1. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Trump presidency could cost U.S. economy $1 trillion: Oxford Economics

    The U.S. economy could be $1 trillion smaller than otherwise expected in 2021 if Republican candidate Donald Trump wins the presidential election in November, economics research firm Oxford Economics said on Tuesday.
    While the firm said Trump’s policies – including more protectionist trade measures, tax cuts and mass deportation of illegal immigrants – may be watered down in negotiations with Congress, they could have “adverse” consequences.
    “Should Mr. Trump prove more successful in achieving adoption of his policies, the consequences could be far-reaching – knocking 5 percent off the level of U.S. GDP relative to baseline and undermining the anticipated recovery in global growth,” it said.
    Oxford Economics describes itself as an independent global advisory firm. They are headquartered in Oxford, England, but have offices around the world including Chicago, Miami, Philadelphia, San Francisco and Washington.

    Yep, Trump’s plan is Yuge. The wrong way.

  2. says

    SC in comment 499, Trump’s campaign manager demanding privacy for Trump and then slamming Clinton for delaying the announcement of her pneumonia diagnosis is so par for the course. This is how they operate. They hold Clinton to one standard, and then hold Trump to a much lower standard. It boggles the mind.

    Meanwhile, mainstream media hosts (not just rightwing media hosts) are letting Trump’s surrogates lie about the interest in seeing Trump’s tax returns. If you look at several sources, you see all the surrogates saying the same thing. Here are some examples:

    KELLYANNE CONWAY: No. […] Alisyn, that I’ve looked at the CNN polling, looked at everybody’s polling, I look at our own polling. I just can’t find where this [tax returns] is a burning issue to most of Americans.
    MIKE PENCE: I do have to tell you, though, Wolf. As I travel around the country — I know members of the media are very interested in this. I don’t hear a lot of people when I’m out on the stump, as I was in Virginia just a few short days ago, I don’t hear a lot of people talking about tax returns.
    SARAH HUCKABEE SANDERS: […] I think the bigger point and the bigger question, what most Americans care about a whole lot more than Donald Trump’s taxes are their own taxes, Anderson. They are far more concerned about who’s going to help cut their personal taxes, […]
    PRIEBUS: […] Maybe the people aren’t interested in people’s taxes. Maybe the reason why not a lot of people are talking about his tax returns is that it’s not actually something people want to talk about, and when news media outlets talk about his tax returns, they’re not getting a whole lot of interest, so they’re not talking about his tax returns.

    What does the polling actually show? It is clear that most voters from both major parties want Trump to release his tax returns. Republican voters want Trump to release his tax returns.

    […] Sixty-two Percent Of Republicans, 74 Percent Of All Voters Want Trump’s Tax Returns. […] the latest national Quinnipiac University survey found that “among all likely voters surveyed, 74 percent said the businessman should release his tax returns” and that “more than six in 10 Republican voters, 62 percent to 31 percent, said they would like to see their party’s nominee do so.” [Politico, 8/25/16]

    Acting as Clinton’s surrogate today, President Obama gave a speech in Philly. He reiterated that Trump should release his tax returns, and he said that failure to do so shows that Trump and his campaign do not know what “transparency” means, nor do they know what is the right thing to do. NBC New link.

  3. says

    Another former Bush Administration big wig has come out against Donald Trump.

    [Robert] Zoellick, who served as deputy secretary of state in George W. Bush’s administration and deputy chief of staff to George H.W. Bush, told Murphy, [Republican strategist Mike Murphy] “I’ve seen the presidency up close. Trump is a dangerous man. I would not want that man with his finger on the triggers.” […]

    “I don’t have a sense that he listens,” Zoellick told Murphy. “Any president needs help. They need to study, they to learn things, and that doesn’t seem to be his style. He just tries to react with what he sees in the news, and it’s all related to his image of how you do real estate negotiations as a bargain and his sense of his own personal brand. And then how he treats aspects of the Constitution, how he treats other people. I would not be comfortable with him serving in that role.” […]

    BuzzFeed link

    Zoellick was president of the World Bank from 2007 to 2012.

  4. says

    Today, President Obama embraced the “Thanks, Obama” rightwing meme, and he turned that meme around 180 degrees:

    I’ve seen in America that for all the challenges, for all the noise of the politics, still has the capacity to come together and do great things,” he said. “We fought our way back from the worst recession in 80 years. We turned around a declining economy. We helped our auto industry set new records. Our businesses created 15 million new jobs. Slashed our dependence on foreign oil. Doubled our production of clean energy. Made marriage equality a reality in all 50 states.

    [snipped other accomplishments, including bringing Bin Laden to justice, establishing diplomatic relations with Cuba, and the still-working-well nuclear deal with Iran]

    By so many measures, America’s stronger and more prosperous than when we started out on this journey together. Republicans don’t like to hear good news right now. But it’s important just to understand this is a big deal. More Americans are working. More have health insurance. Incomes are rising. Poverty is falling.

    Thanks, Obama.

    Details regarding good news re poverty rates, etc. from comment 496 in the previous chapter of this thread.

  5. says

    Oh, no. This is bad, bad, bad.

    The Supreme Court rejected a petition from Ohio Democrats Tuesday morning to restore a crucial week of early voting known as “Golden Week,” the only time voters can register to vote and cast a ballot in a single visit.

    About 60,000 Ohioans voted during Golden Week in 2008 and 80,000 did so in 2012. In 2008, black voters were 3.5 times more likely to use Golden Week as white voters. In 2012, they were more than five times as likely. […]

    Though a federal district court ruled in May that the cuts were “unconstitutional” and ordered the state to restore Golden Week, a federal appeals court overturned that decision in August, siding with Ohio Republicans who sought to cut this opportunity. A dissenting judge on that court criticized the ruling and argued that the early voting cut “imposes a disproportionate burden on African Americans” who disproportionately depend on that week to vote. […]

    Because Ohio does not offer same-day voter registration on Election Day, and because the Governor is refusing to implement online voter registration until after the election, the Supreme Court’s ruling effectively eliminates the possibility for one-stop voting this November.

    Think Progress link

  6. says

    Yes, white nationalists are still Trump followers despite his disavowal of David Duke.

    In an interview with Wolf Blitzer, Trump’s running mate, Mike Pence, refused to call David Duke “deplorable,” and the Alt-Right/White Nationalist movement loved it.

    For the record, Pence did repeat that the Trump campaign does not want David Duke’s support, but here’s how the Alt-Right sees it:

    White Nationalist Radio Host James Edwards: “Bravo!” James Edwards is the host of the “pro-white” radio program The Political Cesspool. Edwards is a David Duke acolyte and he “has probably done more than any of his contemporaries on the American radical right to publicly promote neo-Nazis, Holocaust deniers, raging anti-Semites and other extremists,” according to the Southern Poverty Law Center.

    Edwards has written: “For blacks in the Americas, slavery is the greatest thing that ever happened to them. Unfortunately, it’s the worst thing that ever happened to white Americans”; “MLK’s dream is our nightmare”; and “Interracial sex is white genocide.
    Neo-Nazi Website Infostormer:

    These Jews are not very smart individuals. The evil Jew Wolf Blitzer who spreads lies and bull shit on the kike run network of CNN, attempted to get Donald Trump’s VP running mate Mike Pence to call David Duke “deplorable.”

    After failing to get Pence to label Duke as “deplorable,” Duke’s name became a trending subject on Twitter lol.

    As of now, Duke is the #7 trending topic on the site.

    These Jews don’t seem to understand that linking Duke to Trump is a failing strategy. That’s OK though. I hope they keep doing it. It just means that Duke will be Louisiana’s next Senator and Trump will be President. [Infostormer, 9/12/16]


  7. says

    We have a linking problem related to this thread. If you click on recent comments posted here from the left-hand navigation column on the home page of Pharyngula, the link takes you to the previous chapter, and not to this new chapter.

    Also, once you post a comment in this new chapter, the page refreshes and returns you to the old chapter. I notified PZ that there was a problem. Anyone else seeing this problem?

  8. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Re#7, yes, happens every time.
    A little disconcerting when I did the first post on this chapter.

  9. says

    “Trump’s appeal to female voters doesn’t add up: Not only do the GOP nominee’s new proposals run counter to his past statements, his plan to pay for them strains credulity”:

    Trump is suggesting the federal government guarantee six weeks of paid maternity leave for new mothers and is flushing out the childcare tax cut plan he put forth last month. A campaign adviser said the new leave benefit would be funded by “eliminating fraud” in unemployment insurance, which one 2013 Federal Reserve study estimated to be $3.3 billion a year ― but even the most bare-bones family leave program would likely cost three times that amount, according to independent budget analysts.

    It’s the latest in a string of Trump’s high-cost promises to voters that have been vague, or misleading, on how he plans to fund them….

    By comparison, Hillary Clinton’s proposal to have the federal government cover 12 weeks of paid leave, with workers earning two-thirds of their salary while away, carries a price tag of $300 billion over 10 years — but she’s proposed a specific means of absorbing that cost: raising taxes on the rich.

    Beyond the budget hole, Trump’s outreach to women is plagued by a history — both during his campaign and long before — of derogatory statements about women….

    Trump’s outreach to women, and particularly his use of paid leave to do it, is complicated by reports that he has in fact failed — despite his own statements to the contrary — to provide paid maternity leave or childcare for his own employees….

  10. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Ooh, this is a typical Trump brain fart: Trump says Clinton lacks policies. Seriously? AP Fact Check.

    Republican Donald Trump has rolled out a new attack line against Hillary Clinton as they enter the final stretch of the presidential race, and it’s a head-turner. His claim: that his Democratic rival has been running a policy-free campaign, lacking specific proposals.
    It’s actually Trump who’s the newcomer to policy specifics. While some of Clinton’s positions have been criticized for vagueness, her campaign has produced so many pages of policy that they’ve been turned into a book.

    TRUMP, at a rally Tuesday in Clive, Iowa: “In recent days, we’ve rolled out one new policy idea after another … By contrast, Hillary Clinton is running a policy-free campaign. She offers no ideas, no solutions.”

    THE FACTS: By any measure, Clinton has released far more specific plans on far more topics than her GOP rival. Trump’s website currently lays out seven policy positions, spelling out his “economic vision,” his plan for “immigration reform” and his plan to “pay for the wall.” Clinton’s offers position on 38 issues for potential voters to read.
    They cover, for example, efforts to cure Alzheimer’s disease and autism, a prescription for reining in Wall Street, a plan for tuition-free in-state college, and a menu of initiatives to combat climate change.
    She even outlines an initiative to protect zoo animals in the event of a disaster.

    While Trump’s proposals have grown more detailed in recent weeks, throughout most of his campaign he mocked Clinton for putting out so many proposals — while his aides derided reporters for pressing for specifics, insisting that voters didn’t care.
    “She’s got people that sit in cubicles writing policy all day,” Trump told Time magazine in June. “Nothing’s ever going to happen. It’s just a waste of paper.”
    As for specifics, “My voters don’t care and the public doesn’t care,” he said. “They know you’re going to do a good job once you’re there.”
    Meanwhile Clinton’s campaign has pointed to the pages it has produced as a source of pride. Earlier this month, she and her running mate Tim Kaine released a 256-page book detailing their policy proposals, including ideas for economic growth, national unity and foreign policy.

    Trump doesn’t know that a policy decision is more than just “trust me”. And I don’t trust him.

  11. says

    Non-U.S. leaders are scrambling to address some issues now, before the horrible specter of a Donald Trump presidency may come true:

    As the United Nations General Assembly converges in New York on Tuesday, Secretary General Ban Ki-moon is using the gathering of world leaders to rush the 2015 Paris climate change accord into legal force this year, hoping to bind all countries to its strictures for at least the next four years — regardless of the outcome of the presidential election in the United States. […]

    NY Times link.

  12. says

    Here is some good news related to fighting ISIS:

    The flow of foreign fighters to the ranks of the Islamic State — once a mighty current of thousands of radicalized men and women converging on Syrian and Iraqi battlefields from nations across the globe — has been cut to a trickle this year as the group’s territory has shrunk and its ambitions have withered.

    The decline, officials and experts say, has been dramatic, prolonged and geographically widespread, with the number of Europeans, Americans, North Africans and others joining up to fight and die for the idea of a revived Islamic caliphate falling as precipitously as the terrorist group’s fortunes.

    From a peak of 2,000 foreign recruits crossing the Turkey-Syria border each month, the Islamic State and other extremist groups operating in Syria are down to as few as 50, according to U.S. intelligence assessments. […]

    Washington Post link

  13. says

    SC @10, I noticed that Trump’s plan does not include all parents. It does not include fathers, nor adoptive parents, and so forth. Hillary Clinton’s plan does.

    In other news, Clinton’s comments about some of Trump’s followers resulted in a 50,000% increase in searches for definitions of “deplorable.” Increasing the vocabulary of our citizens.

  14. says

    SC @15, apparently, the story coming out in Newsweek tomorrow takes a look at the Trump Organizations close connections to international financiers, criminals, etc. … and it comes to the conclusion that these close connections will pose massive conflict of interest problems if Trump is elected president.

  15. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    NY State Attorney General looking at the Trump Foundation.

    8:22 p.m.
    New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman says his office has been investigating Donald Trump’s charity to determine whether the foundation has abided by state laws governing nonprofits.
    Schneiderman disclosed the investigation in an interview with CNN on Tuesday. Schneiderman said his office has been investigating The Donald J. Trump Foundation over concerns the foundation “may have engaged in some impropriety.”
    Schneiderman’s comments came hours after House Democrats called for a federal criminal investigation of an improper $25,000 donation Trump’s charity made in 2013 to a political group supporting Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi after Bondi’s office said it was weighing legal action against Trump University.
    Schneiderman is a Democrat and has endorsed Hillary Clinton for president.
    A Trump campaign spokesman said in a statement that Schneiderman is a “partisan hack” and the investigation is “another left-wing hit job.”

    Anything like the right wing hack jobs about Clinton’s e-mails, etc.? Except there is a smoking gun in the Trump Foundation case.

  16. tomh says

    @ #16
    There have been rich presidents and candidates, but rarely, if ever, one that was a hands-on manager of a global empire, comprising over 500 businesses of every description. It’s impossible that there won’t be conflicts of interest. Since presidents are exempt from conflict-of-interest laws, and things like a blind trust, or moving money into more benign assets like Treasury bills, (as Obama did), are strictly voluntary, you can bet that Trump will remain heavily involved in his business interests. No one will be able to track all the conflicts.

  17. says

    Here‘s the Kurt Eichenwald Newsweek article.

    Eichenwald on Twitter last night: “The basket of deplorables emailing me. Ive been called [redacted], jew boy, etc. Not that it matters, you Trump anti-semites, but I’m episcopal.”

  18. Brother Ogvorbis, Fully Defenestrated Emperor of Steam, Fire and Absurdity says


    Did a quick read of that article. Wholly Shite! It seams that Trump & Co. have huge financial dealings with just about every real, potential, or created-for-domestic-consumption economic and strategic rival out there. How the GOPers can hold this piece of dreck up as an icon of honesty and transparency floors me.

  19. says

    From the Newsweek article to which SC linked in comment 19:

    […] The idea of selling the Trump brand name to overseas developers emerged as a small piece of the company’s business in the late 1990s. At that time, two executives from Daewoo Engineering and Construction met with Trump at his Manhattan offices to propose paying him for the right to use his name on a new complex under development, according to former executives from the South Korean company.

    Daewoo had already worked with the Trump Organization to build the Trump World Tower, […] in 1999 construction began on the South Korean version of Trump World, six condominium properties in Seoul and two neighboring cities. According to the two former executives, the Trump Organization received an annual fee of approximately $8 million a year.

    Shortly after the deal was signed, the parent company of Daewoo Engineering and Construction, the Daewoo Group, collapsed into bankruptcy amid allegations of what proved to be a $43 billion accounting fraud. The chairman of the Daewoo Group, Kim Woo Choong, fled to North Korea; he returned in 2005, was arrested and convicted of embezzlement and sentenced to 10 years in prison.

    According to the two former Daewoo executives, a reorganization of Daewoo after its bankruptcy required revisions in the Trump contract, but the Trump Organization still remains allied with Daewoo Engineering and Construction.

    This relationship puts Trump’s foreign policies in conflict with his financial interests. Earlier this year, he said South Korea should plan to shoulder its own military defense rather than relying on the United States, including the development of nuclear weapons. (He later denied making that statement, which was video-recorded.)

    One of the primary South Korean companies involved in nuclear energy, a key component in weapons development, is Trump’s partner—Daewoo Engineering and Construction. It would potentially get an economic windfall if the United States adopted policies advocated by Trump. […]

    Newsweek link

    That excerpt provides details of just one example of how a Trump presidency would be rife with conflicts of interest. The article provides many more.

    Also, I couldn’t help but notice that, once again, Trump hangs out with unethical, lying, cheating doofuses ($43 billion accounting fraud). Apparently, he does that on a worldwide basis.

  20. says

    Now, they’re saying Trump handed Oz some document related to his physical during the taping. Possibly they realized that no one had any interest in Trump’s ignorant musings about health in general and so had to put a tease out there. I can’t imagine why anyone would watch this ludicrous spectacle. If there’s anything of interest, the media will show clips later. Another tiresome promotional stunt that further cheapens the process, a desperate effort to deflect from damaging health information, or both.

  21. says

    SC @23, Trump is putting out teasers and is promoting news about his health on a reality TV show. It is just ludicrous.

    And in addition to the ridiculous aspects, we are not likely to get any reliable information about his health. We will find out that he weighs more than 260 pounds, and that’s about it.

    From Steve Benen:

    […] The original plan, according to the Republican candidate himself, was to release “very detailed” information about his health “this week,” following a physical exam Trump underwent last week. The vow was itself something of a reversal: the only information Americans have seen about Trump’s health to date was a laughable letter from the candidate’s gastroenterologist, Dr. Harold Bornstein, which the physician concedes was thrown together in five minutes without careful consideration, and which included language the doctor himself did not take seriously.

    Yesterday, however, we were told Trump would discuss the results of last week’s physical on Dr. Oz’s television show — a curious choice given Oz’s controversial background and a reversal from the campaign’s previous position — as part of what the host described yesterday as a “no-holds-barred conversation.” Oz added, however, that Trump would control the release of the information and the host wouldn’t ask any questions that the candidate “doesn’t want to have answered.”

    On a related note, Oz conceded he would do this interview despite having no direct communications with the doctor who actually did the physical exam.

    This morning, the Trump campaign said the entire plan had been changed and the candidate wouldn’t release any medical records through Dr. Oz’s show. The GOP candidate would have a conversation about general well-being, but Americans would have to wait for specific information related to Trump.

    A couple of hours later, the plan changed again.

    After a whiplash-inducing morning of mixed messages, Donald J. Trump on Wednesday gave a small window into some of the results from his most recent physical examination in a taped appearance with the television celebrity Dr. Mehmet Oz.

    The quick run-through of results, which Mr. Trump is said to have given to the doctor to read from a piece of paper, came after the Republican presidential nominee’s aides had said he would, and then that he wouldn’t, broach the topic with the celebrity doctor on the “Dr. Oz Show.”

    According to CNN’s report, Trump’s “surprise” disclosure was “a one-page summary of the physical exam he underwent last week.” The physical, the CNN piece added, was conducted by — wait for it — Dr. Harold Bernstein. […]

    Oh, for fuck’s sake.

  22. says

    Paul Ryan is still trying to push his “Better Way” agenda. That agenda is not Trump’s economic plan, and it is not Hillary Clinton’s plan. Furthermore, it is not really a good rebuttal of either Trump’s or Clinton’s plans. It is, instead, Ryan’s dream of glory. And it is based on misleading or outright false concepts.

    To those difficulties, we can add that Ryan has very poor timing. He released his fantasy plan around the same time that the Obama Administration released records showing that:

    […] income growth last year was the fastest on record; poverty rates saw their largest one-year drop since 1968; and the number of Americans without health insurance dropped to the lowest point ever recorded in the United States. […]
    If you are thinking that this is not a good time for Ryan to push yet again his plan to cut taxes for rich people, cut spending for poor people and deregulate big business, you would be right.

    To his economic fairy dust, Ryan added negative comments about the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau: “The CFPB supposedly exists to protect you, but instead it tries to micromanage your everyday life. That’s NOT a #BetterWay.”

    Bullshit. As Steve Benen wrote:

    […] the idea that the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is trying to “micromanage your everyday life” is plainly silly. The agency has been around five years. Can you think of a single instance in which the CFPB has tried to micromanage any part of your everyday life? […]

    But more to the point, Ryan’s complaints about the agency come directly on the heels of one of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s greatest success stories. Late last week, the CFPB reached a record settlement with Wells Fargo after the banking giant was caught allegedly bilking consumers, enrolling Wells Fargo customers in banking services without their permission, then charging them fees for accounts and services they neither sought nor authorized.

    The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau did its job, looked out for the public, and scored its biggest victory to date. In response, Paul Ryan condemned the agency and questioned its very existence. […]

  23. says

    Colin Powell’s hacked and leaked emails are interesting. Here are some highlights:

    [Benghazi investigations are] a stupid witch hunt.
    [There is] a dark vein of intolerance sin some parts of the [Republican] party.
    [Donald Trump is] a national disgrace [and] international pariah.

    NBC News link

  24. says

    This is, sort of, a followup to Nerd’s comment 11.

    Ivanka Trump lied on national TV:

    There’s no policy on Hillary Clinton’s website pertaining to any of these issues, childcare, eldercare, or maternity leave or paternity leave for that matter. There’s no policy that’s been articulated on how to solve the problem.

    Not true, Ivanka. Not true at all. Not even partially true. All lies.

    Clinton gave a speech in January about paid family leave. She also posted the plan on her website. Months ago, Clinton posted three different website pages that provide detailed plans about paid family leave and childcare.

    Clinton spoke about the cost, quality, and availability of childcare in May. That information was delivered in a speech and simultaneously posted online.

    During his most recent speech, Donald Trump echoed his daughter by saying that Hillary Clinton “has no childcare plan.” Bullshit.

    Here are some of Hillary’s accomplishments, or near accomplishments, in this area (as opposed to plans to accomplish something):

    […] She supported her husband’s signing of the Family and Medical Leave Act into law in 1993, the first law to create any access to time off, even if it was unpaid. Getting that modicum of coverage took a huge effort and an enormous coalition to overcome staunch Republican opposition, including two vetoes from President George H.W. Bush. John Boehner (R-OH), a future Speaker of the House, called the FMLA “another example of yuppie empowerment.”

    As a U.S. Senator, Clinton also pushed forward on the issue, introducing a bill that would have allocated funding to pilot programs allowing low-income mothers to care for their newborns at home.

    But it is Republican opposition that has stood in the way of family leave, paid or unpaid. Democrats have twice introduced a bill that would create a national paid program, to no avail. […]


  25. says

    Here’s an update on Hillary Clinton’s health:

    […] According to Clinton’s physician, Dr. Lisa Bardack, aside from Clinton’s pneumonia diagnosis, her physical exam was “normal” and she is in “excellent mental condition.”

    The pneumonia diagnosis is described as mild and non-contagious bacterial pneumonia, which Clinton is treating with the a 10 day regimen of the medication Levaquin. “She is recovering well with antibiotics and rest. She continues to remain healthy and fit to serve as president of the United States,” Bardack added.

    In her most recent physical exam, Clinton had a blood pressure of 100/70, heart rate of 70, and a cholesterol of 189 (LDL of 103, HDL of 56). [….]

    More details are available in BuzzFeed’s coverage.

  26. says

    This is followup to comments 19 and 22.

    Hillary Clinton responded to the newsweek article about Trump Organization:

    Today’s must-read: “Almost every foreign policy decision [Trump] makes will raise serious conflicts of interest.”
    In light of @kurteichenwald’s report on the Trump Organization’s dangerous ties, here are 20 questions that Trump needs to answer—now.

    1. Will you sever ties with your company linked to foreign leaders, questionable organizations, and criminals if you become president?

    2. How will you handle non-cancelable contractual obligations with parties whose interests conflict with those of the United States?

    3. While refusing to release your tax returns, how will you confirm that you do not have dangerous financial ties to bad actors abroad?

    4. If you were willing to work with Qaddafi—a known terrorist and dictator—is there anyone you aren’t willing to make a deal with? Who?

    5. How can you be tough on Iran, given your business partnership with someone connected to Iranian money laundering?

    6. Given that you’ve already questioned our commitments to NATO allies, what is your answer to this?

    When faced with the prospect of losing the millions of dollars that flow into the Trump Organization each year from that Istanbul property, what position would President Trump take on the important issues involving Turkish-American relations, eluding that country’s role in the fight against ISIS?

    7. To what extent would your foreign policy be dictated by potential financial benefits for your business partners?

    8. Will you disclose the nature of your personal and business relationships with all of the Russian oligarchs you are “close” to?

    9. Have you or your campaign discussed U.S.-Russian relations with the Russian billionaires with whom you’ve done business?

    10. How did the Russian mob boss who ran a criminal organization out of Trump Tower get a VIP pass to your Miss Universe pageant in Moscow?

    11. With business ties to politically-connected Indian developers, how can you conduct foreign policy that puts the U.S. above your profits?

    12. How can we be sure you’d be willing to be tough on any nation if necessary, if it would put your interests and profits at risk?

    13. How can we know you won’t (again) impulsively damage relationships with crucial allies to preserve your own ego?

    14. We know you engaged extensively in pay-to-play here at home. Have you bribed foreign officials or other parties abroad?

    15. To what extent are you and your family currently contractually tied to payments from foreign business partners, or governments?

    16. You’ve mentioned ~120 foreign deals, including in countries with national security implications. Where and with whom are you working?

    17. Will your children disclose all of the foreign trips and business deals they’ve undertaken during the campaign, and with whom they met?


    19. In sum, how will Trump guarantee that if forced to choose between America’s security and his own bank account, he won’t pick the latter?

    20. It’s pretty clear: Trump’s spent his life unscrupulously looking out for his own wallet above all. Why would that change as president?

  27. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Hmm…the only thing I see with Lynna’s #28 that would concern me is Hillary Clinton’s cholesterol. She probably needs a mild statin, as she is borderline. That is no big deal, and is common problem.

  28. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Trump, the ignorant policy bereft bigot is trying to make Hillary Clinton seem that way.

    Racist. Divisive. Lacks policy details.
    Those are the jibes Donald Trump has recently unleashed on Hillary Clinton. If they sound familiar, it could be because she’s lodged those very attacks on him throughout the campaign.
    As he works to gain ground against Clinton in the final stretch of the presidential race, Trump is increasingly repurposing Clinton’s attacks against her. It’s a popular schoolyard tactic for the GOP nominee, a political game of “I know you are, but what am I?”
    In the last few days, Trump and his campaign have repeatedly criticized Clinton for failing to provide specific policy proposals. That’s despite the fact that, by any measure, Trump has offered less detail on far fewer issues over the course of his campaign than Clinton, who has released so many policy proposals, her campaign published a book of them.
    “Clinton is running a policy-free campaign. She offers no ideas, no solutions. And only hatred and derision,” he said at a rally Tuesday in Clive, Iowa.
    It’s ironic coming from a candidate defined by divisive statements, who once mocked Clinton’s large policy shop, deriding her proposals as “a waste of paper” and insisting the public didn’t care about the sort of specifics she offered.
    But it illustrates the way that the newly redesigned Trump campaign has embraced the technique of projection, slapping attacks back on his opponent, whether they fit or not.
    It’s a tactic aimed at neutralizing attacks, said Tucker Martin, a longtime Republican operative.
    “Essentially you’re delegitimizing their attack by simply muddying the water, and saying, ‘We’re all guilty, now what?'” said Martin. He said the tactic is especially effective in a fast-moving race, where few people step back to analyze the legitimacy of the charges.

    I see using taped words by Donald against him. Easy to do, and then show Hillary saying the opposite, or point to her web site and pages of policies.

  29. tomh says

    NYT columnist Maureen Dowd continues her vendetta against Hillary Clinton while promoting her new book about the election, (even though it hasn’t happened yet.) That is, if you can call a collection of old newspaper columns a “new” book.

    “She apologizes, but you get the idea she’s only sorry it became a fuss. She’s only sorry she has to say she’s sorry,” is typical. For 20 years she’s had it in for both Clintons.

  30. says

    Why is Trump not releasing his tax returns?

    Trump and his campaign have stuck to the lie that he doesn’t want to release his returns until the IRS audit is complete. There is no proof an audit is being done. (A letter from the IRS, stipulating the audit, would suffice.) He could also release his returns even if they are being audited. He can release returns from previous years. Hillary Clinton now has 40 years of tax returns available for public perusal.

    Occasionally, Trump has conceded that he could release his tax returns “immediately” but that he doesn’t want to.

    Now we get to add this excuse from his son, Donald Trump Jr.:

    When asked why his father has not released his tax returns as presidential candidates have traditionally done, Trump Jr. said, “Because he’s got a 12,000-page tax return that would create … financial auditors out of every person in the country asking questions that would detract from (his father’s) main message.”

    Pittsburgh Tribune-Review link

    Well, at least that sounds like a truthful excuse, but not a good excuse. That is not a good excuse for keeping Trump’s taxes secret. Yes, a lot of questions would be asked. That’s the point.

    Steve Benen added:

    Reid Hoffman, the billionaire co-founder of LinkedIn, this week pledged “to give up to $5 million to veterans groups if Donald J. Trump agrees to release his tax returns before the Oct. 19 presidential debate.”

  31. says

    This is a followup to comment 31.

    Trump really has no clue. He decided to publicly criticize the black, female pastor, Rev. Faith Green Timmons, who interrupted his speech in Flint, Michigan.

    When she got up to introduce me, she was so nervous she was shaking and I said, “Wow this is sort of strange.” And then she came up. So she had that in mind, there’s no question about it…. Everyone plays their games.

    I just have to laugh. It is such a good idea for Trump to insult an African American woman, especially one who had invited him to speak to her congregation. /sarcasm

    Trump also lied about the audience’s reaction:

    “The audience was saying, ‘Let him speak, let him speak,’” Trump told Fox and Friends.

    That isn’t true – in fact, several audience members began to heckle Trump, asking pointed questions about whether he racially discriminated against black tenants as a landlord.

    And that’s when Timmons – who Trump said Thursday had planned to ambush him – stepped in to defend Trump, saying the Republican nominee was “a guest of my church, and you will respect him.”

    “Thank you. Thank you, pastor,” Trump responded.

    NPR link

  32. says

    This is a followup (sort of) to comment 35.

    Donald Trump Jr. said some more stupid stuff:

    Donald Trump Jr. on Wednesday suggested the media has helped Hillary Clinton by letting her “slide” on “every lie” and said that if Republicans did the same, the media would be “warming up the gas chamber” for them.

    CBS News link

    Trump Junior later told NBC correspondent Katy Tur that the “gas chamber” comment was a reference to corporal punishment, and that it was not in any way anti-Semitic. Yeah, right. Sheesh.

  33. What a Maroon, living up to the 'nym says

    Trump Junior later told NBC correspondent Katy Tur that the “gas chamber” comment was a reference to corporal punishment, and that it was not in any way anti-Semitic.

    I assume you (or he) means capital punishment?

  34. says

    This is a followup to comments 6 and 14.

    Hillary Clinton is sort of amending, and sort of defending her “deplorables” comment:

    “I do really believe we are stronger together. But I also accept the responsibility, making sure that we do everything we can to try to heal these divides to bring people together,” the Democratic presidential nominee told the “Tom Joyner Morning Show” in an interview airing Thursday.

    “But it starts by standing up and calling out the bigotry and the hatred that we see coming from Trump. He has incited violence and he has been more than willing to align himself with the so-called alt-right and every deplorable thing they represent.”

    The Hill link

  35. says

    Here is Katherine Krueger’s take on Trump’s word-salad economic plan that he spoke about today:

    Speaking at a Thursday meeting of the Economic Club of New York, Donald Trump made some ambitious promises, vowing to grow the economy by at least 3.5 percent per year, create a staggering 25 million jobs, cut taxes, and slash regulations while preserving entitlement programs. […]

    A policy dubbed Trump’s “Penny Plan,” as detailed in a statement posted online after the speech, includes a directive that there would be “no reductions to defense spending” and “Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid would be exempted” from annual spending cuts.

    Trump also described the optimistic target of creating 25 million jobs. As Bloomberg points out, the country has added 7.7 million jobs over the past decade, which puts Trump’s goal at more than three times as many jobs as were created since 2006.

    The nominee also promised that the economy would grow 3.5 percent during each year of a Trump administration. But since the last recession ended in 2009, economic growth has remained stable at around 2 percent, according to Bloomberg.

    Both individuals and businesses could look forward to tax cuts under Trump’s plan, as he said he would slash business income tax rates to a flat 15 percent. When asked how he settled on that rate, Trump offered up a boilerplate variation of his campaign mantra of making American great again.

    Trump didn’t offer up a projected cost for such a tax plan.

  36. says

    Wonkette covered the Newsweek article that exposed Trump’s foreign entanglements. Rebecca Schoenkopf highlighted this section:

    The Trump Organization is not like the Bill, Hillary & Chelsea Clinton Foundation, the charitable enterprise that has been the subject of intense scrutiny about possible conflicts for the Democratic presidential nominee. There are allegations that Hillary Clinton bestowed benefits on contributors to the foundation in some sort of “pay to play” scandal when she was secretary of state, but that makes no sense because there was no “pay.”

    Money contributed to the foundation was publicly disclosed and went to charitable efforts, such as fighting neglected tropical diseases that infect as many as a billion people.

    The financials audited by PricewaterhouseCoopers, the global independent accounting company, and the foundation’s tax filings show that about 90 percent of the money it raised went to its charitable programs. (Trump surrogates have falsely claimed that it was only 10 percent and that the rest was used as a Clinton “slush fund.”) No member of the Clinton family received any cash from the foundation, nor did it finance any political campaigns. In fact, like the Clintons, almost the entire board of directors works for free.

    From Wonkette:

    When’s the last time you saw a major media property just flat knock down baseless assertions about the Clinton Foundation as just that — baseless?

  37. says

    This is a followup to comments 31 and 36.

    Wonkette covered Trump’s comments about the pastor in Flint, Michigan.

    Donald Trump took his wisdom to Flint, Michigan, Wednesday, so he could make everything better by touring the city’s now-dormant water treatment plant — where he praised “the really good executives,” yes he did! Trump then went on to give a short speech at Bethel United Methodist Church, where about 70 people gave him a tepid reception. “Tepid” may suggest more enthusiasm than there really was. Trump launched into a low-energy version of his stump speech, and even made a Very Funny Joke:

    It used to be, cars were made in Flint and you couldn’t drink the water in Mexico. Now the cars are made in Mexico and you can’t drink the water in Flint.

    When the line was met with one person giggling instead of thunderous laughter, Trump went right along: “That’s not good! That’s not good! It’s terrible!

    He didn’t get much farther into his standard litany of how Democrats and especially Hillary Clinton ruined Flint, because at about the 4-minute mark […] a beautiful thing happened. Trump was in the middle of explaining how NAFTA had taken all the jobs away, and it was all Clinton’s fault:

    “Hillary failed with the economy just like she has failed on foreign policy — everything she touched didn’t work out. Nothing,” Trump said.

    The Rev. Faith Green Timmons, pastor of the Bethel United Methodist Church, interrupted Trump while he was standing on a stage in the church’s fellowship hall.

    “Mr. Trump, I invited you here to thank us for what we’ve done in Flint, not to give a political speech,” Timmons said.

    “Oh, oh, oh, OK, that’s good,” Trump replied. “Then I’m going back on Flint.”

    Clearly rattled, Trump wrapped up in about 90 seconds, with a vague promise that when he’s president, he’ll fix Flint’s problems, through capitalist unicorn farts and red Make America Great Again hats.

    […] NAFTA went into effect in 1994, five years after the release of Michael Moore’s movie Roger and Me in 1989 […]. Damn that time-traveling Hillary Clinton and her 40 years of ruining American manufacturing. […]

    For what it’s worth, Trump never actually offered any actual solutions to the problem of Flint’s lead-poisoned water, except of course his usual explanation that it never would have happened in the first place if he’d been president.

    By Thursday morning, Trump had an explanation for what went wrong in Flint: That bitch pastor set him up! Trump claimed on Fox and Friends that Pastor Timmon had been conspiring to interrupt him ALL ALONG, and he knew this because she was nervous when introducing him, and also because she invited the media to see the speech […]

  38. says

    What a Maroon @38, according to the source, Trump Jr. said “corporal.” I did not check other sources to see if that was accurate.

    In other news, Hillary Clinton made good use of the few sick days she took off this week by pointing out that too many working people do not get paid sick leave. Speaking in Greensboro, North Carolina:

    Clinton said she was thankful that she was financially able to take time off from work, something she emphasized many voters don’t have the luxury of doing.

    “I want you to think with me for a minute about how I certainly feel lucky, when I’m under the weather, I can afford to take a few days off,” she said. “Millions of Americans can’t. They either go to work sick or they lose a paycheck, don’t they? Lots of Americans still don’t even have insurance, or they do, but it’s too expensive for them to actually use. So they toss back some Tylenol, they chug orange juice and hope that the cough or the virus goes away on its own.”

    “That’s why I got into this race. I am running for everyone working hard to support their families,” she added later. “Everyone who’s been knocked down but gets back up.”

    Talking Points Memo link

  39. says

    Hillary Clinton responded today to Donald Trump’s “half-baked” plan for paid maternity leave:

    We don’t need a president who apparently thinks only married people deserve paid leave and only mothers ever stay home with the kids.

    We don’t need someone who rushes out a half-baked plan just weeks before an election after decades of ignoring or putting down working moms.

  40. says

    This is good news for voting rights in Virgina:

    The Virginia Supreme Court rejected a petition from Republican leaders on Thursday that sought to hold Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D) in contempt for restoring the voting rights of tens of thousands of ex-offenders ahead of the 2016 election.

    […] Republican leaders sued, claiming the governor had overstepped his legal authority. A narrow majority on the Virginia Supreme Court agreed, and the registrations of thousands of ex-offenders who had been hoping to vote for the first time in decades were put in jeopardy.

    When McAuliffe attempted to get around the court order by signing each clemency petition individually, the Republican legislators sued him for contempt of court. Had the state Supreme Court accepted their arguments, thousands of ex-offenders in the state could have seen their voting rights re-appear and disappear twice in the span of just a few months. […]

    “No matter your crime, you should not be permanently disenfranchised for the rest of your life,” he [the governor] added. “Let’s welcome them back as productive members of Virginia.”

    A study earlier this year found that the vast majority of those who can now regain their rights — 80 percent — committed non-violent crimes. Most have been out of prison for more than a decade, and African Americans are disproportionately represented. Forty-six percent of the ex-offenders are black, though blacks make up less than 20 percent of the state’s population. […]

  41. says

    This is a followup to comments 37, 38 and 43.

    Here is a Trump campaign source that says Donald Trump Jr. was referring to “capital” punishment:

    Trump spokesman Jason Miller said the comments were wildly misconstrued.

    “The liberal dishonest media is so quick to attack one of the Trumps that they never let the truth get in the way of a good smear,” Miller said in a statement. “Don Jr. was clearly referring to capital punishment to make the case that the media continues to take words out of context in order to serve as the propaganda arm of the Hillary Clinton campaign – something that’s only gotten worse as Trump’s poll numbers have improved.”

  42. says

    Trump is making as big a deal as he can out of Hillary Clinton’s brief absence from the campaign trail. And he has help from rightwing radio hosts:

    “There are people out there who are wondering if Hillary Clinton is really going to have the stamina to go to the debate on the 26th and the debates that are coming up and to match you with the energy that you appear to have,” Talk 1300 AM radio host Fred Dicker commented to the Republican nominee toward the end of an interview, asking, “What’s your sense about whether or not she’s really going to be physically up to the task of going right up to Election Day?”

    Trump responded, “Well, I just don’t know, but I can say for this, you need tremendous stamina. I mean, tremendous. I mean, I’m in three different states oftentimes. I’ll make three or four speeches in front of massive crowds.”

    “You know, if I have a crowd of 5,000 people, it’s considered a very small crowd. I’ve had 41,000, I had 35,000. We have crowds that makes Bernie crowds—Bernie Sanders was second, in all fairness. But his crowds are a fraction of what we’re getting. […]”

  43. says

    During the Obama administration, in 2010, the FDA’s ability to inspect food, to recall tainted food, and to oversee food companies and farms was greatly expanded.

    Donald Trump wants to get rid of all that.

    In a fact sheet Thursday, the campaign highlighted a number of “specific regulations to be eliminated” under the GOP nominee’s economic plan, including what they called the “FDA Food Police.”

    Of particular interest, the Trump campaign complained about FDA rules on issues such as inspections of food facilities, the temperatures at which food is stored safely, and “farm and food production hygiene.”

    The announcement about cutting back food safety regulations has been removed from Trump’s website. Here’s a screen grab:

  44. says

    SC @49 is right about the despicable nature of Trump’s extended hotel ad disguised as a way to honor veterans and as a way to clear up the birther issue.

    I am now going to the brand new Trump International, Hotel D.C. for a major statement. [Trump tweeted]

    From the Daily Kos coverage:

    Apparently he’s going to reveal where President Obama was born. As one of the embedded reporters with the campaign says, “Why spend money on advertising your new hotel when you can get a bunch of reporters with cameras there for free?”

    Friday, Sep 16, 2016 · 8:57:13 AM MDT · Joan McCarter
    Yeah, so I guess he’s trying to keep that “suspense” going. He’s an hour late.

    Friday, Sep 16, 2016 · 9:00:50 AM MDT · Joan McCarter
    Ok, he’s finally being introduced by Gen. Michael Flynn. But the talking heads are talking over him so we don’t know what he’s saying. But a member of the audience helpfully lifts up her “Proud to be in the basket of deplorables” t-shirt in front of the camera. Nice.

    Friday, Sep 16, 2016 · 9:03:02 AM MDT · Joan McCarter
    From the Oval Office, in a photo spray before a meeting, President Obama weighs in: “I, John, have no reaction and I’m shocked that a question like that has come up at a time when we have so many other things to do. Well, I’m not that shocked actually. It’s fairly typical. We got other things to attend to. I was pretty confident about where I was born. I think most people were as well. My hope would be the presidential elect, election reflects more serious issues than that.”

    Friday, Sep 16, 2016 · 9:05:10 AM MDT · Joan McCarter
    “Nice hotel. Under budget and ahead of schedule.” He is doing a commercial for his hotel.

    Friday, Sep 16, 2016 · 9:05:51 AM MDT · Joan McCarter
    “This is our first event. Such an honor to have our first event for medal of honor winners.” This is ostensibly supposed to be honoring veterans. It’s an extended hotel ad.

    Friday, Sep 16, 2016 · 9:06:17 AM MDT · Joan McCarter
    “One of the great hotels anywhere in the world.”

    Friday, Sep 16, 2016 · 9:08:11 AM MDT · Joan McCarter
    “The room is stacked with generals…. I love leaders.” He’s speaking off of notes, not a teleprompter. Talking again about the crowd he has there in his “brand new ballroom.” We’ll see if he ever gets around to the controversy.

    Friday, Sep 16, 2016 · 9:10:45 AM MDT · Joan McCarter
    Still no birther talk.

    Friday, Sep 16, 2016 · 9:18:46 AM MDT · Joan McCarter
    Yeah, still no Trump talking about birtherism. This is looking more and more like a Trump ploy to get publicity on the cheap for his new hotel.

    I wonder how many of these veterans know about how he stiffed Friends of Veterans of the paltry $1,000 donation he had pledged. This is Trump. He got all the cameras there for a PR stunt for his hotel.

    Friday, Sep 16, 2016 · 9:32:16 AM MDT · Joan McCarter
    Trump finally takes the stage. Talks about the depleted military. Blah, blah, blah lies about “all-time lows.” The lies.

    Ok, here we go. “Hillary Clinton started in her campaign in 2008 the birther issue.” And says he ended it in 2011. Taking credit for Obama putting out his birth certificate. None of this is true, but you know that. However, he did say “President Obama was born in the US period. Now we want to get back to making America great.” No apology for his keeping this alive into this year! No apology for the racism. Just a big fat lie wrapped in a PR stunt.

    Politico and many other stories rated the claim that Clinton started the birther issue as “false.”

    Here’s part of the official announcement from the Trump campaign:

    In 2011, Mr. Trump was finally able to bring this ugly incident to its conclusion by successfully compelling President Obama to release his birth certificate. Mr. Trump did a great service to the President and the country by bringing closure to the issue that Hillary Clinton and her team first raised. Inarguably, Donald J. Trump is a closer. Having successfully obtained President Obama’s birth certificate when others could not, Mr. Trump believes that President Obama was born in the United States.

  45. says

    At the end of his hotel promotion/military endorsement event, Trump acknowledged that Obama was born in the US. After lying that Hillary Clinton and her campaign started birtherism and he ended it (continuing the lies in his campaign’s statement). His campaign had apparently led the press to believe this was to be a news conference. Trump answered no questions from the reporters who had to sit behind several rows of supporters, then took only cameras on a tour of the hotel.

  46. says

    I will also point out that Trump kept the birther issue alive well after the long-form birth certificate was posted all over the place. He tweeted about it constantly. He made a big deal out of one of the authenticators of the certificate dying in an accident, etc. He held onto his birtherism right up until today.

    This guy is such a sham, such a scam artist, such an unethical salesman.

    His pitch for his new hotel was all over every single major and minor news source this morning.

    President Obama brushed it off, “I was confident about where I was born.” Obama doesn’t need Trump to tell him anything.

  47. says

    An excerpt from Hillary Clinton’s take on the birther circus:

    As Maya Angelou once said, when someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time. And we know who Donald is. For five years, he has led the birther movement to delegitimize our first black President. His campaign was founded on this outrageous lie. There is no erasing it in history.

    [she warned of the dangers of having] a person in the Oval Office who traffics in conspiracy theories and refuses to let them go no matter what the facts are.

  48. says

    As Steve Benen pointed out:

    […] Look, this is absolutely bonkers, taking politics well past through-the-looking-glass territory. Trump saw the birth certificate in 2011, but proceeded to question Obama’s citizenship in 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2015. Now that he wants to be president, however, Trump expects Americans to believe he’s changed his mind?

    There’s no reason to believe the Republican’s apparent reversal should resolve the matter. Trump should explain why and when he reversed course; why last night’s statement is filled with such brazen dishonesty; why he’s now persuaded by a birth certificate he dismissed years after its release; why Trump hasn’t himself said out loud what his “communications advisor” put in a press release; and when he’ll apologize for his racist antics.


    Trump called the birth certificate a “fraud” for four years.

  49. says

    As if you need to see it again, here is a debunking of the “Hillary Clinton started the Obama birther movement” conspiracy theory:
    Politifact link

    […] There is no record that Clinton herself or anyone within her campaign ever advanced the charge that Obama was not born in the United States. A review by our fellow fact-checkers at reported that no journalist who investigated this ever found a connection to anyone in the Clinton organization.

    Clinton, herself, answered this very accusation after Trump’s tweet during an interview with CNN’s Don Lemon. Lemon asked Clinton if she started smear campaigns that Obama was born outside the United States.

    “That is – no. That is so ludicrous, Don. You know, honestly, I just believe that, first of all, it’s totally untrue, and secondly, you know, the president and I have never had any kind of confrontation like that,” Clinton said. “You know, I have been blamed for nearly everything, that was a new one to me.” […]

    The Washing Post also thoroughly debunked the rightwing meme Trump promoted today.

  50. says

    Some Trump tweets and interviews answers from well after the long form birth certificate was posted:

    [from August 2012] An ‘extremely credible source’ has called my office and told me that @BarackObama’s birth certificate is a fraud.
    [from August 2012] Why do the Republicans keep apologizing on the so called “birther” issue? No more apologies–take the offensive!
    [from September 2012] Wake Up America! See article: “Israeli Science: Obama Birth Certificate is a Fake”
    [from October 2012] O’REILLY: Where do you think he was born?
    TRUMP: I have no idea. I really have no idea. I really have no idea.
    [from August 2013] KARL: But you don’t still question he was born in the United States, do you?”
    TRUMP: I have no idea… Well, I don’t know, was there a birth certificate? You tell me. You know some people say that was not his birth certificate. I’m saying, I don’t know. Nobody does.
    [from December 2013] How amazing, the State Health Director who verified copies of Obama’s “birth certificate” died in plane crash today. All others lived
    [from May 2014] FITZPATRICK: He is a citizen. He produced that long form birth certificate…
    TRUMP: A lot of people don’t agree with you. A lot of people feel it wasn’t a proper certificate
    [from September 2014] Attention all hackers: You are hacking everything else so please hack Obama’s college records (destroyed?) and check “place of birth”
    [from January 2016] TRUMP: Who knows about Obama?
    BLITZER: His mother was a U.S. citizen-born in Kansas. Was he a natural-born citizen?
    TRUMP: Who knows? Who knows? Who cares right now? We’re talking about something else, OK. I mean, I have my own theory on Obama. Someday I’ll write a book. I’ll do another book, and it will do very successfully.

  51. What a Maroon, living up to the 'nym says


    What a Maroon @38, according to the source, Trump Jr. said “corporal.”

    Wow. I don’t know what to say, except that it brings to mind this song.

    I could be a corp’ral into corp’ral punishment
    Or the general manager of a large establishment…

  52. says

    More analysis of Trump’s bizarre and erratic behavior today (from Steve Benen):

    […] The first two relevant sentences in Trump’s remarks – (1) Clinton started the birther controversy and (2) he “finished it” – are both brazen lies. In reality, the Clinton campaign wasn’t responsible for launching this garbage, and Trump wasn’t responsible for resolving it.

    After years of questioning the president’s birthplace and the legitimacy of his birth certificate, Trump added, “President Barack Obama was born in the United States, period. Now we all want to get back to making America strong and great again.”

    The Republican nominee then ran away, answering no questions.

    Trump offered no explanation for why and how he reversed course on one of his signature issues; he expressed no regret for having peddled the racist conspiracy theory for so many years; and he provided no evidence to support his new Clinton-related falsehoods. Instead, Trump blamed someone else for the mess he helped make, briefly acknowledged a reality that was obvious to sensible people many years ago, and then fled the room.

    Why did Trump stick to the conspiracy theory as recently as January? He didn’t say. Why does Trump now accept a birth certificate he used to dismiss as a “fake”? He didn’t say. Why did Trump give a wink and a nod to his radical base this morning by having a birther introduce him at this morning’s event? He didn’t say. […]

    I don’t know which strategic genius on Team Trump thought this would be a smart tactical move, but as observers take stock of the ridiculous spectacle, it’s clear this was a bad idea.

  53. says

    Donald Trump seems to be either setting himself up to skip at least one of the presidential debates, or he wants to preemptively explain away his loser status in an upcoming debate:

    I don’t think Anderson Cooper should be a moderator, because Anderson Cooper works for CNN and over the last couple of days, I’ve seen how Anderson Cooper behaves. He’ll be very biased, very biased. I don’t think he should be a moderator.

    CNN is the Clinton News Network and Anderson Cooper, I don’t think he can be fair.

    The Hill link

  54. says

    Trump’s new hotel in DC, which, as SC noted up-thread, was the real reason for his non-press-conference and festival of lies this morning, is awash in goods from China.

    The bedding, Trump Hotel bathrobes, Trump-branded umbrellas, lamps, king-sized beds (with gold-crown headboards), etc. were all made in China.

    Made in the Philippines, the dresser; made in England, the ice buckets; made in Korea, the TVs.

    Trump: making China great again.

  55. says

    More excerpts from Hillary Clinton’s responses to Trump’s disgraceful performance this morning:

    Expressing zero regret for years of pushing a racist conspiracy theory, Trump again appointed himself judge & jury on @POTUS’s citizenship.

    Leading the birther movement is deplorable. Attempting to say it “did a great service” to the president who Trump attacked is asinine.

    When Trump tries to deflect blame for denying that @POTUS was born in America, he is lying.

    Again, Trump turns his faults on others. Psychologists call it “projecting.” Kids call it “I’m rubber, you’re glue.”

    This shouldn’t have to be said: You don’t just get to say someone else did the worst things you’ve done. It doesn’t work. No one buys it.

    The birther lie is what turned Trump from an ordinary reality TV star into a political figure. That origin story can’t be unwritten.

    Trump’s birtherism stems from the same innate beliefs that led to discriminating against black tenants early in his career. Can’t be undone.

    What Trump should do: for once in his life, own up to his mistakes. Apologize to the President, and to the American people.

    I’ve seen several of Trump’s surrogates being interviewed since the hotel fiasco: they all say that we have more important things to talk about. They seriously want Trump to get away with this.

  56. says

    In 2012, Trump promised to donate $5 million to charity in exchange for documents that proved to his “satisfaction” that Obama was not born abroad.

    Now that he is satisfied that the Hawaiian birth certificate is legitimate, we need the details, the where and the when of the $5 million donation.
    YouTube link

    Trump also wanted President Obama’s passport application, school records, etc.

  57. says

    Don’t trust the Trump Hotel in Washington DC to set up a stage for your event.

    Minutes after Donald Trump gave a thirty-second statement on Friday acknowledging that he believes that President Barack Obama was born in the United States, the stage at which he spoke fell apart on air.

    In a fitting ending to the event, which Trump’s team had billed as a press conference and instead used to promote his new Washington, D.C. hotel and accept endorsements from military generals, the backdrop collapsed as MSNBC’s Katy Tur highlighted the disparity between presidential candidates’ availability to the press.

    “The stage is falling apart behind us, if you can see this,” she said as the backdrop came down, taking a row of flags with it.

  58. says

    Michele Obama was on the campaign trail for Hillary Clinton today. The First Lady spoke at George Mason University in Virginia. She said a lot of good things about Clinton, and she also addressed the “low” tactics of Trump, though she never said his name.

    […] “Back then, people had all kinds of questions about what kind of President Barack would be. Things like, ‘Does he understand us?’ ‘Will he protect us?'” she said. “Then, of course, there were those who continued to question for the past eight years up through this very day whether my husband was even born in this country. Well, during his time in office, I think Barack has answered those questions with the example he set by going high when they go low and he answered those questions with progress we’ve achieved together.”

    Michelle Obama went on to say her husband’s achievements in office were the ultimate rebuttal to the birther movement’s conspiracy theories. […]

    “We need someone who is compassionate,” Obama said. “Someone who is unifying. Someone who will be a role model for our kids. Someone who is not just in this for themselves but for the good of this country. See, at the end of the day, as I’ve said before, the presidency doesn’t change who you are. It reveals who you are.”

    “So if a candidate is erratic and threatening, if a candidate traffics in prejudice, fears, and lies on the trail, if a candidate has no clear plans to implement their goals, if they disrespect their fellow citizens including folks who made extraordinary sacrifices for our country, let me tell you, that is who they are,” she added said to applause.

  59. says

    Here are few responses to Trump’s lies and bad behavior from members of the Congressional Black Caucus:

    [from Representative Gregory Meeks] To lie and say that the birther movement was started by Hillary Clinton and he was finishing it, and that he was born in America, and then walk off, has got to stop. He’s lied and he’s divided this country enough. He lied about Muslims. He’s lied about Mexicans. He’s lied about women.

    [from Representative Sheila Jackson Lee] He [Trump] has committed a crime against the United States and the American people.

    [from Representative Gwen Moore] This is a dog whistle to all other Americans who are not African-Americans to say, “See, you’re all right. Don’t worry about hiring that black woman or that black man because, after all, the most iconic African-American in history is, indeed, not worthy of the American dream.” Be clear, this is not just about degrading the reputation of Barack Obama. It’s about degrading the American dream for all African-Americans

    [from Representative Jim Clyburn] One of the things that we all are used to in this business is dog whistles, but the thing that we’re not used to, and I’m finding it very difficult to getting used to, are the howls of wolves. These are howls. These are not whistles. These are in your face kinds of efforts on the part of one man who is utilizing — I should say misusing the media — in order to heap indignities upon the President of these United States.

    [from Representative Bonnie Watson Coleman] [Trump held a fake press conference] because he needed people to come to the opening of his hotel, because for Trump it’s only about his business, it’s only about what is good for him. Trump doesn’t believe the things he’s forced to say now in order to curry favor with people who are never, never going to support him.


    BTW, did anyone else notice the “hostage reading text his abductors gave him” quality of Trump’s performance when he said that President Obama was born in the USA?

  60. says

    Here is a video supercut of Trump’s long campaign as a birther:
    YouTube link

    Media Matters for America put the video together. It covers five years in 3:18 minutes.

    It’s amazing to see all that crap at once. It is brutal.

  61. says

    I’ve seen virtually no coverage of the CBC PAC response.

    NBC commentary:

    Chris Hayes tweeted a little while ago: “What’s really galling is that today, once again, Donald Trump used a racist conspiracy theory to boost his political and personal fortunes.” (He said he would’ve written “attempted to use,” but it was too many characters.)

    Benjy Sarlin: “Analysis: Trump’s Lengthy History of Conspiracy Theories and Rumors”:

    …Whether Trump publicly renounces birtherism — and his trolling event on Friday was far from definitive — is largely beside the point. That’s because the broader issue isn’t just the question of how he feels about Obama’s birthplace, it’s the way inflammatory and false claims have defined his political career.

    Trump has changed his position on a lot of things over the years. But if there’s one consistent thread, it has been his seeming obsession with conspiracy theories that touch on race, religion, or ethnicity….

  62. says

    In addition to the promise Trump made to donate $5 million to charity if someone produced documents proving that President Obama was born in the USA, Trump also promised to release his tax returns. Let’s see those tax returns, Mr. Trump.

    In case you want to read more about the origin of the lie that Hillary Clinton started birtherism, Talking Points Memo put together a good article on the subject.

  63. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    There is irony in The Donald’s alleged economic policies.
    Trump’s Job Promise Requires a Wave of Immigrants. Some nice charts in the link.

    Donald Trump’s promise to grow the U.S. economy fast enough to create 25 million new jobs over the next decade is bound to win support among American workers.
    There’s only one problem with his pledge.
    Without a wave of new immigrants entering the American workforce, Trump will have a hard time finding enough workers to fill those jobs….
    But beyond globalization, a lot has changed closer to home since those post-war boom to slow the growth of the American economy. That includes a slowdown in the growth in of the workforce.
    “In the post World War II period, we had very strong labor force growth — especially with women entering the workforce in large numbers,” said Chad Stone, chief economist at The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. “Especially in the absence of immigration, those demographic trends are going to be impossible to replicate.”
    To be sure, millions of workers who gave up looking for a job after the Great Recession have been returning to the workforce, offsetting some of the demographic headwinds.
    But an ongoing wave of aging baby boomers is leaving the labor force for good, reducing the number of workers available to fill new jobs.
    In March, American Action Forum, a center-right policy institute led by former CBO director Douglas Holtz-Eakin, estimated it would take between $100 billion and $300 billion to arrest and remove “all undocumented immigrants residing in the country, a process that we estimate would take 20 years,” the group said.
    AAF estimated the removal of that many people would shrink the pool of U.S. workers by 6.4 percent, which means that 20 years from now the U.S. economy would be nearly 6 percent cent smaller. That works out to a loss of $1.6 trillion in lost wages, spending and other economic activity.
    To put that in perspective, the gross domestic product for Texas last year was about $1.5 trillion, second behind California.
    While this impact would be felt across the country and throughout the economy, sectors such as agriculture, construction, retail and hospitality would be hardest hit, the AAF reported.
    In fact, employers are already having a hard time filling some new positions, based on the latest government data, which is one reason wages have begun rising again after nearly a decade of stagnation.

    Sorry The Donald, I am now retired and out of the workforce. Before I retired it was costing me money to work, due to the need to hire CNA help for the Redhead. I doubt if I could find a higher paying job at my age, due to ageism, and you and your rethug pals refuse to consider public funding for that.

  64. says

    Here’s Trump in peak birther form in 2011: Link

    “I reinvigorated that issue, and I’m very proud to have done it.”

    “For people who are giving no credence to the fact that he was possibly born outside of this country, they’re foolish.”

  65. says

    Elizabeth Warren’s reaction to Trump’s statement rescinding his birtherism:

    Let’s be clear: @realDonaldTrump just admitted that he peddled fake conspiracy theories to attack the integrity of @POTUS.

    If @realDonaldTrump will lie about the President of the United States, how can anyone believe a word that comes out of his big mouth?

  66. Lofty says

    Nerd’s link

    Donald Trump’s promise to grow the U.S. economy fast enough to create 25 million new jobs over the next decade is bound to win support among American workers.

    Easy peasy, just give every unemployed American six or more part time jobs about 20 miles apart and you’ve solved a yuuuge problem!11!!

  67. says

    ABC compiled 67 Trump birther tweets. Read together, they’re even creepier. Obviously the one about the plane crash is particularly awful. And then there’s the series directed at Mitt Romney before his debate with Obama telling him to raise demands for Obama’s college records to get him to “quiet down” if he “gets wise.”

  68. says

    Trump pal Alex Jones the other day lied about remarks Obama made in 2013 about climate change and renewable energy to college students in Africa:

    He closed this particular rant by warning those students that President Obama is “the devil in a brown face, come to screw you.”

    It’s one thing to be a right wing shill conspiracy theorist. It’s another to be a racist. And yet another to be pimping for oil companies and other mining interests who would enjoy stripping Africa of all its resources. Alex Jones managed to do all three, with one of the most contemptible, and yes, deplorable, things I’ve ever heard come out of his slimy little spittle-flecked mouth.

  69. says

    Rebecca Traister, “Donald Trump’s New Anti-Abortion Letter Should Terrify You”:

    …Donald Trump took time out of his busy schedule of conspiracy promotion and disavowal to write a letter to America’s anti-abortion leaders, making some new firm promises about what he’ll do on abortion should he be elected president in 53 days. The missive, dated “September 2016,” was released by the anti-abortion nonprofit Susan B. Anthony List, an organization that not only opposes abortion in all circumstances, but also several forms of contraception, including emergency contraception and copper IUDs (which it has described as causing “early abortions”). The letter begins with Trump’s announcement that he has enlisted longtime anti-abortion leader Marjorie Dannenfelser, SBA List president, as the leader of his campaign’s “Pro-Life Coalition.”

    Then Trump cycles through an attack on Hillary Clinton’s commitment to reproductive rights….

    Trump, the Republican nominee for president, then lays out his own series of pledges, promising that he is committed to “nominating pro-life justices to the U.S. Supreme Court,” “signing into law the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act,” which means a ban on abortion after 20 weeks, “defunding Planned Parenthood as long as they continue to perform abortions,” and “making the Hyde Amendment permanent law.”

    So this is what he is promising if he becomes president: a court stacked with “pro-life justices” that will make abortion — and judging by the direction of his party, possibly several forms of contraception — illegal; the concretization of a law that makes full access to health care and control over reproduction unavailable to poor Americans; a 20-week rule that would make abortion illegal before the point in gestation at which many fetal abnormalities are diagnosed.

    This cannot safely be considered electoral posturing or some wacky new skirmish in a culture war. If Donald Trump is elected president, it will likely be with a Republican congress and Supreme Court seats to fill. He could do every single one of the things he’s promising anti-abortion activists he will do. And those things would return women, in a very real way — in a way that is already happening in state and local jurisdictions around the country — to their secondary status: unable to exert full control over their bodies; barred from making choices about whether or when to bear children based on their health, their economic, or familial status, or the condition of the fetuses they carry.

    Donald Trump would like to return us to a nation of forced births, with women’s bodies as the vessels. But by all means, let’s keep yukking it up over his funny orange hair.

  70. says

    From Joe Reid (not Joy Reid): “Honestly, if it takes him five years to confirm the birth nation of one man, this whole mass deportation thing is gonna be mad slow.”

    Congresswoman Barbara Lee was interviewed by Rachel Maddow about Trump’s clumsy lying concerning his 5-year-long campaign to promote birtherism. The main topic of this interview was “why Trump’s efforts to delegitimize President Obama that way are seen as racist.”

    Maddow’s overview of Trump bungling his “bizarre birther backpedal.”

    Rachel Maddow did a great job of documenting the Trump campaign’s “embrace of recognizable racist symbols.” I was particularly grateful for Maddow’s exploration of Pepe the frog, including some guy yelling “Pepe!” at Hillary the Clinton. Maddow was so clear, so thorough, and so accurate.

    From the links above, you can also choose to view Maddow covering a white supremacist press conference that was recently held in Washington DC. Yes, they are racist, and yes, they want you to know it.

    SC @73, yes that veiled threat from Trump toward Hillary Clinton is despicable. And it is dangerous. Joy Reid recently covered more incidents of people harassing Muslims, brown-skinned people, etc., and the assailants all volunteered the information that they are Trump supporters. Let’s not mess around here, Trump is calling for someone to shoot Hillary Clinton.

  71. says

    More followup to SC’s comment 73.

    Here is what Trump said:

    She’s very much against the Second Amendment. She [Hillary Clinton] wants to destroy your Second Amendment. Guns, guns, guns, right? I think what we should do is—she goes around with armed bodyguards like you have never seen before. I think that her bodyguards should drop all weapons. They should disarm. Right? Right? I think they should disarm—immediately. What do you think? Yes? Yes. Yeah. Take their guns away! She doesn’t want guns. Take their—let’s see what happens to her.

    First, let’s debunk the lie. No, Clinton has never promoted the idea that anyone, including herself, should “destroy” the Second Amendment. You should watch the video. The way Trump says, “Guns, guns, guns, right?” is clearly a move to pump up the anger of the crowd. Pandering, dangerous and stupid at the same time.

    I’ll turn to David Nir to express what I felt when I saw that part of Trump’s speech:

    […] This kind of eliminationist rhetoric is at once terrifying and destructive. It’s the same kind of call to stochastic terrorism that’s inspired killers to murder abortion providers and drove Yigal Amir to assassinate Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin—all the while allowing those blowing on that whistle to disclaim all responsibility.

    But make no mistake about it: Trump is calling for violence to be perpetrated against his political opponent. This kind of talk is beyond unacceptable, and Trump should be drummed out of public life altogether. That won’t happen, though, and the Republican Party will have to live with this shameful stain forever.

    And god forbid something should happen, that’ll be 100 percent on Donald Trump.


  72. says

    Senator Chris Murphy and Gabby Giffords have condemned Trump’s remarks, with Murphy tweeting to Trump that if someone acts on his words “the blood will be on your hands.”

    Meanwhile, as his surrogates try to defend all of their refusal to call David Duke deplorable by absurdly insisting their campaign is about policy and not name-calling, Trump tweets about CNN: “Boring anti-Trump panelists, mostly losers in life!” (A reminder: the NYT has a running list of everything and everyone Trump has insulted on Twitter.)

  73. tomh says

    A good, solid piece in the NYT by Nicholas Kristof, about the false equivalence that the media awards Trump and Clinton, the effects of which are shown in a CNN poll this month that shows that by a margin of 15 percentage points, voters thought Donald Trump was “more honest and trustworthy” than Hillary Clinton.
    When a Crackpot Runs for President

  74. says

    First, let’s debunk the lie. No, Clinton has never promoted the idea that anyone, including herself, should “destroy” the Second Amendment.

    Nor, though it’s a minor point, does she likely go around “with armed bodyguards like you have never seen before.” She probably has the normal security detail (and would perhaps have more if there have been more specific threats – I have no idea).

  75. says

    Trump tweeted:

    Why isn’t President Obama working instead of campaigning for Hillary Clinton?”

    George Takei replied:

    As Commander-in-Chief, he is sworn to protect us from threats both foreign and domestic. You, sir, are the latter.

    President Obama is working (while also campaigning one or two days per week). It is Congress that is not working. They just got back from a long vacation, they did nothing useful while they were in session, and now they are getting ready to leave again. Senators and House of Representative critters will have worked fewer days than any Congress since 1964.

    SC @85, yeah, Trump’s insults are uninspired and repetitive. I am weary of hearing “loser,” “total disaster,” “Pocahontas,” “crooked,” “crazy,” etc. Maureen Dowd is no friend of Hillary Clinton, so insulting her may be counter productive for Trump.

    SC @84, my bet is that the comment “with armed bodyguards like you have never seen before,” from Trump is his usual hyperbole that borders on lies.

    tomh @83, that’s a great article. I’ve noticed that Chris Hayes has also discussed the problem of false equivalency several times. Both candidates are running for president … and that’s pretty much the only equivalency. Of course, some people argue that’s not even true. Trump’s non-press-conference yesterday, during which he advertised his newest hotel, backs up the claim that he is just trying to increase the value of his brand.

  76. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    As Commander-in-Chief, he is sworn to protect us from threats both foreign and domestic. You, sir, are the latter.

    Bulls eye.

  77. slithey tove (twas brillig (stevem)) says

    Trump also called for Hillary to stand by her claims against the 2nd by having her bodygaurds drop all their weapons and “protect her” [his scare quotes] totally unarmed. “let’s see what happens”, he stage-whispers, with strong implications of *some distance violence* (if you know what I mean; meaning implying someone should shoot her). Given the entire stump speech was about Hillary dismantling the 2nd amendment, to a crowd of gun fondlers, I think the implication was pretty clear.

    yes, once again, it is time to take his blather seriously and examine them as thought they were actual policy proposals, instead of just immediately dismissing them as ridiculous farts worth mocking. HE seems to be getting lots of thoughtless support from these nonresponses,
    as thoughtless support for brainless ideas is what we excel at. /sarc.
    seriously his diatribes are just waved away as pointless. They need to be responded to directly. point-by-point and not just instantly sweeped into the bin where they belong.
    It is starting, people pointing out the likely results of his various proposals, with the q “is THAT really what you want your president to do? huh?”
    still hoping for progress from the general populace.

  78. says

    Putin backs Trump in what sounds almost like an endorsement:

    Russian President Vladimir Putin on Saturday offered what appeared to be his strongest support yet for US presidential candidate Donald Trump — without explicitly naming him.

    “We are carefully watching what is happening in the United States and we, of course, view with sympathy those who publicly state that it is necessary to build a relationship with Russia, on basis of equality,” he told journalists at a briefing shown on television.

    His remarks were a clear allusion to Trump, the outspoken Republican nominee, who has emphatically professed his readiness to work with Putin, and at one point even said the Russian strongman was much more of a leader than US President Barack Obama.


  79. says

    What Trump says:

    […] ending the illegal flow of drugs, cash, guns, and people across our border, and [putting] the cartels out of business.

    On day one, we will begin working on an impenetrable, physical, tall, powerful, beautiful southern border wall. And Mexico will pay for the wall—they don’t know it yet, but they’re going to pay for it.

    What drug cartels do to get around, over, under, etc the existing border wall/fence:

    […] All seemed to be going well for that inexpensive Chinese drone, at first. It’s normally outfitted with a camera, and was designed to carry a payload of up to 15 pounds. But then it collapsed under the weight of six and a half pounds of methamphetamine and plunked down in a supermarket parking lot about 10 blocks short of the existing wall. […]

    […] in August 2015, came what is believed to be the first successful seizure of drone-smuggled narcotics on the U.S. side of the border. Authorities retrieved more than 28 pounds of heroin that had flown to a field near Calexico. Two U.S. residents were arrested while retrieving the packages.

    […] Drones are cheap and drugs are dear, and such aerial smuggling operations are only likely to increase as the cartels master the technology and pay for better versions of it, which they always do. There won’t be many walls, or any, able to stop the drones completely. […]

    U.S. Attorney Laura Duffy noted in a statement last year, but “drug traffickers have thought of every conceivable method to move their drugs over, under and through the border… We have found their tunnels, their Cessnas, their jet skis, their pangas [small boats], and now we have found their drones.” […]

    Whether by air, sea, land, or subterranean routes, smugglers have devised both tech-savvy and laughably do-it-yourself ways to thwart our nation’s physical barriers—including handmade catapults and hairspray-propelled spud guns. They have even attached cheap GPS devices and drug packages to the vehicles of so-called “blind mules” and just crossed their fingers in waiting. […]

    Last year, a 28-year-old Honduran drug mule decked out in scuba gear was discovered, along with almost $2 million worth of cocaine—55 pounds, distributed among 25 weighted down parcels—at the end of a 150-foot partially underwater tunnel leading from Mexicali into the All-American Canal, an aqueduct near Yuma, Arizona.

    More elaborately, almost $194 million worth of cocaine was discovered aboard a so-called narco-submarine in March off the Pacific coast. The vessel took on water and sank before the drugs could be recovered by authorities. But according to the U.S. Foreign Military Studies Office, this method of drug trafficking, as of mid-2012, accounted for up 80 percent of the illicit drugs travelling from the Andean states toward mid-way points, like Mexico […]


    In conclusion, Trump’s promises are hollow, and Trump’s plans are laughable.

  80. says

    This is a followup to comment 29 (see question #10 from Hillary Clinton).

    More details on Trump’s connection to Russian mobsters:

    […] a reputed Russian mobster indicted for allegedly trying to fix the skating competition at the 2002 Salt Lake City Olympics is the same guy under indictment by the U.S. attorney in Manhattan for allegedly providing protection for a high-stakes illegal global gambling ring operating out of Trump Tower, and he is the same guy who turned up as a VIP on the red carpet at Donald Trump’s Miss Universe contest in Moscow in 2013. […]

    The alleged mobster, Alimzhan Tokhtakhunov:

    was part of a crew of wealthy and powerful Russians who, according to a press report, were treated as VIPs. Also present were Vladimir Kozhin, a top government official and member of Putin’s inner circle (who the following year would be hit with US sanctions in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine) and Aras Agalarov, a Russian billionaire oligarch close to Putin with whom Trump wanted to develop a high-rise in Moscow.

    Currently wanted by Interpol, in the past Tokhtakhunov was involved in a number of ventures throughout Russia.

    He once owned casinos in Moscow. He claimed to be an organizer of pop concerts and fashion shows. He represented a modeling association, and he wrote novels. He lived in a high-end apartment building in Moscow and kept a palatial country house outside the city.

    Trump cites the Miss Universe contest in Moscow as proof of his foreign policy experience.

    Link 1

    Link 2

  81. says

    Jonathan Martin, “Donald Trump’s Anything-Goes Campaign Sets an Alarming Political Precedent”:

    When Donald J. Trump descended on the capital Friday, he was expected to finally concede that the racially tinged falsehood he had gleefully propagated, that President Obama was born outside of the United States, had in fact been a lie.

    But before Mr. Trump got around to what was a grudging and terse admission, which itself included a falsehood about the provenance of so-called birtherism, he had some business to tend to.

    He seemed untroubled in using an ostensible campaign event just a few blocks from the White House to openly promote his personal commercial interests 52 days before the election.

    In fact, this past week offered a vivid illustration of how little regard Mr. Trump has for the long-held expectations of America’s leaders. He is not only breaking the country’s political norms, he and his campaign aides are now all but mocking them.

    Besides using his campaign as a platform to make money on a new hotel, Mr. Trump leveled an untrue assertion that Hillary Clinton had been the first to claim Mr. Obama was born abroad. He also boasted about his health on the show of a daytime television celebrity while releasing just his testosterone levels and a few other details about his well-being.

    Mr. Trump also continued to flout 40 years of tradition by refusing to release his tax returns, a decision that his eldest son admitted this week was not based on an audit, as Mr. Trump has repeatedly claimed, but on a desire not to “distract” from the campaign’s “main message.”

    Beyond his handling of personal information, he also casually accused the chairwoman of the Federal Reserve of corruption, claimed that the bipartisan national debate commission was rigged against him, and stated that Mrs. Clinton had not proposed a child care plan. (She has, and did so a year before he did.)*

    He also mocked an African-American pastor who had just welcomed him to her church, and again referred to Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, who once said she had Native American roots, as “Pocahontas.”

    And that was all before Friday night, when Mr. Trump hinted at violence against Mrs. Clinton by inviting her Secret Service detail to disarm “and see what happens to her.”

    Routine falsehoods, unfounded claims and inflammatory language have long been staples of Mr. Trump’s anything-goes campaign. But as the polls tighten and November nears, his behavior, and the implications for the country should he become president, are alarming veteran political observers — and leaving them deeply worried about the precedent being set, regardless of who wins the White House.

    …His critics fear that his norm-breaking campaign portends a political future in which candidates pay no penalty for unabashedly telling untruths, disregarding the public’s right to know, and lobbing racially charged accusations.

    “I worry that if those of us in politics and the media don’t do a lot of soul-searching after this election, a slightly smarter Trump will succeed in the future,” said Jon Favreau, Mr. Obama’s former chief speechwriter. “For some politicians and consultants, the takeaway from this election will be that they can get away with almost anything.”

    Trump’s Twitter tirade yesterday continued, with attacks on “dopey” Robert Gates. Still obsessing over Gates’s criticisms, he then reportedly said in a speech: “We had a clown today, an absolute clown, Robert Gates…He’s a nasty guy, probably has a problem we don’t know about.” His choice of words stood out to me because Nicholas Kristof, in the article tomh linked to above at #83, called him a clown. It must have rankled – one of Trump’s biggest fears is being regarded as clownish – and his response was to project it onto someone else.

    * It should be noted that Trump’s policy proposals, as we’ve described them here (to the extent they even exist), are evil, ridiculous, or both. Two articles about the economic proposals of this champion of the people.

  82. says

    This bit of transcript is a great illustration of Trump’s authoritarian psychology. The substance of policy and its effects on people’s lives – even when it comes to education and health care – aren’t on his mind. He’s obsessively concerned with competition, prestige, and reputation, and he projects his profound personal insecurities onto the US. He constantly expresses his terror not only that the US is (or is seen as) “losing” or “weak” or “stupid,” but that others are “laughing at us” (I always hear my parents’ voices: ‘Who cares what ISIS thinks anyway, honey?’). He would destroy the country in a vain attempt to banish the laughing voices from his head.

  83. slithey tove (twas brillig (stevem)) says

    re 94:
    While Kriss may be exemplifying “projection”, Drumph has it in yuge quants.
    Every time he says “We…”, substitute in “I…”, and vice-verse, i.e every time he says “I will fix …”, substitute “we will fix …”.
    “Make America Great Again” should be translated to “Keep America Great”
    a POTUS candidate that needs to be tacitly translated by the people he is speaking to is best to remain as “former candidate”.

  84. slithey tove (twas brillig (stevem)) says

    I know [*wringing*hands*cartoonishly*] elect him President then day after inauguration, indict him for impeachment for “major crimes and misdemeanors” based on the tax return audit undergoing currently. Indict him for fraudulent business practice.
    ugh nevermind,
    that would leave Pence as POTUS. not a tolerable fallback.
    [back to drawing board]

  85. says

    An example not of psychological but of strategic projection (you can be pretty sure that at any given time the accusations Trump’s focusing on point to what his campaign is up to): Trump’s accusations of “gaming the system” are exactly what he’s doing here and has been doing throughout the campaign – portraying the media as hostile towards him and not to be trusted so that his followers will distrust media reports and people in the media will bend over backwards so as not to feel or be perceived as being too harsh in their treatment of him. He gives it away when he presents the gaming as the practice of his friend and supporter Bobby Knight.

  86. says

    Trump lies again:

    Hillary Clinton is the first person in history to run for the presidency who is proposing to abolish the borders around the country that she is supposed to protect.

    Trump spewed that not-remotely-true lie in front of a group of families who are grieving the loss of a loved one that was killed by an undocumented immigrant.

    Using that group as an occasion to offer false promises of justice and protection; using that group as an opportunity to tell another easily-debunked lie about Hillary Clinton … just slimy. Gross. Unethical. Stupid. Ignorant.

    Hillary Clinton supports a path to citizenship as part of an overall reform of immigration policies. She supports President Obama’s executive action to allow DREAMers to remain in the USA. She does not, nor has she ever, advocated that deportations of undocumented immigrants who have committed crimes should be halted. She does not, nor has she ever advocated an “open border.”

    She has not advocated a reduction in border enforcement. She would like to maintain effective enforcement (less corruption, more effective action) while also encouraging trade, worker permits, etc. She wants to put an end to the cruel and ineffective private prison system being used to detain undocumented immigrants. (Taxpayers are paying for what are basically unsanitary, unjust, torture centers. Many of the victims are women are children.)

    Here are few more details about the organization that is blatantly manipulating and unethically using the families of people killed by undocumented immigrants:

    […] Formed in 2009 by a Houston woman, The Remembrance Project’s stated purpose is “honoring and remembering Americans killed by undocumented immigrants,” but its tendency to inflate the percentage of homicides committed by undocumented immigrants has drawn allegations that it is channeling genuine grief into politically charged propaganda. […].

    Politico link

  87. says

    Kellyanne Conway, Trump’s campaign manager, repeated the lie that Hillary Clinton started the birther conspiracy:

    “This started with Hillary Clinton’s campaign, no question,” Kellyanne Conway said on CBS’s “Face the Nation” — a claim has been deemed false by numerous fact-checkers.

    “No. 2, it was Donald Trump who put the issue to rest when he got President Obama to release his birth certificate years later, and No. 3, he said President Obama was born in this country, period, and let’s move on to creating jobs, defeating radical Islam, rebuilding our inner cities.” […]

    “The idea that people around Hillary Clinton were not responsible for this — Donald Trump in 2007 and 2008, while the Clintons were pushing this theory, he was a successful businessman, he was building things,” she said.

    Asked why Trump had spent five years peddling a “lie,” Conway said only Trump could answer that question. “Well you’re going to have to ask him,” she said. “But, again, I think that this is a sideshow now that the media seem obsessed with. … He put everything out on the table Friday, those were his words. He does things on his terms, on his timeline.”

    The Hill link.

    For previous discussion of Trump’s obsessive, five-year promotion of the birther conspiracy, see comments 49, 51, 52, 53, 54, 56, 57, 59, 62, 65, 66, 67, 68, 76, 79, and 93.

  88. says

    Carl Berstein on CNN this morning:

    BRIAN STELTER (HOST): Let’s talk about the last seven days of Hillary Clinton’s campaign. She had her near collapse this time last Sunday. Off the campaign trail for several days. Now back on the campaign trail. Has she, you think, fully recovered in a political and media sense from what happened last weekend?

    CARL BERNSTEIN: I don’t know the answer to that question because there is a much larger question about the overall coverage of this campaign by the electronic media, by cable and network news. We’ve been terrific at interpretation at giving equal time to debate panels. But we’ve been positively awful in terms of reporting in a coherent way the biggest story of this campaign, the real existing life and record of Donald Trump. The New York Times, the Washington Post, the Wall Street Journal have done fabulous reporting on this. And we give snippets of it. We need to be doing an hour, two hours a night of real biography, running it over and over of what Trump’s life and record have been about because they’re at absolute odds with the mythical and lying story that he has told us. He’s a con man. It’s been established. And also he has presided over a cover up of his own life. And we have allowed it in cable news and network news particularly….

  89. says

    Kellyanne Conway, Trump’s campaign manager, repeated the lie that Hillary Clinton started the birther conspiracy:…

    His surrogates, and Reince Priebus, spent the morning spewing lie after lie. Also from Priebus today:

    Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus said Sunday that it’s high time for Donald Trump’s former primary challengers to come on board and support his campaign—and suggested there could be trouble for them in 2020 or 2024 if they don’t.

    “Those people need to get on board,” he told CBS’ “Face the Nation.” “And if they’re thinking they’re going to run again someday, I think that we’re going to evaluate the process – of the nomination process and I don’t think it’s going to be that easy for them.”

    Several of Trump’s former Republican primary opponents, including Ohio Gov. John Kasich, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush have not endorsed Trump in the months since the GOP businessman secured the nomination. Asked explicitly whether that meant there would be penalties for the handful of 2016 Republican hopefuls who have not endorsed Trump if they opted to run again in 2020 or 2024, Priebus said nothing has been decided but that it’s something the party will “look at.”…

  90. says

    SC is right about Reince Priebus in comment 103.

    Republicans are really trying to make the lie that Hillary Clinton started the birther conspiracy stick. Some of them are now saying, “Everybody knows it.” What everybody “knows” is what Fox News and rightwing media have been repeating for years. Repetition does not make it true.

    Here’s what Priebus said:

    Well, I think that it was something that got started in the 2008 presidential campaign. Whose fault it was, you know, Hillary Clinton herself, her supporters, her interns, her staffers.

    Some fringe supporters of Clinton circulated a fucked up email about Obama in 2008. Clinton and her campaign denounced it. Trump and rightwing media doofuses picked it up and pushed it hard for more than five years.

    The other part of the new lie is that, as Kellyanne Conway said, Trump ““put the issue to rest when he got President Obama to release his birth certificate years later.” Bullshit. See comments 57, 67, and 71 for proof that Trump did the opposite of putting the issue to rest.

    Here’s a little sideshow/lie related to the claim that Clinton’s campaign started the birther conspiracy theory: some Republicans are claiming that Mark Penn promoted the birther lie. Not true.

    […] David Axelrod, who has not exactly been carrying Hillary Clinton’s water of late, tweeted that “I am no fan of Mark Penn but, so far as I know, he never publicly or privately promoted Birther lie, as Team @realDonaldTrump has charged.”

    Penn served as chief strategist and pollster for Hillary Clinton in 2008. He had nothing to do with birtherism.

  91. says

    Oh, yeah, I almost forgot: Republicans are also pushing the Stanley Blumenthal flavor of the birther conspiracy theory. The Alt-Right in particular loves this flavor as it has a guy with a vaguely Jewish name supposedly helping Clinton to start the birther conspiracy theory.

    And they connect Blumenthal to Benghazi. They get to shout “Benghazi!” again. Apparently, that’s what gets them up in the morning.

    None of the Trump campaign’s versions of the birth of the birther conspiracy theory make sense, nor do any of their versions comport with the facts.

    None of it adds up to what Trump said. He said Hillary Clinton started it. No, she did not. Now he is saying her campaign started it. No, they did not.

  92. says

    The story should be “Most Dishonest Campaign in Memory Continues Its Pattern of Deception: After Trump Tries to Replace One Lie He’s Been Pushing for Five Years with New Lies, Campaign Coordinates Strategy to Spread New Lies to the Public.” Every single report or appearance by Trump,* a spokesperson, a surrogate, or an RNC representative should have this as a framework, and should point to the campaign’s unprecedented mendacity.

    * Trump hasn’t done a press conference since July, by the way.

  93. says

    Here’s how Trump talked about the explosion in NYC:

    Donald Trump said on Saturday night that a “bomb went off” in New York City before authorities had confirmed anything. “I must tell you that just before I got off the plane, a bomb went off in New York and nobody knows exactly what’s going on,” said Trump shortly after he stepped off his plane in Colorado Springs. Trump spoke 45 minutes after the blast that injured 29 people and he used the opportunity to say the country needs to get “tough.”

    “But boy, we are living in a time—we better get very tough, folks. We better get very, very tough. We’ll find out. It’s a terrible thing that’s going on in our world, in our country and we are going to get tough and smart and vigilant. … We’ll see what it is. We’ll see what it is.”

    He then proceeded to talk poll numbers. “A new poll … just came out, we’re up four points in Colorado,” Trump said.

    Slate link

    Here’s how Hillary Clinton talked about the attacks in Minnesota, New Jersey and New York:

    “I pray for all of those who were wounded, and for their families,” she said in a statement.

    “ISIS has claimed responsibility for the attack in Minnesota, and this should steel our resolve to protect our country and defeat ISIS and other terrorist groups. I have laid out a comprehensive plan to do that,” Clinton said.

    “This includes launching an intelligence surge to help identify and thwart attacks before they can be carried out, and to spot lone wolf attackers. We also need to work with Silicon Valley to counter propaganda and recruitment efforts online. Americans have faced threats before, and our resilience in the face of them only makes us stronger. I am confident we will once again choose resolve over fear.”

    The Hill link

    Earlier today, in an interview with Chuck Todd, Clinton’s V.P. pick, Tim Kaine, noted that the Obama administration has significantly reduced the ISIS footprint in Syria and Iraq, and that ISIS’s ability to command troops and to organize attacks has been degraded. Kaine also noted that Clinton has a comprehensive plan to defeat ISIS, a plan that includes addressing ISIS recruitment on the internet.

  94. says

    Here’s the caption from a New Yorker cartoon that appears in the September 17th issue: “Mr. trump said on Friday that Hillary Clinton started the birther theory. He also said that she came up with Trump Vodka and founded Trump University.”


  95. says

    Formed in 2009 by a Houston woman, The Remembrance Project’s stated purpose is “honoring and remembering Americans killed by undocumented immigrants,”

    Which is, with all sympathy to the people who’ve lost loved ones to violence, an appalling basis for an organization.

    Here’s what I’d like (it’s nearly impossible to believe it doesn’t exist online, but I haven’t been able to find it – if anyone knows where it’s available, please let me know): a calendar/schedule of the presidential and vice-presidential candidates’ events – rallies, fundraisers, speeches or appearances before different groups and organizations, interviews, press conferences – past and present, with as much detail as possible.

    Rachel Maddow did a great job of documenting the Trump campaign’s “embrace of recognizable racist symbols.” I was particularly grateful for Maddow’s exploration of Pepe the frog, including some guy yelling “Pepe!” at Hillary the Clinton. Maddow was so clear, so thorough, and so accurate.

    By the way, the other symbol mentioned in that context were the parentheses. Here‘s the story I linked to back in July related to a WikiLeaks tweet (very notably, they use “virtue signaling”).

  96. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    The Donald is already complaining that he won’t be treated fairly at the first Presidential Debate.

    8:55 a.m.
    Donald Trump says he won’t be treated fairly at next week’s presidential debate.
    Trump, in a phone interview Monday with “Fox and Friends,” said he has found debate moderator Lester Holt of NBC to be fair, but if he isn’t “I have a set of things that I’ll be doing.” He didn’t elaborate.
    Trump noted that NBC’s Matt Lauer had been criticized for going easy on Trump at a televised forum on national security, so there will be pressure on Holt.
    Trump said the debates are “a very unfair system, so we’ll see what happens.” Still, he said he feels confident going into the debate.
    The debate will be Sept. 26 at Hofstra University in Hempstead, New York.

    What’s the matter The Donald, afraid you will be called out on your constant lies for a change?

  97. says

    Trump this morning:

    They’re here. And I’ve been saying, this is going to be like the Trojan Horse. We’re letting tens of thousands of people flow into this country, and they are bringing in, in many cases, this is cancer from within. This is something that’s going to be so tough and you know they stay together, so nobody really knows who it is, what’s happening. They are plotting. They keep plotting, and this has been going on for so long…

    You know, in Israel, they profile. They have done an unbelievable job, as good as you can do, but Israel has done an unbelievable job and they will profile. They profile. They see somebody that’s suspicious, they will profile. They will take that person in and check out. Do we have a choice? Look what’s going on. Do we really have a choice?

  98. says


    Trump: Well, we’re going to have to do something extremely tough over there.

    Doocy: Like what?

    Trump: Over there. Like, knock the hell out of them. And we have to get everybody together and we have to lead for a change, because we’re not knocking them, we’re hitting them every once in a while, we’re hitting them in certain places, we’re being very gentle about it, we’re going to have to be very tough,…

  99. says

    SC @112, Chris Christie is also backing up Trump’s lie that Hillary Clinton started the birther conspiracy.

    SC @116, I see that Trump is building up an argument for racial profiling. That’s where he has been headed all along. Representative Steve King said something similar this morning.

    In other news, Trump continues to tell the lie that he was opposed to the war in Iraq before the 2003 invasion. Yesterday, Trump was interviewed on Fox News:

    TRUMP: Well, I fought with Sean Hannity over it and the Neil Cavuto statement is pretty close to being like, “Don’t go in and don’t make the mistake of going in.” I said, I think, the economy is, you know, has to come first. And also if you look shortly thereafter, one of the major people on television actually say, “You know, whether Trump was for it or not before the war, the fact is he was totally against it in the Esquire interview,” which took place pretty quickly after the war started and that’s the same thing.

    Oh, FFS.

    As Steve Benen points out:

    […] Trump did speak to Fox’s Neil Cavuto in January 2003, a couple of months before the invasion, but he didn’t express any opposition to the war. Instead, Trump simply sounded impatient: “[Americans] are getting a little bit tired of hearing, ‘We’re going in, we’re not going in,’ you know, whatever happened to the days of the Douglas MacArthur? He would go and attack. He wouldn’t talk.” […]

    Trump wants us to interpret those comments as a warning that it would be a “mistake” to go to war in Iraq? He said the opposite.

    And, once again, let’s talk about that Esquire interview of August 2004:

    Editor’s note: The following story was published in the August 2004 issue of Esquire. During the 2016 presidential election, Donald Trump has repeatedly claimed to have been against the Iraq War from the beginning, and he has cited this story as proof. The Iraq War began in March 2003, more than a year before this story ran, thus nullifying Trump’s timeline.

    Trump wants us to believe that criticizing the war more than a year after it started is the same as criticizing the war before it started. Sheesh. How does his brain work?

    Trump’s point with all of these lies is that he is a master when it comes to seeing what’s going to happen before it happens. He trusts his gut. He can predict what will happen. He is always right.

    He keeps proving the opposite.

  100. Saad says

    SC, the quote in your #116 is harrowing. I try to feel American society is somehow “above” this, but then he says stuff like that again. I have Muslim family all over the country. Fuck this.

    SC @116, I see that Trump is building up an argument for racial profiling.
    That’s where he has been headed all along. Representative Steve King said something similar this morning.

    If Sam Harris hadn’t officially announced his vote for Trump, he ought to now.

  101. blf says

    Turkey blocks Syrian refugees from resettlement in the US — for having degrees:

    Turkish officials argue the most vulnerable deserve priority resettlement. Some question whether a degree makes refugees less vulnerable

    More than 1,000 Syrian refugees in Turkey have been blocked from resettlement in the US and other countries because they have university qualifications.

    The refugees were approved for resettlement by American officials, before being blocked — sometimes just days before their departure date — by the Turkish authorities.


    Despite recent legislative changes, the vast majority of refugees in Turkey — including Shero and Loreen [the parents of a family being held hostage by Turkey –blf] — have no access to legal work, in contravention of the 1951 refugee convention. As a result, both work as manual labourers on the black market for about half the minimum wage. With both out all day, their children have been left to fend for themselves — leading to two alleged abduction attempts on their eldest daughter […]


    Several other families interviewed by the Guardian have been left in a similarly vulnerable position. Heba, a 34-year-old charity worker, was told in July that her application, along with that of her husband and baby daughter, had been canceled because of her degree in English literature from Aleppo University.

    “We have no notion of what to do,” Heba said, before outlining how the situation for refugees in Turkey falls short of what is pledged under the 1951 refugee convention. “We are unhappy in Turkey, we have no rights. We can’t leave. My husband has no work permit. My baby was sick, she had a temperature, so we went to the government hospital, but they would not treat her. A while ago I went to hospital in a critical situation, I was very dizzy. They refused to help me or receive me.”


    Becca Heller, the director and co-founder of the International Refugee Assistance Project at the Urban Justice Center, said: “We work with thousands of refugees who wait years to be approved for resettlement in extremely treacherous circumstances. To yank the promise of safety away at the last minute of the process is inhumane and a gross violation of international law.”

    Interviewees said UN officials had privately informed them that at least 5,000 Syrians were facing the same predicament. […]

    Should the situation continue, some of those affected said they may try to reach the west by boat, highlighting how the absence of formal means of resettlement can encourage more irregular [and very dangerous! –blf] means of migration.


  102. What a Maroon, living up to the 'nym says

    SC @ 121,

    “When asked ‘what they’re in for’ they’re going to say ‘traffic jam’.”

    And they all moved away from me on the bench…

  103. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Clinton pointing out yet again The Donald is tool for ISIS.

    Democratic U.S. presidential candidate Hillary Clinton on Monday accused Republican rival Donald Trump of helping Islamic State militants recruit more fighters as weekend bomb blasts in New York and New Jersey took center stage on the campaign trail…

    Speaking to reporters in White Plains, New York, Clinton urged Americans to remain calm but vigilant.

    In a statement, Trump’s campaign accused the White House of playing down the threat posed by Islamic State….

    Clinton said Trump’s words are helping Islamic State because they want to recruit more fighters to their cause by “turning it into a religious conflict. … They are attempting to make this into a war against Islam,” she said…

    The last statement shows that Clinton understands the issues with ISIS, whereas The Donald has no idea of what he is doing with his belligerent bellicose blathering.

  104. says

    Donald Trump made an incoherent and ignorant statement in which he cited “freedom of the press” as one of the factors that resulted in the attacks over the weekend:

    […] “They’re all talking about it so wonderfully because, you know, it’s called ‘freedom of the press,’ where you buy magazines and they tell you how to make these same bombs that I saw” Trump said.

    “They tell you how to make bombs. We should arrest the people that do that because they’re participating in crime. Instead they say ‘oh no you can’t do anything, that’s freedom of expression.’” […]

    The websites are the same thing, those people should be arrested. They’re inciting violence, okay? They’re making violence possible. They should be arrested immediately…yet we don’t want to touch them because of freedom of speech,” he said.

    Think Progress link

    What does Trump think about his own incitements to violence?

  105. says

    Fox News is using the incidents over the weekend as an excuse to feature anti-Muslim fearmongers, liars and other assorted doofuses on their news segments:

    […] During a segment that led off with Fox host Ainsley Earhardt asking, “Is the Somali refugee crisis now a terror crisis?” Fox contributor Pete Hegseth warned of the “incubation” of radical Islam in “radical mosques” in Minnesota, claiming that “the problem is that a lot of those communities have not assimilated the way we would want them to.” Hegseth then proclaimed that there “is a terrorist recruitment problem in Minnesota.” […]

    Jim Hanson, executive vice president of the anti-Muslim hate group Center for Security Policy, argued for heightened policing of Muslim communities because the New York attacker was “conducting jihad” and “saying Allahu Akbar.” […]

    Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump appeared on Fox & Friends to fearmonger about refugees and immigration, claiming that President Obama’s policy of “letting people in by the thousands and tens of thousands” will lead to terror attacks “happen[ing] perhaps more and more all over the country.”

    Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, a senior adviser to Trump and a Fox regular, exploited the attacks to call for surveilling the Muslim community, adding that it “is absolute nonsense” to say that going “into these communities” for that purpose is Islamophobic. Flynn suggested that heightened surveillance of Muslim communities doesn’t occur because of “political correctness” and that “political correctness kills. It will cause death.”

    […] profiling and mosque surveillance […] have been found to be ineffective and, according to the ACLU, lead to stigma, interference with religious worship, fear, free speech violation, and damaged relationships with law enforcement.

    Conservative columnist and Fox News contributor Katie Pavlich claimed that the government is letting refugees come “into the country unvetted from terrorism hotspots all over the world,” even though the United States has a rigorous and stringent vetting process for refugees and immigrants. […]

    Media Matters link

    Nerd @124, thanks for that excerpt. Hillary Clinton clearly made her case there. Succinct and correct.

  106. blf says

    Teh thugs and teh trum-prat stealing, again, Donald Trump upsets Les Misérables creators by playing song at rally (edits in the original in {curly braces}):

    Sir Cameron Mackintosh and Alain Boublil say they did not endorse use in Miami of Do You Hear the People Sing?

    Donald Trump has upset Sir Cameron Mackintosh and co-creators of the stage musical Les Misérables for playing one of their songs at his Miami rally.

    Mackintosh, a leading British theatre impresario, is to make his objection felt in a joint statement with Alain Boublil, the musical’s librettist and others who own the copyright.

    A copy released to the Guardian said: “The authors of Les Misérables were not asked for permission and did not authorise or endorse usage of Do You Hear the People Sing? at last {week’s} Trump rally in Miami, and have never done so for any of the songs from the musical for this or any other political event.”


    Trump has upset musicians before. In May, he faced demands by the Rolling Stones to stop playing their music at his campaign events. Earlier, he faced criticism from Neil Young for using his Rockin’ in the Free World. […]

    The intellectual property lawyer Mark Stephens […] said politicians were supposed to clear the use of songs. Sometimes permission was obtained without disclosing it was for a political purpose and there could be a question about whether Trump’s campaign said it would be used at a rally, he added. “That’s where political parties very often come unstuck,” Stephens said.


    This sort of thing has happened before. For instance, Bruce Springsteen’s “Born in the USA” has been stolen by politicians several times (much to The Boss’s annoyance), sometimes with hilarious results — it seems the more clewless thieves are drawn to the title, and pay no attention to the words, to the story the song is telling…

  107. says

    This is a followup to comment 79.

    Carlos Maza, a gay Latino journalist, attended the press conference that the alt-right held in DC. Here is a summary of what he heard there:

    “Race is a foundation of identity. You’re a part of something, whether you like it or not.”

    “When you ask whites to celebrate diversity, you’re asking them to celebrate their dwindling numbers.”

    “I do not want my country to become one in which my children and grandchildren are not only a racial minority, but at the rate things are going now, a hated and despised minority.”

    “Why is Africa poor? Why is, on the other hand, Haiti equally poor? … This is because they’re populated by the same people.”

    “East Asians have the highest IQ — about an average of 102, 103. Next come whites at about 100. Next come Hispanics, which are a very varied population — hard to put a firm figure on them. And then blacks have an average IQ of about 85.”

    “There’s been an overrepresentation by Jews in intellectuals who have tried to undermine the legitimacy of white racial consciousness.”

    “Jews have their own identity. They’re not European.”

    Donald Trump’s campaign CEO, Steve Bannon, also runs Breitbart. Bannon calls Breitbart a “platform for the alt-right.” All righty, then. We know where you stand, Mr. Trump.

  108. says

    The Syrian regime has announced that the ceasefire is over, and Aleppo is being bombed. Very few aid trucks had been able to enter during the ceasefire. Reuters is reporting (via the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights) that aid trucks near Aleppo have been hit by air strikes.

  109. blf says

    This is an interesting-sounding idea, Waste not want not: Sweden to give tax breaks for repairs:

    Government to tackle ‘throwaway culture’ by cutting VAT on fixing everything from bicycles to washing machines

    The Swedish government is introducing tax breaks on repairs to everything from bicycles to washing machines so it will no longer make sense to throw out old or broken items and buy new ones.

    Sweden’s ruling Social Democrat and Green party coalition is set to submit proposals to parliament on Tuesday to slash the VAT rate on repairs to bicycles, clothes and shoes from 25% to 12%.

    It will also submit a proposal that would allow people to claim back from income tax half of the labour cost on repairs to appliances such as fridges, ovens, dishwashers and washing machines.


    [Per Bolund, Sweden’s minister for financial markets and consumer affairs and one of six Green party cabinet members] hopes the tax break on appliances will spur the creation of a new home-repairs service industry, providing much-needed jobs for new immigrants who lack formal education.

    The incentives are part of a shift in government focus from reducing carbon emissions produced domestically to reducing emissions tied to goods produced elsewhere.

    Sweden has cut its annual emissions of carbon dioxide by 23% since 1990 and already generates more than half of its electricity from renewable sources.

    But emissions linked to consumption have stubbornly risen. […]

  110. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    The Trump *tax plan* is costly, much more costly than Trump says.

    Donald Trump’s tax plan may cost $1.5 trillion over the next decade more than he has projected and skew even more to the wealthy, according to a nonpartisan analysis released Monday.
    Trump released his tax plan last week — his third attempt to sketch out a workable proposal — telling voters to check his math. “It works,” Trump promised, estimating the cost at $4.4 trillion and claiming that record-setting economic growth would prevent the cuts from increasing the deficit.
    Trump was relying on estimates from the Tax Foundation, which supports lower taxes, when he pitched the plan to the public. But he left unclear a key detail regarding businesses that are classified as “pass-throughs.” Mostly small businesses — but occasionally very large ones — incorporate so their profits are taxed as personal income, rather than business proceeds.
    At issue is whether Trump’s plan for a flat 15 percent corporate tax rate applies to so-called pass-throughs. The Tax Foundation said his campaign indicated to them those rates would not apply. But the National Federation for Independent Business told the New York Times the GOP’s nominee’s team assured them pass-throughs would get the lower rate.
    The Trump campaign has not commented, forcing the Tax Foundation to issue two estimates. Should Trump allow pass-throughs to be taxed at 15 percent — instead of the 33 percent that many otherwise would be assessed — his plan would cost $5.9 trillion over 10 years, the analysis found. That’s $1.5 trillion more than Trump predicts.

    Trump has no idea of what his plan is, or how it works. I haven’t seen tax cuts stimulate the economy, as the Laffer curve is a laugh. Tax cuts make its the economy worse, as there is less government spending on essentials needed to offset the loss in revenue. This was demonstrated back during Reagan’s first term, see the empirical data in the link. Any tax rate of less than 65-70% will decrease revenues with a decrease in tax rate.

  111. says

    Speaking of bad Republican policies that end up costing regular people a lot of money (Nerd’s comment #131), WIRED magazine bothered to add up all of the economic fallout from North Carolina’s anti-LGBT legislation (also known as at the “bathroom bill”).

    […] You’re never going to get an exact, cent-perfect total—[…] But here’s what we do know.

    First, people are suing the crap out of these guys. North Carolina’s Republican leadership racked up at least $176,000 in legal fees so far, $47,000 of which is just lawyers for the beleaguered Governor Pat McCrory. Why do those numbers matter? They are payed with tax dollars, and they’re rising. In June, the North Carolina legislature approved diverting $500,000 from the disaster relief fund to Governor McCrory’s offices for HB2 litigation. […]

    So it costs taxpayers money to fight lawsuits. How much does it cost them that businesses now see North Carolina as a bad investment? According to the think tank Center for American Progress, business boycotts and pullouts have cost North Carolina another $87.7 million. […]

    North Carolinians lost $58.3 million when PayPal and an “unnamed tech company” canceled their planned expansions to the state. […]

    But by far the sector of North Carolina’s economy most strapped by HB2 backlash is tourism. Leaving aside sports for a second, by the figuring of Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority, the Greater Raleigh Convention and Visitors Bureau, and the Greensboro Convention and Visitors Bureau, the state’s three largest cities lost $109.4 million to canceled conferences and other events since HB2. […]

    But now we get to where it really hurts North Carolina most: sports. […] When the NBA pulled their All-Star Game, North Carolina missed out on $106 million. When the NCAA and ACC followed suit with their championship games, it means a loss of at least another $91.4, $51 million from the NCAA events and $40.4 million from the ACC’s. […]

    Adding all that up, the total cost to North Carolinians so far from HB2 protests is slightly more than $395 million. That’s more than the GDP of Micronesia. And the bulk of it is from sporting organizations, who even five years ago would likely not have waded into political territory like this. […] The near unanimous outcry against HB2 and in support of the NCAA and ACC confirms that. Legislating discrimination has become an expensive bad habit.

  112. says

    It occurs to me that the birtherism led directly to the “woman card.” If Trump could find an audience for his attempts to delegitimize the accomplishments of a black president, of course the same people would cheer his absurd claims that a woman presidential nominee has no real accomplishments and owes her candidacy solely to the fact that she’s a woman.

  113. says

    Looking back at Trump’s responses to attacks that can be loosely lumped into a “terrorism” category, we see that he fails the leadership test every time:

    After the massacre in Orlando, Trump boasted, “I called it.”

    After the attack in Paris, Trump said, “They laughed at me when I said to bomb the ISIS controlled oil fields. Now they are not laughing and doing what I said.”

    After the attack in Brussels, Trump said, “I have proven to be far more correct about terrorism than anybody – and it’s not even close.”

    After the attacks over the weekend, Trump said, “I should be a newscaster because I called it before the news.”

    All of those statements are gleefully self-congratulatory, and not helpful.

    Newscasters are not supposed to guess about the news, but Trump does. Fox News newscasters do guess, and do jump to conclusions, so maybe Trump was limiting his “newscaster” aspirations to Fox.

    Trump’s statements about the attacks over the weekend also included other not-helpful, chest-thumping like “I will give you good results,” and “knock the hell out of them.” He also blamed “freedom of the press,” Syrian refugees, and Hillary Clinton for the attacks over the weekend.

  114. says

    SC @134, you’re right. Delegitimizing his opponents is a standard Trump tactic. He even attempted to apply it to a judge overseeing a lawsuit against him. He used that tactic against his Republican opponents during the primary.

    Groups of people continue to come forward in an effort to force Trump to deal in actual facts.

    More than 50 former government officials and national security and military figures have signed an open letter to Donald J. Trump, urging him to disclose details of his overseas business investments before Election Day. […]

    Michael J. Morell, a former acting director of the C.I.A., and Michael G. Vickers, a former under secretary of defense for intelligence, put together the letter with input from Samantha Vinograd, a former senior adviser to Thomas E. Donilon, a former national security adviser. […]

    “Donald Trump still has not revealed to the American public his international business relationships, even as it becomes increasingly clear that his overseas ties could well constitute significant conflicts of interest when it comes to charting U.S. foreign policy,” the letter reads. “This is unprecedented for a candidate for the nation’s highest office. As such, we are calling on Mr. Trump to disclose, in full, the nature of his business relationships overseas — to include specifically who his business partners are and what and where are his foreign investments.”

    NY Times link

  115. says

    SC @137, yep, that’s disgusting. Trump also complained about the bombing suspect Ahmad Khan Rahami receiving medical treatment after he was wounded:

    But the bad part, now we will give him amazing hospitalization. He will be taken care of by some of the best doctors in the world. He will be given a fully modern and updated hospital room. And he’ll probably even have room service knowing the way our country is.

    […] on top of all of that, he will be represented by an outstanding lawyer […]

    What a sad situation. We must have speedy but fair trials and we must deliver a just and very harsh punishment to these people.

    And the crowd at the rally cheered and cheered.

  116. says

    Lester Holt, who will moderate the first presidential debate on Monday, chose these topics:
    America’s Direction
    Achieving Prosperity
    Securing America

    Each topic is supposed to be discussed for two, fifteen-minute segments. Presumably, the two candidates will receive roughly equal time to give their answers. I expect Trump to interrupt a lot, and to try to talk over Hillary Clinton.

  117. tomh says

    @ #133

    sporting organizations, who even five years ago would likely not have waded into political territory like this

    Not really. Twenty five years ago the National Football League pulled the Super Bowl, (the biggest sporting event in the country), from Arizona and moved it to Pasadena, because Arizona refused to recognize the newly created Martin Luther King Holiday.

  118. says

    Jill Stein went off the rails today and stated that Hillary Clinton is more dangerous than Donald Trump:

    […] While she describes Trump as a danger she also believes he’s nothing more than a moron who has destroyed the GOP. Clinton, on the other hand, she considers a greater threat.

    “Donald Trump, I think, will have a lot of trouble moving things through Congress,” Stein says. “Hillary Clinton, on the other hand, won’t … Hillary has the potential to do a whole lot more damage, get us into more wars, faster to pass her fracking disastrous climate program, much more easily than Donald Trump could do his.”

    Stein also took a few swipes at Bernie Sanders:

    […] “I’ve tried to talk with Bernie, but, you know, Bernie is — he is a team player,” she said, saying he refuses to speak to her. “I think he’s on the wrong team, perhaps because he’s been in Washington, D.C., too long, because he used to really understand independent politics and why we cannot have a viable political system unless we have independent political parties.” She concludes that it could be “a generational thing.”

    Raw Story link

  119. says

    Trump made a claim today that he has made before, that ISIS would love for Hillary Clinton to be elected president because they see her as “weak.”

    Analysts who study the communications of Jihadist extremists disagree with Trump.

    […] To them [jihadists], he is the “perfect enemy,” as one Islamic State defector told a researcher interviewed by TPM, and they are using his posturing to advance their own agenda, according to another analyst. […]

    “It’s clear they find his comments, they find his demeanor, they find his approach, in some way serving the goals of ISIS in some manner, whether it be in having a ground war in Syria or weakening the United States,” […] “They believe that with the U.S. weakening down that the Caliphate will actually rise.”

    […] Trump “ will be a disaster to America,” […] he could bring the end-of-days battle in Syria that jihadists call for.

    “Trump’s governance will be the destroyer of America and its traitor Arab allies,” one commenter said.

    According to Alkhouri, the jihadist supporters’ desire to see Trump become president is two prong. One one hand, they think he will weaken the United States — politically, economically and internationally — and thus is a figure to be mocked. On the other, Trump has also made promises to be more aggressive with the Islamic State — such as “I would hit ISIS so hard you wouldn’t believe it” — that they believe will drive home their us-against-the-West messaging. […]

    Dov Zakheim, a conservative foreign policy adviser, asserts that Trump’s rhetoric would be used as a recruiting tool.

    “If he gets elected it could be a rallying cry for ISIS and al Qaeda and all these extremist groups,” Zakheim said. “They could say ‘see they really do hate you, and if you are Muslim and you think you can get along in the West, you are kidding yourself. “

    Mara Revkin, a PhD student at Yale who has studied ISIS governance, told TPM that in her interviews with both current Islamic State supporters and defectors, Trump is viewed as the ultimate enemy, someone who may push the U.S. into a ground war in the Middle East.

    Revkin–who has traveled a total of four times to Turkey and Iraq this year for her research– said that one Syrian Islamic State defector told her in Turkey that ISIS uses Trump in their propaganda because he is the “perfect enemy.” Revkin added that the Arabic might translate more directly as “excellent enemy.”

    “His anti-immigrant, anti-refugee, and anti-Muslim rhetoric totally validates ISIS claims that Muslims are unwelcome in Europe and the U.S., and that they would be better off living in its so-called caliphate,” she said. “ISIS exploits these inflammatory statements to mobilize its supporters around the idea that the West—and America in particular—is hostile to Islam.” […]

    “Jihadists are always up to date with what’s going on in American politics,” Alkhouri said. “It’s a primary issue to keep tabs on, because, in one way or another, it affects the war on the Islamic State.”

  120. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Now the NC governor/legislature is trying to blackmail Charlotte into repealing their ordinance giving equal rights to LGBT people.

    The mayor of Charlotte, North Carolina, refused on Monday to back off an ordinance that had aimed to expand anti-discrimination protections for gay and transgender people in the state’s largest city but also sparked a controversial state law.
    The Republican leaders of North Carolina’s legislature said in a statement late on Sunday they believed their colleagues would support repealing the law that voided the city ordinance – if Charlotte made the first move.
    North Carolina’s Republican governor and lawmakers blame Charlotte for spurring the state measure, which has drawn rebuke from major companies and sports organizations since it was passed in March.
    The state law, known as House Bill 2, requires transgender people to use publicly owned bathrooms that correspond with the gender on their birth certificate and bars local ordinances protecting lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people from discrimination.
    A spokesman for Governor Pat McCrory told local media last week McCrory would call a special session for legislators to consider a repeal of H.B. 2 if Charlotte rescinded its ordinance.
    But Charlotte Mayor Jennifer Roberts, a Democrat, said the city had no plans to reconsider the ordinance at a council meeting Monday night.
    “We appreciate the state wanting to find a solution to the challenges we are facing and applaud the governor for recognizing the state should overturn H.B. 2, which the state can do at any time without any action from the City of Charlotte,” Roberts said in a statement.

    The mayor got it right. The governor/legislature can stop their bigotry at any time, and get some events that went elsewhere back to the state, if they stop being obtuse bigots. I don’t think they are capable of doing the right thing.

  121. says

    North Carolina’s Republican governor and lawmakers blame Charlotte for spurring the state measure,

    Yeah, Charlotte, if you hadn’t insisted on protecting people’s rights, they wouldn’t have had to pass a law stopping you from protecting them.

  122. says

    In further DT* news:

    If your grandchildren want to see wild animals, surely a wealthy benefactor will put their name to a future museum in which they can see a dozen or two skinned and stuffed examples. If your grandchildren want to visit a forest, surely the world’s companies will by that point have introduced virtual reality goggles that let them see just that. Put a fan to your face, and feel the breeze; hang an air freshener around your neck, and take in the scents of Wild Prairie or National Park #2.

    * Domestic Threat

  123. tomh says

    @ #146
    That is an hilarious bit of reasoning by the state Republicans. They can’t repeal the state law until Charlotte rescinds their ordinance, because … what the heck is their reasoning, anyway? I can’t figure it out.

  124. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    That is an hilarious bit of reasoning by the state Republicans. They can’t repeal the state law until Charlotte rescinds their ordinance, because … what the heck is their reasoning, anyway? I can’t figure it out.

    If NC repeals their H.B.2 law, the ordinance in Charlotte will be valid and enforceable. That is their dilemma. How to repeal the law for economic reasons, while not allowing Charlotte to protect those citizens that they feel shouldn’t be protected. Hence the blackmail, which has been rejected.

  125. tomh says

    @ #151
    Have they really thought that through? Once they repeal the state law, another city, or Charlotte even, passes a similar ordinance, and they have to pass another state law barring it. And they’re right back where they are now, except they look even dumber.

  126. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Have they really thought that through? Once they repeal the state law, another city, or Charlotte even, passes a similar ordinance, and they have to pass another state law barring it. And they’re right back where they are now, except they look even dumber.

    From the rethug standpoint, they will have made Charlotte back down (being the bullies they are), and it is a warning to any other city/county who might even think about it.
    If Charlotte doesn’t back down, and the law is repealed, then it becomes open season for other cities to enact similar ordinances at their will, or the will of the voters.

  127. says

    Donald Trump Jr. has now compared Syrian refugees to potentially deadly candy. The candy company has responded to requests for comment:

    Skittles are candy. Refugees are people. We don’t feel it’s an appropriate analogy. We will respectfully refrain from further commentary as anything we say could be misinterpreted as marketing.

    (It’s worth noting that Trump called for gutting the “FDA food police” earlier this week.)

    At the end of the post I link to above @ #132 about Meredith Tax’s article, I include one of her many links – to a report about life, especially for women, in areas controlled by ISIS. The Syrians are facing – and refugees escaping – that horror, a bloodthirsty dictator clinging to power, and a vicious war. Successive US governments going back decades have contributed to bringing about this hell. The Trump campaign is managing to shift the discussion from one about suffering people who need our help to one about dangerous would-be invaders. It’s a tragic development and a low point in our country’s history.

  128. Saad says

    The mediocre businessman makes no sense on racial profiling question

    “Our local police — they know who a lot of these people are. They are afraid to do anything about it because they don’t want to be accused of profiling,” Trump said on Fox News on Monday. Trump pointed to how Israel used profiling and “done an unbelievable job.”

    Uh, if you KNOW who the criminals are and you go after them, that’s not profiling.

    “They see somebody that’s suspicious, they will profile,” Trump said. “Look what’s going on: Do we really have a choice? We’re trying to be so politically correct in our country, and this is only going to get worse.”

    Again, looking at suspicious people isn’t profiling.

    C’mon, CheetoNazi. Say what’s really on your mind. I thought you were supposed to speak your mind.

  129. says

    New York Times editor on Trump: ‘We will call out lies'”:

    The Huffington Post branded him a serial liar months ago. Now, the most traditional American media outlets have also abandoned journalistic diplomatese in their coverage of Republican candidate Donald Trump, and are reaching for new ways to flag the word “lie.”

    In at least five articles in the New York Times on Sept. 17, including the lead story in the print edition, the words “lie,” “false,” “falsely claimed” and “untrue” appeared in headlines, lead paragraphs, and top sections of the paper’s Trump coverage. The day before, CNN’s Jake Tapper called Trump “the most prominent pusher of the birther lie,” the Associated Press reported that Trump “peddled another lie,” and a Washington Post headline declared, “It’s time for TV news to stop playing the stooge for Donald Trump.”

    It’s a marked change in language, even for outlets that have aggressively reported on Trump’s appeals to violence and bigotry. And it’s especially startling coming from the ultra-traditional Times, which even in the new digital age remains a north star for much mainstream media coverage.

    “I think our investigative work—see [the Sept. 17] story on Trump’s tax breaks—has always been hard hitting,” says Dean Baquet, the New York Times’ executive editor. “But we have decided to be more direct in calling things out when a candidate actually lies.”…

  130. slithey tove (twas brillig (stevem)) says

    Trump said on Fox News on Monday. TrumpDrumph pointed to how Israel used profiling and “done an unbelievable job.”

    What I’ve heard of the Isreali version of TSA, I’d agree. Their form of “profiling” has effectively done what the USA TSA attempts to do. The Israeli TSA watches all the passengers waiting to board for their mannerisms, nervous tics, etc. Then casually talks to ones who look nervous to see why how nervous they really are.
    This is far different than the profiling Drumph advocates. Where a glance at skintone, haircut, beard, clothing, etc are definition of “suspicious”. Even worse than the usual US form of profiling where being of color is suspicious and worth harassment by police.
    The very best one can conceivably say about Drumph (which is far more than he deserves) is that he is a paranoid narcissist. Lashing out at everyone who doesn’t praise him for his very existence and for slapping his name on big resorts and such.

  131. quotetheunquote says

    @SC #156 – That meme is now widespread on twitter, and is SO obscene, I can’t even….

    Very good high-road response from the Skittles PR people though.

    One response on twitter that I really liked (though it is a bit beside the point) came from @Pretty Hat Machine, who tweeted their own version:

    “If you had a bowl of Skittles and I told you just three would kill you, would you take a handful? That’s our Syrian refugee Gun Owners problem.”

    Here you go @DonaldJTrumpJr corrected it for you.

  132. blf says

    On the poisoned candy front, the Grauniad lists a number of good responses, Donald Trump Jr compares Syrian refugees to poisoned Skittles (“Tweet, which echoes racist memes, prompts outrage and slew of rebuttals on social media”), including a long series by Clara Jeffery, the editor-in-chief of Mother Jones.

    One of my favourite replies (a suggestion to the company who makes the candy): “For every pack of Skittles you buy between now and Nov 8, we’ll donate $1 to support refugees.”

    The article also points out the nonsense is not even original:

    [T]he tweet is not actually original. Joe Walsh, the former congressman and rightwing talk show host whose statements have been criticized as incendiary, has voiced similar ideas.

    [image of a very similar comment (but I cannot read the date) –blf]

    I have no real idea who the feck this “Joe Walsh” is (there is a musician by the same name, who is clearly a different individual).

  133. blf says

    Also, my own version is “If you had a bowl of Skittles and I told you every one of them will kill you, would you take any? That’s our Republican problem.”

  134. says

    I normally mute or fast-forward through MSNBC segments with Malcolm Nance (and for good reasons), but last night I caught of few minutes of him on Lawrence O’Donnell, talking about how he’s profiled in Israel and has been moved on Israeli planes to within the shooting range of the air marshal, how Israel’s policies haven’t exactly made it a nonviolent utopia, and even how “there are other things going on” there (hinting obliquely at what virtually no TV news commentators will even go near. He also had one of the best responses to Jr.

  135. says

    Donald Trump Jr. is turning out to be a liability for his father’s campaign … and it’s hard to think of anyone worse than Daddy Trump himself. (See Skittles-related comments upthread and see comments 35 and 37.)

    Daddy Trump has repeatedly called The Clinton Foundation a “slush fund” for Bill and Hillary Clinton. This statement has been proven false, and now we know that it is also massive projection on Trump’s part. The Trump Foundation appears to be a slush fund, according to new investigative journalism.

    Donald Trump spent more than a quarter-million dollars from his charitable foundation to settle lawsuits that involved the billionaire’s for-profit businesses, according to interviews and a review of legal documents.

    Those cases, which together used $258,000 from Trump’s charity, were among four newly documented expenditures in which Trump may have violated laws against “self-dealing” — which prohibit nonprofit leaders from using charity money to benefit themselves or their businesses. […]

    This report from the Washington Post goes on to say that Trump’s alleged practices “may have violated U.S. tax law and gone against the moral conventions of philanthropy.”

    An expert weighs in:

    “I represent 700 nonprofits a year, and I’ve never encountered anything so brazen,” said Jeffrey Tenenbaum, who advises charities at the Venable law firm in Washington. After The Post described the details of these Trump Foundation gifts, Tenenbaum described them as “really shocking.”

    “If he’s using other people’s money – run through his foundation – to satisfy his personal obligations, then that’s about as blatant an example of self-dealing [as] I’ve seen in a while,” Tenenbaum said.

  136. says

    This is a followup to comment 25.

    Hillary Clinton’s response to the Wells Fargo misdeeds:

    I was deeply disturbed when, last week, we found out that Wells Fargo had engaged in widespread illegal practices over many years. The bank secretly opened up millions of accounts for customers without their consent – betraying their customers, misusing their personal information and leading many to be slapped with unjust fees and other charges. Today, Wells Fargo’s CEO will appear before Congress. He owes all of you a clear explanation as to how this happened under his watch.

    There is simply no place for this kind of outrageous behavior in America.
    “Our economy depends on a strong and safe banking system to help keep it moving. But even after Americans spent years working hard to recover from the Great Recession, the culture of misconduct and recklessness that preceded that crisis too often persists. I have a plan to address it. […]

    Donald Trump, the Republican Party, and Wall Street lobbyists are desperate to dismantle this effective agency which is dedicated solely to protecting consumers from unfair and deceptive practices. I won’t let them put the CFPB [Consumer Financial Protection Bureau] under their thumb. I’ll protect the CFPB and make sure it can continue its essential work on behalf of the American people.

  137. says

    More from David Fahrenthold at WaPo – “Trump used $258,000 from his charity to settle legal problems”:

    Donald Trump spent more than a quarter-million dollars from his charitable foundation to settle lawsuits that involved the billionaire’s for-profit businesses, according to interviews and a review of legal documents.

    Those cases, which together used $258,000 from Trump’s charity, were among four newly documented expenditures in which Trump may have violated laws against “self-dealing” — which prohibit nonprofit leaders from using charity money to benefit themselves or their businesses.

    “I represent 700 nonprofits a year, and I’ve never encountered anything so brazen,” said Jeffrey Tenenbaum, who advises charities at the Venable law firm in Washington. After The Post described the details of these Trump Foundation gifts, Tenenbaum described them as “really shocking.”

    “If he’s using other people’s money — run through his foundation — to satisfy his personal obligations, then that’s about as blatant an example of self-dealing [as] I’ve seen in a while,” Tenenbaum said.

    The Post sent the Trump campaign a detailed list of questions about the four cases, but received no response….

  138. says

    SC @166, yikes. Horrible. Sweet, angelic white women being raped by ugly Islamic hordes. How racist can you get? Donald Jr. may not be worse than his father, but he is even more likely than Daddy Trump is to speak his racist mind.

    One tiny bright hope in this mess: maybe we have now inoculated ourselves against a Donald Jr. political campaign. We will have already rejected Don Jr.

    In other news, Daddy Trump is backing up his friend, Chris Christie. Never mind all that difficult Bridgegate stuff, and the comments by both prosecutors and defense lawyers in court stating that Christie knew about the unnecessary, punitive lane closures on the busiest bridge in his region.

    I have known and liked Chris for 15 years. After his recent run for president, he called me to say that he would like to endorse me in that he sees a movement like he has never seen before. I was greatly honored, accepted his endorsement, and he has been a spectacular advocate ever since.

    Moreover, Christie lets Trump humiliate him in public (fetching Trump’s McDonald’s meal; hearing himself described as an “absentee governor” while standing next to Trump). And Trump apparently loves that. Trump loves the alpha-dog position, and he enjoys humiliating all the other males around him.

    Christie may be a criminal, but he praises Trump, backs up Trump’s lies, and exhibits his second class status to Trump all the time.

  139. says

    More historical context:

    “However they disguise themselves, or however friendly they try to be, affirming a thousand times their good intentions to us, one must not believe them. Jews they are and Jews they remain. For our Volk they are poison.”

    “Like the poisonous mushroom!” says Franz.

    “Yes, my child! Just as a single poisonous mushrooms can kill a whole family, so a solitary Jew can destroy a whole village, a whole city, even an entire Volk [nation].”

  140. says

    A few notes re the Skittles tweet:

    – The hapless NJ/NY bomber wasn’t a refugee, nor were his parents, who brought him here in 1995 when he was 7, refugees.

    – “Of the 3,252,493 refugees admitted from 1975 to the end of 2015, 20 were terrorists, which amounted to 0.00062 percent of the total”…“Of the 20, only three were successful in their attacks, killing a total of three people.”

    – The odds for a USian of being killed by a refugee terrorist in any given year are 1 in 3.6 billion.


  141. says

    This is a followup to comments 166 and 167.

    More details about the source of Donald Trump Jr.’s tweet of another white supremacist meme:

    […] He linked to a 2015 post from Anne-Marie Waters, a British activist and member of the fervently anti-immigration UK Independence Party, which she penned for Breitbart’s London offshoot.

    In the post, Waters recounts being sexually harassed and intimidated by “Middle Eastern-looking men” across Europe to set the stage for her takedown of “suicidal” immigration polices that she says allow Muslim men to rape white women.

    “In England, it’s been rape after rape – tens of thousands of young British girls are brutalised, tortured, beaten and raped by organised gangs comprised almost exclusively of Muslims,” she wrote.

    In Germany, Chancellor Angela Merkel’s immigration polices “opened the door to the rape of German women,” Waters wrote. She went on to claim rape, sexual assault and “forced prostitution” are “rampant within the refugee camps in Germany.”


    Oh, FFS, there’s even a Breitbart link. Steve Bannon must be so happy.

  142. says

    Guess who took the photo of the bowl of Skittles that Donald Jr. and other white supremacists misused? A refugee.

    […] David Kittos, a U.K.-based photographer, told the BBC on Tuesday that he disagreed with the Trump campaign’s rhetoric about refugees and said he would never have granted permission to use his image.

    “This was not done with my permission, I don’t support his politics and I would never take his money to use it,” Kittos said.

    “In 1974, when I was six-years old, I was a refugee from the Turkish occupation of Cyprus so I would never approve the use of this image against refugees,” he added.

    Kittos, who is now a British citizen, posted the photo to file-sharing Flickr in 2010 but did not make it available for public use.

    He told the BBC that the campaign’s use of the photograph free of charge amounted to “pure greed” and that he hoped the campaign would delete the tweet.

    Variations of the anti-refugee meme using Skittles and M&Ms have in recent years become popular among white nationalists and anti-immigrant activists online.


  143. says

    I’m amused at all of the “you’re more likely to be killed by”s – your own clothes, your own furniture, cows,… – that come up when you search for information on the odds of being killed by a Muslim/immigrant/refugee terrorist. Most important: in the US, “You Are More Than 7 Times As Likely To Be Killed By A Right-Wing Extremist Than By Muslim Terrorists”:

    …Though terrorism perpetrated by Muslims receives a disproportionate amount of attention from politicians and reporters, the reality is that right-wing extremists pose a much greater threat to people in the United States than terrorists connected to ISIS or similar organizations. As UNC Professor Charles Kurzman and Duke Professor David Schanzer explained last June in the New York Times, Islam-inspired terror attacks “accounted for 50 fatalities over the past 13 and a half years.” Meanwhile, “right-wing extremists averaged 337 attacks per year in the decade after 9/11, causing a total of 254 fatalities.”…

  144. a_ray_in_dilbert_space says

    Anybody else notice how Gump-esque young Donald looked saying, “Refugees are like a bowl of Skittles…”

  145. says

    Elizabeth Warrens is questioning Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf.

    Mother Jones link

    Video and a partial transcript is available at the link. Excerpt below:

    […] Warren proceeded to pummel Stumpf with more questions. “Have you returned one nickel of the money you earned while this scam was going on?” she asked. Stumpf, stumbling, said the unauthorized accounts weren’t a scam and answered the question directly only after Warren repeated the question. “No,” Stumpf said. Stumpf said earlier in the hearing that he earned $19.3 million last year.

    She then asked if he’d fired any members of his senior management. Stumpf initially began by describing the firing of regional branch managers, but Warren stopped him, emphasizing that her question was not about low-level leadership but about the people at the top. Again, Stumpf’s answer was no.

    […] “While this scam was going on, you personally held an average of 6.75 million shares of Wells stock.” The share price went up by about $30 in that time frame, Warren pointed out, “which comes out to more than $200 million in gains, all for you personally.”

    […] You know, here’s what really gets me about this Mr. Stumpf. If one of your tellers took a handful of $20 bills out of the cash drawer, they’d probably be looking at criminal charges for theft. They could end up in prison.

    But you squeezed your employees to the breaking point so they would cheat customers and you could drive up the value of your stock and put hundreds of millions of dollars in your own pocket. And when it all blew up, you kept your job, you kept your multimillion dollar bonuses, and you went on television to blame thousands of $12-and-hour employees who were just trying to meet cross-sell quotas that made you rich.

    This is about accountability. You should resign. You should give back the money that you took while this scam was going on, and you should be criminally investigated.

  146. says

    a_ray @137, you would think that Daddy Trump would be getting tired by now of rescuing Trump Junior from the deep end.

    But neither Daddy nor Junior have a clue when it comes to vetting their sources. Both are into over-simplification as a lifestyle choice. Both think that being rich and white makes them impervious to facts.

    Meanwhile, Hillary Clinton has regained her 5-point lead in national polls. That’s not the 9-point lead from last month, but it does show a revival of the upward trend for Clinton.

    Republicans are so distraught that some of them, (Representative Lamar Smith, doofus extraordinaire) have turned to Reddit posts to find some more rumors with which to bash Clinton.

  147. militantagnostic says

    Yesterday As it Happens on CBC Radio 1 interviewed the mayor of Ahmad Khan Rahami’s hometown. There has been ongoing friction between the city administration and Rahami’s parents restaurant (First American Fried Chicken). They took the city to court over a requirement that they close at 10:00 PM. The mayor said there had been complaints about noise etc and the restaurant continued to defy the closing time resulting in the police showing to to force them to close after 10:00. The bombings may be an act of revenge. I am hearing the argument that Rahami was too much of a doofus to have built the bombs and therefore had an accomplice, but I am not buying it since maker skills are a different domain than planning and strategy.

  148. says

    “375 top scientists sign letter defending climate science against ignorant politicians”:

    On Tuesday, 375 top scientists signed an open letter warning against the consequences of backing out of the historic Paris Climate Agreement, which Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump has said he would do if elected.

    The letter marks an unusual foray into presidential politics for most of these scientists, many of whom specialize in climate change-related fields. World-renowned theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking is among the signatories, as is former Obama energy secretary and Nobel Laureate Steven Chu.

    The Paris Agreement, which is expected to go into force this year or in 2017, commits all nations to undertake steps to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and adapt to global warming impacts for the first time. At least 20 countries are expected to announce their ratification of the agreement in an event at the United Nations on Wednesday.

    The list of scientists signing the letter includes 30 Nobel Laureates, and all signatories are members of the National Academy of Sciences (NAS).

    The letter reads as both a warning of the seriousness of human-caused climate change, as well as a warning against electing a candidate who thinks climate change is a hoax and would withdraw from the Paris Agreement.

    “Human-caused climate change is not a belief, a hoax, or a conspiracy. It is a physical reality,” the letter states. “Our fingerprints on the climate system are visible everywhere.”

    Trump is on record saying he would pull out of the Paris Agreement if he were elected, and has expressed the view that climate change is a hoax, rather than a real and growing problem.

    “We’re going to cancel the Paris Climate Agreement and stop all payment of U.S. tax dollars to U.N. global warming programs,” Trump said in an energy policy speech on May 26….

  149. blf says

    Short excerpt from the longer Donald Trump Jr has a knack for landing himself in hot water:

    Social media has been a problem for Trump Jr for some time. In 2011 he used Twitter to describe who he thought was Representative Maxine Waters, who has served in Congress for 25 years, as looking like a stripper; and in 2012 he joked about Jerry Sandusky, the former Penn State football coach who is currently serving a 60-year prison sentence for child abuse.

    BuzzFeed catalogued 49 of Trump Jr’s tweets earlier this year. The collection portrays him as surprisingly immature for a man approaching 40. Trump Jr repeatedly refers to people tweeting at him as morons, while he also described himself as a boob guy and called a follower a pussy.

    The article also notes several parallels between what the two trum-prats say.

  150. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    A long article showing the lies spewed forth by the Trump Campaign, covering several days.
    Too many subjects to cover (goes back only 8 days), but the usual lies. Including the “classic”, I am unemployed and looking for work, not retired, taking care of the Redhead, and have no desire to work unless the government would pay for the CNA support while I work. Like the Rethugs would support that. Yeah, sure, hey as they said in Dah YooPee.

  151. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Gary Johnson, the Libertarian Party presidential candidate, made another gaffe today.

    Libertarian nominee Gary Johnson has gotten himself in hot water yet again after claiming “nobody got hurt” in the recent attacks in New York, New Jersey and Minnesota.
    On CNN’s “Reliable Sources,” Brian Stelter asked Johnson for his reaction to the recent explosions in the tri-state area, as well as the stabbing that occurred in St. Cloud, Minnesota. “What do you think the government needs to be doing on a day like today?” Stelter asked on Sunday.
    “Well, first of all, just grateful that nobody got hurt,” Johnson said. In fact, 29 people were injured in the Chelsea bombing and nine people were stabbed in the St. Cloud attack.

    Seems to have foot-in-mouth syndrome, typically of libertarians.

  152. says

    Statement from WCC and NCC:

    Two leading Christian groups have strongly criticised Israel’s occupation of Palestinian territory, demanded the Jewish state end the “prison-like conditions” in Gaza and called on the US to cancel its military aid budget to its Middle Eastern ally.

    In a joint statement following a “consultation on the Holy Land” this week, the World Council of Churches (WCC) and The National Council of Churches of Christ, USA (NCC) ecumenical groups that represent over 545 million Christians combined, said that “keeping an entire population under occupation and even in a closed area, such as Gaza, in prison-like conditions is a grave and unsustainable situation.” It added: “We are also well aware that Israel is the occupying force and has commanding power over the people of Palestine and, thus, bears special responsibility for taking the initiative.”

    The statement called on the US to “cease its practice of arming various state and non-state actors in the Middle East and, in particular, to reconsider its proposed $38 billion military aid package to Israel, for the last thing needed at this time is more weapons,” and “end the current wave of legislative efforts to penalize the use of non-violent economic measures to influence policy in Israel.”

    The statement said: “No people should be denied their rights and, certainly, no people should be denied their rights for generations. The unresolved conflict in Israel and Palestine is primarily about justice, and until the requirement of justice is met, peace cannot be established. As Israel’s occupation of East Jerusalem, the West Bank, and Gaza nears the 50-year mark, generations have been suffering under this reality.”…

    …OK. Sorry to change abruptly to another subject, but this has been on my mind. I know from personal experience many of the awful things taught in Christian churches in the US. But even if you set aside bigotry and bigoted policy and other scariness, I’m having a hard time understanding how so many Christians are supporting Trump. How could that support square with, say, Sunday school? As a person, Trump is petty, vengeful, dishonest, manipulative, unremorseful, unreflexive, envious, exploitative, unprincipled, uncaring, demeaning, arrogant, greedy, selfish, and cruel. How can any general Christian principles be taught or preached by people who support him? (Please don’t throw back glib answers to this question – I’m trying to understand people’s attitudes because I know and know of good people who are active Christians who support him, not get in a jab at Christians or religious people. I think this could potentially present an opportunity for solidarity.)

  153. consciousness razor says


    As a person, Trump is petty, vengeful, dishonest, manipulative, unremorseful, unreflexive, envious, exploitative, unprincipled, uncaring, demeaning, arrogant, greedy, selfish, and cruel. How can any general Christian principles be taught or preached by people who support him? (Please don’t throw back glib answers to this question – I’m trying to understand people’s attitudes because I know and know of good people who are active Christians who support him, not get in a jab at Christians or religious people. I think this could potentially present an opportunity for solidarity.)

    Not trying to get in a jab, but hopefully to be a bit helpful….

    First, I’m not sure what you mean by “general Christian principles.” Whatever the “Christian” qualifier might be doing, those are not in fact equivalent to (or interchangeable with) moral or ethical principles. I think this is an important thing to understand, since people do often implicitly treat “Christian” as a way of describing something vaguely good.

    There are certainly many general features of Christianity which can be accurately described just as you described Trump. One of the principles is apparently (and somewhat paradoxically) that it is an unprincipled ideology: anything that you might often associate with Christianity can be tossed out for arbitrary reasons, having to do with what is purported to be God’s will or the Church’s authority to decide what that will is. In another time, Trump could have been aiming to become a pope or grand inquisitor or whatever…. but who knows, maybe he still a chance at that too.

    If something is plainly cruel or manipulative or exploitative, there can be an appeal to some greater (generally mysterious) purpose which is supposedly being served. Although it may be cast in cosmic or ultimate terms (when they attempt to support it theologically), the appeal is often transparently about the immediate and self-serving interests of the institutions themselves and/or the officials governing them. Those institutions may be churches or church-related (e.g., hospitals, schools, charities, and other religious organizations), as well as some that those entitites have found useful (including political parties like the Republicans, public programs or legal/social systems which have benefitted them, private enterprises, and so forth). But in any case, tendentious claims/proposals like this are a bedrock feature of Christian thought, so we shouldn’t be thinking of “genuine/sincere/true” Christianity as something removed from those ideas or somehow corrupted by them.

    Independently of being religious or Christian or what have you, people have a fair amount of allegiance to the groups and structures and traditions which they believe are beneficial. When it doesn’t seem as great as might be thought (or turns out to be terribly harmful), they will come up with all sorts of ways to rationalize it or explain it away. And in my experience, ordinary people usually have many other things on their minds which concern them more directly and personally (like health, jobs, relationships, etc.), as it affects them or their friends/families/coworkers or others in their local environment. That’s what gets their careful/thoughtful attention, when anything does. With that kind of myopic perspective, people can be extremely irresponsible (and simply ignorant, which they have a responsibility to cure) about their decisions on broader national/global issues or things which have larger spatial/temporal dimensions beyond their own immediate experiences and short-term future.

    Turning back to religions (not specifically Christian ones), it’s often not clear (or isn’t considered to be relevant) how disputes can be resolved, how claims can be supported or rejected, or how people can come to know things, how they can make good or reasonable decisions, or what good or reasonable decision-making consists in. Partly because it’s such a ubiquitous problem, religious people are trained to accept this. For no reason (or for any contrived reason), they should have faith in their gods, trust their authorities, believe whatever their doctrines are, follow their traditional practices, and so forth. If any two things in this absurd melange seem to be contradictory or conflicting or in some kind of tension, religions provide no way to handle the problem or even to clearly articulate (in theological or doctrinal terms) the fact that there is one. They always offer you a way out, a way to deny the problem, a way to shift the blame, a way to confuse yourself and others, a way to hope that something magical will come along to solve it for you. That helps religions sustain themselves, but it doesn’t help people form a coherent worldview or set of principles, nor does it help them figure out when things are going off the rails even more than they already were.

  154. says

    First, I’m not sure what you mean by “general Christian principles.” Whatever the “Christian” qualifier might be doing, those are not in fact equivalent to (or interchangeable with) moral or ethical principles. I think this is an important thing to understand, since people do often implicitly treat “Christian” as a way of describing something vaguely good.

    Of course. I agree with everything you say. However, I went to Sunday School and Bible school and Bible camp. Much of it was hateful garbage, and of course the basic beliefs were false. But still so many Bible stories and messages portrayed general Christian principles as the opposite of what Trump represents.

    So I’m trying to understand: Is it that the qualities Trump represents are now hegemonic in US Christianity; that people ignore the majority of his characteristics because he champions their identity or some of their ideas; that they’re leaning on some Christian ideas and ignoring, marginalizing, or rejecting others; that their authoritarian psychological inclinations override their conscious beliefs; that they refuse to see him as he is;…? How does it work? On a practical level, what does this do to professed beliefs and Sunday school lessons? I suppose I’m looking for some kind of anthropological analysis/understanding.

  155. consciousness razor says

    Much of it was hateful garbage, and of course the basic beliefs were false. But still so many Bible stories and messages portrayed general Christian principles as the opposite of what Trump represents.

    Certainly right. But as I was trying to say, the stories and messages you’re talking about here are more peripheral, more on the surface where people accept the kind of pluralism or relativism or laissez-faireism that allows for extremely opposing views. There’s a great deal of dispute about what any of it might mean, with no helpful way of resolving or clarifying matters which is internal to theology/religion. And in any case, those things aren’t central or fundamental to Christianity (or other religions).

    The central theme is that your life doesn’t mean shit, neither does anyone else’s, what is good or bad for you or for anybody doesn’t matter, maybe none of it is even real (or is just some kind of test or preparation for an afterlife that’s infinitely more important) … what God wants eclipses all of that, and that is defining how the peripheral/surface-level ideas in Christianity are to be understood. Since nobody has any idea of what that may be, nor can they explain why it should matter to us if there were a god who had any such intentions or interests, that lands people into trouble.

    It suffices to cite an authority who says stuff you happen to agree with (there have been plenty over thousands of years which have entertained every sort of view, so you can take your pick). Or when they see things aren’t going well, individuals can blame such authorities (for their human limitations/failings) as external bad actors and pretend to absolve themselves of responsibility, while ironically enough at the same time they’re acting as an authority of their own about “what god really intended (which those frail humans over there got wrong)” or “what scripture really says.” Either way, this kind of divination or revelation doesn’t lead anywhere good, but it’s exactly how religions work. To me, that seems totally compatible with the way they (some, not all) are finding something acceptable about Trump, when they wouldn’t be able to find it otherwise.

    So I’m trying to understand: Is it that the qualities Trump represents are now hegemonic in US Christianity; that people ignore the majority of his characteristics because he champions their identity or some of their ideas; that they’re leaning on some Christian ideas and ignoring, marginalizing, or rejecting others; that their authoritarian psychological inclinations override their conscious beliefs; that they refuse to see him as he is;…?

    My guess is that it’s a healthy mix of all of those things, and it’s more a matter of emphasis depending on which sect you’re talking about. Besides, it’s no joke that, for a lot of people, Christianity is just something that happens for an hour or so every Sunday morning (despite the fact that it’s also treated like the most important topic imaginable). It certainly colors their views in other settings in very radical ways, but they don’t seem to have much trouble with compartmentalization when they think they should do so.

  156. says

    Certainly right. But as I was trying to say, the stories and messages you’re talking about here are more peripheral, more on the surface where people accept the kind of pluralism or relativism or laissez-faireism that allows for extremely opposing views.

    But that wasn’t really my experience. Messages to be kind or forgiving (or just not petty and cruel) in your daily life weren’t peripheral. Whole sermons and Sunday school classes were dedicated to them, and they didn’t really allow for their opposites.* Certainly, these messages were compatible with support for unkind, cruel public policies, but they wouldn’t have been compatible with, say, mocking a disabled person or openly delighting in personal revenge. Just on a practical level, it seems like if these messages are still given at all (and they must be to some extent), the dissonance would be patent.

    I suppose on a practical level I would want to ask them what Christian (again – to them) values and ideals they think Trump as a person represents. Reading David Cay Johnston’s new book about Trump, I was annoyed that he kept pointing to the differences between Trump’s stated value system and the teachings of Jesus. I don’t like it even as an appeal to Christians, for the reasons you discuss above and that I’ve talked about elsewhere. On the other hand, though, the incompatibility of “turn the other cheek” and “Get even. If somebody screws you, you screw ‘em back ten times over. At least you can feel good about it. Boy, do I feel good” is glaring. In fact, you could almost think Trump took the Sermon on the Mount and said “I’m going to make my life’s philosophy the opposite of this.” How do they support him without making a mockery of their professed guiding beliefs?

    * Of course I’m not saying that we were always kind and forgiving in actual practice, or that Christians receiving these messages are any more kind or forgiving than anyone else. But they were held as ideals. Pettiness and cruelty were seen as contrary to the ideals.

  157. quotetheunquote says

    Genuine, non-rhetorical question – what the hell is Vladimir Putin thinking? Is he thinking?

    I don’t follow events in Russia very closely, but I do see enough to support a general impression that he is a genuinely evil man – but one of those clever evil men (more Cheney than Bush Jr.), who does his evil in a way that advances his interests towards some end.

    So what the hell is he doing attacking (albeit, perhaps through Syrian government proxies) that relief convoy in Aleppo province? Yes, I can well see how it is against the interest of the Russian/Syrian government to allow them in, but why then go to all the trouble to arrange last week’s ceasefire in the first place? What the hell was that supposed to accomplish? Show the UN who’s really boss there (and who cares if a score more people die in the process)?

    Furthermore, if he’s so keen to try divert suspicion for the attack onto the opposition – which the Russians are doing, apparently – why attack from the air, making it perfectly clear that the opposition could not be behind the attack? I mean, if it was intended as a “false flag” operation (and that is not at all a safe assumption, by any means ) it was a blatantly incompetent one.

    (I realize that is really a whole bunch of questions…)

  158. What a Maroon, living up to the 'nym says

    So the Trump campaign has responded to the WaPo’s story about his questionable use of charity funds with the time-honored legal defense of “look over there!”

    Donald Trump’s absolutely ridiculous response to the Post’s Trump Foundation story

    On Tuesday morning, The Washington Post published a story headlined: “Trump used $258,000 from his charity to settle legal problems.” Written by David Fahrenthold, who has reported extensively about the Trump Foundation, the piece details how Trump directed more than $250,000 of the charity’s money to help pay fees related to his businesses. Those payments could qualify as “self-dealing” and violate laws governing how the leaders of nonprofit organizations can use the money they receive in donations.

    On Tuesday night, Trump communications director Jason Miller issued a statement disputing Fahrenthold’s reporting. Sort of. Actually, not really. Here’s Miller’s full statement:

    In typical Washington Post fashion, they’ve gotten their facts wrong. It is the Clinton Foundation that is set up to make sure the Clintons personally enrich themselves by selling access and trading political favors. The Trump Foundation has no paid board, no management fees, no rent or overhead, and no family members on its payroll.

    There was not, and could not be, any intent or motive for the Trump Foundation to make improper payments. All contributions are reported to the IRS, and all Foundation donations are publicly disclosed. Mr. Trump is generous both with his money and with his time. He has provided millions of dollars to fund his Foundation and a multitude of other charitable causes.

    The Post’s reporting is peppered with inaccuracies and omissions from a biased reporter who is clearly intent on distracting attention away from the corrupt Clinton Foundation, a vehicle for the Clintons to peddle influence at the expense of the American people. Mr. Trump personally and the Trump Foundation, however, are staying focused on their charitable giving to veterans, the police, children and other deserving recipients.

    Chris Cillizza goes on to show how just about every word of the Trump statement is a lie.

  159. says

    At this morning’s event, Don King brought up Trump’s USS Iowa rally last September. I hope this can drive renewed attention to that speech – I mentioned a while back that it’s been sticking in my craw, and I was just thinking about it this morning. It was a bogus event, as Rachel Maddow covered in some detail at the time, sponsored by a fake veterans’ organization which Trump claimed represented hundreds of thousands of veterans but appears to represent one sleazy political operative:

    The illegitimacy of Veterans for a Strong America isn’t just that it purported to be a nonprofit when its tax exemption had already been revoked, that in all likelihood the people who purchased tickets for the Trump speech thought they were purchasing from a nonprofit, that the U.S.S. Iowa Museum gave the Arends group a preferential rate because its chief executive took Arends at his word that the group was a nonprofit, or that it made an explicit endorsement of a presidential candidate violating 501(c) rules. Veterans for a Strong America was and is clearly yet another fake organization willing to use and abuse veterans for the personal or political ends of the man who created it.

    (Needless to say, Matt Lauer didn’t get around to asking about it during the CiC Forum.)

  160. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    A recent NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll shows almost 70% of the voters have concerns about Trump’s comments and temperament.

    A combined 69 percent of American voters say they have concerns about Donald Trump’s comments and language on women, immigrants and Muslims, including more than half who have “major” concerns, according to a new national NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll.
    That’s compared with a combined 64 percent of voters who say they have concerns about Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server during her tenure as secretary of state.
    Asked which problem concerns them the most about Trump, 33 percent say it’s not having the right temperament to be commander-in-chief; 27 percent say it’s his controversial comments about women, immigrants and Muslims; and 13 percent say it’s his praise for Vladimir Putin.
    For Clinton, 36 percent say they’re most concerned about her judgment when it comes to dealing with Syria, Iraq and Libya; 29 percent say it’s her use of a private email server; and 9 percent say it’s Clinton’s recent comment about Trump’s supporters.

  161. says

    Hillary Clinton wrote an op-ed for The New York Times that outlines “My Plan for Helping America’s Poor.”


    […] Nearly 40 percent of Americans between the ages of 25 and 60 will experience a year in poverty at some point. The best way to help families lift themselves out of poverty is to make it easier to find good-paying jobs. As president, one of my top priorities will be increasing economic growth that’s strong, fair and lasting. I will work with Democrats and Republicans to make a historic investment in good-paying jobs — jobs in infrastructure and manufacturing, technology and innovation, small businesses and clean energy. And we need to make sure that hard work is rewarded by raising the minimum wage and finally guaranteeing equal pay for women.

    […] we also need a national commitment to create more affordable housing. This issue doesn’t get much election-year coverage, but it’s a big deal to the 11.4 million American households that spend more than half their incomes on rent. Too many people are putting off saving for their children or retirement just to keep a roof over their families’ heads.

    My plan would expand Low Income Housing Tax Credits in high-cost areas to increase our affordable housing supply, and fuel broader community development. So if you are a family living in an expensive city, you would be able to find an affordable place to call home and have access to the transportation you need to get to good jobs and quality schools.

    We also need to ensure that our investments are reaching the communities suffering the most from decades of neglect. We have got to acknowledge that even though poverty overall has fallen, extreme poverty has increased. Tim Kaine and I will model our anti-poverty strategy on Congressman Jim Clyburn’s 10-20-30 plan, directing 10 percent of federal investments to communities where 20 percent of the population has been living below the poverty line for 30 years. […]

    We need to expand access to high-quality child care and guarantee paid leave so parents at all income levels can balance their jobs and lives. And we will work to double investments in Early Head Start and make preschool available to every 4-year-old because our children deserve the best possible start in life. […]

    This November, the American people will have to choose between an economy that works for everyone and an economy that benefits the well off at the expense of everyone else. The choice couldn’t be clearer.

    There are links embedded in the op-ed on the NYT site so that one can look up the background material for all of the facts, and analyses that she mentions.

  162. says

    Mike Fernandez, a billionaire who previously donated to the Republican Party, is switching sides. He is putting his money behind the effort to register Florida Latinos to vote.

    “As a lifelong Republican, I cannot support a Party I no longer recognize,” Fernandez wrote in an email, saying he could not understand how the GOP “could not distance itself from a man who has taken such liberties with the facts that calling him a liar would not suffice.”

    Fernandez plans to give $2 million to a coalition of Latino-outreach groups.

    […] The groups — National Council of La Raza, Mi Familia Vota and the Hispanic Federation — say they together have helped register about 70,000 new Latino voters in Florida and want to sign up at least 30,000 more. […]


    Registering Latinos to vote looks like a non-partisan effort, but it is estimated that about six out of every ten Latino voters in Florida will vote for the Democratic nominee.

  163. says

    Hollywood stars joined director Joss Whedon to make a video for Whedon’s new PAC, Save the Day. He released a three-minute video featuring “a shit ton of famous people” and some not famous people to focus on the importance of voting.

    YouTube link

    “A racist, abusive coward could permanently damage our society.” Donald Trump’s name is not mentioned, but it is clear that the message is about registering to vote, making sure you vote, and NOT voting for Donald Trump.

    If you go to the website and register to vote, “Mark Ruffalo will do a nude scene in his new movie.” Ruffalo says, “Wait what?” […] “Mark’s going to have his dick out.” […]

    It’s funny and fun to watch. Good points are made. Some of the actors make fun of themselves.

  164. says

    This is a followup to What a Maroon’s comment 195.

    Flurries of outrage and disbelief are swirling around the news that Trump used money other people donated to his supposed charitable organization, The Donald J. Trump Foundation, to pay off legal obligations for his for-profit companies.

    Trump didn’t make matters better when he said at a rally last night, “There’s nothing like doing things with other people’s money.”

    Trump’s running mate and Trump’s surrogates are having a hard time explaining this one:

    Pressed to identify a specific “factual error” in a new Washington Post report on the Trump Foundation that the Trump campaign has claimed was “peppered with inaccuracies,” Indiana Gov. Mike Pence (R) came up short. […]

    “Well, I think what we found is that there is a number of factual errors in that story as there were in previous stories about the Trump Foundation,” Pence said, echoing a campaign statement issued Tuesday evening. “I’m confident they’ll be able to address those and demonstrate that they fully complied with the law.”

    Like the statement, Pence then pivoted to discussing the Clinton Foundation.

    “To back up quick here for just a minute,” Williams said after Pence finished, “do you know what the factual errors are that the campaign is alleging in the Washington Post story?”

    “Well, I think the foundation will be able to lay those out,” Pence said. “There were errors in the previous Washington Post stories, and, you know, look, you know me a while, Brian. I strongly support a free and independent press. People are entitled to ask questions, and I’m sure the Trump Foundation and the Trump family will continue to be able to answer those questions.” […]

    Fahrenthold’s other reporting has found that the Trump Foundation has largely used other people’s money to make charitable gifts since 2008, the year he last donated to his own nonprofit.

    Talking Points Memo link

  165. a_ray_in_dilbert_space says

    Lynna: “a_ray @137, you would think that Daddy Trump would be getting tired by now of rescuing Trump Junior from the deep end.”

    Well, to be fair, ol’ Fred had to bail The Donald out numerous times–sometimes involving sending over suitcases of cash and receiving Trump Taj chips back as collateral. The NJ gaming commission were not amused.

  166. says

    The August FEC filings are out. As I said back in August, Trump was pretty much forced to forgive the $47.5 million in loans he’d given the campaign prior to the primary because the nomination was the deadline and a) his campaign didn’t really have enough to pay them back and b) no one would have donated after that if he’d used donations to reimburse himself. However, it had already emerged in June that the campaign – in addition to being used in the promotion of Trump’s businesses, as it continues to be – was paying large sums to Trump (and Trump-affiliated) businesses. The August filings show that the campaign’s largest expenditure (more than $11 million) was payments to a digital advertising firm that works for Trump’s companies, so that’s interesting:

    The biggest single recipient of Trump’s campaign largesse last month was the digital marketing firm Giles-Parscale, which collected more than $11 million in fees from the Republican nominee. Brad Parscale, the company’s president, has no formal political experience, but he’s been a key member of Trump’s resort marketing team for nearly a decade.

    Trump’s plane and office building got half a million. (I don’t know what the total amount paid to Trump businesses is so far, but I’d like to. It has to be up there. I have no doubt that he’d like to recoup the entire $47.5 million and then make a profit on top of it; time is running out, though, so he might get even more desperate…)

    A few days ago (@ #84 above), I remarked on Trump’s strange comment about Clinton going around “with armed bodyguards like you have never seen before.” I should have thought of what I said just below @ #97 – that “you can be pretty sure that at any given time the accusations Trump’s focusing on point to what his campaign is up to.” Sure enough, in August “Trump’s campaign upped spending on private security forces almost tenfold, from $20,856 to $181,813.”

    (Another $20,000 was paid to Corey Lewandowski, by the way.)

  167. quotetheunquote says

    @Lynna #200.

    Thanks, that is very good! Straightforward, while not pandering to the ego of He Whom We Do Not Name by mentioning his name. Afraid the whole “famous people” thing was a bit lost on me, since I only recognized Stanley Tucci and that Irondude guy, but I got the point. (I’m pretty far out of the loop, RE; current movies, I’m afraid.)

  168. says

    a_ray @202, right. All in the family tradition then.

    SC @203, thanks for the update on the FEC filings. Trump said back in June that “I could be the first presidential candidate to run and make money on it.” And earlier, in 2000, Trump told Fortune magazine, “It’s very possible that I could be the first presidential candidate to run and make money on it.” I think he is serious. Making money for himself and his closest allies is the one thing he is serious about (well, that and pumping up his ego).

    Lewandowski’s money from Trump is so obviously a conflict of interest when it comes to Lewandowski’s job at CNN!

    quotetheunquote @204. Yeah, it’s good even if you don’t recognize all the “famous” people. Famous to whom? To bring you up to speed, here are a few of the Hollywood box office draws that participated: Robert Downey Jr., Mark Ruffalo, Scarlett Johansson, Neil Patrick Harris, Jesse Williams, Julianne Moore, Nathan Fillion, Don Cheadle, and President Jed Bartlet [actor Martin Sheen who starred in the TV serial drama, The West Wing] himself.

    Julianne Moore delivered the “just a shit ton of famous people” line. Don Cheadle delivered the “A racist, abusive coward could permanently damage our society” line. Scarlett Johansson delivered the “Full Markie” line as part of the extended discussion of Mark Ruffalo’s nude scene.

    To participate, go to the website It’s a well-designed site.

  169. says

    This is a followup to comments 195 and 201.

    Donald Trump didn’t just rip off his own Foundation to settle business-related legal obligations, he also cheated taxpayers (that’s us) who give organizations like the Trump Foundation tax breaks via the tax codes we approve, as Josh Marshall pointed out. We give charitable organizations preferential treatment.

    And here’s one example that tells us how truly yucky Trump’s use of the Trump Foundation is — there are several layers of cheating:

    Trump had a golf tournament and there was a $1 million prize if you hit a hole in one. Easy offer to make. Hole in ones aren’t very common. But a guy named Martin Greenberg did it, ironically on the 13th hole. Unfortunately Trump refused to pay up.

    The dispute turned on a seeming technicality: the rules said a hole in one had to travel at least 150 yards. And the Trump golf course folks apparently set the markers at the tee just under 150 yards. It’s like something a carney pulls after you’ve obviously won the big stuffed animal. But whatever the precise facts, that was the essence of the dispute.

    Greenberg eventually sued and the settlement was that Trump agreed to pay out $158,000. He made that payment out of his Foundation. There was a separate, unrelated payment out of the Foundation coffers, tied to the height of a flagpole at Mar-a-Lago down in Palm Beach, Florida. […]

    Talking Points Memo link.

  170. blf says

    Apropos of nothing much, and with the caveat I have an extremely bad memory for names, I do not recognize any of the allegedly “famous” names listed in @204 and @206 (excepting, of course, teh trum-prat). Seriously. I have absolutely no idea who the feck any of those people are. Note that it matters much, if at all, in terms of the content of the message…

  171. says

    Yeah, I know: Trump has gone back and forth a lot when it comes to clarifying his actual immigration policies. And his surrogates have waffled, especially when trying to mitigate the negative effects of having newscasters replay the video of Trump announcing his “total ban” on all Muslims entering the country.

    Well, we can all stop trying to figure it out. No matter how much Trump or his surrogates tap dance around the issue, the the Orange Doofus himself always comes back to banning some large group.

    Today, for example, he told the audience at a rally in Ohio that on his first day in office he will order an immediate ban on Syrian refugees entering the USA.

    Trump has a new, favorite phrase to associate with his various bans on immigrants: “This isn’t only a matter of terrorism, but also a matter of quality of life.” He follows that broad-brush stroke with a promise he has made before, to only allow immigrants “that support our values and love, and I mean love, our people.” WTF does that even mean/

  172. says

    Speaking of Corey Lewandowski’s conflicts of interest, here’s a guy with an even more obvious conflict of interest, Sean Hannity.

    Fox News executives aren’t happy that Sean Hannity, who hosts Hannity week nights on the network, has appeared in an official campaign ad for Donald Trump.

    “We were not aware of Sean Hannity participating in a promotional video and he will not be doing anything along these lines for the remainder of the election season,” a spokesman told multiple news outlets. […]

    The tone of Fox News’ official response seems to indicate that they aren’t happy with Hannity’s appearance in the ad, which further blurs the line between political advocacy and network’s legitimacy as a news organization.

    But considering that Hannity has been using his Fox News platform to advertise for Donald Trump for nearly a year now, it’s hard to take their reaction seriously. […]

    “You can tell me whatever you want. You’re Donald Trump. You can say anything you want.” […]

    Think Progress link

  173. says

    Oh, FFS. Were seeing more misogynistic drivel from WorldNetDaily. That source of rightwing “news” has always taken misogynistic swipes at Hillary Clinton. But this is a new low:

    […] In a column today in WorldNetDaily, psychology professor Kent G. Bailey explains that Clinton “looks more stressed, haggard and out of focus with each passing day” because, from “a paleopsychological standpoint, it simply is not natural, normal, or fair for a diminutive, pudgy, non-athletic and cerebral old lady to be forced into combat with an imposing, 6-foot-3-inch, 237-pound septuagenarian who drives a golf ball 300 yards and eats nails for breakfast.”

    Clinton, he writes, has been forced into this “freakish situation” while “warrior extraordinaire Donald Trump is fully in his element at this moment and is thoroughly enjoying every aspect of the fray.” The presidential race, he explains, is “implicitly pitting the world of women against the world of men.”

    He then goes on to offer several “paleopsychological observations” about why women are not suited to be national leaders, concluding that “if Hillary Clinton is elected, the continuing infantilization and feminization of American men will further explode, society as we know it will crumble, and the regression back to our pagan roots will be complete.” […]

    Yeah, right. There’s his real fear. “American men will crumble…”

    […] There is simply no woman in the world who would have any chance whatsoever against a strong, angry and combat-ready male. …

    […] when a woman is faced with male aggression, her first instinct is to cry for help and then find a male protector to do the fighting for her. Hubby Bill has been the real power behind Hillary’s entire political career […] her “friend” and master of charisma Barack Obama came in like a tag team wrestler to nip at Trump [..snipped note about Al Gore]. And that scion of boredom, Tim Kaine, is always around to […], provide emotional support […]. Unfortunately, this quartet of feminized girly men does not add up to one really tough guy. Ten of them might make one Donald Trump … maybe. [snipped a bunch of crap about “hunting and gathering”]

    […] the human female has never defined band, tribe, or national borders nor, once defined, defended them. That is and always was the province of the male of the species. [snipped some nonsense about male chips and the failures of Angela Merkel]

    […] if Hillary Clinton is elected, the continuing infantilization and feminization of American men will further explode [snipped bit about Trump saving us men from this fate]

    In conclusion, it is not natural for a woman to engage in direct combat with a man, and it borders on the bizarre when sick and unsteady Hillary is forced by circumstance onto the field of battle with Goliath. […]

    Right Wing Watch link

  174. says

    Infamous “dumbest Congressman” Louie Gohmert of Texas has a super-special, conspiracy-ridden view of the death of al-Qaeda operative Anwar al-Awlaki.

    […] Gohmert told radio host Howie Carr that the Obama administration has let Muslim Brotherhood groups tied to radicals in on national security decisions, which he said shows that “we always feed the dogs that are trained to bite us.” […]

    “Al-Awlaki, his parents were from Yemen, they came to the U.S. on a college visa, had al-Awlaki, took him back to Yemen, taught him to hate America,” he said. “And that’s why they couldn’t keep this terrorist al-Awlaki from coming in. And I think one of the reasons they needed to blow him up with a drone strike is if he’d ever been caught, arrested, he would have sung about all the different people he worked with in the administration.”


  175. says

    David Duke loved Donald Trump Jr.’s bigoted and illogical “Skittles” tweet that compared Syrian refugees to poison candy:

    […] DAVID DUKE: It’s a very simple illustration of what we’re really facing in this country, both in Europe and America. […]

    Now in combination with this meme, which, of course, is absolutely correct. I mean when we have a situation where it’s impossible to vet people — or know where people coming from other countries, we don’t have their documents, sometimes they even end up coming without anything. […]

    It’s obvious if you bring massive numbers of people who come in with a different racial heritage, a different orientation — they’re not celebrating the values of the United States of America, the traditions, the heroes of America. They have their own heroes who often fought against America and saw America as a traditional enemy, like the Mexicans. And you have them come in in mass numbers — or any other race — does this lead to more harmony and peace and brotherhood and love? Or does it lead to disunion, disharmony, hatreds, violence, and destruction of society?​


  176. says

    Donald Trump proposes that the USA adopt a “stop-and-frisk” policy in black communities nationwide:

    […] In a pre-taped interview on Fox News scheduled to air Wednesday night, Trump was asked by an audience member what he would do to address “violence in the black community” and “black-on-black crime.”

    Trump responded by proposing that “stop-and-frisk” policing, in which an officer is empowered to stop an individual and frisk them for weapons or any other illegal contraband, be adopted nationwide. […]


  177. says

    Arizona Sherriff Joe Arpaio has his own view of Trump’s announcement that President Obama was born in the USA:

    If he says the president was born here, maybe he has information I don’t have. He didn’t say the document [the long-form birth certificate] was legitimate. He didn’t go that route.

    Whatever you need to tell yourself, Sherriff Joe. Still sounds remarkably stupid.

  178. blf says

    First Dog on the Moon in the Grauniad, A cartoon about Pauline Hanson voters. Why are they?: “It would be easy to do a sneering, elitist cartoon about the cardboard cut-out dunderheads that voted for Pauline Hanson. All right, let’s do it!” Ms Hanson is the führer of the Ozland nazi party. With a few edits, the cartoon would also seem to apply to teh trum-prat’s dunderheads / deplorables:

    ● I voted for Pauline because climate change is a scam.

    ● Muslims want to kill my pets.

    ● I didn’t want to vote at all but the chemtrails made me.

    ● I lost my job because the industry I was in went overseas and [blah blah blah] and we keep bringing more [people] in and [more blah blah] and my analysis is actually quite nuanced. Also, I’m a massive racist.

    ● Like Pauline and her fellow senators I live in a fantasy world where sinister forces beyond our ken are arrayed against us.
      An example of a fellow Ozland nazi senator is Malcom Roberts, the conspiracy kook who denies there is any evidence for AGW even when it is shown to him.

    Plus many others. Some of the readers’s comments are quite funny, even some of the ones that are not from Ozland nazi supporters.

  179. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Trump showing his racism.
    He supports “stop and frisk”. (Note, the event in question was closed to the media.)

    U.S. Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump said on Wednesday he would consider using “stop-and-frisk” policing methods to cut crime if elected, according to two people who attended a Fox News “town hall” taping at a predominantly African-American church in Cleveland.
    With the race tightening between Trump and Democratic opponent Hillary Clinton in the final weeks before the Nov. 8 election, the Republican candidate recently began wooing African-American voters.
    Stop-and-frisk, however, has been the target of protests and successful legal challenges in New York and other big American cities in recent years as a tactic that unfairly singles out minority citizens and violates their civil rights.
    In the tactic, officers stop pedestrians, question them and then search them for weapons or contraband.
    At the town hall, Trump praised stop-and-frisk, according to an excerpt of the interview released by Fox News.
    He made his statement in response to an audience member’s question about what the New York businessman would do to reduce crime in predominantly black communities across the nation, said the two people, Geoff Betts and Connie Tucker.
    Betts, 38, who is black, said he felt dismayed by Trump’s response.
    Tucker, who is white and supports Trump, said she sensed discomfort in the room when the candidate gave his answer.
    “I felt like there was a pause,” she said.

    Yep, Trump should be “stopped and frisked” every 100 yds for the rest of his life. Maybe he would then understand the problem of “stop and frisk”.

  180. blf says

    This isn’t power shovel hole digging, this is ploughshare-class hole digging (Project Plowshare was one of the stupidest “uses” ever conceived for nuclear weapons, basically blowing big craters using one or more nuclear bombs to build canals and similar, throwing many tonnes of debris high into the atmosphere — that is, deliberately creating a considerable amount of fallout and a big radioactive hole-in-the-ground), Anthony Weiner sent sexually explicit messages to 15-year-old, report says:

    Disgraced former US congressman Anthony Weiner, whose career nosedived after he was caught sending sexually explicit texts and images to young women while he was still married, has allegedly spent several months this year in an online, highly explicit relationship with a 15-year-old girl, according to a new report.

    The ex-politician and failed New York mayoral candidate asked her to undress for him and engage in rape fantasies among a plethora of erotic exchanges that began in January 2016 […]

    Weiner is still married to Huma Abedin, Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton’s longtime aide and campaign vice-chairman. Abedin announced in August that she was separating from her husband after Weiner was revealed in another report to have sent another woman a provocative picture of himself in his underwear, with his young son next to him.

    It was but the most recent in a series of scandals involving Weiner.


    “A situation such as this could involve an array of crimes, depending on what is done and what a minor is asked for,” said John Wilkinson, an attorney adviser and former prosecutor with Aequitas, a consultancy and research organization that advises on prosecuting violence against women.

    Any investigation into Weiner could involve child sex abuse images or child endangerment statutes. There are also federal laws prohibiting the sexual exploitation of children and other statutes involving the transfer of obscene materials to a minor. Wilkinson also explained that even if an adult claims a teenager initiated contact and they did not realize their young age, that is not accepted as a defense in court.


    Extreme, and extremely clewless, creep.

  181. blf says

    US news media are more popular than, wait for it, Vladimir Putin:

    But opinion poll reveals that news outlets were viewed less favourably than Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump and — by some margin — Barack Obama
    The authoritative NBC/WSJ poll put Clinton on 43% with Trump on 37%. But the most noticeable feature of the survey was that both candidates were viewed in negative terms by the majority of respondents. [Both scumbags being seen to be crooks is not exactly new… –blf]

    Clinton’s positive rating, 37%, compared to a 52% negative rating. Trump eclisped her on that, however, with a 28% positive about him with 61% were negative.


    [… P]eople who took part in the poll viewed media outlets less favourably than they did Trump, his wife, Melania, and a string of others, including Bill Clinton. Media got a 40-point negative rating (to Putin’s -60 points).

    […] Barack Obama emerged with a very favourable approval rating, up to 52% compared to the 45% who disapproved of him.


    The above isn’t really an article about the poll, just a short regular column about “the media”, and so the lack of detail isn’t too surprising.

  182. says

    “Black Men May Have Cause To Run From Police, Massachusetts High Court Says”:

    Noting that black men were more likely to be targeted by Boston police for encounters such as stops, frisks, searches, observations and interrogations, the judges wrote, “We do not eliminate flight as a factor in the reasonable suspicion analysis whenever a black male is the subject of an investigatory stop.”

    But the judges went on to say that flight alone does not prove “a suspect’s state of mind or consciousness of guilt.”

    The targeting of black males by police for “field interrogation and observation” — FIO — changes the equation, the court said, and “suggests a reason for flight totally unrelated to consciousness of guilt.”

    The court wrote:

    “Such an individual, when approached by the police, might just as easily be motivated by the desire to avoid the recurring indignity of being racially profiled as by the desire to hide criminal activity. Given this reality for black males in the city of Boston, a judge should, in appropriate cases, consider the report’s findings in weighing flight as a factor in the reasonable suspicion calculus.”

  183. blf says

    A Trump campaign chair in Ohio says there was no racism before Obama (the Granuiad’s edits in {curly braces})

    Kathy Miller called the Black Lives Matter movement a stupid waste of time and said low African American voter turnout could be due to the way they’re raised

    Donald Trump’s campaign chair in a prominent Ohio county has claimed there was no racism during the 1960s and said black people who have not succeeded over the past half-century only have themselves to blame.

    Kathy Miller, who is white and chair of the Republican nominee’s campaign in Mahoning County, made the remarks during a taped interview with the Guardian’s Anywhere but Washington series of election videos.

    If you’re black and you haven’t been successful in the last 50 years, it’s your own fault. You’ve had every opportunity, it was given to you, she said.

    You’ve had the same schools everybody else went to. You had benefits to go to college that white kids didn’t have. You had all the advantages and didn’t take advantage of it. It’s not our fault, certainly.

    Miller also called the Black Lives Matter movement a stupid waste of time […]


    Mahoning, the eastern Ohio county where Miller is coordinating Trump’s campaign, is a historically Democratic stronghold that includes Youngstown, a former steel city that has experienced decades of economic decline.

    The county is reputedly “ground-zero” for disaffected white, working-class Democrats who are drawn to Trump’s promise to boost manufacturing by renegotiating international free-trade agreements.

    Before the primaries, some 6,000 Democrats in Mahoning switched party affiliation to Republican, reportedly to vote for Trump.

    Miller […] said that the Democrats switching over to her party were mostly older, white voters. [That’s the only thing she is reported to have said which is plausible –blf]

    She said there were “some” African Americans but played down their importance, suggesting they were only a small portion of the population and do not tend to turn out in elections in significant numbers.

    African Americans constitute 16% of Mahoning county’s population, which is larger than the state and national average.

    During the past two presidential elections, voter turnout in Ohio was actually higher among black people than white people.


    Miller also dismissed the racial tensions of the 1960s, when she said she graduated from high school. Growing up as a kid, there was no racism, believe me. We were just all kids going to school.

    Asked about segregation and the civil rights movement, she replied: I never experienced it. I never saw that as anything.

    Miller added: I don’t think there was any racism until Obama got elected. We never had problems like this{…} Now, with the people with the guns, and shooting up neighborhoods, and not being responsible citizens, that’s a big change, and I think that’s the philosophy that Obama has perpetuated on America.

    Miller dismissed the suggestion that Trump was exploiting racist or prejudiced views among some voters as the media making stuff up. […]

    When it was pointed out that some people might find her remarks offensive, Miller replied: I don’t care, it’s the truth.

    Obama Derangement Syndrome, Dunning–Kruger, Not Even Wrong, Bigotry, and (probably) Projection & xianity. Deplorable.

  184. says

    Strange article in Slate. The body of the article is actually informative and fine (although I’m not sure what Keating’s basis for comparison is when he characterizes Rojava as just “mostly democratic”), but the headline and conclusion come out of nowhere:


    …Much to the irritation of the Obama administration, it’s been clear for a while that Turkey’s priorities in Syria are containing the Kurds, helping the anti-Assad rebels, and fighting ISIS, in that order. When the administration was still holding out hope of restoring some semblance of peace and stability to Syria, it was necessary to placate Turkey, one of the most important backers of the anti-Assad opposition. Now that Obama seems to have decided that the cruder and simpler goal of routing ISIS from its territory will take precedence during his final year in office, keeping Turkey happy is less important.

    This makes no sense. The YPG/YPJ have legitimately liberated cities and villages from ISIS, and Rojava has worked on a project not of hostile separatism but of building an inclusive and democratic region in a federalized Syria (for more background, see my link above @ #132). Not supporting them would be contrary to the goal of “restoring some semblance of peace and stability to Syria” (even if that were the goal of the Obama administration, which it isn’t – their goals are the same as every US administration’s: resources, capitalist expansion, and power*). They’re the only hope not only for peace and stability but for a just and democratic society in Syria. Betraying them in the name of good relations with Erdoğan is/would be lunacy at the level of the response to the Spanish Civil War.

    * …Actually, that’s consistent with the goal of restoring “some semblance of peace and stability.” The problem is that US governments are so captured by capitalist-imperialist ideology that they never seem to recognize what’s in their own and humanity’s long-term interest until it’s far too late.

  185. says

    Kathy Miller called the Black Lives Matter movement “a stupid waste of time” and said low African American voter turnout could be due to “the way they’re raised”

    Donald Trump’s campaign chair in a prominent Ohio county has claimed there was “no racism” during the 1960s and said black people who have not succeeded over the past half-century only have themselves to blame.

    The Clinton campaign in Ohio should send her a flower arrangement.

    During the past two presidential elections, voter turnout in Ohio was actually higher among black people than white people.

    Which didn’t go unnoticed by Republicans.

  186. says

    Another potentially informative but strange and misleadingly titled article: “Why atheists and agnostics don’t believe in voting”

    The article notes that, while Nones have steadily increased as a percentage of the population, our percentage of the voting population hasn’t kept up. So in 2012, Nones were 22% of the population but only 12% of voters. This year, we’re 25% of the population, and of course the percentage of the electorate remains to be seen. What’s odd is that the headline presents it as an article about atheists and agnostics being against or averse to voting, but provides no evidence of that. You have to get to the end of the piece to read:

    Why don’t the unaffiliated vote? As Pew Research Center’s Greg Smith told me earlier this year, “It could be the ‘nones’ are not connected, almost by definition, to religious institutions, which can play an important role in spurring turnout and interest in politics.”

    It’s also the case that the unaffiliated tend to be younger than the population as a whole. And younger people in general are less likely to vote than their older peers.”

    Age is probably a huge factor in the correlation between being non-affiliation and non-voting, but the author, who’s described as being a data person, doesn’t even hint at any sort of multiple regression analyses to tease out various causes, whether such research already exists or remains to be done. It is an interesting bit of information, though. Perhaps people could do like “Unaffiliate the Vote” social-media drives or something…

  187. blf says

    The Granuiad is now reporting Ms Miller, the Obama Derangement Syndrome, Dunning–Kruger, Not Even Wrong, Deplorable trum-prat campaign chair (see @223) has now resigned, Trump campaign chair in Ohio resigns after no racism before Obama comment (live blog, at the 17:23 mark):

    The chair of the Donald Trump campaign in Mahoning County, Ohio, who said in a filmed interview with the Guardian that Barack Obama started racism and went on about African Americans and generations still having unwed babies and when do they take responsibility — she has resigned.


    The chairwoman, Kathy Miller, released a statement: My personal comments were inappropriate, and I apologize. I am not a spokesperson for the campaign and was not speaking on its behalf. I have resigned as the volunteer campaign chair in Mahoning County and as an elector to the Electoral College to avoid any unnecessary distractions.

    And from the same link (18:19 mark), teh trum-prat Jr admits teh trum-prat Sr is withholding his tax returns for political reasons (edits in the original in {curly braces}):

    BuzzFeed’s Andrew Kaczynski flags an interview with Trump Jr on the Doug Wright Show on KSL News Radio on Wednesday. […]: Who knows if that’s politically motivated or not, but our tax counsel, going through a 12,000-page tax return, has said they wouldn’t advise us to {release the returns}. It could create all sorts of other problems. I’m going to listen to them on that […]

  188. says

    This is a followup to comment 215, 218 and 222.

    Donald Trump wants to take black people’s guns away. Trump expanded on his earlier comments supporting the unconstitutional practice of “stop-and-frisk” for black communities by noting that guns would be taken away from people who were stopped.

    […] Well, there are different levels. and you have somebody coming up who is the expert on it but basically they will—if they see, you know, they are proactive and if they see a person possibly with a gun or they think may have a gun, they will see the person and they will look and they will take the gun away.

    They will stop, they will frisk, and they will take the gun away and they won’t have anything to shoot with. I mean, how it’s not being used in Chicago is—to be honest with you, it’s a quite unbelievable, and you know the police, the local police, they know who has a gun, who shouldn’t be having a gun. They understand that.

    The quote is from an interview on Fox and Friends this morning.

    The people being “randomly” stopped will be disproportionately black and Hispanic. No white men will be having their guns taken away. When “stop-and-frisk” was used in NYC, black and Latino residents bore the brunt of the indignity.

    What will the NRA think?

    Trump wants to take people’s guns away on a nationwide basis, using stop-and-frisk. And he keeps accusing Hillary Clinton of planning to take people’s guns away.

  189. says

    our tax counsel, going through a 12,000-page tax return, has said they wouldn’t advise us to {release the returns}. It could create all sorts of other problems.

    LOL. (This is also a red herring – several people have suggested over the past several weeks that he could release a specific selection of pages that would provide the most relevant information. I hate that this would subject him to a much lower standard than everyone else, but it does destroy Jr.’s argument.)

    Speaking of taxes, the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget finds that Trump’s plan would add $5.3 trillion to the debt.

  190. Brother Ogvorbis, Fully Defenestrated Emperor of Steam, Fire and Absurdity says


    The Granuiad is now reporting Ms Miller, the Obama Derangement Syndrome, Dunning–Kruger, Not Even Wrong, Deplorable trum-prat campaign chair (see @223) has now resigned,

    Queueueueue the “PC-Police run amok” and “But Freeze Peach!!!1!!1!1!!!!1” freakout from the reality-detached right wing in 3 . . . 2 . . . 1 . . . .

  191. says

    It’s been what, five days since Trump recanted Birtherism?

    He can’t hold to common sense any longer. He is now, essentially, back to believing what he always believed. And, of course, no apology for Birtherism is forthcoming.

    Here’s how Trump danced around the subject yesterday:

    Well, I just wanted to get on with, you know, we want to get on with the campaign. And a lot of people were asking me questions. And you know, we want to talk about jobs, we want to talk about the military. We want to talk about ISIS and how to get rid of ISIS. We want to really talk about bringing jobs back to this area because you’ve been decimated. So we really want to get just back onto the subject of jobs, military, taking care of our vets, et cetera.

    Translation: I had to say it because my campaign thought it would help me to win. I had to say it to get people off my back. I didn’t really mean it. Mostly I said it to get people off my back. So irritating, all these questions.

    Trump may have started promoting Birtherism as a way to sell himself to über conservatives, but once he had repeated the lie several times, he believed it. What Trump says is Truth. That’s how he always operates.

  192. says

    This is a followup to comment 233.

    Regarding Birtherism, Former RNC Chair Michael Steele said Trump’s promotion of Birtherism was “nothing more than bullshit racism […]”.

    Michael Steele made the comments during an interview on David Axelrod’s show, “The Axe Files” which is a podcast distributed by CNN.



    […] You cannot say to me that given the 400 plus years of this country, that at the very moment the country decides to elect the first Black man president of the United States, you going to ask for his papers? Seriously? Seriously. I can go all day long about what’s wrong with Syria and economic policy and foreign policy with this administration. But I’ll be damned if I’m going to sit here and say “You need to show me your papers first.” That’s not how this works.

    Michael Steele’s brain has too many working parts. He is not likely to be reelected as a Republican National Committee Chair anytime soon.

  193. slithey tove (twas brillig (stevem)) says


    What will the NRA think?

    Trump wants to take people’s guns away on a nationwide basis, using stop-and-frisk. And he keeps accusing Hillary Clinton of planning to take people’s guns away.

    of course Drumph is bestowing magic telepathy to all the cops so they will know on-sight who is hiding a gun in their clothes for nefarious purposes. So only Bad-Guns get confiscated while all the open carry gun-fondlers walk around with guns in plain sight so don’t need to be frisked to prove they have a gun.
    Being telepathic the cops will know which guns are Good, and which are Bad and need to be confiscated. Frisking isn’t to test for possession but to to find their exact location for confiscation.
    Drumph is saying that Hillary, OTOH, will be confiscating all the GoodGuns, and overlooking all the BadGuns so all the GoodGuys will be left unarmed and vulnerable to attack. Make her disarm her Secret Service BodyGuards, And then let’s ‘See what happens’ *wink*, He says in one of his stump speeches to a 2nd Amendment audience.

  194. says

    Regarding all the comments up-thread about Kathy Miller, I was just thinking about how often the media emphasizes how many more people the Clinton campaign hires at the state level compared to the Trump campaign. Even Trump makes that point often (he uses it to imply that his campaign is more efficient, and that he will win even though his army is smaller).

    Maybe it is actually a good idea for the Trump campaign to hire almost no one at the state level. His campaign attracts racist doofuses like rotten meat attracts bears.

    Regarding the comments up-thread about the new statements concerning The TrumpPrat’s tax returns, OMG, Donald Jr. keeps expanding on the truth. It’s a political tactic, releasing the returns would raise questions, etc. And the clear implication is that releasing those returns would sink the Trump campaign.

  195. says

    Trump’s comments about the protests in Charlotte, North Carolina are a mixture of cluelessness and cover-your-ass insincerity.

    […] We honor and recognize the right of all Americans to peacefully assemble, protest and demonstrate,” he said. “But there is no right to engage in violent disruption or to threaten the public safety and peace of others.”

    Trump went on to condemn “rampant” crime in “these communities,” proposing an increase in law enforcement and community engagement to stem “a national crisis.”

    “There is no compassion in tolerating lawless conduct. Crime and violence is an attack on the poor and will never be accepted in a Trump administration,” Trump added, saying that the “riots” in Charlotte “must be brought to a very rapid end.”

    “An attack on the poor” … WTF? The protests (not full out “riots,” though there was some property damage) took place last night near the OMNI hotel and other emblems of wealth.

    Trump said “these communities,” … again, WTF?

    Trump also claimed that African American and poor people suffer the most from “riots.” He specifically said that “law-abiding African American citizens” will suffer from this unrest.

  196. says

    “If You Vote For Trump, Then Screw You”:

    Regardless, in the end, people are still gonna vote for this man. Maybe not enough to get him elected, but still: it’ll be in the tens of millions. (Note to the people causing the polls to fluctuate: What the fuck is wrong with you? I gotta meet the five percent of people who saw Hillary come down with pneumonia and were like, “Forget her, gimme the dictator with dryer lint hair.”) Nothing that Trump says, no damning piece of Trump reportage, and certainly no opinion piece like this one will stop his voters from pulling the lever. Nor will anything stop Trump from being the officious, braindead goon that he is. He will never answer for his crimes, and there’s a frighteningly large portion of the electorate that will always love him for that.

    And so I’d just like to say to that portion of the electorate: Fuck you. No, seriously. Go fuck yourselves. I’m not gonna waste any more time trying to convince you that you’re about to do something you’ll regret forever. I’m not gonna show you old clips of Trump saying rotten things. I’m not gonna try to ANNIHILATE Trump by showing you records of his hypocrisy and greed. I’m not gonna link to a John Oliver clip and be like, “THIS. So much this.” Nothing’s gonna take down Trump at this point, so I’m not gonna bother. No no, this post is for ME. I am preaching to the sad little choir in my soul here.

    Because while Trump is a miserable bastard, YOU are the people who have handed him the bullhorn. YOU are the people willing to embarrass this nation and put it on the brink of economic ruin all because you wanna throw an electoral hissy fit. YOU are the people who want to revolutionize the way America does business by voting for its worst businessman, a disgusting neon pig who only makes money when he causes problems for other people instead of solving them. YOU are the thin-skinned yokels who clutch your bandoliers whenever someone hurls the mildest of slurs at you (“deplorables”), while cheering Trump on as he leaves a bonfire of truly hateful invective everywhere he goes. YOU are the people willing to overlook the fact that Trump is an unqualified, ignorant sociopath because DURRRR HILLARY IS BAD TOO DURRRR.

    The old saw is that people get the politicians they deserve, and I’ll be crestfallen if Trump wins and proves this to be true once more. If you vote for him, you’re not making America great again. You are killing it. You are telling the world that America isn’t worth it. You are telling the world that all of our big talk about freedom and unity and ideals is just a load of shit, and that you would prefer a smoldering dystopia where freedom is just a flimsy cover for evildoing, led by a man who believes that strength is measured only in killing people. You are handing the most important job on Earth to Napoleon from Animal Farm. And you are revealing your breathtaking ignorance to everyone except for yourself. I can’t believe you can’t see this. I want you to see this. I wanna shine a big fucking light in your face and scream at you that Trump isn’t even qualified to be human, much less President. How are you gonna change the system if you elect some corrupt idiot who has no clue how to DO IT, huh? Can’t you see this? Haven’t you heard this asshole talk? THE FUCK IS WRONG WITH YOU?

    But I already know that’s a futile effort. So fuck you, and fuck the GOP leaders who are too chickenshit to stand up to you….

  197. says

    SC @239, that’s one journalist who said exactly how he feels. A good read.

    In other news, here is a too-great-by-half story about a 6-year-old-boy who asked President Obama if he could host the Syrian boy that so many of us saw recently in a video.

    Dear President Obama,
    Remember the boy who was picked up by the ambulance in Syria? Can you please go get him and bring him to [my home]? Park in the driveway or on the street and we will be waiting for you guys with flags, flowers, and balloons. We will give him a family and he will be our brother. Catherine, my little sister, will be collecting butterflies and fireflies for him. In my school, I have a friend from Syria, Omar, and I will introduce him to Omar. We can all play together. We can invite him to birthday parties and he will teach us another language. We can teach him English too, just like my friend Aoto from Japan.

    Please tell him that his brother will be Alex who is a very kind boy, just like him. Since he won’t bring toys and doesn’t have toys Catherine will share her big blue stripy white bunny. And I will share my bike and I will teach him how to ride it. I will teach him additions and subtractions in math. And he [can] smell Catherine’s lip gloss penguin which is green. She doesn’t let anyone touch it.
    Thank you very much! I can’t wait for you to come! Alex 6 years old

    Images of the actual hand-written letter are available on Talking Points Memo.

  198. blf says

    Teh trum-prat has issued a (almost certainly sham) online survey about what he should say in the (first?) debate. The Grauniad snarks it, Trump’s debate preparation survey: refer to crooked Hillary on stage or not? (Adam Gabbatt “is a writer/presenter for the Guardian, based in New York”):

    The Republican wants input from supporters in 30 questions, but Adam Gabbatt offers several more things to ponder in face-off with Clinton next week
    The survey, which was emailed to Trump adherents this week and is available online, asks 30 questions on a range of issues. One asks if Trump should champion his tell-it-like-it-is attitude. Another asks if he should refer to Clinton as Crooked Hillary on stage.


    Part of the questionnaire touches on issues of inequality in the US. One question asks if Trump should focus on his own experience living the American Dream, and his desire to make it accessible for ALL Americans?

    It is unclear how Trump, who was born into fabulous wealth and inherited his father’s company — which built more than 27,000 properties in New York City — when he was still in his 20s, would make this experience relatable to viewers.

    In any case, the survey misses out a number of key points that Trump has focused on during his presidential campaign. Here are some questions that — based on his presidential campaign so far — Trump may want to ask his supporters.

    ● Should Mr Trump imply that the debate moderator is on his period?
      ○ Yes
      ○ No

    ● If you answered no to the above, how would you like Mr Trump to abuse the debate moderator?
      ○ Say: Look at that face!, while pointing to the debate moderator’s face
      ○ Call him a big, fat pig
      ○ Call him a dog
      ○ Other


    ● Should Mr Trump talk about his hands and how they are definitely not small?
      ○ Yes
      ○ No

    ● Should Mr Trump discuss his penis and how there is no problem with its size?
      ○ Yes
      ○ No

    ● If you answered no to both of the above: is there a part of Mr Trump’s anatomy you would like him to focus on?
      ○ Chest
      ○ Biceps
      ○ Abs
      ○ Other


    ● Which of Mr Trump’s businesses do you think he should talk about during the debate?
      ○ Trump steaks
      ○ Trump vodka
      ○ Trump University
      ○ Trump Foundation
      ○ [… numerous others …]

    A link to teh trum-prat’s real survey is available in the article.

  199. says

    President Obama made a joke. Republican Congress critter, Tim Huelskamp of Kansas is offended and outraged.

    Here’s the joke:

    We also honor Wynton Marsalis, who unfortunately, could not make it here today, and Morgan Freeman, who undoubtedly is off playing a black President again. He never lets me have my moment.

    The President made that joke while awarding the National Medals of Arts and Humanities.

    So what’s Huelskamp’s problem? He tweeted: “Obama jokes about race after two consecutive nights of hoodlums rioting in #Charlotte. Outrageous.”

    And: “These are hoodlums, criminals, agitators, not ‘protestors.’ law-abiding Americans should defend themselves.”


  200. slithey tove (twas brillig (stevem)) says

    re 239:
    What he is telling the people who vote for Drumph, “F.U.” is, I think, exactly what those people are saying to America by supporting Drumph. They pretend to support him, but their vote, for that glumph of pumpkin guts, is picking the person who always says F U, because that’s what they want to say to america [sic], ” F*U* America effed me over, so eff america, here’s Drump for you, double eff uu 2 !!11!!! ”
    *yuk* *shrug*
    that”s what I hear, uh huh.
    I say: farck-off anyone who votes for Drumph cuz they don’t like Hill without knowing anything about her. All they know is the lies fed to them by Drumph.

  201. says

    This is a followup to comment 238.

    Trump also said in reference to the protests in Charlotte:

    In case you’re not aware, drugs are a very, very big factor in what you’re watching on television at night.

    Bullshit. There no indications (other than those coming from Trump and his ilk) that drugs had anything to so the protests.

  202. slithey tove (twas brillig (stevem)) says

    re 241:
    Colbert is telling ColbertAmerica to “pharyngulate” [ocal term] that poll, after putting up the URL as ribbon text on his very show.
    I went and filled out the survey in an anti-Trump way and clicked the [SUBMIT] button and was informed the form was “recorded” and click an amount to donate: [10] , [20] , [50] , [100] , [____]
    Refusing to give even a dollar to that vandal, I’m sure the form I completed, and got “recorded”, has vanished into the Write-Only-Memory (for the wombats to eat)
    *shrug* (is getting repetitive today)

  203. says

    I think this is a total that SC was looking for earlier: how much money has Trump’s presidential campaign paid to Trump family businesses so far?

    The answer is about $8.2 million.

    […] The GOP presidential nominee’s campaign has paid his various businesses for services including rent for his campaign offices ($1.3 million), food and facilities for events and meetings ($544,000) and payroll for Trump corporate staffers ($333,000) who helped with everything from his traveling security to his wife’s convention speech.

    In all, the Trump campaign’s payments to Trump-owned businesses account for about 7 percent of its $119 million spending total, the analysis found.

    That’s an unprecedented amount of self-dealing in federal politics. Even the wealthiest of candidates have refrained from tapping their businesses’ resources to such an extensive degree […] he certainly doesn’t appear to feel any embarrassment about flouting political norms that typically compel candidates to distance themselves from their businesses during campaigns. […]

    Among the goods and services that Trump has paid his companies for are $34,500 for lodging and event staging at Trump National Doral golf course, $48,200 for room rental and catering from the Trump National Golf Club in Westchester, N.Y., and $142,000 to Trump Restaurants for rent, utilities, meals and office supplies. It paid more than $1 million to Trump Tower to rent office space for its main campaign headquarters. Trump Ice, his bottled water company, got $1,300, while his son Eric Trump’s Virginia winery was paid almost $5,000 for catering and event space.

    The bulk of the spending, almost $6 million, went to a company called TAG Air for use of Trump’s private plane.

    The campaign has also paid $432,000 to Mar-a-Lago, Trump’s club in Palm Beach, Fla., for lodging, facility rental and catering. […]

    One of Trump’s primary election victory speeches in March, held at Mar-a-Lago, was widely lampooned as an infomercial for Trump-branded steaks, water, magazines and wine.

    And last week, he lured the political press corp to his new Washington hotel by promising a revelation about his longstanding allegations that President Obama was born overseas, which he finally disavowed. Before getting to that, though, he took the opportunity to promote the hotel on Pennsylvania Avenue in the Old Post Office.

    Whatever the campaign paid to use the ballroom in the Old Post Office that day won’t be disclosed until next month’s FEC report. But back in January, the campaign spent $5,000 to rent space in the hotel […]

    Politico link

  204. says

    Just don’t talk about it. That’s basically the Trump campaign’s answer to discussing the issue of racial disparities in policing.

    Mike Pence said as much:

    Trump and I believe there’s been far too much talk about institutional bias and racism within law enforcement.

    Yeah, all that annoying talk about the facts has just got to stop.

    […] US police kill black people at disproportionate rates: They accounted for 31 percent of police killing victims in 2012, even though they made up just 13 percent of the US population. […]

    Vox link

  205. blf says

    Harry Reid on Trump’s failure to release taxes: stop disrespecting presidency:

    Group of Senate Democrats say Trump’s continued withholding of his tax returns shows he is ‘ethically compromised’ and tied to Russian interests
    Harry Reid, the Democratic Senate leader […], said Trump was “misleading the American people” by bucking decades of tradition regarding the release of tax returns by presidential candidates.

    “And that is a gross understatement,” Reid told reporters at a press conference on Capitol Hill. “The American people deserve and respect that any leader of the free world be transparent{…} but Trump doesn’t do it, because he doesn’t respect the office he is seeking or the American people.”


    Trump’s reluctance to make public his tax returns has nonetheless drawn scrutiny from both political parties. Mitch McConnell and Paul Ryan, the Republican leaders in the Senate and the House, have both said Trump should release the returns, pointing to longstanding precedent.


    [Mitt] Romney has also called upon Trump to release his returns, calling the failure to do so “disqualifying”. In 2012, Trump urged Romney to release his tax returns after the former Massachusetts governor was reluctant to do so. […]


    “It’s likely those tax returns will show major income for Trump and his family from Russia — from Russian business interests, from Russian oligarchs,” said Chris Murphy, a senator from Connecticut.

    “It will show that the decisions he will make on whether to turn on or off sanctions against Russia could have a multimillion-dollar impact on his wealth. That’s not embarrassing, that’s disqualifying.”


    In response to the [Washington Post’s reports on the Trump Foundation], Trump spokesman Jason Miller said: There was not, and could not be, any intent or motive for the Trump Foundation to make improper payments.


    As an aside, there’s a somewhat interesting article in the Washington Post speculating on This is why Donald Trump’s tax returns haven’t been leaked.

  206. says

    Sean Hannity, general doofus and guy who carries swill for Trump, is trying to blame the unarmed black man who was shot in Tulsa, Oklahoma for that incident:

    […] Fox News host Sean Hannity is now attempting to smear an unarmed black man who was shot dead by Tulsa, Oklahoma, police on Friday.

    “I understand that in this particular case Mr. Crutcher has a long criminal history and appeared to be under the influence,” Hannity said on his eponymously named radio show Thursday. The Fox News host was referring to 40-year-old Terence Crutcher, a black father of four who was shot to death by Officer Betty Shelby after his car allegedly stalled out in the middle of the road last Friday. […]

    Speaking with KRMG-TV news anchor Russell Mills, Hannity turned his attention away from the police officer who did the shooting to Crutcher to ask, “How many warrants were out for his arrest?

    “None,” Mills answered.

    “Well I read that there was numerous warrants out for his arrest including one assault on an officer and drug trafficking,” Hannity pressed. […]

    Mills told Hannity. “I was able to find a protective order from 12 years ago that was dismissed. I found a couple of financial things. There’s no violent criminal history for Mr. Crutcher that I’ve been able to uncover. ”

    “Are those reports incorrect?” Hannity continued.

    “[…]I have not seen any reporting on any warrants for Mr. Crutcher and I certainly haven’t uncovered any myself,” Mills told Hannity.

    “There has been some misinformation floated,” Mills said to knock down Hannity’s attempt to cast a dead victim as a criminal thug.

    “He did not have any warrants. He had not done anything wrong. He had a malfunctioning vehicle, and he should have been treated accordingly,” Crutcher family attorney Melvin Hall told the Chicago Tribune this week. The paper reported, however, that Crutcher did serve four years in prison from 2007 to 2011 on a Tulsa County drug-trafficking conviction. […]

    Salon link

    Hannity should be ashamed.

  207. blf says

    Related to @251, Tulsa police officer who killed Terence Crutcher charged with manslaughter:

    A warrant has been issued for Betty Shelby’s arrest and ‘arrangements are being made for her surrender to the’ the sheriff’s department

    The Tulsa police officer who fatally shot an unarmed black man on Friday has been charged with manslaughter, prosecutors announced Thursday afternoon.

    Tulsa County district attorney Steve Kunzweiler said he has filed a first-degree manslaughter charge against Betty Shelby, the white police officer who killed Terence Crutcher last week.


    A court filing by prosecutors said Shelby “unlawfully and unnecessarily” shot Crutcher because he was refusing to comply with her orders.

    Shelby “reacted unreasonably by escalating the situation,” according to an affidavit from Doug Campbell, Kunzweiler’s chief investigator, who alleged that she became “emotionally involved to the point that she overreacted”.


    I note the lack of raid by machine-gun toting goons to “arrest” — read: extrajudicially execute — the accused. Apparently, the Tusla goons are not quite up to date with the latest in authoritarian “policing”.

  208. says

    I just heard a clip from Trump today in which his response to the violence at the unrest/violence in Charlotte was concern that it made the US look bad before the world, when the US is supposed to be “the leader.”* It’s his only frame of reference – “Putin would put down this insurrection immediately. If people are able to contest authority in the US, we look weak.” He’s sad and loathsome, and has no understanding that violence in the maintenance of unjust power and repressing dissent to serve the status quo aren’t signs of strength. Truly dangerous.

    * (self-appointed)

  209. says

    Racism in Idaho. Ugly stuff.

    The students of an Idaho high school wanted to creatively express their feelings about the Black Lives Matters movement and asked permission to paint a tribute mural in one of the Mountain Home High School parking lots. They got permission as well as other students to paint in the spots. The murals would eventually fade away by graduation, and if not could be pressure-washed away.

    The problem came when a member of the media asked one of the students for a public comment and hateful racist adults, some with “All Lives Matters” signs, came crawling out of their holes to counter-protest the Black Lives Matter murals.

    From across the street, they waved Confederate flags—and came over to offer the kids “fried chicken” and “watermelon,” which are common symbols of racist stereotypes. Seems like the only racist thing the adults didn’t do was paint their faces black and then put a white sheet over themselves. […]

    The kids at the school, of all color, have been totally accepting of the Black Lives Matter protest but they are not accepting the shameless behavior by the protesting adults. Here is a tweet by one of the students:

    The confederate flag wavers across the street just brought us watermelon and fried chicken…..

    […] Mountain Home High School superintendent James Gilbert addressed the situation Tuesday night in a meeting where some of the press was present. He stressed that the students have done absolutely nothing wrong and he supports the protest. […]

    Protests and racism are sadly a prominent part of our country and since Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump began campaigning and adored by white supremacists, it seems the blatant racism is in full throttle and it’s shameful beyond words. Thoughts are with the safety of the children, and by the way—how great are they?


  210. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    AP-GfK poll shows Clinton more trustworthy on most issues.

    According to the AP-GfK poll, American voters say they trust Clinton more than Trump by large margins to handle health care, 42 percent to 29 percent, and race relations, 48 percent to 20 percent. By a 40 percent to 33 percent margin, more trust the former secretary of state to handle negotiating with Russia.
    Clinton has slimmer edges on filling Supreme Court vacancies, 39 percent to 34 percent, and handling international trade, 40 percent to 34 percent.
    The Democratic nominee is also slightly more trusted to handle immigration, 42 percent to 38 percent.
    The poll shows immigration issues are particularly important to Trump’s supporters. They’re far more likely than Clinton’s supporters to call immigration a very or extremely important issue, 79 percent to 51 percent.
    Despite a focus on national security, Trump has no apparent edge over Clinton on the issue. Voters are closely split on which candidate would better handle protecting the country, with 40 percent trusting Clinton more and 37 percent trusting Trump more. They’re evenly divided on who would better handle the threat posed by the Islamic State group, with 38 percent saying they trust each candidate.
    Clinton has a big edge over Trump on who would do a better job handling the U.S. image abroad, 47 percent to 27 percent….Economic issues are a relative bright spot for Trump. He is narrowly favored as the candidate trusted more to create jobs, 39 percent to 35 percent. In general, voters are about equally split on which candidate would better handle the economy, 39 percent for Trump to 38 percent for Clinton.

    Funny that people trust Trump on creating jobs, when independent economists predict a recession if Trump was elected and enacted his policies.

    Evidently Clinton’s “deplorable” statement isn’t turning into the “47%” debacle of Romney.

    It was supposed to be her “47 percent” moment.
    When Hillary Clinton said that half of Donald Trump’s supporters belonged in a “basket of deplorables,” Republicans thought they just might have found her campaign-crushing-blunder.
    The gaffe, they hoped, was a way to cement an image as an out-of-touch snob, just as Democrats did four years ago to Mitt Romney after he said “47 percent” of voters backed President Barack Obama because they were “dependent on government.”
    But a new Associated Press-GfK poll finds that Clinton’s stumble didn’t have quite the impact that Trump and his supporters wanted. Instead, it’s Trump who’s viewed as most disconnected and disrespectful.
    Sixty percent of registered voters say he does not respect “ordinary Americans,” according to the poll. That’s far more than the 48 percent who say the same about Clinton….
    But the poll findings underscore how Trump’s no-holds-barred approach may be wearing on the country. Despite efforts by his campaign to keep him on message, his image as an outspoken firebrand who brazenly skips past societal norms appears deeply ingrained among voters.
    Nearly three in four do not view him as even somewhat civil or compassionate. Half say he’s at least somewhat racist. Those numbers are largely unchanged from the last time the AP-GfK survey was conducted in July.
    Even among those saying they’ll most likely vote for Trump, 40 percent say they think the word “compassionate” doesn’t describe him well…

  211. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Clinton proposes raising the estate tax on very large estates to 65%.

    Democratic U.S. presidential nominee Hillary Clinton on Thursday proposed raising taxes on inherited property to 65 percent for the largest estates as she bolstered plans for tax hikes on the wealthiest Americans.
    Known by conservative opponents as the “death tax,” the estate tax, levied on property such as cash, real estate, stock or other assets transferred from deceased persons to heirs, currently is imposed only on inherited assets worth $5.45 million or more for an individual.
    Clinton’s plan, posted on her campaign’s website, would raise the estate tax from the current 40 percent to 45 percent, the rate that existed in 2009. But the biggest estates would face rates of up to 65 percent for property valued at more than $500 million for a single person or $1 billion per couple, under her proposal, an update of an earlier plan.
    Clinton’s proposed top rate of 65 percent would be the highest estate tax since the 1980s, and is in line with a proposal made during the Democratic primaries by her former rival for the party’s presidential nomination, U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders.
    Her campaign said the boosted estate tax and a change in the rules to tax capital gains associated with inherited assets would help pay for other proposals to benefit middle-class people, such as expanding a tax credit for working parents.
    Clinton’s campaign said the plan would hit only the wealthiest people.

    Very progressive proposal.

  212. says

    In addition to the general self-spending of the Trump campaign we’ve discussed above, this random article led me to another, and then I found yet another about Trump’s private security. They seem to be a sort of combination Praetorian Guard and sleazy dirty-tricks squad. I’m not a reporter and don’t know if these people/operations alone account for the almost $200,000 in spending in August for the Trump campaign, but if they do, how is that possible? What could account for a tenfold increase in private security spending in a single month in addition to the Secret Service protection? What are they doing?

  213. says

    PBS has released a clip from the upcoming Frontline show about the presidential candidates (you can watch it here). Describing Trump’s motivation to run for president, Omarosa and Roger Stone point to Obama’s joking about him at the Correspondents Dinner in 2011.

    Stone said Trump was motivated to run out of a desire to “show them all.”

    And Omarosa gave this actual quote (I cannot emphasize enough that this is a real thing she said):

    “Every critic, every detractor, will have to bow down to President Trump. It’s everyone who’s ever doubted Donald, who ever disagreed, who ever challenged him. It is the ultimate revenge to become the most powerful man in the universe.”

    This is exactly what motivates an authoritarian like Trump. He’s simultaneously pathetic and terrifying. No one with this character should be anywhere near a position of power.

  214. says

    “Trumpism Is the Symptom of a Gravely Ill Constitution”:

    …A Trump victory would render the Constitution as toothless as the Statuto Albertino of 1848 after Mussolini’s March on Rome. That’s not because Trump proposes violating this or that provision; it is because, to him and his followers, the Constitution is simply nonexistent.

    Trump’s most consistent and serious commitment is to the destruction of free expression. (Note that his response to the bombings in New York and New Jersey was to call for a rollback of the free press, on the grounds that “magazines” are somehow instructing the bombers.) In other areas, his program is torture, hostage taking, murder of innocent civilians, treaty repudiation, militarized borders, official embrace of Christianity, exclusion and surveillance of non-favored religious groups, an end to birthright citizenship, racial and religious profiling, violent and unrestrained law enforcement, and mass roundups and deportation.

    No other serious political program in American history has been as openly contemptuous of the nation’s founding document, of its Bill of Rights, and of the Fourteenth Amendment’s guarantees of due process and equal protection.

    But even if America is spared President Trump, will the pathologies of the last year simply dissipate in a burst of national good feeling? Hardly. Trump was not a meteorite who has unexpectedly plunged to earth out of the uncharted depths of space; he is the predictable product of a sick system.

    “Political correctness” is out of favor, so I won’t pretend that “both sides” bear responsibility. The corrosive attack on constitutional values has come, and continues to come, from the right….

    (The conservative aversion to actually governing, interestingly enough, is not in evidence in states that they control. Legislators in red states are eager to suppress the vote, regulate women’s fertility and sexuality, roll back LGBT gains, silence criticism of agriculture, gut collective-bargaining rights, dismantle higher education, and strip away academic freedom. And state leaders truly in a hurry are eager to call a “convention of the states” and scrap the Constitution altogether.)…

  215. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    A study shows a Yuge difference in the amount of people with health insurance between The Donald’s “plan”, and the Clinton proposals. 29 million people.

    A new study that examines some major health care proposals from the presidential candidates finds that Donald Trump would cause about 20 million to lose coverage while Hillary Clinton would provide coverage for an additional 9 million people.
    The 2016 presidential campaign has brought voters to a crossroads on health care yet again. The U.S. uninsured rate stands at a historically low 8.6 percent, mainly because of President Barack Obama’s health care law, which expanded government and private coverage. Yet it’s uncertain if the nation’s newest social program will survive the election.
    Republican candidate Trump would repeal “Obamacare” and replace it with a new tax deduction, insurance market changes, and a Medicaid overhaul. Democrat Clinton would increase financial assistance for people with private insurance and expand government coverage as well.
    The two approaches would have starkly different results, according to the Commonwealth Fund study released Friday.

    There is a difference between the two parties.

  216. Kreator says

    After Peter Thiel, Silicon Valley does it again:

    A Silicon Valley titan is putting money behind an unofficial Donald Trump group dedicated to “shitposting” and circulating internet memes maligning Hillary Clinton.
    Oculus founder Palmer Luckey financially backed a pro-Trump political organization called Nimble America, a self-described “social welfare 501(c)4 non-profit” in support of the Republican nominee.
    Luckey sold his virtual reality company Oculus to Facebook for $2 billion in 2014, and Forbes estimates his current net worth to be $700 million. The 24-year-old told The Daily Beast that he had used the pseudonym “NimbleRichMan” on Reddit with a password given to him by the organization’s founders.
    Nimble America says it’s dedicated to proving that “shitposting is powerful and meme magic is real,” according to the company’s introductory statement, and has taken credit for a billboard its founders say was posted outside of Pittsburgh with a cartoonishly large image of Clinton’s face alongside the words “Too Big to Jail.”

    Luckey insists he’s just the group’s money man—a wealthy booster who thought the meddlesome idea was funny. But he is also listed as the vice president of the group on its website.
    “It’s something that no campaign is going to run,” Luckey said of the proposed billboards for the project.
    “I’ve got plenty of money,” Luckey added. “Money is not my issue. I thought it sounded like a real jolly good time.”

    “The American Revolution was funded by wealthy individuals,” NimbleRichMan wrote on Saturday. Luckey confirmed to The Daily Beast he penned the posts under his Reddit pseudonym. “The same has been true of many movements for freedom in history. You can’t fight the American elite without serious firepower. They will outspend you and destroy you by any and all means.”

    Tech dudebros… By the way, a good old friend of this blog network is involved in all this:

    Before becoming directly involved in the process, Luckey met the man who would serve as the liaison for the nascent political action group, and provide legitimacy to a Reddit audience for later donations without having to reveal Luckey’s identity: Breitbart tech editor and Trump booster Milo Yiannopoulos.

  217. slithey tove (twas brillig (stevem)) says


    will the pathologies of the last year simply dissipate in a burst of national good feeling? Hardly. Trump was

    … a symptom, not the cause of the disease. WHEN Hillary wins [I’ll assert], she’s got a lot of metaphorical-health needs to address. At which she has some experience. ;-(

  218. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Evidence that the rethugs don’t understand racism:
    Trump Dismisses ‘Narrative of Cops as a Racist Force’ at Penn. Rally

    Donald Trump on Thursday denounced what he called a narrative of racist policing in the wake of fatal officer-involved shootings of African-American men, and said his Democratic rival Hillary Clinton shared responsibility for unrest in cities like Charlotte.

    Pence Says Talk of ‘Institutional Racism’ Among Police Should End

    GOP vice presidential nominee Mike Pence called on the country to end debate about “institutional racism” among law enforcement officers as protests in Charlotte flared this week following the shooting of another black man by a police officer.

    Essentially, let the police kill POC to keep them silent and subjugated.
    Can’t have police treat POC like they are citizens to be as respected as white folk.

  219. says

    Sc @263, your last link to the “Observer” was much appreciated. That piece was well-written, strong.

    Kreator @261, WTF? And there’s even a Milo Yiannopoulos connection. How small-minded are these people. How myopic is their vision?

    Nerd @260, Thanks for that summary of differences between implementing a Trump health plan, and implementing Hillary Clinton’s health plan. The results are starkly different. And, it is another way of showing that Trump does not really care about the poor, nor about disadvantaged communities.

    SC @258, Omarosa is as bad as Trump. Those two think it is a good idea, a healthy concept, to run for the presidency in order to force everyone “to bow down to President Trump.” Sheesh. The big bully got his feelings hurt when President Obama told a few jokes at his expense, so now the big bully is going to blow up the world. But first, he will enjoy the sight of all his enemies kneeling before him. Trump is so dangerous. The more we learn about him, the more we realize how dangerous he is.

  220. says

    Concerning the first presidential debate, which is coming soon (Monday), the Washington Post’s Greg Sargent posted this advice:

    Trump should not be accorded credit for being less ignorant, unhinged, hateful, and dishonest than usual.

    I agree. Please dispense with grading on a curve for Trump.

    Charles Krauthammer said that if Trump “just shows up not foaming at the mouth … he wins automatically.”

  221. says

    Nerd @264, I was offended when Trump claimed that Hillary Clinton is pushing a “cops are racist” concept. She is not.

    In other news, when Trump gave a speech in Pittsburgh yesterday he talked more openly about revoking regulation on all extractive industries, and he proposed opening more public lands to drilling for gas and oil. He is definitely in megalomanic mode. Destroyer of worlds.

    More thoughts on Omarosa’s “bow down” to Trump statement that SC posted: Steve Benen made a good point, writing, “Try to imagine what the reaction might have been if an Obama campaign aide had said, ‘Every critic, every detractor, will have to bow down to President Obama.'”

    Remember what Trump himself said at the Republican Convention: “Nobody knows the system better than me, which is why I alone can fix it…. I am your voice.”

    And there’s this from an interview before the convention: “I feel like a supermodel, except like times ten. It’s true. I’m a supermodel. I’m on the cover of these magazines – I’m on the cover of the biggest magazines.”


  222. says

    This is a followup to comments 184 and 263 (Nerd and SC) in which we see Gary Johnson hurting his own chances by making dumb comments or by posturing strangely.

    […] This week, Johnson also sat down with NBC News’ Kasie Hunt, and during the interview, the presidential candidate apparently thought it’d be funny if he spoke — for a surprisingly long time — with his tongue out. As the video shows, Tur seemed baffled, as any normal person would be. […]

  223. HappyNat says

    The Cincinnati Enquirer has endorsed Hillary. I’ve lived in Ohio for years and read the paper just as long and this is insane.

    The Cincinnati Enquirer, which by its own admission has backed Republican candidates for president “for almost a century,” is endorsing Hillary Clinton for president.

    Curious what the Columbus Dispatch, owned by the conservative Wolfe family, will do now.

  224. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Interesting poll results.

    1 p.m.
    In the final sprint to Election Day, Donald Trump faces a daunting series of roadblocks in the minds of Americans as he tries to catch up to Hillary Clinton.
    That’s according to a new Associated Press-GfK poll that finds that more than half the country fears a Trump presidency. Only about third of Americans believe he is at least somewhat qualified to serve in the White House.
    Moreover, most voters oppose the hard-line approach to immigration that is the centerpiece of the billionaire businessman’s campaign.
    While Trump undoubtedly has a passionate base of supporters, most voters don’t share their fervor. Only 29 percent of registered voters would be excited and just 24 percent would be proud should Trump prevail in November.

    No link to the actual poll in the summary.

  225. says

    Some Bernie Sanders supporters say they are going to vote for Gary Johnson. This doesn’t make sense to me.

    Johnson said in 2012 that he approved of the Citizens United ruling, he opposes a minimum-wage increase, and he has supported the idea of eliminating corporate taxes. None of that fits with Bernie’s platform.

    Maybe some of Bernie’s supporters have been swayed by the fuck-ton of false narratives about Hillary Clinton that Republicans have promoted for years. Maybe the Johnson voters are really anti-Clinton voters?

  226. says

    I am so angry about this that I’m having a hard time focusing on the various ways that Democrats and Republicans are talking about the failure to help Flint, Michigan.

    Rachel Maddow did a great job last night of covering the Senate’s passage of a bipartisan bill that would help Flint, and she covered the Republicans in the House saying “no” to moving the legislation forward.

    The vote in the Senate was 95 to 3 in favor of the bill. Yay! Whoops, too fast with the “yay!” The Paul-Ryan-led House of Congress excluded the part of the bill that would help Flint replace their lead-poisoned water system.

    And that refusal came in spite of the fact that Democrats helped to follow the half-assed Republican rule that all expenditures have to be paid for by eliminating an expense elsewhere in the budget. They did that for the Flint funding.

    But, no, Republicans in the House of Congress are mindless obstructionists. Poisoning children with lead does not move them from that basic stance.

  227. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    A poll from the Lincoln Leadership Initiative is illuminating. The LLI is an anti-Trump republican group.

    Among the survey findings, respondents said if Trump is elected president there would be a:

    46 percent chance that Trump would authorize the use of a nuclear device against ISIS or another foreign enemy;
    54 percent chance the U.S. government would default on its debt;
    65 percent chance Trump would use the powers of his office against a political opponent;
    54 percent chance Trump would create a database to track all Muslims in the U.S.;
    53 percent chance Trump would order the military to target the families of terrorists;
    44 percent chance Trump would authorize internment camps for illegal immigrants; and
    65 percent chance there would be race riots in major U.S. cities.

    Trump supporters shared many of those same concerns, with his supporters predicting a:

    22 percent chance that Trump would authorize the use of a nuclear weapon;
    33 percent chance the U.S. government would default on its debt;
    32 percent chance Trump would use the powers of his office against a political opponent;
    48 percent chance Trump would create a database to track all Muslims in the U.S.;
    29 percent chance Trump would order the military to target the families of terrorists;
    32 percent chance Trump would authorize internment camps for illegal immigrants; and
    36 percent chance there would be race riots in major U.S. cities.​

  228. says

    From the Cincinnati Enquirer article to which HappyNat linked in comment 269:

    […] Trump is a clear and present danger to our country. He has no history of governance that should engender any confidence from voters. Trump has no foreign policy experience, and the fact that he doesn’t recognize it – instead insisting that, “I know more about ISIS than the generals do” – is even more troubling.

    His wild threats to blow Iranian ships out of the water if they make rude gestures at U.S. ships is just the type of reckless, cowboy diplomacy Americans should fear from a Trump presidency.

    Clinton has been criticized for being overly cautious when it comes to sending our troops into battle, but there is a measured way to react to the world’s problems.

    Do we really want someone in charge of our military and nuclear codes who has an impulse control problem? The fact that so many top military and national security officials are not supporting Trump speaks volumes. […]

    The Los Angeles Times also endorsed Hillary Clinton:

    American voters have a clear choice on Nov. 8. We can elect an experienced, thoughtful and deeply knowledgeable public servant or a thin-skinned demagogue who is unqualified and unsuited to be president.

    Donald J. Trump, a billionaire businessman and television personality, is the latter. He has never held elected office and has shown himself temperamentally unfit to do so. He has run a divisive, belligerent, dishonest campaign, repeatedly aligning himself with racists, strongmen and thugs while maligning or dismissing large segments of the American public. Electing Trump could be catastrophic for the nation.

    By contrast, Hillary Clinton is one of the best prepared candidates to seek the presidency in many years. As a first lady, a Democratic senator from New York and secretary of State in President Obama’s first term, she immersed herself in the details of government, which is why her positions on the issues today are infinitely better thought-out than those of her opponent. […]

  229. Brother Ogvorbis, Fully Defenestrated Emperor of Steam, Fire and Absurdity says

    I really need to stop talking with some people I work with. Or hearing their conversations with others.

    Asshole Trump Backer that I occasionally have to work with stated that Trump is not a politician so he doesn’t have to study a problem to know what the simple solution is so he can make an instant decision and solve the problem while Hillary will stop and think about things which means that she will use committees and get input from lots of people which is bad because she won’t be able to make a decision.

    He also says that she cannot legally be President as it would be a third term for her Bill Clinton because, as her husband, he makes all the decisions because Bible.

    He is still discussing politics with another Trumpista and I am trying to drown them out with some Frank Sinatra (backed up by the Tommy Dorsey Orchestra) and failing. I need me some of those headphones that filter out external non-music noise.

  230. says

    Brother Ogvorbis, I second the motion to buy noise-cancelling headphones. There’s just too much Trump-related stupid going around you. It can’t be good for your health.

    In other news, Ted Cruz announced that he is going to vote for Donald Trump. So, yeah, the guy that insulted Cruz’s wife, and the guy that claimed Cruz’s father helped to assassinate JKF, that’s the man Cruz is voting for. Complying Ted.

  231. says

    Stupidity and racism from catcher Steve Clevenger of the Seattle Mariners:

    “Black people beating whites when a thug got shot holding a gun by a black officer haha shit cracks me up! Keep kneeling for the Anthem!” Clevenger tweeted from his account, @Clev_45.

    In another tweeted, he said, “BLM is pathetic once again! Obama you are pathetic once again! Everyone involved should be locked behind bars like animals!” […]

  232. says

    Maybe we’ll soon get more one-degree-removed information regarding Donald Trump’s ties to Russian officials.

    US intelligence officials are looking into the Kremlin ties of a US businessman who is serving as a foreign policy adviser to Republican nominee Donald Trump, […] During briefings given to senior members of Congress about the possibility that the Russian government is trying to tamper with the presidential election, intelligence officials have discussed Trump adviser Carter Page, who runs an energy investment firm that specializes in Russia and Europe, according to the site.

    […] members of Congress were told that Page may have had contact or set up meetings with high-level Kremlin officials and may have discussed the possibility of the United States lifting sanctions on Russia if Trump becomes president. An unnamed senior law enforcement official confirmed to Yahoo, “It’s being looked at.”

    Trump told the Washington Post in March that Page, a former Merrill Lynch investment banker, was part of his foreign policy team. Page’s role in the campaign has been described in various ways since, including as an informal adviser. […]

    Mother Jones link

  233. says

    A House of Congress committee (House Judiciary Committee) is holding hearings on abortion. In the past we’ve heard a lot of offensive stuff from the Republicans controlling this committee, so it should come as no surprise that they are still in ignorant-and-insulting mode.

    So far, they have compared abortion to slavery, black genocide and killing puppies. No, really. They talked about killing puppies.

    […] Rep. Steve King (R-IA) first asked Genevieve Plaster, a witness from the anti-abortion Charlotte Lozier Institute, to confirm that a disproportionate percentage of abortions in the United States have been performed on black women (or “committed” on “black babies,” as King put it). King asked why the black community doesn’t consider that “genocide.” Plaster said that some black pro-life organizations do.

    Then King turned to Johnson and asked, without preamble: “If one were to be there at the delivery of a litter of puppies, and as a puppy was partially delivered, took a device and either crushed the skull or sucked the brains out of that baby puppy, would you be committing a crime in most states?”

    After a moment, Johnson responded somewhat incredulously: “I couldn’t speak to what’s considered a crime with puppies.”

    “If I ask you to research that and come back to this panel with a response … could you do that?” King asked. “Would you do that, I know you could do that.”

    “I could,” Johnson said. “And I could also talk to you about the research and the anecdotal information I have about black communities.”

    The room erupted into applause. “I would love to talk about black communities, if you’d like me to,” Johnson said.

    Later, Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX) invoked the Supreme Court’s Dred Scott decision to suggest — as many Republicans and conservatives often do — that abortion is like slavery because women treat fetuses like “property.”

    Johnson’s response to that idea, which again sparked applause from the room, was: “It’s interesting that we’re bringing up slavery in this space. When you own somebody’s decision-making, you own them.” […]

    Vox link

  234. says

    This is a followup to comments 258, 265 and 267.

    Wonkette covered the Frontline show in which Omarosa made those startling comments, and they covered it hilariously:

    […] President Obama, the president (WHILE HE WAS KILLING OSAMA BIN LADEN) made fun of Trump for HOURS AND HOURS at the White House Correspondents Dinner, while Trump just sat there wooden-faced like he was trying not to burst out crying […]

    Trump’s response to the story was like “Nuh uh, I am a VERY SERIOUS PERSON, not a total pussy like that.” Thing is, we KNOW he’s a total pussy, and according to his best pal Omarosa Manigault […] that was DEFINITELY the night the thin-skinned man baby from the tackiest, most tasteless part of hell, decided he had to run for president. […]

    Appearing on a “Frontline” special that’s airing next week […] Omarosa said this about that night at the Nerd Prom:

    Donald’s face was so incredibly serious … he just put on a poker face. […]

    It just kept GOING and GOING, and [Obama] just kept hammering him, and I just thought, “Ohhhh, Barack Obama is starting something that I don’t know if he’ll be able to finish. […]

    Every critic, every detractor, will have to bow down to President Trump. It’s everyone who’s ever doubted Donald, who ever disagreed, who ever challenged him. It is the ultimate revenge to become the most powerful man in the universe.

    […] Oh God. This is Trump’s buddy talking. His loser buddy, Omarosa. She may think she is helping, that she is telling a story about a valiant knight defending his honor, determined to come out on top.

    NORMAL people on the other hand, people who love themselves and don’t have deep, painful self-esteem issues, see it for what it is.

    Trump is tiny, sad, weak little man, who started a bullshit, racist crusade against the first black president (because he is a goddamned racist), and HE LOST. And everyone in that room was laughing at Trump, not with him, because everybody who’s anybody knows Trump is a fraud, that he actually doesn’t belong among them, that he cheated his way to the top, but isn’t really at the “top” of anything. He’s a laughingstock, and he deserves to be treated as such.

    And Omarosa — all smiles! — says she can’t wait to see every knee bow and every tongue confess that Donald Trump is Lord. Or Hitler. Or whatever he really wants to be inside his tiny-brained soul.

    Oh, Omarosa, what have you done? You told the truth […]

    Michael D’Antonio, author of The Truth About Trump, adds in the clip that “this is personal for him” and that it is a “burning, personal need he has to redeem himself from being humiliated by the first black president,” and if that is not enough to convince you that the man has no business anywhere near the Oval Office — that he has such contempt for the office he’s running for that he’s only trying to get there to prove he’s better than Obama (which he is CLEARLY not) — then nothing will, and fuck you. […]

  235. says

    In other news, Ted Cruz announced that he is going to vote for Donald Trump. So, yeah, the guy that insulted Cruz’s wife, and the guy that claimed Cruz’s father helped to assassinate JKF, that’s the man Cruz is voting for. Complying Ted.

    I think there are two possibilities: 1) they have something on him; 2) as an authoritarian, Cruz is incapable of standing up to social pressure for any length of time

    Trump, naturally, will see it as his having dominated/defeated Cruz, and will have nothing but contempt for him and his capitulation.

    “The myth of Gary Johnson”

  236. says

    Wonkette also took a humorous, but sharp look at “Congressidiot” Robert Pittenger explaining to us why black people get angry when police gun them down. Pittenger is a Trump follower and he is painfully racist and stupid. He said:

    The grievance in their mind is the animus, the anger. They hate white people because white people are successful and they’re not. I mean, yes, it is, it is a welfare state. We have spent trillions of dollars on welfare, and we’ve put people in bondage so they can’t be all that they are capable of being.

    Here is an excerpt from the commentary at Wonkette:

    […] We imagine Pittenger — who has endorsed Donald Trump — was genuinely surprised anyone had a problem with his comments, since hyperbole has worked so well for him previously, like when he explained the Iran nuclear deal was worse than Hitler.

    Rep. Pittenger’s comments followed on the insights of an Ohio county chair for the Trump campaign, who explained how Barack Obama brought racism into existence. Kathy Miller had to quit her job — so unfair! — simply for saying “If you’re black and you haven’t been successful in the last 50 years, it’s your own fault. You’ve had every opportunity, it was given to you.” […]

    Yeah, right. As Wonkette writers noted:

    For some reason, a lot of people didn’t take too kindly to Pittenger’s comments, which were really little more than standard GOP anti-Great Society talking points, but delivered without the usual varnish of euphemism.

    Pittenger later took to Twitter to notpologize — not because he’d said anything inherently racist or anything, but because he was all upset over the protests in Charlotte, so he didn’t word things goodly […]

  237. says

    This is kind of funny, and it is also a smart move from the Clinton campaign. They are seating Donald Trump’s nemesis, Mark Cuban, in the front row at the debate on Monday.

    Mark Cuban, the owner of the Dallas Mavericks, was invited by the Clinton campaign to sit in the front row at Monday night’s debate.

    “Just got a front row seat to watch @HillaryClinton overwhelm @realDonaldTrump at the “Humbling at Hofstra” on Monday,” Cuban tweeted. “It Is On!”

    Cuban is a real multi-billionaire, and a successful businessman, as opposed to Trump’s fake status. And Cuban has repeatedly needled Trump: for example, he challenged Trump to sit down for an interview with him. If Trump agreed, Cuban promised to give $10 million to Trump’s charity of choice (the Donald J. Trump Foundation, we presume). Trump has not accepted the challenge.

    Cuban has also repeatedly criticized Trump for not releasing his taxes. Cuban called Trump “batshit crazy.”

  238. says

    And everyone in that room was laughing at Trump, not with him, because everybody who’s anybody knows Trump is a fraud, that he actually doesn’t belong among them, that he cheated his way to the top, but isn’t really at the “top” of anything. He’s a laughingstock, and he deserves to be treated as such.

    That’s the thing. He hears criticism of his proposed wall, Muslim ban, cruel comments, incitement of violence, stop-and-frisk, torture, etc., as “He’s too tough,” and so he’s rather pleased with it. This clip, however, shows him to be pitiable and ridiculous; and people (including him) are again reminded of and watching Obama’s mockery of him. That’s the worst possible experience for an authoritarian like Trump – it’s psychologically unbearable and generally leads to desperate efforts to escape the feelings of worthlessness and humiliation (as his response to Obama’s 2011 jokes itself shows). Add this to the pieces in GQ and the Observer, and there might be a Twitter or other public meltdown shortly. And if Clinton says anything during the debate that contributes to this psychological state, he could explode.

  239. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    This is pretty much expected, but nice to see. LGBT voters support Clinton over Trump.

    A large majority of registered LGBT voters support Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump, according to results of two weeks of the NBC News|SurveyMonkey Weekly Election Tracking Poll.

    Seventy-two percent of registered LGBT voters support Clinton, compared to 20 percent who support Trump…

    When Libertarian Gary Johnson and Green Party candidate Jill Stein are added to the match-up question, Clinton still maintained the lead among registered LGBT voters with 63 percent support. Trump, on the other hand, had 15 percent support. Johnson was not far behind with 13 percent, followed by 8 percent support for Stein.

    21% support the 3rd/4th party candidates compared to Trump at 15%. No The Donald, they don’t think you are anybody but a bigot.

  240. says

    “Donald Trump Either Lied to the Republicans or Broke the Law (Exclusive)”:

    Trump had been boasting for weeks at his rallies that he knew the political system better than anyone, because he had essentially bought off politicians for decades by giving them campaign contributions when he wanted something. He also proclaimed that only he—as an outsider who had participated in such corruption of American democracy at a high level—could clean it up. During the September 2015 debate, one of Trump’s rivals, former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, verified Trump’s claim, saying the billionaire had tried to buy him off with favors and contributions when he was Florida’s governor.

    “The one guy that had some special interests that I know of that tried to get me to change my views on something—that was generous and gave me money—was Donald Trump,” Bush said. “He wanted casino gambling in Florida.”

    Trump interrupted Bush:

    Trump: I didn’t—

    Bush: Yes, you did.

    Trump: Totally false.

    Bush: You wanted it, and you didn’t get it, because I was opposed to—

    Trump: I would have gotten it….

    …Contrary to his many vague stories on the campaign trail about being a cash-doling political puppet master, this story has a name, a specific goal and ends in failure. If Bush was telling the truth, then Trump would have had to admit he lost a round and, as he assured the audience, that would not have happened. When he wants something, he gets it.

    But that wasn’t the point he needed to make in 2007. The deposition was part of a lawsuit he’d filed against Richard Fields, whom Trump had hired to manage the expansion of his casino business into Florida. In the suit, Trump claimed that Fields had quit and taken all of the information he obtained while working for Trump to another company. Under oath, Trump said he did want to get into casino gambling in Florida but didn’t because he had been cheated by Fields.

    One of these stories is a lie—a detailed, self-serving fabrication. But unlike the mountain of other lies he has told, this time the character trait that leads to Trump’s mendacity is on full display: He makes things up when he doesn’t want to admit he lost….

    Trump must be called upon to answer the troubling questions raised by the episode regarding Bush and gambling in Florida: Is the Republican nominee a perjurer or just a liar? If he refuses to answer—just as he has refused to address almost every other question about his character and background—Trump supporters must carefully consider whether they want to vote for a man who at best has treated them like fools over the past year and at worst committed a crime[.]

  241. Brother Ogvorbis, Fully Defenestrated Emperor of Steam, Fire and Absurdity says

    I kinda like this one (from the same thread (well, like in a dark way)):

    Owen Ellickson ‏@onlxn Sep 22
    RYAN: Rally?
    TRUMP: Yep. Bobby Knight’s introducing me. I had him praise Paterno.
    RYAN: Why?
    TRUMP: Just seeing if there’s a bottom

  242. blf says

    This is hilarious. Boris Johnson, who years ago as a UK newspaper columnist in Brussels repeatedly lied about the EU, and more recently was a major liar for the UK leaving the EU (“BrExit”), in the interim London’s mayor and is now the UK’s Foreign Minister — but still a lying fascist loon — has just had his arse handled to him, France and Germany brush off Johnson’s EU ‘baloney’ jibe:

    Finance ministers offer to explain Lisbon treaty to him ‘in good English’
    Johnson [had said] that the EU’s position that there was an automatic trade-off between access to the single market and free movement [of people] was complete baloney.

    Asked about the remarks at a news conference in Berlin, the German finance minister, Wolfgang Schäuble, and his French counterpart, Michel Sapin, shot glances at each other before the German host responded.

    “We just looked at each other because we’re used to respecting foreign ministers a lot,” Schäuble said.

    “If we need to do more, we will gladly send her majesty’s foreign minister a copy of the Lisbon treaty. Then he can read that there is a certain link between the single market and the four core principles in Europe,” he said.

    “I can also say it in English. So if clarification is necessary we can pay a visit and explain this to him in good English,” Schäuble said.

    Sapin, in a French twist on Johnson’s “baloney” jibe, said: “There are four freedoms and they cannot be separated. So if we want to make good European paté then there are four freedoms that together make up the paté in question.”

    The UK’s BrExiters have been putting forth this la-la land faerie tale the UK can still have full tariff-free access to the UK-less EU for trade, whilst not accepting people from the EU or anything else from the EU someone doesn’t like (e.g., conforming to labour, environmental, safety, health, et al rules…).

  243. says

    This is a followup to comment 272.

    Hillary Clinton’s response:

    Republicans are once again turning their backs on the people of Flint who have waited far too long for help. It’s wrong, unfair, and unjust.

    Representative Dan Kildee’s response:

    Republicans excluded #Flint aid in the bill to fund the government. Unbelievable. #FundFlint #DoYourJob

  244. says

    Kreator @287, Thanks for that additional information. So nice to see that the founder of Occulus Rift is reaping what the whirlwind for supporting Trump.

    SC @289, Yes, Trump blatantly lied during a Republican primary debate (or he had committed perjury in court testimony years earlier). It looks to me more likely that he just lied during the debate. Jeb Bush struggled to fact-check Trump, and failed. The moderators did not fact-check Trump. Trump is an excellent liar. It is very difficult to fact-check an opponent during a debate.

    I think Hillary Clinton is going to face similar fact-checking problems during the presidential debate on Monday.

    blf @292, I love it that the other ministers threw shade on Boris Johnson. The more Johnson moves up in the political world, the more his stupidity is exposed. He can’t play in the big game. Johnson lied so blatantly during the pre-BrExit debates that I still think of him as Trump’s doppelgänger.

    Nerd @291, There is no bottom in the tank of swill in which Trump’s followers are happy to swim. It’s horrifying to watch.

  245. says

    Here is some good news: The International Civil Rights Center & Museum threw shade on Donald Trump. Trump wanted to visit the museum for a photo op during a visit to Greensboro, North Carolina. The museum’s directors said that Trump’s values are contrary to those of the museum. Right on.

    Rachel Maddow covered this nice moment of schadenfreude.

  246. says

    This is a followup to comment 295.

    Here is the excellent shade thrown by the International Civil Rights Center & Museum:

    The International Civil Rights Center & Museum is a non-partisan, non-profit organization that is committed to advancing an enlightened understanding of civil and human rights. Any reasonable observer can conclude–and many have–that Donald J. Trump is in comprehensive opposition to the values and the mission of the Civil Rights Museum. As a practical matter as well, the Museum is not in a position to suspend its operations to serve as a backdrop to legitimize Mr. Trump’s ideological positions.

  247. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    The New York Times has endorsed Hillary Clinton for President.

    The New York Times endorsed Democrat Hillary Clinton for the White House on Saturday, saying she was more qualified than Republican presidential rival Donald Trump to handle the challenges facing the United States.
    The newspaper described Clinton as “one of the most tenacious politicians of her generation” and said she had displayed a command of policy and diplomatic nuance while building a reputation for grit and bipartisan cooperation.
    “A lifetime’s commitment to solving problems in the real world qualifies Hillary Clinton for this job, and the country should put her to work,” the Times said of the former secretary of state and U.S. senator from New York.
    Clinton will face off against Trump on Monday night in the first of three presidential debates, with opinion polls showing her once sizable lead over the New York businessman narrowing amid continued public doubts about her trustworthiness.
    The Times said Clinton’s mistakes had distorted perceptions of her character, but praised her work restoring U.S. credibility in foreign affairs as secretary of state and on behalf of children, women and families throughout her career.
    “Mrs. Clinton has shown herself to be a realist who believes America cannot simply withdraw behind oceans and walls, but must engage confidently in the world to protect its interests and be true to its values,” the newspaper said.
    It said Clinton’s decision to use a private email server for government work as secretary of state deserved the scrutiny it has received in the campaign, but considered alongside the real challenges facing the United States it “looks like a matter for the help desk.”

  248. says

    This is, sort of, a followup to SC’s comment 158.

    The New York Times editorial board has endorsed Hillary Clinton:

    In any normal election year, we’d compare the two presidential candidates side by side on the issues. But this is not a normal election year. A comparison like that would be an empty exercise in a race where one candidate — our choice, Hillary Clinton — has a record of service and a raft of pragmatic ideas, and the other, Donald Trump, discloses nothing concrete about himself or his plans while promising the moon and offering the stars on layaway. […]

    But this endorsement would also be an empty exercise if it merely affirmed the choice of Clinton supporters. We’re aiming instead to persuade those of you who are hesitating to vote for Mrs. Clinton — because you are reluctant to vote for a Democrat, or for another Clinton, or for a candidate who might appear, on the surface, not to offer change from an establishment that seems indifferent and a political system that seems broken.

    Running down the other guy won’t suffice to make that argument. The best case for Hillary Clinton cannot be, and is not, that she isn’t Donald Trump.

    The best case is, instead, about the challenges this country faces, and Mrs. Clinton’s capacity to rise to them.

    The next president will take office with bigoted, tribalist movements and their leaders on the march. In the Middle East and across Asia, in Russia and Eastern Europe, even in Britain and the United States, war, terrorism and the pressures of globalization are eroding democratic values, fraying alliances and challenging the ideals of tolerance and charity. […]

    Over 40 years in public life, Hillary Clinton has studied these forces and weighed responses to these problems. Our endorsement is rooted in respect for her intellect, experience, toughness and courage over a career of almost continuous public service, often as the first or only woman in the arena. […]

    Mrs. Clinton’s occasional missteps, combined with attacks on her trustworthiness, have distorted perceptions of her character. She is one of the most tenacious politicians of her generation, whose willingness to study and correct course is rare in an age of unyielding partisanship. As first lady, she rebounded from professional setbacks and personal trials with astounding resilience. Over eight years in the Senate and four as secretary of state, she built a reputation for grit and bipartisan collaboration. She displayed a command of policy and diplomatic nuance and an ability to listen to constituents and colleagues that are all too exceptional in Washington. […]

    A lifetime’s commitment to solving problems in the real world qualifies Hillary Clinton for this job, and the country should put her to work.

    You can use the article to convince fence-sitters. Many more details are available in the full article.

  249. says

    Nerd and I were thinking alike. We both posted the NYT endorsement.

    Other media outlets have noted that the NYT’s editorial board did not shy away from noting Clinton’s mistakes, such as her vote for the Iraq war, but they also noted that she has acknowledged these mistakes.

    The NYT rebuked overheated and distorted coverage of other mistakes, like the email use.

    The NYT highlighted one of Clinton’s foreign policy success: she pushed for sanctions against Iran, and those sanctions eventually led to last year’s nuclear deal (which is working well so far). This was an example of Clinton’s incremental approach which led to good results in the long term.

  250. says

    A white female police officer in Georgia claimed that a black man shot her. Actually, she shot herself.

    An officer shot. A bullet stopped by body armor. A 10-day chase for an unidentified shooter. A newly hired Jackson police officer told a compelling story about what happened late the night of Sept. 13. After only three months on the job, Sherry Hall found herself immersed in a high-profile shooting, pitting a white officer against a black man. At least, that was her account of what happened. But she made the whole thing up, according to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation

    On Friday, Hall was charged with four felonies, including evidence tampering and giving false statements to investigators. After her account began to unravel over the past two weeks, investigators were left with little to conclude other than she shot herself, but officials stopped short of saying so Friday.“Cops are humans and they make mistakes, but this is not a mistake,” Butts County Sheriff Gary Long said at a news conference. “This is criminal.”

    GBI Special Agent Joe Wooten said Hall is on paid administrative leave after checking herself into a “private facility” to seek help.“Upon release, she will be arrested,” Wooten said.

    AJC News link

  251. says

    I used to read Roger Angell’s coverage of sports in The New Yorker. He pulled off an unlikely feat, marrying literary excellence with sports reporting.

    Now that Angell is 96 years old, his output has slowed down, but I was pleased to see him explain why he is voting for Hillary Clinton, and definitely not for Trump.

    […] I will be casting my nineteenth ballot in a Presidential election. My first came in 1944, when I voted for a fourth term for Franklin Delano Roosevelt, my Commander-in-Chief, with a mail-in ballot from the Central Pacific, where I was a sergeant in the Army Air Force. It was a thrilling moment for me, but not as significant as my vote on November 8th this year, the most important one of my lifetime. […]

    I will cast my own vote for Hillary Clinton with alacrity and confidence. From the beginning, her life has been devoted to public service and to improving the lives of children and the disadvantaged.

    She is intelligent, strong, profoundly informed, and extraordinarily experienced in the challenges and risks of our lurching, restlessly altering world and wholly committed to the global commonality.

    Her well-established connections to minorities may bring some better understanding of our urban and suburban police crisis.

    I have wished at times that she would be less impatient or distant when questions arrive about her past actions and mistakes, but I see no evidence to support the deep-rooted suspicions that often surround her.

    I don’t much like the high-level moneyed introductions and contacts surrounding the Clinton Foundation, but cannot find the slightest evidence that any of this has led to something much worse—that she or anyone has illegally profited or that any legislation tilted because of it. Nothing connects or makes sense; it beats me. Ms. Clinton will make a strong and resolute President—at last, a female leader of our own—and, in the end, perhaps a unifying one.

    […] My country faces a danger unmatched in our history since the Cuban missile crisis, in 1962, or perhaps since 1943, when the Axis powers held most of Continental Europe, and Imperial Japan controlled the Pacific rim, from the Aleutians to the Solomon Islands, with the outcome of that war still unknown.[…]

    Mr. Trump said, “I always wanted to get the Purple Heart. This was much easier.” What? Mr. Trump is saying he wishes that he had joined the armed forces somehow (he had a chance but skimmed out, like so many others of his time) and then had died or been scarred or maimed in combat? This is the dream of a nine-year-old boy, and it impugns the five hundred thousand young Americans who have died in combat in my lifetime, and the many hundreds of thousands more whose lives were altered or shattered by their wounds of war. […]

    Mr. Trump has other drawbacks I haven’t mentioned: his weird fondness for Vladimir Putin; his destruction of the lives and hopes of small investors and contractors unlucky enough to have been involved in his business dealings; his bonkers five-year “birther” campaign, now withdrawn, though without accountability—but never mind all this, for now.

    Mr. Trump is endlessly on record as someone who will not back down, who cannot appear to pause or lose. He is a man who must win, stay on the attack, and who thinks, first and last, “How will I look?” This is central, and what comes after it, for me, at times, is concern for what it must be like for anyone who, facing an imperative as dark and unforgiving as this, finds only the narcissist’s mirror for reassurance.

    New Yorker link

  252. says

    This is a followup to comment 285.

    Trump is threatening to seat Gennifer Flowers in the front row at the first presidential debate.

    After Hillary Clinton’s campaign seated notorious Donald Trump troll Mark Cuban in the front row of the first presidential debate, Trump fired back by threatening to seat Gennifer Flowers next to him.

    “If dopey Mark Cuban of failed Benefactor fame wants to sit in the front row, perhaps I will put Jennifer (sic) Flowers right alongside of him!” the GOP nominee tweeted Saturday.

    Talking Points Memo link

    Trump sounds jumpy and scared. Also, he is reaching back to the early 1990s to find something he thinks will rattle Hillary Clinton. The feud with Mark Cuban, on the other hand, is current. It is today’s news.

  253. says

    Joy Reid wrote a great piece for The Daily Beast.

    Excerpts below:

    […] millions of them [Trump followers] have elevated an authoritarian carnival barker whose nods to white identity politics careen from winking to blaring, to within spitting distance of the White House. Donald Trump’s rise from reality show vulgarian to the Republican Party’s presidential nominee was fueled in large part by his willingness to embrace the birtherism his campaign is now trying to conveniently discard just weeks before the election (and according to Frontline, his desire for vengeance against Obama and everyone else who ever mocked him.)

    It’s a testament to the cult of personality Trump has created that his followers and spokespeople, now joined by the head of the Republican National Committee, are attempting a truly Orwellian rewrite on the matter, trying to foist birtherism off on Hillary Clinton, as if the truth and lies are utterly interchangeable in Trump’s almost Soviet-style concept of leadership.

    […] Trump seems to violate every tenet of what Americans have long sought as our national image. His casual cruelty, his eagerness to return to Bush-Cheney-era torture as a solution to international terrorism, his ethnic and religious fear-mongering and his tawdry exhibitions of glee when violence flares at his rallies are unlike anything we’ve seen in a major presidential candidate since George Wallace. […]

    […] at a certain point, we have to put aside our reflex to venerate the sainted voter and confront the fact that Trump, and all he represents, is what a not-insignificant number of our fellow citizens—mostly white and male and blue collar […] affirmatively want.

    […] Trump’s supporters either don’t care or can live with the fact that he cheated people with a fake university, stiffed undocumented Polish workers to build Trump Tower and that his foundation appears to be a vehicle for him to spend donors’ money on his own needs and desires, including potential bribes of public officials, garish self-portraits and payments to settle his own debts. […] It doesn’t matter to them how ignorant or outrageous, inarticulate or just plain crazy he sounds; or that little that he says is either realistic or even true. […]

    Trump is, to those who support him, broadly recognizable as an American ideal. He is rich and white and male, with a beautiful wife who does what he says (plus a couple exes who keep nice and quiet); adult children who revere him and a platform to tell the snooty, politically correct, celebrity-filled, secular world to go to hell; and to put certain people—immigrants and women and even “not nice journalists”—in their place. […]

    A Trump presidency would place the people his followers fear—Muslims and Black Lives Matter activists and Mexican migrants under brutal surveillance by the state […]

    […] while that idea is frightening to many, who glimpse the “alt-right” hipster Nazis and other racial extremists waiting in the wings to join in the “revival,” perhaps with the kind of spasmodic violence against immigrants and others that we’ve seen in post-Brexit Britain—to a group of Americans who feel like weak, disempowered Clark Kents, a President Trump would make them feel like Superman.

  254. says

    Wonkette posted some great coverage of President Obama’s speech at the opening of the Smithsonian’s Museum of African-American History. Video is also available at the link.

    In his speech at the grand opening of the National Museum of African American History and Culture, President Barack Obama reminded us again just how much we’re going to miss him. […]

    Obama described a block of stone — on display in the museum’s lowest basement level, dedicated to artifacts of slavery — with a worn historical marker reading “General Andrew Jackson and Henry Clay spoke from this slave block during the year 1830”:

    […] Consider what this artifact tells us. On a stone where, day after day, for years, men and women were torn from their spouse, or their child, shackled and bound, and bought and sold and bid like cattle; on a stone worn down by the tragedy of over a thousand bare feet, the only thing we considered important, the singular thing we once chose to commemorate as history, with a plaque, were the unmemorable speeches of two powerful men.

    That block I think explains why this museum is so necessary. Because that same object reframed, put in context, tells us so much more. […]

    […] We’re fairly certain Dinesh D’Souza will eventually get around to tweeting, smugly, that Jackson and Clay were both powerful men in the Democratic party, which is why you should see his dumb movie about why Democrats are the party of slavery and Jim Crow. Obviously the real lesson here is that Obama covered up how Democrats are so very corrupt, profaning this stone where thousands suffered with a plaque commemorating Democratic slaveholders.

    Happily, Mr Obama has already given us the reasonable response to such twaddle: The block of stone tells us “about history, about how it’s told, and about what can be cast aside.” Americans have […] chosen to cast aside the hate of Jackson and Clay, and what is valued, what is memorialized in this museum, is the slave block […]

    Obama also spoke directly about what’s happening right now:

    This is the place to understand how protest and love of country don’t merely coexist but inform each other. How men can proudly win the gold for their country but still insist on raising a gloved fist. How you can wear an “I Can’t Breathe” T-shirt and still grieve for fallen police officers. Here’s the America where the razor-sharp uniform of the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff belongs alongside the cape of the Godfather of Soul.

    And then there was this reminder of why a museum is a thing that helps us bring the past forward into today, why history is an ongoing process:

    A museum alone will not alleviate poverty in every inner city or every rural hamlet. It won’t eliminate gun violence from all our neighborhoods, or immediately ensure that justice is always colorblind. It won’t wipe away every instance of discrimination in a job interview or a sentencing hearing or folks trying to rent an apartment. Those things are up to us, the decisions and choices we make. […] But what this museum does show us is that even in the face of oppression, even in the face of unimaginable difficulty, America has moved forward. So this museum provides context for the debates of our times. It illuminates them, and gives us some sense of how they evolved. And perhaps keeps them in proportion. […]

  255. says

    This is an update to comment 302.

    Gennifer Flowers has accepted Trump’s invitation to sit in the audience at the first presidential debate.

  256. says

    An ugly, racist incident took place at the University of North Dakota:

    School officials are investigating a group of white North Dakota college students after they posted a picture of themselves in blackface with the caption “Black lives matter.”

    […] a group of female students at the University of North Dakota (UND) are facing potential reprimand after the image was uploaded to Facebook. The incident comes just days after three other white UND students reportedly stole the phone of an African American student, locked her out of her own dorm room, took a picture of themselves laughing, and then posted the image to Snapchat with the caption “Locked the black bitch out.” […]

    Think Progress link

  257. says

    Sarcasm and humor from Andy Borowitz:

    At a campaign rally on Friday, Donald Trump warned that Hillary Clinton is scheming to “rig the debate by using facts” in their first televised face-off, on Monday.

    “You just watch, folks,” Trump told supporters in Toledo, Ohio. “Crooked Hillary is going to slip in little facts all night long, and that’s how she’s going to try to rig the thing.”

    “It’s a disgrace,” he added.

    The billionaire drew a sharp contrast between himself and the former Secretary of State by claiming that his debate prep “involved no facts whatsoever.”

    “I am taking a pledge not to use facts at the debate,” he said, raising his right hand. “I challenge Crooked Hillary to take that pledge.”

    He also warned that unless CNN, which is hosting the debate, promises to forbid the use of facts, he might pull out of Monday’s contest. “I’m only going to debate if I’m treated fairly, and facts don’t treat me fairly,” he said.

    At CNN, a spokesperson assured Trump that the network would do everything in its power to keep the debate “as free of facts as possible.”

    “We have a well-established practice at CNN,” the spokesperson said. “If the candidates start straying into facts, data, or other verifiable information, we have instructed the moderators to cut them off.”

  258. says

    This is a followup to comments 302 and 305.

    Trump’s campaign can’t get its story straight when it comes to inviting Gennifer Flowers to sit in the front row at the debate.

    1. Trump threatened, in a tweet, to invite Flowers as a response to the Clinton campaign inviting Mark Cuban.

    2. Gennifer Flowers, in a tweet, accepted the invitation. “Hi Donald. You know I’m in your corner and will definitely be at the debate!…” The tweet is signed with a lipsticked lips emoji.

    3. Kellyanne Conway announced on a Sunday (today) morning show that Flowers had not been formally invited, and that the campaign does not expect her to attend.

    4. On Fox News a different Trump “insider” released this statement: “Clinton can’t deal with Trump. she can’t get inside his head with Mark Cuban or anyone else and although there are plenty to chose from, we don’t have any special guests to highlight her many failures and scandals, but we are happy to have Ms. Flowers’ vote.” (signed “Trump Insider”)

    So, yeah, it’s basically another WTF moment from Trump and his surrogates. My best guess is that the Trump insiders decided that blaming Hillary for Bill’s infidelities was not the best strategy. Cameras on Gennifer Flowers might not get Trump more votes from women.

    Remember, Trump did blame Huma Abedin and Hillary Clinton for Anthony Weiner’s infidelities:

    I only worry for the country in that Hillary Clinton was careless and negligent in allowing Weiner to have such close proximity to highly classified information. Who knows what he learned and who he told? It’s just another example of Hillary Clinton’s bad judgment. It is possible that our country and its security have been greatly compromised by this.

    At one point, Trump also opined that Huma was gone from home too much, that she spent too much time traveling with Clinton. He also said that, as a wife, Huma would tell her husband everything, that she wouldn’t keep classified information a secret from her husband.

  259. says

    I’m feeling a bit sorry for the people at Politico who fact-checked everything Trump said over a period of one week. As I think was mentioned before on this thread, Trump averaged one falsehood every 3 minutes and 15 seconds in his five hours of remarks.

    We subjected every statement made by both the Republican and Democratic candidates […]The conclusion is inescapable: Trump’s mishandling of facts and propensity for exaggeration so greatly exceed Clinton’s as to make the comparison almost ludicrous.

    Though few statements match the audacity of his statement about his role in questioning Obama’s citizenship, Trump has built a cottage industry around stretching the truth. […] Trump averaged about one falsehood every three minutes and 15 seconds over nearly five hours of remarks.

    In raw numbers, that’s 87 erroneous statements in five days.

    Trump’s misrepresentations range from false pronouncements (he again wrongly said he opposed the war in Iraq before it began) to the petty (he insisted Clinton had copied him by holding rallies with her plane in the background and insinuated she was “sleeping” when she held no public events).

    He contradicted his own policy on providing health care to the poor, overstated the ad spending discrepancy between his campaign and Clinton’s and exaggerated the size of his primary victories and polling leads. […]

    Though Clinton spoke for less than half as long as Trump, extrapolating the frequency of her misstatements suggests that even if she, too, spoke for as many hours as Trump, he’d still surpass her nearly four times over. […]

    1. “The reason I do manufacture things overseas — I have to do this, there is no choice, because [other countries] have devalued their currency so much that our companies are out of business for the most part.” (Sept. 20, Fox 8 interview)
    Manufacturing is diminishing as a share of the economy, but it’s hardly vanishing. The sector constituted 11.8 percent of GDP in the first quarter of 2016. In the first quarter of 2006, it made up 13.1 percent, according to the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis.

    2. “Excessive regulation costs our economy two trillion dollars a year. Can you believe that? Two trillion dollars a year.” (Sept. 21, Toledo, Ohio rally)

    The $2 trillion estimate comes from a report from the conservative Competitive Enterprise Institute. […] the figure excludes any benefits derived from the effect of regulations. The Cleveland Plain Dealer notes that car seat belts, for example, are included as a cost. But the lives/money saved as a result is not used as an offset, […] the federal government has estimated the benefits of regulations outsripped the costs. […]

    4. “This NAFTA is a one-way street right out of our country. Our jobs go right out of our country, our companies. It’s a one-way street for our companies and our jobs to get out of here. Nobody comes in. Did you ever hear of NAFTA coming in and bringing jobs? Did you ever hear of a new company opening in upstate New York because of NAFTA?” (Sept. 19, Fox and Friends)
    According to the U.S. Trade Representative’s office, “U.S. exports to Canada and Mexico support more than three million American jobs.” NAFTA made it easier to sell U.S. goods in those countries, meaning that some — and certainly not zero — of those 3 million jobs are a result of the trade agreement. […]

    8. “Michigan is getting killed. Ohio is getting killed. A lot of states are getting killed, including by the way, North Carolina.” (Sept. 20, Kenansville, N.C. rally)
    From January 2009 (when President Obama took office) to last month, Michigan’s unemployment rate fell from 11.6 percent to 4.5 percent, Ohio’s rate went from 8.8 percent to 4.7 percent and North Carolina’s rate declined from 9.7 percent to 4.6 percent. […]

    13. “China’s treating us like we’re a child the way they do. They charge tax but we don’t charge tax.” (Sept. 19, Fox and Friends interview)
    Chinese agricultural products face a 2.5 percent tariff in the United States while non-agricultural goods get taxed at 2.9 percent, according to World Trade Organization statistics. […]

    24-29. “[ISIL is] very strong. … These were started by Hillary Clinton and her policies and Obama when they got out of Iraq this is what happened. This is the remnant of that.” (Sept. 19, Fox and Friends interview, and five other times.)
    First, the obvious: Clinton did not start ISIS. The group’s founders include Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, who founded predecessor group Al Qaeda in Iraq and Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, ISIL’s current leader.

    Nor did all of it happen “on Hillary Clinton’s watch.” The group’s roots trace back to 2004, years before she became secretary of state. And while Clinton left the administration in early 2013, many of ISIL’s highest-profile attacks, atrocities and military victories happened after.

    […] the manner in which the administration withdrew U.S. forces from Iraq, it contributed to a power vacuum that allowed ISIL to accumulate territory in Iraq and Syria. The withdrawal, however, was also dictated in a Status of Forces Agreement negotiated by the George W. Bush administration. […]

    Politico link

  260. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    This sounds like a crooked Trump:
    Donald Trump: ‘I Hope’ Trump Foundation Hasn’t Broken Any Laws

    Donald Trump left open the possibility he had broken laws with his personal foundation, saying in an interview Sunday when asked if he was “confident” he had followed all laws and regulations that he “hoped so.”
    His response raises further questions about the Donald J. Trump Foundation, a charitable organization that multiple media reports have found Trump used for personal purchases and to pay off legal fees, activities that may be against IRS laws concerning charities….
    Trump was asked directly by Full Measure host Sharyl Atkinson if he was “confident that the Trump Foundation has followed all charitable rules and laws,” and he demurred, insisting that his attorneys have control over the operation.
    “Well, I hope so, I mean, my lawyers do it,” Trump said. “We give away money, I don’t make anything, I take no salaries, I take no — any costs, I have zero costs, and a lot of money goes through the Trump Foundation into charities. Goes to charities, it doesn’t go to me, it goes to charities.”.
    The Foundation, however, lists only five officers on its IRS forms, and no attorney. Those officers include Trump, his three eldest children, and a treasurer, Alan Weisselberg, who also serves as CFO of the Trump Organization.

    Funny how attorneys run the foundation, but it doesn’t have have a listed attorney. I smell deception.

  261. says

    One thing this Flowers episode really puts on display is Trump’s inability to feel compassion. He doesn’t understand why people, women especially, would have a problem with this. He’s demonstrated this incapacity for compassion multiple times: in how he publicly carried out and talked about his own affairs, in the “John Miller” tape, in his Flint appearance, in his responses to terror attacks, in his response to BLM, in his stance on refugees, in how he talks about violence and other social problems in cities, in his birtherism and lack of remorse for promoting that lie,… Not only is he not capable of considering other people’s feelings, he’s not even capable of recognizing when he should be pretending to be compassionate, much less of pulling off a convincing act. The only thing he can do is pass right over people’s pain and focus on himself or mask his callousness and sadism by thinking or claiming that those harmed weren’t really harmed, that they started it, that they deserve it, that it’s the result of their own failures or weaknesses, etc. He won’t show an ounce of empathy in the debate tomorrow – even for those who make up his base of supporters – because he’s not capable of it.

  262. blf says

    A follow-up of sorts to @308 (fact-checking every trum-prat statement & fart emitted in one week), the Grauniad has been running a weekly column (Lyin’ Trump: a weekly fact-check, “The Guardian turns a spotlight on Donald Trump’s most outrageous claims and falsehoods”) enumerating teh trum-prat’s lies in the preceding week. It has been running since (or shortly before, I don’t recall now) the thugs’s conventionhateorgy. The latest edition is The lies Trump told this week: drugs are a big factor in North Carolina protests (“From touting the successes of stop and frisk in New York to the state of African American communities across the US, here’s a fact check of Trump’s statements”, 23-Sept).

  263. says

    SC @310, thanks for that analysis. Succinct and correct.

    Nerd @309, yes, very scam-like indeed, right down to the fact that his lawyers are not running The Trump Foundation. They’re not even on its board or staff.

    Meanwhile, Trump’s surrogates and campaign staff are getting really touchy about all of us calling Trump out for his lies.

    “I really don’t appreciate the campaigns thinking it is the job of the media to go and be these virtual fact-checkers,” Kellyanne Conway said, in an apparent attempted jab at the Clinton campaign.

    “Well, I think we all had this experience a few years ago of Mitt Romney being interrupted and being challenged on an assertion he made,” Pence said. “I believe it was about the tragedy in Benghazi, and it turned out the moderator was wrong.”

    Uh, no, Mike Pence. Crowley was not wrong.

    From the New York Times: A Week of Whoppers From Donald Trump

  264. says

    An excerpt from the New York Times article (link in comment 312):

    Virtually all of Mr. Trump’s falsehoods directly bolstered a powerful and self-aggrandizing narrative depicting him as a heroic savior for a nation menaced from every direction. Mike Murphy, a Republican strategist, described the practice as creating “an unreality bubble that he surrounds himself with.”

    The New York Times closely tracked Mr. Trump’s public statements from Sept. 15-21, and assembled a list of his 31 biggest whoppers, many of them uttered repeatedly. This total excludes dozens more: Untruths that appeared to be mere hyperbole or humor, or delivered purely for effect, or what could generously be called rounding errors. Mr. Trump’s campaign, which dismissed this compilation as “silly,” offered responses on every point, but in none of the following instances did the responses support his assertions.

    Mr. Trump’s version of reality allows for few, if any, flaws in himself. As he tells it, the polls are always looking up, his policy solutions are painless and simple and his judgment regarding politics and people has been consistent — and flawless. The most consistent falsehood he tells about himself may be that he opposed the war in Iraq from the start, when the evidence shows otherwise.

    1. He said a supportive crowd chanted, “Let him speak!” when a black pastor in Flint, Mich., asked Mr. Trump not to give a political speech in the church.

    There were no such chants. […]

    2. “I was against going into the war in Iraq.”

    This is not getting any truer with repetition. He never publicly expressed opposition to the war before it began, and he made supportive remarks to Howard Stern.

    3. He said any supportive comments he made about the Iraq war came “long before” the war began.

    He expressed support for the war in September 2002, when Congress was debating whether to authorize military action.

    4. He said he had publicly opposed the Iraq war in an Esquire interview “pretty quickly after the war started.”

    The Esquire interview appeared in the August 2004 edition, 17 months after the war began.

    5. Before the Iraq invasion, he said, he had told the Fox News anchor Neil Cavuto something “pretty close” to: “Don’t go in, and don’t make the mistake of going in.”

    Not remotely close. He told Mr. Cavuto that President George W. Bush had to take decisive action.

    6. He said that when Howard Stern asked him about Iraq in 2002, it was “the first time the word Iraq was ever mentioned to me.”

    Mr. Trump expressed alarm about Saddam Hussein and the situation in Iraq in 2000 in his own book.

    7. “You see what’s happening with my poll numbers with African-Americans. They’re going, like, high.”

    Polls show him winning virtually no support from African-Americans. […]

  265. slithey tove (twas brillig (stevem)) says

    The more I read the more I want to reawaken the moniker “Teflon” to apply to Drumph.
    All the remarks and news stories about all the lies he spews, never stick to him and just slough off effortlessly.
    I hesitate because he doesn’t even deserve that as his “virtual” shield from criticism.
    dammit I can’t express how much I hate how Drumph “is a thing”. He is such an example of worst-case-scenario of a “person” [scare quotes, yes] that I remain baffled anyone remains in his favor.
    I can see some initially saying “I hate the system so much, even Drumph is better than the stadus-coal, so go ahead Drumph”, but at this point it has gotten to the point of *cough* yuk *cough* *retch*

  266. blf says

    In a sort-of follow-up to @314 (wazzock teflon trum-prat), Looking for a Trump metaphor? He’s an autoimmune disease:

    The Republican presidential nominee has used civil society’s defenses  —the press, the courts, financial regulation — to his own ends, causing untold damage
    [Autoimmune diseases] result from our body’s natural defenses being marshalled against it with destructive results. Trump is exploiting our political immune system to the detriment and potentially grave peril of the republic. He’s taken what actually makes America great, the systems of government designed to foster public good — the courts, the press, our charity and financial systems – and used them for personal gain at the body politic’s expense.

    You don’t have to look far to find examples of Trump using the protective mechanisms of society to undermine it — and perhaps the most conspicuous example of it is the courts.

    They were designed as the legal instrument of justice: to prevent victimization; to accuse and punish evildoers; to protect wildlife and the environment from the tragedy of the commons. But Trump has perverted the system, hiring seasoned lawyers to bully his way to desired verdicts. (His $10m lawsuit against a Miss USA hopeful who wrote a Facebook post he disliked was just one of an estimated 3,500 lawsuits involving Trump, according to a USA Today tally.)


    Then there are the ways he’s used the press to his own ends. With its mission of truth-telling, journalism aims to protects society against illegal or otherwise destructive behavior by exposing it. But Trump, who parlayed the notoriety from his television persona on The Apprentice into a national political platform, exploits its weaknesses.

    His steady stream of lies is difficult to fact-check in real time, an advantage to him in debates and other events with live coverage. Moreover, he’s worked to actively undermine people’s trust in the press, vowing to “open up” libel laws so reporters can be sued more easily.


    Even if he loses in November, Trump will still continue to undermine trust in democracy — inciting the rage of his sometimes violent supporters with claims the election process is “rigged”. It’s a specter he and his have long floated; confidante Roger Stone predicts the ensuing chaos will be a “bloodbath”.

    Such a thing, should it occur, would be a violation of what is perhaps the most basic tenet of democracy: that we vote to see what society agrees on, and once it’s been determined, we uphold it whether or not we agree.

    Trump seems to have little interest in any such civic-mindedness. And it’s no coincidence Vladimir Putin is the foreign leader he most admires. In systematically curtailing Russia’s democratic freedoms, Putin has already achieved what Trump seeks: authoritarianism, the worst perversion of democracy.


  267. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    A couple of conflicting articles about presidential debates.

    The first shows that since 1992, the candidate leading before the first debate eventually won the election. It’s got some nice graphs demonstrating the claim. (Hillary Clinton is leading about 4% over The Donald)

    The second is about moments that “changed” the election, but goes back to Kennedy/Nixon. They do mention some cases from the first article, but it sounds more like the debates solidified the prior support for a candidate than changing minds.

  268. blf says

    Trump campaign police advocate fired from airline job after criminal charge:

    Vincent Caldara, who flew plane for Pence, accused of battery with weapon

    Donald Trump’s campaign chairman for police supporters in a key swing state, who was also a pilot for the Republican presidential campaign, has been fired from his job after the Guardian disclosed that he is charged with a violent crime.

    Vincent Caldara, a retired police officer and chair of Trump’s Florida law enforcement coalition, will no longer fly vice-presidential nominee Mike Pence to rallies across the US. He is accused of aggravated battery with a deadly weapon.

    Caldara […] allegedly drove his car at a man repeatedly, knocking the man to the ground, causing him severe physical injuries and leaving him with more than $200,000 of medical bills. Caldara has pleaded not guilty.

    He is also accused of seriously injuring a woman by recklessly driving his Harley Davidson motorcycle into her, in a separate incident. The woman has sued Caldara, but according to court filings, officials have been unable to locate him to serve him with legal papers.

    Eastern Air Lines, the Miami-based company that supplies Pence’s campaign plane and pilots, confirmed Caldara’s departure.


    After refusing for several days to answer questions about Caldara, the Trump campaign moved to distance itself from him.

    “Mr Caldara is not a paid employee of the Trump campaign nationally or in the state of Florida,” said Marc Lotter, Pence’s press secretary. [Oh for feck’s sake, Caldara was employed by Eastern Airlines; that statement is obfuscation! –blf]

    Lotter and other campaign spokespeople repeatedly declined to say whether Caldara remained part of Trump’s Florida law enforcement coalition. But references to his involvement, such as a video clip that showed him opening a Trump campaign office in the city of Cocoa Beach earlier this month, where he addressed supporters, have been removed from the Florida Trump campaign’s Facebook page.


    Last Monday, Caldara stood directly behind Trump at a campaign rally in Fort Myers. As the Republican nominee praised law enforcement, Caldara took from his pocket what appeared to be a gold-colored law enforcement badge, and flashed it at the television cameras.

    [… details of Caldara’s allegedly deliberately driving his car into and over a person …]

    Caldara also faced accusations of wrongdoing while serving as a police officer. In Cop Without a Badge, a nonfiction book published in 1996, the Emmy-winning writer Charles Kipps alleged that as a young New York police officer, Caldara paid a $20,000 cash bribe to the attorney of a senior NYPD official in order to avoid losing his job for misconduct.

    Kipps’s book alleged that in 1982, Caldara angrily pursued a taxi and pointed his gun at the driver after the driver cut in front of him and almost struck his car. Caldara was said to have been driving in Queens while off duty.


    A true goon on teh trum-prat’s “campaign chairman for police supporters”. Figures.

  269. says

    “Trump’s Flyin’ in Style on Your Dime”:

    …It turns out that because it’s Trump’s plane and done up with typically Trumpian over-the-top luxury it actually seats very few people. That means the Secret Service detail makes up well over half the people flying on the plane.

    What does that mean?

    Well, that means you the taxpayer are now picking up the tab for at least 78% of the costs of the jet Trump flies around in. Huffpo estimates that the total the US government will pay to run Trump’s jet will hit $3 million by election day.

    If that’s not good enough, since the plane is actually owned by a Trump business, the cost of the travel nets a profit that goes to Trump. Excited now? Me too.

  270. says

    SC @320, that’s a good video. It summarizes Trump’s failures as a businessman.

    Trump’s other big failure, the failure to tell the truth, is finally getting major coverage in most of the mainstream media. The New York Times (comment 313), The Guardian (311), and Politico (308) are good examples.

    Now the Los Angeles Times has joined the fray with an article titled Scope of Trump’s falsehoods unprecedented for a modern presidential candidate. Excerpt below:

    […] “It gives him not only license, but incentive to spin fantasy, because no one expects him to tell the truth,” said Stutzman, who worked against Trump during the primaries. “They believe they’re getting lied to constantly, so if their hero tells lies in order to strike back, they don’t care.”

    Still, Trump’s pattern of saying things that are provably false has no doubt contributed to his high unfavorable ratings. It also has forced journalists to grapple with how aggressive they should be in correcting candidates’ inaccurate statements […]

    At a time of deep public mistrust of the news media, the arbitration of statements of fact, long seen as one of reporters’ most basic duties, runs the risk of being perceived as partisan bias.

    […] the scope of Trump’s falsehoods is unprecedented, and he is dogged in refusing to stop saying things once they are proved untrue.

    BuzzFeed unearthed an audio recording showing that Trump backed the Iraq invasion and a 2011 video in which he called for swift military action against Moammar Kadafi, then the leader of Libya. In the months since those disclosures, Trump has lied dozens of times on both issues, saying he opposed the use of force in Iraq and Libya. […]

    Thomas E. Mann, a resident scholar at UC Berkeley’s Institute of Governmental Studies, said Trump appears to recognize that a faction of the Republican Party has lost respect for facts, evidence and science — presuming, for example, that anything negative said about Obama is probably true. […]

    “He’s a salesman,” Mann said. “He’s a con man. He’s hustled people out of money that they’re owed. He’s lived off tax shelters. He’s always looking for a scheme and a con, and in that sphere, you just fall into telling lies as a matter of course.” […]

    […] Trump spoke at a black church in Flint, Mich. When he started to criticize Clinton, the pastor interrupted and asked him not to give a political speech.

    “The audience was saying, ‘Let him speak, let him speak,’” Trump later told Fox News.

    “That isn’t true,” reported National Public Radio correspondent Scott Detrow, an eyewitness. “In fact, several audience members began to heckle Trump, asking pointed questions about whether he racially discriminated against black tenants as a landlord.”

    When Trump released his child-care plan on Sept. 13, he said Clinton didn’t have one. She did. […]

  271. says

    Another excerpt from the Los Angeles Times article (comment 321):

    […] Marty Kaplan, a professor of entertainment, media and society at USC’s Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism, has two theories on Trump’s falsehoods.

    Perhaps he’s just putting on an act, like P.T. Barnum — a “marketer, con, snake-oil salesman who knows better, knows how to get the rubes into the tent.” Or maybe, Kaplan suggested, Trump is just “completely unconstrained by logic, rules, tradition, truth, law.”

    “I’m confused,” he said, “whether the whole fact-free zone that he’s in is a strategic calculation or a kind of psychosis.”

    My take on this is that Trump actually believes what he says. For one thing, he uses sources like Breitbart, The Drudge Report, and Koch-brothers-funded “research” that is bogus. For another, he seems to operate on the principle that if he says it, it is true. Or, more precisely, what he says in the moment becomes truth.

  272. tomh says

    @ #322
    Just today Trump’s campaign manager said Trump didn’t lie when he stated categorically that the moderator, Lester Holt, was a Democrat, because “a lie would mean that he knew the man’s party registration.” That’s Trump logic – he didn’t know it so he blurted out what he wanted to be true, but it’s not a lie because he didn’t know the truth.

  273. says

    Slate’s article about Donald Trump’s lies breaks the dishonesty up into categories. It’s easier to follow that way.

    Some of the categories:
    Tax Returns
    Trump Foundation
    Trump Organization
    Trump University
    Iraq War
    Lies Trump Tells About Things He’s Said

    Here’s the explanation about just one of the categories of lies, the lie about putting the Trump Organization into a blind trust to ostensibly eliminate conflicts of interest should Trump become president:

    Lie: There would be no conflicts of interest between his administration and his business empire because he’ll place the latter in a “blind trust” that his adult children would run.

    Truth: Such a proposal is by definition not a blind trust. In an actual blind trust, an independent trustee—that is, not someone’s own children—takes over a public official’s portfolio, thereby allowing the official to operate without knowledge of where or how his money is invested in order to avoid it influencing his decisions.

    And even if Trump did end up setting up an actual blind trust, with an actually independent trustee, Trump would still likely be aware of many of the Trump Organization’s business dealings, given that it makes money by having companies pay for the rights to use the Trump name on buildings and products.

    Furthermore, he has suggested his adult children—Ivanka, Eric, and Don Jr.—will run his company, but has also floated their names for possible jobs within his administration.

  274. says

    The editorial board of the Cincinnati Enquirer has endorsed Hillary Clinton. Excerpt below:

    […] The Enquirer has supported Republicans for president for almost a century – a tradition this editorial board doesn’t take lightly. But this is not a traditional race, and these are not traditional times. Our country needs calm, thoughtful leadership to deal with the challenges we face at home and abroad. We need a leader who will bring out the best in all Americans, not the worst.

    That’s why there is only one choice when we elect a president in November: Hillary Clinton.

    Clinton is a known commodity with a proven track record of governing. As senator of New York, she earned respect in Congress by working across the aisle and crafting bills with conservative lawmakers. She helped 9/11 first responders get the care they needed after suffering health effects from their time at Ground Zero, and helped expand health care and family leave for military families. […] She has been a proponent of closing the gender wage gap and has stood up for LGBT rights domestically and internationally, including advocating for marriage equality.

    Trump is a clear and present danger to our country. He has no history of governance that should engender any confidence from voters. Trump has no foreign policy experience, and the fact that he doesn’t recognize it – instead insisting that, “I know more about ISIS than the generals do” – is even more troubling. His wild threats to blow Iranian ships out of the water if they make rude gestures at U.S. ships is just the type of reckless, cowboy diplomacy Americans should fear from a Trump presidency. Clinton has been criticized as being hawkish but has shown a measured approach to the world’s problems. Do we really want someone in charge of our military and nuclear codes who has an impulse control problem? The fact that so many top military and national security officials are not supporting Trump speaks volumes. […]

  275. says

    Zach Gtalifiankis explained why he would never invite Donald Trump to be interviewed on “Between Two Ferns”:

    No. That doesn’t interest me. Doing it the other way doesn’t interest me. He’s the kind of guy who likes attention – bad attention or good attention. So you’re dealing with a psychosis there that’s a little weird.

    I wouldn’t have somebody on that’s so mentally challenged. I feel like I’d be taking advantage of him. And you can print that.

    <a href="

    Here's some of what Gtalifiankis had to say about Hillary Clinton:

    […] I will say she’s very personable in real life. She really is. There was a laugh or two from her – a really big laugh – that we had to edit out because it wasn’t icy enough for us in a weird way for what we were doing. […]

    I was very impressed with her. I can’t say that she probably has the same thing to say about me. [Laughs] We chatted about a book I didn’t expect her to know about. We kind of bonded over this book called “Amusing Ourselves to Death” [by Neil Postman].

    I walked away from that whole interview going, “She’s cool.” I thought she was cool, and I don’t know if that was my impression of her before that.

    [The episode was mostly improvised. Were you surprised how able she was to handle that kind of improv?]

    I don’t think you can get as far as she has in American politics without a sense of humor – especially since she’s been so forced to play the boys’ [game], since that’s where the power structure is, though it’s changing. But yeah, she definitely has a sense of humor. For sure.

    I saw a few people suggesting you should have somehow gone after her harder. It seems like they were expecting “Between Two Ferns” to suddenly become “Crossfire.”

    [Laughs] Exactly. I agree. […]

    Video of the Clinton interview.

  276. says

    Journalists are also focusing on the ways in which Trump’s campaign manager, Kellyanne Conway, lies:

    […] She is at the ready to justify any of Trump’s statements no matter how boastful, divisive, or leaping off the page false. Like Rumpelstiltskin who spins straw into gold, Conway filibusters, evades and does what she can to make the Donald’s statements appear moderate and reasonable. Remarkably, she has even praised Trump’s “humility.” Among other transgressions, Conway has insisted Trump doesn’t hurl personal insults when his whole campaign is built upon them. […]

    Conway’s standard arsenal when asked any question includes first attacking Hillary Clinton and then the journalist who asked the question or the media at large. For example, when asked by CNN’s Alisyn Camerota if Trump will release a document from the IRS proving he is under an audit, Conway fired back: “Are you calling him a liar?” She then attempted to change the subject back to Clinton’s “basket of deplorables” comment. When asked whether Trump will be releasing his tax returns so the public would know how much he has given to charity. Conway defensively replied: “I doubt it. This is like badgering. In other words, I don’t see it as journalism. I see it as badgering.”

    […] Unbelievably, the Trump camp wants to lie with impunity and opposes the traditional adversarial nature of the press in a free society.

    […] This disrespect also benefits the right because they preach media bias as well. A Trump victory would reward contempt for the truth and erode our politics […]


  277. says

    Oh, FFS. Right-wingers are ramping up the discussion of one of their favorite conspiracy theories.

    […] a theory has been floating around the conservative fringes of the Internet claiming that President Obama’s administration is working feverishly to grant citizenship to immigrants in order to sway the 2016 elections. […]

    Their smoking gun? An email to low-level staffers sent by am immigration field office supervisor encouraging them to work overtime to process applications. […]

    Earlier this month, the martial arts entertainer and conservative activist Chuck Norris warned in an WND column that Obama was “casting a wide net of amnesty and carting illegals into every American community with virtually no regard for safety in doing so.”

    “But he does have one thing in mind for certain,” Norris wrote, “creating new voters in every state to ensure a 2016 win for the Democratic Party presidential nominee.” [snipped other examples of hysteria]

    Johnson [Sen. Ron Johnson] also touted the issue on a radio appearance last Thursday.

    “We’re also highly concerned about what Immigration Naturalization Services had done, and now the new service is doing in terms of potentially pushing people into citizenship at a very rapid rate prior to the election,” […]

    “Both myself and Senator Grassley have a letter out to Secretary Jeh Johnson asking, you know, exactly what USCIS is doing in regards to rapidly increasing the granting of citizenship. What kind of corners are being cut from that standpoint?” […]

    Talking Points Memo link

    Looks like more bullshit excuses being offered now to explain Trump possibly losing the election in November.

  278. blf says

    California passes an utterly useless (as in unenforceable & missing the point) law, Law passed enabling actors to remove age from IMDb:

    California’s Customer Records bill has been welcomed by actors’ union SAG-AFTRA as a welcome challenge to age discrimination in the film industry

    The state of California has passed legislation that will enable actors and other film industry workers to remove their ages from the Internet Movie Database and other publicly accessible websites.


    Yup. That’ll work. And it will magically make the ageism problem in movies vanish. While yer at it, also outlaw the mentioning of an actor’s skin colour, accent, and number of nostrils. That’ll make racism and other -isms disappear. And it’s gonna be ah so easy to get every site in the world to not mention number of nostrils or whatever.

    (The article actually says it’s actually limited to “subscribers to a ‘commercial online entertainment employment service provider'” (whatever that is), and “covers all occupations”.)

  279. says

    Here’s what Trump’s good buddy Alex Jones thinks Trump should say during tonight’s debate:

    […] You’re [Hillary Clinton is] on the payroll of the communist Chinese. You admittedly – it’s come out in the Wikileaks documents – get millions of dollars, basically, from the Chinese government. You should be indicted. You’re a criminal. You’re a spy. And you know what? The Rosenbergs, one of them was a woman and they still went to the electric chair. See, that’s how you lay it out. You say, listen, I don’t like seeing women get thrown in prison, but quite frankly it doesn’t matter, a lot of women end up getting the death penalty, Hillary.

    For the crimes you’ve committed, and the treason you’ve been involved in, you need to be indicted for treason. That’s what I’d tell her. It will destroy her and the mainstream media on the spot. I would quadruple and then quadruple and then quadruple and then quadruple down again with just absolute devastation on her.

    Because it’s the truth. I would let her have it with everything.

    Media Matters link.

    Yeah, that sounds reasonable. /sarcasm

  280. says

    Alex Jones and Roger Stone are also trying to help Trump out of the embarrassing (for Trump) feud with Mark Cuban:

    […] ALEX JONES (HOST): How pathetic […] I mean is he really just lusting after Donald Trump? Is this kind of a latent gay worship thing?

    ROGER STONE: Look, he and Trump have not been close friends. But he went from mildly kind of saying, well you’ve got to give the guy credit, to now being the attack dog.

    JONES: So he’s a spurned latent — and there’s nothing wrong with being gay.


    JONES: So Cuban’s got a crush on him and is spurned.

    STONE: Well it’s worse than that. This poor bastard goes out and defends the Clinton Foundation.

    Yeah, that’ll work. Let’s claim that Mark Cuban has a gay crush on Trump. /sarcasm

  281. says

    Here are the TV media outlets that will be airing the debate tonight, which starts at 9 pm Eastern time:

    CBS, NBC, ABC, Fox, PBS, Univision, CNBC, CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, C-SPAN

    If you prefer to watch online, a live stream will be available at

  282. says

    Oh, FFS. Alex Jones and Roger Stone also think that Hillary Clinton might arrange a fake assassination attempt in order to get herself elected:

    ALEX JONES: What about a fake attempted assassination on Hitlery?

    Wonkette adds: YES HE SAID “HITLERY.”

    ROGER STONE: Look, the globalists will do anything. They killed John Kennedy. They infiltrated the Watergate burglar teams to botch the mission and bring Nixon down.


    [Roger Stone continues:] They lied about health care. They lied about war in Libya.

    JONES: So the sky’s the limit. The next 40-something days is an epic time to be alive.

    Wonkette link

    Wonkette’s analysis:

    Roger Stone also says he “fears for Trump’s safety,” which means Hillary is probably going to fake assassinate herself right before she for real assassinates Trump, and they all agree that maybe the “October surprise” is going to be those things maybe, and also election fraud, and oh by the way, we might all get nuked before there is even an election. […]

    Of course, we regret to inform you that Alex Jones is being real effing lazy with his latest conspiracy, because of all the OTHER stuff that’s going to happen to rig the election for Hillary. Does he not remember HIS OWN CONSPIRACY THEORIES about how Michelle Obama had Joan Rivers killed, so nobody would find out about the first lady’s dick? Uh huh, they’re part of Hillary’s plan too, and Michelle’s dick will be the REAL big Cocktober Surprise, oh yes it will!

    And of course, like the lazy, mediocre fuck he is, Alex Jones also forgot to tell us about how Barack Obama’s secret army of Illuminati Beyoncés factors into all of this. Will they be unleashed before the election? Will they be Hillary’s protectors/bringers of doom?

    America needs to know these things in order to make an informed choice on November 8, so we sure hope Alex Jones starts fucking applying himself sometime between now and then.

  283. blf says

    My favorite conspiracy theory is at least one of the republicans elected or reelected to Congress will be either sane or humane.

  284. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Jill Stein, Green party candidate for President (presently polling about 2%), intended to crash the debate.

    Jill Stein is seeing red about not being allowed on the presidential debate stage Monday. But the Green party candidate aims to crash the TV show.
    Her party hopes to “escort” their candidate (polling at an average 2.3 percent) into the first debate in an attempt to get her onstage, a campaign adviser said last week, and she was at Hofstra University for media interviews.
    As Business Insider reported, “Calling for volunteers to take part in protest and civil disobedience in Hofstra, New York, … Kevin Zeesa wrote on Stein’s website: ‘We may decide to have supporters attempt to escort our candidates [Stein and vice-presidential nominee Ajamu Baraka] into the debates. This situation may lead to arrest – it is possible but not definite. There will be actions you can take with us at Hofstra that do not risk arrest.’”

    Evidently, the security people at Hofstra were not amused.

    Green Party candidate Jill Stein was escorted off the Hofstra University campus Monday afternoon ahead of the evening’s presidential debate there between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump.

    According to her Twitter account, Stein says officers from Hofstra and from Nassau County, New York, stopped her and asked her to produce credentials as she was on her way to a scheduled interview with MSNBC.

    “We were on our way to an interview with @MSNBC when we were stopped by Hofstra security and Nassau County police just now,” she tweeted. “Two police SUVs just pulled up and @MSNBC was questioned even though they had credentials for us at Hofstra for #debatenight.”
    Police apparently allowed the interview to take place – Stein was on MSNBC’ with reporter Hallie Jackson beginning at 1:52 p.m. – before escorting her from campus.
    “Jill Stein was on the college campus,” a spokeswoman for the Nassau County Police Department confirmed to U.S. News. “She was asked to verify the proper credentials. She did not have them, and she was escorted off the campus.”

  285. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Many democrats are quiet about their support for Clinton.

    Nancy Kimmel Viola, a 63-year-old social worker who lives about a mile away from Clinton’s campaign headquarters in Brooklyn, keeps a “Bernie 2016” sticker taped to the front door of her Carroll Gardens home, a vestige of her support for the unsuccessful bid of Sen. Bernie Sanders. While she plans to vote for Clinton, she confesses that her “heart’s not in it.”
    “I have to vote for her.” Viola said. “Having Trump in there is too scary.”
    In Denver, residents in the Democratic stronghold of Park Hill posted many yard signs over a local zoning issue, but few for the presidential race.
    “Most of us around here will vote Democratic, we always do, but we’re not overly enthusiastic for Clinton,” said resident Pablo Marron. “But we are united in our opposition to Trump.”

  286. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    I will state that in my area to date, there has been almost no signage about the presidential or senatorial races. A couple of congresscritter signs (democratic), and the rest all down ballot.

  287. says

    The latest from Fahrenthold at WaPo – regarding Trump foundation and the possibility of tax evasion.

    The Atlantic picks up where I left off @ #310 above – “Donald Trump’s Cruel Streak”:

    …People disagree about the ideal traits to have in a leader. But almost no one wants a president who has proven himself an addict to being cruel, mean-spirited, and spiteful. For decades, Trump has been deliberately cruel to others, often in the most public ways. He behaves this way flagrantly, showing no sign of shame or reflection.

    What kind of person still acts that way at 70? A bad person.

    It is that simple.

    Giving a cruel man power and expecting that he won’t use it to inflict cruelty is madness. To vote for Trump, knowing all of this, is to knowingly empower cruelty.

    Better to recoil in disgust.

  288. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    This exchange says a lot:

    Donald Trump laid into Hillary Clinton for Bill Clinton’s move to sign the trade deal NAFTA, calling it “one of the worst things that ever happened” to manufacturing.

    “And now you want to approve Trans-Pacific Partnership,” Trump added.

    Clinton touted the TPP agreement while secretary of state, but has since opposed the measure. Trump at the debate took credit.

    “You heard what I was saying,” and changed your mind, Trump said.

    “That is just not accurate,” Clinton said. She added, “I know you live in your own reality, but that is not the facts.”

    “But you have no plan,” Trump said.

    Clinton rebutted: “Oh, I do. I wrote a book about it. You can pick it up tomorrow at a bookstore, or an airport near you.”

  289. says

    Steve Schmidt described him at the end as “somewhere between incoherent and babble.” People are suggesting he clearly didn’t prepare. That’s likely true, but a) he wasn’t capable of preparing; and b) for the same reason, even had he prepared it wouldn’t have stuck.

  290. militantagnostic says

    Clinton rebutted: “Oh, I do. I wrote a book about it. You can pick it up tomorrow at a bookstore, or an airport near you.”

    She should have added “and have someone read it to you”.

  291. quotetheunquote says

    Lynna @337:
    RE: the Wonkette story.

    With the likes of Stone & Jones, it’s difficult to keep track of the looniness (seems it’s difficult for them to keep track, themselves!); however, I thought that the theory was that the election was going to be stolen by rounding up Trump supporters and putting them in FEMA camps…

    militantagnostic @352. Bingo!

    “I have the best people, the best readers in the world, they know all the words…”

  292. What a Maroon, living up to the 'nym says

    Trump says he had a defective mic.

    Donald Trump said late Monday night that he believed he was given a defective microphone at the debate, asking at one point if, perhaps, it was on purpose.

    “They gave me a defective mic. Did you notice that? My mic was defective within the room,” Trump said after the debate Tuesday, during a gaggle with reporters. “I wonder, was that on purpose? Was that on purpose? But I had a mic that didn’t work properly.”

    There was no clear problem with his microphone during the debate.

    I guess the problem with his mic is that it picked up everything he said.

  293. blf says

    Of course teh trum-prat had a defective microphone. A real microphone would have just picked up “woosh woosh (spittle) woosh… SPLAT! (heh heh hoo)” as the points flew over his head and he made incoherent farting sounds, ejecting lots of foaming spit, and eventually fell flat on his face, giggling.

  294. says

    I am posting most of my comments about the debate in the thread PZ opened yesterday.

    Cross post:

    Trump went on Fox news this morning and confirmed with his answers to host Steve Doocy that Hillary Clinton got under his skin when she noted that he had called a Miss Universe contestant “Miss Piggy” and “Miss Housekeeping.”

    Trump claimed that Clinton didn’t get under his skin: “No, not at all. I didn’t see it that way.”

    Then he proceeded to prove to us that, not only did Clinton provoke him, but that, yes, he was a misogynistic asshole to Alicia Machado, a Latina woman who became a U.S. Citizen.

    STEVE DOOCY: Going in, [Hillary Clinton] was trying to get under your skin a couple of times. Did she?

    DONALD TRUMP: No, not at all. I didn’t see it that way. At the end, maybe, the very last question, when she brought up the person that became — I know that person, that person was a Miss Universe person, and she was the worst we ever had. The worst, the absolute worst. She was impossible, and she was a Miss Universe contestant and ultimately a winner who they had a tremendously difficult time with as Miss Universe. […]

    She was the winner, and she gained a massive amount of weight, and it was a real problem. We had a real problem.

    Here is a video of Alicia Machado talking about the way that Donald Trump treated her. He invited reporters to watch him demean her for gaining weight (she still looked fabulous); and he didn’t pay her for the commercial work she did. He broke contracts.

    When Trump spoke to Fox News this morning, he still couldn’t say Alicia Machado’s name. And he did not deny that he called a Latina woman “Miss Piggy” and “Miss Housekeeping.”

  295. says

    I guess Rosie O’Donnell wasn’t watching the debate, but she did respond to a tweet about it. She also linked to the video of her comments about Trump that set him off – “the 5 mins orange anus can’t seem to get over.” I’m not sure if I’d ever seen it (had no idea it was back in 2006!), but what’s fascinating is that she goes after him for the shabbiness of his pageant, his ridiculous posturing and hypocrisy, his reliance on his father, his bankruptcies, and his stiffing the people he owed. Years before this election, she got under his skin and revealed the truth about his history in a way that none of the Republican candidates were able to do, with the result that this is what their party vomited up as a presidential candidate. So apart for his bizarre obsessing over her in a presidential debate and the sheer sadism his remarks revealed, he opened the door for people to revisit the video that points out his failures as a businessman and a human being and confirmed his deep insecurities. Quite a performance.

  296. says

    Nerd @356, Clinton’s team also fact-checked Trump, as did The New York Times. Excerpt:

    On Mr. Trump saying that the United States should have taken Iraq’s oil.

    It is an assertion that he made a few weeks ago, and one that was roundly criticized at the time. Seizing Iraq’s oil — or the resources of any country — is illegal under international law, and doing so would have likely prompted condemnation from around the world. In purely practical terms, seizing Iraq’s oil would have required tens of thousands of American troops to protect Iraq’s oil infrastructure, which is spread out across the country and largely above ground. It also is probably safe to assume that Iraqis themselves would have objected to their country’s main source of wealth being used to enrich another country.—Matthew Rosenberg […]

    On Mr. Trump’s claim that the United States is “not updating” its nuclear arsenal and the Iran nuclear deal.

    Mr. Trump is wrong. The United States has a major nuclear modernization program underway, at a cost of tens of billions of dollars. On the Iran nuclear deal, he complained that the United States paid $1.7 billion in cash to Iran. It did. But it was Iran’s money, for military goods never delivered to Iran after the Iranian Revolution. (The principal was $400 million; the remaining $1.3 billion was interest owed in the ensuing three decades.)—David E. Sanger […]

    Like you, I noticed that Trump told the same old lies for most part. He did add one new one, namely that Clinton has been fighting ISIS all her life.

  297. says

    On climate change:

    Hillary Clinton brought it up, saying, “Donald thinks that climate change is a hoax perpetrated by the Chinese. I think it’s real.”

    Trump denied that he had said that: “I did not. I did not. I do not say that.”

    In a 2012 tweet, Donald Trump wrote: “The concept of global warming was created by and for the Chinese in order to make U.S. manufacturing non-competitive.”

  298. says

    The link above is to a video of Richard Engel fact-checking Donald Trump’s foreign policy answers.

    A lot of the things Donald Trump was proposing were, frankly, destabilizing, dangerous to the United States. Dangerous to the world order, if you will. […]

    If you’re a foreign country and you’re listening to this, and you have an agreement with the United States regarding NATO, a nuclear deal, or a protection agreement, or a sovereignty agreement, or a trade agreement — and you suddenly think, “Is the leading world power just going to tear up an agreement that we’ve had for decades? What is that going to mean for me? Are my neighbors going to invade?” […]

    He [Trump] talked about, effectively, establishing a protection racket around the world. This is like kind of a mafia protection system that he’s talking about setting up […]

  299. says

    Another great piece in The Atlantic:

    …Voters who just started paying attention learned, in a brief span of time, that Trump was hoping for the housing crash that devastated millions of working Americans (“that’s business”); that he may be hiding his tax returns because he at least sometimes pays zero in federal taxes (“that makes me smart”); that he stiffs the working class tradespeople who help construct his buildings (“Which our country should do, too); and that the federal government sued him at the beginning of his career for blatant racism against black renters (“no admission of guilt/just one of those things”).

    A CNBC person this morning was saying that the comments about income tax and the housing market were “funny,” and that a lot of people will find them funny. Nothing would surprise me at this point, but if true that would be tragic.

  300. says

    I liked Clinton’s presentation of “the whole racist birther lie” issue:

    […] But it can’t be dismissed that easily. He has really started his political activity based on this racist lie that our first black president was not an American citizen. There was absolutely no evidence for it, but he persisted, he persisted year after year, because some of his supporters, people that he was trying to bring into his fold, apparently believed it or wanted to believe it.

    But, remember, Donald started his career back in 1973 being sued by the Justice Department for racial discrimination because he would not rent apartments in one of his developments to African-Americans, and he made sure that the people who worked for him understood that was the policy. He actually was sued twice by the Justice Department […].

    That last sentence refers somewhat to SC’s comment 364, in which The Atlantic article highlighted Trump’s “blatant racism against black renters.” Trump’s reply/interruption was so obviously callous and shocking.

    Now, as far as the lawsuit, yes, when I was very young, I went into my father’s company, had a real estate company in Brooklyn and Queens, and we, along with many, many other companies throughout the country — it was a federal lawsuit — were sued. We settled the suit with zero — with no admission of guilt. It was very easy to do.

  301. says

    An excerpt from Dan Rather’s analysis of the debate:

    Our Founders believed in reason and the power of intellect. Donald Trump made clear tonight by his wilful ignorance of important issues that he does not. Our founders feared the accumulation of power, they loathed vanity, and tried to build in protections against the demagogues who would appeal to mankind’s basest instincts. Donald Trump relishes in all of these impulses. For him they are instinctual and a prescription for success.

    To call Trump a con man, as many have, is a disservice to the art of the con. By its definition a con requires deceit. But Trump has not tried to hide his lies or the sheer unrealistic audacity of his cartoonish policy positions. He has asked the American people to bet on him. The fact checkers will certainly weigh in. The pundits will have their say. But the voters have all the information they need. The judgement is in their – or more accurately our – hands.

    The text is from Rather’s Facebook post.

  302. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    538 has an analysis of the results of the debate.

    Democrats woke up on Monday to a spate of bad polls for Hillary Clinton, which brought Donald Trump to perhaps his closest position yet in the Electoral College. They had reason to go to bed feeling a lot better. Clinton bested Trump in the first presidential debate according to a variety of metrics, and the odds are that she’ll gain in head-to-head polls over Trump in the coming days.
    Start with a CNN poll of debate-watchers, which showed that 62 percent of voters thought Clinton won the debate compared to 27 percent for Trump — a 35-point margin. That’s the third-widest margin ever in a CNN or Gallup post-debate poll, which date back to 1984. The only more lopsided outcomes were the 1992 town hall debate between Bill Clinton, George H.W. Bush and Ross Perot — widely seen as a maestro performance by Clinton — and the first debate between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney in 2012, when the CNN poll showed a 42-point win for Romney and the horse-race polls moved in his favor in the following days…
    On the mitigating side, as I mentioned, CNN’s poll had a Democratic-leaning sample. (On the other hand, if Democrats were more interested in watching the debate, that isn’t necessarily a bad thing for Clinton since she’s had trouble engaging her base.) Also, a separate post-debate poll from Public Policy Polling found Clinton winning by a narrower margin, 52-40. And historically, it’s the challenging party’s candidate, and not the incumbent’s, who gains after the first debate.
    But there are several other reasons to think Clinton could get a bounce, and perhaps a relatively meaningful one. In addition to the polls, a variety of post-debate indicators implied a Clinton win, including focus groups, betting markets, and the post-debate coverage on television networks. The TV coverage matters because the pundits’ reaction doesn’t always match that of voters in instant polls, and it’s sometimes the TV spin that wins out. Voters narrowly scored the first presidential debate of 2000 as a win for Al Gore, for instance, but after intense media focus on Gore’s demeanor, it was George W. Bush who eventually gained ground in polls.
    This time, pundits and pollsters seem to agree on the Clinton win. It’s certainly possible that by the time you’re reading this — I’m writing at 3 a.m. — some storyline that cuts against Clinton (and which didn’t seem like a big deal on Monday night) will have emerged. But the correlation between the instant-reaction polls and the eventual effect on horse-race polls has actually grown stronger in recent election cycles, perhaps because the conventional wisdom formulates itself more quickly.

  303. says

    Analysis of the debate from Michael Grunwald, who noted a few of Trump’s outrageous comments that are not getting as much coverage:

    […] Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen is widely considered one of the least political people in Washington, but it barely seemed to register last night when Trump accused her of keeping monetary policy loose for purely political reasons—even though the policy should presumably be even looser if the economy were really in the shambles Trump says it is.

    Trump also casually suggested that Obama will “spend the rest of his life on the golf course” after leaving office, a pretty disrespectful thing to say about a president, though obviously not as disrespectful as arguing that Trump did him a favor by spreading lies about his citizenship.

    Trump also tried to push the preposterous notion that Clinton was a fervent birther, but a less effective one than Trump, sounding like Mitt Romney would have if Romney had suggested Obama was a less effective governor of Massachusetts.

    And it was really odd to see a 70-year-old man whose latest doctor’s note revealed that he’s flirting with obesity attack the physical condition of his opponent. Modern presidential candidates just haven’t said things like that. […]

  304. slithey tove (twas brillig (stevem)) says

    Donald’s “defense” against the “twice sued by DOJ on racism charges” boiled down to “my father was doing it in the apartments he gave me, and DOJ was charging many people with it. I settled the case with no admission of guilt. so ta-da not a racist”.

    not paying architects (et al) for a facility at one of his Golf Clubs, of which he was contracted to pay, and that the facility is well constructed and frequented by club members. His “defense” [nb] was “he did a lousy job (so I nobody would pay for such a lousy piece of work)”
    A competent businessman would initiate ‘civil legal action’ to withhold payment in such a case (yes. I’ve been through such a case of “unsatisfactory services rendered”, myself). I’ll bet he’ll claim there was a verbal agreement that was not fulfilled so #Donald# refused to pay; disregarding the common advice that a verbal contract is worth the paper it’s written on.


  305. says

    Fox News is doing its best to back up one of Trump’s lies. Fox posted a misleading chart, with incomplete data, to back up Trump’s claim that “murders are up” in New York City.

    […] Fox’s chart used data from 2014 to 2015 to demonstrate a rise in murder rates, but did not include complete data showing that murder rates in New York City are down in 2016 from the same point last year.

    Fox’s misleading presentation is a followup to a discussion about crime during the debate. Here is a summary of that discussion:

    […] During a discussion about crime, Donald Trump again portrayed himself as a candidate of law and order. He pointed to stop-and-frisk, a tactic utilized by police in New York, as something he thinks helped that city and could work nationally. “We have to bring back law and order,” Trump said.

    Trump criticized New York moving away from the practice (it was deemed unconstitutional by a federal judge in 2013), suggesting that current Mayor Bill de Blasio (D) should have fought to keep it in place.

    Hillary Clinton pointed out that even after de Blasio took office, and after New York moved away from stop-and-frisk, crime has continued to drop, including murders.

    “You’re wrong,” Trump said, interrupting her. “Murders are up.” [The Washington Post, 9/26/16]

    More nuanced analysis of statistics:

    […] historically, New York is far safer than it was just a few years ago. The 352 murders reported last year was still nearly 200 killings behind the total in 2010, when stop-and-frisk was in effect.

    Media Matters link

    Yes, there are still too many murders, as Clinton noted, but you cannot blame the cessation of stop-and-frisk for a rise in murders.

    There’s no correlation between stop-and-frisk and a decrease in murder.

  306. says

    Harry Reid commented on Trump’s reply to Hillary Clinton’s charge that Trump did not pay taxes:

    Even as Trump tried to say nothing about his tax returns, he revealed … at least one shocking truth. Donald Trump thinks that paying taxes is a fool’s errand. He knows that refusing to pay his taxes makes him, as we’ve come to learn, a scam artist.


  307. says

    From Wonkette:

    Just a quick de-clarification on Monday’s debate: You may have heard Donald Trump say that if he never paid taxes, that would mean he was smart, but he denies having said that, even though those may have been the words that seemed to come from his mouth. Probably a bad mic.

    Now, if you believe the lying video and transcript of the debate, it might seem like Trump bragged about not paying taxes, when Clinton raised the question of why Trump hasn’t released his tax returns [Video at the link].

    Clinton: Or maybe he doesn’t want the American people, all of you watching tonight, to know that he’s paid nothing in federal taxes, because the only years that anybody’s ever seen were a couple of years when he had to turn them over to state authorities when he was trying to get a casino license, and they showed he didn’t pay any federal income tax.

    Trump: That makes me smart.

    Clinton: So if he’s paid zero, that means zero for troops, zero for vets, zero for schools or health. And I think probably he’s not all that enthusiastic about having the rest of our country see what the real reasons are, because it must be something really important, even terrible, that he’s trying to hide. […]

    Clinton: And maybe because you haven’t paid any federal income tax for a lot of years. And the other thing I think is important …

    Trump: It would be squandered, too, believe me.

    Obviously, the patriotic thing, and the smart thing, is to not pay taxes, because government bad, starving the government good. Clearly, he’s a man of wealth and taste. Which sort of leaves you wondering why Trump would then go to the spin room and deny what a smart guy he was. Sort of — here’s the exchange with CNN’s Dana Bash:

    Bash: It sounds like you admitted that you hadn’t paid federal taxes, and that that was smart. Is that what you meant to say?

    Trump: No, I didn’t say that at all. If they say I didn’t, it doesn’t matter.”

    He then went on to say he hates the way our government spends our taxes on foolishness like the Iraq and the South Africa, and such as. But no, he never said he doesn’t pay taxes. But if he did, he’d be a damn fool. Not that he avoids paying taxes. Which the government wastes anyway on things it shouldn’t spend money on. Like for instance why hasn’t the government bought any beautiful paintings of Donald Trump? That’s a good use of money.

  308. says

    Major Garrett of CBS fact-checked Fox News:

    On @foxandfriends @realDonaldTrump said he won a @CBSNews post-debate poll. We did not conduct a post-debate poll.

    In other news, Trump’s supposedly charitable foundation may be an old-fashioned tax dodge (as well as a slush fund for Trump).

    Donald Trump’s charitable foundation has received approximately $2.3 million from companies that owed money to Trump or one of his businesses but were instructed to pay Trump’s tax-exempt foundation instead […]

    In cases where he diverted his own income to his foundation, tax experts said, Trump would still likely be required to pay taxes on the income. Trump has refused to release his personal tax returns. His campaign said he paid income tax on one of the donations, but did not respond to questions about the others.

    That gift was a $400,000 payment from Comedy Central, which owed Trump an appearance fee for his 2011 “roast.”

    Then there were payments totaling nearly $1.9 million from a man in New York City who sells sought-after tickets and one-of-a-kind experiences to wealthy clients.

    That man, Richard Ebers, bought goods and services — including tickets — from Trump or his businesses, according to two people familiar with the transactions, who requested anonymity because they were not authorized to speak about the payments. They said that Ebers was instructed to pay the Donald J. Trump Foundation instead. Ebers did not respond to requests for comment. […]

    Did Trump, in fact, pay income tax in the cases where he directed his own fees to the Trump Foundation? […]

  309. slithey tove (twas brillig (stevem)) says

    There’s no correlation between stop-and-frisk and a decrease in murder.

    That’s what I inferred from Clinton saying, “S&F was ineffective”.
    Note that of 4.4 Million S&F, only 1.5% found weapons. And of those S&F’s, 84% were on minorities, who are nearly 50% of the population.
    Random stops could easily find very few results, yet if they were random the sample set would be half white, half POC. 84% POC strongly implies bias, that S&F was for harassment of POCs, and not “protection of innocents”.

    According to NYPD (as reported by MSNBC):

    year | murders
    2012 | 419
    2013 | 333
    2014 | 329
    2015 | 352
    2016 | 242 (so far. {at this time in 2015 there were 257})

    I’ll bet Drumph was trying to use the momentary “blip” of 2015 to justify his claim, “murder is increasing without S&F”, deliberately disregarding the trend, and that the trend is without S&F in effect.

  310. says

    Hillary Clinton spoke at a rally in Raleigh, North Carolina today (at Wake Technical College). She made some excellent points about Republican legislators making it hard for some people to vote, including young people.

    She also included a few comments about last night’s debate:

    [Clinton] repeated her debate-night claim that Trump’s refusal to release his tax returns may be because he had “paid nothing in federal taxes,” as was true on the few years of his returns that he made public. Trump replied on stage, “That makes me smart.”

    “Now, if not paying taxes makes him smart, what does that make all the rest of us?” Clinton asked the crowd.

    Clinton said that she and her husband Bill “didn’t come from billionaire families” but have been financially successful in their public lives.

    “We believe with the blessings we’ve been giving, we should do our part,” she said to cheers from the audience.

    Clinton then went after Trump for boasting to the debate audience at Hofstra University about his past comments calling the housing market bubble a “great opportunity” for his real estate empire. Trump said of those remarks, “That’s called business.”

    “What kind of person believes that?” Clinton asked. “What kind of person would want to root for 9 million families losing their homes? One who should never be president is the answer to that question.”


  311. says

    Oh, no. Not again. This is bad news for voting rights in Illinois.

    On National Voter Registration Day, a U.S. District Court in Illinois granted a motion blocking the state’s same-day voter registration program.

    The program has been offered by counties with populations greater than 100,000. Shortly after a pilot version of the program proved to be a success during the 2014 election, a bill making it a permanent feature of the state’s election law was signed by outgoing Gov. Pat Quinn (D). More than 110,000 voters registered on election day last March.

    […] members of the Illinois Republican Party sued a couple months ago to block the program. They argue it gives unfair advantage to Democratic candidates who generally do well in high-population counties.

    In a ruling issued Tuesday, U.S. District Court Judge Samuel Der-Teghiayan granted the Republicans’ motion for a preliminary injunction shutting down the program for now. […]

    Common Cause Illinois’ Lead Organizer Trevor Gervais expressed disappointment about today’s ruling.

    “To suspend Election Day Registration and suppress the vote less than two weeks before the voter registration deadline will hurt communities across Illinois who were counting on being able to register and vote on November 8,” he said.

    “The court’s decision to side with a conservative group with ties to ALEC and the Koch brothers, combined with Governor Rauner’s recent veto of Automatic Voter Registration, signals a step backwards for voting rights in Illinois and continues a nationwide trend of coordinated and well-funded voter suppression efforts.” […]


    There may be an appeal, headed by Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan who is a Democrat. However, the appeal may be too late to get anything positive done before this November’s election. And the results will be very bad indeed.

    Gervais estimates that would disenfranchise at least as many voters as the more than 110,000 who registered on election day in March.

    Republicans should be so proud of themselves. They have successfully suppressed the vote of likely Democratic Party voters. /sarcasm

  312. says

    Rudy Giuliani, one of Trump’s favorite surrogates, said another stupid thing:

    The president of the United States, her husband, disgraced this country with what he did in the Oval Office and she didn’t just stand by him, she attacked Monica Lewinsky. And after being married to Bill Clinton for 20 years, if you didn’t know the moment Monica Lewinsky said that Bill Clinton violated her that she was telling the truth, then you’re too stupid to be president.

  313. says

    Thanks, slitheytove @375, for the additional information.

    I checked, and, yes, Trump and Fox News are using “the momentary blip of 2015” to justify the claim that murder is rising because NY police stopped using stop-and-frisk. And, yes, they are all-too-conveniently disregarding the overall trend of the past six years.

  314. says

    Yeah, we already know that Donald Trump lied during the debate when he claimed to have never said that climate change is a hoax (comment 360), but’s take a look at more proof that he is lying. Just for the fun of it, here are a couple more of Trump’s past pronouncements:

    Ice storm rolls from Texas to Tennessee – I’m in Los Angeles and it’s freezing. Global warming is a total, and very expensive, hoax! [December 2013]
    NBC News just called it the great freeze – coldest weather in years. Is our country still spending money on the GLOBAL WARMING HOAX? [January 2014]

    For current context:

    Clinton: “Donald thinks that climate change is a hoax perpetrated by the Chinese. I think it’s real.”

    Trump: “I did not—I do not say that.”

    Yes, Donald, you did say that. You do say that. You are a liar.

  315. says

    Some economists weigh in on Trump’s blather about the economy:

    […] “if you think that low corporate taxes are what generates growth, then what do you say to the fact that the lowest corporate tax rate in the world is in Turkmenistan?” [Austan Goolsbee, a University of Chicago economist]
    “Basically no serious economist believes that the problem is that the US hasn’t struck tough trade deals.” [Justin Wolfers, University of Michigan economist and New York Times columnist]
    “Companies? Are you sick of selling to so many people in China? Don’t worry Trump will help contain your market to something easier to handle.” [Betsey Stevenson, University of Michigan economist and former Chief Economist at the Department Of Labor]
    “Could someone point out that jobs have been growing very rapidly under Obama and his regulations?” [Dean Baker of the Center for Economic and Policy Research ]

  316. says

    Rush Limbaugh’s analysis of the debate:

    Trump demonstrated his earned position as a major party nominee. He had every business, every right being up there, and a lot of people were applauding what he was saying up there last night. And Hillary, she came off exactly as many people see her: a witch with a capital B.

  317. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Women’s reactions to Trumps demeanor. Article title: Many women say Trump showed too much testosterone at debate

    Constant interruption. A condescending tone. Eye-rolling.
    For many women, the presidential debate between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump was a case study in deja vu. For more than 90 minutes on a national stage, they said Tuesday, Trump subjected the first female presidential candidate from a major party to indignities they experience from men daily, in the workplace and beyond.
    Tweeted Chicago-based writer Britt Julious: “Thoughts & prayers to every woman watching the #debates & getting painful flashbacks to dudes talking over them at work, school, home, etc.”
    “The sad thing,” said Christina Emery, an author from Swansea, Illinois, “is that I’m so used to men interrupting women — especially when they want to change the subject — that I didn’t pay much attention to Trump’s behavior. I was focused on Clinton and how she handled herself.”
    In the course of the debate, Trump interrupted Clinton 51 times, while she interrupted him 17 times.
    Kathleen Hall Jamieson, a professor of communication who is director of the Annenberg Public Policy Center at the University of Pennsylvania, said Trump’s frequent interruptions of Clinton conformed with research concluding that men in group meetings interrupt women more than vice versa.
    “The question for the audience — did they interpret that as an attempt of a male candidate to disadvantage a female candidate,” said Jamieson. “If so, that hurts Donald Trump.”
    Speaking on her campaign plane, Clinton said Trump’s “demeanor, his temperament, his behavior on the stage could be seen by everybody and people could draw their own conclusions.”…
    “It’s frustrating in women’s lives,” said Deborah Tannen, a linguistics professor at Georgetown University who has written several books about how conversation affects relationships. “And to see it up there in a dramatic way, it’s a little bit of PTSD. You’re seeing the things you suffered from. It brings it back.”
    Clinton’s deportment is of a piece with her experience as a Washington insider, first lady, and former secretary of state.
    But Trump, whose roots are in reality TV and the male-dominated construction world, has always had an in-your-face style — and not just with women, as others pointed out on Tuesday. At debates during the Republican primaries, Trump was far from mannerly in his treatment of his opponents, male and female.
    Jessica Light, a sophomore at the University of Toledo from Berea, Ohio, said Trump’s interruptions didn’t bother her: “She was being harsh and he was just standing up for himself,” she said.
    Others found his behavior at the debate to be unnerving.
    “Many women watching Trump’s treatment of Clinton feel a sickening sense of familiarity with patronizing behavior directed at them during every work day,” said Dr. Janet Scarborough Civitelli, a vocational psychologist in Austin, Texas. “Women become exhausted by the experience that no matter how much they accomplish or how hard they work, a man with a fraction of their knowledge and achievements stands ready to critique them.”
    Trump reminded Deborath Calvanicoweinstein, a homemaker in Madison, Wisconsin, of the car repairmen who talk down to her, but not to her husband.
    “I’ve felt it,” she said. “Even if I did know more than the person I was speaking with. I hope the (presidential) race exposes how sexism is still alive.”
    Some said Trump was condescending from the start of the debate.
    “In all fairness to Secretary Clinton — yes, is that OK?” Trump said. Clinton smiled and nodded. “Good. I want you to be very happy. It’s very important to me.”
    At a debate watch party in St. Petersburg at The Queenshead bar, that remark was met with groans in the audience.
    “I think she looked great when she talked, and I think she looked even better when he talked,” said Trish Collins of St. Petersburg.
    For others, like author Tyler King of Orlando, the debate marked a moment when a highly visible woman turned a spotlight on something that’s been happening for eons.
    “Even if we don’t say it out loud, we share those looks across the conference table. We see it. And little by little, more women are reaching the limits of their patience and speaking out,” she said.

    Sounds like no real converts for Trump.

  318. says

    Officially, Russia loved Trump’s performance during the debate:

    A record number of Americans tuned to watch the debate on Monday night, but someone else was watching, too: the Kremlin media machine. It was the middle of the night in Russia, but the tweets kept coming, making it clear, as always, whose side the Kremlin is on in this election. At the very least, it shows exactly how smoothly Donald Trump’s policy positions dovetail with Moscow’s. Read between the lines, and it also shows what the Kremlin thinks about Hillary Clinton.

    Sputnik, an English-language news service wholly owned and controlled by the Kremlin, cites an expert named Wayne Madsen who says that Trump becoming president “is the only way we are going to see the end to the Syrian civil war.” (Because a President Trump would put an end to all American operations there, and would allow Putin and Bashar al-Assad to scorch and flatten the country into submission?) Who is Wayne Madsen? According to Wikipedia, “he has been described as a conspiracy theorist.”

    Foreign Policy link

  319. says

    During the debate, Trump beat his old record of one lie every 3.25 minutes. And he beat it handily. His new record is one lie ever 2.65 minutes. Way to go, Donald.

    […] Again, there was no contest: Donald Trump was by far more dishonest than Hillary Clinton.

    At their first presidential debate, on Monday night in New York, Trump made 34 false claims to Clinton’s four false claims, continuing his pattern of unprecedented serial lying. […]

    Toronto Star link

    The Toronto Star’s count was 34 lies in 90 minutes, which works out to about one lie every 2.65 minutes. However, Trump’s rate of lying is actually much higher because he was not speaking for all 90 of those minutes.

    I dispute one of the falsehoods the Toronto Star hangs around Clinton’s neck. They say she denied that she praised TPP, but that’s not right. What she actually said was that she praised TPP in the concept or development stage, but that she could not support the deal once all the negotiations and details were finalized. It did not measure up to her standards.

  320. says

    More math regarding Trump’s rate of lying during the debate: if we split the debate time in half, half for Clinton, and half for Trump, then Trump told 34 lies in 45 minutes (one lie every 1.3 minutes).

  321. slithey tove (twas brillig (stevem)) says

    reflecting on the debate’s responses:
    Q: How would you generate new jobs in America
    Drumph: prevent them from leaving.
    Q: How would . You. Create NEW jobs, here in America?
    Drumph; Heavily tax imported products from jobs that moved away from America.
    Q: once again, [Q]
    Drumph: Impose very high Taxes on imported goods, to encourage not leaving…
    Clinton: [suggested various sectors (renewable energy being the first one mentioned) that would necessitate job formation].
    Drumph, when not directly lying, employed his version of Gish Gallop [aka Drumph Dodge ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ ], to appear to give answers while dodging the question completely.

  322. slithey tove (twas brillig (stevem)) says

    reflecting on the debate’s responses:
    Q: How would you generate new jobs in America
    Drumph: prevent them from leaving.
    Q: How would . You. Create NEW jobs, here in America?
    Drumph; Heavily tax imported products from jobs that moved away from America.
    Q: once again, [Q]
    Drumph: Impose very high Taxes on imported goods, to encourage not leaving…
    Clinton: [suggested various sectors (renewable energy being the first one mentioned) that would necessitate job formation].
    Drumph, when not directly lying, employed his version of Gish Gallop [aka Drumph Dodge ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ ], to appear to give answers while dodging the question completely.

  323. What a Maroon, living up to the 'nym says

    Just as I was reading this an HRC ad came on. Shots of girls and women of all sizes, shapes, races, with a narration of Trump denigrating women over the years.


    (Also, Go Sox!)

  324. says

    More on Trump’s deplorable treatment of Alicia Machado.

    Also, this is bringing new light to some of his other remarks. This was posted over the summer, but I didn’t hear about it at the time. Trump talking about divorce in Saudi Arabia:

    Another clip focuses on a man in Saudi Arabia who divorced his wife because his wife had been alone with a man — referring to a presenter she’d only ever watched on TV.

    “There are a lot of male chauvinists in this country who really agree with what’s going on over there,” Trump said. “Men in Saudi Arabia have the authority to divorce their wives without going to the courts. I guess that would also mean they don’t need prenuptial agreements.”

    He continued: “Saudi Arabia sounds like a very good place to get a divorce.”

  325. says

    Trump mocked Rosie O’Donnell’s depression and then bragged about it:

    …He continued, “And they said, ‘It’s a horrible statement, it’s a horrible statement.’ What’s so horrible about it? She attacks me. She said I had terrible hair. You know, it’s amazing. She calls me comb-over, she calls me — but we’re not allowed to attack.”

    Trump then said that when O’Donnell was asked about his remark, she said, “I have no comment, I have no comment about him.”

    “Get even,” Trump said to the cheering crowd. “When somebody screws you, screw the back in spades. I really mean it. I really mean it. You’ve got to hit people hard and it’s not so much for that person, it’s other people watch.”

    Republican nominee for the presidency of the United States.

  326. says

    Good news: fewer people from the USA are trying to join ISIS. FBI Director James Comey said,

    The dropoff began late last summer. At the peak, the FBI was seeing from eight to ten people a month trying to join the caliphate. Now it’s averaging between none and one.

  327. John Morales says

    SC to Nerd (but only implicitly):

    Because that’s not clueless at all.

    Indeed. It is not clueless.

    (Your intended sarcasm falls flat, absent justification)

  328. KG says

    Trump told 34 lies in 45 minutes- Lynna, OM@387

    He must be very disappointed at such a sluggish performance!

  329. says

    Indeed. It is not clueless.

    (Your intended sarcasm falls flat, absent justification)

    Yes, John, it is clueless. None of the women quoted in the article said anything about testosterone. The familiar behavior described – interrupting, condescension, bluster – is not due to hormones but to privilege* and sexism. Attributing it to testosterone adds an extra level of cluelessness in that it feeds the idiotic Trumpian/Evo Psych narrative that disrespect and obnoxiousness are a sign of excessive “manliness” (notably, Trump, asked by precisely no one for this information, released his – alleged – testosterone level on Dr. Oz). The title then compounds the problem by attributing that stupid notion to the women speaking in the article (and to “many women” generally), who are simply expressing their frustration with this bad behavior and presumably hoping that raising attention about it can lead to change.

    * I’m going to assume the same is true of your trolling around, mistargeting your attempted pedantry rather than making an effort to understand what people are saying before you comment.

    And/or you’re in your cups, which I’m certainly not judging. :)

  330. says

    “The Choice” was very good. You can watch it online now here (I hope people outside the US can as well). One quick takeaway: Clinton’s youthful inspiration was Martin Luther King, Jr. Trump’s was Norman Vincent Peale.

  331. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Another solidly republican paper endorses Hillary Clinton, the Arizona Republic.

    Since The Arizona Republic began publication in 1890, we have never endorsed a Democrat over a Republican for president. Never. This reflects a deep philosophical appreciation for conservative ideals and Republican principles.
    This year is different.
    The 2016 Republican candidate is not conservative and he is not qualified.
    That’s why, for the first time in our history, The Arizona Republic will support a Democrat for president./

  332. says

    Nerd @399, it is so nice to see lots of newspapers in red states endorsing Hillary Clinton. We’ve never seen that before, not that I can remember anyway. I wonder if those endorsements will sway any voters?

    Trump Foundation news:

    An adviser to Donald Trump on Tuesday offered a new explanation for why a portrait of Trump — paid for by the Republican nominee’s charitable foundation — wound up on display at a Trump-owned golf resort in Florida.

    Trump, the adviser said, was actually doing his charity a favor, by “storing” its painting on the wall of a bar at Trump National Doral, outside Miami. […]

    Washington Post link

    Steve Benen summarized:

    Let’s recap for a minute. A couple of years ago, Trump used foundation money to buy a $10,000 portrait of himself. Because he used charitable funds, instead of his own money, Trump was legally required to find a charitable use for the giant portrait. Otherwise, the purchase would constitute “self-dealing,” which is illegal.

    But by all appearances, Trump didn’t find a charitable use for the painting, but rather, put it on the wall of one of his golf resorts.

    Yesterday on MSNBC, Trump adviser Boris Epshteyn argued, in all seriousness, “There are IRS rules which specifically state that when a foundation has an item, an individual can store those items – on behalf of the foundation – in order to help it with storage costs.”

    Got that? Trump used foundation money to buy a painting of himself, and now he’s “storing” it – on the wall of a restaurant within a golf resort – as a favor.

    “You’re telling me that that is storage, for Mr. Trump?” MSNBC’s Hallie Jackson asked. “Right, of course, he’s doing a good thing for his foundation,” Epshteyn said.

    Brett Kappel, a lawyer who advises nonprofit groups, told the Washington Post, “It’s hard to make an IRS auditor laugh. But this would do it.”

  333. says

    Another government shutdown looms. Current funding for federal operations expires at midnight on Friday, September 30.

    So, what’s the problem now? Enough lawmakers are up in arms about the deleted funding to address the poisoned water issue in Flint, that the fight has become bipartisan.

    […] Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) brought a spending bill to the floor, knowing full well that the Democratic minority would balk. What he didn’t realize is that there’d be bipartisan opposition to his approach: McConnell’s bill failed on a 45-55 vote, with 12 Republicans joining Democrats to reject the measure, and in the process, pushing Congress just a little closer to a shutdown.

    The sticking point, oddly enough, isn’t some heated disagreement over a culture-war dispute or money for “Obamacare,” but rather, aid for Flint, Michigan. Democrats have said they won’t support any package unless it includes Flint aid, while Republicans have pushed to deal with Flint separately, with resources that could be added to a water-projects spending bill. (Note, McConnell’s bill included money for flood relief in Louisiana and Texas, but no money for Flint.) […]


    All is not lost … not yet anyway.

    House Speaker Paul D. Ryan and Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi struck a deal late Tuesday to deliver federal aid to address the water crisis in Flint, Mich., potentially removing a major flashpoint in negotiations to keep the government fully operating past Friday.

    Under the deal, the House will vote Wednesday on an amendment to a pending water projects bill that would authorize up to $170 million in infrastructure funds for communities like Flint whose water systems are blighted by “chemical, physical, or biological” contaminants. […]


  334. says

    Another aspect of “The Choice 2016” that shouldn’t go unnoticed:* They show clips of Trump in the 1980s when he was flirting with a presidential run. The things he said about the country then were very similar to those he says now – the people in charge are weak; the US needs strong, competent leadership; other countries are taking advantage of and laughing at the US. One of the interviewees remarks that you can see that Trump’s views were already forming back then. But if you think about it, having the same refrain about weak and incompetent leadership and the country being mocked and taken advantage of over the course of several decades and across several different administrations doesn’t signify anything about political views. It suggests that he’s always been projecting his own insecurities about weakness and incompetence and his own fear of humiliation onto the country. (And this is, everyone should remember, a person who’s never held a political position or demonstrated any political competence whatsoever.)

    * Well, two aspects: Another is that they talked to several long-time friends of Clinton’s but I can’t think of a single person they interviewed who’s just a friend of Trump’s. I don’t think he has any, and the classmates and others who interacted with Trump in the past had little or nothing good to say about him.

  335. says

    President Obama commented on the insults Donald Trump lobbed at Alicia Machado, a former Miss Universe.

    You had somebody who basically insulted women and then doubled down I think this morning in terms of how he talks about them and talks about their weight and talks about, you know, how they look instead of the content of their character and their capabilities, which is not somebody that I want in the Oval Office.

    Previous discussion on the thread is in comments 357 and 391.

    New York Times coverage.

    BTW, Trump says that Miss Machado gained 50-60 pounds, but she says she gained about 15 pounds. Photos from the time in question support her claim.

  336. says

    SC @404, In “The Choice” the focus on Trump’s consistent complaints about “weakness” and “incompetence” (that went on for decades) really struck me as significant.

    Like you, I think that Trump was projecting his own fears. And he aimed the same insults at Republican and Democratic administrations. In fact, he seems to aim the same insults at anyone who gets in his way, as Jeb Bush knows well.

    Trump has even used those insults against journalists he doesn’t like.

    Trump has held onto his hurt feelings regarding Rosie O’Donnell for five years. The humiliation is still fresh in his mind.

  337. says

    Donald Trump spoke at a rally yesterday evening. In addition to his usual promises of greatness, etc., Trump added a new promise: he will “make possible every dream you’ve ever dreamed.”

    Umm, yeah. Kind of scary actually.

    In other news, when Hillary Clinton mentioned the fact-checking aspect of her website during the debate with Trump, traffic to “Literally Trump” spiked.

    […] Nearly two million people visited Clinton’s website within an hour after she mentioned it. That’s 10 times as many visits as the campaign has ever attracted in an hour. By this evening, the Literally Trump factoids had been shared 18,000 times on social media.

    The idea for the site was Clinton’s, according to Gayle. “In debate prep, Hillary made it clear that while she would be calling Trump out for his lies, she wanted a place where viewers could be empowered to look it up themselves, not have to wait for reporters or any other delivery mechanism,” Gayle said. “Hillary suggested making Trump’s past statements available on the website for anyone to read for themselves.” […]

    WIRED link

  338. says

    Yes, the Trump campaign is definitely going there. Not only have all of Trump’s surrogates mentioned Bill Clinton’s sex scandals, but so have his children.

    And all of the Trump followers speaking about the sex scandals are doing so in the context of asking for or claiming credit for not bringing it up during the debate. See how diplomatic and restrained they are? See how morally superior Donald Trump is? /sarcasm

    This is from Eric Trump:

    “I mean, he very well could’ve looked down—and he said it when he came off the debate stage, ‘I wasn’t gonna respond to that question because I saw Chelsea in the front row and I just wasn’t gonna go there out of respect for her,'” Eric Trump told Iowa radio host Simon Conway, according to a clip highlighted by Buzzfeed News. “And that was a big moment for me and probably will actually become — my life and this campaign — and probably something I’ll always remember.”

    He said his dad “really took the high ground where he had the opportunity to go very, very low.”

    “I’m really proud of him for doing that. And I think a lot of people recognize that,” Eric Trump said. “I don’t know, I think that took a lot of courage in so many regards and I think he really answered that well and took the high ground and kept the high road.”

  339. says

    More examples of Trump’s followers praising him for not bringing up Bill Clinton’s infidelities:

    […] In an interview on “Fox and Friends” on Wednesday morning, Trump’s deputy campaign manager, David Bossie, said that “clearly Mr. Trump held his tongue” after Clinton mentioned his pattern of making derogatory comments about women during the debate. Calling Clinton an “enabler” of her husband’s affairs, Bossie said she deserves scrutiny for “really attacking these women” in the 1990s.

    Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge (R), a Trump supporter, spent the entirety of a Wednesday interview on MSNBC refusing to respond to questions about the Machado dustup and instead criticizing the Democratic nominee’s “treatment of women.” […]

  340. says

    Trump’s past keeps tripping him up when it comes to women:

    While campaigning for president, Donald Trump often boasts that he hires the “best people.” But in 2007, he bragged that he hired a woman with no experience because she was hot.

    His comments came in a speech for the Learning Annex, an adult education firm that reportedly paid Trump $1.5 million per appearance. During the question-and-answer portion of the event, held in San Francisco, a woman in the audience asked Trump, “How many jets do you have and how might I apply to be a flight attendant?” Trump immediately had the woman brought onstage, where he checked her out, wrapped his arm around her, and and then declared, “You’re hired.”

    Then Trump launched into an anecdote about a time he hired a woman based solely on her looks. “A beautiful girl who was 17 or 18 and applied to be a waitress,” Trump said. “So beautiful. She’s like a world-class beauty.” But, Trump recalled, his advisers pointed out that the woman had no experience. “So I interviewed her anyway because she was so pretty,” he continued. “And I said, ‘Let me ask you: Do you have any experience?’ She goes, ‘No, sir.’ I say, ‘When can you start?'” Trump flashed a big smile at the crowd. […]

    “You can work on my plane anytime,” he said. […]


    That confirms what President Obama said about the way Trump treats women (comment 405).

  341. says

    Here is one of the many stupid, insulting, racist ways in which Fox News is trying to back up Trump’s claim that black communities have never (“ever, ever, ever”) been worse off than they are now:

    […] ALLEN WEST: […] You know, we need to talk about the restoration of the family in the black community. When I was born in 1961, between 75 to 77 percent of the households had two parents. Today, it’s at 24 percent, and you can trace that right back to a failed policy from Lyndon Johnson, where the government provided checks to women who had children out of wedlock as long as they did not have a man in the home.

    STUART VARNEY (HOST): Allen, can I just jump in for a second here? What’s your solution to that problem, children out of wedlock or without two parents at home? What’s your solution; is it a withdrawal of the welfare state?

    WEST: Well, yeah. I mean, Jason Riley wrote a great book, he is a Wall Street Journal editor, saying “please stop helping us.” You know, the black community was stronger it seems during the issues of segregation; when you had families that where intact, when you had communities that were standing up, when you had better education opportunities. I think that is another important thing.


  342. says

    Rush Limbaugh is trying to back Trump up by slut-shaming former Miss Universe, Alicia Machado:

    Who would have believed that, whether or not, a former Miss Universe became a Miss Piggy and a porn star would become such a big deal in the campaign. But it has. It’s the biggest stack [of papers] I got. I’ve got stacks of stuff here and the porn star Miss Piggy, former — who’s now campaigning with Hillary. A former porn star is campaigning for Hillary against Trump.