Donald Trump

The Mindlessness of Donald Trump—and What It Reveals About the GOP

The candidate's lack of a traditional political agenda is key to his anti-political appeal.

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Gage Skidmore

The most striking thing about Donald Trump's presidential campaign is how mindless it is. There is no plan behind it, no grand strategy or driving ideological goal, no political mission statement to speak of. The campaign seems to consist almost entirely of Trump—now leading the GOP field by a solid 10 point margin—roaming from microphone to microphone saying whatever ridiculous thing comes to his mind at the moment. He is calculating only in the sense that he gravitates toward attention-grabbing overstatement. Trump, who is fond of calling enemies morons, dummies, and lightweights, is running the stupidest presidential campaign in memory. 

The empty bravado of Trump's presidential campaign is captured nicely in this revealing quasi-profile from National Journal's Andy Kroll. I call it a quasi-profile because mostly what it reveals is how little there is to learn about Donald Trump, presidential candidate.

Like any decent journalist, Kroll initially resisted the Trump phenomena, believing it to be a sideshow. But as Trump gained popularity in the GOP primary polls, Kroll set out with a somewhat novel plan to investigate the candidate: Rather than focus on the circus, he would make an earnest attempt to determine what Trump actually wanted to do as president.

Kroll flew to Laredo, Texas to watch a few of Trump's media events near the border, and he contacted Trump's not-particularly-responsive campaign team in a fruitless attempt to obtain responses to a few fairly basic questions ("Aside from immigration, if you were to put your name on one piece of domestic-policy legislation, what would it be?"). 

Ultimately Kroll came up empty. Not because he didn't put in the effort, but because there's simply nothing to find.

Kroll's conclusion: "I have zero to report about Trump's plans for actually being president—except that, from all available evidence, he hasn't given it a moment's thought." Outside of immigration, Trump is uniqely agendaless, lacking even dumb policy gimmicks (even Herman Cain had 9-9-9). His campaign is an end unto itself. 

What this means is that you cannot talk about the substance of Trump's campaign, because, aside from a kind of generalized angry nativism, there isn't any. Trump's past record of support for liberal policies (gun restrictions, government-run health care, special taxes for the very wealthy) only tell us how little his support for any particular position matters. Even if there was any policy substance to be found, it would be beside the point.

So why is it that so many Republicans seem to like Donald Trump? Why does his mindless, brazenly uninformed approach to campaigning resonate so much with so many? What, if not his policy ideas and plans for the presidency, explains his appeal?

For many, it seems, it's more about style, and a sense that Trump stands outside the political status quo—that he is more like a everyday person than a scripted political actor. (Trump himself has talked up his refusal to rely on pollsters and political consultants.)

Talking to The Wall Street Journal's Peggy Noonan last week, one Trump admirer—a anonymous 60ish woman from Georgia—put it like this:

"The whole country will be in better shape. And ISIS won't like it that he's in charge. He's very wealthy and can turn around the economy. He'll get things moving. The Donald will kick a—." She knows other supporters locally and among friends of her son, an Iraq vet. "They're completely disgusted and just furious, and he's igniting their passion. He's telling them 'I will make this country great again,' and they believe him." Mr. Trump is dismissed as exciting, but "we have to get excited to get up out of the chair to vote."

It's easy to make too much out of an interview with a single individual, and no doubt others would characterize their interest in Trump differently. But this tracks closely with the explanations from other admirers as well as my own interactions with Trump supporters. And what it suggests is that the Trump crowd has thoroughly tired of conventional politics and conventional politicians. The draw of Trump's candidacy is that he is so very obviously not bound by these conventions—that he is not a conventional politician, nor even really a politician at all. He doesn't have policy ideas or governing plans to speak of? So what? Those are for politicians. Trump's politics are a kind of anti-politics, and his lack of a traditional political agenda only adds to his anti-political appeal.

The rise of anti-politics, at least on the right, can be traced at least in part to a distrust in Republican elites, suggests The Weekly Standard's Jay Cost:

Since 2010, the actions of congressional Republicans have mostly fallen shy of campaign promises. From a short-term perspective, this may have been necessary. It is hard to mobilize your voters by saying, "Vote for me to stop the president from doing worse." It is better to say, "Vote for me to roll back the president's actions." But over time this rhetorical overreach has facilitated a climate of distrust. Republican voters increasingly believe that their leaders, even if they had complete control of government, would not do half of what they promise on the campaign trail. 

Trump's campaign solves this problem by effectively promising to do nothing in particular, which I suppose is about what one could expect from a Trump presidency, to the extent that one can even imagine such a thing.

I suspect, though, that most of Trump's supporters, rather like Trump himself, have put very little effort into imagining a Trump presidency, except to idly fantasize about all the ways that it would be different and awesome and better. He would be an exciting, deal-making, ass-kicker who would strike fear into the hearts of America's enemies, and he would do this simply by virtue of being Donald Trump, in all his glorious, exciting Trumpiness.

What Trump offers is a fantasy of governance without negotiation, of economic success without policy detail, of a president who does not particularly feel the need to act presidential. It's a fantasy of politics without politics, for people who just don't want to think about it too much. In this view, the fact that Trump has clearly put so little thought into it himself makes him seem sensible and relatable. All of which is to say that the mindlessness and stupidity of Trump's presidential campaign are not incidental to the candidate's recent success. On the contrary, they are key to his appeal.

All of this is, in some sense, an outgrowth of the Republican party's own mindlessless during the Obama era. The party has consistently refused to be clear about its domestic policy goals, and what it plausibly expects from government. And while it has not, as a general rule, fully embraced Trump levels of of vapidity, it has embraced figures like Trump, and allowed them to rise within the party. 

This was clearly evident, albeit in a much milder form, in Mitt Romney's 2012 run as the GOP nominee, which was marked by its consistent lack of policy detail, and by Romney's unwillingness to provide clarity about his policy plans. Romney did, however, praise Trump's "extraordinary ability to understand how our economy works and to create jobs" as he accepted Trump's endorsement. 

It's evident still, in the party's ongoing inability to unify around an Obamacare replacement, to reckon with the realities of immigration, to discuss in detail what cutting the federal budget would really entail. It is telling, I think, that a top priority for one of the major intellectual movements on the right is simply to encourage Republicans to engage with policy ideas, at all.

Trump's candidacy is what a refusal to engage with policy and its practical realities looks like when taken to an extreme. He is a mindless candidate for a party that for years has casually courted mindlessness, and is now faced with the worrying possibility that it might prevail. 

NEXT: Upcoming speaking engagements about my book "The Grasping Hand: Kelo v. City of New London and the Limits of Eminent Domain"

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    1. The said part is that Trump actually is more qualified to be president than the current occupant.

      1. And grass clippings are more qualified than Trump.

        1. may be true

        2. Both statements can be true.

        3. Define ‘qualified’.

          1. A metric which cannot be quantified.

            1. But it’s a fabulous metric, trust me.

              1. Obama’s candidacy is what a refusal to engage with policy and its practical realities looks like when taken to an extreme”

                FIFY

                1. Obama’s not a candidate. You can un-fix that now.

                  1. He was

                    1. Sure, and?

                  2. “You can un-fix that now”

                    Because Obama’s proven campaign tactic cannot be employed by any other candidate?

                    1. Apparently you don’t know what “fixed it for you” means. It means that the original claim was wrong.

                      Trump is running a mindless campaign. Even if Obama ran a mindless campaign four or eight years ago (and he didn’t), changing “Trump” to “Obama” isn’t a “fix”.

                    2. His “fix” remains entirely apt.

                      And your statement, being one of opinion, may very well be wrong, or better applicable to another candidate (even one from the recent past.)

                      You chose to point out a temporal issue that had nothing to to with the validity of his statement, as if that somehow rendered it invalid.

                      It did not.

        4. You’re assuming what we have now in the white house and congress are more than “grass clippings.”

        5. And Trump makes you look like grass clippings

        6. Uh, yeah, because community organizers and those born into elected monarchies are so much more qualified than people who have actually employed people and accomplished something. The Donald isn’t my first choice because he’s not a libertarian but we aren’t going to get a libertarian president. He is my first choice for entertainment because it’s fun watching him make his detractors crap their pants.

        7. grass clippings are the start of good compost.

          Alas, we have no grass clippings in CA anymore. 🙁

        8. Trump IS the only candidate that cannot b bought by lobbyist, unions, special interest groups, or through forigen money through the Clinton foundation, so WTF? Is int Trump EXACTLY what we have been asking for?

          1. Trump IS a special interest group. But all kidding aside, if you mean that Trump won’t be buyable because he’s already so rich, you’re forgetting something: People with enormous wealth don’t think they have enormous wealth. They think that – as Nelson Rockefeller put it when asked why he was starting a business (to sell fine-art reproductions of his collection), considering he was so rich – “You can always use a little extra cash.” Wealth seeks to concentrate. It’s a fact of nature, like gravity.

      2. OKay, so I know this Libertarian website is more, well to be honest, not so libertarian at times and can come off as a shrill voice denouncing Obama as much as possible, but the fact that you and others agree that Donald Trump is more qualified is, at best, absurd.
        The reasons are too many to list, honestly. If Libertarians ever want to win a presidency, candor and honesty will do the trick, other than that, just sound like Fox news, but with jeans on.
        I mean this in all sincerity. I am trying to get on board with the ideals of being a libertarain, but the screeching voices drown out the wiser ones, and it eventually sounds silly, and the movement stops, right there.

        1. Sometimes the point is to be silly. Life can really suck if you take everything seriously.

          1. Agreed. tardis if you want to write a detailed exposition comparing and contrasting Barack Obama and Donald Trump, then knock your self out. But chiding people for making humorous and silly comments on the internet is pointless.

            1. Really, I mean that shit is so funny!!! Comedy gold!!! Comedy gold!!!

        2. Well Trump at least runs a large business enterprise. Obama never managed so much as a fucking candy store. I really don’t see why saying Trump is more qualified as an executive than Obama is silly.

          1. Trump doesn’t have a Nobel Peace Prize – isn’t that a requirement now?

            1. IF he were to run, I’m sure he and his supporters can arrange to receive one upon entering office just like others have.

              Maybe they won’t ask for his back?

          2. We went through this with Romney. All the presidents who were successful businessmen were awful presidents.

            1. All the presidents who were successful businessmen

              All none of them.

            2. Tony….do you even remotely think about what you’re writing?

              We went through this with Romney? What did we go through with Romney? All the presidents who were successful businessmen were awful presidents? Who?

              1. Harding, Hoover, Carter, W. Bush (the latter’s success as a businessman is debatable). And of course Truman, regarded as a good president, was a failed businessman.

                Hence the fallacy of equating business success with presidential success.

                1. So logically we should elect a president who has failed in the private sector – obama certainly fits that bill

                  1. Obama has never even tried the private sector. At least one can learn from failure.

                  2. “So logically we should elect a president who has failed in the private sector – obama certainly fits that bill”

                    Obama has avoided the private sector, except when looking for payoffs, i mean doners.

                    Not quite the same as being in it and failing.

                2. Trump’s gone bankrupt repeatedly. “Successful businessmen make bad Presidents” is a silly thing to worry about where he’s concerned.

                  1. Bingo, Dan – I don’t know, but it seems like inheriting a large rental empire and going bankrupt five times isn’t being a great businessman. If he has a skill for surrounding himself with people who actually do know what they are doing, which is doubtful, he will be infinitely better than Obama.

                    1. “going bankrupt 5 times isn’t being a great businessman”

                      As an entrepreneur myself, may I say that…

                      “that’s one of the STUPIDEST statements ever made….
                      any successful person knows, you FAIL more times than you succeed
                      The difference between winning and losing? Persistence. Learning from failure. Building it better in round 2, or 3, or 10. ”

                      References:

                      See:
                      1. Jordan, M
                      2. Lincoln, A
                      3. Jobs, S

                    2. Sean, Trump is not an entrepreneur. He inherited his company. Comparing him to Lincoln, Jordan, and Jobs is retarded.

                    3. Absolutely but these guys are armchair quarterbacks at life.

                    4. Nixon, R

                  2. No, several businesses he owned or purchased went through bankruptcy reorganization. A few of them by design. Trump himself never went broke. There is a huge difference.

                  3. Trump’s sole contribution to the US economy has been to entice thousands of stupid Americans to lose money gambling.

                3. Hell, Grant is being reassessed as one of the better Presidents, and as a businessman he was a disaster.

                4. Your own argument doesn’t even really agree with itself. Not surprising. You truly a re a man among gods.

            3. Romney was never president so we didn’t ‘go through this with him’.

              1. Don’t confuse Tony with such obvious facts.

        3. Well, there aren’t women getting the vapors and fainting at his speeches, Trumps hair is definitely not presidential, and he doesn’t have the ability to turn back the ocean tides, so I guess Obama was more qualified. But is there a point to playing the game of which unqualified, dishonest, egomaniac is more qualified when neither one is?

        4. The reasons are too many to list, honestly.

          and yet, you do not list a single one.

          1. Because there are too many to fit onto a page.

            1. The page is infinitely scalable –
              Please, do tell us of the wonderful qualifications!
              If you could make a list, future people desiring “hope and change” can learn to spot the loser BEFORE electing him! 🙂

        5. If you spend any time at all on this site, you may notice they skewer Republicans about as much as Democrats. If many libertarians lean Republican it’s because the Republicans at least pay lip service to restraining Leviathan government somewhat. Some hope the Republicans will do a little less damage than the Democrats.

          Frankly, it makes little difference – to be a little less awful than one’s opponent is not exactly a compelling campaign theme.

          1. Conservatism and liberalism are fundamentally not libertarianism, but conservatism right now is closer in practice.

            1. Conservatism and progressivism. FIFY. Liberalism IS libertarianism, the word was stolen by progressives after fascism and eugenics went out of vogue, so as to avoid having those albatrosses hung around their necks.

            2. Conservatism, broadly speaking, is a sentiment, not a political or social system like liberalism.

              Things long established should not be changed without good cause.

              American conservatism is nothing like European continental conservatism. Primarily because what American conservatism (in the form of classical liberalism) most values are the central tenets of the Declaration of Independence and the US Constitution. Which, in Europe, were widely reviled at the time of their creation for overturning the old order, and are still reviled there now (for their emphasis on the individual over the state and/or the socialistic masses.)

              Which, not coincidentally, is why American Conservatism is closer in practice to libertarianism.

        6. tard….your comments are absurd.

          I doubt anyone here considers himself in a movement. I don’t. And, most people here are honest and full of candor.

          Obama on the other hand was not qualified and he has shown himself to be incapable. If you can’t see that, then I don’t know what to say to you.

        7. “What Trump offers is a fantasy of governance without negotiation, of economic success without policy detail, of a president who does not particularly feel the need to act presidential.”

          You could easily replace the word Trump with Obama and the above summary would still hold true. Obama was the empty promises candidate on the left, well Trump is the empty promises candidate on the right

          1. I think Trump would actually follow through with at least some of it. A number of things he said are workable. Including getting the Mexifries to pay for the border wall. Hell, I could make that happen as president.

          2. Except Trump is not remotely “on the right.”

            He’s only running as a Republican because he’s not welcome on the hard left.

        8. Please try to list the reasons….I am extremely interested in exactly why anyone voted for Obama especially in the case that it involved qualifications!

          1. I voted in that election. Couldn’t bring myself to vote for either McCain or Obama, so I left that one blank.

        9. Trump is definitively more qualified in that he can legally run for the next term, and Obama cannot.

          That said, Obama was elected on good feels and image. He had precious little political experience above the level of Mau-Mauing the Flack-Catchers (see Tom Wolfe’s book of the same name), and in the ensuing (almost) eight years has revealed no exceptional talent. His “signature legislation” is a slow motion train-wrech. Every foreign-policy matter he has touched had turned to goo. The economy reminds me strongly of Jimmy Cater. His “Environmental” initiatives have shoveled millions into the hands of corporations that seem to be failing anyway.

          Trump hasn’t a much better record. Some. Not much. And a lot of that some is because there are Presidential concerns that Trump has, as yet, had no opportunity to screw up.

          He does, at least, put on a good show. If you like that kind of thing. Me, I’ll read a book.

          Any way we could resurrect Calvin Coolidge for eight years?

        10. Qualifications to be President:

          1. Respect for the enumerated powers
          2. Commitment to represent the American people as best as possible within that framework
          3. Ability to spot talent, acquire it, inspire it, lead it, and manage it
          4. Honesty.
          5. Policy Wonk/Good technical ideas

        11. I think that kind of reasoned response is wasted here. Most of the people who post here aren’t really Libertarians, they are the extreme stupid wing of the Republican Party…in other words Trumps people!

        12. Fox News with jeans on? You don’t understand what we’re about at all. You don’t understand how a statist is slaver, who should fuck off, regardless of whether there’s an R or D after their name.

          1. What makes people statists, and what makes other people libertarians?

      3. True – Trump has reached 35 years of age AND is a natural born citizen.

      4. Amen! The only people more “mindless” than Donald Trump are his last two predecessors (assuming he’s elected)… and every person who voted for them more than once.

        That’s right. Every single person who voted for Bush twice or Obozo twice, is more “mindless” than Trump.

        Anyone can make a mistake and vote for a moron once. But after watch for four years and voting for a moron (or traitor to America) a second time – you have to be mindless to do that.

      5. Well I would say that there are a couple of Govenors that have a track record that proves they can govern… Thje issue then becomes do you agree with them on anything.

      6. Trump must really have Reason running scared if they have to launch non-stop personal attacks against him. Clearly, Reason has no ideas that can “trump” Donald’s!

    2. He seems like a republican version of “Hope and Change.” Modern presidential elections are more about the aura a candidate gives off than actual policy.

      1. No, people on the left – both their base and their national machine – knew good and well Obama was one of their own way back during his first campaign, vacuous as it was. It was only media magic that kept the voters from being told the facts of where Obama stood.

        Trump is no such creature. He has a long history of positions that do not line up with the Republican base or their party machine.

    3. Unlike Obama..

    4. Trump knows a great deal about bankruptcy, useful knowledge when your country goes belly up.

      Apart from that, aren’t all the candidates of both parties unqualified morons?

      We’ve seen morons in the oval office quite often lately.

    5. Suderman and his sheep are going to look very foolish in 15 months when Trump wins the presidency .

      1. When it comes to elections Trump is Barry Goldwater but without the substance.

  1. Jeffrey Tucker wrote a great article on Trumpism

    In effect, he believes that he is running to be the CEO of the country ? not just of the government (as Ross Perot once believed) but of the entire country. In this capacity, he believes that he will make deals with other countries that cause the U.S. to come out on top, whatever that could mean. He conjures up visions of himself or one of his associates sitting across the table from some Indian or Chinese leader and making wild demands that they will buy such and such amount of product else “we” won’t buy their product.

    Yes, it’s bizarre. As Nick Gillespie said, he has a tenuous grasp on reality. Trade theory from hundreds of years plays no role in his thinking at all. To him, America is a homogenous unit, no different from his own business enterprise. With his run for president, he is really making a takeover bid, not just for another company to own but for an entire country to manage from the top down, under his proven and brilliant record of business negotiation, acquisition, and management.

    1. With his run for president, he is really making a takeover bid, not just for another company to own but for an entire country to manage from the top down

      You know who else managed an entire country from the top down…

      All Godwining aside, if true that does reveal him to be a fascist shitheel, which is more than enough reason to oppose him.

      1. Sounds like Bloomberg & NYC. That didn’t turn out so bad – I mean, we survived it. The current occupant seems intent on wrecking the whole enterprise.

        1. Yea, but for the greater good, so it is okay.

        2. Unless you like Big Gulps!

    2. Yeah, that article is great. Tucker rocks.

    3. When Trump has opposition from Congress will he simply say “You’re fired!”?

      “Gabriel Over the White House”, a 1933 film, asked for a president to do just that. Take out the religious aspects of that film and Trump becomes its protagonist, a president who seized complete control of the country, disbands Congress and threatens the world with total destruction if it refuses to act as the president commands.

      1. Totally unrelated to FDR’s presidency, I’m sure.

        1. An FDR aide approved the film.

      2. You mean like obama?

        1. If the shoe fits. It does look like an Obama fashion statement.

      3. Dr. Strangelove or How I Learned to Love the Bomb.

    4. ‘Theory from hundreds of years’ has gotten us into a shithole or haven’t you noticed. Your objection to Trump is he won’t uphold the status quo when the status quo is shit.

  2. mindless

    stupidest

    Trump, who is fond of calling enemies morons, dummies, and lightweights, is running the stupidest presidential campaign in memory

    You don’t say…

    1. Hey! You weren’t supposed to point that out!

    2. Lets be honest. Its not a presidential campaign at all – its a reality show pitch. If he gets green lit for the pilot (by winning the primary), he’ll get around to hiring some writers to actually flesh out the shows premise. But for now, why invest too heavily in a show that might not see the light of day?

      Think about it.

      1. Good point.

  3. So what you’re getting at is he’s the GOP BHO?

    1. Trump actually has tangible accomplishments in his background.

      1. Yeah, he’s filed for bankruptcy 4 times. Maybe that’s what qualifies him to be president: no one knows more about going bankrupt than The Donald

        1. The story of the debt is the story of our leaders pursuing lousy ventures and leaving taxpayers holding the bag. What Trump has done to his investors in the private sector is about as presidential as you can get. If he can figure out how to screw the Chinese debt holders and not just the taxpayers, he’d be a step up.

        2. Did he drive those companies into bankruptcy? Or was he the person who stepped in afterwards to help pull them out?

          Because, given our current Federal debt load, plus all the pending “lesser” defaults (e.g. Puerto Rico, et.al.) it just might be useful to have someone with the latter sort of experience. As opposed to the likes of Obama, who has only been “good” at the former.

          Christ! You are making me think better of the comb-overed clown!

        3. Oh fuck off. I’m not even going to waste my energy on such a low brow comment. Loki, why don’t you take it over to Salon or HuffPo. I’m sure you will be the belle of the ball at either of those places with wit like that.

  4. What this means is that you cannot talk about the substance of Trump’s campaign, because, aside from a kind of generalized angry nativism, there isn’t any.

    Because campaigns run without any substance and based only on vague feelings and emotions are never successful. Like hope and change.

    1. For that matter, not just campaigns, but administrations.

    2. If your only concern is “will someone who claims to be a Republican win” then that’s a fair point.

      If you’re interested in stuff like “what’s he actually going to do as President”, it isn’t.

      1. Thank God we have Hillary blowing our minds out with amazing substance 24/7 to balance out Trump !

        1. Like I said, if you only care about a so-called Republican winning, not caring what the so-called Republican believes isn’t important.

          Your sole criterion for a candidate is “not Hillary Clinton”, so naturally Trump qualifies.

          1. Just as the sole qualifier for Obama was “not Bush.” (Well, okay. And “black.”)

            Pretty scary political times we’re living in.

  5. My opinion is that Trump has a prupose although actually being president is probably not one of them. That would surprise me.

    1. Yeah, his purpose is trolling the entire U.S. news media, and he’s doing a damn good job of it.

    2. To wit:

      Donald Trump has turned the tables on Gawker. After the online site released one of Donald Trump’s cellphone numbers, the GOP presidential candidate changed his voicemail this morning.

      “Hi, this is Donald Trump and I’m running for the presidency of the United States of America,” he says on the recording. “With your help and support, together we can make America truly great again! Visit me at twitter @realDonaldTrump and check out my campaign website at http://www.donaldtrump.com Hope to see you on the campaign trail, we’re going to do it!”

      http://abcnews.go.com/Politics…..d=32875155

      1. lol this kinda thing is the reason I like trump. I disagree with the majority of his views but he’s the only politician I’ve seen that isn’t phony.

        1. Also he doesn’t cower and apologize in the face of the howling SJW outrage mob, he basically doesn’t give a shit what they think or say, which pretty much takes away whatever power they have. Which is another reason I think he appeals to a lot of people.

          1. That’s odd, I looked up “phony” in the dictionary, and there was Trump’s picture.

            Anyone with an IQ exceeding their shoe size understands that this isn’t a serious campaign, it’s a promotion and money vehicle, it’s entertainment in the service of enriching Trump. Why do people bother discussing it as anything having to do with someone who is actually seeking office?

            1. “it’s entertainment in the service of enriching Trump”

              You mean “themselves” Politics always has been.

              (how do you guys use font changes like strikeout and all? I tried cut and paste in Word but still didn’t work.)

              1. Do a google search for what you want with the words html code.

            2. Him not being serious is the whole point. Americans — or at least the hard right — intuitively understand that democracy and all of its sanctimonious pageantry is a giant sham. Cops are nothing but petty thugs in drag. Teachers are glorified fifth columnists. Congressmen are degenerate pork fucking bums. Why should the president not be a total buffoon?

          2. Which is another reason I think he appeals to a lot of people.

            That’s exactly why he appeals to a lot of people, even the ones that disagree with him. The typical GOPer is far too worried about their public image to effectively fight back in this type of cultural environment, which is completely lulz-driven via various “gotchas.”

            Trump’s main appeal lies in the fact that, so far, he’s more than willing to get in the mud with people like the idiots at Gawker (note that it was emotional retard Sam Biddle who posted his number, hardly a sympathetic antagonist) and give it back to them twice as hard. Note his sick burn of Cher the other day where he mocked all her plastic surgeries. All the mainstream pundits thought he was done for mocking McCain, until they realized that McCain isn’t a terribly popular politician. He twists the illegal immigrant argument around by having a black man whose son was killed by mestizo gangsters speak at his appearances.

            In short, he’s showing that he has an actual set of balls on him when it comes to interacting with the media, and given how craven guys like McCain and Romney acted in the face of that spotlight, it’s not hard to see why a lot of GOPers are actually giving him a look.

            1. He’s a sleezy salesman. But he doesn’t hide it like the mainstream political climbers do.

              1. “Yeah, I’m a sleazy salesman. What the fuck are you going to do about it?”

            2. I think it’s because he’s spending his own money that Trump’s a loose cannon. I bet half the GOP candidates out there would LOVE to speak their mind about the more pertinent issues like Trump is doing, but the special-interest donor money is making them STFU.

          3. I’ve been telling every conservative I know for years to stop cowering to those little faggot pussy pieces of shit. If a prorated gets in your way, just slap him down. Teach THEM to cower. Like in the old days.

        2. Meh.

          I liked the cut of your jib until you said “isn’t phony”.

          Trump is – in it for himself. His *objectives* aren’t political, however, he’s in it for the self-promotional opportunities. He has enough money to pay for what he’s doing at the moment, he’s loving all the attention, and even if he’s not that canny a businessman (probably having lost more investor money than he ever distributed back to them) – he is a showman of a particularly “grubby” nature.

          To DT, there is no such thing as bad publicity, and while renting a gold plated LearJet and a couple of hookers would be cheaper than this, he’s having a load of fun.

          And when it’s no longer fun, or he achieves whatever level of publicity satisfies him, he’ll quit the race.

          We don’t need to worry about living in a Trump-powered shitheel fascist America. Ain’t gonna happen.

          1. “Trump is – in it for himself”

            Well, no duh.

            Do you honestly think Obama has an iota of respect for the average American? Obama may has fooled himself into thinking he’s acting “for the greater good,” but ultimately he’s only interested in his “legacy.”

            It’s all self aggrandizement at that political level. Which is why it is essential to know the essence of the man.

            Obama was hard left, and we are getting hard left.

            Trump may not be hard left, but he sure as hell is not libertarian or small government/liberty minded.

        3. I still think the biggest reason Trump has the traction he does is the rest of the GOP field and the Repubs in general. There may actually be a good candidate or two hidden among the group but that person 1) has yet to emerge and 2) is connected to the party which is one huge differential for Trump.

        4. If you think Donald Trump’s act isn’t phony, you probably shouldn’t handle any sharp objects or operate heavy machinery.

        5. Does he actually espouse many views to be a phony about? A cipher is not a standard of authenticity.

    3. I think he wants to put certain ideas into action. He is bringing them to the front and making people talk about them.

  6. Why is Trump popular? Because he’s entertaining to watch, unscripted, indifferent to the boring Kabuki dance of bullshit that is modern political theater, and will say un-PC things others want to say but do not have the spine to say.

    1. I swear if he tells one of the other candidates to “eat a bowl of dicks” in the debate I will break my vow of never voting R or D again.

      1. Bag. BAG of dicks.

        1. I’d be ok if it were a bowl of dicks as well. Cereal or ice cream style references are fine.

        2. Does he have to choke a bitch, too?

          1. Yes, and Wayne Brady does too.

  7. Turn the election of the ‘Murican Emperor into a circus and now the ‘serious’ people like Suderman are all “shocked! Shocked, to find…” a Showman (with a capital S) is in the early (note: 15 months till the polls open) lead.

    Someone find Suderman a fainting couch and smelling salts.

    1. Its pure style.

      Trump is more qualified on paper than Obama was.

      Trump is running on a cult of personality, like Obama did.

      Obama’s metro-cool, quasi-intellectual style is about the only real difference. Its a style that appeals much more to urban elites. Trump’s style is more appealing to blue-collar types, etc.

      1. Substitute ‘quasi-intellectual’ with ‘pseudo-intellectual’. There, I fixed it for you.

    2. Trump’s recent poll showings are about as close to the “libertarian moment” as this country will get. Why? Because they show that average white Americans see their government as a colossal joke.

  8. LOL, so Trump is bad because he isn’t making specific campaign promises but other candidates are better because they’ve consistently made campaign promises they couldn’t keep?

    I’m not a fan of Trump, but Suderman’s logic is not compelling.

    1. Hey remember back in 2007-2008 when Suderman was calling out Obama for running an empty-suit campaign, long on platitudes and short on substance?

  9. He is a mindless candidate for a party that for years has casually courted mindlessness, and is now faced with the worrying possibility that it might prevail.

    Or there is George Bush’s fat brother. Or there is Hillary Clinton. While I do not think Trump will do any better, would he be that much worse than those two?

    1. Really, it’s just like the ’98 MN gubernatorial election writ large

      1. All the front-runners suck, including Trump.

    2. At least the media won’t fall to their knees and start sucking.

      1. Wanna bet?

    3. Trump would probably gut the EPA and several other business stifling bureaucratic organizations. Among other things. He might be a thin skinned egomaniac, but he would be a huge improvement over the Marxist thin skinned egomaniac currently holding office.

      1. Doubtful. If only because he has zero experience within government, nor will most of his appointees (or his appointees will have such experience and will therefore already have a master.)

        Inertia, internal opposition, and lawfare from the left/statist side will doom any such moves on his part.

    4. Two words: Billy Carter

  10. I’m 100% on the Trump bandwagon. We might as well have an entertainingly disgraceful president, right? Plus, the slogans could be the best ever.

    NO TO CHUMPS
    VOTE FOR TRUMPS

    1. He’s so ugly though. Could he at least wear a paper bag with the presidential seal on it?

    2. PLAY THE TRUMP CARD, AND BE A WINNER!

      DUMP THE CHUMPS, VOTE FOR TRUMP.

    3. I would be interesting to see Trump speak at the UN and tell Putin to go fuck himself.

      1. I would be interested to see a president enter into international negotiations and not come back with a deal that is horrifically damaging to our country.

      2. Which one do the cosmos hate more? That’s my dude, whoever that is.

        1. I always figured you for a faux liberterarian JEB! supporter.

          1. Yes, but you’re not very smart.

  11. TRUMP TRUMP TRUMPTRUMP TRUMPTRUMP
    TRUMP TRUMPTRUMP TRUMPTRUMP
    TRUMP TRUMPTRUMP TRUMPTRUMP
    EVERYBODY!!!

    1. TRUMP TRUMP TRUMPTRUMP TRUMPTRUMP
      TRUMP TRUMPTRUMP TRUMPTRUMP
      TRUMP TRUMPTRUMP TRUMPTRUMP

      I just copied and pasted yours, is that ok?

  12. Trump is the Windows 10 of politics: Overhyped and useless but we’re gonna be stuck with it anyway.

    1. How is that not true of all of them?

  13. “For many, it seems, it’s more about style”

    LOL, really? What country have you been living in since the TV was invented?

    I want to see Rand vs Sanders just to see where this country really stands. The most Libertarian guy we can hope for vs an outright socialist. And since Presidents are now dictators, we can settle this one way or the other.

    1. I want to see Rand vs Sanders just to see where this country really stands.

      49% to 49% +/- 4%.

      1. Thunderdome-style?

        Sanders still has to find out who we can cast as “Blaster”. Biden?

      2. One deoderant vs ALL the deoderants in the world!

  14. TRUMP- THE PRESIDENT AMERICA DESERVES

    1. Come on, America hasn’t been that bad.

      1. Have you missed the last 20 years of reality TV?

        I’m not sure we deserve Trump. I’m not even sure we are worthy of President hitchBOT.

        1. As Yortuk (sp?) the Czechoslovakian brother used to say on SNL….”I blame-uh mahself….”

        2. I am an eternal optimist and I believe that there is a chance for a turnaround. Electing Trump will basically be giving in to the slide towards Idiocracy and I want to think that the US (despite all evidence to the contrary) is better than that.

          1. OK. I shouldn’t go stamping on butterflies anyway.

          2. What do you think a vote for Hillary is? Or a vote for Bernie?

            Mind you I am no Trumpbot so If you are arguing in terms of the GOP primary, then I might agree with you. But in terms of the general election, as much of a goof as he is, he is still head and shoulders far better than anyone else the Dems are putting forward.

            1. Trump wants to stick a 25% tariff on everything imported ie Smoot-Hawley redux. This could trigger a massive economic disaster which I am sure that idiot will blame on foreigners. Hillary would be bad, but probably better than Trump.

              1. “Trump wants to stick a 25% tariff on everything imported”

                Bullshit Cyto. Trump has says he would place a 25% tariff on Chinese imports if they refuse to stop manipulating their currency.

                IE He’s willing to play hard ball with the Chinese.

                And furthermore, this is another hole in Suderman’s thesis that Trump’s campaign has no substance.

                1. I assume he’ll stop the US from manipulating its currency as well then?

              2. Like there’s a snowball’s chance in hell of Trump actually doing that.

                Meanwhile, whatever crazy half baked socialist bullshit that temporarily benefits Hill will be enacted.

                1. Whitewater?

                  Commodities trading or aka “How I turned $1,000 into $100,000 in cattle futures in only ten months without any help”

            2. Meh. Hillary is out for a legacy. After she’s elected nothing that happens next matters. If a far-right clique got voted into congress in ’18 and passed a law re-instituting slavery she’d call it a jobs bill, put her name on it and sign it thinking “Hey, at least it’s a legacy…” In short, like Bill, if the prevailing mood is conservative, she’ll be conservative. In fact, the reason Sanders is getting any press at all is that most progs don’t trust Hillary and already think she’s too far right.

              I’d like to see Paul win the primary, but he’s got to get better at getting things out there and at staking out his own ground. Trump’s success so far is that he’s good at self-promotion and Rand is kinda bland,

              1. Bill was a self-preservationist, Hillary is a true believing fascist. She hated when Bill triangulated in the 90s. She is a horrendous human being.

                1. Things might have been more mellow at the WH if she’d only blown his horn…..

                2. You had me up until ‘human being’. Too unbelievable.

          3. There won’t be a turnaround until the people that are voting stop voting for the guy that promises the most free shit.

            1. more like there won’t be a turnaround until the free shit people are outvoted by those paying for the free shit.

              1. never going to happen.

                You have to remember, government employees vote too. And, they vote for more free shit for their “clients”. It’s job preservation and all.

                free shit people + government employees + politicians = majority

                Ask me how I know this.

                The only way to stop this self-serving circle jerk is to outlaw free shit. Hell, just making the recipients work for it – they could replace the government workers – would likely be enough to kill that goose.

          4. Kardashians

          5. America’s failure is structural rather than electoral. I support any candidate who discredits the democratic process.

  15. What Trump offers is a fantasy of governance without negotiation, of economic success without policy detail, of a president who does not particularly feel the need to act presidential.

    *Completely* unlike reality.

    1. wow – can you IMAGINE if we actually had a president who was like that! For TWO TERMS! LOL!

  16. It’s because Trump’s black, isn’t it, Peter?

    Wow. I thought you were better than that.

    TRUMP 2016 – THE CLASSY CHOICE #TRUMP2016 #SUCKMYBALLS

    1. Trump/Dolezal 2016!

      1. Their margin of victory could be ‘uuuuuuuuuuuuge!

        1. Throw in Caitlin as SoS and it could be a big fucking deal!

  17. “There is no plan behind it, no grand strategy or driving ideological goal,”

    “Says the clown at some low-ratings fringe whacko anarchist duggie magazine. A joke! My book will show all the whiners what the deal is. #MakeAmericaGreat”

    1. USA! IUSA! ^^ USA! USA! #TRUMP2016 #ItsGonnaBe_uuuuuuuuuuuuge.

  18. Trump is popular for one reason – most of the base are justifiably convinced that the GOP leadership doesn’t really much give a shit about them or their issues. They’re convinced – again justifiably – that the GOP leadership is more interested in being liked by the media and the Democrats than they are in advancing Republican policies. They back Trump, and Carly Fiorina, because they show some inclination to fight.

    Unfortunately, when people are that frustrated, what the person they’re supporting is fighting for doesn’t matter that much.

    1. ^this^

      I work with a few hardcore GOPers and they love Trump – though they don’t necessarily support him for presidency – just because he is speaking “the truth”.

    2. I would back Trump in a second over any GOP establishment drone (like Jeb) or any of the communist traitors from the DNC. That doesn’t make him a good candidate though.

      I realize that isn’t a popular sentiment here, and will not sit well with the cool kids clique that hates Trump out of hand almost like Tony and PB hate ‘Boooooossssshhhh’. But I don’t really give a shit.

      1. FUCK COSMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMOOOOOOOOOOS

        1. Four years of Cozmos tears will make a Trump presidency enjoyable.

      2. I don’t really give a shit

        Me either.

  19. /TRUMP VOICE

    I love America, and I want her to be great again. Together, we can do that. With my hair, and your vote, we can bring this country back! Who’s with me! This is gonna be ‘uuuuuuuuuuge!

    /TRUMP VOICE

  20. He’s telling them ‘I will make this country great again,’

    Somebody else ran on this platform, as I recall….

    1. So what you’re saying is, “You know who ELSE ran on that platform….”

      1. Tiberius and Gaius Gracchus?

        1. I was thinking along the lines of Gaius Baltar.

  21. I think it’s great that he has no plans–that means by definition he has no plans to F#$% with any of our lives, by, oh say, shoving mandatory health insurance on us all, for example.

    1. He also has no plan to stop any of the current fucking.

      1. Doesn’t he have a few repeals in mind?

  22. You know who else had a plan, a grand strategy , and driving ideological goal?

    1. Dale Earnhardt?

      1. Speed Racer would also have been accepted

        1. Dune Buggy?

          1. Turbo Teen?

            1. Thomas the Train?

  23. The Trump recycling must end

    For love of God, someone do a story about an actual libertarian issue, and stop the gawking

    There’s a whole world out there. Trump is one of the least interesting topics in it

    1. Yeah, what’s with all the infighting over Bobbi Kristina?

  24. What could be more libertarian than sniffily dismissing crackpot fringe political candidates?

  25. Cripes, could we please stop calling anyone opposed to mass illegal immigration a “nativist”? That’s as stupid as calling someone opposed to the Iraq war an “isolationist.”

    I think Suderman misses one of Trump’s good points: he says what he believes. (Or at least appears to.) He’s not another overly-coached, focus-group-tested, boring weather vane, trying not to offend anyone. That is also much of the appeal of Sanders: he says what he thinks, and it’s what a good chunk of the public believes, but rarely hear from the establishment candidates. And of course the pundits and consultants clutch their pearls and claim this amateur, this outsider, just isn’t fit to lead the country. *SNIFF* Which is what many said about Reagan, too. (Not that Trump is Reagan.)

    1. Ah, Reagan.

      *takes hat off head, places it over heart, masturbates*

      1. Sheriff Bart: “You’d do it for Ronald Reagan.”

        Townspeople: *standing and placing their hats over their hearts* “Ronald Reagan!”

        Choir singing: “RONA-ALD REAGAN!”

    2. The Black Gate of FB has opened and its armies have invaded H&R:
      Doug Stumborg
      “The Donald wants closed borders. Reason wants completely wide open borders hence the daily Trump hit piece.”

      1. ” hence the daily Trump hit piece.”

        That would imply that there was just one per day.

        1. daily Trump carpet bomb?

          1. I believe it’s called, “Shock & Awe.” Speaking of, you know who ELSE used shock and awe?

  26. He’s telling them ‘I will make this country great again,’ and they believe him.

    You know else promised to make their country great again…

    1. Brad Paisley?

  27. Someone needs to sound the Doom of Trump!

    1. Victor Von Doom for president! Vote Doom 2016!

  28. If all the candidates for homecoming queen are toothless, sloven, frizzy-haired imbeciles might as well vote for the one who shows up to the dance spiraling on meth and mooning everyone. Better entertainment value.

  29. The fact that ANYONE, is seriously discussing a Trump presidency is a sad commentary on our times.

    The inmates are running the asylum. We are doomed.

    1. It’s sadder that everyone thinks he’s saying “what he believes” just because he’s willing to offend people.

      1. Are you saying he doesn’t believe what he says? Or are you really just saying ‘Nikki’?

        1. What the fuck does that mean?

          1. Trump makes him feels like a man again.

          2. Because her handle is ‘Just Say Nikki’? I was making an awful pun. I LOVE awful puns. The more painful the better. Also, did I tell you my massage therapist has a thing for me? It’s true. she can’t keep her hands off of me.

        2. I’m saying I have no reason to think he believes what he says he believes any more than I have for any other politician. But apparently he’s “real” because he’s up for being mean.

          That’s silly.

          1. “He says what I FEELZ, so he must be telling the TRUTH.”

          2. To be fair, he didn’t insult mexicans in Spanish.

            Also, he says he loves most people he insults. One hand giveth, and another bitchslappeth. The Trump works in mysterious ways.

      2. Yeah, but at least he’s offending all the right people!

  30. most of the base are justifiably convinced that the GOP leadership doesn’t really much give a shit about them or their issues.

    This is, of course, exactly right.
    .
    .
    It’s as if Sallie Mae, head cheerleader, is threatening to go to the prom with the fat pimply tuba player from the marching band if hot QB Billy Bob doesn’t straighten up and fly right.
    It won’t change anything. In the end, Sallie Mae will end up with her panties around her ankles and mascara (among other things) running down her cheeks.

    1. But at least Sallie Mae can enjoy the thought of Billy Bob cursing and fuming as he stands under a cold shower.

  31. We already have clueless currently in office, so why not mindless? At least Trump actually cares about America, which is something we haven’t seen much of recently in the oval office.

    That said, “Trump? Are you F***KING KIDDING ME?”

    1. Jose Supico
      “You make me wanna barf Reason Magazine… What does the candidates’ agenda matter if they never make good on their promises? I’d rather see a maverick shaking the tree and opening cracks in the building ‘ cause there’s no other way to defeat the system. Also the POTUS is about guts, determination and leadership, and like it or not The Donald has it. Sick of these PC bullshit articles…”

      1. Winner! #AwesomeAmerican

      2. I’d rather see a maverick shaking the tree and opening cracks in the building ‘ cause there’s no other way to defeat the system.

        Hope and Change, baby!

        1. Fire up the CafePress because I want muh shirt!

  32. The Mindlessness of Donald Trump?and What It Reveals About the GOP

    Nothing that libertarians didn’t already know.

  33. First, it should be said he is running against the field. 20-25% in the polls won’t win you the nomination, but it can put you ahead of a field of 17.

    Where does that support come from? A mix of things.

    First, probably 5% or so actually think he’d make a good president.
    Second, he’s the first to really stand up to Jeb, and a lot of primary voters want anything but Jeb.
    Second part b, on top of his built in celebrity, he has gotten more free publicity than all of the other candidates combined. Keep in mind your average voter doesn’t know much about the field at this point.
    Third, there is a reflexive backlash against the newest outbreak of political correctness. Folks are tired of people getting pilloried for saying the wrong thing. Whether or not Trump’s remarks are empirically offensive is irrelevant. Cry Wolf syndrome applies.

    Instead of dismissing Republicans as mindless, Libertarians could tap into the zeitgeist a bit. We don’t like political correctness either! We want to defund Planned Parenthood and a whole bunch of other stuff! You shouldn’t have to bake a cake for anybody!

    I guess the allure of picking of 23 Bernie Sanders voters is just to good to pass up.

    1. Instead of dismissing Republicans as mindless, Libertarians could tap into the zeitgeist a bit.

      No, because the Zeitgeist is that dirty Mexicans are out to TAKE R JERBS and ruin Merica. It’s contradicted by all the evidence and is perniciously anti-freedom.

      1. I explained how the LP has, or rather had, an opportunity. The anti-immigration wing of the party is not where the opportunity is.

      2. ” that dirty Mexicans are out to TAKE R JERBS and ruin Merica.”

        It’s amazing how consistently you undermine your own argument by calling the other side childish names. It reminds me of someone… oh yeah, Peter Suderman.

        1. This seems to be the party’s mentality. Every week, the LP posts that stupid “clowns to the left of me, jokers to the right” meme. Because “everyone is stupid but us” is a really compelling reason to cast a vote, I guess.

          1. Yes, but you appear to actually be stupid. Why are you here?

            1. FACEBOOK

            2. Is there any heft to that observation? Or is it just “He criticized the party! Get ‘im!”

              I have commented here for a couple of years at least.

        2. Know who else called the other side childish names?

    2. Does anyone here personally know anyone who is actually excited about Jeb Bush as a candidate? Seriously.

      1. Hillary?

        I mean, define ‘personally’. I know her heart. Black, and rotten.

      2. He is the only R candidate that I have vowed will cause me to vote 3rd party. I am a libertarian Repub, but if the stupid party can’t see to put someone else other than another Bush for the nomination, fuck ’em.

        1. Chris Christie would make a pretty easy decision.

          1. I’d rather have Hillary than fatso.

      3. I’d vote for him just to steal a vote away from Trump.

        1. Jeb would be awful. You really think Trump would be worse?

  34. Trump’s popularity (and Rand’s relative lack of it) demonstrates that conservatives are mostly retarded/neanderthalic or both. They are just stupid people who don’t read enough or maybe can’t read.

    1. Or maybe it’s a long time before any voting takes place and they aren’t fixated on politics like the smart folk are

    2. Can’t wait to see you get your own show on MSNBC…

      1. This comment from FB is up your alley:
        Rich Cameron
        “Gawker buy out reason? I’ve yet to see any policy from his camp. Doesn’t mean there isn’t any, just they he hasn’t put any out there.

        Those calling him a clown should check themselves. Every politician is a clown.”

        1. “Trump may be an idiot, but he’s MY IDIOT!”

          1. Shake. The. Tree.

    3. You’re mistaking Republicans for conservatives. (Republicans do the same thing.)

      1. Also, mistaking Conservatives for Liberals.

    4. If America gets raped by democracy, she was fucking asking for it.

  35. Trump’s campaign solves this problem by effectively promising to do nothing in particular

    If I believed that, I’d vote for him. “Something” is always worse that “nothing” when it comes to government.

    1. I’d fully agree. But in my Californiafied experience most don’t. They fully embrace the idea that government is here to solve everything for us. Whether it’s how your neighbor parks his car in the driveway or bring peace to the Middle East. There isn’t a problem that ‘the right” government can’t solve in most people’s eyes.

      We don’t call it the “nanny state” for nothing.

      1. Yea, but in all fairness, they did fix the middle east.

  36. most of the base are justifiably convinced that the GOP leadership doesn’t really much give a shit about them

    Trump has done the impossible: he’s made me sympathetic to the GOP leadership. If I had to deal with an ocean of ignorant buffoons like the typical GOP member then I would also hold them in contempt and brazenly manipulate them.

    1. With me it’s the reverse. The GOP leadership has done the impossible and made me sympathetic to Trump.

      That said, “President Trump”? Wowowowwwow. Whoof.

    2. ocean of ignorant buffoons like the typical GOP member then I would also hold them in contempt and brazenly manipulate them.

      Damn right! If only we had restrictions on voting eligibility to quiet the rabble!

      1. Something that perhaps tests literacy or civics knowledge. You know, just to make sure that those damned niggers the politically ignorant aren’t screwing up the system by voting against their interests and the greater good.

        1. ^^^LBJ??? 😉

      2. Poor illiterate people tend to make shitty political decisions. My property rights ought to limit their voting rights.

        1. No, their voting rights should not be able to affect your property rights; there’s a difference.

    3. Donald Trump’s candidacy is the RESULT of the faggotcuntniggershitvaginalbloodburst doody-headed RINO party leadership in the first place. If they were not so busy suppressing candidates that aren’t bags like Jeb, Trump would never have declared. Trump is the product of the collective impotent rage the average republican voter feels towards the elitist shit foisted on us by them from on high.

      Candidate Trump is like chickens coming home to roost. Blah blah old southern boy, blah blah, chickens roosting good, blah blah.

  37. Trump supporters certainly are dissatisfied with the government and political establishment. So are libertarians, who might make some gains among such people by not calling them stupid fuckwits. Dumb people’s votes count the same as those from the smart folks, you know.

    1. But they are stupid, anti-freedom fuckwits. Obama’s support came from similar stupid fuckwits who were dissatisfied with the government and political establishment.

      1. I advise you against trying a career in sales, marketing, advertising or politics.

    2. There may be no atheists in foxholes, but at the planning table I’d prefer to be seated with those who have demonstrated cognitive ability.

      1. Damn, it feels good to be a hamster.
        A real hamsta-ass nigga never runs his fucking mouth.

    3. Stupid fuckwits won’t vote with us anyway, so I’d rather just call them stupid fuckwits.

      1. All my life I’ve hears intelligent people complain that they’re ruled by morons, but they can never summon the smarts or gumption to do anything about it.

        Odd, that.

        1. Our society’s pernicious slave morality emasculates the natural aristocracy. They lack the moral fortitude to seize what is rightfully theirs.

  38. OT: I finally got myself a used Browning Buckmark, then figured out why I got such a good deal. It’s missing the extractor. So I searched and searched and no one has the parts. They’re on back order. Oh well, I can wait. It would have cost twice what I paid to get a new one. Of course that one would shoot more than one shot at a time, but you can’t have everything. At least not right away.

    1. “Searched” — including at a local gunsmith? These kind of bits are exactly the kind of thing that gets thrown in a spares bin at the back of the shop when someone wants a Volquartsen extractor fitted.

      Failing that, just look for a Volquartsen yourself on Ebay. I saw a few.

      If you think Buckmark parts are hard to find, try finding parts for a BDM 🙂

      1. I called a few gunsmiths, though not all. Finally I decided to do the back order and add a spare magazine and some snap caps to the order. I figure they should be available when the company puts out the next batch of pistols. Whenever that is.

        1. You’ll just appreciate the thing all the more when it finally arrives.

          There are probably 100,000 of those extractors in a container on its way from Shenzen to Antwerp as we speak. Friedman was right, international trade can transmute chocolate (or wheat) into extractors (and Toyotas).

      2. I need the spring and plunger as well. The extractor alone won’t help me much.

  39. I’m at a crossroads. As a libertarian I loathe the guy, he is the embodiment of crony capitalism. As one who agrees that this bunch who are running are idiots and more a part of the problem than the solution, I love the guy.

    The “established” thousand or so that are running for the repug party are no different than what we already have, they’re just the other side of the same coin. The more Rand Paul opens his mouth the more disappointing he is. Senators only know how to legislate, take money from one group and give it to another, but then we have governors like Christie and Perry.

    Either way, unless we can get a non interventionist free market capitalist in the offices and soon, we are screwed.

    1. Trump vote as a way of punishing the establishment.

      1. ^This. Obviously this.

        I don’t think voters or republicans assume he’s honest or “means what he says”. They think he’s an asshole, but he’s an asshole willing to say the things they want said and that’s good enough for now.

        1. Exactly that Mrs. Struthers. The more people like Suderman hate on him the more his supporters are going to like him. It is for now a harmless phenomena. If Trump were smarter and a more serious candidate, it could be very dangerous. Having a population totally cynical and suspicious of the mass media and political establishment doesn’t always work out so well for anyone, least of all the establishment.

          1. Larry “Lonesome” Rhodes

          2. It’s a mistake to underestimate Trump’s intellect. The guy has accomplished a lot. And not by accident. He may be unlikeable on many levels, but he is far from stupid.

            My aunt and uncle fell into that trap. Their perception of people’s intelligence h \as more to do with adherence to progressive edicts than anything else. Except maybe if they went to the right schools or have the right jobs. Best not to emulate progressive thinking. Or what passes for it.

          3. It’s a mistake to underestimate Trump’s intellect. The guy has accomplished a lot. And not by accident. He may be unlikeable on many levels, but he is far from stupid.

            My aunt and uncle fell into that trap. Their perception of people’s intelligence h \as more to do with adherence to progressive edicts than anything else. Except maybe if they went to the right schools or have the right jobs. Best not to emulate progressive thinking. Or what passes for it.

    2. The “established” thousand or so that are running for the repug party are no different than what we already have, they’re just the other side of the same coin.

      I don’t know. I like how Walker took on the public employee unions. I know, the cop and firefighter unions are still sacrosanct, but he’s got chops, this one.

  40. Not a fan of Trump, but if you expect an electorate that took someone who claimed that this is when the water began to recede and the planet began to heal and made that particular person the most powerful man on the planet to dismiss yet another clown out of hand; you, Pete Suderman, might be laboring under some misapprehensions.

    1. Here’s what Suderman wrote about Obama in 2007:

      “Obama the friend. It’s not exactly presidential, but it sounds pleasant enough. And for the hundreds of thousands of Obama supporters on Facebook and similar sites, it’s the key to his popularity. They may be na?ve about politics and confused about policy, but they seem to know what they want from a candidate: someone to “hang out” with, encourage, and generally not take too seriously. In Obama that’s just what they’ve found. He’s a man of the digital people, and a friendly one at that.”

      Read more at: http://www.nationalreview.com/…..r-suderman

      1. Which mirrors what he is saying about Trump’s supporters. It is not a bad comparison. Of course, Suderman didn’t blame the shallowness of Obama’s supporters on the Democratic Party. Trump in contrast is totally the result of the evil Republican Party not being committed to ideas.

      2. Awwww…ain’t that sweet.

      3. Larry “Lonesome” Rhodes

  41. There are good reasons why Republicans are not very specific on policy issues: the press will then triumphantly find the losers and run story after story about how mean the GOP is.

    And once Ryan was on the ticket, they did run on voucherizing Medicare which is frankly, pretty gutsy.

    1. Good thing the voters didn’t fall for those commercials of him pushing grannies off a cliff and now VP Ryan is…oh, wait.

  42. They aren’t serious about policy, they hate brown people, and aren’t so much anti-elite as anti-intellectual?

    1. Wow. Just wow.

      Say Tony, what do you do for a living?

      1. None of your business.

        1. Can’t answer a straight question can you? Fucking weak little coward.

    2. When the typical intellectual is a minimum wage adjunct professor who whines like a bitch for the state to steal more your shit, it’s rather hard to respect academia.

      1. Also when you’re an idiot with an inferiority complex. You know what I think about the fact that there are people much smarter than me out there? “Good.”

        1. I am also glad that there are people out there smarter than you.

        2. That group is nearly everyone.

  43. Trump’s candidacy is what a refusal to engage with policy and its practical realities looks like when taken to an extreme. He is a mindless candidate for a party that for years has casually courted mindlessness, and is now faced with the worrying possibility that it might prevail.

    Trump engages on one policy, immigration and the desire to secure the border. Take that away and Trump would be going nowhere. The reason immigration is such a potent issue for him is because the Republicans refuse to engage the issue and just wish they could find a way to capitulate and let their cronies have access to endless cheap labor. Trump is succeeding because he is the one person in the GOP who hasn’t told anyone who thinks immigration is a problem to go fuck themselves and stop being so racist.

    In other words, Trump is happening because of the one issue the GOP actually listened to Libertarians on. Given that, it is a bit rich for reason to now claim Trump is all the GOP’s fault.

    1. Trump is happening because of the one issue the GOP actually listened to Libertarians on

      Is this a fucking joke? Find this alleged libertarian GOP whisperer; I’ll wait. Just because libertarians said X and the GOP kinda did sorta-X doesn’t mean that they were “listening” to libertarians.

      1. So the GOP didn’t sell out its supporters on immigration? And even if they didn’t, their supporters certainly feel that way. Moreover, to the extent they didn’t listen to Libertarians and go all in on the “I don’t care if they took your jerbs you fucking racists” Libertarian line of thinking, I am pretty sure doing so would have just made it worse and made Trump even more popular.

        Trump is popular because the majority of the country does not want open borders and are tired of being told to go fuck themselves by the entire political establishment. Libertarians have done nothing but cheer lead the establishment in this regard. They call anyone who even remotely objects to open borders a racist and do everything they can to poison the well and make sure there is never an honest debate about immigration.

        1. Libertarians have done nothing but cheer lead the establishment in this regard. They call anyone who even remotely objects to open borders a racist and do everything they can to poison the well and make sure there is never an honest debate about immigration.

          Those damn libertarians and their control of the debate! Damn them!

          1. They don’t have much effect but they do it nonetheless. Given that fact, it is a bit rich for Reason to now blame the rise of Trump on the Republicans not having any ideas. Trump is only going anywhere because a whole lot of Republican voters think the party stands for open borders, which is exactly what reason wants them to stand for.

            I know you are a bit slow on the uptake but the logic isn’t that difficult to follow.

            1. I may have to drink a lot more to follow your logic. My synapses are still firing. Serious question: how pickled do you have to be before any of what you say makes any sense? And for how long? At one time, you were a pretty intelligent guy, but the slow degradation of brain tissue from ethanol poisoning has turned you into a parody of Tony.

              I miss the old John.

              1. It is still here. You apparently are too stupid to understand my points. I ask you again, what about the above paragraph do you not understand?

                Trump is not succeeding because the Republicans lack ideas. He is succeeding because a whole bunch of people think the Republicans stand for one big idea, open borders and he is the only one willing to talk about it. Considering that reason supports open borders, I don’t see how they can blame the rise of Trump on the rest of the GOP.

                Again, what is so fucking hard to understand about that? And what about it is so difficult that you can’t even make an intelligent point in response to it?

                1. I’m with John here. Except for the current border stuff.

                  It would be a lot cheaper to invade and crush Mexico and build a much smaller wall on the south side of Guatemala. Or maybe even at Cost Rica.

                  That’ show ’em!

        2. There aren’t open borders. There are, to borrow from lap83 from the other day, “arbitrary borders”. This is the worst of both worlds: capriciously controlled borders used as political cudgels. Obama has laid this bare more than any other President, but it has been the case for a long time.

          To the extent the GOP sold out (some of) its supporters, it did so in order to curry favor with the left. Just because they were appeasing people doesn’t mean they were appeasing anybody you pull out of a hat.

          Undoubtedly many people do want the border more strictly controlled, and no doubt they aren’t going to be voting for libertarians any time soon. You know, sometimes people have irreconcilable differences even when they’re not insulting each other.

          And FFS stop conflating Cytotoxic and Tony with libertarians. One is an Objectivist, the other is a left-wing psycopath and probably a sockpuppet. I’ve never called you a racist, nor have many other people who’ve disagreed with you.

          1. You are right, they are not open borders. But perception is reality in politics. A whole bunch of their voters think they are open borders and that has the same effect as them actually being so.

            And no, not every Libertarian is Cytoxic. My apologies for lumping you in with him. But he is not alone in being utterly dismissive of people’s concerns over immigration.

    2. Show me on the doll where the Mexicans stole your jobs, John.

      1. Yes anyone who doesn’t support open borders is just a racist. And you dumb fuckers wonder why someone like Trump is getting traction. It couldn’t be because smug douche bags like you have ceded the field to him. Nope. How could anyone not embrace the kind of high level intellectual discourse that Libertarians bring to the debate? I mean how could they?

        1. What we need are more geniuses like Ann Coulter (stop fapping, John!) to elevate the discourse around here.

          1. yes, Libertarians are like a less funny Ann Coulter. You nailed it. Do you really think that is a good idea?

            1. I think of Ann Coulter as a less funny Al Franken. And he hasn’t been funny since like 1980.

              1. Yeah, when the Boondocks parody of you is funnier and makes more sense than you in real life, there’s a problem.

          2. There are plenty of smart people who support libertarian principles but are not in favor of open borders. Milton Friedman was one. Rand Paul and Charles Cooke are two more.

            The idea that one must be in favor of open borders to be a legitimate libertarian is fucking retard and ahistorical.

            1. Does it not matter to any of you that “open borders” is not actually a policy anyone is talking about?

              1. De facto open borders or real open borders?

              2. Also, Tony?

                We’re having a conversation about what a true Scotsman actually is. And you’re not one under any circumstances so fuck off.

              3. If you are able to walk through a doorway without difficulty, the door should probably be classified as “open” even if you have a sworn statement from your Congressman that it is closed.

            2. Milton Friedman said you can’t have open borders and a welfare state at the same time, which I think is a true observation. He was no more ideologically opposed to open borders than he was in favor of the welfare state. Above all else he was a pragmatist. I don’t know if Paul agrees with Friedman’s perspective or not, but it won’t matter much practically speaking since the welfare state isn’t going anywhere any time soon (and the only likely way for it to go away is socioeconomic collapse).

              1. Friedman’s observation doesn’t apply to the current situation, and every time someone explain this you guys completely ignore the point.

                You’d be on better footing saying you oppose immigration because it results in more money for the welfare state, and that complicates your desire to drown it in a bathtub.

              2. I was at a local government meeting yesterday related to the welfare state. The question on the table for all of the “stakeholders” to address was in relation to providing more welfare to the “low income” population. There was a gentleman from the County Health and Human Services office there who was promoting non-judgement of welfare recipients and spending whatever we had to in order to provide them with goods and services.

                One of the issues raised was a lack of participation by the targeted tribe in past efforts of the same ilk. The gentleman was asked if it was because so many of the welfare recipients were “undocumented” and afraid to come in for services. To which he replied, “No. They already come in for all of the other welfare services. They understand that they have nothing to fear.”

                I was sitting their thinking how do I throw this out there how actual practice flies in the face of all these “researched and published analysis” I see that proclaim that the undocumented who come here are not a burden on the state; that they don’t apply for or receive welfare benefits.

                You’ve provided that opening for this government worker who sees this day in and day out. Call me racist if you will, but when you dangle free carrots in front of third world immigrants, they will chomp them faster than a horse.

                Ain’t America grand?

                1. You’re racist, and anecdote is not the singular of evidence. But being racist you’re not going to care about what the evidence says.

                  1. And Tony starts screaming ‘racist’ when he has a hissy fit and loses yet another argument. Just like his Marxist masters told him to.

                    What would you ever do without that pathetic trump card?

            3. It’s important to note that Friedman’s (and by brief research, seeming the others’) reasoning is primarily driven by the recognition that you can’t sustain open borders while you have a generous welfare system.

              That particular 800lb gorilla isn’t so much a libertarian purity test as a libertarian sanity test.

              If libertarians intend to participate as “serious” members of the political establishment, they can’t ignore that at least some of their constituents will have that concern, and it’s far from clear that *in the current version of the USA* that open borders are a net positive to the citizenry of the US, either in the short, medium-, or long-term.

              1. It is a sanity test. The other thing Friedman didn’t consider is the rise of asymmetric warfare and terrorism. That threat makes fully open borders pretty dangerous.

                1. Given the current success rate of the DHS, I’m not sure you’re right.

                  For dedicated insurgents, our border is effectively 100% porous. I can only assume that given their lack of success, all we’ve experienced since 9/11 is the JV team.

                  1. I think their lack of success has been due to them using and losing their best people in Iraq and Afghanistan.

                    1. The first successful event will be perpetrated by an individual who would not have been identified by crude physical profiling.

                      It’s not an ‘if’. It’s a ‘when’.

                    2. And, as someone who has to regularly train for crisis response, I can say that intel experts are pretty united in saying that it will come in some way we are not even thinking of.

                      Do you know how little poison is needed to make an entire city’s water reservoir take out the population before

                      Do you know the explosive force of an almost empty oil tanker filled only with fumes if ignited after steering it inside SF Bay or NY Harbor.

                      Those are just two ways to have a Twin Tower sized effect on U.S. soil with a single strike. Two ways that most of us wouldn’t even understand.

                    3. Those are just two ways to have a Twin Tower sized effect on U.S. soil with a single strike.

                      In other words, ways to kill a few thousand people in a country of millions.

                      I’m not frightened by this prospect. The damage done by fearmongering politicians afterwards is far greater than any real damage done by Islamist loses blowing something up. If we needed to have a 9/11 every year to keep our freedoms, I’m okay with that.

                2. The other thing Friedman didn’t consider is the rise of asymmetric warfare and terrorism. That threat makes fully open borders pretty dangerous.

                  I don’t know what Friedman considered or didn’t beyond what he said, but the one thing doesn’t really have much to do with the other. Asymmetric warfare and terrorism are problems that, by their very nature, transcend borders. In a situation of military exigency, it might make sense to control ingress or egress along a certain line, but just drawing an arbitrary line and building a fence doesn’t really address the problem.

                  1. Nor are asymmetric warfare and terrorism new inventions; they are just new names.

                3. The welfare argument is a good argument against open borders. Terrorism is not. We have had essentially open borders for our entire history, and foreign terrorists have never been a significant domestic threat.

                  Even in 2001 only a tenth of a percent of American deaths were attributable to terrorism. In a typical year it ranks below “getting struck by lightning”.

                  1. Don’t be so quick to say never.

                    We’ve had terrorists both external and internal make significant statements inside the U.S. in just the last couple of decades. The western world has fared far worse.

                    This may not have been a significant threat in our general past. But it is not without precedence.

                    There are indications in the rest of the western world of growing activity. There has been more domestic activity in the recent past. Probably the most since the Revolutionary and Civil War periods.

                    Quote Santayana here.

                    1. You’ve confused “looks scary on television” with “significant”, freedomlover. Terrorism has been growing less common domestically, not more common. Also, terrorism isn’t a statistically significant cause of death anywhere in the west.

            4. There are plenty of smart people who support libertarian principles but are not in favor of open borders.

              Thank you. I’m not a racist, and anyone who calls me one in person is going to have a problem. I also speak Spanish decently, and lived for a while within a couple hrs of the border. And if I was some poor guy in Mexico, I’d be trying to get here, too.
              But none of that blinds me to the very real harm that can happen to a host society that takes in tens of millions of economic refugees, a large percentage of who are uneducated, low skilled, and whose culture and political outlook are very different from the host society’s.

        2. “you dumb fuckers wonder why someone like Trump is getting traction”

          Republicans are rallying around one of the few candidates guaranteed to lose to Hillary Clinton and libertarians are the “dumb fuckers”? Interesting reasoning there, John.

          But no, we don’t wonder. We know it is because you’re Mad as Hell and Not Going to Take This Anymore. But you are going to take it, John. Impotent rage doesn’t win elections.

  44. Where are all the new Republican type commenters coming from? Facebook?

    1. Fauxnew$$$$

    2. Get off Warty’s lawn, you sick creeps!

      1. You know who else got off on Warty’s lawn?

        1. I have a list of people that Warty invited to “Play in His Garden”.

    3. Presidential campaign. They summoned the Dagon.

  45. Trump’s campaign solves this problem by effectively promising to do nothing in particular

    If I believed that, I’d vote for him. “Something” is always worse that “nothing” when it comes to government.

    No kidding. I wish he’d promise to wear a white linen suit and sit on the front porch drinking mint juleps and playing gin rummy for four years.

    1. I’ve been told that white linen suits, mint juleps on the porch and gin rummy were the peculiar institutions that the South was fighting for in the Civil War. Oh, and cotillion. Is Trump a secret secessionist?

      1. I’ve been told that white linen suits, mint juleps on the porch and gin rummy were the peculiar institutions that the South was fighting for in the Civil War. Oh, and cotillion.

        You have accurately described SugarFree.

      2. He is a Republican isn’t he?

        And while the nation might not deserve Trump as a President, Washington itself most certainly does. God does that town deserve being inflicted with such an asshole for four years.

        1. I’m 100% for Trump for this reason. If the government is going to be absurd, it deserves to be headed by an absurdity.

          1. Almost 7 years of Obama hasn’t already done it for you?

            1. Liberals are partisan enough to claim Obama has been a great president. Let’s hit them where it hurts with a president even they can’t claim is worthwhile.

        2. God does that town deserve being inflicted with such an asshole for four years.

          This is true. It’d be fun watching Trump plaster a giant neon sign outside the WH.

          I don’t understand the enthusiasm for or the outright hatred of the guy, though. I think he’s a jackass, but I’m having a hard time caring that he’s in the race. I assume he’ll eventually do something unforgivably stupid and blow himself up long before we get to real primary season. My guess is he’ll flop at the debate.

          1. The hatred and the love are both just the usual social signalling. Until he said something mean about Mexicans people like Suderman didn’t hate him. Once he did that, saying how much you hated Trump because the new way people like him showed they were part of the group and signaled they were not part of the “other”.

            The love for him is just the reverse of that. Once the media went after him and hating him became a social signal, loving Trump became a way for people who hate the media to show they are part of that group and a way to tell the media to fuck off. What Trump actually said or who he actually is quickly became immaterial.

            1. There have been plenty of candidates from both sides of the isle that could fit this pattern.

        3. He’s not a Republican, as far as I can tell.

          1. He’s as RINO as all the rest.

  46. The rise of Trump also is due to the media. The media has lied so much and portrayed every Republican as the “next McCarthy”, that people no longer listen to them. Sure Trump is a demagogue and an idiot. The problem is that that is what the media says about every Republican. And Republicans are tired of listening to it. So the more the media points out what a demagogue Trump is, the more people like him.

    In the short term that is not a problem since Trump isn’t going to win the nomination much less the Presidency. In the long term, it is a huge problem because the media can no longer stop populist demagogues. They have pissed away their credibility and no longer have that power. So when a no kidding populist demagogue comes along and commands a majority, there will be no stopping them.

    1. So when a no kidding populist demagogue comes along and commands a majority, there will be no stopping them.

      I wonder what “it could never happen here!” sounds like through a boxcar window.

      1. Worse still, since the media is totally craven and worships power more than even its sorry leftist ideology, as soon as the guy gets control, the media will completely fold. The revolution will be televised and Katie Couric and Rachel Maddow will be on camera telling us how wonderful it is.

        1. Wow you’re still upset that Katie Couric asked Sarah Palin what newspapers she reads aren’t you.

          1. yeah, Tony. It is totally about that and not that Couric is a ready example of a completely shallow and stupid celebrity newsreader. Where exactly did Sarah Palin touch you Tony?

            1. Frankly it’s kind of surprising that you recognize Trump as the destroyer of the GOP he is but you thought Palin was an asset to the ticket, nay, a stateswoman of the highest caliber.

              1. I’m still waiting for you to unequivocally state you won’t vote Hillary.

                Hillary over Sarah? I’d take Sarah…any day. I’d probably take Bernie Sanders over Hillary, and I think he is stupid to the point of nearly being evil. Which puts him a hair better than Hillary, who actually is evil.

                1. I unequivocally will vote for Hillary if she is the nominee.

                  1. Why would we assume anything else?

                    1. I don’t know.

                    2. Let me make a bold prediction.

                      You’ll pull the lever for Team Blue no matter who the GOP nominate.

                      How’s that?

                    3. Unless the GOP nominates Elizabeth Warren, that’s a safe bet.

                    4. Now, what a minute. What’s so bad about Elizabeth Warren that you wouldn’t find in any of other candidates?

          2. Wow you’re still upset that Katie Couric asked hung up on Sarah Palin what newspapers she reads aren’t you.

            Introspection isn’t a bad thing, Li’l T.

          3. Does it eat you up inside to know that Palin has twice your intellect and is considerably better educated than your ignorant ass?

      2. I was going to do the whole “you know who else was a populist demagogue?” thing, but I think your comment is better, because, although Godwining can be fun, and even be used to make a point, sometimes the brutal, non-forgiving truth of evil should not be made light of.
        And I think John has a valid point: Now that the media have sold their souls for access, and have cried wolf so often, they have no credibility left.
        The media’s job used to be simply to be the Fourth Estate, to expose government no matter which party controlled it. Now, they are simply the propaganda department of the government. And the government doesn’t even pay them; the gov got a deal there, wonder how much Pravda cost the USSR.
        Privatize the rest of government like that!

  47. Trump’s campaign solves this problem by effectively promising to do nothing in particular

    You mean like using vacuous slogans like “Hope and Change”? This Trump guy is totally unprecedented.

    1. I distinctly remember a promise to stop the oceans from rising. Has anyone been measuring that? How are we doing?

      1. Why, the Lightbringer would have already reversed the effects of goal warning completely if not for those evil, obstructionist Teathuglikkkans!

  48. This is the Boss level in the new game of Social Media Democracy. Get ready to loose all your quarters.

    1. I like that term!

      It provides me with visions of a Coliseum full of Romans holding their thumbs up or down to direct the Caesar as to what the fate of the vanquished gladiator (or Christian) should be.

      And, in more prescient terms, it brings to mind the “guilty or not guilty” online commentary that follows every online story of criminal mischief from Cosby to Michael Brown. Some of those may have even occurred here on the Reason website.

  49. A thought that I’ve had on Trump re: the GOP Primary in recent weeks in simply one of timing. The summer prior the primary-proper is a period where candidates announce, make initial statements, and then focus on gathering contributions and organizing larger pools of financing for the main push of the campaign in the fall (when they begin the proper work of discussing & debating policy ideas and differentiating themselves). In the summer, most potential voters, particularly nationally, aren’t paying attention yet ? many are going on vacations or are just dealing with kids being home or may be taking advantage of the weather to do home repair and such. If you follow the news on most candidates, they’re at events with major fundraisers (the Koch Brothers event in California this past weekend, attended by a fe hundred large donors and five or six of the candidates, is a good example) in lieu of much retail politics. There’s a certain “burn rate” of campaign spending that is both most effective and looks best to voters, so candidates need to go into the pre-primary season in the fall (when the debates start up and they start traveling between early-voting states) with a proper war chest ? especially those candidates whose narrative has been as “front-runners” must have the organization set for defense against insurgency campaigns. (cont…)

    1. What Trump has done, especially given his personal financial resources, is enter the campaign during those summer doldrums and start discussing campaign topics ? even if not necessarily policy solutions ? a month or more earlier than others would be (there were lots of policy talk by folks like Rand Paul and Marco Rubio, even Scott Walker when his numbers took off, in the late spring and early summer, but those men have since went back to organizational mode with the others in recent weeks until the fall). The political media re: the GOP Primary, both on the Right looking for a candidate message to talk about and on the Left looking for a candidate to tear down, have thus gotten a surprise (the media loves surprises, but is often ill-prepared to deal with them at first): like a hot new show suddenly premiering during a season of reruns (this is the man who ran The Apprentice, so I wonder how much that analogy is actually a deliberate thing on his part), Donald Trump was there actually campaigning in public and saying things that sounding like news-bites. Likewise, polling pre-Labor Day and pre-debates (when folks return from the summer doldrums and potential voters start paying real attention) is all about name recognition and Trump has 98% name recognition from his decades being ‘The Donald.’ (cont…)

      1. Folks know who he is and the news has no one else to show (the other candidates are doing campaign business, but it’s organizational business, which doesn’t make for good television), so Trump ends up sucking up all the oxygen in the race at this point ? something that I’m sure that he effectively counted on (the guy might not be a good long-term businessman, but he’s a great short-term marketer). Because of the number of candidates in the race (I’ve compared it to a summer movie season, where a new film comes out each week, relies on the opening weekend gross, and can’t count on having legs before the next #1 film opens), there hasn’t been able to be a candidate yet who could define the vocabulary of this primary season ? that would have been the case of the early debates most likely ? so Trump jumped in at the precise moment where he could steal the thunder of defining the discourse of the GOP campaign and forcing everyone to react to him. That the media outside the Right (the mainstream, the Left, libertarian media like Reason) are following that narrative is proof that he’s doing that much correctly short-term in this segment of the campaign.

      2. All of that is very true. And the other thing he did was pick a fight with the media. The GOP voters hate the media. And as soon as the media goes after someone, a good number of them reflexively start supporting that person as a way to tell the media to fuck off.

        I don’t know if Trump is that smart or just a loud mouth who got lucky but you couldn’t have thought of a better way to curry favor with the GOP base than to say something about immigration that set off the media PC mob. It was perfect. It got him a ton of free publicity and got the GOP base to view supporting him as a way to say fuck you to the media and the PC mass culture and ignore his actual positions.

        1. “And as soon as the media goes after someone, a good number of them reflexively start supporting that person as a way to tell the media to fuck off.”

          Not realizing that they help the left-wing media by doing this.

          1. And there’s the problem: Whoever gets the R nomination, it won’t be Trump, but the nominee will still be trained by whatever dumb shit Trump says.
            I think Trump is just in it for the lolz, but if Shillary could pick her perfect mole, he would look much like Trump.

            1. *stained, not trained

            2. I think this is all a setup for a third-party publicity stunt/campaign by Trump.

              He gets attention, Hillary gets the Oval Office. That’s win-win for Trump — he’s an attention whore and a long-time Clinton supporter.

  50. I always enjoy your work Suderman 🙂

  51. Even Herman Cain had 9-9-9

    Don’t you talk shit about the SimCity tax plan!

  52. What Trump has going for himself:

    1. He says what he thinks, which is something, but Bernie Sanders does that. But, more important when he is attacked he makes no apology. He says it again. I personally can’t stand mealy mouthed half apologies.

    2. He trashed John McCain, not as a politician, but as a war hero. Immediately he went way up in polling with verterans! McCain has a terrible war record. If his Daddy hadn’t been an Admiral he might have been court-martialed.

    3. He trashed illegal immigrants and had it spun as if he were trashing legal immigrants. And, he went way up in the polls with legal immigrants! He knows something about which he speaks. Legal immigrants are not pro-illegal immigration. They, of all people, are hurt the most by it.

    4. He gets money. He understand it. And, he understands how it is made. Unlike pretty much all the rest.

    Seriously…the best and brightest do not go into politics. Does Reason think he is anywhere near as bad as all the rest.

    And, sorry about this…but Rand is going nowhere. End of story. It was a nice idea, but it ain’t happening.

    1. Donald Trump is going nowhere. Oh, sure, he might get the nomination, but all that would mean is four years of whoever the Democrats nominate.

      The loudmouth know-nothing schtick plays well with the base, but lousy with the electorate as a whole. Nominating him would be like the Democrats nominating Al Franken.

      1. “The loudmouth know-nothing schtick plays well with the base, but lousy with the electorate as a whole.”

        Methinks you have that backwards.

        1. The fact that Trump polls better with the Republican base than with Americans as a whole demonstrates that I have it exactly right.

  53. “Trumpiness” took me back to one of my favorite MST3K episodes, “Pod People”, so thanks for that.

    Other than that, even though I don’t like Trump at all, I find it curious to criticize him for a lack of substance in his campaign. EVERY political campaign is devoid of substance. Trump is just more honest about it than the rest.

  54. “The whole country will be in better shape. And ISIS won’t like it that he’s in charge. He’s very wealthy and can turn around the economy. He’ll get things moving. The Donald will kick a?.”

    Electrolytes: It’s what plants crave!

    1. My balls have suddenly started hurting.

    2. Facepalm. Followed by weeping for the republic.

  55. I have to wonder what Trump is like off-camera. He’s supposed to be some big-time wheeler-dealer, which sounds great as far as what you might expect out of a good politician (not *you* you, of course, and not ‘good’ in the sense of ‘not needing a heavy-duty woodchipper massage’ but ‘good’ in the sense of getting stuff done) but I can’t imagine Trump striding into a conference room, banging his dick on the table, telling everybody what low-life, pin-headed, ass-faced, shit-for-brains thay all are and expect that to be a sure-fire negotiating tactic. And yet I can’t imagine Trump doing anything other than that.

    1. About 8 years ago I was in my office and he came to visit my boss, who he knows socially. Trump was the supplicant, looking for a donation to some quasi-charity or other.

      He didn’t come over as a particularly authoritative (or confident) guy, but then again, as I say, my boss and he are social contacts.

  56. So. We’ve all agreed to believe that all the Republican candidates except for Donald Trump are for open borders and amnesty? I just want to make sure I know what we’ve all agreed to believe.

    1. /me hands Warty his first-edition copy of “The Wisdom of Crowds”.

    2. “Well, at least they’re not *meanies*”

    3. Rand Paul, as noted above, was a nice idea. But it’s going to be Walker. So, a public employee union busting Republican, or Shillary.
      Or cast a protest vote, but don’t bitch when Shillary wins.

      1. Busting public sector unions is a BAD thing? Since when?

      2. Busting public sector unions is a BAD thing? Since when?

  57. What Trump offers is a fantasy of governance without negotiation

    Huh? What happened to The Art of the Deal?

    1. Sold the rights to Amazon’s media group. The series will air when “House of Cards” season ends

      1. It got turned into a board game. That reminds me: I’ll pay you….*looks at cards* twenty million dollars for the temporary use of your airline, there.

  58. So the choice is between candidates who promise various things & then do whatever the fuck they want, & 1 who promises nothing & does whatever the fuck he wants.

    1. Unless you believe that everything that every candidate says is a lie — e.g., that Rick Santorum secretly wants to mandate gay marriage for Catholic priests and Rand Paul wants to implement a fascist regime and invade Canada — that’s a silly argument to make.

      Politicians break promises, sure. But some of the things they say they want to do are things they really do want to do. Trump’s only promise is “I’ll seal the border”, and given his past statements in support of illegal immigration he’s almost certainly lying about that.

      So the real choice is between people who will probably do some of the things you want even if they also do things you don’t, and a man who is lying about his one admitted political goal.

      1. “Rand Paul wants to implement a fascist regime and invade Canada”

        Man, you are on to something there! I like it!

        No one will see it coming.

        Isn’t that what makes the best theater? Political or otherwise.

        1. Before, after our at the same time that we invade Mexico?

      2. You related to the Dr. Bongard who was my instructor at the Chi. Med. Sch.?

  59. Maybe the name should be changed to “morons insulting the president no matter the content of the article”, because the 75% of you who have come her only for that purpose are a complete embarrassment to reasonable people.

    1. It’s not the only reason we come here. We have strong opinions about most of the political class.

      As a ‘reasonable person’, what do you think? Aside from being a tiresome shill for a president who has guaranteed Jimmy Carter a better posterity than he would have otherwise enjoyed.

      Educate us – we’re just crass yokels who slander your heroes. Teach us how to be less embarassing.

      1. You can think Obama is a shitty President without thinking “Obama is a shitty President!” is an appropriate response to every political claim or argument.

        By all means, let’s hear why an anti-gun, pro-tax Hillary Clinton supporter makes a good Republican candidate for President. Be warned that I don’t consider “we’re dumb enough to believe he’ll seal the border” to be a sufficient argument.

  60. Kroll’s article is interesting. Still reading it, but I noted, in passing this wording:

    Trump, of course, had caused an international uproar when, in his campaign rollout speech, he claimed Mexico was sending drug dealers and rapists over the border.

    Interest verb, “claimed.” It’s typically used when the facts are in dispute. Does anyone seriously dispute that Mexican drug dealers and rapists are crossing the border? We have the drugs and rapes to prove it. It’s not just a “claim.”

    1. The claim wasn’t that criminals are crossing the border. It was that Mexico was “sending” them. No one had to send them, they came here of their own accord.

      1. No, no one had to send them, but Mexico all but lays out a red carpet. It provides little cooperation with the U.S. in protecting the border; it actually hands out guides to successful crossing; and actively advocates for illegals once they’re here. And the Mexican government benefits through both remittances and by bleeding off some of its most troublesome population.

        The fact that they didn’t actually knock on the drug dealers’ and rapists’ doors and give them a van ride to the border is just a matter of barely plausible deniability.

        1. The subject was criminals, not grape pickers. The drug dealers have even built tunnels to defeat attempts to apprehend them. Mostly, they get in by outwitting or bribing guards, the same way that drugs get into prison. Legalize drugs, implement a guest worker program and most of the problems go away.

          1. “implement a guest worker program and most of the problems go away.”

            No they won’t. The conflicts still center around social differences as much as anything else. But, this is often cited as “racism”.

            Work in a field dominated by recent immigrants or, live near one of the vast areas in San Jose or LA that are predominately immigrant, particularly illegal immigrants. They’ve already set themselves up as separate. They are going way beyond equal and imposing their values and systems on the rest of us. This isn’t as mundane as Republican vs Democrat. It’s Hannibal crossing the Alps.

            If you are middle class American in your own values and outlook on life, you’ll find yourself confronting the harsh reality that these benign immigrants aren’t so. Their values often threaten the tenants of civil behavior and law abidance you accept. In a very harsh way, you’ll find out that they see rape very differently than most of us. Much of what they believe in is anathema to the freedoms we cherish and enjoy.

            I have wanted to assume they would assimilate and it would all work out. But, as I get older, I’m having to admit that I am probably wrong. The needle has moved decidedly the other way.

            And, I’m not one who fears change mind you. But I do fear the loss of our basic values that make us what we are.

            If you live in Peoria or KC, you might not see this the same way.

            1. Illegal immigration is bad for working-class Americans because increasing the supply of labor faster than demand lowers wages — not because of any of this silly “their culture is hurting America” bullshit.

              Tell me, what exactly are these “Mexican values” that are being “imposed” on us? Hard work, family and religion? My goodness, what will America look like after adopting alien values like those?

              1. The values they live and the values they vote for are two different things. One benefits and the other lays waste. Waste is winning.

                1. Who else’s freedom should we curtail on the basis that they don’t vote the way you personally like?

                  1. Tony, can you name a country anywhere on Earth that lets anyone who feels like it enter unchecked and take up permanent residency?

                  2. Let’s start with yours. And all your communist friends. McCarthy had all of you pegged back in the day. Too bad he was such a drunk, even for the ’50s that he couldn’t keep a leash on Roy Cohn. Otherwise he might have crushed the lot of you and prevented all this vile America hating bullshit of yours from becoming so persistent.

                    Honestly, it will probably take depositing all of progressivekind face down in landfills to fix things.

                2. “Freedomlover” isn’t talking about how they vote. Look at what he wrote — it is a bunch of paranoid bullshit about how middle-class values are maliciously undermined by pro-rape immigrants.

        2. “It provides little cooperation with the US in protecting the border”.

          You’re laboring under the misconception that democracies normally stop their citizens from leaving.

          1. Hey. Castro has told us forever that Cuba was a democracy.

          2. There’s a big gap between “cooperating with the U.S.” and “stop their citizens from leaving.” But go ahead enjoy your strawman. It’s big enough to play a major role in The Wizard of Oz.

  61. I figure that Trump has made most of his fortune by purchasing favors from politicians. By becoming president he can eliminate the middleman.

  62. “It’s George W. Bush all over again, innit? He hits a button with people. But do you really want him in charge of the nuclear arsenal?”

    I’m no Bush fan, but that’s a pretty egregiously inapt comparison in a number of ways. Bush is neither as bombastic nor charismatic as Trump, nor is he the simultaneous loose cannon and cipher that Trump is on policy.

    In fact, the only characteristic they appear to share, from the British speaker’s perspective, is “not embarrassed to be an American.”

  63. “It’s George W. Bush all over again, innit? He hits a button with people. But do you really want him in charge of the nuclear arsenal?”

    I’m no Bush fan, but that’s a pretty egregiously inapt comparison in a number of ways. Bush is neither as bombastic nor charismatic as Trump, nor is he the simultaneous loose cannon and cipher that Trump is on policy.

    In fact, the only characteristic they appear to share, from the British speaker’s perspective, is “not embarrassed to be an American.”

    1. Bush was a well admired and successful governor –
      and a successful Presidential campaign manager from ’88

      So he had credentials. Like him or not! (I do…I believe he had good intent)

      That’s not to say that we all, collectively, would like to do the 2001 to 2007 period over again, with knowledge of the future intact, and revisit some decisions. 🙂

      1. “That’s not to say that we all, collectively, would like to do the 2001 to 2007 period over again, with knowledge of the future intact, and revisit some decisions. :)”

        That’s true of most any period in one’s life when we look back. Us oldsters have something to offer. And, that is one of those. The perspective of having BTDT and seeing what the results were.

  64. What the article really highlights for me is the intellectual weakness and inflexibility of the press. They’re unable to think in any manner but cliches, sound-bites and horse races.

    1. “Follow me around. I don’t care. I’m serious. If anybody wants to put a tail on me, go ahead. They’ll be very bored.” Gary Hart. 1987

  65. You guys really don’t “get it”, do you?

    1. I’m imagining the furious bubbling of a bong immediately preceding that statement.

  66. A Trump/Fiorina ticket wouldn’t surprise me in the least.

    1. HP is moving to the East Coast? 😉

  67. It’s a distillation of politics. Most people engage with politics without reading issue papers or long-form journalistic explainers and think-pieces. They go with impressions of the candidates and sometimes get swept up into thinking about how great things will be. This happened to Obama supporters for a while, with some of them driven to weird hyperbole even as Obama’s central argument was incredibly vapid (what does “yes we can” even mean?).

    Whereas Obama is a cerebral person who likes to show off his intricate knowledge of every subject, Trump is a visceral person who likes to show off his emotional reactions to the world. But for a lot of voters, sometimes vapidity is better. The genius of Obama was having a vapid message that enthralled millions and having a reasonable stable of policy experts and issue papers that attracted journalists and politicians. Trump has skipped the latter and as a result has wide popular support and thin elite support.

    The problem is Trump can’t go forever without any elite support and he has yet to provide much confidence that he is a serious candidate, and politicos would be unwise to associate their careers with a stunt candidate.

    1. But, but…he didn’t build that!

  68. The author glaringly fails to include that the present POTUS had zero qualification for office outside of experience in politics and racial and age demographics.
    Trump at least has managerial and financial experience (beyond a lawsuit against banks for lending practices). It is interesting that a sort of vetting of Trump is taking place when his life has been largely public and unconcerned with political correctness. Please, for God’s sake, vet the other candidates extensively (both Democrats and Republicans) so no other President with such a dearth of openness and experience as the present one is elected again.

  69. Reason is deleting my comments solely because I am calling out their hypocrisy.

    loser City.

    1. Of all the criticisms I have of Reason, censorship isn’t one of them. I’ve never seen them delete a comment unless it’s contents were legally actionable. Either refresh your browser or quit making death threats.

    2. Reason has never censored any post. Ever. Proof: Fuck, shit, ass, whore, bitch.

      You are either incompetent, have a technical problem, or are lying.

  70. Perhaps Mindlessness is preferred than Deceitfulness like that of the current small man in the WH.
    It has been the two parties against the people with all the carefully crafted “mindfulness”. Nothing gets done; not the tax codes, border security, immigration….and the long list.

  71. You Trump bashers are such supercilious weenies. You demand specific plans from Trump but not of the other 16 candidates. You eschew his success in business AND publishing AND conquest of the media claiming that he’s a no-talent. Who has been more successful?

    You seem to think the current crop of mediocre focus group bought and paid fors who wouldn’t know a profit and loss sheet if it walked up and introduced itself are somehow more qualified just because they have been so well trained by the people who own them (hint – not the voters).

    How, pray tell, could Trump be any worse than the current metrosexual Marxist Muslim America hater in the White House?

  72. I like this article – it tries to contain the dripping condescension so many national republican pundits seem to ooze when discussing the Donald.

    I do not support Trump – wrong temperament for the job –
    but I do like what he’s been saying in most recent cases –
    because 1) I grow tired of the phony outrage culture, and 2) he is saying things the more traditional politicians simply won’t – and they are largely true.

    most people know they are true – because they don’t contest his point – they instead attack a straw man that ALL OF THEM are criminals – which he didn’t say and no one thinks. Even the most reactionary right wingers I meet only wish to be able to DECIDE whom to screen out..not stop immigration. But ANY nation has the right to say “no criminals, no dual citizens, no sneak ins, no people with foreign allegiance, etc” – right? But always, the straw man is that it’s “racist” –
    Dude, it’s not racist. Is it racist for a condo to have a doorman?

    They don’t address his point that McCain is a JERK OFF that nominated Sarah Palin to one heartbeat from the presidency (at age 80 – unforgivable!)) and is the KING of the Washington insider establishment republican senator club (do NOTHING) – instead critics of Trump ignore that point (that post 2000 McCain SUCKS and is a RINO) and instead take a dumb quip he made about getting captured and pretend he went around trying to make the point that he hates veterans and disrespects them! Straw man much?

    1. That’s why I think it’s good Trump is in the arena. I predict he won’t win a single delegate…but He just won’t capitulate to that BS playbook –
      RAND PAUL – he’s the one I most support. Libertarians seem to think he’s a war guy, a Neocon in libertarian clothing – listen again to his announcement speech “I want an American military strong enough to deter ANY aggression – but wise enough to avoid unnecessary intervention.” Sounds PERFECT.
      ERGO:
      Iran deal bad?
      “Ok, don’t go to war…just WALK AWAY with the sanctions intact! That’s why they are AT the table now”
      Why the rush to cut a bad deal by Obama’s team? Did they forget how hard it was to get those sanction in place? Did they MISS the whole North Korea playbook where we made similar errors (concessions first, promises for our stuff later…then BOOM nuke test..)…..PLUS the secretive stuff on the side and the whole treaty-constitutional BS that our Republican idiots in the Senate went along with. I don’t care WHAT you call an international agreement signed by 6 countries where we exchange promises and concessions – – but the FRAMERS called that a TREATY and spells out what’s required. Why does it take ME to point out that this is a violation of the constitution – no matter WHAT BS the congress passed to “make it ok”. It is NOT ok. And if there is a “side deal” that my representatives don’t get to see when they consider this treaty? That’s impeachable to me……plain and simple.

      1. In a world where the elected president and congress can define a 6 nation signed agreement as something….that is NOT a treaty…..
        the fact that Trump doesn’t propose technocratic solutions is not a big issue.
        merely replacing the people doing THAT lying with people with ZERO experience, but HONEST intent…would be a huge improvement.
        I think we can do better (I support Rand Paul!) but I will not belittle those as stupid who realize that it would be HARD to do worse than smart…but dishonest to the core! That’s what we have…NOW.

    2. Is it racist for a condo to have a doorman?

      It is when they’re all black like in SF.

  73. Peter Suderman, putting more thought into Trump’s campaign than Trump ever will.

    Trump is a fart in the wind, a nothing, a non-factor, a public joke. If a such a scion of empty narcissism actually wins, which cannot possibly be his endgame, well…next election I’m voting for Camacho. At least he lifts.

    1. Kardashians

      1. Don’t ever underrate the American public’s appetite for schmaltz.

      2. They’re not running for public office. Their asses might be.

  74. “…He is a mindless candidate for a party that for years has casually courted mindlessness, and is now faced with the worrying possibility that it might prevail. ”

    Except, for decades we’ve (and I count myself as one of those loyal GOP voters) supported politicians that told us what we wanted to hear about a smaller government, living within our means, only to be disappointed when they were placed in the position of power that they sought, and did nothing – or even the opposite.
    The support that The Donald gets today is a reflection of that betrayal by the traditional pols, and is a determined “thumb to the eye” because of it.

    1. So let me get this straight.

      For decades Republican politicians have told you what you wanted to hear and then not followed through. I’m with you so far.

      Here’s where you lose me: when you say that supporting Donald Trump — whose campaign has thus far consisted entirely of “telling you what you want to hear” — is a departure from your previous behavior. This is a guy who has previously supported gun control, socialized medicine and illegal immigrant amnesty. His poll numbers are 100% due to saying mean things about illegal Mexican immigration. There’s no substance to his remarks at all.

      The message you’re sending is “we care about nothing BUT you telling us what we want to hear. Lie to us, insult our intelligence, cost us the next election — just for god’s sake keep saying things we like to hear”.

      1. Nobody can possibly believe that Trump, upon assuming office, would not lose his shit even more. Right now he’s in his normal form. Give him that much power and he will go Super Saiyan levels of retard.

        1. No way that “hair” stays attached at those power levels.

      2. His poll numbers are 100% due to saying mean things about illegal Mexican immigration.

        At least he is saying mean things about illegal Mexican immigration. I’m not married to Trump. I’d vote for anyone who has mean things to say about illegal Mexican immigration. Even if it was a libertarian.

        1. So you’re a horrible person and proud of it? You’re not alone, but it’s not likely a national political party can sustain itself only on the likes of you.

        2. “I’d vote for anyone who has mean things to say about illegal Mexican immigration. ”

          Isn’t that what I just said? Trump’s support is due to Republicans caring only what candidates say, not what candidates are likely to do.

          You’re supporting Trump — a man with a long history of support for both illegal immigration and the Clintons — simply because he *says* mean things about illegal immigrants. That is, to borrow Trigger’s phrase, Super Saiyan levels of retard.

          1. Saying mean things is a lot more than anyone else is doing. If he continues to get support for it, it might provide a clue to the other candidates.

          2. *That is, to borrow Trigger’s phrase, Super Saiyan levels of retard.*

            Yes, because voting the GOP establishment candidates back into control of both houses of legislature in this country worked out SOOOO well for the Charlie Brown-esque GOP base in 2012 and 2014.

  75. What Donald Trump offers is exactly another Ross Perot. No more, no less. And if he runs as an independent he will throw the election to the Democrat exactly the way Ross Perot did. I wonder which Democrat is paying him to do it?

    1. It is a myth that Ross Perot spoiled it for Bush. According to polling, he took enough votes from Clinton to make it a wash–Clinton would have won a two-way race. But you’re probably right about Trump being a spoiler, which is what makes these polls showing a surprising number of Republicans just not giving a shit about winning in favor of supporting the guy who gives them the stoutest ‘Merica boner.

      Bet they spend the next 8 years whining hysterically nonetheless.

      1. After having been betrayed enough times, many on the right feel that having a Republican president who hews to the establishment line isn’t exactly a big selling point. I myself am leaning towards the Lenin point of view: worse is better. The problem isn’t the politicians–although they are pretty uniformly self-serving morons–it is that the citizenry is stupid enough to re-elect an Obama. This country is so absolutely hosed right now that only a climax fire can clean out the dead wood. The faster this comes the sooner rebuilding can begin. Another couple of Dem terms should do it.

  76. I don’t like Trump, pretty much see him as how he presents himself and can just envision the nano-nano second once-over he’d give me…but then it’s just one nano less than the nano-second any of the candidates would give me, but seriously – the 5 second news cast is about as much of Trump as one stomach, but face it that is only 1 second shorter than the tolerance level for all the other morons, dummies, and lightweights – Hump 4 Trump – now there’s one Brave New World.

  77. The Trump Surge is all about Cuckservatism. The GOP base has finally reached the breaking point and they are rebelling against the Cucks. As Trump is the only candidate who has positioned himself as an anti-Cuck, he’s reaping all the benefits despite the fact even his strongest supporters think he’s an obnoxious, untrustworthy, dick. The anti-Cuck sentiment is just that strong this cycle. Shame of it is Rand Paul was actually well positioned to take advantage of the sentiment but totally blew it.

    1. Rand Paul “blew it” by offering actual plans. Trump offers unfocused rage and a Hillary Clinton presidency.

      The moral of this story is that the Republican base doesn’t want solutions or ideas. They want to throw a temper tantrum until the world magically reverts to 1985 again.

      1. Dollars to doughnuts says you were either not yet born or too young to remember anything about 1985.

        Trust me, you’d like it there.

  78. No offense, when Reason publishes hit articles like this it makes them look like MSNBC.

  79. Look, I’m not a fan of any of the GOP candidates, but nine of the seventeen are governors of states, fer Chrissake…some more successful than others, but all with serious executive experience and short or non-existent scandal sheets. On the Dem side we have the all-time scandal queen and a 25 year Washingtonian who calls himself a socialist but votes straight party line with the Dems. Somewhere in the distance is a guitar-playing failure of a former governor whose coattails were so short that his hand-picked successor attorney general lost to a Republican in a heavily Democrat state.

    If the GOP has courted mindlessness, what does that say about the Dems who haven’t had a new idea since 1935? Whose talent bench is so short that Joe Biden is being discussed as a serious alternative to a mortally-wounded Clinton. I honestly don’t care who wins in 2016, but why are you holding the GOP to higher standards that the Dems. Frankly, after six years of a boob who is incompetent, anti-capitalist, and pro-Islamist the Dems shouldn’t be let within a hundred miles of the capitol city ever again.

  80. Just because he refuses to talk about policy does not mean he doesn’t have plans. Talking about them, however, would have the effect of splitting his support. Now he is just an image than any person can view as having the same policy viewpoint as the voter. Once he starts taking stances, that goes away and he starts losing support. I feel fairly certain that his lack of policy stance is planned and deliberate. Being a blank canvas that the voters can paint what they wish on is effective.

  81. Look, Trump isn’t a regular guy; but then neither was Pisistratus . Trump, in many ways, reminds me of Pisistratus’ rapid rise to power in ancient Athens.

    According to the Greek historian, Herodotus: Pisistratus, during his campaign to become Athens’ new leader, came into town one day leading a magnificently adorned white horse, pulling an equally resplendent chariot, upon which stood a statuesque woman, looking for all the world to be Athena herself, the goddess of Athens. Who, Pisistratus, hastily explained to the gathering crowds, had just decreed that he should be made king. Whereupon, he was promptly elected Athens’ new leader.

    Pisistratus, being the astute politician that he was, realized he actually needed a real power base if he was going to consolidate his rule before his ruse with the woman from the neighboring village was publicly exposed, took the extraordinary step of turning to the common Athenians for support by reducing taxes and introducing free loans to allow the people to build up their farms, undermining the whole hierarchy of aristocrats and political elites of the day along the way. The Athenian economy grew by leaps and bounds and Pisistratus’claim to leadership was never questioned.

    The same can be said of Trump. Trump is popular with independent, middle-class Americans because it gives them a chance to be their own power base rather than being the base of someone else’s power.

    1. “it gives them a chance to be their own power base rather than being the base of someone else’s power”

      How? Walk be through how you get from “voting for Trump” to “having power”.

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  84. “falling shy” of promises doesn’t even begin to describe it. Fratricide, fatal friendly fire, or treason would not be hyperbole.

  85. You know,, I have been a follower of Reason,,I like the reasonableness of Nick Gillespie, in the videos I have watched with him in them.
    Why do you bash Donald Trump? You do realize that he cannot be bought,,,right? He is the only candidate that cannot be bought by lobbyist, special interest,,etc. I think he would be there for the genuine support for the American people. So why do you bash him so?,,,He could be a true compatriot for liberty, which is what you so fervently protect,,,so why bash?

  86. We’ve got McCain prancing around in his ‘Kiss me, I’m a veteran’ underwear. We’ve got no other than Lindsey Graham of all people chastising Hillary Clinton for a lack of honesty regarding personal sexual matters. Jeb is an inflatable balloon with his father’s and brother’s faces drawn on it like a miniature Crayola Mt. Rushmore. Trump popping these phonies with a pin is priceless.

    Most voters these days suppose the results with any candidate they select will be indistinguishable from those of any other but with Trump they get a real benefit right up front. Personally I’m excited to watch the debate tonight for the first time since Ron Paul was running but for entirely different reasons. Say what you want but if you’re going to inevitably get a fascist crammed up your ass no matter what you do it might as well be an entertaining one.

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  89. Mr. Trump is our version of Caligula, who was very entertaining to the Roman citizenry — for a while. H came pretty close to destroying the Roman empire, which was saved by Claudius, who set up a systematic means of government. We, however, to not have our eq

  90. Mr. Trump is our version of Caligula, who was very entertaining to the Roman citizenry — for a while. H came pretty close to destroying the Roman empire, which was saved by Claudius, who set up a systematic means of government. We, however, to not have our eq

  91. Mr. Trump is our version of Caligula, who was very entertaining to the Roman citizenry — for a while. He eventually came pretty close to destroying the Roman empire, which was saved by Claudius, who set up a systematic means of government. We, however, to not have our equivalent of a Claudius. We have a system, but we also have politicians who are in love with arbitrary power and nobody popular enough to upset their apple carts in a productive way.

  92. What is is policy on “the war on drugs”, and legalized prostitution and gambling for all adults?

    These are all crimes-without-victims!

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