|Okay, Trump now we know you have no problem,|
except what a wacky, narcissistic dick you are.
(Note. Several WaPo links here may well be behind a paywall. Right-clicking on the links and choosing to view in private or incognito windows with your browser lets users often slip past these paywalls or extend their free-view allotment.)
Watching the reports of Brussels this morning, I look at the presidential candidates, and, let's face it, it comes down to Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton. All right, maybe it's not over, but for all intents and purposes it is.
So, before the people, let's put the question: In this world that we see today reflected in the unfolding tragedy that is terrorism in Brussels -- and beyond, to be sure -- who do you want in the Oval Office, given our choices?
I don't even need to answer that question. Let's let the Washington Post Editorial Board answer:
There was, first, [during Trump's interview with them] a breezy willingness to ignore facts and evidence. Are there racial disparities in law enforcement? “I’ve read where there are and I’ve read where there aren’t,” Mr. Trump said. “I mean, I’ve read both. And, you know, I have no opinion on that.” Global warming? “I am not a great believer in man-made climate change,” he said.
In that, Mr. Trump is not different from many Republican politicians these days. But no one can match the chasm between his expansive goals and the absence of proposals to achieve them. He would remake the nation’s libel laws, but how, given Supreme Court jurisprudence on the First Amendment? “I’d have to get my lawyers in to tell you,” he said. How could he implement a ban on noncitizen Muslims entering the country? “Well look, there’s many exceptions,” he said. “There’s many — everything, you’re going to go through a process.”
Predictable is bad. What's bad is how unpredictable a Trump presidency would be, given how he dances around real answers to real questions. WaPo's The Fix analyzed Trump's answers and found them baffling:His answer to racial disparity and urban poverty is to create jobs. But how? “Economic zones,” “incentives” and improving the “spirit” of inner-city residents. “You have to start by giving them hope and giving them spirit, and that has not taken place,” Mr. Trump said. How would he push back against Chinese expansionism in the South China Sea? “We have to be unpredictable,” Mr. Trump said. “We’re totally predictable. And predictable is bad.”
Post publisher Fred Ryan asked Trump if he would consider using a tactical nuclear strike against the forces of the Islamic State, were he president. Trump responded that he didn't want to "start the process of nuclear," then reminding the editors that he was "a counter-puncher."
"Remember, one thing that everybody has said, I’m a counter-puncher," Trump said. "Rubio hit me. Bush hit me. When I said low energy, he’s a low-energy individual, he hit me first. He spent, by the way -- he spent 18 million dollars’ worth of negative ads on me. That’s putting..."
Ryan jumped in. "This is about ISIS," he reminded Trump. "You would not use a tactical nuclear weapon against ISIS?"
"I’ll tell you one thing," Trump replied. "This is a very good looking group of people here. Could I just go around so I know who the hell I’m talking to?"Trump never got around to answering the question. Surprise, surprise.
Answers and facts, during Trump's campaign at least, are the least of Trump's concerns. Again, at WaPo, fact-checker Glenn Kessler runs down Trump's truthiness:
There’s never been a presidential candidate like Donald Trump — someone so cavalier about the facts and so unwilling to ever admit error, even in the face of overwhelming evidence. At last count, nearly 65 percent (17 of 27) of our rulings of his statements turned out to be Four Pinocchios, our worst rating. By contrast, most politicians tend to earn Four Pinocchios 10 to 20 percent of the time. (Moreover, most of the remaining ratings for Trump are Three Pinocchios.)I'm not a big fan of mainstream media's fact-checking services -- it's often shoddy and off-target and full of judgments like "Obama's main statement may be essentially true, but so much else around his comments seem off the mark, so we'll give him a "Mostly False." -- but Trump needs busting, and Kessler's assembling of a list whoppers does offer a glimpse of Trump's disdain for facts.
And that's just in today's Washington Post. Considering how dangerous the world is out there, especially in light of what has just transpired in Brussels, let's not let a counter-puncher, who's "unpredictable," who's got big hands and has "no problem down there, I assure you," get anywhere near the presidency. That will be a disaster, that I can tell you.