Looking Forward: Prematurity, Misadventure, and the Wreck of a Presidency

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Tiassa, Aug 1, 2017.

  1. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    So that's why you can't post a three sentence reply without obvious and simple mistakes, misreadings, etc.
    Although if you find idiocy so confusing you can't even read simple declarative sentences without substituting hurt fe-fes from being picked on for the words actually before your eyes, you might want to review your assessments of various politicians.
    It's an alternative approval rating.

    The key point is that it hasn't changed much, or dramatically, in over a year now. So waiting for it to change is not an indicated option.

    We are faced with this guy having one third of the American public behind him, supporting him, for a long time. As with W.
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2017
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  3. Write4U Valued Senior Member

    I did understand the gist of the post, but wanted to make it clear what was meant to other readers.
    I agree, but I cannot believe that 33% percent is the true picture yet. I am sure there are many who are still in a "wait and see" mode.

    On the news I just watched a young woman declare that Trump's vision of stimulating the economy by his promise of an "Infrastructure plan" was for her a positive in Trump's favor. When asked what he had actually done about Infrastructure, she replied, "well he has started work on building the "great wall".

    Apparently she had no idea of the meaning of infrastructure. She had no idea that infrastructure was also a major plank in the platform of the Dems.

    How do we make nice people like that become informed citizens? They heard all those great promises from Trump, and apparently were never informed by the Democratic publicity machine that Infrastructure was also a major objective of Hillary's proposal. How could that be possible?

    I can make a guess that Trump's campaign was so outrageously chaotic that it just drowned out all other voices of reason.

    Hopefully there will come a tipping point, where people begin to realize the false promises of a self proclaimed savior of the people. A false prophet.

    p.s. He just raised his entry fee to Mara Lago country club to $200,000 . A shameful use of power of office for personal gain. What happened to the law that forbids this?

    At some point there must develop some clarity and then his ratings will plummet to only the "basket of despicables", a few handfuls of truly rotten apples in a bushel of decent folk.
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2017
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  5. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Staff Member

    #illrepute | #WhatTheyVotedFor

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    Frank Rich↱, in June:

    In the decades since, Watergate has become perhaps the most abused term in the American political lexicon. Washington has played host to legions of "-gates," most unworthy of the name, and the original has blurred in memory, including for those of us who lived through it. Now, of course, invocations of Watergate are our daily bread, as America contemplates the future of a president who not only openly admires Nixon—he vowed to put a framed Nixon note on display in the Oval Office—but seems intent on emulating his most impeachable behavior. And among those of us who want Donald Trump gone from Washington yesterday, there's a fair amount of fear that he, too, could hang on until the end of a four-year term that stank of corruption from the start. Even if his White House scandals turn out to exceed his predecessor's—as the former director of national intelligence James Clapper posited in early June—impeachment is a political, not a legal, matter, and his political lock on the presidency would seem secure. Unlike Nixon, who had to contend with Democratic majorities in the House and Senate, Trump has the shield of a Republican Congress led by craven enablers terrified of crossing their Dear Leader's fiercely loyal base. That distinction alone is enough to make anti-Trumpers abandon all hope.

    I'm here to say don't do so just yet. There's a handy antidote to despair: a thorough wallow in Watergate, the actual story as it unfolded, not the expedited highlight reel that most Americans know from a textbook précis or cultural artifacts like the film version of All the President's Men. If you look through a sharp Nixonian lens at Trump's trajectory in office to date, short as it has been, you will discover more of an overlap than you might expect. You will learn that Democratic control of Congress in 1973 was not a crucial factor in Nixon's downfall and that Republican control of Congress in 2017 may not be a life preserver for Trump. You will find reason to hope that the 45th president's path through scandal may wind up at the same destination as the 37th's—a premature exit from the White House in disgrace—on a comparable timeline.

    It's a striking ride, almost as if there is some strain of Republican politics itching to do it all over again and this time, maybe they can come through victorious. Then again, mulligan politics aren't exactly unique to Republican presidential corruption, so maybe it's just a correspondence of noise elements.

    What finally did in Nixon—besides himself—is what will do in Trump: not the Democrats, or a turncoat base, or brave GOP leaders. "Historians have written that Nixon was persuaded to resign after the arrival at the White House on Wednesday, August 7, of a delegation from the Hill—Senator Barry Goldwater, Senate Minority Leader Hugh Scott, and House Minority Leader John Rhodes—to tell him he must go," writes Pat Buchanan in his memoir. "This is myth." Nixon's collapse was well under way by then, from the ground up. With the midterms growing ever nearer, garden-variety GOP officeholders, most of them as cowardly as today's, started to flee. The House Judiciary Committee voted on an article of impeachment on July 27, three days after a unanimous 8-0 Supreme Court, including three Nixon appointees, ruled that the president would have to turn over the White House tapes. Even then there was wavering. The ten Republicans who voted "No" on all the impeachment articles in committee would switch their votes only after the August 5 release of the "smoking gun" (a new coinage then)—the transcript of a June 23, 1972, tape showing that Nixon had ordered the facts of the Watergate break-in to be covered up six days after it happened despite his repeated public protestations otherwise. One congressman who didn't bolt even then, Earl Landgrebe, regarded such revelations as fake news ("Don't confuse me with the facts"), telling the Today show hours before Nixon resigned that he was "sticking with my president even if he and I have to be carried out of this building and shot." Landgrebe hailed from Indiana's Second Congressional District, which decades later would send Mike Pence to the House.

    As Buchanan and Nixon's speechwriter Raymond Price (in his 1977 memoir, With Nixon) attested, the president's resignation speech was already in hand by the time Goldwater & Co. visited the White House on August 7. Rather than the importuning of noble Republican elders, it was the stampede of defections that followed the revelation of the smoking gun that finally convinced him he could not numerically survive a trial in the Senate. By then, it was too late for some of his congressional backers to leap into the lifeboats. On Election Day that November, the GOP would lose four seats in the Senate and 49 in the House. Typical of the losers was Charles Sandman Jr., from New Jersey's still solidly red second district, which in 2016 voted for Trump over Clinton by a margin of five percentage points. In 1972, Sandman had beaten his Democratic opponent by 23 percentage points; in 1974, after remaining a loyal anti-impeachment advocate until the final week of Nixon's presidency, he lost by 16 points.

    I keep thinking there is some deeper commentary for my part that goes with it, but as long as I keep seeing certain signs, and fail to find certain other markers, it's easy enough to accept circumstances really are moving forward in ways I would find satsifactory. That is to say, the mechanisms of society are still functioning, so the underlying question reamains ultimately political. The midterm is an obvious waypoint; what are the thresholds, and what are the tolerance ranges?

    To wit, this ought to be an utterly impossible suggestion worthy of being laughed out of the room:

    Republicans will form up an impeachment threat as a feint in order to show voters they really are working on it, but, you know, "Let's not be hasty, because we need to do this right," and all, and then, having survived the midterm, find themselves unable to figure out how to move forward until they need to put on a pretense in 2020. And I know, that last sounds even more unrealistic for any number of reasons, but, to the one, these are Republicans, so it seems unwise to rule out unbelievably stupid projections of balbutive swindle politics; and, to the other, these are Americans, and they just elected Donald Trump—Republicans have, at the very least, a temptation to gamble.

    I know. You would think it sounds like a shitty joke.

    But yeah, I can very nearly imagine some iteration of Republicans trying to pretend they are willing to impeach Trump in hopes of sneaking through the midterm. And I'm going to cover my six on that one by blaming conservatives for going out of their way to make it possible that I might even have a reason to say that in the first place.


    Rich, Frank. "Just Wait". New York. 25 June 2017. NYMag.com. 2 August 2017. http://nym.ag/2usbSP2
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  7. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    There was no way to inform them. They were, and are, not in contact with any sources of information.
    Then how to explain W?

    Trump got almost exactly the same percentage of the white male vote that Romney got. Do you think that the people who voted for Romney were similarly confused by all the chaos?

    There are no Republican voices of reason, and no uncorrupted major media not currently marketing "both sides".
  8. spidergoat Venued Serial Membership Valued Senior Member

    I don't believe that, why is his agenda so aligned with that of the alt-right? He obviously believes these things.
  9. Write4U Valued Senior Member

    W had a few things in his favor.
    a) he came from an old political family and it was assumed that he had some experience what governance meant.
    b) W was/is a likeable fellow, someone you could have a beer with, and he was witty, not really as mean spirited as "lock her up" Trump and calling our democratic institutions as a "swamp" and some kind of nefarious "Deep State". And calling McCain ( a prisoner who refused to take advantage of early release out of respect for his fellow POWs) not a war hero, but a loser.

    And for all his skills and humanitarian intentions;
    c) Al Gore was dismissive of W. He was an orator without passion (a skill he has now developed)
    and avoided to point out his part in the accomplishments of the Bill Clinton presidency.
    d) Even so, you recall that election was decided by that Republican lady (what's her name?) in Florida, who stopped the recount.

    A few more votes and he would have won it all and we might have continued to be the world's technological leader in clean energy and democratic functioning of the government as a positive influence of the people sharing in the prosperity of the Nation.

    Instead W managed to run the bus into a ditch, which took Obama 8 years to pull us out from while passing the ACA which provided health insurance for tens of millions and managing to stabilize the economy and reducing unemployment beyond all expectation, all at the same time. A true Community Organizer of extraordinary skills..

    But people today expect instant gratification and along came the Wizard of Oz who declared "I alone can save the world's woes." and made extravagant promises such as restoring the "coal industry" to its former glory, showing his complete ignorance of GW
    A pied piper, who turned out to be an exterminator up till now anyway, managing to alienate all of our revered institutions and almost every other country in the world.

    Instead of a positive force, there is only destruction, with corpses lying everywhere he walks. I am surprised to see flowers not wilting when he passes by.
    The US has become an international laughing stock and the withdrawal from the voluntary Paris Climate Accord was the clincher in my book. It's all US against Them now.

    Yet the stock market is at an all time high. There is your "deep state"!

    But as the drip of poisonous news continues, we can already see the defections and even as the wheels of justice turn slowly, I can begin to see a flickering of enlightenment in many who voted for him and hopefully reconsider their ill-considered and wishful choice of leadership. And there is still that little issue of the popular vote.

    I am pretty sure this has increased, slowly, one by one, until the force of popular resistance becomes overwhelming and will be expressed at the voting booth.
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2017
  10. Truck Captain Stumpy Registered Senior Member

    where did i state she deserved to be locked up?

    it is my own personal opinion due to my interactions with the woman while i was in service to the government


    i'm not deflecting
    ... however you are in an attempt to build your strawman on your soapbox

    so you're a mind reader now?
    then by all means, tell me what i'm thinking so we can all marvel at your incredible power

    this has been addressed - feel free to re-read my post as you apparently didn't bother to earlier

    (of course, most of your above has already been addressed, so it's not going to mean anything to keep reminding you to actually read the previous posts and or get back to the point which you failed to make or support)
    you're the one waffling and attempting to distract from the point of not only the original Toad post, but every single one of mine so far... even to the point of stating you're psychic and able to know what someone is thinking and intended

    i can't wait to hear what i was thinking
    surely you know it better than i do, eh?
    ah, so now not only are you psychic, but you're also a time traveler and you know more about his actions than anyone else?
    or were you referring to my vote?

    are you saying that voting is considered "sitting out adult responsibilities" now,?? because that is how it reads
    so, i didn't vote the idiot in, but it's my fault the idiot is POTUS?
    that is called delusional (and a few other expletives that are far more accurate, considering the poster)
    you misunderstood... trump is an idiot
    you are the fanatic
    and you're acting just like him, mr psychic time traveler

    feel free to blame everyone else for all the woe's in your pathetic life... it won't change the facts
    nor will it in any way validate you and your beliefs

    this type D-K behaviour is likely why Toad didn't take the time for discourse, much to your trolling baiting hearts chagrin

    so why are you so fanatically devoted to the blatantly false claims you keep regurgitating?
    that is the real question!

    you want to blame everyone but yourself

    by all means, keep blaming us because you already know that the epic failure is really upon the heads of people like you ... so keep scratching, cat - get enough dirt flung, maybe nobody will smell a thing. maybe no one will notice that the problem starts and lies solely with you.
  11. Write4U Valued Senior Member

    Nowhere, I was quoting Trump and that other guy who brought the crowd to a frenzy , by chanting that slogan over and over. If she had been there, they might well have lynched her.
    So you just disliked something about her. Fair enough. I have disliked some of my bosses too. That did not make them incompetent bosses.
    Was it a criminal action that made you dislike her?
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2017
  12. pjdude1219 The biscuit has risen Valued Senior Member

    no neither of you are being belittled or attacked for voting for trump. your being belittled and attacked, rightfully so i might add, for suggesting that voting for trump was a rational thing to do because hillary was a "monster" but than again both of you have shown some rather extreme dishonesty. and stumpy has shown a level of delusional at times that is awe inspiring paired with worse anger management than a toddler that leads me to believe he is going to kill someone over his fantasies one of these days.
  13. Truck Captain Stumpy Registered Senior Member

    that would depend on what it was that they did, really

    criminal? yes
    repeated? yes
    prosecuted? no



    1- TL;DR
    2- baiting troll comment, plus delusional projection on your part
    3- learn to read: http://www.readingbear.org/
  14. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    I posted nothing about what anyone "intended", or was "thinking", except disparagement of the product - the entire mental scene is up Limbaugh's ass, to shorthand it. Whatever you talked yourself into thinking your "intentions" were, or God help us all your "thinking", is none of my interest. I couldn't care less.

    I posted a simple truth about your situation, and Toad's. What you know, and since when you knew it, is not a matter of mindreading but memory - the ability to recall from week to week and year to year what was said and done, what actually happened in this country and who did it and what they said while doing it (including right here).

    Like this:
    I'm obviously not - neither a fanatic, nor acting like Trump. And that is a typical post from you, a basic tactic long familiar from your posting, which requires no mindreading to see through. And I'm going to remember it, the gist of it, just as I remember past Toad posting about Clintons, or your deflections about "libel laws" and instant personal attack and so forth. Limbaugh's Ass, is the shorthand.
    Yep. You and yours. The culmination of the manner in which you guys fulfilled your responsibilities as adult citizens of this democracy over the past thirty years is Donald Trump. Take a look - you own this, and everybody knows you own it.

    And if you think you're getting off the hook of this administration - it's not just Trump, after all, but an entire Republican government stretching back to Reagan - by flinging your silly spittle on a forum, you will be disappointed. This is worse than W, or Ryan, or Cheney - this isn't going to wash off nearly as easily, and you're going to have less time to do it.
    No, it really isn't. Try to keep track: We are the ones who were trying to stop you, remember? Clean up the police a little? Maybe take the edge off the racism? Warn you about the consequences of protecting misogyny and fundie religion? Point out the nature of the modern Republican Party and its organized base? Point out the dangers inherent in a news media so completely excluding leftwing and left libertarian viewpoints, dominated so completely by rightwing and authoritarian corporate interests? You were by turns dismissive and angry about that, at the time.

    And watching you guys lose your shit completely, spin off into spla-land, is not entertaining enough to compensate us for getting stuck with this Republican government.
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2017
  15. billvon Valued Senior Member

    Let me quote to you the final determinations of the FBI in that respect:

    1: "We did not find clear evidence that Secretary Clinton or her colleagues intended to violate laws governing the handling of classified information."
    2: "Based on our review, we have not changed our conclusions that we expressed in July."

    So according to US law, not a criminal at all. Not even enough evidence for an indictment, much less a guilty verdict.
  16. Truck Captain Stumpy Registered Senior Member

    1- you missed the most important part of that post: let me repeat it because it's relevant
    2- besides not referring to the above classified information issue, the incidents in question to which i am referring happened between 1992 and 2006

    not all crimes are arraigned and or prosecuted

    EDIT: the question wasn't a matter of having charges filed per US law, it was asked if the actions were criminal. per the linked definition of criminal, the actions that affected my opinion were classified as criminal.

    @trump jr ice
    is that why you so heavily edited your last diatribe to me here?
    there was quite a bit of supposition about intent, thinking, and more when you first posted it....

    you made an ASSumption that was wrong, and now you can't own it
    that makes you no better than the idiot trump you denigrate
    if you couldn't care less, you wouldn't have baited anyone, and you wouldn't still be continuing your baiting troll commentary

    you're posting your belief about what was said: there is a difference
    it is demonstrative of your personal hostility for anyone who may have strong opinions about anything that are based upon their own opinions or beliefs just because you, personally, think they're established due to "talk radio trash" or some other "hillaryhate" media garbage

    apparently you think no one but you can make logical decisions about anything political

    sounds like a bit of political fanaticism to me
    it also establishes that you lied above about intent as well as what others are thinking

    it wasn't a deflection: it was a relevant point
    if there is a libelous claim you can prosecute the offender - so where is the adjudication of libel regarding said statements?
    that would be evidence, and it would be something that i would be interested in reading - but evidence isn't something you like when it's directly contradictory to your claims, eh?
    then step up to the plate as a fellow independent and accept your own culpability in this because you're no different than i
    (except that i am far more active and interactive with my local and federal politicians than you are)

    i have not once voted for a person who ended up in the oval office since Reagan term 2... not once since then.
    full stop

    also note: as much as i disliked billy personally, i also respected what he did for the military, even when it sucked for me, personally.
    i didn't like his personal life, but i respected quite a bit of what he did.

    hillary, however, is a completely different matter

    and no uninformed trash talking flamer baiting on any forum who wasn't there to see for themselves the reasons i made my mind up about her is going to change my mind

    ... she can, however, change my mind, but it will take evidence far superior to your personal BS flame war tactics here

    and therein lies the difference between you and i: i'm open to the evidence
    i just happen to have evidence that you do not
    besides this being a distraction in an attempt to change the subject, it's also a load of crap
    if you were trying to do all that you claim in your soliloquy, you wouldn't advocate for known false claims
    who are you trying to convince? yourself?

    it's also demonstrative of your fanaticism

    try again, trump jr
  17. billvon Valued Senior Member

    Indeed, not even indicted. Even with half a dozen investigations, probes and panels, not a single one could find anything she did that was illegal.

    There are two possible explanations for this.

    1) There's a secret countrywide conspiracy to insulate her from all her crimes, a conspiracy so powerful that no investigator/prosecutor could overcome their force, but also so secret that no one has ever discovered any evidence of it.
    2) She didn't do anything illegal.

    Occam's Razor, as always, is a good guide as to which of the above is more valid.

    I know, a lot of people deeply, intensely hate her guts. That does not equal "guilty." No matter how strong the hate.


    Some potential crimes remain unknown or hidden. That was certainly not the case with her; every email she has ever sent, and every person she has ever met with, has been under the GOP microscope.
    Some people are well-liked enough that they are given a pass. That is also certainly not the case with her. Witness the number of gun range targets with her face printed on them. The GOP has made hating Hillary a party-wide pastime.

    adjective: criminal
    relating to crime.
    "they are charged with conspiracy to commit criminal damage"
    synonyms:unlawful, illegal, illicit, lawless, felonious, delinquent, fraudulent, actionable, culpable;More
    villainous, nefarious, corrupt, wrong, bad, evil, wicked, iniquitous;
    "criminal conduct"
    • Law
      relating to crime as opposed to civil matters.
      "a criminal court"
    • informal
      (of an action or situation) deplorable and shocking.
      "he may never fulfill his potential, and that would be a criminal waste"
      synonyms:deplorable, shameful, reprehensible, disgraceful, inexcusable, unforgivable, unconscionable, unpardonable, outrageous, monstrous, shocking, scandalous, wicked
      "a criminal waste of taxpayers' money"
    So her actions were certainly not criminal per the legal definition.

    Per the informal definition, you could argue that her actions were criminal. But that would have to be compared to a man who, by any sane standard, is far more criminal (per the informal definition) than she is. Clinton, for example, has never been sued for sexual assault; Trump has. Ttump has even bragged that he commits sexual assault, and gets away with it because he's famous.
  18. Truck Captain Stumpy Registered Senior Member

    actually, there is a third you're not stating:
    3- there could have been an act that is prosecutable under the law that wasn't filed and or acted upon by the law

    not stating relation, but here is an example that can demonstrate the third problem:
    an officer of the law arrives to a Domestic to find a battered woman. there are ear and eye witnesses to a verbal altercation with said spouse, but no direct witness to the battery. the woman refuses to press charges.

    if the woman doesn't press charges, it's also not a crime, yet it is a criminal act that is prosecutable under the law

    this was stated as an example only
    please note that since the above mentioned dates, laws have changed in many jurisdictions to allow the state to prosecute without the victim pressing charges.

    i do not proclaim her guilty of any crime i am not personally knowledgeable of, nor do i consider her guilty of any crime that isn't specifically adjudicated by the court. i can, however, consider her guilty of a criminal act that i have personal knowledge of, especially when i've stated this is my opinion and it's based upon personal knowledge.

    to be perfectly clear about my intent and meaning:
    her actions would have been prosecuted as criminal if they would have been charged, filed and prosecuted under the law.

    as those actions were potentially criminal but circumstances lead to lack of prosecution, then it's not in any way proof of guilt to any secondary parties not privy to, witnesses of, or involved in said act.

    i do not proclaim her guilty in the eyes of the law in any case; i provide only that said situation was a criminal act punishable by law, and that i was knowledgeable of said act by proximity, witness and or involvement in various ways, direct or indirect
    that's because he's an idiot and has a thug mentality
    this is often manifested in sociopathic personalities that are also fanatical in some belief

    he gets away with it because he throws money at it or because the public allows it
    IMHO he would not get away with it if people would stand united against the idiocy
  19. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    No, there wasn't.
    I never baited anyone on their thinking, or their intentions. Still haven't. I've gone so far as to express doubt of any actual thinking being involved in your behavior - certainly you display no acknowledgment of having read with comprehension.
    How would you know? You would have to acknowledge the belief, and what was said, both. You repeatedly refuse to do either one.
    It was not a relevant point. Still isn't.
    I'm not your "fellow" independent (you haven't earned it), and after being stuck with Republican governance have no reason to allow you and yours to dodge the consequences of your words and deeds - Donald Trump: he's your baby.
    You're singular obsession with your voting record has now run its full course, and you can begin addressing thread matters and issues.
    Trump's obviously not a fanatic. I'm obviously not a fanatic. You posted this before - maybe get a dictionary?
    Your increasingly clueless excuses for thirty years of acting and talking in such a way as to stick the country with Republican governance and Donald Trump have been repeated often enough that you can assume we've read them. Now it's time for you read other people's posts with comprehension.

    Not that it's going to get you off the hook for Trump. But you can salvage some respect - self and others (except mine) - by facing up to the past thirty years of American political discourse and your role in it. And Toad's role in it. Beginning in 1992 with the role of Hillaryhate , and ending with an adult American citizen describing a choice between Clinton and Trump as "a rock and a hard place".
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2017
  20. billvon Valued Senior Member

    Good example. In that case, the prosecutor might or might not press charges, since assault is a crime. There is NO QUESTION that Clinton would have been charged were she in a similar situation, since there was a very well funded campaign against her that was looking very hard for such cases.
    OK. And I am certain Trump is guilty of sexual assault, fraud and collusion with foreign powers in an attack on the United States.
    That's fine but it's also not saying much. Any of your actions would have been prosecuted as criminal if they would have been charged, filed and prosecuted under the law. By definition.
    Agreed. But as long as we have people like yourself, people like him will continue to get away with it.
  21. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Staff Member


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    Click for the wrong context, I guess, but it's true, I feel better.

    I would apply a third way, but it also comes with a preface as juxtaposition.

    Once upon a time in the apocrypha of moderating this site, the staff had a discussion about potential solutions to a growing problem of intellectual dishonesty. In history, this discussion has never gone well, so let's never mind the overall detail, except to mention that at one point in this particular discussion I am remembering, everything became a numbers game. Recognizing the potential for the appearance of disparate impact—which does arise if the problem is concentrated within a particular behavioral range—someone suggested, quite literally, quota expulsions of other members who hadn't really done anything wrong. Well, okay, they did, but that's where things got sticky. That is, to avoid the appearance of quota, we would have had to invoke a generally unenforced notion of civility, and thus cut our own throats, as well. In other words, to meet this proposed standard we would abruptly withdraw the right of passionate acrimony the site had, from the outset, allowed. Thus, to meet the quota by calling this other person over here an irredeemable asshole, or some such, we would have indicted the majority of our regular posting members.

    And that is the reason for recalling the episode.

    Still, the obvious third path is fraught for its own sake, in this moment, because what should seem fairly straightforward becomes extraordinarily complex when measured within the range of #DimensionTrump, though it was always at least a little strange when it shows in conservative quarters.

    The word "unprecedented", just for instance, has been largely abused in recent years. For instance: What was "unprecedented" about Barack Obama not wearing a jacket in the Oval Office? Well, he was a black man daring to not wear a jacket in the Oval Office. All those other presidents who took their jackets off in the Oval Office? They were white. So, you see? Barack Obama showed unprecedented disrespect by being the first black president and behaving like white men who preceded him .

    No, really, that's what they mean by "unprecedented".

    The question of a third path, applied to your two possibilities, involves intent. There were cases, for instance, in which officials "accidentally" removed classified materials: the one wasn't prosecuted because his answer was a good faith, "Oh, shit!" while the other was because he tried to hide his "mistake", destroying documents and so forth, in such a manner as to prevent law enforcement and intelligence from understanding what had happened, thereby ensuring a perpetual question mark about the episode.

    You and I, for instance, I think we can agree that sometimes people screw up. And, you know, there is always the spectacular debate over police, but even beyond questions of murder, cops get away with perjury a lot, and when deferring to respect for their authority and service is insufficient, the next standard they fall back to in defending perjury is that the officer was simply incorrect, and did not intend to misinform or deceive. And if this stretches the bounds of believability, society generally detours back through respect for authority and service before finally agreeing to start driving nails.

    How about government officials losing track of information?

    When the Bush Administration and RNC, who was handling the administration's email service, either lost or destroyed twenty-two million emails from a period in which there happen to be viable questions about lawbreaking, why was nobody prosecuted? We're still holding out on intent: Really, nobody intended to destroy the evidence of lawbreaking in employment; oh, and hey, it wasn't destroyed after all, and trust us, because we're not letting you look until after any applicable statute of limitations has passed because our public record is also our right to privacy.

    Nor will we dwell on Secretary Yahoo!—er, I mean Powell.

    Republicans seeking to indict Clinton play with two really, really dangerous, blazing torches: The server was not fundamentally illegal; any acts that can be construed as lawbreaking either fall on procedural questions in the hands of technical staff maintaining the system, or else depend on wordplay about which email boxes are subject to which retention rules while forsaking questions of intent for anything that a political opponent wishes to pretend looks like a crime.

    There is a Doonesbury joke that has been around since Watergate, that one is thinking of future presidents. I don't think it's necessarily explicitly true that every president since has said that, but it's possible; Carter would be the question mark. Yes, we heard it from the Obama administration; I forget what about, only remembering that I gave my little exasperated laugh combined with an accusatory "You [____]", with the blank being filled with some phonetic failure, like "You jus'", as the word dissolves, but derived from, "You just did that?" They had their reasons, as I recall, but that moment is always just astounding to me.

    Yet this is the thing: Today's Republicans need to think of future presidents, members of Congress, and other public officials: Is their animosity toward Hillary Clinton such that they would throw out every last shred of effective discretion? I suppose the gamble there is like pretty much any other: Republicans know their voters will follow them when they demand the resurrection of these functions and principles slain because, you know, one day a Republican is going to need to say, "Yeah, but I wasn't trying to—!" and the remaining question is how much grace others are willing to grant, because as every other principle falls away from American conservatism, its spectrum is more and more colored by that sickly antisocial pall: We should never treat conservatives as they treat others because, in these aspects, we risk functionally conceding the principle of civilized society.

    Which comes back to an old line about the observable difference 'twixt acknowledging human frailty and seeking to exploit it.

    The focused point being to look what Republicans must do to maintain their indictment against Clinton, and then consider what happens if we honor those standards as societal.

    A few years ago you and I had a disagreement about constitutional and tort law; part of your argument was that it was only a problem if people like me were in charge, and part of my retort was to smirk that, sure, if people like me who abide the constitution and equal protection, or some such. But that was the thing; I might mention Griswold because that Supreme Court case was ostensibly about free speech and patient-doctor confidentiality, but it keeps turning up over the years because we can't just apply those principles that one time and leave everything else alone; Griswold is also regarded as having established the right to privacy in marriage, so you can imagine that precedent will turn up over and over and over again.

    (Note: To the other, neither was Griswold in any particular manner about a woman's human rights; if it was, we wouldn't be having the abortion and birth control political and juristic disputes we witness today. We might still have some disputes, but they would certainly look different for requiring different juristic form and vector.)​

    Birth control comes up as relevant to two men getting married to each, how? The right of privacy in marriage. Of course, it gets a little more complicated in detail, but for our purposes the functional point is that society could not invoke this principle once and then simply drop it.

    Or, in a word, precedent; I figure it probably seems a bit strange to you that we should revisit certain basic civics, but, yeah, that's where we are at.

    If Republicans throw out intent with their weak bathwater tea, well, that's the thing, isn't it? How quickly do we expect Republicans will want it back because, you know, their friend over there, sure, it was a bad, stupid mistake, but he didn't intend to break the law when he willingly undertook actions that broke the law? Flynn? Kushner? Manafort? Trump, Jr.?

    • • •​

    The portion from the Doonesbury joke forward might feel a little forced. I would recall that ... oh, my, it was just yesterday↑ that I noted: As long as I keep seeing certain signs, and fail to find certain other markers, it's easy enough to accept circumstances really are moving forward in ways I would find satisfactory. That is to say, the mechanisms of society are still functioning, so the underlying question remains ultimately political.

    At any rate, yeah, that latter portion was written after I turned on my television, got my first news dose of the day, and learned that Mr. Mueller has apparently impaneled a grand jury.
  22. Truck Captain Stumpy Registered Senior Member

    well that's irrational... perhaps i should have known better...

    so - how do you figure that one? is it because i am not part of the echo chamber here?

    not once have i ever advocated for the idiot - and i've campaigned hard against him here in my own state
    i've spoken out against him as well everywhere else (like here or other social media)
    i regularly converse with my REP and SEN
    i am also very active locally (regardless of what the fanatics like ice-trump believe)
    so i'm a responsible adult actively participating in this political machine using the methods allowed, while also standing for things that are important...

    feel free to elaborate why you consider "people like me" to be the problem

    the only reason i can see for you making the claim is because i didn't vote in hillary
    but i didn't vote her in due to my personal experiences with her and their family
    so the claim is pushing towards fanatical idealism

    what's next? the belief that only two parties should ever be allowed to be POTUS?

    ok. and i am certain of all but the last part because i've not specifically seen any evidence on his foreign powers collusion, though i will state his actions present a strong circumstantial case for it.
    if you have it, feel free to link it
    what do you mean it's also not saying much: that is exactly the point
    you're not making sense on that
  23. Truck Captain Stumpy Registered Senior Member


    spoken like a true fanatic

    thank you for validating me

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