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Thread: Trump's Card

  1. #1
    johnr's Avatar
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    Trump's Card

    Maybe a thread where we can place an ongoing critique of the man, his actions, and his consequences.

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    Trump's Card

    Nice thread title. ISWYDT.

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    Trump's Card

    Unfortunately he's likely to say and do so many jaw-droppers that we won't be able to keep up on one thread. America is going to take over the World (forum).

    A sub-section might be "Why is Fox News pissed off at Trump today"? (or any of his crowd, the hypocritical evangelicals, the "lock her up"s, the Muslim-haters, etc). From January we'll need regular links to Trump "betrayals". I'll pick an approval rating of 30% in a year's time, to be revisited if OTF is still around then (hello Admins!).

  4. #4

    Trump's Card

    Can we start with sweepstakes for the date Trump is impeached and/or resigns? I go for 15 May 2018.

    I think the odds for an impeachment are fairly decent. Trump made many enemies in the Republican establishment, many of whom are in the Senate and Congress. They'll want payback.

    Plus, the way needs to be cleared for Paul Ryan. They won't really want to have Ryan challenge a sitting President Trump in 2020 for the candidacy. Pence is a much easier target to defeat.

    Finding a cause for impeachment will be the easy part.

    The question is: would the Dems play along?

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    Trump's Card

    I don't think he'll be impeached. More likely to be a Very British Coup. He'll be bored anyway, and so he'll step down for Pence, perhaps in time for Pence to run as the sitting President, or perhaps the Republicans will let him see out the term provided he plays along.

    Just as being anti-Hillary was enough to swing voters for Trump, so the Republicans will fear the anti-Trump backlash will swing 2020 for the Democrats' nominee. They will want him out of the way, and as I say, he doesn't look like he's got the attention span for 8 years. 8 minutes is a stretch.

  6. #6

    Trump's Card

    From January we'll need regular links to Trump "betrayals"
    The one crumb of comfort, I suppose, will be the hardcore crazies' steady disillusionment with Trump and the subsequent in-fighting when he finds the main planks of his racist manifesto undeliverable.

  7. #7

    Trump's Card

    tee rex wrote: I don't think he'll be impeached. More likely to be a Very British Coup. He'll be bored anyway, and so he'll step down for Pence, perhaps in time for Pence to run as the sitting President, or perhaps the Republicans will let him see out the term provided he plays along.

    Just as being anti-Hillary was enough to swing voters for Trump, so the Republicans will fear the anti-Trump backlash will swing 2020 for the Democrats' nominee. They will want him out of the way, and as I say, he doesn't look like he's got the attention span for 8 years. 8 minutes is a stretch.
    My proposed sweepstakes makes allowance for the resignation option.

    Anyway, if impeachment is needed, ACME has already delivered the parcel

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    ursus arctos's Avatar
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    Trump's Card

    Uncut obviously found one, but you won't find many law professors who would agree that "high crimes and misdemeanors" includes conduct prior to taking office.

    Nor has prior conduct ever been the sole basis of a federal impeachment proceeding (there are a couple of old judicial cases in which prior conduct was part of a parade of horribles together with conduct in office).

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    Trump's Card

    I think he'll make it through. It'll be a scandal ridden 4 years, as more and more stuff comes from his past and more stuff gets prosecuted, but he'll make it.

    He'll start with his cadre of Fox/Breitbart cheerleaders, Gingrich and Giuliani and Christie and Palin and Bannon, on his team, but every time a scandal comes up he'll have to drop them for people that the Republican House finds acceptable, to avoid getting impeached. By the end of 4 years he'll basically be a boiler-plate "conservative" Republican president doing what he's told by Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell. He'll completely abandon his "white working class" voters to save his own backside.

  10. #10
    ursus arctos's Avatar
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    Trump's Card

    As long as he delivers his tax cuts for the super-rich and guts the regulatory state, the Republicans will stay onside.

    Personally, I think resignation is more likely than impeachment, solely because his attention span is so short, but the effect on his brand of a resignation is a significant deterrent to him acting on the impulse. The scary question is just who will be the Cheney to his Dubya (that is what the current fight between Rudy and Newt is all about).

  11. #11

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    Trump's Card

    A checklist for future reference:
    http://www.npr.org/2016/11/09/501451368/here-is-what-donald-trump-wants-to-do-in-his-first-100-days

  12. #12
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    Trump's Card

    matt j wrote: A checklist for future reference:
    http://www.npr.org/2016/11/09/501451368/here-is-what-donald-trump-wants-to-do-in-his-first-100-days
    So
    1) Tank the economy by starting trade wars

    2) Destroy the environment - poison the water, blacken the sky, cut down all the trees, cook the planet. Sell off all the public lands in the west to resource strippers (not on there, but it's going to happen).

    3) Deport everyone

    4) Appoint a fascist to the supreme court. End RvW, bring back Jim Crow

    5) Privatize medicare - so, eliminate it, basically. And social security.

    6) Let 20m+ people rot without insurance

    7) Cut taxes for your friends

    8) Balloon the debt

    9) Drive up interest rates

    10) Hand out tons of pork-barrel infrastructure and military projects to Republicans

    11) Make sure none of our former allies or enemies want to talk to us. Except maybe Putin

    12) Tell Mexico they have to pay for a wall, which they won't.

    13) So...invade Mexico?

    14) Full scale assault on minorities, especially Muslims. Hopefully some civilized countries will take them in.

    15) Do untold damage to our universities and high-tech companies by bringing immigration to a halt.

    16) Nuke Iran.

    I don't know what to do. I wish I was dying of cancer.

    I hope we lose this match to Mexico. I hope we don't qualify. I'm serious. The sight of that fat fuck paling around with Putin at the matches would be too much to bear. Soccer in the US can take the hit now, and Klinsman isn't the answer anyway, so it's ok.

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    Trump's Card

    As long as he doesn't break orthodoxy on tax cuts, gun control or abortion, there is zero chance of him being impeached, no matter what he does.

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    Trump's Card

    Ginger Yellow wrote: As long as he doesn't break orthodoxy on tax cuts, gun control or abortion, there is zero chance of him being impeached, no matter what he does.
    Not clear he'll own the senate for eight years though. So it could happen if things get bad enough for the Dems to win.

    As I said, while this is a huge disaster, it will probably help the Democrats avoid the looming disaster in the senate in two years. It will make their vulnerable seats less vulnerable. They will be able to tie their opponents to Trump and run against his actual appalling record.

    If that fails and we get a GOP supermajority....well, that would be very bad. But it will swing back. But we could be looking at 10 years of fascism before a glorious restoration. We're all a bunch of fickle mushheads.

    I'm really not well. Not sure how to function. Already thinking about which NHL team I'd support in Canada. The Leafs don't seem like a good idea. Sens? Seems kinda hopeless. Habs - Don't speak french and that feels like glory-hunting. Oilers? Possibly, but I don't think I want to live that far west and the whole "oil" aspect feels wrong. And I don't think I want to live in the west. Too dry. Jets - maybe, but I can't get a feel for that.. Flames. No. Canucks? Maybe. Not sure I want to be on the west coast or be on the east supporting a team in the western time zone.

    I'm trying to distract myself.

  15. #15
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    Trump's Card

    I don't think I want to live in the west. Too dry.

    Wha...?!

  16. #16
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    Amor de Cosmos wrote: I don't think I want to live in the west. Too dry.

    Wha...?!
    It's wet where you are, all the way out west. But the middle parts aren't so much. Like where my friends live in Kelowna is, as I understand it, more like Colorado. And the prairies are, well, prairies.

    Vancouver Island seems like a fantastic place, but expensive. And Vancouver and nearby is completely unattainable.




  17. #17

    Trump's Card

    I'm finding the notion that Trump will be controlled by the party establishment, namely Paul Ryan, increasingly implausible. I predict Trump will go full Alpha male on Ryan, and he'll have his allies in Congress. The party is Trump's now, and he's an authoritarian. Impeachment isn't going to happen.

    Neither is resignation, good grief, quitting halfway and letting Pence take over. Well, it's unclear to me (and probably never will be clear) what the real relationship between the two is. I had assumed that Trump selected Pence because he's an utter toady, a member of the establishment whom he knew he could dominate. Pence is heading the transition team because Christie is mired in scandal. So I'm not sure how that changed Trump's calculation, if at all.

    It's going to be fascinating political theater anyway. The rivalry truce between him and Paul Ryan, the McConnell mystery factor, the Gingrich State Department, the Giuliani DoJ...

    Maybe Trump decides not to run for re-election, because he's feeling old and too magisterial. But I don't think the GOP establishment is going to have the backbone to stand up to Trump as long as they feel they can get his signatures, and there's little reason to think they can't.

    The only thing I feel sure about is that it's going to be an epically incompetent administration, worse than Dubya's. The dumpster fire will only burn fiercer.

  18. #18

    Trump's Card

    The incompetence, that is, being probably the only hope of saving the government from total implosion. Maybe the Founders designed it well enough to make an authoritarian takeover so logistically impractical that only a true mastermind could pull it off, and Trump is too much of a buffoon, so instead we'll get a shit storm of corruption and mismanagement, and that'll be enough to destroy everything on its own.

  19. #19

    Trump's Card

    One thing I'm really curious about is Trump's style of interacting with politicians behind closed doors. The dismissive authoritarian way he debates and talks to reporters may give some hint of it. How much give and take is there? He's going to have people terrified of dealing with him, because it will be super easy to piss him off by disagreeing with him.

    We've never had someone like him as president, a true thin-skinned bully with no political experience and a really scary amount of power. How many basic norms will he break just in his personal interactions with underlings, which in his mind means everyone including the leaders of the other branches of government? His apolitical instincts might shock a lot of people into uncertainty of how to deal with him.

  20. #20

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    Trump's Card

    Well, it's all a guessing game, and I'm batting zero touchdowns (or whatever metaphor it is) on recent election results. But right now we can only look at things we can predict - policy promises etc. And since it's all too evident that many voters respond to optic-feels rather than a checklist of laws passed, I wonder if Trump's real downfall could be those times we don't yet know about, but will surely happen. Those times when he has to appear Presidential (natural disasters, school shootings, etc). His total narcissism could make those occasions go horribly wrong ("It's too bad about those dead folks in New Mexico, but I'm here today to talk about my hotel, and it's gonna be great, and that's what you people in the media should be reporting ..."). Not the "elite Washington insider" debates but "WTF?" moments, like Bush saying "helluva job".

    Barring a total makeover, they're going to be car-crash viewing.

  21. #21

    Trump's Card

    Yeah, I didn't get into public perception there, which will undoubtedly be very negative. He's going to be an unpopular president no matter what; a majority of the country thinks he's orange Hitler. There's a whole set of wild cards having to do with social unrest that could be game changers.

    Public perception being the other thing that might save us from an actual authoritarian takeover. If this were the ancient Roman Republic, consul-elect Trumpius Maximus would need to be adored already by the people in order to set about stacking the Senate with his toadies who'd pass a series of laws making him Augustus Donaldus and turning themselves into a rubber stamp.

  22. #22
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    Trump's Card

    I think he'll massively inflate the economy and leave his successor with a huge deficit, yet the GOP will still pretend to be the party of fiscal responsibility. And the American public, with the attention spans of goldfish, will buy the lies, as they did with Reagan and with Dubya until after the 2004 election.

    The known unknown, so to speak, is the gullibility of the electorate. Given how the voters defied sanity in 2016, there are no ground rules going forward that one can rely on. Trump has destroyed not just norms of behaviour but also of prediction.

  23. #23

    Trump's Card

    Trump has destroyed not just norms of behaviour but also of prediction.

    I think that's right, and I think it's perhaps the strongest piece of evidence that we're at a historic turning point, that this isn't just an unfortunate episode. When was the last transfer of power to bring this much uncertainty and lead us to doubt the stability of our institutions and social fabric?

    We all sense that intuitively anyway, it's a real "all bets are off" moment. We knew that Trump wasn't merely ridiculous, but truly dangerous.

    In a sense, though, we've seen the movie before, or at least all the plot elements. We just don't know how it's going to play for today's audience. Trump had all the signs. it's why he was unthinkable, and now we're having to really think about it.

  24. #24
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    Trump's Card

    You could compare it maybe with Reagan in 1980, in how Reagan was threatening to end the period of peace that adhered under Carter, and escalate nukes to a very dangerous point. As a British exile, it feels like the immediate post-Falklands era, leading to the Miners Strike, the end of the working-class as a political movement that could exercise real power through industrial mobilization.

    Britain 1982-90 also felt like a one-party state, and the idea of such a state being led by Trump is truly terrifying. OTOH the Thatcher regime collapsed in 1990 via its own contradictions (on Europe) and over-reach (poll tax), so that's a happier indicator, albeit one that took a decade to play out, and still ended with more Tory rule (Major) and maybe Tory-lite (Blair).

  25. #25
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    Trump's Card

    Americans didn't think of the Carter administration as peaceful. The Iran hostage situation, Soviets invade Afghanistan, economic problems at home, loss of manufacturing jobs, Three Mile Island, terrible cars, terrible clothes. A lot of people thought we were losing the Cold War.

    Reagan succeeded with his Morning in America/City on the Hill schtick. That's very different from the fear-based approach of Trump.

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