Thursday Evening Open Thread: Carson’s Revenge

Ted Cruz should’ve thought twice before ratfvcking Dr. Carson in Iowa. Per the Washington Post:

MIAMI — Conservative favorite Ben Carson, who last week suspended his campaign for the Republican presidential nomination, plans to endorse Donald Trump on Friday morning, according to two people familiar with his thinking.

The endorsement, perhaps the most high-profile nod for Trump since New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie backed him, was finalized Thursday morning when Carson met with Trump at Mar-a-Lago, the luxury club owned by the Republican front-runner, the people said…

The support of Carson, a famed retired neurosurgeon and author, will likely give Trump a boost with GOP base voters and evangelicals, who embraced Carson’s campaign in its early days and fueled his brief rise to the top of Republican primary polls…

Appearing Thursday on Fox News radio, Carson hinted that he is “certainly leaning” toward a candidate and spoke highly of Trump.

“There’s two Donald Trumps. There’s the Donald Trump that you see on television and who gets out in front of big audiences, and there’s the Donald Trump behind the scenes,” he said. “They’re not the same person. One’s very much an entertainer, and one is actually a thinking individual.”…

Sure, Trump’s a dishonest, vain, philandering blowhard and hypocrite, but at least he’s not Ted Cruz!
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Apart from cheering (continuing) confusion among our enemies, what’s on the agenda for the evening?








Fundamental checks

Two data points that make me fairly confident of November even in an alternate universes with a mostly sane Republican party:

TPM:

Fifty-percent of Americans approve of Obama’s performance as the country’s chief executive, the highest level since May 2013. This is an uptick from his average approval rating during his seventh year in office, which was 46 percent, according to Gallup.

And the latest unemployment claims filing:

Initial US weekly unemployment claims fell by 18,000 over the week ending on 5 March to reach 259,000, according to the US Department of Labor

We’re at peace, there are jobs, and the incumbent President is reasonably popular.  Those are good fundamentals for any incumbent party.

Open Thread








Thursday Morning Open Thread: Same Stuff…

As BettyC so kindly pointed out, there was another Democratic debate last night, this time on Spanish-language Univision in cooperation with the Washington Post. New and intelligent questions were asked, and both candidates responded in an adult fashion, much to the disappointment of the Media Village Idiots.

Meanwhile, Trump’s campaign manager seems to have manhandled a female reporter from “the famously Trump-friendly Breitbart News… and her employers signally failed to support her. In case anyone needed a further clue as to Repub social values…
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Apart from that, what’s on the agenda for the day?

gop flasher convention wilkinson

(Signe Wilkinson via GoComics.com)







Wednesday Evening Open Thread: Farce, Another Concept Which ‘Conservatives’ Fail to Grasp

And then, per Mother Jones, “Ted Cruz Hits Miami with One Cruel Goal”:

… Florida is a winner-take-all state, and Cruz is not seen as a strong bet to beat Trump there. Under conventional calculations, there would not be much reason for Cruz to spend time and resources in the state. But Cruz apparently has another goal in mind: to take away votes from Rubio and crush the Florida senator’s last-ditch hopes to win his home state and remain a player in the presidential race.

At the rally, Cruz let his opening act handle most of the knife-work. “Floridians are abandoning Marco Rubio,” declared Miami-Dade GOP vice chair Manny Roman, a Cuban American who was censured by his local party committee last year for breaking ranks and endorsing Cruz. He rattled off the results of Tuesday’s elections and said, “I’m calling on Marco Rubio, especially after last night, to suspend his campaign and endorse Ted Cruz.” The crowd roared with delight…

Cruz announced the presence of a special guest: a former Republican presidential candidate with business experience and a long record of talking about foreign policy. No, it wasn’t Mitt Romney, but onetime Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina. Before dropping out of the race, Fiorina once observed that Cruz was someone who “says whatever he needs to say to get elected.” But that has since been forgotten. She was greeted warmly by the Cruz supporters…

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Apart from making yet another batch of popcorn, what’s on the agenda for the evening?








Shamwow. Did That Really Happen?

trump infomercial

Did you see the Trump products infomercial last night? After winning the MS and MI primaries, Trump called another mock-press conference at one of his tacky properties, which was again done up to look like a White House briefing room, complete with a phalanx of flags behind the podium.

But instead of talking about his plans for the country, Trump delivered a rambling, incoherent paean to his own wealth, business acumen and general awesomeness and bullied and abused journalists who asked him questions. It was a truly bizarre display.

Many observers have noted the event’s resemblance to a QVC segment because Trump aggressively touted his self-branded products throughout, even abandoning the podium at one point to go fetch a magazine to wave before the cameras and toss into the audience:

Trump attempted to portray each product as a going concern, but he appears to be lying or at best misleading people about some of them. As the staging crew was setting up the steak display, observers noticed that the steak packages were branded (ironically) “Bush Brothers.” The water company and magazine seem to be small vanity businesses that supply Trump’s own properties, not the public.

The winery is real enough; Trump drove a distressed property owner into foreclosure and picked up her award-winning vineyard for a fraction of its value. Then he gave it to one of his sons to run.

However, the products weren’t the real commodity being hawked. The whole surreal production was a long-form rebuttal to Mitt Romney’s recent denunciation of Trump as a fraud and failed businessman. Romney’s criticism clearly got under Trump’s paper-thin skin, prompting last night’s display of overweening self-regard.

During the Democratic debate the other night, Hillary Clinton said, “I think Donald Trump’s bigotry, his bullying, his bluster, are not going to wear well on the American people.” I think she’s right. Only the assembled lickspittles at the event and the very worst elements of the US population, i.e., the Republican Party base, could have found such a display attractive.

So Trump has telegraphed his weakness for all to see. He can’t leave any criticism of his own all-important self unanswered, and now we know that the response will be to hold a public exhibition on the ravages of narcissistic personality disorder. It’s shameful that such a character is on the verge of clinching the nomination of one of our two major parties, but here we are.