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August 14, 2018

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and after 2016 i don't believe polls.

that is, i don't believe national polls predict anything about elections that aren't national.

"One of the few bright spots in this administration is that .....'

Could be floaters in the back of the eye. Possibly a detached retina or a stroke.

See an ophthalmologist at the earliest possible opportunity.

"Every dumbass who kissed his ass publicly will be persona non grata in decent circles."

Someone run out and find a decent circle.

As Marty stated, I don't think it is possible to lose credibility in America any longer.

It's now the path to riches and notoriety.

Infamous is the new famous.

Hire an agent.

There are endless gigs available to malign but marketable assholes and jagoffs in America.

A person can now pivot without shame or a shrug from a political career to porn or a political career to a cage match on the WWF ... and back again.

Not so vulgar, Count. Better to follow the Neronic style dispatching them reenacting classical myths. The Donald will be Pentheus, torn to pieces by Maenads (should be easy to find female volunteers); a Galapagos tortoise will be dropped on Mitch McConnell from a sufficient height (so the tortoise but not the turtle has a fair chance of survival) etc.

Vulgarity has never found a better and more vulgar subject.

I think that beneath the furor there are massive changes being made and the impacts will last long past the Trump years.

Oh, I agree completely. But there is so much more that might be happening if they knew what they were doing. Thank God for small favors.

after 2016 i don't believe polls.

Actually, the polls did rather well in 2016. That is, the polls were saying that Trump had something like a 1/3 chance to win. Not zero chance; 1/3. Statistics being what it is, that means sometimes the long-shot comes thru . . . and this wasn't really that long.

Similarly for this year. Last I looked, 538 was saying there were 3 chances in 4 that the Democrats take the House (with varying majorities) and 1 chance in 3 that the Republicans hold it. (By this afternoon evolved to 5 in 7 and 2 in 7 respectively.)

The median forecast is for the Democrats to have a 33 seat majority. But there's even about 1 chance in 200 that the Republicans actually increase their majority -- again, not zero, even if it's not the way the smart money would bet.

Odds are Republicans will add some seats in the Senate and lose the House.

Manafort guilty - and found guilty, too.

"He stays on and we all have to endure it."

Only the unlucky the republican party and mp don't murder:

https://www.motherjones.com/kevin-drum/2018/08/trump-coal-plan-will-kill-5-10000-people-over-next-decade/

Add in the many more killed by the effects of global warming and reduced access to affordable healthcare and those dead lucky duckies might be a plurality.

Manafort guilty - and found guilty, too.

Guilty on 8 counts, hung jury on 10 (haven't seen what the split was on those). Acquitted on . . . zero. Some witch hunt.

The former Trump campaign chairman faced 18 counts in total, five counts of filing false tax returns, four counts of failing to disclose his offshore bank accounts and nine counts of bank fraud.

He was found guilty on Tuesday of five tax fraud charges, one count relating to hiding foreign bank accounts and two counts of bank fraud.

So he was found guilty of some in each category.

https://www.usatoday.com/pages/interactives/trump-lawsuits/

And another trial to come.

Meanwhile, Cohen pleads guilty.

Expect an explosion of impotent rage fairly soon.

He just needs a little time to come up with a line to spin it for the faithful. It'll work too, at least for a while.

Actually, the polls did rather well in 2016.

those were based on accumulations of statewide polls. national polls all said Clinton+4 or so. and they were right! but national polls are meaningless because there are no national elections.

Should be an interesting rally in WV tonight.

russell tells me I am somehow demeaning myself by having an alternative opinion

as russell, i feel qualified to say what it is that russell is saying.

russell is saying that, in your effort to offer an 'alternative opinion', you take positions that are unsupportable.

not 'unsupportable' meaning 'i don't like them'. 'unsupportable' meaning 'are not supported by fact'. they aren't accurate.

Well it would be nice to give them a third choice.

you all are gonna have to make that happen. people like me don't vote in (R) primaries. presumably, people like you, do.

please, by all means, provide yourselves with an option other than the (D)'s and some version of Trump.

I think that beneath the furor there are massive changes being made and the impacts will last long past the Trump years.

couldn't agree more.

how did that happen? how did we get here? who the fnck voted for this guy? oh wait - not me.

maybe you want to take this up with the people who voted for the guy.

maybe you want to comment about the EPA, or the loosening of the stress test regs, instead of about how Brennan is a democratic talking head.

maybe the response you get would be more engaging, and less 'WTF are you talking about?!?'.

maybe you won't have to complain about people 'bullying' you for your 'alternative opinion'.

Mussolini

if you travel in rural italy, and probably not so rural italy, you'll find the occasional picture of il duce. in certain circles in russia, there are folks who fondly remember uncle joe.

there are going to be about 30% of the population who will love trump, in or out of office, until their last dying breath.

Mister we could use a guy like Herbert Hoover again.

Extraordinary to be in court to hear Michael Cohen admit to illegally paying Stormy Daniels and the former Playboy model Kaen McDougal "in coordination with and at the direction of the candidate."

yadayadayada, 87% approval.

Cohen and Manafort in one day. Might be something. Something that I haven't seen discussed--but could easily have missed--is that Cohen is an oulier among attorneys and not in a good way. Non-lawyers often have a cynical, jaundiced view of lawyers as a class. My view is that, trial lawyers at least, are pretty good folks to work with and I'm talking the lawyers on the other side of my cases. We make verbal agreements and handshake deals all the time and almost everyone always keeps their promises. The few who don't are known and distrusted. And then, way out on the edge, are the Cohen's. Slimy, shitty human beings. I maintain there is a special online dating-type service for slimy lawyers and slimy clients to meet. Clients hire lawyers like Cohen because they need something sleezy and shitty taken care of. If it was a straight up deal, just hire a regular lawyer.

If the Trump falls because he hired a piece of shit lawyer, that says more about Trump than it does the lawyer. Trump needed someone like that. He didn't have that need for a reason that can bear sunlight. The more we learn of this guy, the sicker we all get.

I have refused to have anything to do with the coverage of Trump's Nuremberg rallies, but tonight, I'm tempted.

Nahhh. I'll see what MSNBC has to say.

Interesting factoid just now. For those who, like me, didn't know why there are being two separate Manafort trials.

Turns out that they could have been consolidated. But Manafort "declined to waive venue" -- which required that the trial be held in the location where the crime occurred. Apparently he thought he would get a more sympathetic jury in Eastern Virginia than in DC. Perhaps he was right....

The more we learn of this guy, the sicker we all get.

Yep. Thank you, McKinney.

Hope you find the wherewithal to do something about it by voting for Democrats. You're disappointed that our system doesn't allow a viable third course, but it doesn't. Republicans are lock step behind him. You have the opportunity to vote Democratic, even just while he's around, to show your opposition. Health insurance for all is really not a despicable concept. The EPA actually does a lot of good. You're against women's right to choose abortion, but the Supreme Court really shouldn't be occupied by people whose records are being kept a national secret.

There's something you can do, McKinney. Thanks for your consideration.

If the Trump falls because he hired a piece of shit lawyer, that says more about Trump than it does the lawyer. Trump needed someone like that.

Well, for somebody who learnt at the knee of Roy Cohn, surprise surprise.

Something that I haven't seen discussed--but could easily have missed--is that Cohen is an oulier among attorneys and not in a good way.

As you say, Trump needed someone like Cohen. Not least because reputable lawyers wouldn't, and on current evidence won't, work for someone like that.

Duncan Hunter. Hmmm.

I hope every single R goes down. Except for the good ones. Are there any?

I'm thinking that about the end of September Pence stops the Donald in the hall one morning and says, "Ugly things are piling up. Consider the possibility of Ivanka in prison because a jury decides to take it out on her. I promise I'll pardon the Trump family if you'll retire 'for health reasons.'"

I wonder what they have on Mike Pence. My guess is that it's not nothing.

I wonder what they have on Mike Pence. My guess is that it's not nothing.

1. Democrats win the House.

2. Hillary is elected Speaker of the House.

3. Trump retires for "health reasons."

4. Pence resigns rather than face impeachment.

5. Hillary becomes POTUS.

:)

I'll dream about that tonight CharlesWT. Thanks!

Charles, does it occur to you that you've gotten a bit behind the curve? The freekout would be all the greater if it was the current ultra-demoness: Pelosi. (I'm not a fan. But the potential for generating apoplexy is amusing.)

In a day rich in politican news, we wouldn't want to overlook this detail.

In his guilty plea, Cohen said that he (illegally) paid off two women in order to influence the election "in coordination with and at the direction of a candidate for federal office.” One guess who that candidate, and co-conspirator (unindicted or otherwise) is.

Something that I haven't seen discussed--but could easily have missed--is that Cohen is an outlier among attorneys and not in a good way.

I could be wrong, but I believe the coverage of Cohen has pretty consistently been that he's a mobbed-up fixer. His work for Trump has involved very little actual legal representation.

He's not just an 'outlier' among attorneys, he's basically not working as an attorney.

Trump needed someone like that.

Yes.

Look, I know that you, and Marty, and whoever else, thinks we're all being a bunch of shrill liberal ninnies when we criticize Trump, but to be honest it's hardly even a political thing.

Trump is a crook. He is not an honest human being. Not "not honest" in the sense of telling lies and being less than candid, but profoundly so. He's a liar, a cheat, a chiseler.

A significant number of his business associates, including Michael Cohen, are mobbed-up or are plainly gangsters. No bank in the US will lend him money. His real estate business at this point is mostly selling high-end real estate to anonymous off-shore buyers who make their purchases through holding companies. Which is SOP for money launderers.

The rest of his businesses are basically licensing his name, which is to say monetizing his notoriety. He, Ivanka, the boys, are basically the NY branch of the Kardashians, except (thankfully) without the nudie pictures.

Marty criticizes Mueller for "looking for chances to prosecute". You can't swing a dead cat within ten feet of Donald Trump without finding somebody to prosecute. The reason Mueller has so many attorneys on staff, with such a wide range of areas of expertise, is that there are some many freaking criminal ratholes to follow.

I have no idea what the hell to say about his level of support among (R)'s, I guess the combination of tax cuts and "owning the libs" is quite the intoxicating brew.

I feel sorry for all the people who put their confidence in the guy and who are basically gonna get screwed before all is said and done. But they need to wise the hell up. I'll talk about Trump here, but I do not, ever, talk about Trump with anyone in my real life who is a Trump supporter. All it does is get them on the defense. People need space to figure this stuff out for themselves, in their own time, I'm happy to stay out of their way while they do that.

Some never will. So be it. Changing hearts and minds at that level is not one of my superpowers.

For the folks who are into Trump for the de-regulation and the tax cuts and the continued bull market - basically FOR THE MONEY - I say enjoy your payday, and I hope you don't choke on it. Just don't ever tell me you love this country.

Donald Trump is a crook. Born crooked, lived his whole life crooked, crooked still. Probably be a crook until the day he dies. Maybe he'll go down for this bullshit, I have no idea. I hope he does, not because I'm all butt-hurt because Hillary lost, but because he is a cancer on the nation and, frankly, the world, and we'll be better with him gone.

The (R)'s are whole other topic. American conservatives need to get their at together and build a new party. The one they have now is toxic.

Look the president just wrote a 140 character insult of LeBron James, never mind about that EPA stuff. Brennan said Trump is committing treason but has no direct knowledge that it's true, ignore that easing on the stress tests. Wait LeBron answered, wow that was a real gotcha. Huge anti white supremacist rally yesterday, the only white supremacist that showed up was grounded by his dad. Look we reorganized the military and added a space force and hired another 5000 Trump supporters as GS24's, never mind Trump just back handedly insulted Aretha.

I quote the whole passage cause it intersects with the way this blog is currently run. I have no plans on telling people what they are supposed to talk about, but I do get a bit hot under the collar when people tell other people what they should or should not talk about _here_. Perhaps that means that I am enabling the situation that Marty discusses above, but being on the other side of the world, if I don't understand why people are talking about one thing and not the other, I assume that there is some deficit in what I know.

Recently, the term 'whataboutery' has come up, which gives a name to this. I acknowledge that the minority (in this case conservative leaning commenters here) are always going to be accused of this more often (underlining the fact that it sucks to be a minority) and I try to be careful about my complaints about this. I also realize that some commenters are 'reactive', in that they are reacting to comments by others and trying to figure out where to accept that reaction is a part of blog back and forth and when it causes the problems that Marty points out can be tough. I try to judge it by the distance from the original discussion, but that is most certainly subjective and I'm sure that other people might feel that a comment that I think is only tangential is actually intimately related to the matter at hand. I am also sure that, as a member of the majority here, I don't get it right all the time, but I feel it would be more helpful if the case were stated clearly rather than tossed out as an aside. Thanks.

Fine with me if folks want to talk about the EPA or relaxing stress test requirements.

If folks do want to talk about that, maybe lead off with "Let's talk about the EPA and relaxing the stress test requirements".

I also understand that it's a PITA to be in the minority on a blog. It takes a ton of endless work to make an argument, wade through the knee-jerk responses, clarify over and over and over again what it is you're trying to say.

If folks want to discuss stuff that is more substantial than Trump's tweets about LeBron or what he said about Aretha, then please do proceed. The floor is more than open.

Lead the way.

Another grifter in the Trump orbit (one of his early endorsers) indicted:
https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2018/08/rep-duncan-hunter-wife-indicted-for-rampant-misuse-of-campaign-funds.html

If I'm not missing something, we now have the first GOP Congressman to endorse Trump (Chris Collins) arrested for corruption. Followed by the second Congressman to do so (Duncan Hunter) being also arrested.

Now the question is, should we look for the next corruption arrest to be the third Congressman to endorse Trump (Tom Marino)? Or the next member of Congress (albeit not a member of the House) to do so -- which would be then-Senator/now-AG Jeff Sessions? I mean, the pattern overall looks clear, but the precise details are still fuzzy.

Marino already had his scandal:

https://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2017/10/17/558276546/tom-marino-trumps-pick-as-drug-czar-withdraws-after-damaging-opioid-report

I think Marty’s point was more about Trump’s ability to distract the media from the substance of what he’s doing by getting them to focus on his silly antics. Whether this is by design or happenstance is another question. Maybe a bit of both.

hsh, yes.

“Whether this is by design or happenstance is another question. Maybe a bit of both.”

I think it is both. Trump is unable or has great difficulty controlling himself. But has less of an incentive to try since his tweets and statements distract attention from much of what he is doing. He might be smart enough to realize that. Plus some of his statements, like the bigoted ones, appeal to a significant fraction of his supporters and they get a thrill watching liberals go nuts.

I think Marty’s point was more about Trump’s ability to distract the media from the substance of what he’s doing

I think Marty had a variety of points going on, of which that was one.

I'm actually more than interested in discussing either or both of the EPA or stress test relaxation issues. I'd be happy to ignore Trump and his attention-hogging antics for the rest of his natural life.

He's a crook. His family are crooks. His associates are crooks. Half his cabinet are crooks. He managed to become POTUS through sheer bullshitting skill, honed over a lifetime.

If you voted for him, more fool you.

At some point, he'll either be thrown out of office, or replaced via elections or term limitations.

Whichever way, can't happen soon enough for me.

I'm not sure what else there is to say about the man. His combover? His gold-plated toilet? Why do his boys use so much hair product?

Why not discuss the hypothetical virtues of Jerry Springer as POTUS? It'd be just about as worthwhile.

Bugger him and the horse he rode in on.

Next topic?

It has been my practice not to say or write his name, although I might have gotten careless once or twice; Clickbait is my substitute.

I have thought for a long time that "we" ought to have an agreed-upon day, scheduled like the big protests, when he is not mentioned anywhere, by anyone, who is unhappy with ... the situation. No blogging, no bitching, no news media, *no coverage at all.* Because I do think he courts the outrage on purpose, and gets fed by it, and thus gets ever worse. Along with his cultists.

He probably wouldn't notice, since his cult, esp. Fox, wouldn't go along with it. But to whatever extent they all get fed by pissing off the libs, or should I say normal people, maybe he *would* mind.

The risk is that the result might be the petulant tantrum that destroys the world, but I have a feeling, or maybe just a forlorn hope, that at this point no one would obey the necessary orders to make that happen.

Now back to my regularly scheduled not talking about him.

i've been waiting for years for the day when Colbert no longer does 15 minutes of monologue about Trump.

Why not discuss the hypothetical virtues of Jerry Springer as POTUS?

In all honesty, I think he'd be a big improvement over the one we now have, based on what I know of his personal history (not that I want to discuss it any further than that, but it does say something about our current state of affairs, or at least my opinion thereof).

Springer at least has elected experience.

And a JD as well as a BS in poli sci, both from good schools.

Oh, God! Now we're talking about it!

who would be a good VP for Springer?

Oprah?
Maury Povich?
that guy from TMZ?

I have zero interest in basketball, but “if Jane Jacobs co-wrote Blazing Saddles...” is a pretty well irresistible hook:
https://slate.com/culture/2018/08/oklahoma-city-book-boom-town-by-sam-anderson-reviewed.html

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