Trump to the GOP: Thanks for the nomination, see ya later

Hot off the press:

Donald Trump reversed himself on a major policy plank Wednesday as he told reporters he now backs a $10-an-hour federal minimum wage, breaking with years of Republican orthodoxy and his party’s own platform.

“The minimum wage has to go up,” he said at a tumultuous news conference, saying it should go up to $10 from $7.25. He did say that “states should really call the shot,” but “at the same time, people have to be taken care of.”

Asked if he meant the federal minimum wage has to go up to $10 in a followup question, Trump indicated yes. “Federal,” he clarified.

Gee, I wonder what other GOP ideas he’ll drop, now that he has the nomination.

I’ll say this, if Trump is elected we can look forward to 4 years of nonstop comedy. The Onion will become the newspaper of record.  If you don’t believe me, check out this Trump press conference.  

PS.  My sister (who knows many more words than I do), recently taught me another:

Kakistocracy


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72 Responses to “Trump to the GOP: Thanks for the nomination, see ya later”

  1. Gravatar of Tom Brown Tom Brown
    27. July 2016 at 19:56

    Scott, kakistocracy: what is a great word! Your sister must be an awesome Scrabble player.

    Make America Russia Great Again!

  2. Gravatar of Benjamin Cole Benjamin Cole
    27. July 2016 at 20:34

    Trump is the most fascinating political animal of the postwar era, possibly excepting Nixon (and that may only be for me, and only because I grew up in Pasadena, and knew people that used Nixon as a lawyer in his Whittier days).

    The Trump convention speech was deeply marred by bombast, and empty promises. Trump cannot “end regulations” the day he gets into office, for one example, let alone which regulations is he talking about. Empty rhetoric would be a euphemism in describing parts of that speech.

    But in other ways, Trump’s convention speech presentation (which is so bombastic it can only be endured in 10-minute snatches) it is one of the most remarkable exhibitions in recent political history.

    For decades, the GOP has been the party of plutocrats, militarists and the warfare state, rural subsidies, labor bashing (wide-open borders for illegal immigrants, offshoring production), the Southern Strategy and pandering to duped evangelicals. (The Donks are worse, but that is another topic).

    In vivid contrast to the now-dead GOP, Trump embraces labor and the middle class, and said so out loud. He spoke about gays positively, even passionately. In the past, Trump called Iraq a $5 trillion mistake, something no GOP-warefare stater can do. Trump wants factories in the U.S. Amazingly, so far Trump has not even pandered to evangelicals! No phony religious sentiments (think about the odious stooge Cruz in this regard).

    Maybe Trump is lying, as suggested by Scott Sumner, and certainly that is the prerogative of anyone running for the Presidency. I am shocked, shocked! anyone is lying in this campaign!

    But as presented in the speech, Trump’s ideals drew hearty cheers from the new GOP, which may be the rank-and-file GOP asserting itself.

    How the GOP warfare-state globalists will seize control of the party again is a question. Some warmongering neocons are migrating into the Hillary camp.

    Nate Silver says Trump would win if the election were held today.

    Trump’s campaign is described as being in a shambles and poorly financed, next to the Clinton machine. A weak effort. What if Trump manages to piece together a mediocre effort from here on?

    And would not the White House look better with an all-marble foyer, heavily ornamented with gilded frames and fixtures? And maybe a large gold “T” emblazoned in the floor?

  3. Gravatar of Shaun Shaun
    27. July 2016 at 20:43

    Onion articles are nice, but a sprawling police state and an increased probability of World War 3 worries me more. Crazy, I know.

  4. Gravatar of Gary Anderson Gary Anderson
    27. July 2016 at 21:10

    Trump sucks, and is a little too chummy with Russia (but Clinton is not chummy enough). But Seattle’s job picture, according to an article, is increasing due to the $15 per hour minimum wage.

  5. Gravatar of Steve Steve
    27. July 2016 at 21:11

    “Kakistocracy”

    Lol, that’s funny because it’s a near homophone to cuckistocracy, which I’m told is what we have right now. Rest assured I say this in jest.

    Trump’s goal is to turn America into a country club for white people with trust funds. Nobody does country clubs like Trump!

    Of course Trump already broke his pledge to divulge his tax returns after the nomination. That only took a few days. As Cruz said, Trump will betray every single policy promise he makes. EVERY ONE.

    Meanwhile Ivanka, who used the convention to promote her dress brand, also held a fundraiser for Democrat Cory Booker. I’m sure Junior will be busy trying to leverage political power on behalf of the hotel brand.

    I still think Hillary and Donald had a bet, “Cruel Intentions” style (S M Gellar and R Phillippe), over who could screw the public harder and make more money off a presidential campaign. That’s my operating thesis.

  6. Gravatar of BC BC
    27. July 2016 at 21:34

    Your sister has the best words.

  7. Gravatar of Matthew Waters Matthew Waters
    27. July 2016 at 21:46

    The Trump presidency would be a great movie or TV series. Basically like that “Man in High Castle” series (I haven’t seen it). Actually living it? Not so much.

    But it is shocking that a person who proposed a wealth tax to the left of Bernie Sanders isn’t a diehard, pro-free-market Republican. I’m shocked there’s gambling going on in this establishment!

    “Amazingly, so far Trump has not even pandered to evangelicals!”

    Uh, he did a TON of pandering to evangelicals, personally. Jerry Falwell Jr., among many others.

    Trump was also not against the Iraq war before the Iraq war started. In 2002, he stated support for it in an off-hand comment. He also supported the Libya comment. He’s now for dramatically ramping up war in Syria, if his “declare war against ISIS” rhetoric has any value. I actually don’t think he’s lying about this, especially if a terrorist attack happens during his presidency.

    To say that Trump is truly an isolationist doesn’t match the record.

  8. Gravatar of Matthew Waters Matthew Waters
    27. July 2016 at 21:47

    I’m posting too late. “Libya comment” should be “Libya intervention,” or war or whatever you want to call the campaign against Gaddafi.

  9. Gravatar of Rajat Rajat
    27. July 2016 at 22:11

    Off topic, but would you like to comment on this post by Miles Kimball about Gauti Eggertsson and this particular strain of NK work more generally? In particular, the idea that the NIRA might have been a good thing (as a short run policy) by raising expected inflation? I ask because I assume this cuts across your views of the Great Depression, and having read your views, the NK ideas seem ludicrous. http://blog.supplysideliberal.com/post/148084197684/pro-gauti-eggertsson

  10. Gravatar of Ray Lopez Ray Lopez
    27. July 2016 at 22:46

    It’s common for pols to switch sides on issues once the have votes, or to get more votes, before or after an election, so I’m not sure what Sumner’s arguing about. For example, R. Reagan was a populist who talked tough and seemingly adopted Thatcherism but in the end was a Keynesian deficit spender, borrowing rather than taxing.

    As for “kakistocracy”, without clicking on the link in Greek it would mean “bad – regime”. Now what does “Skatocracy” mean, Scrabble players? Rule by skaters maybe? Skaters rule, dudes!

  11. Gravatar of Steve Steve
    27. July 2016 at 22:50

    Lol, the nerds on this thread are asking about Eggertsson.

    Meanwhile, we need to figure out if the American breakaway Republic of Cuckistan should be reclaimed by Putin. Keep it serious!

    Make Cucks Russian Again!!!

  12. Gravatar of Tom Brown Tom Brown
    27. July 2016 at 22:53

    Here’s another lie that’s just been tossed down the memory hole.

  13. Gravatar of Steve Steve
    27. July 2016 at 22:55

    I do wonder if Bill and Donald made a Pervert’s Bet in their summer 2015 meeting. Cruel Intentions, literally.

    Clinton wins: Bill sleeps with Ivanka.
    Trump wins: Donald sleeps with Chelsea or a lolita of his choice.

    Seems like something right up the alley of a bunch of 70s swingers.
    This election sucks. Bring on the Giant Meteor!

  14. Gravatar of E. Harding E. Harding
    27. July 2016 at 23:11

    I agree 100% with this Trump post. I have stated before that the only way the minimum wage is getting a raise is with a GOP presidency.

  15. Gravatar of Benjamin Cole Benjamin Cole
    27. July 2016 at 23:35

    Ray Lopez: I am a proud mone-scatocrat.

    I believe money is not neutral, and when plowed into the economy has a fertile result!

  16. Gravatar of foosion foosion
    28. July 2016 at 02:36

    Trump also said “I would say ten. I would say ten… But the thing is we’ll let the states do it.”

    Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly asked Trump what he would do with the federal minimum wage:

    “I would leave it and raise it somewhat,” he responded, “You need to help people. I know it’s not very Republican to say. But you need to help people.”

    Trump then named a specific number: “I would say $10. The thing is, Bill, let the states make the deal.”

    Does he even understand the difference between federal and state laws?

  17. Gravatar of Kenneth Duda Kenneth Duda
    28. July 2016 at 03:25

    Trump is the most amazing candidate I have ever seen. Look at what he can do.

    Imagine you are the candidate. The opposition just made history by nominating a woman for the first time ever. You’d like the headlines to skip over that and instead focus on Hillary and email, the oldest and tiredest story in the world. Only problem is, there’s no actual news about her email. So, how would you do this? It doesn’t even sound possible. But Trump did it.

    ​http://www.cnbc.com/2016/07/27/the-democrats-just-fell-for-trumps-russian-email-hack-bait-commentary.html

    Trump’s ability to manipulate is off the charts.

    People wonder if Trump “understands the difference between federal and state laws.” His arguments are so illogical that he seems both stupid and ignorant to people used to educated discourse. But I don’t buy it for a second. Take the nuclear triad. He doesn’t even know what it is, right? But check this out:

    http://thebulletin.org/where-will-next-president-stand-nuclear-weapons9391

    Trump has been working for nuclear disarmament since at least *1987*. He has been actively involved in the strategy of preventing nuclear proliferation for decades. There is no possible way he doesn’t know what the nuclear triad is. He deliberately gave that question a non-answer during the Republican debate. Why? I don’t know. Probably because he wanted an answer that would connect with his base, and he knew his base doesn’t know what the nuclear triad is. But how can I dare even guess as to the logic behind the genius that is Donald Trump?

    I don’t think most of us classical liberals have any idea what we’re up against here.

    This coming from a person who wears “never trump” and “dump trump” T-shirts every time I go out in public.

    -Ken

  18. Gravatar of Patrick R. Sullivan Patrick R. Sullivan
    28. July 2016 at 04:22

    Maybe he will get the Bernie voters, after all.

  19. Gravatar of Patrick R. Sullivan Patrick R. Sullivan
    28. July 2016 at 04:31

    BTW, Seattle just provided more info on how raising the minimum wage hurts low income workers;

    https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/2997999-Seattle-Minimum-Wage-Final-Report.html
    ————quote———
    In a region where all low-wage workers, including those in Seattle, have enjoyed access to more jobs and more hours, Seattle’s low-wage workers show some preliminary signs of lagging behind similar workers in comparison regions.

    [1] The minimum wage appears to have slightly reduced the employment rate of low-wage workers by about one percentage point. It appears that the Minimum Wage Ordinance modestly held back Seattle’s employment of low-wage workers relative to the level we could have expected.

    [2] Hours worked among low-wage Seattle workers have lagged behind regional trends, by roughly four hours per week, on average.

    [3] Low-wage individuals working in Seattle when the ordinance passed transitioned to jobs outside Seattle at an elevated rate compared to historical patterns.
    ———-endquote———–

    IOW, just like they draw it up in the econ textbooks.

  20. Gravatar of Christian List Christian List
    28. July 2016 at 04:37

    Madness and genius are separated only by degrees of success. We will see what Trump is after the elections. But the fact that he won the GOP nomination easily is already pretty astonishing.

  21. Gravatar of Patrick R. Sullivan Patrick R. Sullivan
    28. July 2016 at 04:43

    ‘But, Mr. Trump, every thinking person will vote against you!’

    ‘That’s okay, I only need a majority.’

  22. Gravatar of H_WASSHOI (Maekawa Miku-nyan lover) H_WASSHOI (Maekawa Miku-nyan lover)
    28. July 2016 at 04:48

    My Hypermind capital increased 100000 to 133000 since 2015

  23. Gravatar of Gary Anderson Gary Anderson
    28. July 2016 at 05:48

    Ray, Reagan most certainly was a Thatcherite. He passed the St Garn Germain Act which allowed ADJUSTABLE RATE MORTGAGES leading to the failure of the S&L’s which lead to the appointment of Greenspan, which lead to structured finance and a hoarding of bonds even as early as in the 1990’s:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Garn%E2%80%93St._Germain_Depository_Institutions_Act

    http://www.talkmarkets.com/content/bonds/hoarding-the-new-gold-early-history-about-structured-finance?post=101531&uid=4798

  24. Gravatar of Gary Anderson Gary Anderson
    28. July 2016 at 05:54

    And Ray, hoarding of bonds explains how yields have declined relentlessly since the beginning of Greenspan’s term, in boom and bust times. He engineered this dreadful system which protects banks, but makes for slow growth in the real economy.

  25. Gravatar of bill bill
    28. July 2016 at 06:00

    Trump really is Bombastic Chauncey Gardner
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Being_There
    Great movie, BTW
    Oh, and if there is a bet, I’d bet that it’s for $1. Like in Trading Places.

  26. Gravatar of ssumner ssumner
    28. July 2016 at 06:16

    Tom, That’s a great campaign slogan for Trump. Hillary should use it.

    Ben, You said:

    “Maybe Trump is lying, as suggested by Scott Sumner, and certainly that is the prerogative of anyone running for the Presidency. I am shocked, shocked! anyone is lying in this campaign!”

    I don’t like this “they all lie” attitude. I don’t think Hillary has been lying about her intention to raise the minimum wage. Trump’s lying really is off the charts. People feel passionately about politics precisely because they do not think candidates are liars. Otherwise it would be a coin flip.

    For instance, Obama has not been exactly what I expected, but he’s been awful close to exactly what I expected. With Trump, I have no clue.

    Yup, Trump is an evil genius at manipulation. I’m told he doesn’t read books. But he did read one book—Hitler’s speeches. Trump has learned from the master manipulator himself. I wish a reporter at a press conference would ask him
    “Is it true that Hitler’s speeches is the only book you ever read?”

    Patrick, I can tell you are not a young person—they wouldn’t remember that line from Adlai Stevenson.

  27. Gravatar of Gene Callahan Gene Callahan
    28. July 2016 at 06:25

    Scott, really, just stop. This is really embarrassing.

  28. Gravatar of james elizondo james elizondo
    28. July 2016 at 07:14

    Finally Trump offers something reasonable.

  29. Gravatar of Justin Justin
    28. July 2016 at 08:09

    Great comment by Benjamin Cole and Kenneth Duda.

    Honestly, who cares about the minimum wage, really? I agree, it’s not optimal to have minimum wages, but Trump’s position in that press conference was “I think it should be $10, but really, let’s leave it to the states”. It’s just a toothless opinion to get elected, that’s the game.

    Asperger’s victim economists get all worked up because Trump says things which people in the comments section at Econlog wouldn’t agree with. But that’s not what power is about, this is a Machiavellian game, if you don’t use that strategy, you’re not going to be president. Pretending that electoral politics is about checking boxes in an econ textbook is like going to an ice hockey game and getting angry about all shoving and the “horrible loud noises!”.

    Trump is reconfiguring politics. Before, it was about the oligarch class colluding to fleece the great mass of the productive citizenry, the “high-low coalition of the fringes” with the Republicans as controlled opposition. Trump, an oligarch, enters with a new killer strategy, he’s assembled a small coalition of farsighted oligarchs to ally with the productive core of America against Trump’s oligarch rivals. The question is only: “do the citizenry see this?”

    You’ll note that with the exception of Jared Kushner, Trumps big-money allies have a culturally working-class vibe (think Carl Icahn). These are people who loath their 0.05% peers and are happy to check their power.

  30. Gravatar of Patrick Sullivan Patrick Sullivan
    28. July 2016 at 08:37

    ‘Patrick, I can tell you are not a young person—they wouldn’t remember that line from Adlai Stevenson.’

    Curses! Foiled again.

  31. Gravatar of Brian Donohue Brian Donohue
    28. July 2016 at 08:53

    I agree with several commenters that Trump is talking past a lot of his detractors, playing a different game.

    I disagree that there is anything new about this. It’s as if he looked at conventional politicians and said: Pandering? Y’all are pikers. I’ll show you some real pandering.”

    In the nothing new under the sun department, Alexander Hamilton came out recently in favor of Hillary:

    “And yet, however just these sentiments will be allowed to be, we have already sufficient indications that it will happen in this as in all former cases of great national discussion. A torrent of angry and malignant passions will be let loose. To judge from the conduct of the opposite parties, we shall be led to conclude that they will mutually hope to evince the justness of their opinions, and to increase the number of their converts by the loudness of their declamations and the bitterness of their invectives. An enlightened zeal for the energy and efficiency of government will be stigmatized as the offspring of a temper fond of despotic power and hostile to the principles of liberty. An over-scrupulous jealousy of danger to the rights of the people, which is more commonly the fault of the head than of the heart, will be represented as mere pretense and artifice, the stale bait for popularity at the expense of the public good. It will be forgotten, on the one hand, that jealousy is the usual concomitant of love, and that the noble enthusiasm of liberty is apt to be infected with a spirit of narrow and illiberal distrust. On the other hand, it will be equally forgotten that the vigor of government is essential to the security of liberty; that, in the contemplation of a sound and well-informed judgment, their interest can never be separated; and that a dangerous ambition more often lurks behind the specious mask of zeal for the rights of the people than under the forbidden appearance of zeal for the firmness and efficiency of government. History will teach us that the former has been found a much more certain road to the introduction of despotism than the latter, and that of those men who have overturned the liberties of republics, the greatest number have begun their career by paying an obsequious court to the people; commencing demagogues, and ending tyrants.”

  32. Gravatar of Tom Brown Tom Brown
    28. July 2016 at 09:25

    @Ken Duda,

    Would you make a major purchase from Trump? Would you sign a contract with Trump? Would you partner with Trump on a project? Would you recommend a loved one do so? Whatever his game (if it is a game) everything about him screams at 120 decibels:

    “Don’t trust me! I’m a 3rd rate con man!”

    I’ve started to think everything with him is opposites day. Whatever he says, it’s a reasonable bet the exact opposite is true. If he says he’s “very very rich” I’m now inclined to think he’s very much in debt. If he says he’s “gonna hire the BEST people” I’m inclined now to think he’s going to hire some god awful people. If he says “what my investigators are going to find is going to blow you away!” (Obama’s birth certificate) it means he never even hired any to begin with. When he says “I’ve got the best brain and the best memory!” I’m inclined to think the neither are true. And when he says “Only I can make America great again, trust me” … well, I’m pretty sure the exact opposite is the case.

    Why doesn’t he showcase all the satisfied business partners who’ve worked with him on big important projects? Why doesn’t he show us his tax returns? Even his ghost writer for “The Art of the Deal” (the book he’s so proud of) has turned on him now.

    I’m frightened that millions of people would fall for his rudimentary shtick. Others see opportunity in that I guess. Other grifters and cynics.

  33. Gravatar of E. Harding E. Harding
    28. July 2016 at 09:36

    “Patrick, I can tell you are not a young person—they wouldn’t remember that line from Adlai Stevenson.”

    -That line was also objectively false (unless the only thinking people in America at the time had triple parentheses around their names). Eisenhower was more popular among the college-educated than Her. Stevenson was less popular among them than Trump. The college-educated were heavily underrepresented in Stevenson’s disproportionately rural and southern constituency.

    “I don’t like this “they all lie” attitude.”

    -You can’t handle the truth.

    “But he did read one book—Hitler’s speeches.”

    -I think you are vastly overestimating the amount Trump has read. Typical academic.

  34. Gravatar of Massimo Heitor Massimo Heitor
    28. July 2016 at 10:12

    A federal minimum wage is a terrible idea, Trump has waffled on this, and has moved in a worse direction. Trump never strongly opposed the idea of a minimum wage, so I don’t see this as a major flip-flop, but I’m quite disappointed as a Trump supporter. Then again, Trump isn’t running against Rand Paul or Thomas Jefferson, he’s running against Hillary who would also raise the minimum wage, probably even more so.

    Sumner really loses me when he claims that somehow Trump is a unique liar and manipulator in politics. Obama is wildly manipulative and purposefully misleading and has changed his views on major issues. Obama quite formally opposed gay marriage. He lied and completely flip flopped. The ACA health care act was riddled with lies and dishonesty and political tricks and this is widely agreed upon.

    “People feel passionately about politics precisely because they do not think candidates are liars.”

    No, people are passionate about politics, because this stuff matters. Many people, maybe even most people who are passionate about politics, think politicians are liars and manipulators. Of course those things run rampant in politics.

  35. Gravatar of Steve F Steve F
    28. July 2016 at 10:40

    There is much more going on than the OP assumes.

    When trying to win an election, facts don’t matter. Trump is courting Sanders voters at the time of their greatest distaste for Clinton and when they’re scanning the horizon for somebody else to vote for.

    While I agree that I don’t like that Trump isn’t obviously consistent, there is some convergence, but finding it takes more than the tired “egads a flip flop!” Perhaps instead of talking about Trump, Scott should discuss his support for somebody so corrupt she makes Nixon look like a child playing in the sand.

  36. Gravatar of Gabe Gabe
    28. July 2016 at 11:07

    if you are interested in presidential comedy then this Reagan sketch is hilarious in light of Hinkley getting out of jail yesterday.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tI5_YuCWTMA

  37. Gravatar of Gary Anderson Gary Anderson
    28. July 2016 at 11:15

    Seattle has more jobs in the restaurant industry than before the minimum wage was raised. It is a closed access city. Maybe the workers just need more money.

    And Texas is suffering, being a one trick pony as oil prices decline, while California is prospering. I was told Texas had a stronger economy than California because discretionary income was greater. However, in hard times, California is more diversified. i am right and Sumner and the other guy are wrong. Or maybe there is truth to both position. But Texas is suffering. http://trailblazersblog.dallasnews.com/2016/03/report-oil-price-slump-costs-texas-65000-energy-jobs-and-250000-jobs-overall.html/

  38. Gravatar of Justin Justin
    28. July 2016 at 11:25

    @Gary Anderson

    Texas is hardly suffering, people are just moving out of Houston and into DFW and Austin/San Antonio. Nonfarm payrolls are still growing, unemployment is still under 4.5%. Hardly a one-trick pony, oil is just…performance enhancing drugs for that pony.

  39. Gravatar of Jeff Jeff
    28. July 2016 at 11:27

    I am not a Trump supporter, but you’re making too much of this one, Scott.

    If Trump is elected, almost certainly the Republicans will retain control of both the House and the Senate. Trump’s desire for a minimum wage hike will matter only if he is willing to push hard to overcome resistance from the Republican Congress. Given the tenor of his reported remarks, this seems pretty unlikely. In truth, I don’t think any of us know whether or not there are any feasible policy positions Trump feels strongly enough about to really push hard for. He’s the proverbial pig in a poke. If you really think Hillary is horrible, maybe Trump is not quite as bad. He makes at least a few of the right noises.

  40. Gravatar of Christian List Christian List
    28. July 2016 at 11:47


    I can tell you are not a young person—they wouldn’t remember that line from Adlai Stevenson.

    There might be no proof that Stevenson actually said something like this ever.
    https://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Adlai_Stevenson#Disputed

    But he said things like: In America any boy may become President, and I suppose it’s just one of the risks he takes.

    =)

  41. Gravatar of foosion foosion
    28. July 2016 at 12:00

    More on the problem that Trump doesn’t have a consistent or coherent view on this subject: https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/plum-line/wp/2016/07/28/does-donald-trump-even-know-his-own-position-on-the-minimum-wage/

    He doesn’t seem very interested in policy.

  42. Gravatar of msgkings msgkings
    28. July 2016 at 12:43

    @foosion: “He doesn’t seem very interested in policy.”

    Uh, yeah, ya think?

    There’s not the slightest shred of doubt that Trump has no interest in actually doing the job. He just wants the ego boost of a win, it’s the last mountain he can climb. I’m quite sure he had no idea he’d get this far, and apparently there’s some leaked email around proving that.

    He will certainly not run again in 2020, and he may even hand it to Pence after 2 years when he’s tired of the BS.

  43. Gravatar of foosion foosion
    28. July 2016 at 13:28

    He doesn’t seem very interested in truth either:

    https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CodchnxWcAAbfOM.jpg

  44. Gravatar of msgkings msgkings
    28. July 2016 at 13:33

    @foosion: is your day job being Captain Obvious? :-)

  45. Gravatar of Tom Brown Tom Brown
    28. July 2016 at 14:02

    …he’s running against Hillary who would also raise the minimum wage, probably even more so.

    You make it sound like the president is an autocrat (which I suspect is what some Trump supporters fantasize about). Hillary would have to get that through congress. Congress will remain in GOP hands (at least the House). Hillary is not likely to do anything more than 1-sigma different than her predecessors in either party if she doesn’t get what she wants from congress. There’s no telling with Trump, especially if he sees it as a threat to his fragile ego.

  46. Gravatar of Tom Brown Tom Brown
    28. July 2016 at 14:16

    Scott, re: slogan: I’ve got the hats designed. Do you think it needs the America? Somebody else took care of the logo, although I’m thinking a human centipede type design with Trump in the middle, and pence bringing up the rear might be fun. Maybe I can do something with the names… e.g. as the lead segment, I could point out what Putin is pooin’ in. Sophisticated stuff, you know the usual from me. I figure I might be able to sell a few to tourists down at the weekly Sunday arts and crafts fair at the beach. BTW, I think this one from Erickson’s site would make an excellent T-shirt: no caption required. =)

  47. Gravatar of Massimo Heitor Massimo Heitor
    28. July 2016 at 14:29

    @Tom Brown,

    When I said Hillary would raise the minimum wage if she were elected, I didn’t mean that completely literally, in that Hillary the single individual would solely do that herself as an autocrat without any aides, without underlings, without congress, or without a larger political system. I meant that a Hillary administration would engage in political efforts to raise the minimum wage. While the latter is more accurate, normal people talk in the former language. And you should know that.

    Also, as a Trump supporter, I would prefer less presidential power, and more power in congresss. I’d also prefer less federal power and more localized control at the state and municipal levels. And again, if some Thomas Jefferson philosopher type was a viable alternative to Trump or Hillary, I would be inclined to vote that way.

    I like and respect Sumner. But much of his opposition to Trump is so completely nuts, it reaffirms my belief that a Trump presidency is at the least better bet than a Hillary presidency. The same goes for many other right wing types who voice opposition to Trump.

    And as for that PolitiFact graphic, I think that shows that Trump’s style of lying and manipulation is measurably different from Obama or Hillary or Sanders. I’ve been far more horrified by Obama’s manipulations and rhetoric even when it can score well on PolitiFact’s rubric.

  48. Gravatar of E. Harding E. Harding
    28. July 2016 at 14:44

    https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CoZXJinUkAAOVax.jpg

    Politifact is totally biased in its selection and evaluation of statements.

    Let’s Make America Great Again!

  49. Gravatar of Gary Anderson Gary Anderson
    28. July 2016 at 15:20

    @Justin This is just the beginning of the slide for Texas, if the powers that be want to try to destroy Russia by destroying the price of oil.

    Texas won’t turn into Russia, but it will suffer far more if that is the plan and they have the power to pull it off.

    Some people believe that is what is behind the oil demand, that supply and demand are manipulated for political ends. I don’t for sure but it it possible.

  50. Gravatar of TheManFromFairwinds TheManFromFairwinds
    28. July 2016 at 15:34

    Being from Argentina I’m already familiar with Kakistocracy. In fact the acronym for the Kirchners is K (pronounced Ka in Spanish) and this word would get brought up often in relation to them.

    The successors to the Kirchners was Scioli, who lost to Macri, so we almost had a sciolist (someone who speaks about a subject of which he is ignorant) president as well.

    Anyways, the real reason I came to comment was to point out that Romney also supported increasing the minimum wage, and IIRC I read on this blog that had Romney been president we would have had both immigration and minimum wage reform.

  51. Gravatar of foosion foosion
    28. July 2016 at 16:19

    @msgkings I’ve been told I have a flair for the obvious. YMMV.

  52. Gravatar of Benjamin Cole Benjamin Cole
    28. July 2016 at 16:55

    A former Bill Clinton White House official and senior adviser to Hillary Clinton implied Thursday that a Donald Trump administration would “start looking for Jews.”Ann Lewis served as communications director for President Bill Clinton and was a senior adviser for Hillary’s 2000 senate run and 2008 presidential bid. She was speaking during the Democratic National Convention on a panel for the Democratic Party’s Jewish Caucus at the Philadelphia Convention center.Lewis described Republican nominee Donald Trump as a “a candidate who deliberately and consciously tries to divide.”“We know from recent history that when you live in a society where the forces of division looks for scapegoats, Jews are next in line,” Lewis added. “Don’t kid ourselves. Wherever they start, if that is the way people amass power, they will start looking for Jews.”Read more: http://dailycaller.com/2016/07/28/key-clinton-ally-implies-trump-white-house-would-start-looking-for-jews

    Yes, Trump will round up the Jews, starting with…his grandchildren.

    Do we want a business-oriented President or victimist-globalist-warmonger?

  53. Gravatar of ssumner ssumner
    28. July 2016 at 17:25

    Gene, You said:

    “Scott, really, just stop. This is really embarrassing.”

    Look, I know it’s embarrassing for you guys, but stop complaining. I warned you that Trump couldn’t be trusted, that his campaign promises meant nothing. Now you Trumpistas just need to suffer some embarrassment. I’m sorry, but that’s the way the world works. There will be many more “I told you so” posts, so deal with it.

    James, Trump used to say that American workers needed to accept lower wages—that was the only way to bring jobs back home. Now Trump has discovered that the demand for labor slopes upward. The higher the wage, the more workers that firms want to hire. Isn’t life wonderful!

    Justin, Yeah, who cares about immigration—Trump loves the cheap labor to cut his grass. It’s all about fooling the stupid Trumpistas to get elected. I agree with you.

    Brian, Yes, he’s raised pandering to a whole nuther level. But he’s also careful to avoid antagonizing the GOP too much, as long as he needs them. He won’t admit that he’s actually pro-choice until he picks a liberal for the Supreme Court–after he’s elected.

    Tom, That “opposites day” hypothesis is better than most theories I’ve read.

    Massimo, You said:

    “No, people are passionate about politics, because this stuff matters.”

    You don’t seem to get it. If everything is a lie, then politics don’t matter at all. It’s a coin toss. Trump supporters clearly don’t think it’s just as likely that Hillary will ban Muslim immigration as it is that Trump will. So whenever someone who is politically engaged says “they’re all liars” I know that they don’t understand anything about politics. Otherwise they wouldn’t care who won.

    Steve, It makes no difference how bad Hillary is, and I’ve said she’s terrible, because Trump is the absolute worst, out of 325 million Americans. Maybe Hillary is second worst, but she’s still the lesser of evils.

    Also, don’t talk like this is a single regrettable flip flop. He has flip flopped on virtually every single issue, including his most famous issues, like deporting illegals and banning Muslims. Literally nothing Trump says can be believed. That’s not true of others, not even true of Hillary. Hillary really will work to make child care more affordable, and raise taxes on the rich. (I don’t support her on those issues, but I trust her to to try to honor her promises.) She doesn’t lie about everything. Trump does. Why is that so hard to understand? Are people not paying attention?

    Gary, You don’t even know that Texas’s population is growing faster than California, even during the oil slump? Just go away.

    Jeff, This is not about the minimum wage, (which the GOP in Congress will vote to raise regardless of who is elected), it’s about who has their finger on the nuclear trigger. Hillary, Johnson, or a paranoid conspiratorial lunatic.

    Themanfromfairwinds, Yes, I recall when Romney recommended raising the minimum wage. That’s why I keep insisting it will go up, because the GOP will vote for a higher minimum wage regardless of who is elected.

  54. Gravatar of ssumner ssumner
    28. July 2016 at 17:28

    Ben, You said:

    “Do we want a business-oriented President”

    I’d rather have almost anything other than a business oriented president. The last few who tried were Trump, Forbes and Perot. Do normal people ever go into business? Just asking.

  55. Gravatar of Benjamin Cole Benjamin Cole
    28. July 2016 at 19:20

    Scott-

    Well, “normal people”?

    How many standard deviations do we accept before we get to outliers, who are not “normal”?

    Besides I was a middling business-owner for many years. I made everything except money. Just like Don Trump?

  56. Gravatar of Steve F Steve F
    28. July 2016 at 22:53

    Scott, you have let the wind blow into your ears. Duly noted that Trump pisses you off. Trump pissed my Cruz-loving ears off too. But you’ve dropped the ball on your analyses of Trump, and I’m saying it because I respect the discipline of economics greatly and you’re numero uno on my list of respected economists.

  57. Gravatar of Steve F Steve F
    28. July 2016 at 22:55

    Also I’m Steve F, not Steve. Other people got to my name before I did. I don’t want to obfuscate any intentions. Steve F is different than Steve and Stephen (also known as those bastards who took my name before I did).

  58. Gravatar of Justin Justin
    29. July 2016 at 06:07

    @Benjamin Cole Yes and after Trump is done rounding up his grandchildren, he can round up his speechwriter and son-in-law/close adviser and all his Manhattan friends!

  59. Gravatar of Justin Justin
    29. July 2016 at 06:09

    I like how Scott isn’t able to actually engage with people who strongly disagree with him on Trump. He’s like a bullied child, totally without agency, at the mercy of button pushers.

  60. Gravatar of Art Deco Art Deco
    29. July 2016 at 06:40

    Sumner really loses me when he claims that somehow Trump is a unique liar and manipulator in politics. Obama is wildly manipulative and purposefully misleading and has changed his views on major issues. Obama quite formally opposed gay marriage.

    Massimo, it makes perfect sense if you realize that among those employed in salaried positions in academic institutions, media companies, tech companies, and law firms, discourse on social and political questions is status signalling. It doesn’t have to have any integrity at all or make any sense. Read Charles Fried’s complaint uttered 8 years ago about Sarah Palin for a sterling example of the genre; it is contextually nonsensical, but that would not occur to anyone in the faculty rathskellar at Harvard because in that bubble, possession of haut bourgeois cultural markers is a qualification for high office and actually running a public agency is not.

    You’ll never see a critique of BO from the Mercatus crew, at least not one with any astringency. You’ll never see an honest dissection of the gay subculture of a sort you might have seen even 20 years ago in an outlet like Washington Post Book World. You’ll never see one of women’s studies, a worthless pseudo-discipline which takes resources away from serious academic departments. You’ll never see any acknowledgement of the ruin of constitutional law as a serious intellectual endeavour. You will, however, see nutty diatribes against patriotism or against local police.

  61. Gravatar of ssumner ssumner
    29. July 2016 at 06:44

    Steve F, I often shorten names when I respond, to save time. I know you are Steve F.

    Justin. Actually, I am just about the only blogger who does engage with you idiots, every day. The fact that you can’t see this simple fact, helps me to understand why you are fooled by an obvious con man like Trump.

    Being unable to see Trump as a con man shows that this supporters have almost off the charts obliviousness about people. Does he have to tattoo “con man” on his forehead for you guys to see what he’s up to?

  62. Gravatar of ssumner ssumner
    29. July 2016 at 06:46

    Art, You said:

    “You’ll never see an honest dissection of the gay subculture of a sort you might have seen even 20 years ago in an outlet like Washington Post Book World.”

    Still fighting that losing battle against gay rights, eh?

  63. Gravatar of Art Deco Art Deco
    29. July 2016 at 06:48

    I like how Scott isn’t able to actually engage with people who strongly disagree with him on Trump.

    You get what you get from Sumner. From John Quiggin, you’d get an evasive and supercilious dismissal. Corey Robin would just delete your remarks. Tyler Cowen would ignore them. Faculty members are not, as a rule, able to have ordinary conversations with ordinary people on anything but the most banal topics. They either engage in mutual affirmations among peers or they have to piss on you. Got anyone in the mental health trade in your family, ‘cuz they’re just as bad. The question is why we’ve allocated the task of sorting the labor market to such people.

  64. Gravatar of Art Deco Art Deco
    29. July 2016 at 06:58

    Still fighting that losing battle against gay rights, eh?

    I don’t have to be fashionable, so I do not care. In the common parlance, ‘gay rights’ are a franchise granted to homosexuals to hire lawyers to harass others for no other reason than the lawyers and the homosexuals in question fancy the world’s landlords, schoolmasters, employers, and merchants should be their bitch and not do or say anything which rejects the homosexual’s self-evaluation as someone Special.

    The mentality has in the last 25 years infected educational policy, so now the Special status of homosexual men has been incorporated into school curriculum and disciplinary practices. Quite gratuitously. You might think that schools, having a variegated constituency, would avoid pointless controversy. You would be assuming, however, that schools existed for the benefit of the parents and students. Which of course they don’t.

    An older generation of libertarians (e.g. Gottfried Dietze or Richard Epstein) had a considerable regard for freedom of contract and freedom of association. That’s low status, so you won’t see defenses of that from the Mercatus crew.

  65. Gravatar of Massimo Heitor Massimo Heitor
    29. July 2016 at 07:19

    @sumner,

    I don’t think “everything is a lie”. Trump lies differently than Hillary or Obama or Bush. Trump lies like a reality show contestant. Hillary and Obama are lawyers and they lie like lawyers. And some politicians are generally honest and straight forward and those guys have lost this round. I would think that even you could agree with this summary.

    @Art Deco,

    “Massimo, it makes perfect sense if you realize that among those employed in salaried positions in academic institutions, media companies, tech companies, and law firms, discourse on social and political questions is status signalling.”

    I work in tech. I go to San Francisco a lot and know that crowd. Most are super liberal, but there is a sizable group of far right libertarian types. There are also a sizable number of Trump supporters. Read the comments section on any tech site. Famous tech celebs Peter Thiel and Carl Icahn and Mark Cuban are all very public Trump supporters. I also don’t think it’s as simple as status signaling.

    I’m curious as to what your industry or vocation was.

  66. Gravatar of Tom Brown Tom Brown
    29. July 2016 at 08:07

    @Massimo, you write:

    Read the comments section on any tech site. Famous tech celebs Peter Thiel and Carl Icahn and Mark Cuban are all very public Trump supporters.

    Mark Cuban is DEFINITELY not on that list. He changed his mind “after Trump opened his mouth.” [1], [2], [3]

    As you can see Cuban (like Bloomberg) suspects Trump isn’t nearly as rich as he says he is, and wonders why he doesn’t show us his tax returns. And having sued a grand total of two people in his life himself, Cuban wonders why Trump has sued almost 2000 and is involved in so many lawsuits in general. He also is convinced there’s no way he can self fund, and he wonders where are Trump’s satisfied business partners? Lot’s of red flags for Cuban. Would you hand over your 401K on a Trump investment Massimo? Would you trust him with that?

    Colbert’s interview with Cuban here:
    [https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KzqMzX4_1Eg]

  67. Gravatar of ssumner ssumner
    29. July 2016 at 08:08

    Massimo, Why is this so difficult? Normal politicians give you at least a rough idea of the policies they favor. Once and a while they change their minds, especially on hot button issues like gay marriage. With Trump we have no idea of where he actually stands. It’s all an act. He lies almost every time he opens his mouth. That’s not normal. Why is that so hard for people to see? Aren’t you able to read people? Does he need to wear a clown suit before you can see?

    You said:

    “Famous tech celebs Peter Thiel and Carl Icahn and Mark Cuban are all very public Trump supporters.”

    No. Cuban supports Hillary. Icahn is not a tech celeb. I guess one out of three ain’t bad for a Trumpista.

    http://www.complex.com/sports/2016/07/mark-cuban-exchange-emails-with-trump-puts-on-blast

    Oh wait, Art says I don’t respond to Trump supporters, so never mind.

  68. Gravatar of ssumner ssumner
    29. July 2016 at 08:09

    I see Tom beat me too it. I should have said I agree with Cuban on Trump. I wish Cuban had run instead of Trump, but he’s probably not racist enough to excite the GOP “base”.

  69. Gravatar of Art Deco Art Deco
    29. July 2016 at 09:49

    I also don’t think it’s as simple as status signaling.

    Nothing described in a sentence is that simple and no social sector is uniform (thought he arts and sciences faculty is close to uniform).

    Nearly 30 years ago I was reading a letter to the editor written by someone active in a political organization founded by Thomas Golisano. Golisano is a very capable entrepreneur and his organization attracted businessmen. It occurred to me reading the letter that the man who wrote it understands balance sheets and profit-and-loss statements, but not public policy questions which could not be captured in that sort of instrument. I suspect he’s quite common.

    Business PACs at that time tended to look for protective influence and donated to incumbents (and still do, I believe). David Horowitz put it this way, “Businessmen typically regard politicians as fungible”. If you read Trump’s first memoir, that disposition seeps through.

    So, someone like Robert Welch or the Brothers Koch seems odd. Still, at least with Koch, I can see how their political views (favoring the minimal state) mesh with their business. With Welch, at least his icons and antagonisms seemed consonant with his self-employment as a manufacturer (if not his insane historiography). The whole SJW aspect of corporate behavior (manifest in Twitter, Facebook, Apple) makes no sense to me. If it’s not status signalling among peers, what is it?

    Michael Medved has been making the case for decades that film producers frequently behave in ways which make no sense from a commercial standpoint, at least from such a standpoint in a company which has an institutional memory. Makes for an interesting puzzle.

    It’s definitely an involved question as to why people in particular trades line up against those in other trades. Thomas Sowell has offered that articulate people tend to adhere to a certain cluster of attitudes. People in occupations which have weak operational measures of competence tend to as well. Still, it’s a puzzle. Why are golf pros a uniformly Republican occupational group?

    Unfortunately, it’s left academe in comically ruined condition. Scott Sumner, who calls me an ‘idiot’ and ‘moron’ asks a weirdly clueless question about ‘gay rights’. Its hard to see why libertarian publicists would have much interest in that if they are who they say they are. It might if anti-sodomy laws were rigorously enforced or if homosexuals were being snooped out and canned from civil service positions, but that hasn’t been all that common in decades. Now look at the antecedent to that: “You’ll never see an honest dissection of the gay subculture of a sort you might have seen even 20 years ago in an outlet like Washington Post Book World.”. That’s not a reference to a legal regime at all (but is a reference to the sort of articles you might have seen by Camille Paglia or Chris Bull 20 years ago). Our moderator knows when to cheer and when to boo.

  70. Gravatar of Tom Brown Tom Brown
    29. July 2016 at 10:38

    I wish Cuban had run instead of Trump, but he’s probably not racist enough to excite the GOP “base”.

    Amen to that that. If people think a rich guy would be good, there are so many better choices. Even if people think a [truly] anti-PC, tell it like it is, tough guy authoritarian would be good, there are STILL so many better choices! I don’t think I’d ever go for an authoritarian, but I can still think of much better candidates for that. Like how about one that doesn’t tell fantastic bragging lies over 80% of the time for example? That might be a place to start. Is obvious lying considered part of what makes you “Alpha” these days? The more outrageous and obviously 3rd rate hucksteresque the lies are the more Alpha and manly and “red pill” the liar? And why does a supposed “tough Alpha male” need the protection of safe spaces against microagressions directed his way? Why does he enforce his own brand of PC? Why won’t he be honest with us and disclose his tax returns and his school transcripts?

  71. Gravatar of Major.Freedom Major.Freedom
    30. July 2016 at 13:44

    Hey Sumner, when are you going to spend all your time researching the questionable activities of Hillary Clinton?

    Haha, you’re a leftist.

  72. Gravatar of Massimo Heitor Massimo Heitor
    31. July 2016 at 19:01

    Sumner, I seriously would prefer a clown wearing a clown suit over Hillary or Obama. You probably could convince me that any of the other Republican primary candidates is better than Trump. I voted for Cruz and would still prefer him.

    @Art, my guess is the execs at Apple and Facebook are naturally far left SJWs. I know tech workers who have very far right personal views, but go to great lengths to hide their viewpoints. I suspect tech execs and many students and professors in academia are similar, some of the right wing types are closeted and the left wing types are quite evangelical about their views.

    Also, academia still has great strength in non-political STEM areas. You wouldn’t know by reading the news, but universities do great work in math, science, and engineering.

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