Donald Trumpet

I’ve been immersed in reading the history of Benito Mussolini and the rise of fascism this summer and I have to say, the content, the declamatory reach and the wide hearing his views got come from the same chord Donito Trumpet is playing now.

For example, “Mexicans of being responsible for “tremendous infectious disease … pouring across the border”.

As with Mussolini, facts don’t matter.  If caught out, repeat louder. Someone who sounds that sure of himself is surely right

Many are mocking.  In fact, David Letterman came out of retirement to do so.  He said Trump’s presidential race made him regret he had retired.

David Letterman’s Top Trump Ten

But should they (we) be mocking?  At least one analyst says “stop laughing.”

… writing Trump off is dangerous. The billionaire may play the buffoon, but he is an important one — one whom Americans appear to adore. A USA Today-Suffolk University poll released Tuesday shows him leading all Republican presidential hopefuls. And while establishment candidates in both parties might want to ignore him, or express a milder version of his anti-immigration opinions, an enormous number of voters clearly like his views.

WaPo William Frey

And, from the middle of the road, Newsweek, comes an opinion piece that actually links Trumpet’s name with fascism.  Sitting through a long speech, Jeffrey Tucker writes:

I’ve never before witnessed such a brazen display of nativistic jingoism, along with a complete disregard for economic reality. It was an awesome experience, a perfect repudiation of all good sense and intellectual sobriety.

Yes, he is against the establishment, against existing conventions. It also serves as an important reminder: As bad as the status quo is, things could be worse. Trump is dedicated to taking us there.

… Since World War II, the ideology he represents has usually lived in dark corners, and we don’t even have a name for it anymore. The right name, the correct name, the historically accurate name, is fascism. I don’t use that word as an insult only. It is accurate.

Though hardly anyone talks about it today, we really should. It is still real. It exists. It is distinct. It is not going away. Trump has tapped into it, absorbing unto his own political ambitions every conceivable resentment (race, class, sex, religion, economic) and promising a new order of things under his mighty hand.

I myself, would not use the word fascism in relation to what Trump represents; in fact it is wrong to refer to Hitler’s nazism as fascism — different animals of the same species.  I suggest, as a native moniker, Trumpetism.  But Tucker and Frey are on to something.  Mockery may be a weapon to be used but it should be used without believing he is simply a fool.  A fool with millions of adherents is a danger to us all.


Scott Walker, the Quieter Trump

From Bloomberg News, Margaret Carlson spots fraternal twins, Donald Trump and Scott Walker.


“On the surface, you couldn’t ask for two more different candidates than the real-estate mogul and the preacher’s son.

Trump is, well, Trump. Walker, on the other hand, is genial, affable and low-key. As a teenager, he filled in for his father delivering the Sunday sermons and flipped hamburgers at McDonald’s. He quit college, as he explained it to his parents, to make sure there was money to send his younger brother. Democrats who worked with him over the years admit how pleasant he is.

This is where the contrast between Walker and Trump ends and the similarities begin. In his political life, Walker has tried to bring about the America that Trump says we need. He did so first as an assemblyman (calling for a harsh “truth in sentencing” law, prison privatization, and voter-ID laws) and then as Milwaukee county executive (making cuts to spending on parks and public transit, and focusing on making life better in the suburbs rather than helping those in the city). By the time he left that post, Milwaukee had the second-highest black poverty rate in the U.S. and an unemployment rate almost four times higher for blacks than for whites.

He was elected governor with high turnout among his white base. His first act was to bust the public unions and give businesses a tax break.”

GOP — Kicking the Poor, Again

WASHINGTON — A proposal to raise the federal minimum wage to $10.10, an underpinning of President Obama’s economic agenda and an issue that Democrats hope to leverage against Republicans in the midterm elections, failed in the Senate on Wednesday.

The vote was 54 to 42, with 60 votes needed to advance the measure.

All but one Republican voted to sustain a filibuster against the measure, saying that the increase would damage the fragile economy and force businesses to cut hundreds of thousands of jobs.


When the Deregulation Chickens Come Home to Roost in North Carolina

 Wet coal ash from the Dan River earlier this month. The spill coated the river bottom 70 miles downstream and threatened drinking water and aquatic life. Credit Gerry Broome/Associated Press

Wet coal ash from the Dan River earlier this month. The spill coated the river bottom 70 miles downstream and threatened drinking water and aquatic life. Credit Gerry Broome/Associated Press

Last June, state employees in charge of stopping water pollution were given updated marching orders on behalf of North Carolina’s new Republican governor and conservative lawmakers.

“The General Assembly doesn’t like you,” an official in the Department of Environment and Natural Resources told supervisors, who had been called from across the state to a drab meeting room here. “They cut your budget, but you didn’t get the message. And they cut your budget again, and you still didn’t get the message.”

From now on, regulators were told, they must focus on customer service, meaning issuing environmental permits for businesses as quickly as possible. Big changes are coming, the official said, according to three people in the meeting, two of whom took notes. “If you don’t like change, you’ll be gone.”

Read All

We hope, when all the tallies are done, it will be the folks who hate regulation so much, who ‘will be gone.”

Right Wingers Crazy About Womens’ Libido

Mike Huckabee is only the latest to let his own libido out of his mouth as he opined that women couldn’t control theirs.


Right Wing Castigator Faces the Law

This is really fun:

Conservative author and filmmaker Dinesh D’Souza is set to be arraigned at noon ET on Friday in a Manhattan federal courthouse after being charged with campaign finance fraud.

D’Souza faces a maximum of seven years in prison

According to an indictment filed by Bharara, D’Souza allegedly made contributions in the other people’s names to a U.S. Senate candidate in 2012. The indictment didn’t name the candidate, but TPM has confirmed it was Republican contender Wendy Long, who lost to Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY).


For a bit more about his ethical problems. see this at the Daily Beast.

GOP: Enemy of the Poor

From Krugman:

a party committed to small government and low taxes on the rich is, more or less necessarily, a party committed to hurting, not helping, the poor.

Will this ever change? Well, Republicans weren’t always like this. In fact, all of our major antipoverty programs — Medicaid, food stamps, the earned-income tax credit — used to have bipartisan support. And maybe someday moderation will return to the G.O.P.

For now, however, Republicans are in a deep sense enemies of America’s poor. And that will remain true no matter how hard the likes of Paul Ryan and Marco Rubio try to convince us otherwise.

GOP Moves to Encourage More Bad Bank Behavior

Representative Jeb Hensarling, a Republican of Texas and chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, is expected to propose a bill that could open up a huge loophole in the Volcker Rule. The proposed change could allow banks to create and own securities with many types of investments that are barred under the Volcker Rule, which is intended to prohibit speculative trading by banks while letting them both make markets for customers and hedge other investments.

NY Times

Christie – Nailed

From the NY Times

A series of newly obtained emails and text messages shows that Gov. Chris Christie’s office was closely involved with lane closings on the New Jersey side of the George Washington Bridge in September, and that officials closed the lanes as retribution against the mayor whose town was gridlocked as a result.

Mr. Christie has insisted that his staff and his campaign office had nothing to do with the local lane closings, and said that they were done as part of a traffic study.

But the emails show that Bridget Anne Kelly, a deputy chief of staff in Mr. Christie’s office, gave a signal to the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey to close the lanes about two weeks before the closings occurred.

“Time for some traffic problems in Fort Lee,” she emailed David Wildstein, Mr. Christie’s close friend from high school, and one of his appointees at the Port Authority, which controls the bridge.

The editorial board of the Star-Ledger, New Jersey’s largest newspaper is not amused.

His attempts to laugh this off now appear to be dishonest, though we can’t yet be sure that he personally knew about the correspondence of one of his top aides. Still, Christie bears responsibility either way. If it turns out he did know, he is obviously lying and unfit for office — let alone a 2016 presidential run.
And even if he did not, his officials are liars. If Christie can’t control them, how can we trust him as a potential future leader of our country?

How about a class-action suit by all those trapped in traffic that day — business deals lost, baby-sitters doing over-time, urinary pain and suffering?  Looks like a slam-dunk to me.

Picking on the Poor

Bob Herbert in the NY Times

The poor are easy to pick on. They are the great boogeymen and women, dragging us down, costing us money, gobbling up resources. That seems to be the conservative sentiment.

We have gone from a war on poverty in this country to a war on the poor, in which poor people are routinely demonized and scapegoated and attacked, and conservatives have led the charge.

Seconded by Paul Krugman

More than a million unemployed Americans are about to get the cruelest of Christmas “gifts.” They’re about to have their unemployment benefits cut off. You see, Republicans in Congress insist that if you haven’t found a job after months of searching, it must be because you aren’t trying hard enough. So you need an extra incentive in the form of sheer desperation.