You wanna blame somebody for Trump? Blame his supporters. Seriously.

Supporters are a wonderful thing. And the most wonderful thing about them is that we all have them. If you come from a normal background, your family are your biggest supporters. Your friends, however many or few there are, are supporters too. And if you’re even moderately qualified at work, and not quarantined, you have supporters there too. But as wonderful as it is to have that support at your back, supporters come with a caveat. Their support is not unconditional. Ask Kevin Spacey about that. Or Bill Cosby. Charlie Sheen and Mel Gibson are a couple of more pretty good examples. Steve Wynn too. Because, while people may like you personally, or support the things that you do professionally, there are certain things that they’d really not be associated with. And once you’ve lost their support, you’ve likely lost it for good, there is a whole world of people out there for them to support who won’t bring them personal or professional embarrassment. This is where Trump supporters come in. The sole reason that Trump says what he says, and does what he does, is because his truest, most base supporters continue to give him positive reinforcement for his words and actions His supporters love his antics, he behaves the way that they do after their fifth round at Casey’s on a Friday night. And better yet, they get the vicarious thrill of not having their wife make them sleep on the sofa when he says or does something that they’d like to do themselves. How many times have we all read articles and comments wondering on Trump’s complete lack of civility and shame. What nobody ever seems to comment on is the complete lack of civility and shame in his backers. And they’re full of shit to boot. All the way back during the campaign, and ever since, when Trump’s most loyal acolytes are interviewed, they freely admit that they know that the wall will never be built, they just love chanting the slogan as a communal thing. They know he can’t deliver on what he promises, but they love him anyway, because he gives them license to show their true fears and bigotry. And besides, Trump has already delivered on his most basic campaign promise, he is demolishing the entire political and administrative structure of the government. Never forget, all of the racism and xenophobia aside, that is what they sent him there to do. And they’re thrilled. And he’s using them to kill our political process too. People keep gnashing their teeth about the GOP doing nothing to rein Trump in. Ever watch a politician? They govern with one wet finger sticking up in the air, looking for which way the wind is blowing. And right now, the GOP trade winds are blowing in a Trumperly direction. The old joke is true, the word politics is derived from two ancient Greek words, poly, meaning ‘many’, and tics, meaning ‘many small, bloodsucking insects.” The days of honor and constitutional oaths are gone in the GOP, do you really think that Carlos Curbelo wants to go back to being just another common slob in January? This is why the investigations that the new Democratic controlled House will undertake starting in January are so important. And why they must be so surgically precise. Exposing Trump’s lies and personal greed won’t do any good. Trump’s […]

The key to winning in 2020? Think of Trump as the political “American Pie.”

If you’re old enough, you know exactly what I meant by the reference to “American Pie” in the title. If you’re not, then just substitute “Born in the USA,” or maybe “Staying Alive” instead. Every once in a while, the coolest song in the world comes out, until they play the ever loving shit out of it, and everybody gets so sick of the damn thins that they finally end up burning copies of the CD in their back yard, while they film it for You Tube. Trump is the political version of “American Pie.” Remember July of 2016, when he creaked down the gilt escalator in Trump Tower, and slammed Mexicans in front of a paid crowd? He was so hip, so cool, and best for the media, he was free! But now, even the Trump Ministry of Propaganda, FOX News, won’t carry his campaign rallies live, and if the ratings sink much lower, he’s going to get voice mail when he calls in to Fox and Friends. Back in 2017, the Democratic strategy was to hammer on Trumo’s obscene personality and actions, and ride a glorious wave of revulsion to victory in the midterms. But what actually ended up happening? The word “Trump” was just about the only word that never passed from a Democratic candidates lips. They talked about healthcare, infrastructure, jobs, anything but Trump, and it worked like a charm. Which is exactly what Republicans kept wanting to do too, except that Trump wouldn’t let them, he kept crashing their rallies. People are sick of Trump. They’re sick of his face, they’re sick of his voice, they’re sick of his childish language and temper tantrums. Trump is the American Pie that makes you slip in the CD of Pat Boone’s Greatest Hits that your grandmother left on the console that time you took her to the senior center to play pinochle. I noticed this personally in the midterms here in Nevada. Both Jacky Rosen and Steve Sisolak, running for Senate and Governor respectively, never mentioned Trump at all in their ads, and only mentioned their opponents to draw policy contrasts. Meanwhile, their opponents ran the standard attack ads. Rosen and Sisolak will both be gainfully employed in government service in January. And I’m not the only one who noticed this phenomenon. The Daily Beast published an article today that showed that the Democrats had noticed the sea change as well; “To succeed in 2020, a Democrat will need to have the skill and discipline to deftly pivot from Trump’s BS to the issues that matter,” Dan Pfeiffer, a former senior adviser to President Barack Obama, told The Daily Beast. “If you are trying to get retweets and social engagement, you are going to optimize for all things Trump and in doing so, you are playing his game. The funny thing is, if the Democrats can figure this one out, so can the Republicans. And they’d love nothing more than for the Democrats to follow this strategy, because they’d like to follow it themselves. They know what an albatross Trump is around their necks, and the less they have to talk about him, the better it is for them. Except for the fact that this strategy won’t work for the Republicans, for one simple reason. Because Trump is going to be on the […]

The GOP lost more than the House on Tuesday night. They lost their favorite talking point too.

The thrill is gone baby, the thrill is gone away     BB King Just because I haven’t been writing for the last three days doesn’t mean that I have been idle. Far from it. I’ve been laying on the sofa, kicking my feet in the air, giggling like a two year old being tickled, and running around the room high fiving myself almost constantly. After two years of the darkness of Trumptopia, it feels good to have the sunlight on your face again, doesn’t it? Look, Beto O’Rourke aside, let’s call it what it was, shall we? A good old fashioned, no holds barred, don’t-tell-mama ass kicking. We flipped somewhere between 32-41 House seats, minimized the Senate losses for 2020, took over 6 Governor mansions, flipped almost 400 state legislative seats, and gave both the Democratic party and the country enthusiasm and confidence going into 2020. All in all, a pretty good might. Cast our mind back to the first of the year. What was the greatest danger facing the Democrats heading into the midterm elections? If you listened to the talking head nabobs of the media, it was that the Democrats had no arching national message to run on. I screamed to the heavens at the time that this was nonsense, simply because midterm elections are decided on local issues, not a national agenda. Nut wadda I know, I don’t get paid to spout pap and nonsense. Turns out that we had the mother of all issues, healthcare, but we ran it on the local level to victory. But what about the Republicans? Hell, they were stuffed with issues. There was the economy, the tax cuts, Trump’s big, fat, New York mouth. And what did they end up running on? Caravans of homicidal asylum seeking women and children. It turns out that the GOP lost more than just the House on Tuesday night. They also buried, once and for all, their favorite nemesis. For 10 years now, the Republicans have had a built in advantage to motivate their base. Evil incarnate, the Devil wearing Prada, the liberal leech on the soul of the nation, the Nosferatu of American politics. Yep, Nancy Pelosi. I won’t speak for the whole country, I’ll let the comments chime in, but here in Nevada, Nancy Pelosi was omnipresent. A large part of this may have been due to the fact that most of the GOP candidates in Nevada ran almost no ads of their own, letting the PAC’s do the dirty work. Jacky Rosen, running to oust Dean Heller, was a one term House member, but the attack ads the GOP ran mentioned Nancy Pelosi’s name as often as Rosen’s. Rosen was a Pelosi stooge, voting 90% of the time in lock step with Pelosi. One ad even showed pictures of the two women, with the narrative, “Jacky Pelosi and Nancy Rosen, it’s almost impossible to tell them apart!” Susie Lee was a first time candidate for congress, running against perennial loser Danny Tarkanian, desperately trying to turn personal corruption into a full time profession. But lee was painted in the ads as a Pelosi in training, and ads creamed about the “California dark money millions trying to steal a Nevada seat!” But it didn’t work. Lee beat Tarkanian, and Rosen stomped Heller. The feared and vaunted “Pelosi […]

O’Rourke Denies Avenatti, and Words To The Wise About What We Must and Mustn’t Do In 2020

With the midterm elections a few days away, speculation is now heating up as to who Donald Trump’s adversary will be in the 2020 presidential race. All the usual cliched considerations are coming up, a progressive or a moderate, an old timer or a newcomer, what’s the magical answer? That led columnist Frank Bruni to consideration of what the race would sound like in a day and age where national discourse has plummeted to the sub-basement, and a chat with a rising Democratic star. New York Times: Should his opponent join him in the mud, which is the approach that the lawyer Michael Avenatti not only recommends but models? Is it even possible to avoid such a descent? Eric Holder and Hillary Clinton apparently think not, to judge by recent public comments of theirs (“When they go low, we kick ’em,” Holder said). I happened to reconnect with O’Rourke recently in Fort Worth, Tex., and I asked him about the optimal tone for a Democrat at this juncture and about Avenatti’s and Holder’s repudiations of Michelle Obama’s “they go low, we go high” credo. “Avenatti does not represent us,” O’Rourke told me, meaning most Democrats. “Eric Holder — what he said — that’s not where we’re at.” He added that among American voters, “there is a real concern about civility — not for the sake of manners but for the sake of the country working.” People were expecting a vicious counterpunch, in true Avenatti-Trump fashion, but instead we got this. That’s very sane and measured. Good for him. This lengthy, must-read article goes on to caution about the traps that Democrats cannot fall into again. And it [Democratic campaign] better not sneer at Trump and condescend to his supporters. No baskets, please, and no deplorables. Midwesterners who voted for him won’t be lured back into the Democratic fold if they’re made to feel ashamed about their decision and told that they were duped. Axelrod made the same general point to me, and I think it’s the crucial counsel. “If Democrats are going to win in 2020, it can’t be with the careless presumption that everyone who voted for Trump is a toothless, ignorant racist,” he said, adding that voters who were still reeling from the 2008 financial collapse and voters disgusted by the paralysis on Capitol Hill “viewed Trump as the kick in the ass that Washington needed. There has to be room for these voters, but if they’re shunned and belittled for having supported him in the first place, they will just be driven further into his column.” The article points out that Hillary couldn’t see how Trump could even be considered as a candidate, which was part of the problem. He wasn’t taken seriously enough. We let ourselves be hoodwinked by laughing at him and listening to polls which predicted a 96% chance of Democratic victory. That’s why we’re in the mess we’re in now. While we were busy guffawing or being mortified, the thieves came in and yanked the rug right out from under us. Further, we are admonished that we can “tout Hillary’s popular vote victory, blame the Russians or comb the shadows for anything that absolves [Democrats] of error,” but that’s not going to help us win. They dismiss Trump as an accident, a freak […]

Hold Onto Your Hat Michael Bloomberg Just Registered As A Democrat There’s Talk Of 2020 Run

Maybe Michael Bloomberg is having an identity crisis or something. He used to be a Democrat, then he became a Republican, and apparently he’s had a come to Jesus moment and realized the error of his ways, and he’s back. He posted this on Instagram this morning. “At key points in U.S. history, one of […]

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