Watching with bemusement in Colorado. Can't help think of the brexit referendum campaigns.. prior to the vote, remain was polling ahead by a few percent and markets were predicting 75% chance of remain win. Sound familiar?
But the appointment of Pence – a longtime Koch favourite – will probably change that.
... a case of looking after the pennies and the dollars will look after themselves, perhaps?
The walking dead...
Trump is openly campaigning on the ‘Law and Order’ platform that is always the first and last refuge of the bully and the closet racist.
More like the 'Loa and Ordure' platform to my way of thinking...
...but yes, it's like The Joker taking over City Hall, asylum will be sought offshore...
I’m guessing very few people read the NewYorker these days but Adam Gopnik in Being Honest About Trump manages to call Trump out.
"It is no surprise that the American face of fascism would take on the forms of celebrity television and the casino greeter’s come-on, since that is as much our symbolic scene as nostalgic re-creations of Roman splendors once were Italy’s.
What all forms of fascism have in common is the glorification of the nation, and the exaggeration of its humiliations, with violence promised to its enemies, at home and abroad; the worship of power wherever it appears and whoever holds it; contempt for the rule of law and for reason; unashamed employment of repeated lies as a rhetorical strategy; and a promise of vengeance for those who feel themselves disempowered by history. It promises to turn back time and take no prisoners. That it can appeal to those who do not understand its consequences is doubtless true. But the first job of those who do understand is to state what those consequences invariably are. Those who think that the underlying institutions of American government are immunized against it fail to understand history. In every historical situation where a leader of Trump’s kind comes to power, normal safeguards collapse."
That bit about normal safeguards collapsing is very scary. I hope there is no violence at the convention and that at least some speakers are cautious but not looking positive so far.
So when push come to shove in the South China sea we’ll have the attractive option of taking sides with Trump’s America or the lawless butchers of Beijing?
Time for CMT, a hundred billion on defence, putting a nuke on top of Rocket Labs electron rocket and declaring a bristling, heavily armed neutrality????
My cosy liberal assumption back in New Zealand – that even if Trump won the nomination, he would still get toasted in the actual election – I don’t subscribe to it any more.
Scary thought. Is the Hispanic vote not still sitting there as the great unknown?
ETA: That's @graeme tuckett, not Tom, btw...
The Electron wouldn't make a very good ICBM - it uses liquid O2 as its oxidant and thus has to be fueled (which takes some hours) immediately before launch. ICBMs use storable propellants - these days, solid fuel.
The very real possibility is that Trump will ease ahead in some polls this week or next.
Well, yes... if you can't do that off the back of massive convention media coverage then you really have a problem. But elections aren't won or lost off convention week dead cat poll bounces. They're won on the ground, and I'm not seeing any evidence that Trump's ground game isn't (to use one of his favourite sneers) "low energy."
If all the GOP has is chanting "Hillary's a witch" I don't think that's going to get the job done.
So, Electrons only really useful for our submarine fleet's second strike capability then. For that day when NZ reaches superpower status, and decides to roll the world destruction dice. We'll have to wait until at least 2019 for that, and GoT will be finished by then, so I'll be looking for entertainment.
But elections aren't won or lost off convention week dead cat poll bounces. They're won on the ground, and I'm not seeing any evidence that Trump's ground game isn't (to use one of his favourite sneers) "low energy."
If Trump somehow manages to win, it'll be over issues that have been brewing over the past generation or two. A big part of it has been that the traditional working class as we know it has splintered into the following:
- The working-class heroes who've kept the faith, as sung about by Bruce Springsteen. Under threat of becoming an endangered species.
- The nouveau riche, who've joined the establishment and tell the rest of us, "I've got mine, so eff you!"
- The precariat, who've fallen off the ladder, given up all hope and accepted their lot in life. Prone to non-voting out of sheer cynicism and disillusionment.
- The neo-nativists who've fallen off the ladder and blame the reds/greens/yellows/blacks/browns/pinks/rainbows for it. They think Donald Trump will reopen the Detroit car plants and Pennsylvania steelworks, and make Mexico pay for the border wall. Cut from the same cloth as those who smashed up Japanese cars in the 1980s, if they aren't the exact same people.
The Electron wouldn’t make a very good ICBM – it uses liquid O2 as its oxidant and thus has to be fueled
You weak peacenik! We’ll just keep the first strike option on the table. Our slogan will be “making NZ great in it's last twenty minutes”!
Being serious though, the point of my post is the possibilty of a fascist America and an authoritarian and lawless China both equally bent of murderous adventurism makes for deeply unethusiastic options for allies. If Trump wins, that has serious implications for NZ. The New Zealand public would be extremely unlikely to support getting involved in any conflict between the USA and China. Trump has made it clear treaties are not worth the paper they are written on if he decides one partner isn’t sufficiently pulling its weight.
The implications for NZ’s options are worth thinking about. Armed neutrality is one option, but that will cost a fortune and almost certainly require universal CMT.
Re: The dead cat bounce. Yes, both Trump and Clinton will get a 3 or 4 point surge in the week after their respective conventions. But with the unprecedentedly long 100 plus days from conventions to election day, the bounces are irrelevant.
And re the Hispanic vote. My gut and conversations tell me that Trump is being very smart in driving a wedge between the legal immigrants, who may vote. And the illegals who can't. Brexit taught us that people are far more self interested in the booth than they are when talking to pollsters. Plenty of commentators have pointed out that many legal Hispanic immigrants may actually warm to Trump's promise to keep more immigrants out. Thus reducing the pressure for jobs and housing on the ones already here.
Pair that with the macho/catholic resistance to being led by a woman. And you might just find that the Hispanic vote - even if it doesn't turn out for Trump - won't necessarily get behind his opponent either.
And yes, of course I'd rather be wrong.
Meanwhile Trump turns his guns on the ten or eleven states that actually will decide the election, keeps up his peculiar impersonation of pugnacious statesmanship as seen in his - scarily focused and, admit it, pretty effective speech - and hoovers up a few thousand of those so called Reagan-democrats in the purple states.
Four months to go. The Koch chequebook is now probably out. Murdoch's taken charge of Fox, and Clinton is limping from the contrived email scandal. If I had the money to bet, I'd still pick Hillary. But by fuck it's close right now.
Clinton's VP pick is dull. Trump's odds just shortened.
can’t even get a law passed that would prevent someone on the ‘terrorist no-fly’ list from buying a gun.
...was defeated by the Republicans
My friend's buddy who works in constitutional law in the US explained why it's not as simple as you make it sound.
The 'terrorist' list has no judicial oversight, once you are on it you cannot appeal the decision and have yourself removed. So having your rights (in this case to having a gun) removed by being on this list simply wasn't considered good/fair/constitutional, and likely never had a chance of being passed anyway. Or would probably have been successfully challenged if it had made it into law.
He's, according to him, a big anti-gun guy, but he was super pissed at them trying to make this law.
5 Reasons Why Trump Will Win
Yeah right. Old song Michael.
No Republican has ever won the White House without Ohio, and 538 rate it as the third most likely tipping point state (the state that tips the candidate over 269 giving them the win). So no real conspiracy there.
In comparison, New York has a less than 0.1% chance of being the tipping point state, with Hillary polling at +16.2%. Your feels might be that Trump can win New York, but the closest he's got in polling is behind by 12.
538 gives Trump's odds of winning at just under 40%. Not insignificant, but pretty different to your feels
But then again, not a month ago, 538 was rating Trump’s chances at only 20%. Against that whopping amount of variance in the figures, a current estimate of 40% shouldn’t feel comfortable at all.
No Republican has ever won the White House without Ohio, and 538 rate it as the third most likely tipping point state
And given that Trump has made a strong pitch to left-behinds in Rust Belt states like Ohio, it’s a plausible scenario. He’s a master at peddling snake oil, and politics is no exception. In this case, he’s basically promised the Rust Belters that he’ll bring back the car plants & steelworks, while conveniently ignoring that his clothing merchandise is made by the same Mexicans he wants to wall off, and by the same Chinese he wants to tariff.
Clinton’s VP pick is dull. Trump’s odds just shortened.
I'm just astounding anyone who hasn't been in a fucking coma for the last week could say that with a straight face.
How would you like Kaine to amuse you, Tom? Pull a violent crime epidemic out of his arse like a pornographic kiddie party magician? Declare war on the imaginary menace of trans rapists lurking around public bathrooms while public schools are being closed down -- because I'm pretty sure Mike Pence has that shtick covered. Respond to mass murders in Nice and Munich by declaring "extreme vetting" (whatever the fuck that means) of all French and German citizens because they "brought it on themselves"?
I'm going to shout so apologies in advance.
THIS IS NOT A FUCKING GAME. THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES IS NOT THE WORLD'S CREEPY RACIST DRUNK UNCLE WHO RUINS EVERY FAMILY GATHERING EVER. AND IT IS NOT HILARY CLINTON AND TIM KAINE'S JOB TO GET INTO A DOUCHE-OFF WITH TRUMP AND PENCE.
And frankly, people, it's more than a little condescending to those poor benighted flyover country rubes to assume that all they can respond to is pandering lies.
Errrr… 2010 called and it wants it’s outburst back.
Tim Kaine is disaster because he represents a fundamentally conservative, status quo presidential candidate swerving back to an Overton “centre” defined by a media/political establishment who are now hopelessly out of touch with the mood of the electorate. Projecting an establishment safe pair of hands via a couple of aging white baby boomers won’t mobilise the young or marginalised blacks to vote. It certainly won’t appeal to Trump’s angry angry supporters who have seen their standard of living decline because of the very things Clinton champions like the TPPA and NAFTA. Whether it be Brexit and UKIP or Corbyn or Sanders or Trump or Le Pen people are showing a hunger for change, not continuity. And they don’t much care if the change agent is a neo-fascist or a socialist.
Clinton’s biggest problem is her political baggage and her attachment to a neoliberal staus quo that is now provoking a populist uprising. She would have been a fine president eight years ago. She is now living in times that have passed her by.
Kaine reinforces the feeling that Hillary represents a failed and passing political order, and Clinton is a hardline hawk who only offers endless war to boot. Working within a broken system and having excellent establishment credentials is just collaborating with a failed elite. Kaine offers nothing to change this narrative. He is an old white guy who simply echoes Clinton’s appeal. Clinton needed to pick someone who offered hope and a postive reason to vote for her.
Whether you like or not, Trump is offering the losers from neoliberalism hope. He is saying vote for me and I’ll whack a 35% tariff on imported cars so they’ll be forced to make them in Detroit. I’ll get rid of all those Mexican workers whose wage competition has pushed you onto subsistance wages, and if Mexico complains to the WTO, well, President Trump will lead a strong America that will tell the WTO to fuck off. And to blindly patriotic Americans living in diminished circumstances that is a sweet, sweet message of change. And on foreign policy, whether or not you think he is a buddy of Putin his signalling that he’ll pull back from US committments to defend ex-Soviet satellite nations on the border of Russia who should never have been admitted to NATO in the first place is a badly needed reality check for an increasingly aggressive Germany and major injection of common sense into an inccreasingly reckless adventurism by NATO in eastern europe.
I don’t want Trump to be president. But his rise points to the central problem, the decadence of the western political elites. If he makes it, it’ll be because a dessicated and out of touch political and media establishment that no longer responds to the interests of the voters has shown itself as no longer fit to even defeat a bouffant charlatan, let alone lead the country.
Errrr… 2010 called and it wants it’s outburst back.
And I'm sure your "decadence of the elites" thesis got a really great grade in a first-year pols course, circa 1990.
Look, in the end we can sit on the other side of the Pacific Basin playing our ever-so-sophisticated, world-weary games of false equivalence bingo. But if you really think Kaine and Pence are virtually indistinguishable, then I"d like you to explain that to the women only one of them wants to charge with "feticide" if they have a miscarriage. Who is obsessed with shutting down Planned Parenthood -- which, BTW, is the only way an awful lot of low-income and rural women get potentially life-saving health services like mammograms and cervical smears. Tell that to the victims of yet another mass shooting, because I see who is offering "thoughts and prayers" then casting the votes the NRA paid for and who isn't. Who respects judicial independence and who doesn't. Who actually has job and infrastructure policy, and who doesn't give a detectable fuck.
And the list goes on and on and on.
Indeed it does; but who in America is currently reading that list when making their decision about whom to support for Kick-Ass-In-Chief?