Trump Watch: The Conservative Condition

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Tiassa, Aug 10, 2022.

  1. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Valued Senior Member

    If, for instance, Ben Collins↱ of NBC News asks—

    Am I losing my mind? Is this not a gigantic deal? He's either casually admitting to using federal agents to interfere in a state election or lying about it for some equally inexplicable reason, right? Am I reading this wrong or is this a five-alarmer for the DOJ?

    —there are a few ways to answer: Well, yeah, it kind of looks like that. DoJ might have an obligation to look into such a claim. It sounds facially absurd, and presumes federal law enforcement really are such easy tools.

    But then, there is also this: The juxtaposition is not unusual. Or, perhaps, the particular iteration is unusual because how many former presidents even have an opportunity to say something so stupid, but, still, sometimes people put themselves in a position where there really is no good explanation.

    Writ small, maybe someone you know isn't lying, but their expertise or qualification is tarnished by what they said, or something like that. An example rarefied by prestige is a time when Chief Justice Roberts seems to have lied from the bench about gay marriage, but that's the thing: He didn't lie if (A) he genuinely doesn't remember such important work from his formative years as a lawyer, or (B) he just doesn't think the rhetoric and behavior described animus. But when he said in open court that he did not remember animus, the easy first reaction was to point out that such lines live and die in front of the brick wall on open mic night, but coming from a Supreme Court justice, there isn't really any version that doesn't tarnish His Honor's honor. That is, no explanation of it speaks well of the Chief Justice, and we are left to argue about how much it diminishes him, or the Court, and how much any of that actually matters.

    Meanwhile, yes, Donald Trump does appear to have confessed to using the Department of Justice to tamper with a state election.

    That's just super.


    @oneunderscore__. "Am I losing my mind? Is this not a gigantic deal? He's either casually admitting to using federal agents to interfere in a state election or lying about it for some equally inexplicable reason, right? Am I reading this wrong or is this a five-alarmer for the DOJ?" Twitter. 10 November 2022. 10 November 2022.
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  3. Beaconator Valued Senior Member

    The GOP likes every case whether it has merit or not.

    Who doesn’t love a case? Whatever kind of case that is…
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  5. Sarkus Hippomonstrosesquippedalo phobe Valued Senior Member

    Has he, though? Or did he simply send in the FBI and DoJ to stop the tampering (illegal activity) he thought was going on? In the same way, if you see someone being harassed on the streets, can you not call the cops to intervene? Or must the state election process police itself? Or is the analogy wrong for other reasons?
    I'm just trying to understand the issue, 'cos from this side of the pond it doesn't seem that wrong. Is it something to do with the state v federal split of powers?
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  7. Beaconator Valued Senior Member

    oh what the hell are people with guns and judges with words supposed to do about politicians?

    I don’t assume people with guns can’t use words… judges can’t use guns or politicians can’t vomit in the grass…
  8. Sarkus Hippomonstrosesquippedalo phobe Valued Senior Member

    Well, gee, thanks for this. As helpful as a chocolate teapot. Do you have anything constructive to actually say to someone seeking to genuinely understand the issue, or is being unhelpful your actual intention?
  9. billvon Valued Senior Member

    Up until four years ago - absolutely. I was making way more than I needed to, or that an average person could make.

    I am now making about half that because I joined a startup that I really wanted to work for (as opposed to a company that would pay the most.)

    But you are absolutely right on the larger scale - people will usually demand that highest salaries they can, and that greed drives the employment market.
    Yes, they were. Again, greed drives our economy. It's how we set prices.
    Correct. You have to upset the system (i.e. shut down most drilling due to a pandemic) to get supply and demand out of whack, at which point that greed drives prices astronomically high.
  10. Janus58 Valued Senior Member

    Yes, it is a big deal. Even if he truly thought the election was being "stolen", he had no right to interfere with the counting of votes. At most, he could have sent observers to catalog what they believed to be improper ballots, and then challenged the certification of those votes. A better analogy is you witnessing someone in a store putting items in their pockets, and you suspect them of shoplifting. You can't call the cops to stop them from doing it, you have to wait until they actually walk out of the store without paying for those items.
    And here's the other thing: Assuming he did sent them in, and they did "intercept" or stop improper votes? Where are they? You'd think that the DOJ and FBI would carefully collect and preserve that evidence to later validate their actions. Not doing so would be like a Police officer charging someone with Drug Possession, and then when asked to present the seized drugs as evidence, saying " I don't have them, I threw them away." Why wasn't it brought up in any of the myriad of cases Trump brought to challenge the election? This would have been the perfect "smoking gun" to bolster his claims.
  11. Sarkus Hippomonstrosesquippedalo phobe Valued Senior Member

    But did they actually interfere? From his Twit-post he just said he brought them in, and the "tampering" stopped. E.g. it could have been that he brought them in to observe, and while they observed nothing wrong, their presence stopped what DT thought was the "tampering"? So what did the FBI and DoJ actually do when he called them in? Did he even call them in at all, though?
    The "stopping" might just be that the presence of the FBI was a sufficient deterrent so that no more "tampering" took place, and thus no evidence. I'm not sure the Twit-post says that they identified any tampering post FBI involvement, only that the "tampering" ceased when he did bring them in. Hence the FBI nor DoJ have any evidence of it, because there wasn't any while they were there.
    I'm not trying to defend Trump's allegations of tampering, just trying to get to why the subsequent Twitter commentary was identifying it as such a big deal. I'm not sure your response helps me in that regard, though. I get that if they did actually interfere then, yeah, sure, that's a big deal. But did they, other than, say, acting as observers or deterrent? Or is that sufficient for it being a big deal?
  12. pjdude1219 The biscuit has risen Valued Senior Member

    CSPAN watching Katie porter's presentation to congress. You can find YouTube videos of it
  13. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Valued Senior Member

    The election itself is run by the state; sending feds to intervene in the handling of ballots requires more than a president thinking something is going on.

    This also lends toward the question of whether anything actually happened. Here's the thing, though: A lack of evidence would not be evidence of lack. As one analyst suggests, we would have heard about it at the time if federal law enforcement showed up without a warrant or court order and affected the ballot count.

    What Trump describes is a massive felony.

    Odds favor the story being make-believe. As a question of boasting, there is actually a lot to say about the character of American conservatives, but that is a different discussion. Trump has put DoJ in a bad spot; they kind of have to investigate, and few will believe them when they say nothing happened.

    If DoJ got involved in the Florida election this way, we should have heard about it before now. If DoJ got involved, and their actions were proper, there will be a paper trail. But we already know the SS tanked, and DoJ is well aware of its historically conservative prejudice; moreover, there is a lot of noise, right now, doubting the Department of Justice in ways that, frankly, things should never come to. The twit-record suggests Donald Trump claiming a corruption scandal and election fraud in Broward County in November, 2018, but the record stops there, for the moment, because the former president's tweet is unavailable for unspecified reasons, which might seem like a small detail but is actually problematic because that part of his Twitter history is considered a presidential record subject to retention. Wayback↱, however, shows that Trump did in fact claim:

    Law Enforcement is looking into another big corruption scandal having to do with Election Fraud in #Broward and Palm Beach. Florida voted for Rick Scott!

    The phrasing is vague enough to mean pretty much nothing, so what we're waiting for is probably some manner of statement from Broward elections officials; the only really testable claims will be that yes, feds did show up during the vote count. Right now, nobody seems to be rushing forward on that point.

    Most likely is that the story is untrue. Trump might have said something to someone in his administration, and they might have said yes sir, but it sounds like something no responsible federal official would actually go and do. But in that case, it's also true that the attempt is supposed to count for something.

    Still, a former president appears to have asserted that the Department of Justice participated in election tampering at his order. The unspoken joke right now is that it's after the election, and Merrick Garland is only waiting to indict until he knows how to schedule his Congressional hearings for which Judiciary Committee. It is also impossible to utterly ignore the rising disappointment in the all too easy projection that the Department of Justice will never indict a conservative president, just like it broke policy to go after Hillary Clinton in the middle of an election while withholding discussion of a foreign-influence investigation involving Donald Trump. Against that backdrop, it's almost like Trump is begging the AG to indict him. The former president has put DoJ in an awkward position, and apparently to insult Ron DeSantis for the sake of internecine conflict.

    Also, just because it's Trump: There was some harassment of election workers at the time, including a loud and belligerent protest, which they acknowledge was disruptive and even frightening. Some liberal activists blame Trump for an angry mob intimidating poll workers. Also, Gov. Scott ordered the Florida Department of Law Enforcement to investigate the election in Broward County. It would look bad for Trump to claim credit for direct action harassment of election workers, and there is reason to wonder if he wants credit for Scott's action. Either way, of course Donald Trump went and said it without thinking about the implications. It's kind of wht he does.
    Sarkus likes this.
  14. Seattle Valued Senior Member

    I'm not calling it "greed" but if that's how you'd like to refer to doing what is in your self-interest, fine.

    You are still doing what is in your self-interest. You find the start-up more interesting and if it's successful, at the IPO stage, you will probably make even more money than you were before, correct?

    Self-interest is what everyone is doing, even the minimum wage clerk at Target. When the war, pandemic and OPEC caused reduced production, world oil markets adjusted supply and demand as always. Do you think something else should have occurred?

    Do you agree with the Congresswoman Katie Porter presentation that half of our current inflation is due to corporate greed? Which companies should lower their prices, is that economically feasible and is that why we have inflation in any meaningful sense, IMO?
  15. Jeeves Valued Senior Member

    Every chance he made for himself. Where the hell you been the last 8 years? Mars?
  16. Sarkus Hippomonstrosesquippedalo phobe Valued Senior Member

    I'm guessing there must be a sale on chocolate teapots. Ah, well.

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  17. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Valued Senior Member

    Think of our own experiences over time; part of what really confuses that other half is how to deal with the conservative bloc.

    Consider Nikki Haley. A groundbreaking politician, daughter of Indian immigrants to the United States; governor of a state, ambassador to the United Nations; in her way, she is the embodiment of the American Dream. Her story is an example of the poem, of why we lift our lamp beside the golden door.

    Now consider a Black man, and in his own way a testament to the American Dream; the son of a World War II veteran, the American-born son of an American grew up struggling for civil rights, achieved a prominent station of civic respect and leadership, and won election to the United States Senate.

    And now the conservative daughter of immigrants has called for the American-born Black man to be deported.

    So, here's the thing: Free speech, and all, &c., ad nauseam, except ceteris paribus is not in effect, and that's where American liberals get really confused. Think of it this way, complaining that American liberals are too elitist is such easy sport that even you get in on it↗ from abroad. Imagine she said it here. She's not our neighbor, Seattle, so we can't excuse her for being ignorant. But what she said is insupportable and panders to white supremacism. In its way, there ought to be a context in which what she said is disqualifying, but that's the thing; we're not even talking about your pretensions of cancel culture, with this, but, rather, the idea that the proverbial everybody else, i.e., the "other half" that is "probably still sane", is expected to continue to take her seriously, as if she has some particular credibility. This isn't some new phenomenon in the twenty-first century, or even the Internet Age; it's been going on the entire forty-two years of my political awareness, and it wasn't new, back then.

    It's like in 2015, when Republican presidential candidates sought public demonstrations of piety for the sake of being seen, and inasmuch as any of them—e.g., Cruz, Huckabee, Jindal—might want to be seen with the pastor who said parents should drown their children instead of letting them read Harry Potter stories, what the hell were American liberals, or anyone else in that ostensibly sane crowd, supposed to say or do?

    There is kind of a blithe, ping-pong equivocation going on in the American discourse, but ceteris paribus is not in effect; not all else is equal. Sure, one side says something, and the other side says something else, but it is often only customary pretense that makes those two things somehow equally valid or otherwise functionally comparable. In our society, sometimes these people, over here, need to suffer excessively because it would hurt the feelings of those other people, over there, if they didn't. Yes, sometimes it really is that straightforward.

    Like our current American moment in which that woman over there can't have her cancer treatment because it hurts someone's feelings that a potential bearer of children might take a drug that would disrupt her potential for pregnancy while it treats her cancer. The only reason we couldn't see it coming is because it was supposedly indecent to predict such outcomes. People could see it coming, because conservatives told us; it was in the anti-abortion framework at least since Roe. Still, it was considered inappropriate to suggest this was where it would go, and all that sort of chiding about liberal elitism and the bit about everyone who disagrees with someone, &c.

    The complaint about cancel culture works this range; in some hands it is merely a complaint about public disapprobation or even the very prospect thereof; for others it simply means being refused what they want; and part of the problem with the whole cancel culture hullaballoo is that it refuses to separate itself from certain fallacious pretenses that, by coincidence, happen to be the sorts of things the complaint wants nothing to do with. I'm sorry, is that a complicated expression? How about, nonreciprocal empowerment? It's one thing if, in some quarters, refusal of nonreciprocal empowerment to afford and curtail the human, constitutional, and civil rights of others is somehow perceived to be cancellation or some other violation of one's rights and equality; to the other, though, are the observation that supremacy is not equality, and the overlap between what so much of the cancel culture complaint would seek to vindicate, and what conservatives are censoring in their panic about CRT and transgender. Remember, this period and experience also includes the transition from projecting the hurt feelings of snowflake liberals to conservatives seeking to outlaw educational curricula perceived to somehow hurt white people's feelings.

    We know it plays. We know it affects elections. Elon Musk just wagered forty-four billion dollars on it. In our own microcosmic experience in our little corner of the web, we have known similar pangs and quandaries. We know these stations of rhetoric, and where they lead.

    And toward broader questions about American society and politics, the common aspect reminds: That bloc who are "probably still sane" remain obliged to similar demands. And as you're well aware, nothing they come up with is good enough.
    Jeeves likes this.
  18. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Valued Senior Member

    It came through my twitfeed this morning, making the rounds↱ as Rep. Porter appears to survive a redistricted re-election challenge.
    pjdude1219 likes this.
  19. Seattle Valued Senior Member

    Hey, Jackass. Is your greatest fear that this site will become popular and will no longer be your blog but instead will become a place for discussion and 2 way communication? You don't do well with any other point of view do you? Ceteris paribus, there is your view or the other view/person is stupid.

    That's a limiting characteristic for a moderator to have on a discussion forum. Who did you know to be here?
  20. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Valued Senior Member

    It's a matter of record↗ that ignorance was the excuse offered for your racist behavior; that part wasn't my call.

    Meanwhile, you do understand, of course, that your point of view isn't "any other point of view", but, rather the one that you communicate to others.

    The point being that we ought not lower the bar for someone like Nikki Haley the way we do for someone like you.
    pjdude1219 and cluelusshusbund like this.
  21. Seattle Valued Senior Member

    You don't need to orchestrate any discussion. There are only a few of us on here. none of which require footnotes by the way. We ought not lower the bar for your delusional blog but we do consider you special needs.

    Just leave me out of your rants with James.
  22. pjdude1219 The biscuit has risen Valued Senior Member

    Bit rich coming from the guy with an ideology that can be refuted with a middle school education who spends most of your posts pontificating to ever else to feed your delusion that your smarter and more knowledgeable than the rest us.
  23. Seattle Valued Senior Member

    My grammar is certainly better than yours.

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