Author Topic: Hillzilla vs Trumpenator  (Read 3662 times)

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skybison

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on: August 09, 2016, 02:42:57 AM
So Once again the United States faces an election, this time between two wildly unpopular cannidates.

In This Corner we've got Hillary Clinton.  A more or less typical center left democrat in terms of policy, who is widely hated both by right wingers for being too liberal and liberals for not being liberal enough.  She has a controversial record, with more then half the country regarding her as dishonest and corrupt while the rest see her as a normal politician no worse then any other getting unfairly treated because of her gender. 

And In This Corner we've got Donald Trump.

Oh God.

I'll just say what I really think.  Donald Trump is without question the worst single serious candidate the US has had in living memory.  He has repeatedly shown himself to be wildly unqualified without even the most basic understanding of key issues.  His platform lacks any real substance, and is just a mess of pandering, bluster and racism.  He is absurdly childish and narcissistic, lashing out viciously at the slightest provocation and everyone and anyone that doesn't stroke his fragile ego.  He praises authoritarian tyrants for their authoritarianism and openly encourages violence among his supporters and threatens to unleash them on his enemies if they do not tow his line.  He promises to commit war crimes if elected.  He promises to start a trade war with China that economist warn will do to the economy what a sledgehammer does to a watermeleon.  He wants to scrap regulations to saved the Ozone lair because he liked his old hairspray better.  He supports scrapping NATO and refuses to say he won't use Nuclear weapons, critically undermining the system of international security we all depend on to prevent nuclear war.  And that's just scratching the surface.

I have disliked other people who have been president or ran for it.  Trump is the first to genuinely scare me.

I get that many don't trust Hillary.  But please if you really can't stand her Vote for Gary Johnson of the Libertarian Party or something.  Please do not let the Unstable, Incompetent Semi-Fascist anywhere near power.



Loopy

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Reply #1 on: August 09, 2016, 07:39:44 PM
Disclaimer: I live in PA, so it doesn't matter who I vote for, the state is definitely going to go to Hillary, and that's informing my actions.

So, with that out of the way, I'm almost hoping that Trump wins not because I think he's a better choice or will be a competent president, but because I wonder if enduring four years under him might be worth the reaction the country will have for the next election. The destruction of the current form of the Republican Party is my most hoped-for goal, but even lesser benefits might be worth four years of whatever Trump can accomplish through executive orders and speeches.

But again, this is idle speculation and hopes that won't have any effect on the real world.



theColonel

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Reply #2 on: August 10, 2016, 02:53:37 AM
I'm probably going to end up casting a vote for Trump. He has taken a few positions that genuinely interest me, and I already mentioned why I'm not going to vote for Hilary. So with that said, I also don't think that some of the labels used to describe Trump, such racist or xenophobe, matter all that much to me. They're just words used to shut-down discussion about the merits and demerits of importing Muslims, and whether it is prudent to endanger ourselves by treating immigration and multiculturalism as good things in of themselves. He's childish and pretty immoral as a human being, I'll grant you. But I'm not a progressive, so I don't think his plan to ban migrants from Syria and other similar countries is a point against him, in fact it's probably one of his greatest strengths.

Overall, I'm not super excited for this election. The candidates aren't just non-ideal, they're flat out bad, and I'm tempted not to vote, but if I do than I think that for me, the choice is pretty clear on who I'd choose.
« Last Edit: August 10, 2016, 11:35:09 AM by theColonel »



skybison

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Reply #3 on: August 10, 2016, 08:58:11 PM
Quote
They're just words used to shut-down discussion about the merits and demerits of importing Muslims, and whether it is prudent to endanger ourselves by treating immigration and multiculturalism as good things in of themselves.

Well if you don't mind my asking, what are the merits?  Because I see none that hold up to scrutiny.  There have been more terrorist attacks/mass shootings in the US by native white and christian/post christian people then by Muslims.  And I don't see any evidence to support the idea that Muslim Immigrants are more violent overall.  Terrorist attacks are shocking attention grabbing events, but they are actually very rare, kill very few people and have been growing steadily less common over the past few decades.  And Trump's stances: Ban all muslim immigrants, murder people because their cousin was a terrorist etc would likely fail to do anything to prevent terrorist attacks (most muslim terrorists are radicalized native borns, not immigrants).  Indeed it would almost certainly improve ISIS's recruitment drive by furthering the narrative that the US is out to destroy Muslims.



theColonel

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Reply #4 on: August 10, 2016, 09:36:30 PM
I'd say that it is meritorious because Islam the religion is, at its core, violent and hostile (Islam views the world as being divided between Muslims and the house of war, or those on the conquest list). The Koran, as well as the overall body of Muslim tradition and jurisprudence, legislates violence toward the infidel. So, the way I see it, it is more prudent to keep our guard around people whose religion naturally lends itself toward the slaughter of innocents. Does that mean that all Muslims are violent? No, but when you look at their world view and what it is all about, it seems wise, to me, to be cautious. A Jihadist is simply being a good Muslim. Your final comment highlights the problem I see with those who would ignore this. They mistakenly believe that in order to stop Muslims from joining ISIS,  we need to erect a false, more "safe" version of Islam and insist that those who fall outside the boundaries we made up are not Islamic. To do this, misses what the obvious problem is (and it comes from willful ignorance on the nature of the Muslim religion).

As for Trump's policies toward killing the "cousins" of terrorist, I read somewhere that that was misunderstood, though I'm not a die-hard Trump supporter, so if your interpretation of his comments are correct, than I'd agree that it reflects poorly on his understanding of what it means to be president, but hey I never thought he had a good idea on what it meant in the first place!

I'll also make one comment about the election overall, I'm in a similar situation as Loopy, in that my state is pretty much going to Hilary in spite of what I vote.
« Last Edit: August 10, 2016, 10:16:48 PM by theColonel »



shorewall

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Reply #5 on: August 11, 2016, 05:29:30 PM
I think People's biggest hang up with Trump is that he isn't careful with what he says.  Depending on the audience, that can be his biggest flaw, or his greatest appeal. 

I've been saying for a while that politicians campaign to each other.  Normal people don't care as much about what the Pundits talk about.  Which is why the pundits have been amazingly wrong during this election season. 

Plus, people see through the one sided media attention that favors Hillary despite everything that comes out about her, and focuses negatively on everything that Trump says or does.  I saw the articles from HuffPo and others, nostalgic for Mitt Romney, but when he ran, they demonized him as well.  So people have learned to tune out the biased media. 

Face it, no news source is impartial.  That includes Facebook and Twitter, which are private companies, who do not value free speech.  It comes down to what you believe.  Listen to both sides, and based on your experiences and world view, pick a side.  We are not able to discern an objective "right" choice, because we don't have all the information necessary to make that choice.  Hillary or Trump could get elected and then be completely different from what they promised.  And in the end, the President is not a king.  They do have accountability.  (Surprise, surprise, I know.)

I believe that everything that is going on over in Europe is helping Trump.  Every attack, every report of sexual assault is gaining him favor.  The reason people like Trump are elected, and Brexit happens, is because elitist politicians feel like an Oligarchy, and forget that, until they take away all our freedom, we can still vote them out.

I'm not comfortable with this election.  Who can be?  But I have done a lot of research.  I have read the issues on each candidate's website, including Gary Johnson.  I live in Utah, and I know a lot of people here are considering voting for him.  He's not a bad choice.  He seems like a rational choice, with a lot of conservative views, although a "hands off" social policy.  He is the compromise candidate that probably should win.  Cons: a) No one will work with him, because he doesn't belong to the big two, and b) he's not gonna win.  But I don't have a problem with voting for him as a matter of conscience.  He's a good choice.

Trump's platform boils down to two things.  One, adjust unfair "Free" trade policies.  Such as stopping China and Mexico from ripping us off, and becoming more financially independent.  This is one of his biggest draws.  I know economists who only see numbers don't like it, but these same economists ignore culture and values, besides the pursuit of the almighty dollar.  We can't only go by that.

Two, he wants to secure the border.  That HAS to happen.  Whether we go for amnesty, whether we let in refugees or not, it has to happen.  We have to have a secure border, and check people coming across.  People who just want to work are not our problem.  Families are not our problem.  Not knowing who is coming across is a problem, and we can bountifully see that in Europe.

When I read his platform, I understand what he wants to do.  I understand why he believes it will help.  And I can feel the passion behind it.

When I went to Hillary's website to read her stance, I can sum up her claims.  Throw money at the problem.  Every ill under the sun, every issue.  Throw more tax money at it.  And appease us by saying that she wants the rich to pay for it.  The rich who already store their profits offshore.  The ones who benefit from free trade agreements.  The ones who can get richer in a Great Recession.  They didn't feel the pinch.  And who is funding her?  The rich.  If you compare the funding of the candidates, it is absurd how much of Clinton's money has come from Super PACs.  And she claims to want Finance Reform?

Trump has raised much less, and it is mostly from small donations and personal loans.  And he is very popular, despite that!

Hillary wanted the TPP, until Bernie and Trump made it too politically toxic.  Now she's against, or so she says.  She has flipped on many major policies.  Even the rank and file democrats don't like her.  While the DNC foreswore itself to aide her.  (The opposite of the Republicans, where the rank and file like him, and the party hates him.  When a Bush doesn't like you, you know you're doing something right.) 

She erased 30,000 emails that were requested by the FBI, and stripped the servers so that the FBI couldn't recover any of the information.  The FBI flat out said that she lied to the American Public about what happened, and only stated that they didn't think she had lied to them.  And then she turned around and lied to say that that meant she had been truthful to the American Public, which the FBI had gone out of their way to say that she hadn't.

And with all of the emails being released now, we don't know what was on those servers, but other countries do.  And though the Justice Department did not press charges (following fishy meetings between her husband and the head of the DOJ, an Obama appointee), enough was known to put an end to her political ambitions.  Yet she continues.  The theme of her campaign is "Deny, deny, deny, and eventually people will forget about it."

The DNC is paying her back for playing ball in 2008.  Then she was the Bernie, the one who could have won, if the Superdelegates chose her.  (Which, by the way, how stupid is the concept of Super Delegates?!)  She was gonna take it to the wire.  Instead, the head honchos took her aside and told her they wanted Obama.  So she packed it in.  They paid her back with the SOS position, and now they are truly paying her back.  Now Bernie was the Hillary, the one who could have won, if the Super Delegates went his way.  He was never out of it.  But the DNC not only never wanted him, but actively worked against him.

She hasn't had a press conference in nearly seven months.  And she must have known how bad erasing 30,000 emails would have looked during the investigation.  My personal belief is that she took the hit because the alternative, letting the DOJ see what she had on the servers, was worse.

And her stance on Gun control, no matter who shares it, is unfounded.  We have millions more guns than ever before, and yet there are less gun deaths than ever.  Most gun deaths are suicides, which, while tragic, are not what we think of when we think of gun control.  And most violent gun crime is committed by repeat criminals, who already are not supposed to have access to guns.  The gun control we already have is ineffectual.  Then we look at places with Gun Control, like France and Germany.  Like San Bernadino, and the gun free zone of an Orlando gay nightclub.  Gun control did not stop those attacks.

The fact is, every criminal or terrorist is a coward.  They target areas that they feel are vulnerable.  Gun control makes law abiding citizens vulnerable.  The USA has a long standing belief in people's right to defend themselves, especially at a time when the Supreme Court has ruled that police do not have a constitutional duty to protect a person from harm.  In a situation like Hurricane Katrina or the LA riots, when society breaks down, you are on your own.  And even in the best of times, the cops cannot be everywhere at once.  We believe that you should have the right to defend yourself.  Hillary doesn't.

Clinton's campaign is the definition of empty promises.  Half the things she says, she was forced to because of popular opinion, and once elected will not feel any loyalty to.  And she cannot address the many exposed errors she has made.

Hillary Clinton is the candidate for Rich people continuing to run the country like their personal slush fund.  Trump is the candidate for the country making its own decisions, as a sovereign nation.  Gary Johnson is the candidate if you can't bring yourself to vote for Trump.

When in doubt, look at Europe.  That is what Obama and Clinton praise, and want the US to be like.  They are not doing too well right now.  Thanks to unchecked immigration, and the violent backwater hicks of the Middle East.  (Don't get me started.)  We cannot ignore that.  If you are scared of Trump, good.  That's better than putting your blind faith in a candidate.  We must hold our elected officials accountable.

(You can tell right when I got carried away.  It's when I started talking about the emails.  :D)
« Last Edit: August 11, 2016, 05:38:34 PM by shorewall »



Loopy

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Reply #6 on: August 11, 2016, 05:59:09 PM
My uncle (a very liberal academic of some prominence with long loyalty to the Democrats) explained the idea behind super-delegates to me, and the way he describes it, the press has been completely misrepresenting everything.

He says that there would never be a case of a candidate winning enough delegates to get the nomination but then losing it because super-delegates didn't vote according to the popular consensus. Yes, the rules and math allow for that, but he says the party leadership is too smart to have that happen, as it would undermine all confidence in the system.

As described, the purpose behind the super-delegates is actually an escape-hatch, like in case where Hillary had been prosecuted/arrested for the email scandal after she had already gotten enough delegates to secure the nomination. Or maybe she could have had a heart-attack or something and had to drop out for health reasons. In an emergency case like that, the super-delegates could have voted for Bernie, thus giving him the nomination despite him otherwise not having the numbers, and the party would have had a legal candidate despite losing out on the more popular one.

I don't know if he's right (I wouldn't put anything past the leadership of either party), but it does make sense. I can't imagine a system would have been put into place purely to let party-leadership override popular votes, not with the approval of the rest of the party.



Guy

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Reply #7 on: August 11, 2016, 10:02:02 PM
This election blows. Everyone sucks, and the fact that a libertarian like Gary Johnson is getting taken seriously is hilarious, because that shows how desperate the American people are for an option that actually isn't terrible. The UK already made one of the worst decisions of the year, and in typical American fashion, the stupid people of this country might choose something even worse. 

As an aside, the nail in the coffin really was the "I think the British people are sick and tired of experts." I mean....that's got to take the cake for stupidest comment of the year.

Democracy was definitely a mistake. :3

Anyway, I'm not voting, since I don't care enough to register and my state's going to Hillary. If I really wanted to, I'd vote for Hillary, if only because I think the amount of salt from Trump losing this election would be absolutely amazing. Also, Hillary's the only chance of securing a progressive Supreme Court, because no one else will nominate an appropriate judge. She'd not only replace Scalia, but she'd probably also have to replace Ginsburg too since she's getting old. The people who want Trump to replace those justices honestly have no idea what that entails and/or would never feel the ramifications of a conservative court, which would undoubtedly help to reverse any progress made by minorities in the last couple of years, if not decades.

In other words, I think what matters isn't a Hillary presidency, but what kind of people she'll surround herself with. I'm much more inclined to have a Clinton presidency surrounded by intellectuals than a Trump presidency that surrounds itself with demagogues and nationalists. But of course, people are "sick" of intellectuals....I mean that's because they're plebs and don't know anything, so whatever.

This always reminds me of how I tell people, to trigger them, that political engagement doesn't work when most of your population is filled with normies and dumb people. And that's pretty much what you have in America: normies and dumb people who are easy to manipulate by fake semblances of populism. When you have people believing that a failed real estate mogul who frauded people out of college educations with small loans of a million dollars is actually a representative for the common man, that's when you know your country actually has no clue about anything important.
« Last Edit: August 11, 2016, 10:06:45 PM by Guy »

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shorewall

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Reply #8 on: August 12, 2016, 12:52:38 PM
And I wonder why more people don't agree with you.  :)



Guy

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Reply #9 on: August 12, 2016, 04:56:54 PM
A lot of people do agree with me, most of them who understand why American democracy is a joke. It's the fundamental crisis of democracy when the vast majority of a country doesn't know anything. Polls, general questionnaires, interviews with average Americans, results from test taking, and more all point to the fact that a non-insignificant portion of Americans are uninformed on the issues. Your first post itself doesn't make me any more confident when you say you've "done a lot of research" (wew lad) and that's the kind of rhetoric you spew out. Again, the fact that Trump is a leading Republican candidate says more about what cancers have festered on the right for years rather than there being any legitimate issue that Trump has brought up.

If people who actually don't know jack don't agree with me, they prove my point, not the other way around. It's not my fault if people are ignorant on economics, foreign policy, and general public policy issues. Americans are one of the few people where I feel they indulge and embrace their ignorance like a virtue. It's awful.

Finally, I think the polls should skew more heavily toward Clinton in the next couple of months. Can't really guarantee it, but it sounds like the logical progression of events (though this election cycle hasn't really been very normal). Primary polls are largely unreliable, and the number of voters in American primaries is vastly overshadowed by the general electorate. Once the debates roll around, I think Trump's numbers are going to keep falling as they are now. I mean, once that happens, it's safe to assume that most level headed people do agree with me. *shrug*

Admittedly, at the end of the day, I don't care if people don't agree with me on this, because political discussions irrevocably are irrelevant to the lives of most people. I feel like Americans, once again because they're not very smart, don't realize that the presidency is far from having the most immediate impact on their lives. I mean in this election it matters because of the Supreme Court, but if Hillary or Trump gets elected, I guarantee my life in general is not going to change at all. Literally I will continue to do my comfy finance job, my tax bracket likely won't change, my savings won't change, I won't be in anymore danger of losing my life to a terrorist, etc. etc. People way overestimate what a Clinton presidency will actually do, and they way overestimate how much damage Trump is going to do.

My only concern after making sure progressives get a good Supreme Court candidate is that America doesn't look like a laughing stock. Britain looks like one because Johnson and Farage managed to blatantly lie to the British people and get away with it; I'm really not interested in an American Johnson making us look stupider than we already are.
« Last Edit: August 12, 2016, 05:15:25 PM by Guy »

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FartsOfNeil

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Reply #10 on: August 13, 2016, 03:57:41 PM
Wow Shorwall.  That post of yours was the first reasoned justification I've seen for Trump.  I certainly don't agree with it and I feel some of it's claims are in dire need of some 'prf pls' html tags to back 'em up, but it has a mature, nuanced, calm and thoughtful tone that I can certainly respe--

The fact is, every criminal or terrorist is a coward.



He says that there would never be a case of a candidate winning enough delegates to get the nomination but then losing it because super-delegates didn't vote according to the popular consensus. Yes, the rules and math allow for that, but he says the party leadership is too smart to have that happen, as it would undermine all confidence in the system.



Anyways:

Trump is horrible and I'm not voting for him.  Not because he's a horrible person, but because regardless of whether he actually is or not, he presents himself as one.  What he says and how he behaves is a transparent and distressingly successful appeal to a very vocal and apparently much larger group of people than I was lead to believe before this election started.  But I openly despise those people and don't want them and their views to represent America.  Hillary's a terrible person, but a bog-standard politician.  I don't like her, but I can live with myself with her as a president.  This all to say nothing of the fact that the real power of the presidency is - and has always been - who they elect as SCJ's, and I don't want Trump anywhere near that shit.  That's a thousand times worse than all the nuke's he'll have authorization to launch.

Still gonna vote for Bernie though.  Even if he aint running and I gotta write his name on it.  As Loopy pointed out, your vote doesn't actually matter, so I have no qualms voting for who I want rather than throwing it away by submitting to a rigged system.



theColonel

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Reply #11 on: August 13, 2016, 04:08:00 PM
It's interesting that the Supreme Court is mentioned (kind of). I think in many ways this is what most people participating in this election are interested in. Though I'm on a different side, so my primary motive for voting against Hilary is because I don't want her to nominate anyone to the Supreme Court. I don't trust Trump to make good picks either (since he's flip-flopped on just about every issue out there), but people who are supposedly on my side seem satisfied with the list of nominees he'd choose from, and since I want the Supreme Court to be staffed with Conservatives, I guess that's reason for me to hope.
« Last Edit: August 13, 2016, 06:21:24 PM by theColonel »



Loopy

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Reply #12 on: August 14, 2016, 08:12:04 PM
I hear a lot of people who say they vote based on the Supreme Court, but I don't consider that a reliable enough thing to base my own preferences on it. Justices have proven to be unpredictable enough that it seems a shaky thing to vote for President for. The nominees would have to get past Congress, which is its own drama, and then even once on the bench, Justices can drift as the years go by. And that's even assuming that cases that fall on the specific Conservative/Liberal scale that each person is interested in (does being a social liberal mean always being a fiscal liberal always mean favoring a liberal take on Constitutional interpretation always?) while the makeup of the bench is favorable.

I dunno, if you have no other thing to vote on, I guess it's fine, but I think it's a bit bloated in terms of the attention it gets.



theColonel

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Reply #13 on: August 14, 2016, 10:24:08 PM
True. Though I suppose the answer is to look at the Justice's entire career and worldview. Though that doesn't always help, since people can change and it's difficult to pick a good SCJ because there is nothing quite like it, so how can you know how someone will behave in a given situation if you don't have a similar one to compare it to?



Guy

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Reply #14 on: August 15, 2016, 07:26:26 PM
I hear a lot of people who say they vote based on the Supreme Court, but I don't consider that a reliable enough thing to base my own preferences on it. Justices have proven to be unpredictable enough that it seems a shaky thing to vote for President for. The nominees would have to get past Congress, which is its own drama, and then even once on the bench, Justices can drift as the years go by. And that's even assuming that cases that fall on the specific Conservative/Liberal scale that each person is interested in (does being a social liberal mean always being a fiscal liberal always mean favoring a liberal take on Constitutional interpretation always?) while the makeup of the bench is favorable.

I dunno, if you have no other thing to vote on, I guess it's fine, but I think it's a bit bloated in terms of the attention it gets.
Not really; I think what we know is that nominations to the Supreme Court have lasting impacts. One of Bush 41's lasting legacy's is adding Clarence Thomas to the Supreme Court, and he's been an absolute disaster. We've also seen the effects of the last couple supreme court nominations; Sotomayor and Kagan have been incredibly consistent with what we would expect out of them.

The issue with the "nominee has to get past Congress" argument is that the only reason we're seeing Obama get so much push back now is because he's a lame duck president (also I firmly believe it's because he's black but let's not go there). There is no way that they prevent a Supreme Court nominee from being even considered on the Congressional floor if you're a first term president. Even if this isn't true, both Clinton/Trump will get resistance from an already divided Congress, so this is nonunique to begin with. At that point, I'd rather the more experienced person nominate a progressive Justice.

And yes, perhaps a justice doesn't do precisely what you want him/her to do, but from what we've seen, most justices have been pretty consistent over the course of the last few years, with only one or two Supreme Court justices really being swing votes over major decisions (Healthcare, Gay Marriage). Not doing precisely what you want is not the issue; it's whether or not you're going to have another Scalia on the Supreme Court. We have not had an opportunity to change the balance of power in the SCOTUS of this scale in a long time. Almost any other reason to vote for Trump is completely irrelevant. With another Sotomayor/Kagan, topics of:

  • LGBTQ rights
  • Women's rights
  • Race relations
  • Voting rights

Become far easier positions to hold.

I cannot see a reason that really outweighs this. If you're talking about the destruction of the Republican Party, the best outcome would be a total repudiation of Trump (whether it be Hillary or whoever else), which would rip  the party apart. Most of the Republican elite have thrown their nominations behind Trump. What was once a party that denounced everything at him and fought him at every turn during the primary process has become a party that's basically been circle jerking him. There is nothing more destructive to a party than that.

It's interesting that the Supreme Court is mentioned (kind of). I think in many ways this is what most people participating in this election are interested in. Though I'm on a different side, so my primary motive for voting against Hilary is because I don't want her to nominate anyone to the Supreme Court. I don't trust Trump to make good picks either (since he's flip-flopped on just about every issue out there), but people who are supposedly on my side seem satisfied with the list of nominees he'd choose from, and since I want the Supreme Court to be staffed with Conservatives, I guess that's reason for me to hope.
All I have to say is that, again, people who want a conservative court aren't aware of the fact that a progressive court does not affect them at all, and are most likely unaware of the ramifications of a court that seeks to reverse any progressive changes in the US.

As an aside, I'm not sure when the term "progressive" became such an ill spoken term. It's like suddenly people got salty that others were getting opportunities to make something out of their lives. It's the literal equivalent of someone getting an ice cream cone from a truck, but when they see another person get an ice cream cone that's exactly the same, they get upset.

Wow Shorwall.  That post of yours was the first reasoned justification I've seen for Trump.  I certainly don't agree with it and I feel some of it's claims are in dire need of some 'prf pls' html tags to back 'em up, but it has a mature, nuanced, calm and thoughtful tone that I can certainly respe--

The fact is, every criminal or terrorist is a coward.

[img]http://i.imgur.com/lcxyE0D.gif?noredirect[ /img]
I'm surprised you even got that far. I tuned out pretty early.
« Last Edit: August 15, 2016, 07:35:41 PM by Guy »

"As he caught his footing, his head fell back, and the Milky Way flowed down inside him with a roar."