Trump just lost any chance he had to be President

Donald Trump has recovered from many missteps, but he’s just made one that, I think, is fatal. I refer, of course, to his call that Russia should get hold of Hillary Clinton’s deleted emails and give them to the United States press. See below:

This is, of course, a call for either espionage or the handing over of material obtained already by espionage. And it’s unprecedented.

Now Trump, clueless and ignorant as he is, may be conflating Clinton’s personal-server emails with the Democratic National Committee emails released by Wikileaks, which were probably obtained by Russian hackers and perhaps by Russian government hackers. As his erstwhile ghostwriter says, Trump has zero attention span and may simply be confused.

Regardless, this is an extraordinarily stupid thing to say, and of course the Democrats will make bales of hay out of it tonight.  Even Mike Pence, Trump’s vice-presidential pick, said that releasing illegally obtained emails is a serious matter. Republicans, probably in a state of shock upon realizing who they’ve chosen, have said very little.

My take: although I’ve always thought that Trump wouldn’t win the Presidency, now I’m absolutely sure of it. He won’t recover from this one. Even if he’s leading in some polls, the Democrats will surely get a post-convention bounce.

And, if any of you still think Trump can or will win, please contact me, as I’m willing to bet you good money that he won’t. That’s a bet you can’t lose, because anybody reading this site will be glad to pay off a bet if Trump loses!


  1. Matt
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 6:02 pm | Permalink

    I feel like this is a headline I’ve read many times over the past year.

    • Posted July 27, 2016 at 6:05 pm | Permalink

      Well, I’ve offered a bet to those who think Trump will win.

      • Marvin L.
        Posted July 27, 2016 at 6:24 pm | Permalink

        Well, he’ll lose as many votes as Hillary lost over the DNC emails, ie, practically none.

        Faith in politics (or “pragmatism”, as if) is too strong to be affected by inconveniences such as “facts”.

        • Randall Schenck
          Posted July 27, 2016 at 6:56 pm | Permalink

          I would be glad to take any of those bets that the professor may not want to handle. He can send them on to me if he wants.

        • Larry
          Posted July 27, 2016 at 9:06 pm | Permalink

          And if facts were to matter to the average American, the attention span for transgressions such as this is short.

        • Posted July 28, 2016 at 7:30 am | Permalink

          “Well, he’ll lose as many votes as Hillary lost over the DNC emails, ie, practically none.”

          I disagree. He just lost a big slice of the independent vote.

          Unless of course you’re saying he’d already lost them before the gaff. But I think there are still undecided voters out there.

          I’m amazing (and appalled) that Drumpf thinks that the tactics he used to get nominated will work with the general electorate.

          • Posted July 28, 2016 at 8:53 am | Permalink

            I’m not sure Trump’s actions can be called “tactics”.

      • Taylor
        Posted July 28, 2016 at 6:52 am | Permalink

        You can place a bet on betting markets such as PredictIt.

    • Posted July 27, 2016 at 9:47 pm | Permalink

      Michael Moore wrote a recent article where he predicted Trump would win. A year ago he predicted Trump would win the nomination when everyone else thought his run was an absolute joke. So as far as I’m concerned his prediction has earned him some street cred and should be taken a bit more seriously than otherwise.
      I really hope hes wrong. Sometimes I think Trump could lose every state or at least lose worse than Goldwater but in the back of my mind I wonder if I’m fooling myself because a Trump presidency would be such as disaster.

      • mordacious1
        Posted July 27, 2016 at 10:41 pm | Permalink

        Michael Moore predicted that Romney would win. His goal is to get out the vote or this time, to keep Bernie people from voting 3rd party.

      • Posted July 28, 2016 at 3:19 am | Permalink

        I find Moore’s take well-informed and convincing. Here’s is it in full and here are his five reasons in summary (there’s some overlap):

        1) Midwest Math, or Rust Belt Brexit: Trump needs to win over four states, Michigan, Wisconsin, Ohio, Pennsylvania and has the rhetoric in place to make that feasible, e.g. tough talk against corporations that ship jobs away. People don’t need to agree on anything, but as with Brexit Logic, he’s a way to throw a Molotov at the establishment.

        2) The Last Stand of the Angry White Man: endangered white men feel threatened that things are not done as they used to be for 240 years, and Clinton is representing this change. First a black guy is bossing whites around, and now a woman? Not for these voters.

        3) The Hillary Problem: she represents The Establishment and says whatever gets her elected. The Trump Danger may not be enough to make people come out in large numbers and queue up an afternoon. I’ll add, people know Clinton for decades and thus know that they get only empty promises.

        4) Depressed Sanders Voters: Moore concedes that most Sanders voters will hold their nose and vote Clinton, but they do so depressed, without enthusiasm, without dragging five people to the ballot, without persuading anyone else. That’ll cost.

        5) The Jesse Ventura Effect: once people are alone and truly on their own in the box, unaccountable and free, the inner troll might come out. People are dissatisfied enough to simply want to topple the apple cart.

        • Posted July 28, 2016 at 8:55 am | Permalink

          On #2: 2008 and 2012 showed that the GOP can’t win nationally by just appealing to white men.

          On #4: There are certainly as many Never Trump GOP people out there as there are Never Hillary Sanders supporters.

          On #5: Yes, speaking as a Minnesotan whom lived through the Ventura “administration”, we have done the experiment (and it was an abject failure). It’s most unfortunate that the rest of the US has not taken note.

        • Posted July 28, 2016 at 4:51 pm | Permalink

          Trump will Lose! He has No Political Experience, No Police’s just insults! Doesn’t know who tried to assassinate Reagan, which state Kaine was Governor of! Wont show his Tax Returns mWhy?? Not paying your share?? Wont keep our NATO Allies Welcome WW3! Lot more soldiers that will die than Hillary is “said” to have killed! Took bankruptcies! Left Americans with no jobs and businesses holding HIS Bill! Took money on Sept11th he wasn’t entitled to! Now wants Russia to hack America’s Info! ESPINOGAGE!!! NO THANKS!!

    • Posted July 27, 2016 at 9:51 pm | Permalink

      He’s said far worse stuff and it hasn’t hurt him….I’ve taken Jerry’s bet.

      • FiveGreenLeafs
        Posted July 28, 2016 at 4:35 am | Permalink

        I don’t do bets, so I will not take up the offer, but, if nothing (more) extraordinary happens until November, I think the probability of Trump winning is now much higher than that Hillary will do so.

        I think we are in the middle of what in a historical (retroactive perspective) has the potential to be a quite dramatic course correction, that has the force to change the “rules” of the game in a fundamental way.

        I don’t think the full impact of such a shift has yet really begun to register and percolate into the awareness and perspective on a societal level.

        In practical terms, it means (I think), that many predictions made according to the old “rules” set will now fail miserably…

        • darrelle
          Posted July 28, 2016 at 6:38 am | Permalink

          Predictions of the sort you seem to mean, made by any rule book, have an abysmal accuracy record. Failing miserably is the norm.

          • FiveGreenLeafs
            Posted July 28, 2016 at 9:54 am | Permalink

            The science of forecasting seem to tell us, that this is a much to simplistic statement.

            If you haven’t read Philip Tetlock’s (University of Pennsylvania) books “Expert Political Judgment: How Good Is It? How Can We Know?” and “Superforecasting: The Art and Science of Prediction”, I would urge you to do so.

            One critical parameter is for example the time frame. Long term forecasting, >10 years in the future, seem to be, for all practical purposes in most cases (even under optimal conditions) useless. Short term forecasting, less then 1-2 years into the future, is a another thing entirely, and here it is possible to do forecasting that are significantly better than chance.

            Another critical aspect is that some people seem to be much better than others at doing this, and PT is now running a very large study to try to figure out just exactly what it is that these people do (or don’t do), that makes them able to excel.

            You can also read (and listen) to a discussion with PT over at the Edge, with contain an introduction by Daniel Kahneman.


            Of course forecasting is uncertain, but this is a thread about just forecasting, and what and how you do it does (seem to) matter a great deal – the information you make use of, and what you do with that information.

            On a side note, both Lou and I touched on this already back in a post here on WEIT in March, see “The Trump steamroller keeps flattening other Republicans, Clinton takes South and Massachusetts”

            • darrelle
              Posted July 28, 2016 at 10:29 am | Permalink

              It was a simple statement not intended to be a thorough critique. But I still think it is a pretty accurate criticism of the general case.

              As you pointed out there are a few people/groups who have demonstrated some reasonably consistent success, for example 538, at very short time frame predictions. 538 themselves will tell you that it is too early to place much confidence in their current predictions of the General Election results. Short time frames being something else you pointed out. I think these two points support my criticism rather than detract from it.

              Perhaps in the future we will be able to make more accurate predictions over longer periods of time (pretty much a sure thing actually), but it is a very difficult problem and to date, which is what I was addressing, the overall track record is very poor.

              • FiveGreenLeafs
                Posted July 28, 2016 at 12:52 pm | Permalink

                “But I still think it is a pretty accurate criticism of the general case.”

                But I was not talking about or referring to a general case, but a very specific case (that of which this comment thread is concerned), namely, who will be elected the next president of the USA in roughly 3 months time… 🙂

                What you said in your first comment was,

                “Predictions of the sort you seem to mean, made by any rule book, have an abysmal accuracy record. Failing miserably is the norm.”

                And I pointed to the result of science, (i.e. Philip Tetlock et. al.), that seem to indicate, that short term political predictions (which this, as far as I understand it, is an prime example of) when made according to “best art and practice”, have significantly better odds than chance, which (to my mind) would make your claim false.

                Your claim is (as I see it) valid for long term predictions, but, again, thats not what I am talking about here. You could of course make valid scientific claims about what you would like, for example climate change or polar bears, but, what relevance does that have to the question at hand?

                It is also well worth to remember (I think), as underscored in “The Edge” article, that since this often (in one way or another) concerns probabilities, if you estimate that the probability is 0.8 that Trump will win, there’s also a 20% chance that someone else will win. So if someone else win, that does not mean the prediction was wrong!

                And, the type of forecasting I refer to above, i.e. in regard to Tetlock’s research, is a much wider (and extensive) subject than Bayesian statistic, Nate Silver and 538.

              • darrelle
                Posted July 28, 2016 at 2:47 pm | Permalink

                ”But I was not talking about or referring to a general case, but a very specific case . . . “

                But you referred to the Edge article about Tetlock’s IARPA forecasting tournament which includes a wide range of forecasting cases / contexts.

                ”. . . namely, who will be elected the next president of the USA in roughly 3 months time… “

                And such forecasts are still notoriously inaccurate, though yes, there are a small percentage of forecasters who are more accurate. The previous general election is a good example, which the article you reference uses as an example to demonstrate just that.

                ”And I pointed to the result of science, . . . that seem to indicate, that short term political predictions . . . when made according to “best art and practice”, have significantly better odds than chance, which (to my mind) would make your claim false.”

                We may just be talking past each other or making inaccurate assumptions of what the other means. I am not arguing that better than chance accuracy is impossible now or in the future. What I am saying is that the actual record of political forecasters to date is very poor. The article you referenced seems to support that claim very well. In fact the poor record of political forecasting is one of the things that inspired Tetlock to study the issues of forecasting.

                ”. . . if you estimate that the probability is 0.8 that Trump will win, there’s also a 20% chance that someone else will win. So if someone else win, that does not mean the prediction was wrong! “

                Perhaps in some sense yes, but as far as using forecasting as a tool, then no, that forecast would be wrong. But, that is not how the article presented the scenario you are referencing and the point you make here is not quite the point that Tetlock was making. The point Tetlock was making is that one inaccurate forecast does not mean that the forecaster is not a good forecaster Or more simply, one data point is not enough information to place any confidence in any assessment based on that one data point.

                We may not really disagree much here. Basically, I said performance to date sucks and you’ve responded with better performance is possible. I don’t disagree with you it’s just that your response doesn’t oppose my criticism. You seem to have assumed that what I mean is that performance will always suck because it is inherently impossible to achieve better performance. That isn’t what I said, or at least what I meant.

  2. John Conoboy
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 6:10 pm | Permalink

    I hope your prediction is true, but I know that the republican party and its many pundits, as well as, Faux News have an amazing ability to ignore such things, to put spin on them and explain them away, or to just go on the attack. And the right wing base has a very short attention span when its heroes do something stupid and an amazing memory for imagined sins of the left.

    • Diana MacPherson
      Posted July 27, 2016 at 7:00 pm | Permalink

      My take on it as well. I hope Jerry is right and deep down I think he is but stupid is everywhere and I have OCD about this election.

      • SA Gould
        Posted July 27, 2016 at 8:05 pm | Permalink

        Americans want to be entertained, not informed. Of course he can get elected. (Would a sane country/political party have let him get this far?)

    • Posted July 28, 2016 at 7:45 am | Permalink

      Up until this moment, he’s been addressing a small slice of the electorate. Now he has to appeal to everyone. Or at least a majority.

      2008 and 2012 showed that the GOP won’t win nationally by just appealing to white males. The demographics have shifted enough.

      • Posted July 28, 2016 at 8:11 am | Permalink

        2008 and 2012 had reasonably inspiring Democrats. In 2016 the Democratic candidate has not excited her potential base, while Trump has excited his base. If too many Dems stay home, he can easily win regardless of the demographics. The only voters that count are the ones excited enough to go through the trouble of voting. That’s why I took Jerry’s bet.

        • Posted July 28, 2016 at 9:00 am | Permalink

          “If too many Dems stay home, he can easily win regardless of the demographics”

          Of course. I think the vast majority of Dem supporters will realize the disaster a Drumpf presidency would be. I’ve seen it with several vehement Never Hillary friends already. This kind of nonsense will surely push many in that direction.

          (I know you disagree with my analysis — or at least the final tally.)

          There is a strong Never Trump faction in the GOP as well.

          Look at all the prominent GOP figures who didn’t come to the RNC. I’ve never seen anything like it in my life (I remember elections back to 1968).

          I agree that Trump certainly can win, if the cards fall for him. I just don’t think he will (though I’m, not as sure as Jerry seems to be).

          • darrelle
            Posted July 28, 2016 at 9:39 am | Permalink

            “There is a strong Never Trump faction in the GOP as well.”

            This does seem like a positive thing. But I wonder how many voters as opposed to politicians are in the Never Trump camp. Time will tell. The republican voting bloc has been bleeding rational people for many years now. I am not confident that there are enough left to make a significant difference in bleeding republican votes away from Trump. I hope so.

            Meanwhile the republican party has purposely been molding their voting bloc(s) to be exactly what they are now and Trump comes along and appeals to them even more than their creator by dropping any pretense of restraint in displaying pretty much all the worst human traits and making the usual Republican leaders look like politically correct sissies by comparison. He appeals, as many demagogues typically do, to more basic behaviors underneath the thin veneer of culture and civilization. It is a disgusting thing to see, especially in ones own country.

            • Posted July 28, 2016 at 11:01 am | Permalink

              Meanwhile the republican party has purposely been molding their voting bloc(s) to be exactly what they are now and Trump comes along and appeals to them even more than their creator by dropping any pretense of restraint in displaying pretty much all the worst human traits and making the usual Republican leaders look like politically correct sissies by comparison. He appeals, as many demagogues typically do, to more basic behaviors underneath the thin veneer of culture and civilization. It is a disgusting thing to see, especially in ones own country.

              I couldn’t agree more.

              That’s why I’ve been saying that the GOP should have been reading Faust instead their bibles.

              • Chukar
                Posted July 28, 2016 at 1:31 pm | Permalink

                “He appeals, as many demagogues typically do, to more basic behaviors underneath the thin veneer of culture and civilization.”

                That’s exactly the purpose of propaganda – bypass the reasoning ability of humans and sway their emotions, aka “more basic behaviors.” Just as “USER” was the famously easy “backdoor” hack into computers in all sorts of corporations and governmental entities, the principles of propaganda are the “backdoor” into the human mind.

                Here’s one:
                PANDER: Ignore intellectuals and reasonable arguments; target the unthinking masses with powerful emotional pitches.

                Alternative viewpoint: If you think no one could believe such a stupid statement, the statement is not aimed at you.

  3. jamesgart
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 6:13 pm | Permalink

    I agree!!!!

  4. Posted July 27, 2016 at 6:15 pm | Permalink

    Isn’t Trump inciting a criminal act by a hostile country? Do I hear the GOP rabble shouting “Lock him up”?

    • Copyleft
      Posted July 28, 2016 at 7:29 am | Permalink

      Don’t be silly. He said it against HILLARY. The Republican faithful will forgive anything if it’s directed against a Clinton.

  5. Rageforthemachine
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 6:15 pm | Permalink

    I won’t bet you that he will, because I don’t think he will, but I’ll bet you that he still could. His losing over this requires that the people who would normally vote for him realize the gravity of his comments. If they haven’t realized the gravity of a lot of the comments he has already made I doubt this will make much difference.

    • darrelle
      Posted July 28, 2016 at 6:41 am | Permalink


      Yeah, I agree. With the people actually voting I don’t think this foot in mouth incident will have much of an affect.

      • Posted July 28, 2016 at 7:48 am | Permalink

        Ah, but this involves the Russkies (still commies, don’t you know!) And national security. These are “sacred” to the right wing.

        • darrelle
          Posted July 28, 2016 at 9:04 am | Permalink

          Yes, but even so I don’t think it will matter much to most of them. They are like terrified horses that have the bit between their teeth.

          As others have mentioned many Republicans have been openly admiring Putin for quite a while now. After all, he is the epitome of the manly-man and manly-manness outweighs pretty much anything for many of the people committed to Trump.

        • Posted July 28, 2016 at 9:38 am | Permalink

          I am not sure. There is a strong isolationist mood across the political spectrum in the USA. Trump has already said that he likes Putin and he thinks the USA need not defend NATO member states if Russia attacks them.

          • Posted July 28, 2016 at 11:22 am | Permalink

            I’m not sure either. But I think it will hurt him in the general election.

          • Diana MacPherson
            Posted July 28, 2016 at 2:17 pm | Permalink

            Yeah what a thing to say. Like NATO obligations just don’t matter all of a sudden. But, Trump sees himself as so special, the rules don’t apply to him.

  6. Posted July 27, 2016 at 6:16 pm | Permalink

    The moneyline odds right now are Clinton -215 and Trump +175 so you’ll have to offer a good payoff for a Trump win.

    • Ralph
      Posted July 28, 2016 at 12:21 am | Permalink

      The odds market implies Trump has around a 33% chance of winning, i.e. Jerry should be offering around 2/1 to be in line with the market.

      I’m surprised the market probability is so high, it’s quite frightening. Is this country really so stupid? I remember the days when we laughed at Reagan. I now long wistfully for the good old days of such sincere and moderate Republicans as Reagan.

      • Posted July 28, 2016 at 12:02 pm | Permalink

        I’m surprised it’s so low, given Hillary’s scandals and the DNC putting their thumb on the scales during the primaries. A lot of people are going to be more comfortable with a wildcard like Trump than a proven liar and possible criminal like Clinton.

        I’ll be voting for Johnson/Weld rather than the lesser of two evils.

        • GBJames
          Posted July 28, 2016 at 4:17 pm | Permalink

          The implication being, of course, that Johnson/Weld isn’t an “evil” option. Why is that?

          Oh… because that’s the ticket you prefer. What you don’t prefer is what qualifies as “evil”.

  7. Posted July 27, 2016 at 6:16 pm | Permalink

    And, of course, Milo is calling Tr-mp a genius and the suggestion for espionage political theater.

    I do hope many of Tr-mp’s supporters get how serious a mistake it is to fill the presidency with a mocking, careless, reality TV dictator. It’s not funny. It’s not theater. The Milo’s among Tr-mp’s base have got this one dangerously wrong.

    (Tr-mp’s Twitter feed now suggests that they give the emails to the FBI.)

    • Posted July 28, 2016 at 1:01 am | Permalink

      Milo is a complete hack…look no further than his series on “scientists who are actually stupid.”

  8. BobTerrace
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 6:17 pm | Permalink

    Leon Panetta, the former CIA chief:

    “You have a presidential candidate who is, in fact, asking the Russians to engage in American politics. I think that’s beyond the pale. … He is truly not qualified to be president of the United States.”

    • infiniteimprobabilit
      Posted July 27, 2016 at 6:25 pm | Permalink

      One hopes and trusts that Russia (Putin, whoever) will have the good sense not to go near that one with a ten-foot pole.

      (Trump’s suggestion I mean, not Panetta’s comment)


    • Derek Freyberg
      Posted July 27, 2016 at 6:27 pm | Permalink

      What we need are a few more comments like that from people on both sides of the political divide – Colin Powell and the like.
      And let’s see what the RNC does.
      I’m not sure it will do much good with the die-hard Trump loyalists, but it should soften his support around the edges – it’s one thing to approve of the guy for some of his economic statements when your job has moved to China, or whatever, but quite another as a USA-ian loyalist to approve of someone who urges a foreign state to conduct espionage against the US.

      • eric
        Posted July 27, 2016 at 7:37 pm | Permalink

        Oh, it won’t do any good with partisan conservatives – even the ones who don’t like Trump. They’ll vote GOP regardless. The same is true for partisan liberals and the Democratic ticket. That’s why pretty much every political map you can google will show >350 electoral votes out of 538 are locked in; because campaigning won’t move them at all. Well, unless something crazy happens like they die of a heart attack or get caught on video having sex with a sheep or something.

    • Diana MacPherson
      Posted July 27, 2016 at 7:02 pm | Permalink

      Oh I don’t know. I think Putin would make a better US President than Trump.

      • BobTerrace
        Posted July 27, 2016 at 7:05 pm | Permalink

        Fer shore. +1

      • tubby
        Posted July 27, 2016 at 7:30 pm | Permalink

        He at least looks better riding a horse without a shirt on.

      • Dave
        Posted July 27, 2016 at 7:31 pm | Permalink

        Careful, he likes to annex neighboring countries!

        • Diana MacPherson
          Posted July 28, 2016 at 2:01 pm | Permalink

          I wouldn’t put it past Trump to do the same.

          • Posted July 28, 2016 at 4:26 pm | Permalink

            Yeah, but then where will he put all those Mexicans?

            • Posted July 28, 2016 at 4:28 pm | Permalink

              Oh, maybe he’ll just use Alaska as grounds for annexing Russia. Then, he can let Sarah Palin manage it for him, since she lives next door.

            • Diana MacPherson
              Posted July 29, 2016 at 1:45 pm | Permalink

              Canada, once he takes our Arctic since America does not recognize Canadian Arctic Sovereignty.

              • Filippo
                Posted July 29, 2016 at 4:36 pm | Permalink

                Does Russia claim some kind of Arctic sovereignty?

              • Diana MacPherson
                Posted July 30, 2016 at 10:40 am | Permalink

                They claim they own all the Arctic. They’ve opened up long closed Arctic military bases and they’ve even appealed to the UN that they own the Arctic that belongs to Canada.

              • Posted July 30, 2016 at 9:47 am | Permalink

                Oh. But wont’ that just be moving them from one end of ‘Murika to the other?

        • Posted July 28, 2016 at 8:40 pm | Permalink

          And since Sarah can see Russia from her house, I suppose that makes the U.S. a neighboring country.

          • Diana MacPherson
            Posted July 29, 2016 at 1:51 pm | Permalink

            • Diane G.
              Posted July 30, 2016 at 1:10 am | Permalink


            • Posted July 30, 2016 at 9:48 am | Permalink

              ROTFLMAO!!!!! HILARIOUS!

  9. Posted July 27, 2016 at 6:23 pm | Permalink

    After this suggestion, I hope Trump is not privy to national security briefings.

    • Posted July 27, 2016 at 6:27 pm | Permalink

      You got that right!

      Jebus. The thought of him privy now…

      • Diana MacPherson
        Posted July 27, 2016 at 7:04 pm | Permalink

        He’d blab to Putin just to brag.

    • Copyleft
      Posted July 28, 2016 at 7:31 am | Permalink

      Since they’re often called intelligence briefings, they’d have to be either renamed or put in air quotes.

      “10:00… time to give The Donald his –ahem– *intelligence* briefing.”

  10. Posted July 27, 2016 at 6:27 pm | Permalink

    Clinton is the betting favorite. But I wonder just how much support this will cost him. It almost appears that he goes UP in the polls after every stupid thing he says.

    Then again, that was during the Republican primary.

    So I hope you are right, but I am nowhere near as confident as I wished I were.

    • Jeff Lewis
      Posted July 28, 2016 at 11:38 am | Permalink

      Agreed, when he can make the kind of statements he has in the past about banning immigrants of one particular religion, and creating a database to track citizens of that religion, and that wasn’t enough to submarine his campaign, I don’t know what could.

  11. Dean Booth
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 6:27 pm | Permalink

    I’m not so sure it will affect his supporters. Here’s the first sentence from a post on Briertbart:

    “The reason Donald Trump’s comments Wednesday morning about Russian hackers and Hillary Clinton’s missing emails have become such a big deal is that the mainstream media were told today to make them so.”

    And the comments to this post are all about what a genius Trump is.

  12. SA Gould
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 6:27 pm | Permalink

    Stupid, but not treason. Way too vague. (Source: Norman Goldman show, liberal radio talk show host who specializes in legal matters.)

  13. Newish Gnu
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 6:28 pm | Permalink

    OP: “Now Trump, clueless and ignorant as he is, may be conflating Clinton’s personal-server emails with the Democratic National Committee emails released by Wikileaks…”

    Commenters on a right wing site (Why yes, I am a bit masochistic. Why do you ask?) were counting on voters making this mistake. They were quite gleeful about it.

  14. ploubere
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 6:29 pm | Permalink

    I wouldn’t bet that drumph will win, but I think he has a good chance, and don’t think that this incident will matter to his fans, who have no connection to reality or any understanding of how the real world works. Those who hate Clinton probably like the idea.

    • bluemaas
      Posted July 27, 2016 at 7:34 pm | Permalink

      I shall so sorrowfully and somberly take on your bet, Dr Coyne.

      I am not with $riches$ so I can only, if $ and not if of any other types of wealth which I quite do indeed have, then I can only wager $5.00 that: this Bigoted Beast .will. win.

      The deal out of his mouth today ? His supporters / his trumpeters ? They do not care; they simply .do. .not. .care.

      Likely others of us, your readers, received yesterday Mr Michael Moore’s message in which he enumerates five reasons “WHY Trump W I L L Win.”

      Alone, Mr Moore’s Reason #2 is WHY I place my wager with you. NO way will a(ny) woman, citizen of and born in the United States, be “permitted” i) to garner more attention and ii) to be more important than … … the persons of Mr Moore’s Reason #2.

      Not to mention (any other of) Mr Moore’s four other reasons WHY !


  15. pck
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 6:29 pm | Permalink

    Do you take up bet offers via comments or do we have to email Prof. Ceiling Cat? ;p

    This is too good of an offer to not take up!

  16. Posted July 27, 2016 at 6:32 pm | Permalink

    Reblogged this on The Logical Place.

  17. mfdempsey1946
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 6:33 pm | Permalink

    You say that Donald Trump has lost any chance he had of becoming president because of his dumbfoundingly stupid (indeed, virtually traitorous) expression of hope that the Russian government will successfully hack Hillary Clinton’s emails.

    I hope-hope-hope that you are right, that on November 8 my anxiety over the Trump creature’s possible election as president will prove to have been laughably unfounded.

    But we still have some three and a half months to go until Decision Day, and this amount of time can be an eon in politics where change, especially bad change, is concerned.

    At the risk of sounding (here I date myself) like a broken record, we must not assume Trump’s stupefying record of coarse, ignorant statements and actions has made his defeat inevitable.

    The depressing fact seems to be that an unknown number of (in some cases justifiably) angry people (probably millions of them) are applauding the exact same Trump statements and actions that generally and rightly disgust people here and on other online venues. It seems that a huge percentage of these people will not stop supporting Trump no matter how disgraceful his words and deeds become.

    The question is — are there enough of them who vote to put Trump over the top? To me, this issue seems scarily in doubt.

    Don’t like Hillary? There are many reasons for feeling this way. Flirting with Jill Stein or Gary Johnson? Dreaming of a way for either of them, Hollywood-ending style, to break through?

    Please rethink.

    We must face reality because reality is well and truly facing us. And like it or not, the only reality now facing us (barring a miracle, and there is a reason they are called miracles) is that one and only one person can prevent the catastrophe of a Trump presidency — and that person happens to be Hillary Clinton.

    No, Hillary Clinton’s election will not necessarily be a cue for mass dancing in the streets. But it must happen if the United States is not to spiral into disaster.

    However, I for one continue to fear very strongly that — at this moment, at least — it is much too early to be confident that this will be the outcome on November 8.

    Complacency can be insidious, as what has taken place thus far during this campaign season has forcefully shown us. We must defeat complacency with equal force by taking absolutely nothing for granted.

    • Diane G.
      Posted July 28, 2016 at 5:00 am | Permalink

      Hear, hear!

    • Posted July 28, 2016 at 12:06 pm | Permalink

      “Don’t like Hillary? There are many reasons for feeling this way. Flirting with Jill Stein or Gary Johnson? Dreaming of a way for either of them, Hollywood-ending style, to break through?

      Please rethink.”

      I’m voting Johnson/Weld because, despite some differences, I can vote FOR them in good conscience. Voting for someone you don’t actually support is a truly wasted vote.

  18. Glenn
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 6:33 pm | Permalink

    I’m with you on that. Trump has some sort megalomania disease.

    • Posted July 27, 2016 at 7:14 pm | Permalink

      megalomania disease==narcissism.

      An excerpt from Ben Yagoda’s “Here’s Looking at You, Narcissist”:

      “Otto Kernberg, in his 1975 book Borderline Conditions and Pathological Narcissism, filled in the picture, observing that narcissists present an unusual degree of self-reference in their interactions with other people, a great need to be loved and admired by others, and a curious apparent contradiction between a very inflated concept of themselves and an inordinate need for tribute from others. Their emotional life is shallow. They experience little empathy for the feelings of others, they obtain very little enjoyment from life other than from the tributes they receive from others or from their own grandiose fantasies, and they feel restless and bored when external glitter wears off and no new sources feed their self-regard. … Very often such patients are considered to be dependent because they need so much tribute and adoration from others, but on a deeper level they are completely unable really to depend on anybody because of their deep distrust and depreciation of others.”

    • somer
      Posted July 27, 2016 at 11:48 pm | Permalink

      I don’t think he’s organised enough to be a megalomaniac. I think he’s just an endlessly attention seeking narcissist but just as dangerous.

  19. Posted July 27, 2016 at 6:35 pm | Permalink

    Tr-mp did just majorly f-up; he placed himself in the middle of an intelligence firestorm.

    I hope this egregious lapse of judgment spreads a distaste through his more senior base and trickles down to the adolescent boneheads who think what he did was “cool.”

  20. merilee
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 6:38 pm | Permalink

    I’m not sure his supporters are smart enough to recognize the irresponsibility of his statement. The old-time Repubs, if there are any left, must be totally gob-smacked by T’s honeying up to Putin, former KGBer. Maybe somebody like Lindsay Graham will speak out.
    Despite all the fun that Jon Stewart made of Graham, he now appears to be one of the most reasonable (granted that the bar is set pretty low.)

  21. Brian Davis
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 6:45 pm | Permalink

    I don’t think Trump will win. But I don’t think this comment will hurt him much, if at all. Many voters will never hear about it. Many of those who do will have forgotten it by November.

  22. Siggy in Costa Rica
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 6:45 pm | Permalink

    Man, that title got my hopes up. I know more than a few Trump supporters. They won’t even blink at what Trump said in that video. In fact many will be nodding their heads in agreement. The vast majority don’t care one bit what Trump’s critics have to say about him. So unless Fox News starts criticizing him, I doubt it will make much of a difference.
    I surely hope I’m wrong.

  23. infiniteimprobabilit
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 6:48 pm | Permalink

    What Trump is calling for is roughly equivalent to what Wikileaks was doing. Can we assume that, if elected, the Trump will halt all action against Julian Assange?

    Thought not.


  24. Posted July 27, 2016 at 6:50 pm | Permalink

    the morons who follow trump are the same morons who have said that the Russians and Putin are completely right when it comes to making homosexuality illegal, etc. They want a dictatorship because they think that they will be the ones in charge. And I’m pretty confident that if you asked most of them a question: first asking about Russians and then about the USSR, they wouldn’t have a clue that they are essentially one and the same.

  25. Chukar
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 6:52 pm | Permalink

    Jerry: I’ll bet you $50 that Trump *can* win it, and I’ll also bet you $25 that he *will* win it. I hope I lose the 2nd bet, but I don’t know how I can lose the first, because how can anyone ascertain for certain that he *cannot* win it?

    I think you are making a serious mistake by presuming that the vast majority of supporters of Trump (currently ahead of Clinton in the polls) either (1) care (in a negative way) that Putin supports Trump, or (2) will remember it for more than 1-2 weeks.

    You are ignoring the tremendous power of propaganda to persuade, and perhaps haven’t noticed that Trump is very adept at applying propaganda principles in everything he says. And, not least, you are giving too much credit to the American people for having the desire or ability to utilize their inherent powers of reason. Humans are animals and as such, have the near-unique power to reason but avoid doing so whenever possible. Someone once said (paraphrase): “No one ever lost a dime by underestimating the intelligence of the American people.”

    Bet’s on.

    • Randall Schenck
      Posted July 27, 2016 at 7:05 pm | Permalink

      Just put your money where the mouth is. I said several weeks ago he would be lucky to win 5 states. As Obama said today or yesterday – It’s scary enough that he does not seem to be prepared or know anything, but that he also seems not to want to learn. Many of you will learn by placing bets with the professor.

      • tomh
        Posted July 28, 2016 at 11:02 am | Permalink

        “I said several weeks ago he would be lucky to win 5 states.”

        That’s a bet I would take.

      • Chukar
        Posted July 28, 2016 at 11:57 am | Permalink

        I’ll be very happy to put my money where my mouth is, Randall, but based on your tone I can see you are not an unbiased observer, so you won’t be holding it for me.

        I’m willing to trust Jerry if he’s willing to trust me. If he isn’t, then he’ll also have to post the same amount with the unbiased 3rd party holding the bets.

        I see from another comment that bets need to be sent by email to “Professor Ceiling Cat.” I can find no such email address on the blog site. What’s the address? I’ve never previously emailed Jerry.

        Chuck Almdale

        • darrelle
          Posted July 28, 2016 at 3:37 pm | Permalink

          Click on the “Research Interests” link near the top right corner of the screen and you will readily find his email.

  26. FA
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 6:59 pm | Permalink

    Seems to me that Trump has just got Democrats everywhere to admit that storing government email on a private server vulnerable to attack is a major national security issue that should have been taken far more seriously than it was.

    • Posted July 27, 2016 at 9:44 pm | Permalink

      Except, and it’s a big except, he’s actually pimping for the hackers.

    • Posted July 28, 2016 at 5:03 am | Permalink

      I think you’re right. It’s the Dems who look like chumps on this, especially as Hillary already has ‘previous’ with email security.

    • frankschmidtmissouri
      Posted July 28, 2016 at 8:25 am | Permalink

      Of course, the Russians have hacked the White House, so your point is somewhat moot.

  27. geckzilla
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 7:00 pm | Permalink

    I only read one eye-roll inducing response to this so far, and that “he is still better than lying, criminal Hillary”

    As usual, very little thought is being done by most ideologists concerning their ideologies.

  28. tubby
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 7:01 pm | Permalink

    Considering there’s a portion of the US that thinks Putin is the bee’s knees for his crack down on the LGBT community and the legislation to force smaller religious communities to get the permission of the Orthodox church in order to hold services I’m not so sure this will hurt Trump at all.

  29. Chukar
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 7:15 pm | Permalink

    Jerry: What’s more, when I win your money, I want you to accept my post on the Principles of Propaganda so that the other readers of your blog, who are unusual among Americans in that they actually *enjoy* using their minds, can see exactly why I won the bet.

    I sent these principles to you last week in a comment, but for reasons unknown to me your blog would not permit the comment to be posted.

  30. Posted July 27, 2016 at 7:20 pm | Permalink

    Writing in the Wsshington Post today, Bruce Schneier, a security technologist and a lecturer at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University, has raised a very serious concern–Russian hackers could target US voting machines in November.

    • Posted July 27, 2016 at 9:11 pm | Permalink

      If the rest of the states would follow Oregon’s lead in voting by mail, not only would more people get to vote, but “Russian hackers could…” not “…target US voting machines in November.”) In this case, Yay! for old fashioned snail mail!

  31. Dave
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 7:22 pm | Permalink

    Trump’s supporters are coming out with the usual apologies: he’s joking, he’s baiting the Dem’s, he doesn’t mean it. I’m sorry, but I have lost “faith” in the US electorate and would not be surprised by any outcome.

    • Posted July 27, 2016 at 7:42 pm | Permalink

      Yeah, and these are the times we live in:

      Near treason passes as a post-modern “whoops, ah shucks, he didn’t mean it, and besides, it’s funny.”

      These are times in which Newt Gingrich claims violence is rising because people FEEL that it is, digging his heels in despite the overall trends in violence showing its decline.

      Feelings and “anything goes” are the rhetorical devices being used to justify that no matter what Tr_mp says or does, it’s okay. This post-modern relaxation of boundaries and departure from facts trades reality for lunacy and tells us it’s normal.

      • Merilee
        Posted July 27, 2016 at 7:55 pm | Permalink

        John Oliver nails it, as usual.

        • Posted July 27, 2016 at 8:06 pm | Permalink

          Yeah, that’s what I thought when I watched the blurb this morning. And then my thoughts wandered to Jerry’s comment on La Silverstein being a good mate, and I thought, “Ah, hah, I get it; there’s something about witty political satire.” About five years ago, I had similar admiration for Jon Stewart. It didn’t go so far as thinking he’d be a good mate, but the ability to digest important political matters and convey them with humor is so satisfying to watch when done well. John Oliver’s outstanding.

          • Posted July 27, 2016 at 11:42 pm | Permalink

            Funny, I just saw that I wrote Silverstein instead of Silverman. All I can say is I didn’t know who she was until Jerry’s post yesterday. I’ve probably said her name wrong more than once in the past day. (Oy. Oh well.)

            On a brighter note, Obama’s DNC speech was fantastic and Mike Bloomberg did well, making me happy as he’s the namesake for one of my alma maters: Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Bloomberg said: “I’m a NYer and I know a con when I see one.” Hah!

      • Chukar
        Posted July 28, 2016 at 12:11 pm | Permalink

        You’re correct, these are the times in which we live, and your examples are appropriate. When the Brits, against all expectations and predictions, voted for Brexit, I got the disturbing & sinking feeling that if they, despite their apparent sanity when compared to Americans, could vote for Brexit, then Americans could easily elect Trump. Minnesota elected Jesse Ventura, California elected Arnold Schwartzenneger (sp?) twice, and Richard Nixon was elected twice, despite the fact that everyone knew he was a crook. To say, “It can’t happen here” is feel-good self-delusion. I hope it won’t, but I don’t believe it can’t.

  32. HNthursday
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 7:25 pm | Permalink

    I need to ask you Jerry, how much money do you want to lose? This is first time that I comment on yours, or in fact any blog, although I read(or at least) try to read your blog constantly.

    Not only that I think Trump can win, I think that Trump has more chances to win than Hillary does, in fact, I would be surprised if Hillary wins… But we will see. If turns out that I am wrong, at least I have an excuse since I’m from Europe.

    But if I am right, if Trump wins, I’m expecting your books: Why evolution is true and Faith vs Fact with a signature (I have to get some reward, lol)

    Slowly you and your fellow Americans will have to get used on the phrase “President Trump”. It’s only 4 (or 8) years… Come on, what’s the worst thing it can happen..?

    Oops, I guess we will find out 🙂

    • Posted July 27, 2016 at 7:33 pm | Permalink

      You’ll have to email me with how much you want to put up. We haven’t settled on terms, so it’s a bit premature for you to tell me what you’re expecting without saying what you’re offering.

      • HNthursday
        Posted July 27, 2016 at 7:41 pm | Permalink

        Oh you’re serious about that… Well ok, in that case we can go for a small amount, if you want to… $50? If Trump wins, I get books, if Hillary wins I send you $50 via PayPal.

        • Diane G.
          Posted July 28, 2016 at 5:09 am | Permalink

          Note that Jerry specified contact by email. You can find his email address by Googling, or clicking on the Research Interests link above. Yes, it’s OK to use his U Chicago eddress.

          • HNthursday
            Posted July 28, 2016 at 8:32 am | Permalink

            Thank you on information Diane.

  33. Stephen Barnard
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 7:34 pm | Permalink

    This isn’t going away. At this moment the every national security asset of the United States — FBI, CIA, NSA, you name it — is shining a light on Trump’s dealings with the Russians, as well they should. I wouldn’t be at all surprised if there were leaks. Rather damaging leaks, because they hate and fear him.

    • Posted July 27, 2016 at 7:44 pm | Permalink

      And it’s possible, if, as George Will suggests, Trump’s tax returns reveal his deep connections with Russian oligarchs, that a lawsuit could give the FBI or the IRS will have cause to investigate his tax returns.

  34. HNthursday
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 7:35 pm | Permalink

    I need to ask you Jerry, how much money do you want to lose? This is first time that I comment on yours, or in fact any blog, although I read(or at least) try to read your blog constantly.

    Not only that I think Trump can win, I think that Trump has more chances to win than Hillary does, in fact, I would be surprised if Hillary wins… But we will see, if turns out that I am wrong, at least I have an excuse since I’m from Europe.

    But if I am right, if Trump wins, I’m expecting your books: Why evolution is true and Faith vs Fact with a signature (I have to get some reward, lol)

    Slowly you and your fellow Americans will have to get used on the phrase “President Trump”. It’s only 4 (or 8) years… Come on, what’s the worst thing it can happen..?

    Oops, I guess we will find out 🙂

  35. Posted July 27, 2016 at 7:49 pm | Permalink

    This might or might not meet prosecutorial minimums for filing charges, but this is treason, pure and simple. Calling on our biggest military adversary and long-time geopolitical counter, the very Russkies themselves, to hack our governmental and political computer systems? And doing so while openly allying yourself with the Russian head of state?

    That’s gonna be a bridge too far even for plenty of the crowd that wears white sheets as headgear.

    One thing’s pretty clear, though: this is going to be a record low turnout election — or else there’ll be record numbers voting for other parties as well as writing in Mickey Mouse.

    May I suggest? Jill Stein would actually make a superlative President….


    • Merilee
      Posted July 27, 2016 at 7:58 pm | Permalink

      I thought I had just read that Jill Stein was an anti-taxer

      • Posted July 27, 2016 at 8:07 pm | Permalink

        Wherever you heard that from, it sure wasn’t Jill herself. From her own issues page: “Make Wall Street, big corporations, and the rich pay their fair share of taxes.”




        • Hempenstein
          Posted July 28, 2016 at 12:11 am | Permalink

          Suspect she meant anti-vaxxer. (Also suspect auto-correct.)

          • Merilee
            Posted July 28, 2016 at 12:34 am | Permalink

            Thanks, Hemp, I could have sworn I typed vaxer.

          • Merilee
            Posted July 28, 2016 at 12:37 am | Permalink

            Reminds me of the Far Side cartoon where the poor dog thinks he’s off to get tutored…

        • Merilee
          Posted July 28, 2016 at 12:28 am | Permalink

          Ben, I typoed. Anti-VAXer. Sorry.

        • colnago80
          Posted July 28, 2016 at 7:10 am | Permalink

          According to Dr. David Gorski, Dr. Stein sounds a lot like Jay Gordon and Bob Sears, both medical doctors who are skeptical about vaccination. He ought to know, he has been following them for years and has written extensively about anti-vaxers on his ORAC blog.

          She has also been wishy washy on homeopathy, talking about it’s safety and ignoring its worthlessness relative to treating illnesses. Contrary to Dr. Stein, most homeopathic “remedies” are perfectly sate as they consist of nothing but distilled water.

          This, of course, is in addition to her support of the BDS movement whose purpose is to expel the Jews from Israel.

          • Posted July 29, 2016 at 4:33 pm | Permalink

            Do you have a link to this? I can’t find where he talks about Stein, unless you’re referring to this:


            • tomh
              Posted July 29, 2016 at 7:20 pm | Permalink

              Dave Gorski show up quite a bit in this thread on the patheos blog, danthropology, including this comment, (in response to a query from colnago), “She sounds a hell of a lot like Dr. Jay Gordon or Dr. Bob Sears in her responses.” You have to scroll through 3 or 4 pages of comments to get there. (Sorry, I don’t see a way to link to the comment.) Gorski argues, of course, that Stein is firmly in the anti-vaxx camp.

      • Merilee
        Posted July 28, 2016 at 12:25 am | Permalink


        • Posted July 28, 2016 at 11:01 am | Permalink

          I don’t know about her stance on vaccines — which tells me that, even if she’s against them, she’s not making a big deal of the fact.

          But I will guarantee you this: she is not perfect. Nobody is perfect — and finding flaws in anybody is trivial. As is declaring any flaw to be a fatal show-stopper.

          Even when all the other options also have equally fatal show-stopping flaws.

          The key isn’t to seek out reasons to declare a candidate fatally flawed; rather, it’s to weigh the totality of the one candidate against the totality of another.

          And, if you do so with Jill, you’ll find that she’s overwhelmingly the most rational choice — on economics, on foreign policy, on health, on the environment, on civil rights, and on and on and on and on.

          Honestly? Even were she a full-fledged anti-vaxxer and homeopath? She’s made Medicare for All a centerpiece of her campaign. And I’d take, in an heartbeat, Medicare for All with free homeopathic treatment and reduced emphasis on vaccination. Because we’d have Medicare for All, doctors with a clue would effectively use homeopathy as placebos (and perhaps begin to tame the antibiotic resistance problem), and per-capita vaccination rates would rise even as per-insured rates might flag slightly. And nobody would again fear bankruptcy from medical reasons, and employers would no longer have such huge power over their employees through threats of terminating access to medical treatment.




          • GBJames
            Posted July 28, 2016 at 11:03 am | Permalink

            “…inding flaws in anybody is trivial…”

            Or, to paraphrase my friend Ben Goren, “they are all lizards”.

            • Posted July 28, 2016 at 11:19 am | Permalink

              Jill is the least reptilian lizard I’ve ever even heard of in America. And if you think for a moment that she’z even vaguely, remotely like any politician in the Democratic or Republican parties today, it’s clear you know nothing about her other than her candidacy.

              I’ll grant you; she would have fit in the Democratic Party of the New Deal era, and there’re other Western democracies where she’d have no trouble gaining a parliamentary seat.

              But to equate her with Hilary and Drumpf?




              • GBJames
                Posted July 28, 2016 at 11:45 am | Permalink

                The equation was yours.

                “finding flaws in anybody is trivial”.

              • Posted July 28, 2016 at 11:52 am | Permalink

                Yes, indeed — and I just found a flaw in you: misinterpreting what I wrote.

                Many people, including many of his supporters, would agree that Drumpf’s tastes in hairstyles is rather flawed. But nobody would seriously suggest that that should be considered reason to vote against him. His treasonous call for favors from Putin to sabotage the election, on the other hand…that is a flaw that should prevent one from voting against him — but not his hair.

                Jill’s stance on alternative medicine is marginally more worrisome than Drumpf’s hair — but even that stance is more than tempered by her placement of Medicare for All at the heart of her platform.

                If you think that Jill is a lizard because she’s slightly soft on AltMed, despite her advocacy of Medicare for All, if you’re equating that with Drumpf’s treason…

                …then there’s no way I can even think to reason with you.




              • GBJames
                Posted July 28, 2016 at 12:15 pm | Permalink

                The point, Ben, is that you do exactly what you complain about the rest of us doing.

                Flaws in your favored candidates are excused as trivial and unimportant because “everyone has flaws”. But flaws in un-favored politicians are fatal, qualifying the all, equally, for “lizard” status.

              • Posted July 28, 2016 at 1:01 pm | Permalink

                No, the lizard fallacy is that you should vote for the lesser lizard because you fear a victory from the greater lizard.

                I’m not advocating for Jill because I think, if she doesn’t win, somebody even worse than her will take office. I’m advocating for Jill because I’d hire her to do the job were I on the applicant review committee.

                Jerry’s a perfect example of the lizard fallacy in practice. He’s voting for Hillary because he’s terrified of Drumpf — and this despite his open admission that he really, really, really doesn’t like Hillary.

                Or, the difference is between voting for somebody because you like that somebody despite imperfections, or voting for somebody you really don’t like out of terror for somebody even more horrific.



              • tomh
                Posted July 28, 2016 at 2:58 pm | Permalink

                Ben Goren wrote:
                “If you think that Jill is a lizard because she’s slightly soft on AltMed”

                “Slightly soft” is one way to put it, I guess. Stein is firmly in the anti-vaccination camp, and is actively discouraging Americans from vaccinating their families. As part of the general anti-science tone of the Green Party in the US, she also has called for the imprisonment of GMO producers, using falsified claims about environmental and health effects, and the supposed suicides of hundreds of thousands of Indian farmers, a claim which has been thoroughly debunked. Rather than recognize that science awareness is necessary to solve modern crises, she promotes paranoia, claiming vague conspiracies involving government, “big pharma,” and Monsanto, always Monsanto. But, if these kinds of anti-science issues aren’t important to you, I gues you could excuse her as being “slightly soft on AltMed.”

                Aside from the above, perhaps her worst sin is that she dismisses differences between the two major parties as “window dressing,” ignoring the vast differences between the positions of the two major parties on issues of critical global importance, like climate change, ocean protection, and national environmental regulation.

                But none of that is important, I guess, because she calls for Medicare for all. Never mind that it’s an impossible goal in today’s (and tomorrow’s) political environment, that the only possibility is an incremental approach, such as Obamacare, and even small advances like that are in constant danger of being reversed. Reality and Jill Stein just don’t mix.

              • Merilee
                Posted July 28, 2016 at 3:08 pm | Permalink


                Being anti-vax ( and anti-gmo) is not a minor flaw.

              • Posted July 28, 2016 at 3:30 pm | Permalink

                All the “gotcha” moments I’ve seen of Jill that’re supposed to demonstrate how anti-science she is have been remarkably devoid of science denialism and instead typical politician question-shifting where she harshly criticizes the rampant corporatism and crony capitalism of American politics. You might see her as anti-agribusiness, but she’s anti-megacorporation. Of course she calls out the poster children of agribusiness — just as she calls out the poster children of big oil when talking about energy policy matters.

                And I’m most unimpressed by your abject defeatism when it comes to Medicare for All. We already have Medicare for old people, and it’s hugely popular. Every other Western nation has their own equivalent of Medicare for All. When asked, more Americans support Medicare for all than supported same-sex marriage in the days of DOMA and DADT. That we don’t have Medicare for all is entirely due to the power of big business to buy Democrats and make us all pay the tab.



              • tomh
                Posted July 28, 2016 at 4:02 pm | Permalink

                Ben Goren wrote:

                All the “gotcha” moments I’ve seen of Jill that’re supposed to demonstrate how anti-science she is have been remarkably devoid of science denialism

                Telling parents they should be skeptical of vaccines, convincing them they can’t trust the regulatory agencies that regulate vaccines, telling them that doctors don’t have reliable data before they vaccinate, all these things and more give aid and comfort to the anti-vaxx camp. This can easily be seen by the reverence she receives on anti-vaxx sites, and how her words are used as justification for not vaccinating children. This kind of rhetoric does real harm. You may claim this is not anti-science, but merely “politician question-shifting,” but the result is the same. Children don’t get vaccinated.

                Using thoroughly discredited claims to argue against GMOs doesn’t qualify as anti-science for you either, I guess. Call it what you will, it’s dishonest and regressive.

              • Posted July 28, 2016 at 4:26 pm | Permalink

                You’re putting spin on her statements that I simply haven’t heard. Indeed, the statements I’ve heard have been that people in other countries trust their doctors to get vaccinated and do so at higher rates than in America, but the lack of trust in American government has served to depress vaccination rates here.

                How you get from that to providing aid and comfort to baby-killers is beyond me….



              • Posted July 28, 2016 at 6:20 pm | Permalink

                Aside from the above, perhaps her worst sin is that she dismisses differences between the two major parties as “window dressing,”

                If we’re charitable, perhaps she’s just falling into the trap of not keeping her information up-to-date. If we go back a few decades, there was much partisan overlap and bipartisan agreement on bills. It wasn’t uncommon to break with the party on a particular bill. We’ve become polarized. The Democrats have run slightly left but the Republicans have run way right. One could be forgiven for confusing many of Hillary’s policies with those of Richard Nixon. One cannot be forgiven for thinking she’s remotely similar to Ted Cruz, Mike Pence, Mike Huckabee, et al.

              • darrelle
                Posted July 28, 2016 at 3:56 pm | Permalink

                Just wanted to throw in that Hillary Clinton is pretty strong on health care for all, always has been. I seriously doubt Jill Stein, or anyone, could make better progress towards that goal than Clinton at present.

              • Posted July 28, 2016 at 4:24 pm | Permalink

                Where have I heard that before?

                Oh…yeah…about soon-to-be-President Obama…as in, “Obamacare.”

                Where I’m legally required to “contribute” a dollar to the CEO yacht fund for every four dollars I pay to my doctor…with the government acting as the enforcers for the most notoriously corrupt insurance racket in all of history…all for the privilege of getting the most expensive and worst healthcare in the developed world.

                Boy, did he ever make great progress! Before you could choose to not get “insurance” and be bankrupted when you got sick. Now, you have no choice, you must get “insurance”…and still be bankrupted when you get sick. Woo-hoo! I feel so progressive!



              • darrelle
                Posted July 28, 2016 at 4:30 pm | Permalink

                Are you blaming the Obamacare we have on Obama? Or are you admitting the reality that Jill Stein would stand very little chance of achieving anything remotely like medicare for all if she were to somehow win this presidential election?

              • Posted July 28, 2016 at 4:42 pm | Permalink

                Considering Obama’s expressed pride at having his name integrated into the policy he considers his crowning achievement, yes, I’m blaming him for it.

                And considering that Jill is campaigning largely on Medicare for All, I’d say that, should she win, it will be so with an unambiguous mandate to follow through — especially considering the shock her election would serve to the body politic.

                I mean, really. If she wins, do you really think there’d be enough left of the establishment to stand against her?



              • Posted July 28, 2016 at 4:56 pm | Permalink

                No president can sign a bill that hasn’t passed the Congress. Obama recognizes how lucky he was to be able to sign a bill with what little was on it, after he worked so hard to keep block-headed legislators from blocking every single thing. I give him credit. I don’t recall any president facing the obstructionism he’s had to put up with, so the fact that he got anything through that moved anywhere closer to universal healthcare is saying something. When the Republicans tried innumerable times to rescind the law by naming it pejoratively after Obama, Obama decided to turn it around on them and take the credit. He didn’t ask for it. He was just wise enough not to fight over it and then turn that negative into a positive. It was about the meanest thing he could do to those obstructionist Republican law makers.

              • Chukar
                Posted July 28, 2016 at 5:50 pm | Permalink

                Docatheist is entirely correct, and stated the case far more succinctly than I could, especially the point that “Obamacare” was a Republican pejorative used by them for many months before taken on by Obama to defuse it.

              • Posted July 30, 2016 at 9:44 am | Permalink

                Thank you, Chukar.

          • Cindy
            Posted July 28, 2016 at 11:04 am | Permalink

            And, if you do so with Jill, you’ll find that she’s overwhelmingly the most rational choice — on economics, on foreign policy, on health, on the environment, on civil rights, and on and on and on and on.

            I have been reading some of her Tweets. I like her.

    • Posted July 28, 2016 at 10:23 am | Permalink

      I would consider these points before voting.

  36. Billy Bl.
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 7:59 pm | Permalink

    I don’t know what scale you’re using to quantify the stupidity of what comes out of this guy’s mouth. How is this any worse than any of the other bonehead things he’s said? And whoever liked him before will likely now love him.

  37. W.Benson
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 8:12 pm | Permalink

    I don’t think Trump conflated anything. In fact, he said exactly what he wanted to say, in a way understandable to anyone who has followed recent events. For those not in the know, he could have provided a little more background, but this was a news conference full of gottcha journalists. (I await with bated breath for Hillary to hold a press conference, but I will probably suffocate first).
    Trump says, “Russia, I hope you can find the 30,000 e-mails [that someone in Russia may have hacked in 2013] that are missing [i.e., the allegedly personal e-mails Hillary erased from her basement server in 2014 and seemingly no longer exist].” There is nothing wrong, much less treasonous, with what Trump said here. The comments here suggest that few liberals are aware of what Hillary and her co-conspirators have been up to.
    And no, I do not support Trump. It would be a catastrophe were Trump to become president. A victory by Hillary and her team would merely be a disaster.

  38. Peter
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 8:15 pm | Permalink

    I think this says it all:
    “And in the same way like when you’re standing on the edge of Niagara Falls and your mind wonders for a moment what would that feel like to go over that thing, a lot of people are going to love being in the position of puppetmaster and plunking down for Trump just to see what that might look like. Remember back in the ‘90s when the people of Minnesota elected a professional wrestler as their governor? They didn’t do this because they’re stupid or thought that Jesse Ventura was some sort of statesman or political intellectual. They did so just because they could. Minnesota is one of the smartest states in the country. It is also filled with people who have a dark sense of humor — and voting for Ventura was their version of a good practical joke on a sick political system. This is going to happen again with Trump.”

    • colnago80
      Posted July 28, 2016 at 7:15 am | Permalink

      In defense of Minnesota’s voters, in debates against his major party opponents, it is my understanding that Ventura showed himself to be better informed and more knowledgeable about the issues then they did.

  39. Michael Finfer, MD
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 8:17 pm | Permalink

    I sincerely hope you are right, but this buffoon has been so good about defying predictions that I am genuinely nervous about it.

    I find it truly disheartening that so many people do not have the cognitive skills that are necessary to recognize Trump for the charlatan that he is. It is a major indictment of our education system.

    Here’s a link to a short piece in the New Yorker about a run-in one of Trump’s people had with Stephen Hawking. Everyone here must read it:

  40. Marella
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 8:27 pm | Permalink

    I’d be sure you were right, if I hadn’t been equally certain that Americans wouldn’t elect George Bush, but they did, and twice! I’m not convinced that the people who support Trump give a damn about any of this stuff, they just want to WIN for a change. And I worry that Hillary is so unpopular that Democrats will just stay home and elect Trump by default.

  41. Gordon Davisson
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 8:51 pm | Permalink

    I really really hope you’re right. But this sounded uncomfortably similar to an Onion story from last December, ‘This Will Be The End Of Trump’s Campaign,’ Says Increasingly Nervous Man For Seventh Time This Year.

  42. jeffery
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 9:04 pm | Permalink

    And you’ve got to realize that the dope has three more months to screw up in, too; I’m beginning to wonder whether he’s really a “stealth agent” sent to destroy the Republican Party….
    The only problem is, we’re still dealing with the American public: “Here, look at this nice, shiny, loud thing…that’s it; now, over HERE- good boy!”

  43. GBJames
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 9:07 pm | Permalink

    I don’t expect to see a President Trump. But I’ve been surprised before. It would be a catastrophe.

    But the simple fact that such a possibility exists is far more weird than I could ever have imagined in my youth.

    Scary times.

    • Kevin
      Posted July 27, 2016 at 11:29 pm | Permalink

      It is a reflection of America. Trump is entertainment to them. Escapism made real. He is so not possible he has become a living fiction they do not want turned off.

  44. Posted July 27, 2016 at 9:22 pm | Permalink

    I don’t remember there being a requirement for individuals to be intelligent above any specified level in order to be able to run for president. I think we’ve had plenty of evidence that stupidity doesn’t prevent someone from being elected president. No bet from me on this issue. I’ve lost too much faith in the intelligence of the bulk of the electorate. May I be wrong.

    • Posted July 28, 2016 at 1:01 pm | Permalink

      Sure, but there are different kinds of stupid. Donald rump’s statement is strategically stupid, playing right into Hillary’s narrative. This story isn’t about Hillary’s establishment buddies tilting the playing field to help her win! No, it’s about Russian spying!

      If Donald rump keeps playing by Hillary’s rules, he’s going to lose. I agree with many comments pointing out that the voters will have forgotten about this particular fracas by election day. But strategically-stupid is a chronic condition, and, unlike stupid-about-religion or stupid-about-economics etc., it costs elections.

  45. Posted July 27, 2016 at 9:23 pm | Permalink

    I wonder if the Trumpster will approve when someone hacks his accountant’s computer system and posts the Donald’s tax forms on the web?

    • Posted July 28, 2016 at 5:08 am | Permalink


    • Diana MacPherson
      Posted July 28, 2016 at 2:04 pm | Permalink

      I hope Anonymous is already on that.

  46. Peter
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 9:47 pm | Permalink

    The fact that Trump is now a nominee leaves me flabbergasted so I’m starting to think that anything is possible! This seems off-the-charts crazy but I would have said the same thing about Trump getting so far a year ago.

    “At a minimum, Trump appears to have a deep financial dependence on Russian money from persons close to Putin. And this is matched to a conspicuous solicitousness to Russian foreign policy interests where they come into conflict with US policies which go back decades through administrations of both parties.”

  47. Posted July 27, 2016 at 9:49 pm | Permalink

    I hope the betting odds and polls stay close. I don’t want Trump elected through complacency, like Brexit.

    • Posted July 28, 2016 at 8:29 am | Permalink

      … yes, and for want of rational thought and thinking things through. Actions have consequences.

  48. sponge bob
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 10:17 pm | Permalink

    Don’t want your emails in the hands of Russian hackers? Don’t run a private email server in your basement. Anyone that runs a private email server is a glutton for punishment. It sucks, and in general is not worth the effort.

    I highly doubt this will hurt Trump. He just figures the Russians have the deleted emails already.

    • colnago80
      Posted July 28, 2016 at 7:18 am | Permalink

      Considering the incompetence of the government in protecting their computer systems from hackers, it is not at all off the wall to consider the possibility that her private email service may have been more robust against intrusions then the State Department’s system, which has been hacked in the past, as has the Pentagon’s.

  49. Cindy
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 10:17 pm | Permalink


  50. imnotno
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 10:46 pm | Permalink

    Unless you’re suggesting that Russia literally has time machines, then this cannot be interpreted to mean “Russia, please go hack us”. The server is offline and all of its emails are GONE. They are not THERE to BE hacked anymore! The time for hacking was several years ago. He is clearly requesting they share what they already have with the FBI, since anything else is an impossibility! Critical thinking is a very undervalued skill these days, I think.

    It alarms me that you are more concerned about his request for Russia to assist in a legal investigation than you are about the prospect of a serious breach of national security caused by Hillary Clinton, in her efforts to dodge our FOIA laws!

    Regardless, Bill Clinton himself signed a treaty with Russia to cooperate on legal matters such as this!
    Quick excerpt from the treaty:

    “The United States of America and the Russian Federation […] to prevent and fight against crime, […] shall provide to each other […] comprehensive mutual legal assistance in criminal matters.”

    “Legal assistance under this Treaty shall include […] providing documents, records, and other items;”

    Source (PDF link):

    You have to be off the deep end to think that this manufactured controversy will sink Trump. Russia should be working with American law enforcement to stamp out crime and corruption in our government. That level of cooperation is one of the greatest things two countries could do for each other! I would be proud of our country if we could extend such assistance to Russia.

    You people are so desperate for some shred of evidence that Trump is literally Dr. Evil that you sink to depths like this to “prove” how awful he is, but all you’re doing is proving your own lack of legal knowledge and political experience. Ironically and hilariously, that’s ALSO what you lot accuse Trump of.

    • imnotno
      Posted July 27, 2016 at 10:49 pm | Permalink

      Whoops. I messed up one of my formatting tags. Since I can’t edit, just pretend that didn’t happen…

    • Posted July 28, 2016 at 12:45 am | Permalink

      That agreement is not an agreement for Russia to commit espionage and hand over what they steal. It’s a treaty to share information in law enforcement. To say we want them to spy on us is absurd. Also, Jerry said this is either a call for espionage or to hand over materials obtained by espionage.

      Your point that the server is dead is valid, but you obviously don’t understand that this only makes obtaining the emails more difficult, not necessarily impossible. Any email on her server is also on other servers, minimally servers that supported whatever domains Hillary’s contacts were on. This would be either Government servers in the case of official addresses or possibly multiple exchange servers if she emailed other domains; e.g. Gmail or Yahoo. It’s quite possible that copies could turn up somewhere, or already have if there’s been breaches in other systems.

    • Posted July 28, 2016 at 8:34 am | Permalink

      *You* are off the deep end, to remotely think this would be an appropriate time for Russia to suddenly become helpful towards the US.

      • W.Benson
        Posted July 28, 2016 at 9:46 am | Permalink

        Why not! If a potential president is deeply involved in criminal activity, isn’t it appropriate for anyone to reveal it to American voters. Of course, if this unnamed candidate is clean, this would help dispell the cloud the candidate his/herself created.
        What I find particularly obnoxious is the red-baiting by a press that consistently bends to interests while avoiding issues.

        • Cindy
          Posted July 28, 2016 at 9:52 am | Permalink

          Russia, if they did hack Clinton’s email, would be sharing the information WITH THE FBI.

          Some folks here have referred to this as “fucking retarded” and I would love for them to explain why sharing what was hacked with the FBI would be a terrible idea.

          • Posted July 28, 2016 at 10:52 am | Permalink

            Russia, if they did hack Clinton’s email, would be sharing the information WITH THE FBI.

            Some folks here have referred to this as “fucking retarded” and I would love for them to explain why sharing what was hacked with the FBI would be a terrible idea.

            And what, pray tell, would the FBI do with those emails?

            There’s not a chance in Hell that the chain of evidence has been even remotely closely protected adequately. Have you any idea just how trivial it would be to manufacture anything and everything you could dream of and insert it into such an “archive”?

            But, of course, the expectation isn’t that the FBI would even pretend to accept the information; rather, that it would leak out…at which point we’ll all be reading headlines about Hilary’s secret Kenyan Muslim atheist underaged prostitution ring.

            Besides which, do you really want a President who “won” the office by begging Putin to come up with the means to destroy the credibility of his candidate?

            Jesus Christ — I can’t even believe I actually had to just type that!

            Drumpf openly going hat-in-hand to Putin saying, “Please Mr. Pinko Commie Ruskie KGB Master, would you be so kind as to crown me the next American President because I’ve heard you think I’m so swell?” And Drumpf’s head is not speared on a spike atop a banner reading, “America First”!?

            What the bloody hell?



            • Cindy
              Posted July 28, 2016 at 10:59 am | Permalink

              Right now the FBI has nothing. This would give them a starting point at least.

              Now, you are correct, it is a very valid concern that Russia might fake the information. And that would be a violation of the treaty that Bill Clinton signed with Russia –

              At any rate, I believe that the FBI should be provided with the information as per the treaty. They can determine if Russia is being dishonest and if the information is genuine, and determine the extent to which Clinton violated national security.

              • Kevin
                Posted July 28, 2016 at 11:14 am | Permalink

                If an FBI agent is concerned that Russia might violate some treaty they would be an unwise, inexperienced agent.

                If there is no disclosure of a technological capability that was not previously public before, then the FBI know they and the Russians sit on useless propaganda.

              • Posted July 28, 2016 at 11:26 am | Permalink

                Are you seriously suggesting that you think that Russian hackers have better legal investigatorial tools at their disposal than the FBI?

                And your suggestion that a treaty would prevent Putin from using this as an opportunity to pick the next American president…do you want me to violate Da Roolz?

                Just look at what happened to Ukraine over the past few years, and tell me with a straight face that treaties have any sort of hold over Putin.

                Finally…that you think that the FBI can magically determine the authenticity of what you’re proposing demonstrates you have, literally, zero knowledge of computer science. As in, not even as much knowledge as a C- student at the end of a non-major “Introduction to Business Computing” community college class would be expected to have.

                The forensic chain of evidence would be so far gone in this case that you might as well pull up Drumpf’s Twitter feed and call it the missing email archive, and have every bit as much a valid claim of reliable authenticity.



              • Cindy
                Posted July 28, 2016 at 11:29 am | Permalink

                And your suggestion that a treaty would prevent Putin from using this as an opportunity to pick the next American president…do you want me to violate Da Roolz?

                So this is your way of discretely calling me an ‘idiot’.

                Stay classy.

              • Posted July 28, 2016 at 11:53 am | Permalink

                I thought it was brilliant (and hilariously well done). Then, your response proved it. I’m still laughing!

                Reminds me I heard this exchange:
                Guy #1 to snafu: Jesus Christ!!!!
                Guy #2 to Guy #1: You called?
                Guy #3 to Guy #2: You’re not my son.

              • Cindy
                Posted July 28, 2016 at 12:15 pm | Permalink

                Are YOU suggesting that the FBI is so grossly incompetent that they blindly trust everything handed to them?

                That they have no awareness of the sensitive political nature of this case, and thus, the need for every bit of scrutiny as to the veracity of the data?

                The FBI director very clearly stated they didn’t have proof it was actually hacked. Of course, there is evidence of it, but not proof.

                Therefore, if a foreign state came forward and said “Yeah, it was hacked, here’s what we got.”, then, if the data were verified, it would conclusively prove that one of our candidates, through incompetence and disdain for the law, jeopardized our national security, which is kind of an important thing for voters to be aware of before an election!

                If Russia came forward with evidence of Trump (or even my preferred candidate, Bernie) having done such things, I would applaud that as well, because in a free and open democracy, people have the right to know about a candidates legal misadventures.

              • Posted July 28, 2016 at 12:20 pm | Permalink

                if the data were verified

                Your whole thesis rests upon this assumption, that anything Russia might give us is even hypothetically verifiable — an assumption that has as much bearing on reality as Mormon claims that the Garden of Eden was really in Missouri.



              • Jeremy Tarone
                Posted July 28, 2016 at 11:44 am | Permalink

                The FBI already determined that Clinton did not violate national security laws. There have been numerous investigations and committees looking into the emails, all have failed to provide anything that can substantiate charges.

              • Cindy
                Posted July 28, 2016 at 12:05 pm | Permalink

                Statement by FBI Director James B. Comey on the Investigation of Secretary Hillary Clinton’s Use of a Personal E-Mail System


                With respect to the thousands of e-mails we found that were not among those produced to State, agencies have concluded that three of those were classified at the time they were sent or received, one at the Secret level and two at the Confidential level. There were no additional Top Secret e-mails found. Finally, none of those we found have since been “up-classified.”

                It is also likely that there are other work-related e-mails that they did not produce to State and that we did not find elsewhere, and that are now gone because they deleted all e-mails they did not return to State, and the lawyers cleaned their devices in such a way as to preclude complete forensic recovery.

                None of these e-mails should have been on any kind of unclassified system, but their presence is especially concerning because all of these e-mails were housed on unclassified personal servers not even supported by full-time security staff, like those found at Departments and Agencies of the U.S. Government—or even with a commercial service like Gmail.

                With respect to potential computer intrusion by hostile actors, we did not find direct evidence that Secretary Clinton’s personal e-mail domain, in its various configurations since 2009, was successfully hacked. But, given the nature of the system and of the actors potentially involved, we assess that we would be unlikely to see such direct evidence.

                To be clear, this is not to suggest that in similar circumstances, a person who engaged in this activity would face no consequences. To the contrary, those individuals are often subject to security or administrative sanctions. But that is not what we are deciding now.

                People have lost their jobs for less. This is a clear case of special pleading for Hillary because of who she is.

              • Posted July 28, 2016 at 4:17 pm | Permalink

                General Patreus did worse and got a teensy widdle swap on the hanty, poor thing. For his training and position, he was an utter disgrace, and it got him out of his marriage to an unattractive woman, out of the military with full retirement benefits including full pay (!), and into a civilian job with even better pay. All he had to do was personally hand over material he knew was top secret to a woman he was sleeping with who didn’t work for our government at all and so, of course, wasn’t vetted in the least.

                If she was a Soviet-style Russian agent, she did her job very, very well.

              • Posted July 28, 2016 at 7:54 pm | Permalink

                I held a Secret Clearance at one point and most certainly would have lost my job and probably the clearance with it if I’d done what Hillary did. That said, the fact that politicians play by different rules simply isn’t news. We can rage against the system and I’m right there with everyone doing it but the outrage that Clinton wasn’t individually punished for this, much less convicted as a felon as the right wants, simply doesn’t comport with the reality of politics in America. This no less qualifies her than it does any of the other DC insiders who get away with stuff none of us could. Hell, they’ve even written special legislation for themselves allowing Congress to do what would be considering insider trading if it were done by a citizen at a private firm. The establishment proudly and unapologetically flouts the law, and to a large extent so do the rich such as Trump. This isn’t baggage worthy of dismissing a candidate lest we dismiss all of them. We’re left with the decision to hold our nose and vote Hillary or go 3rd party. I’m in a heavily democratic state so I may have the luxury of doing the latter as I did in 2012, but this election I’m currently leaning g towards keeping Trump out at all costs.

              • Merilee
                Posted July 28, 2016 at 8:17 pm | Permalink

                Not to mention W, Condi, and Colin having done the same thing with emails…

              • Posted July 28, 2016 at 9:52 pm | Permalink

                Our cyber security is a joke to begin with. Comey said Hillary would’ve been better off with Gmail than a private server. What’s left unsaid is that most agencies would also be more secure with Gmail. The position I worked in, to take one example, used IE6 as “security” so people couldn’t browse a lot of Web 2.0 sites. This was well after the point that it’d been established that browsing the web at all with IE6 was a serious security risk…

              • Posted July 30, 2016 at 9:38 am | Permalink

                If a black man with a gun kills an unarmed person, it’s murder. If a white man does it, it’s an accident. If an officer does it, it’s nothing, just doing his job. After all, he’s a government employee, government representative, and taxpayer-funded promise “to serve and protect”, whatever that means in actuality, officer by officer.

                If the white man fights against oppression, it’s a patriotic rebellion. If Native Americans do it, it’s an uprising.

                And so on. He who is inside the power-network is less likely to be fed to the sharks than he who is on the other side. The higher one is in that network, the better. Just ask David Patraeus.

              • Filippo
                Posted July 30, 2016 at 11:10 pm | Permalink

                “If Native Americans do it, it’s an uprising.”

                And if it’s in the Philippines 1899-1901, it’s an “insurrection.”

              • Posted July 31, 2016 at 1:15 am | Permalink

                We should see how many more of these we can list. It’s a worthy game, if it can teach insight along the way.

              • Posted July 31, 2016 at 12:17 pm | Permalink

                If it’s a Government operative controlling an unmanned drone, it’s homeland security.

              • Posted July 31, 2016 at 12:29 pm | Permalink

                Emphasize it with the nongovernmental contrast. That will be a very good one!

              • Posted July 30, 2016 at 9:40 am | Permalink

                Why shouldn’t Hillary Clinton be afforded the same judicial generosity than her male counterparts receive everyday? Just because Martha Stewart wasn’t shown such equality in comparison with her peers?

              • Posted July 30, 2016 at 9:43 am | Permalink

                I think you come to the same conclusions I do, about the system. I just wanted to add my two cents’ worth, one penny at a time. I do feel more supportive of Hillary, after glimpses of the DNC filled me in on her history, and, yet, the overwhelming urge is to protect our nation from Trump’s dangerous demagoguery.

              • Posted July 30, 2016 at 1:04 pm | Permalink

                I think you pretty much nailed it. Hillary’s been doing what she does for four decades. Nothing is going to come out of left field with her. Maybe Trump ends up not being terrible (though I can’t imagine him appointing good justices especially after he turned himself over to the worst of our religious demographic in selecting Mike Pence). This is one of the few knowns with Trump. Maybe that’s where the damage would be limited but Trump combined with a Republican controlled Congress has a high probability of undoing a lot of regulations from the environment to the economy. And this is probably the best case scenario. What really scares me is the possibility that he may stampede over the First Amendment and also have trigger happy finger the second a foreign leader slights him.

                This is not a gamble anyone should be willing to take. This is about electing the POTUS, not playing slots in Vegas.

              • Posted July 31, 2016 at 1:13 am | Permalink


            • Posted July 28, 2016 at 11:57 am | Permalink

              Adding to all you just said, what precedent is there for the Russians hacking us and then turning the information over to the FBI? If they are really behind the DNC hack, they did a public dump. It’s truly naive to assume they’d just hand it over to our authorities. There’s absolutely zero advantage for them to do that as opposed to another public leak.

              • Cindy
                Posted July 28, 2016 at 12:01 pm | Permalink

                Then Bill Clinton was clearly an idiot for signing the treaty in the first place.

                And the FBI is clearly too incompetent to review the information.

              • Posted July 28, 2016 at 12:10 pm | Permalink

                No; treaties are very useful diplomatic tools. Idiocy comes not from signing them, but from thinking that they’re sacred.

                And “the information” you would have the FBI review is no different from you writing up something on your own computer and typing Hillary’s name on it. There’s no magical identification in emails — never has been, never will be.

                Don’t believe me? Here — I’ll show you.

              • Posted July 28, 2016 at 7:42 pm | Permalink

                The treaty is an agreement to share law enforcement information. It should be fairly obvious that a country committing espionage is not going to turn around and give the information back to the country they just stole the information from.

                I don’t follow your assertion that I’m implying the FBI isn’t competent enough to handle the information. My assertion is that Russia would dump the information to the media just like it appears they have done with the DNC hack. And at that point, what does the FBI do, analyze information that is second hand from the media with no access to the chain that the emails followed? It’s not a question of FBI competence at that point, it’s the fact that there’s no trail unless the FBI can get at the original information and trace it back to its origin. The media merely having the alleged content of the emails is pretty much a dead end when it comes to traceability.

    • Mudskipper
      Posted July 28, 2016 at 11:27 am | Permalink

      Trump’s first statement on this matter encouraged Russia to share the emails with the press, not the FBI. He later amended his statement after the loud outcry.

  51. merilee
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 11:10 pm | Permalink

    Over dinner I was saying to my bf, would it not be great if Bloomberg spoke out against Trump to all the independents. He said I doubt that would happen. Lo and behold a few hours later that’s exactly what happened at the DNC!!! I think his appearance surprised a lot of people. I am very glad he did this. Great speech by Obama, too, as usual.

    • Charleen D. Adams
      Posted July 27, 2016 at 11:55 pm | Permalink


    • Posted July 28, 2016 at 12:29 am | Permalink

      Best line from Bloomberg: “I’m from New York. I know a con when I see one.” Me too Mike, me too.

    • Diane G.
      Posted July 28, 2016 at 5:22 am | Permalink

      Bloomberg is one of the most overlooked shrewd political thinkers we have.

  52. somer
    Posted July 27, 2016 at 11:46 pm | Permalink

    This revelation of his irresponsibility in national security terms should surely bite him.

    I think that Trump is a dangerously irresponsible narcissist as per his general conduct in the campaign, his personal history, the article by his former ghostwriter of Trumps autobiography “The Art of the Deal” and plenty of other articles. He has very limited attention span and he has no respect for the institutions of US governance

    Hilary may be no saint but the russians and the extreme left would rather Trump than Hilary.
    Wikileaks dismantling of DNC is clear attack by Putin on Clinton
    John R. Schindler, 25 July 2016,

    Why some leftists are defending Trumps ties to Russia
    Jonathan Chait 25 July 2016 New York Magazine – daily intelligencer

    John Pilger: Why Hillary Clinton is More Dangerous than Donald Trump,
    John Pilger, 23 March 2016,

    Assange, Avowed foe of Clinton, Timed email releases
    New York Times

  53. Hempenstein
    Posted July 28, 2016 at 12:22 am | Permalink

    The record that’s emerging of Trump the serial rapist – concerning contractors, vendors and other professionals that he’s stiffed – may do him more harm than this. (Ref the architect, the piano dealer and the contractor all recently in the news stream.)

  54. Posted July 28, 2016 at 12:27 am | Permalink

    This will, needless to say, have no effect on Trump supporters. One Trump supporter I know said that the clip I posted of Trump asking Russia to find the emails is out of context and a media misrepresentation. So, I posted the entire transcript and he seemed to do exactly what Jerry suggests Trump may be doing: conflating Hillary’s email server with the DNC hack.

    I’ve talked to a few otherwise smart people who are in the never Hillary camp as well. They also seem to make the conflation between the two sets of emails. They were also adamant that Hillary should have been convicted partly because she may do nefarious things with the information, suggesting she may divulge information to foreign powers in exchange for favors. Sure, I suppose that’s a logical possibility, but it’s not one with supporting evidence. Yet, these same people upon the revelation that Trump literally asked a foreign state to commit espionage for Trump’s own gain, summarily dismissed it and went on to list more bad things about Hillary.

    Nothing about this election would surprise me anymore. I did make a bet with one of these people that Hillary will win and I’m confident enough to even have given Trump a 50 electoral votes handicap. So, for me to win, Hillary needs 304 electoral votes or more. I still think I’ll win, but I’m not ruling Trump out. There are too many people who simply fail to see the dangerous demagoguery he promotes and too many people who are happy to support him for it. As if this iset bad enough, the same people who bashed Obama for having too little experience now happily ignore the fact that Trump has zero relevant experience for POTUS. Add to this that the man lies about 70% of the time according to Politifact, and there’s no way in hell he should be polling in the same time zone as Hillary, never mind slipping ahead of her in some polls after the convention. I see a strong parallel between our religious fanaticism and Trump support. It’s clear that a large percentage of Americans simply could not care less about facts. No amount of data contradicting their views will make them budge.

    • Posted July 28, 2016 at 5:52 am | Permalink

      There is no “conflation”. The DNC hack and the deleted emails are obviously separate, but equally obviously linked. If Russia did the DNC hack (no evidence, but not impossible), it would likely also have hacked Hillary’s vulnerable server, in which case it might have a copy of the deleted emails.

      Hillary doing bad things for favours is no mere “logical possibility”. She and her husband have a long history of shady business deals and dubious contacts, as well as suspicious arrangements with foreign powers, not to mention running a foundation that does little, if any, meaningful charity work. Furthermore, they choose to do a lot of business in notoriously corrupt/lawless/opaque regions, such as Saudi Arabia, Haiti, Congo, Nigeria, and Central Asia, out of the public eye. On top of all that, Bill has been dogged constantly by credible accusations of sex crimes. For any even faintly believable accusation that’s been flung at Trump, there’s something as bad or worse hovering over the Clintons. The couple both stink of sulphur.

      • Posted July 28, 2016 at 8:49 am | Permalink

        If Russia did the DNC hack (no evidence, but not impossible), it would likely also have hacked Hillary’s vulnerable server, in which case it might have a copy of the deleted emails.

        That is a huge leap. Why does hacking one server entail hacking another one (several years prior, no less)? We don’t know that Hillary’s server had the same level of security vulnerabilities that the DNC server had, or if it did that the same hackers found it.

        Hillary doing bad things for favours is no mere “logical possibility”.

        No, it isn’t a logical possibility that she does any bad thing for favors. The list of shady dealings you list, I wholeheartedly agree are nefarious and are valid criticisms. The Clintons have enriched themselves to 9 figure wealth through their political connections. It reeks and is indicative of much that’s wrong with our system. Yet, you’re jumping the gun here. When I say it’s a logical possibility that Hillary deleted an email and divulged its content to a foreign power (or anyone for that matter), there’s still several things that need to be established. First, we need to know that something that was deleted was something she could have used for personal gain. Second, we need some evidence of what the gain was and who she was in cahoots with. There’s simply no way to jump to that conclusion without some specific evidence about this instance of alleged impropriety. Simply demonstrating that her character is questionable doesn’t give us free reign to say any accusation we make must be true or even likely. If that were the standard, we may as well declare every conceivable conspiracy theory about every shady politician must be true and where does that leave us with Drumpf vs. Hillary? Notice no one is chanting “lock him up” over Trump’s statements, merely pointing out as Jeb Bush did that Trump is clearly unhinged and doesn’t have the experience nor the mindset to be POTUS. For all we dislike about Hillary, she’s a known quantity.

  55. Posted July 28, 2016 at 3:35 am | Permalink

    The guy is a Grade A fuckwit.

    One bet I would be willing to make (and would seriously hope to lose) is that if he gets in he’ll order the deployment of nuclear weapons at some point. He’s that fucking retarded.

    • jeremypereira
      Posted July 28, 2016 at 7:46 am | Permalink

      One can only hope that, if he does order a nuclear attack, one of his bodyguards will shoot him in the head.

      I wouldn’t normally advocate murder, but it would be justified to stop nuclear armageddon.

  56. Posted July 28, 2016 at 4:58 am | Permalink

    This will not damage Trump at all. Only those who already hate Trump think he’s made a mistake here. His supporters think he told a great joke at the expense of Clinton and her loyal press, and at the same time trolled Clinton into issuing a response that appears to admit that the deleted emails did contain state secrets after all, despite her previous sworn sworn denials. This contradiction is damaging to Hillary, and could even lead to further investigations. Also, of course, there is nothing to hack, as the emails have already been deleted and the server is already out of commission; therefore accusing Trump of incitement to hack looks somewhat desperate, even hysterical – a sign that the Clinton campaign is nervous.

    • Mudskipper
      Posted July 28, 2016 at 11:41 am | Permalink

      No, they did’t troll Clinton into admitting the deleted emails had state secrets. Only Clinton haters think this logic works.

      It is Trump who believed the deleted emails contained state secrets and it is Trump who called for Russia, our long-time opponent, to turn what he clearly believes is classified information over to the press for publication. The Democrats (and not a few Republicans as well) are reacting to this.

  57. RichardS
    Posted July 28, 2016 at 5:49 am | Permalink

    Unfortunately, I think Trump’s comments will do him zero harm with most people. Being a bit of a pessimist I think it’s quite likely he’ll win in November. The lack of enthusiasm for Clinton and her seemingly complete lack of understanding of the widespread revulsion against the establishment will likely result in a low voter turnout for her vs the large voter turnout of excited Trump supporters. As so many generals are said to do with wars, Clinton is trying to run the 2012 campaign over again. Just as the British establishment thought Brexit could easily be defeated the American establishment appears to think business as usual is all that’s needed.

  58. jay
    Posted July 28, 2016 at 6:06 am | Permalink

    I can’t understand the ‘shock and horror’ over this.

    Is the left completely incapable of understanding hyperbole? Or do they assume that their opponents can’t possibly make sarcastic statements?? (I am reminded of the bizarro world that took Palin’s ‘I can see Russia from my back yard’ as some serious statement of misunderstanding).

    I’m not defending Trump (but I’ve disliked Hillary ever since the Bill presidency–especially now that she’s going after the First Amendment), but in this context it’s a tempest in a teapot.

    ref Assange (before the days of wikileaks):
    Back during the Bill administration the feds were actively attempting to suppress and criminalize private access to strong encryption. Assange was then active in the cypherpunks movement (I was there too, but not on his technical level). He probably does see her as a the threat she is. He is probably, however driven mainly as an an anti statist disruptor rather than particularly partisan.

    • JAY
      Posted July 28, 2016 at 6:29 am | Permalink

      BTW there is a persistent rumor in hacker circles, as well as elsewhere that Russia did indeed compromise Hillary’s server, but no one knows when or if they will openly play that hand.

      As even the FBI noted, she would have been more secure using Gmail. My personal *theory* about why she used a private system rather than the government or a commercial system is not exactly ‘keeping my personal stuff private’ as she claims, but an attempt to bury the smoking gun emails regarding dealings with the contributors to the Clinton Foundation.

      Unfortunately, as James Comey said, she doesn’t really understand email or security.

    • Posted July 28, 2016 at 8:55 am | Permalink

      If Trump were joking, it was horrible delivery. He said it midstream with no apparent attempt at humor. It simply flowed out with the rest of his words, which are the best words….very very good words.

      As for Palin, I don’t recall the uproar over her Russia statement being due to thinking she could actually see Russia from her house. It was due to the fact that simply being adjacent to a land mass is enough to qualify her on foreign policy. That’s where the absurdity lies. It’s like saying you’re qualified to deal with Canada because you live in Buffalo.

  59. SA Gould
    Posted July 28, 2016 at 6:18 am | Permalink

    The sad truth is that a Hillary presidency will also be a disaster because Republicans *want* her to win: four more years of Benghazi and email hearings, and all the garbage they’ve amassed over a decade. (Don’t think that they aren’t capable of blocking supreme court nominations.

    Then add in the open misogyny. They don’t even have to work at that, it comes naturally to them.

    • Cindy
      Posted July 28, 2016 at 7:12 am | Permalink

      Republicans would prefer a Hillary presidency because she is a neocon just like Bush. She supports the TPP for example, while Trump opposes it. And it is no secret that Republican leadership do not like Trump as he is too much of a wildcard and seeks to shut down things like the TPP.

  60. Posted July 28, 2016 at 6:22 am | Permalink

    Lol, Careless Clinton already exposed thousands of emails to every hacker in the world, including Russia, China, Romania, etc. with her idiotic private server. This is just a tactic by Trump to make sure no one forgets the fact that the FBI says Clinton was extremely careless with US government emails.

  61. Matthew Jenkins
    Posted July 28, 2016 at 6:27 am | Permalink

    During the Brexit campaign, the stated intention to vote ‘out’ dropped after the murder of Ms. Cox, but people forgot after two or three days and resumed their prior positions.

    • jay
      Posted July 28, 2016 at 6:50 am | Permalink

      “resumed their prior positions.”

      As well they should. The decision should be based on something more than the presence or absence of a political murder.

      Brexit was brewing from years of anger over an increasing intrusive bureaucracy. Dictates, down to things like what kind of containers olive oil could be served in in restauants, or how big you tea kettle can be were mandated by a ruling unelected cabal. No wonder people rebelled.

      • jeremypereira
        Posted July 28, 2016 at 7:48 am | Permalink

        That’s all mythical nonsense though spun by British right wing newspapers.

      • Posted July 28, 2016 at 9:40 pm | Permalink


        Someone’s skeptic card is in danger of being revoked.

  62. Posted July 28, 2016 at 6:28 am | Permalink

    I already have bets with some American friends stretching back to last year when it became obvious that Trump is very good at manipulating a section of the population. Educated liberals (and now conservatives too) look at his latest antics and go “see–he’s a loon!”. But what his parish hear is “those people who despise me are frightened of him”. And they are happy to see the whole thing burn to get back at the elites. It just happened to my country–it can happen to yours. (See “Brexit” for details)
    So–I’d be happy to take another bet–very happy to lose it–and if I win it it will go to our campaign to block Trump building a wall across an Irish beach.

  63. Posted July 28, 2016 at 7:32 am | Permalink

    Republicans who can’t neglect their consciences enough to vote for Trump will still be unable to vote for Hillary, but that’s okay. They’ll follow the lead of George H.W. Bush’s third and youngest son (G.W.’s youngest brother) and vote Libertarian.

    That’s enough to split the Republican vote down to size, while the Democratic vote grows full of Hispanics, over immigration, Blacks, over Black Lives Matter, and Women, over equality and reproductive rights.

    I see the stock market fell a little bit, last night. I think it would have fallen much further, were a Trump presidency expected. I think it forecasts an expectation that Hillary will shake things up, there, but in a (relatively) responsible way.

    • Posted July 28, 2016 at 7:37 am | Permalink

      P.S. I bet a notable percentage of Republicans will become independents, now, on their way to switching sides, if Hillary does what they consider a good job in office.

      I wonder whether the Republican party will go the way of the Whigs, and whether the Libertarian Party or Green Party will mature and step up to fill the void? I just cannot stomach the thought of a Tea Party doing that.

      Apologies if these thoughts of mine were already posted by someone else, above. Redundancies are just so darned…. redundant!

  64. curtis anderson
    Posted July 28, 2016 at 7:38 am | Permalink

    Neither of these two would have a ghost of a chance of winning if they weren’t running against the other.

  65. jeremypereira
    Posted July 28, 2016 at 7:56 am | Permalink

    The man who put forward the monumentally absurd idea of building a wall all along the Mexican border and making Mexico pay for it without being damaged will not have any trouble with this one, I’m afraid.

    What scares me is the number of people on my scientifically representative (ahem) Facebook feed who are Bernie supporters and who seem to want to avenge him against Hillary by letting Trump win.

    • Cindy
      Posted July 28, 2016 at 7:58 am | Permalink

      Mexico will pay for the wall in the sense that billions of dollars will no longer be sent back home to Mexico by illegals

      • jeremy pereira
        Posted July 28, 2016 at 8:51 am | Permalink

        Is it your opinion that the wall will actually

        a) get built

        b) stop illegal immigrants

        c) stop Mexicans (legal or illegal) from sending money home?

        The point is that the wall is an absurdly stupid idea but it hasn’t hurt Trump at all.

      • Posted July 28, 2016 at 9:05 am | Permalink

        That is the Trump campaign claim alright, but the idea that it’ll work in practice is ludicrous. Two very simple workarounds: have a legal citizen wire the money for you, or simply mail the money in la package.

        • Posted July 28, 2016 at 9:06 am | Permalink

          *a package.

          That was not a poor attempt at Spanish….lol

          • merilee
            Posted July 28, 2016 at 10:19 am | Permalink

            Thought maybe you meant a workaround through France??

  66. Vaal
    Posted July 28, 2016 at 10:02 am | Permalink

    I’ve had a sinking feeling that Trump will win and this doesn’t abate it.

    I really don’t know if Trump can get enough votes. But I’ve been interacting with numerous folks who plan to vote for Trump, and I know there isn’t a chance in hell this latest faux pas from Trump will alter their trajectory. Their hate for Hillary is far, far too strong, and their reasons for voting for Trump are already not based on any sort of sober analysis of whether he is fit to govern.

  67. Kevin Meredith
    Posted July 28, 2016 at 10:29 am | Permalink

    Trump is the only candidate for president who has made explicitly clear his dislike for and fear of non-whites. For a horrifyingly large number of Americans, this is all that matters.

    This message is so powerful to these people that Trump’s profound and extensive flaws as a human being are insignificant. They will vote for him no matter what else he does or says, period, because he hates the way they hate.

    All politics is visceral, after all, and you don’t get more visceral than hate.

    Swing voters are essential here, but right now they’re buying into Hillary’s negatives and possibly aren’t as aware of Trump’s flaws. I hope he’ll continue to be himself and slowly lose support, but right now he’s polling better than Hillary, and I still see the outcome as frighteningly tentative.

  68. Chukar
    Posted July 28, 2016 at 12:03 pm | Permalink

    What’s the proper email address for me to send my bet to. I’ve never emailed you before (only commented), and it’s not at all obvious to me what your email address is.

    Chuck Almdale

  69. Posted July 28, 2016 at 4:40 pm | Permalink

    If Trump can make enough undecideds believe that Hillary is a dangerous liar, some Dems might vote Green or Libertarian. I was a Bernie follower, and if other Bernie followers decide they can’t vote for Clinton because of how the system was rigged and Bernie lost unfairly, they, too, might vote Green or Libertarian.

    If some Republicans can’t stomach voting for Trump, they will likely vote Liberarian or Green, and the Tea Partiers who aren’t neo-Nazi types will “vote their conscience”, as well.

    That won’t be enough Libertarian or Green votes for either of those candidates to win.

    It might be enough Democratic votes lost, though, to make sure Trump wins.

    Need I say more?

    Trump doesn’t have to run faster than the angry grizzly bear chasing the two of them. He only has to run faster than Clinton.

  70. Filippo
    Posted July 28, 2016 at 7:42 pm | Permalink

    I read in the 7/28/16 hard-copy NY Times that U.S. intelligence officials will be briefing Trump (and surely Clinton).

    What is the legal warrant for that?

    Will the intel types be briefing other candidates in addition to Trump and Clinton and if not, why not?

    Why not wait until after the election? Plenty of time thereafter for such briefings for the winner.

    Beyond that, I don’t think Trump can keep his mouth shut about the substance of such briefings, given his track record.

    • Posted July 30, 2016 at 9:56 am | Permalink

      There are briefings, and then there are briefings. Hillary has the intelligence and background to build on that would allow briefings in rather deep detail.

      Trump has such Dunning-Kruger know-it-all-ness, the less he receives, the more brilliant he’ll believe he is.

      I expect the briefers will realize this quickly, if they don’t know already know, and “streamline” Trump’s briefings to suit. In doing so, they can empower themselves as the tail that wags the Donald — er, dog.

  71. Posted July 29, 2016 at 11:07 am | Permalink

    What odds and what terms? I’d go 1:10 or be generous to you and do 1:5 odds Trump wins, and I’ll put up $1000. If I’m right, you pay me $10,000. Are you so sure now?

    • tomh
      Posted July 29, 2016 at 12:09 pm | Permalink

      Why would anyone do that, when you can bet Clinton in Vegas at 1/2?

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