Occam, Trump, and Russia

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Jennifer
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Re: Occam, Trump, and Russia

Post by Jennifer » 10 Jun 2018, 17:03

thoreau wrote:
10 Jun 2018, 16:42
Jennifer wrote:
thoreau wrote:
10 Jun 2018, 15:45
Jennifer wrote:Without Trump, I never would've known that Russia is our nation's best buddy whereas Canada is a threat to our national security.
If Trump isn't being blackmailed then he is one of the most deluded people ever.
And "Trump plus the Russians" isn't even the only potential national security problem he's caused. There's too damn many to keep up with them all -- WTF is up with that Chinese telecom Trump's been trying to rehabilitate? Is it a quid pro quo for China just happening to grant lots of Trump-brand copyrights in that country? Why does Trump think pissing off our allies in the G7 is a good idea? Seriously, is he actively trying to fuck things up, or is he genuinely too dumb to know that he is, or is he viewing things solely through the lens of "How can I enrich myself and the Trump brand" with nary a thought for American national interests, or what?
Some of the dismissals of concern seem to amount to "Eh, they're all crooked. He's no different." They might as well have a marmot bite someone and say "I believe in nossink Lebowski. Nossink" while their friend pees on a dude's rug.
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Re: Occam, Trump, and Russia

Post by Shem » 10 Jun 2018, 17:12

Warren wrote:
10 Jun 2018, 14:28
I have no idea what kind of "specifics" would impress you. Manafort is a lobyist. He speaks to people in power pressing the case of those that pay him. It's arguably the single most normal activity in D.C.
Betraying some knowledge of the changes Manafort is up for would be a good start. Money laundering for the Russian mob is not typical lobbyist behavior. That is what he is charged with. The guy who he was laundering money for was on a list of people who are sanctioned. All of this is beyond typical lobbyist behavior.
JasonL wrote:
10 Jun 2018, 14:56
Always useful - are anyone’s beliefs on the amount of influence falsifiable?
I'm prepared to accept the results of the Mueller investigation, provided it's able to continue to completion.
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Re: Occam, Trump, and Russia

Post by Warren » 10 Jun 2018, 18:31

Shem wrote:
10 Jun 2018, 17:12
Betraying some knowledge of the changes Manafort is up for would be a good start. Money laundering for the Russian mob is not typical lobbyist behavior. That is what he is charged with. The guy who he was laundering money for was on a list of people who are sanctioned. All of this is beyond typical lobbyist behavior.
No sale. The Russians are the new kids in town, but money laundering is a must have for political operatives.
Shem wrote:
10 Jun 2018, 17:12
I'm prepared to accept the results of the Mueller investigation, provided it's able to continue to completion.
Special Counsel investigations continue until they can deliver someone's head. An important head. I'm not saying they're trumped up charges. But I am saying everybody within reach of the oval office is guilty of such things or they wouldn't be within reach of the oval office. What's more, if we didn't bother with the special counsel, the country would be no worse off.
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Re: Occam, Trump, and Russia

Post by thoreau » 10 Jun 2018, 18:37

Warren believes in nossink, Lebowski! Nossink!
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Re: Occam, Trump, and Russia

Post by Shem » 10 Jun 2018, 20:03

thoreau wrote:
10 Jun 2018, 18:37
Warren believes in nossink, Lebowski! Nossink!
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Re: Occam, Trump, and Russia

Post by JasonL » 10 Jun 2018, 20:13

If mueller ends with manafort and no material charges on pres, is that enough to say no obvious influence? (This is my take - if you can’t get anything better than maybe obstruction you don’t have much.)

Also testing temp on various theories you see about the internets:

Who thinks the FISA warrant was problematic and/or indicative of one political party targeting the other through that mechanism? (I find this worrisome)

Who thinks Page was a known FBI informant and that’s why there are no charges even tho round 1 take is he’s deffo a spy ( I don’t know what to make of this).

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Re: Occam, Trump, and Russia

Post by thoreau » 10 Jun 2018, 20:43

If Mueller can't find anything on Trump, not even illegal activity in his real estate dealings with Russia, then yeah, no influence. But still obstruction: He admitted on TV that he fired Comey to stop the Russia investigation.

FISA? Man, tough one. When a bunch of people linked to the Kremlin are running around somewhere, how do you NOT do a counterintelligence investigation? But political campaigns are a unique circumstance. The fact that this dilemma has even come up goes to Trump's lack of fitness for the job. But his lack of fitness for the job does not automatically justify blurring lines. Tough one.

I don't know what to make of Carter Page. I think that everyone on all sides would be better off if he talked less and went away.
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Re: Occam, Trump, and Russia

Post by Jadagul » 10 Jun 2018, 21:38

Julian Sanchez says that the Carter Page FISA looks about as above-board as any FISA can get, on a few levels. I tend to trust him on that somewhat because he's definitely not a blind FISA booster.

(He wrote a bunch about how frustrating it is to finally have a group of people worrying about FISA abuses and having to tell them that no, this one is kosher).

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Re: Occam, Trump, and Russia

Post by Shem » 10 Jun 2018, 22:01

JasonL wrote:
10 Jun 2018, 20:13
If mueller ends with manafort and no material charges on pres, is that enough to say no obvious influence? (This is my take - if you can’t get anything better than maybe obstruction you don’t have much.)
Enough to say all indications are he was unaware, which means punishment for Russia interactions is unwarranted. It makes him a fucking halfwit, but that's not illegal.
Who thinks the FISA warrant was problematic and/or indicative of one political party targeting the other through that mechanism? (I find this worrisome)
Current indication is that the FISA warrant arose because Trump campaign workers were making calls to individuals who were covered by CIA and NSA observation and discussing things that had possibly extralegal implications. No evidence yet that it was political in nature, especially since the agencies actively hid the existence of a lot of the deeper aspects of the Trump investigation from political appointees. So, no more concern than arises from a typical FISA warrant.
Who thinks Page was a known FBI informant and that’s why there are no charges even tho round 1 take is he’s deffo a spy ( I don’t know what to make of this).
We know for a fact he was in informant; the Russians tried to develop him as an asset back in 2011ish, and the feds caught on and he turned on them. He wanted an oil deal from Russia, the Russians were shocked at how stupid he was, but willing to play along, the FBI caught wind and offered him the chance to turn on said Russians, and he did. As for whether he is one now, I can't imagine any investigator being stupid enough to let him go on Chris Hayes if he's currently an asset. That doesn't mean he isn't, though. We also don't know that there aren't charges; there's a couple of sealed indictments, and he could be covered under one of them.
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Re: Occam, Trump, and Russia

Post by lunchstealer » 10 Jun 2018, 22:31

JasonL wrote:
10 Jun 2018, 20:13
If mueller ends with manafort and no material charges on pres, is that enough to say no obvious influence? (This is my take - if you can’t get anything better than maybe obstruction you don’t have much.)
Wait, influence on Trump himself, or influence on the election?
Also testing temp on various theories you see about the internets:

Who thinks the FISA warrant was problematic and/or indicative of one political party targeting the other through that mechanism? (I find this worrisome)

Who thinks Page was a known FBI informant and that’s why there are no charges even tho round 1 take is he’s deffo a spy ( I don’t know what to make of this).
I'm open to the possibility that the FISA warrant was political but my guess is that it's more just run-of-the-mill security apparatus overreach.
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Re: Occam, Trump, and Russia

Post by lunchstealer » 10 Jun 2018, 22:34

Jadagul wrote:
10 Jun 2018, 21:38
Julian Sanchez says that the Carter Page FISA looks about as above-board as any FISA can get, on a few levels. I tend to trust him on that somewhat because he's definitely not a blind FISA booster.

(He wrote a bunch about how frustrating it is to finally have a group of people worrying about FISA abuses and having to tell them that no, this one is kosher).
It was Julian's take that tipped me on it.
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Re: Occam, Trump, and Russia

Post by Eric the .5b » 11 Jun 2018, 18:15

thoreau wrote:
10 Jun 2018, 11:42
"Um, his campaign manager works with Kremlin agents and now the President is pushing for Russia to be let back into the G7."
Does that sway elections? Does it fix elections?

Because Trump's corrupt. You know Trump's corrupt. I know Trump's corrupt. Everyone with a brain and eyes and probably half the ones with MAGA caps besides knows he's corrupt. If a corrupt president <Jon_Stewart_whinge>ruins America</Jon_Stewart_whinge>, we're about 200 years too late to worry about it.

But the Blue narrative I run into is that Trump and Russia fixed the election, much like Blues said about Bush and company in 2000 and 2004. They care about sweetheart deals for Russia, but only as the pro quid pro for all the voters being brainwashed by Facebook and all the voting machines being subverted by Russian hackers. Combined with Trump's bullshit about millions of faked votes, we're getting to a point where one Team can't win the presidency and have the other Team acknowledge it as it legitimate. That worries me a lot more that Trump sucking Putin's dick, because at some point, people may actually start meaning that partisan bullshit, and when that happens, this country is terminally fucked.
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Re: Occam, Trump, and Russia

Post by Eric the .5b » 11 Jun 2018, 18:27

lunchstealer wrote:
10 Jun 2018, 15:11
I think Russian troll farms + email hack (which solidified the "Hillary is a crook who stole the election from Bernie" theme) is probably enough to have pushed some people to make that snap fickle decision that they then spent the intervening months justifying. And it's worth remembering that the Russian trolls weren't just alt-right guys. There were a lot of ones pushing hard-left stuff that drove down Team Blue turnout. A big thing they've focused on is pushing the division between left and right, which is going to hurt a centrist like Hdawg.
How did the Russian left-wing trolls compare to all the actual left-wingers who really hated Clinton?

The problem with this for me is how congratulatory this whole set of arguments is to Clinton. She wasn't actually so unpopular with the left that Bernie Sanders could mount a challenge, it was just the Russian trolls. She hasn't been absolutely hated by the right since 1992, it was just the Russian trolls. If not for the Russian trolls, she would have gotten her long- and unjustly-delayed coronation, etc.
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Re: Occam, Trump, and Russia

Post by lunchstealer » 11 Jun 2018, 19:03

Eric the .5b wrote:
lunchstealer wrote:
10 Jun 2018, 15:11
I think Russian troll farms + email hack (which solidified the "Hillary is a crook who stole the election from Bernie" theme) is probably enough to have pushed some people to make that snap fickle decision that they then spent the intervening months justifying. And it's worth remembering that the Russian trolls weren't just alt-right guys. There were a lot of ones pushing hard-left stuff that drove down Team Blue turnout. A big thing they've focused on is pushing the division between left and right, which is going to hurt a centrist like Hdawg.
How did the Russian left-wing trolls compare to all the actual left-wingers who really hated Clinton?

The problem with this for me is how congratulatory this whole set of arguments is to Clinton. She wasn't actually so unpopular with the left that Bernie Sanders could mount a challenge, it was just the Russian trolls. She hasn't been absolutely hated by the right since 1992, it was just the Russian trolls. If not for the Russian trolls, she would have gotten her long- and unjustly-delayed coronation, etc.
So is it your contention that the number of people influenced by Russian organized trolling was exactly zero?
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Re: Occam, Trump, and Russia

Post by Eric the .5b » 11 Jun 2018, 19:19

lunchstealer wrote:
11 Jun 2018, 19:03
Eric the .5b wrote:
lunchstealer wrote:
10 Jun 2018, 15:11
I think Russian troll farms + email hack (which solidified the "Hillary is a crook who stole the election from Bernie" theme) is probably enough to have pushed some people to make that snap fickle decision that they then spent the intervening months justifying. And it's worth remembering that the Russian trolls weren't just alt-right guys. There were a lot of ones pushing hard-left stuff that drove down Team Blue turnout. A big thing they've focused on is pushing the division between left and right, which is going to hurt a centrist like Hdawg.
How did the Russian left-wing trolls compare to all the actual left-wingers who really hated Clinton?

The problem with this for me is how congratulatory this whole set of arguments is to Clinton. She wasn't actually so unpopular with the left that Bernie Sanders could mount a challenge, it was just the Russian trolls. She hasn't been absolutely hated by the right since 1992, it was just the Russian trolls. If not for the Russian trolls, she would have gotten her long- and unjustly-delayed coronation, etc.
So is it your contention that the number of people influenced by Russian organized trolling was exactly zero?
I make no contention of "the number of people influenced by Russian organized trolling". I'm noting something about the contentions you're repeating.

What number of people are you claiming were influenced by Russian trolls, besides "enough"?
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Re: Occam, Trump, and Russia

Post by thoreau » 11 Jun 2018, 19:25

Eric the .5b wrote:
11 Jun 2018, 18:15
thoreau wrote:
10 Jun 2018, 11:42
"Um, his campaign manager works with Kremlin agents and now the President is pushing for Russia to be let back into the G7."
Does that sway elections? Does it fix elections?

Because Trump's corrupt. You know Trump's corrupt. I know Trump's corrupt. Everyone with a brain and eyes and probably half the ones with MAGA caps besides knows he's corrupt. If a corrupt president <Jon_Stewart_whinge>ruins America</Jon_Stewart_whinge>, we're about 200 years too late to worry about it.

But the Blue narrative I run into is that Trump and Russia fixed the election, much like Blues said about Bush and company in 2000 and 2004. They care about sweetheart deals for Russia, but only as the pro quid pro for all the voters being brainwashed by Facebook and all the voting machines being subverted by Russian hackers. Combined with Trump's bullshit about millions of faked votes, we're getting to a point where one Team can't win the presidency and have the other Team acknowledge it as it legitimate. That worries me a lot more that Trump sucking Putin's dick, because at some point, people may actually start meaning that partisan bullshit, and when that happens, this country is terminally fucked.
First, corruption should be punished when found, regardless of whether it will or won't <Jon_Stewart_whinge>ruin America</Jon_Stewart_whinge>. If it can be proved that Trump knew Russia was trying to help him, and has treated them favorably in return, that should be punished. Period.

Second, I'm less concerned about the trolls than the fact that Russia apparently knew about the DNC hack and wanted Trump to be grateful. I'm not sure how many votes it actually swayed, but if they were involved in that illegal hacking, and they used it to get a quid pro quo, the number of actual voters that they swayed is irrelevant. It's corruption either way.

Third, and related to corruption, if Trump's inner circle was alerted to possible Russian hacking, and instead of calling the FBI was all "Hey, thanks, Russia!" then that is evidence that neither he nor anyone close to him should ever hold a security clearance.

Finally, while I'm not sure how many votes were swayed by the DNC email hacks, I think there are two distinct dimensions to it., and both of them probably had at least some effect On one level, the stuff revealed in the DNC hack was mostly upsetting to Berners who were already reluctant Clinton voters. That either makes them marginal voters (and thus important, since elections are won on the margin) or weakly pro-Clinton (and thus her fault). But the other aspect to it is that it reminded low-information voters that Democrats have email problems. And there's polling data to suggest that that did matter, that Clinton's numbers started declining again in October once Comey reminded everyone that Hillary Clinton had email problems. Email was her Achilles' Heel, and that is both her fault and also the reason why the DNC hack mattered. It reminded everyone that she had email problems. That's ultimately her fault, but it also makes that hack important, and if Russia was telling Trump about it and saying "See, this is proof we want to help you" and if he is all "Great, amazing!" then that is indisputably corrupt, and he should be impeached over it.
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Re: Occam, Trump, and Russia

Post by Aresen » 11 Jun 2018, 19:34

Whether or not Russian Trolls swung enough votes in the swing states that went for Trump is highly debatable, but irrelevant.

Hillary made the decision not to go to those states in the last days of the campaign despite Bill advising her to do so. That was probably far more significant than Russian Trolls. (FFS, what proportion of American voters made their voting decision based on what they read in Youtube comments sections? Unbathed guys living in their mothers' basements isn't that large a demographic.)

I have yet to see a breakdown of Gary Johnson voters by their GOP or DNC leanings, but I suspect that Johnson drew more heavily from Team Red than Team Blue. In Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin, votes for Johnson were more than four times the margin between HRC and DJT. If Johnson voters came from the GOP side as I suspect, then it would have been even harder for HRC to win those states.

OTOH, Stein voters were almost certainly blue in preference. All three states would have gone to Clinton if Stein voters had gone to their second choice.
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Re: Occam, Trump, and Russia

Post by thoreau » 11 Jun 2018, 19:46

Hillary Clinton has to own the fact that she ran a shitty campaign.

Trump has to own the fact that his campaign was infiltrated by people answering to the Russian government, at a minimum because of his own incompetence and quite possibly with his knowledge and consent. It's entirely possible that he knew about the other things that the Russians were doing as part of their efforts to help him, and if he said "Hey, great!" then whether or not their efforts actually swung any votes is irrelevant to the issue of disloyalty and corruption.
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Re: Occam, Trump, and Russia

Post by Eric the .5b » 11 Jun 2018, 19:53

thoreau wrote:
11 Jun 2018, 19:25
First, corruption should be punished when found, regardless of whether it will or won't <Jon_Stewart_whinge>ruin America</Jon_Stewart_whinge>. If it can be proved that Trump knew Russia was trying to help him, and has treated them favorably in return, that should be punished. Period.
A lot of things should be severely "punished when found. Period." in government and never will be. We damn well know this. A lot worse is going on in the criminal justice system than in the Oval Office. I'm disgusted by Trump, too, but Trump's corruption won't destroy this country.
thoreau wrote:
11 Jun 2018, 19:25
Second, I'm less concerned about the trolls than the fact that Russia apparently knew about the DNC hack and wanted Trump to be grateful. I'm not sure how many votes it actually swayed, but if they were involved in that illegal hacking, and they used it to get a quid pro quo, the number of actual voters that they swayed is irrelevant. It's corruption either way.
Sure, but eh. I can't shed tears over the DNC hack or even be horrified at the idea that an *gasp* illegal release of political operatives' secrets mighthave rubbed the "almost" off "almost certainly won't vote for Clinton" for some people. Of all the things that happened against Clinton, that strikes me as the least justly objectionable, because it was at least real information.

If that real information reminded some fraction of voters of existing problems you describe as Clinton's fault, oh well. Sure, that's corrupt for Russia to offer as a pro quid pro and it's corrupt of Trump to accept—and I completely believe that happened. That and $16 gets me a nice breakfast.
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Re: Occam, Trump, and Russia

Post by Eric the .5b » 11 Jun 2018, 19:57

thoreau wrote:
11 Jun 2018, 19:46
Hillary Clinton has to own the fact that she ran a shitty campaign.

Trump has to own the fact that his campaign was infiltrated by people answering to the Russian government, at a minimum because of his own incompetence and quite possibly with his knowledge and consent. It's entirely possible that he knew about the other things that the Russians were doing as part of their efforts to help him, and if he said "Hey, great!" then whether or not their efforts actually swung any votes is irrelevant to the issue of disloyalty and corruption.
Here's the difference between these two things. Team Red lose nothing they're not already going to lose later this year if they and Trump refuse to own this. Team Blue can still lose the 2020 election and re-elect Trump if enough of them keep chanting the mantra of "We Did Nothing Wrong"" and refuse to learn from their mistakes.
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Re: Occam, Trump, and Russia

Post by thoreau » 11 Jun 2018, 20:28

Eric the .5b wrote:
thoreau wrote:
11 Jun 2018, 19:25
First, corruption should be punished when found, regardless of whether it will or won't <Jon_Stewart_whinge>ruin America</Jon_Stewart_whinge>. If it can be proved that Trump knew Russia was trying to help him, and has treated them favorably in return, that should be punished. Period.
A lot of things should be severely "punished when found. Period." in government and never will be. We damn well know this. A lot worse is going on in the criminal justice system than in the Oval Office. I'm disgusted by Trump, too, but Trump's corruption won't destroy this country.
thoreau wrote:
11 Jun 2018, 19:25
Second, I'm less concerned about the trolls than the fact that Russia apparently knew about the DNC hack and wanted Trump to be grateful. I'm not sure how many votes it actually swayed, but if they were involved in that illegal hacking, and they used it to get a quid pro quo, the number of actual voters that they swayed is irrelevant. It's corruption either way.
Sure, but eh. I can't shed tears over the DNC hack or even be horrified at the idea that an *gasp* illegal release of political operatives' secrets mighthave rubbed the "almost" off "almost certainly won't vote for Clinton" for some people. Of all the things that happened against Clinton, that strikes me as the least justly objectionable, because it was at least real information.

If that real information reminded some fraction of voters of existing problems you describe as Clinton's fault, oh well. Sure, that's corrupt for Russia to offer as a pro quid pro and it's corrupt of Trump to accept—and I completely believe that happened. That and $16 gets me a nice breakfast.
I don't care about any wrong done to Hillary Clinton. She's a grown-up, she has to own her career and its ups and downs.

I care about seeing Trump punished for the corruption that he almost certainly engaged in.

And, yes, there is plenty of other corrupt stuff going on. Show me a path to investigating and punishing that and I'll call my congresswoman. But DOJ should be able to walk and chew gum at the same time.
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Re: Occam, Trump, and Russia

Post by Eric the .5b » 11 Jun 2018, 20:37

thoreau wrote:
11 Jun 2018, 20:28
I care about seeing Trump punished for the corruption that he almost certainly engaged in.
I think you should prepare for disappointment. I'd like to be wrong, but I don't see him leaving office before 2020. And worse, in 2020-21, I more than halfway expect to hear an updated list of Blue excuses for why Trump won re-election.
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Re: Occam, Trump, and Russia

Post by Jadagul » 11 Jun 2018, 21:15

Honestly, the fact that so many people think Trump's corruption is normal is probably more threatening than his actual corruption. The damage his corruption is doing is in making that look normal. It's not; it hasn't been in decades; and it's both important to make it abnormal, and to make people believe that it's unusual.

This is all under the assumption that we're not ascribing Trump's amazingly damaging diplomatic moves to corruption and/or Russian/UAE influence.

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Re: Occam, Trump, and Russia

Post by thoreau » 11 Jun 2018, 21:41

Jadagul wrote:Honestly, the fact that so many people think Trump's corruption is normal is probably more threatening than his actual corruption. The damage his corruption is doing is in making that look normal. It's not; it hasn't been in decades; and it's both important to make it abnormal, and to make people believe that it's unusual.

This is all under the assumption that we're not ascribing Trump's amazingly damaging diplomatic moves to corruption and/or Russian/UAE influence.
I agree with every word of that, Jadagul.

I just don't know what to say to myself.
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Eric the .5b
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Joined: 26 Apr 2010, 16:29

Re: Occam, Trump, and Russia

Post by Eric the .5b » 11 Jun 2018, 23:55

Jadagul wrote:
11 Jun 2018, 21:15
Honestly, the fact that so many people think Trump's corruption is normal is probably more threatening than his actual corruption. The damage his corruption is doing is in making that look normal. It's not; it hasn't been in decades; and it's both important to make it abnormal, and to make people believe that it's unusual.
For at least half of Trump supporters, they don't believe the corruption. For the rest, I think they go into straight cognitive dissonance on the matter. It certainly won't be Team Blue that gets them out of it.

I'm not sure that Trump makes anything look normal except to his own supporters. Everybody else, including his ex-supporters, are horrified.

If he's gone after one term, I think his lasting damage will be minimal. At this point, I'd put better odds on Trump alienating his own base, segment by segment, than on the Blues managing to beat him.
"Better that ten guilty persons escape than that one innocent suffer."
"Cyberpunk never really gave the government enough credit for their ability to secure a favorable prenup during the Corporate-State wedding." - Shem

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