March 11, 2016

"There’s the one you see on the stage, and there’s the one who’s very cerebral, sits there and considers things very carefully."

"You can have a very good conversation with him. And that’s the Donald Trump that you’re going to start seeing more and more of right now."

Said Ben Carson, endorsing Donald Trump.

It was a whole 45-minute press conference. Trump loves the press conference format. From the NYT description:
Mr. Trump, whose sedate appearance in the Miami debate Thursday evening was widely noted, said he believes it’s time to move past [debates].

“We’ve had enough debates in my opinion,” Mr. Trump told reporters at his news conference. “It would be nice to finish off with this one,” he said, pointing out that he had repeatedly called it an “elegant” debate and saying it was simply time for a calm, staid debate so that the party could come together.
If the new tone is to be elegant and calm, there's no better exemplar of the tone than Ben Carson.

Well played.

AND: This post gets the civility bullshit tag. Do you see why? There are a lot of posts with that tag, so let me save you the trouble of looking for the answer if you don't remember what that tag means. It designates a call for civility and includes my opinion on the subject: Calls for civility are always bullshit. They are never really about civility as a neutral principle. Civility is called for to tame the opposition, when it serves your interest.


rhhardin said...

Civility works better if one has an explainable point.

Bob Ellison said...

Calls for civility are civil, humble calls. Most civil, humble people don't make those calls, because they consider such calls to be arrogant.

Carson's endorsement of Trump says more about Carson than about Trump.

Chuck said...

There is an unusual level of "bullshit" in this instance of "civility bullshit," Professor.

Let's turn the WayBack Machine all the way back to, say, November of 2015. All of about 11 weeks ago. Here's Donald Trump on his close personal friend Dr. Ben Carson:

...he wrote a book. And in the book he said terrible things about himself. He said that he’s pathological and that he’s got basically a pathological disease. Now he wrote this I guess before he was running for office or thought that he was running for office. And I don’t want a person that’s got pathological disease. I don’t want it. I’m not saying he’s got it, he said it.

This isn’t something that I’m saying, like “Oh, he’s pathological liar.” I’m not saying it! He said he’s got pathological disease. He actually said pathological temper.

And then he defined it as disease. So he said he has pathological disease.

Now. If you’re pathological, there’s no cure for that, folks.

Okay, there’s no cure for that. And I did one of the shows today. And I don’t want to say what I said. But I’ll tell you anyway. I said that if you’re a child molester, a sick puppy, you’re a child molester, there’s no cure for that. There’s only one cure—we don’t want to talk about that cure. That’s the ultimate cure. Well, there’s two, there’s death, and the other thing.

There's more, of course. There's Trump mocking Carson on video, ridiculing Carson's recounting of the near-stabbing incident with Carson's friend's belt buckle:

I won't speculate on how Carson could stand up with the nutjob who mocked him in this fashion. But it is disgusting. A grave stain on Carson's reputation.

Rumpletweezer said...

This election cycle has significantly reduced the number of people I respect.

pm317 said...

Trump did well. said...

Good job on getting Ben to endorse you. He was one of my top choices. I even voted for him in last Sunday's primary. I voted for him knowing the fix was in for Rubio.

John Henry

The Cracker Emcee said...

At this point it's safe to say Chuck is a moby. Whatever Trump's faults or merits, all the drama-queen thrashing about Trump is just too typical of the usual liberal hysterics. Not an attack, just an observation.

Bob Ellison said...

When I Write the Book.

Bob Ellison said...

That's good drum-work there.

David Begley said...

Carson is a sell out. Trump is using him. Carson's entire campaign was an exercise in ego enabled by his campaign people who made millions.

Charlie Currie said...

Phyllis Schlafly to endorse Trump the chattering class can be disappointed in a true conservative icon

Fabi said...

Trump continues to play half-wits like cheap fools. It's one of his greatest strengths. He's completely sandbagged the media, the pundits, many of his opponents, and most importantly the Nancy Boys of the GOPe. It is a master's class on divining those chumps. Bravo!

That doesn't mean I want him as my president, but if he's the nominee then I'll gladly pull the lever for him, and do so with a shit-eating grin while I reminisce about his mental subjugation of the freshly-shorn losers he has so brilliantly exposed.

Charlie Currie said...

This is not the doctor you were looking for.

Birkel said...

I look forward to the Hillary Clinton Administration. I hope her coattails are non-existent and both the House and Senate stay in Republican control. The best I can imagine is gridlock.

mccullough said...

Chuck's not a moby. He's just a sheltered dude who can't handle the cognitive dissonance that his party has sucked for a long time and that a good chunk of those folks are through with it. Not being a Republican doesn't mean you are a Democrat. It means that the GOP's major policies for the last 25 years suck just as bad as the major Dem policies for the last 25 years. Hatred of Dem policies isn't enough to keep people as Republicans.

Anonymous said...

I don't understand how such a brilliant brain surgeon can be so unintelligent on other matters. Between the pyramids of grain and other equally outlandish ideas, the notion that Trump is cerebral is laughable. Trump flys by the seat of his pants were his cerebellum resides. You'd think Dr. Carson would be able to distinguish the difference between a brain and an ass. And the idea that Trump has the ability to be Presidential and civil is asinine. Dr. Carson may be a decent human being but this endorcement makes me doubt this now. Not an impressive endorsement.

Charlie Currie said...

“When people see a strong horse and a weak horse, by nature, they will like the strong horse” - OBL

Bay Area Guy said...

It's not quite "civility bullshit." The 45-minute conference was civil. Carson and Trump didn't call for Hillary and the Dems or Rubio or Cruz to be more civil. They were just being civil.

Trump's call for no more debates is close, but not civility bullshit. That's just political tactics -- Trump doesn't need any more debates, he's already used them effectively.

Trump 1, Althouse 0

Bay Area Guy said...

Jeez, Chuck, you're like a trial attorney, who is losing the jury, and right before verdict is now screaming, "But my client wasn't served properly!!!!"

It's too late.

Trump will get a lot more endorsements as we proceed through Spring and Summer. Attacking the endorser or re-fighting old battles between Trump and the endorser, is pointless.

mccullough said...


That you can't understand that a neurosurgeon can have religious beliefs you don't understand and hold views you don't like and have strange views on the pyramids lmeans you need to learn more and interact more with a wide variety of people. You are very sheltered. Like those in the GOP who are stunned by Trump's popularity or those in the Dem party who are stunned by Sanders popularity.

Danno said...

Maybe Carson can work on making Trump a bit more civil. He has always struck me as the true adult in the room at the GOP debates. However, in this cycle many voters want a candidate who isn't afraid to break a few eggs in the process.

Diamondhead said...

Two Trumps? This is an endorsement?

Clayton Hennesey said...

I find our mass amnesia this cycle about American politics baffling.

Campaigning seldom, if ever, has any relationship to governing. Campaigning is about maximizing the number of people who will vote you into office for any reason at all. Only if and when they do does governing become relevant, and predicting the nature of governing from campaigning only works at the broadest and most abstract levels of ideology. For example, Obama could have easily demographically locked in the Democrats for decades when he had a Democrat Senate and House simply by fulfilling his campaign promise to Hispanics; instead he elected out of the blue to blow up the private health insurance market. There's no more telling what a Trump will actually do in office than there is a Kasich or a Sanders.

But right now Trump wants first to get into office more than anything else, in contrast to, say, a Kasich who wants the same thing, but only if you can feel good about yourself afterward and it isn't too inconvenient.

R. Chatt said...

What does Meade's mother think? Is she persuaded by Trump's less offensive demeanor?

Meade said...

I'll call her and get back to you.

traditionalguy said...

It's a new day and truth again Trumps the Spin of the Media Circus.

Spin says Trump called Carson a psychopath. Truth says Trump reasoned that Carson's book must be made up religious stuff, or that Carson had called himself a psychopath

Spin says Trump has admitted to having a two personalities, implying he is bi-polar and hiding it. Truth says that like all great warrior and athletes Trump uses a War face while he is on the field clobbering the opponents until the game is over, and then he is the nicest man in the clubhouse and protects the weak and generously praises the others that he just defeated.

Steve Uhr said...

Trump hotels/restaurants are participants in an ongoing large sophisticated criminal conspiracy to fix retail alcohol prices. He and many others belong in prison.

The conspiracy is conducted in part in public under the guise of promoting responsible drinking. And it does reduce output, as do all successful price-fixing conspiracies Under the antitrust laws, however, the so-called reasonableness of the fixed price is irrelevant. It is a "per se" violation. One need only prove there was an agreement/understanding and the defendant knowingly joined the agreement. Why he joined is irrelevant. (Of course it is to maximize profits and not to promote public health.)

The conspiracy began in the early 1980's, and has caused hundreds of billion in damages. Today the agreement is ongoing in dozens of communities, if not hundreds, in N America and elsewhere. Annual US alcohol sales approx $140 billion. Victims of price-fixing are entitled to treble damages. I.e., overcharged $1.00 on a beer, entitled to $3 in damages. overcharged $3 on a cocktail, entitled to $9 damages on that one drink alone.

Under the law, all participant in a price-fixing conspiracy are liable for the entirety of damages (times 3), and they have no right to contribution from other participants. Hence, despite the limited role of firms like Target, Chipotle, and Whole Foods (see Davis, California agreement at link), they each are on the hook for much more than their market cap.

The conspiracy is largely facilitated by the Responsible Hospitality Institute ( (board includes the major trade associations for alcohol producers, distributors, and retailers, as well as the International Downtown Association, which represents over 600 local community business trade associations (i.e., an association of associations)), working closely with universities (including UW and Harvard), local police and government officials and other organizations, such as the AMA and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

For smoking gun proof of conspiracy see submission to DOJ in connection with a proposed merger between Anheuser-Busch and Modelo (Corona)at:

Two conspiracy "recruitment/training" videos are at: (Responsible Beverage Service --1989) (Alcohol Risk Management -- 1997)

In the ARM video, the written price-fixing agreement is visible briefly at 6:40

FYI -- Trump Chicago: cheapest mixed drink - $16, cheapest craft beer -$12, cheapest glass wine $15:

Meade said...

Truth says Donald Trump plays and has always played by his own rules.

Fabi said...

Steve Uhr has jumped the Chuck.

Anonymous said...

I understand perfectly that in certain religions there are unusual beliefs, however when an intelligent person belongs to that religion it's not unusual for that person to question those beliefs. Your assertion about me being sheltered is humorous. Tell me mccollough, do you ever not jump to conclusions about people you don't know personally? You need to work on that. You also need to work on your violent tendencies, thinking back to yesterday's conversation about sucker punching protestors you disagree with.

FullMoon said...

Amanda says
"...Dr. Carson may be a decent human being but this endorcement makes me doubt this now. Not an impressive endorcement.

I felt the same about you, until you spelled "endorsement" incorrectly.
I find spelling and grammar errors offensive to my eye, and ear and am disappointed your one of

Bob Ellison said...

Most of the time, we have to judge people based on demeanor and minor behaviors. Things like you might find on a résumé.

Trump's résumé sucks like a Hoover. He's an asshole who hates people for a living and never realized how lucky he was to have a rich daddy.

But that's all we have to go on. Cruz might have a pointy nose, Kasich might be an insider, and Rubio might be a little light in the loafers. We have to go with what we have.

Anonymous said...

"I felt the same about you, until you spelled "endorsement" incorrectly.
I find spelling and grammar errors offensive to my eye, and ear and am disappointed your one of


Karen of Texas said...

Okay, I have to laugh with Amanda on that grammar Nazi schtick, Fullmoon. You asked for that one. *eyeroll*

Pookie Number 2 said...

And the idea that Trump has the ability to be Presidential and civil is asinine.

I suspect that Amanda's inability to perceive much beyond the superficially obvious explains most of her political views.

gadfly said...

Forty-five more minutes of air time for T-Rump not shared by the other three candidates remaining. The real news of the day was Ted Cruz getting an endorsement from Utah Senator Mike Lee, perhaps the most conservative U.S. Senator - but there was no imposed 45-minute Cruz "news conference" featuring pointless rhetoric that displayed "tenuous relationship with the truth."

But Fortune hit the nail on the head:
It’s still up for debate whether or not the media “created” Donald Trump—or, at least, the GOP presidential frontrunner version of him — but there is no doubt the billionaire reality TV star turned politician has meant big ratings — and income — for networks.

Leslie Moonves, the chairman of CBS , admitted as much . . . . “It may not be good for America, but it’s damn good for CBS,” Moonves said at a Morgan Stanley conference in San Francisco . . .

Moonves, who referred to the presidential election cycle as a “circus,” went on to note his surprise at the turn of events that have propelled Trump from a laughingstock to the Republican leader in terms of presidential delegates heading into Super Tuesday.

Moonves declared: “The money’s rolling in and this is fun. I’ve never seen anything like this and this going to be a very good year for us. Sorry. It’s a terrible thing to say. But, bring it on, Donald. Keep going,”

T-rump is getting more than 50% of total election coverage on the major networks while Ted Cruz gets under 17%.

mccullough said...


You are ignorant about basic things, such as the differnece between a private rally open to the public and a public forum. BLM has every right to bitch and moan in a public forum because that is public space owned by the government t and available to anyone who obtains a permit and complies with time, place, and manner regulations. People who obtain a permit and then hoot and holler are protestors. People who do at at private places open to the public are hooligans.

It's not like you arrive at your positions after careful study and weighing the conflicting facts. You are a useful idiot for some progressive cause.

And punching people who won't conform their behavior to basic social behavior at private events open to the public has been a long tradition. There is a reason BLM doesn't pull their bullshit tactics at sporting events. You disrupt the enjoyment of sports fans who laid good money to watch a game, you are going to get punched and then told to knock it off. Same thing at a rock concert.

BLM are cowards. That's why they pick soft targets like the mall in Minnealolis and Bernie Sanders events and college campuses. The hats where the other cowards are.

Anonymous said...

With all due respect, you often express yourself through your GI system. Your ideas are not useful for any ideology. The notion that protestors should be sucker punched when they express ideas you don't agree with in a private venue or public venue is outside the norm of even conservatives. You need to work on your violent tendencies.

FullMoon said...

Gadfly says "But Fortune hit the nail on the head:
It’s still up for debate whether or not the media “created” Donald Trump—or, at least, the GOP presidential frontrunner version of him — but there is no doubt the billionaire reality TV star turned politician has meant big ratings — and income — for networks.

Are there actual statistics for this statement? Are networks actually charging more for advertising when Trump is scheduled to appear?

mccullough said...

The idea that someone who disrupts a private event open to the public is a protestor is progressive nonsense. They are hooligans. A protestor is someone who does it in a public forum. Your terminology reveals your ideology.

mccullough said...

BLM should stick to college campuses, malls in wealthy progressive enclaves, and Sanders rallies. Progressive cowards tolerate their SA tactics.

Bob Ellison said...

Hillary might be a lying bitch. Sanders might be a communist.

Meade said...

@R. Chatt, I finally got a hold of her. She said she spent the morning out on her front porch in the sun watching cement trucks moving around and she forgot to take her phone with her.
"Oh, I hated seeing the doctor [Ben Carson] line up behind Trump"
"Ben might be able to keep Donald in line"
Asked about her opinion of DT's behavior during the debate last night: "Better than usual. Trump seems to appreciate the doctor."
"It will be hard for [Trump] to change his 'me, myself, and I' attitude and his being money hungry because he's too old to change."

Mother said she will "hope for the best" and will "pray" because "even though prayer doesn't always give us what we want, it never hurts to pray that God's will be done."

When I told her that you were interested in her opinions, she said, "Oh, well, isn't she NICE?" By the way, I've never known my mother to use sarcasm.

n.n said...


Carson would be a good candidate to serve as Secretary of Health and Human Services.

FullMoon said...

Amanda said... [hush]​[hide comment]

"I felt the same about you, until you spelled "endorsement" incorrectly.
I find spelling and grammar errors offensive to my eye, and ear and am disappointed your one of


Like shooting fish in a barrel, lol! Literally predictable.
He who laughs last....

FullMoon said...

All in fun Mandy, nothing personal :-)
Now, make me a sandwitch.Please

chickelit said...

I find spelling and grammar errors offensive to my eye, and ear and am disappointed your one of

Whose that Nazi?

chickelit said...

Althouse wrote: This post gets the civility bullshit tag. Do you see why?

Thanks for clarifying. Because I thought otherwise. You've long had a thinly disguised disdain for Dr. Carson -- going back to that speech you thought he didn't write.

tim in vermont said...

The notion that protestors should be sucker punched when they express ideas you don't agree with in a private venue or public venue is outside the norm of even conservatives. You need to work on your violent tendencies.

Amanda is right. It only plays into their hands. That's why they taunt and provoke, so they can have the punch to wave around like a bloody shirt. She knows it too. Nobody is genuinely outraged by the punch, one side is gleeful to have "proof" and the other side is frustrated that the provocation tactics worked.

Fritz said...

He ain't my guy, but Trump isn't as stupid as he plays on TV.

mikeyes said...


I understand your concern about how Mr. Trump discussed Doctor Carson's life eleven weeks ago, but in Trump time that's about one hundred human years, long enough to forget or at least to be overwhelmed by all the Trump shoutings. Everyone else has forgotten that he said this or conflated it with a whole bunch of other stuff to the point that it all melds together and a lot of people silently agree with whatever he said without actually hearing it.
John Oliver stated that there is a part of him that really likes Donald Trump and what he says ("but it is a part of me I don't like") and I think that seems to protect Mr. Trump and attracts Dr. Carson to him.

Mountain Maven said...

Why doctors and other nerds should run for president.

mccullough said...

Now the hooligans shut down the Trump event in Chicago. Burning flags inside and storming the stage. BLM shutting down the interstate highway next to the venue.

Ernst Rohm smiles.

Drago said...

Amanda: "I don't understand how such a brilliant brain surgeon can be so unintelligent on other matters."

Lets imagine, for just a moment, that Dr. Carson was a democrat and Amanda was a conservative.


walter said...

Diamondhead said...
Two Trumps? This is an endorsement?
Settling on just two is generous.
Apparently Carson has a couple as well..

walter said...

They are now both "Changing..flexible!"

amba said...

Meade should start a blog called "Shit My Mom Says." She's very wise.

Bricap said...

One example that comes to mind was calculating the entrance into this race. Aside from the name recognition, he immediately stood out from the rest of the field by being an avowed Birther, and not merely someone who played footsie with them in an attempt to get them out to vote. In 2012, during his brief flirtation with running, he had a surge in his polling due in large part to that. This time around, against a crowded field, being the sole avowed Birther meant capturing a sizable plurality at least until other candidates started dropping out.

I knew Trump would do well initially, but the unknown was how many of the other candidates' supporters would end up supporting him as the field thinned out. Gov. Walker saw this dynamic at play when he dropped out, urging all other candidates who didn't have a realistic chance to get out of the race immediately, in order to let the GOP anti-Trump vote coalesce around a preferred candidate.