Trump is Toast

datePosted on 13:21, October 11th, 2016 by Pablo

Well, all good things must come to an end.

But first, let’s play word association:

Authoritarian Populist.

Racist. Bigot. Xenophobe.

Bully. Buffoon. Bankrupt.

War-mongerer. Torture fan. Genocidal Demagogue.

Narcissistic Sociopath. Tax evader. Ignorant blowhard.

Serial Liar. Serial Cheat. Serial adulterer.

Thin skinned. Egomaniac. Coward.

Lecher.

Sexual predator.

Whose name comes to mind when these words are mentioned?

Conservative spin aside, there is no coming back from this. The destruction of brand Trump is unfolding before our eyes and soon will be complete.

Let’s unpack the video outtakes from his 2005 Access Hollywood appearance in order to explain the reasons why.

In it he speaks of pursuing a married woman. That will cost him religious conservative votes as well as those from people who take a dim view of home-wreckers.

He then boasts that he has a pre-meditated strategy to swallow breath mints before he forcibly kisses women without their consent. He goes on to say that because he is a “star” he can grope women’s genitals with impunity. These are admissions of repeated sexual assault. That is going to cost him much more than female votes, as many in the law and order crowd, to say nothing of men who have real respect for their mothers, wives, sisters, daughters and grand daughters will walk away from a self-admitted practitioner of such criminal behaviour (say what you want about Bill Clinton, there is no audio recording in his own voice of him admitting to sexual assault).

In his non-apologies he claims that the crude and lewd language he used during the now infamous bus ride is just “locker room banter.” Besides the fact that many have pointed out that it is not, in fact, normal athlete talk to speak the way he did, what he is basically saying is that (presumably male) locker rooms are places where discussion of sexual assault is common place. If that is true, then what he is speaking about–and dismissing–is a particular aspect of rape culture. True or not (and there is definitely a problem with rape cultures in some areas of US society), the fact that he downplays the seriousness of boasting about sexual assault (whether real or made up) is indicative of deeply seated misogyny on his part. This may have been something that he could get away with twenty years ago, but it is not now.

Better yet, Trump is a wrecking ball that is bringing the Republican Party down with him as the GOP rats scramble to get off that sinking ship known as the 2016 campaign. They have to jump because the word association game that we just played will be attached to those who do not. Already 50 Republican elected officials are trying to put distance between themselves and Trump, including the House Majority Leader and 14 Senators. The focus of the Republicans is keeping their House and Senate majorities, and that looks to be increasingly in peril in the Senate (where a shift of 4 seats restores a Democratic majority).

In parallel, the media facilitators at the alternative universe known as Fox News are also in full meltdown mode as the Trump sycophants (Sean Hannity) publicly quarrel with other colleagues (Meghan Kelly, Shepard Smith) in a crisis environment brought about by the forced resignation of another sexual predator, Roger Ailes, as CEO of the network.

These are the worst of times. These are the best of times.

The forces of evil in the US are in disarray, on the run and looking for whatever (political) cover they can find. But there is no place to hide.

This year November 8 is not just election day. It is not just judgement day for the GOP.

It is armageddon for US conservatism. The end is nigh.

The real questions now are what will the Democrats do with the gift of Republican self-destruction? Will the Clinton administration heed the lessons of the election and integrate at least some aspects of Bernie Sanders’ policy prescriptions into it? Will the Democratic Congressional leadership seize the opportunity to consolidate or pursue legislative gains in areas such as health care, education, campaign finance reform and taxation? Will the Supreme Court nominations made by the Clinton administration ensure a “progressive” majority for decades to come?

For their part, will the unsavoury forces unleashed by the Trump campaign crawl back under their rocks or will they turn into a violent disloyal opposition? Will the GOP split into “moderate” and retrograde wings and if so who will dominate conservative discourse? What lessons will the Republicans take away from this disaster? Will those lessons teach them civility or even more darker modes of behaviour?

Time will tell but for the moment we can only thank The Donald for his efforts.

12 Responses to “Trump is Toast”

  1. James Green on October 11th, 2016 at 21:31

    If the Republicans lose out in Congress this time, they will just sweep back in in two years time. Their extreme gerrymandering of the districts after the 2010 census ensures that. The Democrats unfortunately don’t have the balls to brake with convention and redo the redistricting before the next census is due, after 2020.

  2. Pablo on October 12th, 2016 at 17:43

    James:

    Good points about the mid-terms and the impact of gerrymandering.

    But I think the issue is the Senate. The Dems need to win 30 seats in the House to be a majority and even then will not have a 2/3 majority to pass legislation. But the Senate, with six year terms, has both veto and executive override powers, so the race for the upper house is what matters especially if the Dems win enough to prevent a 2/3 GOP majority in the House.

    This is another reason why Trump is an ignoramus. He simply does not understand what I just wrote. I saw that terrible wench Bill O’Reily try to coach him in a free air time interview about “having to get along” with the likes of Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell, and Trump repeatedly refused to move from his belief that he will force them to do his presidential will. Coming on top of his threats at retribution and saying that he is going to have Clinton investigated and put in jail, it is clear that Trump’s authoritarianism blinds him to the realities of governance in a two party bicameral federal system with a separation of powers that is grounded in a system of laws.

  3. James Green on October 12th, 2016 at 20:56

    Yeah the Senate is pretty important and currently looks like a very close contest (somehow, I don’t understand it but that’s what 538 says).

    I don’t understand what you mean by a 2/3 majority in the House, that happens very rarely and never to Republicans since before FDR. The flipside of Gerrymandering is that it makes supermajorities much harder to achieve.

    Also the Senate composition changes every 2 years and the Dems will certainly lose a few seats in the 2018 mid-terms.

    Six months ago some people were actually attributing intelligence to Trump’s then success, no-one is doing that any more, he is, as you say, an ignoramus.

  4. Pablo on October 12th, 2016 at 21:03

    It is harder to dislodge Senate incumbents after a first term than House Reps, so my thinking is that if things can move in the first two years then the next four are more assured if not cemented when it comes to SC nominee and health care etc legislation. Obviously the four year mark is an issue, but I think that the trend stands barring some disaster. I could be wrong.

    The deal with the 2/3 majority is that you need it to pass legislation without fear of automatic over-ride. So unless the House is overwhelmingly in favour, any bill will die in the Senate. But again, I could be wrong.

  5. Geoff Fischer on October 13th, 2016 at 06:31

    Where Pablo sees a sexual predator and tax dodger, I see the moral ambivalence of the western world. The United States is not Iran. People are free to engage in all manner of sexual activities just so long as it is consensual. They are also encouraged to become wealthy just so long as they stay within the strict limits of the law.
    However, in the political sphere different standards are applied. There the notions of probity, rectitude, honour and moral obligation still come into play, and so we have public “outrage” and “scandals” over the conduct of congressmen, senators and presidential candidates which would not be of any interest to the public if they were private citizens, and might even be a subject of prurient (and even envious) interest if they were rock musicians or film stars.
    No doubt there is a bloc among the American voting public that adheres to old-fashioned religiously-based moral values, and they may punish Trump for his amoral attitudes. But there is also a large element, perhaps a majority, of the population which will not give a hoot. Bill Clinton was able to emerge politically unscathed from his sexual transgressions because his political support was unmoved by sexual amorality.
    Donald Trump may not be in the same happy position, but it is apposite to remember the parable of the unjust steward aka the parable of the shrewd manager (Luke 16:1-13)in relation to Trump’s various misdemeanours. It is as true now as it was two thousand years ago that people, both men and women, may reward those who have deceived and exploited them if they can see those skills at deception and exploitation being turned to their own advantage. In other words hire the poacher as gamekeeper, take onto your payroll the hacker who brought down your website, marry the man who took advantage of you, or elect as president the candidate who avoided paying taxes. Human nature is more complex and calculating than we sometimes allow, and while Donald Trump may seem destined for political oblivion, as the Americans themselves would say it is not over until the fat lady (being the American voter) sings.

  6. James Green on October 13th, 2016 at 14:07

    Senate: A good point about the incumbency advantage.

    House: Yes, I think you are right. I keep forgetting that the Senate has to approve bills too because it seems so bizarre to me. Except budget bills which are the sole province of the House.

  7. paul scott on October 13th, 2016 at 22:40

    I would expect Pablo to, and he did, reflexively trot out the mindless slurs that the left keep in the cut and paste toolbox.
    A person could think that Pablo’s experience in previous life of pompous disapproval and pedantry would have taught him something.
    In my opinion Pablo your dogmatic and pedantic treatment of EA on this site is nothing short of clinical. But I won’t put slur names on it. That’s for your level of reaction.

  8. Pablo on October 14th, 2016 at 08:13

    Paul:

    You comments are starting to move into the realm of trolling, so this is your only warning to stop. If you have a critical comment about something posted, just get to the point and leave the rest aside.

  9. Danyl McLaughlan on October 15th, 2016 at 03:39

    The Republicans losing Congress is very, very unlikely. The Dems would need to gain 60 seats, and even in the 1994 “Revolution”, the Republicans only got 54 seats.

    A more likely scenario is the Republicans hanging onto Congress by a slim majority, but the party leadership having difficulty imposing the level of discipline necessary to leverage that majority.

  10. Pablo on October 15th, 2016 at 09:20

    Danyl,

    I agree that the House is out of reach but the Senate is clearly in play. That will make a great difference if the Dems can win the 4 seats required to swing back into the majority. Plus, if the Dems can win enough seats to prevent the GOP from having a 2/3 majority in the House, it will be hard for the House Republicans to obstruct the administration in the measure that they have the last 8 years.

    Check this out from Nate Silver: http://projects.fivethirtyeight.com/2016-election-forecast/senate/?msource=SHORTLIST&tr=y&auid=17019868

  11. Ben on January 18th, 2017 at 21:48

    Egg meet face.

  12. Pablo on January 19th, 2017 at 12:07

    An omelette’s worth, thanks. But do not gloat too soon. The presidency can still burn Trump in many ways.

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