Trump Lingered Last in Line for Brains

You know, Donald Trump sure lacks a basic grasp of, you know, anything. For instance, the newly pro-life Trump believes the Constitution guarantees the Right to Privacy:

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

This is, of course, a problem, as the Right to Privacy was established by a Supreme Court case you may have heard of: Roe v. Wade. This is a little like saying you oppose segregation but believe “separate but equal” is acceptable legal doctrine; nobody who’s studied the abortion debate for more than a moment would make this mistake.

Naturally, the anti-choicers are dismayed by Trump’s response. And well they should be; I’d certainly question it if, say, Bill Gates announced he was running for president, said he was totally pro-choice, and also that there is no right to abortion in the Constitution.

But this won’t dent Trump, who has risen near the top of the GOP polls. Why? Because Trump is a one-issue candidate, and that issue is Birtherism. Donald Trump is a loud, obnoxious guy mouthing off about how Obama isn’t really an American because he’s Black he wasn’t really born here, and that appeals to the Republican voters who hate Obama because he’s Black he wasn’t really born here. Trump’s appeal is all about racism, which is why he’s added Dreamsism to his Birtherism. After all, a Black person Obama couldn’t have really written a good book; those people can’t write he can’t write that well. He must have had a white person Bill Ayers write it.

This is Trump’s appeal. Now, I don’t expect Trump to stay viable for long; his personal baggage makes Newt Gingrich look like Mother Theresa. Eventually he’ll implode, and he’ll do so spectacularly. But his current high standing in the polls is further proof that a huge segment of the Republican Party is simply and resolutely racist, and willing to back anyone who will mollycoddle to them. For now, that’s Trump. One suspects the eventual nominee is watching, and learning, and that 2012 is going to be ugly indeed.

This entry posted in Abortion & reproductive rights, Elections and politics. Bookmark the permalink. 

21 Responses to Trump Lingered Last in Line for Brains

  1. 1
    mythago says:

    This is, of course, a problem, as the Right to Privacy was established by a Supreme Court case you may have heard of: Roe v. Wade

    Argh. No. The right to privacy was really established by another Supreme Court case called Griswold v. Connecticut, which held it was a natural consequence of the Fourteenth Amendment. What Roe did was to balance that right to privacy against the “state’s interest in preserving fetal life”.

    Now, it’s certainly true that Trump is a grandstanding jackass, and it’s also true that anti-abortionists are fond of pretending that there is no right to privacy, certainly not vis-a-vis abortion (they’ve mostly got enough animal cunning not to say that it should be A-OK to ban married women from using the Pill).

  2. 2
    Jeff Fecke says:

    Okay, it started with Griswold. And I’m grateful for the use of birth control protected by it. But rhetorically, calling to Roe works better rhetorically — and I defend myself by saying that Roe hammered it into stone.

    Although given current anti-choice trends, I misdoubt that the anti-choicers will be going after Griswold sooner than later.

  3. 3
    nobody.really says:

    MSNBC’s Countdown show has been collecting Donald Trump campaign slogans. My favorites:

    “We Shall Overcomb!”

    “Trump/Palin 2012: You’re Fired!/I Quit!”

  4. 4
    mythago says:

    Jeff @2: Meaning, it’s not true but it sounds better? C’mon. That kind of tactic is their bag, not ours.

    Plus, it really doesn’t help. “Roe invented a right to privacy!” is something I’ve heard from anti-choicers, on the pretense that Blackmun just pulled it out of his ass, instead of relying on long-standing precent that was meant originally to protect the sanctity of marital privacy. Anti-choicers don’t (openly) want to go there.

  5. 5
    Korolev says:

    The Birther conspiracy theory attracts a sizeable amount of Americans, but not nearly enough to get him elected – it also makes him look like a nutter in front of everyone else. So if he wants to dig his own electoral grave, let him.

    As for whether or not he could actually believe in the insanity he spouts, it’s possible. Trump isn’t stupid (you don’t make millions by being an idiot), but even normal to smart people can believe some truly insane things. Like the brilliant Chemist/Physicist Linus Pauling, who made huge advancements in our understanding of molecular structure, but who sadly went off the deep end in old age and honestly believed that Vitamin C could cure Cancer and the Flu. It didn’t matter that every study said he was wrong, he was possessed with the idea that Vitamin C would cure just about everything under the sun. It was (so I’m told) really sad to see a brilliant mind slowly turn crazy.

    Now, Trump is hardly a Brilliant Mind (Brilliant Minds don’t make things like the Apprentice), but he isn’t actually stupid. He manages to dress himself in the morning and he doesn’t walk into walls with alarming frequency. So he’s of at least normal intelligence.

    So what I’m saying is… Maybe Trump isn’t stupid. Maybe he’s just insane. Balls-out, fantastically crazy. A loony. An absolute nutter. A head-case beyond hope.

    Which… come to think of it, is actually worse than just being stupid.

  6. 6
    Mokele says:

    But his current high standing in the polls is further proof that a huge segment of the Republican Party is simply and resolutely racist

    You know, I never get why some folks are surprised by this. It’s basically an inevitability that a fair-sized chunk of the current population will be racist due to demographics. The Civil Rights Movement was only about 50 years ago, and given the controversy at the time, it’s a fair estimate to say that a pretty good chunk of the populace was racist, let’s say half. Assuming no subsequent change in views, half of all 65+ year-olds are racist (a total of 6% of the US population), plus anyone they influenced substantially since (kids, etc.). If we assume the population is evenly split between Democrats, Republicans, and swing voters, and that the Republican party will hold a strong attraction to these leftover racists, you have 18% of the Republican party who’s been against the Civil Rights Act literally since day one.

    Math aside, it seems as if discourse about racism often neglects that open racism was a viable political position mirroring a large chunk of the population less than 50 years ago, and that a fair chunk of the populace either was alive & racist at the time, or were raised by those racists.

  7. 7
    RonF says:

    First, my position on whether or not President Obama is a natural-born citizen of the United States:

    a) I’d bet my house he is.
    b) I don’t consider anything that’s currently been offered as evidence in support of the proposition actually proves that.

    Brilliant Minds don’t make things like the Apprentice

    On the contrary. I’ve watched that show. So have millions of other people. It’s a brilliant concept and he plays it out with tremendous skill. I don’t watch “reality” shows (there’s little that’s actually real about them), but I do find Apprentice entertaining.

    However – having watched it I cannot imagine someone who is as star-struck about celebrity, financial success and material possessions as he is being seriously considered as Presidential material. Of course, I couldn’t imagine a former community organizer who was 2 years into his freshman year as U.S. Senator being considered Presidential material either. Anything can happen – and perhaps will. If this is the best that the GOP can do it’s time to disband it. I just have to hope that this is people having fun with pollsters and not evidence that people actually think he’s the best out there. Chicago once elected a mayor on the basis of her entertainment value, one Jane Byrne. She certainly was entertaining, but it didn’t work out particularly well for the city. Let’s hope the country as a whole doesn’t make the same mistake.

    Trump’s appeal is all about racism,

    I’m sorry, but I think that’s ridiculous. I figure that Trump’s appeal is that (in contrast to just about all the other GOP hopefuls) he’s got pretty much 100% name recognition and he’s painted as a business genius. His opinion on Obama’s birth is likely more a detriment than a supporting factor. Have there been any polls on WHY people support him?

  8. 8
    mythago says:

    I don’t consider anything that’s currently been offered as evidence in support of the proposition actually proves that.

    Which is to say, we have infinitely moveable goalposts. Whatever proof is offered, we can reject as “not enough”, so we have no standard we can say is met. Newspaper announcements? Could be in error. Certificate of birth? Not official enough. ACTUAL certificate of birth? Could be forged. Witnesses? Lying. And so on.

    Funnily, none of those arguing Obama was born in Kenya (or Indonesia, or whatever) have offered any proof of their theories. But that isn’t necessary, after all; he’s black, so unlike the previous N president, he’s gotta prove he was born here.

  9. 9
    Franklin says:

    If you question where this president was born you must be a racist. There’s a logical leap if I ever saw one.

    I too personally think the birther issue is stupid. We should create a presidential commission to verify eligibility of each presidential candidate, but I’m much more conserned about his horrible policies (suppose that is only evidence I am a racist too) and my guess is he was born in hawaii but they just don’t have the proper records.

    “after all; he’s black there is less evidence than N president that he was born in the US, so unlike the previous N president, he’s gotta prove he was born here.” Fixed

    yeah – I guess I see the racism now.

  10. 10
    Silenced_is_foo says:

    I imagine that a major proportion of Trump’s supporters have no idea of any of the issues about him or the birtherism or anything like that and just support him because he has a TV show where he fires celebrities.

  11. 11
    Jake Squid says:

    You know, wrt his eligibility to be POTUS, it doesn’t matter where Obama was born. You all know this, right? Just checking.

  12. 12
    Robert says:

    You know, wrt his eligibility to be POTUS, it doesn’t matter where Obama was born. You all know this, right? Just checking.

    I have a birther friend in Denver, and he is just emotionally committed to the notion that a foreign birth disqualifies you for the presidency. I was able (painfully) to get him to acknowledge that John McCain’s overseas birth wasn’t a disqualification because both of his parents were Americans, but we ran out of beer and time before I could get over the Kenyan hump. Some people are just stupid about some things.

    Emotional commitments to “facts” are almost impossible to dislodge. Lest we feel too smug, however, we should all remember that just about all of us have emotional commitments to facts that we aren’t willing to even argue about. The birther stupidity-nugget just happens to stick out more.

    Trump would be a disastrous president. He is far too liberal and far too bellicose, a uniquely destructive combination, even without getting into his character flaws and personal limitations. Fortunately, I am 90% sure that his run is simply a publicity boost for his commercial/entertainment empire, and his selection of birtherism as a topic is optimized for maximum attention (and maximum harm to Obama).

    That 10% chance does worry me, though.

  13. 13
    Charles S says:

    Franklin,

    my guess is he was born in hawaii but they just don’t have the proper records.

    Your guess is wrong. He was born in Hawaii and they do have the proper records. You clearly give too much trust to lying jackasses who claim that a certificate of live birth isn’t a birth certificate, or whatever the hell the birthers claim these days.

  14. 14
    RonF says:

    mythago, this is not a case of moving the goalposts. The goalposts are, and have always been, making public the actual birth certfiicate to independent examination. If you want to make a football analogy, what’s been going on is that Obama’s supporters have put the ball across the 30-yard line and tried to claim that it was a touchdown.

    And you’re right – I haven’t seen any proof that he was born anywhere else but the U.S. either. However, it seems to me that the burden is on the candidate to prove they are qualified, not on the public to prove that they are not. Is racism a motive for some of the objectors? Probably. I don’t see that as particularly material, though. Nor do I see it as a reasonable presumption that it’s the motive for even a majority of them, never mind all.

  15. 15
    RonF says:

    You know, wrt his eligibility to be POTUS, it doesn’t matter where Obama was born. You all know this, right? Just checking.

    I’ve been told that there are some issues about the fact that only one of his parents were American citizens and what the laws were when he was born. But the true issue there would be that if it was proved that he was not in fact born in Hawaii then he would have been proved to have lied about the circumstances of his birth.

  16. 16
    Charles S says:

    RonF,

    Obama’s birth certificate has been examined and confirmed by state officials in Hawaii.

    No other president has ever been subjected to this nonsense, so no, the burden of proof is not normally on the president, it never has been, and this has never caused you any concern before.

    What is the evidence that George W. Bush wasn’t secretly adopted, and that he wasn’t actually born in France to French citizens? I’ve certainly never seen any evidence disproving that claim, and I doubt you have either. How do we know Bill Clinton wasn’t actually a foundling on the steps of a New Zealand church who was later secretly slipped into the US and adopted by his putative parents?

    What evidence, other than a birth certificate, birth announcements in the newspaper, witness reports, and the absolute absence of any evidence for the claims (all four forms of evidence are well documented for Obama’s birth) could possibly be presented as evidence against the nonsensical claims I just advanced?

  17. 17
    hf says:

    Funny.

    My position on whether or not the axioms of logic and arithmetic will ever tell us 2+2=3:

    a) I’d bet RonF’s house they won’t.
    b) I don’t consider anything that’s currently been offered as evidence in support of the proposition actually proves that.

    Clearly, then, I’m entitled to believe 1=3 if my church says so.

  18. 18
    Jake Squid says:

    I’ve been told that there are some issues about the fact that only one of his parents were American citizens and what the laws were when he was born.

    … but, continues the traditional RonF, I haven’t read about the rules so I can’t really say.

    It is not difficult to find the rules that determine whether or not you are born a US citizen. Oh. Here, . Turns out it isn’t difficult to get the facts in under a minute at all.

    Tune in next week when RonF tells us his factually incorrect position on an issue that he could have looked up in less than 15 seconds. Same RonF time, Same RonF channel.

  19. 19
    Ampersand says:

    I’ve been told that there are some issues about the fact that only one of his parents were American citizens and what the laws were when he was born.

    Ron, “I’ve been told” is not a source — and thanks for providing yet another example of moving the goalposts.

    if it was proved that he was not in fact born in Hawaii then he would have been proved to have lied about the circumstances of his birth.

    No, it wouldn’t. You’d have to prove not only that he wasn’t born in Hawaii, but that he knew that he wasn’t born in Hawaii.

    And from your earlier comment:

    The goalposts are, and have always been, making public the actual birth certfiicate to independent examination.

    Ron, as has been pointed out to you in the past, the birth certificate has been independently examined.

    As for moving the goalposts, here are some statements you made in that thread:

    It is my understanding – and if I’m wrong, please provide a link – that originals or certified copies of documentation proving that the official records state that President Obama was born in Hawaii have not been released… When I got my passport the U.S. State Department demanded a certified copy with embossed seal and signature. … The documentation so far cited would not satisfy the State Department as proof of citizenship if Obama offered it to support a passport application. …

    In fact, the birth certificate had been released, it did have an embossed seal and signature, and it would certainly be accepted by the State Department with a passport application. But none of that mattered to you; you just moved the goalposts.

    Originally birthers claimed that the birth certificate would show that Obama’s middle name was “Mohammad,” and similar nonsense; when they were proven wrong, they didn’t quit, they just moved the goalposts.

    Ron, with all due respect, I’m not convinced that any evidence could shift your views on this issue. You could examine the birth certificate with your own hands, surrounded by birth certificate experts, meet the living witness to Obama’s birth in person, and you’d still be claiming that Obama has not provided enough evidence.

    There’s a birth certificate, which has been examined. There’s a contemporary newspaper announcement of Obama’s birth. There’s a living witness who recalls Obama’s birth. (Source for last two claims). That’s more than sufficient evidence. That’s probably more evidence than many Americans could muster, in fact.

  20. 21
    hf says:

    Hmm, the first link in my comment had an extra (“) somehow.