From the Washington Post, in an article about the firestorm surrounding Donald Trump’s vile attacks on Gold Star parents Khizr and Ghazala Khan:
It’s also possible that the controversy could help Trump, at least among those considering supporting him, if voters begin to see it as another example of elite-driven political correctness by the media and political establishment.
Trump suggested that Mrs. Khan was not allowed to speak at the Democratic Convention, probably because she’s a Muslim doormat.
Trump compared the loss of their son, Capt. Humayun Khan, to the “sacrifices” he has made as a businessman.
Trump finally gets around to saying he’s sorry about their loss a day later, but notes that Humayun died 12 years ago, apparently code for “get over it.”
Trump says that he was “viciously attacked” by Mr. Khan and that he’s allowed “to respond” (by insulting his wife and demeaning their son’s life).
Elite-driven political correctness, Washington Post? Seriously?
And his underlying political rationale is enough to give M.C. Escher a throbbing migraine: Hillary Clinton is guilty of grave, if unspecified, trespasses against American national security for conveying classified information on an unsecured private email server. So to nail down the case against her alleged crimes, the Republican party’s presidential nominee wants to . . . unleash the info-warriors of a rival power on classified email communications. It’s a bit like pledging to combat the spread of the West Nile virus by importing a robust new strain of Zika-infected mosquitoes.
At a manifestly deranged political moment like this one, it behooves us to pan back and ask a pair of interlocking questions: “What the fuck?” and “How the fuck did we get here?” A definitive reply to the former is probably best left to psychological professionals. But we can discern a key clue to the latter in the predicate vow Trump lofted eastward as he tried to seal this particular display of deal-artistry: “I think you will probably be rewarded mightily by our press.”
It is by now a weary truism that the whole Trump insurgency was bred by the bottomless media-fed demand for titillation and shock-jock diversion. But the logic of Trump’s winking overture to Russian data breachers goes beyond anything we encounter in standard laments about the cable news cycle and the pseudo-outrage industry known as reality television.
No, Trump, who has long crafted campaign messages and policy pronouncements for maximum press exposure, is actually promoting foreign espionage on the grounds that it will yield rewarding press coverage. And hey, why not? The sensationalized mastery of the political press corps has gotten Trump this far. Maybe the next stage of media evolution will be a Bravo franchise called The Real Hackers of Moscow. Where, oh where, is Guy Debord when you need him?
Senior GOP quislings—er, sorry, thought leaders—such as Newt Gingrich stoked the lost-in-the-late-capitalist-sensorium vibe by insisting that their party’s standard bearer was joking, even though the pronouncement had precisely none of the spontaneity or humorous content that marks jokes as such.
For a rough but revealing contrast, consider Ronald Reagan’s off-the-cuff announcement that “we begin bombing in five minutes.” Reagan delivered that 1984 aside into a microphone he didn’t realize was live, and the comic effect (such as it was) stemmed from his own awareness that he was widely viewed as a rhetorical enthusiast of all-out nuclear confrontation. The setting and delivery of Trump’s comments show that the utterance conveyed zero such self-awareness—and far from inadvertently finding its audience via a mike that the speaker thought was dead, the appeal to Russian hackers came at a press conference organized and choreographed by the Trump campaign for maximum news-cycle attention.
For good measure—and to heighten the general ideological-derangement factor—Gingrich of course insisted that the media was yet again downplaying the national-security peril posed by the Team Democrat nominee (forgetting to note that news of Clinton’s private email server was actually broken by the lickspittle liberal elitists at TheNew York Times). [...]
Jack Kelly is a former undersecretary of the Air Force and a goddamn idiot. His idiocy must have been the key to his employment by the Pittsburgh Post Gazette, which is the non-Richard Melon Scaife paper in Pittsburgh. How he missed his calling there is beyond me. Our readers corrected me and for that I am glad:
Vietnam is mostly jungle. I don’t like jungles, but guerrillas do. There is plenty of cover and concealment. There is plenty of water. There are a lot of things to eat. Creepy crawly yucky things, but you can eat them if you have to. A large guerrilla force can live, relatively securely, in jungles for long periods. Iraq is mostly desert. Desert offers little cover or concealment, less food and water.
No. Iraq is one of the most urbanized countries on earth. Most Iraqis live in cities. Not that deserts have stopped rebellions. But then you would have to read history to know that. They have maps of this, you know.
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During the Cold War I visited Berlin only twice, to run the Berlin Marathon with my platoon. The most memorable thing was how everything on the East side of the Berlin Wall looked gray: It was like looking at a black and white television set, while everything to the West was in technicolor. During one trip, we did have the opportunity to go through Checkpoint Charlie and visit the East.
To cross into East Berlin, as soldiers, we had to wear our dress greens. Before crossing the border, we had to remove all the insignia from our uniforms. We also had to exchange a certain amount of money for East German marks, and could not change them back when we came back west.
On our way back to West Berlin, we all had East German money that we did not spend, and we would not be able to exchange to either American dollars or West German marks. So we stopped at a restaurant and ordered a feast. Once our food arrived we realized our mistake: the East Germans in the restaurant were staring at us. They had likely never eaten a meal like we were about to partake in, and here we were, four American Army privates, eating like kings right in front of them.
There are smart terrible people and dumb terrible people. While they’re both dangerous in positions of power, the dangers they represent are significantly different. We’ve been watching the now multi-day war between Donald Trump and the Khan family. Tr…
More than 30 years passed before another first lady mounted the podium at a political convention, and it was a Republican, Pat Nixon, who spoke at the 1972 convention which nominated her husband for a second term. Hillary Clinton was only the second Democratic first lady to speak during a nominating convention when she addressed the Democrats in 1996 to urge the re-election of her husband. That was the same year that we saw Elizabeth Dole, the wife of the Republican candidate, speak on his behalf. But for the first time last week, it was not an incumbent first lady seeking to humanize and re-elect a sitting president, but a former candidate’s wife who spoke about the nominee she wished to see elected.
For the last 20 years, we have seen the wives of candidates speak to their conventions. This year was a little different—and not only because of the spouse’s sex.