How much longer can America rely on minority voters?

[There’s a certain type of right-winger that I don’t care for.  He (it’s usually a man) views some races as superior at governing.  There’s a certain type of left-winger I don’t care for.  She seems to blame almost all the world’s problems on white people, especially white men.  Given how my past political posts have occasionally been misinterpreted, I’d should probably encourage people to read the following post as an attempt to satirize both groups.]

America is a great country, but it does have one flaw—too many white voters.  In 2000 and 2004, white voters gave us George Bush.  In 2008, whites wanted Hillary Clinton, but blacks insured that the nomination went to the less militaristic Obama. Then in the general election, white voters opted for McCain (by a near landslide margin of 12%), but minority voters saved us from electing a President that never saw a Middle Eastern war that he didn’t want the US to enter.

This time around, Hillary was the less objectionable Democrat, running against a socialist with loony views on economics. White voters like Sanders, but the more sensible African-American community saved America from socialism.  (Polls showed Sanders easily beating Trump, had he gotten the nomination).

In the general election, it’s quite possible that whites will go for Trump, perhaps the most appalling buffoon to ever run for the presidency, at least since the Civil War. And let’s not even talk about white males, the dumbest of the dumb.  I’m once again counting on sensible African-Americans to bail us out in November. Fortunately, there is good news on that front:

Gov. Terry McAuliffe today signed an order restoring the voting rights of 206,000 ex-felons, a sweeping action the governor said was aimed at rectifying Virginia’s “long and sad history” of suppressing African-American voting power.

Virginia is a swing state, so this is really good news.  And here is more good news:

Garvey, vice president of the Harvard Republican Club, is one of many conservative college students dispirited with the presidential race because of the GOP’s controversial front-runner, Donald Trump. Now faced with the prospect of a Trump nomination, Garvey and other college Republicans say they may do the unthinkable in November: Vote for Hillary Clinton.

Whites seem to have appallingly bad judgment when it comes to presidential politics.  Fortunately, we are getting a steady flow of Hispanic and Asian and African immigrants, and so the electoral strength of my “problematic” ethnic group will become diluted over time.  I hope it happens fast, as we can’t keep relying on African American voters to bail us out every single election cycle.  This madness must end.  We need a “minority majority” now!

PS.  Donald Trump’s top aides now claim that he’s a fraud, that he has just been pretending to be a buffoon:

Donald Trump’s chief lieutenants told skeptical Republican leaders Thursday that the GOP front-runner has been “projecting an image” so far in the 2016 primary season and “the part that he’s been playing is now evolving” in a way that will improve his standing among general election voters.

PPS.  Say what you will about my over-the top trashing of Trump, but even Trump’s supporters cannot deny that when I say one of his political position is insane, it’s an excellent predictor of Trump abandoning the position.  Last week Trump was committed to paying off the national debt in 8 years.  Today he’s abandoned that commitment, as he will later abandon almost all of his other commitments.

Douglas Holtz-Eakin, a former director of the Congressional Budget Office and economic policy adviser to Republican John McCain’s 2008 presidential campaign, cast doubt on the viability of Trump’s old and new positions.

“Under current law, the debt will rise by 50 percent ($14 trillion to $21 trillion) by 2024,” he said in an e-mail. “He has proposed an enormous tax cut, promised to not touch either Social Security or Medicare, and is committed to bigger defense spending. His initial promise was preposterous and would not happen. This one is dubious as well.”

The best predictor of Trump’s positions once he becomes president is to consider his political views at the time when he was a big fan of Nancy Pelosi, only disappointed by her failure to impeach Bush.  In other words, Pelosi wasn’t left wing enough for Trump. Perhaps Rush, Fox News, et al, are secret socialists.


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123 Responses to “How much longer can America rely on minority voters?”

  1. Gravatar of Ray Lopez Ray Lopez
    24. April 2016 at 06:15

    Oh gawd, another jeremiad on Trump. If Trump wins, which is unlikely, it’s simply democracy in action along the lines of the 1824 Jackson election. Maybe Trump will do a Jackson and abolish the Fed? Won’t have much effect either way (money is endogenous, money is neutral).

  2. Gravatar of Philip Halverson Philip Halverson
    24. April 2016 at 08:38

    One can never be an ex-felon. He or she will always be a murderer, rapist or robber. I don’t want them living near me, nor do I want them voting as they have already demonstrated poor decision making and a lack of impulse control.

    The only thing missing in your rant was support for “Chicks with Pr*@ks” in the ladies’ room.

  3. Gravatar of Benoit Essiambre Benoit Essiambre
    24. April 2016 at 08:39

    lol this is gold.

  4. Gravatar of Daniel Daniel
    24. April 2016 at 09:48

    Wow, I agree with you! So why is your hatred of Trump so much more visible than your hatred of Clinton? Last time I asked this question, you just gave me three links where you argue against lefties in a very subdued and respectful manner (e.g. you didn’t call anyone a buffoon or idiot or moron). Something is inconsistent here.

    On a related point, I really hate it when people talk about the “demographic changes” and how it favors democrats. I view the democrats as being the party more likely to transfer my liberties to bureaucrats and drum up racial animosity along the way. I’m not alone in this. I believe many people with a conservative or libertarian bent feel as I do. So it’s kind of annoying when I (a brown man) is lumped together with the Dems. I expect that many conservatives/libertarians will subconsciously or consciously hate me and people who look like me more. Whether it’s right or wrong, it’s a typical emotional response. And news media focusing on the statistics that minorities overwhelmingly favor Dems only increases this emotional response. What do you expect when you constantly tell people, barely concealing your joy, “this group of people is replacing you AND they will vote against your interests”. Of course, the people in media can’t see that this is happening. They’re the Good Guys after all.

  5. Gravatar of Art Deco Art Deco
    24. April 2016 at 10:16

    Whites seem to have appallingly bad judgment when it comes to presidential politics.

    As far as I can recall, Barack Obama, John Kerry, and Bilge Clinton all lost the white vote. The first of these was a complete tyro whose entire time in office has been taken up with subordinating public policy to messaging items, passing out bon bons to Democratic Party clients, and harassing the opposition in various ways. Neither Obama nor Kerry had any executive experience at all when they sought the presidency. Kerry had had about a half-dozen years of unremarkable law practice under his belt. Obama didn’t even have that. He was a ticket-puncher at the University of Chicago Law School, producing not one scholarly article in 12 years of drawing a paycheck there, nor teaching any important courses.

    We could have had Al Gore, a man also bereft of executive experience but who had had five years as a newspaper reporter after graduating at the 20th percentile of his college class. For those of us who remember the sober policy wonk who had little time for the Democratic Party’s silly gimmicks (e.g. the nuclear freeze) or its truck with plain evil (abortion on demand), the 2000 election might be seen as the midpoint of the intellectual and characterological decline which set in around about 1987 and left him by age 62 facing the accusations of an irate hotel employee over his displays of lechery.

    As for Bilge Clinton, he’s a study in sociopathic personality disorder who has cheapened our public life more than any single individual. He was placed in office in spite of having been exposed as a serial adulterer who had managed without penalty to shirk his ROTC service obligations. His opponent was the incumbent President, a man with certain shortcomings but also a man who had never truly failed at anything he’d ever done (and he’d had tours in politics, in business, in the military, and in the Ivy League, not to mention a long and fruitful marriage) and also a man who loved something other than himself.

    And before that, white voters rejected Walter Mondale, a congenial man in many respects (and certainly preferable to who came after), but the living embodiment of the Democratic Party as a holding company of clanking special pleaders. (It’s here that Sumner will provide a link to an antique piece of silliness by Hendrick Hertzberg purporting to demonstrate that Mr. Reagan’s successes had nothing to do with anything Mr. Reagan did do or did not do).

    And before that, white voters rejected Jimmy Carter, having the appalling bad judgment to think that a man whose response to problems was to obsess over minutiae, wring his hands, and postpone decisions might just not be the man to continue holding the job.

    And before that, white voters rejected George McGovern. Very decent chap, he. See the contemporaneous remarks of Dr. Sidney Hook for what that was not enough at that time.

  6. Gravatar of E. Harding E. Harding
    24. April 2016 at 10:18

    “less militaristic”

    -Arguable; he hired Her as Secretary of State.

    “Fortunately, we are getting a steady flow of Hispanic and Asian and African immigrants, and so the electoral strength of my “problematic” ethnic group will become diluted over time.”

    I can’t really argue with you here, except that it’s kinda dangerous to have large ethnic groups that seem really bad at self-government to always automatically push the lever for only one party, even if that party occasionally happens to be the more sensible one, as in 2012.

    And Trump can still win the election by ignoring Virginia (too filled with felons and DC hacks, anyway), getting Kasich to be his VP, and moving on straight to Florida, Ohio, and Pennsylvania. Pennsylvania went for Romney harder than Colorado, New Hampshire, Iowa, Wisconsin, or Nevada, so it would have made a good clincher state for Trump, anyway (his other option would have been New Hampshire). Pennsylvania has enough electoral votes to cancel out Trump’s loss of Virginia.

    “In the general election, it’s quite possible that whites will go for Trump, perhaps the most appalling buffoon to ever run for the presidency, at least since the Civil War.”

    -Bryan?

    Personally, I think the franchise should be limited to White men between the ages of 18 and 30. Those were the most likely to favor Ron Paul in 2008 and 12 and seem the most connected to America’s future. Never trust anyone over 30.

    I also think Sanders would be a better candidate than Clinton, if only because he would appoint the same justices, have a better foreign policy (in some, but not all respects), and have a smaller chance of his bad proposals passing the House.

    Rush is for Cruz. Fox is also not exactly Trump-friendly territory, though O’Reilly is.

  7. Gravatar of E. Harding E. Harding
    24. April 2016 at 10:22

    @Ray Lopez

    -1824 was the corrupt bargain election. 1828 was the Jackson triumph election.

  8. Gravatar of Art Deco Art Deco
    24. April 2016 at 10:25

    So why is your hatred of Trump so much more visible than your hatred of Clinton?

    The bad imitation of Susan Sontag (“The White Race is the cancer of human history.”) is sort of grimly amusing. Faculty libertarians are adept at reminding you that their position in their social world is analogous to that of characters like Yevgeny Yevtuschenko and Andrei Vozensensky in Soviet Russia or Gerald Gottling or Josef Plojhar in central Europe – the parody opposition.

  9. Gravatar of ssumner ssumner
    24. April 2016 at 10:31

    Daniel, You said:

    “Last time I asked this question, you just gave me three links where you argue against lefties in a very subdued and respectful manner (e.g. you didn’t call anyone a buffoon or idiot or moron). Something is inconsistent here.”

    Because Trump is a buffoon and Hillary is not. I don’t know why that’s so hard to grasp. People focus too much on Trump’s position on this or that issue. It doesn’t matter, as he lies about everything. In the case of Hillary we actually do have some idea of what she believes. Not exactly, but we have some idea. The problem with Trump is not what he believes, it is what he is. He’s a demagogue and a buffoon. I make that point over and over again, but people don’t get. Well, 70% of people get it, but not some readers of my blog.

    Would you ask a three year old for their position on the national debt? No. Then why ask Trump? He doesn’t even know what it is.

    Art, Bush got us unto the Iraq War, and the Great Recession, and did a very poor job on holding down federal spending, even before the 2008 recession. Obama has many faults, but not comparable to Bush.

    Agree that McGovern was a decent chap.

    Harding, I’ve seen quotes of Rush defending Trump, and Fox News is becoming increasing pro-Trump. They know which way the wind blows.

  10. Gravatar of Art Deco Art Deco
    24. April 2016 at 10:33

    “Fortunately, we are getting a steady flow of Hispanic and Asian and African immigrants, and so the electoral strength of my “problematic” ethnic group will become diluted over time.”

    Try a thought experiment. Let’s suppose we arrest the arts and sciences faculty, strip each one of their citizenship, and deport them to Argentina. (The ones who bleat about ‘mass incarceration’ we’ll send to Brazil instead). Let’s add the teacher-training, social work, and law faculties while we’re at it. At what point would the marginal loss of skills finally balance the benefit of having fewer self-satisfied fools with no civic spirit?

  11. Gravatar of ssumner ssumner
    24. April 2016 at 10:36

    Art, I’d probably start with internet trolls, then gradually work up to college professors.

  12. Gravatar of E. Harding E. Harding
    24. April 2016 at 10:43

    “He doesn’t even know what it is.”

    -He’s a billionaire, with lots of houses and no drink. Of course he knows what it is.

    @ssumner

    -I thought the Fed got us into the Great Recession, not Bush. Obama’s faults in the Middle East are way worse than Bush’s, and the only reason he was better on domestic policy was because of a little thing called the House of Representatives. There was no territory held by the Islamic State when Obama came into office, and the Taliban and al-Qaeda were in a much worse position. Then Obama proceeded to slowly take control of the global jihadist movement beginning with his killing Bin Laden, overthrowing Gaddafi, and exit from Iraq.

    “He’s a demagogue and a buffoon.”

    -So what? Why should I care?

    “Because Trump is a buffoon and Hillary is not.”

    -Hillary still defends her Libya position. Trump at least denies it. What’s more buffoonish?

    “They know which way the wind blows.”

    -They certainly will after Trump’s nominated.

    Also, does Trump’s unexpected rapid crash and highly predictable resurgence in Betfair:
    https://electionbettingodds.com/GOP_chart_maxim_lott_john_stossel.html
    count as evidence against the efficient market hypothesis?

  13. Gravatar of Art Deco Art Deco
    24. April 2016 at 10:51

    Would you ask a three year old for their position on the national debt? No. Then why ask Trump? He doesn’t even know what it is.

    You continually show a lack of understanding of the distinction between your inelegant rhetorical flourishes and social reality.

    Art, Bush got us unto the Iraq War, and the Great Recession, and did a very poor job on holding down federal spending, even before the 2008 recession. Obama has many faults, but not comparable to Bush.

    What? I think the federal deficit in FY 2006-07 was on the order of 1.8% of gross domestic product. I seem to recall that figure quintupling later on. That aside, the Republican caucus in the House averaged about 226 members over the period running from 1995 to 2007 and getting anything done in the useless Senate requires a supermajority. You want to accomplish much, you need different institutions. Bush would have had to be much more confrontational to get anywheres with domestic programs and he had other irons in the fire.

    As for the Iraq War, politicians make real decisions, unlike professors (or thrift-shop mark down faculty like Obama). None of Bush’s critics bother with assessing the trilemma he actually faced or attempt any serious counter-factual (one suspects because his critics are poseurs who are serious about precisely nothing). In the eventuality, Gen. Petreus was quite successful at containing political violence in central Iraq and erasing it in the other nine provinces, an achievement the current administration threw away.

    I’m really fascinated with your implicit notion that the President could unilaterally re-write financial regulations to require exchange trading of credit default swaps, or take control of Citigroup’s mortgage lending business for the greater good, or steamroll the Fannie/Freddie fellator caucus in Congress.

    Obama has many faults, but not comparable to Bush.

    Tyler Cowen does a much better job of this fan dance than you do. It think it’s because he’s less emotional.

  14. Gravatar of Art Deco Art Deco
    24. April 2016 at 10:54

    Art, I’d probably start with internet trolls, then gradually work up to college professors.

    You might attempt to learn the distinction between critics and trolls before you do.

  15. Gravatar of E. Harding E. Harding
    24. April 2016 at 12:01

    “None of Bush’s critics bother with assessing the trilemma he actually faced or attempt any serious counter-factual (one suspects because his critics are poseurs who are serious about precisely nothing).”

    -ROTFL! Art, do you seriously believe this?

    “In the eventuality, Gen. Petreus was quite successful at containing political violence in central Iraq and erasing it in the other nine provinces, an achievement the current administration threw away.”

    -This is actually true.

  16. Gravatar of Scott Freelander Scott Freelander
    24. April 2016 at 13:27

    Scott,

    Well said. Perhaps you will like what former Reagan and H.W. Bush administration official Bruce Bartlett has to say about this:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=95OUeN15VnI

    Trump supporters, you should watch this too. Bartlett actually has some common sense.

  17. Gravatar of E. Harding E. Harding
    24. April 2016 at 14:10

    @Scott

    -What Bruce says about the Republican Party is ridiculous. Bartlett has no common sense. Trump is by far the best Republican candidate. Cruz’s positions are basically the same as Goldwater’s, who actually did go down in historic defeat. There’s no reason to expect the Donald to go down in historic defeat. Historic victory, maybe. And the Republican party stands for quite a lot, though it’s true a lot of its opposition is just pure anti-Obama partisanship. Obama is by no means a moderate; he is a progressive Democrat. Trump is a moderate Republican. Goldwater was a true conservative. Trump isn’t. Next time, if Trump loses, they’ll nominate Cruz. The Republican party is the Party of Cruz. It is not the party of Trump, who appeals best not to Republicans, but Republican-leaning independents. The Republican party has not been “dumbed-down”, voters from both parties, but, especially since 1996, the Republican party, have just always been susceptible to a Trump-like candidate. Remember Perot? Trump is a sort of Perot, but running within the GOP, and winning fantastically.

  18. Gravatar of Scott Freelander Scott Freelander
    24. April 2016 at 14:18

    Harding,

    You and other Trump supporters live in a bubble. The rest of us, conservative, liberal, moderate alike, just stand back and are aghast at what’s happening.

    Here’s more Bartlett for you:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f7k7QSeyQIM

  19. Gravatar of Lorenzo from Oz Lorenzo from Oz
    24. April 2016 at 14:19

    But why is a buffoon doing as well as he is? (Even though that is not as well as lots of folk seem to think.)

    There is something going on in the US that is not being captured by ordinary economic data.
    http://peterturchin.com/blog/2016/04/24/popular-immiseration-in-america-c-1980-c-2020/

  20. Gravatar of Art Deco Art Deco
    24. April 2016 at 14:57

    -ROTFL! Art, do you seriously believe this?

    Yes I do, because it is true.

  21. Gravatar of Scott Freelander Scott Freelander
    24. April 2016 at 14:59

    Lorenzo,

    George W. Bush was a moron, Sarah Palin was about as stupid as candidates get, and remember Dan Quayle? What is new about the Republicans supporting moronic candidates?

    Say what you will about Democrats, but at least the Democratic presidential nominees are intelligent people.

  22. Gravatar of Benjamin Cole Benjamin Cole
    24. April 2016 at 16:10

    I think Trump is actually Ronald Reagan-lite.

    Reagan was a protectionist, Trump is a protectionist. Reagan talked about a strong military, Trump talks about a strong military. Reagan ran large deficits, and Trump will likely run large deficits, while talking about balancing the budget.

    Trump says he likes low interest rates, and Reagan spent years bashing Volcker for lower interest rates. Reagan also maneuvered through the Plaza Accords to cheapen in the US dollar.

    White voters brought us Reagan and “made America great again!”

    Trump=Reagan?

    Much closer than Trump=Hitler.

    Pretty darn close!

  23. Gravatar of Art Deco Art Deco
    24. April 2016 at 16:11

    George W. Bush was a moron, Sarah Palin was about as stupid as candidates get,

    You also confound both your flourishes and your conceits with social reality.

  24. Gravatar of E. Harding E. Harding
    24. April 2016 at 16:41

    “You and other Trump supporters live in a bubble.”

    -Lessee. I voted for Trump in the primaries. As did the plurality of the voters in the Republican primary in my county. And my state. And the country as a whole. I live in a bubble? Maybe. But it’s not the kind of bubble you seem to be talking about. If Trump was genuinely unpopular among Republicans, he wouldn’t have won Florida. If Trump was genuinely unpopular among Republican-leaning independents, he wouldn’t have won Arkansas.

    Bartlett is some kind of leftist. Screw him. He has nothing but contempt for Real America. Is Clinton a fascist? What’s more fascist about Clinton than about Trump? In any case, Cruz is a more true representative of the Republican party, and is very similar to Goldwater.

    Art, why? I don’t think Al Gore would have even conceived of invading Iraq.

    @Benjamin Cole

    -Implausible. Reagan almost singlehandedly remade the Republican Party. That cannot be said of Trump, who is sui generis.

  25. Gravatar of Scott Freelander Scott Freelander
    24. April 2016 at 16:51

    Benjamin,

    I’m no Reagan fan, but Reagan had more decency in his pinkie than Trump has demonstrated in his entire public career.

    Just look at this short clip from an immigration debate between Reagan and H.W. Bush in 1980. Notice how each candidate is pro-immigration and actually show compassion for illegal immigrants. We know what happens to people like that in the Republican Party today. They end up like Jeb Bush.

  26. Gravatar of Scott Freelander Scott Freelander
    24. April 2016 at 16:52

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ixi9_cciy8w

  27. Gravatar of Scott Freelander Scott Freelander
    24. April 2016 at 17:00

    Art and Harding,

    Yes, you’re in a bubble, along with about 12-15 million other Americans. Trump’s hardcore support is only about 35% of the Republican Party, and roughly 26% of Americans identify as Republicans(all-time low in polling). That’s about 9% of the US population. And, as Scott has said, and Bruce Bartlett in the link below, it’s not so surprising that such a percentage of the population is willing to support what is essentially a great deal of fascism.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Iv9_aAHAFA4

  28. Gravatar of ssumner ssumner
    24. April 2016 at 17:05

    Harding, You said:

    “Also, does Trump’s unexpected rapid crash and highly predictable resurgence in Betfair:
    https://electionbettingodds.com/GOP_chart_maxim_lott_john_stossel.html
    count as evidence against the efficient market hypothesis?”

    No.

    Art, You have the flaw of taking people too seriously. You assume that when a billionaire like Trump says crazy things, like that he’ll pay off the national debt in 8 years, and that he’ll do so via “trade”, that there’s some sort of actual thought process going on in Trump’s mind. How could he be a billionaire, and the likely GOP nominee, if he was a complete moron, who knew nothing about public affairs? In contrast, I assume that if Trump sounds like a complete idiot, then he’s probably in fact a complete idiot.

    I do agree that Tyler Cowen is much better, so you are right about that.

    Harding, You said:

    “Trump is a moderate Republican.”

    Yes, he’s the normal Rockefeller Republican, who wants to ban muslims and start up the torture machine. And he likes Putin, just like those other moderate Republicans. A better description would be “Trump is from the fascist wing of the Democratic Party, masquerading as a Republican, for the same reason that ambitious business types who want to become governor of Massachusetts pretend to be Republicans; it’s easier to get the nomination.”

    Scott, I’ll give you Palin, but neither Bush nor Quayle would have claimed that they would pay off the national debt in 8 years, through “trade”.

    Ben, We know what Reagan believed. You have no idea what Trump believes on any given issue. Not a single one. And if you think what he says is what he believes, then please tell me why he changes his views every 5 minutes. Reagan occasionally changed his views, but not to the ridiculous extent that Trump does. He’s going to pay off the national debt, and then he isn’t? That’s a massive change in economic policy, in 24 hours. Why? Doesn’t he owe us an explanation?

    Why do you take anything Trump says seriously? Why not just assume he’s a con man? I really don’t get the appeal of Trump. What if Trump had said that he’d pay off the national debt in 8 years “through use of the Ouija Board” Would you still believe Trump? How is paying off the national debt in 8 years through trade any different from doing so with the Ouija Board?

    Either Trump is a troll, just teasing us, or he’s a moron, there really aren’t any other plausible options. Either way, he should not be elected.

  29. Gravatar of Art Deco Art Deco
    24. April 2016 at 17:13

    Art, You have the flaw of taking people too seriously.

    No, you have the flaw of thinking you’ve any talent for humor. You cannot claim ‘satire’ if you’re consistently not amusing. And continually taking the clown nose off and putting it back on again is not clever parrying, it’s a lame refusal to take responsibility for what you’ve said. There’s no point to hyperbole if it’s not illustrative, and your’s just never is.

    Scott Freelander, whether I live in a bubble or not, it is almost never illuminating of anything but the speaker’s asininity to call perfectly functional adults ‘morons’ or ‘stupidest’ blah blah blah. The two individuals in question have run (variously) state governments, local governments, and businesses, as well as their own households. It’s a common vice in the world in which we live to confound intelligence with articulateness or Ivy League cadences. Not much excuse for that.

  30. Gravatar of Art Deco Art Deco
    24. April 2016 at 17:20

    I don’t think Al Gore would have even conceived of invading Iraq.

    Removing the government of Iraq was aspirational public policy from 1998 forward and George Bush obtained authorizations from a fat bloc of Democrats in Congress for it (and nearly all Democrats in Congress for Afghanistan). Gore has never been Jeanette Rankin or Wayne Morse; during the 1980s he was (with Dante Fascell and Steven Solarz) one of the leading critics of modal opinion on foreign affairs within the Democratic Party, which opinion fancied that ‘negotiations’ have a life of their own and international confabs were worth something. Run down the list of competitive Democratic presidential candidates from the period running from 1980 to 2000; the ones most likely to have asked Congress for that resolution would be A. Gore.

  31. Gravatar of Art Deco Art Deco
    24. April 2016 at 17:32

    Bartlett is some kind of leftist. Screw him.

    No, Bartlett needs to sell himself. He was an employee of the National Center for Policy Analysis. Most of those on the staff there there are working academics or emeriti who ultimately have other sources of income and some street cred. They also employed people whose duties were broadly in the realm of public persuasion, including Bartlett. Bartlett had a patronage job in the Treasury department 30 years ago but has no academic background in economics. The National Center fired him after he published a polemical book. His claim is that he’s a punished dissident (and I think he has a secondary claim about donor pressure). The National Center’s claim is they do not produce polemical books purporting to diagnose the motives of politicians and that he misrepresented his project to his superiors (who supposedly relieved him of certain tasks so he could finish the book). Fundamentally, though, he needed them. They didn’t need him.

    He was out of work at age 53 and needed a new product line; apparently being a Republican whose signature is attacking Republicans is good for enough payola to make rent.

  32. Gravatar of Scott Freelander Scott Freelander
    24. April 2016 at 17:52

    scott,

    It’s obviously not an important point, and Bush and Quayle certainly had some decency Trump does not, but did Bush or Quayle strike you as intelligent? I’ll grant they were more intelligent than Palin or Michelle Bachmann, but Bush is a guy who found out well after he decided to invade Iraq that there were different sects of the Muslim faith in Iraq, for example.

    Also, no I don’t think Bush would say he was going to balance the budget through protectionism, but he did sign some protectionist bills into law. I wouldn’t be surprised if, to the degree he was right on economic matters, that it was largely the result of listening to his father and little brother, who I’m guessing might actually know what comparative advantage is.

  33. Gravatar of Scott Freelander Scott Freelander
    24. April 2016 at 17:59

    Bartlett was a lieutenant in the Reagan revolution, so its rich for some presumably relative nobody to question his conservative bona fides. He is not a Democrat and considers himself a moderate conservative by today’s standards. He has also said that Obama is moderate-to-moderate conservative, which to anyone outside of the Trump/teabagger bubble, seems a very reasonable claim. Obama would certainly be considered conservative in any other developed country I can think of.

  34. Gravatar of Benjamin Cole Benjamin Cole
    24. April 2016 at 18:00

    Scotts Freelander and Sumner: Okay, you have brow-beaten me into my fallback position: I do not think Bernie Sanders is so bad. He seems like a nice guy and we might actually get out of the Middle East for a change.

    Keep in mind, candidate Ted Cruz has also made various statements that would burn the hair my head if I had any left.

    Making sand glow in the dark? Raising interest rates to cut the federal deficit? For the gold standard or not for the gold standard? Lionizing Trump for his immigration and trade policies?

  35. Gravatar of Steve Steve
    24. April 2016 at 18:11

    Texas is already majority minority, which must explain its success. Once the white man stopped regulating jobs out of existence, the minorities became right-wingers.

  36. Gravatar of Scott Freelander Scott Freelander
    24. April 2016 at 18:26

    Benjamin,

    I agree, there’s no reason to believe Sanders is a bad guy, but he really doesn’t seem to understand economics at all. He seems to have good intentions, which matters to me, but I think many of his ideas address some real problems in unrealistic ways. For example, I suspect the biggest cause of the rapid rise in college education costs may be government subsidization. 100% subsidization would just make that problem worse.

    In contrast, I favor a small, minimum guaranteed income, a sizable hourly wage subsidy, and the elimination of all other programs to help the poor, except I’d ensure 100% of people can access medical care. If we keep the income tax, I like Friedman’s negative income tax, but unlike him, I’d index it to inflation.

    So, let people pay for college out of their earnings/general subsidy, rather than creating particular incentives for some to go to college, for example.

  37. Gravatar of Steve Steve
    24. April 2016 at 18:35

    “Virginia is a swing state”

    Meh, only if Kasich is the nominee.

    My model has Cruz losing the pop vote by 4, Virginia by 10, and New York by 40, but still getting to 250 or so electoral votes. Hillary will already be at her victory party when she gets the call about counting hanging chads.

    I’m looking forward to the most sectionally divided election of my lifetime (Hillary-Cruz), but that’s a given if your platform is taking an ax to government.

  38. Gravatar of E. Harding E. Harding
    24. April 2016 at 18:36

    “Gore has never been Jeanette Rankin or Wayne Morse”

    -That made me chuckle. I know. Gore would have certainly invaded Afghanistan. But Iraq? I don’t think he ever expressed support for that.

    On Bartlett, same difference.

    “Yes, he’s the normal Rockefeller Republican,”

    -There are no such things any more.

    “who wants to ban muslims and start up the torture machine.”

    -Banning Muslims is a sensible policy given what’s going on in Europe. Also populist and un-PC, but not outside the boundaries of moderate Republicanism (if such a thing exists). Starting up the torture machine was a Bush policy, and he was a moderate Republican.

    And banning Muslims is a Democratic policy? Every other Presidential candidate supports every actual fascist-like policy supported by some Democrats Trump favors. And being tough on illegal immigration is a Democratic policy? It’s certainly not a fascist one.

    “Notice how each candidate is pro-immigration and actually show compassion for illegal immigrants.”

    -Reagan was a RINO on some issues. Yes, I know.

    “And he likes Putin, just like those other moderate Republicans.”

    -That’s called being sensible, and isn’t something that can be placed on the left-right spectrum.

    “Either way, he should not be elected.”

    -It’s not that Trump is a fantastic candidate. It’s that his opponents haven’t offered a credible alternative. Why don’t you understand that?

    “He has also said that Obama is moderate-to-moderate conservative, which to anyone outside of the Trump/teabagger bubble, seems a very reasonable claim.”

    -Actually, it’s frickin’ ridiculous, and shows you’re to the Left of Bernie Sanders.

    Legacy admission is a wonderful thing because it means even if you’re not as qualified as others you’re going to get that slight advantage.

    -A typical Obama appointee.

    Also, Trump got more votes than Clinton in New Hampshire. Bubble?

    “I do agree that Tyler Cowen is much better, so you are right about that.”

    -You are wrong.

    Bernie is wearing Hillary down in the primaries, but he’s weak. And even despite his weakness, he’s gaining on her. That should spell trouble for Hillary come the general election. I have made predictions of the state-by-state general election results here:

    https://goo.gl/g83zM9

    Trump, unlike Cruz, is likely to weaken the partisan divide, not strengthen it. There’s no way Cruz wins super-atheist New Hampshire, for instance. Trump might.

  39. Gravatar of Scott Freelander Scott Freelander
    24. April 2016 at 19:08

    Harding,

    Banning Muslims is a sensible policy? It’s ludicrous on its face. Aside from being unconstitutional, how would one even reliably identify Muslims who didn’t admit to being Muslim?

  40. Gravatar of Steve Steve
    24. April 2016 at 19:11

    “Trump, unlike Cruz, is likely to weaken the partisan divide,”

    Trump can flatten the map, e.g., by losing Utah and New Hampshire by 5 points apiece.

    The partisan divide is structural though. Cruz would expose that by pitting the anti-government candidate against the pro-corruption candidate.

    The partisan divide only goes away when the east coast elites stop telling everyone else how to live. Maybe everyone will reach a place of mutual love and understanding someday. Unlikely though, because east coast elites be elite.

  41. Gravatar of Benjamin Cole Benjamin Cole
    24. April 2016 at 19:50

    Scott Freelander–I largely agree with you.

    And remember to unzone property and decriminalize push-cart vending. Millions of new jobs and businesses would open up.

  42. Gravatar of E. Harding E. Harding
    24. April 2016 at 19:52

    “Aside from being unconstitutional”

    -It’s not. It’s perfectly constitutional, unless you’re willing to say all immigration restrictions are unconstitutional because they’re not explicitly mentioned in the Constitution. Think a little.

    How do Americans identify any kind of asylum seekers claiming religious persecution?

    “Trump can flatten the map, e.g., by losing Utah and New Hampshire by 5 points apiece.”

    No.

    Trump won more primary votes than Clinton in Utah.

    Republicans won more primary votes than Democrats in Utah.

    Same for New Hampshire. Same for Ohio (though lots of Bernie supporters voted for Kasich there because they hate Trump more than Hillary).

    https://goo.gl/XGRWH5

    Are you going to argue Trump will lose Louisiana? Bill Clinton got a majority there in 1996 and Trump won fewer primary votes than Clinton there (and so did Republicans). Despite all this, I just can’t see Louisiana swinging Clinton. More likely, the bizarre result is due to the closed primary.

    Cruz is a conservative Republican, and is likely to strengthen the geographic partisan divide to a greater degree than Romney. He might have won the general election if VA’s governor hadn’t unleashed the felon vote and Cruz picked Kasich as VP.

  43. Gravatar of Scott Freelander Scott Freelander
    24. April 2016 at 19:59

    Benjamin,

    Yes, it’s funny that in many parts of Europe even, it’s much easier in some ways to set up sidewalk businesses. I just heard Charles Koch today talking about how unfairly the laws are written to keep down competition from startups.

  44. Gravatar of Scott Freelander Scott Freelander
    24. April 2016 at 20:02

    Harding,

    Wow, you’re really, really out there, but what else should I expect from a Trumpista? Religious tests of any kind violate the constitution.

  45. Gravatar of E. Harding E. Harding
    24. April 2016 at 20:20

    “Religious tests of any kind violate the constitution.”

    -Well, that’s false on its face. But, go ahead. Show a single Supreme Court case that demonstrates your point without sounding like an ignoramus. Last time I heard, immigrants weren’t Federal employees.

    “Wow, you’re really, really out there”

    -Of course I would be, given that you’re to the left of well over 80% of Americans and I’m to the right of well over 80%.

  46. Gravatar of Steve Steve
    24. April 2016 at 20:31

    Harding,

    I’m assuming Trump embraces BernieCare and gay marriage in order to compete in NH. Then what happens when an unreliable liberal buffoon tries to run in Utah?

    As it stands now, Trump would get blown out of the water in NH.

    How is he going to win? By taking different positions in each of the 50 states, and hoping no one notices?

    At some point you need actual policies, not a personality that only helps in states Trump could never win.

    And the media is currently running for Trump, because Cruz is the alternative. Once Clinton becomes the alternative, the media will run against Trump.

  47. Gravatar of Steve Steve
    24. April 2016 at 20:56

    FYI, this is how the Bronx district 15 (Yankee stadium) voted:

    95772 Clinton
    41114 Sanders
    4261 Trump
    1033 Kasich
    1022 Cruz

    Three delegates for Trump, whose personality matches the stereotypical Yankees fan! Trump gonna turn NY red, lol.

  48. Gravatar of Benjamin Cole Benjamin Cole
    24. April 2016 at 21:50

    Side note to Scott Sumner:

    “The best predictor of Trump’s positions once he becomes president is to consider his political views at the time when he was a big fan of Nancy Pelosi, only disappointed by her failure to impeach Bush.”==Scott Sumner.

    I do not see what was wrong with impeaching the-then George Bush.

    Egads, on Bush’s watch we got entangled in not one but two fantastically expensive (but unwinnable) wars, and our financial system collapsed. The Dow got cut in half. Bush also spearheaded Medicare Part D, which places more liabilities onto taxpayers than the entire Social Security program. “National security” spending exploded, despite a nearly-complete lack of military adversaries.

    On impeaching and then hopefully convicting Bush, Trump was right, for perfectly good a-political reasons

    Sheesh, a U.S. President was once impeached to investigate his private sex life. We can’t impeach Bush for colossal, incredibly expensive and dangerous incompetence?

    Unrelated PS: How is it taxpayers cough up $1 trillion a year to fund “national security,” and our intelligence agencies cannot unlock an off-the-shelf iPhone?

    The KGB has just ordered a gross of iPhones to upgrade their their secrecy….

  49. Gravatar of Steve Steve
    24. April 2016 at 23:18

    We are going to have a choice between Cis-Hillary and Trans-Hillary if Trump wins the nomination.

    Trump has taken almost every position on almost every issue. He earns an A+ in Con-Artist 101, the first A of his life. The trick of a Con-Artist is that the Mark projects his Hopes and Dreams upon the Con Artist. The Mark remembers the times when the Con Artist validated the Mark, and forgets the times when the Con Artist contradicted himself. Thus, the Con Artist becomes all things to all people.

    Nobody really knows what Trump believes. Will he bring peace to the mid-east, or bomb the shit out of them and take their oil? Well, he will do a different thing for each and every voter!!!

    The only issue I believe Trump on, is that he wants to abolish the estate tax. He loves his kids! Maybe he will pick Ivanka as VP, so that he can lust after his VP the way McCain lusted after Palin.

  50. Gravatar of Steve Steve
    24. April 2016 at 23:46

    Look, I was Trump-curious for a while. At first it seemed plausible that Trump could be policy heterodox in a new and exciting way, like pro-health care but anti-open borders.

    The problem is that Trump continues to take more and more different sides of the same issue. He’s covered most of them, even supporting tax increases last week.

    That’s the strategy of a Con Man. All things to all people, whatever you need me to be, I will be, just for you, and for nobody else. Sad!

  51. Gravatar of Scott Freelander Scott Freelander
    25. April 2016 at 00:45

    Benjamin,

    The the ICC should have jurisdiction over American politicians. We pushed other countries to submit to its jurisdiction, but we refuse. Bush and his henchmen should be handed over for many things that went on in Guantanamo Bay. The Supreme Court ruled that the Geneva Convention was rule of law, and it was clearly violated. After that ruling, Congress quickly passed a law that Bush signed granting themselves immunity.

  52. Gravatar of E. Harding E. Harding
    25. April 2016 at 02:05

    “Will he bring peace to the mid-east, or bomb the shit out of them and take their oil?”

    -Both.

    Yes, the inconsistency is a problem. But what are Utahns going to do? They’re less likely to vote for Hillary than they were for Bill.

    “As it stands now, Trump would get blown out of the water in NH.”

    -He and the GOP won more primary votes there than Climton and dems.

    Trump will embrace same-sex marriage (Utah is a gay-friendly state), but not Berniecare.

  53. Gravatar of Christian List Christian List
    25. April 2016 at 02:58

    @Steve
    “That’s the strategy of a Con Man.”

    I hear this narrative all the time but a few things don’t fit in this narrative at all. A real con man usually does not want to become famous. He tries to stay as low key as possible. A real con man is not in business for over 40 years. A real con man has a lot of problems with former friends and former employees.

    That’s not really the case with Trump. All his former friends and former employees the media dug up so far speak in a surprisingly positive way of Trump. And the media is really trying to find former friends that totally hate him now. You can be very assure of that. They are trying 24 hours a day.

    I just read an interview with Joe Isidori, one of his former cooks. He does not comment on Trump’s ambition in politics, he seems a bit surprised by that. But regarding his former work he is higly enthusiastic. He even says that Trump was “like a father” to him. Even though he was just one of many cooks for Trump years ago, he is still so enthusiastic.

  54. Gravatar of Christian List Christian List
    25. April 2016 at 03:03

    @Steve
    “FYI, this is how the Bronx district 15 (Yankee stadium) voted.”

    I think you can explain all this with simple economic rationales and backgrounds. Not with traits of characters like ssumner and others do.

  55. Gravatar of Christian List Christian List
    25. April 2016 at 03:09

    I don’t find the reasoning by ssumner in this post too convincing. The narrative goes a bit like this:

    When Trump was really extreme people like ssumner said: “Well look he is way too extreme”. Now Trump is backpedaling heavily and they say: “Well oh gosh, you can’t elect him now either, he’s a flip-flopper, he’s a democrat or worse a socialist.”

    That’s a bit dishonest but okay.

    Trump is in a state in which he can not convince enough new people anymore no matter what he says. This might actually kill him off.

  56. Gravatar of Ben J Ben J
    25. April 2016 at 03:51

    Art, your hypocrisy is remarkable:

    “Scott Freelander, whether I live in a bubble or not, it is almost never illuminating of anything but the speaker’s asininity to call perfectly functional adults ‘morons’ or ‘stupidest’ blah blah blah.”

    Tut-tutting about people being asinine when you’re using nicknames like “Bilge Clinton” and “Hellary”. I suppose I should have expected as much from an ancient, vitriolic partisan like yourself. But try to be less obvious next time!

    Oh, what would I know. I’m just a communist socialist democratic left-wing ivy league college professor radical activist etc etc

  57. Gravatar of Steve Steve
    25. April 2016 at 04:19

    “But what are Utahns going to do?”

    That is the very bad bet Trumpers are making. If you present conservatives with two liberals on the ballot, they will vote for the lesser evil liberal (and actually conclude that Trump is the lesser evil).

    The much more likely outcome is conservatives don’t show up, or vote 3rd party, and Trump gets blown out.

  58. Gravatar of Mike Sax Mike Sax
    25. April 2016 at 04:25

    Wow! Nothing much to say but ‘Your welcome.’ As a New Yorker it gave me great pleasure to vote against that charlatan, Bernie Sanders.

    Not surprising he lost in a landslide with his promise to destroy the entire banking industry-kind of an important industry in NY.

    I guess I will belatedly say your welcome for voting Obama in 2008 and against Bush twice.

  59. Gravatar of Mike Sax Mike Sax
    25. April 2016 at 04:29

    Anyone who wants to grasp the difference between the parties just look at two people: Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders.

    The real rank and file Dems-diverse, the people of color, etc-had no use for Bernie. Trump is literally eating the GOP.

    It’s the difference between a reasonably healthy political party and what the GOP has become

  60. Gravatar of Steve Steve
    25. April 2016 at 04:42

    “All his former friends and former employees the media dug up so far”

    Therein is the rub. “So far” My understanding is Trump often has employees sign non-disclosure agreements and then sues the crap out of anyone who dares speak up. I imagine that’s how he would run the country with DOJ and IRS in tow, too.

    “A real con man usually does not want to become famous.”

    Why? He isn’t breaking the law. Lots of people with narcissistic personality disorder want adulation, and will say anything to get it.

    Trump’s seemingly random policy positions may very well have a central tendency, of social liberalism, economic opportunism, and white nationalism. Judging from his wives, Make America Czech Again.

    The time to be Trump-curious was last year, though. At this point, I don’t know how you can vote for someone who still can’t articulate any governing principles, other than by projecting your hopes and dreams upon him as I explained above.

  61. Gravatar of Derivs Derivs
    25. April 2016 at 05:07

    “My understanding is Trump often has employees sign non-disclosure agreements and then sues the crap out of anyone who dares speak up.”

    When your business is your brand, and your brand is your name, seems rather standard course of doing business. I won’t say nothin about nothin about anywhere I ever worked for exactly the same reason. I’ve VERY WILLINGLY signed a whole bunch of those agreements.

  62. Gravatar of Patrick R. Sullivan Patrick R. Sullivan
    25. April 2016 at 05:22

    ‘The real rank and file Dems-diverse, the people of color, etc-had no use for Bernie. Trump is literally eating the GOP.’

    Bernie has received almost 42% of the votes cast in Democrat primaries. Trump has gotten about 38% of Republican votes.

  63. Gravatar of ssumner ssumner
    25. April 2016 at 05:34

    Scott, Great Reagan/Bush clip, I’ll put that in a post.

    Bush clearly wasn’t as smart as Clinton, but he did not say the idiotic things that Trump says. That’s a whole new level of stupidity.

    Trump’s comments are so stupid they seem like jokes, like he is auditioning for The Onion. And yet his supporters take him seriously.

    You said:

    “Obama is moderate-to-moderate conservative, which to anyone outside of the Trump/teabagger bubble, seems a very reasonable claim.”

    Not to me. I think people confuse how Obama has governed with what he is. The GOP has hemmed in in, so he hasn’t done much socialism. But he has a strong preference for much more government involvement in the economy, and much more redistribution. He just can’t get it through Congress. If Obama really were center-right then Bill Clinton would have to be an ultra-conservative. Imagine Obama doing the crime bill, welfare reform, cutting the cap gains rate, deregulating banks, etc. No way is Obama center-right.

    Steve, You said:

    “The problem is that Trump continues to take more and more different sides of the same issue. He’s covered most of them, even supporting tax increases last week.
    That’s the strategy of a Con Man. All things to all people, whatever you need me to be, I will be, just for you, and for nobody else. Sad!”

    It’s really sad to see so many otherwise intelligent adults who are fooled by such an obvious con man. It couldn’t be more obvious if he had “con man” tattooed on his forehead. But some people simple can’t see it. How can they be so blind?

    Christian, You said:

    “he’s a democrat or worse a socialist.””

    I said he’s a “fascist Democrat” not a “Democrat” If I had thought he was a Democrat I wouldn’t have done a single post criticizing him.

    Ben J, Yes that’s Art. Excellent comment.

  64. Gravatar of E. Harding E. Harding
    25. April 2016 at 06:02

    “It’s really sad to see so many otherwise intelligent adults who are fooled by such an obvious con man.”

    -Yeah; Trump regularly lies and is inconsistent. So what? How is this any worse than what Kasich or Cruz have on offer? Trump at least offers the chance of expelling the illegals, keeping out new Muslim arrivals, better relations with Russia and Cuba, a restoration of Assad rule over Syria, and an end to the Islamic State in Libya. Trump is the worst presidential candidate, except for all the others. How can you not see it?

    @Patrick

    -Trump had three major competitors. Sanders had one.

    “The much more likely outcome is conservatives don’t show up, or vote 3rd party, and Trump gets blown out.”

    -That would require a third-party Perot. But Trump is today’s Perot. Utah is so conservative, even Bush I and McCain couldn’t lose it. And Utah voted overwhelmingly against McCain in the primaries.

    ssumner, what’s a fascist democrat? Name one other example of such a beast.

  65. Gravatar of Urstoff Urstoff
    25. April 2016 at 13:22

    I love it. Please more posts trolling Trumpalos.

  66. Gravatar of Justin Irving Justin Irving
    25. April 2016 at 13:58

    I couldn’t care less about Trump’s position on the national debt or trade. The question is “are we going to become like western Europe?” and I don’t mean socialism. Are we going to allow an antagonistic civilization to colonize our territory? Trump called Brussels a disaster early on, he will get this question right. Some questions are bigger than economics.

  67. Gravatar of Mike Sax Mike Sax
    25. April 2016 at 14:14

    Yes, Patrick but 38% is a lot more than the other GOP candidates have. That’s how elections work, the candidate who gets the most votes win.

    Bernie’s 42% is not so much when she has 58%. But 38% is rather good compared with what Cruz and Kasich have. Kasich still has fewer votes/delegates than Rubio six weeks later.

    Or as Trump is now calling him ‘1 and 38 John Kasich’

  68. Gravatar of Art Deco Art Deco
    25. April 2016 at 16:37

    The real rank and file Dems-diverse, the people of color, etc-had no use for Bernie.

    Strange as it may seem to you, Mike Sax, votes do not count double or carry magic dust with them just because the voter is black or Puerto Rican.

  69. Gravatar of Art Deco Art Deco
    25. April 2016 at 16:39

    Oh, what would I know. I’m just a communist socialist democratic left-wing ivy league college professor radical activist etc etc

    And a purveyor of red herrings, too. Why does this not surprise me?

  70. Gravatar of Art Deco Art Deco
    25. April 2016 at 16:41

    Benjamin,

    The the ICC should have jurisdiction over American politicians. We pushed other countries to submit to its jurisdiction, but we refuse. Bush and his henchmen should be handed over for many things that went on in Guantanamo Bay.

    You really need to stop pretending to have a decent bone in your body.

  71. Gravatar of Art Deco Art Deco
    25. April 2016 at 16:43

    Unrelated PS: How is it taxpayers cough up $1 trillion a year to fund “national security,” and our intelligence agencies cannot unlock an off-the-shelf iPhone?

    You keep peddling this phony meme. You should stop it.

  72. Gravatar of Art Deco Art Deco
    25. April 2016 at 16:44

    Wow, you’re really, really out there, but what else should I expect from a Trumpista? Religious tests of any kind violate the constitution.

    No, religious tests for the holding of public office violate the Constitution.

  73. Gravatar of Art Deco Art Deco
    25. April 2016 at 16:47

    Banning Muslims is a sensible policy? It’s ludicrous on its face. Aside from being unconstitutional,

    The appellate courts now offer us I-say-its-spinach-jurisprudence.

    In a political culture where judges are not brazen liars, there is no constitutional right to settle in the United States that may be invoked by a resident of Pakistan.

  74. Gravatar of Art Deco Art Deco
    25. April 2016 at 16:53

    Bartlett was a lieutenant in the Reagan revolution,

    Yeah, well a job he had 30 years ago isn’t helping him meet his mortgage payments.

    so its rich for some presumably relative nobody to question his conservative bona fides.

    If he wanted me nobody to pay attention to him, he’d have landed a job elsewhere and written about public policy in his off hours. He’d have also crafted a credible perspective on the day’s issues and not read like some sorosphere press agent.

  75. Gravatar of Art Deco Art Deco
    25. April 2016 at 17:05

    Bush or Quayle strike you as intelligent? I’ll grant they were more intelligent than Palin or Michelle Bachmann, but Bush is a guy who found out well after he decided to invade Iraq that there were different sects of the Muslim faith in Iraq, for example.

    You could not be more self-indicting.

    You can read the psychometrics-obsessed Steve Sailer on Bush’s scores on the Air Force Qualifying Test. Bush had an ordinary professional man’s scores, as did John Kerry. Bush slogged through the Ivy League and spent more than 20 years in various executive positions. That’s adequately intelligent to anyone not taken in by surface phenomena.

    As for Quayle, he passed the Indiana bar exam on his first attempt. He’s not an idiot. He’s a banal, ordinary man who’s not interested in much other than his avocations. Contrary to newspaper fantasies, he had to earn a living and he was salable as a politician and it got him out from under the family business. It’s a reasonable inference he was a lousy lawyer, and that’s why his wife did not want him around the offices of Quayle & Quayle after 1974. He was a legislator. He never held any executive positions and his presidential campaign committees were exploratory only.

    As for Bachmann, she’s a tax lawyer. She’s phenomenally energetic and has never really failed at anything in her life even though she’s disabled by migraines much of the time. This is your idea of a stupid person?

    As for Gov. Palin, she’s much more hands on. There’s a distinction, though, between intelligence and intellectuality. In what condition were the governments she ran when she left them?

  76. Gravatar of Art Deco Art Deco
    25. April 2016 at 17:08

    but Bush is a guy who found out well after he decided to invade Iraq that there were different sects of the Muslim faith in Iraq, for example.

    I’m idly interested to know who is the purveyor of that particular internet meme which you have swallowed hook, line, and sinker.

  77. Gravatar of Mike Sax Mike Sax
    25. April 2016 at 17:25

    I never said it did Art Deco. But there are more of these votes in the Dem primary. Bernie is in the wrong party for the white man model of winning elections.

    What counts is having more votes.

  78. Gravatar of Art Deco Art Deco
    25. April 2016 at 18:04

    Bernie is in the wrong party for the white man model of winning elections.

    There is no white man model. Sanders polls as well as Clinton as we speak, but it’s too late to make up the delegate deficit.

  79. Gravatar of E. Harding E. Harding
    25. April 2016 at 18:19

    “If I had thought he was a Democrat I wouldn’t have done a single post criticizing him.”

    -Wait a second…

    Sumner is not a libertarian, proof #15163411535154315.

  80. Gravatar of Mark Mark
    25. April 2016 at 18:54

    ““If I had thought he was a Democrat I wouldn’t have done a single post criticizing him.”

    -Wait a second…

    Sumner is not a libertarian, proof #15163411535154315.”

    Did anyone else here the ‘woosh’ sound of that going right over E. Harding’s head?

    I’m glad someone finally gave me the chance to say that. I’ve been waiting a long time.

  81. Gravatar of Larry Larry
    25. April 2016 at 22:08

    Temp has refreshed my appreciation of the difference between lying and bs-ing. The former expects you to believe what he says. The latter is testing you to see whether you are dumb enough to be fooled. Trump is the latter. In one way that’s a relief. We can take comfort that he is not serious about really anything he says. The only problem is that we have no idea what he’s actually going to do, or even whether he’s just trying to guarantee a Hillary win. In any event, we have to give him credit for an amazingly skillful campaign. Using only Twitter and rallies he’s beaten and embarrassed the entire Repbulican starting lineup. Will he do the same to the Dems?

  82. Gravatar of ssumner ssumner
    26. April 2016 at 05:03

    Harding, You asked:

    “Name one other example of such a beast.”

    Trump’s the first. George Wallace was close, but more a racist than fascist.

    Justin, I’m almost afraid to ask, but what “antagonistic civilization” is going to colonize our territory?

    Mike, You said:

    “That’s how elections work, the candidate who gets the most votes win.”

    No, that’s not how primary elections work—just go away.

  83. Gravatar of John S John S
    26. April 2016 at 06:09

    I truly feel there’s a decent chance (say 5%) that Trump is showing signs of early stage dementia. I felt that even before the 7/11 for 9/11 slip-up, which one has to admit is a pretty incredible mistake.

    This entire election cycle is a depressing one for this once-great nation. I despise the leftists, but the slime of C.U.C.K. (Conservatives United for Cruz and Kasich) is not terribly inspiring.

    If only Trump had one-tenth of Reagan’s poise…

    But I’m resigned to the country going down the tubes. It was good while it lasted.

  84. Gravatar of Justin Irving Justin Irving
    26. April 2016 at 06:24

    Come on Scott, it’s 2016 this isn’t new. Read your Mark Steyn and your Tino Sanandaji.

  85. Gravatar of Massimo Heitor Massimo Heitor
    26. April 2016 at 07:06

    @ssumner,

    Almost everything you are saying sounds childish and absurd. I don’t know what is serious and what is an attempt at a joke or some sarcastic weirdness or attempt to out-insane Trump, or your perception of Trump.

    Sure, Trump’s comment about paying off the debt in eight years sounds like rubbish. Almost no one took that seriously, he said it and discarded that line shortly after, no one else cares. Politicians have more serious lies all the time. My best analysis is that Trump lies like a reality TV star, while most other politicians lie like lawyers, and the former bothers you more than the latter.

    “We need a “minority majority” now!” <- Is this some kind of joke or sarcastic weirdness? You sound obnoxious.

    "Banning Muslims is a sensible policy? It’s ludicrous on its face. Aside from being unconstitutional,"

    But banning Confederate flags and symbols and shaming that group is totally ok? Even Confederate sympathizers like Ron Paul who have overwhelmingly reasonable arguments? And sure we aren't talking about banning them from immigrating, we are repurposing their traditional homelands, and banning their own symbols from what would be considered their own soil. We aren't talking about banning Muslims from Saudi Arabia.

    Even Saudi Arabia and gulf states ban foreign muslims and preferentially choose other non-Muslim guest workers. Japan, and Israel all effectively ban Muslim immigration it. Europe has aggressively excluded many Muslims for most of its existence. The giant walls of the Vatican were built explicitly to repel Muslim attackers. India actually has shoot to kill policy on Muslim immigrants from Bangladesh or Pakistan and doesn't even face global criticism.

    Sumner will point out how small the body count from Islamic terror attacks are on a global scale. But consider, in high school I read "Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee" about the Wounded Knee massacre and I cried and damned the Europeans for committing such horror on Amerindians. But in hindsight the casualty count of the Wounded Knee episode was about the same as the November 2015 Islamic attacks in Paris. Will that atrocity be similarly enshrined for future generations of high school students? No, the globalists are aggressively downplaying that.

  86. Gravatar of Art Deco Art Deco
    26. April 2016 at 07:29

    Sumner is not a libertarian

    Rather more that selection processes in the academy have produced a corps of libertarians who are capons (with some exceptions like Glenn Reynolds). Richard Epstein’s cohort has retired. The provost doesn’t care about chess, doesn’t care about all the twee curios that Tyler Cowen finds arresting, doesn’t care about foreign trade, doesn’t care about occupational licensing boards, and doesn’t care about NGDP targeting. There will be no critiques of anything the provost does care about. Instead, it will be chuffering about open borders and kvetching about the drug laws.

    As for conservatives in the academy, they’ve all retired and a number of them squandered their last years in the academy fussing about the use of teaching assistants (not present at teaching institutions and pretty atypical at many research institutions) and devoting their attention to hypothetical general educational programs. (Gilbert Meilaender and Thomas Sowell were exceptions here; Allen Bloom did acknowledge at least cutting time in college and eliminating distribution requirements as an alternative to building a core curriculum).

    As for the evangelicals in the academy, the ones you find are commonly poseurs who fancy it’s there job to sell the outlook of the secular academy to the marks who enrolled at their mediocre little institutions. As for the Catholics in the academy, they’ve retired as the usual parasitoid wasps have taken over their institutions and ruined them.

    The people who have their eye on the ball are either outside the academy at loci like the Manhattan Institute or are drawn from the residual population of old-line Democrats (e.g. KC Johnson). The academy cannot fix itself and state legislatures need to start blowing large parts of it up.

  87. Gravatar of Art Deco Art Deco
    26. April 2016 at 07:38

    Will that atrocity be similarly enshrined for future generations of high school students? No, the globalists are aggressively downplaying that.

    The function of much of the academy, much of the legal profession, much of the helping professions, and much of the media is to re-allocate status among groups and claim for themselves an exclusive franchise to allocate recognition. The status of some groups must rise and some groups must fall. Public figures must be badgered to make show trial apologies. Trump refuses to apologise and effectively flips the bird at these people. Well, you can see in Sumner’s posts the visceral reaction of the faculty to a vulgar real estate developer telling the purveyors of historical fiction and the call-out culture to get stuffed.

  88. Gravatar of John Thacker John Thacker
    26. April 2016 at 09:01

    Polls show Trump is easily losing Arizona in a general election to Hillary, while Cruz and Kasich would easily win. There is no state where Trump would win that the others would lose, either. He is absolutely crushed in the Pennsylvania suburbs.

    Trump is the king of political correctness, attacking everyone but taking offense and demanding apologies whenever there’s the slightest bit of criticism of him. He and his fans want socialism for white people.

    If you really want to write a more dangerous satire, you could point out that Trump is the worst fears of the Know-Nothing and other immigration restrictionists of days yore: his support is markedly higher among Irish-Americans and Italian-Americans, lower among WASPs and northern Europeans.

  89. Gravatar of E. Harding E. Harding
    26. April 2016 at 09:46

    “Polls show Trump is easily losing Arizona in a general election to Hillary,”

    -The Arizona primary shows Trump won a solid 6% more votes in Arizona than did Clinton with three competitors, as compared to Clinton having only one. See; these polls are worthless.

    “There is no state where Trump would win that the others would lose, either.”

    -Florida? It contains way too many Trump supporters to ignore.

    “Trump is the king of political correctness, attacking everyone but taking offense and demanding apologies whenever there’s the slightest bit of criticism of him.”

    -[citation needed]

    “He and his fans want socialism for white people.”

    -Not true for Trump. I think you’re talking about a certain Bernie Sanders.

    “Trump is the worst fears of the Know-Nothing and other immigration restrictionists of days yore: his support is markedly higher among Irish-Americans and Italian-Americans, lower among WASPs and northern Europeans.”

    -:-) Pathological altruism.

    @John S

    -Remember Obama with his “fifty-seven states” and “Yemen model”? Everybody has bad days.

    BTW, excluding Texas and 2012’s single-candidate primaries, Trump is doing better than Romney was at this stage of the game.

  90. Gravatar of msgkings msgkings
    26. April 2016 at 09:48

    Art Deco would despise Trump if he were a Democrat. Which he kind of is. Probably give him a really clever name like Chump or something, to match witticisms like Hellary and Bilge.

    Total hypocrite.

  91. Gravatar of E. Harding E. Harding
    26. April 2016 at 11:13

    @msgkings

    -I wonder what Art thought about the Donald when he was a giant critic of the Iraq war.

  92. Gravatar of Mark Mark
    26. April 2016 at 11:18

    msgkings, indeed I think the argument could actually be made that trump is the least republican person in the race next to Sanders, maybe excluding his opinions on immigration.

    There’s really no excuse for anyone who purports to believe in the basic tenets of the GOP for liking him. But alas, policy opinions matter so little in politics.

  93. Gravatar of Philip Crawford Philip Crawford
    26. April 2016 at 13:16

    I ? this post. Mostly because it makes the ideologues so cray.

    But seriously, now that you’ve blown the whistle and the dogs went nuts, can we talk about Japan and the failure of NIRP? ?

    http://www.ft.com/intl/cms/s/0/d5f8a036-0acc-11e6-9456-444ab5211a2f.html#axzz46yB1kZEb

  94. Gravatar of Art Deco Art Deco
    26. April 2016 at 13:35

    -I wonder what Art thought about the Donald when he was a giant critic of the Iraq war.

    I wasn’t thinking about Trump in 2004.

    There’s nothing opaque about what I think about any of the candidates, if anyone gives a rip. The principal topic under discussion here is not the comparative merits of the candidates. It is whether or not Trump is Darth Vader. Obviously, he isn’t, but the obvious is lost on the moderator.

    A secondary question is whether we live in a country or in giant hotel. Libertarians fancy we live in a hotel, giving evidence of Chesterton’s aphorism that the trouble with a madman is not that he is logical, but that he is only logical.

    A tertiary topic is the moderator’s views of various classes of voter, which are protean.

  95. Gravatar of Massimo Heitor Massimo Heitor
    26. April 2016 at 16:54

    “It’s really sad to see so many otherwise intelligent adults who are fooled by such an obvious con man.”

    Arguably all politicians are con men. They all lie. Of course a lot of stuff Trump said is dumb or dishonest.

    The dominant model of mass immigration to the west horrifies me. Trump seems to be the main political actor to combat that. The dominant discourse on race and bigotry and who has moral justification to exclude and who does not horrifies me. Even some of what Sumner says on this issue horrifies me. Trump, again seems to be the main political actor that combats this.

    Am I being fooled? Is every voter ultimately fooled at some level?

    BTW, I did vote for Cruz in the primaries. I’d be thrilled with either Cruz or Trump as president. And despite my enthusiasm for Trump, I do fear he will trigger bad things.

  96. Gravatar of Massimo Heitor Massimo Heitor
    26. April 2016 at 17:24

    I feel like this guy from another news article:

    “I know people view him as crass, but I’m tired of the typical political nonsense,” said Dave Rothfield, 57, a retired radiologist and Trump supporter in Gaithersburg, Md. “Everybody portrays people who support him as uneducated slobs who don’t know what they’re talking about. But a lot of them are like me, people who follow this stuff closely and are tired of what they’re seeing.”

    Thank you, I’ll try not to post too much :)

  97. Gravatar of John S John S
    26. April 2016 at 17:25

    E. Harding, didn’t know about “57 states.” I suppose anyone can slip up on the trail, makes me feel a bit better.

    I’m still not at all enthusiastic about Trump himself, but the support he’s getting is heartening because it’s an unmistakable sign that American nationalists are finally standing up for themselves. Trump gets my applause for that.

    Shaping up to be a huge week for him (ranging from 53-65% today). Plus, he got Bobby Knight’s endorsement. Doesn’t get bigger than that in Indiana.

  98. Gravatar of John S John S
    27. April 2016 at 03:47

    Cruz called the hoop a “basketball ring” in Indiana. What the hell?

    http://www.si.com/extra-mustard/2016/04/26/ted-cruz-indiana-republican-primary-basketball-ring

    Not even a Canadian would screw that up. Maybe at some point Cruz will tear off his melting Harry Langdon face and come out as an extra terrestrial.

    This is up there with “potatoe” in the gaffe HoF.

  99. Gravatar of Art Deco Art Deco
    27. April 2016 at 04:31

    Arguably all politicians are con men. They all lie.

    Lillian Carter was asked if her son ever lied. She said perhaps some little white lies. The reporter asked what that meant. She says, “Well, remember when you came to the door and I said I was glad to see you?”. There is a distinction between artifice and mendacity. The former I would not doubt is universal among elected officials. The latter, not so much. For the Clintons, there is no truth. For Obama, truth is something which emerges in subtexts and unguarded moments. Rubio’s not above brazen lying, though he’s not like that 24/7. Trump is impossible to make sense of. Cruz and Sanders are fairly straight up; I don’t think there’s much deception incorporated into Kasich’s spiels either (though there’s a mess of chaff there now and again). Cruz and Rubio are the two among the six competitors who’ve managed an orderly domestic life.

  100. Gravatar of Art Deco Art Deco
    27. April 2016 at 04:40

    The dominant model of mass immigration to the west horrifies me. Trump seems to be the main political actor to combat that. The dominant discourse on race and bigotry and who has moral justification to exclude and who does not horrifies me. Even some of what Sumner says on this issue horrifies me. Trump, again seems to be the main political actor that combats this.

    The most distressing thing to happen in the last year was the implosion of Scott Walker’s campaign. His problem? He was listening to his donors. John Kasich manifests the culture of the dominant vector the Republican elite. The public service that Trump has performed has been to disrupt the efforts of the donor elements and Capitol Hill to maintain a cartel which keeps that issue off the table. The Republican Party suffers and suffers badly from wretched leadership, AM McConnell in particular.

  101. Gravatar of Massimo Heitor Massimo Heitor
    27. April 2016 at 07:02

    “The function of much of the academy, much of the legal profession, much of the helping professions, and much of the media is to re-allocate status among groups and claim for themselves an exclusive franchise to allocate recognition. The status of some groups must rise and some groups must fall.”

    Much competition has some healthy valuable component. The really ugly, destructive group competitions seems to happen primarily at the government level. Education is most tightly related to this. In terms of setting the morality of society and which groups are right/wrong and advising/justifying government, that used to be done by religion, today it’s done by education. The rest of society is only indirectly relevant to this.

    “Trump refuses to apologise and effectively flips the bird at these people. Well, you can see in Sumner’s posts the visceral reaction of the faculty to a vulgar real estate developer telling the purveyors of historical fiction and the call-out culture to get stuffed.”

    I agree. So where is your blog? Google only showed me art deco architecture stuff.

  102. Gravatar of ssumner ssumner
    27. April 2016 at 16:22

    Justin, I don’t have time to read them. I don’t even have time to keep up with monetary economics, which is my field. So why don’t you just save me some time and tell me who’s about to take us over. Who should I be frightened of? I’d really like to know. I’m serious.

    Massimo:

    “Sure, Trump’s comment about paying off the debt in eight years sounds like rubbish. Almost no one took that seriously, he said it and discarded that line shortly after, no one else cares.”

    I love Trump supporters. “Yes, everything Trump says is rubbish, I don’t believe a word he says. Unless of course I agree with him, and then I think he’s telling the truth.”

    It’s so stupid you couldn’t even make it up. Tell me Massimo, is Trump going to raise taxes on the rich, or slash them sharply? And then tell me how you know. Which one of his claims do you believe? Politics makes even intelligent people so blind that they’ll follow a total clown as if he is some sort of leader who will solve our problems. Why do you believe Trump?

    You said:

    “The giant walls of the Vatican were built explicitly to repel Muslim attackers.”

    How can I argue with that logic?

    Philip, NIRP? Interest rates aren’t a policy, they are an outcome.

    John, You said:

    “Plus, he got Bobby Knight’s endorsement. Doesn’t get bigger than that in Indiana.”

    Why am I not surprised. I always suspected that jerks like Knight made up a substantial part of Trump voters. I’ll bet if Knight had run instead of Trump, he’d be running away with the GOP nomination.

  103. Gravatar of ssumner ssumner
    27. April 2016 at 16:28

    Massimo, You said:

    “The dominant model of mass immigration to the west horrifies me. Trump seems to be the main political actor to combat that.”

    He’s done nothing to combat immigration, nothing at all. He says he wants a big increase in H1-b visas. Do you approve? He also says he wants to sharply cut taxes on the rich, and he says he wants to raise taxes on the rich, all with one week! And he says he will pay off the national debt, and he says he won’t pay off the national debt, all within one week! And despite all that you single out immigration as the one thing Trump really believes in? Even after his top advisors told the press that it was all an act?

    If you are looking for investment property Massimo? If so, I have a bridge I’d like to sell you.

  104. Gravatar of HW HW
    27. April 2016 at 17:30

    Whites have more voting power than non-whites on a per capita basis, as they tend to live in smaller states that in turn have more electoral votes per capita. Minorities meanwhile are concentrated in big metro areas and bigger states like California, New York, Florida, Texas, that have fewer electoral votes per capita.

    Moreover, a large share of African-Americans are concentrated in states where their votes don’t really matter in the general election. A good example is Mississippi. They make up 37% percent of that state’s population, yet their voting patterns don’t matter that much as they get “overwhelmed” by white voters who vote GOP. This is also true in other deeply conservative states like Louisiana, Georgia, Alabama etc. The black vote doesn’t really matter there. This wouldn’t have been an issue if the US had a popular vote system instead of FPTP.

    But instead, we get a situation where a large share of minority voters either live in places where they have less electoral votes per capita, or where their votes don’t matter because of FPTP (in theory this should also work the other way and deny conservative whites their votes if they live in liberal majority-minority states, but whites don’t vote GOP to the same extent that non-whites vote Dem, and especially not in liberal states, so the aren’t affected by FPTP as badly).

  105. Gravatar of Massimo Heitor Massimo Heitor
    27. April 2016 at 20:23

    “Tell me Massimo, is Trump going to raise taxes on the rich, or slash them sharply? And then tell me how you know.”

    I don’t know. Same with health care. I do assume that he doesn’t have the devotion to hard left causes like Sanders/Clinton and whatever he does will be less terrible than them. I also expect the GOP to control him to some extent on these issues and will stop anything too terrible and might produce outcomes that are very good. It’s quite obvious that these type of issues aren’t the main motivators to Trump’s supporters.

    “Even after his top advisors told the press that it was all an act?”

    You are stretching here. His public “The Donald” persona and his campaigning tactics are an act.

    “Why do you believe Trump?”

    Wow, you are just setting me up for a slam dunk on this one.

    Trump’s __opponents__ believe Trump.

    People are so upset by Trump because they __do__ believe him and they are horrified.

    Sumner, you called him a bigot. Others are calling him Hitler. Your coblogger Bryan Caplan says he is horrifed by Trump, that Trump is anti-foreign bias personified, and that he loses sleep over the idea of Trump. These are very intense beliefs in Trump representing consistent ideologies.

    So, to be very clear. Both Trump’s supporters and objectors absolutely believe in Trump, it’s just whether they think he is evil or a voice for good. I think he is a voice for good. I would never vote for anyone even close to Hitler.

    “Politics makes even intelligent people so blind that they’ll follow a total clown as if he is some sort of leader who will solve our problems.”

    This is definitely not limited to Trump. I believe that society should move away from voting on ballots towards voting with your feet, purchases, and actions.

  106. Gravatar of Scott Freelander Scott Freelander
    27. April 2016 at 20:34

    Scott,

    What’s interesting is that Sanders gets criticized, properly, by those who point out that most of his agenda wouldn’t get through Congress. Well, the same is true of Trump, and perhaps more so. If Trump were President, the easy way out for him would be to push bills in Congress to build the wall, for example, and then blame Congress for it not passing and say he tried.

  107. Gravatar of Scott Freelander Scott Freelander
    27. April 2016 at 20:39

    Scott,

    Another thing I find interesting is that money, and in particular ads, have not had nearly the effect in this campaign cycle that many seemed to assume. The biggest fundraisers/spenders didn’t win.

    Yet, at the same time, completely contrary to what the justices who favored the Citizens United decision wrote, voters seem to see money in politics as corrupting even more than in the past. They seem fed up with it.

  108. Gravatar of Massimo Heitor Massimo Heitor
    27. April 2016 at 21:04

    “Tell me Massimo, is Trump going to raise taxes on the rich, or slash them sharply? And then tell me how you know.”

    Ask the same question to Trump haters, like Bryan Caplan. How can he be horrified at Trump and lose sleep over Trump without being sure of what Trump’s tax plan will be?

    Same thing with the animated Trump protesters: why bother protesting Trump’s rallies if you don’t know what his tax plan is?

    “I love Trump supporters. ‘Yes, everything Trump says is rubbish, I don’t believe a word he says. Unless of course I agree with him, and then I think he’s telling the truth.'”

    This is both Trump lovers and haters.

  109. Gravatar of Mark Mark
    27. April 2016 at 22:29

    @Scott Freedlander, regarding money in elections:

    I agree very much and think that ‘money in politics’ is one issue in which supports my theory that there is fairly little correlation between the magnitude of a problem and the extent to which people worry about it (and often the correlation is negative, curiously). Jeb Bush raised money faster than anyone even when he wasn’t even in the top 5 for the GOP. Sanders, an unabashedly anti-corporate socialist has managed (until now) to keep within reach of Clinton, the biggest fundraiser after Bush. This election cycle has discredited the fears of the anti-citizens united crown.

    In fact it’s not uncommon to hear people blame the Koch brothers and their ‘dark money’ for Donald Trump, despite them being decidedly opposed to Trump.

  110. Gravatar of Mark Mark
    27. April 2016 at 22:37

    @Massimo:

    I’d say it’s pretty rational to be afraid of a pure random variable getting elected president. So yeah, no one (including Trump) knows what his tax policy will be. No one knows what his foreign policy will be. It could be any of the many disparate positions he as taken over the months. That is not reassuring.

    If you’re in a relationship with a girl, and some days you come home and she’s ever so sweet and kisses you and makes dinner and dotes on you, and some days she screams while beating you over the head with a skillet, you don’t take the mean of her behavior and say ‘all in all, she’s okay.’ You run a way and file for a restraining order because she’s a lunatic. The fact that Trump is all over the map from one extreme to the other one day after the next should not reassure the average rational, risk-averse citizen.

  111. Gravatar of Massimo Heitor Massimo Heitor
    28. April 2016 at 06:25

    “I’d say it’s pretty rational to be afraid of a pure random variable getting elected president. So yeah, no one (including Trump) knows what his tax policy will be.”

    All of the heated opposition to Trump does not care about his tax policy.

    People aren’t horrified or afraid of Trump as a random variable, they are horrified or afraid of him because he would temporarily pause Muslim immigration or criticize illegal immigrants or build a border wall with Mexico.

    So, yes, I do see your point, that it’s reasonable to worry about a random variable, but that is not what is happening at all. Most of Trump’s worst critics really don’t fear crazy tax policy. Trump has to cooperate with congress on tax policy, and they will stop anything too crazy.

    Foreign policy is a bigger concern. The executive branch acts more unilaterally there and arguably with larger effects. People are concerned about having Trump’s “finger on the button” with regard to nuclear weaponry. Again, Trump would have teams of more reasonable advisors that probably won’t do anything crazy, but it’s still a fear even with another more reasonable sounding president.

  112. Gravatar of ssumner ssumner
    28. April 2016 at 10:50

    HW, I think the election should be popular vote, perhaps with a runoff if no one gets 40%.

    Massimo, I’ve got news for you. Trump supports amnesty for illegals. He said so in 2013. You may think you know when Trump really means it, and when he doesn’t, but he’s just playing you guys for suckers. He’ll drop his supporters the day he is elected, and start working on an amnesty.

    I’ve consistently said Trump won’t do what he says, I object to him because of what he is, not what he’ll do. He’s a buffoon leading a revival of right wing nationalism in America, that’s why I oppose him. Please stop being naive, and stop believing Trump is going to do what he says. He won’t. He won’t do what he says on taxes, immigration, the military or a 100 other issues. He’s a fraud. Do you really think a rich guy who lives in a gold plated palace in NYC cares about the white trash of West Virginia? Seriously? Privately he probably laughs at them, they are “losers” (in his mind, not mine).

    Mark, You said:

    “I’d say it’s pretty rational to be afraid of a pure random variable getting elected president.”

    You’d think that would be obvious, but Trump supporters don’t get it. Yes, there’s some surprise with any candidate, but Trump is off the charts for dishonesty.

  113. Gravatar of E. Harding E. Harding
    28. April 2016 at 11:42

    “I’ve consistently said Trump won’t do what he says,”

    -I have no doubt he will build a wall. I think he’ll probably defeat the IS. I think he’ll probably put up trade restrictions. He’ll certainly bring back torture and kill a lot of terrorists’ families, much to the consternation of civil libertarians. He’ll appoint a conservative SC justice (probably more like Alito than Scalia).

    “He’ll drop his supporters the day he is elected, and start working on an amnesty.”

    -He will not. He’s been consistent about combating illegal immigration ever since his 2000 campaign. He’s no Reagan 1986.

    “Do you really think a rich guy who lives in a gold plated palace in NYC cares about the white trash of West Virginia?”

    -Yes. They’ll give him the nomination. I never got that feeling from Rmoney.

    “Privately he probably laughs at them”

    -Privately, he probably appreciates them for helping make his campaign a success.

    BTW, prediction markets have proven themselves to be totally worthless this campaign season, inferior to my forecasts (which weren’t very accurate, anyway).

    “He’s a buffoon leading a revival of right wing nationalism in America, that’s why I oppose him.”

    -He’s not a buffoon; he’s just an ideological shapeshifter Northeastern Republicans love.

    BTW, in August you said that even a 10% chance Trump would get the GOP nomination was far too high, and dismissed Krugman for thinking the contrary. This is why I don’t trust you on political predictions. Americans don’t care what Trump stands for. They care about who he stands for. They want an America Made Great Again, a real fighter for their cause, not a True Conservative America.

  114. Gravatar of Massimo Heitor Massimo Heitor
    28. April 2016 at 14:03

    “I’ve got news for you. Trump supports amnesty for illegals. He said so in 2013. You may think you know when Trump really means it, and when he doesn’t, but he’s just playing you guys for suckers.”

    “He’ll drop his supporters the day he is elected, and start working on an amnesty.”

    First, you are completely out of sync with pretty much all other Trump critics. All other Trump critics are criticizing him because he _will_ build a border wall, and he _will_ crack down on immigration, and he _will_ have anti-foreign bias. You are saying the opposite. That everything is a sham and a trick.

    I’m eager to place bets.

    Trump _will_ not grant blanket amnesty to all illegal residents of the US. Sure, I can imagine some scenarios where even Viktor Orban would grant amnesty to specific groups, but blanket amnesty? No way.

    Trump _will_ build a border wall with Mexico. You think he won’t?

    Trump _will_ name Islamic terror as Islamic terror.

    Are you open to betting terms on any of this?

    “Do you really think a rich guy who lives in a gold plated palace in NYC cares about the white trash of West Virginia? Seriously?”

    Yes. I think Obama cares deeply about blacks across the globe. And I think Trump cares deeply about Americans, working class Americans, and whites.

    Reports say that Trump has this rude persona on camera, but off camera he is a very kind person. Do you have any evidence to counter this?

  115. Gravatar of Art Deco Art Deco
    28. April 2016 at 14:24

    Reports say that Trump has this rude persona on camera, but off camera he is a very kind person. Do you have any evidence to counter this?

    One of the curios about him would be the dogs not barking. No intramural fights with his siblings or any collateral relatives, no scandals or embarrassments re his children. Ronald Reagan was plagued by his idiot kids and George McGovern, George Bush the Elder, and Gerald Ford all had at least one real problem in the next generation. Quite a puzzle, that sort of thing.

  116. Gravatar of E. Harding E. Harding
    28. April 2016 at 21:40

    “I think Obama cares deeply about blacks across the globe.”

    -I don’t think he does. GWB certainly did. But Obama definitely cares about Blacks in the U.S., even if they are of dubious moral character. Remember Ferguson?

  117. Gravatar of Art Deco Art Deco
    29. April 2016 at 06:01

    Obama definitely cares about Blacks in the U.S., even if they are of dubious moral character. Remember Ferguson?

    Non ci credo. The man’s all guises and poses. I’ll wager he cares about Eric Whitaker and ValJar. Re anything else outside his skin, all bets are off.

  118. Gravatar of Etymology lesson – Marginal REVOLUTION Etymology lesson - Marginal REVOLUTION
    4. May 2016 at 20:19

    […] Here is more, via DK.  Here are related comments from Scott Sumner. […]

  119. Gravatar of asdf asdf
    5. May 2016 at 07:52

    We should thank Scott for his public service. Establishment “rightist” are outing themselves for who they are, people who really really really hate the white middle class. You could say that hating the white middle class is the core of their life philosophy.

    The left, including Sumner, is engaged in a very dangerous game. Having long ago lost the white vote, they have to rely on importing minorities to maintain electoral majorities. The problem though is that those minorities don’t support any of the positions people like Scott like. How much does your average black person care for trannies? How much does your average Muslim care for women? What views and track record do Latin American voters have on socialism?

    For a brief period of time, specifically because they are a minority, they can be bought off with welfare and racial agitation. That’s what the democratic party offers. Vote for us, we use that power mostly to enrich ourselves, and we toss you a few bones. Also you get to march in the street and burn some things (not in our neighborhoods though).

    This only works so long as:
    1) Minorities stay minorities.
    2) The white majority can be force to pay for all the giveaways.

    When NAMs are a majority that entire system falls apart. If you want a look at that see current third world countries with those demographics, or the relative underperformance of heavily black areas here in the USA.

    Probably the most insane position of your post is that minority voters are some kind of high information wisdom filled vessels. Watching too many movies where Morgan Freeman is the supporting character on your personal quest to enlightenment? In reality most minority voters are easily manipulated sub-literates who mostly respond to political patronage machines. They vote Dem to get welfare, they voted Obama because he is the same skin color as them, and they vote Hillary because they recognize her. In the future as their power grows expect them to abandon their current white liberal enablers to form their own political base.

    In the long run turning America into a majority NAM country will make us like every other majority NAM country. Corrupt quasi-socialists in which most of the population has to live chaotic and miserable lives. People like Sumner will wall themselves off in compounds with private security and lord over a divided and impoverished mass that they helped to create.

    Scott is going to do more long run damage to this country then losing a war. All for his own personal gain and comfort. How dare middle class white people want to live in a first world country. Why are they in his way.

  120. Gravatar of Harry Dexter Fright Harry Dexter Fright
    5. May 2016 at 10:08

    Sumner is an out of touch egghead.

    Muh monetary policy.

  121. Gravatar of An actual economist who publishes An actual economist who publishes
    9. May 2016 at 12:17

    Wow, you’re so brave Scott Sumner to take those stupid goyim white males down a peg or too!

    Very well-argued. It’s obvious that Africans and Hispanics make superior presidential decisions, as can be seen by their choices of leaders in their own countries.

  122. Gravatar of Professional Pleb Professional Pleb
    9. May 2016 at 13:07

    Vapid anti-white screed. Stick to economics.

  123. Gravatar of TetMan TetMan
    13. May 2016 at 06:21

    Yes, I think the author is 100% right.

    We can clearly see how better off are Latino, African nations than Nordic or Germanic ones.

    It’s also time we stop the unending influx of Swedes and Austrians from entering Panama in the quest for a better life.

    Put down the crackpipe dear author, you’re fooling no man.

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