90 Percent of Trump’s Supporters are Snowflakes

whining snowflakes

CNBC, Trump stokes culture wars, but low turnout mars Tulsa campaign rally

CNN, Tulsa official says 6,200 attended Trump rally as campaign tries to blame ‘radical’ protesters and media for lack of crowd

Tulsa’s fire marshal has now told multiple news outlets that his peeps counted just under 6,200 attendees. That’s his story, and he’s sticking to it. The campaign has told CNN that the real number must have been in the neighborhood of 12,000.

Everybody agrees that the arena has 19,199 seats, and that lots and lots of them were empty.

The campaign claims that a million people applied for tickets. It also claims that it expected every seat to be filled, and that it expected huge overflow crowds. And it admits that these expectations were not met. Bigly.

The campaign also claims that Trump supporters who didn’t show were a bunch lf snowflakes—intimidated by media reporting that they would be putting their lives at risk. It also claims that a lot of the folks who did show were also a bunch of snowflakes, who, despite the assistance of the Tulsa police and the obvious lack of violence outside the arena, lacked the courage to get past the Black Lives Matter folks and into the venue.

In other words, about 90 percent of Trump supporters are a bunch of weenies, according to reliable sources inside the campaign.

Also, there’s a possibility that teenage pranksters were issued a whole bunch of the 19,199 tickets. This, however, would reflect pretty badly on the campaign, so they don’t admit it.

Parsimonious razor

Occam’s Parsimonious Shave

There are various plausible reasons for the no shows. The parsimonious explanation is that, in Tulsa and surrounding territories, there are only six to twelve thousand idiots willing to put their lives at grave risk to feed Orange Man’s ego.

They ran an experiment. They tested the very outer edges of idiocy. And those were the results.

Now, it’s time to replicate the experiment a few more times, just so we can all be reasonably confident about the outcome.

Cultists in the Roach Motel

Feelings are running high. One of my good friends shared the old roach motel commercial, in anticipation of what is likely to happen in Tulsa this coming Saturday.

Well, maybe “roaches” is a little bit harsh to describe the 19,000 folks who are apparently going to be packed like sardines in a tin can over in Tulsa next Saturday.

But let us just reflect on the ancient maxim that a man is presumed to intend the natural consequences of his acts.

This morning, talking head Dr. Scott Gottlieb informed us that about one in every 200 of us carries the virus.

Thus, of the 19,000 Know Nothings in the Tulsa arena, one may expect 95 of them to be spreading the virus. And none of them will be wearing masks. Because wearing masks is a concession to reality, and, if you are a hard core cultist, you must never, ever make a concession to reality.

King of the Know Nothings

Know Nothings

Yesterday, New York Times writers Maggie Haberman and Annie Karni sucked their thumbs at great length on the question, Does Trump Want to Fight for a Second Term? His Self-Sabotage Worries Aides: Advisers and allies say the president’s repeated acts of self-destruction have significantly damaged his re-election prospects, and yet he appears mostly unable, or unwilling, to curtail them.

It’s worth a read.

I do not wish to sound like a know-it-all, so please excuse me. But I know the answer to their question.

Trump wants to win reelection, but if and only if he can win by being King of the Know Nothings.

If reelection depends on being, or pretending to be, something other than King of the Know Nothings, then he would prefer to lose and then go on to monetize his role as King of the Know Nothings.

Many questions are hard. But this one, I think, is pretty easy.

What is interesting is whether his plutocratic supporters—who did not become plutocrats by regularly throwing good money after bad—will want to keep on propping him up as he keeps running toward the precipice.

Yeah, and If We Stopped Looking at the Naked Emperor, We Wouldn’t See His Nether Regions

naked emperor

WaPo, today, 3:32 PM:

‘If we stop testing right now, we’d have very few cases, if any,’ Trump says

At a roundtable Monday afternoon on protecting senior citizens during the coronavirus pandemic, President Trump had a novel response when asked about the number of covid-19 cases in the U.S.

“If we stop testing right now, we’d have very few cases, if any,” Trump told reporters at the White House.

I’ll bet that really makes those senior citizens feel protected.

Words Fail Me in Explaining How Much More Hopeful I Feel

Happy Texts

N.Y. Times, Covid-19 Patient Gets Double Lung Transplant, Offering Hope for Others

In other hopeful news, I just read an article by a big-time epidemiologist, who explained, that, for us older folk, obesity is the really big risk factor. And that we should, at all costs, avoid prolonged indoor experiences with packed masses, wearing no masks, shouting at the top of their lungs.

Boy, howdy, do I feel better.

Trump rally

Orange Man’s Other Delusion

Delusion

JUST LYING OR ACTUALLY DELUSIONAL? THE DEBATE CONTINUES, LITERALLY AD NAUSEAM

For the zillionth time, the question is posed: conscious lies or deep-seated delusion reflecting serious mental disorder?

Jonathan Chait, Delusional President Demands CNN Retract Poll:

Yesterday, President Trump lashed out at CNN’s poll showing him losing to Joe Biden by 14 points, directing legendarily inaccurate Republican pollster John McLaughlin to write a memo claiming the network deliberately engineered a false result.

Today, Trump has sent a letter to the network, signed by actual lawyers, demanding it retract the poll. CNN has obviously refused, explaining why its poll is in fact legitimate and not Fake. CNN’s result, showing Biden ahead by 14 points, is at the top end of a range of recent polling, but many other surveys have found Biden leading by low double digits.

As is the case with many of his erratic moves, the question arises whether Trump is actually suffering from a serious mental illness, or is instead pretending to believe something fantastical in an effort to rally his base. In this case, there is a plausible story for why Trump could be acting out of conscious cynicism. He seems to believe that polls themselves exert a strong pull on election outcomes, and that unfavorable polling will discourage his supporters from showing up.

On the other hand, there is a fair amount of evidence suggesting Trump is not playing a clever messaging game, or even a stupid one, but actually believes his own lies.

A month and a half ago, Trump threatened to sue his campaign manager, Brad Parscale, for bringing him bad polls, according to both the Washington Post and CNN. “Trump told Parscale that he did not believe the polling that had been presented to him, even though it came from the campaign and the RNC,” the Post reported. “‘I’m not losing to Joe Biden,’” Trump said at one point, both of these people said, adding that the president used profanities throughout the call.” The Post also reported that Parscale managed to mollify the boss by bringing “polling numbers that were more positive for Trump,” which resulted in Trump being “in a far better mood.”

Two days ago, the Daily Beast reported that Trump’s reelection campaign is spending $400,000 to run pro-Trump ads in Washington, D.C. The Washington market has no value — Trump is not seriously contesting either the city or its suburbs. The point is to soothe the president. “With Trump stuck in that milieu of anxiety, his re-election team is hoping that the ads may put him at ease that his formidable political machine is hard at work defending him and attacking his enemies,” notes the report.

This morning, the Washington Post casually drops the following sentence into the middle of an account of the campaign’s difficulties: “Trump has become obsessed with polling and lashes out at those who say he is losing to Biden, according to two White House officials and a longtime Trump ally.”

The reporters, perhaps because their sensitivities have been dulled by years of daily exposure to this kind of madness, immediately moved on to other points, rather than linger over the sheer irrationality revealed by this line. It is quite a conundrum for the president’s staff. He is obsessed with polls, but he becomes enraged upon being informed he’s losing to Biden. Given that every poll shows him losing to Biden, his advisers don’t seem to have a lot of good options.

Imagine we were discussing a regular person suffering this kind of pathology. (Jim loves Nascar, can’t get enough of it, wants to watch it all the time, but the sight of automobiles makes him go ballistic, so don’t let him see any cars.) We would be talking about finding him help.

Orange Man’s Other Delusion: He Can’t Count the Slytherins

Let me tell you what his other delusion is. His other delusion is that most white people are pretty much all, like him, stone cold racists.

That’s why he cannot maneuver the changing tides of public opinion on racial oppression. That’s why he’s going to side with Slytherins every time.

Because he can’t count the Slytherins.

That Line in the Sand

which side

We are pretty damn near the point where the big political division of 2020 will be a hard, bitter line in the sand between those who are firmly in favor of police brutality and criminality and those who are not.

The Nuremberg rallies, set to resume shortly, will feature all manner of bully, bluster, and fulmination about those who demand police reform. The proto-Nazis will be out in full force.

That line was always there. This country will be a hell of a lot better off when we all see who stands where.

Seriously, things couldn’t be better.

Because there are a damn sight more of us than there are of them.

A Guest Post from Rosa: Like a Kidney Stone

We owe a debt of gratitude to Rosa Goldman, from downstairs here at Happy Acres, who has called our attention to this charming musical entertainment.

**

A big hello to yesterday’s and today’s readers from Australia, Brazil, Canada, the Czech Republic, Hong Kong, India, Italy, the Netherlands, New Zealand, South Africa, Spain, the UAE, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

Hong Kong: we’re with you.

New Zealand, remind me once again on your policy for accepting political refugees from the United States.

A Wedge Drivin’ Man

Trump viciously attacked Mitt Romney for adopting a position supported by 53 percent of Republicans.

A clear warning that any other Republican office holders who also embrace a position held by 53 percent of Republicans are going to receive a good Twitter lashing, followed by a passel of easily disproved lies coming out the mouth of his sycophantic press secretary.

Like John Henry before him—who was most definitely a Steel Drivin’ Man—Trump is showing his political genius as a Wedge Drivin’ Man.

Blue Monday

Blue MAGA

A Sea Change in Public Opinion

You do not have to be an old person like me to remember a time when neither Democrats nor, God forbid, Republicans supported gay rights or gay marriage. Some don’t support gay marriage now, and the never will. But a strong majority moved, and moved fairly quickly, from one side to the other. I believe something similar is happening now, before our eyes.

Politico sucks its thumb at considerable length on this matter: Is This the Last Stand of the ‘Law and Order’ Republicans? A punitive brand of conservatism embraced by Trump and some GOP hardliners is rapidly falling out of step with public opinion.

And, folks, they don’t just assert that part about “falling out of step with public opinion.” They’ve got the data to make their case. If you doubt that, then I dare you to read the piece.

A Stress Test on the Military

Another recently popular topic for thumb suckers has been the prospect that Trump might not concede if he loses, and that he might provoke a constitutional crisis. If that concerns you, I recommend Fred Kaplan,Trump Can’t Just Refuse to Leave Office: We have a lot of things to worry about in the next eight months. This isn’t one of them.

Let me add this. I am glad that, in the last couple of weeks, the military brass was forced to do a lot of thinking about how far—if at all—they would obey an unconstitutional order from the President. It was a stress test. Folks, the military is not going to support a military junta with Trump at the head. Not happening.

Trump’s Remaining Support

This morning, the talking heads said Trump has one meeting scheduled today—with a bunch of policemen. The police and their notorious unions are facing real stress right now. Their inclination will be to keep supporting Trump. Bigly.

But will he support them? He is, after all, a coward. And some of his aides are going to tell him about Politico and its thumb-sucking article on the sea change in public opinion.

And if Trump doesn’t come out, big time, for the police unions and their right to bust heads with impunity, how will they react?

The Big Strategy: Decrease Biden Turnout by Drenching the Country in Lies about Biden

That, according to the talking heads this morning, is the thinking of the political geniuses in the White House.

But there is this one little problem. Trump lies every time he speaks. Honest Abe, he ain’t. If your big strategy is to win by lying, maybe it would have been a really good idea to tell the truth some of the time in the past. As it is, even his own supporters don’t believe what he says.

The Cake is (Almost) Baked

That’s the headline in this morning’s piece by Jonathan V. Last, The 2020 Cake Is (Almost) Baked: Biden has the biggest, most durable lead of any presidential challenger ever. He’s more personally popular than Trump. The wrong-track number is at -38. And there are only 20 weekends left before Election Day.

Outstanding reading for garment renders and hand wringers.

Humpty Dumpty Had a Great Fall

Humpty Dumpty cracked

Good morning, everyone. As we all reflect on the Bonfire of Trump’s Vanity, let’s head over, once again, to fivethirtyeight.com.

And what do we find? We find that, in the weighted poll of polls, Trump’s disapproval (53.9 percent) now exceeds his approval (41.7 percent) by a whopping 12.2 points.

You will, I hope, recall that the corresponding number at the end of March was only 4 points. Now it’s 12.2 points, and rising pretty much every day.

THIS IS WHAT HAPPENS WHEN MINORITIES TRY TO OPPRESS MAJORITIES

As I have repeatedly observed, about one quarter to one third of our population

  • feel grievously oppressed, because their ability to oppress others has been greatly weakened,
  • feel aggrieved by pretty much everything that has happened since 1750,
  • want to coopt the government to oppress their opponents—the majority of the population, by force if necessary, and maybe by force preferentially, and
  • think, or thought, that they had found God’s Anointed latter day King Cyrus to do that very thing.

What is happening right now is the inevitable denouement of the Southern Strategy devised by Richard Nixon.

But here’s what all good Southerners know: if you put on your suit and your white shoes, and you walk across the cow pasture, no matter how carefully you walk, when you come to the other side there’s going to be some brown on those white shoes.

For years and years, the respectable folks at the country club have been walking across that racist pasture, and they have been getting more and more brown on their white shoes.

Or, let’s change, the metaphor. For years and years, Humpty Dumpty has been sitting precariously on that wall. This week, the inevitable is happening. See this from the New York Times, Vote for Trump? These Republican Leaders Aren’t on the Bandwagon: Former President George W. Bush and Senator Mitt Romney won’t support Mr. Trump’s re-election. Colin Powell will vote for Joe Biden, and other G.O.P. officials may do the same.

Trump, who knows no limits, just went too far.

And his bully boy supporters among the police just went too far.

This is what happens when you reach the end of the line for the Southern Strategy. This is what happens when you rile up the rubes.

The majority is mad as hell, and we are not going to take it anymore.

And the coalition that kept Humpty Dumpty precariously poised on that wall is falling apart.

Yes, the smaller part of the old Republican coalition will side with the majority, at least on the advisability of using bullets and police dogs on peaceful protesters.

And the 25 to 33 percent of our population will just have to marinate in their own rancid thinking, at least for a season.

The Wrong End of the Telescope

wrpmg end

Tom Cotton, Send In the Troops

Michael Gerson, Trump wnts to turn his opponents into infidels to be destroyed, not defeated

Greg Sargent, Trump and Tom Cotton are losiing the argument. New polls confirm it.

So, here’s the deal. There’s the 32 percent. And then there’s Everyone Else. Mr. Sargent’s point is that Tom Cotton and Donald Trump have done a piss poor job of convincing Everyone Else that there is a crisis that needs to be solved by the “military domination” of American cities. And he has the data to prove the point—some of which I discussed this morning, plus some additional data as well.

I think we may take it as a given that this is how things stand as of Friday afternoon. And, how—one may hope with reasonable confidence—things will stand with Everyone Else after we live through whatever is going to happen this weekend.

But if this is all we see, we are looking through the wrong end of the telescope. What about the 32 percent? What if Tom Cotton and Donald Trump and Fox News are doing a perfectly splendid job of convincing these folks that they stand in mortal peril from the massive demonstrations? (And do please remember, that’s a fear they are psychologically ready to experience, given their morbid fear of the end of white supremacy.)

What if Cotton and Trump and Fox News rile up the rubes to a white hot passion?

What if Trump brandishes the Bible and convinces his 32 percent that Everyone Else is an enemy of Christianity, meriting extermination like a bunch of roaches? What if the 32 percent come to fully accept that the only good Democrat is a dead Democrat?

And what if nothing happens—except more massive, peaceful protests around the country?

I think you see where this looks like it’s heading.

It looks like it’s heading to a point where Trump, out of abject desperation, will issue some seriously unconstitutional orders to the military.

And that, ladies and germs, is when push will well and truly come to shove.

God’s Modern King Cyrus, or the Wizard of Oz?

This follows up on my post this morning about the new ABC News poll. As Eugene Robinson wrote, Trump is uniting Americans—against him.

This is a good time to remember the widespread reports that Trump did not expect to win in 2016, nor did he want to win. Rather, according to these same widespread reports, he saw his presidential run as a branding exercise, and a prelude to setting up some kind of Fox News-like operation in which he would become King of the White Trash and make a lot of money off their ignorance.

Who knows what’s rattling around in his delusional head right this minute? But a working hypothesis that would explain most of his behavior is that he still yearns to be King of the White Trash and make lots of money in that capacity.

But, now, I think he’s well and truly boxed in.

32 percent of the population would probably love to see the U.S. military cleanse the streets of all those diverse peaceful protesters. But I really believe that ain’t happening. If given an unconstitutional order, I think most of the military would just refuse to obey.

Besides which, it looks like the cops—be they good cops or bad cops—are doing a pretty good job arresting the looters and the arsonists. Which gives even less purported justification for unconstitutional use of the military—unless you are among the quarter to a third of the population who believe in enforcing white supremacy, by terror if necessary.

Trump’s remaining supporters want him to be “strong.” But if he can’t send in the Army, what kind of performative strongman act can he do? The one he did on Monday night looked lame. In retrospect, it only looks lamer.

So what can Orange Man do to “project strength”? Tweet out his support for Georg Floyd’s killers? Praise the Buffalo police officers who almost killed the elderly white guy?

But if he doesn’t “project strength,” how many of the 32 percent will still be with him?

What if God’s Chosen One—God’s 21st century answer to King Cyrus—turns out, instead, to be the little man behind the curtain in the Wizard of Oz?

Former SecDef Mattis, Having Also Grown a Pair, Has Some Things to Say

Mattis

Former Secretary of Defense James Mattis writes,

I have watched this week’s unfolding events, angry and appalled. The words “Equal Justice Under Law” are carved in the pediment of the United States Supreme Court. This is precisely what protesters are rightly demanding. It is a wholesome and unifying demand—one that all of us should be able to get behind. We must not be distracted by a small number of lawbreakers. The protests are defined by tens of thousands of people of conscience who are insisting that we live up to our values—our values as people and our values as a nation.

When I joined the military, some 50 years ago, I swore an oath to support and defend the Constitution. Never did I dream that troops taking that same oath would be ordered under any circumstance to violate the Constitutional rights of their fellow citizens—much less to provide a bizarre photo op for the elected commander-in-chief, with military leadership standing alongside.

We must reject any thinking of our cities as a “battlespace” that our uniformed military is called upon to “dominate.” At home, we should use our military only when requested to do so, on very rare occasions, by state governors. Militarizing our response, as we witnessed in Washington, D.C., sets up a conflict—a false conflict—between the military and civilian society. It erodes the moral ground that ensures a trusted bond between men and women in uniform and the society they are sworn to protect, and of which they themselves are a part. Keeping public order rests with civilian state and local leaders who best understand their communities and are answerable to them.

James Madison wrote in Federalist 14 that “America united with a handful of troops, or without a single soldier, exhibits a more forbidding posture to foreign ambition than America disunited, with a hundred thousand veterans ready for combat.” We do not need to militarize our response to protests. We need to unite around a common purpose. And it starts by guaranteeing that all of us are equal before the law.

Instructions given by the military departments to our troops before the Normandy invasion reminded soldiers that “The Nazi slogan for destroying us…was ‘Divide and Conquer.’ Our American answer is ‘In Union there is Strength.’” We must summon that unity to surmount this crisis—confident that we are better than our politics.

Donald Trump is the first president in my lifetime who does not try to unite the American people—does not even pretend to try. Instead he tries to divide us. We are witnessing the consequences of three years of this deliberate effort. We are witnessing the consequences of three years without mature leadership. We can unite without him, drawing on the strengths inherent in our civil society. This will not be easy, as the past few days have shown, but we owe it to our fellow citizens; to past generations that bled to defend our promise; and to our children.

We can come through this trying time stronger, and with a renewed sense of purpose and respect for one another. The pandemic has shown us that it is not only our troops who are willing to offer the ultimate sacrifice for the safety of the community. Americans in hospitals, grocery stores, post offices, and elsewhere have put their lives on the line in order to serve their fellow citizens and their country. We know that we are better than the abuse of executive authority that we witnessed in Lafayette Square. We must reject and hold accountable those in office who would make a mockery of our Constitution. At the same time, we must remember Lincoln’s “better angels,” and listen to them, as we work to unite.

Only by adopting a new path—which means, in truth, returning to the original path of our founding ideals—will we again be a country admired and respected at home and abroad