Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Response to The Politics of Humiliation

In a telephone interview, he noted that women did not like seeing Mrs. Clinton insulted or bullied by men. He said he wanted to be more strategic, by calling into question Mrs. Clinton’s judgment in her reaction to Mr. Clinton’s affairs ...
Trump, or maybe one of his ubiquitous droids, needs to explain how this is supposed to work:

When confronted by boasts from his own book on his extramarital exploits with women (“If I told the real stories of my experiences with women, often seemingly very happily married and important women, this book would be a guaranteed best-seller"), how much success can Trump expect to get from painting Hillary with that same brush, when nobody is accusing Hillary herself of being a slimy lounge lizard?

The worst they can argue is that she married someone like Donald Trump!
He [Trump] acknowledged that Republicans tried to discredit her judgment in the marathon Benghazi hearing in the fall, to little avail. 
But he said that he would be more pointed and memorable in linking her to the failings and deaths in Libya, and that the debate would have a vastly larger television audience than the hearing.
First of all, is Trump really saying that, for once, he's going to stop speaking in generalities, and start digging into the details?

Okay, well, good luck with that!

Trump needs to understand that Hillary was able to shut down the Benghazi Committee members because their insinuating questions actually only have an effect when kept in that mysterious area of "unanswered questions". But once you get beyond the generalities and into the specifics in these Benghazi accusations -- and the same thing with the email accusations -- the wrongdoing turns out to not be there, the "scandal" falls apart, and the critics start looking like they're on a witch-hunt.

Greg Sargent zeros in on another one of Trump's bizarre ploys:
Unlike Romney, Trump cheerfully cops to having been in on the elite scam that has ripped off American workers for decades and now promises to put his inside knowledge to work on their behalf.
Hey, it's that old "Fox in the Henhouse" scam! Remember that one?

So it all comes down to that old snoozer, "Yes, he is an S.O.B., but at least he's our S.O.B." I understand a lot of Americans think things are bad in this country, but it's hard to believe that things are so bad that they want to put a know-nothing bullying shit-head in the White House.

Charles Blow says you can just forget about all the strategies:
Trump is smart enough to know what he lacks – substance – and to know what he possesses in abundance – insolence. So long as he steers clear of his own weakness and draws others in to the briar patch that is his comfort zone, he wins. 
As MSNBC’s Chris Matthews said in December, this is asymmetric warfare. Conventional forms of political fighting won’t work on this man. Truth holds little power, and the media is still enthralled by the monster it made.
The media didn't really create this monster, unless you're talking about the media being so predictably easy for the monster himself to manipulate. It's not that hard. All it takes is a recognition that the media insists on giving the public more of what it obviously wants, because if the public doesn't get what it wants, it goes away -- and what it wants is provocative bluster, and preferably, on a daily basis. 

And that's exactly what Trump offers up: Today's story is that he says we need to keep all Muslims from entering the country; next Sunday, it will be that this Muslim thing was only a suggestion. Do the Trump-heads think he's a flip-flopper? No, since they're not really listening. He had them a long time ago, at "We don't win anymore."

Yes, there are a large number of voters who have totally given up on rationality, given up hope, and think they need an S.O.B. as their president, but we can only hope that we outnumber them on election day. If we don't, then America will find itself involved in the same experiment that John Boehner kept trying with the Tea Party -- just this once, let them get their way, and let them find out first hand, that -- surprise! -- shutting down the government doesn't force Obama to repeal Obamacare after all!

Of course, that wishful thinking never worked for Boehner, and it surely won't work for us either.

Maybe electing Donald Trump president of the U.S. will be sort of a yin-yang moment for the planet, in which everything seems to be chugging along nicely, but the next thing you know, bang! Everything is swallowed up by its dichotomous opposite! Maybe it's that the gods are just playing dodge-ball with us!

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