Plus: Biden's Putin "gaffe"
Lowry has flipped sides on the issue of Trump so many times I have lost count. But I agree with Mingo below. In for a penny, in for a pound.
It's surprising a party which embraced Mr Grab-em-by-the-Pussy would shy away from another politician who goes in more for dungeons and lewd photos?
This is just a few steps further along the path the GOP has chosen to tread. Family Values are so last millennium.
Totally agree with you on the Bidens Putin “gaffe”. Never considered it could have been Biden’s take down this wall moment
Missouri, Texas and Florida. All run by crazy people who claim to be good Christians.
So it turns out the Snake Island incident was just propaganda--- the Ukrainian soldiers weren't killed. They were captured and are alive. Truth is the first casualty of war.
I remember how quickly the audio recordings of their defiance (which was in fact thrilling!) shot around social media faster than a bullet.
BUT the valorization of the Ukrainians as having died rather than surrender followed along. It should have---if it was true. Defiant as they were they did, in fact, surrender. They were not valiant warriors taken down by a vicious army. They did the RATIONAL thing when confronted with an overwhelming force. This made them no less heroic because they allowed themselves to be taken as POWs.
I follow the news pretty closely but I never caught up to the reality of what happened on Snake Island until today while listening to "On the Media" on public radio. I have found the NYT report (which I just missed apparently) and a few other media clarifications of the events but no where near the blizzard of stories that accompanied initial reports of the incident.
All of which leads me to wonder how much of the media coverage of the war is factual and how much is just cheerleading. I suppose it doesn't matter since the righteousness of Ukraine's cause is self evident.
Nevertheless I expect more probity from the media and a greater willingness to admit when they get it wrong.
"victim of a vast conspiracy involving Senate GOP leader Mitch McConnell"
Everything. I do mean everything is a vast conspiracy in MAGA world. Hangnails. Annual seeds that fail to germinate. Mint flavored toothpaste. Siamese cats. You name it and if MAGA feels so unfairly picked on or foaming-at-the-mouth angry contrarian one day [actually it's 24/7/365], then its time for another conspiracy. I'm telling you, there is a debilitating mass mental illness in this US of A. For how many? You want a number?
About 40 percent of total population. You know. MAGA.
Andrew Ordover has got it just right.
As a center left Democrat, I believe that a part of wisdom is knowing and accepting that you cannot have everything you want.
Compromise is truly the only way forward.
And, I think The Bulwark is helping lead the charge.
You can be on Trump's good side by being anti-anti-Trump without being specifically PRO-Trump in name, all you have to do is treat his enemies badly, dodge questions about him publicly, and promote his agenda without using his name specifically.
Trump grew up swimming in a world of mobsters where he tried to pretend he was one. He knows how to operate on stochastic messaging and putting signals into the water without telling you what he wants you to do one-on-one on record. Just operate in that world and you're speaking his language and he'll throw you a nomination. It really is that simple for GOP politicians to get his support folks. Think like a wannabe mobster and you have his language.
Trump has been very successful at persuading his fans that the people who hate him hate them too, and that he is all that stands between his people and their enemies.
Don't underestimate Putin's ability to exploit the same dynamic. Which Biden just endorsed before his handlers walked it back.
It's all very well for Westerners to indulge themselves (again) with fantasies of the End of History in Russia while aggravating the latter's centuries old inferiority-induced paranoia, but as long as they aren't willing to put their missiles where their mouths are (for obvious reasons) it might behoove them to show rhetorical restraint.
I am wondering whether Biden isn't using Trump's own rhetorical trick (possibly inadvertently), of saying the thing, then walking it back juuuuust enough for plausible deniability, but now it's out there. Carol S. gives the example of his rhetoric on Jan. 6. I don't know if it was the right thing to do, but I'm also not completely sure it was all bad.
Well, you know... Biden said the quiet part out loud. It was impolitic so "clarified." But we all know what he truly meant and I bet most of the world agrees.
For all those who have their undies in a bundle over Biden's comment about Putin must enjoy watching people being killed and cities being flattened. I'm not sure it was a "gaffe" but our Presidents honest feeling and if so good for him. What Putin is doing is so unnecessary but for whatever reason he continues. Thank heavens his army is poorly trained or Ukraine might already belong to Russia. I grew up during WWII so I've seen this before, it wasn't pleasant then and it's less so now.
Biden's 'gaffe' and the turmoil around it are an example of the adage : Do what you want and ask for forgiveness afterwards. Generally speaking, I am against that mode of operating in the world as it opens up numerous amoral pandora boxes (affairs, political smearing, bad behaviour in general) but in this case, I think they were right to walk his statement back, if only to keep the heat on the world stage at a simmer rather than a roiling boil. But...as Tom Nichols said in his recent Atlantic article, he speaks from his heart and for the heart of many sentient, feeling persons. Maybe a seed will be planted from these comments that will grow into some swell of resistance, internally. We can't predict the unfolding of events but diplomatic utterances leave much wanting. An honest, perhaps impolitic statement, from Biden is what good and decent people everywhere want to say on the world stage. The White House shouldn't grovel. Trump said nefarious garbage like this everyday but only to support evil in the world. Gaffes can be windows into a soul at work. In this case, I think it was. For good.
So Rich Lowry has finally decided another two years of Trump dominating the news cycle is too much. He's finally had it riding the bipolar roller coaster that some of us got off before it left the gate. He's decided it's time to move on. I find it laughable that he mentions the TFG ( that fat guy, that fucking guy) had some policies that were good. What policies? I got nothing from his tax cut but an extra $20.00 in my paycheck every other week. He spent seven months of his first term trying to take away people's healthcare. Remember repeal and replace? Only it was all repeal and no replace. Rich instead offers alternatives to TFG such as Josh Hawley, Ron DeDantis or Ted Cruz, three loathsome individuals. Hey Rich, you bought the ticket, you get to go on the ride.
I wish we lived in a world where Andrew Ordover's suggestions above would be employed, but that world no longer exists. After having lived through Tom Delay's terrible hold on Congress, I figured these new Pelosi/Reid characters would usher in civility again. Wrong. They were as divisive and toxic as Delay or anyone else. Now all our politics are based on grievances and recriminations. I see no way out of it unfortunately
"Trump's words are so vague, general, and empty that his supporters can map whatever they want to see onto him." -- He has also stated starkly opposing views on the same issue within a short span of time, so Trumpers can quote the statement that serves their purposes and ignore the others. A striking example is how they zeroed in on the word "peacefully" in his 1/6 rant and ignored his many uses of the word "fight" in the very same speech.
The Trumpist hall pass is one of the more disturbing aspects of the Trump era. More bizarre is the notion that someone who's a poor example of personal ethics, and lacking any discernible piety, was the best possible defender of conservative religious and moral values in the national culture. It's like openly declaring "We love hypocrisy!"
Then there was the "Let Trump be Trump" moral exceptionalism. That phrase was always a way of saying it was unfair to hold him to any standard outside himself -- i.e. an endorsement of his solipsistic ethical understanding.
Once you've taken the position that Trump is so special he shouldn't be held to normal standards of ethics, and that only he can save America's religious and moral character, it follows that anyone who tries to hold him morally accountable is an agent of corruption -- part of the eeevil Deep State.
Then, some people discovered that the Trumpian moral exceptionalism that began is pretty much exclusive to Trump himself could be stretched out into a permission structure for anyone who praises Trump -- you know, all the good Christians who want to save America from satanic forces. And then it turns into the ethos of a whole party.