It Wasn’t Just the Butler Who Did It

The former butler of stately Trump Manor is a racist, sexist nutjob who issues lurid Facebook fatwas calling for the death of President Obama for being a foreign-born “muzzy,” refers to black people as “negroes” in the manner of Cliven Bundy, suggests that American cities should be obliterated for ethnic cleansing purposes and calls future president Hillary Clinton a “cunt” who should be summarily lynched.

The fact that the man who used to play Alfred to Trump’s Batman is the distilled essence of the white nationalist element of every Trump rally ever held isn’t important news, apparently. It was reported, but as a sideshow item, as if it revealed nothing more about Trump except how hard it is to get good help these days. The story doesn’t appear above the fold at the moment at CNN, The New York Times or other major media outlets. (Imagine the screaming headlines and calls for congressional hearings that would result if the woman who scrubs Hillary Clinton’s toilets were revealed as a moon landing doubter.)

clue weaponBut let’s not pretend this has nothing to do with Trump. The butler did it, but Colonel Marmalade was seen in the conservatory with the crack pipe. So maybe some enterprising Beltway journalist could get a fucking clue and use this unfortunate butler incident as an opening to revisit the GOP nominee’s birther activities. Heretofore, when asked about birtherism by reporters, Trump says, “I don’t talk about that anymore.” What kind of lame-ass reporter lets an interview subject get away with that? (Cooper, Tapper, Blitzer, et al.)

Imagine if Hillary Clinton tried to deflect a question by airily proclaiming that she doesn’t talk about it anymore. She wouldn’t get away with it. The complaint here isn’t that there’s a double standard; of course there’s a double standard, which is why Trump can babble about Bill Clinton’s 25-year-old horn-dog behavior without having his own piggish history, which includes rape allegations, put under the media microscope. The bygones — they are gone by!

But just five years ago, Trump, the GOP nominee, was a prominent national figure in the explicitly racist birther movement. He made bizarre allegations and outlandish promises about what his team of Hawaii investigators would reveal, then failed to deliver because there was nothing to find. And that shouldn’t be allowed to disappear down the memory hole, especially when a former Trump employee is revealed to be insanely animated by the very ideas Trump spent 2011 fomenting nationwide. Do your fucking jobs, DC press corps!

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142 replies
  1. 1
    Patricia Kayden says:

    Perhaps no one is surprised that Trump hired a racist, sexist wacko as a Butler given that Trump is a racist, sexist wacko himself, who has mesmerized a whole party of racist, sexist wackos. You can almost hear Republicans saying “There’s nothing to see here” in relation to this story.

    Yet, we had to endure months of discussions about Pastor Wright and Bill Ayers when they were “connected” to then candidate Obama.

  2. 2
    Betty Cracker says:

    @Patricia Kayden: I think you’re exactly right — it’s a dog-bites-man story because of course Trump’s butler is a whack-job. But one of the two major party presidential candidates for 2016 led a bizarre, racist investigation into a sitting president’s legitimacy and was revealed as a fool, and damn it, that should be an issue!

  3. 3
    Baud says:

    Do you fucking jobs, DC press corps!

    They are!

  4. 4
    Lit3Bolt says:

    “But we are doing our jobs! What’s this jur-no-lism you speak of?”

  5. 5
    D58826 says:

    From the why we have Trump (and maybe deserve him as well) file, this from AP

    Million-dollar bids shown for gun that killed Trayvon Martin Bidding in an online auction for the pistol former neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman used to kill Trayvon Martin had gone well into the millions by Friday morning, though it was unclear if they were serious bids.

    http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/.....;ocid=iehp

  6. 6
    Betty Cracker says:

    @D58826: It’s a sick, twisted thing, alright. But this from your link:

    By Friday morning, the site showed bidding had surpassed $25 million with the leading bidder using the screen name “Racist McShootface.”

    Pretty sure that’s not a serious bid. Hopefully the auction will be trolled to hell and back and Zimmerman won’t make a nickel.

  7. 7
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    I remain flummoxed that the New York Times reporters who wrote what was essentially a puff profile of the butler a couple of months ago utterly failed to notice any of his horrendous (racist, sexist, murderous) tweets and Facebook posts in the course of their research. Or possibly they noticed but deemed the rantings somehow irrelevant. Questionable journalism, either way. The guy certainly hasn’t made a secret of his views — in fact, according to David Corn’s MJ article, it sounds as though he’s perfectly comfortable holding such views and writing such filth.

  8. 8
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @D58826:

    NPR just said $65 million.

  9. 9
    L Boom says:

    Has anyone considered the possibility that the butler’s just a big Wallace Stevens fan? It’s important we keep these things in context.

    Poetry is the supreme fiction, madame.
    Take the moral law and make a nave of it
    And from the nave build haunted heaven. Thus,
    The conscience is converted into palms,
    Like windy citherns hankering for hymns.
    We agree in principle. That’s clear. But take
    The opposing law and make a peristyle,
    And from the peristyle project a masque
    Beyond the planets. Thus, our bawdiness,
    Unpurged by epitaph, indulged at last,
    Is equally converted into palms,
    Squiggling like saxophones. And palm for palm,
    Madame, we are where we began. Allow,
    Therefore, that in the planetary scene
    Your disaffected flagellants, well-stuffed,
    Smacking their muzzy bellies in parade,
    Proud of such novelties of the sublime,
    Such tink and tank and tunk-a-tunk-tunk,
    May, merely may, madame, whip from themselves
    A jovial hullabaloo among the spheres.
    This will make widows wince. But fictive things
    Wink as they will. Wink most when widows wince.

  10. 10
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    This is one of the many reasons for my nym.

    Wipe them out. All of them.

    Oh, and BTW…it’s a “press corpse”.

  11. 11
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: Research? The New York Times? WTF is that?

  12. 12
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: That’s the whole point. The media is no longer shocked that Trump attracts, supports, hires or retweets racists/sexists/Islamophobes. It’s just no longer news. Just like it’s never brought up that he was a Birther against the first Black President prior to his campaign.

    There’s nothing to see here, folks. Keep driving.

  13. 13
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @D58826:

    Critics called the auction an insensitive move to profit from the slaying.

    I do believe we have the understatement of this young century. Way to go, AP.

  14. 14
    Betty Cracker says:

    @Patricia Kayden: Maybe we need to borrow a page from the wingnut media manipulation playbook and work the refs. Write or call local papers and national outlets and ask why Trump is allowed to get away with not addressing recent activities and associations that reflect directly on his judgment and fitness for office.

  15. 15
    Snarki, child of Loki says:

    Huh. Buying Zimmerman’s gun (for a *reasonable* price) makes sense to me.

    Because if I ever crossed paths with Zimmerman, I’d feel that my life was in danger, and it would be good to have a known-to-work gun in hand for Standing My Ground purposes.

    The irony, of course, is an extra benefit.

  16. 16
    Baud says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    “Racist McShootface.”

    I wonder if Hillary should start calling Donald “Trumpy McTrumpface,” in response to all if Donald’s name calling.

    Maybe hold an online contest and let the people decide.

  17. 17
    Betty Cracker says:

    @L Boom: Let be be finale of seem…

  18. 18
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Baud: “Fuckface von Clownstick”

  19. 19
    germy says:

    @L Boom: But wasn’t Stevens a racist as well? “Who’s the c**n?” he asked once after seeing a photo of Gwendolyn Brooks.

  20. 20
    JMG says:

    The media WANT Trump to be the next President. He’s money for them. In a Clinton administration, ratings for CNN and MSNBC and clicks for the Post, Times, etc. will descend to their former basement. A Trump presidency promises endless crisis, civil strife and foreign war, the stuff they live off of. How much of our current political lunacy is based on the simple fact each day is presented as a breathless mix of horror and excitement to the mass media audience by the “news.” Speaker of House meets his party’s nominee for President is about as dull as it gets, and Wolf Blitzer had an orgasm or six covering it.
    Clinton ought to pull a Jon Stewart, go on every news outlet and tell them, loudly “you’re hurting America.” But she won’t.

  21. 21
    dedc79 says:

    @L Boom: It’s long past time Wallace Stevens made it into a comment thread.

    Now it is September and the web is woven.
    The web is woven and you have to wear it.

    The winter is made and you have to bear it,
    The winter web, the winter woven, wind and wind,

    For all the thoughts of summer that go with it,
    In the mind, pupa of straw, moppet of rags.

    It is the mind that was woven, the mind that was jerked
    And tufted in straggling thunder and shattered sun.

    It is all you are, the final dwarf of you,
    That is woven and woven and waiting to be worn,

    Neither as mask nor as garment but as a being,
    Torn from insipid summer, for the mirror of cold,

    Sitting beside your lamp, for the citron to nibble
    And coffee dribble . . . Frost is in the stubble.

  22. 22
    Betty Cracker says:

    @germy: Damn, that’s disappointing. I’ve admired the work of both Stevens and Brooks for decades. I got to meet Brooks years ago, and she was a thoroughly delightful person.

  23. 23
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @Betty Cracker: That’s a great idea — especially when it comes to big media outlets like CNN and the NY Times. I subscribe to the Washington Post and will ask their Ombudsman about how they’re covering Trump (although I assume that in the end, they’ll denounce him and endorse Secretary Clinton).

    @Baud: The one insult that makes him balk is “small handed”. I guess he considers that a direct attack on his manhood, i.e., the little peanut between his legs. But I’m hoping Secretary Clinton doesn’t have to lower herself to calling Trump silly names when she can just tell the truth and call him a bigot.

  24. 24
    bemused says:

    Anthony Senecal and Ted Nugent are soul mates.

    Did a little reading about Senecal and surprised he was once mayor of Martinsburg, WV for a couple of years. That must have been an “interesting” time for the city. He proposed a yearly fee for panhandlers to panhandle which did not pass.

  25. 25
    debbie says:

    @Baud:

    She most certainly should not.

    As for the butler and the gun auction, they are both indictments of the education system in this country.

  26. 26
  27. 27
    father pussbucket says:

    “Pardon me, sir … it’s the Batshitphone.”

  28. 28
    AliceBlue says:

    @Betty Cracker:
    Yesterday I read (can’t remember where–TPM maybe?) that the gun had been removed from the auction website.

  29. 29
    debbie says:

    @dedc79:

    Well, then. This sums up my view of the world:

    One must have a mind of winter
    To regard the frost and the boughs
    Of the pine-trees crusted with snow;

    And have been cold a long time
    To behold the junipers shagged with ice,
    The spruces rough in the distant glitter

    Of the January sun; and not to think
    Of any misery in the sound of the wind,
    In the sound of a few leaves,

    Which is the sound of the land
    Full of the same wind
    That is blowing in the same bare place

    For the listener, who listens in the snow,
    And, nothing himself, beholds
    Nothing that is not there and the nothing that is.

  30. 30
    debbie says:

    @AliceBlue:

    Zimmerman found another site to sell it.

  31. 31
    dedc79 says:

    Trump is Kurtz/Brando and the Butler is the sycophant journalist/Dennis Hopper. Mar a Lago is the Heart of Darkness.

  32. 32
    Baud says:

    @Patricia Kayden:

    You are too classy. I want Hillary to play this at every campaign event.

    I don’t want a man with a small hand
    I don’t want a Pres with an lousy touch
    I want somebody who will spend some time
    Not come and go in a heated rush

    With apologies to the Pointer Sisters.

  33. 33
    Kay says:

    Imagine if Clinton had said she wanted to ban all Muslims from entering the country and then said it was just a suggestion?
    She would be asked about it every day and so would every Democrat and surrogate.
    Trump just got away with it.

  34. 34
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @AliceBlue: Removed from the first auction web site, then another site agreed to host the auction, being in the mood, I guess, for a buttload of hits.

  35. 35
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @AliceBlue:

    It was removed by the original site, but immediately snapped up by another.

    ETA:

    The website for United Gun Group began hosting the auction Thursday after another website, GunBroker.com, took down the auction saying it wanted “no part in the listing on our website or in any of the publicity it is receiving.”
    Hours later, United Gun Group tweeted that it would post Zimmerman’s ad. The new link was posted, along with a statement from Zimmerman. The site calls itself a “social market place for the firearms community.”

  36. 36
    dedc79 says:

    @debbie: My dad (an aspiring poet in his retirement) will from time-to-time email me favorite poems of his. About three out of every four are by Wallace Stevens.

    With The Snowman, I’m struck by how differently it reads when winter is behind us than when winter is coming. Although I suppose winter is coming.

  37. 37
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Patricia Kayden: The guy who came up with “short fingered vulgarian” to characterize Drumpf over 20 years ago in SPY to this day occasionally gets photos from Drumpf in which Drumpf protests that his fingers are not small.

  38. 38
    rikyrah says:

    So maybe some enterprising Beltway journalist could get a fucking clue and use this unfortunate butler incident as an opening to revisit the GOP nominee’s birther activities. Heretofore, when asked about birtherism by reporters, Trump says, “I don’t talk about that anymore.”

    The MSM aided and abetted the birtherism.

    Never forget that.

  39. 39
    rikyrah says:

    @JMG:

    The media WANT Trump to be the next President. He’s money for them.

    Yep.

  40. 40
    debbie says:

    @dedc79:

    The last few lines work for me year round. We read Stevens in 8th grade and this poem alone penetrated my mindless mind, especially when I was reading Lord of the Flies.

  41. 41
    Kay says:

    Now that there are different, laxer rules for Donald Trump I don’t know why Clinton or anyone else has to follow any.

    Racing to the bottom at lightening speed! We just threw the tax return release rule out to make it easier for the real estate heir to win a trophy. What goes next?

  42. 42
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @raven: See, it’s scientifically proven that Trump has a small member and much less dignity than any howler monkey I know.

    @Kay: The media is letting him get away with a whole lot of nonsense. President Obama had to give several speeches to damp down fires caused by his words being taken out of context (clinging to their guns) or what other people who were associated with him said (Pastor Wright’s fiery sermons). Yet Trump has gotten away with making explicitly bigoted comments, including one in his kick off campaign speech where he referred to Mexicans as rapists.

  43. 43
    rikyrah says:

    @Kay:

    Imagine if Clinton had said she wanted to ban all Muslims from entering the country and then said it was just a suggestion?
    She would be asked about it every day and so would every Democrat and surrogate.
    Trump just got away with it.

    Imagine if Hillary Clinton had said – we don’t have to pay our bills. We can just print more money.

    Yeah, you know what would have happened.

  44. 44
    rikyrah says:

    @Patricia Kayden:

    Yet Trump has gotten away with making explicitly bigoted comments, including one in his kick off campaign speech where he referred to Mexicans as rapists

    Only in the MSM. I take solace that the Spanish-language media isn’t remotely falling for the Trump reboot.

  45. 45
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @Villago Delenda Est: Not surprised to hear this. That is the one insult that will haunt him to his grave. Just like he ties physical beauty to womanhood, he ties sexual prowess to manhood. Trump is very old school as evidenced by his desire to punish women who exercise their rights to obtain abortions.

  46. 46
    rikyrah says:

    @Kay:

    Racing to the bottom at lightening speed! We just threw the tax return release rule out to make it easier for the real estate heir to win a trophy. What goes next?

    Let’s be for real. They started that with Willard. Never forget – Steve Benen became known to a lot of us because he wrote a weekly column called THE LIES OF MITT ROMNEY.

    A WEEKLY COLUMN.

    Yet, the MSM went along like nothing was happening.

    tax thing too.

  47. 47
    D58826 says:

    @Betty Cracker: Yep the part I clipped said there was some question about the seriousness of some of the bids. But I’d bet my pink unicorn that there are a few sickos who would sell their first born to own that gun.

  48. 48
    Brendan in Charlotte says:

    As others have said – The media is doing it’s job… See, right here in the job description it says:
    1. Treat all statements by Republicans as the absolute truth
    2. Take all statements by Democrats out of context
    3. If candidate say her name is Hillary Clinton, article should read that while candidate said this, some people are skeptical of the claim.

  49. 49
    Kay says:

    @rikyrah:

    They gave him 24/7 coverage but they had their serious faces on, so it’s okay. I thought showing your “long form” birth certificate was a new rule for presidential candidates but it’s mysteriously become a non-issue.

    Remember how the record keeper in Hawaii was suddenly deemed unreliable, even though every court in the country accepts that authentication, probably hundreds of times a day?

  50. 50
    gratuitous says:

    We don’t have to imagine anything about the disparity in coverage between Trump’s butler Anthony Senecal and his racist, sexist views, and any Clinton associates. A cursory review of Huma Abedin stories is all you need.

  51. 51
    eric says:

    The media does not care if trump is president; they care about a close race and non-candidate money used to buy ads at a non-discounted rate. This is akin to convention season for the media, especially television.

    Gotta keep it close until it isnt. Just like GOP-leaning pollsters.

  52. 52
    D58826 says:

    @Kay: Imagine what would happen if Hillary walked into a restaurant and ordered lunch on a campaign stop or got her hair done ….. oh wait those happened didn’t they.

  53. 53
    D58826 says:

    @raven: All that proves is the well know fact that ‘facts and science have a liberal bias’. Haven’t you gotten the memo from Rancid Piebus. :-)

  54. 54
    Kay says:

    @D58826:

    Republicans have a coordinated response: “he’s new at running for President”. I’m fine with the new lower standard for moronic, loud mouth real estate heirs who lie about their net worth, but I do think it should be extended to all candidates. Level playing field!

  55. 55
    MattF says:

    There’s a whole cohort of crazy-as-a-bedbug Trump fans. And Trump dogwhistles to them all the time. See, e.g., Kevin Drum’s discussion of Trump’s taco bowl tweet. Drum clarified something that everyone misses. Isn’t that a story? Is there a journalist around here, somewhere?

  56. 56
    D58826 says:

    @Kay: Yep every body play by the same rules. While I would prefer a slightly higher bar but it should be the same height for every one.

  57. 57
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @MattF:

    Is there a journalist around here, somewhere?

    This is the MSM we’re talking about, so nope!

  58. 58
    low-tech cyclist says:

    @Villago Delenda Est: “Fuckface von Clownstick” works for me. I don’t think people would even have to guess who you were talking about.

  59. 59
    D58826 says:

    What I still find unbelievable even at this late date. Eugene Robinson at WAPO

    Trump came to Washington for meetings with Ryan and other GOP establishment figures as a conqueror, not a supplicant. His populism, xenophobia, isolationism, bigotry and evident love of big government may be anathema to the Republican elite, but the party’s base clearly feels otherwise. Anyone choosing self-interest over principle — a habit I have observed among politicians — would think twice about opposing a man who has received more primary votes than any previous GOP nominee.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/ryan-and-trumps-painful-sham/2016/05/12/7e6bccfa-1876-11e6-924d-838753295f9a_story.html

  60. 60
    Anya says:

    Betty, great points but I resent your putting Trump and his racist butler in the same sentence as Batman and Alfred.

  61. 61
    Kay says:

    My whole day is canceled because “the magistrate has a stomach flu”. With all the retired judges around here I’m SHOCKED they couldn’t find a VJ on a beautiful spring Friday :)

  62. 62

    @D58826:
    Trump has no love of big government or isolationism – the guy talks about who he would nuke! But that he waffles on it and it proves the Republican base never gave a damn about that stuff except as excuses for bigotry – yeah, that scares the party apparatus.

  63. 63
    MattF says:

    OT. My, what big teeth you’ve got.

  64. 64
    Kay says:

    @D58826:

    I really think they’re missing one of the main reasons GOP primary voters are so angry, and it has nothing to do with economic security or the out-of-touchness of the political class.

    They think Obama ran rings around Republicans- that he beat them in every round. That’s why they’re mad. Trump isn’t about conservative policy because their voters aren’t mad about that- they want to win. They wanted Obama crushed and broken and they didn’t get that. All of the investigations and allegations Republicans threw out led no where. Nothing happened.

  65. 65
    Bobby Thomson says:

    I’m not seeing the free ride. There’s a reason he has higher disapproval than lice.

  66. 66
    smintheus says:

    Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha. Ha ha ha. Phew.

    Just to be clear; this guy is perhaps the worst racist Trump has ever hired to work for him(self).

  67. 67
    Kay says:

    @D58826:

    Republicans told their voters over and over that there was massive illegality in the Obama Administration- everything from the ridiculous Mexico gun-running conspiracy theory to the IRS to Benghazi and then nothing really happened. He wasn’t perp walked anywhere. Of course their voters think they’re ineffective and corrupt. If they weren’t the Kenyan would be in handcuffs by now. They should probably stop saying everything they don’t like is illegal since they never enforce these imaginary laws.

  68. 68

    @Kay:
    Republicans are only mad at the establishment for not delivering enough racism, yes. Front and center is that the party promised they would destroy the black guy who dared become president, and wipe his legacy (Obamacare) from the history books. They were promised repeals, impeachment, a one-term presidency, debt default, and actual arrest. They got none of it.

  69. 69
    amk says:

    lincoln wept.

  70. 70
    Betty Cracker says:

    @Bobby Thomson: You can thank Trump’s repellent persona for that.

  71. 71
    D58826 says:

    @Kay: Good point. The crazy has reached the point where my Obama/Hillary hating sister thinks that once Obama crushes the e-mail indictment he will force Hillary to appoint him to the supreme court or do what ever else he demands once Hillary is elected. I know she and her hubby are Rush fans but this is into Alex Jones territory. She is a retired Navy commander, with an undergraduate/masters degrees in nursing, ran the CCIU at San Diego Naval hospital and was a nursing home administrator. So she is smart but when blind hatred takes over the only thing left functioning is the lizard brain

  72. 72
    Anya says:

    Every tiime I get a little glimpse of the cable media’s Trump coverage, I get extremely angry. The media focuses on the most sensational and superficial aspect of everything Trump related. They wilfully ignore anything that might let their viewers form an understanding of the seriousness of the moment. I just don’t know how our country will survive this crazy time.

  73. 73
    smintheus says:

    @Frankensteinbeck: Republicans have been frustrated for decades by their leaders’ bait and switch games. It’s not just the policies/programs/agencies they keep promising to eliminate. GOP leaders also whip up one faux outrage after another, and then drop the matter when its rhetorical expiration date approaches. Republican voters don’t realize they’re being played so they’re waiting for shoes that will never drop. There are still conservative groups out there that exist for the sole purpose of outlawing the burning of flags; when was that fauxrage, 1992 or 1988?

  74. 74
    Betty Cracker says:

    @smintheus: You know, maybe that will finally get the Beltway peeps to stop polishing Trump’s knob. They don’t like being played for fools (though lord knows they should be used to it). And if that really is Trump in the recording (sure sounds like it to me), I’m pretty sure voice pattern analysis technology can prove it, so his denial today will be revealed as another lie. Maybe they’ll report that, since it’s a breathlessly gossipy star-fucking story of no real consequence, i.e., hard news!

  75. 75
    geg6 says:

    @Kay:

    They know. And they know that this exact attitude is largely about racism.

    But they will never point that out. They will never say what needs said about this man and these voters. They are too worried about losing the ability to make it about both sides, too worried about losing eyeballs, and too worried about offending their corporate masters. And we won’t even get into the conscious/subconscious racism among most of the media. If they talked about the racism of the rank and file GOP, people might notice that their records aren’t exactly stellar when it comes to inclusion of minorities.

  76. 76
    D58826 says:

    @Kay: Forgot to add, they are sponsoring a gay man to be the next pastor at their mainline protestant church. She says both the pastor and his HUSBAND are wonderful people. She admits that she finds it hard to believe that she is doing this. The human mind is a strange thing a

  77. 77
    gogol's wife says:

    I’m nostalgic for the days of Rafalca.

  78. 78
    MattF says:

    @Betty Cracker: It just demonstrates that Trump’s contempt for reporters is not a recent thing. Not news.

  79. 79
    tarragon says:

    @D58826:

    I know she and her hubby are Rush fans but this is into Alex Jones territory.

    I know both Rush and Alex Jones but can’t quite put this statement together.

  80. 80

    @smintheus:
    I disagree that they’re being used and abandoned here. As decades of anti-abortion and anti-gay laws demonstrate, elected Republicans try to deliver on these promises, and are likely as bigoted as their base. They move on when it becomes clear they have failed, and grab a shiny new hate. They’re addicted to hate, not manipulated into hating.

  81. 81
    smintheus says:

    @Betty Cracker: Journalists stop letting Trump play them? That’s maybe 3 bridges too far, Betty. I’d be happy if they’d just spread this one gossipy story, which makes Trump look like that d00shbag boy in high school we all laughed at. In fact, he’s quoted saying he makes things up because people want to be fooled by his posturing.

  82. 82
    Tilda Swinton's Bald Cap says:

    On a related WV note. And here.

  83. 83
    MomSense says:

    @JMG:

    I think we need to stop expecting our President/leader to say all the things to everyone. Last week the President told the WH Press Corpse that they needed to realize how serious the job of president is and how serious this election is and they completely missed that he was talking to them.

    We all need to tell these ignoranuses that they are hurting America – which they are.

  84. 84
    the Conster, la Citoyenne says:

    @smintheus:

    There are still conservative groups out there that exist for the sole purpose of outlawing the burning of flags; when was that fauxrage, 1992 or 1988?

    Frank Luntz had a group of women on CBS This Morning, asking them to characterize Trump. The wingnuttiest Trump supporter accused Hillary and Bernie supporters of burning flags in CA, so this blabbering idiot of the female gender must still get those chain emails in 24 point colored fonts from those groups. Most of the other women were appalled by Trump, and the only black woman sat in front and said she is so done with Trump. There were a couple of real doozy dumbasses, and another woman who looked like she was ready to take them down herself. Luntz said he’s never had a such a contentious survey group, and admitted that Trump was extremely divisive.

  85. 85

    @smintheus:
    Remember that in 2009 the Republican leaders tried to walk back the extreme anti-Obama rhetoric on national television, and were all forced to apologize, similarly publicly. The Republican base exploded with outrage that their hate was not being validated. The most cynical Republican politicians are riding a tiger and nudging it to include their favorite policies. The others are just as batshit crazy as their voters.

  86. 86
    D58826 says:

    @the Conster, la Citoyenne:

    admitted that Trump was extremely divisive.

    When the Donald loses Luntz ……………..

  87. 87
    smintheus says:

    @Frankensteinbeck: I think that Republicans were a lot less crazy back in the ’80s and early ’90s, but they had learned to whip up the rubes. Remember when Reagan and then Bush were going to put an end to Affirmative Action? Would only have required an Executive Order, but instead the rubes got nothing. Same deal on most issues for decades now.

  88. 88
    Betty Cracker says:

    @smintheus: I’m not saying the Beltway press will stop letting Trump play them, but it wouldn’t surprise me if they pursue this unflattering story since it tangentially concerns themselves. Here’s Trump’s response to Savannah Guthrie on “Today” when she questioned him about it:

    “You’re going so low as to talk about something that took place 25 years ago about whether or not I made a phone call, I guess you’re saying under a presumed [sic] name? The answer is no, and let’s get on to more current subjects. I mean, I know it’s wonderful for your listeners, but I think we have more important things to discuss.”

    Ha! It’s obviously gotten under his skin. And if I’m not mistaken, they can prove he’s lying pretty easily. It’s just the kind of stupid story that could get legs. Something more substantial, like the fact that an out-and-out racist has a 30% or better shot at becoming president next year, isn’t even being discussed.

  89. 89
    JMG says:

    Trump’s threatening of Bezos and the Post might actually result in increased negative treatment of him by other media. For one thing, Bezos is way richer than Donald. For another, nothing gets the press more upset than an attack on their own special selves. Remember how they all rallied around Fox News when Obama ripped it and indicated he wouldn’t treat it as a real news outlet.

  90. 90
    Kay says:

    @D58826:

    The crazy has reached the point where my Obama/Hillary hating sister thinks that once Obama crushes the e-mail indictment he will force Hillary to appoint him to the supreme court or do what ever else he demands once Hillary is elected.

    Even the smart ones have gone crazy! I go around and around on politics with a “libertarian” lawyer here and he’s gotten progressively angrier over the years. Once they got Congress and he would complain about Obama’s (alleged!) law-breaking I would ask him why the GOP Congress doesn’t do anything if there’s all this blatant illegality. He would then turn his rage on “the establishment”. They believe Obama has run roughshod over the manly men of the GOP. They want revenge.

  91. 91
    shomi says:

    The bigger story is that slideshow comparing Drumpfs mansion to Saddam Hussein’s palace. Never thought about it before but there probably are a lot of comparable things between the two crackpots.

  92. 92
    Peale says:

    @JMG: yeah. Remember how they rallied around that breitburt reporter and megyn Kelley? It’s like they hold no grudges at all.

  93. 93
    smintheus says:

    @the Conster, la Citoyenne: Were the Hillary and Bernie supporters burning rainbow flags?

  94. 94
    shomi says:

    @JMG: Thank dog you’re not Hillary’s campaign manager.

  95. 95

    @smintheus:
    It’s a bit more complicated. You’re right that the base was way less crazy. The base was also much more of the country, as Reagan proved. He both manipulated them and was exactly what (white) America wanted at the time. He validated their racism (and other bigotries), gave them cover for it. He told them that it was utterly unacceptable to accuse anyone of racism until you expended all benefit of the doubt, so they leaped on the chance to shit on minorities even if they got crapped on in the process. After all, they were ‘responsible!’ Now enough of those racists are sick and tired of having to play nice that they’ve taken control, and the traditional polite racists are horrified… at the impoliteness. Especially the national media. They worship the ‘It’s not bigotry, it’s mature responsibility!’ philosophy as their god, ugh.

    And yes, in the process Reagan glued that ‘responsible’ racism to plutocracy. Liberals loved negroes and hated the rich, so the racists were damn well going to defend the rich and give them anything they want. He popularized Cleek’s Law, and it has driven base and leaders alike ever since, growing increasingly more extreme and desperate. There are cynical manipulators, some, but mostly… it became inextricable, a giant policy of ‘fuck you!’

    But like I said, enough of the base has decided that dog whistles aren’t enough to take over, and lo and behold – they’re making the leaders they want. Trump is sure as Hell an honestly nasty, stupid bigot.

  96. 96
    JPL says:

    @Brendan in Charlotte: This should be copied and pasted on Todd’s twitter feed.

  97. 97
    smintheus says:

    @Betty Cracker: Oh, I agree with that completely. If Trump ties himself in knots trying to maintain his lies about a blatant sock-puppet braggart, it could easily be played out for a week or more and convince at least some of his potential supporters that Trump is a loser.

  98. 98
    Steeplejack says:

    Wallace Stevens:

    They said, “You have a blue guitar,
    You do not play things as they are.”

    The man replied, “Things as they are
    Are changed upon the blue guitar.”

  99. 99
    Hunter says:

    Do your fucking jobs, DC press corps!

    That’ll be the day.

  100. 100

    NPR was talking about the Ryan/Trump meeting this morning and going on about how there were such deep divides among Republicans, and I realized I didn’t see them. It surprised me that, for instance, Lindsay Graham won’t support Trump. After birthers, and the Freedom Caucus, and “You lie!”, he and his voters look pretty standard R.

  101. 101
    smintheus says:

    @Frankensteinbeck: I think the better formulation, as the campaign goes forward, is to say more directly that Trump is running a bigoted and divisive campaign to appeal to violent and dangerous types. Because Trump’s general election strategy is going to be to let on that he’s a different person in private, so voters should just choose whatever version of Trump they want to believe is the real Trump. It’s amazing how many rubes are willing to buy into demagoguery like that.

  102. 102
    NorthLeft12 says:

    Betty, like most of the worthless celebrities who are masquerading as journalists these days, they value their “access” to the Donald too much to make him feel uncomfortable by asking him anything remotely resembling a tough question.
    But watch them interrogate a “regular person” who happens to be on the wrong side of the interviewer’s viewpoint or station promoted view. Nauseating.

  103. 103
    tazj says:

    Most of the media is absolutely ridiculous. Trump can take several conflicting and incoherent policy stances in one day and rarely gets called on it. They’re constantly in search of the angry white voter who feels left behind. In one way that’s fine we should care about people who are discouraged and suffering. However, that shouldn’t be an excuse for racism, bigotry, and just plain stupidity. It’s like much of the media is saying “these disaffected people want to vote for a mean, crazy person but it’s ok, it’s understandable, they really have no other choice.” They were driven to racism and bigotry and plain stupidity (the wall and Trump’s tax plan, foreign policy) by politicians who didn’t care. Forget about the fact that President Obama proposed several jobs plans beyond turning around the economy, and all the Republicans did was obstruct and yell about the deficit.

    I grew up poor and white and my parents never resorted to hate and blame because of their difficult circumstances and would have been ashamed of us if we did. Now, ignorance and hate are excused by our media.

    It is pretty bad when Mitt Romney has to call Trump out for not releasing his taxes.

  104. 104

    @Iowa Old Lady:
    The deep divide is between racists who want plausible deniability, who want to be able to tell themselves ‘I’m not racist, and nobody who matters will ever think I’m racist’, and the ones who are sick to death of not being able to shout ‘Nigger nigger!’ Trump told them Mexicans are racists and Muslims should be shot with bacon-covered bullets. Trump is obviously a bigot, even to the plausible deniability racists. They hate the idea of that maskless truth becoming the face of the party!

    EDIT – @smintheus:
    I don’t think Trump will have a general election strategy. So far he’s just run his mouth and said whatever shit comes to his mind at the time. We’ve received repeated ‘He’s pivoting to the center!’ proclamations and no, he just happened to say something centrist on that day.

    However, the party around him may try to use that strategy.

  105. 105
    WereBear says:

    Mr WereBear has been distressed of the media’s behavior of late, as people who are just now taking note of who is probably going to be running for President have a horribly unclear picture of Trump, as shown by their statements of support.

    Long long months ahead.

  106. 106
    Mike in NC says:

    What position would Preznit Drumpf appoint his psycho butler to? Maybe Chief of Staff or UN Ambassador?

  107. 107
    WereBear says:

    @MattF: Gee, I interpreted that as Mexicans being a part of the dish: ie, Trump endorses cannibalism!

  108. 108

    @WereBear:
    The good thing about a presidential election is that by the end, everybody knows who the candidates are – despite the media’s attempt to deceive. Witness Romney.

  109. 109
  110. 110
    cmorenc says:

    As predicted, the media has shifted into general election horse-race mode, with the focus on portraying Trump v Hillary as a closely competitive horse race so they can draw eyeballs and clicks. The Trump butler story tends to distract from and potentially help dissipate the main story line they need to draw viewers/clicks the next six months.

  111. 111
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @WereBear: LOL! If that is how much he loves Mexicans, then ewwww!

  112. 112
    Chris says:

    @Kay:

    Even the smart ones have gone crazy!

    I think the thing is that a lot of people who become conservatives, or who are conservative but not especially politically engaged, are only in it for one or a handful of issues – abortion, guns, “small government,” take your pick. But that functions as kind of a gateway drug, and if you start immersing yourself regularly in Fox News and other conservative media, you’ll gradually end up believing all kinds of shit that you never would have before. (And of course, their own coverage gets gradually crazier and crazier, and most of the audience just follows right along).

  113. 113
    Steeplejack says:

    @Kay:

    They think Obama ran rings around Republicans—that he beat them in every round. That’s why they’re mad. Trump isn’t about conservative policy because their voters aren’t mad about that—they want to win.

    This is a good point. And I think a big part of Trump’s appeal is that he projects the image of a manly, take-charge, get-things-done guy. A winner! It’s a fake cartoon image that has little to do with reality, but it hits a nerve with the Republican rank and file that have had ineffectual, low-energy betas like Mitch McConnell and John Boehner as the face of their party for a long time. Even their “macho” rollouts have been failures: Mitt Romney was the robot from the uncanny valley, and weightlifting, backward-cap-wearing Paul Ryan reminds them of that dudebro at the gym who never towels off the bench after he’s sweated all over it.

    Come to think of it, the whole “deep bench” primary crew was like a rogues’ gallery of low-energy betas. Trump stood out. He’s an asshole, but he’s a genuine asshole.

  114. 114
    rikyrah says:

    @Kay:

    They think Obama ran rings around Republicans- that he beat them in every round. That’s why they’re mad. Trump isn’t about conservative policy because their voters aren’t mad about that- they want to win. They wanted Obama crushed and broken and they didn’t get that. All of the investigations and allegations Republicans threw out led no where. Nothing happened.

    Well, he did. Because, he’s brilliant, and because he’s better than them.

    THAT is what kills them.

    He exuded and exemplified COMPETENCE at every turn.

    There were no scandals, save for the ones the GOP made up.

  115. 115

    @Steeplejack:
    I will note that in his run against Rand Paul, Conway did everything Democrats here said he should do. He roasted Paul endlessly on Paul’s lunatic positions and allowed no flipflopping. ‘Aqua Buddha’, as much as we treat it as a joke, scared Paul so badly that he canceled a debate.

    THAT plummeted Paul’s poll numbers. His base hated that sign of weakness. When he rescheduled the debate and went back to fighting, his numbers returned to normal. They didn’t give two tugs of a dead dog’s tonker if he was a good Christian, they wanted a successful bully.

  116. 116
    Hoodie says:

    @Patricia Kayden: If you’ve ever doubted that Trump is clinical NPD, that tape may convince you. It’s fascinating how easily he talks about himself in the third person.

  117. 117
    Kay says:

    @Frankensteinbeck:

    I remember how much they loved Karl Rove and it was for just that reason- smug, bullying ‘winner’. Some liberals fell for it. I remember the ’06 midterms when Karl Rove said he “had the math” or whatever bullshit he was spouting and liberals panicked- “he runs math now!” :)

  118. 118

    @Frankensteinbeck: One analyst said Trump offends the old R guard aesthetically. That sounded right to me.

  119. 119
    rikyrah says:

    @Frankensteinbeck:

    They move on when it becomes clear they have failed, and grab a shiny new hate. They’re addicted to hate, not manipulated into hating.

    The shiny new hate is Trans folks.

  120. 120
    🚸 Martin says:

    This is a nice summary.

    But in many ways this is more important:

    His phrasing is telling. First, it suggests that for Trump, blacks and Hispanics aren’t part of “we”—“they” constitute separate groups. Perhaps that’s an accidental, unthinking division, but subconscious racial division is no less dangerous. Second, it shows him assuming that minority concerns can be reduced to economics.

    When Obama says ‘we’ he means everyone. Me, as a middle class white male is definitely part of his ‘we’, and I feel that viscerally – it’s not an intellectual exercise to put me in that group. When Obama was speaking for the black community or the broader minority community, he was explicit about that.

    That’s the importance of electing minorities. Its nearly impossible for a white president to extend that embrace to everyone when so many prior white presidents have failed. It not that they necessarily fail to try (although many do), it’s that it’s so hard for those who have felt left out to trust that it’s genuine. That’s the basis of Bill Clinton’s ‘first black president’ – he exceeded expectations on this front. Only a minority president can fully redefine ‘we’. It really is a matter of taking the meaning of the word back. Only a female president can say ‘we’ and have all women finally feel viscerally that they are part of that group. Only a latino president can do the same. Sure, there will be people that choose to be on the outside. Certainly a lot of Trump supporters chose to exclude themselves from ‘we’ because they didn’t want to be in the same family as a black person, but that’s their problem and they’re never going to carry enough power to matter in the grand scheme. Sure, they may flip every legislature in the Confederacy, but eventually they’ll be overpowered.

    Democrats would themselves do better if they didn’t reduce minority concerns to economics. That was Sanders big mistake. I don’t think he believes that, but he’s so completely focused on economic issues that he kept offering up economic solutions to civil rights problems early on. Clinton does a rather good job – I think a lot of white Democrats need to learn from her. That’s been no small part of my much more enthusiastic support for her this time through.

  121. 121
    a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q) says:

    @Iowa Old Lady: That’s exactly it, and kind of insightful. He’s just common and crass, which isn’t suitable as part of their aesthetic

  122. 122
    Brachiator says:

    @Kay:

    Racing to the bottom at lightening speed! We just threw the tax return release rule out to make it easier for the real estate heir to win a trophy. What goes next?

    I don’t know. That a near moron like Sarah Palin was applauded by much of the GOP base was about as bottom as you could get. And Trump is the sad sequel to this idiocy at the presidential level.

    I think that Romney only released two years of tax information, and ultimately the media and his opponents just stopped demanding that he comply. And Trump supporters are so desperate to see their Great White Trump succeed that they will eagerly push aside any reasonable vetting of their candidate, lest it reveal anything unsavory or problematic.

  123. 123
    smith says:

    @🚸 Martin:

    Democrats would themselves do better if they didn’t reduce minority concerns to economics. That was Sanders big mistake.

    Exactly. Economic pain may exacerbate bigotry but it doesn’t explain it, and easing economic pain won’t necessarily do much to ease bigotry. Social injustice needs to be recognized and confronted head on. It has been bothering me to see how many pundits are satisfied to explain the racism and misogyny of Trump’s supporters by reference to their economic woes. They chose to blame those woes on minorities and women for a reason.

  124. 124
    D58826 says:

    @Kay: Yep. She can’t forgive Hillary for Benghazi since one of the casualties could have been her daughter who works for the state department. I never saw that kind of anger directed at Reagan after the Marine barracks explosion in Beirut and one of the casualties could have been her Marine corp husband. It was the other unit stationed in Jacksonville that was in Beirut. And sort of icing on the cake with regard to the non-existent stand down order in Benghazi were the rules of engagement in Beirut. The WH issued orders that the Marines weapons were not to be loaded so the barracks sentries had nothing to shoot with. The WH reasoning was they didn’t want a nervous Marine firing a round into a crowd and making a tense situation worse. It was a very defensible reason except it discounted the possibility of a terrorist attack. Can you imagine if Hillary or Obama had made that decision and had to defend it today..

  125. 125
    Chris says:

    @D58826:

    She can’t forgive Hillary for Benghazi since one of the casualties could have been her daughter who works for the state department.

    My dad worked for the State Department his entire life, including in places like Bosnia and Afghanistan, and I’m pretty positive he’d tell her to STFU.

  126. 126
    rikyrah says:

    @smith:

    It has been bothering me to see how many pundits are satisfied to explain the racism and misogyny of Trump’s supporters by reference to their economic woes. They chose to blame those woes on minorities and women for a reason.

    And won’t ask why these folks continue to vote against their economic best interests.

  127. 127
    St. A says:

    @Baud: Trumpty Dumpty.

  128. 128
    the Conster, la Citoyenne says:

    @rikyrah:

    They won’t ask because they know, which would mean saying The Word That Must Not Be Said – the word that describes the elephant in every room. It’s also the word that describes why Sanders lost all the way back on March 1 when he chose to dismiss the delegate rich South.

  129. 129
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Betty Cracker: As long as ratings are being delivered, they will do this.

    It’s all about the Tubmans.

  130. 130
    D58826 says:

    @🚸 Martin: I think in large measure Obama can do it so well is because he has walked the walk. It isn’t just talk for him when he refers to minority kids being followed by the security guard at a dept. store. He has actually experienced it. Hillary can directly relate to the issues that women feel.

    Not sure if it representative but it struck me as ‘odd’ when it happened. Was leaving the local WalMart in N. Carolina and the greeter stopped the family in front of me to check their cart and receipt. Every thing was ok so they were waved on thru. I had a small enclosed bag of something, triple A batteries maybe or a DVD. I was waved thru with a have a good day. I’m white, the family was African American and the nice grey haired lady was old enough to have been an adult in the Jim Crow era. Did it mean anything? Was it racial? I don’t know but it was odd. And I suspect that if an African American had been watching the scene they would have assumed the worst because it had happened to them or someone they know.

  131. 131
    D58826 says:

    @Chris: Diplomats know it’s a hazard of the business. Stevens wasn’t the first diplomat killed in the line of duty and he won’t be the last. It was just an emotional hook for my sister to hang her otherwise irrational hatred of Hillary on. I mean my sister is a conservative, its ok not to like Hillary’s policy positions. I didn’t think much of Reagans but I didn’t hold him personally responsible for what happened in Beirut. He made a decision as president and it turned out badly. Happens to all of them. Goes with the job

  132. 132
    Original Lee says:

    @JMG: Douglas Adams foretold Drumpf. It just took me a while to realize it.

    “If there’s anything more important than my ego around, I want it caught and shot now.” – Zaphod Beeblebrox

  133. 133
    Elie says:

    The Republicans thought that they could stimulate racism and hatred of “the other” without consequences to themselves. Those kind of atavistic impulses feed the part of the brain that enhances territoriality and paranoia and is very difficult to control when loosed. They bred the most recent Republican political generation to be ignorant — anti-science, anti-factual information — making it even less likely that they could be influenced with anything beyond just brute force. They cleared out all moderate, collaborative, consensus seeking voices — and so they have what they have — yes Trump but the people who support Trump are the underlying catastrophic pathology that has no easy solution for their party — or our country. Not all of them are olds, so will be popping up to make particularly state and local politics more harrowing. I sure don’t look forward to it…

  134. 134
    MCA1 says:

    @D58826: That’s exactly why, if I had unlimited funds, I would be bidding on this thing and ensuring that either I won or I bankrupted whatever psycho did win. To ensure none of those freaks get to hump that thing. I’d hold a very public melting down of the gun, and invite the press and anyone else who’d like to relieve the world of a firearm or two. If anyone were to ask whether I felt bad about enabling Zimmerman’s behavior, I would (a) note that all I did was outbid everyone else by a couple hundred thousand dollars, so it’s not like I presented him with a million when he would otherwise have gotten zero, and (b) asked them whether they think it makes any difference, as we all know full well Zimmerman’s a stupid fuck and will have lost whatever he makes in this auction within two months.

  135. 135
    MCA1 says:

    @Betty Cracker: Fine by me if that happens. I’m already at the level of exasperation with the media that I don’t care how insubstantial or petty or tangential or ridiculous the issue is that finally gets traction and starts the ball rolling. This mofo needs to be taken down by any means available. I don’t care at this point if we don’t get a thorough repudiation of every dangerous, bigoted, ignorant idea he’s put forward, and a national consensus of “WTF were we thinking on that guy?” going forward. I just want his candidacy strangled and left dead on the ground, no matter how. If this bologna is what it takes to start a wave turn from “Let’s make this a horserace” to “Actually, going on about how unfit for President the Republican candidate is is surprisingly decent business” I’m all for it.

  136. 136
    D58826 says:

    From a daily e-mail sent out by the WAPO – The Daily 202: Kentucky governor, not sold on Trump, embraces his role as a Clinton foil

    The Clintons have been surrounded by corruption their entire political lives,” the governor said. “I don’t use the term corruption lightly. … Go back to Arkansas and follow the trail. … Go back to Whitewater. Look at the foundations. Look at the pay to play.”

    What I still don’t understand is if the Clintons are that irredeemably evil and will to do anything to advance their evil schemes why are so many of these critics still alive. There are lists of people, mostly just everyday folks with no political power, that the Clintons have ‘murdered’. So why is it that power players like Ken Starr, Drudge, Larry Klayman, Sean Hannity, El Rushbo are still with us? Surely the Clintons have a nice spot a thousand miles off the coast where their enemies could be disappeared. The Clintons aren’t stupid, they learned that leaving Vince Fosters body on the grass in Washington was a mistake, Someone was sure to notice it.

  137. 137
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @D58826: Bill and Hillary are so evil that they know they can’t use the Tantalus Device on the big names, only on red shirts.

  138. 138
    NotMax says:

    *sigh*

    It’s so hard to get good sane help these days…

    :)

  139. 139
    J R in WV says:

    @D58826:

    And so after a $40 million investigation, by a Republican icon, K. Starr, esq. there was no indictment for ANY of all that corruption that “surrounded” the Clinton’s administration, first in Arkansas and then in Washington,DC.

    Probably the most expensive investigation ever conducted in the history of the world, especially if expressed in Dollars per Crime.

    I don’t exist in an environment where I am exposed to RWNJs, thank Dog, and I think if I was I would just have to print cards with “Name a crime with an indictment, if you can’t then shut up about corruption!”

    An indictment just needs an indication that someone committed a crime. It doesn’t take anything like beyond a reasonable doubt!

    And Hillary Clinton hasn’t even been close to indicted – never a real hint of illegality worth taking to a grand jury!

    Grrrr!

  140. 140
  141. 141
    AxelFoley says:

    @smith:

    And this, too.

  142. 142
    Anoniminous says:

    test 2

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