August 8th, 2016

Predicting the future: another post from your friendly Trump-hating media shill

There’s a trend I’ve noticed in the comments section here and also in some of the emails I’ve been getting: quite a few people admonishing me that I should shut up like a good apparatchik and take one for the Trump Team in terms of criticizing him, and that if I don’t, I’m responsible (not solely, of course, but in my own little way) for the election of Hillary Clinton and every evil that follows from that. This was summed up rather elegantly recently by one person who wrote that I was now “just part of the media anti-Trump chorus.”

What is the goal of a blog? Some exist to make money; alas, not this one, not much (although heartfelt thanks again to all who contribute in that way). Some exist to lead the cheerleading for a political movement; not this one, either. Some exist to rouse the rabble with rabble-rousing nastiness, whipping them up into a two-minutes hate a la Nineteen Eighty-Four. Nope, not me. Some exist to sell something, or to provide a service (soft-core porn, anyone?).

And I guess you might say I provide a service, and that sevice (the intended one, anyway), is to provide a forum in which to disuss politics and just about everything else under the sun in a rational, fact-based, logical, sometimes playful and/or humorous, mostly respectful, way. I also try to provide a place where political changers feel very much at home.

So that’s the service I originally wanted to provide for others. But I was (and am) doing something for myself, too. For just about all of my life I’ve had what someone close to me calls a “seething cranium,” meaning that I tend to ruminate on a lot of things. I can get a bit long-winded—just a trifle!—in real life, and it’s not an experience completely unknown for me to see the occasional eye glaze over when I try to talk about something near and dear to my heart. But here, here, I can talk about whatever I want and get it off my chest or just plain share something I find fascinating, and I draw like-minded people whose eyes maybe won’t glaze over so readily.

But there’s more. Because of my political change experience, I call them like I see them, and in doing so I try as best I can to tell the truth. I believe that the truth will help us all make the best political decisions. Back when I was a liberal Democrat (or thought I was), every time Ronald Reagan said something that I thought sounded smart, I might pipe up about it to a few of my fellow-liberals, who would sometimes look at me funny, with suspicion (through their somewhat-glazed eyes, that is). Later, if George W. Bush didn’t sound all that dumb to me, I might say so, too. And if I thought the 2000 election was really a toss-up, and I was willing to abide by the Court’s ruling that Bush was the winner (despite my bitter disappointment), I said that, too.

In other words, I wasn’t a political shill for the left or the MSM then, and I certainly don’t intend to be one for the right now.

Yes, Hillary Clinton is terrible, horrible, vile. But if I see Donald Trump as also terrible, horrible, vile—although in a different way and with different faults—it behooves me in this election to try my best to sort out who’s who and what’s what and in what ways each would be terrible, and act accordingly in the voting booth. I have already said I cannot envision ever voting for her and have trouble envisioning ever voting for him—and although I might do the latter, he’s been making it more and more difficult lately to the point where it’s close to possible. I say that with terrible sorrow, because I consider this election year a tragedy for America and for the world. We had many choices that I think would have been excellent, and I believe that we (I speak collectively, not personally) made the wrong choices.

I consider it my duty as a voter and a human being to explore the question of who to vote for with as much truth and integrity and good judgment as I can possibly muster, and I am deeply offended at the idea that I’m required to lie or cover up what I see as my assessment of Donald Trump. Fortunately for Trump supporters who think I should keep quiet about his flaws (and should look away even if he shoots someone on Fifth Avenue), I don’t have that much influence in the world. But still, I have to do what I see as my duty, which is to tell the truth of what I see and the way I evaluate it, so that I can make the best decision possible. Asking me to keep quiet begs the question, because it only would make any sense at all (forget the moral dimension; I’m just speaking practically now) if in fact we knew who was better and who was worse, and I contend that we do not.

Unfortunately.

And about that “responsibility for the election of Hillary and everything she does” part—if she is indeed elected, the responsibility for that would lie in:

—the voters who chose the execrable Hillary Clinton in the primaries.
—Donald Trump himself, who is what he is and says what he says, and mounted a losing campaign.
—Hillary Clinton herself, who is what she is and says what she says, and mounted a winning campaign.
—The people who voted for Hillary Clinton in the general.

And what would I be responsible for if I don’t vote for Trump? I would be responsible for failing to help to elect Donald Trump. By not helping to elect Donald Trump, I would be part of preventing his presidency, and whether you think that’s a good or bad thing depends on the very question we’ve been debating here so mightily and for so long: who would be the worse president of the two, and why, and how?

In that endeavor, Hillary is the more known quantity—and thus in recent months I’ve devoted less attention to her—and Trump the unknown quantity. Some people say that argues in his favor, but I don’t see that as necessarily so. But that’s an issue on which reasonable men and women can disagree.

I wish I had the proverbial crystal ball to see the two alternative futures, President Hillary Clinton versus President Donald Trump. Short of that, though, we have to puzzle it out ourselves, and that requires honesty. And even after the election comes and the winner is inaugurated and begins the task of being president, and the potential becomes reality and then history, we’ll never know the alternative history of what might have been.

If Hillary is president, we’ll know what she does as president, but we don’t know what Trump would have done. Would he have been much better, as his supporters will no doubt argue as they blame those who didn’t vote for him? We’ll never never know (unless he were to be elected in 2020, and even then it would be at a different point in history). Would he have been worse, as others will say? We’ll also never know. And the opposite is true, of course, for speculation about a Hillary presidency if Trump were to be elected. And although I think we’d be on much firmer ground if we are trying to guess what she would have done, because she has much more of political track record, we still would never know for sure—although if a President Trump does good things, I think we could be pretty certain he’s better than she.

In mid-May I wrote a post on this very issue of alternative history, with a quote from the great Czech writer Milan Kundera. I urge you to go there and read the quote, and I’ll add another:

Kundera describes his vacillating hero, Tomas, in the throes of making a decision about whether or not he is in love with a certain woman:

“He remained annoyed with himself [for not knowing what he should do] until he realized that not knowing what he wanted was actually quite natural.

“We can never know what to want, because, living only one life, we can neither compare it with our previous lives nor perfect it in our lives to come…There is no means of testing which decision is better, because there is no basis for comparison. We live our lives without warning, like an actor going on cold.”

In making both in our personal and in our political decisions, we can weigh things. We can look at the facts. We an make lists of pros and cons. We can bring all our forces of logic, knowledge, experience, and intuition to the solution of our dilemma. But we can never know what the alternative would have brought. We can only do our best.

190 Responses to “Predicting the future: another post from your friendly Trump-hating media shill”

  1. vanderleun Says:

    “You just keep thinking Butch. That’s what you’re good at.” — The Sundance Kid

    And, from the same film, the political quandary of 2016:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1IbStIb9XXw

  2. Cornhead Says:

    “In that endeavor, Hillary is the more known quantity….”

    Yeah, she’s a known CRIMINAL. And I am not exaggerating. When the 33,000 deleted emails are leaked it will be clear to all. Bribery at the highest level.

    We all love you dearly neo, but sometimes you are too intellectual. Hillary is a criminal who has been bribed by foreign countries. Trump has not.

    Many here wanted other candidates. Trump won. Neo has no duty to shill for Trump and she can express her views. It is her blog.

    Trump gave a very good speech on the economy today. This race is all about the economy and terrorism. Everything else is a distraction.

    I have totally changed my mind about Trump and I saw him in person four times. I’ve seen Hillary six times and I am even more opposed to her than ever.

    Clint Eastwood in “Vanity Fair” had it right re doing movies. Don’t over intellectualize every thing. Sometimes go with your gut.

  3. vanderleun Says:

    Then again Claire Wolfe (who semi-famously and semi-fatuously said: “America is at that awkward stage. It’s too late to work within the system, but too early to shoot the bastards.”) this AM notes:

    “The best thing about “me” isn’t about me at all. It’s the Commentariat. Or the people who rarely speak up online but are always there, being doers, sharing their wisdom, laughing about things, helping other freedomistas where help is needed. Being Moles or Agitators or Ghosts or Cockapoos. Or just themselves, undefinable. The best thing about “me” is the people who feel comfortable in a place like this, and who go out in the world and create freedom.”

    http://www.clairewolfe.com/blog/2016/08/05/proudly-preaching-to-the-choir-since-1996/

  4. vanderleun Says:

    “Trump gave a very good speech on the economy today.”

    That he did. I watched it.

  5. DNW Says:

    There’s a trend I’ve noticed in the comments section here and also in some of the emails I’ve been getting: quite a few people admonishing me that I should shut up like a good apparatchik …

    Not having access to your e-mail, I cannot say that I have noticed you being harangued by any regular or semi-regular readers of your blog in the comments section.

    That said, I think it is time for you to quit straddling the fence and to wholeheartedly, and categorically, and with out mental reservation, support The Donald in all he says and does, even though small-minded people may not be capable of grasping or comprehending the grandness and nobility of his vision, the brilliance of his tactics, or or the profound depth of his strategy. Commit! Before you singlehandedly destroy the republic with all your qualms and fears!

  6. DNW Says:

    That was just a joke of course. I do have access to your e-mail …

  7. neo-neocon Says:

    Cornhead and vanderleun:

    My intellect and my gut tell me that BOTH would be terrible presidents, in different terrible ways. I’m trying to sort out who would be worse, the criminal or the loose cannon. The answer is not the least bit obvious to me.

    Unfortunately, I have reached the point where Trump’s prepared speeches have become utterly and totally meaningless to me, on a par with Obama’s “no red or blue states” crapola that had nothing to do with how he governed as president.

    I have never given much credence to political speeches, by the way. It is not how I evaluate candidates, generally, and even more so not how I evaluate Trump, since his speeches and almost everything else he says are at variance, and since I have almost no evidence that he has much input into his own speeches. It really wouldn’t matter to me if he did, though, because I evaluate a person’s mind and intentions and character far more on what they say and do off-the-cuff.

    Far from being too intellectual on this, I’m using my gut a great deal, actually.

  8. neo-neocon Says:

    vanderleun:

    Keep quoting that quote, vanderleun, that’s what you’re good at. 🙂

  9. vanderleun Says:

    “…BOTH would be terrible presidents, in different terrible ways.”

    Did you ever have to make up your mind
    Pick up on one and leave the other behind
    It’s not often easy and not often kind
    Did you ever have to make up your mind

    Did you ever have to finally decide
    Say yes to one and let the other one ride
    There’s so many changes and tears you must hide
    Did you ever have to finally decide….

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iNHQYPhdPlE

  10. neo-neocon Says:

    DNW:

    Not so much the regulars (at least not the regulars I know), but there have been quite a few people coming on to say it who also add that they’re regular readers but that they’ve never commented before.

    In other words, they come out of the woodwork to tell me to shut up already and promote Trump.

    Now, I have no way to know if they are actually regular readers or if they are new arrivals pretending to be regular readers. But there have been quite a few. And there have been a couple of regular readers/commenters, too.

  11. vanderleun Says:

    “Keep quoting that quote, vanderleun, that’s what you’re good at.”

    Not at all. It’s just that I am COMPELLED by my SEETHING CRANIUM!!!

  12. Cornhead Says:

    Neo

    Then on the gut level realize Trump wants the love of the American people. The only way he gets that is by making America great again. He has to improve the economy to get the love.

    On the other hand, Hillary wants more money for herself and her cronies (including foreign countries). For her, it is screw America.

  13. T Says:

    Neo,

    As Thomas Sowell recently wrote: “Nobody said that being a good citizen would be easy.”

    Ultimately, I have gone from backing Fiorina (then Cruz) to supporting Trump as a matter of reality. Our next president will either be the Republican or the Democrat candidate. As you point out, Trump is still, to some degree an open question. He may greatly disappoint me/us but he also may not.

    I may regret a vote for Donald Trump (or not) but I can not, under any possible or plausible circumstances, ever see myself regretting not voting for Hillary Clinton. I truly believe that she is a fundamental danger to this nation; as a sequel to Obama and with the likelihood of several SCOTUS appointments, she can infect our government for at least a generation.

    One can rationalize one’s vote by what one is</I) responsible for (e.g., a Trump win), but I will rationalize my vote by what I refuse to be responsible for, i.e., a Hillary Clinton presidency. Thus my vote will be for the most winnable non-Hillary candidate. In this election cycle that is the Republican nominee, regardless of the dissension within the ranks.

  14. huxley Says:

    Clint Eastwood in “Vanity Fair” had it right re doing movies. Don’t over intellectualize every thing. Sometimes go with your gut.

    When I started looking into Trump, I was hoping to discover he wasn’t as bad as the media made out. However, the more I looked, the worse Trump got.

    Almost everything about Trump shrieks “con man” to me. His grandiose persona, his constant bragging, bullying and lying, his swings from fawning to vengeance-wreaking, his bizarre self-named, often-failed financial schemes , his secretiveness about finances, his litigiousness, his constant blaming of others when things don’t go well, etc.

    I’m an intellectual guy, but I didn’t get where I am on Trump because I’m lost in my head.

  15. OM Says:

    Neo:

    Once again another gem.

    Consistency is not your hobgoblin.

  16. neo-neocon Says:

    Cornhead:

    My evaluation of what Trump wants is very very very different from yours. And it may indeed involve money for himself and his cronies, which may indeed include foreign countries.

    But more importantly, what a person wants (even if I agreed with you about his intentions) does not mean that anything he does or says is likely to accomplish that aim.

    My evaluation of Trump has sunk in the last couple of months rather than improved, in particular post-convention. The high point was his speech at the convention. If he had acted differently since the convention it would have helped solidify my vote. Instead, he has said very alarming things, and those are things that reveal his mindset, his abilities or lack thereof, and his ignorance.

    I will keep watching and evaluating, of course. And I was a lot happier when I thought I could vote for him.

    I have noticed that almost everyone who has come to the Trump camp, reluctantly, has done so because they feel pretty certain he would be better than she. I am pretty certain of no such thing. That’s the difference.

  17. Cornhead Says:

    Huxley

    On policy, Trump is the best by a far, far margin. Low taxes, a real border, law and order, really fight terror and better trade deals. That’s what is important.

    I was very much against the Trump persona. He is a rough character with bad stuff in his background. He’s a total media hound. Much of this I attribute to him being an NYC real estate developer. I got over it. It’s not about me. It’s about our country. Hillary will destroy our country. Simple.

  18. Baklava Says:

    Neo and all,
    I’m using my gut also.

    My conclusion is that Trump is damaging the figure through his lack of understanding of conservatism and he is unable to articulate or provide clarity.

    Because he is unclear it is immeasurable the amount of damage he is bringing.

    Think of a David Duke and how that would bring complete disrespect to the party.

    I can’t tell my grandkids I voted for that.

    He HAD the responsibility of being clear in his positions. He could talk about security and the difficulty of vetting refugees without saying Muslims. He never had to use the word Mexican. My wife is Mexican and feels strongly about having a secure border for national security reasons at was horrified about Kate Steinle and the other victims of sanctuary cities.

    Every Trump supporter owns this problem.

    The only winner in this election will be the return to personal responsibility.

  19. Cornhead Says:

    Neo

    Trump always got big applause when he referenced that he wasn’t owned by donors. I don’t care if he is worth $100m or $100b. At his age and that scale of wealth, it is all about approval from the American people and showing up those snobs in Manhattan. He’s the Brooklyn-Queens boy.

    If he wins, the value of his Trump Organization skyrockets. His equity will make his wife and kids even richer. In his own mind he will become one of the greatest Americans ever. Greatness. That’s what this is all about.

  20. Cornhead Says:

    Baklava

    Trump is just not very articulate. Sometimes his language and thinking is sloppy. Some stupid mistakes. But the alternative is Armageddon. Good bye USA.

  21. expat Says:

    I would feel a lot better about Trump if he had paid some attention to what his critics were saying and tried to modify his behaviour to show that he really could be presidential. He pretends to listen to what his supporters want, but I don’t think he really ever tries to walk in their shoes. He seems to imagine a world in which everyone wants gold faucets and a condo in a high rise. Does he know that lots of people just want a little yard where they can pitch baseball with their sons or grow a few tomato plants?

    The people who haven’t jumped onto his bandwagon (although they might vote for him as the lesser of two evils) are his last chance to learn a bit of what is expected of a president. I wish he would sit quietly and think a bit.

  22. Cornhead Says:

    The first time I saw Trump was in very blue collar Sioux City, Iowa. I was stunned how this billionaire from Fifth Avenue connected with these people. I knew he was onto something right there. Trump filled a high school gym on short notice. Hillary had a much smaller crowd in a college cafeteria.

  23. huxley Says:

    Cornhead:

    But as I said, in my view Trump is a con man. Con men con, that’s what they do. They gain your confidence, then they exploit you.

    Trump’s supporters, enthusiastic or reluctant, are far too trusting of Trump. They hope he will be better than Hillary, but that’s hope, not rational argument.

    Those who signed up for Trump University hoped they would gain the knowledge and skills to better themselves financially as Trump promised them. They found out otherwise.

    Exactly why the Trump Administration should work out better for its faithful than Trump University eludes me.

  24. Baklava Says:

    Corn head, this is true with Obama. Cities have higher rates of murder, debt is twice as high, labor participation is worst in 44 years, terror is on the rise, schools must allow boys in girls room (which Trump isn’t going to address)

    as I see it, Trump isn’t the answer because he will ensure we lose for the next generation……. and he isn’t for freedom anyway

  25. Cornhead Says:

    Expat

    “He seems to imagine a world in which everyone wants gold faucets and a condo in a high rise. Does he know that lots of people just want a little yard where they can pitch baseball with their sons or grow a few tomato plants?”

    Disagree. Trump gets what people want and they respond to him. Hillary’s crowd are party regulars and feminists. I’ve seen them. If Hillary was a man, she would lose 30% of her base.

  26. T Says:

    “I have noticed that almost everyone who has come to the Trump camp, reluctantly, has done so because they feel pretty certain he would be better than she.” [Neo @ 2:27]

    No certainty for me at all, I have migrated to the Trump camp because I am hoping the he will be better than she. I am fully aware that I might be disappointed.

    “Think of a David Duke [i.e., Trump?] and how that would bring complete disrespect to the party.” [Baklava @ 2:33]

    The party??!! Quite frankly, to Hell with the party. Any disrespect the Republican party receives it has earned. My concern is for the nation. Trump can reverse the Obama course, he can stop the Obama course or he can continue the Obama course. Hillary will continue the course if only because she and Obama are Progressive soul-mates. I’m going with two out of three.

  27. IGotBupkis, "Si tacuisses, philosophus mansisses Says:

    My own position is that, if ANYONE.can demonstrate so much BLATANT disregard for fraud, criminal collusion, treasonous perfidy, outright lying, and an almost endless litany of immoral and criminal action and STILL have ANY chance of getting your vpte, then shame on you.

    Short of having sufficient justificatiion to believe that Trump will start WWIII, I cannot see how ANYONE can fail to do everything in their power to prevent Hillary becoming POtUS.

    YMMV.

  28. T Says:

    “They hope he will be better than Hillary, but that’s hope, not rational argument.” [Huxley @ 2:50]

    This is true and I fully admit that. So what? Voting for Hillary because she is not Trump is not rational argument. Voting for Gary Johnson, Jill Stein or Evan McMullin who cannot win just because they are neither Trump nor Hillary is not rational argument. Voting one’s “conscience” is not rational argument. The list goes on. There is no point to make here.

  29. Baklava Says:

    my concern is for the nation also

  30. IGotBupkis, "Si tacuisses, philosophus mansisses Says:

    ****Boss Tweed**** was less corrupt than Hillary.

  31. T Says:

    One other difference between Hillary and Trump to keep in mind is that regardless of anyone’s actual research, most of what we know about either Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton comes from media accounts. There is very very little actual primary research. Doing research on the internet? You’re either reading a reporter’s report or a novelist’s rendition.

    Remember everyone has an axe to grind, and as Glenn Reynolds frequently points out, just think of reporters as “Democrats with bylines.”

    Given that, we also know that most media people have made every attempt to invalidate Trump and glorify Clinton. Trump does not appear very attractive at all having been presented to us by an antagonistic media. Hillary comes off at least as poorly having been presented to us by an obsequious media. What does that tell us about what may yet be unreported?

  32. T Says:

    Let me rephrase my 3:16 comment a little more succinctly.

    As bad as Trump might be is the best that the media can make Hillary appear.

  33. OM Says:

    Even lawyers can be conned and feel good about it, Cornhead. Voting for Trump is not at rational argument by the same token, T.

    Knowing the future didn’t work out to well for Cassandra. Be careful what you wish for.

  34. T Says:

    “Voting for Trump is not at rational argument by the same token, T.” [OM @ 3:29]

    and I did admit exactly that:

    . . .but that’s hope, not rational argument.” [Huxley @ 2:50]

    This is true and I fully admit that. [T @ 3:03]

    I also pointed out that the odds for Trump were two out of three with nothing guaranteed:

    Trump can reverse the Obama course, he can stop the Obama course or he can continue the Obama course. [T @ 2:56]

  35. carl in atlanta Says:

    T:
    Yes.

    Cornhead:
    Thanks for your continuing efforts and reports. You’re the only commenter here (that I know of) who has regularly been attending 2016 events, rallies etc. from the get-go. You’ve seen these people in the flesh, pretty much unfiltered by the MSM “Lens of Bias”. That you seem to have reached the same conclusions that I have — that the decision we face is binary and that Clinton is so clearly a “known-known” bad option that it’s worth taking a chance on Trump, who has in fact assembled some decent (conservative-ish) advisers and who has at least declared his much-acclaimed list of SCOTUS picks — is heartening. However, it seems clear that there is a very large % of conservative voters — including many commenters here — who revile Trump as much as, if not more than they do Clinton, and who will not (they would say “cannot”) vote for him under any circumstances. If that % is as large as it appears to be – 25%? 35%? More?—then Clinton is certain to win.
    I don’t condemn the NeverTrumpers (or Near-NeverTrumpers), but I don’t understand why they seem willing to accept and even facilitate the certainty of Hillary being elected when we all know her presidency would be a disaster for the republic.
    The choice before us is not a happy one but it is one that must be made, and in making it we must be willing to weigh the odds and take a chance. And that choice is binary. Barring some kind of Black Swan event, all other talk is not only unrealistic, it’s demoralizing and divisive.

  36. AMartel Says:

    “But we can never know what the alternative would have brought.”

    I think that while we can’t know a specific outcome or predict unknown variables (like the economy which is sure to suddenly crumble – unexpectedly – if Trump wins) we can know with a certain degree of confidence and accuracy what Hillary Clinton will bring. It’s not like there isn’t tons of precedent.

    I sense that the real hang up here is (1) social unease because Trump is such a buffoon and (2) lack of consensus from the usual sources. We (Republican voters) are so used to going along with the candidate that the establishment and establishment media have picked out and vetted for us even though we may have this sneaking feeling that this one isn’t going to fly either. It’s exactly how I felt about Jeb, Christie, and a lot of the other guys in the race this year. Including, unfortunately, Scott Walker who I had high hopes for. They were all big kow-towers. I did not get this feeling from Carly or Cruz which is why I supported them so strongly. With the pre-selected nominee, the media and the candidate’s surrogates already know his deficiencies and are ready with pre-fab responses to criticism. (E.g., how dare you make fun of McCain’s age; he’s battle-tested!) I haven’t liked any of the Republican presidential nominees in decades. They’re all compromises assembled by committee. They all barely win if they win at all. I go along and vote for them because I have no choice. Now we are stuck with a very different problem; this guy could win. Oh, sheeeet~!

  37. DNW Says:

    Cornhead Says:
    August 8th, 2016 at 1:50 pm

    “In that endeavor, Hillary is the more known quantity….”

    Yeah, she’s a known CRIMINAL. And I am not exaggerating. When the 33,000 deleted emails are leaked it will be clear to all. Bribery at the highest level. “

    That’s right.

    I am pretty sure that Trump is not a traitor, nor at ideological and philosophical war with the principles of constitutionalism and the rule of law. Hillary is.

    I also to this point have not seen that he is as obviously morally psychopathic as Hillary – though Neo would probably describe both her and Obama in terms of narcissistic personality disorder rather than psychopathy.

    And although Trump may be so pig-ignorant of law and philosophy that he barely comprehends either the principle of constitutionalism or the rule of law, he is unlike Hillary or Obama, not about fundamentally transforming rule of law capitalist America into its political antithesis – something many of her supporters are quite supportive of – and into a completely post-constitutional polity: That is to say, in finally hammering the coffin lid down on our (as Obama criticized them) “negative liberties”, and further entrenching that totalitarianism which constitutes the stuff and substance of left-fascism; or as it is nowadays known, the modern “liberalism” of the Democrat Party.

    I have by the way, some recommended reading for those who like myself are reasonably schooled and read in philosophy and law, but who have somehow missed the exact mechanics of the migration of the ideological viruses of Comte in France and Marx in Germany, into the intellectual bloodstream of American “liberalism”.

    That is to say, those who still wonder at the exact ideological details of liberalism’s transformation [which we all recognize took place] from a preoccupation with expanding liberty and equality under law, to “perfecting” society through redistributive governmental action and penalties.

    The book is: John Stuart Mill and the Religion of Humanity. Linda C. Raeder 2002 University of Missouri Press.

    We all know of the movements from the Civil War era period on … but the intellectual transformation process itself, which resulted in the ideological result we see now, always seemed a bit vague as one tried to peer behind the surface hub bub of events and movements.

    In this work, Raeder amplifies what only a few prior examiners of Mill’s superficially “liberal” doctrines have noticed and commented upon: the essentially anti-transcendent, yet religious-like impulse that drove what looked to casual onlookers to be a neutral secularist interest in promoting disinterested liberty. The deception, if that is not too strong a word, was as Raeder shows through letters to Comte and posthumously published works, intended as part of advancing the collectivist religion of humanity.

    If she is right, and I am pretty well persuaded she is, Mill is like numerous others once thought to be, and esteemed in educational propaganda to be, more or less classical “liberals”.

    But like Dewey, or John Rawls for example, he turns out to be quite something else.

    The book can be gotten cheaply in like-new condition through Alibris or the like; and will save you spending 50 bucks for a Amazon copy.

    A modest philosophical vocabulary is recommended but not required, as she writes simply, but not down.

  38. eve Says:

    Yes, neo. Both will be terrible presidents., But remember Yeats:. “Things fall apart; the center cannot hold. ” The US is in debt to the tune of trillions of dollars. Demographics will work against us. Collapse will come at some point. I will vote for Hillary in hopes that the “falling apart” happens while she is president. Yes, it’s depressing to think this way, but history teaches painful lessons.

  39. Geoffrey Britain Says:

    neo,

    “My intellect and my gut tell me that BOTH would be terrible presidents, in different terrible ways. I’m trying to sort out who would be worse, the criminal or the loose cannon. The answer is not the least bit obvious to me.

    I agree as to both being terrible Presidents. I wrestled with that as well and, given the unknowns, it is an impossible conundrum to resolve. Finally I realized that it is less a case of which would be worse, than of the forces they would unleash upon America.

    In my judgement, the alt-right cannot begin to match the Left’s ability to affect America. Due to several factors; 1) we are much farther down the Left’s path than the alt-right’s, 2) the alt-right is anarchist (let it all burn down), while the Left is a totalitarian ideology with specific goals antithetical to liberty. 3) the massive network of organized leftist organizations attacking American society on every front.

    “I have noticed that almost everyone who has come to the Trump camp, reluctantly, has done so because they feel pretty certain he would be better than she. I am pretty certain of no such thing. That’s the difference.”

    IMO, Trump will not be ‘better’ than Hillary, rather his negative impact will be less harmful in the long run, confirmed by history, which demonstrates that authoritarian fascist regimes are far easier to recover from than are marxist regimes. I suspect this is so because authoritarian fascist regimes are based in a cult-like worship of a person. Whereas an ideology has no natural end.

    What makes the Left’s ideology so dangerous is it’s rejection of reality and, its willingness to use whatever amount of force is necessary… to make the world as it wishes, regardless of how many it must sacrifice.

  40. T Says:

    “I suspect this is so because authoritarian fascist regimes are based in a cult-like worship of a person. Whereas an ideology has no natural end.” [GB @ 3:59]

    Time to reprise the C.S. Lewis quote:

    It may be better to live under robber barons [i.e.,Trump] than under omnipotent moral busybodies [i.e., Clinton]. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end, for they do so with the approval of their consciences.”

  41. DNW Says:

    By the way, does anyone really imagine that Hillary will be able to manage the international and possibly domestic fallout from 8 years of Democrat Administration misfeasance?

    Those who are frightened with the idea of a Trump administration because of “Russia, and Iran, and North Korea”, had better really begin playing Hillary scenarios over in their mind; and judging for themselves as to just how it is that accommodating this physically enfeebled neurotic’s lust for power and validation, will redound to our country’s benefit when Kim Jong decides to test her.

    There goes Neo’s worst nightmare, in an attempt to avoid it.

    On the other hand if another 9/11 hits with Hillary in office … we can all sit back, crack a beer, and say … It was to be expected and it is yours”. Until that is Jennifer Granholm’s Office of Patriotic and Counter-Wrecking Activities, starts rounding naysayers and demoralizers up.

  42. Geoffrey Britain Says:

    Does anyone really doubt that under Clinton, Obama’s disastrous foreign policies will not continue? That China, Russia, Iran and N. Korea will not continue to gain increased military capability against a declining America?

    That Pax Americana will not be a thing of the past, with China instituting ‘might makes right’ as the new paradigm in ‘international relations’?

    That America will not be viewed as a ‘paper tiger’? Literally inviting nuclear terrorism.

    That Islamic terrorist attacks will not become the norm?

    That illegal immigration will not skyrocket with amnesty as the ultimate incentive?

    That our economy won’t slide into depression?

    That the 1st and 2nd amendments will not be gutted? That the federalization of local police and state forces not be fully accomplished? That the military will not be fully emasculated and made into an enforcement arm of the Left?

    That the legal, cultural and ‘educational’ attacks by the Left won’t escalate?

    So much to look forward to, the point of no return reached, in the fundamental transformation of America, will be the first woman President’s… legacy.

  43. AMartel Says:

    eve, when have the Dems ever taken or been assigned credit for their multitudinous appalling failures? what makes you think they’ll take credit for Clinton’s failure?

  44. Ann Says:

    Trump’s stance on the use of nuclear weapons and the nuclear arms race rules out any possibility of my voting for him.

  45. CapnRusty Says:

    Hillary will continue, if not accelerate, the path down which Obama and the Democrats have been taking us. Illegal aliens will become voting citizens. Muslims will continue to come in without vetting. The Supreme Court will become a liberal rubber stamp, after which the 2d Amendment will be crippled. The media will root and cheer, and lie, for her. Wall Street will love her. There will be no opposition. We can know all that for sure.

    We don’t know for sure what road Trump will take us down. But I don’t think he will renege on the issues mentioned above. We can be sure, however, that the media will disparage and lie about his every move, the bankers will fund his opponents, the Democrats, and probably half the Republicans, will strongly oppose everything he tries to do.

    So. If you think either one would be a bad President, choose the one the system will most strongly attempt to restrict.

  46. Ira Says:

    Neo:

    Cornhead and CapnRusty and others have it right.

    We KNOW Hillary has violated the public trust.
    We KNOW Hillary as Secretary of State and as a candidate has scapegoated people.
    We KNOW Hillary is a liar and that she even lies about lying.
    We KNOW Hillary has destroyed evidence subject to a subpoena relating to her operations as Secretary of State.
    We KNOW Hillary is corrupt.

    So, as much as one might speculate about how bad Trump might be, we KNOW that Hillary cannot be trusted in public office.

    Frankly, I think we would be committing a SIN if we do not do at least the minimum legally permissible to preclude Hillary’s being rewarded with any new public office after what we’ve experienced of her time in public office. What is the minimum legally permissible thing to do? Vote for whoever else has the best chance of defeating Hillary.

    Right now that candidate is Trump.

    Also, we know the main stream media will more vigilantly report on what a President Trump would do than on what Hillary would do as president.

    CLINTON DELENDA EST!

    Ira

  47. AMartel Says:

    Ann, How do you feel about Obama’s nuclear weaponizing of Iran and do you believe Clinton will do anything at all to stop it?

  48. AMartel Says:

    Hillary is a compromised candidate due to her leaky personal server. How can such a person successfully negotiate with the bad actors of the world who have leverage over her (us)?

  49. DNW Says:

    “That America will not be viewed as a ‘paper tiger’? Literally inviting nuclear terrorism.

    That Islamic terrorist attacks will not become the norm?

    That our economy won’t slide into depression? “

    This is all likely, perhaps inevitable, no matter who is elected.

    The open question is whether one at least, of the candidates would try to do something about it to arrest it.

    This does being up an interesting matter though which I am sure the social-war gaming Hillary crowd has already thought through: as these types if the are good at nothing else, are obsessed every moment of their collectivist vermin lives with what others are doing, or would do give this or that provocation.

    And that matter is this: Imagine that Madame Stalin catches international hell. Imagine that there is an almost existential crisis during her administration. What happens? Well the left, insinuated as it is into every nook and crany of society, as diligent as it has been to ensure that there is no safe ground, no final redoubt which it has not penetrated and infested, is actually in a “good” position to wave the flag of patriotism or at least self-preserving expediency – much in the way Stalin was able to rally many Russians to the cause, when it might well have been in their best interests to let the Nazi’s into the Kremlin. But of course they could not, since what Stalin proposed to do to them slowly over time – for the most part – the Nazi’s would do more quickly.

    Thus, this moral slug, which has spent its life waging political war on traditional American freedoms and values, will be able to use the lives of the people she despises to insulate herself, and those like her.

    It’s not difficult to see why collectivists are so relentless. They have to be lest those whom they are targeting get a chance to put some distance between them, step aside and let nature work justice.

  50. KBK Says:

    Lots of words. Here’s mine: SCOTUS

  51. DNW Says:

    “This does being up ”

    bring up

  52. DNW Says:

    ” KBK Says:
    August 8th, 2016 at 5:44 pm

    Lots of words. Here’s mine: SCOTUS”

    Yes.

  53. DNW Says:

    Now its the turn of some smart-ass to post an exclamation point.

  54. DNW Says:

    By the way, Neo: Has anyone else suggested the site is sluggish-sticky?

  55. Lowell Says:

    Sorry, neo, but my eyes began to glaze over about halfway through. As for me, if Trump is close in FL, I’ll take my chances with him, over the criminal Hillary. If he’s not close in FL, THEN I’ll vote my conscience for a third party Gsry Johnson. Shows you just how much conscience I really have.

  56. David Foster Says:

    As long as there is a reasonable level of free speech in a society, problems can be fixed. Once free expression is reduced below a certain level, the society’s feedback loop is destroyed and problems of many different kinds become unfixable.

    Hillary is aligned with those who would suppress speech they don’t like: suppress with bureaucratic star chambers (as in the universities), suppress with IRS investigations, suppress with outright thuggery (as with many leftist activists), suppress with threats to send ‘hate speech’ perpetrators to prison.

    If Hillary becomes president, then you personally–whatever your views–will quite likely face the choice of either shutting up…indeed, not just shutting up but mouthing the required opinions…or, at a minimum, seeing your career and your personal finances destroyed.

  57. Matt_SE Says:

    “Some exist to sell something, or to provide a service (soft-core porn, anyone?).”

    But this is a tasteful site, so we call them “nudes.” : )

  58. Matt_SE Says:

    @ Cornhead:
    “Clint Eastwood in “Vanity Fair” had it right re doing movies. Don’t over intellectualize every thing. Sometimes go with your gut.”

    Oh, you really don’t want me to do that.

  59. Matt_SE Says:

    @ Neo-neocon:

    “Now, I have no way to know if they are actually regular readers or if they are new arrivals pretending to be regular readers. But there have been quite a few. And there have been a couple of regular readers/commenters, too.”

    They’re rent-a-mob Indians or Pakistanis, hired by Manafort to swarm conservative sites to manufacture a consensus. The opposite of a preference cascade.
    I’m sure Eric can tell you all about it.

  60. Matt_SE Says:

    @ Cornhead:

    “Trump filled a high school gym on short notice. Hillary had a much smaller crowd in a college cafeteria.”

    Romney and Ryan were drawing much larger crowds than Obama at the end, too. We know how that worked out.

  61. Richard Saunders Says:

    Ann, I sense that it will surprise you to learn that the United States has tactical nuclear weapons in its inventory, has deployed them from the 1950s until at least the 1990s and possibly still today, and has always considered tactical nuclear weapons usable under certain circumstances.

    It may also surprise you to learn that the United States has repeatedly announced that it does NOT adhere to the “No first use policy,” and that under the current Nuclear Posture Review, issued in 2010, “the new doctrine envisions commanders requesting presidential approval to use nuclear weapons to preempt an attack by a nation or a terrorist group using weapons of mass destruction. The draft also includes the option of using nuclear weapons to destroy known enemy stockpiles of nuclear, biological, or chemical weapons.” Wikipedia, “No First Use.”

    I suggest you also look up the “Atomic Cannon,” “Tactical Nuclear Weapons,” and “Special Atomic Demolition Munition.”

    Trump’s asking “Why we can’t use nuclear weapons” on Raqaa and other terrorist safe havens is perfectly rational and well within the scope of current and past US doctrine.

  62. Matt_SE Says:

    What I’m seeing increasingly is panic.
    Trump supporters across the enthusiasm-spectrum are seeing the polls, and silently thinking to themselves that they F’ed up. Because the alternative is the obviously criminal Hillary, they’re now starting to rationalize and lie about how Trump “isn’t that bad.”

    I care about the truth and I don’t like being lied to, no matter the source.

    If you F’ed up nominating Trump, then it’s time to take your medicine. We can only hope we aren’t destroyed by Hillary, though I’m of the opinion that there’s a lot of hysteria going on, on both sides. Both sides have an incentive to jack up the hysteria to 11.
    Hence, the apocalyptic language and Manichean duality of the race.

    IT’S OUR LAST CHANCE TO SAVE AMERICA, AND TRUMP IS THE *ONLY* PERSON WHO CAN DO IT!!!!!!!!11!!!!11!

    Bullshit.

    I think we’ll all still be here in 4 years (though maybe not Hillary if she has an aneurysm), America won’t have fallen permanently into the socialist sphere, and we’ll have another crack at nominating someone competent this time.

  63. Nick Says:

    If you’re trying to get me to support Trump, aim for my head, not my guts. I can understand an intellectual argument for supporting Trump against his opponent. As for my guts: I hate him.

    I hate bullies. That might be the driving force behind all of my political beliefs. I hate bullies the way only a former fat kid can. I oppose Clinton, and I hate the bullying party and policies she represents, but I don’t hate her the way I hate Trump. He’s the worst kind of bully: a stupid, smug rich misogynist bully. He bullies everyone. He bullies the skylines. Hillary Clinton might have had some decent motivation, at one time. She’s the kind of person I suspect will be surprised when she goes to Hell. Trump I suspect won’t. He’s never done anything decent in his life, and never acted with decent motivation. If there’s anything good in him I can’t see it.

  64. stu Says:

    At least Neo knows that her vote will only have meaning to her and will have no effect on the outcome, given that she resides in the deep blue state of Massachusetts. A Virginia resident, I am aware of the fact that Hillary has pulled her television buy here as she feels that she has the state won. Given the large federal presence in northern Virginia, she is probably right. My inclination therefore is to vote for the pot smoker.

  65. Ann Says:

    Trump’s asking “Why we can’t use nuclear weapons” on Raqaa and other terrorist safe havens is perfectly rational and well within the scope of current and past US doctrine.

    No responsible leader, however, would speak of such things in a throw-away, casual fashion, as Trump has done.

  66. OM Says:

    For all the reluctant and other supporters who view HRC as worse than DJT, there are others of standing that view the prospect of DJT as CIC as unacceptable and a grave national security risk. These others are not Democrats, BTW.

    http://www.redstate.com/sweetie15/2016/08/08/unfit-number-gop-national-security-officials-signing-letter-condemning-trump-unfit-rises/

  67. Yankee Says:

    During the primaries, I posted several times on Neo’s blog that I would support the Republican candidate in November, no matter who he was.

    I like that Trump has brought up issues of immigration restriction, nationalism, and populism that have previously been absent. I think that Trump’s ideas will persist because he is in touch with what many people want, and with what the future may bring.

    Trump is also a normal person in ways that the Clintons and Obama never were. Those guys are radicals with a lifelong craving for power.; they know nothing of life but the political arena.

    I have specifically detailed the corruption of the Clintons, and the national security failings of both Obama and Hillary. For the greater good of the country, for a better national defense, and for a stand against open corruption, Trump is far and away the better choice of the two.

    It’s now August, with about three months to go until November. At this point, one’s ideal candidate is not going to be there. With that in mind, I look forward to voting for Trump.

  68. OM Says:

    Richard Saunders:

    Old old news about tactical nukes, Nuclear Weapons Databook was a go to reference back in the 1980s. It was published by the National Resources Defense Council. a leftist org that is still quite active. But now we have the “interwebs.”

    Look up Little John rocket or the Davy Crockett – launched from a jeep using a “recoilless rifle” system 105 mm I recall.

    Most of the tactical nuclear devices and systems were retired more that 30 years ago. As an aside, my father told some stories about the Atomic Annie cannon getting stuck while on maneuvers (alerts?) in West Germany 1958-1961. Officers were not pleased.

    Oh the good old days as an army brat overseas. But being a child I of course did not realize how serious the situation really was. No parallels for today of course.

  69. Cap'n Rusty Says:

    Ann:

    I’d suggest you look at what Snopes dot com has to say about it. Also note in the Snopes article that the recently-fired Honorary National Chairman of the Hillary Campaign appears to have pressured MSNBC, whose talking head provided the hearsay upon which you are basing your conclusion.

  70. T Says:

    “He’s the worst kind of bully: a stupid, smug rich misogynist bully. He bullies everyone. He bullies the skylines.” [Nick @ 7:56]

    If you are correct, then it’s better, as Lyndon Johnson would say, to have him inside the tent pissing out than outside the tent pissing in.

  71. AesopFan Says:

    T Says:
    August 8th, 2016 at 3:16 pm…
    Given that, we also know that most media people have made every attempt to invalidate Trump and glorify Clinton. Trump does not appear very attractive at all having been presented to us by an antagonistic media. Hillary comes off at least as poorly having been presented to us by an obsequious media. What does that tell us about what may yet be unreported?
    * * *
    Point one.
    Even the WaPo had to give Trump the win over the “crying baby” controversy.
    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/fact-checker/wp/2016/08/06/trumps-right-he-didnt-kick-a-baby-out-of-a-campaign-rally/

    Which doesn’t make him a better person than he may be, but it does support the above thesis.
    After all, the media managed to call Mitt Romney a murdering liar with a straight face.

    * * *
    DNW Says:
    August 8th, 2016 at 3:55 pm
    Cornhead Says:
    August 8th, 2016 at 1:50 pm

    I am pretty sure that Trump is not a traitor, nor at ideological and philosophical war with the principles of constitutionalism and the rule of law. Hillary is.
    * * *
    Point two.
    * * *
    Geoffrey Britain Says:
    August 8th, 2016 at 3:59 pm

    I agree as to both being terrible Presidents. I wrestled with that as well and, given the unknowns, it is an impossible conundrum to resolve. Finally I realized that it is less a case of which would be worse, than of the forces they would unleash upon America.


    IMO, Trump will not be ‘better’ than Hillary, rather his negative impact will be less harmful in the long run, confirmed by history, which demonstrates that authoritarian fascist regimes are far easier to recover from than are marxist regimes. I suspect this is so because authoritarian fascist regimes are based in a cult-like worship of a person. Whereas an ideology has no natural end.

    What makes the Left’s ideology so dangerous is it’s rejection of reality and, its willingness to use whatever amount of force is necessary… to make the world as it wishes, regardless of how many it must sacrifice.
    * * *
    Point 3.

  72. AesopFan Says:

    David Foster Says:
    August 8th, 2016 at 6:28 pm
    As long as there is a reasonable level of free speech in a society, problems can be fixed. Once free expression is reduced below a certain level, the society’s feedback loop is destroyed and problems of many different kinds become unfixable.


    If Hillary becomes president, then you personally–whatever your views–will quite likely face the choice of either shutting up…indeed, not just shutting up but mouthing the required opinions…or, at a minimum, seeing your career and your personal finances destroyed.
    * * *
    Point 4.
    We are already there for some people (Bendan Eich, anyone?), and nearly at that point for the rest of us.
    * * *

  73. AesopFan Says:

    Brendan Eich, of course.
    Twitch keyboard.

    http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2014/04/04/mozilla-ceo-resignation-free-speech/7328759/

  74. AesopFan Says:

    Here’s another bucket of rain on Hillary’s parade, in case you missed it.
    http://libertyunyielding.com/2016/08/08/world-vision-ngo-accused-losing-millions-hamas-clinton-foundation-partner/

    I am NOT arguing that we HAVE TO vote for Trump to stave off Armageddon (God will take care of that in His own time, thankuverymuch), but choosing between Gog and Magog is enough to make anyone gag.

    The election isn’t until November, though, so there is plenty of time for something dramatic to change the game in unforeseeable ways.

  75. AesopFan Says:

    This story has been covered elsewhere, but I think Austin Bay gives is a bit more flair, as is his wont, and supports some of the sorta-kinda-pro-Trump comments above.

    http://observer.com/2016/08/short-circuit-damage-to-us-security-hillarys-lies-and-amiris-execution/

    Never held to account. Lefty profs in academia complain about insidious White Privilege. The Media Privilege extended by mainstream media to Democrats in general, and Hillary in particular ultimately has that effect: system-damaging lack of accountability. Hillary thought she could get away with breaking the classified information laws. Now she thinks she can lie about James Comey’s truly short-circuited investigation. She wagers that by late October everyone will believe Comey exonerated her. Media Privilege functions as a type of vote fraud—voter information fraud. The arrogant recklessness it encourages also damages national security.

    Did Hillary’s dishonesty play a role in Shahram Amiri’s death? I doubt we will ever know with certainty—unless a senior Iranian intelligence officer defects, and that’s not too likely if she is elected president.

    Once upon a time intelligence professionals used the phrase “walk back the cat” as slang for retracing the trail of evidence and assumptions until they identify the double agent, the false source or the analytic error. The cat walking unraveled the ball of string. Rewind the twisted yarn to find the flaw. CIA, NSA and FBI counter-intelligence may have already done some cat back walking in regards to Shahram Amiri. If they haven’t, in the wake of his execution, they damn well better.

  76. Geoffrey Britain Says:

    “there are others of standing that view the prospect of DJT as CIC as unacceptable and a grave national security risk” OM

    Since it’s one or the other, evidently they find Hillary an acceptable alternative.

    “Appeal to the authority
    Argument from authority, also ad verecundiam and appeal to authority, is a common form of argument which leads to a logical fallacy. In informal reasoning, the appeal to authority is a form of argument attempting to establish a statistical syllogism.”

  77. Ann Says:

    Trump, talking to Anderson Cooper on March 29:

    COOPER: Saudi Arabia, nuclear weapons?

    TRUMP: Saudi Arabia, absolutely.

    COOPER: You would be fine with them having nuclear weapons?

    TRUMP: No, not nuclear weapons, but they have to protect themselves or they have to pay us. Here’s the thing, with Japan, they have to pay us or we have to let them protect themselves.

    COOPER: So if you said, Japan, yes, it’s fine, you get nuclear weapons, South Korea, you as well, and Saudi Arabia says we want them, too?

    TRUMP: Can I be honest with you? It’s going to happen, anyway. It’s going to happen anyway. It’s only a question of time. They’re going to start having them or we have to get rid of them entirely. But you have so many countries already, China, Pakistan, you have so many countries, Russia, you have so many countries right now that have them.

    Now, wouldn’t you rather in a certain sense have Japan have nuclear weapons when North Korea has nuclear weapons? And they do have them. They absolutely have them. They can’t — they have no carrier system yet but they will very soon.

    Wouldn’t you rather have Japan, perhaps, they’re over there, they’re very close, they’re very fearful of North Korea, and we’re supposed to protect.

  78. Kyndyll G Says:

    Basically, what we have is this: A hopeless, virtually unelectable candidate was foisted on us, pushing aside numerous, better candidates who might have been able to win, and the stage is already being set to blame us when he loses.

    We predicted all of this months ago. Now that the fun is over, the media has turned on Trump just like we all knew it would, and he’s flopping around as effectively as a goldfish in the middle of Fifth Avenue. And why would we expect otherwise? He hasn’t learned a thing from this whole campaign; he just continues to act like being an inarticulate, blundering, blubbering bully will continue to work. He never had a Plan B if and when the Magic of Being Trump wore out its welcome.

    He was always up against it. The media is not on our side, and that would be the case even if he were bright, and quick on his feet, and willing and able to concentrate his attacks on the floundering and almost equally helpless Clinton. But he was always the worst of almost any of the candidates. He’s terribly ineffective against the MSM and social media, and his bad PR – dating back years – writes itself.

    We are told that we have to vote for him because he’s better than Clinton – and he probably is. Clinton is an epically horrible and compromised candidate. But there are 20 million random registered Republicans – and probably a decent number of Democrats as well – who would be better than Clinton. Any one of the original 2016 GOP presidential contenders would not only be better than Clinton, they’d be better than Trump.

    Why? Those of you who aren’t creepy paid shills, why did you do this to us? I get that some of you are so angry at the Republican Party for not being able to neuter Obama’s craziness that a lot of you are simply motivated to destroy the GOP. Well, congratulations, if that’s you, and that was your goal.

    The real winners here are the Democrats. If they don’t win this election, they’ll win the rest for the foreseeable future. If they do win this election, they’ll win the rest for the foreseeable future.

    All we had to do was put up a realistic candidate, and maybe we had a chance to delay them for another few years, but it’s pretty much stick-a-fork-in-it time.

  79. AesopFan Says:

    Another entry on the “who knows what’s really going on when the Media feel free to lie for their cause?”

    http://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2016/08/a-reporter-fesses-up.php

    What else is there? That’s it–a mighty thin indictment. It would be far more reasonable to say that Hillary Clinton is an abnormal candidate, and perhaps an unstable one, since she is the only presidential nominee who has been the subject of a criminal investigation by the FBI. To a neutral observer, that appears a great deal more abnormal than a few ill-considered remarks about political or judicial opponents.

    Interestingly, Rutenberg admits that in the press, it is open season on Trump:

    Rutenberg wraps up with some pretentious words about the duties of a journalist. But it is far too late in the day for anyone to take them seriously. For decades, the duty of a New York Times reporter or editor has been to elect Democrats. That hasn’t changed.

  80. AesopFan Says:

    PS I appreciate that neo writes what she thinks and what she feels, and invites the rest of us to ring the changes as we will — and that the commenters in general are educated and civil. That’s worth a lot these days.

  81. Nick Says:

    Agreed, Aesop. I sometimes forget just how awful it is outside of a cluster of sites I have Favorited.

  82. Nick Says:

    T – I’ll agree that Trump’s in the tent and he’s pissing. But is he pissing out? Why does he seem to hit conservatives so often? The military? Why is Clinton so dry and Cruz so wet? As some point, we’ve got to admit that this lunatic that someone let inside the tent is just here to piss on us.

  83. TmjUtah Says:

    I can’t support Trump.

    But if the option is Mrs. Clinton, I will surely vote for him.

    I see several posters back up the thread invking “conservative/conservatism”.

    That issue was decided when the RNC failed to field any “conservatives”.

    The only positive policy asset I can recognize in Trump is that he may be of the system, but not captured by it.

    Mrs. Clinton’s incompetence in any executive position she has ever held would be remarkable but for the naked corruption permeating every moment of every post or office she’s held.

    Hillary isn’t a politician. She’s Kanye West, with literally thousands of leeches willing to do anything to stay on her tour bus.

    Four. Supreme. Court. Justices.

    Hell yes, I will vote for Trump.

  84. rigeldog Says:

    It’s your blog; you are a wonderful writer and a woman of principle: everyone else can just suck it. IMHO.

  85. Dagon Says:

    The zeitgeist is a generational repudiation of Conservatism — you’ve been telling yourself that you’re special and then there’s reality, and it comes like a bolt from the blue. This let’s cook up a civil war angst is not the way, and it’s legacy is tied to Conservatism. The only ones to make it out with any dignity might be the Neoconservatives.

  86. Ymarsakar Says:

    quite a few people admonishing me that I should shut up like a good apparatchik and take one for the Trump Team in terms of criticizing him, and that if I don’t, I’m responsible (not solely, of course, but in my own little way) for the election of Hillary Clinton and every evil that follows from that.

    I see humans haven’t changed from the last few centuries.

    People are always looking for a scapegoat to blame, the person that dares to get out of the Circle. If we all hold hands and believe, utopia and harmony will be here, right.

    It’s much the same as what humans did to Jesus and various other prophets of his god over the eras.

    It is the weakness of humans that allow him to rest in blissful ignorance and deep sleep, as evil marches on. Then when they wake up, they Demand to be saved by a Messiah or Hero. But it was their very weakness that had condemned them, and it is their self deception which proves that the people do not deserve victory or salvation.

    Which Hero or Messiah should be sacrificed for the sins of a human population? They are merely going to transgress again, in a few generations at the most. They will need another scapegoat, someone they can sacrifice and heap blame on their own sins and transgressions. No matter how many pure saints you sacrifice for megalomaniacs and selfish greedy trash, you aren’t going to make a utopia come down from heaven.

    Jean of Arc was burned at the stake by Catholic bishops and jurist/scholarly/religious/authorities. She was inconvenient to have around at the time, due to political power megalomania. Later they make her into a Saint, and declare that all those who follow her, now should obey the Catholic Church. Convenient, how that one works.

    Humans repeat the same foolish and mortal sins, again and again. Generation unto generations uncounting.

    I’ve known the Leftist alliance was true evil, because of True hate, not this political bs people like to call hate, for near a decade now. Yet I was not so weak nor foolish as to believe becoming evil was going to be enough to defeat evil. One needed a power higher and greater than evil, to defeat evil, even temporarily. That’s what the foolish mortals don’t want to accept, given that they are acting on fear of what they see. That’s not even hate of evil, that’s just cowardice. If people truly hated evil, humans have ways of coming up with inventive ways to destroy things. Humans don’t hate evil. They hate people, individuals, isolated frozen, character assassination victims. They can hate a Hussein Obola or a H Rod Damn Clinton, but they can’t hate evil.

  87. Ymarsakar Says:

    IGotBupkis, “Si tacuisses, philosophus mansisses Says:
    August 8th, 2016 at 3:01 pm
    My own position is that, if ANYONE.can demonstrate so much BLATANT disregard for fraud, criminal collusion, treasonous perfidy, outright lying, and an almost endless litany of immoral and criminal action and STILL have ANY chance of getting your vpte, then shame on you.

    To be clear, every Leftist in your entire ancestral branch, direct lineage or not, is guilt of aiding and abetting the Leftist alliance’s evil.

    It’s easier to pin false hopes on an election, than to burn out the evil in your relatives, however. That way, the blame can always be put on someone else. Maybe your vote didn’t count in the end, thus you aren’t responsible. Or maybe somebody else didn’t pull their weight and your candidate lost, so you aren’t responsible either. How you’re not responsible for your clan’s evil, that might be a more difficult thing to rationalize.

  88. R Daneel Says:

    My intellect and my gut tell me that BOTH would be terrible presidents, in different terrible ways.

    Are you sure that may not be the intention of the MSM manipulation we must acknowledge?

    Let’s unpack two things:

    1. Hilliary = “The Vast Right Wing Conspiracy”. This piece of specious agitprop was the first time my ears pricked up when she spoke. It is paranoia on a narcissistic level I cannot fathom. She was FLOTUS. Who cares what FLOTUS of any type thinks about pretty much anything outside of flowers or gardening. Sorry, that may be sexist or whatever but I am sick to death of PC. And her crimes, lies and prevarications just roll from there.

    2. Trump = i.e. Kahzir Khan. Now, Trump picking on the wife was just dumb but really who started the bug-scuffle? Was it Trump as the MSM would have you believe? Unpack the time line please. Or was the whole Khan/Gold Star family scuffle pre-loaded perhaps? No matter, if Trump says anything here the outrage machine can spin up for take-off.

    I suggest reading Scott Adams. He has a blog and talks about persuasion. He is funny but makes great points. He holds that Trump is a master persuader. (Yes, the “Dilbert” guy)

    I would say this, why do you think either Hilliary or Trump would be terrible?

    Hilliary is a Transnational Progressive and Cultural Marxist. As Obama has been effective so shall she be if what you wish to see is America go down the road to full blown tyrannical socialism.

    Trump wants to (among other things):
    Control the borders
    Stimulate the economy
    Build the military back up
    Defeat radical Islamic Terrorism
    Make better trade deals
    If he gets 2 or 3 out of the 5 then things will be better.

    At some point I will fill in my history for you so you know I am not just a single sided right winger.

  89. Eric Says:

    You’re describing a standard Democrat-front Left tactic – hence, Left-mimicking Trump-front alt-Right.

    When a Left-side pundit criticized Obama in an election year, a chorus of Democrat-front Left activists responded the same way as Trump-front alt-Right activists have responded to you. The two may, at least in part, be the same (perhaps Russian) operatives.

  90. OM Says:

    GB:

    “Since it’s one or the other, evidently they find Hillary an acceptable alternative.”

    That appears to be their assessment, people who have actual experience in the matters at hand. How illogical!

    “Appeal to the authority…..”

    You might have noticed that I don’t cite “Geoffrey B.”.as an “authority” on anything relating to national security.

  91. neo-neocon Says:

    David Foster:

    Trump is allied with suppressing speech he doesn’t like. See this and this. I see evidence that he is more anti-free-speech than Hillary, and that’s saying something.

  92. neo-neocon Says:

    R Daneel:

    Read what I wrote about Trump re Khan, here and here. It has nothing to do with “who started it.”

    I have read Scott Adams plenty, and I don’t agree with much of what he says. And Scott Adams reminds me—and has long reminded me—of those Obama-defenders to whom every single thing Obama does, including a burp or a fart, is a case of Obama playing brilliant 4-dimensional chess. Adams always seems to think that Trump is playing 5-dimensional chess.

    Adams writes about the country getting upset because of Trump’s comment on Mrs. Khan’s silence, as though that was the most offensive thing he said. Absolutely not; Adams either doesn’t get it or has not been paying attention to this one, because the “jobs sacrifice” comment was far far worse.

    Adams also writes that it was because of Team Hillary’s powerful persuasion that “the question of Trump’s sanity seemed like a legitimate question for the press.”

    Wrong again; wrong, wrong wrong. Hillary Clinton isn’t the least bit necessary for this, nor is the press—the bare bones of what Donald Trump has said over time was quite enough, thank you, to call into question his stability and his judgment, as well as his ability to control his emotions, all things in short supply (and not just lately; right along) with Trump, and all suspect because of his own words and behavior.

    It is Trump who has persuaded us that this needs looking at. The majority of the voters in this country were willing to reject Hillary. Trump has persuaded many of them to run away from him back to her. Nice going, Master Persuader.

    If you want to know what I think of Trump start reading my posts in the category “Trump.” There are about 200 of them, so I’ve explained quite a bit. But the short version is that he says many many contradictory things and so one cannot know what he actually intends and what he does not intend, lies habitually, and has said many things that show incredible ignorance, as well as saying things that are tyrannical and show disregard for the Constitution, and has shown a temperament that is highly unreliable and indicative of someone who one might describe as a loose cannon. Most of his position papers and speeches contain things he cannot speak extemporaneously and with intelligence about. I also think he is a con man par excellence.

    Therefore one cannot or trust believe a thing he says or promises.

  93. P McCarthy Says:

    We are faced with Hobson’s Choice. To vote we must pick one of two unsatisfactory options. But Clintion is a known criminal, liar, cheat, etc. and has been know to be these things since 1974 when she was fired from the Watergate Committee. And in all her years of being in the political media forefront, she has accomplished virtually nothing and has actually done terrible damage in her career. She does have poor judgement. So the choice has to be the lesser known quantity and hope he surrounds himself with better people than Hillary ever has (Rahm Emmanuel, Podesta, Sidney Blumenthal, Stephanopoulos, Huma Abedin, etc. She cooses her “aides” for what they can do for her alone, not for the country. Trump might be a disaster but she will most certainly be a disaster. He will at least save the SCOTUS. She will bring the country down, turn us into Venezuela. She would not even endorse the Fraternal Order of Police! Instead she chose Black Lives Matter, a Soros funded group of thugs.

  94. Geoffrey Britain Says:

    Ann @9:33,

    Thank you for providing evidence that Trump can think deeper than the average person. That evidence being his assertion that “It’s going to happen anyway. It’s only a question of time.”.

    Kyndyll G,

    The Trumpsters didn’t do it to us. We did it to ourselves, unable to agree on “a realistic candidate”.

    rigeldog,

    I would vote for neo for President in a heartbeat.

    Ymarsakar,

    Do you really hate humanity that much? Are you so certain that the majority know what they do? In any case, thank you for that view from Mt. Olympus.

  95. Bill Says:

    Cornhead: “If he wins, the value of his Trump Organization skyrockets. His equity will make his wife and kids even richer. In his own mind he will become one of the greatest Americans ever. Greatness. That’s what this is all about.”

    Wait, won’t that be highly, potentially illegal? Aren’t presidents supposed to put their wealth in blind trust? No one is talking about this – my sense is most of what Trump is after is Trump’s greatness, not America’s. So he becomes even richer, by wielding the VAST, WORD-ENDING power of the Executive branch to help his businesses, and we’re OK with this? I’m not.

    T: “Trump can reverse the Obama course, he can stop the Obama course or he can continue the Obama course. “

    There are a lot of other possibilities of what Trump might do. My concern is he’ll chart a new course that will be disastrous.

    T: “This is true and I fully admit that. So what? Voting for Hillary because she is not Trump is not rational argument. Voting for Gary Johnson, Jill Stein or Evan McMullin who cannot win just because they are neither Trump nor Hillary is not rational argument. Voting one’s “conscience” is not rational argument. The list goes on. There is no point to make here.”

    Denying one’s conscience is a horrible thing. The flippancy with which Trump supporters talk about conscience really bothers me. The lesser of two evils is still evil. And I can’t tell which one is the lesser.

    DNW: “I am pretty sure that Trump is not a traitor, nor at ideological and philosophical war with the principles of constitutionalism and the rule of law. Hillary is.”

    I’d feel better about this if I thought he had the first grasp of constitutionalism and the rule of law. He’s about the rule of Trump and I expect him to abuse the separation of powers at least as much as Obama has.

    T: “Time to reprise the C.S. Lewis quote:”

    Oh, man – you did it. You used C.S. Lewis to defend Trump. It’s a great quote, of course, but I can’t imagine Lewis being a Trump fan.

    Ann: “Trump’s stance on the use of nuclear weapons and the nuclear arms race rules out any possibility of my voting for him.”

    Word.

    Matt_SE: “I care about the truth and I don’t like being lied to, no matter the source.”

    Thank you! Well said.

    “I think we’ll all still be here in 4 years (though maybe not Hillary if she has an aneurysm), America won’t have fallen permanently into the socialist sphere, and we’ll have another crack at nominating someone competent this time.”

    Well said again. I hate the situation we’re in, but the apocalyptic language is mainly propaganda to scare us into supporting the Republican lout. I’m immune to it at this point.

    Ann; “No responsible leader, however, would speak of such things in a throw-away, casual fashion, as Trump has done.”

    This is one of the most troubling prospects of a Trump presidency.

    T: “If you are correct, then it’s better, as Lyndon Johnson would say, to have him inside the tent pissing out than outside the tent pissing in.”

    Well, actually, it’s better for him to lose so he doesn’t have any real power. Then I won’t care where he pisses.

    Nick: “Why is Clinton so dry and Cruz so wet?”

    Boom. Laughed out loud at this!

  96. Cornhead Says:

    Saw Mike Pence in CB tonight. Report should be on Power Line in the AM.

    One takeaway is that Pence is just very bland. He probably would be a good President but his personality is such that he would have a hard time breaking through the primary field. Just like Scott Walker. Today it takes a Trump figure to break through.

  97. Bill Says:

    Also, to the subject of this post, Neo, you’re doing a great job and just keep it doing what you’re doing. I really enjoy this blog – one of the more rational and reasoned ones out there now.

  98. OM Says:

    GB:

    Kendal and I would like to know who is this “we” you are speaking of, Kemo Sabe?

    So the Trumpsters have no responsibility for the catastrophe or disaster that is this election?

    Or is it a disaster and catastrophe that this election is? After all it must be a “binary” choice. That “binary choice” is this cycle’s version of “gravitas.”‘ Sounds so sophisticated, trips off the tongue. Bleah!

    Convenient to blame the victims and absolve the perps.

  99. neo-neocon Says:

    Cornhead:

    I think the the idea that “it takes a Trump figure to break through” is a fallacy. I agree that with Trump in the picture, it would have taken another figure of Trump’s intensity to break through. But imagine a primary with all the other candidates and no Trump—someone would have won, and it would not have been a Trump or a “Trump figure.”

    I agree that it probably would not have been Walker, who did come across as bland. But it would probably have been Rubio or Cruz (maybe Fiorina, but I doubt it), perhaps (less likely) even Bush or Kasich. None of them are “Trump figures,” and one of them would have “broken through” and won.

    I submit that one of them might even have gotten a majority of the votes. Trump didn’t accomplish that overall. He is one of very few Republican frontrunners historically who received less than half of the primary votes.

  100. neo-neocon Says:

    DNW:

    You write:

    I am pretty sure that Trump is not a traitor, nor at ideological and philosophical war with the principles of constitutionalism and the rule of law. Hillary is.

    However, I have written several posts on how he is indeed “at ideological and philosophical war with the principles of constitutionalism and the rule of law.” I assume you have read them; perhaps, if so, you’ve forgotten them: this, this, this, and this. I see him as worse than Hillary Clinton in that respect.

  101. Geoffrey Britain Says:

    OM,

    There you go again. I didn’t say that the Trumpsters bear no responsibility. I said they are not responsible for this debacle.

    The we is all of us, in that even in the majority we could not reach concensus on a candidate that would have derailed Trump’s candidacy. I suspect that had Trump never entered the race, it would have gone to a brokered convention with a GOPe choice, the nominee. And a brokered convention reveals a fractured party.

    We may be victims but none of us are entirely blameless. In my own case, I vilified Rubio. However justified it may have been, it added it’s own impediment to consensus.

  102. Geoffrey Britain Says:

    neo,

    They who ask, “how much can I misbehave and still get into heaven”? are not in ideological and philosophical opposition to God’s laws and wishes. They are merely immature and self-indulgent. So too with Trump.

    Ignorant, narcissistic, selfish… sure. But the man has no detectable ideology or philosophy beyond freely operating safely and comfortably within an America that caters to him.

    Trump wants America great again because being the biggest frog, in the biggest pond is highly appealing to his ego. Laws are for those who can’t get around them.

    But as bad as that is, he’s not interested in controlling people, so as to lead them to the inherent social justice of marxism’s utopia.

  103. Tim P Says:

    Neo,

    You said,

    “There’s a trend I’ve noticed in the comments section here and also in some of the emails I’ve been getting: quite a few people admonishing me that I should shut up like a good apparatchik and take one for the Trump Team in terms of criticizing him, and that if I don’t, I’m responsible (not solely, of course, but in my own little way) for the election of Hillary Clinton and every evil that follows from that. “

    I read your post, I haven’t read most of the comments, so I apologize if I repeat any preceding comments.

    This is your blog. Say whatever you damn well want.
    If folks don’t like it they can start their own blog, or say it on their blog.

    Personally, while I don’t like Trump, I do feel a vote for anyone else is basically helping Hillary, but how that translates into action is I will act as I see fit. I will try to persuade others and that may or may not work. Everyone will have to live with the consequences of their actions.

    I do have a lot of concern for how totally over the top, the media has gone for Hillary. It makes preceding candidate support look tepid.

    One of the biggest coverups (of the many) going now concerns Hillary’s health.

    People can disagree, you don’t have to tow th ‘party line’, it’s one of the big things that differentiate us from the left.

  104. Bill A Says:

    Bravo! When I read neo-neocon I feel fortified in my own quest to keep rational and sane.

  105. tonynoboloney Says:

    Whew, I must have read a hundred silly posts from you guys, it’s exhausting.

    I came over here from Gerard V’s site, I’ve been here a few times before.

    As I see it we have absolutely no choice but to vote for Trump for all the same arguments the reasonably sane people on this site have stated. Hillary is a disaster she cannot be trusted. I cannot say one positive thing about her, not one.

    Even though a vote for Trump is what I’ve been calling “scorched earth”, meaning I (we) will be burning every known conservative principle behind us. I am willing to suspend every known accepted rule of politics just to avoid putting another Clinton in the White House. I actually HATE that women, probably even more than I despise Obama.

    I understand that if I vote for Trump and he fails there will be no America to go back to. But I’m willing to take that chance. It’s “scorched earth” for me and mine, Trump or nothing.

  106. David Foster Says:

    Neo,

    I am well aware of Trump’s idiotic comment following the murder attempt against Pamela Geller.

    Pam is now supporting Trump—given the alternative.

  107. Bill Says:

    “I understand that if I vote for Trump and he fails there will be no America to go back to. But I’m willing to take that chance. It’s “scorched earth” for me and mine, Trump or nothing.”

    America has survived all sorts of things – including a Civil War (I always shake my head when people say things like “we’ve never been so divided”).

    I’m amazed at Trump supporters – supporters! – who use terms like “Authoritarian Fascist” when describing him. Or indicate that they think he has just a slightly better chance than Hillary to not be the death of us all (the whole “95% chance of the end of America is better than 100% chance”) Trump argument.

    We can do better than this. Why are you rewarding these parties with your votes?

  108. Bizzy Brain Says:

    I knew there was a reason I quit reading your column years ago. Clicked on it today only because your link appeared in American Diges.

  109. Geoffrey Britain Says:

    Bill,

    Now I understand why my words fail to persuade you. You suffer from a lack of reading comprehension; I have never expressed support for Trump, I am not a Trump supporter. I simply recognize that he is the lesser of two evils. I supported Walker, Fiorina and Cruz.

    I have repeatedly, ad nauseam, listed the reasons why I believe him to be the lesser evil. I have not capitulated and switched support to him, I’m responding to the reality that it is either Trump or Clinton.

  110. OM Says:

    “I said they are not responsible for this debacle.” – the Trumpsters.

    I am not part of your “We.”

    “In my own case, I vilified Rubio.” That was when Rubio was a threat to Trump and I recall your criticism of Cruz, again when he was a threat to Trump. Yeah, I guess you have some ‘splainin’ to do. Is that FL speak? But Trumpsters, no they are not to balme for the election of HRC?

    Keep apologizing, rationalizing, and blame shifting to everyone but the Trumpsters.

  111. OM Says:

    Bizzy Brain:

    You can put your brain back in the box and let it rest for a few more years.

  112. Geoffrey Britain Says:

    addendum: when Trump’s flaws are readily acknowledged, suggesting alternative interpretations of what Trump has said that seem possible and pointing out priorities and larger factors that must be considered is not acting as a supporter of Trump. Rather it is maintaining perspective and objectivity. The proof that you and others here are not maintaining perspective and objectivity is that you refuse to acknowledge anything positive about the man. No one, not even Trump is that one dimensional.

  113. OM Says:

    GB:

    The voice of authority speaketh!

    And more double talk, even Trump likes babies. /S

  114. Yankee Says:

    Maybe a different approach is in order. Instead of discussing Trump so much, why not talk more about the other candidate in the race, Hillary Clinton?

    Just the other day, Seddique Mateen, the father of Omar Mateen, attended a rally in Florida, right up front, showing his support for Hillary Clinton. Omar Mateen, for those who have already forgotten, was the Muslim of Afghan descent who killed 49 people and wounded 53 others at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, FL on June 12, 2016.

    Seddique Mateen is supporting Hillary Clinton. He knows what he will get with her, if Hillary is elected. Seddique Mateen is not supporting Trump, because likewise, he’s smart enough to know what he will get with a potential Trump Presidency.

    Maybe there’s something we can learn from that. Maybe we could also learn something from the Tsarnaev brothers. For those who have already forgotten, Tamerlan and Dzhohkar Tsarnaev, Muslims of Chechen descent, who came here as refugees, set off two bombs during the Boston Marathon, on April 15, 2013, killing three people, and injuring 264 others, then later killing a policeman on April 18th.

    About nine weeks later, the U.S. Senate (led by the “Gang of Eight”), passed the 2013 “immigration reform” bill, by a vote of 68-32 (which was later blocked in the House). Both Obama and Hillary want higher levels of immigration, including more Muslims, and want more refugees admitted into the U.S.

    One could also mention all the recent terrorist attacks in Europe by Muslims and refugees. Dead Americans in the streets. Dead Europeans in the streets. There’s something to be learned there. Trump understands this. Hillary doesn’t get this, and she never will.

  115. clarityseeker Says:

    Soldier on…

  116. Geoffrey Britain Says:

    OM,

    You’re suffering from Trump Derangement Syndrome. Everything you see is interpreted through that filter. Your perspective is deeply skewed when it comes to the man. It’s literally affecting your memory of events.

    My criticism of Rubio was consistent and offered prior to the start of the primary campaign. I strongly criticized Cruz once, after his speech at the convention and strictly in regard to his “vote your conscience” remark and clarified that my objection was due to my perception that he suggested it, solely to harm Trump, which assisted Clinton.

    I never, ever indicated or even implied that I preferred Trump at any point. I offered strong support for Cruz until Trump had secured the needed votes for the nomination.

    I indicated in my response that Trumpsters bear their fair share of responsibility for this debacle but that, IMO it is inaccurate to place the blame solely or even primarily upon their shoulders.

    Disagree with my position, as is your right but stop twisting my words to fit your biases.

  117. Geoffrey Britain Says:

    “Hillary doesn’t get this, and she never will.” Yankee

    That presumes that she’s a fool. Are you certain she’s not a knave? Since the Left is united in sharing her position on that issue, could there be an ulterior motive for their apparent obtuseness regarding a mortal threat to literally everything they purport to embrace?

  118. William Teach Says:

    What Trump and the Trumpites do not get is that votes are earned. They expect everyone to just fall in line, but neither Trump, nor what he calls a campaign, nor his supporters do much to woo people to support Trump. Heck, their nastiness does more to turn the very people he needs, ie, people who tend to vote Republican, off.

  119. OM Says:

    GB:

    The authority speaketh again! The authority knows all and sees all! He knows your thoughts! The authority has no biases! But has selective memory syndrome. /S!

    Spin spin spin.

  120. Geoffrey Britain Says:

    William Teach,

    IF you are referring to Trump’s supporters who refuse to acknowledge valid criticisms of Trump, I agree.

    Here on this blog however, who has expected everyone to fall into line, without offering a rationale for why others, such as yourself, should do so?

  121. Geoffrey Britain Says:

    OM,

    There you go again.

  122. Yankee Says:

    I don’t think the fool vs. knave discussion is productive. Hillary and the rest on the Left with similar beliefs advocate policies that they believe will both improve and transform America. Negative side effects to such policies may not be noticed, or else could be dismissed as being of little to no concern. For Obama, Hillary, and other leaders, it often sounds like terrorism is just something we have to get used to (like a natural disaster).

    While “Hillary doesn’t get this” is focused on terrorism, it can mean more than just that. It’s why I have said that Trump’s ideas will persist. He is in touch with better future ideas with nationalism, trade, immigration, and international relations. And, with all that has gone on, a better national defense is warranted—which eliminates Hillary because of her record of failures, and her bad ideas for the future.

  123. expat Says:

    My rather unrelated thought of the hour: So many Trump supporters justify their preference by saying SCOTUS. Does Trump know that tho appoint justices he has to have the advice and consent of the Senate? If he does, why hasn’t he made a greater effort to ensure that our people stay in the Senate? Shouldn’t he have consulted with these people to learn how he could best put forward his ideas in their states? Ask Kelly Ayotte how helpful Trump has been to her race.

    This man is incapable of seeing a picture that extends beyond the reach of his little fingers. He owes us all a lot more.

  124. OM Says:

    GB

    You have put down the “syndrome” cudgel. Progress.

  125. R Daneel Says:

    neo – Okay, I get it. Trump is icky.

    Now I remember why I quit coming here.

  126. Geoffrey Britain Says:

    The fool vs knave question is essential. Fools are exposed by reality and lose whatever support they once had. An example being Chamberlain in WWII.

    Knaves twist and use reality’s consequence as ‘proof’ that they are right, so as to increase their power until liberty is lost.

    Clearly, you believe Hillary and the Left to be sincere but mistaken. Hopefully you are right but if not, reality will lead to regretting that assumption.

    My own view is that in the main, liberals are fools, useful idiots, while the elite are knaves.

  127. expat Says:

    Yankee,
    in your 9:42 comment about terrorism, you said that Trump understands this. I disagree.Trump has read some headlines or seen morning news reports about terrorism, but he hasn’t done a GD thing to understand it. Ask him if he has read anything by Bernard Lewis. How about The Looming Tower? Does he realize that European countries are trying to deal with the radicalization of 2nd and 3rd gen immigrants, which is quite different from importing ISIS fighters today?
    No, Trump doesn’t understand a thing and he doesn’t know what he doesn’t know. He seems to be making no effort to learn, although he is apparently willing to try to get a few people on his team who can write speeches for him. But in the field of international affairs, it is especially important to think before you speak.

  128. Bill Says:

    GB: “Now I understand why my words fail to persuade you. You suffer from a lack of reading comprehension; I have never expressed support for Trump, I am not a Trump supporter. I simply recognize that he is the lesser of two evils. I supported Walker, Fiorina and Cruz.”

    GB, with all due respect, you are voting for the man, correct? And you have spent a lot of time in this space arguing for why we should vote for him. You’ve called people like me delusional and willfully blind because we can’t see that Trump is preferable to Hillary, etc.

    Maybe “support” isn’t the right word. But you’re voting for and working to convince others to vote for him, which seems to me to be “support”. Please suggest another word. I’ll do my best to comprehend the word if I’m able. But, since it’s me, you might want to keep limit the number of letters, as my reading comprehension is notso-hotso.

    “neo – Okay, I get it. Trump is icky.

    Now I remember why I quit coming here.”

    In case you hadn’t noticed, Neo hasn’t closed the door on voting for Trump.

    But Trump people don’t understand the need for persuasion. Insults, taunts, etc. are the linga-franca of Trumpistan.

  129. DNW Says:

    ” Bill Says:
    August 9th, 2016 at 7:42 am

    “I understand that if I vote for Trump and he fails there will be no America to go back to. But I’m willing to take that chance. It’s “scorched earth” for me and mine, Trump or nothing.”

    America has survived all sorts of things – including a Civil War (I always shake my head when people say things like “we’ve never been so divided”).

    I’m amazed at Trump supporters – supporters! – who use terms like “Authoritarian Fascist” when describing him. Or indicate that they think he has just a slightly better chance than Hillary to not be the death of us all (the whole “95% chance of the end of America is better than 100% chance”) Trump argument.

    We can do better than this. Why are you rewarding these parties with your votes?”

    Certainly you have some notion of what slaughter and world upending is veiled behind your shrugging assertion that America “survived” a Civil War?

    As far as rewarding goes: Do you have a party to suggest Bill?

    Big Maq has mentioned the Libertarians; presumably as a viable alternative. Aside from the likelihood of their even gaining more than half a dozen or so electoral votes under the most favorable circumstances one could imagine, have you read their platform?

    Is that something you can support? More unrestricted immigration; more drug legalization; more logically incoherent notions of “self-ownership”: as if the body is real property of a separate person, which can be sold and repurchased again like any commodity.

    Who would wish to associate themselves with a nihilistic regime of law and implied system of contracts like that?

    The Trumpsters, whoever they are, and I am not myself completely certain, or even if they are a coherent lot, managed to migrate into the Republican party primaries in sufficient numbers to make him the nominee. Unfortunately.

    In fact there probably are not more than 15% of the American voters, maybe 25% to 35% of Republicans, who are committed classical liberal constitutionalism and rule of law types anyway.

  130. Kyndyll G Says:

    I feel like I’m a back seat passenger in a car in the middle of nowhere, almost out of gas. There’s two options – go back (Clinton=definitely no gas, we’ve just driven through there and we know there’s no gas stations) or go forward (Trump=strong probability of no gas but don’t know yet). Oh sure, we could go off the road (third party=infinitesimal chance of gas) but the realistic chances of finding a gas station before wrecking the car or running out of gas are so close to zero that they might as well be zero.

    We’re all sitting here arguing about which direction to go and obviously, going forward is the only option with even a tiny chance of an outcome that doesn’t involve running out of gas in the middle of nowhere.

    The fault lies in the parties that got us here, against the strenuous objections of the rest of us, back when there were options. That would be you, Trumpists.

  131. OM Says:

    expat:

    Cogent and thoughtful. Kudos.

  132. DNW Says:

    “You’ve called people like me delusional and willfully blind …”

    GB, did you use those terms to describe those who are skeptical of Trump?

    If so, where?

  133. OM Says:

    Bill:

    You may have nailed GB down about what “support” means.

  134. OM Says:

    DNW tp the rescue.

  135. OM Says:

    DNW to the rescue. Sound the alarm.

  136. DNW Says:

    “That would be you, Trumpists.”

    Does anyone here actually know, in the sense of knowing the character, the likes and the personality of any Trump first supporters? You know, first name basis … longtime friend, in-law, cousin or something?

    Remember, that is a Trump firster … someone who preferred him to say, Cruz on some ideological grounds.

    I have never met one.

  137. DNW Says:

    OM Says:
    August 9th, 2016 at 11:22 am

    DNW to the rescue. Sound the alarm.

    Bugger off.

  138. Bill Says:

    DNW: “Certainly you have some notion of what slaughter and world upending is veiled behind your shrugging assertion that America “survived” a Civil War?”

    I absolutely do. I have studied the Civil War for years.

    My point was that people say things like “We’ve never been so divided” and it’s a silly thing to say. We have certainly been more divided than now.

    I wasn’t shrugging off the Civil War. It was horrific. I must not have communicated very well if that’s how you read it. My point was that we’ve been in WAY worse straits in the past than we are now, which is why I don’t understand all the “America is about to die if we don’t elect Trump” talk.

  139. T Says:

    Bill,

    Your responses (@ 12:17 am) are so consistently one-dimensional I suspect that you are trolling this blog. At any rate they beg for responses. In your own sequence they are:

    You respond to Cornhead’s comments with a statement about blind trusts. The fact that Trumps ownership would be transferred to a blind trust in no way affects the ability of the asset to change in value (up or down) in response to Trump’s actions. This is not unlike the greater or lesser influence the Clinton Global Initiative would have if she is (or is not) president. Your response is a non sequitur.

    Your response to me about possibilities other than continuing, stopping or reversing Obama’s course are subsets of those three possibilities.

    Your response to me about conscience (“Denying one’s conscience is a horrible thing.”) is certainly true. No one ever said it wasn’t, but your underlying premise is false. To quote Antonin Scalia:

    More important than your obligation to follow your conscience, or at least prior to it, is your obligation to form your conscience correctly.

    [snip]

    In short, it is your responsibility . . . not just to be zealous in the pursuit of your ideals, but to be sure that your ideals are the right ones. . . . Good intentions are not enough.

    Your response to me regarding the C.S. Lewis quote (“I can’t imagine Lewis being a Trump fan.”) is, again, another false premise. The quote, IN LEWIS’ OWN WORDS, indicates that he would rather toil under a greedy master (a Trump) than an omnipotent moral busybody (a Clinton). It has nothing to do with your attempted perversion of the quote to imply that I called Lewis a Trump fan. One needn’t be a fan to prefer the lesser of two bad situations.

    To MattSE you responded:” . . . the apocalyptic language is mainly propaganda to scare us into supporting the Republican lout.” THE apocalyptic language? As though the language of the left, other side, is logical, rational and demur? The Republican lout? Would that be as opposed to the Democrat lout? Your inner troll is showing.

    Finally to me you responded: “Well, actually, it’s better for him to lose so he doesn’t have any real power. Then I won’t care where he pisses.” So you clearly have no problem dealing with where Hillary, that omnipotent moral busybody will be pissing.

    As I noted at the outset, one dimensional responses based on several false premises. Conclusion, likely troll. QED.

  140. Geoffrey Britain Says:

    Bill,

    Suggesting that you may not die of a knife wound but will die from a bullet to the brain is not ‘support’ for a knife wound. It is an attempt to escape the more certain fate.

    I stand personally chagrined at accusing you of a lack of reading comprehension. Too much time spent responding to OM is the only excuse I can offer. I apologize.

    Please try to fairly present my words and positions. As example, I have never accused your side of being “deluded”. But I have suggested that, given history’s examples, some amount of willful blindness has to be at play, when someone implies that a fascist authoritarian is less preferable than a Marxist ideologue with massive support.

    This is ‘support’ for Trump. That is not I.

  141. Valerie Says:

    It’s easy enough to vote against Hillary,
    if it’s so hard to vote for one or the other.

    I see no point in all the verbal/mental gymnastics.
    It isn’t that difficult to see Trump is the better choice
    of the two for America’s future.

  142. Joe Says:

    Haven’t been here in awhile; I missed it, especially neo’s insightful thoughts. As with all presidents, the potential damage or benefit rests not so much with the White House as it does with the people he/she brings with him/her to run the Federal government. A president does and says a lot, no question, but a lot of what he does depends on a willing Congress to help or hinder (though Obama’s thumbing his nose at Congress has empowered the Executive more than ever, and Congress over the years has abdicated its authority to the Executive in ways it can’t recover). Point is, the people at the Department level and below write the regulations that cost the American people in thousands of ways that most don’t see. Wonder why this economic recovery is the worst since 1949? Look at the laws and regulations foisted on businesses, the non-crony types, and notice how much more difficult it is to do business in this country. Only recently did we pass the point where more small businesses are closing than opening. That was a telling point, and is emblematic of what this administration, and, likely in my opinion, a Hillary administration, will do to us. In the end, we choose between a known quantity with a taxing mentality, or a relatively unknown quantity (at least as it concerns politics) with a money-making mentality. All that said, the most important reason to vote for The Donald, to me, is that he is not a career politician. It is career politicians who know nothing more than working in government who care nothing, from both parties, about anything but themselves. That we are not thriving is not their concern. Why are career Republicans not backing The Donald? Because he threatens their little Govt., Inc., fiefdom, their crony cash and their bases of power. That, also, is a telling thing.

  143. DNW Says:

    So far, one person that I have seen here has admitted to knowing a Trump first type, and that person is Big Maq.

    He claims – if I understand him correctly – that Republican businessmen of his acquaintance have supported Trump from the beginning. I do not recall his saying why they did – if he himself knew.

    As far as I am aware, he’s the only one to make such a claim concerning personal acquaintance with long-time mainstream Republicans supporting Trump as a first choice.

    And if he is correct, then the “party” as some suggest, may through its membership be partly to blame. If you wish to absolve state governments and open primaries. But to point blame is not to really grasp or understand the dynamic that propelled the result in the first place; and to suggest a long term remedy or path to success – supposedly another party – without understanding the basic nature of the problem, is ludicrous.

    Who do you think you are in-gathering, and to what productive proximate end?

    We may be technically past the point in this cycle of needing to understand where the Trumpsters are originating, when it comes to evaluating the deficits of the man they succeeded in nominating, but the petulant posturing and pouting I have been seeing here, has nothing of real reasoning or solutions in it.

    Trump is highly defective. Yet the only realistic calculation at the moment, seems to be whether he is a greater danger to our way of life and national survival than Hillary, or not.

    At this point it seems to me to be even odds or better for Trump being a lesser threat.

    But of course, that depends to some extent on what you consider our way of life, to be.

  144. OM Says:

    DNW:

    And the horse you rode in on.

  145. expat Says:

    Read this piece from The Corner at NRO and see whether you think Trump would be willing to dig into the terrorism issue at this level:

    http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/438794/islamic-terrorism-democrats-reality

  146. huxley Says:

    Does anyone here actually know, in the sense of knowing the character, the likes and the personality of any Trump first supporters? You know, first name basis … longtime friend, in-law, cousin or something?

    DNW: Yep. A co-worker, then friend, I’ve known since the 70s. We were both ex-hippies who loved music. He was a big Frank Zappa fan. He came from a Russian working-class family. He turned conservative years earlier than I did. He listened to Howard Stern then shifted to Michael Savage. He attended Tea Party rallies. He was disgusted with the Democrats, then with the GOP leadership for not doing enough to stop the Obama agenda.

    My friend speaks bluntly and harshly at times, so he appreciated Trump’s harsh bluntness particularly on immigration and Muslims. He likes Trump’s brashness, emphasis on America First, and his ability to disrupt PCness. He said I didn’t like Trump because I wasn’t “hard-core” enough.

    For several years now we’ve had weekly phone chats about politics, music and life. Our talks became more antagonistic on the subject of Trump to the point of yelling at each other. Finally I asked not to talk about Trump. He reluctantly agreed. Later he said if we weren’t going to talk about Trump, we shouldn’t talk about politics either. I said OK. We talked some more about non-politics then hung up.

    When I called the next week at the usual time, he didn’t answer the phone. I sent him a music DVD I had promised. I never heard from him and I stopped initiating contact.

    So, what’s your point DNW? Is it like when my liberal friends ask me if I know any Muslims after I criticize Islam?

  147. Bill Says:

    GB: Thanks for the kind words. No need to apologize – I realize we are going hammer and tongs here at times. I appreciate the civility.

    T: I am not a troll, although I know that my “digest” of responses last night obviously seemed like trolling to you. I can assure you that I don’t support and will not vote for Hillary. I’m in the Never him/Never her camp.

    Regarding the Lewis quote. It is a good quote, one I have referred to before when discussing HRC. Fits her well. I guess my response was more or less just visceral – Lewis was a gracious gentleman and a noble scholar and I have a hard time believing he would be in support of someone as unlike him as Trump is. But – of course – I don’t really know and shouldn’t have tried to speak for the man.

    Regarding my conscience – my ideals and values are fully formed. I can’t in good conscience vote for Trump, for reasons I’ve stated many times in this space. I don’t know how else to put that.

    I think we should stick to rational argumentation about the man himself, rather than making judgments about motivations. If my reasons for not supporting Trump aren’t valid, help me understand how. The issue I have is I can’t vote for him just because he’s not Hillary. I think she’ll be awful too. Can I not support either one?

    I think Trump has demonstrated horrible ignorance of the issues, an amazingly thin skin, extreme emotional immaturity, an overriding vengeance motive and a really frightening (to me) narcissism and cruelty. He is a transparent liar and self-promoter. He has, for crying out loud, publicly mocked a disabled reporter. A person who spent his time immediately after winning the nomination trying to take down elected GOP politicians who he will need to get his agenda passed simply because they didn’t endorse him is not someone who is putting the good of the country first. In short, from where I sit, Trump is a person that I don’t think should be trusted with his own military, state police, and nuclear arsenal.

    Call that trolling if you’d like. Are there better arguments than “she’s worse”?

  148. Geoffrey Britain Says:

    “My point was that we’ve been in WAY worse straits in the past than we are now, which is why I don’t understand all the “America is about to die if we don’t elect Trump” talk.” Bill

    We are at least as divided as the nation was just prior to the civil war. Liberals, the Left’s “useful idiots” are willing to sacrifice children upon the altar of political correctness, all to escape accusations of prejudice. They are willing to sacrifice fundamental liberties without which the nation cannot survive… in the name of ‘social justice’.

    The South sought parity and the continuance of slavery, failing that they sought separation. Today, the Left seeks the end of Constitutional governance and the institution of the beginnings of Marxism. They are working to disrupt societal cohesion through cultural disruption.

    The forces on the Left seeking America’s destruction both physically and culturally are qualitatively different than was the South’s desire to secede. The South having concluded that the end of slavery was the north’s goal and, that it would repeatedly violate the state’s right to self-determination, in order to accomplish that goal.

    Today’s forces on the Left are far more powerful, far more seditious and far more entrenched than what existed in the Civil War. They have half of America fully indoctrinated into their memes.

    That those forces seek America’s societal dissolution is inarguable. Whether we are close to the tipping point, where if Clinton is elected, retreat will be impossible without either a successful Article V convention or another civil war is debatable.

    That argument is moot however, since the tipping point will only be recognized in retrospect, after it’s too late. Thus, simple prudence requires we act as if it is a certainty, since the end of liberty, the Left’s existential necessity… is too terrible to chance.

  149. DNW Says:

    “I don’t understand all the “America is about to die if we don’t elect Trump” talk.”

    Ok, let’s take up your point.

    I don’t think that many are suggesting that the polity with the name “United States of America” will cease to exist. Unless of course that brain damaged psychopath Hillary encourages a surprise nuclear attack on the country which leads to its break up.

    What I think people like me mean, is that the legal predicate of our association is at the breaking point, and is about to be permanently flipped from a constitutional association or union into a “positive rights” collective.

    I think that some people just cannot comprehend, and many may not even care, how far down that path Obamacare and the Individual Shared Responsibility Mandate has taken us.

    In fact I believe it was Neo who noted that many of her friends seemed perfectly happy being managed by others when it came to these kinds of life choices.

    So we are, frankly, on the downhill slope to the legal institutionalizing, the legal concresence of the elements of redistributive left-fascism into the conceptual predicates of the law. [I don’t mean “predicate law” here]

    Does this matter? It depends on what your freedom means to you. Is it just an abstract matter? No. Elderly people are just now being shocked to receive notice that their medicare supplemental coverage payments are projected to double; “because of changes in the law”. From in a case I know of, $126 per mo to $256. Others, healthy single men and women who who may have been paying $90 to $120 per month for large deductible catastrophic health insurance coverage, now find that the must pay 3 to four times the amount in order to fund the potential treatment of the autogenous and behavioral induced disorders of others, and may not decline to participate.

    We are being turned into a “collective”; and the coercive, punitive mechanisms have as we have seen, already in some cases been put in place to ensure that there are no demurrers.

    This, and the IRS targeting scandal and abuses, and the flood of aliens, and all the other notorious instances of administrative lawlessness is what we have gotten out of Democrat party left-fascism over the last 8 years, and what we will absolutely get more of, no doubt about it, with Hillary.

    We might get more of it with Trump, or we might not.

  150. DNW Says:

    You are a punk-ass troll, OM.

    Your postings prove it. Like I said, “bugger off”.

  151. DNW Says:

    “DNW: Yep. A co-worker, then friend, I’ve known since the 70s. We were both ex-hippies who loved music. He was a big Frank Zappa fan. …”

    Well, that ‘splains it right there. LOL

  152. notherbob2 Says:

    TRUMP OCTOBER SURPRISE WATCH

    Ever wonder why Trump does so many stupid things that only serve to whip the media into a frenzy against him? So much so that they are having to consult their Thesaurus’ so as to not repeat endlessly the same pejoratives?
    Think of the famous rope-a-dope strategy that allowed Mohamed Ali to beat a superior opponent in the Rumble in the Jungle. When Trump springs his October Surprise, the media will be punched out, so to speak, and powerless to overcome his surprise. Admit it; aren’t the whines of the Trump resistors writing here on this blog becoming harder and harder to read? Losing their punch, so to speak?

  153. DNW Says:

    “So, what’s your point DNW? “

    My point is to try and find out what kind of [perhaps so-called] “Republicans” are Trump-first types, and to assess their motivations and rationale.

    From my reading of your description, your “conservative” friend is neither a classical liberal nor even a Republican.

    What I seek is information on an apparently murky subject, not to cast blame in some moral sense.

    Your story reminds me of a Russian expatriate I met through business in Houston years ago. He “explained” to me that what we needed in the United States was a strong leader, to clamp down on the threats to our freedoms. Some years later I received another lecture from a man who stated what the United States needed was a “benevolent dictator.” If my sample was limited to two, I might have concluded that this was a Slavic trait.

    In any event, I don’t think that Trump would even if he wanted to, have a snowball’s chance in hell of pulling any such gambit off. What’s he going to do “dissolve Parliament”?

    I don’t share Neo’s vague fears that sufficient Republican politicians can be bought off as easily as she suggests, and have no reason to believe that Trump could get Democrat politicians to fall in line.

    On the other hand, as the Democrat party is already the party of post-constitutional LEFT fascists, I am certain that none of them would mount any resistance at all to Hillary no matter what she did in the way of undermining our personal and economic liberties.

    “Is it like when my liberal friends ask me if I know any Muslims after I criticize Islam?”

    No, not at all. I am not asking people to be sympathetic toward the Trump-firsters. I am wondering who the hell they are, and wishing to understand what can be done in a general way about them. Since if the Republican party goes down, what’s to suggest that they will not migrate to the next likeliest option?

  154. Mark30339 Says:

    Great post Neo – particularly the sharing on your purpose and mindset. But too much is made of how we must responsibly vote, and how responsible we are for the consequences. As a whole, we are not a responsible electorate. I think we resemble a herd of grazing animals reacting to frequent shocks from our masters’ cattle prods. We react in different directions, but we are in a state of always reacting rather than in a state of building, securing and improving.

    The American experiment is unraveling. The most responsible action is to bolster our safe houses, increase connections with our church communities, and become more able to render aid. A tolerance for fascism is growing while our citizens seek youtube distractions of the day. Too many people are lining up to happily select a dictator, whether it’s Clinton or Trump there can be no doubt that the victor will build massively upon Obama’s precedents for exceeding authority.
    .
    Vive la Résistance !

  155. Richard Saunders Says:

    OM – I’ve tried for years to find out, but I’ve never seen hard evidence that the emplaced ADMs were removed from Europe. I’ve heard rumors to that effect, but nothing concrete. Perhaps you have a source?

    Ann — I’m just trying to provide information, not convince anybody of anything. I certainly don’t know the Donald well enough to know whether he was being casual and offhanded or deadly serious. In any case, I realized a while ago that I just have nothing to say to people who think that bullshit, bluster, and nasty comments are worse than lying, stealing, “pay-for-play,” total disregard for national security, utter contempt for the American people, and an unwavering commitment to Leftism.

  156. OM Says:

    Richard Saunders:

    I don’t have a source more definitive than yours. Weaponsman.com had a post about the ADM and SADMs a month tow ago, I ‘d have to read it again to answer. His site is searchable. It may be a plausible deniability thing.

  157. OM Says:

    DNW:

    You stepped off the high road with “bugger off” so as I said before

    “and the horse you rode in on.”

  158. Bill Says:

    Richard Saunders: ” just have nothing to say to people who think that bullshit, bluster, and nasty comments are worse than lying, stealing, “pay-for-play,” total disregard for national security, utter contempt for the American people, and an unwavering commitment to Leftism.”

    Well, they are both bad. The first item in each list is identical (BS versus lying. Same thing). Hillary has done worse things on a foreign policy level than Trump has done but that’s because Trump has never had the power Hillary has had (I propose we don’t grant it to him). Regarding contempt for the American people, Trump has alienated vast swaths of the citizenry. Ask, for instance, a Muslim citizen what they think of Trump’s plans.

    Or ask a millennial. One of my young friends told me that her Muslim friends are “terrified” of a Trump presidency.

    Ask a hispanic or African American. He’s polling very low with both groups, and not surprisingly.

    I don’t think Trump is a leftist, of course, but I think he and HRC are both pretty committed to authoritarianism. They both believe the world will be a better place by having them run it.

    We’re in a really bad spot…

  159. neo-neocon Says:

    Richard Saunders:

    You write:

    In any case, I realized a while ago that I just have nothing to say to people who think that bullshit, bluster, and nasty comments are worse than lying, stealing, “pay-for-play,” total disregard for national security, utter contempt for the American people.

    You don’t have to say anything to anyone you don’t wish to talk or write to. But here’s my take on that last part of your sentence.

    I think you mischaracterize most people’s objections to Trump, at least most people on this blog. It is not that they believe that bullshit, bluster et al are worse than the rest of your list. It’s just that they give a different significance to the bullshit and bluster et al, and understand the different context of Trump’s and Hillary’s histories.

    I’ve written posts about this, so I won’t go into it in detail, but the problem is that Donald Trump has never held political power and Hillary Clinton has held it for a long time. That means that the canvasses on which they work are different, and Trump has had no opportunity to compromise national security, etc. However, he has habitually done several of the things you list (or related things), albeit in a smaller arena than she: lying, conning people (see this, this, and this, for example), cheating people; and his character flaws indicate that he would have no hesitation to do so on a larger scale than before if he was given the opportunity. I also have written several posts about his disregard for the Constitution and his threats regarding curbing free speech. In addition, he has been on the “pay” side of “pay for play” and he has also often supported causes and politicians on the left (including Hillary Clinton). He adopts leftist lunacy in some of his accusations against George Bush.

    You may choose to disregard all of that, or you may decide some of it’s an exaggeration, or you may think that despite all of it Hillary is still worse than he. That’s fine and it’s a judgment call. But please don’t mischaracterize the concerns of those who think differently by saying what they are upset about is a little BS and bluster. It is not. That is a small part of it. Would that that were all there was to be upset about.

    Both sides need to respect each other.

  160. DNW Says:

    ” neo-neocon Says:
    August 9th, 2016 at 12:52 am

    DNW:

    You write:

    I am pretty sure that Trump is not a traitor, nor at ideological and philosophical war with the principles of constitutionalism and the rule of law. Hillary is.

    However, I have written several posts on how he is indeed “at ideological and philosophical war with the principles of constitutionalism and the rule of law.” I assume you have read them; perhaps, if so, you’ve forgotten them: this, this, this, and this. I see him as worse than Hillary Clinton in that respect.”

    I’ve reread the posts you’ve linked to from February. And they leave me shaking my head and wondering just how we got to this point where he is the Republican nominee.

    I disagree only with your last sentence, since I think it can be demonstrated through a trail of dead bodies and well known deeds, that Clinton is already everything you fear Trump shall be; albeit more circumspect in her public pronouncements.

    And now we are once again at that the very circumstance which you previously complained of as allowing Trump to the fore: i.e., people/candidates stubbornly sticking to their emotionally comforting and ideal candidates and allowing no other. It is precisely the same position in which we find ourselves now.

    I supported Cruz from the start. Would even have been happy with Romney, if all else failed. Many, and not just Trumpsters though, despised Cruz because of a supposedly uneasy smile, because of his deliberate style of analysis and delivery, or even, if one can believe it, because of alternately, either his Black Irish stern, or his occasionally wan-smile immature look.

    The fact is, that the Goddamned affect drunk, government is love emotionalists – if I may be permitted the use of that term – in this polity are themselves responsible for the worst of all possible worlds which we now confront.

    It is the logical, inevitable, and not at all surprising or unexpected result of their pursuance of their own deepest social and emotional desires.

    And now, having allowed their limbic systems to run wild in public, these snivelers pout, and marvel at where they find themselves.

    This is just too, too rich.

  161. Yankee Says:

    Expat:

    Trump understands the links between terrorism, Muslims, and immigration, far better than his opponent does (who has a record of failure in dealing with such issues). Trump has proposed a ban on Muslim immigration to the US; such a policy would never come from Hillary Clinton. As for that NRO article you mentioned, it is addressed to those on the Left, in the Democratic party, who are in denial about Islam.

    As for thinking before you speak in international affairs, why don’t we tell that to Obama, Hillary, and John Kerry? With all of them, one can find specific examples where they blundered badly just with what they said (roughly the entire Middle East). This is in addition to statements Obama has made that have been insulting to our friends and allies (as I recall, Neo-neocon has documented some of them right here).

    And there is still the matter of Angela Merkel inviting millions of refugees into Germany, regardless of existing international laws and EU conventions. Was she not thinking?

    Trump is not the problem. There is a big disconnect between the current ruling elites and reality. They have made a mess of things. All this helps explain why I am more comfortable with Trump.

  162. neo-neocon Says:

    DNW:

    We are in more agreement than disagreement.

    But as to that sentence of mine you object to, I refer you to the comment of mine right above yours in this thread.

    Trump just hasn’t had the opportunities Hillary has had. And many voters propose to give them to him.

    Nor has Hillary already done what my very WORST fears about Trump are.

    I have watched over the years as people on the right have railed at good but imperfect candidates, and raged at the GOP’s inability to do the impossible. Some of the objections are valid, but the vast majority are not, IMHO. I have watched the long slow progression to this tragic point.

  163. DNW Says:

    OM, you’re a silly little troll.

    If you were capable of more, you would have proven it by now.

    Your comments speak for themselves, repeating only one thing “OM is a pathetic troll.”

  164. neo-neocon Says:

    notherbob2:

    What fantasy world do you live in? “Losing their punch”? Au contraire.

    And to characterize objectors to Trump as “whiners” reveals a juvenile mindset.

  165. Geoffrey Britain Says:

    IMO, it is a profound mistake to primarily focus upon either Trump or Clinton’s personal characteristics. In a sane world, neither would have ever gotten through the first round of the primaries.

    The proper place to focus is upon the forces that stand ready to assist them. That is so because it will be those supportive forces that enable them to do whatever amount of damage they may do to the republic.

  166. neo-neocon Says:

    Valerie:

    Your argument has no substance whatsoever. Do you really think that by stating such a thing in such a way, that you’ve resolved some sort of dilemma, or given people a reason to agree with you?

    I have noticed a lot of this in blog discussions over the years, and it is especially prevalent among Trump supporters.

  167. DNW Says:

    neo-neocon Says:
    August 9th, 2016 at 1:44 pm

    DNW:

    We are in more agreement than disagreement.

    But as to that sentence of mine you object to, I refer you to the comment of mine right above yours in this thread.

    Trump just hasn’t had the opportunities Hillary has had. And many voters propose to give them to him.

    Nor has Hillary already done what my very WORST fears about Trump are.

    Yes, well, consider that Hillary has never actually had the power of chief executive, and all the evils she has nonetheless managed to exhibit in practice and character.

    Voting for her is tantamount in my view of electing a Lucifer because he ostensibly knows the political ropes, over a Berlusconian fool.

    As you said, we largely agree up to that point.

    Now I have to go do some actual work.

  168. T Says:

    Bill,

    Let me clarify what I am about to write. I fully understand that feelings run high on all sides in this particular election cycle. I am also in full agreement with Daniel Patrick Moynihan’s admonition that we are all entitled to our own opinion but not our own facts. With that in mind, I’m going to do my best to stick to the facts of the situation to explain my own opinion. That is, I’m not waging any debate or argument to change anyone’s opinion. Most of them are pretty much already set in stone and I don’t think anyone will find anything new here.

    First of all, the reality of the situation is that (barring some black swan event) either the Republican or the Democrat nominee is going to enter the oval office. Period. That is the choice we are given. No Johnson, No Stein, no McMullin; it’s Trump or Hillary.

    My concern is how to make the best of that situation. I can never vote for Hillary Clinton for numerous reasons, not just her personality, but her Progressive philosophy, her 40 year history in the public sphere having accomplished nothing, and the fact that it has been proven that she clearly endangered our country’s national security (although to what extent remains not publicly known).

    Secondly, and I made this point in an earlier thread, Trump has been presented to us by an antagonistic media, Clinton by an obsequious media. For as bad as Donald Trump appears, Hillary Clinton appears no better. This is the worst the media can make of Trump, but the best they can make of Clinton.
    IMO Trump has potential upside; Clinton, a known quantity does not. IMO she has only downside. Now, whether any Trump potential is/can be realized is clearly an open question and at this point IMO there is no discernible answer.

    While I’m not happy about Trump being the Republican frontrunner (notice I did NOT say conservative), I can neither directly (by my vote) nor indirectly (by my lack of voting) support C.S. Lewis’ omnipotent moral busybody. Remember any president brings along an entourage of about 6,000 people who will write and enforce the regulations which will invade my daily life. Perhaps the less quoted portion of that same C.S. Lewis passage says it best:

    [The omnipotent busybody] may be more likely to go to Heaven yet at the same time likelier to make a Hell of earth. This very kindness stings with intolerable insult. To be “cured” against one’s will and cured of states which we may not regard as disease is to be put on a level of those who have not yet reached the age of reason or those who never will; to be classed with infants, imbeciles and domestic animals.

    Hillary’s people will disseminate all that we know which is bad about Hillary: Sympathy for criminals and terrorists (BLM, antipathy for police); fiscal support for crony capitalist programs (e.g., heretofore unworkable green energy, she has already stated that she wants to close the coal mines); antipathy for the Second Amendment (she called SCOTUS wrong on the Second Amendment Heller decision); stacking SCOTUS (she has already said she would appoint judges to reverse Citizens’ United, i.e., judges with a preconceived decisions on cases), etc.

    For those who claim that they would never vote for either Trump or Clinton, I see displacement activity going on. For those unfamiliar with the term, imagine an elk confronted by a bear and the elk doesn’t want to fight but it also doesn’t want to run so it does something completely unrelated to the situation—perhaps it grazes. For those in that group, the Trump/Clinton choice must seem to me to be such a violation of life-values that they neither run nor fight, but graze. I have been in exactly that position before involving a major (non-political) life crisis, so I can empathize. The closest parallel I can think of is the decision to disconnect (or not) a comatose child from life support. For those who are inclined this way in this election there is absolutely nothing easy; there is no good answer; there is no right answer; there is only action or inaction.

    So, I will vote for that glimmer of potential upside knowing full well that it may not materialize. Knowing full well that it is not even my third choice. Knowing full well that hope is not a strategy, but when presented with only two alternatives–hope vs. no hope, I’ll cast my lot with hope. Finally, knowing full well that courage is not acting without fear, but acting in spite of it.

  169. neo-neocon Says:

    R Daneel:

    OOOOO, yes, TRUMP IS ICKY, TRUMP IS ICKY!!!!

    🙁

    Your brilliant summary of my thoughts, my almost-200 posts and countless comments on the subject, is so penetratingly insightful that I tip my cap in awe and can only offer my profuse thanks to you.

    Thanks also for demonstrating so well the depth of thought that is exhibited by so many of Trump’s most fervent supporters, and by the great Trump Himself.

    And you needn’t trouble yourself to come back. I’m sure you’ve got much much better things to do with your time.

  170. Matt_SE Says:

    @Bill:

    “The flippancy with which Trump supporters talk about conscience really bothers me.”

    This is why I kept referring to them as cynical burnouts. If you frequent the alt-right sites, they will at once decry the left as a bunch of Godless heathens, and then go on to sneer at anyone of faith that doesn’t agree with them (Mormons, “conscience” voters).

    They may know scripture, but they haven’t taken it to heart. Many of them online are truly vile people.

  171. Matt_SE Says:

    Yankee Says:

    “Maybe a different approach is in order…why not talk more about…Hillary Clinton?”

    Holy crap, are you serious?
    I would guess that 95% of Trump supporters talk about nothing else. Bring up a Trump flaw: “yeah, but Hillary did this…”
    Criticize a Trump policy: “yeah, but it’s better than the alternative!”

    A “different approach” would be addressing Trump’s flaws honestly, and making a rational argument why abandoning principles is/isn’t justified.

  172. notherbob2 Says:

    Neo: “…to characterize objectors to Trump as “whiners” reveals a juvenile mindset.”

    http://dictionary.cambridge.org/us/dictionary/english/whiner

    a person … who complains or expresses disappointment or unhappiness repeatedly.

    I did not mean to be dismissive of all comments by all commenters, but at this point in time expressions of disappointment or unhappiness that Trump is the nominee begin to pall.

  173. Matt_SE Says:

    William Teach Says:

    “What Trump and the Trumpites do not get is that votes are earned. They expect everyone to just fall in line, but neither Trump, nor what he calls a campaign, nor his supporters do much to woo people to support Trump. Heck, their nastiness does more to turn the very people he needs, ie, people who tend to vote Republican, off.”

    They think that because people voted reluctantly for McCain or Romney that Trump is OWED the same consideration for winning the nomination. The difference is, Trump isn’t a decent man, hence all the talk about “conscience” which was never brought up with Romney/McCain.
    What a bunch of whiny, crybaby SJW-wannabes.
    Portions of them who were reluctant supporters have been conned again into increasing their vocal support because they can see the writing on the wall.

    The people responsible for guaranteeing this result were the people who voted for Trump. They were given every warning.

  174. notherbob2 Says:

    I meant “simply” that he is the nominee. Not objections to him as a candidate.

  175. Richard Saunders Says:

    Neo, like I said, nobody’s going to change their mind at this point, so there’s no point in arguing about it.

  176. OM Says:

    Richard Saunders:

    http://foreignpolicy.com/2014/01/30/the-littlest-boy/

    “As Cold War tensions abated, the United States began recalling SADMs to the continental United States. The weapon was officially retired in 1989, with the departments of Defense and Energy declaring that it was “obsolete” and that “there was no longer an operational requirement” for it. With the demise of the Soviet Union in 1991, George H.W. Bush made deep cuts to nonstrategic nuclear weapons across all the services.”

    SADM = Small Atomic Demolition Munition (backpack W54 device)

    Nuclear Weapons Databook from NRDC is referenced in the Foreign Policy article.

    I haven’t found the Weaponsman.com article yet.

  177. Nick Says:

    Most people who are new to politics expect to change the world. This feeling usually lasts through the first primary, when they discover that not everyone is on board with their revolution. Some walk away from politics forever disillusioned, some become fringe activists, and some temper their expectations and become reformer-types within the system. Trump supporters have never gone through this. They rallied behind their man, and he crushed his opponents. He said he’d win, and he won. And now his supporters don’t understand the people who won’t join the bandwagon. They have no framework to understand it.

  178. Bill Says:

    T,

    Thanks for the well written and well thought out response. Much appreciated

  179. Yankee Says:

    When I suggest talking more about Hillary, it is because all too often when Trump is discussed, it seems to get to the point where we miss the forest for the trees. There’s a lot of back-and-forth in the comments, but the persuasion, if any, is less visible.

    A different topic, a change of focus, could help lead to new insights. Another way to achieve this may be to make it less personal by talking about Candidate A and Candidate B. Or else one could talk about political policies in general that will be relevant for the coming decades.

    Again, way back after the first few primaries, I stated that I would support whoever the Republican nominee was. If it had been JEB! or Gov. Chris Christie, or Sen. Lindsey Graham, then I would have found positive things to say about them, and would have looked for a way to provide constructive support. The positive approach is always best.

  180. Richard Saunders Says:

    OM – I was thinking about the emplaced ones, the MADMs. BTW, do you think Lebed was BSing about the missing 104 suitcase nucs?

  181. OM Says:

    Richard Saunders:

    I’ll check this evening about the MADMs at Weoponsman.com There were photos of some of the locations as I recall, much lager devices (~ 55 gal drum enclosures size). Don’t know anything about the missing suitcase nukes (soviet?) except that I ‘d read theirs weren’t as maintainable, if missing then more a threat for spread of contamination, not so much Kaboom.

  182. OM Says:

    Richard Saunders:

    Correction SADM = Special Atomic Demolition Munition, but smaller than a MADM. Whole new twist on “isn’t that special.”

  183. OM Says:

    Richard Saunders;

    The Magic Rucksack
    http://weaponsman.com/?p=23250

  184. OM Says:

    Richard Saunders:

    If you can translate German there is more on the ADMs in this article (scroll down to “ADM – die sog. “Atommine””

    http://www.geschichtsspuren.de/artikel/34-verkehr/135-sperren-wallmeister.html

    It’s from the comments of http://weaponsman.com/?p=23250

  185. Richard Saunders Says:

    OM – I made a quick scan through the article but didn’t see a date for removal –it would take me way too long to translate the German — I haven’t spoken it for 45 years! The interesting thing is, I never heard about the true SADMs, the backpack bombs. I knew people who maintained the emplaced MADMs, but they referred to them just as ADMs.

  186. Richard Saunders Says:

    OM – I meant the date of removal of the MADMs. I’m guessing it was probably in the 1991 drawdown of tactical nucs under George Bush I, but I don’t have anything solid on that.

  187. Ymarsakar Says:

    In any case, thank you for that view from Mt. Olympus.

    You’re welcome to it, GB. Although I suspect it won’t help someone like you all that much.

    I don’t expect you to have substantive arguments, because it’s impossible for you to field them once emotions replaces your thinking. All you can field against me are personal attacks, isn’t that right, Mr Olympus.

    Then again, America’s hero kings and queens, Hussein, HRC, and Trum, can’t do much better. So I suppose it would be unfair of me to hold normals to a standard even their leaders fail by.

    Saunders, like GB, also objected to the “Trump supporter” description. Although why people who lobby others to vote for Trum, think they aren’t supporting him, is hard to figure out. Maybe it’s just a matter of self identity or unwillingness to associate with Trum’s hardcore supporters, the Alt Right and Democrats.

    Nick has an interesting point, although I would add that many of Trum’s supporters are also Democrats. Democrats are used to the DNC enforcing party monopoly on a single candidate. Remember Bernie and his kneeling down to Clinton’s power, after what she did to him? That’s the Democrat machine in operation, has been for decades. So when Dems jump ship to vote for Trum as the RNC’s candidate, those Dems expect Republicans to jump on the band wagon, since after all that’s what they were brought up to believe in. Republicans didn’t have consciences, being evil, right.

    The American experiment is unraveling. The most responsible action is to bolster our safe houses, increase connections with our church communities, and become more able to render aid. A tolerance for fascism is growing while our citizens seek youtube distractions of the day. Too many people are lining up to happily select a dictator, whether it’s Clinton or Trump there can be no doubt that the victor will build massively upon Obama’s precedents for exceeding authority.

    Indeed. Think global, act local. That was one way for me to tolerate and handle the various 2007-2009 excuses I would often get, about America’s predicted future. As the Left destroyed the country, people kept spouting off about elections and hope and change. Fat lot of good that did.

    Americans are still talking about Hope and Change and Elections, even now, irregardless of their politics. They haven’t figured out that the Republic they want to fight for, is already dead.

    As for the Southern Baptists in CW 1 in the US, they were fighting for the opposite of states’ right, because they wanted to expand slavery to all the US territories, irregardless of what the people in those territories thought about slavery. The Southern Baptists and slave lords had already successfully indoctrinated a generation of Irish and Scots tribes to fight for the slave lords, even though the Scotts-Irish liked freedom and didn’t own slaves, for the most part.

    That’s not to mention the documents of Southern succession mentioning the Fugitive Slave Acts, either, which was a federal writ. They were complaining that New York, an abolitionist State, had the ability to nullify or abrogate that federal protection of “property”. That isn’t state’s rights, that’s federal empowerment. So is spreading slavery to the US territories, plus Mexico.

    The South was not interested in destroying the Union, in fact they probably planned on being re admitted to the Union, this time on better terms, once the Democrats up North had unseated their rival, Lincoln, and the Abolitionist Republicans.

    The problem back then wasn’t Nathan Bedford Forrest or the Confederate leaders or General Lee. Just as the problem now aren’t the leaders of the Leftist alliance or the 70 yo Democrat, Trum.

    The American people are hopelessly corrupt and fallen. Yes, there are enclaves of survivalists and Christians and Mormon Christians, and Jews and Amish, who still resist the evils of this world by fighting temptation and turning the other cheek, demanding “give it your best shot, your last one wasn’t enough, bring it on”. But how many righteous people can live in a city before the city cannot be destroyed by divine punishment? Once the number of righteous fall below a certain number… divine punishment will cave your heads in, even if the Leftist alliance and their Islamic allies fail to.

  188. Ymarsakar Says:

    Matt SE ,

    I told some people over at VoxDay’s comments, that I did not recognize their god as the god of Christ, the Christian god that is. Many of what they do, can be termed labeling good as evil, and evil good, similar to what the Left or Lucifer does.

    You should have seen some of their reactions. For as rough a verbal and written personality the Alt Right commenters and readers usually are, they had quite an interesting reaction to me. They actually felt threatened enough to attack me, but unlike the original Southern Baptists, their KKK death squads and lynchings can’t quite reach over the internet, no matter what their intended verbal enmity and poison is. I’ve seen far worse than they have in their entire lives… combined together, concerning humanity’s evil against humanity.

    It may surprise people to know this, but many people who were originally Alt Right, or rather originally non political but later Alt Right, are Southern Baptists, white supremacists, or Democrat Dixiecrats. Nationalists and tribalists, not exactly Republican patriots. I myself was rather surprised and shocked to know that the propaganda of civil war 1 in the US, had not yet expired in the Southern Bible Belt.

    But the internet allows people to write things that they would normally only speak about in the closed walls of their closest family or confidants. Just a harmless line or two, in anonymous land. But to me, I can connect the dots, it is all I need.

    The Southern Baptist betrayal of Jesus Christ’s belief in human freedom and redemption from sin, was not erased or destroyed merely because the Southern slave lords and politicians lost the war. The fight continues still, even now, this contest between good and evil.

    Should humans acquire earthly power, render it on a king, and use it to subjugate and destroy their enemies? Or should humans acquire spiritual might and use it to dare their enemies to try their worst to break them, in order to remain unbroken rebels to the human poison, greed, and system of human corrupt laws?

    It mirrors the discussion before about Jesus Christ and why the Jews decided to go with false prophets and destroy themselves in rebellions against Rome, rather than rendering unto Caesar what Caesar gave them, money and tribute. The House of Israel, at the time, made a mistake, specifically the tribe of Judah and Benjamine. Thus they were almost destroyed for it, and they were exiled for nearly 2000 years from Jerusalem for it, and they were scattered, as predicted hundreds of years before Jesus was born.

    So what now, that Americans have the same decision? Will humans decide to no longer rebel against the divine laws over them, or will humans make the mistake as before?

    I don’t think even divine level entities like Lucifer, knows how this will play out. If they did, they would not need mortals to decide the issue once and for all.

    I have to wonder just how long this continent can tolerate a people fallen into evil and abominations. Certainly Venezuela started feeling the Burn, quite soon in terms of human history.

  189. LindaF Says:

    I can’t see that having a known quantity – the argument for Clinton – is better.

    Most of what we know her for is NOT what we want. There is that added aspect that she is a liar, would have the ability to replace ALL of the Supreme Court Liberals with younger ones – leaving us at the mercy of Leftist overlords for all foreseeable future, and – perhaps worst of all – is HIGHLY vulnerable to blackmail for her stolen emails. Yes, I am one that is convinced that BOTH China and Russia are in possession of them.

    Despite the concern about Trump’s impulsiveness, I have to prefer an occasional quick-draw impulse to a known and corrupt serial incompetent.

  190. Rand Says:

    I have enjoyed your site for some time now. I can relate to your dilemma in our two choices. For myself, I have decided I have to vote for Trump if only to keep the likes of Hillary, with her ideology, from appointing and skewing our Supreme Court to the left. With Trump I have a hope he will not make leftism thought a requirement for any nominees to fill empty SC chairs if/when they come up and the existing one. I think America lost a great one when Scalia passed.

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Previously a lifelong Democrat, born in New York and living in New England, surrounded by liberals on all sides, I've found myself slowly but surely leaving the fold and becoming that dread thing: a neocon.
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