Wednesday, August 03, 2016


Donald Trump swears he doesn't think the use of nuclear weapons is a swell idea:
Donald Trump’s presidential campaign denied a report on Wednesday that the Republican presidential nominee had three times asked a foreign policy adviser why the U.S. could not use its vast nuclear arsenal.

“There is no truth to this,” spokeswoman Hope Hicks told The Hill in an email, as the anecdote from MSNBC anchor Joe Scarborough gained traction on the internet.
Here's what Scarborough said on the air this morning:
SCARBOROUGH: ... I'll be careful here. Several months ago, a foreign policy expert on the international level went to advise Donald Trump, and three times he asked about the use of nuclear weapons. Three times he asked, at one point, "If we have them, why can't we use them?"


SCARBOROUGH: That's one of the reasons why he has -- he just doesn't have foreign policy experts around him.

BARNICLE: Trump? Trump asked three times whether we can use nuclear weapons?

SCARBOROUGH: Three times in an hour briefing, "Why can't we use nuclear weapons?"
The head of Trump's campaign, Paul Manafort, says this is inaccurate because Trump hasn't had any meetings of the kind Scarborough describes.

But Scarborough wasn't talking about the formal security briefings given to presidential nominees. Scarborough was talking about meetings with foreign policy experts. We know Trump has had a couple of those -- in May he met with James Baker and with Henry Kissinger.

Trump went on to claim that he won Kissinger over, or at least persuaded him that he'd be feared as president:
Donald Trump said Henry Kissinger agrees with his foreign policy ideas at a rally in Fresno, California Friday.

“One of the biggest diplomats in the country who is a friend of mine, you saw recently I actually met with him and it was all over the place, so you can figure it out,” Trump began, apparently referencing a meeting he had with Kissinger, former secretary of state and foreign policy guru, in the middle of May.

Trump continued: “And he said, ‘Donald, I thought you were wrong in your approach. I thought it was too tough. But you know what? All of those countries are calling me, What do we do, what do we do, how can we make him happy?'”
But Kissinger denied that:
Through a spokesperson, Kissinger disputed Trump’s account. “On foreign policy, you identify many key problems” Kissinger said of Trump. “I do not generally agree with the solutions. One-shot outcomes are probably not possible.”
"One-shot outcomes are probably not possible." What did Kissinger's spokesperson mean by that? Was that an overly cryptic way of signaling the fact that Trump had said he could settle any international dispute with one nuke?


I don't know why this months-old conversation came to light only now. Maybe Scarborough, who was a Trump lackey for months, didn't want to go public with it at the time, and is doing so now to try to help his precious GOP put some distance between itself and the floundering embarrassment of the Trump campaign. Or maybe the expert -- Kissinger or whoever it was -- didn't give Scarborough the OK to go public with the story until now. I can imagine that the expert didn't quite believe that Trump is as dangerous as he is until this week-- a lot of supposedly smart political insiders were similarly asleep at the wheel until now.

Maybe Scarborough is going public with the story as part of this exercise in futility:
ABC News has learned that senior party officials are so frustrated -- and confused -- by Donald Trump's erratic behavior that they are exploring how to replace him on the ballot if he drops out.

... Trump would have to voluntarily exit the race. Officials say there is no mechanism for forcing him to withdraw his nomination. (Trump has not given any indications that he no longer wants to be his party's nominee.)
Of course he hasn't, you idiots.

The Republican establishment may be sick of Trump, but Trump isn't sick of Trump. He may not be enjoying himself as much as he was when he was winning primaries, but he likes himself, and he likes being liked by crowds. He sincerely believes the conspiracy theories he peddles, so not only will he respond to a loss by saying he was cheated, he'll mean it. He's a pure product of right-wing propaganda. He believes in nukes because thinks every problem has a simple solution ("toughness," "resolve"), and he believes he'd win a fair election because the right has been telling us for years that Democrats only win elections as a result of fraud. So no, he's not going anywhere.


Unknown said...

Maybe RNC officials can surreptitiously insert "Jr." on all the ballots on Election Day?

Feud Turgidson said...

Okay, Manafort isn't outright lying, because he's not referring to the meeting Trump had with ancient Doctor Strangelove and Monroe administration presidential advisor James the 3rd (Baker), Manafort is referring to a formal national security hearing given to "all" major party nominees going back to the Magna Carta or whatevr.

But hold on a sec: Paul Manafort, former consultancy partner to the late Lee Atwater, current consultancy partner to Roger Stone and Charlie Black, Vladimir Putin's contact to Donald Trump, is 'sitting in' on US IC national security briefing sessions?

Now I'm curious to know if the briefings are conducted in Livonian with everyone outfitted as a Teutonic Knight.

Unknown said...

I do not get all the Brouhaha now. Trump said this in April in same Town Hall with Chris Mathews where he said "abortion. Has to be some punishment" A few questions after that he said "If we have Nukes why dont we use them". That was in April.

Feud Turgidson said...

BTW, FWIW, Herr Doktor Professor Merkwuerdigliebe turned 93 this past May, a month after James III turned 86.

'Yeah okay, I get that Jim, but I need to ask Henry again: I open the case and where exactly is the button? What color is it? I can change the code, right? Like, to "admin", or "DJT"? Because I'm not good with remembering numbers.'

Feud Turgidson said...

'Listen, Henyr: Can I see your Nobel medal? Nice. You know, people ussually give things of this nature, like tribute to a potentate. No, I'm not kidding; sure, I'm kidding about the potentate part, but not the tribute. Do you mind if I have this? Because Obama, he got one, so if I can show one to the press, that'd be more, you know, presidential. And I'm gonna change the engraving, a little, the name, just so you know.'

Victor said...

tRUMP isn't moving to the center, he's moving to fucking insanity!

Thanks, GOP, and the loon's in your base that you've coddled for decades, as they grew more bigoted and insane.

jsrtheta said...

No, he is not the product of right-wing mania. He is sui generis. His success to date may be the product of right-wing mania, but he himself is not. He is what we know him to be: A megalomaniacal narcissist, for whom ideology is simply a vessel, not the object of the voyage.

And, yes, he is certainly capable of walking away from all this. He's done it in the past, over and over. When Trump senses failure is in the offing, he puts other powers in place, and then blames them when the inevitable results. He always takes his money and runs.

So the thought of him withdrawing is not unbelievable. He is already laying the groundwork for such a move now, by proclaiming the election is fixed, and therefore he has no stake in staying in. He doesn't give two shits for the Republican Party, so there is no pain in doing this. And because he reinvents reality every time he opens his mouth, it is a minor task to convince himself that he is absolutely right to withdraw.

KenRight said...

I don't see it that way.
Perhaps Trump is trying to pre-empt vote fraud by so suggesting.

On the nuke issue-hasn't Putin warned the West and the US in the recent past
Russia has nukes and will use them if need be, if pushed too far?
Did anyone here or in Russia call for his dismissal on that basis?

And aren't the neconlib team of "fuck Europe" Hillary/Obama/Nuland doing the pushing, while Trump is saying how nice it can be if we get along with Russia?

Again, case closed -Clinton is the danger.

jsrtheta said...

Oh, that Ken! He is a caution!

The New York Crank said...

I agree with Jeff Ryan. I wouldn't put it beyond Trump to say, in effect, "Rigged games are for losers, so I'm taking my bat and ball and I'm going home."

I find that scarier than if he stays. Odds are, if he stays he'll lose the election. If he leaves, his likely successor is Mike Pence, who at lest gives the appearance of sanity, especially in comparison to The Donald. In that case, we' might get in the White House a Tea Party Republican who will drag us back into some dystopian version of the 18th Century.

Yours very crankily,
The New York Crank

jsk said...

Maanfort is already two-thirds of the way towards completing the old lawyer joke. "First, my client never had any such meeting; second, I was at that meeting, and my client never said anything of the sort; and third, he did say that, and he was completely right to say it."

jsrtheta said...

Up there with "My client didn't steal that car. And if he didn't steal that car, he was just borrowing it. And if he wasn't borrowing it, it's his car."

Feud Turgidson said...

Jeff Ryan, the standard criminal attorney version goes,

There was no theft, the vic is pulling a con. If the car was stolen my client was working in a rehab center in Lithuania at the time. Okay, not "working" as in a listed employee, more like in the landscape detail in a minimum security facility. But if my client was involved, he had a color of right.

Gerald Parks said...

“Amazingly, given his erratic behavior for more than a year, the issue of Trump’s mental stability has received relatively little attention.”

Does anyone remember ever reading or even thinking THIS about a presidential nominee from a MAJOR political party?

The GOP/Republican Party has been a complete disaster for America in the 21st Century ...starting with Bush/Cheney 2001-2008 and carrying through TWO Congress'(13 & 14) ...the 2 worst in US history.

Its not just their is the entire party and its supporters ...they've lost their GD minds!

Glennis said...

“And he said, ‘Donald, I thought you were wrong in your approach. I thought it was too tough. But you know what? All of those countries are calling me, What do we do, what do we do, how can we make him happy?'”

What does this even MEAN? That other nations' leaders were calling Kissinger to find out how to appease Trump? Huh?

Green Eagle said...

"He sincerely believes the conspiracy theories he peddles"

I think a comment about sincerity is appropriate here. People believe lies, largely, not because they are plausible but because it suits their interests to do so. A result of this fact is that there is no one on earth more likely to believe your lies than yourself, because no one has as much interest in believing them.

After all, do you doubt that Hitler and Goebbels and Himmler sincerely believed they were building a better world? "Sincerity" is a much overrated virtue.