Topic: Trump

There's no way he'll win is there? Reassure me people.

Bend over!
Hi Ben

Re: Trump

I hope he wins the Republican nomination. Doubtful he'd beat either Bernie or Hillary (hopefully Bernie).

But if he does...it will be quite entertaining. I think one of the problems in the US is that too many people don't participate in elections. If Trump wins I think a lot more people will realize how important it is to vote.

Also doubtful that Trump could do 90% of what he says he would do. He's going to have to get Congress to agree with him, and not even the nutiest Republican is in favor of a lot of Trumps ideas. Many of the things Trump wants are clearly Unconstitutional (banning Muslims) and/or way too expensive (the wall).

I dream in beige.

Re: Trump

US politics have become such a surface game of posturing and blind zealousness that I actually think a Trump victory would be quite fitting. Not that it would benefit anyone directly, but perhaps it would awaken a majority of the country to the rank state of its election qualifying.

Do a little hopscotch

Re: Trump

Trump's bravado and attitude are the worst, but in terms of substantive ideas, Cruz is way scarier, to me.

We need the birds.
I understand, but the files are organized alphabetically.

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Re: Trump

eddie wrote:

Trump's bravado and attitude are the worst, but in terms of substantive ideas, Cruz is way scarier, to me.

100% agree -- we can talk plenty of legitimate shit about Ted Cruz, but it is unfortunately true that he is incredibly intelligent, and while he might be a ways from being "politically savvy," he's certainly a light year closer to that than Trump is.

Trump is crazy without know-how. Cruz is crazier with know-how.

Whodathunk ten or so years ago that we'd all be saying (thinking), "President Jeb Bush wouldn't be half-bad..."

Of course, that is comparative, but still. The fuck.

- Nathan

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Re: Trump

nguideau wrote:

Whodathunk ten or so years ago that we'd all be saying (thinking), "President Jeb Bush wouldn't be half-bad..."

Of course, that is comparative, but still. The fuck.

that's a good point.  it's funny.  jeb seems quite normal, likeable and intelligent by comparison to some of those guys. 

i gotta say i don't love any of them, republicans or democrats.  i like bernie, but he worries me a little bit.  hillary is just hillary.

Re: Trump

Bernie ticks the most boxes for me, but the way he talks about banking concerns me. A lot of basic misunderstanding of the banking sector and the central bank.

For my money, with a little retrospect being available now that the election cycle is well underway, Elizabeth Warren would've been a much better candidate than either HRC or Bernie. She has a more accurate take on Wall Street vs. Main Street, without throwing the baby out with the bath water. And she doesn't have HRC's horrendous record on welfare programs, to say nothing of the more obvious (and sometimes more valid than I like admitting) Republican talking points.

- Nathan

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8 (edited by setyabacksetyabacksetya 2016-01-11 13:04:04)

Re: Trump

nguideau wrote:

Bernie ticks the most boxes for me, but the way he talks about banking concerns me. A lot of basic misunderstanding of the banking sector and the central bank.

For my money, with a little retrospect being available now that the election cycle is well underway, Elizabeth Warren would've been a much better candidate than either HRC or Bernie. She has a more accurate take on Wall Street vs. Main Street, without throwing the baby out with the bath water. And she doesn't have HRC's horrendous record on welfare programs, to say nothing of the more obvious (and sometimes more valid than I like admitting) Republican talking points.

I guess I need to do do a little more digging into bernie's economic ideas, but last time I checked I kind of thought he and Elizabeth Warren were fairly similar in that regard? I'm hoping for a Sanders/Warren white house, with Warren going on to become the first woman prez and hillary left wondering what the fuck happened. I'm sure that's wishful thinking.

edit: then again, we kind of need warren in the senate

9 (edited by eddie 2016-01-12 06:26:41)

Re: Trump

as i've said elsewhere, kasich is the only guy who doesn't seem insulted by my existence.

I do like Jeb a fair bit though, by comparison to the rest of the field. but you have to wonder how smart and capable he is if he's losing to both trump and cruz. actually, getting trounced by both of them is more like it.

it's so galling that no one has said, "listen, trump says funny things or things that people relate to, but his ideas are illegal and unconstitutional. he can't do what he says. he wouldn't have the legal authority. so, with all due respect, I don't have anything to say about what Mr. Trump just said. I'll yield the rest of my time."

We need the birds.
I understand, but the files are organized alphabetically.

Re: Trump

Trump won't win the presidency. Hillary probably will, and probably will be alright. I like Bernie, and would vote and campaign for him if he's the nominee, no question. But I actually think Hillary might be more effective, once elected -- although she might not be as 'feel good' as Bernie...

On the plus side, the last time a Clinton was in office, the music scene was pretty good...


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Re: Trump

glassblowingfunkyneighbor wrote:

On the plus side, the last time a Clinton was in office, the music scene was pretty good...

Counterpoint: Silverchair.

We need the birds.
I understand, but the files are organized alphabetically.

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Re: Trump

eddie wrote:
glassblowingfunkyneighbor wrote:

On the plus side, the last time a Clinton was in office, the music scene was pretty good...

Counterpoint: Silverchair.

Counter-counterpoint: Pavement

Counter-counter-counterpoint: Smash Mouth

Ouch.

- Nathan

Re: Trump

The 90s contained multitudes.

We need the birds.
I understand, but the files are organized alphabetically.

Re: Trump

You guys won't even heard of Embrace or Menswear. Be grateful

Bend over!
Hi Ben

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Re: Trump

manireni wrote:

There's no way he'll win is there? Reassure me people.

I seriously doubt he can win a general election. If he gets the Republican nomination, you will see crazy turnout to vote againts him from non-whites, women, young people, etc. on a kind never before witnessed. I admit the prospect of him gettigng nominated does frighten me, since this whole damn thing has been unpredictable, but my rational mind says that he's very likely to lose a general. I largely agree with Eddie that Cruz is in many ways even more vile from a policy standpoint, but he's just so detested even by his own party, that I think he might even have less of a shot in the general than Trump.

"It was only four tracks on the machine, but I was picking up twenty from the extraterrestrial squad." -Lee "Scratch" Perry

Re: Trump

Wither freakin' America? How the mighty have fallen.


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Re: Trump

kate h wrote:

Wither freakin' America? How the mighty have fallen.

Counterpoint, we survived Andrew Jackson.

I'm as liberal as they come so maybe this sounds really saccharine, but I do have faith in Americans (or really, people).

- Nathan

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18 (edited by kate h 2016-02-25 17:51:37)

Re: Trump

nguideau wrote:
kate h wrote:

Wither freakin' America? How the mighty have fallen.

Counterpoint, we survived Andrew Jackson.

I'm as liberal as they come so maybe this sounds really saccharine, but I do have faith in Americans (or really, people).

We survived a great many things. But logically speaking that's not a precedent for never-ending success nor a historical case for uninterrupted progress.

Beyond that, I can relate to faith, being a Jesus freak and all. And certainly a great many people do much to affirm the best in humanity.

But none of that negates ample evidence of human & American stupidity, cruelty, horror shows, even mass delusional hysteria, social decline, and (metaphorically) criminal-level collective action (albeit absent conspiracy).

And just to tack back to logic for a second, none of this is dependent on being as so-called, "liberal as they come."


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Re: Trump

kate h wrote:

We survived a great many things. But logically speaking that's not a precedent for never-ending success nor a historical case for uninterrupted progress.

Beyond that, I can relate to faith, being a Jesus freak and all. And certainly a great many people do much to affirm the best in humanity.

But none of that negates ample evidence of human & American stupidity, cruelty, horror shows, even mass delusional hysteria, social decline, and (metaphorically) criminal-level collective action (albeit absent conspiracy).

And just to tack back to logic for a second, none of this is dependent on being as so-called, "liberal as they come."

The history does not define the future, this is logically clear. That was not what I meant.

Let me say it differently. Every era and the generations that own them have pointed to "ample evidence of human & American stupidity, cruelty, horror shows, even mass delusional hysteria, social decline, and (metaphorically) criminal-level collective action (albeit absent conspiracy)."

I have so many questions about this.

Is this a truth for all-time, or is the truth for all-time that people have a penchant for doom-saying? Are current levels of stupidity and/or cruelty and/or delusion and/or "social decline" (scare quotes because, what does that mean?) higher than they have been in the past? How do we know that? I would like to see the "ample evidence" that society is generally worse off today than it was a generation ago.

This is a nebulous question because it is a macro question searching for an answer about many component questions. Are we worse off today in terms of the health of our planet than we were a generation ago? Undoubtedly yes. But on delta as a rate of change, are we better off with the technology of this generation working toward a solution than we would've been with the prior generation's technology and attitude toward the problem?

Is American income and wealth inequality reaching levels that have been shown in past economies to cause stagnation and other social problems? Absolutely. But on a global scale, we are looking at living standards that are higher, on average, than they have ever been, underlaid by global income and wealth inequality that is as narrow as it has ever been.

My hope is that people ask questions about the great problems of our generation as a call to action to try and solve the problems, not as a surrender to them. I think there is a fine line between realism and pessimism, and the latter is too often a self-fulfilling prophesy.

- Nathan

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Re: Trump

nguideau wrote:

My hope is that people ask questions about the great problems of our generation as a call to action to try and solve the problems, not as a surrender to them. I think there is a fine line between realism and pessimism, and the latter is too often a self-fulfilling prophesy.

Word!

"It´s a fine line between clever and..eh.. stupid"

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21 (edited by kate h 2016-06-26 03:11:51)

Re: Trump

nguideau wrote:
kate h wrote:

We survived a great many things.

The history does not define the future, this is logically clear. That was not what I meant.

Let me say it differently. Every era and the generations that own them have pointed to "ample evidence of human & American stupidity, cruelty, horror shows, even mass delusional hysteria, social decline, and (metaphorically) criminal-level collective action (albeit absent conspiracy)."

I have so many questions about this.

Is this a truth for all-time, or is the truth for all-time that people have a penchant for doom-saying? Are current levels of stupidity and/or cruelty and/or delusion and/or "social decline" (scare quotes because, what does that mean?) higher than they have been in the past? How do we know that? I would like to see the "ample evidence" that society is generally worse off today than it was a generation ago.

This is a nebulous question because it is a macro question searching for an answer about many component questions. Are we worse off today in terms of the health of our planet than we were a generation ago? Undoubtedly yes. But on delta as a rate of change, are we better off with the technology of this generation working toward a solution than we would've been with the prior generation's technology and attitude toward the problem?

Is American income and wealth inequality reaching levels that have been shown in past economies to cause stagnation and other social problems? Absolutely. But on a global scale, we are looking at living standards that are higher, on average, than they have ever been, underlaid by global income and wealth inequality that is as narrow as it has ever been.

My hope is that people ask questions about the great problems of our generation as a call to action to try and solve the problems, not as a surrender to them. I think there is a fine line between realism and pessimism, and the latter is too often a self-fulfilling prophesy.

Okay, so here's my take. I find it's easiest and most authentic to be sanguine and even optimistic at the more human-scale level — with oneself, family, friends, in one's neighborhood, community, with associations, that kind of thing.

Then there's the kind of wizened and sage perspective where we can see with the eyes of cosmic time — the Lord works in mysterious ways, an epochal view that renders the specific into a more homogenized context for high-minded spiritual purposes. In a contemporary sense there's the casual "it's all good," (a phrase I detest but I get its point). All of these suggest an optimism while implicitly acknowledging that at any pinpoint on the map it could potentially be messy. But it's a very broad stroke.

And then there's the analytical view that, by virtue of such a stance, addresses problems, and to a lesser extent, problem solving. It's easy here to mistake realism and frank acknowledgements of complex problems as pessimistic and doomerish. This is often followed by the urge to seat analysis in historic comparisons and to seek what IS good, undergirding that the good should not be dismissed just because some things are a shit storm. I get that. Hope springs eternal.

It seems obvious to me that any time anyone attempts to address or analyze national level or global issues it is highly complex on the face of it; it's simply not an easy task and is itself an historical anomaly — few other eras had average schmoes like me (and maybe you but I don't want to suggest you're average) talking about nation-state level problems, especially in a highly complex time with a huge population and myriad subcultural features and the driving force of a largely democratized and pervasive media. It's perhaps hubris to even try!

This is even harder when the issue is behavior — attitudes, expressions, movements of people. Simpler things (on the surface at least) are issues of so-called living standards. So since that is simpler than, say, a concept like social decline and mass stupidity, I'll take that on first to see if I have enough brains to tackle it.

I tend to take issue with what governs the happy-go-lucky assumptions behind a phrase like "living standards." To give a simple example, we assume that a neat row of suburban homes tapped into the grid where everything is available at a push button is a wholesale improvement in the world. People enjoy climate controlled environments, shelter from the storm, water piped in, and a host of other conveniences and pleasures — what's not to like?

But I find that this — and most every other conversations about the fruits of the contemporary world — rides entirely on a dismissal of the externalities (the things NOT factored in to the discussion). These are the things behind the things — in the case of a nice neat row of suburban homes that keeps life largely cushy and untroubled this is the dirty fossil fuels not only serving the energy needs of that little slice of paradise, but also baked into every single item in it. The "dirt" of this dirtiness is expressed externally as acidified oceans, mercury in the air, carbon and methane creating palpable imbalances in the very climate stability and chemical composition of our bigger shelter from the storm, the atmosphere, etc. It's also bloated landfills, despoiled soils, etc.

Sounds doomerish huh? Of course! Shut that girl up!

And the thing is it's not just one neat row of suburban houses but a world that has exploded in population due almost solely to the great gifts of human longevity and relative health that the fossil fuel era has provided. And taken out of context, this is happy stuff. That's why we go back to cheering the so-called living standards, because this is all we care about, all we talk about. And we don't in any serious way think it is in peril either from climate or from energy decline — not at a national level in a real and meaningful way. The old paradigm is just too rife with entropy for us to take seriously our predicament.

So, unspoken are those externalities, creating mass delusion. Not only a delusion because they don't enter into the national conversation in any kind of serious way, but also because they allow for a mass stupidity about and even a mass disregard for the true conditions of our time.

In other eras, the scope of human life was much more limited. Except for rare individuals, few people traveled very far from home. Energy was a known and understood quantity because it was mostly people-powered. You grasped it when you had to chop wood and carry water. You grasped it when the embers were wasted and the house grew cold, or when nightfall came and the dark was upon the face of the earth. There's little room for the kind of mass delusion and mass stupidity (about matters in one's scope) in circumstances where one directly relates to the key infrastructural conditions of life.

But we like to believe we have been liberated from that old toil because we do get to push buttons and magically get stuff like heat and lights. We also like to believe that it is NOT our behavior or those buttons and lights that are acidifying the oceans and despoiling the land. And we really like to believe that "technology will save us," because smart and good people are putting their noses to the grindstone to "solve our problems," and keep giving us not only a good, but a better world.

I find that last premise particularly troubling even if and when I know that many people are good and smart and caring and sometimes all three at the same time.

However, most imagined technological fixes operate independent of a concern for their longevity in the current energy paradigm, which is in deep decline. They also operate with the presumption that our primary concern is the economy, particularly the endless growth paradigm. And they further operate on the presumption that we should all live exactly like we are — mass consumption — forever more. Conservation, steady-state economy, and even frank economic decline are all verboten topics because of the intellectual entropy behind the governing paradigms of our time.

So let me attempt to wheel this back to my broad strokes on social decline, mass stupidity, and mass delusion as it's expressed in America today, and relative to this thread, concerning Trump.

To be honest, I'm not a huge fan of gigantic nation-states. And I'm really miffed over the Dillon Rule, which affects about 35 or so American states, severely limiting state-level activity in those states, which, more often than not, chokes innovation and progress.  I think that, because of the sad scourge of slavery, and its role in the Civil War, that we overly emphasize the greatness of having a huge nation state, and refuse to look at anything concerning "states rights," that was at the heart of both the founding of the nation and largely obliterated with the increase in federal level (top down) control that was consolidated when the north won. I know that's a huge topic, and I could really be taken to task because EVERYONE truly believes the Civil War was just about slavery and that the North was full of white-hatted progressives. But I know my stuff on this, and it wasn't and they weren't.

But here we are today with a gigantic nation-state, a mass media not only in everyone's pocket, but allowing everyone to be their own media station — witness us here. That's okay when folks are smart, thoughtful, respectful, do their homework, and have the chops to make their case. But for the cause of mass egalitarianism, and the enoblement of the individual even when his or her behavior has nothing noble about it, we've reached a fairly pervasive condition of "anything goes." It's a relativism writ large, with no center of gravity. It's all the spoils of freedom with none of its responsibilities.

Now did some of this surface in, say, Nazi Germany without the Internet? Yes, mass delusion, mass stupidity, mass degradation (social decline). So we don't have to say, have the Internet for hysteria to arise and gross human behavior to erupt. I mean the same can be said about crucifying Christ or lynch mobs or whiskey rebellions or witch hunts. But how mass is mass? Mass hysteria in isolated Salem, Massachusettes and backwater Mississippi (however repugnant) isn't the same scale as the nation-state level of Nazi Germany or millions of Trump supporters.

Politics is, of course, different on the surface from the energy issues I cited above. But for me, any time I take broad swipes at American culture I can't help but begin with our privilege and excess as the hidden text behind all behavior that rides on it. Indulge me.

I'm actually astounded about how we've become about electing our president. At the founding of the country George Washington was widely a shoo-in, but the Founding Fathers (with their false enlightenment and failure to truly embrace the radicalism of their ideas of liberty, scars that we bear to this day), sat around debating what title and role to give whomever would fill that role. They had names like "His Excellency," "His Exalted Highness," and it took a while to settle on president. One thing was for sure — they didn't want a king; Washington was adamant that he wanted no trappings of being a king. Yet here we are 240 years latter treating our presidency as a coronation. At the same time we have almost no national conversation on the role of our senate and congress AS A WHOLE so that we can grasp what's required to have the people's house actually represent the people (to say nothing of the outsized role money and BIG INDUSTRY play in that brothel and casino).

So the carnival-show big top is the presidential race. Never in the history of TV has the national media indulged the parties in their races 18-24 months out until the last presidential race, showing serial televised debates of the most unlikely figures and giving them a national audience in the papers, radio, and on TV talk shows prior to those figures actually making a case on a personal basis, pressing the flesh, winning support, and coming to the table with something real, not just a warm body and unvetted ideas.

Add this to a society so fed fat on daily doses of lowest common denominator infotainment and it's surely no recipe for supplying erudite ideas, or even serious ideas. Of course politics has long had showmanship, but context matters. Terrible ideas have long been curried, but it's a different thing when this is broadcast instantaneously all over the world. On the one hand this can lead to a rejection of those ideas, and in Trump's case, he has enough deep repugnancy that even if he's helped move politics a little further away from canned speeches and talking points, he will hopefully be rejected.

Yet as for now it's being revealed in America just how many people can either cling to those ideas in their whole, or make peace with the unmistakably vile pieces — the xenophobia, misogyny, racism, and belittling hostility — and embrace him anyway. This is a kind of stupid that goes beyond the stupidity I spoke of above. It's also a stupidity that gets in the way of those good and smart people who do want to create a better world. And it's a stupidity that has never had such a broad and deep reach, such instantaneous and mass outlets for its spread. While we can weigh this against all the good that the Internet and mass media has brought (especially if we externalize — put aside — the grossly outsized fossil fuel footprint it demands) it is serving social decline, and not at a negligible level.

Further, there is virtually no serious conversation or context for discussion that follows on from a centralized media force — we're squarely in the post Hardball era and if it's not the overall din inherent in 24/7 mass communication it's the private din of our hyper-demographied choice.

What are other forms of social decline? They are myriad and I'm sure we can discuss them. As for now, this is all that my insomnia tonight bought me. Still, I'll go to bed happy because I'm in my little home living at a scale that makes me happy. I'm happier not analyzing our society and attempting to get my head around it, but it seems I was born with tendencies to think on a macro scale however much it saddens me to do so. And it does sadden me. And it saddens me that these issues don't make that national stage amidst the clown show that we've become.

I do hope, in that context, that we'll get smarter before we get more stupid, that we'll mature as a species, and that things like democracy can be worthy of their origins and name. I do hope that.

Goodnight Gracie!


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22 (edited by swede 2016-02-29 08:27:58)

Re: Trump

https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/31/fb/80/31fb803bc334c2e452cdf1fd3ed39aa1.jpg

"It´s a fine line between clever and..eh.. stupid"

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23

Re: Trump

yeah, unfortunately that's not legit.  when i first saw that quote months ago it struck me that nobody really talked about fox news in that way in 1998.  nobody really even knew what it was.  sure enough:

http://www.snopes.com/1998-trump-people-quote/

the boy your mother wanted you to meet

24

Re: Trump

that snopes article also serves to debunk some of the other conspiracy theories floating around that he's only running to screw over the republicans and help Hillary - he has definitely always been a republican.  he's just left-leaning on a couple of issues

the boy your mother wanted you to meet

Re: Trump

And I just thought of that quote as being from someone who'd do anything/whatever it takes to gain power....

"It´s a fine line between clever and..eh.. stupid"