Posts tagged ‘Donald Trump’

November 22, 2016

Post-Election: Learning About Our Country

by Vince

trumpoThis is my first post in 5 years. I vowed to take a reading sabbatical and focus on books over electronic posts. In that time we have had 2 presidential elections, I took a director job in a new area, and started/finished a Masters degree. A lot has worked through my mind in those 5 years. More recently, I have read a lot pertaining to the election and needed to get it out in writing.

Many people believe we live in a new and different country, one they do not recognize or thought still existed. I don’t think a new country could have formed overnight. This change has been fermenting for anywhere between 8 and 30 years.

I voted for Hillary. I didn’t think she was perfect but I admired her views and convictions and respected her experience. I was turned off by Donald’s rhetoric that emboldened hate and nervous we would make the most powerful person in the world hold a job they had zero qualifications for. While Hillary has nearly 2 million more popular votes than Donald, the electoral college vote gave Donald the win. He is our president.

There are a variety of responses to this new reality. Donald supporters can boast, Hillary supporters can vent, or we can work to understand each side. I wish to understand the thinking and desires of Donald supporters. I refuse to believe all Donald supporters are racist and uneducated (exit polls have shown that 30% of women voted for Donald and a similar amount of Hispanics did too).

I have found various media outlets to be either helpful or harmful in this effort to understand. Many blogs report every single solitary tweet by Donald or his “alleged” supporters, making it seem that all they are and do is reduced to offensiveness. Meanwhile I find many posts by David Brooks to be balanced and helpful. Brooks highlights the tendency to reduce people to caricatures (emphasis in bold is mine):

Large parts of popular culture — and pretty much all of stand-up comedy — consist of reducing people to one or another identity and then making jokes about that generalization. The people who worry about cultural appropriation reduce people to an ethnic category and argue that those outside can never understand it. A single identity walls off empathy and the imagination.
We’re even seeing a wave of voluntary reductionism. People feel besieged, or they’re intellectually lazy, so they reduce themselves to one category. Being an evangelical used to mean practicing a certain form of faith. But “evangelical” has gone from being an adjective to a noun, a simplistic tribal identity that commands Republican affiliation.
Unfortunately, if you reduce complex individuals to one thing you’ll go through life clueless about the world around you. People’s classifications now shape how they see the world.

I do not have answers to why each and every person voted for Donald. Truth is I never will. I personally would find it hard to trust his promises when he has never made any political promises before, trust his alleged ethics when he has flip flopped more than Mitt Romney, or simply vote enthusiastically for someone just because Hillary was anathema.

Trump has somewhat changed since winning the election. His 60 minutes interview shows a more somber personality, but his daily attacks on media resembles single party authoritarianism.

It’s been two weeks since the election. The raw emotion has begun to go away for me. I am willing to listen and learn. Let’s do this together.

August 31, 2011

What to make of Bill O’Reilly as an Immoral Masthead

by Vince

This story is thick:

Last summer, Fox News anchor Bill O’Reilly came to believe that his wife was romantically involved with another man. Not just any man, but a police detective in the Long Island community they call home. So O’Reilly did what any concerned husband would do: He pulled strings to get the police department’s internal affairs unit to investigate one of their own for messing with the wrong man’s lady.

(…)

Roger Ailes—treating his local police department like a private security force and trying to damage one cop’s career for the sin of crossing Bill O’Reilly.

The article goes on with the details from the Nassau County Police Department. Just like Rush Limbaugh and his drug problem as well as Donald Trump and his spoiled treatment on the part of his dad (as he then goes on to question Barack Obama’s education credentials and if he is worthy to be out POTUS), we now have O’Reilly who talks big talk, calls people pin heads, and does his best to be the conservative champ in terms of moral righteousness. I wonder how he will spin this on his show. Victimization possibly?

August 30, 2011

Pushing Buttons of Racial Resentment

by Vince


While the left or those who enjoy attacking the right’s seemingly 1950’s esque “let’s take America back” style of reform, which if we were to go there, it would be horrendous, these quick labels of “racist!” hurt discourse and frankly are mostly inaccurate. The right is not stupid. Rush Limbaugh and Donald Trump are big figures who use racial stereotypes to joke or make their points and then whine when they are picked on. The judgments made on them may be overdrawn but they could save the headaches by avoiding inaccurate racial stereotypes in the first place.

May 27, 2011

Political Cartoon of the Day

by Vince

May 23, 2011

Mitt vs. Barack

by Vince

Robert Reich explains how the hypothetical presidential match-up between Mitt Romney and Barack Obama has dwindled from a 13 point lead for Barack to just 1 point:

Why is Mitt doing so well? Partly because Obama’s positions are by now well known, while voters can project anything they want onto Mitt. It’s also because much of the public continues to worry about the economy, jobs, and the price of gas at the pump, and they inevitably blame the president.

But I suspect something else is at work here, too. To many voters, President Obama sounds and acts presidential, but he doesn’t look it. Mitt Romney is the perfect candidate for people uncomfortable that their president is black. Mitt is their great white hope.

I wouldn’t take it so far with the race card. Mitt is somewhat ambiguous when it comes to policy, yes. However, he seems to be the same, plain candidate that was around in 2008:

I say this not because Mitt’s mind is the sharpest of the likely contenders (Newt Gingrich is far more nimble intellectually). Nor because his record of public service is particularly impressive (Tim Pawlenty took his governorship seriously, while Mitt as governor seemed more intent on burnishing his Republican credentials outside Massachusetts). Nor because Mitt is the most experienced at running a business (Donald Trump has actually managed a major company, while Mitt made his money buying and selling companies). Nor, finally, because he’s especially charismatic or entertaining (Sarah Palin can work up audiences, and Mike Huckabee is genuinely funny and folksy, while Mitt delivers a speech so deliberately he seems to be driving a large truck).

May 14, 2011

White Privilege, Donald Trump, and Unpaid Taxes

by Vince

Tim Wise helps us Caucasians out by using Donald Trump as an example (this is so worth a full read):

Now, with the birth certificate thing settled among remotely sane people, Trump has switched gears, casting doubt on Barack Obama’s academic performance and suggesting he didn’t deserve to get into the Ivy League schools he attended; namely, Columbia and Harvard Law. Although this plays directly into the long-running narrative so common on the white right for the past forty years, to the effect that black folks are getting things they don’t deserve because of racial favoritism, Trump insists it has nothing to do with race. Of course not. Neither could it possibly be about race that Trump would question Obama in this way, despite never having raised the issue of academic merit with any white president or politician, like, for instance, George W. Bush, who was a mediocre student (at best) in prep school and Yale, and actually bragged about his piss-poor performance to Yale students when he gave the commencement address there after becoming president.

One other noteworthy quote:

Never mind that General Electric paid less in taxes last year than undocumented immigrants, despite record profits.

March 23, 2011

Wait What? of the day

by Vince

“I think I probably have more experience of anybody… I dealt with Gaddafi. I rented him a piece of land. He paid me more for one night than the land was worth for two years, and then I didn’t let him use the land. That’s what we should be doing. I don’t want to use the word ‘screwed’, but I screwed him.” –Donald Trump, yesterday morning on Fox & Friends.

H/T: The Pajama Pundit