We've spent the better part of 18 months predicting one Donald Trump moment after another will be the straw that breaks the camel's back, the moment where we announce that we've proven ourselves willing to put up with quite a lot but this time he has Gone Too Far. And then the election rolled around and we proved that we really have no values, ethics, or standards for behavior as a society that we're not willing to waive when the prospect of a tax cut and cracking down on scary brown people is on offer. Right-wingers have always been good at the hypocrisy of preaching civility and Family Values for everyone but themselves, but it's not far-fetched to describe 2016 as having taken it to a new level.

So when the Russian hacking stuff came out after the election – which, to be clear, I don't believe told us anything that anyone paying attention could not have concluded with confidence prior to the election – I was embarrassed to find myself thinking yet again, "Well this time he's gone too far." Cut me a little bit of slack, though. If there's one thing that old white people, and old white conservatives in particular, could not conceivably go soft on it would be The Russians. We are a nation of people literally raised to hate, fear, and mistrust The Russians even when there is no logical reason to do so and even (or especially) when we don't quite understand why. They are the bad guys, period. They always have been and they always will be. Even abandoning communism didn't change the dynamic. America Good, Russia Bad.

Except, of course, when they actively attempt to screw Hillary Clinton. Then they're our pals, or at the very least they are inept and harmless.

The closest thing to a silver lining from this year is the way we will emerge from it with a much clearer understanding of American conservatism in its current incarnation; at its core, it really is just authoritarianism. They can try to decorate it with bows and ribbons and puerile rhetoric about God and Guns and Freedom, but this man-crush on Putin gives the lie to all of it. The closest thing to a legitimate use of "freedom" by anyone willing to cozy up with that guy is a selfish, authoritarian one. We love freedom in the sense that everyone should be free to do as they please as long as they do exactly as I do.

When you're willing to excuse away a foreign country trying to fuck with our presidential election what you're really saying is that you've gone so far in on this hand that you don't see any reason to stop now even when logic and judgment dictate that you should. This is like a gambler down to his last $20 pouring it into a slot machine and figuring that having $0 to your name and $20 to your name are, if not economically or rationally identical, functionally so.

102 thoughts on “WHY STOP NOW”

  • I don't blame the Russians for taking geopolitics to its logical conclusion, but I do blame the Democrats for having spent too much of the last 20 years with their heads up their asses waiting for the inevitable triumph of demographics and enlightenment thinking, rather than organizing, planning, making their case to the people. They left a huge opening and the GOP marched straight through the gap and took power. Until we recognize this, we aren't going to have a prayer of understanding how Trump was able to win, much less how we turn this disaster around.

  • As a Russian (currently in Canada), I find it amusing to try to convince Americans to vote for the Democratic party (because in a two-party system, you have no other moral choice). It's like we're still trying to influence your elections.

    In part, this is probably the result of globalism sort of coming to bite the US in the butt. By creating the tools of globalism (global trade, the internet, the political-industrial complex, mass-scale social networking platforms), the US has opened itself up to the sort of foreign influence (even if relatively benign in my case) that would have been unimaginable during the Cold War. The kind of electoral and cultural influence that the US was able to wield against other countries only through the use of intelligence agencies is now accessible to random Macedonians wanting to earn a buck, not to mention authoritarian state actors with an axe to grind.

    I guess there is a lesson to be learned here about the idea that in the modern age, all avenues of cultural exchange and soft power are bidirectional. You can't hope to export your influence without opening yourself up to importing some in the process.

    The one possible upside is that just like Republican politicians can make pilgrimages to Uganda to promote homophobic laws there, it may be possible for Canadians to make pilgrimages to the US to promote the idea of "being less of an ignorant dick". /tongue firmly in cheek

  • "We love freedom in the sense that everyone should be free to do as they please as long as they do exactly as I do."

    Nailed it.

  • ConcernedCitizen says:

    A conservative radio host from Wisconsin made basically the same pointin the NY Times a few days ago: modern American conservatism is not a principled movement. It is, rather, a tribal-authoritarian one grounded in fear and given over to conspiracy theories.

    This isn't really news to anyone who's paid attention for the past couple decades. But, as you said, the silver lining is that, with the election of Trump, this is so obvious now that even a conservative radio host can notice it.

  • Once again, Obama and the Dem's utter horror at the thought of having to play politics bites them in the ass. Soft-playing the DNC hack instead of hammering it over and over and over…whaddaya know, the Republican narrative carried the day.

    I long for the day to have ONE Democrat as politically bloodthirsty as the average Republican congressman.

  • you don't see any reason to stop now even when logic and judgment dictate that you should

    Not so. Decency dictates they should have stopped a long time ago. If decency were money, the GOP is not so much the gambler down to his last $20, as the one in hock to the Mob for $20 million.

    If the goal is to make the USA safe for kleptocratic gangster capitalism, logic dictates the GOP should keep doing exactly what it is doing.

    Propaganda in the USSR portrayed the West, inaccurately, as a corrupt dystopia. After the fall of Communism, the Russians made this dystopia a reality for themselves. Now it has come full circle, and the USA will be controlled by people who see the distortion of Soviet propaganda as a model to be followed: http://blog.iainroberts.com/2016/12/full-circle.html

  • It must be hard to be a progressive optimist and be kicked in the teeth by events at every turn. Much better to be a pessimist and have a life filled with pleasant little surprises.

  • Welp, Trump won because a (very) few hundred thousand people (out of approx. 130 million voters) in a few states flipped from D to R this time. So I don't think "we" as a country are significantly different than we were four or eight years ago when "we" elected a black guy with a weird name President. Sure feels like something's changed, though.

    I think the part of the reason those on the right aren't flipping out over the CIA's allegations of Russian interference is not just that their guy won, but that they just plain DON'T BELIEVE IT. The GEB said it himself: we're supposed to believe those WMD guys? Why?

    Hell, Comey alone probably affected the election more than all the wikileaks e-mails combined. Not a fan, but I'm pretty sure that guy's American.

  • @geoff

    The CIA, for all their faults, weren't "those WMD guys".

    When the CIA wouldn't tell Dick Cheney what he wanted to hear, he basically created his own intelligence agency (Office of Special Plans) that would.

    Cheney and Rumsfeld cherry-picked the intelligence to ignore anything that didn't support their foregone conclusion.

  • well, maybe some people believe the 'russians hacking' story has as much veracity as 'WMD' story. Ie. fucking zero, zed, nada, zip….

    Could that be part of it? Ed, you are certainly ready to believe that 'story' w/o any proof.

  • @MK, understood and agreed, but Agency head George Tenet himself went along with the charade. ("It's a slam dunk!") As did the New York Times and the Washington Post, so I can understand why (some) people are skeptical of the "ZOMG PUTIN HACKS ELECTION!!" story.

  • "The current discourse on this issue is plagued by partisan gibberish — there is a disturbing trend emerging that dictates that if you don’t believe Russia hacked the election or if you simply demand evidence for this tremendously significant allegation, you must be a Trump apologist or a Soviet agent.

    The reality, however, is that Trump’s reference to the Iraq War and the debacle over weapons of mass destruction is both utterly cynical and a perfectly valid point. U.S. intelligence agencies have repeatedly demonstrated that they regularly both lie and get things horribly wrong. In this case they may well be correct, but they cannot expect Americans to simply take their word for it." (Jeremy Scahill/ Jon Schwarz– The Intercept)


  • @Major Kong–and don't forget, when Ambassador Joe Wilson refused to lie about the existence of the yellowcake used to make WMD, in retalition, Cheney outed his wife, Valerie Plame, the CIA undercover agent, thus endangering the lives of not only the spies she worked with, but even the benign, completely-innocent people she might have come in contact with in her everyday life, including food cart vendors.

  • I have a comment in moderation, likely because I included links. In short, in counterpoint to this morning's Hillary- and Democracy-hating trolls on how the sanctions were working and how Putin gulled the trolls into doing his dirty work for him, Crooks & Liars and DKos both have interesting articles on how the Obama administration was using diplomacy on the Russians, and it was working.

  • Emerson Dameron says:

    @John Danley –

    The US still viscerally detests "socialism" if it means health insurance for poor people. We've just decided that Putin in particular must be okay because Trump said so.

  • @Emerson Dameron

    Actually, the US populace routinely supports socialist policies (at least according to polls, for what they're worth) so long as they're not actually framed as socialist. The word socialism is a propaganda trigger that places people's thinking patterns into a certain web of associations that are very difficult to break out of. Redefine all socialism as not-socialism, and you'll probably make more progress.

  • I see Trump as more similar to the European New Right or "Third Position" in ideology, and not a garden variety American right winger. If you see him as a 3rd positionist, it's less confusing.

    I'd suggest looking at the Third Positionist generally and also Putin advisor Aleksandr Dugin and his "fourth political theory". He's published in the USA by Counter Currents which also publishes a wide array of material for informed the Stormfront crowd.

    Dugin puts it this way. Note it is explicitly antiliberal and antiglobalist:

    "If we free socialism from its materialist, atheist and modernist features, and if we reject the racist and narrow nationalist aspects of the Third Way doctrines, we arrive at a completely new kind of political ideology. We call it the Fourth Political Theory, or 4PT, the first being liberalism, that we essentially challenge; the second being the classical form of Communism; and the third being National Socialism and fascism. Its elaboration starts from the point of intersection between different anti-liberal political theories of the past (namely Communism and the Third Way theories). So we arrive at National Bolshevism, which represents socialism without materialism, atheism, progressivism, and modernism, as well as the modified Third Way theories.…

    The only thing that we insist on in creating such a pact of cooperation is to put aside anti-Communist, as well as anti-fascist, prejudices. These prejudices are the instruments in the hands of liberals and globalists with which they keep their enemies divided."

    The world has changed and there is rapprochement between Russians and fascist sympathizers.

  • So far there no evidence has been presented that Russian agents carried out the email hacks, just a lot of very vague, murky, heavily qualified statements from unidentified "intelligence officials." OTOH, Craig Murray, the Iraq whistleblower, says that it was a lead, not a hack, from a Democratic insider.

    More likely is that the "Russian hackers" scenario is a shiny object to distract from the actual suppression and stealing of votes by the GOP. They have been doing this for decades, and it is MASSIVE — millions or tens of millions of votes disappeared in who knows how many elections. Hell, a late SCOTUS Chief Justice started his legal/political career doing vote suppression. Greg Palast has done great work on this, dating back at least to the stolen election of 2000. All of this new Red Scare nonsense will blow over in a little while, and the whole thing will be forgotten, leaving the GOP in a perfect position to keep doing this forever.

  • Indeed. Any conservative claim to values is lost, surrendered to the check cashing store on the corner. Vladimir's place.
    This is all so twisted. Just enough voters believed in the ultimate celebrity endorsement – Putin says he likes the guy – to get Americ's best know con (clown) in office. That's all it was. And even Donnie Boy knows not to get in the way of another bully's personal grudge match: Putin's with Hilary. Stand aside and let it fly.
    A closed mind resists even the most challenging facts. Can you imagine the VFW boys finally coming around on the Ruskies while downing their beers? You have to now. They have.

    And for goodness sakes AutoRock, no one pushes progressive issues out of optimism. We do it cause it's better to make things better for people. We're not optimistic about the chances, especially given your ilk. And if you can still enjoy life's little surprises then you're not a true pessimist. A true pessimist knows all surprises, little or large, are gonna make it worse. You betray your desires. It's not all about what makes you feel better.

  • "Actually, the US populace routinely supports socialist policies (at least according to polls, for what they're worth) so long as they're not actually framed as socialist."

    "Keep your government hands off my medicare!" God, those people are stupid. Only problem is, we have to suffer right along with them.

  • Are we surprised? I've seen Putin vs Obama memes going back at least three years. I've seen conservatives idolize Putin as a "Strong Leader" who "Fights Terrorists and isn't a wimp" because nothing says courage like having journalists or others who say things that aren't nice about you murdered in cold blood by assassins.

    It's been a long game being played here. I would say that the Russians have been helping to cultivate the cult of Putin in the US for a few years now, and Trumps strings being attached to the Kremlin is just a bonus for them. Russia is run as a kleptocracy and has been since the fall of the Soviets. I would also suspect the oil barons of also being involved since there is so much money to be made from selling Russian oil, but I don't know if those people give a shit about politics, and plus, why go to all the trouble of doing propaganda when you can just bribe, I mean provide superPAC contributions for, politicians.

  • Bonus little story.

    When Pablo Escobar was in "prison" in Columbia, in which his lieutenants could come and go as they pleased, etc., it was said that he used to play soccer games with his people where he would play striker, huffing and puffing, and everyone let him take breaks and score goals because they feared the consequences if they didn't, and he was such a small, vain little man that he needed to feel as if he was a superstar soccer player as well as being a bloodthirsty cocaine trafficker.

    A few months ago, maybe at the opening of the Sochi ice arena for the Olympic Hockey Tournament, Russian players and legends played an exhibition game where Putin also suited up. What do you know, Putin scored a hat trick in the game, skating on a line with NHL/KHL players.

    It takes a special kind of vanity and smallness to need to "prove" how masculine you are by having people throw sporting events to make you appear like a sporting superstar. Flight suits are also an appropriate metaphor here as well.

  • @Well….mostly

    'Any conservative claim to values is lost, surrendered to the check cashing store on the corner. Vladimir’s place.'

    Haven't we had enough people of every spectrum shouting about 'fact checking" yet? It's not the conservative administration that has doubled the national debt in just eight years to where it now stands at 107% of GDP. This is the second highest peak ever, nearly reaching the stratospheric levels of that other peak, WWII also, btw, achieved under a Democrat administration.

    And it certainly isn't from Vlad's place that the US gets its funds, Russia's share of the US bond market doesn't even get it a place in the top 5 foreign lenders.

  • Lets see who Putin handles the execution of his ambassador to Turkey. Tough on terrorism? Or about to jump into a quagmire.

  • @April; speaking of stupid, I passed around a meme I saw and the conservatives all agreed with it: Shrodinger's Immigrant; simultaneously stealing your job and too lazy to work. The conservative response, "This is so true!"

  • Jesus: BuggyRockhead is now focusing on debt during World War II, which is somehow the fault of the Democrats?

    We'll see how effective Tangerine Menace is at reducing the national debt while cutting taxes for the 1% AND spending more on weapons and (kleptocratic) public works projects.

  • @Major Kong

    And then there's that odious progressive search for equivalence. It's a game for multiple players with prizes for the best cherry-pickers.

    Yes, Reagan increased the debt by 186% but, as you know, 100% of nothing is nothing. Where Reagan's increase amounted to $1.9 tr., Obama has added $8 tr., more than four times as much in absolute terms.

    And then there's that other repulsive progressive thing – the willful ignoring of the issue. I was responding to a spurious, ill-researched implication that Russia is a major financier of what is laughingly called the US economy. You may wish it were so but nothing could be further from the truth.

  • @Tim

    I guess that explains why Trump won the hoi-poloi vote. Oh, wait …

    It's a salutary lesson likely making the Dems more receptive to introducing voter IDs.

  • @Tim:

    Craig Murray, the Iraq whistleblower

    Just for the record, Murray has gone full tinfoil hat in recent years. He thinks MI5 has nothing better to do than vandalise Labour and Conservative party offices in Aberdeen, as part of some convoluted plot to discredit the Scottish National Party (no, I don't follow the logic either). http://blog.iainroberts.com/2015/04/spray-paint-in-aberdeen.html


    Because of inflation, comparing dollar values now and 30 years ago is almost meaningless. Debt-to-GDP ratio is a much better indicator. Interest rates are relevant as well (they were in double digits in the 1980s, now are effectively zero after inflation). But somehow I get the impression you're not interested in such petty details.

  • Your denial would be comical if it weren't so cloying. Why doubt Wikileaks' contention that the Podesta leaks and the DNC leaks were from DNC insiders?—one of the leaked emails even talks about making "an example" of the suspected leaker (Seth Rich).

    I'd wager that very few people here have read that name before—Seth Rich.

  • I'm sure a big upper class tax cut plus a large military spending increase will have that debt fixed in no time at all.

    Makes perfect sense if you believe that 90% of the discretionary budget is food stamps and foreign aid.

  • @Talisker

    Don't tell me, tell Major Kong, I merely continued the vein that he opened.

    You may have noticed [but then, as a progressive, you will have ignored] that I couched my reply to him in words like 'odious', 'cherry-picking' and 'equivalence'.

    There's always someone who points out the obvious and this time it's you.

  • @MK, I see your Kudlow, and raise you SC Rep. Mick Mulvaney for OMB (OMG!!) Director:


    Pretty weird that Trump says he wants to cut taxes, build infrastructure and "rebuild" the military, but puts this guy at Management and Budget. I don't think Mulvaney and the Goldman boys are gonna get along. ("Fuck it, let's default on the debt! What's the worst that could happen??")

    @Tom, I have also gone pretty tinfoil hat the last couple years. so while I recognize Rich's name, until some kind of evidence surfaces, so far as I'm resisting the "OMG IT'S VINCE FOSTER ALL OVER AGAIN" stuff. I DO however believe it's just as likely (OK more likely) that the DNC/ Podesta e-mails were provided to wikileaks by a Dem insider or a US intelligence actor as by Vlad The Impaler, given the absence of attribution or proof of Russian state involvement so far.

  • @MK, I see your Kudlow (and jeez, when you've lost Greg Mankiw…), and raise you SC Rep. Mick Mulvaney for OMB (OMG!!) Director:


    Pretty weird that Trump says he wants to cut taxes, build infrastructure and "rebuild" the military, but puts this guy at Management and Budget. I don't think Mulvaney and the Goldman boys are gonna get along. ("Fuck it, let's default on the debt! What's the worst that could happen??")

  • If I didn't have to live here, it would almost be interesting to watch them turn the whole country into Kansas over the next few years.

    Interesting in the sense of a bad train wreck that is.

  • @carrstone.
    I'm guessing you're including the 2009 budget deficit in your narrative. Passed before Obama became president. The largest deficit in the span. Of course, the 2017 deficit will be Obama's also. Good stuff, buddy.

  • @Paul, @doug

    Why're you picking on me? I didn't start the discussion on comparing values.

    Not that I care that you are; you regressives are skilled at deflecting and answering questions that weren't asked.

    Why ever are you so ineptly quoting Cheney at me? Are you saying that Cheney was right? Or wrong? Or did you just not like putting the quote in its context because you didn't know what it meant if you did?

  • @Vinny

    Not true. I understand logic well enough as you would recognize if you'd take off your progressive-colored glasses. I just don't accept that the progressive stance is the only way to see the world – it's no wonder you're all so cranky all the time.

  • Give us a break, you know you want it–otherwise you wouldn't be here. We know you're just waiting with bated breath for democommie to come in, pull your hair and call you a whore.

  • As soon as carrstone's mom starts charging him rent for the basement, cuts off his endless supply of hot pockets and closes the AOL account he will go back to watching game shows.

  • @Vinny–

    It's basically hopeless. Carrstone is a fairly adept troll and I think some of the guys actually enjoy a good ol' fashioned bukkake party every now and then. The best we can do is ignore it or just dip out of the thread.

  • Pretty rich:

    Can we please stop with this politically correct bullcrap? The reality is that a huge portion of Trump-era Republicans (about 52% based on that “popular vote” poll) are simply either morons, or are suffering from mental illness. Importantly, among Republicans without a college degree, 60% said that Trump won the popular vote. These are simply unintelligent people. There is just no other way to slice it and it is a reality so depressing that it has played a significant factor in my decision to end my national radio talk show at the end of the year. –John Ziegler

    Calling Ed over to the mic:

    The closest thing to a silver lining from this year is the way we will emerge from it with a much clearer understanding of American conservatism in its current incarnation; at its core, it really is just authoritarianism. They can try to decorate it with bows and ribbons and puerile rhetoric about God and Guns and Freedom, but this man-crush on Putin gives the lie to all of it.

  • Ever consider that it was your own hubris that's brought you to your knees?

    The game has changed right out from under you and you failed to pay attention to it, so you're still playing by the old rules and shit yourselves when you realise they don't work. You're like the way we used to razz the Rs for playing by the Cold War geopolitical rules. Guess what that ship sailed—and sank. You're like someone so cock sure of themselves that they refuse to pay attention to the signs the environment is telling them, because, "I'm right!" You're like the bozo we had recently who despite the signs, warnings and "better judgement" felt he was invincible in his Prado and drove across a swollen causeway. He was pulled out several Ks down stream. So confident was he.

    Prior to 18mos ago the majority of the commentariat was hating on Clinton, for valid logical reasons. Her coziness w Wall St, her Hawkishness and duplicity… No where near the rabid, white hate she garnered from the right, but I'm certain you could warm your hands by it. Effectively, your points lined up point for point with right's, just hold the emotion. Suddenly, you're all unicorns with sparkles, rainbows and fairy dust shooting out their arses over her. What changed? Oh yeah, party before principle. I'm looking at you Bernie. Who's bright idea was this anyways? You got sucked in by dud goods.

    Don't get mad at Trump, his voters, the EC, Russia, or who ever you're casting blame on this week. Get your pitchforks and torches out for the DNC, DWS and Clinton, and yourselves for your hubris to buy this shit and think people in Peoria would buy it. They're obviously not as stupid as you make them out to be, because they knew Clinton was shit. EVERY single poll had Clinton losing to Trump prior to the general. EVERY POLL!
    So who's the rube in this instance?

    We were just amazed that the bulk of you didn't set fire to the convention when the emails were leaked. Seriously. Talk about cowed. You got gamed, and you refuse to blame the people who played you. You've got a bad case of battered spouse syndrome. The sooner you wake up to that the better.

    So perhaps a bit of soul searching is in order?

    Might I suggest a bit of humility?
    Stop calling anyone and everyone who disagrees with you an -ist, a -phobe or a bigot. As you seem to have not noticed, here's a hint: that shit doesn't work any more. Those states and counties that are blood red right now, they delivered Obama to the White House. TWICE!
    Yet you have the audacity to call them racists. Yeah. Go drive your Prado into that swollen causeway. We'll come find you down river later.

    We're tired of wanting to have a discussion, and have you call us -ists and -phobes. Well if you're not going to engage in an adult conversation, then fine.


    You want to know what normalises Hitlerism and naziism?
    Simple, keep doing what you're doing, to the point that the other person has no other choice than to troll the shit out of you. Because it causes you to absolutely lose your shit, and your still no wiser than you were.

    So yeah. Drop your tickets that you carry on yourselves and start listening.

  • OK xynzee, I'll bite. Who do you think we should have nominated?

    Clinton certainly had baggage but I still don't think the Jewish, Atheist, self-proclaimed socialist would have played well in Middle America.

  • @xynzee

    Who the fuck are you talking to?


    Coziness with Wall St, hawkishness, and duplicitousness are considered *strengths* when you're a (male) Republican. This would've been a slam dunk if she had a penis and a red tie.

  • "Progressive colored glasses"? Is that the nuevobuzzphrase that your Randroidmentors are insisting on?

    I can't speak for anyone else but "Progressive" is a label I'd be happy to wear–if I wasn't something else.

    Exult in your indignorance, asshole.

    Aurora S.:

    I doubt that I could pull his hair, he most likely has a brush-cut or, if he's on his way to a TrumPutin rally maybe a skinheado. As for calling him a whore, he couldn't even aspire to that level of humanity.

  • I can't believe that so many people have fallen for the idiotic conspiracy theory that the Russians screwed with the election. The only ones that have made that allegation are the CIA, and they've showed no proof for it, only conjecture. Since it's inception, the CIA has engaged in two things. One, lying to the American public, and two, interfering in the elections of other countries. But everybody seems to have swallowed the conspiracy theory hook, line, and sinker. IT security experts don't believe it they can point out a whole bunch of reasons why it's preposterous. In there estimation, it was nothing more than a leak. Somebody at the DNC was pissed off at the way they were screwing with the primary, and they accessed all these emails and handed them over the WikiLeaks.

    Hillary lost the election because of simple, street-level, retail politics. She had no message. It was all about her. She showed absolute disdain for voters. You can't call voters names and then expect them to flock to you. She and her acolytes crapped on Trump voters and they crapped on Bernie voters. That's how you lose an election. She didn't need any help in losing from the Russians, from Comey, or anybody else. She was a terrible candidate who ran a terrible campaign.

    It was painfully obvious to anyone who didn't have his or her head up their ass that people want to change. Trump offered change. Bernie offered change. Hillary offered more of the same, and you're gonna like it you fucking deplorables or you fucking Bernie Bros living in your parents' basement just looking for free stuff.

  • Skipper: Thank you for summing it all up.

    While I despise the Tangerine Menace and despise the Barechested Man on Horseback even more, there is no rational reason for assuming that "Russia" is some kind of existential threat. If Trump is too cozy, if anything, Hillary was too hostile.

  • I said something upthread about a couple hundred thousand voters flipping the election to DJT. Per the Cook Political Report, it was more like 78K:

    "1. Effectively 77,759 votes in three states (WI/PA/MI) determined the Presidency: Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump won by:
    22,748 votes in WI, 0.7 of a point (3rd party candidates received: 188,330)
    44,307 votes in PA, 0.7 of a point, (3rd party candidates received: 218,228)
    10,704 votes in MI, 0.2 of a point (3rd party candidates received: 250,902 votes)"


    Most of those 3rd party votes went to Gary Johnson, but I don't see anybody Nadering HIM.

  • MK: first off, put the Dixie cup down and step away from the kool-aid.

    You've proved that you're still playing by the rules of the Cold War in a post 9/11 world. The old factions are gone.

    Again, you weren't paying attention to any of the polls. In a head to head they had the Jewish, atheist, self proclaimed socialist routing the Orange Toupéed Middle Finger. It was only the establishment that believed their corrupt Saudi shill had even a snow ball's. The proof of this reality is the fact that Obama was put into the White House TWICE, by the people you brand as a bunch of slathering stormfronters.

    Bernie's hurdles were his age and his predilection for passifisivism. But he was pivoting away from that early on saying as president he has different obligations and must think about situations in a different light. So he accepted that there would be cases where the use of the drone program was the best solution.

    The real millstone around his neck would be the left's SJW contingent, and their bloody cultural Marxist agenda. Again the ONLY people absolutely obsessed in individual identity politics was you, and you refused to listen to people. You just kept branding everyone who disagreed with you as an -ist or -phobe, and some how considered that winning the argument.

    So everyone cheered on the guy who couldn't be cowed by that BS.

    So get over your grievances and stop twitch hunting people. People disagree with you, either learn to engage on the merits of the argument or build a bridge and get over it.

  • @xynzee

    Bernie never had to face the GOP attack machine. I can just see the ads now with his face morphing into Mao, Stalin and Castro.

    I may be an old Cold Warrior but that still plays well in parts of the country.

    I had no great love for Hillary. I came pretty close to voting for Bernie in the primary but I still think he would have lost, just for different reasons.

    You and I both know that he's not that kind of socialist. However, to a large chunk of the population:

    Socialist = Communist = Soviet Union = The Enemy

    For what it's worth, my preferred candidate was Joe Biden, but he wasn't an option.

  • Gerald McGrew says:

    So earlier I had expressed my shock at seeing an incoming Republican President tell the American public that they should trust Russian State propaganda over our own intelligence agencies.

    Now I see that some progressives are doing the same ("Bernie bros" it would seem), something else I thought I'd never see.

    Oh, and btw Skipper….the FBI has also agreed that not only were the Russians interfering, but Putin was overseeing it and specifically to get Trump elected.

  • @MK:
    There's still two things you're forgetting.

    1) These counties put Obama in the White House Twice.
    That tells us that there's a very large contingent who are more interested in policies than identity BS. Would he have won by the same margin as 08? Dunno.
    2) The number of people who stayed home out of disgust.

    You're also forgetting that there's a large number of people who voted Trump/other/left blank out of a sheer dislike of Clinton and the SJW faction.

    On a number of economic policies Trump and Bernie were saying the exact same thing. Stop letting corporations have these free passes to offshore work.
    A firm understanding that people don't want hand outs, they want a decent paying job.

    People will be good with many of his policies, if he could show that they will be equitably paid for and revive the middle class by broadening the economy with decent paying jobs.

    He may have been weak on the WoT and immigration. However, as the Rs need to distance itself from the alt-Right. The Ds need to purge itself of the cultural Marxists of the ctrlg-Left. People hate the ctrlg-Left as much, if not more than the alt-Right. They're just there being dickheads, just treat them like a communicable disease. Know where they are, quarantine them and inoculate yourself and loved ones against it. The ctrlg-Left on the other hand are virulent strain of a new disease running rampant through the community and melting people's brains as it goes.

  • @Aurora S: and for "coziness with Wall Street" read, "Gave paid speeches to Wall Street" (and any number of other places, including private corporations, schools, events…), which is an executable offense if you're a woman and a Democrat, but perfectly fine if you're a GEB or even just male. How dare Hillary Clinton give speeches for money! How dare she summarize her opinions and experiences for cold hard cash! @@

  • Once again, with my personal nod to Skipper's "OMG, Hilz is soooo meeeean because she correctly identified an absolutely deplorable bunch of human beings TO THEIR FACE"


    All the terrible things Hillary Clinton has done — in one big list

    DOVER, N.H. (MarketWatch) — I have a confession to make: I can’t keep up.

    Am I supposed to hate Hillary Rodham Clinton because she’s too left-wing, or too right-wing? Because she’s too feminist, or not feminist enough? Because she’s too clever a politician, or too clumsy?

    Am I supposed to be mad that she gave speeches to rich bankers, or that she charged them too much money?

    I’m up here in New Hampshire watching her talk to a group of supporters, and I realized that I have been following this woman’s career for more than half my life. No, not just my adult life: the whole shebang. She came onto the national scene when I was a young man.

    And for all that time, there has been a deafening chorus of critics telling me that she’s just the most wicked, evil, Machiavellian, nefarious individual in American history. She has “the soul of an East German border guard,” in the words of that nice Grover Norquist. She’s a “bitch,” in the words of that nice Newt Gingrich. She’s a “dragon lady.” She’s “Elena Ceaușescu.” She’s “the Lady Macbeth of Little Rock.”

    Long before “Benghazi” and her email server, there was “Whitewater” and “the Rose Law Firm” and “Vince Foster.” For those of us following her, we were promised scandal after scandal after scandal. And if no actual evidence ever turned up, well, that just proved how deviously clever she was.

    So today I’m performing a public service on behalf of all the voters. I went back and re-read all the criticisms and attacks and best-selling “exposés” leveled at Hillary Rodham Clinton over the past quarter-century. And I’ve compiled a list of all her High Crimes and Misdemeanors.

    Here they are:

    1. When she was first lady, she murdered White House lawyer Vince Foster and then dumped his body in a park.

    2. She drove Vince Foster to commit suicide through her temper tantrums.

    3. She was having an affair with Vince Foster.

    4. She’s a lesbian.

    5. Chelsea isn’t Bill Clinton’s child.

    6. She murdered Vince Foster to cover up that she once bought a tract of undeveloped land in Arkansas and lost money.

    7. She murdered Vince Foster to cover up her role in firing the White House travel department.

    8. After she murdered Vince Foster, she ransacked his office in the middle of the night and stole all the documents proving her guilt.

    9. When Bill Clinton was governor of Arkansas, she was a partner in the state’s top law firm, and it sometimes did work involving the state government.

    10. She once invested in commodities futures on the advice of a friend and made $100,000, proving she’s a crook.

    11. She once invested in real estate on the advice of another friend and lost $100,000, also proving she’s a crook.

    12. Unnamed and unverifiable sources have told Peggy Noonan things about the Clintons that are simply too terrible to repeat.

    13. The personnel murdered at Benghazi make her the first secretary of state to lose overseas personnel to terrorism — apart from Condi Rice, Colin Powell, Madeleine Albright, George Schultz, Dean Rusk and some others.

    14. Four State Department staff were murdered at Benghazi, compared with only 119 others murdered overseas under every secretary of state combined since World War II.

    15. She illegally sent classified emails from her personal server, except that apparently they weren’t classified at the time.

    16. She may have cynically wriggled around the email law by “technically” complying with it.

    17. She once signed a lucrative book contract when she was a private citizen.

    18. Donald Trump says she “should be in jail,” and he’s a serial bankrupt casino developer in Atlantic City, so he should know.

    19. Former House Majority Leader Tom Delay says his “law-enforcement sources” tell him she is “about to be indicted” — and if a man once convicted of money laundering and conspiracy doesn’t have good law-enforcement sources, who does?

    20. She’s a hard-left radical who wants to break up the nuclear family.

    21. She’s a conservative “mousewife” who refused to break up her own family.

    22. She’s in favor of single moms.

    23. She refused to be a single mom.

    24. When she was first lady of Arkansas, she pandered to conservative voters by dyeing her hair.

    25. Before that, she totally insulted them by refusing to.

    26. She’s a frump.

    27. She spends too much money on designer dresses.

    28. She has “cankles.”

    29. She has a grating voice.

    30. She yells into the microphone.

    31. She spent 18 years in Arkansas and some of the people she knew turned out to be crazy rednecks and crooks.

    32. She’s in the pay of the mafia.

    33. She’s in the pay of the Chinese government.

    34. She’s in the pay of the Wall Street banks.

    35. In order to suppress the billing records from her time at the Rose Law Firm in Little Rock, she cleverly packed them up and took them to the White House rather than shredding them.

    36. When she handed over the documents to public officials, they couldn’t find any evidence she’d committed any crimes, so she must have doctored them.
    37. Congress spent tens of millions of dollars and six years investigating her investment in the Whitewater real-estate project, and, while they didn’t actually find anything, they wouldn’t have spent all that money if there weren’t something there.

    38. By cleverly hiding all evidence of her crimes in the Whitewater affair, she caused Congress to waste all that taxpayers’ money.

    39. When she ran for senator of New York, she was still a fan of the Chicago Cubs.

    40. She once said the Clintons were thinking of adopting a child, and they didn’t follow through.

    41. She was photographed holding her hand near her mouth during the raid that killed Osama bin Laden.

    42. She’s got brain damage.

    43. She’s old.

    44. She’s really ambitious and calculating, unlike all the other people running for president.

    45. She secretly supported Palestinian terrorists, Puerto Rican terrorists and Guatemalan terrorists.

    46. She secretly supported a group that wants to give Maine back to the Indians.

    47. She’s a secret follower of “radical prophet” Saul Alinsky.

    48. She did her law degree at Yale, and it’s a well-known “socialist finishing school.”

    49. When she was young, she did things to build up her résumé rather than just for their own good.

    50. When Bill was president, she “allowed” him to keep people waiting.

    51. She’s married to a sex addict.

    52. She’s an enemy of traditional marriage.

    53. She didn’t divorce her husband.

    54. His philandering is her fault because she is too strong, and too weak, and too frumpy, and too fat, and too cold.

    55. She’s hostile to women who fool around with her husband.

    56. A divorced taxi driver in Florida told me that if Hillary is elected president, “women will take over everything.”

    57. She insulted Tammy Wynette.

    58. When they left the White House, she and Bill bought a big house in New York that they couldn’t afford.

    59. She sometimes calls her staff during dinner, even when they’re out at a restaurant.

    60. She claimed there was a “vast right-wing conspiracy” against her husband, and it turned out there was nothing but a bunch of tycoons financing private investigators, and some fake think tanks and books and news sites and stuff.

    61. When she got married, she didn’t “stay at home and bake cookies.”

    62. She supported the Iraq war because she’s a secret foreign-policy conservative.

    63. She’s a secret foreign-policy radical with a plan to impose worldwide “radical social experimentation” through the World Bank.

    64. She is secretly plotting to let children sue their parents for making them take out the garbage.

    65. She looked bored during the Benghazi hearings.

    66. Oh, yeah — and she totally has a vagina.

    It’s clear: Hillary must be stopped. Hearings now!

  • @xynzee

    What exactly is a "cultural Marxist"?

    The only other person I've heard use that term is a former friend who I strongly suspect is now a member of the alt-right.

  • @Katydid: To me, "Coziness with Wall Street" isn't about paid speeches. It's about being part of the corporatist Democratic Party, led largely by Bill Clinton, that has walked away from the causes of working people over the last 30 years – and as a result left a huge opening for a faux-populist authoritarian to take over.

  • Major, he means we should not fight for minority rights and should be focused on a populist economic message. I don't know what cultural Marxism is, but you can't complain repeatedly about SJWs and identity politics without meaning we should dump women's, LGBT, and racial minority rights from the platform. Strangely enough, I thought economic justice and social justice went hand in hand. Paul Campos makes the argument far better than I can:

  • Robert Walker-Smith says:

    I've been seeing a variety of riffs on this theme – "You can't call us Nazis! The Nazis were leftists and we're conservatives! You people with your insistence on racial and gender equality and resistance to the militarization of society – YOU'RE the real Nazis!"

    Apparently leftists can be fascists and Marxists simultaneously. It's the Humpty Dumpty approach to rhetoric; merely a question of who is to be master, you or the word.

  • Yeah. Using the term "Cultural Marxist" is the kind of stuff one sees on Men's Rights Movement websites and the Alt Right. xyz is not making a good case for himself with that one.

    As much as I am annoyed by overly earnest, tattooed, weirdly dressed college age pansexuals lecturing us on "intersectionalisty" It is amusing that the worst social justice warriors are Actually the Alt Right and MRM trolls and their focus on white victimization.

    On the other hand, if your entire program is group identity victimization, one cannot be surprised when one's political enemies start copying the tactics and language against you!

  • The term "cultural Marxist" is a dead giveaway that the writer is probably a Libertarian or of similar group. It's also part of the Objectivist lexicon these days (the group least likely to have read any Marx, and therefore the most eminently qualified to comment on his actual ideas).

    Replace the acronym SJW with "People who think you should treat those different than you with respect", and the opposition to them pretty much disappears. Hatred towards SJWs is largely fomented by shitbricks like the youtube "atheist" brigades, gamergate and r/redpill.

  • I may not have realized that the writer is a Berner. I guess my argument in this case is a bit different: social justice is a fundamental component of economic justice and vice versa.

    Even if you create jobs or raise the minimum wage, you can't fix a minority's economic stance in society without addressing the underlying racism/sexism keeping them from getting to that better job (although increasing min wages may help across the board). Creating jobs that certain groups can't reach because of other factors like racism/sexism is sort of what unionism did in America for decades. There is considerably more cross-sectional solidarity in the unions these days, but emphasizing an economics-only message is a dead end for a lot of other groups.

  • jcdenton: I see your points. But…it's a matter of tone and focus. Too many of the college age "warriors" exhibit a purism worthy of a fundamentalist religion. Worrying that someone's uncle doesn't use the proper pronoun in referring to your special self. Ever finer parsing of privileges and oppressions and micro aggressions. Much of this is internet based, and it doesn't have much impact in the "real world", but it is not a good ground on which to build a political movement.

  • Hacking is real.

    I read that Putin and his internet criminals are responsible for the Cleveland Browns' 2016 season.

  • @Heisenberg; to summarize your point, "Waaaah! The lower- and lower-middle class were *forced* to vote for the party whose very platform is "screw you loser, we got ours" and promised to slash their health care (unemployment is next) because they were stupid enough to believe all the lies about a woman who's been trying to get everyone healthcare for 25 years and was talking about jobs and raising the minimum wage."

  • "Cultural Marxism" is like saying "Abstract Expressionist Imperialism" or "Dada Economics". Unless you're maybe talking about socialist realist art in Stalin's USSR or Mao's China, the term is nonsensical.

    As for whether an "overemphasis" on racism/ sexism at the expense of class concerns cost Mrs. Clinton the election, please. Eighty thousand people in three states cost her the election, with an asterisk (EC) to boot. And I say that as someone who's been pretty damn hard on her and her campaign here.

  • Geoff: I saw numbers referenced on another site (sorry) that suggested that the meme that it was the white working class that voted in Trump is not necessarily true. The stats he referenced suggested it may have bene more the religious right "to blame"…and I am not sure how Hillary could have better reached out to that group, despite her own evident and longstanding real religiosity when compared to the thrice-divorced-multi-bankrupted-multi-fraud casino owner. (Wish I had saved the links!) :)

  • @Brian M

    People making less that $50K a year went for Hillary.

    The evangelicals went heavily for Trump (by roughly 80%) because the Supreme Court was in play.

  • Major Kong: That is what I read.

    Yet the various discussions in the media seem to be focusing on the "how the Democrats lost the working class" meme. When the real problem may have been more religious and cultural…the "petit bourgeoisie" evangelical vote.

    Interesting, the same kind of problem can possibly be seen in discussing Trump voters. Sure there was a racist and sexist basis for some of his voters. But there is also a meme floating around out there that the "Alt Right" was the reason for his ultimate victory. But, at least now, some statistics show that this "Alt Right" is a trivial number of people. Another internet-based group that has little real influence on the electoral numbers.

    Pretty interesting question.

  • And…a writer who I find "interesting" has an interesting response to the whole "identity group politics" question. Not sure I agree with him 100%, but he makes a passionate plea (he is an avowed Socialist, and a gay activist/anarchist/sci fi writer:)


    For a Leftist to buy into that scapegoating by accepting the rhetorical gambit in the notion of "indigency politics" would be to turn against a core principle of socialism: that the destitute must not be just left to fend for themselves. Is this any less true of "identity politics"? I don't believe it is. I don't believe that socialism can really be called socialism without having at its core a principle that the subaltern must not be just left to fend for themselves. It is not merely a liberal principle of tolerance by which lynching or gaybashing or domestic abuse are rejected as bigotry enacted. It is a socialist principle that the community protect those disempowered by unjust power structures, surely. Hence the "social". A socialism taking recourse to a 19th century focus on economic class, abandoning the 20th century development into anti-fascism, is not full socialism. If you're a Leftist thinking that "identity politics" is The Problem, ready to compromise on your anti-fascism in that respect, you may not be doing so due to your own bias re those abject groups affected, but you're buying into the Rightist rhetoric born of their bias. And to do so can only render your socialism unfit to purpose.

  • @Brian M, yes, all the lovely Church Ladies I know voted for Teh Donald. Swear to God they're nice people, and pretty serious about their faith. I just don't get it.

  • Voting for The Donald as a so-called Christian basically puts the nail in the coffin of the "values-voter" credibility. There's no more beating around the bush here. The Nice Church Ladies have made it abundantly clear that they're 100% unconcerned with philandering, violence, pride, greed, excess, lying, or swindling. They can't be buggered to give a dusty fuck about his actual faith (which is something the Right has totally racialized, by the way–so as long as he appears WASPy enough). It's about Punishing People We Don't Like and having a boner for the apocalypse.

    Cheeto Benito is the embodiment of the Seven Deadlies in an ill-fitting suit and a bad toupee. They've been spraying the Turd Of Vengeful Bigotry with perfumed holy water and telling us they're just acting upon God's divine orders and take it up with him if you have a problem. It's not about that; it was never about that. It's about hate, and always, always, always has been. Deep down they knew it, we knew it, but everyone's continued to let them keep up the facade.

    I say we take this opportunity to shove it right back in their hateful faces. If this means telling a Nice Church Lady to go fuck herself, do it. She's actually a terrible human being who thinks that chanting the Lord's Prayer after doing something terrible absolves her of consequences and makes her a better person than she is. Fuck her and the horse she rode in on, she can shove her sanctimonious bullshit right up her ass.

  • PS: I have absolutely no understanding or pity or charity in my heart for the Trumpists. They're not "misguided", they don't "mean well". They knew exactly what the fuck they were doing and who it would affect, and they chose to pull that lever for Trump anyway. They're not Nice People. They've demonstrated that they're good at telling others (and themselves) that they're Nice People. They can act the part when it suits them. That's it.

  • I'm with Aurora S. The "nice church ladies" I know who voted for Trump are all fundagelical white women who are sure people are poor because they're stupid and lazy. They hate minorities and liberals and wimminz who won't obey them.

  • @Brian: Hillary Clinton was never going to win the fundagelical vote; they can embrace a man who's been divorced three times after proven adultery, has cheated the people who worked for him and contracted work from him, has been caught lying (no doubt there) and embraces Wall Street. However, a woman who wears pants (!!!) and sometimes has short hair (!!!!) and got one-a-them EJUMACASHUNS and thinks she has some intrinsic worth…well, that's simply a bridge too far.

    In 1992 through 1993, I worked for a small company (roughly 50 people) as one of three non-evangelical employees. The evangelicals all went to the same church and sent their kids to the church school. They were absolutely apoplectic about Hillary Clinton even then, and their church school played sports against the school 12-year-old Chelsea went to–during soccer season, they used to gloat at how they'd tell their kids to beat the crap out of Chelsea during soccer games because that would sure show her mother!

  • Aurora S.and Katydid are wearing the huevos in this thread. I've disliked Hilary for a long time, but I've never seen her as an absolute piece of shit, which is what she "lost" to. To update Sinclair Lewis*,

    "When fascism comes to America, it wI'll wrapped in a chinese Armani knock-off, and shitting on a tolden throne."

    * If he actually said that.

  • To add my two cents to Aurora S's last post: I am sincerely sorry for the people who didn't vote for Trump but nonetheless are going to lose access to affordable healthcare (or even any healthcare at all). Just a couple of years ago my own employer-provided healthcare was so very, very bad ($1500/month employee contribution, $5k yearly deductible before insurance even began to kick in with prescription medicine not counted toward the $5k) that my doctor *and* my pharmacist were both talking to me about joining the ACA. The ACA not only provided healthcare to countless people who never had it, but also forced insurance companies to actually spend some of their premiums on actual health care for the people paying those premiums. I am sincerely afraid for when that's gutted.

    So, given that I am entirely sympathetic to people who didn't vote for Trump but are facing financial ruin, it's also given that I'm really, really fed up of being told that I must have compassion for the idiots who voted for Trump and now are panicking because he's going to do *exactly what he said he would do when he was campaigning*. They're the f'ing morons who gleefully drove us off a cliff, now they're whining about the ground coming up fast to meet them.

    Truth be told, I'm also pretty fed up with the morons who are mindlessly parroting the same old lies about Hillary Clinton that were debunked 20 years ago. A lot of these are the same lies told about Michelle Obama–there is a definite segment of society that loses their shit at the thought of an educated, smart, hard-working woman who raises decent kids and doesn't kowtow to the alt-right and the religious reich. Sadly, much of that hatred flows from the cornfed and the inbred that are trying so hard to drag the country down to their level.

  • I kinda WORK for the Church Ladies, so I can't exactly tell them to fuck off. My guess is that my favorite CL pretty much votes straight ticket R and has all her life, as genteel white Southerners largely have done since 1964.

    BUT, another CL's husband mentioned that he'd gone to school with "that guy who stepped in when the Cliinton's couldn't…". Realizing he was talking about one of my favorite Clinton Conspiracies (Bill is not Chelsea's father), I piped up with "Webb Hubbell?" "Yeah!" Fortunately I did not laff (sic) in his face.

    It's my favorite Clinton Conspiracy because a) seems like 'wingers like to go on about Bill's other (illegitimate) kids, b) I thought Hillary was a man-hating Lesbian (ZOMG!!), and c) Chelsea is the spitting image of her dad. I don't really think a DNA test is necessary, ha ha.

  • @geoff; in wingnutlandia, Hillary Clinton can simultaneously be a raging lesbian with numerous lesbian lovers *and* have had numerous affairs with men *and* be completely anti-sex. Logic and consistency have no place in their world. Also, I agree with you that Chelsea Clinton is absolutely her father's child and even a blind person could see the resemblance. However, I refer you back to my first sentence.

  • Robert Walker-Smith says:

    Someone I actually know fairly well admitted on FB that one of the reasons he would never vote for Clinton was that he couldn't stand to listen to her voice.

    There are valid reasons for someone to express dissatisfaction with Clinton's policies and practices, but when a white man with a history of mother issues comes out with a howler like that, my bullshit meter goes into the red zone.

  • ' So I'm just hoping that maybe he can knockin a couple of runs and we can get a lead and maybe get him out of therelater in the game.Choose whether you would like to select online or real world faxless payday loans direct lenders, once you have regarded pros and cons regarding both. Straight against choosing the menus (with effortless hyperlinks in the direction of all greatest-advertising and marketing merchandise) and processing credit history or debit card charges, your workforce really shou

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