Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Trump’s Sins

 

Because I try to be reasonably self-consistent, I occasionally find myself wondering about the apparent inconsistencies in the way I felt about President Obama and the way I feel about President Trump. In particular, I ask myself why I’m willing to give the latter a pass on so much with which I really don’t approve while being much less lenient with the former.

I wanted to know about the terrorists and bigots in Obama’s past, about his affiliations with socialists, about his speeches to anti-Semitic groups, etc., because I thought that Obama himself was motivated, at least in part, by animus toward the country I love. I have always believed that he thought America is too big for her britches, a country in need of being taken down a notch, too proud and too self-confident — a country that must atone for her sins. I think his past associations hinted at that, and I think he often governed with those motives in mind.

I don’t think President Obama really liked America very much, at least not the America I grew up in and love.

In contrast, I have little interest in knowing about President Trump’s past, because I think I understand the man well enough without it. I think he’s a narcissist, a self-promoter, a rambling promise-anything hustler, a man with essentially no ideology, and also a man who wants to be loved and admired. I think he has, for whatever reason, identified success as a patriotic, pro-business, get-the-job-done conservative as his path to the love and admiration, the greatness, he wants, and playing that role is more important to him than anything else.

That works for me because of the role he’s chosen, and again, for whatever reason, has him pursuing goals congruent to my own interests.

My interest in Obama’s past was that it might help me to expose him as the anti-American progressive I thought (and still think) he was. And, now that he’s out of office, I don’t even care about that.

I have little interest in Trump’s past, since his behavior now is self-evidently, and usually, the kind of behavior I want in a President, and I don’t expect it to change. I don’t think he’s a particularly complicated man.

Obama was a private, secretive man. Trump, the good and the bad, is transparent.

I think that’s why Trump’s sins don’t bother me. We want good character in a President in large part because character is a predictor of behavior. We don’t need a predictor with Trump: he’s driven by an unflattering aspect of his character, his pride, in such a way that he feels compelled to do things of which I happen to approve.

That isn’t ideal, but I think it’s reality and it works pretty well, so I can live with it.

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  1. Gossamer Cat Coolidge

    I do think though that Trump genuinely loves America and I agree that Obama did not.

    • #1
    • January 13, 2020, at 1:29 AM PST
    • 18 likes
  2. Miffed White Male Member
    Miffed White Male Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    So basically, he may be a son of a bitch, but at least he’s our son of a bitch?

    • #2
    • January 13, 2020, at 3:15 AM PST
    • 9 likes
  3. Stina Member

    I really think the people who describe Trump in such humiliating ways have something seriously wrong with them.

    Maybe he is a narcissist. Obama was to. But stop kidding yourself that you know anything about what motivates the man. Mind reader you are not.

    • #3
    • January 13, 2020, at 3:26 AM PST
    • 5 likes
  4. MichaelKennedy Coolidge

    Stina (View Comment):

    I really think the people who describe Trump in such humiliating ways have something seriously wrong with them.

    Maybe he is a narcissist. Obama was to. But stop kidding yourself that you know anything about what motivates the man. Mind reader you are not.

    Does anyone think a non-narcissistic person would run for president? I think it was Eisenhower who said there were two requirements to be president. One was “to be able to ride the horse.” The other was “fire in the belly.” What else is fire in the belly but confidence you can do the job and most people would describe that as narcissism.

    Obama was a red diaper baby mentored by Bill Ayres and Bernardine Dohrn, both domestic terrorists.

    • #4
    • January 13, 2020, at 5:35 AM PST
    • 10 likes
  5. Jon1979 Lincoln

    Trump’s past was pretty much an open book, in terms of the generalities — the left hyperventilated about the details, in that they knew in their bones he had to be crooked on deals, or he slept with porn stars, but the public in general knew that’s the type of personality Trump had when they elected him, since he had been showing that side of his persona in public at the very least since he skirted legal efforts to keep him from tearing down the Bonwit Teller building in 1979 in order to build Trump Tower.

    Compare that to how Obama was hyped by the media, in that they really wanted the public to know as little as possible about his life before his DNC Convention speech in 2004, and wanted them to buy into the myth. He was the adult version of Greta Thunberg and her family, coming out of seemingly nowhere to suddenly be granted Absolute Moral Authority and near-deity status by progressives and most of the media, who are supposed to be wildly cynical about anything that’s too good to be true. That’s the main contrast between the last two presidents, in that one’s life history was an open book that the media wants to open even further and the other’s was a tightly controlled story that the same media types really didn’t want to know anything more about, out of fear over how the public might react to that information.

    • #5
    • January 13, 2020, at 7:29 AM PST
    • 13 likes
  6. Henry Racette Contributor
    Henry Racette

    Jon1979 (View Comment):

    Trump’s past was pretty much an open book, in terms of the generalities — the left hyperventilated about the details, in that they knew in their bones he had to be crooked on deals, or he slept with porn stars, but the public in general knew that’s the type of personality Trump had when they elected him, since he had been showing that side of her persona in public at the very least since he skirted legal efforts to keep him from tearing down the Bonwit Teller building in 1979 in order to build Trump Tower.

    Compare that to how Obama was hyped by the media, in that they really wanted the public to know as little as possible about his life before his DNC Convention speech in 2004, and wanted them to buy into the myth. He was the adult version of Greta Thunberg and her family, coming out of seemingly nowhere to suddenly be granted Absolute Moral Authority and near-deity status by progressives and most of the media who are supposed to be wildly cynical about anything that’s too good to be true. That’s the main contrast between the last two presidents, in that one’s life history was an open book that the media wants to open even further and the other’s was a tightly controlled story that the same media types really didn’t want to know anything more about, out of fear over how the public might react to that information.

    Excellent summation.

    “He [Obama] was the adult version of Greta Thunberg.”

    Brilliant.

    • #6
    • January 13, 2020, at 7:45 AM PST
    • 8 likes
  7. Henry Racette Contributor
    Henry Racette

    Miffed White Male (View Comment):

    So basically, he may be a son of a bitch, but at least he’s our son of a bitch?

    Well, yes and no.

    If the metric we want to use for SOBness is character, then yes, I guess that’s fair.

    But if the metrics we want to use are how well the man serves my country as Commander-in-Chief, how fit he is for the office as measured by the benefit the nation derives from his presence there, how consistent his actions are with the Constitutional restrictions placed upon him, then only one of the last two Presidents was an SOB, and it isn’t Trump.

    • #7
    • January 13, 2020, at 8:15 AM PST
    • 1 like
  8. DonG (skeptic) Coolidge

    The MSM spends 93% of the time spreading horrible propaganda about Trump. If they spent 100% of the time telling us how great he is (like they did with Obama), then this topic would rarely come up. 

    • #8
    • January 13, 2020, at 8:16 AM PST
    • 9 likes
  9. Henry Racette Contributor
    Henry Racette

    DonG (skeptic) (View Comment):

    The MSM spends 93% of the time spreading horrible propaganda about Trump. If they spent 100% of the time telling us how great he is (like they did with Obama), then this topic would rarely come up.

    Absolutely. It’s a pet peeve of mine that pundits on the right often don’t mention the biased coverage when they discuss Trump polls. It’s okay to do that when simply talking about polls, but when we’re trying to relate Trump’s actions to poll results, as if we were evaluating the success or failure, wisdom or otherwise, of his choices, then we have to take into account the fact that nothing he does is going to be interpreted favorably by the press. Since public opinion is likely largely driven by the elite opinion-makers — the press and entertainment industries — talking about how Trump’s actions affect his poll results is somewhat misleading.

    I expect every future Republican to face this press-bias headwind. Part of the reason Trump is important right now is that he makes that conflict explicit.

    • #9
    • January 13, 2020, at 8:53 AM PST
    • 6 likes
  10. WillowSpring Member
    WillowSpring Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Henry Racette: I don’t think President Obama really liked America very much, at least not the America I grew up in and love.

    Ignoring the “birtherism” issues, I think Obama’s upbring was very different from most Americans. I always had the feeling “He ain’t from around here”.

    On the other hand, I have known many refugees from Russia, Viet Nam and so on who had bought into the American ideal and I would say “they are from around here” even though it was literally wrong.

    Trump is “from around here” (Even if it is New York – that has taken some getting used to) And I would add, Melania is also.

     

    • #10
    • January 13, 2020, at 10:35 AM PST
    • 6 likes
  11. Henry Racette Contributor
    Henry Racette

    WillowSpring (View Comment):

    Henry Racette: I don’t think President Obama really liked America very much, at least not the America I grew up in and love.

    Ignoring the “birtherism” issues, I think Obama’s upbring was very different from most Americans. I always had the feeling “He ain’t from around here”.

    On the other hand, I have known many refugees from Russia, Viet Nam and so on who had bought into the American ideal and I would say “they are from around here” even though it was literally wrong.

    Trump is “from around here” (Even if it is New York – that has taken some getting used to) And I would add, Melania is also.

     

    I get that. (I’m from New York as well, though a very different New York than the one from which President Trump hails.)

    I think the worst of President Obama had little to do with his oddly foreign parentage and upbringing, and a lot to do with his embrace of a pretty typical liberal narrative of American moral failure, a la Howard Zinn and company. I think Obama was every bit the mediocre university professor steeped in intellectual racial grievance theory and contemptuous of less educated, less sophisticated, less self-aware middle Americans whose sensibilities effectively defined America (until relatively recently).

    • #11
    • January 13, 2020, at 10:48 AM PST
    • 6 likes
  12. Jon1979 Lincoln

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    DonG (skeptic) (View Comment):

    The MSM spends 93% of the time spreading horrible propaganda about Trump. If they spent 100% of the time telling us how great he is (like they did with Obama), then this topic would rarely come up.

    Absolutely. It’s a pet peeve of mine that pundits on the right often don’t mention the biased coverage when they discuss Trump polls. It’s okay to do that when simply talking about polls, but when we’re trying to relate Trump’s actions to poll results, as if we were evaluating the success or failure, wisdom or otherwise, of his choices, then we have to take into account the fact that nothing he does is going to be interpreted favorably by the press. Since public opinion is likely largely driven by the elite opinion-makers — the press and entertainment industries — talking about how Trump’s actions affect his poll results is somewhat misleading.

    I expect every future Republican to face this press-bias headwind. Part of the reason Trump is important right now is that he makes that conflict explicit.

    One of the things both Trump and Reagan shared was the fact they had been public figures for the better part of four decades before they became president. That’s important because one of the things other GOP presidential candidates have run aground with is that even if you’re been in the Senate or been a governor of whatever for years, you’re not known to the general public in the same way a celebrity is — political junkies may know all about you, but more casual voters don’t.

    That means if you don’t define yourself quickly to those voters, the media is going to do it for you, and define you as negatively as possible. People thought they knew Reagan and Trump more because they had been in and out of their pop culture lives for years. GOP 2024 candidates aren’t going to have the same luxury, and will need to be on the offense from the outset.

    • #12
    • January 13, 2020, at 10:50 AM PST
    • 6 likes
  13. Bill Nelson Member

    Henry Racette: We want good character in a President in large part because character is a predictor of behavior.

    This is, largely, true. Trump is not a man of good character, and his behavior is often “deplorable” (to borrow a phrase).

    The question is this: Is he doing the people’s work? In his past praise of Kim Jong-il, was he serving the American people? I don’t think so. And his foray into the Ukrainian mess which has caused so much conflict, did that serve the American people? No. And he is at war with the democrats and often many republicans. Does the endless tweet storm serve the people? I can’t see how.

    So it is said that Trump cannot stop being Trump. And as his character is suspect, then “being Trump” maybe isn’t such a good thing all of the time.

    I think almost everyone would agree that is Trump stopped tweeting, and stopped his needless inflammatory statements at his rallies, and just stopped being an ass in general, because of the accomplishments, his approval would be into the 60s.

    And for me, personally, the real tragedy of the Trump presidency is that now a democrat such as Bernie Sanders does have a legitimate shot at being president and doing some real harm. And because the republican party is now the party of Trump, the stain carries with it.

     

    • #13
    • January 13, 2020, at 10:58 AM PST
    • 1 like
  14. Bill Nelson Member

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    It’s a pet peeve of mine that pundits on the right often don’t mention the biased coverage when they discuss Trump polls.

    That is called whining. Not something that is good to do.

     

    • #14
    • January 13, 2020, at 10:59 AM PST
    • 1 like
  15. Henry Racette Contributor
    Henry Racette

    Bill Nelson (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    It’s a pet peeve of mine that pundits on the right often don’t mention the biased coverage when they discuss Trump polls.

    That is called whining. Not something that is good to do.

    No, it isn’t “whining” — assuming I understand your meaning.

    If one is offering suggestions about how Trump should behave, with the assumption that better behavior would raise his poll numbers, then one should take into account the possibility that the poll numbers reflect less about his behavior and more about the barrage of negative press coverage he has received and will no doubt continue to receive. Pundits who talk as if Trump’s 40-something approval figure is a product of Trump’s abrasive personality, without mentioning the 90+% negative press coverage he has received since before coming into office, are painting a misleading picture. It isn’t whining to point out that Trump — and any Republican — faces a powerful media headwind.

    You suggest that his tweets are, on balance, counter productive. I often think that, but I’m not at all sure it’s true. I think one consequence of his pugilistic tweeting is that the public’s sense of the press has changed, and more of us see it for the biased and corrupt institution it is. I wish he’d tweet less and choose his targets more wisely, but I’m not sure people would see the press as clearly today if not for the well-earned abuse he heaps upon it.

    Bill Nelson (View Comment):
    The question is this: Is he doing the people’s work? In his past praise of Kim Jong-il, was he serving the American people? I don’t think so. And his foray into the Ukrainian mess which has caused so much conflict, did that serve the American people?

    You’re cherry picking — as was I when I enumerated the positives of the Trump presidency.

    But I’ll accept his verbal flattery of awful people, as long as his actions lead to the deaths of equally awful people, to the support of our allies, and to positive change here at home. His approach to negotiations often leaves me feeling insecure, and I’m not convinced it’s as thought out and deliberate as his strongest supporters claim it is. But, again, on balance I like the results.

    In your comment you’ve focused mostly on his tone and his comments and tweets. Those things matter. But, at least to me, they don’t matter as much as his actions and accomplishments. And there’s much to like about his actions and accomplishments.

    I’ll take substance over form, since I can’t have both.

    • #15
    • January 13, 2020, at 11:12 AM PST
    • 7 likes
  16. Jon1979 Lincoln

    Bill Nelson (View Comment):

    Henry Racette: We want good character in a President in large part because character is a predictor of behavior.

    This is, largely, true. Trump is not a man of good character, and his behavior is often “deplorable” (to borrow a phrase).

    The question is this: Is he doing the people’s work? In his past praise of Kim Jong-il, was he serving the American people? I don’t think so. And his foray into the Ukrainian mess which has caused so much conflict, did that serve the American people? No. And he is at war with the democrats and often many republicans. Does the endless tweet storm serve the people? I can’t see how.

    So it is said that Trump cannot stop being Trump. And as his character is suspect, then “being Trump” maybe isn’t such a good thing all of the time.

    I think almost everyone would agree that is Trump stopped tweeting, and stopped his needless inflammatory statements at his rallies, and just stopped being an ass in general, because of the accomplishments, his approval would be into the 60s.

    And for me, personally, the real tragedy of the Trump presidency is that now a democrat such as Bernie Sanders does have a legitimate shot at being president and doing some real harm. And because the republican party is now the party of Trump, the stain carries with it.

     

    I think blaming Sanders on Trump ignores the general direction of the left in the post-2008 crash years, and was not just an American phenomenon, based on how close Jeremy Corbin came in 2017 to being British prime minister. On the U.S. side, in the wake of Obama’s 2012 re-election the left bought into the idea that they really did have a Permanent Electoral Majority. They didn’t have to run a ‘historic first’ candidate like Obama (or Hillary) to win the White House — they could run someone like Sanders knowing they had at least 240-250 electoral votes locked in. That’s why he’s gained traction.

    • #16
    • January 13, 2020, at 11:13 AM PST
    • 6 likes
  17. Ontheleftcoast Member

    MichaelKennedy (View Comment):

    Stina (View Comment):

    I really think the people who describe Trump in such humiliating ways have something seriously wrong with them.

    Maybe he is a narcissist. Obama was to. But stop kidding yourself that you know anything about what motivates the man. Mind reader you are not.

    Does anyone think a non-narcissistic person would run for president? I think it was Eisenhower who said there were two requirements to be president. One was “to be able to ride the horse.” The other was “fire in the belly.” What else is fire in the belly but confidence you can do the job and most people would describe that as narcissism.

    Obama was a red diaper baby mentored by Bill Ayres and Bernardine Dohrn, both domestic terrorists.

    Obama picked Ayres and Dohrn for himself, as far as we know. The mentor his family picked for him was Communist pornographer Frank Marshall Davis.

    • #17
    • January 13, 2020, at 11:22 AM PST
    • 4 likes
  18. DonG (skeptic) Coolidge

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    Obama was every bit the mediocre university professor

    Have you ever wondered how an unemployed drifter got admitted to Harvard Law School? 

    • #18
    • January 13, 2020, at 11:35 AM PST
    • 7 likes
  19. Aaron Miller Member
    Aaron Miller Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    I don’t understand Trump. His very public life in previous decades suggested he is an opportunist with no firm ideology, just a desire for money and fame. But I would expect an opportunist to be less consistent than he has been as President.

    Perhaps that is related to what has surprised me most about Trump’s first term: Democrats’ scorched earth strategy to defame and dethrone him. Trump was a long-term friend of Democrats. Why did they not try to woo him away from Republicans after the election? Republicans gave him bupkis after a corporate tax cut (the one interest that unites Republicans in every Congress). Trump has been a self-flattering guy keenly interested in esteem. Why didn’t Democrats offer him a legacy of “fighting climate change” or whatever?

    I might believe Trump had experienced a conversion to ideology if not for some of his election antics, like accusing Ted Cruz’s father of contributing to JFK’s assassination. The quick switch from that persona to his current manners suggests there is still some acting involved.

    As you say, what matters most are results. Crude and absurd public remarks aside, Trump has been a better President than most.

    • #19
    • January 13, 2020, at 11:46 AM PST
    • 3 likes
  20. JamesSalerno Coolidge

    The biggest contrast between them is their work history. I value private sector experience in a public official. There’s something that urks me about individuals who have never created anything or worked a day in their life telling me what to do with my money.

    Trump was born into money, yet he started businesses in competitive fields. You can criticize his bankruptcy or his failures, but most trust-fund babies do not go out and compete. I think that says a lot about what Trump thinks the American Dream means. It’s a hustle. It’s failing and getting back up.

    Obama was also born into money. But he never worked. His history is all 501c-this, board of director-that, organizer & academic. He’s lived off the taxpayer’s dime his entire life. I think he worked in a law firm for about five minutes and that’s his only real-world work experience. Obama’s America is gimme, gimme, gimme. It doesn’t matter if you do not produce, you are entitled. You know what’s best for everyone else because you are an academic. Your ideas are more important than your output.

    • #20
    • January 13, 2020, at 12:00 PM PST
    • 5 likes
  21. Bill Nelson Member

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    without mentioning the 90+% negative press coverage he has received

    If the media had such influence, then his negatives should be much higher.

    Look, most people don’t pay that much attention, what they do see is behavior they would not tolerate in any of their family members or friends. That drives the negatives because that is how people relate to others. If you have an acquaintance who uses abusive and foul language, you don’t bring them into your house.

    But the vast majority of people are smart. They know that the media coverage is biased, it’s no secret. As you yourself note:

    I think one consequence of his pugilistic tweeting is that the public’s sense of the press has changed

    And is there an ally of the US who trusts our president? Unlikely.

     

    • #21
    • January 13, 2020, at 12:01 PM PST
    • 1 like
  22. Miffed White Male Member
    Miffed White Male Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Aaron Miller (View Comment):
    Perhaps that is related to what has surprised me most about Trump’s first term: Democrats’ scorched earth strategy to defame and dethrone him. Trump was a long-term friend of Democrats. Why did they not try to woo him away from Republicans after the election? Republicans gave him bupkis after a corporate tax cut (the one interest that unites Republicans in every Congress). Trump has been a self-flattering guy keenly interested in esteem. Why didn’t Democrats offer him a legacy of “fighting climate change” or whatever? 

    I believe history is going to judge this as a huge missed opportunity on the part of the Democrats. The gigantic freakout experienced in the days after the election, and the instant spooling up of “the resistance”, precluded the Dems from taking advantage of the opportunity they had to co-opt Trump.

    • #22
    • January 13, 2020, at 12:17 PM PST
    • 4 likes
  23. Ed G. Member
    Ed G. Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Bill Nelson (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    without mentioning the 90+% negative press coverage he has received

    If the media had such influence, then his negatives should be much higher.

    I think that’s Hank’s point: with the actual results it’s the favorables that should be much higher and the unfavorables much lower. Right, people don’t pay much attention – that’s why the background noise and widespread assumptions are so influential. If the feeling in the air is negative then people who aren’t paying much attention will accept that baseline. 

    With all that we know now, still forty some percent favor impeachment and removal. That’s not just unfavorable, that’s people who think he should be removed for…..Orange Man Bad. 

    • #23
    • January 13, 2020, at 12:54 PM PST
    • 1 like
  24. Miffed White Male Member
    Miffed White Male Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Ed G. (View Comment):

    Bill Nelson (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    without mentioning the 90+% negative press coverage he has received

    If the media had such influence, then his negatives should be much higher.

    I think that’s Hank’s point: with the actual results it’s the favorables that should be much higher and the unfavorables much lower. Right, people don’t pay much attention – that’s why the background noise and widespread assumptions are so influential. If the feeling in the air is negative then people who aren’t paying much attention will accept that baseline.

    With all that we know now, still forty some percent favor impeachment and removal. That’s not just unfavorable, that’s people who think he should be removed for…..Orange Man Bad.

    I recall reading a “study” some years ago that attempted to disentangle the effects of media bias from public opinion. IIRC, they found that the effect was something greater than 5 points.

    And this was pre-Trump.

     

     

    • #24
    • January 13, 2020, at 12:58 PM PST
    • 1 like
  25. Ed G. Member
    Ed G. Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Stina (View Comment):

    I really think the people who describe Trump in such humiliating ways have something seriously wrong with them.

    Maybe he is a narcissist. Obama was to. But stop kidding yourself that you know anything about what motivates the man. Mind reader you are not.

    Agreed. I avoided doing that with President Obama too. During the first campaign I thought it worthwhile to understand where he came from and who influenced him. After his eight year term I think that analysis was entirely relevant and predictive. However, I would never presume to know what he thinks, feels, or gets motivated by.

    • #25
    • January 13, 2020, at 12:59 PM PST
    • 1 like
  26. Bishop Wash Member

    JamesSalerno (View Comment):
    I think he worked in a law firm for about five minutes and that’s his only real-world work experience.

    Didn’t Ayers or whoever the ghostwriter was say that Obama felt as though he was behind enemy lines during that time?

    • #26
    • January 13, 2020, at 12:59 PM PST
    • 2 likes
  27. Ed G. Member
    Ed G. Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Aaron Miller (View Comment):
    I don’t understand Trump. His very public life in previous decades suggested he is an opportunist with no firm ideology, just a desire for money and fame. But I would expect an opportunist to be less consistent than he has been as President.

    I don’t think his public persona suggested anything about ideology, to me. Lack of suggestion never led me to infer that he only cared for money and fame. I didn’t know what to expect from him as president except that he would be no worse than Hillary or any of the progressive identitarians and that he would likely be better.

    • #27
    • January 13, 2020, at 1:04 PM PST
    • 1 like
  28. Jon1979 Lincoln

    Aaron Miller (View Comment):

    I don’t understand Trump. His very public life in previous decades suggested he is an opportunist with no firm ideology, just a desire for money and fame. But I would expect an opportunist to be less consistent than he has been as President.

    Perhaps that is related to what has surprised me most about Trump’s first term: Democrats’ scorched earth strategy to defame and dethrone him. Trump was a long-term friend of Democrats. Why did they not try to woo him away from Republicans after the election? Republicans gave him bupkis after a corporate tax cut (the one interest that unites Republicans in every Congress). Trump has been a self-flattering guy keenly interested in esteem. Why didn’t Democrats offer him a legacy of “fighting climate change” or whatever?

    I might believe Trump had experienced a conversion to ideology if not for some of his election antics, like accusing Ted Cruz’s father of contributing to JFK’s assassination. The quick switch from that persona to his current manners suggests there is still some acting involved.

    As you say, what matters most are results. Crude and absurd public remarks aside, Trump has been a better President than most.

    That seemed to be what Chuck Schumer wanted to do at the outset. He really didn’t attack Trump during the 2016 campaign, and Trump never really went after him, and both had done deals in the past. But the anger from others on the left, and the hubris to believe they could game the system to oust Trump before 2020, meant any idea Schumer might have had of schmoozing Trump into governing more as a liberal went out the window (my surprise was Trump didn’t move left after the 2018 midterms, because his habit over the years has to been to follow where the swing voters go. But the white-hot hatred the Democrats had given him, plus his desire to win any feuds he’s involved with, may have kept Trump on the conservative path, even as swing voters moved left).

    • #28
    • January 13, 2020, at 1:07 PM PST
    • 3 likes
  29. Ed G. Member
    Ed G. Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Bill Nelson (View Comment):
    But the vast majority of people are smart. They know that the media coverage is biased, it’s no secret.

    Except that most lefties I know think it’s biased in favor of conservatives.

    ?!?

    Also, the properties of a population tell us that the majority of the population is only fair to middling. How many college graduates have I met who probably needed a few more years of high school? Many. 

    • #29
    • January 13, 2020, at 1:09 PM PST
    • 1 like
  30. Western Chauvinist Member
    Western Chauvinist Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Henry Racette: also a man who wants to be loved and admired.

    He sure has a funny way of showing it! I’ve never seen so much hatred directed at a man who wasn’t a war criminal. And it predates his run for office. He was never an insider in the New York business scene. Always considered gauche and vulgar. Sometimes I think his behavior is a form of self-deprecation. He sure makes people laugh at those rallies with his over-the-top analysis and self-promotion. He’s not stupid. He knows people think it’s funny when he touts his super-jenius(Luntz joke) perfection in all things. 

    I don’t think he’s doing right by the country because he wants to be loved and admired. I think he’s risking all the venom to make good choices for us because he’s a hard-ass New York competitor. It’s all about the winning. 

    Obama’s sins were mortal rather than venial because his worldview is damaging to the very idea of America. And then he had the nerve to lecture us about “who we are.” Bastard.

    • #30
    • January 13, 2020, at 1:21 PM PST
    • 4 likes