Donald Trump

Drain the Swamp!

Government spending and crony capitalism are out of control, and few people bother to go to Washington to ask for spending cuts.


President-elect Trump says he's uniquely qualified to "drain the swamp" in Washington, D.C. He can do it, he said at one debate, because as a businessman, he understands American cronyism. "With Hillary Clinton, I said, 'Be at my wedding,' and she came to my wedding. You know why? She had no choice because I gave."

He said that's why he gives money to politicians from both parties. "When they call, I give. And when I need something from them two years later, three years later, I call them. They are there for me!"

That's crony capitalism. Ideally, laws are applied equally; no one gets a special break because he gives money. But today's complex government allows the politically connected to corrupt… most everything.

Even parts of the government swamp designed to protect consumers, like Dodd-Frank banking rules, get corrupted. Banks watch little changes in rules far more closely than you ever will. Then they exploit them. Bank lobbyists make money off complex laws like Dodd-Frank. They fight tooth and nail to keep them, not abolish them.

Congress recently almost got rid of one obvious example of crony capitalism, the Export-Import Bank. To encourage exports of American products, bureaucrats give loans to Boeing and other big companies.

Some principled Republicans tried to eliminate this corporate welfare, but Ex-Im loans were voted back in during the final hours of budget negotiations.

Government programs almost never die.

Businesses in cozy relationships with government don't die either. Jeff Deist, president of the free-market Mises Institute, says when the housing bubble burst, banks should have been allowed to fail and put through "the bankruptcy and liquidation process."

Investors would have lost big, but that's OK, says Deist. "That's the difference between free-market capitalism and state capitalism. With state capitalism, there are upsides for the parties involved—but no downsides."

In the swamp, no one but taxpayers pays for their mistakes.

Politicians routinely promise to change this culture, but once they get to D.C., they lose interest, says Trump.

"They go to Washington, something happens—they become weak… I promise this is not going to happen to me."

I want to believe him. But even if he were an utterly principled man—and I await evidence of that—it's tough to constantly say "no" to people.

When you're in Congress, people ask you for money all day. "I need a grant for my charity—we do so much good!" "My business needs a subsidy/protective tariff—we employ so many people—in your state!" So it goes, week after week.

Few people bother to go to Washington to ask for spending cuts. Even though America is heading toward bankruptcy, 90 percent of congressional testimony comes from people who want more stuff.

Politicians' cronies get more stuff. Solyndra got half a billion dollars from President Obama. The company went bankrupt, which shouldn't be a surprise. Government has no way of knowing which ideas will succeed.

But it's well worth it for companies to invest in lobbyists and fixers who dive into the swamp to extract subsidies.

For taxpayers? Not so much. While the benefits to lobbyists are concentrated, taxpayer costs are diffuse. Solyndra cost each of us a couple bucks. Will you go to Washington to pester your congressman about that? Probably not.

I want to believe Trump when he says he'll "drain the swamp." But it's easier to believe Thomas Jefferson who, with greater eloquence, said, "It's the natural progress of things for government to gain ground, and liberty to yield."

Draining the swamp would mean not just taking freebies away from corporations—or needy citizens—but eliminating complex handouts like Obamacare. Candidate Trump said he would repeal Obamacare. Will he? He's already backed off of that promise, saying he likes two parts of the law—the most expensive parts.

Every word in the register of federal regulations and laws has a special friend, a lobbyist (or 20) who will defend it, fight hard to make sure everything stays the same.

Good luck draining that swamp, President Trump. I hope you'll succeed, if that's really your goal.

But I won't count on it.


NEXT: The Cannabis Exception to the Second Amendment

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  1. Now there's a business idea. A combination wood chipper / sump pump. Coal powered. Operated by orphans for Tree Fitty an hour.

    1. You can pay Mexican orphans $1.50/hr

        1. Well,, to be fair, it's a dangerous job. As soon as they lose a limb or two, though, they don't have the bargaining power, and you can bid them down to $.25-$.50 an hour.

          They have to pay those medical bills somehow!

      1. Someone call the union!

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  2. I expect to be disappointed, I will keep a tiny sliver of hope at least something gets whacked due to a bureau chief making an intemperate remark or such.

    1. The worst thing about the Trumpkins is that when he does go back on his word, they will worship him anyway. Look at his cabinet picks, they're already making excuses for him.

      1. Yup.

        They couldn't help themselves basically accusing Ted Cruz's wife of being a traitor to America by working for Goldman Sachs, and now that Trump's picked a Goldman Sachs guy to be Secretary of Treasury? "Well, you have to have someone who knows high finance to run the US Treasury..." But don't you dare call Trumpism a cult. Oh no no no. They are all free independent thinkers, dontchaknow!

        1. It's actually a bit frightening how similar the cult worship of Trump has been to the cult worship of Obama. Trump is going to get to the White House, and be very similar to any other politician. Then, when he doesn't get things done, his followers will make every excuse in the book, like Obama's worshipers do for him.

          1. I've been saying for months that Trump is just Obama for peckerwoods.

            Same entitlement spending, just a different population.

            However, Obama was only able to handout phones. Trump's gonna give us all Carrier air conditioners!

            1. "Obama for peckerwoods."

              My take home for the day, thank you.

              1. - the last Imperial Woodpecker. "It was a great piece of meat".

          2. Trump was the same as Obama in that they are both an empty mirror that people see themselves in. In that way, neither of them are all that much worse than any other relatively unknown politician before they take office.

            It's the cultists that are always the problem. Having hope is not a failing but refusing to accept facts is.

          3. In some ways, Trump IS the Republican Obama. Obama had little record as a public official, and Trump has none. Both were blank slates who made pleasing noises, allowing their supporters to paint them as saviors who would deliver whatever it was that those supporters wanted. Obamites have clung to him, regardless of what he actually does, and so far Trumpets show every sign of doing the same.

            1. We bitter clingers disagree.

          4. I've been saying people voted Hoping for Change again. Anyone paying attention knows that Trump is mostly more of the same, especially on the budget which is the biggest factor regarding Change. He'll be different on immigration, but he's backed away from that.

            I've also said, that I bet the 2017 budget spends more and has a higher deficit than the 2016 budget.

            If Trump raises tariffs and starts a trade war, that bodes ill for the GOP. Consider that 55% of imports are used by US manufacturers in their products. Also look at the history of the Smoot-Hawley Tariff Act of 1930. That resulted in a huuuge contraction of the economy: the US GDP fell by almost half within 3 years before the act was repealed (do we ever repeal any legislation these days?). And both Smoot and Hawley (both Republicans) lost their seats that year.

            I Hope I'm wrong, and Trump is smarter. But like Stossel I won't count on it. Especially since the GOP is dominated by RINOs. Consider there are 40 members of the House Freedom Caucus, out of 247 House GOP members.

            The GOP is already talking up the 60 votes they supposedly need in the Senate, when they can like they've done before, and put it in a spending bill requiring only 51 votes. They're looking for excuses to avoid draining the swamp, like they always do.

        2. The funny part is that they ever believed that a Manhattan real estate developer was ever going to take on Wall Street in the first place.

          1. we don't need to 'take on wall street', we need to take on washington.

            the only way to get money out of politics is to make politicians not worth buying.

            1. What I was talking about was what his true believers believed about him.

              1. "True believers"? Get a grip on yourself. Not a masturbation euphemism (NTTAWWT).

      2. I'm more pro-Trump than most of the people on these boards, but I'll take a guess and say that the vast majority of his voters, including myself, were not the stereotypical cultish Trumpkin true believers, but rather were people that knew that Hillary would be an awful president based on a legitimate, traceable track record of incompetence, and chose a wild-card instead. Honestly, if he turns to be an average or even slightly below-average in office, it's a win for us IMO. It's a very small likelihood in my eyes that he will either be uniquely anti-establishment or a uniquely corrupt president (emphasis on the word unique).

        1. ^ this ^

          I have no great faith that Trump will keep all (or possibly even most) of his campaign trail promises, though I'll be delighted if he does so. It's enough for me that his win keeps the rancidly corrupt, dishonest, and incompetent Clinton out of the Oval Office. Everything else, including the socjus splodeyheading, is just gravy.

          1. That pretty much sums up my position as well.

            1. Yup, mine too.

              1. Trump is only good as President for his entertainment value. I expect much entertainment.

          2. Yep. The histrionics from the left have been hilarious but are wholly off-kilter. He's not the second coming of Mussolini, not the head of some mighty insurgent populist revival, not an ideologue bent on the destruction of Democrats and his enemies.

            Trump, vell, he's just zis guy, you know?

            1. I'd rather look at Melania in Presidential photos rather than Hildebeast.

          3. I'm happy with Trump in that he gave us his list of SCOTUS candidates ahead of time (something all but the "I'm better than thou" candidates would do) which Cato said were very good. That's good for the long term, though I'll probably be dead by the time it makes a difference.

            In the short term, I've doubts he'll serve a 2nd term, because given what I expect for his budget, the economy won't get better. I'd say people Hope there will be Change and are betting on it in the market now. They'll be disappointed later. Even if Trump wants to reduce spending, the GOP RINOs won't let him, and I don't think he'll fight them. I hope I'm wrong.

        2. " and chose a wild-card instead"

          This is being far too kind to Trump. IMO it is deliberately refusing to see Trump's own track record of awfulness.

          Trump is the one who wants to weaken the First Amendment to go after reporters who say mean things about him.

          Trump is the one who tried to use the power of the state to kick an old woman out of her house so that he could expand his casino.

          Trump is the one who brags about seducing married women, not to mention doing other things to them.

          Trump is the one who thinks judges "sign bills" or that there are more than 7 articles in the Constitution.

          Trump is the one who egged on his followers to commit violence against protestors at his rallies.

          Trump is the one who played footsie with the worst elements on the right, the genuine racists and white supremacists.

          Trump is the one who is not afraid to embrace the strongman version of the presidency.

          Yes, Hillary has a track record of corruption and awfulness. But based on Trump's demonstrated character and his own track record of sleazy behavior, I cannot say in good conscience that Trump wouldn't have done exactly the same things that Hillary did, had he been in her shoes. Hillary only has a track record of public corruption because she has had access to the levers of power, while Trump hasn't. Trump doesn't get moral credit for not doing things that he was never in a position to do in the first place.

          Saying he's a "wild card" is deliberately refusing to see all of this.

          1. He was just joking about all that.

            1. I'm sure Scott Adams will have a blog post up any day now about Trump's brilliant 9-dimensional chess move to outwit the media and the left and the establishment with his master persuader brilliant techniques!!!!

              1. Say what you will of Adams's take on Trump. Trump took on the GOP inner party apparatchiks, the Democrats, the media (but I repeat myself), and every other bright bulb in the country and handed the lot of them their asses.

          2. At least with Trump there might be some pushback for the awful things he tries. Yes, Trump is awful on a number of issues, but at least he will get some pushback on some of the awful things he tries.

            Does anybody doubt that the NYT or WaPo would do anything more than cheer on Hillary's attempt to amend the constitution to make it illegal to criticize her?

            1. I was about to point this out to chemjeff, so thank you for saying it. One of the key reasons why I voted for Trump instead of Johnson was because I knew that more people, including folks in the media business and incumbent politicians and bureaucrats, will actually do their job of checking and balancing the executive branches with him in office rather than Hillary. I also still don't think that all of things that chemjeff listed about Trump, although some of it is true (especially his track record of being pro-eminent domain), adds up to being worse than Clinton.

              1. That is the only thing he listed, the position on eminent domain, that is honestly bad about the guy. The rest of that shit is kinda mendacious.

                The Hildebeast lost Jeff. Get over it.

                I have about decided you are a troll.

                "yeah Hillary is evil, but what do we really know about Trump? Huh?"

                Is that you Chapman?

              2. I didn't necessarily say he was worse than Clinton. I think you can make an argument that he isn't. What I object to is this idea that he is just some random "wild card" that "we have no idea what he's going to do". Yeah we do have some idea, based on his own track record of sleaze and awful behavior.

            2. Who is going to push back? Republicans in Congress? Of course not. They are all members of the same tribe. The media? The media might, but let's not forget (1) members of the media have to do what they can to secure access to Trump in the WH, and Trump made it very clear in the campaign that he makes media access to himself conditional on nice things being said about him (at one point he threw out the WaPo reporters covering him because he thought they were too unfair to him), and (2) Trump's base of voters, whether they be the genuine Trumpkin fanboys or his more reluctant supporters, can all basically agree that they aren't going to believe "MSM attacks" on Trump, they are more likely to believe Rush's and Hannity's shilling for Trump instead, so the only people persuadable by media investigation of Trump scandals are those who aren't going to vote for him *anyway*.

              It will be just like the Obama scandals all over again. The media will report on them, and his voters will ignore them and continue to support Trump regardless. So, big fat whoop.

              1. Do you really think guys like Cruz wouldn't be happy to stab Trump in the back as soon as it was politically viable? Unlike Clinton, the Republican party isn't built around Trump. And there are a few congressmen that got more votes in their districts than Trump did, so they're not riding on Trump's coattails.

                Right now the GOP is in a honeymoon with the period with Trump, but that doesn't mean they're all going to place nice if Trump tries pushing through something that goes against the GOP party line.

                1. Please tell me what the "GOP party line" is other than getting themselves elected. The main reason that the establishment didn't support him was that they, like everyone else, misread the electorate and thought he'd get trounced in the general election. Now that he's been elected, they'll fall in line.

                  1. ^^^^^ THIS ^^^^^
                    The GOP sucks massive donkey d!ck. They are almost as progressive as the dems. but they claim to be all about small government and fiscal responsibility. Nothing could be further from the truth. Their strategic goal is ... getting elected. Why? So they can get REelected.

          3. Agreed. I also think Trump may represent a new type of corruption that we haven't really seen before: systemic corruption.

            In his speech, Trump bragged about basically owning politicians by giving them money, and it return he gets things done that he wants. This type of "pay to play" corruption is the type most people mean when they say corruption.

            However, the second level of corruption is "systemic corruption." Systemic corruption is when the government essentially chooses which businesses it wants to succeed, generally by loyalty to the administration, and other businesses that don't align themselves with the administration, or openly criticize it, face high regulatory hurdles and other pressures. In essence, an important component of being a successful business becomes toeing the line on whatever the administration wants, and NOT doing that means making the conscious choice to be a dissident and rebel - and your life becomes a lot harder for it.

            1. This is sarcasm right? You described the Obama administration perfectly. I don't peruse the reason boards during day light hours enough to know who is being a smart ass.

              1. HEY, westernsloper? I think I know who you ARE!!!!!!

                /Front Ranger

                1. nope sorry. I have never used another name.

                  1. Or, do you mean who I really "ARE" as in who I am?

                    That would be funny. I don't owe you money do I?

              2. C'mon, enough with the hyperbole. Putting in place perhaps business-unfriendly generalized regulations is not systemic corruption and not what I'm talking about.

                I'm concerned that established media companies will be black-listed by the WH for writing critical pieces. I'm concerned that certain banks will be given preferential treatment because they gave favorable loans to Trump holdings. I'm concerned that foreign countries will face diplomatic pressure to allow golf courses and hotels to be built. Essentially, I'm concerned that all of the dirtiness of NY construction and real estate operations get imported in to the WH.

          4. Yes, Hillary has a track record of corruption and awfulness. But...

            Another sterling example of how in sentences like this, the listener can disregard everything that preceded the but because the speaker meant not a word of it. Herself was incompetent and malevolent in public office. She enriched herself and her family while on the public payroll and did so by promising favors to donors that would also be paid for by the public.

            Like the other poster said, Hillary is what-you've-seen-is-what-you'll-get and Trump is more results may vary.

            1. "Herself was incompetent and malevolent in public office. She enriched herself and her family while on the public payroll and did so by promising favors to donors that would also be paid for by the public."

              Yes she did, and that's awful. Can you say with a straight face that had Trump been in her shoes, that Trump wouldn't have engaged in similarly sleazy behavior? Trump hasn't had the access to the levers of power that Hillary has had. Trump's demonstrated character illustrates that he is not above that level of sleaze. Once again: Neither Trump nor anyone else doesn't get moral credit for not doing things that he was never in a position to do in the first place.

              1. I can say, and even you have to admit, there is no way of knowing. That alone separated the two. Trump has utilized laws created by people like Hillary, laws we may think are horrible but I don't get the logic of blaming the person using the laws above the one(s) creating them.

                Neither Trump nor anyone else doesn't get moral credit for not doing things that he was never in a position to do in the first place.
                Nor does he or anyone else get moral demerits for things you think they might do but have not actually done.

              2. You are working backwards from conclusion to premises. Looking at what actually happened we can draw the conclusion that Clinton is wildly corrupt. Starting with the conclusion that Trump is corrupt so he would have done it too is simply absurd. You are manufacturing premises out of thin air.

                Just give the man a chance, I am sure he will give us plenty of reason to criticize him, but until he does you are just making a fool out of yourself.

                Let me are one of those people who think truth is subjective and malleable.

                1. "You are working backwards from conclusion to premises."

                  No. Exactly the opposite actually. I am comparing both Hillary and Trump *on the same footing* - based on their respective characters. Both Hillary and Trump exhibit serious, serious character flaws. I think we can both agree on that? Based on the nature of their character, we might be able to make some sort of reasonable prediction of what each might do given a particular set of circumstances. Give Hillary access to the levers of power, and based on her character, she will abuse that access and use it to enrich herself. We've all seen that. Give Trump access to the levers of power, and what will he do? It's NOT this huge "wild card", "we have no idea" thing. We DO have some idea, based on his character. And it's not good. Are they EQUALLY bad? No, and I never claimed they were. But it's not a coin flip either.

                  1. Face it chemtrails, if Cheeto Jesus actually did anything criminal, hillary would have had the AG lock him up in September. Complete with perp walk. Nope, inferring he is as dirty as her thighness of Chicago is not cutting it. In some ways, Cheeto Jesus has transcended lying by taking both sides of most issues and he does so passionately, like a 70 year old alzheimer's patient

          5. Trump is the one who brags about seducing married women

            Some of us can't help the effect we have on married women.

            1. That is a bad road to go down. Guess how I know.

            2. Sheesh, if you only knew how much I have to dial down my charm in front of married women.

              1. Trump is very charming a few million has that effect on most women

          6. I'm not a blind supporter of Trump ? I preferred Marco Rubio in the primaries ? but I see a lot more positive about him than negative.

            He has appointed excellent people to work on health policy. They have ideas that, if implemented, would be a huge improvement over Obamacare. Personnel is policy, so we can surely conclude that he is serious.

            Political correctness has been winning the campaign against free speech for the bulk of the Obama Presidency. If Trump is anything, he's a potent foe against this horror.

            He has promised to untangle the huge thicket of regulations that enslave us. John Stossel is right in saying that this might be very difficult to do, and the temptation to help his buddies might be difficult to overcome. Certainly Hillary Clinton is guaranteed to make regulations even worse. So if he can actually dump a few rules he's a far better guy than Hillary, and if he can really reform our regulatory state, he's one in a million.

            What amuses me about Trump is that nobody seems to want to give him a chance to prove himself. He is either the perfect, ideal President, or he is the most horrible monster that ever held office. I say, watch him like a hawk and let's see what happens when the rubber meets the road. To try and judge him before he has had a single day in office is just plain silly.

            (I wrote a message rebutting every one of your points but alas, it was 4,196 characters and Reason refused to post it.)

          7. IDGAF. I emigrated to Taiwan before Bush II. The USSA deserves what they voted for.

        3. That sums it up Zenome.

          If nothing else the Trump presidency will be entertaining. A Clinton presidency? Not so much.

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      3. Already? They were doing that even before the election. Every time Trump flipped, flopped and flailed, the Trumpets rushed to explain how this was all part of his super-clever strategy. They're just like the poor useful idiots in the Gulag who were convinced that Stalin would rescue them any day, if only he knew what was going on.

        1. But again, how many of his voters actually fit this stereotype? From my observations, it's mostly a small but loud percentage of his base that were low-info voters to begin with and will remain that way for the foreseeable future. I feel that more of his supporters are like the ones that I described above.

          1. But again, how many of his voters actually fit this stereotype? From my observations, it's mostly a small but loud percentage of his base that were low-info voters to begin with and will remain that way for the foreseeable future.

            *Most* voters are low-info voters. Most of Trump's support comes from such people almost by definition.

        2. That was the Ukraine/ Holomodor.

      4. The worst thing about people who say things like "Trumpkin", in addition to having a poor vocabulary, is that they constantly project things onto other people that don't exist. Very few people worship Trump. The large majority of the people who voted for him did so reluctantly.

        And to the extent they didn't, it was mostly because they didn't see him as ideological. The whole "I am a deal maker" actually sold. People are tired of ideology. They just want someone who will change some things.

        1. This. I'm guessing that most people who voted for him were expecting mostly status-quo with a higher-than-usual mystery factor relative to the other candidates. The only thing that the worshipping true-believer types show is that their base was considerably more enthusiastic than Clinton's, and that obviously showed by the turnout in the states that Trump campaigned in.

        2. Very few people worship Trump. The large majority of the people who voted for him did so reluctantly.

          The last part is true. Not so much the first. When Trump first started gaining steam, a lot of his supporters were willing to alter long-standing political principles on the fact that Donald Trump held different positions. Sorry, but if you're a Republican saying nice things about socialized medicine, you're probably reacting to something other than a thoughtful or principled analysis of the issues.

          1. "Worship" is a very strong word. His worst supporters, for the most part, are more gravitated towards his personality and his campaigning style than anything to do with his positions. I really don't find that fact all that dangerous; most humans, including myself, are not all that principled about anything, and we're full of inconsistencies between our opinions and our actions. I just try to limit myself and read up on principles since I'm openly libertarian.

            1. Did you just write that you don't find demagoguery to be all that dangerous?

              1. No, I don't, as long as it's affecting a minority of individuals and not the majority. Demagoguery tends to be more effective if the populace is less educated. I'm a rather optimistic individual, and I still don't think that most people voted for him over Hillary because of emotions, but rather because he was a mystery box that was a logically better choice than someone that we knew was awful and incompetent (Hillary). His more low-info supporters are just loud and annoying and not much else IMO.

                1. No, I don't, as long as it's affecting a minority of individuals and not the majority.

                  You seem confused. You just previously argued that the majority of people aren't principled and are easily swayed by charisma. We just witnessed two demagogues rent asunder the civil society of this republic. What makes you think that we're not at the overwhelming majority state already?

                  1. Sorry for my confusing language, but I just said that the majority of people, including myself, aren't principled on any one issue. This was a different point between the one that I made about demagoguery and how emotions and charisma tend to sway the less educated.

                  2. I also think that as usual in elections, the two extreme ends, usually the youthful and/or the less-educated, were divided by the demagoguery, while most individuals of working age voted in the more logical way that I described above.

              2. All politics is demagoguery. To selectively use it to describe one side is on par with the intellectual failings of Godwin's rule.

                It's particularly sad when our current POTUS has used the most blatant and vicious demagoguery to further the racial hatred in the country and fools with partisan blinders refuse to acknowledge it.

                1. All politics is demagoguery.

                  I agree, and such, propositional logic would tell us that all politics is dangerous.

                  To selectively use it to describe one side is on par with the intellectual failings of Godwin's rule.

                  Well, it's a good thing I didn't do that, MikeP squared!

                  1. HM, do you consider references to "Munich" within the realm of Godwin?

                    1. Yes, she could be viewed as a hotty. I had not heard of her, so thank you. No, I never saw Spielberg's Munich.

        3. I cannot speak for others, but when I use terms like "Trumpkins", I am not referring to every single Trump voter. I know there were a lot of very reluctant Trump voters who cast a vote for whom they believed to be the lesser evil. With terms like Trumpkin I am specifically referring to his loud fanboys who defend his every word and deed. They are mostly the ones who pollute the blog comment sections and political Twitter and use terms like "cuck" and the like to razz anyone who disagrees with His Orangeness. They are scummy people who deserve derision and shame for who they are apologizing for and what type of nakedly populist protectionist politics they are advocating for.

          1. It is just a stupid word invented by an embittered mediocrity, Kevin D. Williamson.

            1. Like it or not there are Trump supporters who go beyond the pale. If someone's responding to legitimate questions or counterpoints with insults or dismissal, if they're abandoning long-held principles or excusing things they complained about from Obama when Trump does them, it's fair to say that there's something going on there beyond just political support.

              And I'll grant, you can say the same about Trump opposition. There were people out there who, if Donald Trump personally cured cancer in between shifts feeding the poor in a soup kitchen, would cite it as proof that Donald Trump was willing to risk global overpopulation to boost the number of old people voting for him.

              But, that the existence of one phenomenon doesn't mean the other doesn't.

              1. It is ignorant to complain about the fringe with one side and ignore the fringes on the other. We hear endless cries about the alt-right, but yet little to nothing about the far more populous anarchists and leftist agitators. How many cars have been torched by the fringe Trump supporters? How many public beatdowns? How many firebombings?

              2. Sure Bill there are. The problem is the Sugar Free in particular is of the latter group and assumes anyone who isn't is just a Trump worshiper. My experience is that there are very few people who worship Trump and for every one who has unrealistic expectations there are 20 Sugar Frees who have lost their fucking minds over the issue. Yet, it is everyone else is the "Trumpkin".

                It is just tiresome and boring. I guess I should take more please in their anger and bitterness but I am mostly bored by it.

                1. Then, the "Trumpkin" term isn't inappropriate. It's just that there needs to be some term to describe irrational Trump hate (Trump Acceptance Rejection Disorder?).

                  1. I don't see anything irrational about hating a major party politician.

                    1. Sure, if your reasons for doing so are rational. If Trump is so bad, why can't you come up with better reasons to hate him?

                    2. So shriek wasn't the person who coined "Trumpkins"?

                    3. Your gross and slobbering support of him is reason enough. The endless braying of some of the most dimwitted people ever to comment on this blog is reason enough.

                    4. He's not all bad. He most likely doesn't believe anything he's ever said, so he has that going for him.

                    5. I'd say it depends. If the hatred is for major party politicians, per se, there's nothing irrational about it. If the standard for defining hatred is consistent amongst them, I'd say there's nothing irrational about it. If one is subjected to dramatically less exacting standards for hatred (more exacting for non-hatred), then it's fair to call the resulting hatred irrational.

          2. You need to look in a mirror. You're the fool with the dripping hate and it makes you ugly and deserving of derision.

        4. "Very few people worship Trump."

          I'll agree that most of his voters were likely the "lesser of two evils" types. But, I'm not so sure the Trump worshipers are a small minority. I don't know if you ever frequented Breitbart, but the last time I was on that site (which was at the very start of the primary season, so I can only imagine what happened after he secured the nomination and the presidency) if you ever said ANYTHING even slightly critical of Trump, you'd get completely mobbed by most of the commenters there. All the article writers would slobber over Trump (so much so they drove out Ben Shapiro). That isn't exactly a small fringe group site. That's a pretty popular Republican/Conservative news site.

        5. Trumpskyite is my preferred noun.

    2. I hate to shrink your sliver even further, but if the Trump is dinning with Romney I don't think anyone is persona non grata. Either Trump is lazy and not serious... or he thinks he can benefit from playing nice, regardless of his promises to the little people.

      1. If Trump does pick Romney, it will be only as the Designated Fall Guy when some foreign shithole blows up under Trump's watch and makes Trump's poll numbers sink.

        1. Courting and nominating people who were former adversaries, but still largely on the same side, is how you build successful coalitions.

          Nominating critics like Haley to the UN, or Romney to SoS will give Trump significant ins with groups that may at best been lukewarm to proposals or at worst actively resisted. Having someone like Haley and Romney on board will most certainly sway key blocks in the House and Senate to Trump's side in future proposals. The same tactic is apparent with Priebus and whatever Trump did to pull Ryan and Cruz on board as well. Regardless of what people think about Trump, this is success right here for all to see.

          It is sad you are so childishly ignorant of how diplomacy works in business and politics. good luck with that.

          1. Keep your friends close...

            1. And feed your enemies into woodchippers.

              1. Even if you offend Dopehat in so doing.

      2. If the alternatives are John Bolton or Rudy Giuliani, I would take Romney in a heartbeat as Secretary of State. Granted that's a very low bar.

        1. I agree. And Trump never said anything bad about Romney. It was Romney who said Trump was unfit for office. If anyone is a hypocrite here, it is Romney. He is the one walking back on his claims and now willing to play nice since there is power to be gained by doing so.

          1. And Trump never said anything bad about Romney.

            Yeah, he just called him a coward, a choke artist, a loser, and said "I could have said, 'Mitt, drop to your knees.' He would have dropped to his knees."

            What is a Trumpkin? Go find a mirror.

            1. Look, if it's true then it can't be bad. Only lies are bad, which is why we're better off under Trump than Clinton.

            2. I'm no Die Troompkinder, Saccharin Man, and despite Troomp being a blunt, inarticulate bore (who said almost verbatim what most of The Commentariat said at the time of Flopney tanking on an election that was his to lose), Troomp's assessment is correct.

              John is also correct, IME, that only Troomp could have beaten Shrill-Bot. Paul, Cruz, or even GayJay would have fallen, as they ran predictable, almost textbook campaigns.

              1. Cruz didn't really run a textbook campaign. He was pitching an identical coalition to Trump's, but Trump got the inside track on him by being louder, angrier, and more 'Merican. I don't necessarily disagree that Trump's version was also more effective for the general, considering that he's more likable and pitched an idealized populism instead of Cruz's more realistic conservative-led version of it, but his campaign was not textbook.

                1. Cruz didn't really run a textbook campaign.

                  Au contraire. Cruz, IME, followed two established, winning campaign strategies:

                  1) Ronald Reagan's (building the coalition, appealing to The Traditional Party Base and expand the tent);

                  2) Barack Obama's (increased online and social media presence; totally cribbed Obama's campaign notes for the highly vaunted, "Ground Game," vital to win an election, AKA GOTV.)

                  Even election is peculiar, but like history itself, trends are cyclical and congruent events repeat reliably. Cruz was otherwise no more or less remarkable than any other textbook candidate.

                  1. I think you've got a good argument for #1, but that could apply to Trump as well: Cruz's SoCons and Trump's nationalists have long been rock-ribbed Republicans. Trump was better at expanding that tent and did so earlier than expected, but the strategy is the same.

                    #2 is tactics, not strategy.

                    1. #2 is tactics, not strategy.

                      By definition, you are correct. However, how one utilises the GOTV based on all the geographic and relevant voter demographic data, i.e. "Whose votes to chase and can reasonably rely upon," and when to do so are very much strategy. Cruz, on paper, should have mopped the floor with Troomp, based on his following the Obama model of sifting through sophisticated voter demographics to figure out who #1 actually is and courting their votes..

                      Case in point for #2: Shrill-Bot. She depended on #1, but basically eschewed the tactics inherent in strategy #2, and it cost her strategic votes (which is *precisely* why The Founders created the EC).

                    2. The last "rock-ribbed" Republican was Barry Goldwater.

              2. It's not about Trump being right or wrong, Groovus. It's about John's selective memory in defense of Trump.

            3. He said he ran a bad campaign and was a bad candidate. Why does that make him unfit to be Secretary of State.

              Romney meanwhile said Trump was crazy and dangerous and unfit to hold any office. And now he is going to serve in his cabinet? Trump is the one being a hypocrite.

              And I know what Trumpkin is. It is a made up word used by embittered butt hurt losers who lack the creativity to come up with something clever. Thanks for providing an example of that.

              1. You got the chrome off that trailer hitch yet, John?

                1. Did you stay up all night thinking of that SF? You really must of worked hard thinking of that one.

                  This does remind me though that I haven't really had a chance to properly rub the fact that Trump won the election in your face. How many times over the last year did you smugly assure me that he was going to lose in a landslide and that Hillary was certain to be President? A hundred times at least.

                  You were just completely wrong, you were smug about it. Watching you whine and cry over this is frankly even more enjoyable than I thought it would be.

                  Considering your amazing track record in predicting all things Trump. Why don't you tell us all about how his administration is going to go. Inquiring minds want to know.

                  1. Yup. That was me. Fawning supporter of Hillary Clinton. Find me some of it. If it exists in such quantity, then it must be easy it find.

                    I did think Hillary would win, like most people. I'm glad she lost, but Trump is still human garbage. My support was for Johnson, despite his flaws. The only prediction I ever made was that the voter turnout would be at a historic low because of such shitty candidates from both major parties. I was wrong about that.

                    But is barely beating Hillary Clinton in a handful of states really something to crow about? Hillary Clinton, probably the most hated woman in America? Woo! Yeah. Really crow about that.

              2. Trumpkin is the name of the half-dwarf tutor to Prince Caspian in book 2 of The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis. Using it as a pejorative for those who did not vote for Grandma Caligula is unimaginative and lazy.

    3. I hope that they all get whacked. That's MY pipe dream.

  3. I wonder how long it's going take people to realize that we didn't elect Trump, we actually elected Pence.

    1. When 10 Commandments posted on White House door?

      1. Too far away to read. He's posting them in the Mall, which will shortly be renamed Chop Chop Plaza 2.0.

    2. When the prison population exceeds the welfare population.

  4. Since everyone loves the swamp analogy so much I'll just say that Trump is like unleashing a giant python into the Everglades. Sure he's not indigenous to it per se and he might kill some gators but in the end he's not really an improvement over the situation.

    1. Is Trump python 2 or 3?

      And does that make Fillon Ruby?

    2. Yeah, but we still have the option of introducing snake eating gorillas.

      1. Harambe, gorilla. An ape not alive. Gentlemen, we can rebuild him. We have the technology. We have the capability to make the world's first bionic gorilla. Harambe will be that gorilla. Better than he was before. Better...stronger...faster.

        1. I'm afraid it's too late - they already fed the remains to the lions.

    3. What has Trump done that can be fairly described as corrupt? Seriously. Taking advantage of ED is no different than Ron Paul taking earmarks for his district. Both are lousy but legal things. If Trump hadn't done it his competitors certainly would have just like those earmarks were going somewhere if not to Paul's district.

      Is declaring bankruptcy now corruption? Should we repeal all of the Bankruptcy code and go back to debtors prison?

      I get it you don't like Trump. But corruption is a specific charge. You shouldn't make it without giving facts and examples, which no one ever seems to do.

      1. Key words: in the end. Look back after 4 years and see if anything has changed apart from the players' names.

        1. Maybe the won't. I don't know. We will find out. In the mean time, if you are going to make a charge like that, back it up with facts. Your wishful thinking might turn out to be true, but that doesn't make it anything other than wishful thinking right now.

        2. and that's the thing, isn't it - in the end. All this pants-shitting about the alleged parade of horribles that will be unleashed smacks the need for safe spaces and drama being far more widespread than college campuses.

          1. "smacks OF the need....."

          2. I agree, there's too much pants-shitting going on. I'm waiting for him to actually do some stupid things before I start screaming. It's all talk thus far, and Trump has shown since he entered politics that his words mean squat.

      2. "Is declaring bankruptcy now corruption? Should we repeal all of the Bankruptcy code and go back to debtors prison?"

        In many cases it is. And, a bit of time spent repenting after a bankruptcy wouldn't hurt a lot of fools.

        I have seen in my work, too many people opting for bankruptcy and really milking the system. Especially during the last recession. The number of strategic defaults on homes around here was ridiculous. It wasn't that they couldn't pay the mortgage. It was that they didn't have to. And they got to live rent free for a couple of years and buy another, better house at the distressed prices and the feds let them have the mortgage forgiveness tax free.

        As much as I have no love of banks, I saw banks getting screwed with impunity right and left by strategic defaulting scoundrels. I saw this with my own eyes while looking for properties to purchase.

    4. So does that make him Tiffany or Debbie Gibson?

      1. Kylie Minogue.

  5. In the swamp, no one but taxpayers pays for their mistakes

    In space, no one can hear you scream

  6. Things started going bad in the USA when the drained the swamp and built Washington.

  7. He said that's why he gives money to politicians from both parties. "When they call, I give. And when I need something from them two years later, three years later, I call them. They are there for me!"

    That's crony capitalism.

    I'd call that influence peddling.

    1. Indeed, Brooksie. Rodney Dangerfield himself explained it best.

      I have stated before on these here very threads that Back to School is essentially the Troomp Presidential Election Documentary.

      1. "You want to make 14 dollars the hard way?"

      2. Groove, to expand on your analogy, Thornton Mellon's approach to snagging Sally Kellerman sure beat Paxton Whitehead's cuck mien.

        1. You might even say he grabbed her by the pussy... and she let him do it.-)

          1. Whereas Dr. Phillip Barbay, instead of grabbing her by the pussy, suggests "a merger".

            Heck, the more I think of it, Thornton was an alt-right archetype and Barbay a true cuck.

  8. So your saying one of the few promising things about Trump which is cutting regulation is prolly not going to happen due to rent seeking?

  9. I wonder how long it's going take people to realize that we didn't elect Trump, we actually elected Pence.

    About thirty seconds after a screeching, drooling Trump is dragged out of the White House in a straitjacket.

    by Quiche Baxter-Govedarica

    Writing for soi-disant Reason, John Stossel of FAUX News infamy discusses the idea that Donald Trump's "drain the swamp" is absurd on its face, that Trump is as much a swamp monster as any other Republican. Now that we can praise the blind squirrel for finding food, the question raised is this: where was this scrutiny during the campaign??

    Let's be clear: Hillary won the election of the people, not the appointed elites. But the rules, as they stand now, say that the Trump family will occupy the White House. How did it get to this point? If a right-wing Koch addict can see who Trump really is, why couldn't the watch dogs at NBC, CBS, NBC? Where were all the stories critical of Trump? How could our guardians of truth let us down at this most critical juncture of American history?

    There has been much discussion in the post-mortem of the election about "fake news". Well, if the media had simply done its job and reported the truth - that Donald Trump is a racist, sexist, bigot, homophobic warmonger, he would have only won the reddest of the red states. But because the media had their kid gloves on when handling Trump, because they failed to report the REAL news, we won't be draining the swamp.

    We will become the swamp.

    1. Shikha Dalmia's, Steve Chapman's, and Peter McArdle's attys. will be contacting you very shortly for both copyright infringement and plagiarism, Jr.

      I suggest you lawyer up.

    2. Yeah, the media really used kid gloves when it came to Trump, if only they'd called him racist the voters would have voted for Hillary.


    3. Is it unworldly to point out that the author is named after an egg pie?

    4. Well, if the media had simply done its job and reported the truth - that Donald Trump is a racist, sexist, bigot, homophobic warmonger, he would have only won the reddest of the red states.

      But Trump is the bigot. Because everyone knows that those red holes are nothing but fever swamps of the worst of the worst. Says a person named Quiche. With a hyphenated last name. Please tell me this was a parody piece of liberal smugness that tries to sound erudite but does far more to confirm why Herself lost, despite however many in California voted for her.

      1. It's a satircal piece by Real News Jr., Wareagle.

        1. Okay...thanks.

          1. It's a new feature Hit n Run is running.

  11. Just saw that Steve Mnuchin from Goldman Sachs is Trump's nominee for Treasury secretary. When there was talk about John Allison from BB&T I tried not to get my hopes up; just seemed inevitable it would have to be the Goldman Sachs guy.

    1. Agreed, in a battle between new and status quo, always bet on status quo to win. I do wonder, however, if Allison will be appointed in a smaller role, a la Priebus/Bannon. His cabinet so far seems to be a balance of both of his establishment and anti-establishment sides of his coalitions.

  12. I like how the same progs talking about how we need the right TOP MEN and experts to head government get so mad when a banking guy heads the banking department (simplified).

    I mean, what do you expect? Yeah we are going to appoint a diversity coordinator with a major in feminist glacier studies to head to finance sector

    1. Is that a trick question?

    2. We do it in California all the time.

      Look how that has worked out.

  13. Of course, literally draining a swamp (excuse me, wetland) will still get you arrested.

    1. Not after Trump appoints his new EPA director.

  14. If the Trump intends to drain the swamp, so far he is making a terrible job of it.

    1. Please note draining swamps usually lead to flooding later on, so probably incremental little tweaks makes more sense.

  15. Nick's interview with Brad Thor rang a bell. Throughout the campaign Reason kept shoving in our faces everything Trump said, and all of it was in the GOP platform. Almost all, that is, except for a couple of items taken from those spy thrillers and tossed out in Fox Network interviews. Neither Kleptocracy candidate seemed any different than the ones they've been running for decades. The biggest difference has been the level of hatred stirred up by what they had to say about each other--and that, judging by the vote count, redounded to Gary's benefit.

  16. what i find particularly galling about the notion that trump was somehow the solution to politics as usual. he admitted -even bragged during the campaign in fact- about how he basically bought politicians to get what he wanted. it's as if enough people thought it was just the people who ran for office that were a part of the infestation.

    now, granted, you can say he was only playing by the rules as they existed, but that only works if you ignore everything else about the man. there's nothing to suggest he ever had an ah-ha moment where he realized things needed to change. in fact, he's a lot like obama in that he used the desire for change as a campaign theme rather than any real conviction about changing a damn thing.

    hillary was her own kind of horrible certainly, but it's as if there was this piece of moldy cheese that voters wanted to throw out, but they turned it over, and thought it was edible because all the mold was on the other side. it's all the same cheese.

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  18. Jefferson quote a bit off.

  19. So far Trump-1
    American haters-infinity 0

    I don't care what he does as long as the perps of 11/23/63 are finally destroyed. I'm talking about Zapata Bush and Felix Rodriguez.!

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