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FSogol

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Hometown: Northern VA
Member since: Fri Oct 29, 2004, 10:34 AM
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The GOP’s backward-looking agenda

The party embraced a startlingly backward-looking social agenda, much of it a reaction to the Obergefell v. Hodges Supreme Court ruling that legalized same-sex marriage. The party favors a constitutional amendment that would overturn the ruling, enabling states to ban same-sex unions once again. It proclaims that children should be raised by “a mother and father,” expressing disapproval of gays and lesbians as parents. It signals approval for the discredited practice of gay conversion therapy. It calls for the Bible to be taught in public schools. It supports allowing churches to organize politically while keeping their tax-exempt status.

The party’s allegiance to tax cutting and deregulation remains. Among other things, the GOP would curtail a variety of environmental protections and prevent a variety of species from being listed as endangered. It would abolish the Internal Revenue Service, a particularly silly bumper-sticker proposal.


Whole piece from the Washington Post Editorial Board here:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/donald-trump-has-completed-his-hostile-takeover-of-the-gop-platform/2016/07/18/e400fd44-4d2b-11e6-a7d8-13d06b37f256_story.html

x-posted from GDP2016

The GOP’s backward-looking agenda

The party embraced a startlingly backward-looking social agenda, much of it a reaction to the Obergefell v. Hodges Supreme Court ruling that legalized same-sex marriage. The party favors a constitutional amendment that would overturn the ruling, enabling states to ban same-sex unions once again. It proclaims that children should be raised by “a mother and father,” expressing disapproval of gays and lesbians as parents. It signals approval for the discredited practice of gay conversion therapy. It calls for the Bible to be taught in public schools. It supports allowing churches to organize politically while keeping their tax-exempt status.

The party’s allegiance to tax cutting and deregulation remains. Among other things, the GOP would curtail a variety of environmental protections and prevent a variety of species from being listed as endangered. It would abolish the Internal Revenue Service, a particularly silly bumper-sticker proposal.


Whole piece from the Washington Post Editorial Board here:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/donald-trump-has-completed-his-hostile-takeover-of-the-gop-platform/2016/07/18/e400fd44-4d2b-11e6-a7d8-13d06b37f256_story.html

The GOP’s coronation of a charlatan

Years from now, bright-eyed children will look up at Grandma or Grandpa and ask, “Where were you when they nominated Donald Trump?” Far too many prominent Republicans will have to hang their heads in shame.

As the garish imperial coronation in Cleveland reaches its climax, there will be much commentary — some, no doubt, from me — about fleeting events. Did So-and-So’s speech help Trump or hurt him? Did one line of attack against Hillary Clinton seem more or less promising than another? All of this is news, but we must not lose sight of the big picture: The “party of Lincoln” is about to nominate for president a man who is dangerously unfit for the office.

Trump is a brilliant showman, no question about that. His life’s work has been self-aggrandizement, not real estate, and all those years of practice served him well when he turned to politics. He knows how to work a crowd. He understands television and social media. He dominated and vanquished a field of experienced campaigners as if they were mere apprentices.

But he lacks the knowledge, curiosity, temperament, wisdom, compassion and resolve to be president. The GOP is about to formally endorse a charlatan for the most important job in the world.


Rest of the Eugene Robinson piece here:
https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/the-coronation-of-a-charlatan/2016/07/18/b6d9e254-4d12-11e6-a7d8-13d06b37f256_story.html

x-posted from GDP2016

The GOP’s coronation of a charlatan

Years from now, bright-eyed children will look up at Grandma or Grandpa and ask, “Where were you when they nominated Donald Trump?” Far too many prominent Republicans will have to hang their heads in shame.

As the garish imperial coronation in Cleveland reaches its climax, there will be much commentary — some, no doubt, from me — about fleeting events. Did So-and-So’s speech help Trump or hurt him? Did one line of attack against Hillary Clinton seem more or less promising than another? All of this is news, but we must not lose sight of the big picture: The “party of Lincoln” is about to nominate for president a man who is dangerously unfit for the office.

Trump is a brilliant showman, no question about that. His life’s work has been self-aggrandizement, not real estate, and all those years of practice served him well when he turned to politics. He knows how to work a crowd. He understands television and social media. He dominated and vanquished a field of experienced campaigners as if they were mere apprentices.

But he lacks the knowledge, curiosity, temperament, wisdom, compassion and resolve to be president. The GOP is about to formally endorse a charlatan for the most important job in the world.


Rest of the Eugene Robinson piece here:
https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/the-coronation-of-a-charlatan/2016/07/18/b6d9e254-4d12-11e6-a7d8-13d06b37f256_story.html

Republicans keep trying to normalize Trump. He keeps proving it’s impossible.

DAMAGING AS Donald Trump’s style is to American political culture, that’s not where the focus should be after this astonishing weekend. True, the campaign fumbled the rollout of Mr. Trump’s vice-presidential pick and failed even more miserably in its efforts at style adjustment. But those missteps should not distract from the more basic failure of substance. The candidate does not deal honestly with issues — neither in the sense of basic logic and fact nor in the sense of offering voters something more than slogans upon which to evaluate his potential presidency.

As Republicans assembled in Cleveland, the Trump campaign was trying to normalize the candidate. The choice of the relatively conventional governor of Indiana, Mike Pence, as running mate, was part of the effort, as was the sheaf of boilerplate that Mr. Trump sporadically consulted during his introduction of Mr. Pence on Saturday. But in repeated flights of rhetoric, both Saturday and in a joint interview with Mr. Pence on Sunday’s edition of “60 Minutes,” Mr. Trump showed that belligerent self-absorption is not, for him, just an act; it’s characterological. You might say this bull carries the china shop around with him.

That is less alarming than Mr. Trump’s continuing inclination to fiction. He wildly accused his likely opponent, Democrat Hillary Clinton, of having “created” or “invented” the Islamic State terrorist group. He blamed her for having “led” President Obama into all of his policy mistakes, when in fact it is well-documented that she pushed for a different, more muscular approach to Syria’s civil war. He insisted that the Obama approach to the Islamic State is “weak,” and that his would be far stronger, then, in response to prodding from CBS’s Lesley Stahl, outlined an approach — selective use of U.S. ground troops, reliance on regional allies — hardly distinguishable from current policy. To be sure, a Trump administration would “declare war” on the Islamic State, presumably with a vote of Congress; that, indeed, might fill the legal lacuna in which the United States now operates. We wonder, though, whether Mr. Trump understands that a declaration of war reaffirms the applicability of the laws of war, which would preclude his plan for “worse than” waterboarding.


More from the washington Post editorial board at:
https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/republicans-keep-trying-to-normalize-trump-he-keeps-proving-its-impossible/2016/07/18/7e6cad68-4ced-11e6-aa14-e0c1087f7583_story.html

GOP, RIP? by EJ Dione

Nonetheless, Republicans who are not in the least progressive have reason to mourn what is likely to come to pass this week: the transformation of the Party of Lincoln and Dwight Eisenhower into the Party of Trump. Some are bravely resisting this outcome to the end — and good luck to them. A fair number of leading Republicans have stated flatly that they will never vote for Trump. Their devotion to principle and integrity will be remembered.

But so many others in the party have found ways of rationalizing support for a man who plainly does not take governing, policy or even what he says from one day to the next seriously. It is comical but also embarrassing to watch politicians and consultants fall all over themselves to declare that Trump is “maturing” because every once in a while, he reads partisan talking points off a teleprompter. This is seen as a great advance over the normal Trump, whose free-association rants refer to his opponents as “lyin’,” “crooked,” “sad,” “weak,” “low-energy” and — in the very special case of Sen. Elizabeth Warren — “Pocahontas.”


https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/gop-rip/2016/07/17/2aaabb0e-4ab6-11e6-bdb9-701687974517_story.html

The brand of Trump: His business record doesn’t match the luster

Trump truly is a dealmaker, but he has developed a reputation in the real estate world as a particularly confrontational one. It’s hard to see how his style would fit in political or diplomatic negotiations, where compromise is necessary and bluffing is dangerous.

“Deals are my art form,” he wrote in a 1987 book. But it feels closer to a cage fight than an artist’s studio. He’s known for being litigious. (A publication called lawnewz.com counted 169 federal lawsuits in which he was named.) He often bargains with a kind of brinkmanship, threatening to walk away if he doesn’t get the concessions he’s demanding. That kind of bare-knuckles behavior is common in real estate, where litigation is often seen as a negotiating tactic and risking bankruptcy is almost a badge of honor. But it fits uncomfortably with a democracy and its checks and balances.


https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/for-brand-trump-the-record-doesnt-match-the-luster/2016/03/03/9cce067e-e183-11e5-846c-10191d1fc4ec_story.html

‘Make America Great Again’ is not a policy. It’s an exercise in mass psychology.'

The pledge to “make America great again” is not an economic project. It’s an exercise in mass psychology. The idea is to get people to displace their anger and frustration onto groups that (in Trump’s view) have eroded America’s “greatness” — Mexicans, Muslims, the Chinese, political and financial elites, and “the media.” The Trump treatment is to peddle hatred and resentment for his political gain.

As an election strategy, this might succeed if enough people subscribe to his self-serving stereotypes. But as economic policy, it’s mostly a dud. It won’t change most people’s objective circumstances. In some cases, it may protect them from imports. But for most, it won’t provide jobs, and any income gains from tax cuts are skewed toward the rich. Sooner or later, people will recognize that they’ve been had.

Trump’s serious deficiencies are of character, not intellect. He is a salesman whose favorite product is himself. His moral code is defined by what works. What works to build his popularity is legitimate, even if it’s untrue, tasteless, personally cruel or inconsistent with what he has said before. What doesn’t work is useless, even if it involves inconvertible truths, important policies or common courtesies.


Rest by Robert J. Samuelson at
https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/make-america-great-again-is-not-a-policy-its-an-exercise-in-mass-psychology/2016/07/17/e316d5a2-4ab5-11e6-bdb9-701687974517_story.html?tid=hybrid_collaborative_1_na

Look out! Donald Trump promises to run the country the way he runs his business

DONALD TRUMP promises to run the country the way he has run his businesses. Recent reporting on Mr. Trump’s financial dealings makes that promise sound more like a threat.

Mr. Trump refuses to release much of the documentation that would shed light on the business background he says qualifies him to lead the nation — including, most glaringly, his tax returns. So it has been up to members of the media to piece together the puzzle of the candidate’s business record. Post reporter Drew Harwell and the New York Times’ Russ Buettner and Charles V. Bagli are the latest to shine some light on that record.

The emerging picture is an ugly one. In Atlantic City, Mr. Trump’s casinos failed even when the rest of the town continued to thrive. Along the way, Mr. Trump used company money to pay off personally guaranteed loans, and — after the 1995 creation of the public company Trump Hotels and Casino Resorts — publicly traded funds to bail out privately held casinos. The company has filed for bankruptcy five times.

Mr. Trump is running for president on the platform that he is an extraordinary executive. Because most of his business empire is privately held, the public must look to Trump Casinos and Resorts to evaluate these claims to competency. So far, they seem about as solid as Mr. Trump’s reputation as a borrower. Additional characterizations of Mr. Trump as an imperial CEO — ignoring and even firing advisers who disagreed with him — deflate arguments such as that of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), who says that Mr. Trump would defer to his “White House counsel,” or to other members of his staff and Cabinet.


More by the Washington Post editorial board at:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/mr-trumps-business-dealings/2016/07/17/843ab114-3194-11e6-95c0-2a6873031302_story.html

Donald Trump’s most enduring — and unbefitting — trait - Allan Sloan

I’ve been covering Donald Trump off and on for more than 25 years, and what has always struck me is his lack of impulse control. It was his biggest problem when I first started dealing with him in the 1980s, and it’s his biggest problem now.

Plenty of financial and real estate players got carried away in the go-go 1980s. But Trump was in a class by himself.

He ended up presiding over six — count ’em, six — bankruptcies because he kept making business decisions with his gut rather than with his brain.

Trump’s less-than-stellar business history has been well documented by The Washington Post and other newspapers, magazines and online publications, as has his lack of self-control in his personal life. But what has not been fully explored is the impulsiveness — actually, total recklessness — that was at the root of the pivotal decisions that tanked his businesses.That same impulsiveness is at the root of Trump’s self-inflicted political and business problems today.


Whole article at:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/donald-trumps-most-enduring--and-unbefitting--trait/2016/07/15/f5684848-488b-11e6-acbc-4d4870a079da_story.html

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