For weeks Trump supporters have been defending all of Trump’s most outrageous positions, often in my comment section. They scoffed when I pointed out that his positions were absurd. I’ve got some bad new for you guys; Trump’s starting to realize that I was right, his positions are loony:
Though for many weeks Trump has been telling crowds he would bring back the practice of waterboarding and other forms of torture that are “a hell of a lot worse,” he sent a statement to the Wall Street Journal on Friday promising to stay within the bounds of international law.
“[I would] use every legal power that I have to stop these terrorist enemies,” he said. “I do, however, understand that the United States is bound by laws and treaties and I will not order our military or other officials to violate those laws and will seek their advice on such matters. I will not order a military officer to disobey the law. It is clear that as president I will be bound by laws just like all Americans and I will meet those responsibilities.”
Less than 24 hours previously, Trump was on the debate stage in Detroit doubling down on his vows to kill civilian families members of terrorists, use waterboarding to get information out of prisoners, and bring back other forms of torture banned by international law. When debate moderators told him that former military and intelligence leaders have suggested that the U.S. military can and should refuse to carry out such orders if Trump becomes commander in chief, Trump responded: “They’re not going to refuse me…I’m a leader, I’ve always been a leader, I’ve never had any problem leading people. If I say do it, they’re going to do it.”
That’s not how his hero Putin would behave. What happened to the macho tough guy? I almost feel sorry for him, having to backtrack like a dog with its (undoubtedly very large) tail between its legs.
Perhaps if Trump’s supporters realize that he’s not going to kill the innocent children of terrorists, then there’s really no reason to vote for him. After all, weren’t those absurd positions and that tough guy image what drove up his poll numbers? I hope Trump doesn’t let us all down now.
PS. And since when does Trump care about legal niceties? Is he really going to back off from torture just because it’s illegal? If so, then how can we trust him to put tariffs on Mexican products? After all, even NAFTA critics think that plan is illegal:
“That 20% tax would be an absolutely straightforward violation of probably every trade law the United States has with any other country,” Joshua Meltzer, a fellow in global economy and development at the Brookings Institution, told msnbc.
“All of our existing agreements lock us into lower tariffs,” Claude Barfield, a scholar at the American Enterprise Institute who supports lowered trade barriers, told msnbc.
“Absolutely illegal,” Robert E. Scott, director of trade and manufacturing research at the Economic Policy Institute and a strong critic of past trade agreements like NAFTA, told msnbc when asked about Trump’s 20% import tax.
And then there is this:
“It’s absurd,” Scott said.
But I already told you that, didn’t I?
I keep having a nagging doubt that this is all a Pat Paulson-style scam. Surely we are going to wake up some morning and Trump will tell us that he was just kidding, and had no intention of being President. Or that he’s actually a Democrat, just pretending to be a fascist in order to get the GOP nomination, because he thought that’s what GOP voters wanted to hear. After all, isn’t Trump acting more like Paul Krugman’s vision of what Republicans are like, than an actual Republican? Even worse, might Krugman be right?
PPS. I checked the county results in Massachusetts, the state that gave Trump his largest victory. It turns out that he won by huge margins in even the most affluent counties of booming Massachusetts. Trust me, this is not about economic hardship. What’s the matter with Kansas? Apparently nothing. Those low income Kansas Republicans are far smarter than their Massachusetts compatriots.
Update: It’s happening:
Amid the sparring and free-flying insults of Thursday night’s Republican presidential debate, Donald J. Trump said he wanted to expand the number of visas available for highly skilled immigrants.
His remarks caused shock among some supporters who have seen Mr. Trump as a bulwark against an influx of foreigners taking American jobs.
Just as I predicted, he’s a Democrat pretending to be a fascist. There’s a reason he supported Hillary in the past. Picturing the “shock” among his supporters brings a big smile to my face. I’m going to receive great joy watching how this thing plays out.
What happened to the guy who tells the truth?
But on Thursday, responding to a question from Megyn Kelly of Fox News, one of the debate moderators, Mr. Trump said: “I’m changing. I’m changing. We need highly skilled people in this country
Got that, Trump supporters? You low-skilled unemployed factory workers don’t fit into Trump’s grand plans to Make America Great Again. Greatness comes from smart Asian immigrants, not American students who don’t do their homework.