Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Trump's Dummkopfs

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  • Russell Brown, in reply to AndrewH,

    A fucking political turd circling the bowl, in the gravitational embrace of her grotesque “charitable foundation”.

    The foundation that gets an "A" rating from CharityWatch, publishes all its accounts, works with the Word Heath Organisation and is universally acknowledged as having played the key role in reducing the cost of HIV/AIDS medication to African nations, thus saving millions of lives? That one?

    Or are we talking about some fantasy organisation in your head?

    If you had the courage to admit you just don;t get it about Trumps supporters (and Brexit)

    You know, in the week after the Brexit vote, my reliably left-wing friend in London didn't want to walk to work because there had been a series of racist assaults carried out by apparent Brexiteers in the area. She's non-white.

    I’d have some sympathy, but your condescension is just awful.
    Russell Brown – student hero. has somehow morphed into middle class, Auckland property owning wanker.

    Well, I was never a student, but thanks for illustrating my point about the alt-left.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22753 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Conal Tuohy,

    Because racial minorities have been made scapegoated by his campaign? Like right-wing populists always do? I mean, obviously you know that; so why are you asking?

    Mother Jones has a story this week listing the various neo-Nazi and white supremacist organisations to endorse Trump. Not a single one of those endorsements has been disavowed by the candidate or the campaign Not one.

    That is not business as usual. Except in the sense that’s it’s mirrored in the violent anti-immigrant rhetoric of the Brexiteer fringe, Len Pen’s mob in France, etc.

    Why do you think that negates the idea that Trump’s support is riding a wave of legitimate grievance with joblessness, homelessness, and hopelessness, and social alienation?

    I don’t doubt that Trump has found some purchase among poor, disenfranchised white voters.

    But the idea that he’s riding a wave of the jobless and homeless simply isn’t backed up by the evidence.

    Pew Research found Clinton with a 29-point lead over Trump among the poorest voters (< $30,000 pa income).

    A big Gallup poll reported by The Guardian found Clinton with a 25-point margin among Americans earning $24,000 or less.

    For annual incomes between $30,000 and $100,000, Pew found support basically equal, with Clinton having a slight lead over $100,000.

    But overwhelmingly, poor Americans do not support Trump.

    The strongest determinants for supporting Clinton look to be, in order: (non-white) race, (low) income, (young) age, (female) gender, and (high) education.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22753 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel, in reply to AndrewH,

    anger management...

    Oh, fuck off. That’s one helluva lot of white men voting in a bloc to reach his polling numbers.
    I honestly can’t believe how condescending you are...

    I am failing to see the 'condescension' you claim, I just see you failing to parse and comprehend the statement properly, let's unpack it (as I read it):

    And at his worst levels, after the DNC, he was winning in just one demographic: white men.

    'Winning in just one demographic: white men' means he was perhaps doing better than Hillary Clinton in this demographic, it doesn't say that other demographics did not vote for him, they were just not more than Hillary was getting - so his total numbers are not purely comprised of 'white men', but largely, yes.
    I don't believe Russell claimed support for a virtuous Hillary, he just pointed out that she would be a safer alternative, and that 'her' charity is not as grotesque and fraudulent as you would like to believe - especially compared to Trump's confection.
    I think Russell did basically admit that he just doesn't 'get' Trump supporters and the Eggers Guardian piece added another viewpoint which helped the discussion along in a sane and rational manner.
    What I don't understand is why you had to go all Trump and bring on the hate with your closing statement - that means you must hate a lot of people, while slamming doors in the face of discussion, I find that sad and ultimately self defeating...

    Personally I think an apology is owed for your Friday night excesses - that you might be big enough to give in the hard light of a Saturday morning.
    You may of course beg to differ.

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7889 posts Report Reply

  • David Hood,

    Something from 538 today:

    http://fivethirtyeight.com/features/religion-and-education-explain-the-white-vote/

    That’s one helluva lot of white men voting in a bloc to reach his polling numbers

    As Ian pointed out, that is not what Russell said, but as it happens there are a lot of white people- Total minorities made up 29% of the potential voters in 2012, so the preferences of the 71% of the electorate that are white have a big say. Actually more than 71% due to age demographics of actual voters.

    Dunedin • Since May 2007 • 1443 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Another right-wing Silicon Valley billionaire backing Trump. Palmer Luckey, founder of Oculus, has been funding the production of racist, misogynist Clinton "shitmemes".

    We know Hillary Clinton is corrupt, a warmonger, a freedom-stripper. Not the good kind you see dancing in bikinis on Independence Day, the bad kind that strips freedom from citizens and grants it to donors,” Luckey wrote on a Reddit thread introducing his initiative, using the pseudonym NimbleRichMan.

    Luckey’s support for Trump may be unusual in a tech industry that has a tendency to support Democrats, but it is his embrace of the dark side of Trump’s internet army that is so alarming. We may be used to the incredibly wealthy supporting pro-business politicians by writing checks to the Republican party, but the full-on embrace of “shitposting” and the bigoted online harassment that so often comes with it is something else entirely.

    Shitposting is not intended to add to an online discussion but to shut it down with, well, shit. It is the opposite of the ideals of good faith, open discussion made possible by the internet.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22753 posts Report Reply

  • Alfie, in reply to Ian Dalziel,

    Alas. The abilty to spray bile and walk away is a poor substitute for cogent argument.

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1386 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Ian Dalziel,

    I don’t believe Russell claimed support for a virtuous Hillary, he just pointed out that she would be a safer alternative, and that ‘her’ charity is not as grotesque and fraudulent as you would like to believe – especially compared to Trump’s confection.

    Yes. She’s compromised. She could be described as a liberal hawk. But a good deal of what people believe they know about Clinton simply isn’t true – witness Andrew’s venom on the topic of the Clinton Foundation.

    And more to the point, on every measure, including regulation of Wall Street and foreign policy, Clinton is a better choice than Trump.

    Is she an establishment candidate? Well, yeah. You can see that in her tax proposals, which are small-c conservative, slightly more redistributive.

    Trump’s published tax policy is summed up by Business Insider’s headline last month: Trump’s tax plan sounds populist, but it aims its key benefits at the rich

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22753 posts Report Reply

  • Conal Tuohy,

    Russell "working class" is not the same thing as "poor" or having a "household income" in a particular bracket. I think the Pew report you cited has this weakness compounded by treating the income brackets as monolithic rather than divided by race and geographic factors that could be proxies for the depressed manufacturing sector, and I think this obscures some of the information landscape, making it no so easy to draw conclusions from.

    Have you seen this very recent poll? It backs what it calls the 'conventional wisdom' about Trump's strength in working class support.

    http://kff.org/report-section/kaiser-family-foundationcnn-working-class-whites-poll-section-1-conventional-wisdom/

    Melbourne • Since Oct 2008 • 14 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Conal Tuohy,

    Have you seen this very recent poll? It backs what it calls the ‘conventional wisdom’ about Trump’s strength in working class support

    It shows that white working class voters are dissatisfied, in part because they're "nervous about cultural changes taking place in the United States" and feel "Christian values are under attack".

    It also indicates that as a group they're doing quite well and largely have secure jobs. Also that they're pretty racist.

    If you were trying to convince me that culture-war isn't a factor here, I'm not sure this is right survey to do it with.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22753 posts Report Reply

  • Hilary Stace,

    Hillary has very good disability policies, actual disabled people working on her campaign and huge support in that sector (although not sure whether ratification of the UN CRPD is on her to-do list), whereas Trump has just made ableist jokes..

    Wgtn • Since Jun 2008 • 3199 posts Report Reply

  • tussock, in reply to Russell Brown,

    You might be reading too much into that Russell. Conservatives are always fearful about something or another, that's quite natural, the things those ones are afraid about are largely bullshit race and class issues because it's a pretty good country to live in with a massively powerful military and there's not any real problems for the majority to fear any more. That terrorism thing got old years ago, and everyone hates the security theatre surrounding it.

    Not that the actual race issues in the US are bullshit, they're terrible, but the way conservatives look at it over there is bullshit. Factually incorrect. Racist, if you will.

    But overall, it just looks like most conservative US voters aren't put off by his racism, because they're mostly racist, nor his foreign policy gaffs, because they can't even find their own country on a world map, nor his sexism, because they're mostly sexist, and so on.

    But the ones he is putting off, because not all conservative voters are any of that stuff, that's why he's still 7 points down rather than a couple points up that historical trends would put an average Republican at this point.

    He's not attracting people because he's racist, he's losing them, it just increases the relative concentration of racists that remain. Like the people at his rallies don't really give a shit what he's saying, because if you did you probably aren't at his rally.

    Take a group, exclude a sub section of it, remains of group seems to have more people not in that sub section. Really not more, just less of the excluded ones.

    Since Nov 2006 • 607 posts Report Reply

  • Kumara Republic, in reply to Russell Brown,

    It shows that white working class voters are dissatisfied, in part because they're "nervous about cultural changes taking place in the United States" and feel "Christian values are under attack".

    It also indicates that as a group they're doing quite well and largely have secure jobs. Also that they're pretty racist.

    If you were trying to convince me that culture-war isn't a factor here, I'm not sure this is right survey to do it with.

    Irrespective of income and wealth, such voters would have been conservative Dixiecrats in the first place. They became Reagan Democrats in the 1980s, and GOP-turned-independent commentator George Will claims that "today they are the Republican base".

    It's a sad state of affairs when the traditional working class has balkanised into mutually exclusive factions:

    - The loyalists who've kept the faith and still vote Labour or Democrats and belong to trade unions, who sadly are in a slow decline.
    - The nouveau riche - including Essex Man - who now support establishment conservatives and tell everyone below them, "I've got mine, so fuck you!"
    - The defeatist precariat, who've given up on voting because they feel it makes no difference.
    - The angry precariat, who are mad as hell and won't take it anymore, who are swinging behind Trump & Farage on the Right, and Sanders & Corbyn on the Left.

    I consider myself part of the new 'precariat' who's been on the minimum wage for some years and finding the career ladder missing all the rungs in the middle. I've managed to earn a few pennies crowd-working on the side, but it's nowhere near enough to ditch the 9-to-5 routine just yet. For all their faults, I've found that the likes of Sanders and Corbyn best speak for people like me. I'm simply too intellectual and high-information to fall for illiberal demagogues likes Trump and Farage.

    If Trump wins the White House in November, it could be the end of the Reaganite-Thatcherist winner-takes-all model of the past generation. It's a model that I certainly won't miss, but Trump is a textbook case of the cure being worse than the disease. And I suspect I'm not the only one who's filled with a sense of dread - as in proper Weimar Republic dread - that I didn't have during Dubya's presidency.

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 5416 posts Report Reply

  • Conal Tuohy, in reply to tussock,

    Yes quite. And amongst his bigoted supporters in the white working class, of which the Kaiser Foundations said

    Over half (53 percent) are very dissatisfied with the country’s economic situation, 47 percent say America’s best days are behind us, and 50 percent expect their children to have a worse standard of living than they have now

    … many of them could have been won to the Democratic candidate if the Democratic Party had elected to run their left candidate. Sanders would have been a far more electable candidate, and importantly would have enabled the Democrats to unite the balkanized working class around some much more progressive economic policy.

    Melbourne • Since Oct 2008 • 14 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel,

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7889 posts Report Reply

  • andin,

    amongst his bigoted supporters in the white working class

    Well working class, dont know about that anymore
    "shooting from the lip"
    "this thought was never vocalized by anyone else before",
    of course confirmation bias, but thats too "sciencey" for some upright apes
    I just dont know...If you just sound and look as if you have authority it seems to be enough for 60,000,000 odd, thats only a quarter of 'em so far

    raglan • Since Mar 2007 • 1881 posts Report Reply

  • Don Christie,

    So much...

    On healthcare, Clinton's proposals in 2008 were far more radical than Obama's. The latter famously borrowed Mitt Romney's healthcare reform policy.

    Social policy wise Clinton is more radical than Obama. International affairs, far more hawkish. One may be scarier than the other to NZ, or people who live in the Middle East.

    But taking the piss out of voters who have lost 10s of 1000s of jobs in the last few years (Ohio) is not going to win elections.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1645 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Conal Tuohy,

    Attachment

    … many of them could have been won to the Democratic candidate if the Democratic Party had elected to run their left candidate. Sanders would have been a far more electable candidate, and importantly would have enabled the Democrats to unite the balkanized working class around some much more progressive economic policy.

    Hmmm … maybe. But even the utterly patrician Romney got 63% of white non-college votes according to this WaPo commentary from May. But that’s disproportionately men – support among white women is relatively even.

    The same holds nearly as true for white male Democrat voters in the primaries.

    The Economist notes that even in New York, where she won pretty handily, she only picked up 42% of the white male vote, vs John Kerry’s 53% in 2004 – although, intriguingly, Clinton did very well in Alabama, Arkansas and Tennessee.

    It does seem evident that white men do not like Hillary Clinton. So Sanders would presumably have done better there – or maybe his tax and healthcare policies would have been a massive issue once the Republicans got to negative campaigning on them, which they naturally didn’t do during the primaries.

    But yeah, non-college white men in America love them some Trump …

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22753 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Kumara Republic,

    Regarding the issue of The Establishment – at the moment, not one mainstream newspaper has endorsed Trump. Traditionally conservative papers have gone for Johnson. It is conceivable that no significant newspaper will endorse Trump.

    That sound you hear is white American cleaving away from its own institutions.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22753 posts Report Reply

  • Ana Simkiss, in reply to AndrewH,

    That "grotesque foundation " is saving lives. Do your research before spouting right wing talking points. http://www.politifact.com/global-news/statements/2016/jun/15/hillary-clinton/clinton-clinton-foundation-helped-9-million-lower-/

    Freemans Bay • Since Nov 2006 • 141 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel,

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7889 posts Report Reply

  • Kumara Republic, in reply to Russell Brown,

    That sound you hear is white American cleaving away from its own institutions.

    Hell yes. The WASP establishment doesn't need any existential threats from the outside, it's already doing a sterling job of self-destructing and decaying from within.

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 5416 posts Report Reply

  • Tom Semmens,

    I am uncomfortable with writing anything on this discussion, because the very title ("dummkopfs") is an awesome QED on culture wars and the rise of Trumpism.

    Sevilla, Espana • Since Nov 2006 • 2212 posts Report Reply

  • Kumara Republic, in reply to Russell Brown,

    Traditionally conservative papers have gone for Johnson. It is conceivable that no significant newspaper will endorse Trump.

    Do the National Enquirer and New York Post count as significant? I'll leave out the New York Observer, which is owned by Trump's son-in-law.

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 5416 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    The New York Times: Why Donald Trump
    Should Not Be President
    :

    A change agent for the nation and the world?

    There can be little doubt of that. But voters should be asking themselves if Mr. Trump will deliver the kind of change they want. Starting a series of trade wars is a recipe for recession, not for new American jobs. Blowing a hole in the deficit by cutting taxes for the wealthy will not secure Americans’ financial future, and alienating our allies won’t protect our security. Mr. Trump has also said he will get rid of the new national health insurance system that millions now depend on, without saying how he would replace it.

    The list goes on: He would scuttle the financial reforms and consumer protections born of the Great Recession. He would upend the Obama administration’s progress on the environment, vowing to “cancel the Paris climate agreement” on global warming. He would return to the use of waterboarding, a torture method, in violation of international treaty law. He has blithely called for reconsideration of Japan’s commitment not to develop nuclear weapons. He favors a national campaign of “stop and frisk” policing, which has been ruled unconstitutional. He has blessed the National Rifle Association’s ambition to arm citizens to engage in what he imagines would be defensive “shootouts” with gunmen. He has so coarsened our politics that he remains a contender for the presidency despite musing about his opponent as a gunshot target.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22753 posts Report Reply

  • simon g,

    I am uncomfortable with writing anything on this discussion, because the very title (“dummkopfs”) is an awesome QED on culture wars and the rise of Trumpism.

    The rise, maybe. But the destination - no.

    There's a fundamental distinction between starting out wanting to vote Trump, and ending up actually doing so. Yes, I get why people are feeling powerless and angry. The fertile ground has been well traversed, and we can all blame our culprit of choice (the feeble Democrats, the media, globalism, dormant bigotry, etc).

    So it isn't hard to see why a demagogue has initial appeal. But this is way more than a Brexit referendum (obfuscating, distracting, confusing). It's way longer in time, it's way clearer in focus. It's not confusing at all. Simply, there is no longer any excuse for not knowing who Donald Trump is. Sure, many voters - not only in the USA - pay little attention to politics, it's a minority sport. But it's now reached the point where it's only possible not to know by wilfully avoiding the truth. Not the truth bent by the "liberal media", but the original source, the horse's mouth. Free and unfiltered, whenever we want to hear it.

    So I have no time for Trump's voters. Not now. Empathising with rage is a long way short of curing the rage with a gun - as if there were no other possible option. If they choose to elect him they can never say they didn't know what they were doing, that he - or they - were simply misunderstood. They know now, they will know in November, and if they get what they deserve, then to hell with them. That's not "elitist", that's two plus bloody two.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1321 posts Report Reply

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