Trump Watch: The Conservative Condition

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

  1. candy Valued Senior Member

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    I think I finally have figured DJT out.
    He is the guy who never reads the instructions.
     
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  3. billvon Valued Senior Member

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    A recent poster noted that Trump passed an executive order that declassified any document once it passed the rim of the toilet bowl.
     
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  5. RainbowSingularity Valued Senior Member

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    he is cartman off south park

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  7. candy Valued Senior Member

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    Sounds like the search is starting to go sideways.
    Apparently FBI agents do not read the instructions either. DOJ has agreed to return the passports. No word on the attorney-client communications. Hope they do not end up in the NY Times like the Project Veritas messages did.
    This does not inspire faith in government. MAGA's already distrust the system.
     
  8. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Staff Member

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    Inspiring the faith of insurrectionists who require corrupt government and have no use for truth is not part of DoJ's mission.

    For instance, are the magagaga under some deusion about the history of law enforcement in this country? It's almost like they don't know how things work. For instance:

    Remember, Donald Trump does not have three active passports. The idea that FBI agents collected the three passports, established their legitimacy, and then returned them after doing so would not be at all unusual in the history of law enforcers serving search warrants. Apparently the magatude aren't aware.

    It is also worth observing that one of the reasons agents were able to get a search warrant was because they knew paperwork filed by one of Trump's attorneys made false statements. The crime-fraud exception is already in play.

    Meanwhile, the only people weeping for Project Veritas grifters are their easy marks; the New York Times already prevailed in its argument about publishing PV internal documents.

    Look, there are times when someone might seem to not have a clue what they're on about. You wrote six sentences, Candy, and none of them describe anything that is true. Sideways? No, not really. Do not read the instructions? I doubt your comprehension of how search warrants work; there are at least two straightforward ways they could have been collected. Attorney-client privilege? Prima facie false attestation by one of Trump's attorneys is a big part of why DoJ has a search warrant to begin with. Hope they don't end up in NYT? Well, sure, pretty much anyone would hope their internal communications don't end up in the newspaper, but if they're newsworthy, such as evidence of a crime, yes, we will see them. Faith in government? Maga attitudes? As far as anyone else can discern, the only government the magatude trusts is corrupt.

    I wish I could explain a certain concept to you, except there is nothing about your posts suggesting you would understand: Compared to decades watching law enforcement and courts hew to particular postures, processes, arguments, and outcomes, the complaints of the magatude sound uneducated and petulant. Remember, that others lost an argument with law enforcers in the past does not mean those others accept the outcome was correct, but it is, in fact, an outcome, and one of the key questions in discerning between general failure and particular corruption of justice is whether certain outcomes we don't like hold consistently as time passes. Compared to the wars against drugs and terror, and the inquisitions against women, children, and schools taking place in conservative states, magagaga complaints about the FBI serving a search warrant at a former president's home simply don't compare to what has gone on in the past.

    The extraordinary aspect of this warrant is indeed that it is for the private residence of a former president. But that question can easily be addressed by the facts at hand; as near as we can tell, President Trump's behavior is also seemingly unprecedented. There are no bothsides equivocations, this time, and the only reliable aspect of right-wing equivocation is that rightists will equivocate.
     
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  9. RainbowSingularity Valued Senior Member

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    MAGA think Trump won the last election . . .
    & Trump tried to get electoral officers to stop the vote count which is illegal
     
  10. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Staff Member

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    We find ourselves coming back to this—

    —because—

    Indeed, the email Team Trump released to the public was intended as support for the former president's claims, but the closer one looked, the less it helped him. Trump insisted that one of the passports had expired, when in fact two of them had expired. Trump said the FBI "stole" the passports, when in fact the FBI was returning them after determining they were unrelated to the investigation.

    And then, of course, there's the timing: Team Trump received the Justice Department email at 12:49 p.m. eastern, and the former president published his pseudo-tweet about a half-hour later.

    In other words, the Justice Department effectively told Trump and his team, "We're returning the passports," at which point Trump told the world that the FBI "stole" the passports, launched an unprecedented political "assault," and pushed the United States into "third-world" status.

    There was a degree of irony to the circumstances: The former president was needlessly deceiving the public, and his own political operation released an email that helped prove he was needlessly deceiving the public.


    (Benen↱)

    —this sort of gullibility—

    —is apparently something we are supposed to take seriously.

    It's a relativistic outcome, an inevitable product of equivocation in which one part of a dualism has no obligation to fact, integrity, or even simply making sense; scraps of marketplace cacophony are raised to merit by counterintuitive and even contrarian equivocation.

    And it has gone on so long that no matter how many times rightist, and especially Trumpist, hyperbole fails, there are always willing believers, easy marks, and enough that we are apparently obliged to take them seriously.

    This describes an interesting circumstance for a society. Truth is stranger than fiction, but reality does not suit conservative need, and, historically speaking, it generally does not. The Trump experience in particular hemorrhages from a thousand multivalent self-inflictions. In its way, what we see describes a manner of moral relativism that is virtually unanchored; its relativistic anchors are themselves subjective, relative, and subordinate, epistemically inoculated against any need for consistency.

    (Ironically, it is a form of the moral relativism that traditionalists of a former age guarded against, accusing liberalism, secular humanism, and other such influences as tearing the fabric of society; it turns out they were correct about moral relativism, but chauvinistically, as they described future iterations of traditionalism, i.e., subsequent generations of their own conservatism.)​

    The easiest way to justify anything is to abandon the principles by which it is assessed. This is how certain conservative rhetoric survived long enough to possess the Republican Party; it was a simple dualistic proposition in which one side was relieved of any obligation to fact, integrity, or simply making sense because it would somehow be unfair if we did not.

    In a certain way, it makes sense psychologically, but the present context suggests disruption of normative function. We allow and even encourage dysfunction because we are acculturated toward both empathizing and sympathizing with certain fear, and anxious gullibility of politically existential gravity is a seemingly inevitable result of our perpetual American failure to do the right thing.
    ____________________

    Notes:

    Benen, Steve. "What’s up (and what’s not) with the FBI taking Trump’s passports". MSNBC. 16 August 2022. MSNBC.com. 17 August 2022. https://on.msnbc.com/3prqxIB
     
  11. Neddy Bate Valued Senior Member

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    2,411
    It was probably his own bright idea to store his passport with the classified documents, in case he decided to take them out of the country.

    And by "classified documents" I mean the ones he secretly declassified before they were planted by rogue FBI agents. [/sarcasm]
     
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2022
  12. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Staff Member

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    Perhaps the most striking subtlety of the moment reminds that someone of such an ethic could ever have become president in the first place. As Donald Trump works to build a legal team, we might wonder at those who would raise such dubious character to power.

    To be sure, there are a variety of factors that contribute to a problem like this. The most respected law firms, for example, are no doubt aware of the fact that Trump has a habit of refusing to pay what he owes to those who work for him. Reflecting on the then-president's inability to secure impressive legal counsel, George Conway noted in a Washington Post op-ed in 2020, "This is what happens when you don't pay your legal bills."

    That's true, but it's not the only relevant angle. Just as notably, good lawyers realize that they — unlike most members of the Republican Party's cult of personality — can't lie without consequences. When House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy shamelessly peddles nonsense on Fox News, he knows he can get away with it. When lawyers try to do the same thing in a courtroom, they know they can't get away with it.

    What's more, good attorneys have certain expectations about their clients. Given Trump's history of occasionally blurting out confessions, would you want to defend him?

    Finally, there's the not insignificant fact that those who have represented the former president have come to regret it — and they've said so publicly.


    (Benen↱)

    The fact of corruption and incompetence is not surprising; the magnitude, however, is something extraordinary in our American experience.
    ____________________

    Notes:

    Benen, Steve. "A familiar problem: Trump struggles to hire a legal defense team". MSNBC. 17 August 2022. MSNBC.com. 17 August 2022. https://on.msnbc.com/3AtKAwk
     
  13. Neddy Bate Valued Senior Member

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    2,411
    That happened because the republicans like to vote for people who they think will "own the libs". The cruelty is the point, just as it is with the forced birth movement.
     
  14. parmalee peripatetic artisan Valued Senior Member

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    They can have my expired passports when they pry them from my cold, dead hands. Jesus Fucking Christ.

    Not exactly sure what about this reminds me of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences much belated apology to Sacheen Littlefeather this week, apart from the often overlooked detail of John Wayne having to be physically restrained at the Oscars, as he was attempting to physically assault Littlefeather.

    I guess point there being: right-wingers and conservatives have always been human garbage. That said, I do get a kick out of it when reasonably sane people offer up someone like, say, Joe "git yer muskets!" Walsh as a supposed example of a non-fucking human garbage Republican.
     
  15. billvon Valued Senior Member

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    Yes. A woman at a Trump rally summed up what they want from a leader: "he's not hurting the people he is supposed to be hurting." To them, hurting the right Americans should be the goal of a republican president.

    With people like that, we won't need China to take us over. We'll fall apart ourselves.
     
  16. Seattle Valued Senior Member

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    8,124
    Conservativism and Republicans are two different subjects.

    Granted, Republicans are hard to figure out although I think I finally get it. We look at Republicans today and think how can you believe this crap, how can you fall for Trump, don't you realize how much damage you are doing to institutions, etc.

    For the hardcore third of the party...damage to the institution isn't a problem, it's the point. Chaos, "freedom", anti-social, sit on a mountain top with your gun and being a "prepper" is actually what they want.

    They want to undermine the authority of the State Department, Justice Department, IRS. Seen in that light, I get why they want Trump. They all say that they don't care for his personality but they like his "policy". His policy is to permanently reduce government institutions.

    Conservatism is about low taxes, controlling the size of government (not undermining it), strong defense and limited debt.

    Trumpism is about destroying all that plus all the craziness of course.
     
  17. billvon Valued Senior Member

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    I think nowadays you really have to separate out three different groups - republicans, conservatives and Trump supporters. There is getting to be less and less overlap between them.
     
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  18. parmalee peripatetic artisan Valued Senior Member

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    I don't disagree. And to be honest, I'd first just written right-wingers, then I added conservatives. Not sure why exactly.

    Regardless, you didn't address social conservatives--they're human garbage.

    But as to fiscal conservatism, that's always been a bit of mystery to me. For instance, I'm an unbelievably cheap bastard. My ways of jamming econo are truly alarming and shocking to a lot of people. I am the epitome of fiscal responsibility--with respect to myself. However, when it comes to the dogs... that all goes out the window. I should clarify though: I'm saying they get the best food, the best insurance, their Kong toys are immediately replaced when they mysteriously disappear, and they have a good time even if it costs--I don't throw money at stupid shit that dogs couldn't care less about. Maybe that's not all that clear, but what I am essentially saying is that beyond your toothbrush and your underwear, everything is public property as far as I'm concerned. I mean, I don't want people fucking up my records and gear and such, but one can quibble over details after everyone's needs are met.

    And what does "controlling the size of government" even mean? No EPA? No means for dealing with infrastructure? No single payer health care for all? No proper--and free--public education for anyone who wants it?

    No one wants "big government." Yet, at the same time, everyone thinks toll roads suck.

    As far as post-Eisenhower Republicans go, they're all "Trumpists," whether they pretend to "like" him or not. We all know that if Reagan weren't such a shit actor, he would have been the John Wayne in that scenario.
     
    Last edited: Aug 19, 2022
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  19. parmalee peripatetic artisan Valued Senior Member

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    OK, I tried to throw in an edit to my post above, yet the software created a duplicate post. What's that all about?
     
  20. parmalee peripatetic artisan Valued Senior Member

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    Thought I'd throw this in because I'm a bit manic. Also, I noticed that there was a fair bit of what is termed "profanity" in my posts above.

    If it's not glaringly obvious, my liberal use of "profanity" is quite deliberate. To potential whiners: note that I am never lewd or vulgar. Neither am I telling anyone to "fuck off." Rather, the "profanity" is all filler or substitutes for commonplace nouns/adjectives/adverbs.

    Essentially, if someone complains about my profanity, I know precisely the kind of person I am dealing with and I generally avoid dealing with such persons henceforth as such persons are largely... well, worthless.

    Also, I probably ought to illustrate what I mean by "human garbage." Here ya go:



    "Senators Ted Cruz and Steve Daines fist bump after shooting down a bill that would expand healthcare coverage for veterans exposed to burn pits."

    That's human garbage.
     
  21. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Staff Member

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    For whatever it's worth, and, sure, that's probably not much, Ben Stein¹ claims, "Trumpism is basically old-fashioned republicanism".

    Then again, he also says the GOP should "gather its nuts together and say [Republicans] are the party of the greatness in America".
    ____________________

    Notes:

    ¹ qtd. in Filipkowski↱.​

    @RonRilipKowski. "Ben Stein wants to know why Republicans don’t get enough credit for freeing the slaves." Twitter. 18 August 2022. Twitter.com. 19 August 2022. https://bit.ly/3T1zG8A
     
  22. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Staff Member

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    A Note on Defending Trump

    Steve Benen↱ observed, of Donald Trump's announcement that the FBI had served a search warrant at Mar-a-Lago:

    Trump's statement runs 340 words. Amidst all of the whining and whataboutism, at no point does he actually say he's innocent or deny that he mishandled classified information.

    Aaron Rupar↱, today, suggests, "we've gone in about one week from 'the FBI planted evidence' to 'very legal and very cool'", or, as he put it yesterday↱, "Rudy Giuliani tells Newsmax that Trump was just trying to preserve documents by putting them in a safe place."

    And, yes, he really did. Rupar detailed Giuliani's discussion with Rob Schmitt of Newsmax:

    … and now, they want to make him responsible for having taken classified documents and preserve them. Really, if you look at the Espionage Act, it's not really about taking the documents; it's about destroying them, or hiding them, or giving them to the enemy. It's not about taking them and putting them in a place that's roughly as safe as they were in in the first place.

    Two points go here:

    1) At no time has the defense of Trump asserted that there was nothing to find.

    2) Giuliani's comment on the Espionage Act is both incorrect in itself, and incomplete compared to the range of crimes considered. 18 USC §793↱ is under the Espionage Act; Trump also faces questions under §1519↱, pertaining to Obstruction of Justice, and §2071↱, on Records and Reports.​

    What we know of the search warrant, and a prior request to review security footage, suggests the concern under §793; questions of particular actions and intentions are in play, and this is what Giuliani relies on in his characterization of the Espionage Act. The question of §1519 appears to be answered in the inventory list, e.g., Stone document, though particular details might affect the specific legal implications. However, about §2071: An attorney cannot confess for his client, as such, but the political defense of Donald Trump over the last eleven days has consistently conceded §2071.
    ____________________

    Notes:

    @atrupar. "Rudy Giuliani tells Newsmax that Trump was just trying to preserve documents by putting them in a safe place." Twitter. 18 August 2022. Twitter.com. 19 August 2022. https://bit.ly/3c7nTVv

    —————. "we've gone in about one week from 'the FBI planted evidence' to 'very legal and very cool'". Twitter. 19 August 2022. Twitter.com. 19 August 2022. https://bit.ly/3AAvmpE

    @stevebenen. "Trump's statement runs 340 words. Amidst all of the whining and whataboutism, at no point does he actually say he's innocent or deny that he mishandled classified information." Twitter. 8 August 2022. Twitter.com. 19 August 2022. https://bit.ly/3Ad1U7L

    United States Code. (2022) Law.Cornell.edu. 19 August 2022. http://bit.ly/2mYZiIv
     
  23. Seattle Valued Senior Member

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    8,124
    OK, "social conservatism" and reduced size of government...

    I'm not sure "social conservatism" has anything to do with conservatism. I'd just called it bigotry.

    Reduced size of government means let the government grow to the point that it's needed and no more. We need the government, IMO, to run the prisons and I don't agree with any for profit, privately run prisons.

    On the other hand the government doesn't need to be providing public pre-kindergarten, IMO. People can chose to have kids, they can chose to send their kids to nursery or not just like they can chose to buy a car or not.

    I don't think the government should provide a car for me. It would be nice of course. A lot of things are nice but it's unnecessary and in the end, we would still be paying for it and the price would be higher.

    I do agree with universal healthcare. I'm less sure about free continuing education. It's not really "free". When you give free anything to people it tends to be abused. If they have to pay at least a portion then it tends to go where it should go. I'm open to more affordable education although most people who want it currently do still seem to be able to get it and many who don't really seem to care about it, still seem to get it.

    Look at the educational benefits that our military get. Many had a college degree before they entered, others got one while in the military. When they retire they still have a certain amount to spend on education and a stipend while they are getting that education.

    So, many just delay getting a job and learn to fly an airplane, learn to scuba dive, anything to use up that education allowance and to get that stipend. That's taxpayer money however and it's not an efficient use. It encourages behavior that wouldn't otherwise occur if they had to pay for it. It was meant to provide a college education, after service, for those who couldn't afford it otherwise. Now it's just a "benefit" to be wasted.

    You may consider everything "public property" other than your toothbrush and underwear but that's usually the viewpoint only of those with little more than a toothbrush and underwear.

    When kids are in college they are sometimes much more liberal than after they get a real job, pay taxes for a while, try to raise a family and get some real world experience.

    Here's the thing. Money doesn't grow on trees and the economy doesn't just magically grow. If someone does something that "grows" the economy they have more money than someone who doesn't. If everything belonged to the "public" the economy would be much smaller. How does that help anyone? It doesn't.

    It's not just about Bill Gates vs a poor person. It's also about an average middle class person vs a poor person. In any system one can be a poor person. In our system you can also do better than that (or not). A middle class person has more money because of the decisions that they have made. However that money doesn't come at anyone else's expense. It's not a zero sum game.

    If I was poor it wouldn't be because of Bill Gates having a lot of money. Take away Bill Gates and the economy is just smaller. More doesn't end up in my pocket.

    The "public" doesn't create excess wealth. People do. Why would most people feel that Portland Oregon is a more pleasant place to live than Detroit Michigan? Both places belong to "the public". That's because the public is an non-entity that does little other than survive.

    If we want a society with pretty equal outcomes we can go back to an agrarian, subsistence society. Everyone will be poor but equal. At that point saying that everything other than your toothbrush and underwear belongs to the public has more meaning because most people would have little more than a toothbrush and their underwear.

    I'm not sure what your point was about Ronald Reagan and John Wayne.

    If profanity makes for better reading, I can go back and spice it up I suppose...

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    Last edited: Aug 19, 2022

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