One of the basic ways we got here!

SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 7, 2019

Tribal dysfunction described:
We're spending the weekend thinking about the various forms of muddle which occur in, even dominate, our alleged national discourse.

We're thinking about Richard Panek's essay on gravity in the Washington Post Outlook section. We're thinking about Lauren Michele Jackson's recent lengthy essay in Slate, although we'll admit we can't quite define what Jackson was talking about.

We're thinking about the way Eric Levitz pictures the size of the achievement gaps in New York City's public schools. Also, of the way his picture follows the picture painted by Dana Goldstein quite a while ago.

We're thinking about the latest word from inside a bubble at Salem State. We're thinking about the way Eve Fairbanks hears the voice of John Wilkes Booth when she reads Nicholas Kristof—and we're thinking about the editor who would put such dreck into print.

Needless to say, this would all be comical, if not for the astonishing place to which our penchant for muddle has brought us. With respect to that point, we'll restrict ourselves to quoting one passage from Michelle Goldberg's latest column.

In her column,
Goldberg ponders the possibility that the GOP is about to wither away, an event which always seem to be right around the corner. She quotes Democratic pollster Stanley Greenberg describing one part of the public's reaction to the election of Trump:
GOLDBERG (9/6/19): In his polling and focus groups, [Greenberg is] seeing that the reaction to Trump is changing people. “The Trump presidency so invaded the public’s consciousness that it was hard to talk to previously disengaged and unregistered unmarried women, people of color and millennials without them going right to Trump,” he writes. A few months after the election, he realized he could no longer put Clinton and Trump voters in focus groups together because indignant Clinton voters, particularly women, so dominated the conversations. “This turned out to be an unintended test of the strength of their views and resolve to resist,” he wrote.
If we might borrow from the Beatles: All the previously disengaged people, where did they all come from?

At any rate, once their sleepwalking gave us Trump, they became indignant, irate. When Greenberg tried to stage focus groups, they talked over everyone else!

So it went within the tents of our admittedly brilliant tribe, whose members sleepwalked through decades of the muddle-rich public nonsense which eventually gave us Trump.

For the record, Goldberg had played a part of that sleepwalking. On the bright side, it may have helped her land her job at the Times. But our tribe is deeply inept in various leadership sectors, and has been for many years.

Is it possible that the sleepwalking continues? In Goldberg's column, we get to dream about the inevitable defeat of Donald J. Trump, and perhaps of all the people who sound like John Wilkes Booth. But what might such a disordered person do in the face of onrushing defeat?

What might Donald Trump do next year? All over cable, as cable stars cluck, that question is being ignored.

83 comments:

  1. "If we might borrow from the Beatles: All the previously disengaged people, where did they all come from?"

    Beatles? Meh. Here's a far more relevant quip, from George Romero: When there's no more room in hell, the dead will walk the earth.

    Poor liberals, they suffered, all simultaneously, the exploding head syndrome in the morning of 11/9/2016, and since then they've been aimlessly stumbling around, making meaningless loud sounds.

    Sad.

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    1. Mao, Mao, number one

      Always here first he’ll show you how it’s done

      Pretend to be hip pretend to be cool

      This website’s dumb ‘scuse me while I drool

      On my keyboard, I’m above board

      I gotta display my super-cool handle

      My brain’s about as bright as a guttering candle

      That’s okay that’s alright it really is me

      Read what I write and you can see

      I’m number one!

      Number one!

      Always here first I’ll show you how it’s done

      Delete
  2. Is Bob seriously contending that during the 2016 election the media were too disengaged to criticize Trump? IMHO the media over-criticized him so much that they blew their credibility.

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  3. Off topic: Trump Gloats As NOAA Releases Statement Supporting Claims Hurricane Dorian Could Hit Alabama

    https://start.att.net/news/read/category/news/article/newsweek-trump_gloats_as_noaa_releases_statement_supporting-rnewsweek

    The NOAA cone clearly showed that Trump was right. Trump's critics embarrassed themselves by automatically disagreeing with him. Even a stopped clock is right twice a day.

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  4. *** PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT ***

    David in Cal is a moral and intellectual idiot. He is thus incapable of independent thought and can do no more than repeat right-wing propaganda, in this case the claim that a new statement from NOAA makes Trump right about his statements about Alabama.

    Needless to say, a coerced statement from an anonymous spokesperson at NOAA cannot undo reality. No meteorological information ever showed that Alabama was ever in danger from Hurricane Dorian. For a complete run-down on the ignorance, misrepresentation, and lying, go here:

    https://www.cnn.com/2019/09/06/politics/fact-check-timeline-of-trumps-alabama-dorian-map-fiasco/index.html

    I don’t recommend it.

    Please do not post rude comments about David in Cal because he regurgitates here what he’s swallowed. Reasonable people do not ascribe agency to idiots.

    (I’m looking at you, mm.)

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  5. deadrat - I use my own eyes whenever possible. Look at the map at your link. The five day cone includes a bit of southeastern Alabama. The cone represents the possible center of the storm. The map shows that the center of the storm could have gone to Alabama. That alone justifies Trump's comment.

    Furthermore, the cone only goes out five days. You can see that parts of Alabama were potentially in the path shown beyond the five days.

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    1. "a coerced statement from an anonymous spokesperson at NOAA cannot undo reality."

      David, David. You should know better: nothing can undo dembot reality. Their reality is self-evident: it's clearly outlined in the dembot manual, updated on a daily basis. End of story.

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    2. NOAA staff warned in Sept. 1 directive against contradicting Trump

      In an agencywide directive sent Sept. 1 to National Weather Service personnel, hours after Trump asserted, with no evidence, that Alabama “would most likely be hit (much) harder than anticipated,” staff was told to “only stick with official National Hurricane Center forecasts if questions arise from some national level social media posts which hit the news this afternoon.”



      They were also told not to “provide any opinion,” according to a copy of the email obtained by The Washington Post.
      ....

      The agency sent a similar message warning scientists and meteorologists not to speak out on Sept. 4, after Trump showed a hurricane map from Aug. 29 modified with a hand-drawn, half-circle in black Sharpie around Alabama.

      “This is the first time I’ve felt pressure from above to not say what truly is the forecast,” the meteorologist said. “It’s hard for me to wrap my head around. One of the things we train on is to dispel inaccurate rumors and ultimately that is what was occurring — ultimately what the Alabama office did is provide a forecast with their tweet, that is what they get paid to do.”


      “Power is in tearing human minds to pieces and putting them together again in new shapes of your own choosing.”
      ― George Orwell, 1984

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    3. You are a liar. A very small part of Alabama had a < 10% chance of Tropical Storm (not Hurricane) winds for a very brief period a while before Trump tweeted.

      By that 'logic' all the Eastern Seaboard all the way up to NY should have been warned, and since the hurricane could have gone anywhere after 5 days, the entire US should be warned.

      What a maroon !

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  6. Wow, DinC is actually dumber than I thought.

    "The map shows that the center of the storm could have gone to Alabama."

    So much for map-reading.

    Leroy

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    1. Leroy - perhaps you don't fully understand what the cone represents. It's not the outline of the potentially affected area. It's the uncertainty of the center of the storm. The National Hurricane Center says

      NHC tropical cyclone forecast tracks can be in error. This forecast uncertainty is conveyed by the track forecast "cone", the solid white and stippled white areas in the graphic. The solid white area depicts the track forecast uncertainty for days 1-3 of the forecast, while the stippled area depicts the uncertainty on days 4-5. Historical data indicate that the entire 5-day path of the CENTER of the tropical cyclone will remain within the cone about 60-70% of the time.To form the cone, a set of imaginary circles are placed along the forecast track at the 12, 24, 36, 48, 72, 96, and 120 h positions, where the size of each circle is set so that it encloses 67% of the previous five years official forecast errors. The cone is then formed by smoothly connecting the area swept out by the set of circles.

      It is also important to realize that a tropical cyclone is not a point. Their effects can span many hundreds of miles from the center. The area experiencing hurricane force (one-minute average wind speeds of at least 74 mph) and tropical storm force (one-minute average wind speeds of 39-73 mph) winds can extend well beyond the white areas shown enclosing the most likely track area of the center. The distribution of hurricane and tropical storm force winds in this tropical cyclone can be seen in the Wind History graphic linked above.


      https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/refresh/graphics_at5+shtml/173710.shtml?cone#contents

      Note also the risk that the center of the storm might not remain within the cone.

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    2. David, go fuck yourself. This isn't North Korea or Russia. The map Donald J Chickenshit criminally defaced was from days earlier when a tiny sliver of Alabama was shown could get impacted with a very low probability. When he began this insanity on Sunday there was literally no chance of Alabama being impacted. The storm had turned north and starting on Saturday, the day before Trump tweeted his bullshit, the maps all showed no chance of Alabama being impacted.

      “You are a slow learner, Winston."
      "How can I help it? How can I help but see what is in front of my eyes? Two and two are four."
      "Sometimes, Winston. Sometimes they are five. Sometimes they are three. Sometimes they are all of them at once. You must try harder. It is not easy to become sane.”

      ― George Orwell, 1984

      You, David, and that lying sack of shit Acting President of yours are not going to change reality. 2 + 2 = 4, asshole.

      Delete
    3. Leroy commented

      Wow, DinC is actually dumber than I thought.

      At this point, is that even possible?

      Trump tweeted on 9/1 that Alabama “will most likely be hit (much) harder than anticipated.” That was wrong. Two days earlier, the NOAA’s “cone of uncertainty” extended a few miles across the Georgia-Alabama border, but the forecasts on 9/1 showed that Alabama would be unaffected as the storm had veered north.

      Did Trump order FEMA to prepare for the likelihood of storm damage in Alabama? If he believed his own bullshit but didn’t mobilize FEMA in Alabama, than he’s malfeasant. Or he is just lying.

      Note that the NOAA “correction” of the National Weather Service (by an unnamed spokesman, and no doubt ordered by Trump) is carefully worded to say that the NWS spoke in “absolute terms” about forecasts that are only “probabilities.”

      Here exposed clearly in a trivial event is our situation:

      Trump is a liar who can’t admit to a mistake. He demands that you disregard experts who dispute him, the press that reports about him, and reality. DAinCA isn’t an outlier in jumping on the crazy wagon. He and his fellow credulous fools are legion.

      Remember, “perhaps” it’s you who doesn’t “fully understand what the cone represents.”

      If it’s the cone of idiocy, we understand.

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    4. Trump has no idea where Alabama is in relation to Florida.

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    5. Let's tone down the hyperbole. David in Cal is no more a mouth-breathing moron than any other Right-winger.

      Delete
    6. David in Cal is certainly not a moron. In the classification of mental deficiency, the categories are in order of increasing severity moron, imbecile, and idiot. David in Cal is an idiot. This means he is incapable of moral judgment and lacks independent intellectual capacity., He demonstrates his deficiency every time he posts a comment.

      I have long urged that other commenters refrain from heaping vituperation on his head. For instance, it's simply cruel, as well as misleading to call him a liar: he has no understanding that lying is wrong and no means to determine truth from falsity. Reasonable people don't impute agency to idiots.

      It's not his fault that he can't learn. I have often compared the verbal abuse of David in Cal to booing the losers at the Special Olympics.

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    7. Anon @12:54 AM:

      Well OK; Well alright; You win!

      Delete
    8. The Basie band!
      The Count from Redbank, NJ and his Number one son-Joe Williams.
      For the younger generation, BonJovi is also from Redbank.

      Delete
  7. deadrat - If Trump used a 2 day old cone to justify his prediction, then he was wrong to do so and your criticism is justified. His comment that Alabama “will most likely be hit (much) harder than anticipated” is hard to make sense of. There was a point where the storm had become incredibly powerful and every area was at risk of being hit harder than previously anticipated. But, Trump's comment is vague, so I don't know if this is what he meant.

    mm - you're wrong about "a tiny sliver of Alabama was shown could get impacted with a very low probability." Bear in mind that the cone is not the outline of the affected area, it's the outline of the most likely location of the center of the storm. If the center hit Alabama, the affected Alabama portion would be considerable. In fact, if the center hit northern Florida, a significant portion of Alabama would have been affected.

    The cone includes 60% to 70% of the probability. That leaves around 35% chance that the storm would go north or south of the cone. So, there was around a 17% chance that the storm center would go farther north into Alabama than the cone indicated. In short, at the time of the graph Trump showed, Alabama was a considerable risk.

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    1. You are such a liar, David.

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    2. If Trump used a 2 day old cone to justify his prediction...

      IF????? You don't know? That is the prime foundational fact behind this madness, you fucking disingenuous lying sack of shit.

      By the way, you fucking imbecile, it's called the "cone of uncertainty". Do you understand why the cone widens as a function of time from the initial point?

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    3. mm, again DAinCA is not an imbecile; he's an idiot. Reasonable people do not ask idiots questions that begin "Do you understand."

      Delete
  8. Somerby says, referring to the Clinton voters in the focus groups: "At any rate, once their sleepwalking gave us Trump, they became indignant, irate. When Greenberg tried to stage focus groups, they talked over everyone else!"

    1. Clinton won the popular vote by more the 3.5 million.
    2. Women in particular supported Clinton and did not put Trump into office. White non-college men supposedly did that.
    3. Women worked their hearts out and their asses off for Clinton. They did not sleepwalk.
    4. Somerby is clearly projecting his own ambivalence toward Clinton onto members of that focus group, who by description felt so passionately about the election that they talked over the Trump supporters.

    Why does Somerby keep doing this? It is as if he has never met an actual Clinton supporter. Who doesn't know any Clinton voters? Conservatives, and Somerby, apparently.

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    1. Somerby says, referring to the Clinton voters in the focus groups: "At any rate, once their sleepwalking gave us Trump, they became indignant, irate.

      TDH is not referring to Clinton voters. He’s not referring to voters at all. He’s talking about “[a]ll the previously disengaged people” that Stanley Greenberg described, namely, “previously disengaged and unregistered unmarried women, people of color and millennials.” Presumably “disengaged and unregistered” modifies the compound object that follows. (Emphasis mine.)

      You claim that

      Somerby is clearly projecting his own ambivalence toward Clinton onto members of that focus group, who by description felt so passionately about the election….

      But the point is that these members of the focus group were unmoved by the election, so “disengaged” that they hadn’t registered to vote. Only now (in Greenberg’s experience) do they feel passionately about the result of that election.

      You ask about Somerby’s continuing actions, but the real question is why you can’t seem to read for comprehension.

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    2. Once again, you do not understand that juxtaposition creates implication. Stop telling me that I don't read for comprehension. You are the one missing things with your super-literal interpretations. Somerby broadens the topic beyond those focus group participants to encompass everyone. We liberals didn't sleepwalk through the election and WE didn't give the country Trump. Somerby may have done that and his desultory non-support for Clinton was one reason why Clinton had trouble overcoming the animosity toward her that was ginned up by conservatives. He projects that onto those focus group members and onto the rest of us liberals. He has been doing this for months and it is both unfair to the energetic Clinton supporters who were hard-working and did their best to put her into office, undermined not by apathy but by Comey, Russians, and vote-rigging/suppression in key states. These are things Somerby has never discussed, except to mock Comey-the-God.

      My read skills are fine. Yours seem motivated to support Somerby's inexcusable lies about what happened in 2016.

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    3. White women voted for Trump. Why do you say women supported Clinton and did not put Trump in office?

      Both 2016 candidates were by far the 2 most unpopular candidates in history.

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    4. @3:34P is right. Point 2 is wrong. Pew Research says white women voted for Trump 47% to 45%.

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    5. Once again, you do not understand that juxtaposition creates implication.

      I understand that in this case it’s created inference.

      Stop telling me that I don't read for comprehension.

      Sure, just as soon as you start.

      You are the one missing things with your super-literal interpretations.

      I like to stick with what’s written. Try it; you might find you like it. Didja notice that TDH often indicts with “We liberals!” Or like here with “our tribe.” Now I don’t take that literally (or “super-literally,” if you prefer) to mean every single liberal. But you seem to. So it’s OK if you do the super-literal thing?

      We liberals didn't sleepwalk through the election and WE didn't give the country Trump.

      The charge is that “muddle-rich public nonsense” gave us Trump and that “we” didn’t challenge that nonsense “over decades,” not just in the course of the last Presidential election. See what I mean about reading for comprehension?

      [H]is desultory non-support for Clinton was one reason why Clinton had trouble overcoming the animosity toward her that was ginned up by conservatives.

      How did he do this from a blog nobody reads?

      My read skills are fine.

      No, and your write skills seem a bit shaky.

      Yours seem motivated to support Somerby's inexcusable lies about what happened in 2016.

      My what? My “read skills”? Or did you mean me? Face it: you have no access to my motivations, you can’t name a lie TDH has told about 2016 (disagreeing with you doesn’t count), and you don’t know my judgment about what happened in 2016.

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    6. deadrat,
      Good on you for ignoring Somerby when he does his Right-wing "us liberals" schtick. It's just as lazy when Somerby does it, as when the corporate media does it on a daily basis.

      Delete
  9. Lauren Michelle Jackson's essay is about the development of white identity studies in academia and its spread to the general public via several bestselling books about white privilege, entitlement, and unconscious racism and how to eliminate it.

    If Somerby were to read one or more of those books, cited in the article in Salon, he might better understand why so many liberals are trying to change their own attitudes about diversity, and where some of the accusations of racism are coming from, what they are about and why they are being made.

    If Somerby were to take white identity and racism seriously as a concept, he might be less inclined to believe conservative memes about race as a liberal construct, racial namecalling and white victimhood, themes that have been recurring in his columns lately.

    But it is easier to pretend that Jackson is hard to read, confused, or some such nonsense.

    Jackson begins by explaining that someone cannot evade racial bias by having black relatives, teaching black kids in public schools, participating in civil rights actions back in the day, and so on. She clearly explains why this doesn't make you exempt from bias. Somerby should take that part to heart, since it almost shouts "This means you, Bob."

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    1. If Somerby were to take white identity and racism seriously as a concept,….

      As opposed to what? As a motivating political force? As the foundation of a political party?

      If Somerby were to read one or more of those books, cited in the article in Salon, he might better understand why so many liberals are trying to change their own attitudes about diversity….

      If you or Lauren Michelle Jackson think that liberals are the problem when it comes to racism, neither of you is paying much attention to what’s going on in this country.

      Jackson begins by explaining that someone cannot evade racial bias by having black relatives, teaching black kids in public schools, participating in civil rights actions back in the day, and so on.

      What one can’t evade is accusations or racial bias. Again, if you or Jackson think that this country’s racial problems arise from white people who are proud of having black relatives or who teach black kids, or who participated in civil rights campaigns “back in the day,” then neither of you is paying much attention to what’s going on around you.

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    2. Somerby thinks that liberals are the problem when it comes to racism. I don't think that and neither does Jackson. Jackson thinks that white people who examine their own white identity are the solution, not the problem. Somerby seems to think that accusations of racism are the problem, a kind of name-calling or finger-pointing of "The Other." Jackson and similar writers are urging self-examination and self-motivated change in the way white people interact with diverse people. She says those authors who write about the topic suggest that it is white people's responsibility to change unconscious bias by making it more explicit. The excuses white people use to avoid such change, which I enumerated from her article, are not the cause of racial problems, they are the justifications that people use to deny that they themselves are part of the problem and they prevent people from engaging in greater self-examination of how they might be contributing to racial bias.

      I believe this would have been clearer to you if you had visited the links in the article itself and not simply reacted to my comment. Somerby said he didn't know what Jackson's article was about. It is not rocket science if you actually read her article and visit some of the places she links to. And this is an important and necessary discussion that motivates the way many liberals are talking about race and racism these days. Somerby appears befuddled because he doesn't care enough to read beyond his knee-jerk reaction. Don't you be that guy too.

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    3. Somerby appears befuddled because he doesn't care enough to read beyond his knee-jerk reaction. Don't you be that guy too.

      OK, I can recognize good advice when I see it.

      I believe this [Jackson’s article’s theme] would have been clearer to you if you had visited the links in the article itself and not simply reacted to my comment.

      I did read the article and followed a few of its links. Prompted by your comment, I went back to read the article a second time.

      Jackson thinks that white people who examine their own white identity are the solution, not the problem.

      Well, not the problem of racism in the US, but there’s no solution without an associated problem, and for Jackson it’s this:

      “White progressives” … the group most responsible for the social exhaustion that people of color experience on a daily basis. They are the hair touchers, the “you go, girlfriend!” cheerleaders, the “not even water?” inquirers,….

      I had to look up “not even water.” Apparently this is a meme around non-Muslims asking those who fast during Ramadan whether the fast extends to drinking water.

      Somerby seems to think that accusations of racism are the problem, a kind of name-calling or finger-pointing of "The Other.”

      Well, to be fair, that some accusations of racism are a problem.

      The excuses white people use to avoid such change [i.e., away from unconscious bias], which I enumerated from her article, are not the cause of racial problems, they are the justifications that people use to deny that they themselves are part of the problem and they prevent people from engaging in greater self-examination of how they might be contributing to racial bias.

      Fair play. I’ve often said that there’s no statement about race so stupid that a white person hasn’t said stupider, but didn’t you say at the outset that neither Jackson nor you think that liberals (the most likely candidates for bias that is unconscious only) are the problem “when it comes to racism”?

      Let me descend to analogy. What would you think of a Jew who was aware of the following: the Pittsburgh synagogue shooting that left 11 dead, the President endorsing white supremacists chanting “Jews will not replace us!”, the President branding as disloyal any Jew not supporting him, the continuing lionizing of a freshman Democratic Congresswoman who dabbled in an antisemitic meme, etc. ad infinitum et nauseam. And this Jew tells you, “You know the real problem? All these goyim who find out that I keep kosher and ask, ’Not even bacon?’”


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  10. I'm pumpin' friggin' iron.

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  11. This post illustrates how Somerby confuses and misstates what he is analyzing.

    After highlighting this from the Goldberg article:
    “A few months after the election, he realized he could no longer put Clinton and Trump voters in focus groups together because indignant Clinton voters, particularly women, so dominated the conversations.”

    He then says this:

    “If we might borrow from the Beatles: All the previously disengaged people, where did they all come from?

    At any rate, once their sleepwalking gave us Trump, they became indignant, irate. When Greenberg tried to stage focus groups, they talked over everyone else!

    So it went within the tents of our admittedly brilliant tribe, whose members sleepwalked through decades of the muddle-rich public nonsense which eventually gave us Trump.”

    Note what Somerby does here. He highlights a sentence about Clinton voters, then complains about “all the previously disengaged people” whose “sleepwalking” gave us Trump. And yet, these two groups (previously disengaged/Clinton voters) are clearly not the same group of people. He then immediately moves on to complaining about members of “our tribe” who sleepwalked for decades. This seems to include media types like the ones he is criticizing in his post, but by extension (due to his highlighting of that passage), Clinton voters as well.

    It is also important to note that Somerby editorializes when describing the Goldberg piece: he uses the word “irate”, even though that did not appear in the story, and he says the Clinton voters “talked over everyone else”. The article instead says they “dominated the conversation.” These subtle additions are pure Somerby invention, and serve to direct his readers to a particular opinion about those “Clinton voters” with their unconscionable “sleepwalking.”

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    1. Note what Somerby does here. He highlights a sentence about Clinton voters, then complains about “all the previously disengaged people” whose “sleepwalking” gave us Trump. And yet, these two groups (previously disengaged/Clinton voters) are clearly not the same group of people.

      OK, that’s a fair cop. Highlighting the bit about Clinton voters and then complaining about “disengaged people” is misleading. But TDH is clearly talking about the latter group as sleepwalkers. Clinton voters couldn’t have been disengaged in the election. After all, they voted, so they must have been engaged at least to that extent.

      The juxtaposition, however, is columnist Goldberg’s, not pollster Greenberg’s. To be fair, I’d have to check the latter’s book, which I confess I’m not likely to do.

      This [TDH’s complaint] seems to include media types like the ones he is criticizing in his post, but by extension (due to his highlighting of that passage), Clinton voters as well.

      Seems to include? Media types are his perennial targets. But don’t you think you’re reading a bit too much into typography?

      TDH says the Clinton voters “became indignant, irate”; Greenberg uses only “indignant.” But part of the definition of indignant is showing anger. TDH says they “talked over” others in the focus groups; Greenberg says they “dominated the conversations.” Do you really think the Trumpers in the focus groups meekly sat in silence while the Clinton-voting women took over the conversation. This is extremely subtle “editorializing,” dontchathink? In any case, TDH was not talking about sleepwalking voters.
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    2. @deadrat
      To dominate a conversation is not the same as talking over someone. The latter implies rudeness or incivility. At any rate, it isn’t a matter of what I think. It simply is that the account in Goldberg’s story does not say anyone talked over anyone else. That is an interpretation, a novelization, that is objectionable, especially coming from Somerby who dislikes this kind of thing.

      And irate is not a synonym for indignant. Another inexcusable Somerby addition.

      And...Did you not read Somerby’s actual sentence? They (the disengaged voters apparently) sleepwalked and gave us Trump, then became indignant. Except that, in the Goldberg story, it was the Clinton voters who were described as indignant, not the disengaged voters. Somerby is conflating the two groups. He has constantly accused liberals of sleepwalking, or sleeping in the woods, so he is lumping the disengaged voters in with the indignant Clinton voters to create a single group of sleepwalkers. Somerby’s (perhaps deliberately) careless prose leads precisely to this conclusion.

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    3. @5:41P, I should give you your due when you’re right: domination does not necessarily mean talking over someone. It can also include intimidation into silence or not letting anyone else get a word in edgewise. Domination is rude and incivil in a conversation. I cannot imagine a convocation of dominating liberals and cowed Trumpers, but maybe you can. In any case, TDH should have been more careful.

      To be irate is to be angry. To be indignant is to be angry over an unjustified act or statement. You can look it up. To complain that they’re not synonyms is silly. The indignant are a subset of the irate.

      Again, you’re right that TDH conflates the disengaged group (who would go “right to Trump”) with the Clinton voters (who were indignant). TDH should have been more careful. But who’s being super-literal now? Do you suppose that the formerly disengaged went “right to Trump” calmly and more in sorrow than anger?

      TDH accuses the disengaged of having given us Trump because they couldn’t be bothered to interest themselves in the election. That cannot apply to Clinton voters because they voted. TDH accuses the rest of us of sleepwalking, not over the election, but over the decades of failing to challenge nonsense public discourse. In this he may be right or wrong, but his careless prose hardly leads to the conclusion that he thinks voters were uninvolved in an election in which they voted.

      Well, maybe you’re led to that conclusion, but don’t generalize to the rest of the world.

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  12. “At any rate, once their sleepwalking gave us Trump, they became indignant, irate.”

    Nowhere in the Goldberg story does it say that the previously disengaged voters were indignant. It was the Clinton voters who are described this way.

    Thus, Somerby makes it sound as though Clinton voters sleepwalked and then became indignant.

    That isn’t what the story said.

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  13. “What might Donald Trump do next year? All over cable, as cable stars cluck, that question is being ignored.”

    The polling from Greenberg shows an important emergence of political engagement amongst previously disengaged voters, brought about by their opposition to Trump. It is fact-based, and would seem to have an important bearing on 2020. Greenberg thinks it is predictive.

    What Trump will do is anyone’s guess, and is in the realm of speculation, since he is, after all, a mentally unstable sociopath. (According to TDH).

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    1. Here's how Salon reported on Stanley "Nostradamus" Greenberg:
      America is now too diverse and progressive for President Obama's "third term" and entirely too liberal for the extreme anti-immigrant GOP to remain a winning national party in 2016, according to former President Bill Clinton pollster Stanley Greenberg.

      Published on Halloween 2015.

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    2. If what Greenberg is finding is factual, ie that many previously disengaged people are now engaged by their opposition to Trump, then that is a potentially significant fact, regardless of the accuracy of Greenberg’s previous predictions.

      On the other hand, why should journalists speculate about what a mentally deficient idiot might or might not do? That is not fact-based journalism, and there is no real basis upon which to predict his actions with any accuracy.

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    3. Dateline May 29, 2011,

      American Christian evangelist and radio broadcaster Harold Camping predicted that the end of the world would occur on October 29, 2011. If Camping’s calculations and insights are correct, then this is a potentially significant fact and we should all prepare for annihilation regardless of the accuracy of Camping’s previous predictions of the end of the world on September 6, 1994 and May 21, 2011.

      See the problem with your tautology yet?

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      We hope you enjoyed this example of uncultured impudence and lower middle class ignorance™

      Delete
  14. 'So it went within the tents of our admittedly brilliant tribe, whose members sleepwalked through decades of the muddle-rich public nonsense which eventually gave us Trump. '

    What gave us Trump was morons like Somerby who spend their lives attacking liberals and defending Trump.

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    1. Democrats, in large part, gave us Trump by abandoning the working class and cozying up to Wall Street and by being unappealing snobs.

      Delete
    2. Wrong, Boris. Democrats did not abandon the working class, the working class abandoned Democrats.

      "snobs" - you fucking moron, you've swallowed every piece of shit the republicans have been shoveling your way for a long time. Snobs, for those of you who don't understand Wingnutese, means educated.

      Delete
    3. Why did the working class abandon Democrats?

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    4. mm - what is your basis for claiming "snobs means educated."

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    5. "snobs means educated."

      'Unappealing snobs' and 'educated' are attempts to describe the category of liberal zombies. 'Zombies' is, of course, a better way to put it.

      'Inner Party members' is what George Orwell came up with in 1948, when he was writing 1984.

      It doesn't really matter what words we use to describe them.

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  15. "Why did the working class abandon Democrats?"

    Democrats passed the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

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    Replies
    1. Yes, we have a winner, but not in the sense Robert means. The working class probably didn't like the Democrats message to them:

      Hey, you working class racists: Vote for me!

      Delete
    2. To the working class, giving blacks equal rights is exactly like calling the working class "racists".
      But you can't call them "racists", for some reason. Quite the Catch-22.

      Delete
    3. Another one @6:01P. I'm getting tired of all this winning.

      Delete
    4. One in 5 of the working class are black.


      The question is why did the working class abandon Democrats?


      The "winning" answer is that they are racists?

      One in 5 of the working class are black. Many more are Latino. And all the working class has suffered the loss of manufacturing jobs to service sector jobs and the associated salary loss with it.

      The question is why did the working class abandon Democrats?

      Of course, there is only one answer racism!!!

      Am I understanding your response correctly?



      Delete
    5. Hillary Clinton won the black vote 91/6 and the Hispanic vote 66/28. So we’re probably not talking about the Dems losing working class people of color. Non-college grads are probably a fair approximation to “working class,” and sure enough, she won non-white non-college grads 77/18.

      So if the “Dems lose working class” meme has any validity, it’s among white working class voters, whom Hillary lost 28/64. The white south is solid Republican. White voters in the Confederacy went for Trump by around 40% with the exceptions being Florida, North Carolina, and Virginia (22%, 28%, and 15% respectively). The Republicans lost Texas to the Democrats in 1968. Do you remember what kept them from otherwise sweeping the region?

      Let’s go north. Michigan was the epitome of working class America during the heyday of auto manufacturing. Do you remember who won the Democratic primary in 1972?

      Racism is probably too stark a term. Racial politics isn’t the only answer, and when it’s present, it’s not always the most important factor. The Democrats won southern states when favorite sons Carter and Clinton ran.

      But Lee Atwater basically had it right.

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    6. The working class didn't abandon Democrats. The white working class abandoned Democrats. Just like all the other subset of white people did, after Democrats passed the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

      If your understanding of my response is that I don't think whites abandoned Democrats because Democrats passed the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (and the Voting Rights Act of 1965), then you are not understanding my response correctly.

      As David noted, you can't blame them for abandoning Democrats. Whites felt giving civil rights to black people is exactly like calling them "racists".

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    7. I'm talking about white working class Democrats leaving the party in 2016, a half a century after the Civil Rights Act. Remember 2016? White working class Democrats were thought to have been reliable in many of the states they were not. (https://bit.ly/2kyWL71)

      Did these people abandon Democrats in 2016 because of the Civil Rights Act of 1964? Hell no dude! Why would they wait 50 years? It's whole generation of white working class that listen to Lil' Nas X!

      Sigh.

      Racism (or "probably" a slightly less stark a term).

      It's the only card you city bumpkins know how to play.

      Follow the money my friends.

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    8. There is no proof working class whites voted for Trump because they approve of his racism. More likely, it was their approval of his long history of stiffing contractors who work for him, that won him their votes. LOL.

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    9. White working-class voters left the Democratic party decades ago and never returned. What makes you think there was a mass abandonment in 2016?

      Racism is the card Lee Atwater taught the Republicans how to play, and they've been winning tricks with it for a long time.

      If people were interested in following the money, Republicans could rely only on 1% of the vote.

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    10. @11:00P, that and their heartfelt concern about the effectiveness of modern hairspray.

      (Go here: https://www.c-span.org/video/?c4592821/trump-hairspray-regs)

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    11. Or their own long history being stiffed by establishment Democrats and Republicans. That was probably what it was. Not abandoning Democrats as much as abandoning and rejecting the establishment of both parties. That's probably the best way to look at it.The establishment of both parties failed them and put them on a treadmill to nowhere.

      Look around. The establishment may have done it to you too!

      Delete
    12. "What makes you think there was a mass abandonment in 2016?"

      Pre-election articles like the one to which I linked. I provided a source and can provide many more.

      I am not one to quarrel if you believe white working class voters abandoned the Democratic party decades ago and never returned because of "basically" racism. You seem like a smart guy and I'm sure you've done your research and investigated the matter fully (with respect to money and class etc.). I respect the conclusion you have drawn and appreciate you sharing it with me.

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    13. You seem like a smart guy and I'm sure you've done your research and investigated the matter fully (with respect to money and class etc.)

      Good God! I hope that’s snark, because none of that is true.

      Your link takes a contrarian view that the white working class abandonment of the Democratic party is mostly the result of white southerners move to the Republican Party. Maybe. I picked Luzerne County, PA (county seat, Wilkes-Barre) in the (now) rust belt. Democratic stronghold in the three Presidential elections in the 1960s. Swing area ever since, with a fondness for crackpot candidates like George Wallace and H. Ross Perot.

      I’m too lazy to examine the rest of the northern white working-class areas.

      Sorry.

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      We hope you enjoyed this example of uncultured impudence and lower middle class ignorance™

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    14. "none of that is true" That explains a lot.

      "link takes a contrarian view that the white working class abandonment of the Democratic party is mostly the result of white southerners move to the Republican Party."

      The article, pre-election, suggested that "it’s highly unlikely Trump will draw many working-class voters away from the Democrats, in large part because there probably aren’t a whole lot of white Democratic votes left in the South to take away, and because most blue-collar workers still identify with the Democratic Party", which turned out to be wrong. On the contrary, there was an abandonment of the Democratic party by working-class voters that cost Clinton the election. That is the abandonment to which I referred before about which you had inquired.

      Cheers,

      Delete
    15. Explains what? You come here for discussion with intelligent researchers? Go ahead. Pull the other one.

      You can say lots of things cost Clinton the election -- the lower turnout of black voters compared to the Obama elections, underperforming with Hispanics, etc. Probably most blue-collar workers still identify with the Democratic Party. I doubt that's true of white blue-collar workers. In any case, identification with the Democratic Party as in registration is not the same as voting for the Democratic Presidential candidate.

      If Luzerne County is any indication, white working-class areas sometimes go Democratic, sometimes Republican. Which is to say they're swing areas. They (or at least Luzerne) stopped being reliable Democratic strongholds after the 1960s.

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    16. Explains your impudence and lack of coherence. Eg. One moment the "winning" answer to why the white working class left the Democratic party is because of their racist reaction to the Civil Rights Act.of a half a century ago to "probably most blue-collar workers still identify with the Democratic Party." Most blue collar workers are white. You're a little all over the map.

      Cheers,

      Delete
    17. I’m wrong. I thought the working-class category (as approximated by non-college grads) would have tipped Democratic unless you split the group by race. It doesn’t. Trump took the working class 50/43. He took the white working class 64/28.

      The working class was a reliable Democratic demographic in the 1960s. It hasn’t been since. Much of that can be attributed to the Dixiecrats switching parties. But the Rust Belt fell away as well, just not as hard, becoming swing areas instead of Democratic strongholds.

      I don’t plan to change the impudence, but is that coherent enough for you?

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      We hope you enjoyed this example of uncultured impudence and lower middle class ignorance™

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    18. No, it's not coherent at all. But I appreciate you effort.

      Delete
    19. Check out my post @2:43P and tell me what's not clear to you. Or not. Max nixt to me. I'm beginning to smell troll anyway.

      Delete
    20. Yes, let's just leave it at that. Best,

      Delete
  16. @10:18 wrote: Whites felt giving civil rights to black people is exactly like calling them "racists".

    @10:19 is arguing that liberals didn't really call white people racists in a comment that implicitly calls them racists.

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    1. "Whites felt giving civil rights to black people is exactly like calling them "racists". " I don't understand what they mean by this or the Catch 22 it is supposed to reflect.

      The whites are racists because they felt giving civil rights to black people is exactly like calling them "racists"? I don't get it.

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    2. The statement implies that whites trivialize the act of giving civil rights to blacks.

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    3. "trivialize"?
      I wish. Instead they've been butt hurt about it for 55 years.

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    4. David is wrong (as usual). Whites didn't feel Democrats were calling them racists for passing the Civil Rights Act of 1964. It's worse than that. Whites felt Democrats were punishing them, by passing the Civil Rights act of 1964.

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    5. You'd have to be a zombie dembot to think you'd win elections after shoving the Civil Rights Act down the throats of white people.

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    6. Keep in mind, David is on record as contending that blacks in this country were better off before the major civil rights legislation in the 60's.

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    7. "Whites felt Democrats were punishing them, by passing the Civil Rights act of 1964."

      Whites were the ones that passed the law. You mean racist whites?

      Your answer is then, racism? Racist whites? A primary factor for white working class leaving the Democratic party over the last few decades is their racism? Specifically their resentment for being punished by Democrats when the Civil Rights act was past 55 years ago?

      There are probably some other factors you could consider as well. The Democratic party itself may have a few shortcomings that contributed to their loss of the white working class. Maybe.

      I would research it.

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    8. A primary factor for white working class leaving the Democratic party over the last few decades is their racism? Specifically their resentment for being punished by Democrats when the Civil Rights act was past 55 years ago?

      Of course not. Nothing that happened 55 years ago is the direct impetus for electoral results today. The coalition that passed the CRA64 comprised non-Southern Democrats and Republicans. (There were no Southern Republicans in the House and only one Southern Democrat in the Senate, John Tower.) There has since been a realignment. The Dixiecrats changed parties, and the Republican Party became the Tea Party.

      Back in the day, it was southern outrage at integrated lunch counters. Now it’s caravans of diseased brown criminals invading from Mexico. But there’s a straight line through various points like Reagan’s speech near Philadelphia, MS (1980) and Bush’s Willie Horton ad (1988).

      US racial politics has always been the gift that keeps on giving. Only the party labels change.

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    9. Oops. Not just racism. Turns out the working class also abandoned Democrats because the woking class (unlike the Democratic Party) are big fans of more mercury in their drinking water.
      Thanks for the guidance, 1:34.

      https://www.apnews.com/5c675cd468e648e7b97d4988bbb3d05e

      Delete
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