Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Response to The Actual Job

(See: Just Above Sunset: The Actual Job)

My god, that was so cleansing!

Yes, the reminder of that night in 2011 at the Correspondents' Dinner, when Obama ruthlessly ridiculed Donald Trump on national TV over his hard decision on whether to fire Gary Busey or Meatloaf, and then went back into the White House Situation Room himself and fired Osama bin Laden. That was delicious, even if it was just another Trump story. I can't seem to get enough of those.

In fact, I just had to follow that link to Trump telling someone, presumably in reference to dealing with women, “You have to treat 'em like shit” -- the someone being his friend Phillip Johnson, according to New York Magazine, who reportedly replied:
"You'd make a good mafioso," Johnson replied. 
"One of the greatest," The Donald assured him.
Which happens to echo Jon Stewart's standard Donald Trump impersonation, making him sound like a don from one of New York's famous "five families". That same link (to The Daily Beast) says this:
Trump “boasts about having poured a whole bottle of wine down Marie Brenner’s back after she wrote a story on him that he hated,” New York magazine reported in 1992. ... 
In 1990, Brenner profiled Trump and then-wife Ivana for Vanity Fair, brutally detailing the dissolution of their marriage. 
“How can you say you love us? You don’t love us! You don’t even love yourself. You just love your money,” 12-year-old Donald Jr. told his father, according to Brenner’s profile. 
“What kind of son have I created?” Trump’s mother, Mary, reportedly asked Ivana.
His own mother! But back to the cleansing.

It's mostly in hearing all these discussions of policy matters, such as the pros and cons of the Iran deal, that no one could ever imagine any of the Republican contenders intelligently engaging in. Listening to all this, after weeks of immersion into the dark world of Republican partisan politics, is like a return to civilization after spending too much time in some ruthless third-world country, where truth and rationality and human decency have absolutely no currency.

And so it's not just Donald Trump. In fact, as Paul Krugman suggested in his Monday column, maybe one reason we're all spending so much time talking about Trump is that none of the rest of the pack, as demonstrated by their performances at last week's debate, has anything to say:
Well, there were 19 references to God, while the economy rated only 10 mentions. Republicans in Congress have voted dozens of times to repeal all or part of Obamacare, but the candidates only named President Obama’s signature policy nine times over the course of two hours. And energy, another erstwhile G.O.P. favorite, came up only four times. ... 
And there was a good reason they seemed so tongue-tied: Out there in the real world, none of the disasters their party predicted have actually come to pass. President Obama just keeps failing to fail. And that’s a big problem for the G.O.P. — even bigger than Donald Trump.
Krugman may be overstating that problem. It's only a real problem for the GOP if most people understand it to be true, or even care about it, but it still has to be a blaring embarrassment to the eighty-something-percent of Republicans that don't support him that their presidential front-runner is a lounge-lizard.

That party truly is the gang that couldn't shoot straight.

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