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Monday, July 16, 2018

OTP 2018 July 16: Why Does President Trump Balk At Attending Baseball Games?

As the World Cup finale plays in my living room, it’s seems like the right time to reflect on “America’s pastime” – baseball – and its curious standing these days.

The sport gets it close-up on Tuesday night, when the Major-League All-Star Game is played in the nation’s capital. President Trump is not expected to be attendance, though he easily could zip over to the festivities upon his return from his meeting with Vladimir Putin.

Dating back to William Howard Taft in 1910, every president has done the season’s ceremonial first pitch at least once. So far, Trump’s twice declined to participate in that ritual.

(As always, views expressed in the article lede and comments are the views of the individual commenters and the submitter of the article and do not represent the views of Baseball Think Factory or its owner.)

Mellow Mouse, Benevolent Space Tyrant Posted: July 16, 2018 at 10:24 AM | 1502 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: off topic, politics

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   1101. spycake Posted: July 20, 2018 at 07:49 AM (#5712998)
Flop
   1102. Mellow Mouse, Benevolent Space Tyrant Posted: July 20, 2018 at 07:56 AM (#5712999)
So I see the nightly Ray-cast has given up entirely on actually defending what Trump does and says and it is now jus attack everyone else who dares not blindly follow the great leader. Makes it easier to tune out, so victory!
   1103. Zonk just has affection for alumni Posted: July 20, 2018 at 08:32 AM (#5713001)
As a general rule, when a minority diagnoses a majority with a hysterical malady, the chances are excellent the diagnosis is inverted.

If the chief diagnosers are comprised of two media personalities that used be lawyers, an unlicensed optometrist, and reality TV buffoon - the chances rise to near certainty.
   1104. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: July 20, 2018 at 08:40 AM (#5713002)

an unlicensed optometrist
I presume you mean Paul, but he is neither of those things. He is licensed and an ophthalmologist.
   1105. Mellow Mouse, Benevolent Space Tyrant Posted: July 20, 2018 at 08:42 AM (#5713003)
As a general rule, when a minority diagnoses a majority with a hysterical malady, the chances are excellent the diagnosis is inverted.


The fact that the subjective opinions "Trump is an idiot who is not qualified for the Presidency" and "Trump is acting exactly like someone under the influence of the Kremlin would act" are so widely held across the entire political spectrum makes is hard to just dismiss them out of hand without some serious hand waving.

I mean it is conceivable that neither is true, but the bulk of the objective evidence and subjective opinions point to both being true. All Ray and rest of Band Trumpkin have name calling and sundry other ad hominem.
   1106. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: July 20, 2018 at 08:58 AM (#5713005)
There are two things about TDS:

1. It can't be self-diagnosed.
2. One who has it can't diagnose it in another.

If you don't think you have TDS there are two possibilities:

1. You don't have it.
2. You do have it.

But you can never determine on your own which it is. You'll need an observer who isn't inflicted with TDS to diagnose it in you.


So, let me get this straight. I can't know whether I have it or not. I need someone who doesn't have it to diagnose it in me. But where am I to find such a person? If I have it, I can't diagnose it in others, and others can't self diagnose, they need someone not afflicted to diagnose them...so no one can ever know if they have it of not.

I can't think of a better example of nihilism. Well done.
   1107. Mellow Mouse, Benevolent Space Tyrant Posted: July 20, 2018 at 09:19 AM (#5713008)
so no one can ever know if they have it of not


Except Ray. Ray knows. Ray always knows.
   1108. SouthSideRyan Posted: July 20, 2018 at 09:26 AM (#5713009)
So, let me get this straight. I can't know whether I have it or not. I need someone who doesn't have it to diagnose it in me. But where am I to find such a person?


I don’t know is Beetle Bailey still alive?
   1109. The Interdimensional Council of Rickey!'s Posted: July 20, 2018 at 09:34 AM (#5713010)
But where am I to find such a person?


You must ask an Authority Figure Who Knows. Like Ray. If you don't respect and abide by the Authority Figure's Judgement, it's part of your TDS.
   1110. Zonk just has affection for alumni Posted: July 20, 2018 at 09:37 AM (#5713011)
It's an epidemic!

So... WH folks were so concerned DNI Dan Coats was just going to up and quit in the immediate aftermath of Help Stinky that they virtually begged Trump to specifically praise Coats in his CBS interview and made sure to highlight the praise to Coats.

Then yesterday happened... and Coats got to find out on stage via a question that Putin was coming to dinner, in that now infamous little surreal show.

But yes, yes... tell me more about who the deranged people are.
   1111. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: July 20, 2018 at 09:40 AM (#5713012)

As a general rule, when a minority diagnoses a majority with a hysterical malady, the chances are excellent the diagnosis is inverted.
The old joke is:

An old man is driving down the highway when he gets a frantic call on his cell phone from his wife. "Steve, be careful!" she yells, "I saw on the news that there's a maniac driving the wrong way on the highway and causing accidents!" "Not a maniac," he responds. "Hundreds of them!"

The thing is, we know FLTB is trolling, and while I used to credit Ray as being sincere, I'm finding it harder and harder to believe that he doesn't know exactly what he's doing.
   1112. Count Vorror Rairol Mencoon (CoB) Posted: July 20, 2018 at 09:47 AM (#5713018)
The thing is, we know FLTB is trolling, and while I used to credit Ray as being sincere, I'm finding it harder and harder to believe that he doesn't know exactly what he's doing.


Well, to paraphrase the estimable Dr. Peter Venkman, "Ray's gone bye-bye, David" ...

He's well into performance art territory now.
   1113. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: July 20, 2018 at 09:53 AM (#5713022)
   1114. Traderdave Posted: July 20, 2018 at 09:53 AM (#5713023)
   1115. The Interdimensional Council of Rickey!'s Posted: July 20, 2018 at 10:07 AM (#5713026)
It still amazes me that anyone thought this guy was an economic genius


Trump supporters are idiots. How is this not clear by now?
   1116. -- Posted: July 20, 2018 at 10:09 AM (#5713027)
Hardcore TDS is a “majority” position.

Ok, then.

Ray’s “it can’t be self-diagnosed” hypothesis is looking quite prescient indeed.
   1117. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: July 20, 2018 at 10:17 AM (#5713031)
It still amazes me that anyone thought this guy was an economic genius


Didn't he previously claim that the stock market gains wiped out the national debt?
   1118. spycake Posted: July 20, 2018 at 10:20 AM (#5713032)
The thing is, we know FLTB is trolling, and while I used to credit Ray as being sincere, I'm finding it harder and harder to believe that he doesn't know exactly what he's doing.

Sincere trolling?
   1119. dlf Posted: July 20, 2018 at 10:39 AM (#5713037)
It still amazes me that anyone thought this guy was an economic genius


Picking a fight with the Fed, and its Chair that he just nominated, seems ... shall we say ... a tad deranged.

   1120. Zonk just has affection for alumni Posted: July 20, 2018 at 10:47 AM (#5713040)
Awesome.
It was Coats fault he had to play Bud Abbott on stage... at (what was and has been for a while) a rather routine forum that the DHS Secretary and FBI Director also attended...

“If you’re going to give a speech at Aspen, call the national security adviser. Check in with the White House,” Schlapp told NBC’s Peter Alexander. “He wasn’t prepped for the interview. It is his fault…The Cabinet has an obligation to stay hooked up with the President.”
   1121. Count Vorror Rairol Mencoon (CoB) Posted: July 20, 2018 at 10:49 AM (#5713043)
“If you’re going to give a speech at Aspen, call the national security adviser. Check in with the White House,” Schlapp told NBC’s Peter Alexander. “He wasn’t prepped for the interview. It is his fault…The Cabinet has an obligation to stay hooked up with the President.”


It's lackeys, toadies and lickspittles ... all the way down.
   1122. DavidFoss Posted: July 20, 2018 at 10:51 AM (#5713044)
Picking a fight with the Fed, and its Chair that he just nominated, seems ... shall we say ... a tad deranged.

His complaint doesn't even make sense. Trump complained that Yellen *wouldn't* raise rates, now he's complaining that her successor *is* raising rates, further along in the business cycle, too.

Trump is just in campaign mode as usual. He wants to signal to his base that he's not happy about the slower economy that will result from higher rates. I don't think he particularly knows or cares *why* the Fed doing what it is doing. Everything is short-term with Trump. Now that he is President, he wants to maximize the next economic report.
   1123. Zonk just has affection for alumni Posted: July 20, 2018 at 10:53 AM (#5713045)
Meanwhile, Trump is now preparing to add tariffs on top of whatever is left from China... which ain't a lot.

Wheeeeeeee!

The singularity of stupid is collapsing... is the big bang imminent?
   1124. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: July 20, 2018 at 10:55 AM (#5713046)
Remember hippies - this is all your fault for being so shrill.
   1125. Zonk just has affection for alumni Posted: July 20, 2018 at 11:00 AM (#5713048)
An epidemic, I tells ya!


Americans are aware of the developments of the Helsinki Summit between President Trump and Russian President Putin: 74% of the public has seen, heard, or read about it. Both Democrats (82%) and Republicans (77%) are closely watching, while Independents (70%) are slightly less interested in following the news.

Half (49%) of Americans agree with former intelligence officials’ assessments that President Trump acted “treasonous” during the Helsinki summit, and just a quarter (27%) disagree. There are sharp partisan divisions here; 80% of Democrats agree, along with 43% of Independents, and one in five (21%) Republicans.


Maybe it's not a syndrome but an evolution of the species happening in previously unimaginable rapidity?
   1126. Zonk just has affection for alumni Posted: July 20, 2018 at 11:04 AM (#5713050)
More contagion...

When I wrote, back in February, that I was skeptical that President Donald Trump would ever be proved to have secretly colluded with Russia to sway the 2016 election in his favor, I mistyped.

What I meant to write was that I wasn’t skeptical.
   1127. The Interdimensional Council of Rickey!'s Posted: July 20, 2018 at 11:05 AM (#5713051)
Again, the only people who continue to be willing to identify as 'Republican' are Trumpholsters.
   1128. perros Posted: July 20, 2018 at 11:10 AM (#5713054)
Dershowitz will tell you why he does what he does, because like his unofficial client in the White House, he can never stop talking about himself.

He says he swims against the tide of popular opinion despite his mother chiding him to be nicer to powerful people... when time and again he seeks to be nice to powerful people.

In an article I can't link (Boston Globe), Dershowitz reveals his friendship with Bibi Netanyahu and his wish to be involved in negotiating a two-state solution for Israel.

Wonder if he's friends with the Kushners as well...

So if Alan is a social pariah in the Vineyard by degrading himself as a Fox Insider and tireless defender of Trump, there's a big potential payoff down the road. Even if worst comes to worst, he's a shoe-in for the President's legal defense against high crimes and misdemeanors.
   1129. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: July 20, 2018 at 11:13 AM (#5713059)
You Trumpholsters didn’t care about torturing “enemy combatants” and you won’t care about using the same tactics on children , who are just enemy combatants for the beaner invasion of America. Maybe someday they’ll use these tactics on you and yours, and then it will be my turn not to care.
   1130. Kiko Sakata Posted: July 20, 2018 at 11:14 AM (#5713060)
Half (49%) of Americans agree with former intelligence officials’ assessments that President Trump acted “treasonous” during the Helsinki summit


I downloaded the actual questions to confirm, the question explicitly includes the word "treasonous": "President Trump's behavior towards Russian President Putin has been described by former members of the U.S. Intelligence Community as 'treasonous.' Do you agree or disagree with that assessment?"

Strongly agree - 34%
Somewhat agree - 14%
Neither agree nor disagree - 12%
Somewhat disagree - 10%
Strongly disagree - 17%

That's stunning. Half of all Americans think that Trump's behavior was treasonous and twice as many strongly agree as strongly disagree. Look, I hate Donald Trump as much as the next guy and think his Helsinki press conference was disgraceful, but even I think "treasonous" is probably a bridge too far. Are there any historical precedents for something like this: one-third to one-half of the population basically think the President of the United States is a traitor?
   1131. GordonShumway Posted: July 20, 2018 at 11:18 AM (#5713064)
Good morning legal scholars and super geniuses,

So, I read the following article this morning, that stated that Trump is planning to impose tariffs on $500 billion worth of Chinese imports, after having imposed tariffs on $34 billion of Chinese imports earlier this year.

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-07-20/trump-says-he-s-ready-to-go-with-tariffs-on-all-china-imports

The impression I got was that the president has very broad discretion to impose tariffs on other countries, without needing the approval of Congress. Kindly correct me if I am wrong here.

As we know, Trump's primary issue both as candidate and president has been illegal immigration, and more specifically the inflow of illegal aliens from the US-Mexico border. Despite his many promises to have a wall built on said border, he doesn't have enough votes in Congress to approve the funding of such a wall.

Setting aside any moral concerns for now, are there any real legal restrictions preventing Trump from imposing tariffs on imports from Mexico, and conditioning the lowering or removal of such tariffs on Mexico's agreement to police the border against illegal entry into the US?
   1132. -- Posted: July 20, 2018 at 11:20 AM (#5713065)
They don’t think he’s a traitor because social media has denuded words like “treasonous” of any real meaning, and therefore cut the connection between treason and traitor. Plus of course roughly 30% of the country has late-stage TDS.
   1133. perros Posted: July 20, 2018 at 11:20 AM (#5713066)
What do you think would have happened if the 9/11 hijackers had been primarily Russian, or more than 200 young Russians had been arrested as intellence agents? With all the focus on Russia, we can safely ignore the activities of our allies in the Middle East who have developed increasingly close ties to the Public Enemy Number One of American Democracy.

We're not losing our grip on hegemony with Trump, but completing a process started when we became The World's Only Superpower, and everybody else decided to take aim.

Probably Putin's design all along.
   1134. Zonk just has affection for alumni Posted: July 20, 2018 at 11:22 AM (#5713067)
That's stunning. Half of all Americans think that Trump's behavior was treasonous and twice as many strongly agree as strongly disagree. Look, I hate Donald Trump as much as the next guy and think his Helsinki press conference was disgraceful, but even I think "treasonous" is probably a bridge too far. Are there any historical precedents for something like this: one-third to one-half of the population basically think the President of the United States is a traitor?


We don't have polls - but I'm betting in the post-Washington (I'm thinking maybe up through Madison or so) days when there was a decidedly acrimonious split between hawkish factions around French/British relations and the extent to which the fledgling US ought to flex its muscle and throw off European hegemony, you might find something close.

The Jackson-Adams quarrels a decade later got equally acrimonious, including relatively significant claims from the Jacksonians that JQA was pimping American virgins to the Russian Tsar.

   1135. stig-tossled, hornswoggled gef the typing mongoose Posted: July 20, 2018 at 11:24 AM (#5713069)
Are there any historical precedents for something like this: one-third to one-half of the population basically think the President of the United States is a traitor?


I'm not sure of all the adjectives & definitions they used, but a goodly portion of residents in the soon-to-secede states seem not to have thought particularly highly of Lincoln after his first election; ditto for the so-called Copperheads in the North. (For my Constitutional History course, or whatever it was called, in grad school I delved into the old Congressional Records U& Globes in the law library to read Clement Vallandigham's addresses. Fascinating stuff. The man was not much for mincing words.)
   1136. perros Posted: July 20, 2018 at 11:26 AM (#5713072)
Are there any historical precedents for something like this: one-third to one-half of the population basically think the President of the United States is a traitor?


Americans have always been influenced by propaganda, but never so blatantly or to such great effect.

Dumb Democrats and even Dumber Republicans. No wonder Putin can undermine our entire country with a few Facebook ads and a redhead.
   1137. Zonk just has affection for alumni Posted: July 20, 2018 at 11:28 AM (#5713073)
Plus of course roughly 30% of the country has late-stage TDS.


Indeed.

This would be the unbreakable Trump "base" that is going to stick with him no matter what.

I like to think (hope?) the actual number is more like 20-25%, but maybe you're right... it could be ultimately a floor closer to 30%.
   1138. Kiko Sakata Posted: July 20, 2018 at 11:28 AM (#5713074)
I'm not sure of all the adjectives & definitions they used, but a goodly portion of residents in the soon-to-secede states seem not to have thought particularly highly of Lincoln after his first election


Fair enough. This one is obviously comparable (probably worse), of course. There is a tendency in this country to think that America is the most divided it's ever been, ignoring, of course, that history includes an actual Civil War, not to mention things like one Congressman caning another and the sitting Vice President killing a former Secretary of the Treasury in a duel.
   1139. Mellow Mouse, Benevolent Space Tyrant Posted: July 20, 2018 at 11:30 AM (#5713077)
What do you think would have happened if the 9/11 hijackers had been primarily Russian...


We still would have invaded Iraq.
   1140. DavidFoss Posted: July 20, 2018 at 11:31 AM (#5713078)
but even I think "treasonous" is probably a bridge too far.

They had legal experts on the TV discussing this last night. The rhetoric doesn't fit here since we are not at war with Russia. The charge of treason is used almost exclusively during wartime.

Caveat: I am not a lawyer. Many people here are lawyers. Please chime in and correct/clarify.

Exaggerated rhetoric doesn't excuse Trump, of course. :-)
   1141. Zonk just has affection for alumni Posted: July 20, 2018 at 11:31 AM (#5713079)
I'm not sure of all the adjectives & definitions they used, but a goodly portion of residents in the soon-to-secede states seem not to have thought particularly highly of Lincoln after his first election; ditto for the so-called Copperheads in the North. (For my Constitutional History course, or whatever it was called, in grad school I delved into the old Congressional Records U& Globes in the law library to read Clement Vallandigham's addresses. Fascinating stuff.)


If the whole Trump farce ends with a postscript of Dershowitz pulling a Vallandigham stunt in court, I just might pee myself.
   1142. Kiko Sakata Posted: July 20, 2018 at 11:31 AM (#5713080)
They don’t think he’s a traitor because social media has denuded words like “treasonous” of any real meaning, and therefore cut the connection between treason and traitor.


I expected somebody to object to my transition from "treasonous" to "traitor". To me, a traitor is one who commits treason, and, like certain other crimes, most notably rape and murder, doing so once is sufficient to wear the brand forever (O.J. Simpson is a murderer; Brock Turner is a rapist; Jonathan Pollard is a traitor). That said, as I said above, I'm not yet ready to pin the "traitor" label on President Trump.
   1143. Hot Wheeling American, MS-13 Enthusiast Posted: July 20, 2018 at 11:33 AM (#5713081)
@benjysarlin:
. @joshtpm was getting into this last night, but among the strangest elements of Trump's obsession with Russia being "our friend" is there doesn't seem to be any one policy area where there's some need for a breakthrough that's both urgent and plausible.

You might say "Syria," but Trump's instinct there is to get out as fast as possible. They're not going to back a new Iran pressure campaign after we withdrew from the last one. Trump already seems to sympathize with Putin on Crimea, so not sure what the goal would be there.

Anyway this is one of many reasons why people get confused when Trump starts talking up some exciting new deal. What would a deal even encompass?
   1144. Davo and his Moose Tacos Posted: July 20, 2018 at 11:33 AM (#5713082)
Hey-oh OTPers. So who can explain why liberals are so mad about the idea of Trump inviting Putin to the White House for a summit? US Presidents meet with world leaders much more monstrous than Putin all the time (hell, Trump has already had WH meetings with Erdogan and Netanyahu.)

I’ll hang up and take your answer off the air.
   1145. zenbitz Posted: July 20, 2018 at 11:34 AM (#5713083)
Ray, let me put it another way - just because people are emotional doesn't mean they are wrong.

For example, people have have strong negative emotional reactions to pedophilia.
   1146. Hot Wheeling American, MS-13 Enthusiast Posted: July 20, 2018 at 11:34 AM (#5713084)
@jon_rauch:
New from @pewresearch: "73% of Republicans and Republican-leaning independents say increased tariffs between the U.S. and its trading partners will be a good thing for the country." Memo to free-market Republicans: your party is gone, period.
   1147. Esmailyn Gonzalez Sr. Posted: July 20, 2018 at 11:35 AM (#5713085)
No wonder Putin can undermine our entire country with a few Facebook ads and a redhead.

Who among us has not been unduly influenced by a redhead at some point in their life?
   1148. Mellow Mouse, Benevolent Space Tyrant Posted: July 20, 2018 at 11:36 AM (#5713086)
but even I think "treasonous" is probably a bridge too far.


Treasonous is way too far for normal conversation, it is right in line with standard political hyperbole -- see verbiage hurled at Obama, Bush, Clinton ...
   1149. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: July 20, 2018 at 11:36 AM (#5713087)
If you still buy books, Caliban Book Shop in Pittsburgh is one of the best used book shops in the country, much better (for instance) than the much-better known Strand in New York. It's a fraction of Strand's size, but the quality of the selection is better and the prices are a lot lower.


You hear the news about Caliban this morning? I'm really disappointed.
   1150. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: July 20, 2018 at 11:40 AM (#5713089)

That's stunning. Half of all Americans think that Trump's behavior was treasonous and twice as many strongly agree as strongly disagree. Look, I hate Donald Trump as much as the next guy and think his Helsinki press conference was disgraceful, but even I think "treasonous" is probably a bridge too far.
I think it's rather a big stretch to say that the press conference itself was treasonous. (Unpatriotic, sure. But not treasonous.) Rather, his dealings with Russia verge on treasonous, and the press conference was an exemplar.
Are there any historical precedents for something like this: one-third to one-half of the population basically think the President of the United States is a traitor?
I don't think there are any historical precedents for anything Trump-related.
   1151. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: July 20, 2018 at 11:41 AM (#5713090)
That's stunning. Half of all Americans think that Trump's behavior was treasonous and twice as many strongly agree as strongly disagree. Look, I hate Donald Trump as much as the next guy and think his Helsinki press conference was disgraceful, but even I think "treasonous" is probably a bridge too far. Are there any historical precedents for something like this: one-third to one-half of the population basically think the President of the United States is a traitor?

Webste's legal definition of treason seems pretty clearcut:
the offense of attempting to overthrow the government of one's country or of assisting its enemies in war; specifically : the act of levying war against the United States or adhering to or giving aid and comfort to its enemies by one who owes it allegiance

Since we're not in a state of declared war with Russia, then it's hard to say Trump's engaged in treason. But then by that standard it'd be hard to apply "treason" to anyone after the end of World War II.

And if you include Military engagements authorized by Congress or by the UN and funded by Congress, still no luck, since the last time either of those applied to Russia ended with the Korean armistice of 1953.

But using a less formal standard, it's clear that Putin's Russia is our enemy, even if Trump wants to claim otherwise. And by that standard, it's hard to deny that by his performance in Helsinki**, Trump has given "aid and comfort" to our enemy.

So while Trump may not be a traitor by any reasonable legal definition, if he talks like Putin's parrot and squawks like Putin's parrot, I'm not sure what else you could call him.

** Which is but the latest of many examples
   1152. Zonk just has affection for alumni Posted: July 20, 2018 at 11:44 AM (#5713094)
Hey-oh OTPers. So who can explain why liberals are so mad about the idea of Trump inviting Putin to the White House for a summit? US Presidents meet with world leaders much more monstrous than Putin all the time (hell, Trump has already had WH meetings with Erdogan and Netanyahu.)


How about we start with the idea that Russia keeps claiming Putin and Trump reached all these great agreements in the first summit and nearly a week later, neither the US public nor even his own State and Intel folks seem to have the faintest clue of what those agreements are?

You folks keep trying to pretend the lunacy and ridiculousness - or possibly worse - of Trump doesn't exist as a prime factor when it is a key part of the equation.

This is not a "US President" in any kind of usual or even normal sense. It is Donald Trump. It is a Donald Trump who increasingly turns skeptics into suspectors.

Get rid of Trump - even for a Pence, and my concerns over Pence-Putin 'summits' are not even in the same universe.

It's more about Trump than it is Russia.

   1153. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: July 20, 2018 at 11:46 AM (#5713095)
Setting aside any moral concerns for now, are there any real legal restrictions preventing Trump from imposing tariffs on imports from Mexico, and conditioning the lowering or removal of such tariffs on Mexico's agreement to police the border against illegal entry into the US?

Well, he has already imposed tariffs on Mexican steel (as well as steel from other countries). This article is pretty helpful in terms of the President's broad powers to implement tariffs. NAFTA limits the goods on which Trump could do so, but the US law implementing NAFTA gives him fairly broad discretion -- so a violation of NAFTA in this regard would probably be an international dispute and not a violation of US law, I believe.
   1154. OCF Posted: July 20, 2018 at 11:50 AM (#5713097)
(hell, Trump has already had WH meetings with Erdogan and Netanyahu.)

And he's made clear that he admires them (and Duterte, and even Kim) for "strength" in ways that he does not admire Merkel, Macron, May, Trudeau, et al.
   1155. perros Posted: July 20, 2018 at 11:51 AM (#5713098)
Right, and on average German Jews were better off between 1876 and 1945 than they were from 1806 and 1876. We don't want to let a flukish 12 year blip throw a monkey wrench into such a precise mathematical judgement. You have to throw out these small sample sizes and concentrate of The Big Picture.


Everybody dies to make way for human progress. Graveyards and cemeteries are quickly going out of style as the majority of Americans now prefer to be turned into ash. More importantly, why let all that valuable real estate go to waste?
   1156. The Interdimensional Council of Rickey!'s Posted: July 20, 2018 at 11:51 AM (#5713099)
The fact that the sitting "president's" supporters literally have to rules-lawyer their way out of him being guilty of treason outright...
   1157. The Interdimensional Council of Rickey!'s Posted: July 20, 2018 at 11:53 AM (#5713100)
How about we start with the idea that Russia keeps claiming Putin and Trump reached all these great agreements in the first summit and nearly a week later, neither the US public nor even his own State and Intel folks seem to have the faintest clue of what those agreements are?


When Vlad Putin makes an "agreement," Russia has made an agreement. Vlad is the Russian state.

When Erdogan makes an "agreement," Turkey has made an agreement. Erdogan is the Russian state.

Etc. Et al. Trump wants to be the dictator of America. He always has wanted as much.
   1158. perros Posted: July 20, 2018 at 11:54 AM (#5713101)
Who among us has not been unduly influenced by a redhead at some point in their life?


But with a gun fetish?
   1159. perros Posted: July 20, 2018 at 11:57 AM (#5713102)
It's more about Trump than it is Russia.


Yes, Listen to the Helsinki presser again. The utter narcissism is jaw dropping. I doubt there are any agreements, it's merely an empty brag that can't be falsified.
   1160. greenback slays lewks Posted: July 20, 2018 at 12:01 PM (#5713103)
New from @pewresearch: "73% of Republicans and Republican-leaning independents say increased tariffs between the U.S. and its trading partners will be a good thing for the country." Memo to free-market Republicans: your party is gone, period.

Frank Luntz is going to work hard to get somebody to brand tariffs as "Import Taxes."
   1161. perros Posted: July 20, 2018 at 12:07 PM (#5713105)
Holy smokes what happened to the “Imperial Hubris” dude?


Some of the IC are good people, I presume. But institutionally (and you can include the FBI), they are a bunch of white nationalists, high breeding and ivy league education the polish that generally keeps them from coming off like Kluxers and Nazis.

Now they can say some highly informed and even intelligent things, but don't be fooled. These secret police are not democrats in any way, shape, or form.
   1162. DavidFoss Posted: July 20, 2018 at 12:08 PM (#5713106)
Hey-oh OTPers. So who can explain why liberals are so mad about the idea of Trump inviting Putin to the White House for a summit? US Presidents meet with world leaders much more monstrous than Putin all the time (hell, Trump has already had WH meetings with Erdogan and Netanyahu.)

Do you remember 3-4 days ago? If Trump was a tough negotiator and master of diplomacy, he could talk to Putin every day and we would all trust that the public pleasantries were being backed up by hard bargaining behind the scenes.

Instead we get a crazy press conference and a changing story the next day. No one knew what the purpose of the meeting was beforehand. No one was allowed in the meeting help (or at least be a witness). Afterwards, all we hear is that agreements have supposedly been made that no one knows about. The only thing we hear is that we're going to do it again! All against he backdrop of the hacking indictments and nerve agent poisonings.

Why is this a liberal thing? Didn't a bunch of conservative politicians think this was all very strange? Or has the news cycle flipped and we're just going to consider the whole thing to be another instance of 'owning the libs'.
   1163. Jay Z Posted: July 20, 2018 at 12:12 PM (#5713107)
Hey-oh OTPers. So who can explain why liberals are so mad about the idea of Trump inviting Putin to the White House for a summit? US Presidents meet with world leaders much more monstrous than Putin all the time (hell, Trump has already had WH meetings with Erdogan and Netanyahu.)

I’ll hang up and take your answer off the air.


It's not just that he's meeting with Putin, it's that he favors Putin over any other world leader.
   1164. Zonk just has affection for alumni Posted: July 20, 2018 at 12:15 PM (#5713108)
And he's made clear that he admires them (and Duterte, and even Kim) for "strength" in ways that he does not admire Merkel, Macron, May, Trudeau, et al.


Indeed - though, nowhere near the lengthy, sustained, and universally consistent extent with Putin. It's not even close. Setting the ridiculous gift of prestige he gave Kim (and still NK is stalling on something as simple as returning US remains. Still. As of yesterday. Never mind the alleged denuking.), at least (?) there was the "rocket man" precursor.

Yes, Listen to the Helsinki presser again. The utter narcissism is jaw dropping.


Honestly, that is rapidly turning out to be the best case.

Adding to the above...

I doubt Trump has even mentioned Duterte beyond the leadup and moment of his trip to the Philippines. So OK, his vanity + his love of strong authoritarians fits. Bog standard Trumpism.

Kim? Well, he was little rocket man - threatened with fire and fury - before he was a funny guy who loves his people. OK, Trump's well-trod china shop bull negotiating "tactics" fit. Stupid, but expected.

Putin just stands completely alone as NOT really fitting... Even if one just accepts "Trump as Trump", something is just too weird.

There is no truculence-praise cycle.

The problem with Trump-Putin is actually that he is - frankly - too consistent.... and that just does not make sense.
   1165. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: July 20, 2018 at 12:16 PM (#5713109)
If you still buy books, Caliban Book Shop in Pittsburgh is one of the best used book shops in the country, much better (for instance) than the much-better known Strand in New York. It's a fraction of Strand's size, but the quality of the selection is better and the prices are a lot lower.

You hear the news about Caliban this morning? I'm really disappointed.


Big surprise that the recommendation came from Andy the scofflaw.

Bigger thanks to Vlad for showing me around Pittsburgh yesterday evening. If any of you chumps are ever in the city and need a local guide who will take you to a great burger and pierogi place followed by a lengthy stroll of several miles to see the remaining home plate from Forbes Field and the TV station where they filmed Mr Rogers Neighborhood, he's your man. Thanks dude!
   1166. Zonk just has affection for alumni Posted: July 20, 2018 at 12:21 PM (#5713113)
New from @pewresearch: "73% of Republicans and Republican-leaning independents say increased tariffs between the U.S. and its trading partners will be a good thing for the country." Memo to free-market Republicans: your party is gone, period.


These are 2017 numbers - so I'm not sure what extent the additional sanctions would matter - but it's just another area where something doesn't make sense.

Russia is not - and has never really been - a very important US trading partner. However - just using Trump's frame and accepting it the way Trump sees it - proportionally, the US trade imbalance with Russia is among the most imbalanced of all the top 30. Doesn't matter much because the overall number is so low, but still.

The US doesn't particularly need Russian natural resources and Russia doesn't seem particularly interested in US exports. Some kind of bilateral best buddies trading status with Russia would basically matter to no one except US-based energy corps who would be eager to get involving in Russian energy extraction perhaps certain minerals.

   1167. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: July 20, 2018 at 12:23 PM (#5713117)
My pleasure! I had a good time as well - thanks for agreeing to get together.

I can confirm for the board that YR is a man of taste and sophistication, as well as an interesting dinner companion, and that he didn't attempt even once to kill me and stuff my corpse into the trunk of a car.
   1168. zenbitz Posted: July 20, 2018 at 12:26 PM (#5713121)
I don't think there are any historical precedents for anything Trump-related.


Caligula didn't *actually* make his horse a Consul (according to wikipedia), but a porn star was elected to Italy's parliament.
   1169. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: July 20, 2018 at 12:28 PM (#5713122)
I can confirm for the board that YR is a man of taste and sophistication, as well as an interesting dinner companion, and that he didn't attempt even once to kill me and stuff my corpse into the trunk of a car.


I didn't drive.
   1170. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: July 20, 2018 at 12:28 PM (#5713123)
a porn star was elected to Italy's parliament


Hey, Cicciolina! I remember her.
   1171. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: July 20, 2018 at 12:29 PM (#5713124)
Hey-oh OTPers. So who can explain why liberals are so mad about the idea of Trump inviting Putin to the White House for a summit? US Presidents meet with world leaders much more monstrous than Putin all the time (hell, Trump has already had WH meetings with Erdogan and Netanyahu.)

I’ll hang up and take your answer off the air.
Hey, OTPers. We've always had a few Chomsky-style nuts here, from Retardo to Perros, but I don't remember Davo's being like this until the last week or so. Is this something new? Or did I just somehow block him from my mind?
   1172. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: July 20, 2018 at 12:29 PM (#5713125)
I didn't drive.


Didn't have to be your car. You're adaptable!
   1173. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: July 20, 2018 at 12:29 PM (#5713126)
If you still buy books, Caliban Book Shop in Pittsburgh is one of the best used book shops in the country, much better (for instance) than the much-better known Strand in New York. It's a fraction of Strand's size, but the quality of the selection is better and the prices are a lot lower.

You hear the news about Caliban this morning? I'm really disappointed.


When I saw your link and read the article, I called a good friend of mine who's a former head of the ABAA and a longtime friend of the Caliban owner. Bottom line is that the case against him isn't quite as clearcut as the DA's office is trying to make it out to be, but there's still enough tangible evidence behind the charge to make it tough to believe that he was solely an unwitting victim. All book dealers have to deal with thieves and fences who make up all kinds of stories about where their books come from, and often they're quite good at their "trade". But even those who can pull the wool over a dealer's eyes once or twice eventually wind up giving their game away, and the fact that the owner had a "business" relationship with the library employee that went on for many years is in itself pretty damning evidence.

But thanks (Vlad) for posting the link, and obviously I'm going to follow the story as it further develops. I don't really know the owner personally, but I had many dealings with his shop over the years, and it always struck me as one of the best general used book shops in the country. The whole thing just makes me sick at heart.
   1174. GordonShumway Posted: July 20, 2018 at 12:31 PM (#5713128)
1153: Thanks Dave!
   1175. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: July 20, 2018 at 12:34 PM (#5713129)
Bullshit Andy, you were trying to get me pinched. I ain't got time for that, I'm on probation!
   1176. Morty Causa Posted: July 20, 2018 at 12:37 PM (#5713132)
Trump is a narcissist on a l'état, c'est moi scale. He simply cannot transcend self.

Let's not quibble about what's treasonous or no. Leaders of states do not act like he acts. They do not take the side of the opposition in a public forum, time after time. This is elementary statesmanship. But, for Trump it's all and only about him. He'll sell out his country, just as he's sold out workers, partners, wives. He's a textbook sociopath. He's pathological. And what's worse is that his pathology is contagious.
   1177. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: July 20, 2018 at 12:39 PM (#5713134)
But thanks for posting the link, and obviously I'm going to follow the story as it further develops. I don't really know the owner personally, but I had many dealings with his shop over the years, and it always struck me as one of the best general used book shops in the country. The whole thing just makes me sick at heart.


That's how I feel, too. I've killed many an afternoon in that shop, and bought a decent number of books there over the years, along with the occasional album. Nothing valuable enough to have been stolen goods, fortunately. But it's still a pity.
   1178. Hot Wheeling American, MS-13 Enthusiast Posted: July 20, 2018 at 12:41 PM (#5713136)
Hey, OTPers. We've always had a few Chomsky-style nuts here, from Retardo to Perros, but I don't remember Davo's being like this until the last week or so. Is this something new? Or did I just somehow block him from my mind?

The 'hang up and take your answer off the air' is suspiciously similar to the gimmick of BBTF's famous fence-sitter (but not really), Howie M. Many people are saying the two accounts are run by the same person. Now, I don't know about that, but many people are saying.
   1179. tshipman Posted: July 20, 2018 at 12:47 PM (#5713139)
The 'hang up and take your answer off the air' is suspiciously similar to the gimmick of BBTF's famous fence-sitter (but not really), Howie M. Many people are saying the two accounts are run by the same person. Now, I don't know about that, but many people are saying.


cut this out. Davo has been on the board for a long time, as a Royals fan. So has Howie, as a Mets fan. Don't let the OTP thread overwhelm everything about the person.

   1180. My name is Votto, and I love to get blotto Posted: July 20, 2018 at 12:52 PM (#5713141)
that he didn't attempt even once to kill me and stuff my corpse into the trunk of a car.


he's probably biding his time until Pittsburgh's self-driving cars ditch the human backup.
   1181. The Interdimensional Council of Rickey!'s Posted: July 20, 2018 at 01:10 PM (#5713156)
The far left elements of the BBTF community are sliding fuller and fuller into "the enemy of my enemy is Trump" territory, in keeping with their basic religious beliefs (that the Deep State is evil and must be destroyed) lining up with Team Cockholster. Perros and Davo are simply a sort of vanguard in this regard. One is unsure how this aligns with Bernie Sanders' campaign manager's name being all over the Mueller investigation documents.
   1182. Jay Z Posted: July 20, 2018 at 01:10 PM (#5713157)
Asking if Trump can commit treason is like asking if a gorilla can commit murder. It's kind of irrelevant to why you care about a gorilla.

I would be careful about going into a cage with a gorilla. 'Cause it's a wild, unpredictable, powerful animal. Also unfit to be POTUS. As is Trump.

Trump is unfit to be POTUS as he has demonstrated a million times. He should be impeached for the good of the country. He would be replaced by a different Republican. The exact details of "treason" and what you think of it when you're thinking about someone like Benedict Arnold are irrelevant.

Impeachment is thankfully a very vague process. In fact, we should be grateful that it is so. Trump can simply be sent on his way. It's there, the same party would be in power, maybe would even help Team (R) in 2018. But people here, his opposition, keep trying to parse out things legalistically. They are tragically out of step with the moment. Trump's unfit, get him out of there, move on.
   1183. tshipman Posted: July 20, 2018 at 01:19 PM (#5713159)
So this is a thing:

WASHINGTON — President Trump’s longtime lawyer, Michael D. Cohen, secretly recorded a conversation with Mr. Trump two months before the presidential election in which they discussed payments to a former Playboy model who said she had an affair with Mr. Trump, according to lawyers and others familiar with the recording.

   1184. The Interdimensional Council of Rickey!'s Posted: July 20, 2018 at 01:19 PM (#5713161)
Asking if Trump can commit treason is like asking if a gorilla can commit murder. It's kind of irrelevant to why you care about a gorilla.


It also plays directly into the authoritarian premises of Team Cockholster's basic driving desire: that (their) executive is above the law and may do anything he/they desire without consequence.
   1185. The Interdimensional Council of Rickey!'s Posted: July 20, 2018 at 01:24 PM (#5713163)
Impeachment is thankfully a very vague process. In fact, we should be grateful that it is so. Trump can simply be sent on his way. It's there, the same party would be in power, maybe would even help Team (R) in 2018. But people here, his opposition, keep trying to parse out things legalistically. They are tragically out of step with the moment. Trump's unfit, get him out of there, move on.


I'm still holding out hope* for a flipped House and Senate, impeachment of both Trump and Pence, and magically 2 years of "President Pelosi."

*not actual hope; just, that would be super fun
   1186. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: July 20, 2018 at 01:30 PM (#5713169)
But thanks for posting the link, and obviously I'm going to follow the story as it further develops. I don't really know the owner personally, but I had many dealings with his shop over the years, and it always struck me as one of the best general used book shops in the country. The whole thing just makes me sick at heart.

That's how I feel, too. I've killed many an afternoon in that shop, and bought a decent number of books there over the years, along with the occasional album. Nothing valuable enough to have been stolen goods, fortunately. But it's still a pity.


I'll say this: I've known plenty of book dealers over the years, including the most well known dealer in Washington, about whom news like this would elicit from me (or any other dealer) little more than a "Big Surprise". The owner of Caliban would never have been on that list.

I should also mention that for a long time the librarian book thief had him make out the checks to the library itself, which if you're a dealer would've meant you'd have little cause to suspect anything. The problem is that since he was usually buying several books at the same time, his check notation said only "for box of books", or "for x number of books", without listing specific titles. And another thing is that since the library didn't report the missing books until fairly recently, long after they'd been sold, that was another flag that wasn't there to alert him that the books were hot.

When I asked my friend if the books had had de-accession stamps on them, he said that they hadn't, but that aside from the Library of Congress, relatively few libraries make a habit of doing that when they're disposing of surplus material. And when the Caliban owner took these books to book fairs, he didn't try to erase or remove the library markings, which in a hothouse setting like an antiquarian book fair is a pretty good sign that he didn't think there was anything wrong with them.

None of which is likely to do the Caliban owner a whole lot of good in court, because these are the sort of things that would contribute more to a book dealer's understanding of the situation than it would mean to a DA, whose job is more to presenting all the facts in the worst possible light for a defendant. But since this isn't a court, I thought these things might be worth noting.
   1187. Davo and his Moose Tacos Posted: July 20, 2018 at 01:44 PM (#5713178)
1154-Ayyup. His support for Duterte scares the hell out of me, as theirs is the type of small-f fascism I could see coming to America. (Though I find Justin Trudeau’s support for Duterte’s death squads much more troubling, since it’s actually material, ya know.)

1171- I’ve been on this site forever but never posted in these threads. I mostly limited myself to threads about Mike Moustakas and Ned Yost.
   1188. Cleveland (need new name) fan Posted: July 20, 2018 at 01:46 PM (#5713179)
Some of the IC are good people, I presume. But institutionally (and you can include the FBI), they are a bunch of white nationalists, high breeding and ivy league education the polish that generally keeps them from coming off like Kluxers and Nazis.

Now they can say some highly informed and even intelligent things, but don't be fooled. These secret police are not democrats in any way, shape, or form.


This is just stupid. I worked with the IC for over 30 years and this is simply not true. Almost all the people are "good people". Yes they are more likely to be conservative than the general population and yes, there are some right wing nuts jobs, but they are not a bunch of white nationalists trying to destroy this country. I know exponentially more IC people than you, including multiple dozens of senior executives who actually make the decisions and this isn't even close to accurate.


Criticism of the IC is often deserved, but this kind of loony attack shows more about your mental state than anything about the IC.
   1189. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: July 20, 2018 at 01:47 PM (#5713180)
Just another day at the Trump White House....

In secret recording seized by FBI, Trump and Cohen discuss making payments for story of model who alleged affair with Trump
On Twitter, McDougal’s lawyer Carol Heller wrote that she was “learning of this in real time just like everyone else.” Peter Stris, a lawyer who negotiated McDougal’s settlement with AMI earlier this year, tweeted, “When @realDonaldTrump said we were lying, do you think he meant we WEREN’T?”

Senate Republicans drop bid to block Trump from helping Chinese telecom giant ZTE
Bowing to White House demands, Senate Republicans have backed off their attempt to reimpose U.S. sanctions on the Chinese telecommunications giant ZTE, a congressional source said Friday.

The retreat means that ZTE — a company found guilty of selling U.S. goods to Iran in violation of sanctions — will get to duck tough Commerce Department penalties that bar U.S. companies from doing business with it. Chinese officials said those penalties would effectively put ZTE out of business.

President Trump had ordered his own Commerce Department to lift the penalties, but senators wanted to reimpose them as part of a sweeping defense policy bill set to be unveiled next week. They have now agreed to language advanced by the House instead, which bars government contractors from doing business with ZTE but allows the company to continue doing business with private U.S. firms, according to a source who spoke on the condition of anonymity to speak about the internal negotiations.

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) blasted the decision Friday. The “chances that a #China controlled telecomm will not just stay in business, but do so here inside the U.S. sadly just went up,” he wrote on Twitter.


   1190. Zonk just has affection for alumni Posted: July 20, 2018 at 01:51 PM (#5713183)
OK... just for a diversion and amusement...

Does the The Office episode "Product Recall" ring a bell with people? A disgruntled employee at the paper mill puts an obscene watermark on the paper. Michael arranges a press conference to apologize to a customer. It does not go well. So he does an "apology video" that after multiple takes, devolves into him threatening to burn the building down, put an F word watermark on every sheet of paper, and issues a demand that "they" have one day to comply?

This is like a real life instance of that.

Except, rather than the video being tossed in a drawer and forgotten... Michael posts it.

If this were something someone else captured and posted - it would be like kicking someone clearly with problems and a level of mean I wouldn't bother.... but the humorous element of her posting it to her Youtube channel... the parallel is just... well... like I said... purely for Friday afternoon diversion purposes.
   1191. Jay Z Posted: July 20, 2018 at 01:51 PM (#5713184)
Another reason to get Trump out of there is a limit to the legacy of chaos. Trump is POTUS, he is going to make decisions. Some of these will have consequences decades long. Like them or not like them, I would like them to be based on some underlying philosophy. Trump's will be based on the whims of an incompetent, narcissistic, boob. It's clear that "The emperor has no clothes" is a real effect, and there is plenty of POSITIVE TDS - meaning that Trump did this, said this, it must make sense somehow because he's POTUS. It doesn't and will never make sense. It's why he needs to go ASAP.
   1192. Swoboda is freedom Posted: July 20, 2018 at 01:52 PM (#5713185)
Some of the IC are good people, I presume. But institutionally (and you can include the FBI), they are a bunch of white nationalists, high breeding and ivy league education the polish that generally keeps them from coming off like Kluxers and Nazis.

Now they can say some highly informed and even intelligent things, but don't be fooled. These secret police are not democrats in any way, shape, or form.


This is just stupid. I worked with the IC for over 30 years and this is simply not true. Almost all the people are "good people". Yes they are more likely to be conservative than the general population and yes, there are some right wing nuts jobs, but they are not a bunch of white nationalists trying to destroy this country. I know exponentially more IC people than you, including multiple dozens of senior executives who actually make the decisions and this isn't even close to accurate.


I second this. I did some work in the intelligence sector and while the people tend to be more conservative (like the military), they are not white nationalists. Most of them have spent time abroad (living and working) and a lot can speak another language. They tend to have a better, less insulated view of the world that the average American.
   1193. zenbitz Posted: July 20, 2018 at 02:07 PM (#5713189)
Another reason to get Trump out of there is a limit to the legacy of chaos.


Satisfying as though it would be to see Der Trump hanging from a (metaphorical!) meat hook, I'm not sure this is 100% true. For one, President Pence will make bad decisions too -- any he could hardly be LESS competent at pursuing a conservative agenda.

My argument is that - in order for the Senate (certainly be close to 50-50) to actually come November) to actually CONVICT Trump on impeachment charges that it's highly unlikely a split congress will even bring, Trump would have to commit some extremely heinous crime. Like there is no way any of this collusion/graft/corruption/campaign finance irregularities come close. And if does get close (certainly a possibility but I am not assuming facts not yet in evidence) - I think we would see the GOP leadership/rank-and-file bureaucrats move to essentially neuter the executive.

Basically you are going to need 16-20 Republican Senators to convict and they are not going to do it unless it's in the best interest OF THE REPUBLICAN PARTY.

There is some chance of a Dem House impeaching with essentially zero chance of conviction in the senate just to score political points and hamper the function of the government (WE LEARNED IT FROM YOU GOPDAD), but that's hard worth rooting for.
   1194. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: July 20, 2018 at 02:13 PM (#5713191)
GShumway, #1131:
So, I read the following article this morning, that stated that Trump is planning to impose tariffs on $500 billion worth of Chinese imports, after having imposed tariffs on $34 billion of Chinese imports earlier this year.
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-07-20/trump-says-he-s-ready-to-go-with-tariffs-on-all-china-imports

Meanwhile, this happened.
Japan, EU Sign Trade Deal to Eliminate Nearly All Tariffs

The ambitious pact signed in Tokyo runs counter to President Donald Trump's moves to hike tariffs on imports from many U.S. trading partners. It covers a third of the global economy and markets of more than 600 million people.

...............[EU Council President] Tusk praised the deal as "the largest bilateral trade deal ever." He said the partnership is being strengthened in various other areas, including defense, climate change and human exchange, and is "sending a clear message" against protectionism. The leaders did not mention Trump by name, but they did little to mask what was on their minds — highlighting how Europe and Japan have been pushed closer by Trump's actions.

The two sides have been discussing the possibility of this deal for a few years. Probably just a coincidence that it was announced a day after the great Helsinki Summit.
   1195. Jay Z Posted: July 20, 2018 at 02:17 PM (#5713192)
Satisfying as though it would be to see Der Trump hanging from a (metaphorical!) meat hook, I'm not sure this is 100% true. For one, President Pence will make bad decisions too -- any he could hardly be LESS competent at pursuing a conservative agenda.

My argument is that - in order for the Senate (certainly be close to 50-50) to actually come November) to actually CONVICT Trump on impeachment charges that it's highly unlikely a split congress will even bring, Trump would have to commit some extremely heinous crime. Like there is no way any of this collusion/graft/corruption/campaign finance irregularities come close. And if does get close (certainly a possibility but I am not assuming facts not yet in evidence) - I think we would see the GOP leadership/rank-and-file bureaucrats move to essentially neuter the executive.

Basically you are going to need 16-20 Republican Senators to convict and they are not going to do it unless it's in the best interest OF THE REPUBLICAN PARTY.

There is some chance of a Dem House impeaching with essentially zero chance of conviction in the senate just to score political points and hamper the function of the government (WE LEARNED IT FROM YOU GOPDAD), but that's hard worth rooting for.


You're still not getting it.

Trump is a raving beast. He doesn't have to commit a heinous crime. Indeed none is required for impeachment.

Again, Team R could simply replace Trump and maybe be better off in 2018. Maybe worse off. Now they're political creatures, impeachment is a political process, Trump still has his base of support. So he has to lose popularity to be sure, to be of no further use to be sure, to be discarded. That much is reality.

But I don't think a rational person has to wait for a heinous crime in order to be in favor of impeachment. Trump has manifestly demonstrated unfitness for office and should be removed.

Oh, and there is no way Trump is going to be neutered by any Congress. Too much societal inertia, "He's POTUS so things must be tolerable." Trump should be gone, but even his opponents are going to drag their feat, hoping reason will prevail, hoping reason will matter.
   1196. Zonk just has affection for alumni Posted: July 20, 2018 at 02:19 PM (#5713193)

Satisfying as though it would be to see Der Trump hanging from a (metaphorical!) meat hook, I'm not sure this is 100% true. For one, President Pence will make bad decisions too -- any he could hardly be LESS competent at pursuing a conservative agenda.

My argument is that - in order for the Senate (certainly be close to 50-50) to actually come November) to actually CONVICT Trump on impeachment charges that it's highly unlikely a split congress will even bring, Trump would have to commit some extremely heinous crime. Like there is no way any of this collusion/graft/corruption/campaign finance irregularities come close. And if does get close (certainly a possibility but I am not assuming facts not yet in evidence) - I think we would see the GOP leadership/rank-and-file bureaucrats move to essentially neuter the executive.

Basically you are going to need 16-20 Republican Senators to convict and they are not going to do it unless it's in the best interest OF THE REPUBLICAN PARTY.

There is some chance of a Dem House impeaching with essentially zero chance of conviction in the senate just to score political points and hamper the function of the government (WE LEARNED IT FROM YOU GOPDAD), but that's hard worth rooting for.


The Senate composition really doesn't matter.... at least, within the realm of practical possibilities.

I doubt the Dems take the Senate - my upside/best hope is that they somehow manage to pick up one seat and it ends up with Pence being necessary to keep the gavel in Chinless's hands. Fanciful, <1% possibilities of the Dems somehow getting into the +3/+4 realm would be great - but nigh impossible. The absolute best reasonable ceiling is that they don't lose any of their tough seats and grab NV and AZ (or weirdness like -1 but Bredeson winning TN or Beto mania being more real than most people think).

But it doesn't matter. Anyway you slice it - a conviction on articles of impeachment is going to require some number of GOP senators to convict. Easier if that number is lower, but in my mind? You get to 10 - you can get to 15 or 17 or whatever.

All roads flow through the House. The House starts the process. For the House to start - and put some teeth - to any articles, you need a House with Democratic committee chairs issuing subpoenas and driving the investigation.

Without the House committees having Democratic chairs to exercise oversight, it's all folly. Much as I wish it were possible in 2018, it's not. House committees are right now chaired by either outright flunkies or flunky-curious gavels.
   1197. Zonk just has affection for alumni Posted: July 20, 2018 at 02:35 PM (#5713204)

You're still not getting it.

Trump is a raving beast. He doesn't have to commit a heinous crime. Indeed none is required for impeachment.

Again, Team R could simply replace Trump and maybe be better off in 2018. Maybe worse off. Now they're political creatures, impeachment is a political process, Trump still has his base of support. So he has to lose popularity to be sure, to be of no further use to be sure, to be discarded. That much is reality.

But I don't think a rational person has to wait for a heinous crime in order to be in favor of impeachment. Trump has manifestly demonstrated unfitness for office and should be removed.

Oh, and there is no way Trump is going to be neutered by any Congress. Too much societal inertia, "He's POTUS so things must be tolerable." Trump should be gone, but even his opponents are going to drag their feat, hoping reason will prevail, hoping reason will matter.


The 2018 focus specific to impeachment should be educating and breaking down this wall that congress need not tie a "high crime and misdemeanor" specific to some statute. Reinforcing the actual fact that a President can actually be impeached for whatever a Congress decides.

January 2019, the Dems will be running oversight committees.

What's more - beyond Traderdave and dlf's inversion of the yield curve, the sheer reality of expansions not continuing forever and other indicators like commodities markets mean that we're certainly going to see choppy economic waters in 2019 or 2020 at latest.

That's going to peel off the low-infos who don't really care, so long as the economy 'feels' good.

I don't even support a Day One drafting of Articles (well, absent obvious).

The Mueller probe is obviously the wildcard - could well yield (im)peaches as soon as this fall... who knows. But absent that wildcard, House Dems should deliberately grind it out, with due diligence, and be targeting summer/fall 2019.
   1198. Swoboda is freedom Posted: July 20, 2018 at 02:40 PM (#5713209)
Trump is a raving beast. He doesn't have to commit a heinous crime. Indeed none is required for impeachment.

This is crazy. Get organized for 2020 and vote him out. If the economy starts to suffer, there may be a Republican challenger.

I would hate to see impeachment become a political game.
   1199. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: July 20, 2018 at 02:42 PM (#5713210)

The leaders did not mention Trump by name, but they did little to mask what was on their minds — highlighting how Europe and Japan have been pushed closer by Trump's actions.
Ah, but you see, Trump knew that would happen. It was all part of his master plan to help boost worldwide trade.
   1200. spycake Posted: July 20, 2018 at 02:47 PM (#5713213)
@jon_rauch:


Very disappointed that's not the tall, tattooed relief pitcher!
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