Cold Grey Pre-Dawn Open Thread: Trump and His ‘Base’ Rally Each Other

Dave Roth, at Deadspin:

Donald Trump believes that everything he says is made true by virtue of him having said it, and once he begins believing something he is incapable of not believing it. This is why he says things more than once. The challenge is figuring out how he says things for the first time.

So: Trump got it into his head that he had received a Michigan Man Of The Year Award, and despite some complicating factors—he didn’t, for one, and also such an award does not appear to exist—he has continued to bring it up whenever the mood strikes him. There’s a whole story around it, and as is his custom he tends to retell it with more additions of the words “very” and “sir” as the years go by. “I’ve been fighting for the car industry for years,” Trump said the first time he told the story, in Michigan and two days before the 2016 Presidential election. “I was honored five years ago. Man of the Year in Michigan. That was a great honor for me.” As Trump told and has since re-told the story, he was criticized for giving a speech in which he talked about “what Mexico and these other countries are doing to us. And especially what they’re doing to Michigan.” …

What is useful about this, and what would be beautiful about it if everything around it was not so luridly toxic, is how plain it all is. Trump is a being of pure reaction and grievance and avarice, and as such is never really very difficult to parse. When he lies about money it’s because he wants people to think he has more of it than he does; when he lies about golf it’s because he wants people to think he’s a better golfer than he is. Those lies tell you something about how Trump wants to be seen, but they’re incidental to the bigger questions of who and what he is. Stranger lies like the Michigan Man one reveal more about how he sees the world and understands his relationship to the other people in it, which is fundamentally as someone cleaning up at an endless televised awards show.

Most of the idiocies at the core of Trump’s being were created in the same way that pearls are—an irritant lodges itself in the spongy matter of his mind years ago, actively or passively, and then is worried into something bright and very hard. In this case, though, we can watch this accretive work happening in real time—some dumb speech, long forgotten, grows into a great honor bestowed by strangers who admired him, and then into a controversial stand for which he was criticized but for which he boldly refused to apologize. And now it is something he can bring up, whenever he is feeling under-appreciated or anxious or when nothing else will come. He stalls and sputters and his pale eyelids flutter and suddenly then there it is, glistening on the dais in front of him—that time that Charles Woodson called to concede victory in the Michigan Man Of The Year Award, a few years ago or whenever it was. “Sir,” the Heisman Trophy winner said through his tears to Donald Trump, “you deserve this more than anyone.” What a beautiful memory.

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To the Leningrad Station: Putin’s American Auxiliary Has An Official Comedian

Wonder how many other GOP turncoats will use the summer recess to slip away & join ol’ GriftGawdGuns’n’Gravytrain at Vlad’s summer resort? Dana Rorabacher? Devin Nunes?… Kevin McCarthy is too busy ‘acting’ as head to various department Trump wants destroyed. Doubt #MoscowMitch’s spouse will let him avoid his financial duties to the PLA. And Rand Paul is already supposed to be hiding out in Canada for ‘lung surgery’ consequent to losing the lawn-care argument with his neighbor…








Open Thread: Another Would-Be White Supremacist Foiled

Yes, this is a direly serious topic; apparently the would-be Avenger of Whiteness murdered his stepsister before failing to damage anything at the mosque beyond his own dignity (and the national sense of civic comity).

On the other hand, my first-gen Norwegian-American Spousal Unit has always insisted that modern Norwegians are a notoriously polite & non-violent people because the most violently-inclined members of the gene pool self-exported to other lands during the Viking period…

(I will defend the argument that mocking these would-be ‘race heroes’ is a better disincentive to potential followers than inflating their importance.)








Saturday Night Cheap Shots Open Thread: Kid Rock Is Trending & He Isn’t Even Dead…

… although he might’ve written his own professional obituary, if Molly Jong-Fast’s tweet is any indication. Turns out Rum-Tum-Sleazy is *not* one of the Jellicle Cats!

Ah, well, he’s still got his biggest fan…








Late Night After Dark Open Thread: Revenge of the Moon Tardigrades

As some reporters pointed out when that Guardian article appeared, the Moon had already been biologically compromised when the Apollo XI astronauts left behind bags of their… wastes. (Some exobiologist spoilsports claim there were probably tardigrades on the Moon already.) No doubt the would-be schlockmeisters are hard at work scripting already!

Here’s a potential opening scene…


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Big Horror climax: