Observations On The Obscene Trump Audio Scandal

4217128-caveman

A leaked audio  obtained and released by the Washington Post has Donald Trump commenting to media personality Billy Bush about his attempts to bed a married woman, a few months months after he married Melania Trump, his third wife. When he sees a beautiful woman, the GOP standard-bearer said, he  kisses her without consent.  “When you’re a star, they let you do it. You can do anything,” he explains. He describes a married woman who wouldn’t sleep with him by making fun of her as having“phony tits.” Then he advises Bush, “Grab them by the pussy.”

Nice.

But not surprising. Not even a little bit.

Observations:

1. CNN’s senior White House correspondent Jim Acosta believes this may finish Trump’s presidential campaign. Utter incompetence and confirmation bias: why does anyone listen to “experts” this dense? Acosta, and I’m sure he has lots of company, apparently has learned nothing over the past year. What kind of person who currently supports Trump despite his constant vulgarity, misogyny, meanness, dishonesty, irresponsible statements and foolishness would regard this unremarkable male jerkishness as a last straw? Of course he talks like that. I never had any doubt that he talked like that, just as I never doubted that Hillary Clinton regarded Bernie’s supporters as gullible children, as a recent leak of her candid comments revealed. Did you think Trump talked about women differently than this when he was with other guys?

2. Why would talking in this juvenile, boorish and sexist manner be relevant to anything, especially in this election? It’s no secret that alpha males like Trump and many rich, powerful male celebrities are prone to this jerk-speak about women. We know Jack Kennedy, heck, all the Kennedys, regarded women as their personal playthings: do Democrats really believe Jack, Bobby and Teddy didn’t talk like this or worse? LBJ? Nixon was famously crude. And then there’s Bill Clinton: are Hillary supporters and Bill’s fans, not to mention Clinton’s allies in the news media,  going to have the vapors over a Republican who says “pussy”? If so, the hypocrisy will be record-setting.

3. Is the material difference that it was caught on tape? Does a sexist tree falling in the forest make a sound?

4. Is this really how Presidential campaigns going to be fought from now on? Gotcha videos, e-mails and tapes? How ugly, petty and degrading.  And frightening: nobody apparently can say anything in private that they don’t want to see in a New York Times headline. Do we really want to live in a world like that? If not, why is it fair to make political candidates live in that world? The Golden Rule applies.

5. Should the Post have published this? Oh, I think so; it’s news, sort of. The public has aright to know what it should already have known beyond the shadow of a doubt. Donald Trump is a narcissist, sexist, boor who has no respect for women and has the general life view of a very rich, very spoiled, 13 year-old. Stop the presses!

6. Trump has registered his version of an apology:

“This was locker room banter, a private conversation that took place many years ago. Bill Clinton has said far worse to me on the golf course – not even close. I apologize if anyone was offended.”

It’s a #9 apology on the Apology Scale, a classic non-apology apology:

9. Deceitful apologies, in which the wording of the apology is crafted to appear apologetic when it is not (“if my words offended, I am sorry”).

Trump should have stopped after “many years ago.” It is an interesting statement, as once again Trump proves that he is incapable of reasoning by anything other than rationalizations. This combines #1, “Everybody does it” with #22, “It’s not the worst thing,” along with #50 A, The Underwood Maneuver, or “That’s in the past.”

What he should have said was that his comments were disrespectful of women, crude and undignified, and certainly not appropriate banter for a national leader or a  role model. He should have noted that guys engage in such exchanges far too often, and they must learn that doing so entrenches sexist attitudes that impede equal treatment of women, and enable a culture that is unacceptably tolerant of sexual assault and sexual harassment. Moreover…Oh, heck, I can’t write any more: I’m giggling too hard. Trump would no more say this than he would fly to Pluto by wiggling his toes.

46 Comments

Filed under Character, Ethics Train Wrecks, Etiquette and manners, Gender and Sex, Journalism & Media

46 responses to “Observations On The Obscene Trump Audio Scandal

  1. Patrice

    Well, there’s a mental image worth holding onto — Trump wiggling his toes on the way to the outer regions of the solar system.

  2. Wayne

    Bill Clinton and Trump would have been great buddies if they had gone to the same college together. If Trump had any class, he’d immediately withdraw from the presidential race. But no, sadly his ego is too big.

  3. You are probably right that the Kennedys’ spoke this way, but unlike Trump at least with the Kennedys there was alcohol involved.

  4. dragin_dragon

    Re: Your number 4…Do you remember Romney’s statement, secretly recorded and published? “I’m not going to actively seek the vote of the 47%”. So, to answer your question, yeah, this is the new ‘normal’…iPhone recordings done clandestinely, and presented publicly. There is no cure. The tech has done us in.

  5. deery

    Dude…do you really think the scandal is that Trump said some “bad words” or he doesn’t think too highly of women? You seem to be missing the salient part, which is that Trump is openly boasting about his past sexual assaults of women, and lackey Billy Bush is laughing and egging him on and encouraging this behavior.

    That can’t be brushed aside as “locker room banter” or “boys will be boys.” These are actual crimes he is bragging about, and should not be minimized in such a manner. You don’t seem to have even picked up on this part of it.

    • Because its just talk, that’s why. Trump lies about everything else, and you believe him about this? Have you ever BEEN with jerks like this, and their sexual fantasies? I have. I’ve even roomed with some. He’s boasting, and he’s saying that the women don’t object. Sexual harassment requires unwelcome advances, and what he’s saying is that if you are rich and famous, it isn’t unwelcome.

      People boasting about things like this is not a crime, doesn’t prove there was a crime, doesn’t constitute evidence of a crime and doesn’t indicate that there is a real victim….especially when the speaker is a fantasist like Trump.

      So let me get this straight: Trump says he saw thousands of NJ Muslims cheering on 9/11, and he’s mocked for lying; then this toad boasts about all his sexual conquests and it’s the equivilent of a notarized statement to you? We have actual evidence of Clinton’s sexual assaults, and you don’t believe them, but a serial liar talks about this crap to D-list celebrity and its gospel. How about if Trump was on tape saying he caught a 400 pound mackerel?

      And don’t call me “dude” again. I mean it.

      • deery

        It’s more than “just talk.” Trump is still undergoing a trial where he is accused of raping a 13 year old girl. There has long been accusations of sexual harassment of his female employees, and contestants from his various enterprises. Coupled with him unashamedly bragging about committing such sexual assaults, it definitely lends some credence to it.

        “I’m automatically attracted to beautiful women — I just start kissing them, it’s like a magnet. Just kiss. I don’t even wait. And when you’re a star, they let you do it. You can do anything,” he said in the 2005 conversation. “Grab ’em by the pussy.”

        So he’s bragging about going up to random women, assaulting them, and getting away with it because he’s a star. And you given his background, you dismiss it all as “just talk” and Trump just “being a jerk”? And then wonder why more women don’t come forward with their assaults. I think we can clearly see why.

        • I didn’t dismiss it or not dismiss it. It wouldn’t pass muster as evidence in any trial. It’s boasting and words, and that’s all. He gives no context for the comments at all. Is he talking about employees? Friends? Dates? You have no idea.He doesn’t say a thing about “random women.” Is he talking about alone with them in a room? In a public place? Based on this, I can’t tell (and neither can you) if he’s even guilty of what we see Joe Biden doing over and over again—touching and fondling young women during photo ops. The Atlantic did an exhaustive review of Trumps lawsuits and scandals. There is no ongoing rape trial, obviously, and no current lawsuit either. An old lawsuit for sexual assault that was hopelessly enmeshed with the woman’s husband’s lawsuit on business matter was dropped.

          I wouldn’t be shocked if Trump engaged in sexual assault as often as Bill Clinton, but what he boasts to Billy Bush proves nothing at all, except that Trump behaves like Trump, all the time.

          • deery

            When you have at least one lawsuit where a woman alleges that Trump “grabbed her by the pussy”, another for rape of an underage girl, countless charges of sexual harassment, and he is on tape bragging about doing just that to women, it should be hard to dismiss it all as “just talk”, fantasies, or “jerk-speak.” He is admitting to sexual assaults while others yuk it up, and others merely dismiss it all as lewd talk.

            Bill Clinton may or may not have raped women. He isn’t running for office. It’s irrelevant to Trump’s admission, and for all of his numerous flaws, at least you don’t have Clinton on tape confessing to assaulting women. It isn’t a particularly high bar to pass over, yet Trump still couldn’t do it.

            • See, I’m a lawyer, Deery. Lawsuits aren’t evidence of anything. People sue rich people like Trump for looking at them funny.I can’t find your so-called rape case anywhere: rape is a crime; not a civil matter. There is no rape charge. The other case was withdrawn by the accuser—not settled, withdrawn. That episode and this this juvenile boasting are unrelated until there is a name that relates them. I get it: you WANT to treat this as an admission of some kind. But that’s pure bias. It isn’t.

        • Carcarwhite

          How is it an assault if they welcome it? Can’t be possible. He right too. Women throw themselves at men in power. As a woman I can say yup he’s bragging and probably gets very little and his talk is very typical of many men and who cares? I’ve hear young pre teens talk about women in similar manners of how they can’t stop staring at tits and were fascinated with women’s tits and I. It was bragging about how they had touched some. Trump like many men never grew up here it seems. And yeah would be nice to have decent people running.

      • Chris

        “We have actual evidence of Clinton’s sexual assaults”

        Other than the testimony of the accusers, what evidence are you talking about?

        • Other than the smoking gun, what evidence do you have of the murders? Victim testimony is evidence. In the case of Monica, we have a blue dress. How quickly they forget.

          • deery

            So victim testimony in the case of Clinton is enough evidence for you, though she never even bothered to press charges or file suit of any kind, but victim testimony is irrelevant for you in Trump’s case, though his own ex-wife has claimed he raped her, and others have filed suit? Ok. Not to mention, he has admitted on tape to committing sexual assault. Little things like that.

            Monica has testified that however unseemly, the sexual contact between she and Clinton was very consensual on her part. But the herculean efforts to throw Clinton in there in a blatant attempt at deflection continue. Clinton is irrelevant. Trump is on the record boasting about sexually assaulting women, and some people seem determined to dismiss it as mere jerk boy behavior. That is very concerning. Or should be.

            • 1. Monica was a victim of textbook sexual harassment that would get now and would get then any CEO fired from a competent corporation. An employee CAN’T give consent to a boss, especially the President of The United States.

              2. Ivana has specifically and repeatedly denied that she was raped.

              3. Trump, as I said and you choose to ignore, mentioned no specific woman or women, and alluded to none. His statement could not and should not be used as evidence of anything.

              4. The comments on the tape are not an admission of sexual assault. Boy, it isn’t as if the guy doesn’t do and say enough that’s legitimately horrible, you have to exaggerate and distort it anyway. This is ugly, sexist but typical locker room-style posturing and boasting, as I said, and as fair and reasonable people recognize. Calling it anything else is over-reach, and just helps Trump.

              • Chris

                Jack, the only smoking gun here is the smoking gun indicating your extreme anti-Clinton bias. As Deery points out, you are using victim testimony against Clinton but not Trump as “evidence.” You also throw Monica in there when we are talking specifically about sexual assault, trying to conflate that with low-level consensual harassment. But the real smoking gun was when you said “I wouldn’t be shocked if Trump engaged in sexual assault as often as Bill Clinton,” presuming guilt.

                Your bias is hurting the quality of your writing and your argumentation.

                • No, Chris, your state of denial denial is hurting your credibility. Bill Clinton’s conduct as a sexual predator is only slightly less well documented than Bill Cosby’s. I work in the sexual harassment field. There has been no victim testimony against Trump. Paula Jones testified under oath that Clinton preyed on her. Katherine Willey registered a complaint against Clinton. Those who have investigated Juanita Broaddrick’s claims have found them and her very credible. Clinton has multiple accusers on the record, and lied under oath about the Lewinsky matter. Clinton had a staffer, Betsey Wright, whose job it was to deal with his so-called “Bimbo eruptions,” that is, women threatening to go public with Bill’s conduct. Clinton engaged in a full on coverup to hide an illicit relationship of sexual exploitation using an intern half his age. What anti-Clinton bias? Clinton’s conduct has been accepted by all but the most corrupted of his apologists and enablers.

                  We now know that Nancy O’Dell is the woman Trump was talking about, whom he says he “moved on.” We have no testimony from O’Dell that he assaulted her. When and if we do, that will be evidence. At this moment, there are several women who will, right now, detail Bill Clinton’s conduct on the record, and none that will go on the record regarding Trump. You and deery are apparently relying on Ivana’s ambiguous statements that she now denies were allegations of rape, and spousal rape is notoriously hard to prove.

                  All I wrote to deery was the Trump’s taped comments to Bush constitute “admissions” or evidence of nothing. Nor does what Clinton may have said to Trump on the golf course constitute “evidence.” Boasting about conduct is not proof that the conduct occurred, especially when the boaster is a habitual exaggerator and liar.

                  And trust me: manipulating an intern into giving the boss blowjobs is NOT “low-level harassment.” A BACK RUB is low-level harassment. Another argument like that and I’ll start to believe Bill’s claim that you’re on Hillary’s disinformation payroll.

                  • deery

                    Argh! There are several detailed accusations against Trump, if that is the standard that we are going by.

                    First, there is the accusation that he raped a 13 year old girl. That accusation can be found here: http://therealdeal.com/2016/06/20/jane-doe-files-civil-rape-complaint-against-donald-trump-in-ny-court/

                    Then there is the court case where the woman alleges that he “groped her in the pussy” several times.

                    The accusation by a friend of Erin Burnett that he sexually assaulted her n the boardroom, in full view of others, backed up by both male and female coworkers who were there.(Also see the tic-tac detail, the same detail Trump talks about with Bush).

                    The accusation by his wife Ivana that he raped her.

                    Oh, and him openly bragging to others that he likes to sexually assault women, and because of the power differential, relishing the fact that there is nothing that they can do about it.

                    • deery

                      The boardroom story, per CNN:

                      In March 2010, the woman — who asked not to be identified — met Trump in a boardroom in Trump Tower.

                      Another man — a colleague of Burnett’s friend — was in the boardroom at the time of the incident.

                      The woman told Burnett: “Trump took Tic Tacs, suggested I take them also. He then leaned in, catching me off guard, and kissed me almost on lips. I was really freaked out. … After (the meeting), Trump asked me to come into his office alone. Was really unsure what to do. … Figured I could handle myself. Anyway, once in his office he kept telling me how special I am and gave me his cell, asked me to call him. I ran the hell out of there.”

                      The Trump campaign has not responded to a request for comment.

                      The alleged incident mirrors Trump’s own words in the 2005 “Access Hollywood” tape. Trump was talking about actress Arianne Zucker, who was waiting to escort Trump to a soap-opera set on which he was about to tape a cameo appearance.

                      “I’ve gotta use some Tic Tacs, just in case I start kissing her,” Trump said. “You know I’m automatically attracted to beautiful — I just start kissing them. It’s like a magnet. Just kiss. I don’t even wait. And when you’re a star they let you do it. You can do anything.”

                      http://www.cnn.com/2016/10/08/politics/donald-trump-woman-incident/index.html

                      Just empty boasting and fantasies on Trump’s part?

                    • I don’t know, and neither do you. Trump’s account doesn’t fit, because she didn’t just let him do it, did she, if its the same woman? So he’s exaggerating or lying. Wow—you’ve found evidence that he takes Tic Tacs. Meanwhile, anonymous accusers have no probative value, can’t be checked, and shouldn’t be publicized.

                    • deery

                      Jill Harth details Trump violating her: He pushed me up against the wall, and had his hands all over me and tried to get up my dress again and I had to physically say: “What are you doing? Stop it.” It was a shocking thing to have him do this because he knew I was with George, he knew they were in the next room. And how could he be doing this when I’m there for business?

                      http://www.slate.com/blogs/the_slatest/2016/10/07/the_1997_lawsuit_alleging_donald_trump_groped_a_woman.html

                      But just fantasies and empty boasting on Trump’s part.

                    • She withdrew the lawsuit and now refuses to confirm her claims. Sorry: you can’t use her now. Either Trump paid off her husband in the other suit to get her to drop hers, or she filed hers to extort Trump into giving in to her husband. She was never cross-examined, and she recanted her statements. One of Bill’s accusers recanted too—she’s not evidence either. Bill gave Paul Jones cash; Trump did not give her cash.

                      As I said, I wouldn’t be surprised if she was telling the truth.

                    • That lawsuit has already been thrown out twice, once because the address used by the plaintiff, who also uses fake names, is an abandoned property….raise any suspicions there for you Chris? Probably not.

                      It was just filed for the third time at the end of September, and there will be a hearing to see if it has anything to justify going forward. Rape allegations were also made against Alan Dershowitz, that mad rapist, related to Epstein. Talk about a dubious accusation. If I was conspiracy minded, I’d wonder how much the Clintons are paying her. Just a coincidence that the suit was refiled as Hillary’s poll numbers dipped, I’m sure.

                      Normally you sue for alleged rape rather than seek a criminal charge when you know there isn’t sufficient evidence and think you can get a settlement. (Unlike with Cosby, the statute hasn’t run.) The reason this hasn’t been covered even by the left-biased media (the only places highlighting this case are the left-equivilents of Breitbart) is that it’s so dubious. Do you think they’d be freaking out over “pussy” if there was a credible rape allegation to promote, like when they used anonymous accusers to drive Herman Cain out of the race?

                      It’s not enough that I completely condemn Trump on the facts; you want me to hype for Hillary’s camp too.

                      http://fusion.net/story/355598/judge-hearing-trump-underage-rape/

                    • By the way, this has been one of the best and most illustrative discussions ever.

                  • Chris

                    “Bill Clinton’s conduct as a sexual predator is only slightly less well documented than Bill Cosby’s.”

                    Ridiculous. Dozens of women have accused Cosby of rape. Dozens. One woman has accused Clinton of rape. Another has accused him of harassment, and another of assault. Your false equivalence is absurd, and absolutely indicative of bias.

                    (There are memes going around that include names of other “accusers,” but none of them have actually accused Clinton publicly, and at least one–Elizabeth Ward Gracen–has explicitly disputed that she was violated, saying they had a one night stand. Others on the list can’t even be proven to exist.)

                    As Deery pointed out, there are other women who have publicly accused Trump of assault, you just weren’t aware of them, and didn’t care to research to find out. In addition, Trump is what we call a “walking red flag”–he demonstrates the textbook behavior of an abuser. I don’t know if Trump’s statement could be used in a court of law as evidence against him, but tha shouldn’t stop reasonable people from assuming that when he says he’s a sexual predator, he’s being honest.

                    • I said that Clinton’s record as a sexual predator was almost as well-documented, not that as many alleged victims had come forward. As with Cosby, there is literally no chance that Clinton is not a sexual predator. The count is two rape claims ( Eileen Wellstone is an English woman who alleged Clinton raped her in 1969 after she had met him at a pub near Oxford University, England. Clinton was a Rhodes Scholarship student at Oxford at that time) two claims of physical assault, and Lewinsky. Given that Clinton has been quoted by Gennifer Flowers as saying he had hundreds of affairs, it is fair to guess that we are only aware of the tip of the iceberg. Including Monica, there are 17 women who have accused Bill of sexual harassment (using his position and power to seek sex from them), sexual assault, or worse: Juanita Broaddrick, Kathleen Willey, Paula Jones, Sandra Allen James, Eileen Wellstone, Christy Zercher, Carolyn Moffet, Helen Dowdy, Becky Brown, Regina Blakely Hoppet, Monica, and Elizabeth Ward Gracen, Gennifer Flowers, Connie Hamzy, Dolly Kyle Browning, Sally Miller (Sally Perdue),Lencola Sullivan. For a married public official, that’s pretty impressive. Cosby protected his record with his power and influence for decades..only a naif would believe this is Bill’s total.

                      Meanwhile, Bill’s defense consisted of “:it’s just sex” and “everyone lies about sex,” but in Trump’s case, both of these are turned on their heads. A serial liar is taken as confessing criminal behavior boasting to someone he barely knows about no particular incident, and talking about what Bill has done habitually is treated as the ultimate horror.

                      And seriously, what’s your beef? The post doesn’t defend Trump in any way, it just refuses to call it a reliable admission pf criminal behavior when it is not. It is amazing to me that there are still Democrats so brainwashed that they continue to think Bill Clinton isn’t the sociopathic predator he is.

                    • Chris

                      Jack. You literally just responded with the exact same bullshit I told you was from a false internet meme. One of the women you listed as having accused Bill Clinton of sexual harassment, Elizabeth Ward Gracen, has gone on the record numerous times as saying Clinton did nothing wrong to her. Dolly says it was an affair. The rest of those names–aside from Broadrick, Flowers, and Jones–all come from second hand rumors. I have researched Eileen Wellstone extensively; there’s no evidence she exists. At one point I found a pair of articles which claimed she was raped by Clinton that literally linked to *each other* as sources. What is your source for these claims?

                      You’re using the fact that the rape lawsuit against Trump was withdrawn to argue that we shouldn’t hold the rape accusation against him. But almost none of the women you just listed ever sued Clinton, or came out publicly against him at all. Again, with the exception of Broadrick, Flowers and Jones, none of those women ever even publicly accused Clinton of a crime! Your double standards are ridiculous.

                    • Meanwhile, Bill’s defense consisted of “:it’s just sex” and “everyone lies about sex,” but in Trump’s case, both of these are turned on their heads. A serial liar is taken as confessing criminal behavior boasting to someone he barely knows about no particular incident, and talking about what Bill has done habitually is treated as the ultimate horror.

                      When Paula Jones first came out with her accusations, the Democratic leadership understandably and justifiably did not concur with her.

                      But when James Carville made that comment about “Drag a 100 dollar bill through a trailer park and who knows what you’ll find?”, this should have ended Carville’s career as a political consultant with the Democratic Party. He should have become a pariah. Democratic leaders should have demanded that Clinton fire Carville.

                      That did not happen.

                      When Bill Clinton was investigated for perjury in relation to that same case, the Democratic leadership should have, at a minimum, merely said wait and see.Once the evidence became clear, they should have demanded his resignation.

                      instead, they attacked the investigation itself. They said it was only about sex. They attacked the character of Ken Starr. They said everybody does it. they said gentlemen are expected to lie about sex. They attacked the Republicans as being obsessed with sex and wanting to destroy women’s right merely because they opposed perjury.

                      This should have done Clinton in.

                      Instead, Clinton finished his term with over 60% approval rating.

                      James Carville was right when he said character did not matter in the context of presidential popularity among voters.

                      The bar was lowered. or maybe it was already lowered even before the whole scandal with Bill Clinton

                      And there is no way Republicans are going to raise the bar in this context and in this year, not when they are the ones that have the most to lose from it.

      • Steve-O-in-NJ

        Who are you, Officer Rivieri? (Baltimore cop who roughed up kids for calling him “dude” and was justifiably fired). All silliness aside, Jack, boasting or not this is one straw too many for a lot of folks – or it may be the out they were looking for. Donors are pulling their support, at least three congressmen are calling on Trump to step aside, Ryan uninvited him from what was to have been the first time they appeared together.

        Time for Trump to give it up. I really don’t give a damn about the feminist pearl-clutching about what he said, but about the supremely dishonorable aspect of it. I’m not naive enough to think the President should be a Boy Scout, but talk of abusing one’s celebrity status to grope a married woman by her genitals while married to someone else? Sixteen-year-old boys with delusions of grandeur from reading magazines they have no business reading can talk like that and have it not sound (too) ridiculous, because they are sixteen-year-old boys with delusions of grandeur, whose fathers will hopefully set them straight on a few things before they do something stupid or criminal. Anyone even six months in the real world who says something like that is a pig, plain and simple, and is one step away from a criminal. Add to this his refusal to even TRY to prepare for tomorrow night, despite his own running mate showing him how it’s done, a clear indication that the man has a learning curve flatter than Kansas in November, and I give up. The man has no redeeming qualities that make him fit for high office, and I refuse to give this nation it’s own Silvio Berlusconi.

        • Has any officer roughed up someone for “LOL”? Just curious.

        • On the Twitter, it really blows my mind how many men talk about how, “this is how real men talk”, or “everyone I know talks like this, when away from their wife”. What’s more, is that they say this with pride, as if to not talk like this makes one a namby pamby sissy.

          This is pathetic. Yes, many (dare I say most) men tall dirty jokes, laugh at bawdy stories, and act like fools, as a way of relating to and bonding with one another. But, a 60 year old man, bragging (truthfully or not) about grabbing a woman by her genitals, bragging about cheating on his newlywed model wife is just…so…damn…pathetic. And that this is viewed by other men as how to improve their standing in the eyes of other men, that cheating on your family makes you a more impressive man, and is something to brag about, is pathetic. Then again, I think sexual conquest bragging is lame in general, and that we, “as a society” place way too much importance in gettin’ some….so much so that the phrase “you can’t get laid” is an actually effective criticism.

          SMDH.

  6. Wayne

    And now Hillary: How the White House was “managing” the email scandal to prevent damage to her presidential bid. Time to lock them all up.

  7. I think I might be a latent Jungian.

    While I understand that there is a necessary ‘political way’ and ‘governmental way’ to look at all that is happening, and thus the relevance of the perspective of someone (Jack) who has studied the US Presidents, as well as law and ethics, I cannot help but understand things, or try to, through a psychological lens.

    There seem to me numerous ‘fires of hysteria’ burning brightly in different places. The NYTs for example, day by day, becomes more and more strident and shrill in its attempts to do anything — anything! — to stop the momentum forward of Trump. The underbelly of that, it seems to me, reveals starkly the NY Intellectual Establishment which means, in essence, Jewish-perspective and Jewish concern. To me this indicates fairly strongly just how present and influential is the Jewish perspective. I know that no Gentile is allowed to say such a thing without potential serious reaction, so I take it upon myself as (ex-) Jew to point it out. Horkheimer and Adorno were just as terrified of the American populus as they were of the pan-Germans and ‘Trump’ (in my view) represents as a psychological phenomenon the upsurge of affect and will and *disturbance* from the lower orders of society.

    So, I think that there seems to be a bizarre clash between an upper and intellectual class (those with ‘university background’ where the more complete training and indoctrination in standard and presentable views is instilled in people) and those ‘without college background’ as the Times had stressed for some time. That is of course where the ‘deplorables’ are to be found, the same ones that Horkheimer noticed and feared.

    My own view of sexuality is that our modernity has become perverse. In my researches I have noticed that it seems to trace back to Hugh Hefner. That seems to be the entry point. “Let’s go up to my sleek apartment, have a drink or two, and talk about Nietzsche …” and naturally in the hope of one thing leading to another. In simplest terms once you set free the former restrictions, the appetite is piqued and never sated, and it seeks more and more and more *freedom*. My perspective is that all this sexual fury which has invaded fantasy, comics, daytime TV, advertising, lady’s magazines, definitely thr boy’s magazines, movies and of course in the billions of billions of dollars porno industry, and of course also stands behind the homosexualization industries, is all of a kind. It is all one.

    A whole generation of boys since some years now has been raised-up sexually in poor graphic terms. And from what I have read even the girls are getting into it. It is a feature of the present (and I noticed very strongly the evolution in American films, as for example from the conservatism of Make Way For Tomorrow up through A Married Woman and culminating in Tiny Furnature where Lena Dunham finds herself at the nadir of a woman’s downward descent to pure debasement (where she allows herself to have sex in a concrete tube outside and has to listen to the one she’s attracted to talk on about his deranged perversions and she acts as if it is *normal*. Just a detail of the day.

    Here, with Trump, you seem to have a man of the Old School. His ‘discourse’ is non-different in essence from 50 years of cultivated attitude through media like Hefner’s. But this is not the rough stuff and it is not the really ugly stuff. It is *tame* as they say. And now a whole Establishment, a whole Opinion Set, is going to hysterically rise up to convince me that this is some uncommon travesty? A significant percentage of the US world (and Europe and many places) talks exactly like this. And the GIRLS talk just as badly, just as objectifyingly. I have heard women speaking not even very privately in far more graphic details.

    How bizarre it is to see a Perverse Nation, one that has given itself over to perversion at every level, present a face of Puritanism. I just don’t get it. But it is there, just exactly there, that I suggest a *split* is visible. To the worst degree it becomes ‘social psychosis’ whereas now it just appears bizarrely neurotic.

    I guess from the look of things the entire System will rise up and take out The Donald. You would almost expect at this point inanimate objects to come forward and speak out against him. There will be signs in the skies.

    How does one tie-up and resolve such observations as these? See in my mind one desires to believe in the rational, as if a rational conversation in rational terms will set things aright. But the irrational seems to be having its day. (I was going to try to bring in the Creepy Clown hysteria as evidence of dangerous events in the popular psyche — heh heh — but my loyal readership will have to wai).

  8. Ah! Another deflection from the Clintons’ unacceptability – just in time! Planned Parenthood should be running full-page ads in every newspaper, praising Donald and expressing eternal gratitude. Just think how rare abortion would be, if not for guys like him. Hollywood and its stars should be similarly grateful – so much more Bachelor Party and Animal House material! That’ll keep ’em employed off of the drooling teen guys’ (or is it pre-teen, now?) parents’ income for at least the next two presidential terms. “Spartan” is now fully vindicated: Sho’ ‘nuf, Missus, we gots us a rape culture! Just think of how many more women this gives something for them to bitch about and withhold sex [from males] because of. And all the preceding is only merely beginning to scratch the flaccid, neglected, needy scrotal and penile skin of the body of potential benefits to the society. Thank the USA for Donald Trump! The man is walking, talking money, I tell you! More money for all! This latest revelation will induce more males to Islam than any promise of virgins in Heaven ever could. Guys: CAPITALIZE! (Bill Clinton: you know you could use this help from Donald – SCORE, dude, SCORE!)

  9. E2 (nee Elizabeth I)

    Trump is Trump. This should surprise no one. It does not surprise me. What does surprise me is the sheer number of Kennedy and Clinton apologists to this day — two of the most egregious misogynists in presidential history — and the media’s concept that this Trump behavior will surprise anyone or change attitudes toward him. The media once again has revealed its deep belief that we are all morons, have no knowledge of history, and will bend to the media’s will. That offends me as much as Trump does.

  10. Periodically I will link to Amy Alcorn, a blogger and author, who is a level-headed, iconoclast with right-of-center instincts and a nose for ethics issues. Here is what she wrote about the Trump tape:

    “What I was most shocked by was how people are reacting — as if they’re really getting some surprising new piece of information about the guy.

    Say you’re from another planet. All you have to do is take a five-minute look at this guy to know what he’s all about. You don’t need last-minute confirmation from some long-buried tape. I knew it from reading about him in the papers when I lived in New York — and then seeing what a corrupt, awful, and unstable person he is through his statements throughout the campaign.

    In short, Donald Trump is a coarse, corrupt jerk who is horrifyingly close to being president. His behavior around women is in no way surprising or out of character.”

    Exactly. I think it’s obvious. Why wasn’t it obvious to TV reporters, right wing talk show hosts and Republican leaders?

    For most of them, it was. They just didn’t have the integrity, courage and honesty to react appropriately.

  11. wyogranny

    Literally every person running for president is unsuitable in every possible way. We’re looking at the end of the United States of America envisioned by the founders.
    Fundamental transformation…complete.

    • I thought about this statement since I read it yesterday and I think it is 99.5% false. The reason is simple: the Constitution is still the principle and guiding document and the forms of government will go on just as they have been. The same somewhat lumbering, resistant to change systems, the same checks and balances.

      My understanding of the function of government has been a little sketchy so I have been trying to get more clear about how it functions by reading some textbook-like introductions.

      What has become clear is how much the Presidency itself, the office, the responsibilities, the central focus, the concentration of a form of power on this executive function, that has changed radically from what was envisioned by the Founders, and it seems safe to say it changed when the nation shifted from its original organization into an Empire with interests and activities definitely not visualized by these Founders.

      There is such a bizarre tension in the air. What is going to happen? Because what is happening does not follow rational, ordered lines and seems to mirror irrationality, and because the Interests who have vast and inordinate power within the US system are freaking out and doing everything and anything within their power to inhibit Trump and ensure Clinton, one must I think recognize the strange psychological conditions in these last days before election. I keep having this feeling that something really bizarre will happen but perhaps that is just part of the psychological conflagration.

      How relevant or useful may be the psychological analysis I am not sure. But when the ‘conscious attitude’ of a person runs into a dead-end, when they are *stuck* and overburdened by conscious attitudes that no longer work, it is the ‘unconscious’ that unsettles the entire structure. And when that happens the conscious attitude is *invaded* by content from the unconscious. There seems a tremendous amount of psychic tension in the air around the Event of this totally bizarre election and it is showing up in people. Is it the fear of catyclism or is it the longing for it?

      This sounds outlandish — this sort of musing — but I do not think it really is. And even if Hillary Clinton wins, and this seems likely given the uncertainty, and even when ‘things go back to normal’, the strange rupture of the last year will not simply disappear. Something very significant is afoot but to date I have not read anyone who really has a sense what, exactly, is happening and ‘what it means’.

    • The other thing is: In fact the Presidency should not have the power and the centrality that it does. Beyond any doubt that is anti-Constitutional. It seems to me plain as day. In a factionalized Republic the party of the elected president will automatically have too much power. His function then becomes antithetical (it seems to me) to what was envisioned originally.

      Obama becomes a strange example of the populist problem, doesn’t he? He sort of did become the Black man’s president. Or the president of the activist-class. So when a social justice warrior-type takes the Presidency, yes, this is perverse. But it is perverse because too much power has been granted to that office.

      There can be no President in our day who can somehow ‘bridge’ the social divisions which are becoming more noticeable. There is literally a developing segment of the population that desires a Socialist-Trotskyite candidate. And then there are the ‘deplorables’ that do seem to be a class of person without much preparation and even perhaps desire to understand the function of things. But they have appetites and prejudices and they like, I suppose, to watch Reality TV and relish the Reality TV-like way that politics are playing out. If 100 million watched the last debate, Good Lord, maybe 200 million will watch this one!

      (I tend to think out loudly, obviously.)

      How could all that is happening be reined-in? How could things be put back to ‘normal’? What exactly is ‘normal’?

      A country of such vast power and influence is seen teetering on the brinks of an unreal PSYCHOLOGICAL abyss. This is not a material or economic issue. Not one of war. I cannot help but see it as a psychological crisis.

  12. Jack wrote: “What he should have said was that his comments were disrespectful of women, crude and undignified, and certainly not appropriate banter for a national leader or a role model. He should have noted that guys engage in such exchanges far too often, and they must learn that doing so entrenches sexist attitudes that impede equal treatment of women, and enable a culture that is unacceptably tolerant of sexual assault and sexual harassment. Moreover…Oh, heck, I can’t write any more: I’m giggling too hard. Trump would no more say this than he would fly to Pluto by wiggling his toes.”
    _______________________________

    With every post I recapitulate the *role* that my life has provided me, first in relation to my upbringing and my rejection of ‘the religion of my fathers’, which began first by thinking improper thoughts and having inappropriate questions, but has extended to precociousness in asserting what I *see* and what I *understand* even when — especially when! — the people around me are doing all in their power to keep a lid on things and shut me up. The whole story of my life in one aspect is people defining for me How to see and What to see and me seeing it differently and getting into oodles of hotwater when I assert myself. It is what I have to deal with. Its my Fate.

    I think that to get to the bottom of this — this entire manifestation: Trump, his person, his being, his coming to be a spokesman for a submerged population who do not have voice, and also and very clearly the sexual and indeed the phallic manifestation, so very clear, need to be better understood.

    But let me be plain. You just have to bust out and say certain things because no one else is doing it. A whole Establishment of girly-men, men who have debased themselves in service to a too-powerful Mommy figure, men who seem to be afraid of themselves as men, with defined desires and with potency and power, are going to come forth in a repentant line and kneel down before the Moloch of political correctness and declare, confessionally, how ‘inappropriate’ Trumps comments are, and that they have daughters and such. (While their daughters, I’ll have you know, have a very different vision of things. For God’s Sake I have girlfriends who have led pretty libertine sex-lives and have heard tales that PALE any of this tame stuff).

    Wow. What is the meaning of this? Remember: America is a perverse nation. It has pioneered the crass sexualization of children and sexy girls, and it has also pioneered another manifestation of phallo-centrism: the homosexual movement; the boy-love movement. Sex and sex-energy and sex-as-value in itself, sex as a commodity, sex as an industry, sex as a channel you can turn on in your bedroom, these are American productions.

    Enter the Pious Hypocrite …

    There is something here, something in this whole manifestation and the way it is playing out (a theater of symbols and coincidences) that points very strongly to issues of masculinity, or perhaps a crisis of masculine identity? If Trump is anything, Trump is a manifestation of the American Masculine Self. Could be that he is an older version of it (a crude 50s and 60s version?), but even though it is all embarrassingly crass and painful to listen to the taped braggery, the fact that it is made into a national issue and, at the bottom, seems to represent a deep discomfort with the REALITY of sexuality and the actual way it works, not only the way men conduct themselves but what women want of men (I am sorry to say and this embarrasses me but but it all has to do with the erect phallus; it is required for reproduction and ‘sacred function’ just as it is for sex-sport and the game of sex is now and has always been a disturbing and yet exciting apsect of male-female dynamics).

    I don’t know where these observations lead but they seem to point, at basic levels, to emasculation processes. Shall HRC be the ‘female’ camp with its progressive politically correct, in league with the NY Intellectual Establishment, to defeat an older American archetype?

    “Physical phallos has become a religious and psychological symbol because it decides on its own, independent of its owner’s ego decision, when and with whom to spring into action. It is thus an appropriate metaphor for the unconcious self, and specifically the masculine mode of the unconscious”. [Eugene Monick, “Phallos: Sacred Image of the Masculine”]

    More when I know more … 😉

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