03 Mar 2016

The Adults in the Room Can’t Stand That Schoolyard Bully Trump

Humor 42 Comments

I believe this is how Socrates dealt with a boor, as well:

Trump Critics

(I didn’t cut and paste. The reason I made this post is that the above happened to be contiguous in my Twitter feed.)

I’m being dead serious. I couldn’t stand Trump in the beginning of this thing. But seeing people call him Hitler day in and day out, and continue to talk about “stopping Trump” when really they mean “stopping the vast number of people who keep voting for him,” makes me no longer detest the guy. I have to think this barrage of smug attacks is having the same effect on other people too.

42 Responses to “The Adults in the Room Can’t Stand That Schoolyard Bully Trump”

  1. E. Harding says:

    “I couldn’t stand Trump in the beginning of this thing”

    -Same here, at least until July/August.

    “I have to think this barrage of smug attacks is having the same effect on other people too.”

    -It’s getting really annoying, to be quite honest. I don’t remember this happening to Rmoney at this stage of his campaign.

    • Andrew_FL says:

      Maybe it should have.

    • Guest says:

      David Stockman’s latest article about Romany paints an entirely new picture. http://davidstockmanscontracorner.com/mitt-romney-is-the-real-super-fraud-heres-the-proof-chapter-and-verse/

    • Tel says:

      Trump is out of control.

      That is to say, the lobbyists, donors and party establishment who control all the other candidates have great difficulty controlling Trump… and this freaking scares the poo poo out of them. Standing at a not quite safe distance, I find this enormously entertaining.

        • Tel says:

          The “Trump Voters” circle should have been drawn about 1000x larger than the “Ardent Mitt Romney Fans” circle.

          When has a good conspiracy theory (or Trump promise) ever had to stand up to a fact-check?

          Weeeellll there was that time Trump mentioned people in New York cheering on 911, and then the media tried to pretend it never happened, until someone dug up the reports from the very same newspapers that tried to claim they never reported that. That one stood up to a fact check pretty well I think.

          Then there was the one where Trump said that the Iraq War didn’t make anybody safer, because it was a stupid idea… and they don’t like him saying that but it’s holding up pretty dang well to fact checking at well.

          Now they are down to things like linking him to the KKK? I mean really, these are the same people who want to talk about “facts”. They wonder why nobody listens to them.

          • Zack says:

            Trump claimed he saw “thousands and thousands” of people celebrating in the streets. I haven’t seen any news reports describing anything like this. Do you have a link?

            He was going around claiming for months that knew the Iraq invasion was going to be a disaster and that he was warning against it. That turned out to be a complete lie.

            • guest says:

              At the time, I don’t remember any stories about Muslims in New Jersey cheering, but rather in the Middle East.

              I’ll keep an eye out, but you don’t need a video of muslims cheering to know that they hate free markets.

              They may falsely blame free markets for crony capitalism and such, but they are definitely fighting against free markets, as many Conservatives already know.

              Many Conservatives also know that many libertarians *don’t* know this.

              The accusation, “They hate us for our freedoms” is true, if only because they don’t understand freedom well enough to change their target from freedom to government interventions.

              There is a difference between crony capitalism America and Constitutional America, and libertarians need to make this distinction when talking to Conservatives, otherwise Conservatives will falsely believe you’re attacking the freedoms they believe the Constitution was written to secure.

            • guest says:

              Breitbart lives!:

              9 Pieces of Documentation that Vindicate Trump’s Claim of 9-11 Muslim Celebrations – Breitbart

              “In a burst of Orwellian memory-holing, MTV even brought back one of the witnesses so she could recant her story 14 year later.”

              Bahaha! Freakin Lefties.

              • Zack says:

                Again, Trump claims he saw footage of “thousands and thousands” celebrating in the streets in New Jersey. I don’t see anything in that article that backs that up. The first item actually kind of seems to contradict it- “exaggerating,” “handfuls.”

  2. Zack says:

    So the guy says he’ll force members of the military to break laws and deliberately kill children, torture prisoners etc, but you “no longer despise” him because some people make silly jokes about him on twitter? Seriously?

    • Zack says:

      “no longer detest”

    • Bob Murphy says:

      Yes Zack, seriously. Is that because I’m an awful human being who is fine with torture?

      Or, is it just the opposite? Do I feely sympathy for a guy being publicly ridiculed by people who have no problem with McCain saying “bomb bomb bomb, bomb bomb Iran” or Cruz talking about making sand glow?

      Suppose someone rushed the stage and shoved a piece of glass in Trump’s eye. Would I be allowed to feel bad for him at that point?

      • Brian says:

        I’m a contrarian on the rising libertarian contrarianism re: Trump. Yes, I see the hypocrisy in someone guilty of 2nd degree murder criticizing someone who promises to commit mass murder and chop up their remains on live TV. Nevertheless, I find no amount of scorn too much for the would-be mass murderer and I feel no sympathy for such a person whatsoever. (That’s an analogy for anyone denying that Trump said he would do it on TV…)

        Now, whether it makes for sound political strategy to march out Mitt Romney, that’s a different question altogether. Enough to make me wonder whether there isn’t some other agenda going on. I’m perfectly willing to admit that the GOP is that dumb, but… [I can’t find my tin hat in order to postulate the alternative].

    • Bob Murphy says:

      Zack let me clarify something else: These aren’t just random people from my high school. I don’t know who Andrew Kelly is, but everybody else above is supposed to be an astute commentator on the political scene.

      • Zack says:

        Ok, maybe I’ll put this differently. Trump, who is running for president of the United States, has done nothing but insult and mock opponents for months, sometimes in extremely crude ways. I guess I don’t see anything hypocritical about conservative opinion writers throwing some jabs back at him.

        I don’t know who the other two are, but Ramesh Ponnuru and Jim Geraghty both write for National Review, right? A few months ago, Trump- again the likely presidential nominee for a major party- was calling for the FCC to fine and ban the editor of NR from TV. He talks about shutting down parts of the internet and he keeps saying he wants to change libel laws so he can sue publications that aren’t being fair to him.

        You have a fair point about those McCain and Cruz quotes, but isn’t Trump going pretty far beyond what either of them actually proposed? Waterboarding was extremely controversial. Trump promises to “bring back a hell of a lot worse than waterboarding.” He says he’ll institute a program of deliberately targeting family members of bad guys for assassinations, and that he’ll force the military to follow through with these things, even if it’s illegal. He also keeps repeating a fake story about a general dipping bullets in pig’s blood and executing Muslim prisoners as an example of how we need to get tougher. I haven’t seen anything close to this from any other candidates.

        I have respect for you and I certainly wasn’t trying to imply that you were a bad person who was okay with torture. I was just a little puzzled by this post and what I’ve been seeing from a lot of self-described libertarians regarding Trump.

        • Craw says:

          “nothing but”

          Really? I’ve seen him lavish praise as well, and make sound criticisms too. He’s done a lot that I saw.

          Why does everyone have to go over the top crazy on Trump? Why can’t he just be a reckless guy with some bad ideas?

          I know the reason actually. Because vocally abusing Trump isn’t about opposing his ideas or forestalling his election. It’s about signalling. See Zack signal. Truth is optional when signalling.

        • E. Harding says:

          “I haven’t seen anything close to this from any other candidates.”


          “He says he’ll institute a program of deliberately targeting family members of bad guys for assassinations”

          -Anwar al-Awlaki is hardly the only guy who has had his family targeted by the President.

          “Waterboarding was extremely controversial.”

          -But Cruz said he’d use it on the most high-level suspects.

          “I guess I don’t see anything hypocritical about conservative opinion writers throwing some jabs back at him.”

          -Uh, a teacher doesn’t behave like a schoolchild because the latter misbehaves.

          “A few months ago, Trump- again the likely presidential nominee for a major party- was calling for the FCC to fine and ban the editor of NR from TV.”

          -Because NR was against him from the very beginning.

          • Zack says:


            If you look through the things I listed and conclude that he’s just a guy with some bad ideas and that opposition to him is just “signalling,” we’ll have to agree to disagree.

            E. Harding,

            I don’t know what your point is with that Rubio link. Unless I’m missing it, I don’t see anything about assassinations or torturing or killing prisoners.

            I said Trump promises to “bring back a hell of a lot worse than waterboarding.” Has Cruz or anyone else said anything close to this?

            “-Uh, a teacher doesn’t behave like a schoolchild because the latter misbehaves.”

            So in this analogy, the guy running for President of the United States is the schoolchild, and the bloggers making jokes on twitter are the authority figures?

            “-Because NR was against him from the very beginning.”


            • Craw says:

              Always glad to politely disagree. Even with someone who’s just signaling. And I know you are signaling by your hyperbole and melodramatic attack on Bob Murphy. These serve no other purpose, ergo signaling.

      • Craw says:

        As for the NR crowd and the neo-cons. It feels to me like they’re having a hissy fit because someone took away their toy — the GOP. The GOP will pick a nominee and they will have had no real say in the process.

    • Tel says:

      …torture prisoners etc…

      Trump is retrospectively responsible for Abu Ghraib ?

      Gosh, that is surprising. I always thought some other President was responsible for that. Who knew?

      That’s what it comes down to with Trump, each thing someone throws at him invokes the response, “Well, compared to what we have already had, how bad could he be?” Kind of puts the challenge out there for his critics doesn’t it?

      • Zack says:

        “Trump is retrospectively responsible for Abu Ghraib ?”

        That’s clearly not what I said.

        • Tel says:

          It is the comparison that comes to mind when you consider the Neocon alternative to Trump.

  3. Andrew_FL says:

    At this point all manner of Republicans are either in desperation mode or deeply in denial.

    Time for the apocalypse, I guess.

    #SMOD 2016

  4. Craw says:


    > talk about “stopping Trump” when really they mean “stopping the vast number of people who keep voting for him,”

    Exactly right. Thinly disguised class prejudice.

    • Craw says:

      The more I see attacks on Trump *voters* the more I feel it might be kinda nice to see The Donald win. Attacking Trump the wrong way is the best way to elect him. Decades ago I saw Hanna Ashrawi interviewed, and she was asked why the Palestinians keep choosing Arafat as their leader when all the signs were that they’d get a better deal with anyone else. Her answer has stuck with me. “Sometimes you want to throw a stone at the world. Arafat is our stone.” If Trump becomes the stone, he wins.

  5. RPLong says:

    To me the weird thing about the Trump phenomenon is that his stated policies, where they can be deciphered, don’t appear to be any different from any of the other candidates. So it’s not his policies that seem to make people so offended by him, but rather this break from presidential decorum.

    Apropos of nothing, I saw Barack Obama on an episode of Funny Or Die.

    I mean, I think people have lost their minds. The bar has been set so low that spray-tan and bravado have become the reasons to despise a candidate. (Rather than, you know, killing and torturing and stuff.)

    • Peter says:

      RP –
      I respectfully disagree. His position on Iraq (“Bush and Cheney lied”), Syria (“Let Russia destroy the jihadis”), Israel (“I will be neutral in any Israel – Palestine deal negotiations”), Libya etc. has the neocon establishment in a tizzy. Believe me, their ire has nothing to do with decorum, they couldn’t give two sh@ts about that.

      He’s pissing off all the right people, which is why I am seriously considering casting a ballot for him.

      • E. Harding says:

        Trump isn’t as great on foreign policy as you might think, though the alternatives are worse (certainly Rubio). He supported overthrowing Gaddafi in 2011, but only as long as the U.S. got to keep the oil. Cruz and Kasich both opposed the Libyan intervention. He also said “Assad is our enemy” on a number of occasions, and has argued for the Islamic State destroying the Syrian government before the U.S. takes over the remnants in Syria. However, he is also the only Republican presidential candidate who has unequivocally supported the Russian intervention in Syria and has argued for good relations with Russia.

        • Peter says:

          I agree it’s a mixed (and muddled) bag, and I certainly didn’t want to give the impression that I think he is great on foreign policy. My point was that I believe it is his foreign policy views that are the reason why the republican establishment, i.e. the neocons are up in arms about him, and not his demeanor or decorum. I am curious as to your views on this.

          • E. Harding says:

            Definitely part of the reason, but his decorum is also a huge turn-off for them. I think if Trump had Rubio’s foreign policy there’d be grudging acceptance for him from the Neocons. The biggest reason the GOP establishment hates Trump is that they cannot control him with anything on the most issues of the candidates.

            Email issue still not fixed. America still not made great again.

    • guest says:

      Brawndo’s got what plants crave.

  6. Khodge says:

    Trump is 100% the product of the mainstream media. I don’t remember all of the numbers but he had, at some point, five times as much media exposure as the other candidates – his was free, theirs was paid for.

    Are you really willing to extend sympathy to someone that skillful at wrapping the press around his little finger? In the end, the rest of the field has to start slinging mud because Trump made the rules and his minions in the press don’t believe in professionalism.

    • Craw says:

      You confuse emotional response with thought.

  7. Craw says:

    Interesting thread. Murphy says not one word about approving of Trump, he only reacts like a mensch when he sees sneering bigotry and people ganging up. And many of you seem so proud of trying to shame him for it.

  8. Koen says:

    The correct position is:

    – to detest Donald Trump
    – to detest the political and media elites attacking Trump and his supporters
    – to regard some of the ways in which said elites attack Trump as unfair, hypocritical and/or bullying
    – to regard some of the ways in which Trump attacks the elites as unfair, hypocritical and/or bullying
    – to enjoy some (though by no means all) of the ways in which Trump shows his contempt for these elites, to their faces
    – to enjoy the Trump phenomenon as a revolt of the people so detested by the elites
    – to enjoy the elites experiencing their Ceaușescu moment
    – to consider it unfortunate that the instigator of the revolt is such an unworthy and loathsome character himself

    • Craw says:

      I agree. I think deplore is a wiser choice than detest. As for the last point, I strongly agree. I like a lot about Trumpism, but not Trump. Maybe next time we’ll get someone with the courage and charisma to smash PC, without the bad bits.

  9. Bob Murphy says:

    Hey everybody,

    I should probably clarify: I don’t have a TV, and I have literally not watched even 30 consecutive seconds of any of these debates. All I see are a few seconds of clips after the fact.

    So, if you are aghast that I am not jumping up and down about how awful Trump is, it’s possible that this explains it. I am aware of the shocking things he says, but often only in print after the fact.

    I will say, though, that if you’re worried about an awful strong man seizing the reins of power, the time to flip out was years ago, when the reins of power were being constructed.

    • Travis Bigler says:

      You’re absolutely right about it being a bit late to start freaking out. Perhaps my viseral gut instinct comes from having made the mistake of watching them.

    • guest says:

      “… the time to flip out was years ago, when the reins of power were being constructed.”

      Very true- HEY, WAIT just a minute.

      Everyone who has access to the Internet has a TV.

  10. Travis Bigler says:

    I’m really not able to understand how to sympathize with any of them. I also do feel visceral about Trump from a gut instinct. And as for stopping the voters, are we going to start defending mob rule? I just do not understand the sympathy. I hope that’s not signalling or insulting. Attacking political correctness is fine, but it is not enough to excuse the rest.

    But this is important, and hard to address: I’ve already noted others dismissed by some commentators as merely signaling or even attacking Bob. I have to admit that the Mises’ crew are some of the few people who have been able to get me to go into SkyBar. I am saying this from my conscience. I wish we could stick to any other establishments in town, please.

    Having lived in Auburn, it is really hard to get me to go to that place because of something a number of younger locals [locals, not just out of town students such as myself] in that town say go on in that business. I do not think our elders hear as much about it, and so I am not attacking people who go there.

    I have even used my real name so as not to be accused of an anonymous attack on that business–But it is something I don’t want to have to say. And if I do not say it, I would face further questioning. So here it is: It relates to accusations of SkyBar facilitating the use of GHB as a “roofie.” I say this for the safety of students, even if it puts me at risk of a lawsuit or other potential retaliation by their ownership.

    Now, anyone can say whatever they want of me and I do not feel any further need to explain myself.

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