Author Topic: The Trump Presidency  (Read 75441 times)

Offline Obviousman

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Re: The Trump Presidency
« Reply #1050 on: June 03, 2020, 01:49:11 AM »
I heard something the other day worth mentioning: Trump cannot believe how lucky he is.

First he had the impeachment but then COVID-19 came along and took everybody's minds off that.

Now there are the riots, and now people are focusing on that, and have forgotten COVID or impeachment.

A fair bit of truth in that, methinks.

Offline Jason Thompson

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Re: The Trump Presidency
« Reply #1051 on: June 03, 2020, 03:05:10 AM »
Well I hope that he does get the boot in November. If he doesn't I will despair for the future of the US and ther world. But one thing I think we can be pretty sure of: the end of this year and the start of the next in US politics is going to be a hell of a shitshow.
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Offline gillianren

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Re: The Trump Presidency
« Reply #1052 on: June 03, 2020, 11:05:45 AM »
I have to say, I'm hopeful about the Senate right now--I'm hopeful that it will change hands.  Because the majority of people have disapproved of how the Republicans handled the pandemic, and a majority disapprove of how they're handling the protests.
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Offline JayUtah

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Re: The Trump Presidency
« Reply #1053 on: June 03, 2020, 11:07:28 AM »
Well I hope that he does get the boot in November. If he doesn't I will despair for the future of the US and ther world. But one thing I think we can be pretty sure of: the end of this year and the start of the next in US politics is going to be a hell of a shitshow.

I don't think the U.S. will survive four more years of lurching from one existential crisis to another.  And it's legitimately hard to imagine the political landscape being any worse than it already is.  Many of us have given up on the notion of a functioning national governmnent.  What's even more frightening is that we are all pretty sure there was no way George W. Bush would be elected to a second term.
"Facts are stubborn things." --John Adams

Offline LunarOrbit

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Re: The Trump Presidency
« Reply #1054 on: June 03, 2020, 11:14:50 AM »
Do we have time to start building a wall on the southern border (of Canada)?
It suddenly struck me that that tiny pea, pretty and blue, was the Earth.
I put up my thumb and shut one eye, and my thumb blotted out the planet Earth.
I didn't feel like a giant. I felt very, very small.
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Offline JayUtah

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Re: The Trump Presidency
« Reply #1055 on: June 03, 2020, 11:32:32 AM »
Do we have time to start building a wall on the southern border (of Canada)?

With any luck you can get the U.S. to pay for it.
"Facts are stubborn things." --John Adams

Offline Obviousman

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Re: The Trump Presidency
« Reply #1056 on: June 03, 2020, 05:10:15 PM »
I have to say, I'm hopeful about the Senate right now--I'm hopeful that it will change hands.  Because the majority of people have disapproved of how the Republicans handled the pandemic, and a majority disapprove of how they're handling the protests.

I really hope you are right but my limited understanding doubts it. A number of my US friends are staunch Republications; whilst acknowledging (to some degree) Trump's poor performance, they look at electing a Democrat as possibly the worst thing they could do.

I remember when I was in Florida and ask a couple of them why they voted for Trump, the general consensus was that both candidates were bad but the country would 'recover' quicker under Trump than Clinton. I don't know if they still hold that view.
 

Offline jfb

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Re: The Trump Presidency
« Reply #1057 on: June 03, 2020, 05:36:44 PM »
It's not just Trump that needs to be voted out.

If Biden wins the Presidency and Mitch McConnell is still Majority Leader, then nothing changes.  It'll be a repeat of Obama's two terms with the Senate blocking all judicial appointments and threatening to shut down the government every other week (because of the deficit you see, which suddenly matters again).  No meaningful legislation gets passed.  No work gets done.  FOX News plays all your favorite propaganda hits, and in 2024 they get Trump Jr. elected and we're done as a functioning democracy.

But at least the libs got owned, so it was worth it.

McConnell, Graham, Cornyn, frankly everyone but Mitt needs to lose their offices, their influence, and their fortunes.  They need to suddenly find themselves retired with nothing to do but yardwork because nobody wants to touch them with a barge pole.  And I know that's fantasy because of the wingnut welfare circuit, but that's what should happen. 

There needs to be a housecleaning at all levels of government, federal, state, and local.  Meaningful police reform has to happen at the city level. 

The only way to purge the Republican party of the racist and fascist dipshits is for them to lose, massively, across the board. 

Offline Obviousman

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Re: The Trump Presidency
« Reply #1058 on: June 03, 2020, 06:21:19 PM »
But this is what has me stumped: what should of been a Clinton victory became Trump's; he changed the landscape, became a disruptor.... but the Democrats fight back with the same old style of candidate that didn't work last time!

I agree with a lot of the comments here: I don't think Biden is much but - like Republican voters did with Clinton (and if I were a US voter) - I'd be not so much voting for Biden but rather against Trump.

Offline Peter B

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Re: The Trump Presidency
« Reply #1059 on: June 03, 2020, 08:16:52 PM »
It's not just Trump that needs to be voted out.

If Biden wins the Presidency and Mitch McConnell is still Majority Leader, then nothing changes.  It'll be a repeat of Obama's two terms with the Senate blocking all judicial appointments and threatening to shut down the government every other week (because of the deficit you see, which suddenly matters again).  No meaningful legislation gets passed.  No work gets done.  FOX News plays all your favorite propaganda hits, and in 2024 they get Trump Jr. elected and we're done as a functioning democracy.

But at least the libs got owned, so it was worth it.

McConnell, Graham, Cornyn, frankly everyone but Mitt needs to lose their offices, their influence, and their fortunes.  They need to suddenly find themselves retired with nothing to do but yardwork because nobody wants to touch them with a barge pole.  And I know that's fantasy because of the wingnut welfare circuit, but that's what should happen. 

There needs to be a housecleaning at all levels of government, federal, state, and local.  Meaningful police reform has to happen at the city level. 

The only way to purge the Republican party of the racist and fascist dipshits is for them to lose, massively, across the board.

I tend to agree with the sentiments, but the way things are at the moment it's not going to happen because not enough people are actively engaging in grassroots political work.

Changing the political landscape of a country as big as the USA is going to take engagement by a significant portion of the population for a significant period of time, with the likelihood of no apparent change for a while too. In that sort of environment it's easy for people to give up and say nothing will change, and that it's better to exploit the system as it is than to change it. That will especially be the case when they get mocked and dismissed by Republican supporters, who seem to have mastered the art of the adolescent put-down.

The other things about this sort of work are that it takes a lot of time when so many people seem so much more busy than ever before, and that it involves working closely with people of different political views. The danger is that being seen as a compromiser can attract the ire of the ideologically pure who are theoretically on your side. (About ten years ago the Australian Greens sided with the conservative side of Australian politics to vote down a carbon pollution reduction scheme  because it didn't go as far as the Greens wanted; and thanks to that decision by the Greens we've pretty much since then had a far less effective alternative in place. The better is the enemy of the good...)

Yes, Biden isn't an ideal candidate, and he has questions he needs to answer about his past behaviour. But if Democrats insist on not voting unless they have the perfect candidate they're handing the White House to the Republicans for the next generation at least. Politics is the art of the compromise, and Sanders supporters in 2016 have something to answer for in this regard.

So what I'd suggest needs to happen in the next few months is a commitment from ordinary Americans to involve themselves in politics as much as they can at the local level, focused on the election rather than getting sidetracked (President and House and Senate). It would probably also help Democrat candidates to hear more from the people they're expecting to vote for them, rather than having everything filtered through the bubble of the party.

To that extent, that's one reason why I keep visiting the UM forum. The political discussions can get overheated at times, but at least it's a place where people of different political views engage with each other. Unfortunately a lot of the time it involves little more than repeating old slogans at each other, but at least it's an opportunity to see what people on the Other Side think and why they think it. I think of engaging with these people in much the same way as I'd engage with an Apollo HB - not to tackle their beliefs head on, but to stay calm and to plant a seed in their minds and those of the silent onlookers, to make them realise that the sort of changes being sought aren't as frightening as their politicians and commentators have been telling them.

Also, for all the appearance of hyper-partisanship in American politics I suspect there's still a decent-sized pool of people in the USA whose political beliefs sit somewhere between the two parties and so who are amenable to the sort of arguments from either side.

But once the election is done, there's obviously a lot more work to do at the state level too - that would allow the worse gerrymanders to be dealt with, for example. Otherwise, if ordinary people sit back and leave it to the party, not much is going to change.

Offline Peter B

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Re: The Trump Presidency
« Reply #1060 on: June 04, 2020, 12:55:23 AM »
I note that Trump's former defence secretary has criticised him:

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-06-04/jim-mattis-criticises-donald-trump-over-protest-response/12320210

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Former US defence secretary James Mattis has slammed President Donald Trump's response to nationwide demonstrations triggered by the killing of George Floyd, accusing him of trying to divide the country.

The retired Marine General said he has watched this week's "unfolding events, angry and appalled..."

I wonder how much attention this will draw?

Offline ineluki

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Re: The Trump Presidency
« Reply #1061 on: June 04, 2020, 04:43:52 AM »
I note that Trump's former defence secretary has criticised him:

Even his (probably not much longer) current secretary disagrees with Big Orange;

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/06/03/us/politics/esper-milley-trump-protest.html

Offline jfb

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Re: The Trump Presidency
« Reply #1062 on: June 04, 2020, 09:52:37 AM »
But this is what has me stumped: what should of been a Clinton victory became Trump's; he changed the landscape, became a disruptor.... but the Democrats fight back with the same old style of candidate that didn't work last time!

But that's who Democrats voted for in the primaries.  "We" picked him (I didn't, I voted for Warren, but I was outvoted).  We can argue about the primary process all day, but under the rules we set for ourselves, Biden won this round. 

There are a thousand reasons I don't want Biden as the candidate - his age, his voting record, his age, his propensity to shove his foot into his mouth, his age - but he has the advantage that he was part of a popular administration, and he's not scary to the old white people who actually show up to vote.  And he's not a Clinton. 

Part of HRC's problem (aside from being loathed and a bad campaigner) was that she was having to campaign as kinda-sorta the incumbent.  It's really hard to follow a two-term President from the same party (just ask Al Gore, Hubert Humphrey, and Richard Nixon).  George H.W. Bush's election was a bit of a fluke, which came down as much to Dukakis being a bad campaigner (that goddamned tank) as anything else. 

The roles are reversed this time - Trump is the incumbent, and Biden is the challenger.   That automatically gives him an advantage HRC did not have. 

It's also hoped that Biden can win back the votes that Clinton lost in the EC by, let's face it, being an old white guy.  He can't count on flipping a big state like TX or FL (although either one in addition to NY and CA means he wins easily), he has to pick up those wins in the smaller rural states. 

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I agree with a lot of the comments here: I don't think Biden is much but - like Republican voters did with Clinton (and if I were a US voter) - I'd be not so much voting for Biden but rather against Trump.

That's the argument I'm having to make to a lot of people.  You don't have to like Biden, and frankly he's not going to be in office more than one term.  But ya gotta get Trump out of there before we're permanently broken.


Offline gillianren

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Re: The Trump Presidency
« Reply #1063 on: June 04, 2020, 10:45:52 AM »
You mean Ford, but the point is there.  I voted for Sanders despite preferring Warren; well, she'd dropped out of the race by my primary.  But Biden won our state anyway, honestly because a lot of people simply don't like Sanders and think that Biden has a better chance against Trump.  I think part of the problem was that we were all so determined to find a candidate "who could win" that we didn't consider putting in the work to make our candidate win.  Warren's unofficial slogan was "she can win if you vote for her."
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Offline JayUtah

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Re: The Trump Presidency
« Reply #1064 on: June 04, 2020, 11:21:47 AM »
Indeed, the skill sets for winning an election to an office and for doing a good job in the office have continued to diverge since Douglas Adams facetiously used it as a premise in the Hitchhiker series.  Joe Biden as being more "electable" than other Democratic candidates is the same strategy that gave us the eminently "electable" Donald Trump.  While I think one will suck less than the other at being President, that's not the kind of choice Americans ideally want.  A Biden Presidency won't give us wage equality, civil rights, or restore our national prestige.
"Facts are stubborn things." --John Adams