Tuesday Reads: The Insane CampaignPosted: August 23, 2016
Can this presidential campaign get any more ridiculous? I’m guessing it will. I know I’ve written this multiple times, but every morning I feel shocked all over again. On the days when I have to write a post, it’s even worse. I just can’t believe what is going on in the corporate media! As Donald Trump’s behavior gets more and more out-of-control insane, so-called “journalists” search for ways to make Hillary Clinton look equally horrible. It’s not working for them, and that has to be sooo frustrating.
Last night Hillary appeared on the Jimmy Kimmel show and joked around about the conspiracy theories that Trump and his supporters are pushing about her health. The Washington Post reports:
It was a funny premise: Hillary Clinton would pick Donald Trump quotes out of a jar and try to read them with a straight face.
But when it came time for the last quote, she said she couldn’t even read it. She handed it to Jimmy Kimmel.
Kimmel read it: “‘I’ve said if Ivanka weren’t my daughter, perhaps I’d be dating her.'” (Trump actually said this in 2006.) …..
“I do feel sometimes like this campaign has entered into an alternative universe,” she said. “I have to step into the alternative reality and, you know, answer questions about, am I alive, how much longer will I be alive, and the like.”
I know that feeling. I can’t imagine what it would feel like to be the person who is dealing with all this right-wing craziness.
At NBC, First Read summarizes Trump’s efforts to get the media to make the campaign a referendum on Hillary Clinton and not on him. But could he ever really stand to have the attention on someone other than himself?
It’s time for a special prosecutor to look in the Clinton Foundation! Hillary Clinton has a health problem! Clinton and the Democrats are bad for minority voters! “Welcome to the Bannon campaign,” the New York Times’ Alex Burns observed, referring to new Trump campaign chief Steve Bannon of Breitbart News. Indeed, the Trump camp has been under new management for an entire week, and you see how it’s doing everything it can to turn this race from a referendum on Donald Trump — which it has been for months now — into a referendum on Hillary Clinton. Of course, there’s a legitimate question as to whether this will all work. After all, there’s no way the Obama administration will appoint a special prosecutor with 77 days before the election. And the allegations about Clinton’s health are unfounded — in fact, Clinton’s letter from her doctors is much more thorough than Trump’s four-paragraph letter (which begins “To Whom My Concern”). But you see what the Trump campaign is trying to do: Down in the polls, it’s trying to change the subject back to Clinton.
As for the Clinton Foundation, here’s what Trump said about it campaigning last night in Akron, OH: “Her foundation took in large payments from major corporations and wealthy individuals, foreign and domestic, and all the while she was Secretary of State. The Clinton Foundation accepted as much as $60 million from Middle Eastern countries that oppress women, gays and people of different faiths.” More Trump: “The amounts involved, the favors done and the significant numbers of times it was done require an expedited investigation by a special prosecutor immediately, immediately, immediately.”
And he continued his pretend pitch to minority voters, delivered to a lily-white audience in Akron, Ohio:
Over the past week, Donald Trump has been making a pitch to minority voters. And it’s easy to see how it’s likely to fall on deaf ears, especially since he’s been making it in front of nearly all-white crowds. “Crime at levels that nobody has seen, you can go to war zones in countries that we’re fighting, and it’s safer than living in some of our inner cities. They’re run by the Democrats,” Trump said in Akron, OH last night. “And I ask you this, I ask you this, crime, all of the problems, to the African Americans, who I employ so many, so many people, to the Hispanics, tremendous people — what the hell do you have to lose? Give me a chance. I’ll straighten it out, I’ll straighten it out. What do you have to lose?”
First read left out a scary ad lib by Trump last night.
“Walk down the street and you get shot.” Wow.
Corey Lewandowski, the CNN “commentator” who is also being paid by the Trump campaign, explained why Trump “reaches out” to African Americans while speaking to all-white audiences. T-Bogg at Raw Story: Trump avoids speaking to black voters because he’s not safe in their communities.
Lewandowski was part of a panel Monday night hosted by Anderson Cooper when he was asked why Trump doesn’t appeal to black voter by actually meeting with them instead of talking about them in front of predominately white audiences.
“You know what’s amazing to me is that no one remembers Donald Trump went to go have a rally in Chicago at the university. And remember what happened?” Lewandowski began. “It was so chaotic and it was so out-of-control that the Secret Service and the Chicago Police Department told him you cannot get in and out of the facility safely. And that rally was cancelled.”
Several panelists jumped in with the same question: “What does that have to do with communicating with the black community?”
“Look!” Lewandowski shot back. “That is a black community. He went to the heart of Chicago to give a speech to the University of Chicago in a campus that is predominately African-American to make that argument. And you know what happened? The campus was overrun and it was not a safe environment.”
Panelist Angela Rye replied, “Would you acknowledge that not all black communities all over the country are still not monolithic. So if he tried the same thing in Cleveland–”
Lewandowski immediately cut her off, saying “He tried to go to Chicago and wasn’t allowed to make the speech–” as Rye shot back, “What about Dallas? What about Los Angeles?”
Here’s Jill Lawrence at USA Today on whether any of us should “take a chance” on Donald Trump: Change is not your friend this year.
What do you have to lose? Donald Trump keeps asking African Americans. But really that’s his question to all of us. The core premise of his campaign is that our country is so weak, and our leaders are such losers, that we should put all our money on Trump the wild card, the savior. The restoration to greatness is at hand, but only if we choose him.
Trump made that explicit the other day by christening himself “Mr. Brexit.” He’s the candidate of disruptive change, exciting and unsettling and the ride of your life. What we can expect the day after Hurricane Trump makes landfall at the White House? Hey, don’t harsh the euphoria.
Here’s the thing, though. Trump may be asking “what do you have to lose?” as a rhetorical question, but there’s an answer to it, and that answer is “an enormous amount.”
I’m not even talking about the temperament issues that unnerve so many in both parties as they contemplate a President Trump in charge of nuclear codes, the military and relationships across the globe. Let’s look purely at economics and other indicators of national health.
The stock market continues to set new records during President Obama’s tenure, andonly George H.W. Bush presided over a bull market for more of his time in office. The jobs report for July, released on Aug. 5, was so positive that conservative economist Douglas Holtz-Eakin called it impressive, “strong across the board,” and “the first month in recent memory that doesn’t have some significant downside.” Republican leaders were silent rather than issuing their usual negative responses….
…black Americans, like all Americans, would stand to lose plenty under President Trump. They’d have to put up with his inaccurate stereotyping of African Americans and hostility to the Black Lives Matter movement. From a pocketbook standpoint, his protectionist views could trigger trade wars and higher consumer prices. And he’d revive trickle-down economics, a major contrast to Obama policies that have directed resources to low-income rather than high-income Americans.
Do we really want to trade what gains we’ve made for a guy whose new tax plan is a boon for wealthy Americans, the national debt and lenders like China? As acerbic liberal Jason Sattler (aka @LOLGOP) put it on Twitter, “Trump is offering ‘change’ the way a high-impact collision with a tree offers your car ‘customizing.’ ”
I’ve been reading David Cay Johnston’s new book, The Making of Donald Trump. Whatever horrors you read in the media are just the tip of the iceberg. I can’t believe the dishonesty of this man. Sometimes I have to take breaks from reading just to recover a sense of normalcy. I can’t even imagine what would happen to the global economy if he somehow became POTUS.
Just check out this new story at Huffington Post: Donald Trump Jacked Up His Campaign’s Trump Tower Rent Once Someone Else Was Paying For It. HuffPo doesn’t allow cutting and pasting anymore, so I can’t excerpt from the article; but here are the basics. Trump “quintupled” the rent on his Trump Tower headquarters to $169, 758 beginning last month. Read much more about the Trump campaign’s spending at the link above.
Melania Trump has also run into some dishonesty issues. Raw Story: REVEALED: Melania Trump outright lied under oath about having a college degree.
Melania Trump’s website was yanked offline in July when discrepancies surfaced about her claim that she graduated with a degree in architecture from the University of Ljubljana in Slovenia. She, in fact, did not graduate, rather she only attended classes before moving on to a modeling career and coming to the United States under possibly illegal visas.
Now it seems, new evidence shows that Trump may have lied about her degree under oath, which would make her guilty of perjury.
The case involved a now-defunct caviar skincare line, which Racked.com recalls Melania Trump promoted on “Good Morning America,” her husband’s show “The Apprentice” and on CNBC, but ultimately never made it to the market. The contract Trump had with a cosmetic company called New Sunshine LLC imploded when friend Steve Hilbert was fired from the company by another Trump friend, John Menard.
The case ended up in court, where Melania was required to testify.
“Where were you born, Mrs. Trump?” the attorney asked.
“I was born in Slovenia,” she answered.
“Would you please explain to the Judge your formal education including what schools you attended and from which you graduated?” the attorney requested.
“I attended and graduated from design school, from fashion and Industrial Design School and also attended, graduated from architecture degree, bachelor degree,” she testified under oath.
As was revealed in July after Trump’s plagiarism scandal, that isn’t an accurate account of Trump’s educational background. She does not have an architecture degree, nor did she graduate with a bachelor’s degree.
That’s all I have for you today. What new horrors will Tuesday bring? Please post your thoughts and links in the comment thread below.