Sunday, August 14, 2016

Why I don't buy the "intentional loser" theory

Is Donald Trump trying to lose?

This meme has been gaining popularity. The other day, I caught a Sam Seder broadcast which argued that Trump's hilariously hypocritical "Mark Foley" moment was designed to make The Donald look bad. Brent Budowsky, a very level-headed fellow, here offers a tentative endorsement of the "intentional loser" scenario. (Okay, it's not really an endorsement -- more like an exploration of the idea.)
I have been to many rodeos in national politics, and literally every single major player in politics that I know expected Trump to "pivot" after the conventions to appear to take more responsible positions and say fewer irresponsible and self-destructive things. Republicans believed Trump would pivot with hope; Democrats believed he would pivot with dread.

Nobody I know believed that Trump would pivot in the opposite direction, becoming even more irresponsible and self-destructive after the conventions.
I am not saying that I believe Donald Trump is trying to throw the election to Hillary Clinton, but I am saying this is a prospect that is now worth seriously considering if the endless series of Trump blunders and gaffes continues.
The "intentional loser" theory accounts for much. Yet I can't buy it.

Reason 1: Trump biographer David Cay Johnston scoffs at the idea. I haven't read Johnston's book yet, but I've seen every interview with the guy on YouTube. He knows his subject.

Reason 2: I've been reading Wayne Barrett's Trump bio, and of course I've been watching documentaries about the man's life. The very idea that Donald Trump would willingly assume the role of World's Biggest Loser goes against everything we know about the man's psychology.

Reason 3: Team Trump is laying the groundwork for an election dispute that will make the Gore-v-Bush face-off seem pleasant.

Trump supporters live in a state of perpetual paranoia: They are absolutely convinced that the omnipresent Great Clinton Conspiracy rigs every poll, controls all media, and can even game the election.

In fact, fully 40 percent of these idiots believe that ACORN will fix the vote. This is a truly insane conspiracy theory, for at least three reasons. First and foremost, ACORN no longer exists -- has, in fact, been out of business since 2010. Second, ACORN never engaged in election rigging, right-wing hallucinations to the contrary notwithstanding. Third, ACORN was hardly friendly to Hillary Clinton in 2008.

Obviously, Trump supporters exist in a separate universe. Trumpism has become a kind of religion -- and for its adherents, reality is whatever the right-wing conspiracy peddlers say is real.

Devotees of The Donald have fastened onto "alternative" polling methods like this one, which holds that Trump leads Hillary 64% to 36%. Obviously, those numbers are absurd. But the Trumpers themselves are absurd; do not underestimate the power of self-delusion.

For more absurdity, see here.

Roger Stone has predicted a "bloodbath" if Clinton "steals" the election. Always remember that Stone was the man who engineered the "Brooks Brothers riot" which shut down the count in Florida back in 2000. His current warnings indicate that he has plans for another sort of riot. The couture will be rather more downscale, and the action will be much more violent.

(Pat Buchanan has issued a similar warning.)

None of this fits the "intentional loser" meme. Sorry folks, but if you buy into that scenario, you're engaging in wishful thinking.

Team Trump has a secret plan to tighten the race. Their gambit has nothing to do field offices and GOTV drives and pivots to the center and outreach to minorities and all of that other conventional stuff. I don't yet know what that gambit will be. Whatever it is, it will be shocking, it will be devious, and it will change the dynamics of this race in one spectacular coup de théâtre.

Something wicked this way comes.
The national security establishment backs Hillary.

Rioters, in the unlikely event any of this scenario happens, will receive the modern equivalent of Monsieur Bonaparte's "whiff of grapeshot", assuming that the modern Panopticon State can't simply prevent riots from starting to begin with.

Orange Julius Caesar brims with confidence because either he's too dense to know he's losing, or he's just trying to burnish his brand to become a politician-entrepreneur after the election.

A majority of the Establishment, especially of the national security portion of the Establishment, does not want him. That might not matter if this country were a genuine democracy, but of course, it isn't--and after this fiasco, I'm starting to think that is a good thing.

The whiff of grapeshot thing doesn't always work. France, 1789. France, 1871. Russia, 1917.

Just sayin'...
I'll read those biographies. So far I've only read Trump. That's enough to know that the guy is not aiming to be the world's biggest "Loser".

What "conspiracy theories", especially wacky ones, can he himself be hit with?

He's a billionaire, he's insane, and he's descended from the Christ family. He may well be into some wacky shit.

Leylines? I spent a short while looking at the positioning of a few of his buildings, but didn't find anything to lock on to. Further work in that area may be fruitful.

Then there's his coat of arms. He used one for years, but Scottish heralds eventually made him another one, complete with a double-headed eagle, after he fell foul of the Court of the Lord Lyon. In mediaeval countries like England and Scotland, there are strict rules on who is allowed to use coats of arms.

Trump's first arms are the ones he uses on the cushions in his penthouse in New York. He also uses them on branded clothing and on the packaging of some of the other fashion items he hawks.

In most images I've seen, the arms have 23 studs arranged in a pattern. What are the studs meant to depict? At first I thought they were dollar signs (that's what they look like here), but in the other image, which is sharper (and on which for some reason the lions are legless), they are clearly diamond shapes with crosses on the top. WTF?

Can we get the lions to say "6 6 6"? Their tails are easier to read that way in the second image. Here is a third version, this time with 25 studs, outside Mar-a-Lago. The 666 here is very evident.

Flip the arms in the second image upside-down and the top six sephiroth appear clearly, but he seems to have split Yesod into two for some strange reason.

What's with the angle of the spear?

Then there's his rip-off of the Unisphere.

How might Pence fit in?
Trump has no ground operation. He has no real support of the GOP establishment. The media, after pretty much building him up, have mostly treated him with derision. The election won't even be close.

You keep forgetting the GOP establishment wrote this presidential election off months ago. They are focusing on 2020 and also on the 2018 elections, where something like 30 Democrat Senate seats are up for grabs.

People still think this guy is going to get 40 percent of the vote. Nonsense. He is slipping almost everywhere in the country, even in Indiana. People I know that have supported Trump are largely silent these days.

No grapeshot for Black Lives Matter, so probably none for Trump.

I think the "intentional loser" ideas originally come from the grand Clinton conspiracy people. They're meant to be friends, hence he defeats her Republican enemies and then throws the election for her.

So probably not.

Those old regimes Mr. Cannon mentioned did not have the modern Panopticon technologies at their disposal.

Unless he is postulating some mutiny in the ranks of the State's enforcers--which I doubt will happen in the foreseeable future--I don't see the State losing to a gaggle of maddened Bubbas.

The modern Panopticon State is gonna be overthrown by these dolts? Blogga please. xD

Same fear exists in the U.S.
Trumpsters must expose and checkmate this possibility.

I don't see any necessary contradiction between intentional losing and contesting the vote. He can then incite mobs of indignant rural gentlemen into local uprisings, pretending he's a defender of democracy and the Constitution and ensuring his status as a celebrity pundit for the rest of his life. That would make a better legend for him than would serving a feckless and incompetent term as president.

Claims of election rigging will also aid the Republican effort to rewrite history by discrediting the legitimate claims of the past with respect to the 2000 and 2004 elections--and aid the Democrats' wishes to marginalize those concerns and cover up their cowardly refusal to act on them.

Just as the Birther movement provided an organizational nexus for all the rabid Obama haters to gather so the feds could keep an eye on them, the Trump mob provides a similar law-enforcement opportunity.

We have to recognize that the powers-that-be of both major parties have long recognized the social dislocations that will result from the problems of globalization, poor public education, over-population, climate change, automation of jobs, and perhaps an impending meltdown of the dollar. Looking back it seems that they are pretty much in agreement about what needs to be done. Inciting mob uprisings around the country will provide excuses for even more draconian legislation than we've already got.

In a weird way, I like the bit about finding hidden 666s at the Mar-a-Lago. That kind of thing can depress the evangelical vote.

I was wrong to point to France in 1871 vis-a-vis the "whiff of grapeshot" thing. Force of arms definitely put down the communards. But the empire did give way to a republic.

Black Lives Matter is a protest movement, not an insurrectionist movement. We've learned, the hard way, that it is best in the long run to avoid the grapeshot when it comes to protestors.

The final conspiracy theory from Anon 3:38 makes one key mistake: Trump is not a phenomenon of the Powers-That-Be in the country. He is Putin's creation, although he probably sees himself as Putin's business partner.
I followed the link Hoop left.

I believe Obi-wan Kenobi would refer to that site as "a wretched hive of scum and villainy". Eeeeuwww...
Did I let a Ken Hoop comment through? It's the dog. The dog has diabetes and he wakes me up every hour or two to pee. And after I let him out I stumble back toward bed but I may check the mail and the blog comments along the way. Often, I'm simply too bleary-eyed to know what's really going on.

So blame the dog.
@Anon 3.38pm - "mobs of indignant rural gentlemen into local uprisings

How do they get persuaded to subside so that civil war is avoided?
b 6:44, perhaps some deep intelligence investigations could tell us what's persuasive for indignant rural mobs. Pringles or pretzels? Lay's classic or barbecue?

I don't think there's any practical threat of civil war right now. (Things could change if there were an economic collapse.) I do think there's a practical threat that disorder, perhaps inspired by agents provocateur, might be used to justify further reductions of liberties in the name of public order.
As a sorta gentleman who lives in a rural area, I can assure you that anyone blowing about patrolling the polls etc. is really into camo cosplay. I lose no sleep on the impending "revolution."
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