March 23, 2016

"I went from being 6-foot-5 to 4-foot-5 when I climbed up on that witness stand. I thought, 'My God, this is really horrible.'"

"I tried to keep it in context, what I was dealing with. [The defendants] said it was newsworthy — I felt like I was in the middle of a joke, that they were trying to make something that’s a joke in a locker room with men getting dressed. Then to have to talk about it or be exposed to it was just ridiculous, very embarrassing. It’s hard to talk about this stuff especially when you’re trying to be serious or under oath."

Said Terry Bollea, (Hulk Hogan) about his lawsuit against Gawker, which he characterizes as "actually protecting the First Amendment and carving out that little piece of privacy."

Also quoted in the linked article — which goes to The Washington Post — is Donald Trump, who brought up the Hulk Hogan lawsuit in his recent interview with the WaPo editorial board:
 "I mean I must tell you that the Hulk Hogan thing was a tremendous shock to me because — not only the amount and the fact that he had the victory — because for the most part I think libel laws almost don’t exist in this country."
Not that Hulk Hogan's case was a libel case. (It was for the invasion of privacy.)
"You know, based on, based on everything I’ve seen and watched and everything else, and I just think that if a paper writes something wrong — media, when I say paper I’m talking about media. I think that they can do a retraction if they’re wrong."
Here's the full interview with Trump. Let's get a little more context, because someone in the comments the other day was asking me to try to make sense of what Trump said about libel. He does leap around and make associations freely. If you're unsympathetic to him, it's easy to say he's uninformed, incoherent, and doesn't care if it shows. If you're sympathetic, you can infer and interpolate and make the connections yourself. For example: Hulk Hogan's case surprised him because he thought the courts leaned heavily in favor of the media's rights and would get away with publishing whatever they want and that therefore lawsuits — whether they are based on libel or privacy — would fail.  

You may want to know — before you read what I have to say about the transcript — whether I'm sympathetic or unsympathetic to Donald Trump. Isn't everyone on one side or the other? Actually, no. Somehow, I find myself resting comfortably in the middle. I care about seeing how other people react, and it's better to stay uncommitted. Cruel neutrality. It's real. I couldn't even tell you who I'll vote for in the Wisconsin primary next week. I may decide on my walk to the polling place.

Ugh! The transcript! The discussion of libel goes on so long, and I'm engaging with it line by line. It no longer belongs at the end of this post. I'm cutting and pasting what I've been writing into a new post, which will be up fairly soon.

88 comments:

Chuck said...

Good. Game on.

Count me as your Number One Critic of Trump, and also your Number One Legal Analysis Fan.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Ann Althouse said... I couldn't even tell you who I'll vote for in the Wisconsin primary next week. I may decide on my walk to the polling place.

The Twitter rumblings say Scott Walker is very likely to endorse Ted Cruz soon (based, I think, on an interview Walker just did with Charlie Sykes).
Does that do anything for ya', Prof?

Chuck said...

Two things to remember:

1. In the Trump WaPo transcript, Trump references his own libel case. That was the case where Trump sued the author and publisher of the authorized-access biography "TrumpNation" for libel, for having allegedly underestimated Trump's net worth. Trump sued for $50 Billion-with-a-B. Trump got nothing.

2. In the Hulk Hogan/Gawker case, my understanding (without having read the pleadings) is that the first cause of action by Plaintiff "Hulk" was for a copyright violation.

wtf.

Hagar said...

Whatever the legal ramifications may be, if Hogan can put Gawker out of business, he will not have lived in vain.

Ann Althouse said...

"The Twitter rumblings say Scott Walker is very likely to endorse Ted Cruz soon (based, I think, on an interview Walker just did with Charlie Sykes). Does that do anything for ya', Prof?"

Not really.

I'm not even sure which party's primary I'm going to vote in!

I really don't like anyone that much, though I could put them in order that I'd enjoy being friends with them. Trusting one to be president... what a horrorshow!

Bay Area Guy said...

Althouse declares:

Somehow, I find myself resting comfortably in the middle. I care about seeing how other people react, and it's better to stay uncommitted.

I believe this.

Cruel neutrality. It's real. I couldn't even tell you who I'll vote for in the Wisconsin primary next week. I may decide on my walk to the polling place.

Color me skeptical. You have opinions on Trump. They are probably slightly unfavorable, perhaps not as unfavorable as Meade's, but I doubt you are neutral on Trump. True, you might have not made up your mind for whom to vote, I do buy that. But I will bet a ham sandwich, you're not voting for Trump.




Steve M. Galbraith said...

If you're unsympathetic to him, it's easy to say he's uninformed, incoherent, and doesn't care if it shows. If you're sympathetic, you can infer and interpolate and make the connections yourself.

If there was evidence that he himself could, if given the time, detail these connections, that he understood the details or specifics of issues, then it would be acceptable to make those connections for him. Or at least defensible.

There is no evidence that he can.

There's less evidence that the howling mob who support him can either.

This idea that Trump is qualified to be president is a complete joke, a farce, a disgrace. We're supposed to have sympathy for his supporters because they've been ignored or left behind. Well maybe they're losers in life because they are simply losers? Ignorant, lazy, poorly informed, unwilling to change? It's not the establishment that has left them; it's the world.

Ann Althouse said...

Order I'd enjoy being friends with them: Trump, Sanders, Hillary, Kasich, Cruz.

Chuck said...

Ooops.

I just got off the phone with Dr. Evil's assistant, calling from their new lair underneath the polar ice cap (which is shrinking, much to Dr. Evil's consternation).

Dr. Evil wanted all of you to know that Donald Trump's 2006 libel lawsuit had a damages demand of only $5 Billion, and not the $50 Billion that I mistakenly typed.

I am so, so sorry for the error and I want to humbly and personally apologize to Mr. Donald J. Trump, and the Trump Organization, and everyone in the Donald J. Trump family, including both of his ex-wives (who might be legally barred from comment in any event).

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Aww, poor Ted Cruz! What about an order you'd like to have a discussion on a legal topic (or even just a general BloggingHeads talk) with 'em?

n.n said...

Publication with a motive to damage reputation is libel. Perhaps it depends on how Gawker obtained the repurposed materials, and if the public had a right to its unsolicited consumption.

That said, gawker is "an awkward, foolish person". Aptly named.

mikee said...

Althouse will vote for Hillary on the basis of her being the most experienced or some such folderol, thought up as she walks to the polls, and won't accept that she made a mistake until well into the first term of disaster.

On such a basis we will have the most corrupt and evil president of our country's history elected. God help us all.

Bob Boyd said...

If you knew Kasich pees with his hands on his hips would it affect his place in your "friends" ranking?
Asking for a friend.

Chuck said...

As always with Trump, the worst ways to understand him at all, include listening to him speak to a crowd, and listening to him being interviewed by anyone in the mainstream media.

The best way to understand Trump is when he's being cross-examined under oath by an opposing attorney. When Trump has to actually answer a direct question, with consequences for any false statements.

Here's a short little article on Trump's deposition in the aforementioned 2006 libel action:

http://money.cnn.com/2011/04/21/news/companies/donald_trump_excerpts/index.htm

readering said...

Can't believe Trump wouldn't be at the bottom of the remaining list for president. I want a politician in the oval office, not a vain old man looking for something interesting to occupy his time after he has retired from his long business career.

Ann Althouse said...

"Color me skeptical. You have opinions on Trump. They are probably slightly unfavorable, perhaps not as unfavorable as Meade's, but I doubt you are neutral on Trump. True, you might have not made up your mind for whom to vote, I do buy that. But I will bet a ham sandwich, you're not voting for Trump."

I do have opinions on Trump but the don't add up to a decision.

I have a strange personal liking for him and I don't accept the prodding to hate him. In fact, I react the other way and feel like defending him against unfair charges. I don't think he's a racist or a sexist, and I'm inclined to believe that he wants to offer himself for public service because he thinks he has special skills and that they'd be good for America. I had a dream about him that I won't describe in detail but that revealed a favorable opinion of him.

BUT!!! I am concerned that his mind isn't properly suited to the role of President. Winning in business deals is more different from winning in building the American economy and keeping us secure than he seems able to see. It's weird to express such confidence that the expertise is transferable. He expresses himself in a way that makes me worry that he's too flighty and disordered to do everything he's supposed to do. And I can't tell how much of a risk-taker he is, possibly way too much.

If I were conservative on social issues, I would definitely reject him. But I'm not.

n.n said...

I wonder if Gawker has ever considered exposing the "final solution" carried out in abortion clinics and clinical cannibalism in Planned Parenthood. The exposure of socialist commission of genocide confirmed the moral orientation of the war in the allied powers' favor.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Ann Althouse said...I really don't like anyone that much, though I could put them in order that I'd enjoy being friends with them. Trusting one to be president... what a horrorshow!

You know, that's usually true but it's certainly seems more true this time around. I feel that way about a lot of thing (w/r/t national politics/gov) lately--many of the themes and trends just seem heightened lately. I'm sure some of that is just Media coverage/interest, but I'm not sure that's all...

Just to mention: the answer some of us came to quite a while ago is that the best response to the obvious defects in our "ruling class" and in the government/bureaucracy generally is to reduce the size and scope of the federal government and to respect the system of federalism by pushing as much power (and as many decisions) down to as low a level of government as possible...but of course that's crazy talk!

Chuck said...

Althouse...
...
...In fact, I react the other way and feel like defending him against unfair charges.



As it pertains to your own blog, Professor, there's no doubt that you have endeavored to be fair to Trump.

And as one of Trump's most ardent critics (among several others, whom I very much admire) on your blog, do you think that your blog has hosted any unfairness toward Trump? Because I definitely don't.

I regard myself as a careful, determined, unrelenting, fair critic of Trump.

Ann Althouse said...

"Althouse will vote for Hillary on the basis of her being the most experienced or some such folderol, thought up as she walks to the polls, and won't accept that she made a mistake until well into the first term of disaster."

She has sat in the Senate and occupied the position of Secretary of State, but what did she do? What are her achievements when trusted with power? The experience is something of the opposite of a recommendation, because looking at what she's done, I'm seeing failure. She got herself into so much trouble as Secretary of State. It's ridiculous.

I hate the idea of voting for her, but that doesn't mean she won't be the best of a bad bunch. They are all bad in different ways.

n.n said...

Selective exclusion is socially conservative. Not traditionally conservative, but liberally conservative. Liberalism has a selective or variable orientation that changes with generations, prevailing winds, and accedes to special and peculiar interests.

Ann Althouse said...

"Aww, poor Ted Cruz! What about an order you'd like to have a discussion on a legal topic (or even just a general BloggingHeads talk) with 'em?"

Eh. You should have reminded me of his interest in pop culture and the voice acting he does -- Princess Bride, Dr. Seuss.

I'd forgotten that when I made my list.

It's the talking-like-an-advocate demeanor that's not what I would enjoy in a casual situation. That's what I was thinking of. It seems to never stop.

But, generally, it's the sanctimony and righteousness that just isn't my personal taste in friendship.

Maybe he's not like that in private. I don't know. I am inclined to think he's earnest and honest. My worry is he's too rigid and severe. I know that's what some of you conservatives love.

traditionalguy said...

Interestingly, The Donald used a Right to Privacy case victory to leverage some cred for his Libel Law restoration threat. And the libel law is dead for now. But he is using its threat to back down incoming fire.

Heidi Cruz is under threat today for her husband'd slimey use of religious slander games.

Ann Althouse said...

"Publication with a motive to damage reputation is libel."

That's so wrong.

Are you trying to talk about "actual malice"? Because you are failing terribly.

Chuck said...

Ann Althouse said...
...
...

If I were conservative on social issues, I would definitely reject him. But I'm not.


It is an interesting, and fair, notion on your part.

As is typical with Trump, there's a paucity of public data to go on; but I think it is fair to say that Trump is the LEAST ideological of any of the 24 or so Republican presidential candidates in the last 16 years, on the subject of same-sex marriage.

Trump is almost indisputably more liberal on same sex marriage law, than Governor Kasich. I'm not sure about Senator Paul.

The problem with Trump is that he's not even good as any sort of intelligent discussant on the topic. Trump thinks that judges sign "bills."

Ann Althouse said...

"And as one of Trump's most ardent critics (among several others, whom I very much admire) on your blog, do you think that your blog has hosted any unfairness toward Trump? Because I definitely don't."

That would require much more careful reading of the comments than I can do.

There are hundreds of comments every day. Some I read, some I skim, and some I never get to. But I don't have an informed opinion of whether it's all been fair. I'm sure some people are being unfair. That's only natural.

If something struck me as unfair, I'd probably skim on to the next thing.

Ann Althouse said...

"Heidi Cruz is under threat today for her husband'd slimey use of religious slander games."

I'm planning to blog that story soon, but I don't think you're properly stating it. The anti-Trump ads were not placed by Cruz but by supporters of Cruz. He can't coordinate with those people. How could that make him slimy?

Curtiss said...

"I had a dream about him that I won't describe in detail but that revealed a favorable opinion of him."

So Trump is in your head. Perhaps you're not as comfortably in the middle as you think.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Ann Althouse said...Maybe he's not like that in private. I don't know. I am inclined to think he's earnest and honest. My worry is he's too rigid and severe. I know that's what some of you conservatives love.

Yeah, substitute "steadfast and upright" for rigid and "straightforward and forthright" (or maybe "genuine and direct") for severe--and of course "respect" for love, and I think you're pretty close, yeah.

No denying he's not a great politician, though.

But, generally, it's the sanctimony and righteousness that just isn't my personal taste in friendship.
I've never been to Madison, but I'm familiar w/the stereotypes...I'm sure you have lots of friends there, though.

Bob Ellison said...

"The anti-Trump ads were not placed by Cruz but by supporters of Cruz. He can't coordinate with those people. How could that make him slimy?"

Come, now, let us be adults. The campaign laws are silly. There is coordination and slime enough to go around on all sides. Of course Cruz's people coordinate (shh...shh...let's use the wizzle phone on this one). So do Hillary's and so do all the rest.

Bay Area Guy said...

Althouse sez:

I have a strange personal liking for him and I don't accept the prodding to hate him. In fact, I react the other way and feel like defending him against unfair charges. I don't think he's a racist or a sexist, and I'm inclined to believe that he wants to offer himself for public service because he thinks he has special skills and that they'd be good for America. I had a dream about him that I won't describe in detail but that revealed a favorable opinion of him.

I buy this and salute this. In my view, the tendency of the Left to hurl the racist, sexist, homophobic charges in lieu of rational debate and discussion is horrendous.

BUT!!! I am concerned that his mind isn't properly suited to the role of President. Winning in business deals is more different from winning in building the American economy and keeping us secure than he seems able to see. It's weird to express such confidence that the expertise is transferable. He expresses himself in a way that makes me worry that he's too flighty and disordered to do everything he's supposed to do. And I can't tell how much of a risk-taker he is, possibly way too much.

I buy this too. My overall concern, though, is that Hillary is so bad, so corrupted by the pursuit of power and money, so inauthentic and scripted and aggrieved, that, Yes, even The Donald, flaws and all, would be preferable.

HoodlumDoodlum said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
eric said...

I don't understand this making up your mind as you walk to the polls.

Why vote?

I believe you've stated not voting is a perfectly reasonable position. If you're not a Democrat or a Republican, why not leave the choice up to them who they run and stay out of it?

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Ann Althouse said... In fact, I react the other way and feel like defending him against unfair charges. I don't think he's a racist or a sexist, and I'm inclined to believe that he wants to offer himself for public service because he thinks he has special skills and that they'd be good for America.

I meant to add, I feel almost exactly the same way! For me, though, as someone on the Right, it's more a matter of seeing the Media attacks on Trump through the lens of the Media's normal attacks on the Right. Trump actually DOES say pretty extreme things and really DOES seem to embody a number of bad traits (and/or beliefs) that the Media normally accuses the Right/Republicans having, so when they attack and denigrate Trump now it just highlights, for me, how unfair they've always been and what damage that's done (to the Right, sure, but also to our political system). Prof. Reynolds' USA Today column this week taking David Brooks to task hit the nail on the head when it discussed the Media's treatment/portrayal of the Tea Party. The Tea Party supporters were denounced as racists and extremists when really they were just average (right-leaning) Americans who were fed up with their government and wanted to work together to bring about change. They were less politically successful than they could have been (and, really, SHOULD have been) in large part because they were successfully smeared and could on that basis be dismissed.

It's awkward to want Trump to lose but simultaneously to want Trump to continue to be successful in pointing out (and even countering) many of the unfair and damaging Media and cultural trends and tropes that, to me, have caused such long-term harm to our nation. I mean, ridiculous stuff like this: Emory Students Traumatized by pro-Trump chalkings! I dunno, maybe I'm just trying too hard to find a silver lining on the thundering storm cloud that is election 2016.

David Begley said...

The Gawker publisher wrote that evidence was excluded that this film was an intentional conspiracy between Holk Hogan and the Love Sponge in order to pre-empt and divert the media from filmed racist comments made by the Hulkster. Also excluded was a $5,000 settlement between the Hulkster and the Sponge. Mr. Sponge also took the Fifth. A scheme between the two of them is plausible and I'm suspicious. Might be reversed.

samanthasmom said...

Isn't the right to privacy sacrosanct in the Constitution? If it protects our private right to kill unborn babies, surely it should protect our privacy when we're having fun making babies (or not making babies, but doing the thing that would make babies if we weren't trying hard not to create babies we'd have to kill before they're born)?

Chuck said...

Bob Ellison; before I engage you on the subject of campaign finance law, I have to ask; were you an admirer of the BCRA which was in part gutted by the Citizens United Case? Or do you endorse a hypothetical law that would largely eliminate any donor limits to campaigns yet require full and immediate disclosure (say, online and within 48 hours)? Or some other scheme? Or no regulations at all?

Your answer will help me respond to your preceding post.

C Stanley said...

Hillary's poor use of her time in office is the least of it. The complete lack of ethics is disqualifying. I can't even be bothered to review whether or not she's had any accomplishments.

So no, she will not end up as the least bad.

mccullough said...

The libel laws vary among the states. For instance, New York is the most protective of defnandants, and goes beyond what the First Amendment requires. Trump has the most experience with New York law so maybe he knows it's more protective and wants to change that. Maybe he doesn't know and thinks the interpretation of the first amendment goes too far in protecting libelous statements. Maybe he thinks there should be a federal libel law that tracks the first amendment decisions but doesn't allow the major media companies the over protection they get.

A public figure/public official like Trump needs to prove that a reporter/publisher (i) made a false statement (ii) of material fact (iii) and, by a clear and convincing standard of proof, knew the statement was false or recklessly disregarded the truth or falsity of the statement. That is what the First Amendment requires of state libel laws for public figures. It also forbids an award of punitive damages to a public figure. After this, it is up to the state. It can require knowledge only, it can require reputational damages to be presumed (i.e. Plaintiff doesn't have to present evidence on how reputation was damaged by bringing in witnesses or expert testimony based on a methodologically sound survey poll, etc.). It can require proof of actual economic damages (eg a lost contact or business deal or loss of a job) before awarding any damages for reputation damages or emotional distress/mental anguish damages. It can also allow or not allow punitive damages.



In many states

Bay Area Guy said...

@David Begley

I have seen that too. It seems like the Hulkster, his pal, and his pal's wife have pulled off a serious scam. Iran v Iraq war though (why can't both sides lose), so no worries.


mccullough said...

Gawker needed admissible evidence to show this conspiracy. It had none.

mccullough said...

Scalia, using an originalist approach, said New York Times v Sullivan was wrong and imposed requirements that the First Amendment doesn't mandate.

traditionalguy said...

Threats of a counter slime at Cruz will only work because Cruz can order his supporters hiding out as "Independent" PAC Administrators to cease and desist or Cruz fires them. If they are independent "Anybody But Trump" Donor Class PACs, then expose them to prove the Donors are using your candidacy. The burden is still on Ted to stop impugning the character of "many foreign wives."

Ted's acting surprised and apologizing after the damage is done is as old as Trial Law practice itself. So the threat Trump made is don't allow another accidental attack on my wife's character or your wife's character will receive return fire, Trump Style.

Bob Ellison said...

Chuck, no, I didn't and don't support BCRA. That was an act by the already powerful to control the people.

In general, the rule should be: don't control speech, or money directed toward speech. But "get the money out of politics" is not reason enough, and it's not even fair. What about rich people who can buy their own campaigns? They're completely exempt. Bloomberg could maybe buy his way to the presidency, on 1st Amendment grounds. How is it fair that other people can't buy another person's way to office?

The no-money idea leads to pure public campaign finance, which is communism. It stems primarily from the notion that the voters, the electorate, the people who are supposed to be deciding who runs the government, are too stupid, too ignorant, and too poor to get it done right, so the elite, rich, already-elected will do it for them.

And it's not practical. Suzie told me Mitch said John says the new game is to attack Ted on having a pointy nose. That's not gonna get the laughable FEC (which should be abolished) on the case.

mccullough said...

If Cruz is an originalist, as he claims to be, then he agrees with Trump's view of the First Amendment.

Nonapod said...

Trumps various noises on libel are a bit worrying. I'm sure Trump would love to sue organizations and media personalities that he feels have treated him unfairly. For example I don't doubt he'd love to find some way to sue Megyn Kelly out of existence. Although maybe not? Given his twitter feed he seems to be weirdly obsessed with her

traditionalguy said...

WWF is Theater. The basic plot is good guys are hurt by bad guys with aid of referees who ignore rule violations, but somehow the crowd yells the good guy to victory.
Hogan is playing his good guy part he does so well. The Jury knew their role and yelled him to victory.

And Tampa folks hate being made fun of by NYC folks. So the Jury sent that message.

The Right to Privacy plot had to be twisted to make it work. No wonder Trump was surprised. Those were great trial lawyers.

shiloh said...

"They are all bad in different ways."

Déjà vu all over again although mittens was your heartthrob. And you liked Rubio/Scott Walker this time around for the same reasons.

Hey, admit it Obama was better looking than McCain so it was a no-brainer.

Truman was "our" last great president. I digress.

>

I'd like to be friends w/Scarlett Johansson.

Amanda said...

I don't have a moment of regret in speaking of Trump's massive amount of negative qualities. As far as the fairness factor in highlighting his negatives, I weigh it against what would be negative for this country. I have nothing against Trump personally as I don't know him, nor would I want to know him, he'd be last on my list of friends, ha. Generally thin skinned narcissists don't make good friends.

As far as he being racist, not sure, sexist, he most certainly is. I don't understand how it could be mistaken, he hones in on the his victim's female traits and then proceeds to make those traits look ugly or disgusting. The female attorney who needed a break to pump breast milk-"disgusting", Carly Fiorina- "look at that face", "blood coming out of wherever" trying to make Megyn Kelly 'disgusting'. I believe Trump thinks he can manipulate people into seeing him as not racist or sexist by occasionally making a show of being magnanimous toward a woman or a Black person. I don't see these acts as being sincere, I see them as a way to deflect attention from his negatives and bamboozle his critics.

mccullough said...

If Trump is a sexist, then why is his daughter a confident, tough minded person. Chelsea Clinton is a weak whiner. Should we judge candidates sexism by how their offspring turned out?

FullMoon said...

When I saw that the woman responsible for the nude pic of Trump's wife was connected with Walker ,my gut reaction was to lose respect for Walker. Only took a second or so to imagine that I was (briefly) feeling the way ant-Trump people react to occasional bad behavior by Trump supporters.

Amanda said...

Women dislike Trump even more than men dislike Clinton

Gabriel said...

@Bob Ellison:But "get the money out of politics" is not reason enough, and it's not even fair.

Well, you can make it "fair" (progressive definition), if you're willing to accept government licensing of the press.

Because press coverage is not an in-kind contribution, thanks to the First Amendment. So that means anyone who can claim to be "press" should be exempt from campaign finance laws. So how do you tell the New York Times (owned by a Mexican billionaire), a legitimate press publication, from the New York Blimes (owned by the NRA) which is an illegitimate attempt to run around the campaign finance laws by establishing a fake news outlet?

The solution, for those who worship power, is government licensing of the press. Journalists at places like the New York Times would fall all over themselves to jump through the licensing hoops and kiss whatever rings needed to be kissed, in exchange for government-issued credentials that establish they are Accredited Journalists.

That the government would certainly collude with the press to shape public perceptions is a feature, not a bug.

That's where this was always going. It's good for the Republic that Citizens United went the way it did.

Amanda said...

Graphic @1:43pm based on this Quinnipiac poll.

Wilbur said...

In pro wrestling terminology, Trump supporters are widely regarded as Humanoids.

Hat tip to The Brain.

shiloh said...

"If Trump is a sexist, then why is his daughter a confident, tough minded person."

Trump In 1988: Ivana And I Don’t Argue Because She ‘Does Exactly As I Tell Her To Do’

ok, people can change ...

HoodlumDoodlum said...

David Begley said...
The Gawker publisher wrote that evidence was excluded that this film was an intentional conspiracy between Holk Hogan and the Love Sponge in order to pre-empt and divert the media from filmed racist comments made by the Hulkster. Also excluded was a $5,000 settlement between the Hulkster and the Sponge. Mr. Sponge also took the Fifth. A scheme between the two of them is plausible and I'm suspicious. Might be reversed.


I read that too, David, but what else do you expect the Gawker publisher to say? I mean, there was a legal proceeding. He had some lawyers. Expensive ones, I'd wager. I know they're saying the judge's rulings were bad, but again what do you expect them to say? This wasn't some star chamber/campus sex assault proceeding where only one side got a fair shake--maybe they win on appeal but I find neither their whining nor their spooky conspiracy theorizing very convincing, myself.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

The spectacle of people who make their money publicizing smears, innuendo, and gossip claiming not to have been treated fairly is, by the way, pretty rich.

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

I wonder if traditionalguy gets tired of sycophancy.

David Begley said...

Hoodlum

I think the most important thing here is that not only is Hogan a celebrity but that he comes from that crazy WWE world.

How does one distinguish between Terry and Hulk?

The trial judge made errors of law. She also let him wear his Hulkster wrag in the courtroom! Nuts.

Reversed and remanded.

Steven Davis said...

@Wilbur, I stumbled across this article today, it's dated so it may have already been discussed here:

http://thinkprogress.org/politics/2015/09/14/3701084/donald-trump/

Brando said...

"If there was evidence that he himself could, if given the time, detail these connections, that he understood the details or specifics of issues, then it would be acceptable to make those connections for him. Or at least defensible."

That's exactly it. There's this tendency among Trump's apologists to assume there's some hidden genius here, a constant benefit of the doubt that he has yet to earn. Perhaps if he carried on a single conversation or speech where he actually displayed some complex understanding of the issues he's talking about, it would be deserved. But so far he comes across like a hyperactive child.

"Order I'd enjoy being friends with them: Trump, Sanders, Hillary, Kasich, Cruz."

So you enjoy being friends with cruel, vindictive people who turn harshly on you any time you differ with them? Those must be terrific friendships.

Not that the others in that lineup sound great, but geez.

"For example I don't doubt he'd love to find some way to sue Megyn Kelly out of existence. Although maybe not? Given his twitter feed he seems to be weirdly obsessed with her"

He has weird obsessions about a lot of things that suggest a mental disorder--the hands thing goes well beyond amusing jokes and make me wonder if he might have some clinical obsession. But the hands thing is harmless--this constant attack on Megyn Kelly is a vindictiveness that you really don't want in a national leader.

"If Trump is a sexist, then why is his daughter a confident, tough minded person. Chelsea Clinton is a weak whiner. Should we judge candidates sexism by how their offspring turned out?"

Sexists can't sire confident, successful women? I don't know about that. I don't think Trump is really sexist, but his daughter doesn't really prove anything. Obama's daughters turned out just fine as far as I can tell but Obama has some troubling personal qualities of his own.

aritai said...

From a distance it appears you're pTb is more than fair when he need not be, per playground rules. He seems to all give those that poke him in the eye one warning, with a veiled factual threat before he brings out his flamethrower. Best I can determine he didn't publish the details, the same as he hasn't done for many others that threatened him like Mr. McCain. his less than direct response, hiding the reason why he's exactly right, letting Mr. McCain save face is enough while absorbing the public ridicule himself, likely crediting McCain for being a good man with very human failings. Seems your pTb never takes the easy choice. In this case though Mr. Cruz isn't directly responsible, he got his one warning. He and Mr. Cruz kept the peace for a long time even with Mr. C’s provocations before pTb responded to the attacks. Best I can determine he didn't publish the details, the same as he hasn't done for many others that threatened him like Mr. McCain.

In this case Mr. Cruz has the opportunity to tell his supporters “You're not helping, and you're going to cost me not only my opportunity to be nominated, but you will bring great harm to my family so cut it out else I'll withdraw from the contest, my family is too important." Which would more than satisfy, I expect, your pTb. Who'd likely ask him to please remain in the race, the voters deserve an opportunity to have a choice, which he needs as well if he's to play this generation's Andrew Jackson, with the voters having his back so he can destroy the establishments of both parties and return rule to the people. Remember that he acted against his own interest when he asked Mr. Rubio to withdraw once it was impossible Mr. R. to get the nomination so the voters could have a clear rather than diluted choice in the primaries, with only he and Cruz fighting it out in the debates.

I'm surprised the media has not done a colonoscopy of both families. Then again, they have for your pTb in my opinion, and would certainly do it for Mr. Cruz if nominated. Ms. H. and her family? Never. pTb and his family have no secrets. Medical records? Children’s issues at school? No way. pTb doesn't even drink, the monk. Oh, right, that's Abbott in Australia who was far too nice to keep his job given the resistance of his own country's establishment liberal and labor.

mccullough said...

Trump isn't a genius. He's just smarter than the people who run the RNC and the candidates in the GOP primary.

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

Gabriel, I agree.

What makes a journalist? A government license to practice freedom of speech?

Abolish all shield laws, seriously.

khesanh0802 said...

Someone made the comment that it was important to have a politician not a business person in the presidency, presumably because they are more capable than a business person. It reminded me of George McGovern who, after he left politics, tried to run a hotel business. He never stood a chance and was a horrible failure. He said later, to paraphrase, that he had no idea how much talent and effort it took to run a business.

Bob Ellison said...

aritai, I guess I'm too lazy to wonder what pTb means, or maybe I'm just too old not to notice that it's some dumb lingo from folks who write too long in web comments. Try to be more concise, and define your terms.

Chuck said...

Wow, Bob Ellison; I confess to being unclear about what kinds of campaign finance spending you would favor, and consequently I'm not sure why you'd be opposed to unrestricted spending by groups that are legally barred from coordinating with campaigns.

Bob Ellison said...

Chuck, the default position should be no impositions on campaign finance spending. If I run an ice-cream shop, am I restricted as to how many ads I can run on TV for my products?

"legally barred from coordinating with campaigns" - you think that's an acceptable concept? and a practicable one?

Brando said...

"Someone made the comment that it was important to have a politician not a business person in the presidency, presumably because they are more capable than a business person."

I don't know who said that, but anyone running for president is by definition a politician. I have said that the skill sets for running a business and running a government are very different, and if you don't have experience in running a government you'd better have good advisers who understand the law, the legal and fiscal limitations of the office and your political ambitions, and you need the skills to operate within those constraints. Likewise, a successful politician isn't going to necessarily be good at running a business (see Harry Truman).

Our last truly successful businessman to become president was Herbert Hoover.

Brando said...

"Althouse will vote for Hillary on the basis of her being the most experienced or some such folderol, thought up as she walks to the polls, and won't accept that she made a mistake until well into the first term of disaster."

I'm not so sure she'll vote for Hillary--her posts have been mightily pro-Trump lately. I think she's going to try and Make America Great Again.

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

Thank you, Steven Davis. I found it interesting, if not edifying.

The notion that Trump reminds me of a professional wrestler - or possibly more properly, a manager - has been lingering in the back of my head for a while. The article brought it to the forefront. In trying to think specifically of who Trump reminds me, about the best I can come up is the late Roddy Piper or maybe Freddie Blassie.

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

mccullough @ 2:22 w/rt the RNC

Talk about damning with faint praise?!?

That was the softest bigotry of low expectations ever, sir.

LMAO

Of the candidates, Dershowitz offered his opinion of the intellectual firepower of every student and claimed Cruz had the goods over all of them. Seems like a bit of a stretch to think Trump is smarter than Cruz, even though he has aptitudes Cruz clearly doesn't.

Chuck said...

Yes, Bob, I do think that a holding that allows unrestricted spending by uncoordinated groups is workable law. But like you, I was never a fan of the BCRA. If I had been on the Court, I would have (like Justice Alito) joined in the majority, as well as the concurrence by Chief Justice Roberts (as did Alito) and the concurrence by Justice Scalia (as did Alito). I'm torn on the concurrence by Justice Thomas, which would have gone further and would have stricken the reporting requirements in the BCRA, which weren't dispositive to the outcome.

The status quo in campaign finance encourages too much uncoordinated spending, in my own view, to the disadvantage and even the destruction of the political parties. I'd prefer no donation limits, but with more reporting requirements if there is a real problem with illegal influence and bribery. (I don't think there is, to be honest with you.)

Anyway, you seem like much more of a libertarian, than to crack down on independent groups who spend their own money on causes and communications that they belive in, without regard to what any candidate might think, pro or con.

Birkel said...

I thought pTb was a reference to P.T. Barnum of traveling circus fame.

The T is capitalized to refer to Trump.

Is that wrong?

Chuck said...

mccullough: As usual, when we get close to a subject that concerns Trump, you get dishonest.

You can't be serious, trying to defend Trump on the verbal mess he's made in connection with libel law. It's -- quoting Professor Althouse -- "ridiculous."

And don't try to tell people that Justice Scalia didn't believe in New York Times v. Sullivan, as if it were some sort of deflection or defense of Trump's own idiocy on the subject.

Justice Scalia spoke at length on the case in an appearance at the Aspen Institute. Here is what Scalia said:

“Now the old libel law used to be (that) you’re responsible, you say something false that harms somebody’s reputation, we don’t care if it was told to you by nine bishops, you are liable,” Scalia continued. “New York Times v. Sullivan just cast that aside because the Court thought in modern society, it’d be a good idea if the press could say a lot of stuff about public figures without having to worry. And that may be correct, that may be right, but if it was right it should have been adopted by the people. It should have been debated in the New York Legislature and the New York Legislature could have said, ‘Yes, we’re going to change our libel law.’ But the living constitutionalists on the Supreme Court, the Warren Court, simply decided, ‘Yes, it used to be that … George Washington could sue somebody that libeled him, but we don’t think that’s a good idea any more.’”


So as is often the case with Scalia, you have confused process with subject. You might as well declare that Scalia opposed same-sex marriage. He didn't. What he opposed was the imposition of a federal judge-made law that surpasses state law on the subject. Scalia could not figure out what part of the Constitution, all of which was written in years when same-sex marriage was unthinkable, was supposed to mandate a federal right to homosexual sodomy and same-sex marriage.

And now, because I don't want to give you any breathing room, I also want to cut you off from any reply to the effect of, "Well, Trump might be just talking about New York and New Jersey libel law." Nope. Not buying that. If that is what Trump means, Trump should say so. That's not what he's said. He should run for the New York state senate, or governor, if he wants to change New York laws. So, no. Don't try that end-around. It will not work.

Trump is campaigning for President of the United States. He's the guy who brought up this subject; no other candidate has. Trump has made a lot of strange and provocative statements about libel law, and he has spoken about what he'd like to do, or propose, as President. It has been weeks, since this subject came up. And in all of that time, Trump continues to talk jibberish.

This is on Trump; and it is exposing his stupidity, his bad instincts, and his lack of serious information and counsel.

Wilbur said...

pTb = PT boats? Pass the biscuits? Prune the bushes?

Birkel said...

I do like biscuits.

holdfast said...

The Melania ad was beyond dumb, and as such I tend to think that the legit Cruz organization had nothing to do with it. It was web-only, so it likely had little money behind it.

I was going to write that the candidates should leave each others spouses out of it - but then I realized I don't really mean that with respect to Bill Clinton. Maybe this is because he crosses the line from just being the supportive spouse on the stump - saying the usual things about how wonderful hubby/wifey is and how proud they are of him/her. I don't think it's a sexist thing - I know nothing about Fiorina's or Elizabeth Warren's respective husbands, and I don't care. I know that Pelosi and DiFi are both married to rich dudes, but they aren't political. So I guess it's just a Bill thing.

Barry Dauphin said...

Gawker should have done a retraction---run the sex tape backwards.

John Henry said...

Most surprising thing to me from the article is that he is only 6'5" tall.

I met him once. Delta departure lounge, LaGuardia 1989. Chatted with him for a minute or two, both of us standing.

I am 6'1" and I would have sworn that he was at least 12" taller than me. I had to tilt my head way back. He looks big on TV but that doesn't do him justice. The guy is enormous.

John Henry

John Henry said...


Our last truly successful businessman to become president was Herbert Hoover.

Hoover was one of the most amazing people we have had become president. Wildly successful at everything he touched. Gifted writer. Humanitarian, probably saved 20mm Europeans from starvation in wwI, first as a private citizen, after US entered the war as a $1/year employee. Excellent Secty of Commerce.

Pretty good Minister of Natural Resources for China in the early 1900s

Surprisingly not such a good president. Some of that was his fault and some beyond his control.

The first 3 volumes of his memoirs (Birth through presidency) are available for download from the Hoover Library. Interesting and very well written.

A few of his other books are at Gutenberg.

John Henry

mccullough said...

Chuck,

You don't understand how the First Amendment affects state libel laws. New York Times v Sullivan said those slander and libel laws that didn't comply with its announcement as to what the First Amendment requires are not enforceable in court.

Many people like Sullivan. But they aren't originalists. You can't be an originalist and believe Sullivan was correctly decided.

The only way to change it is to appoint a Justice who is an originalist. So Trump would have to appoint a Justice like Scalia or Thomas. An originalist would say the state can impose a Sullivan standard under its own laws if it wants but that the Constituion doesn't require it.

If Cruz is an originalist, then he agrees Sullivan was wrong.

Paco Wové said...

"I want a politician in the oval office, not a vain old man..."

Why? What's so great about politicians?