Sunday, October 23, 2016

Career Move

The late Karen Carpenter once sang "we've only just begun." (No link herein provided; I'm opposed to torture.)   The post-election campaign has only just begun.

That's the post-election campaign of Kellyanne Conway nee Fitzpatrick.  And so it was that this seemingly odd exchange took place on CNN's State Of The Union on Sunday

TAPPER: Let's talk about this idea that everything is rigged. Yesterday, Mr. Trump once again arguing that the election will be rigged. It's a charge that he makes, with no real evidence to suggest it, that many Republican secretaries of state and others are very upset that he's making. 

Now, back in April, when you were working against Donald Trump, when you were supporting Ted Cruz and advising his super PAC, you had some tough words for Mr. Trump when he was lashing out -- lashing out at the time against the system being rigged. 

Take a listen.


CONWAY: We hear from the Trump campaign rules -- that rules change, it's not fair, the system is rigged, the system is corrupt. You can whine and campaign all you want that you didn't know the rules. 


TAPPER: Is this a pattern with Mr. Trump? If he starts losing, he starts lashing out and calling the system corrupt and calling it rigged?

CONWAY: We love watching that clip together. But that was actually about what was happening on the weekends, where....

In the spin that seemingly won't die, Conway went on to the fallacious analogy between Trump's reluctance to accept results of the upcoming election and the Gore challenge to the Florida disputed results in 2000.

But Conway was- uncharacteristically- telling the truth when she admitted  "We love watching that clip together," . As of November 9, she will be out of a job. As of November 10, she will be sure to have spread far and wide the story that had she not reined Trump in, he would have been more of a monster if not for her.

Thursday night in New York City, Hillary Clinton joked "I have great respect for Kellyanne Polls, and since she's a contractor, he probably won't be paying her."   Mrs. Conway promptly tweeted "A shout out from @Hillary Clinton at #Al Smith dinner."   Usually an individual wouldn't want to draw attention when her candidate is being called out for his disonesty and for herself being played for a sucker, but Conway really isn't being played for a sucker, even if Trump never pays her.

She has something else in mind. As notorious and reprehensible the candidate she works, the whole charade is, for the veteran pollster, a career move and resume-builder.  At the previous night's debate, Trump had declared "We'll get out, secure the border and once the border is secured at a later date we'll make a determination as to the rest. but we have some bad hombres here and we're going to get them out."   Moments later, Conway re-tweeted reporter Bob Costa's tweet:   "Bad hombres"= Trump being Trump   Trump's other answers+Conway-esque.

In the end, Kellyanne Conway is a classic careerist, loyal to no one besides herself. She'll go far in Republican Party politics.

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Saturday, October 22, 2016

Trump Disrupts Narrative

Oh, this was bad timing.

Asked at the last and final presidential debate whether he "will absolutely accept the result of this election," Donald Grump responded

I will look at it at the time. I'm not looking at anything now. I'll look at it at the time.

What I've seen -- what I've seen is so bad. First of all, the media is so dishonest and so corrupt, and the pile-on is so amazing. The New York Times actually wrote an article about it, but they don't even care. It's so dishonest. And they've poisoned the mind of the voters.

But unfortunately for them, I think the voters are seeing through it. I think they're going to see through it. We'll find out on November 8th. But I think they're going to see through it.

This was re-interpreted, in some quarters (though not many), as Trump refusing to accept the results of the election, rather than the candidate refusing to pledge to accept the results. So on Thursday morning, Mika Brzezinski defiantly stated "He did not say I will not accept the results."

"Look, we can play with semantics," former US Representative Harold Ford (D-Tenn) replied.

Joe Scarborough counted with "Semantics? It's called the English language." A moment later he added "He was Donald Trump being Donald Trump saying 'I'll look at it at the time." Willlie Geist would chip in with "It's also what everyone else on his campaign said all night long. Ivanka said, Kellyanne too, Rudy Giuliani said it, Mike Pence said it to Brian Williams thirty minutes before. 'Of course we'll accept the outcome.'"

Brzezinski/Scarborough deserves credit for boring down on Trump's actual words: "I will look at it at the time." Unfortunately, for MSNBC's morning drive-time crew, however, that time came later in the very same day when the GOP nominee told a crowd in Ohio

Ladies and gentlemen, I want to make a major announcement today. I would like to promise and pledge to all of my voters and supporters, and to all of the people of the United States, that I will totally accept the results of this great and historic presidential election.... if I win.

It would be unfair to call these MSNBC dupes "dopes"- they're right about some things. But Brzezinski and Geist, both of whom should know better, and Scarborough all swung and missed. When Trump stated "We'll find out on November 8th. But I think they're going to see through it," he was all but admitting that he'd cry about the results if he didn't win. (Of course, not being deeply psychotic, he wouldn't complain if he won.)

Ivanka Trump. Kellyanne Conway. Mike Pence. Rudy Giuliani.  If the guys and gal at Morning Joe believe any of them- ever- they haven't been paying attention.

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The Nasty Woman's Opponents

This news item from CNN on September 12 summed the situation up well:

The Democratic presidential nominee sparked an uproar late Friday when she described Trump's supporters at a fundraiser.

"To just be grossly generalistic, you can put half of Trump supporters into what I call the basket of deplorables," Clinton said. "Right? Racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, Islamaphobic, you name it."

She added: "And unfortunately, there are people like that and he has lifted them up. He has given voice to their websites that used to only have 11,000 people, now have 11 million. He tweets and retweets offensive, hateful, mean-spirited rhetoric."

Clinton then said some of these people were "irredeemable" and "not America."

She described the rest of his supporters as people who are looking for change in any form because of economic anxiety and urged her supporters to empathize with them.

The Democratic presidential nominee made similar comments in an interview Thursday with an Israeli television station. But when they were widely reported Friday night, Trump and Republicans quickly pounced on the remarks, which drew comparisons to President Barack Obama's comments about clinging to "guns and religion" at a 2008 campaign fundraiser and Mitt Romney's "47 percent" remark in 2012.

Exactly four weeks later Trump spoke to a rally in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania  and warned his supporters about the election being "taken away from us." He added "and everybody knows what I'm talking about. And this croooked media. And you talk about crooked Hillary- they're worse than she is."  The crowd responded with a lengthy rendition of "Hillary sucks."

It was ten days later at another Pennsylvania rally, this one in Newtown, that the crowd went with the same "Hillary sucks." Not much creativity with these guys (and gals).

It's not only Pennsylvania, however.  Three days earlier at the rally for the state GOP in Green Bay, Wisconsin (to which Trump had been invited and disinvited), the crowd had chanted "Paul Ryan sucks."

Okay- that one's accurate. Still, the verb usage is a little hackneyed and rude, while making up in simplicity what it lacks in class.  And it's a safe bet that the Trumpists are by far- by maybe 100 times- more upset that Ryan's endorsement of Trump has been unenthusiastic rather than that the Speaker's aim, as Charlie Pierce has recognized it, is

privatizing Social Security, voucherizing Medicare, a further investment in the ridiculous notion of supply-side economics, the deregulation on the federal level of just about everything from the stock market to canned tuna, the sell-off and pillage of public lands, the revival of block-grants so that the governors and state legislatures can have a feeding frenzy on the federal tab, and the continued refusal to do anything about the climate crisis.

Ryan has not withdrawn his endorsement of Trump, notwithstanding- well, everything. CNN, which reported on Clinton's damaging remarks in September, went over two months paying Corey Lewandowski while he was still on Donald Trump's payroll. Yet, "CNN sucks" and "Paul Ryan sucks."

It's enough to make you think some of the GOP nominee's supporters are- with apologies to the guardians of proper English- deplorables.

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