November 6, 2018

What does Trump wish he could "take back and redo"? "I would say tone," he answers.



"I would like to have a much softer tone. I feel to a certain extent I have no choice, but maybe I do, and maybe I could have been softer, from that standpoint, but I want to get things done. We've had tremendous victories on trade, we've had tremendous victories on so many different things, on our military.... But I would say, if there's anything, I think tone would be, perhaps, something. I'm not sure that if I did that, maybe I'd be swamped — OK? — meaning, with the other side, because I wouldn't say their tone's been so nice either. But that would be something I would say that I'll be working on."

Let's be clear about what he said there. His unsoft tone may have been crucial to getting things done, things he's very proud of. He seems to regret only that it was necessary to forgo the soft tone, and he wants us to know that he prefers a soft tone, but he's doing something that's less personally pleasant for him because he needs to get things done for us. He blames the other side for being harsh and threatening to "swamp" him if he isn't tough. But he'll be working on tone, so it's something to hope for.

Is there a kinder, gentler Trump to come after the midterm elections? We saw a softer tone last night at the Cape Girardeau rally, when he presided over an 8-minute pause to wait for a woman to receive medical treatment. We need to see how the elections come out today, and how he is treated by "the other side." I don't think he will unilaterally disarm. He's clearly onto what I call "civility bullshit." But softer could work as a tactic, and our trickster President has plenty of tricks up his sleeve.

54 comments:

whitney said...

based on past performance, whatever happens, Trump will turn it to his advantage

Mark O said...

Yes. Kinder. Gentler. With a thousand points of light (whatever the hell that was).
I like the disruptive, combative, cleansing Trump.

Birkel said...

If his tone changed immediately, his opposition would not change.

Virgil Hilts said...

Imagine return of 1980s Trump-as-he-was-on-Letterman (in terms of voice and mannerisms - of course he had to age). Does not seem like same human. Keep telling my never-DT wife (God bless her) that DT really was once handsome/charming. She refuses to believe it, but it's true.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wVsAir5fDbs

Earnest Prole said...

Who wouldn’t like to be kinder and gentler, provided of course that it doesn’t cramp your style?

Ignorance is Bliss said...

What does Trump wish he could "take back and redo"?

Stormy Daniels

iowan2 said...

Unless the Dems end up with 60 in the Senate, and a 100 vote advantage in the house. I don't see the Dems Dialing back, even a scouch.

Everyone is dismayed at how President Trump attacks people on twitter. Something Scott Adams pointed out, President Trump only defends against someone launching an attack.

Since my scenerio above is pure fantasy, I see the media/Dems double down on crazy. The President is going to be forced to answer every volley, with worse than he recieves.

gadfly said...

Stupid question to ask an egotist. Stupider answer from the man who even lies about telling the truth.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

Stormy Daniels

It's a joke. Based on the double meaning of redo

Get it?

Bay Area Guy said...

Is there a kinder, gentler Trump to come after the midterm elections?

I'd be all for a kinder, gentler way of grabbing them by the pussy.

Pianoman said...

Hitler also wished he had a softer tone.

AllenS said...

Don't listen to them, Trump, they are not your friends.

Tank said...

He’s goal oriented, so he’ll do what he thinks will work.

rhhardin said...

Trump has to use the tone that will get reported in the news, to undermine the news cycle full of lefty stuff.

Jim at said...

You racist, sexist, lying, piece-of-shit Hitler! ... why aren't you using a nicer tone when talking to us? - Leftists

Drago said...

Gadfly is a sad little fellow.

He barely qualifies as our Poor Man's LLR Chuck.

Barely.

Fabi said...

I'm old enough to remember when Obama was asked about the most enchanting aspect of being president. That was hard hitting journalism.

Molly said...

(eaglebeak)

Trump has as many tones as he needs--the Art of the Deal. That's why he can say he fell in love with Kim Jong Un--he wants something from him. If it doesn't work out, he'll be back to calling Kim Little Rocket Man.

He can snuggle up one day and be Genghis Khan the next.

That's Entertainment.

Achilles said...

I know exactly what Trump feels.

Ann knows Trump is exactly right about this too.

She just can't admit it because leftists know where she lives.

And that is exactly the point.

Nancy Pelosi admitted today there will be chaos and disunity if she is not put in power.

Hillary Clinton said their can be no civility until she is put in power.

OK then.

Kevin said...

Sarah Sanders: Good tone. I've got good tone.

President Trump: I got tone! Firing!

Ken B said...

Bliss
Now that's funny.

pious agnostic said...

"Trickster president"

That's it!

He's not Hitler. He's Loki. He's Hermes. He's Coyote.

That's a much better frame. Thank you Althouse!

YoungHegelian said...

You know, for a guy who supposedly hates the press & is just a hop, skip, & a jump from sending them off to gulags, he sure seems to talk to them an awful, awful lot.

Unlike a certain Light Worker we could name....

Vance said...

Can anyone name the fascist/communist dictatorship that allowed as much criticism from the press as Hitler Trump does? Why, it's as if he isn't Hitler at all!

Conversely, what reporter dared criticize Obama, outside of a few brave souls that got destroyed?

Chuck said...

Althouse: "Let's be clear about what he said there..."

LOL! Are you fricking kidding me? How can anyone be "clear" about THIS word-stew?!?

"I would like to have a much softer tone. I feel to a certain extent I have no choice, but maybe I do, and maybe I could have been softer, from that standpoint, but I want to get things done. We've had tremendous victories on trade, we've had tremendous victories on so many different things, on our military.... But I would say, if there's anything, I think tone would be, perhaps, something. I'm not sure that if I did that, maybe I'd be swamped — OK? — meaning, with the other side, because I wouldn't say their tone's been so nice either. But that would be something I would say that I'll be working on."


So Trump has "no choice" in his tone. But "maybe" he does! So tone is..."something." Well, not exactly. Tone isn't clearly "something;" to be really clear, "tone would be, perhaps, something." And if his tone were changed, Trump is "not sure if [he] did that..." maybe he'd "be swamped." What does "swamped" even mean? Because "maybe" he'd be "swamped." Well, fortunately, Trump gives us a nice clear explanation of that, by saying "meaning..." Oh wait. Trump doesn't say what he is "meaning," and instead he just throws out the taunt that the "other side... their tone's been [not] so nice either. Alright so there is basically nothing that Trump would go back and redo as the question was posed, as Trump wanders off the end of the question saying, in completely Trumpian fashion, "[T]hat would be something I would say that I'll be working on."

Okay! He'll be working on it.

Althouse this is sadly a howler of a blog post from you on election night. If an NBC commentator had belched out such a word-mess, you'd be blogging about how ludicrous it was. If a NYT or New Yorker writer wrote such garbage, you'd be calling it out.

Althouse you can't "be clear about what he said" there. No being with a brain can be clear about what Trump was saying. You can make up some of your own feelings about what Trump was saying, and -- Surprise! -- you came up with some "Master Persuader" theory. Congrats. Have a nice election night.

bagoh20 said...

Although I was not liking it when he first entered the fray, I've come to think it was necessary. I'm not at all impressed by the results of his predecessors who had a kinder tone, and I think that his tone was likely integral to his success. It was partly his tone that caused his enemies to expose themselves for the biased liars they are. They believed it gave them license to express themselves openly, and they did.

At the time, I was impressed with G.W. Bush's reluctance to attack those who attacked him, but I now see that he got nothing back for that courtesy.

I fantasize about a Trump who is incredibly articulate, and uses a sharper, more refined defense, but tough fighters are not usually refined, and if you want a fighter for a President rather than a figurehead, you have to be flexible.

Ken B said...

Explain to us Chuck that the word stew is another incest fantasy.

Fernandistein said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
viator said...

"our trickster President has plenty of tricks up his sleeve."
As we; the GOP 2016 all star hopefuls; the Democrats; Hillary Clinton; the Lamestream Media; various foreign cabals, sovereigns and politicos; the globalist left; pardoned felons; Never Trumpers; assorted lefty/globalist/cultural Marxist billionaires; Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin; Xi Jinping; and an array of quick and slow pundits have discovered.

Fernandistein said...

If Trump ever gets rich I hope he's not "mean as Hitler" to everyone except for rich white males, like he is now.

(Apologies to J.Handey.)

Limited blogger said...

Sounds like the answer to the job interview question - what's your biggest fault?

"I care too much"

bagoh20 said...

"If an NBC commentator had belched out such a word-mess, you'd be blogging about how ludicrous it was. If a NYT or New Yorker writer wrote such garbage, you'd be calling it out. "

Who wants an NBC commentator or a NYT writer as President? You don't hire a ballerina for a warrior's work, even if she would improve the aesthetics. This country needs a warrior, not another symbolic place holder spouting platitudes as people walk off with the silverware.

Leland said...

I was just reading another blog. One that was pro-Trump from the start. They love Trump's tone, and from there, I can see what I think Trump means.

Here in Texas; I don't know why anyone thinks Beto has a chance against Cruz. Cruz's original run in the Senate was backed by the TEA Party, who propelled him over the GOP Party preferred son, Lt. Gov David Dewhurst. Cruz has deep support among conservatives and they've backed him even over Trump in the 2016 Texas primary.

Yet, I do know why people think Cruz is weak, and that's because of the harsh personal attacks from Trump during the primary. Because Trump's tone on Cruz was hard and negative, and Trump had to do it to even have a chance in Texas. But Trump lost in the primary, and Trump's supporters didn't do well initially to gain the support of Cruz supporters. Trump got the support by sticking to his platform and not being Hillary.

Since 2016, Trump has mended a few fences mostly by keeping his promises, but some of his supporters need to catch a clue from Trump. The primary is over, and it is time to open the tent. You can still keep out Chuck. The tent doesn't need to be that big. Softer tone, not tone deaf.

Sebastian said...

Softness and civility, if you can fake that, you got it made.

Kevin said...

Althouse: Let's say something nice about Trump.

Chuck: NFW!

The media only puts out 93% negative Trump stories. Even they can't muster the 100% negativity of Chuck's comments.

Dickin'Bimbos@Home said...

did anyone ever ask Obama that Q?

Francisco D said...

Hitler also wished he had a softer tone.

No. He did not. Listen to one of his speeches.

A HS friend was in an advanced German class with a very bright Black athlete. The teacher played one of Hitler's speeches and ALL the students stood up they were so caught up in the intense emotion.

stevew said...

There's a part of me, in a somewhat fevered corner of my mind, that thinks this whole thing with Trump constantly calling out the media is the manifestation of a deal they put together to provide news and ratings for the media companies and a distraction for Trump's political critics.

Chuck said...

Dickin'Bimbos@Home said...
did anyone ever ask Obama that Q?


As it so happens, yes. And Obama's answer is very appropriate for tonight:

“If I have a regret during my presidency, it is that people were so focused on me and the battles we were having, particularly after we lost the House, that folks stopped paying attention up and down the ballot.”

In Presidential fashion, it isn't really a true "I regret" answer. But at least it wasn't garbage.

Props to President Eisenhower for the best Presidential answer, ever to the question, "What were your mistakes as President?" Eisenhower's reported answer -- and I have never been certain about the provenance for this quote: "I only made two mistakes, and they are both sitting on the Supreme Court." (Referring to his nominations of Earl Warren and William Brennan.) And even that is not quite an admission of personal failure so much as a criticism on nominees who let him down. Of course, it is 10,000 times more clever than anything Trump has ever said.

cubanbob said...

Softer tone? I was at the inauguration and the Left-Democrats didn't even wait for the inauguration to finish to start with their crap.
No, Trump needs to be harsher against the leftist scum.

Chuck said...

Francisco D said...
Hitler also wished he had a softer tone.

No. He did not. Listen to one of his speeches.


Or just read them!

Like Trump did!


bagoh20 said...

You will notice that Obama's answer did not accept that he made a mistake, but that "folks stopped paying attention". The people let him down.

narciso said...

don't forget when stuck a chiv in Nixon, we saw how civility was repaid in w's case, one needs a blunt instrument,

stevew said...

Rather like the job interviewer asking you what your biggest weakness is or area in need of greatest improvement. It's a trap question that demands an answer itemizing or highlighting your strengths.

narciso said...

yes, when they torched that limo on conneticut avenue, the j 20 crew, got off 'free as a bird'

narciso said...

those were much more profound regrets which were nearly irreversible,

BUMBLE BEE said...

Chuck... the Althouse Blog rodeo clown!

narciso said...

hey mark o, how have you been, how's the horse?

President Pee-Pee Tape said...

One thing you've always been really bad at is considering the alternative. If civility is bullshit, have you ever considered that barbarism might be even worse bullshit?

President Pee-Pee Tape said...

"What does Trump wish he could "take back and redo"? "I would say tone," he answers."

He's a pretty slow learner.

Just the way you guys like 'em!

Unknown said...

Trump is expressing the lament of any decent self-defender forced into a stand-your-ground situation where his attackers lie moaning at his feet when the cops show up. Unfortunately, in politics there are no cops. Maybe just today, November 6th, we are the cops. I say it been self-defense all the way through.

glenn said...

Never complain, never explain.

traditionalguy said...

This is the narrative that we started with in 2015, and it is coming true early. We would elect him so we could use Trump's brain and aggressiveness to fix our problems for us. And then, once we don't need him, we can throw him out for being a rude fellow that embarrassed us.

Known Unknown said...

" If civility is bullshit"

Your comprehension is off. The Professor isn't saying all civility is bullshit, but that phony political appeals in the name of civility are indeed bullshit.