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Mike 03

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Gender: Male
Hometown: Modesto California
Home country: United States
Current location: Arizona
Member since: Mon Oct 27, 2008, 05:14 PM
Number of posts: 16,616

Journal Archives

Speculation: Nominee or not, Bloomberg could dismantle Trump

While I agree that in terms of polls and likely outcome of the primaries, Trump is scared to run against Biden, I believe the person he has Oedipal night sweats about is Michael Bloomberg because Bloomberg can do something to Trump no other person so far has been able to do: dismember Trump’s psyche. Bloomberg can expose him completely as a fraud and a charlatan. Trump’s greatest fear is being exposed by someone more successful than him who he has no psychological defense against. If you were an FBI profiler trying to get a confession out of Trump, you’d send in Bloomberg because there’s a button inside Trump such that if the right person hits it, you’ll see Trump disintegrate like a Twinkie in a tornado. And Bloomberg is the guy to push it.

It doesn’t matter if Bloomberg is saying something that hundreds, thousands of reporters, psychiatrists, and foreign affairs experts have said before—if it comes from Michael Bloomberg it will hit a target nobody else has been able to hit.

It has to do with exposing Trump in a way he’s not capable of defending himself against. Trump has an arsenal of tools he’s relied on since childhood when he’s attacked, such as name-calling, blaming, deflecting, projecting and lying. They are childish but have been somewhat effective (early on, they were more effective) with his base. They’ve allowed him to keep his self-concept intact. But Trump has no defense mechanism against Bloomberg. For Trump, an attack by Bloomberg is almost like an attack from a glorified image of his own father—the father figure he imagines he had but didn’t, and also being attacked by the person he imagines himself to be but obviously isn’t: an actual stable genius; a (mostly) beloved New Yorker; an actual philanthropist; an actual respected billionaire; an actual successful businessman. Trump’s usual defenses will crumble because his fragile façade isn’t equipped to repel an attack from someone who actually exists in the space Trump thinks belongs to him: It’s an attack from deep inside the very place he wants to occupy.

And inversely, Bloomberg knows exactly what Trump is. Over Bloomberg’s lifetime he’s seen thousands of less-successful malignant narcissists like Trump pass through high finance. He can read Trump like an X-ray machine. Bloomberg is probably too compassionate to intentionally disgrace a lot of the losers he meets, but he won’t hesitate to slam-dunk Trump when the opportunity presents itself.

Remember, Trump and his father were very competitive and Fred Trump was an extremely demanding, controlling person. Trump shifted his real-estate aspirations to Manhattan not to try to “outdo” his father but to impress him and, importantly, avoid competing with him. But Fred Trump could never be impressed by anything Trump did, and Trump could never meet his father’s expectations. Fred Trump’s death left unfinished business between them. “Unfinished business” that someone as psychologically shrewd as Bloomberg can exploit by speaking to Trump the way a disappointed father speaks to a son he never loved. That’s why I think Bloomberg, more than anyone else, can throw Trump terminally off balance. How? Maybe with something as simple as an advertisement but probably something more creative, perhaps hitting Trump on multiple platforms, but especially a televised interview where he could speak almost directly to Trump, shaming him, humiliating him in a sophisticated manner that Trump couldn’t miss. I think one reason Bloomberg is remaining aloof from the fray is he that he knows this confrontation is coming and wants it to be meaningful, which it wouldn’t be if he were constantly in Twitter scuffles. Today we saw a glimpse of a direct confrontation between these two people.

Michael Bloomberg doesn’t actually have to win the nomination to accomplish this. He can attack Trump at the time and place of his choosing. He’d probably wait until closer to the election because he’s also a superior strategist. But in the unlikely event that Trump is stupid enough to keep attacking him (which surprises me, actually), it could come sooner.

I've been waiting for this: a direct confrontation between these two.

Trump is taking a risk here because his low self esteem could be decimated by someone like Bloomberg who is so much more successful in the very ways Trump values and defines 'success'. I thought Trump might totally avoid even invoking Bloomberg's name, but it looks like it's game on. But I bet it won't last long.

EDIT: There's also the peripheral issue of 'Does Trump see his father when he sees Michael Bloomberg' in terms of how he will approach confronting him.

"Neither Difficult Nor Easy"

Layman Pang was sitting in his thatched cottage one day [studying the sūtras]. "Difficult, difficult," he said; "like trying to scatter ten measures of sesame seed all over a tree."

"Easy, easy," Mrs. Pang said; "like touching your feet to the ground when you get out of bed."

"Neither difficult nor easy," their daughter Ling Zhao said; "on the hundred grass tips, the great Masters' meaning."


From The Enlightened Heart: An Anthology of Sacred Poetry, by Stephen Mitchell.

Edited for clarity of who is talking.

My back-of-the-envelope prediction

is that he'll have spent somewhere around $650 million (including but not limited to golf) by the end of 2020. By the way, does this include protection for Jared, Ivanka, Don Jr., Eric, etc...?

Magnificent thread.

https://twitter.com/jenmercieca/status/1207076438081454081

https://twitter.com/jenmercieca/status/1207077374585712640

https://twitter.com/jenmercieca/status/1207078839899348992

Hopefully you're right.

Except...

Russian interference. Check. (Boris Johnson even tried to suppress a report about Russian interference.)
A sizeable portion of the population believing "facts" that aren't true or ignoring facts they don't like.
A sizeable portion of the population rallying around a leader who the world mocks.
Rallying around a leader who threatened to flout court orders and law (though he pulled back).
A sizeable portion of the population voting against their own financial interests and it's not clear why.
THe fomenting of division so great it has torn families apart.
Some of this has to do with disdain for immigrants and familiar populist tropes.

Did some liberals simply get exhausted by Brexit? This morning even the experts are disagreeing about what happened. I say we should listen to them and figure out for ourselves whether we need to pay attention to this or not. It's very hard to predict voter behavior right now, or entirely understand what motivates it. So I say we shouldn't completely dismiss what happened last night. We do so at our own peril. How many of thought Trump couldn't even win a first term, right up to the week he won?

EDIT: From the BBC last night. More "lower class voters" (their words) than middle class voters voted for Conservatives in this election and that's never happened before (according to BBC). They couldn't explain it.

Blueprint for a campaign ad I want to see

This is a rough draft. This is just a blueprint for something better. I wish somebody would create an ad like this while the Bevin Pardons are hot in the news. He exemplifies the Trump Republican. Even though there is lots of voice-over talking, the intention is for a rapid-fire constant barrage of visuals, quick edits, and harsh sound bites, edited down to a minute or less. I wish some candidate--any candidate--would run something like this.

FADE IN:

ANNOUNCER: What has the Republican Party become under Donald J. Trump?

NEWS ANCHOR: Against the strong advice of top military officials President Trump has pardoned two Navy Seals found guilty of war crimes.

CORRESPONDENT: Pentagon officials are reportedly furious.

Photos of the Navy Seals, if available, during their trials, or gloating, or posing with dead bodies intercut with Trump, his crazy tweets, etc…

NEWS ANCHOR: The President wants the Navy Seals he pardoned of war crimes to hit the campaign trail for him.

SCENE: Trump Rally, Trump boasting about pardoning the Navy Seals and what fine people they are.

NEWS ANCHOR: Navy Secretary Richard Spencer resigned today.

SCENE: TRUMP RALLY: Trump campaigns with pardoned Seal (If this exists).

A PSYCHIATRIST BEING INTERVIEWED BY A REPORTER:

REPORTER: What does Donald Trump see when he looks in the mirror?

PSYCHIATRIST: He sees a god.

CHRIS COLLINS NEWS CONFERENCE. SUBTITLE: INSIDER TRADING

Collins: No, I will not resign. I’ve done nothing wrong.

NEWS ANNOUNCER: Today Collins plead guilty to charges of insider trading.

SCENE: DUNCAN HUNTER being chased by reporters. SUBTITLE: conspiracy, corruption, wire fraud and violating campaign finance laws

Duncan Hunter (press conference or to reporters): There’s been a misunderstanding. My wife did it.

NEWS PERSONALITY: Duncan Hunter has completely thrown his own wife under the bus.

VOICE OVER: What kind of people are these?

Duncan Hunter to Reporters: I have no intention of stepping down.

NEWS ANNOUNCER: Today Duncan Hunter changed his plea to Guilty.

NEWS ANNOUNCER: Outgoing Kentucky Mayor Bevin today pardoned a man convicted of beheading a woman and stuffing her body into a barrel.

TOM HANDY, PROSECUTOR: I think it’s the arrogance of a governor who has a God-like image of himself and a lack of concern for anybody else.

ANNOUNCER: The party that was once “Tough on Crime” has become the party that doesn’t care about you or your family’s safety.

DR. JERROLD POST. SUBTITLE: CIA PROFILER JERROLD POST. POST: If he’s voted out of office, the most dangerous time is between Election Day and his last day in office.

NEWS ANCHOR: Today the outgoing governor issued (dozens, hundreds) more pardons, including one to a child rapist and another to a man convicted of murder in a violent home invasion robbery.

CBS HEADLINE: Ex-Kentucky governor pardons convicted killers in last days in office

SERIES OF MUGSHOTS:

Delmar Partin (Man who beheaded woman). TITLE: PARDONED!

Child Rapist. TITLE: PARDONED!

Patrick Baker: TITLES: Homicide, Home Invasion, PARDONED!

Shots of emotional, uncomprehending family members (of victims) and prosecutors reacting to news of the pardons.

FAMILY MEMBER: Why is he doing this!?

NEWS ANCHOR VOICE OVER: Former Kentucky Governor Matt Bevin issued a slew of pardons on his way out of office, granting relief to a convicted killer whose brother raised money for Bevin. He also pardoned Patrick Brian Baker, who was convicted of homicide and other crimes in a fatal 2014 home break-in in Knox County, the Courier Journal reported.
Baker's family raised $21,500 at a political fundraiser last year for Bevin and Baker's brother and sister-in-law also gave $4,000 to Bevin's campaign on the day of the fundraiser.

NEWS PERSONALITY: The cruelty IS the point.

PROSECUTOR JACKIE STEELE: To say I am aggrieved by this pardon would be an understatement.

NEWS PERSONALITY (think Joe or Mika): The Republicans no longer govern; they like to break things, mess things up.

PSYCHIATRIST or NEWS PERSONALITY: This has nothing to do with deeply held political principles. It’s about what feels good at any given moment. It’s about getting back at the voters you don’t like, or profiting off your power, or exacting revenge.

TRUMP: When someone hits me I hit back a hundred times harder. I believe in an eye for an eye.

PSYCHIATRIST (repeat): The most dangerous time is between Election Day and his last day in office.

ANNOUNCER: This is no way to run a country. (Apologies for the ancient cliche here).

(The close is personalized by the candidate, who will come up with a better ending than I did.)

The shortest-lived government agency in history.

They shouldn't even bother printing up business cards because in a year "The Space Force" won't be a thing.

Eastwood's aesthetics are difficult to reconcile with his politics.

Thinking of Unforgiven which is self-critical and derisive of hypocrisy and hagiography and mythmaking of criminals into heroes. Million Dollar Baby totally exposing the myth that if you work hard enough and want something bad enough you can achieve the American Dream. And Mystic River (I need to see it again) seemed very against the mob mentality and scapegoating. There are probably other examples too. I didn't care for J. Edgar but it seemed like there was something there too.

The Breeders - Cannonball

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