and minority leaders to the televised meetings, as needed, so we hear all voices."

That isn't going to work. They will derail the conversation onto identity political issues.

Hagar said...

Trump, Sanders, Bloomberg, and Hillary!
This has to be the oldest presidential candidate field ever.

I think we are likely to go with Trump in a sort of, "What the heck, all of these people are impossible, so let's try the one that is the most unpredictable and see what happens. At least a Trump presidency should break up the old alliances so there will be some movement wherever it takes us. And there should be some fun watching Trump dodge left or to the rear when all these experts expect him to go right or bull straight ahead."

jr565 said...

coupe wrote:

...once people are allowed to take over federal property, "you don't have a government anymore."

well you could have the state control the land, as opposed to the federal govt. That's still govt.

AJ Lynch said...

I love Adams and Dilbert but Sanders would not make anyone's smart team.

jr565 said...

What he's saying is how the presidency works anyway. The presdient has a bunch of advisors who tell him what to say, what his polling numbers are etc. We can have that and not require multiple presidents at the same time.
If one of the three wins he can always hire the other two to be advisors. Something tells me none of them would want that job.

khesanh0802 said...

@ Jack Bunce It was the 60's pretty much when Bobby Mac. Lyndon, and Westmorland tried to kill us all. Other than that your comment is accurate.

AJ Lynch said...

We need less and less govt policy and we should blow up the Kennedy School of Government with all the graduates in it - wtf do we need a school of govt for? It's part of the problem.

We need a School of Incentive Design: How to make lazy people get off their ass and do the right thing. Too many people do nothing but scheme to get on govt programs and don't teach their kids to study and work hard to get ahead. And the rest of us spend inordinate amounts of time and energy arguing over how to help these hopeless schmucks and their doomed kids.

traditionalguy said...

The LBJ Cabinet who perpetrated Viet Nam on us was not the best and the brightest by a mile. They were lower level retreads from WWII. The survivors of the !965-1972 war were a lot smarter than before. Those are the three guys you are ridiculing from you great experience with big time video games.

jr565 said...

(cont) watch any movie where the president is called upon to make an important decision or where the president is kidnapped. There are always a bunch of people sitting around a table. Saying What do we do? There's always the warmonger army general and he always argues for war. And then there's the more reasonable one and he always says, no mr president we can do this without going to war. That's just what they want us to do!
And that guy usually gets his way. And is proven right, and the evil warmonger is often part of the plot and was trying to start a war to further his purposes. Hollywood tropes, I know.

anyway, That is the experts table. We already have that in govt. George Stephanopolous was hired to do exactly what Scott wants.

eric said...

The USA's "asset" which justifies borrowing is the tax revenue stream from its citizens. Assets like land are irrelevant to the process.

I wouldn't say irrelevant.

The government is deep on debt. Some of that debt is monies owed to people. If the government said, hey look, we are broke, by we've got trillions of dollars worth of land which isn't just land, but also mineral rights, like oil and natural gas. Will you take that instead of the money we owe you?

Anyway, you get the idea.

George Grady said...

My daily prayer:

Dear Lord, save us from committees of smart people.

Amen.

Fernandinande said...

Bob Ellison said...
They're all three atheists for whom "Après moi le déluge" is the unspoken shout.


Those voices in your head are shouting now - are they also becoming more frequent?

JPS said...

Adams has offered some wonderful insights this campaign season. This post was a let-down.

Dennis Miller, back in 1987, had a vaguely similar idea: Volleyball-ocracy. Elect seven men, put them each in their positions, they serve till someone screws up, they rotate.

Back to Adams. If I read him right, he's saying let's have a chief executive who decides on the big issues; one guy who will make a powerful case for a larger and larger federal government; and one competent centrist who asks the annoying questions like how will we pay for that, and how will you actually make that work? And they're all going to argue and hash it out and as a result of that process we'll get good policies and good politics.

Now how different is that from what we actually have, except that instead of the one guy and the other guy, we have the majority and minority parties? OK, he wants to leave Congress' role as it is - but he basically wants to distill the two congressional parties into those two presidential super-advisors: One representing the great socialist Forward, the other saying, Hey, not so fast - think of Bloomberg as the personification of Bob Michel's congressional Republicans rather than Newt Gingrich's. How revolutionary is this?

And after typing all that, I see George Grady's prayer and say a heartfelt, Amen.

khesanh0802 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
khesanh0802 said...

@traditional guy I can't tell if you are accusing me of gaining my experience regarding McNamara, Johnson, Westmoreland, Cabot Lodge, McGeorge Bundy, etc. from video games. They were the boys in charge and David Halberstam's calling them the "Best and Brightest" was based on their reputations from WWII and was tongue-in-cheek. It turned out they weren't smart at all about what was going on in VN. They had nary a clue.

If you do think my experience is vicarious look carefully at the photo. That is Hill 881 outside of Khe Sanh in the background. I took that picture outside my battery's fire direction center.

PB said...

I disagree on the best and brightest approach, and I don't think Bloomberg is the voice of reason. To paraphrase William Buckley, I'd rather be governed by the first 3 names in the phone book than by these three.

Michael Fitzgerald said...

Any room in which Bernie Sanders is considered one of the smartest is not a smart room. Dumb idea to gather 3 big government bureaucrats to make decisions, unless you want more government, less freedom, and fewer inalienable rights.

n.n said...

I guess grandma got ran over by a jackass.

steve uhr said...

Trump-Cruz-Clinton-Sanders. A very bad dream. How did we get to such a sorry state?

jr565 said...

And now Trump is for letting Medicaire negotiate drug prices.
I'll let Ezra klein's tweet stand for itself:

Ezra Klein ‏@ezraklein 53m53 minutes ago
Donald Trump endorses an idea liberals love: letting Medicare negotiate drug prices http://bit.ly/1S9cXos

why would National Review ever get the idea that he wasn't a conservative.

Michael E. Lopez said...

So... three liberals.

Mmm hmm.

dmoelling said...

Scott Adams has become Dilbert in his old age. He is the perfect cubicle dweller, sure that his corporate management doesn't have a clue and if only a strong genius would be put in the top slot things would be magically better.

Sorry Scott it doesn't work that way. I remember being a cubical dweller before starting my own business and all the stuff you thought was easy is really hard. Not just your own business, but staying out of trouble with HR, OSHA, IRS, Homeland Security and all the other "helpers" out there. Trump is very minor league in the business world and he's barely handled the details to stay afloat over the years. Plus he shorts his suppliers, telling them to make it up in volume! In 30 years I've never been shorted except by some Nigerians. Everyone else pays per the agreed price including Pakistanis, Jordanians, Mexicans, Columbians etc. Trump's scum.

jr565 said...

So lets say Trump wins and decides to propose letting Medicaire negotiate drug prices to a republican led congress. What do the trumpbots want repubs who prevoiusly were against such a proposal to do? What is the establishment Republican position supposed to be to the Trumpbots. ARe they supposed to oppose Trump on this proposal? or go along?

Robert Cook said...

"But they are also patriots more than they are politicians. All three men have reached the point in their lives in which they are focused on giving back. I say we take them up on the offer. I want all three of them."

No one could write this and actually mean it unless they are a complete idiot.

Robert Cook said...

"They're all three atheists...."

What's that got to do with whether they're patriots or not? What does it even mean to be, or to call someone, a "patriot?"

Saint Croix said...

Adams post is so removed from any objective, observed reality, that it is difficult to respond to it without using scatological descriptives that offend people.

I like this. I would have just said, "shitty shit shit." But what you said is way classier.

grackle said...

The only reason he got any traction at all is because Hillary is such a dislikable shrew and a known incompetent sociopath, even among Democrats.

Agreement. Hillary is a weak candidate She was weak against Obama when they were opponents on the campaign trail. She is weak now. Sanders’s strength is more due to Hillary’s vulnerabilities than of his own intrinsic strength. I believe just about any GOP candidate could beat her. She wouldn’t stand a chance against Trump.

jr565 said...

ANOTHER area where Trump, shall we say differs from Many repubs is on eminent domain and land use.

I love this comment and how it relates to Sarah Palin:

The billionaire businessman suggested later in the interview that while he was a fan of oil and gas companies drilling and fracking on federal lands, protecting the earth should still be a top priority.

"I'm very much into energy, and I'm very much into fracking and drilling, and we never want to be hostage again to OPEC and go back to where we were. And right now, we're at a very interesting point because right now there's so much energy," Trump said. "And maybe that's an advantage and maybe--actually, it's more of an advantage in terms of your question because we don't have to do the kind of drilling that we did."

"I am for energy exploration, as long as we don't do anything to damage the land. And right now we don't need too much -- there's a lot of energy," he said.

So basically, when Sarah Palin was saying Drill baby drill and asking for Alaska to have access to its own land and not be at the mercy of the federal govt he would have.... sided with the democrats.
Again.
Really, Sarah, if you wanted to support someone who wasn't for drill baby drill you could have spared us a lot of anguish and simply voted for the dems.

jr565 said...

and if some trumpbot says "he says we have a lot of energy now, so he would have been for drilling in ANWR, then" the point is the argument about who should control the land. the feds or the local govt. That principle wouldnt' change whether we needed oil or not would it? Would he give Alaska the rigt to drill in ANWR for example and then when he determined we had enough energy take the land and reassert federal ownership? No, its either or.

If the federal govt wanted to build a high speed rail, I suppose they could do so over the objection of the state the same way Trump says the govt has a right to assert emninent domain?

Skeptical Voter said...

Goldang. Sanders is a "patriot" alright--just that he's a patriot from Planet Marx.

Chuck said...

Wow I just read the column to which Althouse linked. What a nauseating pile of touchy-feely, stinking rubbish.

I don't need to find a president who makes the whole country feel good. When was the last time we had one of those? I am a Republican, and I want the nominee of my party to (a) win, and (b) advance my party's goals.

The Trump crowd seems to have a bunch of irrational complaints:

~ They don't like the "RINO" legislators in Washington. There is no one in the field, to whom "Republican in Name Only" applies better than Donald Trump. Trump is quite literally, a "Republican This Year, For Convenience."

~ The Trumpettes don't like the GOP establishment's supposed "dealmaking" with Democrats in Washington. But all Trump talks about is making deals. Trump even trots out the MSM tripe about "gridlock" in Washington. There is gridlock because my party thinks like Jeff Sessions, and the other party thinks like Sheldon Whitehouse. Neither one of those guys sees much compromise with the other. They both want to win. I wouldn't want to compromise with Sheldon Whitehouse either. But that is what Trump talks about. "Getting everybody in a room and make a deal."

~ The restless Trump plurality (it isn't close to being a majority) talks in generalities about wanting a "conservative." Rush Limbaugh presides over "the Limbaugh Institute of Advanced Conservative Studies." Sean Hannity prides himself on being a conservative and not a registered Republican. The mantra -- heretofore -- of pundits like Laura Ingraham and Ann Coulter has been conservatism. But Trump isn't anything like the best or most reliable conservative. Mitt Romney's past record on Republican issues is about 5000% clearer and cleaner and more reliably conservative than Donald Trump's record.

~ Trump is supposedly "the winner" candidate. On the strength of little more than pre-election Republican polling. It is a very thin slice of polling. Trump's larger national negatives are staggering. The worst of any candidate in the field. If Trump can win in November, it means ANY Republican can win in Novmeber; so we might as well pick the best Republican.

A Trump presidency would sure be fascinating. I'd be very interested to see it, if Trump can't get his way on an issue like punitive import tariffs, because Congressional Republicans would not have it; and Trump then went to Democrats to get their votes to make a deal...

Drago said...

Chuck: "..and Trump then went to Democrats to get their votes to make a deal... "

This comment would be more forceful if the republicans hadn't fully capitulated to Obama/Pelosi/Reid in the last budget bill and if the republicans weren't fully prepared to move full-speed ahead on amnesty.

Sebastian said...

Trump is such a smart Democrat, he figured out his best chance of getting nominated was to run as a Republican.

Real American said...

Sorry, but all the "smart people" have been in the room alone for a long time. The problem is, they're not that smart. They think they fucking know everything and can centrally plan our economy and our health care and and our daily lives because THEY KNOW BETTER because they went to Harvard or Yale or Stanford or some other bastion of the "leaders of tomorrow." Well, the leaders of tomorrow are fucking dumb. They can't even build a website. They can't build a wall. They can't do their basic fucking jobs. They don't know what they don't know, which is why central planning fails every fucking time its tried. Its why centrally planned economies have to keep people from leaving. the collective wisdom of the dumbest people in our country is so far above what these allegedly "smart people" know it's ridiculous.

Saint Croix said...

Bob Ellison argues Trump, Sanders, and Bloomberg are "all atheists." Actually, I think Trump identifies as a Christian, and the other two identify as Jews. For instance Bernie identifies as a secular Jew. And so does Bloomberg.

I think of somebody who simultaneously calls himself an "atheist" and a "Jew" might want to think about his concepts a bit. I know my first girlfriend, who was Jewish, was very clear on the subject that Judaism is a religion. I was like, "But in Israel the law of return says that if your mother is Jewish, you are Jewish. That's biological, it's not religious." And she was like, "Oy vey."

Anyway, anti-Semites group Jews together on a biological basis. That's what Hitler did. It wasn't a religious test. It was a biological test. Thus Israel created it's law of return to protect Jews, and the stupid children of Jews. So if your mother is Jewish, you can run to Israel, even if you are an atheist, or a Hindu, or anything else. I guess that's why Woody Allen can go around calling himself a Jew and an atheist without his head exploding.

Also Jews (and Christians, a well-known Jewish sect that has expanded to include a few billion non-Jews as well) are so damn liberal they will let anybody show up. I was at a Jewish wedding one time (same girlfriend, marrying a different guy) and they were passing around yarmulkes. I was like, "Is it okay for me to wear this?" (I mean, my penis is Jewish but the rest of me is Episcopalian). And they were like, "Sure!"

Is that liberal or what? I still don't think atheism is kosher, though.

garage mahal said...

"And now Trump is for letting Medicaire negotiate drug prices."

Oh no!

Hagar said...

It is a bit dicey if any of this crew can make it through a full four years and improbable that any of them could go for eight.

Who will any of them pick for V-P?

Saint Croix said...

I think Bob Ellison is on to something, though. I've noticed, over the years, that Scott Adams does not do a Christmas cartoon. Almost all the other cartoons do some sort of Christmas cartoon. Scott Adams cartoon strip, Dilbert, has his characters in the office, still running around in cubicles, even on Christmas day.

Always struck me as a little weird.

And so I think it's entirely possible that what is motivating Adams, is a belief that Trump, Sanders and Bloomberg are all atheists.

Thus, Adams likes all three of them. Any of them will suit Scott Adams, because he is fighting a war with God.

Fernandinande said...

Saint Croix said...
Anyway, anti-Semites group Jews together on a biological basis.


For example, these anti-Semitic Jews in Israel, making hateful claims:
"The Ashkenazi Jewish population is medically important because of its unique history and relative isolation. Founded from effectively just 300-400 individuals less than 1000 years ago, the Ashkenazi population has a more uniform genetic background compared to most other populations."

That's what Hitler did.

Only a Nazi, neo or otherwise, would drive a Volkswagen. Or a Porsche. Or a BMW. Or a Mercedes.

Fernandinande said...

Saint Croix said...
I've noticed, over the years, that Scott Adams does not do a Christmas cartoon.


It took approximately 15 seconds to find:
"I sometimes call myself an atheist because it’s too hard to explain Spinoza’s version of god. And it’s too hard to explain that agnosticism is the only intellectually defensible position."

Any of them will suit Scott Adams, because he is fighting a war with God.

It's only logical for people to fight things that they think don't exist.

machine said...

then why don't you do something?

Saint Croix said...

It's only logical for people to fight things that they think don't exist.

You think Scott's love for Trump and Bernie and Bloomberg is logical?

And you think it's logical, or a good idea, for you to vote atheism, without regard to anything else?

jr565 said...

garage mahal wrote;
"And now Trump is for letting Medicaire negotiate drug prices."

Oh no!

I'm sure YOU like it. Do you plan on voting for him?

Clyde said...

Sadly, this election is not going to come down to voting FOR someone, it's going to be about voting against the worst choice, whichever Democrat that may be, depending on whether Hillary! is behind bars or not come election time.

Phil 3:14 said...

Scott Adams writes a funny, insightful cartoon. But Scott Adams the person is a nihilist. Don't take advice from a nihilist. If it turns out badly he'll say "What difference does it make anyway!"

buwaya said...

"Dilbert, has his characters in the office, still running around in cubicles, even on Christmas day."

Because the point is that Dilbert doesn't have a life, being such a nerd and perpetual loser.
There are no happy, hopeful people in Dilbert either. They are all doomed, they can't win.
They are already in Hell, in cubicle-world.

Michael Fitzgerald said...

Sexist racist triumvirate.

machine said...

"Trump had 3 wives, a baby by wife #2 while married to wife 1. And many affairs.& the evangelicals like him? Hypocritical pseudo Christians"

Freeman Hunt said...

What? And I was starting to get interested in reading Adams! Now I feel like a fool. But not as big a fool as some members of this Brains Dream Team envisioned by Adams.

buwaya said...

machine -

"Trump had 3 wives, a baby by wife #2 while married to wife 1. And many affairs.& the evangelicals like him? Hypocritical pseudo Christians"

Let him who is without sin cast the first stone

Today salvation has come to this house, because this man, too, is a son of Abraham. For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.

Two people owed money to a certain moneylender. One owed him five hundred denarii, and the other fifty. Neither of them had the money to pay him back, so he forgave the debts of both. Now which of them will love him more?”
Simon replied, “I suppose the one who had the bigger debt forgiven.”
“You have judged correctly,” Jesus said

Paddy O said...

"I think of somebody who simultaneously calls himself an "atheist" and a "Jew" might want to think about his concepts a bit."

Well, in terms of covenant, it's not who they believe in, it's who God believes in.

Chuck said...

Drago: The Republican majorities just finished killing off a bill that inched toward amnesty. It got a narrow majority in the last Senate, by virtue of the "Gang" which no longer exists. Your prediction of Republicans rubber-stamping "amnesty" seems baseless. The House as presently constituted would NEVER go along.

Now as for the omnibus budget bill(s); what would you like to have seen happen? Trump keeps saying that he dislikes Washington "gridlock" and what he would do is to get everybody in a room, and make a deal. Do you have a realistic vision of what such a deal would look like?

Oso Negro said...

Jesus fucking Christ. A ruling troika of New York City assholes. JUST what the country needs.

Amanda said...

Jerry Falwell Jr. President of Liberty University just endorsed Trump, too funny. The thrice married philanderer, that's rich.

buwaya said...

"by virtue of the "Gang" which no longer exists"
The "gang" is still there, every one. All are still Senators.
"The House as presently constituted would NEVER go along."
Well, there you go. The house is more representative of the people.
"Do you have a realistic vision of what such a deal would look like?"

What would you like? A deal is made by a negotiator, not by the offer.

What the Republicans have lacked more than anything is someone able to use effective rhetoric. A big part of the deal is public perception or fears of public perception. That was in fact Obama's biggest, er, trump. Why does a body with the power of the purse blink when threatened by a government shutdown? Because the cost of withholding funds is not something substantial, a law traded for a law, but something much more malleable by the right personality. Obama, with a lot of help, traded nothing for something. Why should he (or the Democrats) be the only ones in the position of trading nothing for something?

buwaya said...

And Trump makes news again, skipping the next debate.
Unheard of, outrageous, inconceivable!
Well, not anymore it seems.

Now its news, and he gets more publicity, and yet more people, probably, like the fact that he upsets the stuffed shirts.

grackle said...

ANOTHER area where Trump, shall we say differs from Many repubs is on eminent domain and land use.

I saw Trump debate this with a talking head. Readers, do you think the Keystone pipeline deserves to be approved? Many conservatives do. I’d say the overwhelming majority of “Repubs” heartily approve of the Keystone pipeline.

But uh-oh! The Keystone pipeline will require over a thousand miles of, wait for it: eminent domain!

But eminent domain is a bad, bad thing. Isn’t it? Isn’t eminent domain the tool of scoundrels and therefore Trump is a scoundrel for not hating eminent domain?

Let slip the dogs of cognitive dissonance! Let the bear of simultaneous contradictory beliefs out of its cage. Let fly the ineffective arrows of blunted arguments!

Embrace the cascade.

The restless Trump plurality (it isn't close to being a majority) talks in generalities about wanting a "conservative.

Straw man arguments abound! Although Trump has never said that he is a conservative that I can find, they still trot this tired meme out to the parade. Although I am sure that some Trump supporter somewhere has probably said something about liking Trump’s conservatism I think it best to link to something that proves this straw man allegation. But I doubt we’ll get it.

rcocean said...

He lost me with his labeling Bloomberg a "Centrist". Yeah, maybe in NYC or SF. Otherwise, he's Social liberal/Globalist/Crony capitalist. IOW, his kind are running DC right now and if you elect him, you'll get more of the same.

And "Bernie" is just selling the same old socialist snake oil. He'll be a little less interventionist in foreign policy, spend a lot more and otherwise an extreme Leftist on social policy and everything else. He'll blather a lot about "workers rights" while letting in 50 million refugees. Sanders isn't a change in direction, he'll accelerate the downward spiral exponentially. Take a UK Labour MP and put him in Vermont and you get "Bernie".

traditionalguy said...

So will FOX put up a Cuban Octagon Match of Rubio v. Cruz? Or will Cruz get The Donald to debate him alone on his home turf in Canada?

Stay tuned.

David Begley said...

Trump: Natural born coward.

Freeman Hunt said...

Trump adds women and minority leaders to the televised meetings, as needed, so we hear all voices.

So my sex makes me some kind of checkmark "voice" that can be embodied by women generally? No, thanks. You can go ahead and shut the gate to that special identity ghetto. I'm not going in.

Jim said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
CStanley said...

3 wrongs don't make a right.

Chuck said...

buwaya: The members are still there, but they are no longer constituting a gang. By their own accounts, they used to be allied on the immigration compromise, and now by their own accounts they are not.

Rubio is the one most in the "amnesty" crosshairs, and I think he has walked back his compromise position. Rubio has been 1000% more reflective on that one issue than the 50 hair-brained spectacularly dumb reversals we've seen with Trump. If you are writing off Rubio for a past immigration position, I can't imagine what your attitude must be toward Trump.

Amanda said...

Oh Lordy, Tony Perkins just endorsed Cruz. Not only are conservatives split, now so are evangelicals! Who'd have predicted it?

JamesB.BKK said...

If only we could raise taxes on the rich, then everything would be fine again. In measuring annual gross income to define the "rich," a single person making US$ 15,000 or more and a family of four making US$22,000 or more would be considered "rich." This is because the global average income (as measured by the BBC) is US$ 10,000. We should use that income as a guide, because borders are irrelevant, which in turn is because "that's who we are." Also, the cost of living in defining the rich and the actual retained wealth after taxation for redistribution or receipt of redistributed funds are irrelevant. Thomas Piketty told me so.

Mark said...

Jim, I think it's bad. Hits him in is "fighter/winner" facade, makes him look petulant and, worse, scheming. He's made his nut off of being hated by the establishment, but he's opened himself up to mockery by just about everybody.

It wasn't the hatred that brought down Palin, it was the mockery. She was a force for a while with Tea Party people who saw the unfairness, but she really lost her personal chance at national office when she resigned as Governor, because it showed she would flinch.

Trump tried the mockery approach on Cruz, and Cruz didn't flinch. Instead he's returning fire, and Trump, by showing how thin-skinned and petty he can be, is going to be vulnerable to it.

I've been wrong before, and Trump is good at this (obviously). But I think this lost him the Republican nomination.

Michael said...

Dilbert the cartoon is brilliant at capturing the absurdities of corporate life from one particular point of view. But it is not, nor I hope is it intended to be, the whole picture. Dilbert the engineer would probably be a pretty terrible CEO.

Saint Croix said...

that trained hypnotist stuff cracks me up

"this is not a joke"

are you sure?

Amanda said...

Oh man, it's just gets more entertaining, Trump isn't going to participate in the upcoming Fox News debate. I guess he's feeling a little bit insulted by a hilarious tweet Fox made. This is some comedy gold.

JamesB.BKK said...

The strawman argument about eminent domain re XL is in ignoring the difference between public use and public benefit. One phrase appears in the US Constitution. The other does not. Transmission and distribution systems (incl. pipelines) have long been considered for public use with utilities considered to be working for or agents of the public within their franchise areas. XL may not fit that, but if so it is only because of Kelo. Anyway, Trump did not decide or argue Kelo. It's "The Law of the Land."

Seeing Red said...

We have the smartest people in the room. Why doesn't he like the outcome?

Saint Croix said...

Trump is making the move to remove journalists he doesn't like.

Amanda said...

Oh, yes let's not forget about Trump's fear of Megyn Kelly.

rcocean said...

Thank God Trump won't show up for Fox Debate. We had a debate 2 weeks ago. And as the front runner Trump doesn't need to debate and he's on TV constantly.

Fox decided to turn the whole thing into a soap opera. Will Kelly and Don get back together or will they fight? Stay tuned.

I look forward to Althouse's commentary. I hope it won't be as boring as I think the debate is going to be.

rcocean said...

It might be even worse than I thought, since they'll have to replace Trump - more Paul Rand anyone?

Amanda said...

"Megyn Kelly's really biased against me..."


mccullough said...

Trump keeps the spectacle interesting. If he's not there, I'll watch the highlights but the energy will be lower. There are too many people at the debates anyway. Trump has his supporters and they seem pretty loyal to him. Fun to watch Trump take on Fox News.

mccullough said...

Obama has never appeared on Megyn Kelly's show. Is Obama afraid of Megyn Kelly?

Jim said...

Actually, Obama called for the censure of Fox News. because, well, they weren't reporting the Party line. First Amendment? Meh.
Totalitarianism is so much fun, until your Party is out of power.

buwaya puti said...

I am not for or against anyone, save the Democrats and that is out of pure humanitarianism (I wish all Americans the best). And moreover I am a foreigner, not a US citizen, and can't vote for any of them.
I am fascinated by Trump. It's like watching Muhammad Ali, Scott Adams is right about that. Maybe Joe Frazier will finally land the decisive blows, but its been quite a show, and its not looking like his opponents have what it takes. Whether it's a GOOD THING or not is up to God, fate, or chance. I don't presume to know. Joe Frazier was apparently a nicer man than Ali, but that counts for nothing in fistfights.

Rubio is a more personally sympathetic person than Cruz. He also made his political reputation originally as someone who was anti-establishment. Unfortunately he committed a sin that will take long to forgive, much as Christie did. These things happen to people who dont have the skill to read the public mood, where the parade was going, a critical fault in a politician. He also lacks the fire and chutzpah to get people excited enough to forgive him. He makes a poor demagogue. Both Cruz and of course Trump are better demagogues, more powerful personalities. That matters a very great deal, much more so than position papers or platforms. It doesn't matter a bit what he wants, if he isn't up to getting it.

Amanda said...

I'm sure Obama is just quaking in his boots, lol!

mccullough said...

Obama went on O'Reilly and Brett Baier a few times and Chris Wallace. Fox and Obama get along well. It's all theater.

Drago said...

Amanda: "I'm sure Obama is just quaking in his boots, lol!"

So...Obama is "courageously" avoiding going on Megyn Kelly's show?

Amanda said...

On the Mark Levin show Cruz just challenged Trump to a one on one debate, hahaha! Will Trump be man enough to take up the challenge? This is truly wonderful entertainment.

Drago said...

Jim: "Actually, Obama called for the censure of Fox News. because, well, they weren't reporting the Party line. First Amendment? Meh."

When obambi pulled this little stunt I was not really surprised to see the other major networks stand up for Fox. Those other networks were no doubt pondering just what might happen under a different regime were they (the msm) unwilling to take a stand.

Drago said...

Amanda: "On the Mark Levin show Cruz just challenged Trump to a one on one debate, hahaha! Will Trump be man enough to take up the challenge? This is truly wonderful entertainment."

There appears to be direct correlation between the degree to which the dem events are scripted to protect Hillary and the volume/tone of the posts by the lefty trolls on websites challenging republicans to answer each and every demand coming from any quarter.

I'm sure it's purely coincidental.

wildswan said...

Will people watch the debate if Trump isn't there? That's what he wants to find out.

Plus Hillary just did a "town hall" so Trump thinks "Well I'll have some kind of forum that focuses on me and ?maybe some favored persons: Is he winnowing the Republican field? Or just trying to make a favorable case for himself in a race which might be close? Maybe he wants to call upon people ho support him to turn out for him.

As for the Three Grandfathers and the use of systems - well, I think of DARPA inventing e-mail, icons, the mouse. And losing it all to Apple - one driven man, Steve Jobs.

gadfly said...

Amanda said...
"Megyn Kelly's really biased against me..."

If Megyn is so inclined, so am I! Too bad that the rest of Fox News is in bed with the T-rump, cooked rare.

grackle said...

If you are writing off Rubio for a past immigration position, I can't imagine what your attitude must be toward Trump.

Allow me to offer an answer:

Trump, all by himself, made immigration an important issue in this campaign. The others tiptoed around it because they didn’t want to piss off the Latinos. Or the pundits. Or the talking heads. Or progressive race-baiters. You remember that, don’t you? That particular conventional wisdom was ignored by Trump. And remember how they ALL said Trump had crossed the line and was finished in politics? Didn’t happen, did it? Rubio’s positions do not matter at this point. He’s waaay back in the pack.

Saint Croix said...

we need Trump's leadership in today's desperate times the same way The Wehrmacht needed Heinz Guderian and Erwin Rommel's leadership sending Panzers in lightening attacks that no one else had ever seen done before.

Traditional Guy, try not to wet yourself as you go Godwin on yourself, okay? If I told you once, I've you a thousand times, your leader does not love you, does not know who you are, and if he did know who you are, would not give one shit for you. You are following the wrong horse, kemosabe. You're not the first guy to worship Caesar, and you won't be the last. But try to let go of the sun god ra, okay? Don't drink the lemonade, brother.

Saint Croix said...

Rubio’s positions do not matter at this point. He’s waaay back in the pack.

Rubio is bringing it. Good for him. About time Churchill showed up.

JamesB.BKK said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Saint Croix said...

“Marco Rubio, as an example, he’s got no money, zero,” Trump said. “I think that’s fine, that’s OK, maybe it’s good politically to say you owe money because you over-borrowed on your credit cards. He’s got nothing. I mean, he’s got nothing.”

Listen to Trump, talking about everybody who is beneath him. Listen to him disparage the poor. Think about how many poor voters there are. It's an idiotic idea, to call Rubio poor. "You don't have any money! You don't have any money!" How do you not see how that gives Rubio an opening?

Mitt Romney did the same thing, talking down at the poor. Very bad campaign tactic.

When Trump says Jeb is "low energy," that was a powerful criticism, very specific to Jeb. Voters aren't going to say, "hey, I'm low energy, that son of a bitch is talking about me!"

But people are touchy about money. If Trump starts bragging about how much money he has, and everybody else in the race is poor and beneath him, he's doomed.

JamesB.BKK said...

That Trump is trouble. Unelectable. Probably a stormtrooper. What we need is a guy or gal that takes your stuff whether you need it or not and sends it to me, minus a cut. That's the morally proper arrangement.

Saint Croix said...

That Trump is trouble

Yes.

Unelectable.

No.

Probably a stormtrooper.

Maybe.

What we need is a guy or gal that takes your stuff whether you need it or not and sends it to me, minus a cut

No.

That's the morally proper arrangement

No, it's not.

Saint Croix said...

Here's an awesome article on the dark side of Marco Rubio. It's spot on.

Brando said...

A lot of commenters on this blog have repeatedly cited Scott Adams for some clever analysis of this race and Trump's strength as a candidate. I think a notion like this one sort of puts that analysis in perspective.

Trump is leading because his supporters are sick of the same old same old from the GOP, and they love the idea of some rich insulated guy who can tell it like it is, and who cares what he really believes or really would do? He pisses off all the "right people" which means blue bloods sipping champagne and eating caviar in their fancy clubs, and dreadlocked hippies in drum circles. They deserve to be pissed off!

Sanders is surging (though not quite leading) because the Dems are sick of the Clintons and want to see someone stick it to Wall Street and the One Percenters and bring back manufacturing jobs that must all be going to sweatshops or something.

I'm not sure why Bloomberg is on the list. Perhaps he appeals to those desperate about the idea of a Trump/Sanders race.

Big Mike said...

But they are also patriots more than they are politicians.

I don't think any of the three could even spell "patriot" without spellcheck to help them.

Bill Peschel said...

Scott Adams is playing on the belief that being right once in his life makes him someone worth listening to, because you'll never hear the 100 times he got it wrong.

If you read his books, you'll find that he didn't invent very much. Dilbert originated with him, but not the name (a co-worker suggested it) and not the notion that there was a career in cartooning in it for him. Most of his story ideas come from readers.

He's good in using other people's work and taking credit for it.

Whenever he tried to make a success of something, he's failed. He consulted on a workplace comic strip set at a gym: Failed. He invested in restaurants: Failed. If you invested in ISDN according to his recommendation in "The Dilbert Future," you would have lost your shirt.

William Chadwick said...

Here's the most flawed of the flawed grandathers:

http://cdn.pjmedia.com/instapundit/wp-content/uploads/2016/01/bernomics.jpg

grackle said...

Rubio is bringing it. Good for him. About time Churchill showed up.

The commentor links to a Politico hit-piece from September of last year. And that outdated article means that Rubio is “bringing it?” Tell us another one.

Here’s the latest from RCP. It shows Rubio trailing Trump by 20 points, Cruz by 14 points. Waay back in the pack.

http://tinyurl.com/kvzkyg4