December 11, 2016

"The election of Donald Trump to the Presidency of the United States has effectively forked reality into two versions that are running in parallel."

"Clinton’s supporters believe they are living in a world that is a repeat of 1930s Germany, with Trump playing the part of Adolf Hitler. See this reaction for a typical example. Meanwhile, the other half of the country believes we elected a highly-capable populist who will 'drain the swamp' and bring a business approach to government along with greater prosperity. So how do you know which reality is the real one? The fast answer is that you can’t know. As I said, the human brain did not evolve to understand reality. But just for fun and education, I’ll tell you the best way dig down to the next layer of truth: Look for the Cognitive Dissonance trigger...."

Scott Adams is helping us understand the reality of our illusions.

108 comments:

Darrell said...

Since the Lefties call everyone who doesn't support their agenda Hitler, you can assume this to be another bullshit charge.

Ron said...

ya know....the Nazis worked really hard to make that reputation....and now, their name is attached to every reality show host that comes down the pike! Disgusting...

epador said...

I've recently changed my morning block read to start with Althouse and follow with Adams, (see, its not all about alphabetical order) and here she is linking him!

Curious George said...

You know that if a Hitler charge finally does come true, even if it's for someone decades from now, some asshole lefty who was 0-100 up to that point will say "told ya."

MikeR said...

Michelle Goldberg again? She was completely out of touch with reality already back in her Bloggingheads days w Anne Althouse. It's disheartening that such a large chunk of the country is oblivious like this.

Ann Althouse said...

@MikeR

Thanks for pushing me to watch that video. Jeez! Goldberg finds it "menacing" that Trump said — to the people who didn't vote for him — "They're on our side, they just don't know it yet" and "You're going to like what we have in store."

Wilbur said...

AA, I read "Jeez! Goldberg finds it "menacing" that Trump said ..." as Jonah Goldberg.

I experienced relatively mild cognitive dissonance. That's what Wilbur gets for reading too fast.

rhhardin said...

I put it down to women's magazines moving to the MSM.

There the expectation is contact with reality, which is a fading expectation now.

chickelit said...

We are all well and truly forked.

Mick said...

I stopped reading HERE:

"Look for the Cognitive Dissonance trigger.

In this case, Clinton supporters were persuaded to believe that Trump is OBVIOUSLY the next coming of Hitler. Or maybe worse because Trump is also rude and sexist. If that version of reality is true, Trump could not have been elected president. But he was. That’s the trigger for cognitive dissonance: two observations that don’t fit together."

Adams makes a false assumption, and also mis-defines, and mis-identifies "cognitive dissonance".
The false assumption is that, "If that version of reality is true, Trump could not have been elected president". Obviously Trump COULD be the next Hitler and rude and sexist, and BE ELECTED. Cognitive dissonance occurs when reality does not fit preconceived beliefs, and one amends reality in their head to fit the preconceptions, or avoids reality altogether to protect the preconception. The Reality is that TRUMP WAS ELECTED, the preconception is that HRC "deserved it" and was "winning by a landslide". The "cognitive dissonance" is that Trump "is not my President", was "aided by the Russians", "won the election unfairly", and that the "electoral college is not fair".

They are in the anger stage now, next comes bargaining-- after the inauguration.

Trump won all but around 500 of around 3100 counties in the US. It was a territorial and electoral landslide that was easy to predict if your eyes were open--- just by observing the fervor and attendance of his supporters at rallies compared to the sleepiness and lack of attendance at the crooked Old Lady's rallies. As he usually does, Adams makes something simple complex.

EDH said...

GOLDBERG: Because it is coming from the mouth of Donald Trump. Who is going to turn our country into a racist police state.

Escape from Trump Tower

"Tell this to the workers when they ask where their leader went. We, the soldiers of The National Liberation Front of America, in the name of the workers and all the oppressed of this imperialist country, have struck a fatal blow to the racist police state. What better revolutionary example than to let their president perish in the inhuman dungeon of his own imperialist prison."

Mark said...

the other half of the country believes we elected a highly-capable populist who will 'drain the swamp' and bring a business approach to government along with greater prosperity

No. Not really. The "other half" is happy to know that we dodged having a return of Clintonism and a pathologically dishonest, paranoid, corrupt, power-lusting, angry, full-of-contempt, and self-centered woman for president who, although primarily concerned with her own power and sense of entitlement, also favors an ideology that is and has been highly destructive of society and culture, which seeks to tear down prior institutions in favor of their new paradise, complete with a culture of death and the machinery to put it in motion, all while projecting their own deep-seated evil on the "other half."

The "other half" voted largely believing that the person they voted for is a big question mark who COULD POSSIBLY be a capable president, but time will tell.

Bay Area Guy said...

Scott Adams should get a lot of credit for his astute political observations this campaign season, and Althouse gets credit too for bringing him to our collective attention.

The folks who think Trump is like Hitler and the USA like Germany in the 1930s are not only delusional, but ignorant too. They should READ about Germany in the 1930s. They should to understand the context of WW1 and its aftermath, and how awful it was. They should try to understand what Europe was like with Germany and USSR, led by two genocidal dictators, Hitler and Stalin, at the helm, with Mao leading his own band of murderous Communist rebels on the march in China.

I understand the pain of losing. I really do. It hurts. This time, the Left lost, and it's painful, because it was so unexpected. I get that. But these Snowflakes haven't experienced real pain, the pain of war, the pain of hunger or even the modest pain of getting into a fistfight as a teenager on a Saturday night. They live in a bubble that has greatly stunted their intellectual and emotional growth. So, to them, reality bites. But that's there problem, not ours.

clint said...

But I like my illusions.

I was promised that if I liked my illusions I could keep my illusions.

Chuck said...

Professor Althouse, may I ask about your seeming fascination with two particular news outlets that you seem to blog about more often than others?

One is of course the New York Times; the other is Meet the Press.

Is it nostalgia? Is it simply that they are two such visible avatars for the mainstream media? Do you have any particular admiration for them, as news providers? Are they the very best examples of Manhattan/left bias, masquerading as the "best" of American journalism?

Is it all of those things? Something else? (I sort of expect that it will be something else, and that you will surprise and delight us with whatever it is.)

I ask, because NBC (and the Times, to a lesser extent) seems to have gone full-MSNBC on the "Russians swung the election for Trump" fake-news story. Chuck Todd occasionally makes news, I'd have to agree, and he can be a hard questioner, but I have never thought much of that show and that it is a poor substitute for Sunday's best program (Fox News Sunday with Chris Wallace).

wildswan said...

The fake news story that Russia leaked memos to help Trump win depends on the supposition that Russia thought Trump had a chance to win. But no other establishment group thought Trump would win. Why would the Russians, authoritarians to the core, unlike all other authority groups think Trump would win? Cognitive dissonance.

In my opinion the Russians were angry at Obama for the sanctions and out to get Clinton who would continue Obama's policies. But what would be the best lies to tell about Clinton?

The Russians simply recognized that Clinton was so corrupt that the best lies to tell would be her own lies and those of other Democrats.

The American media was so corrupt that the Russians could use the truth, i.e. Clinton's lies and Democratic party lies, instead of made-up Russian lies. Thus the Russians become purveyors of truths (namely,American lies) which the American media was hiding. Masters of chess, the Russians probably thought it was funny.

And now Obama is trying to create a narrative about how the Russians saw Trump would win and wrap that lie around the Russian truths about Hillary thus making telling the truth about Hillary as sinister as Soviet cold war lies.

A world of mirrors exposed and half-smashed by a time of change.

Mark said...

Which party in the U.S. today believes in eugenics? Which believes that some life is unworthy of living, that some human life is not even human or life, but essentially untermenschen? Which stifles dissent and demands that you comply with new order? Which has especially the last several years viewed their leader as some kind of savior and deliverer of the people? Which has gangs of people who, although not necessarily wearing shirts colored brown, nevertheless roam the streets to smash and burn and bully people? Which seeks to take over or otherwise suppress religious institutions? Which has implemented executive decrees restricting liberties and/or dictating that people act against conscience? Which is obsessed with irrational bitter resentments while convinced of their own superiority?

Comanche Voter said...

Gee Mark, why don't you just come right out and say what you really think of Hillary Clinton?

I'm probably misqouting Victor Davis Hanson, but VDH said that the country's fears of Donald Trump were in the subjunctive, i.e. what he might do in the future. OTOH the country's fears of Hillary Clinton were in the indicative---we'd already seen her lie repeatedly, run a pay to play operation in the State Department (and you can go on with the rest of her baggage).

So one was a known quantity--rightly subject to contempt, while the other was an unknown quantity on whom one could project one's fears.

Look I'm not fond of Trump, (and I didn't vote for Clinton) but I'm willing to give the guy a chance and see how things work out before making a final judgement.

Mark said...

From which strain of ideology and politics in the U.S. and U.K. did the Nazis themselves first get some of their ideas? Ideas like "three generations of idiots are enough"?

Birkel said...

Chuck is unable to discuss the post. So Chuck attempts to distract us.

It would seem Scott Adams had a good sense of the election. He seemed to understand. Understanding is hard. Understanding is harder when one is holding one's breath and pouting while thinking in terms of the "No True Sctosman" fallacy.

AReasonableMan said...

If 'greater prosperity' is the criteria for deciding which alternative reality is real then Trump might have a problem. I see no clear evidence that Trump has an economic plan that will reliably deliver 'greater prosperity'.

Rich Lowry has a go at outlining Trump's economic policies:

"Of course, Republican politicians always talk about jobs and economy, although usually in the bloodless context of gross domestic product growth. Obviously, we want the GDP to grow, but it can be an empty metric for average workers. In fact, it’s possible to pursue policies that increase the GDP while harming the interests of workers.

Trump never mentions poverty. And while he talks a lot about reducing taxes, he never talks about increasing transfers, redistribution, or access to core goods. He talks about wages, full stop. And that’s the key to Trump’s economics. If you squint just right, you can see a strategy. It is to increase growth through traditional Republican means (i.e., tax reform and deregulation), at the same time he aims to directly create a tighter labor market through soaking up labor via an infrastructure program and reducing foreign competition by discouraging outsourcing and squeezing immigration."

'Traditional Republican means' have not traditionally been good for the labor market. Since WWII the unemployment rate has gone up under every Republican president other than Reagan and Reagan only produced a modest decline. In contrast it has gone down for every Democrat except Carter, who had no effect on unemployment. Even if you believer that the federal government can significantly tighten the labor market it is statistically unlikely that 'traditional Republican means' will do so.

Birkel said...

"AReasonableMan" closes his eyes, announces he sees "no clear evidence" and happily saunters to embrace Rich Lowry.

Any port in a storm.

CWJ said...

Chuck,

I believe Althouse has consistently stated that she blogs about what interests her. I assume what sources she follows in turn follow from that premise. I don't think there's more to it than that. Nor do I think asking her to explain her preferences adds anything to the discussion. It's good to remember that this is her personal blog, not the AP. I'm just happy to the extent our interests, not agreement, overlap.

Mark said...

Which has advocated what would essentially be a Ministry of Truth? Which routinely corrupts language? Which believes in punishment for thought-crime? Which prompts you to finally realize what Winston Smith meant when he wrote, "Freedom is the freedom to say that two plus two is four"?

tcrosse said...

Our hostess reads the NYT and watches Press the Meat so I don't have to. Much appreciated.

Sebastian said...

"So how do you know which reality is the real one? The fast answer is that you can’t know." Well, you could look at, you know, what's happening. For example, cabinet appointments. Not a Goering or Goebbels in the bunch, as far as I can tell. Nor do I detect any Dachau camps being built.

"As I said, the human brain did not evolve to understand reality." So we can't know which reality is the real one right around us but we can know what the human brain was evolved for. Quite the scientist, that Scott Adams.

mtrobertslaw said...

Should a real Hitler appear on the scene and manage to get himself elected, rest assured he will be a man of the far left. And one of his first tasks will be to come up with a final solution to the "deplorables" problem.

virgil xenophon said...

Actually the problem with leftists (and undoubtedly what causes them to be leftists in the first place) is that they have a genetic defect which prevents them from processing reality and thus they live their entire lives in a state of denial..

CWJ said...

Mark,

I agree with your comments, which is why the left has been so effective in shutting down publicly expressed opposition. Even when the stakes are small I've lost friendships when expressing my opinions while I've kept my politically disgreeable friends. They're my friends in spite of their politics, while I've occasionally been cast aside because of them. It's a frightening mindset I simply don't understand.

mikee said...

This is the Trousers of Time description of reality, from author Terry Pratchett, wherein one can go down either leg of the pants for any given choice, and never know what is in the other leg of the pants. And while Pratchett used the idea for humor, the Left doesn't even realize it was fiction.

JHapp said...

I suppose the only way to know is personal revelation but unfortunately most people will think you are crazy.

Robert Cook said...

"The 'other half; is happy to know that we dodged having a return of Clintonism and a pathologically dishonest, paranoid, corrupt, power-lusting, angry, full-of-contempt, and self-centered woman for president who, although primarily concerned with her own power and sense of entitlement, also favors an ideology that is and has been highly destructive of society and culture, which seeks to tear down prior institutions in favor of their new paradise, complete with a culture of death and the machinery to put it in motion, all while projecting their own deep-seated evil on the 'other half.'"

Dude...stop and catch a breath! You sound like a crazy person.

Of course, Clinton was a self-centered candidate concerned with her own power, but your blabber about her wanting to establish a "new paradise" suggests you think Clinton is some sort of socialist or communist. This is, of course, crazy. Clinton is no more left of center than Barack Obama, which is to say, not!

Robert Cook said...

"Should a real Hitler appear on the scene and manage to get himself elected, rest assured he will be a man of the far left."

Yes, because no right-wing person could ever be a new Hitler, or any kind of authoritarian or totalitarian dictator!

Hahahahaha!

gbarto said...

I'd say we've been living in two realities for quite some time now. I went to grad school in the mid-nineties for humanities. The people back home were aware of and dubious about the grad school work I lived in. And the people in grad school couldn't imagine a world where sensate people shopped at Wal-Mart other than ironically. What we are seeing now is nothing new. It's just my grad school world's shock that my small town world found a voice when it was supposed to have died away by now. But the othering of my small town world has been going on for quite some time now.

Fabi said...

Cookie enters strong with his No True Socialist fallacy. Another day ending in "y"!

Howard said...

The cognignative dissonance is Trumpsters believe that Donald will free markets while the Dow surge is due to his promise of infrastructure tax cut Keynesian economic stimulus.

pacwest said...

Tuned into the local Fox station this morning to watch the Wallace/Trump interview. During that hour the screen read "Due to FCC regulations 47 CFR 76.92F, 47 CFR 76.101 this program has been blacked out at the request of KIMT, KXLT, KTTC or KTTC-CW."

YoungHegelian said...

And speaking of historical similarities, what did the 1925 - 1941 Commies & their fellow travelers call their Social Democratic "socialist, but not far enough Left" brethren? "Social Fascists."

What did the Soviet Union think Fascism was?

Fascism is the open, terrorist dictatorship of the most reactionary, most chauvinist and most imperialist elements of finance capital. Fascism tries to secure a mass basis for monopolistic capital among the petty bourgeoisie, appealing to the peasantry, artisans, office employees and civil servants who have been thrown out of their normal course of life, and particularly to the declassed elements in the big cities, also trying to penetrate into the working class......

Born in the womb of bourgeois democracy, fascism in the eyes of the capitalists is a means of saving capitalism from collapse. It is only for the purpose of deceiving and disarming the workers that social-democracy denies the fascization of bourgeois democracy and draws a contrast in principle between the democratic countries and the countries of the fascist dictatorship. On the other hand, the fascist dictatorship is not an inevitable stage of the dictatorship of the bourgeoisie in all countries. The possibility of averting it depends on the forces of the fighting proletariat, which are paralyzed by the corrupting [disintegrating] influence of social-democracy more than by anything else.

Extracts from the Theses of the Thirteenth ECCI Plenum on Fascism, the War Danger, and the Tasks of the Communist Parties (Dec. 1933)

Page 262 Oxford Readers --- Fascism edited by Roger Griffin


So, if you think that the difference between Great Britain & Nazi Germany is one of degree, that Nazi Germany is just late stage capitalism having a bad hair day, then it's easy to understand why you wouldn't be too upset about going into a treaty with them.

Yeah, the Left is correct. We've been through this before in the 1930s. Except it's once again them failing to understand major qualitative differences among their opponents to the Right.

Michael K said...

I agree with chuck.

NBC (and the Times, to a lesser extent) seems to have gone full-MSNBC on the "Russians swung the election for Trump" fake-news story.

It was interesting to see this theme, which appears to be this weeks' talking points. It wasn't just NBC and MTP, I watched part of Stephanopolis and Dickerson with the same theme.

Howard is clueless at the reaction to the promise and prospect of repealing Obama's entire regulatory maze. Pay attention, Howard.

n.n said...

Judging people by their colorful clump of cells (a.k.a. "diversity").

Selective exclusion ("=").

Pro-Choice/abortion's terminating life unworthy of life or selective-child policy.

Planned Parenthood's clinical cannibalism.

Progressive wars.

The prophecy of Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming and other pseudo-science.

They may be right. We have taken a turn to the Left.

Chuck said...

Birkel said...
Chuck is unable to discuss the post. So Chuck attempts to distract us.


I just don't have a whole lot to say about Scott Adams. He interests Althouse, and that's fine, of course. But in this installment, he divides the entire country/electorate into two groups; liberals who basically regard Trump as a comprehensive evil on a par with a Hitler, and adoring Trump supporters who believe everything Trump puts out.

I know a lot of Republicans, most of whom voted for Trump only after hoping for a Republican alternative to Trump. And who still think of Trump as something of a clumsy, reckless idiot. I know many other Republicans, some of whom cast no presidential vote (there were almost 90,000 presidential undervotes in Michigan), or who voted for Clinton, or for Gary Johnson. A actually don't know anyone (save for the anonymous commenters online) who think of Trump in the way that Scott Adams characterizes Trump suporters. For me, Adam's hypnotic black and white dichotomy is completely invalid and a non-starter.

While some, and perhaps many low-information voters based their votes on emotionalism, I voted based on a cold-eyed view of the reality of partisan politics in Washington. People need to weigh a lot of personal options and information and decide which party they favor.

Scott Adams' "prediction" of a Trump victory, based on ersatz metrics of personality, messaging and emotionalism, isn't even close to being the most interesting of the Trump-victory predictions. Professor Alan Lichtman predicted a Trump win, basing it on real measurable in a far more interesting way than anything Adams ever wrote:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2016/10/28/professor-whos-predicted-30-years-of-presidential-elections-correctly-is-doubling-down-on-a-trump-win/?utm_term=.ef01609391f0

grackle said...

But I like my illusions. I was promised that if I liked my illusions I could keep my illusions.

Love it! This is Burge-level fun.

Chuck said...

Michael K;

I commented yesterday, that the 'Russians-won-the-election-for-Trump' story was leading the English-speaking world news coverage. Everywhere. I heard it on CBC-Canada radio, here outside of Detroit. It is the leading story on BBC, evidenced by their home page right now.

What is really interesting this morning is that Senate Republicans seem ready to open an investigation that Chuck Schumer suggested. And I don't mind a bit. I tend to like a lot of Intelligence oversight. Intelligence tends to require considerable oversight. I certainly don't trust the New York Times, or the unnamed sources who leaked the story about the CIA report or the fall briefing of congressional leadership. I always prefer more information, from adversarial sources, to less information, from supposedly trusted sources.

n.n said...

major qualitative differences among their opponents to the Right

At least the American Right. Capitalism does not tolerate monopolies and practices, and other price fixing schemes that are first-order causes of recurring catastrophic anthropogenic economic climate change. Christianity does not tolerate [class] diversity including institutional racism and sexism; conflation of logical domains including the fantasy of spontaneous human conception, Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming, and other departures from the scientific domain; and abortion rites including Pro-Choice/selective-child.

Well, in principle they are right. We'll see how well they reconcile moral, natural, and personal imperatives.

Mick said...

Chuck said..
"Scott Adams' "prediction" of a Trump victory, based on ersatz metrics of personality, messaging and emotionalism, isn't even close to being the most interesting of the Trump-victory predictions. Professor Alan Lichtman predicted a Trump win, basing it on real measurable in a far more interesting way than anything Adams ever wrote"

I predicted it for months, based on what I saw with my own eyes.

chickelit said...

Comanche Voter said...I'm probably misqouting Victor Davis Hanson, but VDH said that the country's fears of Donald Trump were in the subjunctive, i.e. what he might do in the future. OTOH the country's fears of Hillary Clinton were in the indicative---we'd already seen her lie repeatedly, run a pay to play operation in the State Department (and you can go on with the rest of her baggage).

I like that analogy but I'd go further and say that Hillary was the imperative mood.

Rhythm and Balls said...

It's not Hitler's Germany.... yet. But to deny that he tried to hit all the same emotional notes as Hitler or that he has no clue what he'll do apart from promising everything is absurd.

Rhythm and Balls said...

Cookie enters strong with his No True Socialist fallacy. Another day ending in "y"!

Yes, Fabi. Because socialists are all about promoting the lost sense of superiority of the long dominant ethnic group!

chickelit said...

Yes, Fabi. Because socialists are all about promoting the lost sense of superiority of the long dominant ethnic group!

R&B: I think you're forgetting that before Trump won the general election, he won the primary. And he won the primary against candidates and GOPe attitudes which specifically denigrated the white working class. See Kevin D. Williamson as an example. Instead of ignoring that electoral segment, the DNC should have played up this difference. But the DNC was beholdered to wrighting social injustice.

SGT Ted said...

Those that claim Trumps represents incipient fascism are ignoring the yuge historical difference. Both Hitler and Mussolini were fanatically ideological leaders and agitators for socialism before they split off to form their own political parties and movements. Trump is the exact opposite in this regards; an a-ideological person if there every was one.

There were no organized cells of thugs running around beating up and killing ideological opponents either. Rather opposite in fact: there were political agitators and thugs hired by Hillary's campaign to try and foment violence at Trump rallies to manufacture "Trump is a fascist" propaganda video clips of Trump supporters "attacking" the agitators after they had picked a fight.

The "Trump = Hitler" crap is sheer drama queenery and a leftwing oppression fantasy. If they truly thought he was Hitler, they'd be leaving the country.

Yancey Ward said...

pacwest wrote:

"Tuned into the local Fox station this morning to watch the Wallace/Trump interview. During that hour the screen read "Due to FCC regulations 47 CFR 76.92F, 47 CFR 76.101 this program has been blacked out at the request of KIMT, KXLT, KTTC or KTTC-CW."

Sounds sinister, but is probably an air rights conflict between the cable station you tuned into and one of the stations listed who had the local broadcast rights to the program.

Yancey Ward said...

I don't know how wide spread the belief in the new meme, "The Russians Did It To Hillary" actually is. I want to believe that the fraction is very, very tiny and mostly exists in the newsrooms of the MSM and in the faculty lounges of the colleges and universities, but my own experience tells me a different story. I have had a front row seat to watching two highly educated and intelligent relatives buy into this nonsense whole-hog, and this includes the "Trump Is The New Hitler" meme, too. That a grasp on reality can be so tenuous in just about anyone is kind of disconcerting to me.

Rhythm and Balls said...

R&B: I think you're forgetting that before Trump won the general election, he won the primary.

I think you're getting half the point. He won the primary for being less restrained and more blunt. Didn't have anything to do with "conventional Republicanism". That was the entire point.

He won (while losing the popular vote) the general by being more progressive on economic/trade concerns AND on military overreach. The SAME WAY OBAMA BEAT MCCAIN!

This is Trump playing a shell game with progressive and populist approaches. A phony populist in the primary, a phony progressive in the general. And now people want to pretend that Republicans will become a progressive, populist party to align themselves with his prescription for the fleeting success of an election. I predict they will not, and neither will he, and the whole thing will backfire.

And he won the primary against candidates and GOPe attitudes which specifically denigrated the white working class. See Kevin D. Williamson as an example. Instead of ignoring that electoral segment, the DNC should have played up this difference.

Yes, they should have.

But the DNC was beholdered to wrighting social injustice.

Well, if they want to get anywhere from here on out then they will have to undergo a massive purge and reinvent themselves along FDR lines and accept that class ALWAYS trumps ethnicity/race/gender/whatever. People can't do a damn thing about where their grandparents came from, what they look like, their genitals. They CAN however do an awful lot about whether the majority of the country making less than 45k? annually are getting as much attention from government as all the billionaires are. That's what matters and neglecting that is exactly what cost Hillary the election and the DNC any legitimacy.

JAORE said...

Trump is a racist, homophobic, anti-Semitic, puppet of Putin,... and, oh yeah, he's a Nazi that will build concentration camps on time and under budget.

A couple of years ago he was center-left with pals all across the political spectrum, but particularly on the left. And he'd maintained that status for decades under public scrutiny.

Damn, he would have made a GREAT spy or under cover cop.



Jupiter said...

"Meanwhile, the other half of the country believes we elected a highly-capable populist who will “drain the swamp” and bring a business approach to government along with greater prosperity."

Would that it were so. The fact is that the power and reach of the federal government has expanded vastly during my lifetime, to the point that I now see it as the greatest single threat to my family's well-being. The idea of that power in the hands of Hillary Clinton did not particularly worry me. As Cookie says, she has neither principles nor convictions. She is a mere appetite. But the army of looters, ideologues, parasites and Left Fascists in her train would have crystallized and directed that threat.

Trump is a loose cannon, and that is the best that can be said for him. But he does not appear to see the continual expansion of federal power as a problem. And he is therefore unlikely to bring about any improvement in our national malaise. He is a reprieve, no more.

Fabi said...

I'm not certain what your response to my comment is trying to convey, R&B -- care to elucidate?

Jupiter said...

There is something deeply puzzling about the whole "Russia-influencing-the-election" farce. I well recall when the Soviet Union kept several thousand ICBMs in 24/7 readiness to destroy our country and all the people in it. I don't recall anyone discussing this threat as intended to influence our elections, although I suppose the Soviets had their preferences like anyone else.

Are we now supposed to lie awake nights worrying that the Russians will expose our e-mails? I mean, what if they do? The Lunatic Media was full of stories about how our enlightened European allies were aghast at the prospect of a Trump Presidency. Are we to recoil in isolationist horror at the thought that the French might have preferred Hillary? Ah, but what if that preference had led them to -(gasp)- hack an e-mail?!? And -(gulp)- reveal its contents?!?

Perhaps the most telling aspect of the whole silly affair is the idea that the Russians worked their evil will upon us by revealing what the Democrats said to each other, as opposed to what they said to the American electorate. We used to do that to them, you know. It was called Radio Free Europe.

Rhythm and Balls said...

Well, clearly you're trying to deny the ethnic nationalism of Hitler/Trump were/are right-wing things.

Hitler wanted to destroy the weak. He had a might-makes-right ideology. The difference between that and being anti-welfare was that he thought the "bootstraps" Germans should pull themselves up by originated in their bloodlines, whereas the right-wing social Darwinists of the AEI and other "think tanks" who provide the GOP's economic policies think those bootstraps are willed economic instincts.

He was a mix of ideologies, but that was his prevailing concern. Your tribe thinks the rich are superior and deserve to prevail and destroy everything else; Hitler thought the Aryans were superior and deserve to prevail/destroy everything else. Ideologies of superiority, rather than concern for the downtrodden. Very right-wing.

Achilles said...

"There are no facts, only interpretations."

-Nietzsche

I love some of these quotes. for example:

"It is impossible to suffer without making someone pay for it; every complaint already contains revenge."

and

Achilles said...

Rhythm and Balls said...

I think you're getting half the point. He won the primary for being less restrained and more blunt. Didn't have anything to do with "conventional Republicanism". That was the entire point.

He won (while losing the popular vote) the general by being more progressive on economic/trade concerns AND on military overreach. The SAME WAY OBAMA BEAT MCCAIN!


Trump correctly diagnosed that this election was about the proletariat vs. the bourgeois. He noted correctly that the American People agree on 80% of the shit and we are getting screwed by corrupt politicians.

This is Trump playing a shell game with progressive and populist approaches. A phony populist in the primary, a phony progressive in the general. And now people want to pretend that Republicans will become a progressive, populist party to align themselves with his prescription for the fleeting success of an election. I predict they will not, and neither will he, and the whole thing will backfire.

I think failure is baked into the cake at this point. We borrowed and printed absurd amounts of money during the obama years and had no growth to show for it. In addition we are about to dislocate at least 15 million people from long tern jobs in trucking and transportation alone over the next 10 years due to automated driving. We are not even discussing a living stipend framework for when there are no jobs because robots are making the robots that make our stuff/food/housing.

Yes, they should have.

Well, if they want to get anywhere from here on out then they will have to undergo a massive purge and reinvent themselves along FDR lines and accept that class ALWAYS trumps ethnicity/race/gender/whatever. People can't do a damn thing about where their grandparents came from, what they look like, their genitals. They CAN however do an awful lot about whether the majority of the country making less than 45k? annually are getting as much attention from government as all the billionaires are. That's what matters and neglecting that is exactly what cost Hillary the election and the DNC any legitimacy.


A massive segment of the population will literally have nothing to do in the next couple of decades. It will be simultaneously glorious and disastrous. The overriding challenge of the next generation will be to find a purpose for people who don't need to grow food/make stuff. We will need a variety of ideas and perspectives.

I will repeat you need to take the DNC over and make it represent the left of the political spectrum. If there are large amounts of people who do not feel represented by the political process it leads to trouble.

Robert Cook said...

"There is something deeply puzzling about the whole "Russia-influencing-the-election" farce. I well recall when the Soviet Union kept several thousand ICBMs in 24/7 readiness to destroy our country and all the people in it."

It's probably more accurate to say they held those weapons to insure that we did not attempt to destroy their country and all the people in it.

hstad said...

Sorry "Chuck", this comment, "....I know a lot of Republicans, most of whom voted for Trump only after hoping for a Republican alternative to Trump. And who still think of Trump as something of a clumsy, reckless idiot....?" These Republicans and you get your view from the MSM, which I will heretofore call, FSM ("FakeStreamMedia"). How do you or the Republicans you know anything about Trump? Your knowledge is solely based upon media reports - which are largely fashioned as propaganda pushed during a political year. I think the caricatures for both Trump and Clinton during an election campaign is quite telling that anybody would give this creditability!

Achilles said...

Robert Cook said...

It's probably more accurate to say they held those weapons to insure that we did not attempt to destroy their country and all the people in it.

Remember everyone, the Russians/Soviets were the good guys. Their intentions were always noble and the US was always the aggressor/evil. The US was responsible for killing off the Kulaks too...

Achilles said...

Rhythm and Balls said...
Well, clearly you're trying to deny the ethnic nationalism of Hitler/Trump were/are right-wing things.

The semantic discussion between what is right wing and what is left wing is a diversion at best if your goal is effective policy.

Hitler wanted to destroy the weak. He had a might-makes-right ideology. The difference between that and being anti-welfare was that he thought the "bootstraps" Germans should pull themselves up by originated in their bloodlines, whereas the right-wing social Darwinists of the AEI and other "think tanks" who provide the GOP's economic policies think those bootstraps are willed economic instincts.

You are attacking perceived motivations rather than results. No matter what criteria you use capitalism and free markets have provided much better results at lifting people out of poverty than bureaucracy, socialism, or the varieties of other government interventionism that have been tried. Governments have been the leading purveyor of death, poverty, and misery for a long time. Please don't bring up the "No government" straw man I am tired. You know I think we need to move toward a living stipend so we can dispense with that ahead of time.

Rhythm and Balls said...

I will repeat you need to take the DNC over and make it represent the left of the political spectrum.

I will do my best but it is a very heavily corrupted and rotten machine. Perhaps 90% of it is dead weight. No joke. We're not even sure where to start, apart from what all the political humorists and satirists are up do - Jimmy Dore, etc. Every night they skewer another talking points pundit (Karen Finney, etc.) but the media-political complex with MSNBC and the MSM makes this quite daunting. TBH, I think the Sanderses, Tulsi Gabbardses etc. will have to start with the premise of seeing where they can work with Trump and building a populist economic agenda from there. If not, then starting from scratch will be nearly impossible given the weight of the inertia they're up against, but there is no other choice. Most Democrats if not the DNC just have no clue; they aren't getting it at all, and I'm not sure how to change the message. Their power bases on the coasts - now appointing Schumer minority leader - don't bode well. NY and CA state-based leadership has got to go; the party needs to lose its fascination with Wall Street and Silicon valley. I suspect movements to build local leaders who can hopefully foment a Tea Party-like revolution in 2018 are the best option. But the DNC is corrupt and has to go - pending a thorough flushing out top-to-bottom, and the Tammany Hall-based power centers in NYC need to be shut out of all leadership. They need to take a hint and recruit any and all leadership from the rust belt states that won Trump the election. If powerful voices speaking to their concerns aren't put to the top of the tickets then the party's toast. Perhaps they will create a new one from third party outsider leadership or re-form as the original Republicans did after the downfall of the Whigs.

As UBI, that's a discussion that's long overdue - and scary to contemplate. Not because it's not worth considering. Just because I have no idea how a political class this inept could ever get to a point of pulling off something as transformative and disruptive as universal basic income. I just listened to a C-SPAN panel on it with Charles Murphy and Jared Bernstein. Interesting stuff. Charles Murray is also concerned with the social/community stability aspect of that - which is interesting.

I wish the left could put together a positive agenda but fear that unfortunately, they will probably have to wrench power the time-honored old fashioned way it's always done in D.C. - awaiting a huge blunder to capitalize on from the opposition. If they're not ready to take over with a whole new party and infrastructure and leadership and philosophy at that point, then they're toast and deserve to be toast. We'll have to hope that the discussions and changes will take place in dialogue throughout the political system and may have to just give up on the Democrats regaining their historic claim (early 20th c.) to those things. It's up to them to do it or not. We can lead horses to water but can't make them drink.

Rhythm and Balls said...

You are attacking perceived motivations rather than results. No matter what criteria you use capitalism and free markets have provided much better results at lifting people out of poverty than bureaucracy, socialism, or the varieties of other government interventionism that have been tried. Governments have been the leading purveyor of death, poverty, and misery for a long time. Please don't bring up the "No government" straw man I am tired. You know I think we need to move toward a living stipend so we can dispense with that ahead of time.

You're a good man with decent insights and I sort of regret saying the point you responded to on this thread. It was really more for Fabi's edification. There are very decent conservatives who realize that the "destruction" of creative destruction needs to be managed. I think re: your larger point surrounding capitalism is valid. I've brought this up with chickenlittle. It's great at creating wealth, and maturing third world countries to a point they can move further with - but it seems we're past that point. The term "redistribution" is pejorative and I don't like it or the idea behind the concept, but the fact is that we've created about as much wealth as we know what to do with. I don't want to change those incentives. I don't want future entrepreneurs to have any more difficult a time here than in the past or anywhere else. But that's a different discussion. The discussion at the moment concerns how to improve living standards for the 75%+ of the country who will never run a business, never create an industry, never disrupt the paradigm or invent a technology. They can't be thrown under the bus. We need a policy that keeps as much encouragement for commerce as possible, just with less incentives for poaching those left behind. More to even out the rough edges and bring them into the ladder of opportunity for a decent life and living wage, if not a silly fantasy that billionaire-hood lurks just around the corner for them as well.

Robert Cook said...

"Remember everyone, the Russians/Soviets were the good guys. Their intentions were always noble and the US was always the aggressor/evil."

It's not about whether the Soviets were good guys or not. They were another geopolitical entity in the world, a totalitarian society that restricted the freedoms of their own citizens, but that had to deal with its own post-WWII difficulties and challenges. They, like most European nations, had suffered grievous losses and catastrophic devastation to their country. By comparison, the USA emerged barely scathed, with relatively tiny casualties and no destruction at all of our country. We came out of WWII the most powerful nation in the world. The Soviets were fearful of what we might or could do to them, rightfully so, given our demonstration of cataclysmic power at Hiroshima and Nagasaki, (and those events were meant to show the Soviets our power). We meant for the Soviets to fear us.

To view the USA as the essential "good" and "noble" and "selfless" world power always and only acting in defense against the always evil, treacherous and murderous expansionism of the Soviets is childish and ignorant. We have been plenty evil, treacherous and murderous throughout our history, up to today.

tcrosse said...

A big similarity of Trump to Hitler is that they both draw big crowds, something of which you can't accuse Hillary. Hillary was just as much a demagogue as Trump, but to a different demos, one that got more respect from the bien pensants.

gadfly said...

"Look for the Cognitive Dissonance trigger...."

So some Clinton folks are performing actions contradictory to their beliefs, ideas, or values.

Clinton supporters were persuaded to believe that Trump is OBVIOUSLY the next coming of Hitler . . . [but] how can it simultaneously be true that Trump is OBVIOUSLY the next Hitler while it is also true that half the country didn’t notice?

Adams needs to simplify his reasoning. It is not required of people that believe Trump is the next coming of the long-dead Fuhrer to question their own beliefs.

What is - is, such as the Trumpster belief that Donald tells the truth and will be good for the country, despite the fact that half the country doesn't think so.

Something is strange about populism that turns off the opposite viewpoint assessed under the same logic. We were pounded by so-called conservative commentaters that "Hillary lies," while not acknowledging that Donald lied just as much if not more all during the campaign.


Achilles said...

To view the USA as the essential "good" and "noble" and "selfless" world power always and only acting in defense against the always evil, treacherous and murderous expansionism of the Soviets is childish and ignorant. We have been plenty evil, treacherous and murderous throughout our history, up to today.

You use the words childish and ignorant. It is cute.

Let's make a list of places where the US held sway: Japan, Western Europe, south korea, much of the south pacific, Australia...

Now a list of places where the Soviet Union held sway: Eastern Europe, North Korea, Cuba, the stans etc...

Compare and contrast.

Michael K said...

while not acknowledging that Donald lied just as much if not more all during the campaign.

Another fact free diatribe. I can recount Hillary's lies going back to the The White House Travel Office scandal.

The famous cattle futures deal is another example.

Now it's your turn.

Achilles said...

gadfly said...
"Look for the Cognitive Dissonance trigger...."

So some Clinton folks are performing actions contradictory to their beliefs, ideas, or values.

This is your fatal flaw. People who supported Hillary Clinton had no beliefs, ideas, or especially values. She was caught in innumerable lies. She clearly sold influence to foreign interests and became absurdly wealthy doing it.

Most importantly she committed crimes any normal citizen would have gone to jail for and got away with it because she was a powerful politician. She got away with it because people like you were willing to support her over the rule of law.

You are empty shells. You have been outed as hollow and no longer politically relevant. The DNC will never win a national election again as it is currently constituted particularly after voter ID laws are enacted. Keep pedaling stories about how the Russians are coming. Remember Barrack will have more flexibility to help Putin after the election.

Michael K said...

"the fact is that we've created about as much wealth as we know what to do with."

"You have made enough money"

Another deep thinker.

Rhythm and Balls said...

"the fact is that we've created about as much wealth as we know what to do with."

"You have made enough money"

Another deep thinker.


It takes no deep thought to neglect the vast majority of the country, tell them they're on their own and pretend that any social stability will result from just making sure the gov't prioritizes the complaints of billionaires. Not that I'd expect a West Coast surgeon, who grew up with a black wet nurse to raise him in Chicago when his overprivileged parents couldn't be bothered to do so, to get something as basic as this. America's problems at the moment - however they originated - do not result from insufficient wealth, you sheltered dildo. Get out of your gated community and stop wasting time at the country club that lost Mitt Romney the election in 2012.

Jupiter said...

Rhythm and Balls said...

"Your tribe thinks the rich are superior and deserve to prevail and destroy everything else...".

Rhythmo, my tribe thinks the rich created almost everything of value. And we would like to give them the opportunity to create some more.

Your tribe seems to imagine that there was a great big complex of automobile manufacturing sites situated near the Great Lakes, being managed by virtuous Indians living in harmony with Nature and the Highway God. Then the greedy white people came in and took them away.

That is not actually what happened.

Rhythm and Balls said...

Rhythmo, my tribe thinks the rich created almost everything of value. And we would like to give them the opportunity to create some more.

Translation: "More outsourcing! More jobs for China and India! Fuck the poor in America! Shareholder value is the only barometer by which we measure America's social success or political stability! Billionaires are insufficiently incentivized! They have it really tough and need the government to find ways to make things even easier for them! Walmart's role as the biggest employer of food stamp recipients means that it is a model of American success!"

Right. Your story has become quite tiresome. And dangerous. Yours is the mindset of the politicians who ran the Weimar Republic.

Your tribe seems to imagine that there was a great big complex of automobile manufacturing sites situated near the Great Lakes, being managed by virtuous Indians living in harmony with Nature and the Highway God. Then the greedy white people came in and took them away.

That is not actually what happened.


What actually happened is that the CEOs of the Big Three figured out in the 1960s that if they made cheap shit and de-prioritized quality in favor of savings and profits, that somehow the competition and the consumer wouldn't notice. Newsflash: They did notice. Foreign imports swamped the American markets, and the politicians responded with a fatuous "Buy American" campaign. That lasted throughout the 1980s, until your tribe convinced the other tribe that free trade would be an even better answer. So they made a convenient agreement to build foreign economies at the even further expense of American labor. That is what happened, but it's always entertaining to hear right-wing bubble dwellers regurgitate the shopworn narrative sold to them by the pundit class - especially when those bubble dwellers had never stepped foot in Michigan in their lives, let alone 30 - 50 years ago when this recipe for disastrous success was put into motion.

Static Ping said...

ARM: The unemployment rate is a curious choice to measure job creation. It is a well established phenomenon that when the economy is growing, especially after a downturn, the unemployment rate tends to go up temporarily. The unemployment rate is the ratio of the employed with those that are actively seeking employment and are not long-term unemployed. At the start of economic booms the number of jobs increase but the number of people who go out to apply for those jobs increases even more, causing the rate to go up. If the economy is doing well the rate goes up then comes back down. Seriously, to use the standard unemployment rate as a measure of job creation is foolish and desperate.

Michael K said...

Another juvenile diatribe for the person who knows no economics.

tell them they're on their own and pretend that any social stability will result from just making sure the gov't prioritizes the complaints of billionaires.

When was the last time you got a job from a poor man ? I guess I could ask when you got a job ever but have promised to be civil.

It's hard to believe someone can be this ignorant and still use the internet.

BTW my nursemaid was not a "wet nurse" and my family was very middle class. Neither parent had gone to college.

You obviously know nothing about life in the 1940s for the middle class.

Rhythm and Balls said...

You obviously know nothing about life in the 1940s for the middle class.

I know that you're happy to have kissed it goodbye. Nothing you've advocated for decades has paved any way for its return. And you hate the same FDR who made it possible.

So go tell your wet nurse that you miss her sweet milk and dream for its return, since sooooo many loud protesters can't figure out why you think that sort of middle class existence should have been good enough for YOU, but not for THEM.

Baby boomers are the most entitled and myopic jerks in generational history. No wonder they want life for every subsequent generation to be worse than how they had it: They fear they'll become as entitled as they became.

Oh, and go worry about "jobs" when the unemployment rate isn't below 5%. Somehow that happened despite how horribly difficult Obama and his Tea Party Congress made life for the wealthy.

The problem isn't lack of jobs; it's lack of a decent living standard with those jobs. Again, get out of your gated community, yank Mammie's titty out yo mouth, and start looking around you.

hombre said...

Lefties are not subject to cognitive dissonance. They either lie the inconsistencies away or resort to lefty logic.

Rick said...

Let's not forget the half of the country who thinks we elected someone who doesn't know how to do anything and will accomplish nothing, and that this was the best possible outcome given the entire population of candidates (including primaries)?

Pitching is 80% of the game and the other half is hitting and fielding. - Mickey Rivers

Nothing is a high standard - Someone Else

Michael K said...

Balls seems unusually angry today.

Try to sound more intelligent.

AReasonableMan said...

Static Ping said...
ARM: The unemployment rate is a curious choice to measure job creation. It is a well established phenomenon that when the economy is growing, especially after a downturn, the unemployment rate tends to go up temporarily. The unemployment rate is the ratio of the employed with those that are actively seeking employment and are not long-term unemployed. At the start of economic booms the number of jobs increase but the number of people who go out to apply for those jobs increases even more, causing the rate to go up. If the economy is doing well the rate goes up then comes back down. Seriously, to use the standard unemployment rate as a measure of job creation is foolish and desperate.


In your overeagerness to say something negative you seem to have completely misunderstood the argument. Trump's plan to produce 'greater prosperity', i.e. prosperity the little people actually experience, appears to involve increasing wages by restricting the flow of immigrant labor into the country and possibly by soaking up labor into infrastructure projects. In other words, create a tight labor market. It might work but not sure the Feds really have the levers of power to make this happen on command and there will be enormous opposition from within his own party.

chickelit said...

It might work but not sure the Feds really have the levers of power to make this happen on command and there will be enormous opposition from within his own party.

They don't need "power to make this happen;" the Feds will need only the "power to control" viz. raising interest rates. They perfectly suited for that at this time.

Ayn Rand, ein Volker, ein furor

Tony said...

What is so great about this article are the defensive Drumpf supporters that didn't even bother to read it. Spoiler Alert: the author has your back, righties! ROFLMAO

Achilles said...

Rhythm and Balls said...
You obviously know nothing about life in the 1940s for the middle class.

I know that you're happy to have kissed it goodbye. Nothing you've advocated for decades has paved any way for its return. And you hate the same FDR who made it possible.


Actually it was Truman and Ike if any president did anything to help. But this is another who is more like the nazi's rabbit hole.

So go tell your wet nurse that you miss her sweet milk and dream for its return, since sooooo many loud protesters can't figure out why you think that sort of middle class existence should have been good enough for YOU, but not for THEM.

Boring personal attacks.

Baby boomers are the most entitled and myopic jerks in generational history. No wonder they want life for every subsequent generation to be worse than how they had it: They fear they'll become as entitled as they became.

100% agree. Baby Boomers have set up several government institutions that are funneling money from younger generations to themselves. These need to be ended.

Oh, and go worry about "jobs" when the unemployment rate isn't below 5%. Somehow that happened despite how horribly difficult Obama and his Tea Party Congress made life for the wealthy.

The tea party elected those people. They turned out to be traitorous turncoats. The GOPe took the victories we gave them and sold us out to the CoC. So we gave them Trump. I hope he tears DC apart. They are certainly acting like the world is ending. And that unemployment rate is horseshit.

The problem isn't lack of jobs; it's lack of a decent living standard with those jobs. Again, get out of your gated community, yank Mammie's titty out yo mouth, and start looking around you.

A good point made with an unnecessary remark. I can get infinite jobs right now paying $11 an hour. I have started several businesses and employed dozens of people and what I can tell you right now is that you cannot be a small business and make it for long with employees. There is too much government at every level and that is how the big corps that want to pay people 11$ an hour want it.

Achilles said...

Tony said...
What is so great about this article are the defensive Drumpf supporters that didn't even bother to read it. Spoiler Alert: the author has your back, righties! ROFLMAO

Tony is super smart. Like smarter than all of the people and stuff. Because Drumpf is something only smart people can type. And stuff.

P.S. So I don't leave you hanging and you might not get it, I think you are most likely an idiot based off this relatively small sample of your thinking and writing.

Rhythm and Balls said...

Balls seems unusually angry today.

Try to sound more intelligent.


Try to sound less contemptuous of regular, hardworking decent Americans.

And wipe the milk from nursemaid Mammy's tittay off the side of yo mouth. I know you take great pride in being a pampered, prissy, mama's boy. But it just makes you look like a little bitch.

Michael K said...

Balls is only interested in hateful semi-obscene attacks.

There are other places with interesting discussions.

Have a nice day and try to get some medicine for your problem.

Rhythm and Balls said...

The unemployment rate is measured the same way it's always been. I think this thing about the U-6 or whatever is a bit gratuitous. If slightly fewer people are in the workforce than had once been, first of all - there are remedies. (You said you wanted a progressive and not corporatist DNC). Second, we assume that America's workaholism has been a good thing. Not paying attention to community needs is a bad thing. There is a balance that's being missed.

All indications point to Trump being just as beholden to the bought out interests as those he attacked, at this point. So I highly doubt any "tearing apart" will occur. Hiring Steve Bannon? Not tearing DC apart. Complaining about 1st amendment exercises? Not tearing DC apart. Hiring industry shills to watch the henhouses they raid? Not tearing DC apart. Refusing to take his conflicting business interests with foreign holdings seriously? Not tearing DC apart. It's almost like he's doing CGI moves, just more audaciously.

Regardless of which predecessors expanded FDR's legacy the most, or what baby boomers are abusing, the fact remains that dismantling everything he did is no prescription to reviving the middle-working classes - let alone providing them with a wet nurse/nursemaid/whatever in every uneducated wage earner's home.

Don't worry too much about my "attacks" on Dr. Entitlement Michael K. People have to be woken up. Trump engaged in some of this, himself. As much as he hates to be attacked, attacking others is pretty much is modus operandi. We thought it might have been the long awaited prelude to needed reform, but apparently he's just taking out psychological issues and relegating leadership to all talk, no action. This is not the Trump the blue collar Midwesterners elected. Even Sarah Palin criticized his bail-out/incentivizing of Carrier. He's picking and choosing winners in the marketplace, not punishing outsourcers. He's giving them ransom money for their agreement to stay in the states and do the patriotic thing, which is just more of the same as before.

With Trump waiting until inauguration day or 90 days or a year thereafter isn't necessary. He won and now he's showing his true colors.

wwww said...


Interesting post by Adams.

He doesn't have it quite right. He amplified the argument, which is true for a vocal minority (Trump must be HITLER!!) But doesn't capture the alarm of many people like Josh Barro or James Fallows.

The alarm for many is:

1) Serious alarm: This is yet to be seen, but Trump may be someone who is willing to disrupt long-standing international alliances established in the wake of the WWII order (NATO) and make "deals" on a bi-lateral basis. The worry is the greater risk of geopolitical crisis as the post-WWII Pax Americana world order is disrupted.

2) China has been inflating her currency. Trump says China is deflating it. Is this campaign rhetoric? Or does he misunderstand the situation? If this isn't just rhetoric, if he misunderstands the situation....

3) Does he understand China may be willing to go to war over the 1 china policy? Does he have a well-thought out strategy or is he winging it?

Hey winging it might work but it could also end in a trade war w/China or a nuclear bomb from N. Korea in Seattle. Does he fully understand the risks of his rhetoric? If his tactics are impulsive -- it worked to win an election. but the downside is much less. if his impulses failed the risk is only a failed election.

if his impulses don't play out/ "win" in foreign policy the downside risks are much greater.

4) People are offended/alarmed by his statements & history. ie: calling a second-generation American judge a foreign national.

5) to a lesser degree people are worried he'll put his business interests before national interests.


My first worry is a greater chance of a nuclear bomb in LA or Seattle. Second worry is Russia in the Baltics/ Eastern Europe. 3rd worry is a trade war w/ China.

Other worries but are further down on the list. Will worry about the rest if we make it through the next 4 years. would love not to worry & happy to be wrong.

I don't want to worry this much about politics. Trump might think he's building drama, but how many people want to worry about his political rhetoric? we want stability & prosperity& to go about living our lives without undue worry.




Rhythm and Balls said...

Balls is only interested in hateful semi-obscene attacks.

Nah, actually I'm interested in much more. Read the substance; it's all over between the lines of the barbs I throw in there to wake you up. If you want fewer barbs, stop personalizing and stick objectively to the substance yourself.

There are other places with interesting discussions.

Problem is, "interest" doesn't define "importance." Most of the important problems of the day are mundane, and if you cared about your country, you'd take an interest in them. America's issues don't need to be trivialized and reduced to mere fodder for entertainment value, like the rest of your media, for them to appeal to you. If they do, then that says more about you than it does about the value of a website.

Have a nice day and try to get some medicine for your problem.

My medicine has a name. It's called: Not taking any shit. It works wonders. Many people are at risk of believing their own bullshit these days. Prime Example #1: A guy named Donny Trump and all his sycophants. Prime Example #2: The Clintons. But they're out of power for the foreseeable future and hopefully as disgraced as Donny will soon be.

Learn to be less enamored of and intoxicated by the strong sniff of the power of your own bullshit, Michael K. Your country is in trouble. Deep trouble. Wake up and smell the bullshit.

Unknown said...


"Try to sound less contemptuous of regular, hardworking decent Americans.

And wipe the milk from nursemaid Mammy's tittay off the side of yo mouth. I know you take great pride in being a pampered, prissy, mama's boy. But it just makes you look like a little bitch."

Ohhhh hahahahahaha! This is gold.

Michael said...

Trump has suggested taking 25% of the DC bureaucracy and moving it to cities and towns away from the beltway, to towns in the worn down parts of America.

I would suggest that where ever they might be moved it should be no less than a three hour drive from a Palm restaurant.

Joe said...

I'll post here, what I posted there since it bears repeating that Adolph Hitler was NOT elected. He lost the election to Hindenburg. The Nazi party won only 230 seats of 608 of the Reichstag. Due to a series of backroom deals, threats and secret alliances, German President Hindenburg appointed Hitler chancellor (Kaiser). Hitler essentially then carried out a coup by burning down the Reichstag, framing the communists asking Hindenburg for emergency powers, which the senile [literally] old man granted him. When the politicians met to debate this, the Nazis and their thugs allowed only Hitler supporters into the temporary meeting hall. This group then passed a law giving Hitler dictatorial powers.

A few months later, all political parties except the Nazi party were declared illegal. Then Hitler purged his own supporters and anyone who could be a threat to him (including, if not especially, Rohm and Strasser.)

What Hitler did to gain power had nothing to do with democracy.

(Germany had a system with a fairly powerful president and a chancellor who was appointed by that president and who did not need to come from the Reichstag--s/he could literally be any German. The modern government has been modified to where the president is similar in power to the Queen or King of England and the chancellor is equivalent to the prime minister in power and in how they achieve that post.)

Achilles said...

Rhythm and Balls said...
The unemployment rate is measured the same way it's always been. I think this thing about the U-6 or whatever is a bit gratuitous. If slightly fewer people are in the workforce than had once been, first of all - there are remedies. (You said you wanted a progressive and not corporatist DNC). Second, we assume that America's workaholism has been a good thing. Not paying attention to community needs is a bad thing. There is a balance that's being missed.

What we need is more people in the work force for fewer hours per person. We are on the cusp of massive productivity gains through mechanization. We need to make sure that is distributed in a way that keeps the masses from eating civilization.

Right now we have a small number of people picking up multiple jobs to make ends meet, a bunch of people sliding into disability/government handouts, and the rest moving to black market jobs. Not a recipe for growth but this is the kind of market distortion Obama's policies would be predicted to create. He raised marginal tax rates and handed out "green energy" tax breaks to his big donors. Obamacare made it nearly impossible for small businesses to hire full time workers which makes it nearly impossible for small businesses to exist.

Disruptive technologies are going to come. We will all be better off if they come from small businesses run by people like me and you and not from Google, Amazon, and GE. Many small companies are making awesome 3D printing technologies and robotics. We need to make it easier for them to stay in business and independent.

Right now it is a nightmare for a 50-200 employee company with a new product to meet the massive array of government crap you have to deal with and an xxx-million dollar check from a megacorp looks really good. We need to end that which means getting the government off their backs. I don't mind forcing the multi-state and multi-national corps to deal with the feds. That should be their job. But the small interstate businesses should be regulated by states only.

Rhythm and Balls said...

What we need is more people in the work force for fewer hours per person.

I actually think this is a great idea. 30 hours per week is probably a more sensible norm nowadays than 40.

Achilles said...

Rhythm and Balls said...

I actually think this is a great idea. 30 hours per week is probably a more sensible norm nowadays than 40.

40 would be better than what we have now. Currently with Obamacare and overtime laws it is very hard to get a job with a single company that will employ you for more than 30 hours a week. Even then ideally 40 hours at 11$ an hour you gross ~1800$ a month and get to keep ~1300$. Most people on the bottom end work 2 or 3 jobs with one of them being under the table totaling around 60-80 hours a week. Rent around here starts at $1200 a month for a 1 bedroom no frills. If you have a family it is impossible.

The issue is you can't just say 30 hours a week and a living wage! As an employer I need to make a profit on everything including the employees I hire. If my company produces widgets and you are my employee making widgets for me and my profit on a widget is 2$ a piece after all other costs I need you to make me at least 15 widgets an hour in order to pay you 15$ an hour. Yes I need to make more money than you are worth.

The reason is risk. If you have never put your life savings into a business and lost money you wouldn't understand.

The only way you are going to see wages increase for everyone is make it so small capital can make a lot of money. As long as these insane regulations are in place the large corps will continue to depress wages, move production overseas, and create the permanent 2 class system the aristocracy has always striven for.

Fen said...

Ran into two liberal friends today who are NOT on the Hysteria Train.

One works a Senior Something to a Global Warming Think Tank. He thinks Trump won because Dems ignored rural folk. Said his job takes him out to rural areas all the time, and that he could see something was brewing, that they had it really hard and felt the Dems didn't care.

The other *defended* the EC, which surprised me. I had already gathered my arguments in favor of it and was trying to find a way to explain why we needed it in a way that wouldn't be declared "offensive". But he was already there.

Another interesting bit was that both were rolling their eyes at all the Facebook drama post-election. "People are out of their minds".

So, some solace. Not everyone on the Left has gone Full Libtard.

Fen said...

Balls: Well, clearly you're trying to deny the ethnic nationalism of Hitler/Trump were/are right-wing things. Hitler wanted to destroy the weak. He had a might-makes-right ideology.

That's funny. Just last night you were ignorantly insulting me and I had to introduce you to Malory. Now you adopt "might-makes-right" into your talking points. You're welcome.

And sure, the Nazi were right-wing socialists. Uh huh.

Dave in Tucson said...

Stupid and raciest voters are all so last week. Haven't you heard? The latest cri de coeur is Russian hackers.

Although I could've sworn I heard before the elections that suggesting they were rigged was simply naive foolishness?

Fen said...

The reason is risk.

Yup. And this is what the "you didn't build that, you had help" nonsense misses.

In any endeavor, there is no shortage of people willing to "help".

But the ones willing to risk everything they have on some idea they have? Very few.

Matthew Sablan said...

The odds of us draining the swamp are higher than the odds of us electing Hitler.

But, neither are actually very high.

Mike said...

he has no clue what he'll do apart from promising everything

I just spotted someone living in an alternate reality! For someone with "no clue" what to do, Trump sure did hit the ground running. Keep living in your bubble, R&B.

Static Ping said...

ARM: In your overeagerness to say something negative you seem to have completely misunderstood the argument.

Not really. My disagreement was very specific to using the base unemployment rate as a useful statistic. The rate that the media popularized is a very misleading. Using it by itself without context basically reveals that the person has a pop culture level (or worse) understanding of economics, like most people in the media, and does not really understand the issue at all, also like most people in the media. It is a foolish thing to do. If the author actually knows economics, it is desperation.

As to tightening the labor market, the market is so slack at the moment with so many people dropped out and discouraged that it is hard to imagine that it would not tighten up at least somewhat as long as the government does not actively try to prevent it. Cutting off the supply of illegal immigrants would do wonders.

AReasonableMan said...

Static Ping said...
Not really.


Yes really. Nothing you said had anything to do with what I originally posted, which was a discussion of Trump's possible approach to increasing wages.

Peter said...

Nov. 8 didn't go their way, it looks like the recounts won't reverse it, so what's left other than subverting the Electoral College and, if that fails, assassination?

It's impossible to know if they really think Trump is Hitler, but we do know they not only expected to win but believed they deserved to win and, now that they haven't, are desparate to find justifications to oppose a Trump presidency by any means necessary.

Because if you're about to do what in most contexts is obviously wrong then you must justify yourself. Because if it's 1933 in Germany then anything, anything at all that anyone might do to derail what's about to happen is justified.

Which doesn't mean they really believe Trump=Hitler, it's that they lost but don't believe they should have lost and therefore feel entitled to reverse their loss, by any means necessary.

Rusty said...

AReasonableMan said...
Static Ping said...
ARM: The unemployment rate is a curious choice to measure job creation. It is a well established phenomenon that when the economy is growing, especially after a downturn, the unemployment rate tends to go up temporarily. The unemployment rate is the ratio of the employed with those that are actively seeking employment and are not long-term unemployed. At the start of economic booms the number of jobs increase but the number of people who go out to apply for those jobs increases even more, causing the rate to go up. If the economy is doing well the rate goes up then comes back down. Seriously, to use the standard unemployment rate as a measure of job creation is foolish and desperate.

In your overeagerness to say something negative you seem to have completely misunderstood the argument. Trump's plan to produce 'greater prosperity', i.e. prosperity the little people actually experience, appears to involve increasing wages by restricting the flow of immigrant labor into the country and possibly by soaking up labor into infrastructure projects. In other words, create a tight labor market. It might work but not sure the Feds really have the levers of power to make this happen on command and there will be enormous opposition from within his own party.


You might have missed the part where Trump promises to reduce the corporate tax rate and over reaching government regulations. That will do more to increase prosperity than anything else. Wealth creation creates jobs. Not government creation.