August 11, 2016


“ Your opponent right now, Mr. Trump, is yourself.” -- Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) 8/04/16

“I don’t know why we’re not leading by a lot. Maybe crowds don’t make the difference.” — Donald Trump at a large campaign rally. 8/03/16

“Trump is Trump. You can pull somebody out of the insane asylum and staff him with the best people in the business, and he’s still going to be in the parking lot screaming about the book of Revelations and there’s nothing you can do about it. Hillary’s the placekicker on the field. She’s shanking every kick. And Trump’s the guy pleasuring himself in the stands.” — Former Romney national security adviser John Noonan. 8/03/16


“In the mind of the average American, there is no doubt he is a Muslim. He is not a Christian.” -- Carl Paladino, Donald Trump’s New York co-chair, saying that President Obama’s foreign policy proves he’s a Muslim.

“If in 96 days Trump loses this election, I am pointing the finger directly at people like Paul Ryan.” — Sean Hannity. 8/04/16

"Reality TV idea: We build a fake White House and put Trump in it and tell him he's president. Film the whole thing". -- Dan Kaszeta @DanKaszeta

“Donald Trump is Todd Akin. He is Richard Mourdock and Sharron Angle. But that is really not fair to Akin, Mourdock and Angle. They weren’t nuts. They had political views and others that made them unelectable. With Donald Trump, it is instability. He is an absurd candidate for president. He is a neutron bomb that has gone off in the Republican Party that is destroying anyone near him.” — GOP strategist Stuart Stevens. 8/05/2016

“I hear that Donald Trump is watching the Olympics tonight. He’s seeing how high the Mexican pole vaulters go.” —Libertarian presidential candidate Gary Johnson 8/05/16

“This whole thing disgusts me, Hillary Clinton should be put in the firing line and shot for treason,” -- Al Baldasaro, a Republican state representative from New Hampshire and Trump’s veteran’s adviser commenting on whether she is responsible for the deaths of four Americans in Benghazi, Libya in 2012.. 8/07/16

“We have a wonderful OPPORTUNITY here folks, that may never come again, at the RIGHT time. Donald Trump’s campaign statements, if nothing else, have SHOWN that ‘our views’ are NOT so ‘unpopular’ as the Political Correctness crowd have told everyone they are!” -- Rocky Suhayda, chairman of the American Nazi Party, saying that a Donald Trump victory would present a great opportunity for white nationalists to build pro-white coalitions. 8/06/15

Trump sounds like a 12-year-old — a willful and abusive braggart. He is remarkably ignorant and uneducated about the world that we face and the means we may use to defend ourselves. -- Retired four-star general Barry McCaffrey


“The government will be shut down if they attempt to steal this and swear Hillary in. If there’s voter fraud, this election will be illegitimate, the election of the winner will be illegitimate, we will have a constitutional crisis, widespread civil disobedience.” -- Roger Stone suggesting that the outcome is fair only if Trump wins.

“Of course not.” --Newt Gingrich, when asked by whether Trump’s plan to “cut taxes $9.5 trillion over the next decade, most of it going to top earners, and add[ing] $11.2 trillion to the debt with unspecified spending cuts” adds up. 8/08/16

“Hillary wants to abolish, essentially abolish the second amendment. And if she gets to pick her judges, nothing you can do folks. Although the second amendment folks, maybe there is… — Donald Trump (video) signaling that assassinating Hillary Clinton and/or her Supreme Court nominees is an okay thing to talk about. 8/09/16 

“Trump’s negatives—in the RealClearPolitics averages, 35 percent see him favorably, 58 percent unfavorably—along with his habit of digging his hole even deeper mean that what should be a very winnable race for Republicans instead has become one dependent upon a cataclysmic event, perhaps an act of God, in order to win. That is never an enviable position to be in. Right now, it is looking more like a referendum on Trump.”-- Cook Political Report 8/09/16

“I don’t think he thought it through. It was a red meat line he tossed off carelessly to signify solidarity with the crowd… But that is the problem: When you are the president of the United States you can’t do that. The things you say can send armies marching and markets tumbling. And he seems incapable of controlling himself. This is at the core of worries about him.” -- David Axelrod, on Donald Trump’s “Second Amendment people” comments. 8/10/16

“While no candidate is perfect and while nothing is certain, I am convinced that Hillary Clinton has what it takes to make our government truly work as our Founding Fathers intended. That is why as a Republican she has my strong support, and my vote this November.” -- Former Rep. Chris Shays (R-CT) 8/10/16



1. The Borowitz Report: Trump Economic Plan Calls For Every American To Inherit Millions From Father
2. Mark Fiore Cartoon: Trump’s ultimate sacrifice
4. From MEDIA MATTERS (They watch Fox News so you don't have to)
5. From the Late Shows
6. Political Ads/Statements
7. U.S. Chamber sues over rules that discourage companies from moving overseas to avoid taxes
8. Will Delegitimizing A Clinton Presidency Outlast Trump's Campaign?
9. AP FACT CHECK: Trump shapes facts to fit economic agenda in Detroit speech
10. Donald Trump needs a miracle to win
12. Trump Casts Doubt on Electoral System
13. G.O.P Candidates Flee Trump’s Shadow
14. The movie: “Trump: What’s The Deal?”
15. Late Night Jokes for Dems


1. Fareed Zakaria: The unbearable stench of Trump’s B.S.
2 George F. Will: Trump’s shallowness runs deep
3. E.J. Dionne Jr.: The Republican Party has lost its soul
4. Ruth Marcus: Donald Trump makes his most dangerous comments yet
5. Anna North: What Hillary Clinton Faces on the Stump
6. Gail Collins: Intervening Donald
7. Goldie Taylor: Donald Trump Is Out of Time
8. Heather Wilhelm: Sorry, GOP: There Is No Trump 'Reset' Button
9. Peggy Noonan: The Week They Decided Donald Trump Was Crazy
10. Rebecca Traister: Donald Trump and the Long History of White Men Claiming Fraud 
11. Ed Kilgore: Hillary Clinton Should Go Nuclear on Donald Trump
12. Michael J. Morell: I Ran the C.I.A. Now I’m Endorsing Hillary Clinton
13. Maureen Dowd: Crazy About the Presidency
14. Jon Perr: Lessons from the rise of Donald Trump
15. Nicholas Kristof: Clinton’s Fibs vs. Trump’s Huge Lies
16. Thomas L. Friedman: Trump’s Wink Wink to ‘Second Amendment People’ 


1. The Borowitz Report: Trump Economic Plan Calls For Every American To Inherit Millions From Father

At a speech in Detroit on Monday, the Republican Presidential nominee, Donald J. Trump, spelled out the details of his economic plan, which calls for every American to inherit millions of dollars from his or her father.

“There are people at my rallies, desperate people, desperate because they want jobs,” he told his luncheon audience at the Detroit Economic Club. “Once they inherit millions from their father, they will never want a job again.”

Using an anecdote to show how his economic plan would work, Trump explained, “A man with zero dollars who inherited forty million dollars from his father would become forty million dollars wealthier.”

“We are going to make America rich again,” he said.

Trump’s plan for wealth creation drew strong praise from his team of economic advisers, including Ivanka, Eric, Tiffany, Barron, and Donald Trump, Jr.

2. Mark Fiore Cartoon: Trump’s ultimate sacrifice


“If the election is rigged, I would not be surprised. The voter ID situation has turned out to be a very unfair development. We may have people vote 10 times.” -- Donald Trump 8/04/16


"What does that mean? The federal government doesn't run the election process. States and cities and communities all across the country, they are the ones who set up the voting systems and the voting booths. And if Mr. Trump is suggesting that there is a conspiracy theory that is being propagated, across the country, included in places like Texas, where typically it's not Democrats who are in charge of voting booths, that's ridiculous.” -- President Obama 8/04/16 


“I’ll never forget the scene this morning, Iran ― I don’t think you’ve heard this anywhere but here ― Iran provided all of that footage, the tape, of taking that money off that airplane. Over there, where that plane landed, top secret, they don’t have a lot of paparazzi, you know.The paparazzi doesn’t do so well over there.” But “they have a perfect tape, obviously done by a government camera, and the tape is of the people taking the money off the plane. It’s a military tape. It’s a tape that was a perfect angle, nice and steady. Iran released that tape, which is of quality like these guys have,” he continued, pointing to the media in the back of the room. “Iran released that tape so that we will be embarrassed.” Trump claimed that the Iranian government released secret footage it had of the United States transferring $400 million in cash to Iran. -- Donald Trump 8/03/16


The video was “merely the b-roll footage included in every broadcast” of the prisoner release. The video he saw was not shot in Iran, it did not show the exchange of cash, it was not “top secret,” it was not “a military tape,” and it was not “provided by Iran.” Nor was it released to embarrass the United States. -- Christina Wilkie & Jessica Schulberg. 8/03/16



The video's text asks "Wait. What?" before replaying the Clinton clip, modified and slowed down. As Clinton says again "we aren't going to raise taxes on the middle class," the subtitles read "we are going to raise taxes on the middle class." -- Trump campaign video


“Clinton definitely said, ‘We aren't going to raise taxes on the middle class.’" -- Linguistics professors at the University of Chicago and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology who analyzed Clinton's speech with a computer program.


The Iranian government announced Sunday it had executed Shahram Amiri, a nuclear scientist who spent about 14 months in the United States in 2009 and 2010. Senator Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) noted on Sunday’s Face the Nation that Amiri’s case had been discussed by top Clinton State Department officials on emails that passed through her private server. The Drudge Report ran the story with a banner title, “Clinton email led to execution in Iran?” which Trump promptly retweeted without comment to his 10.7 million followers. -- Washington Post


Despite what you might read on Donald Trump’s twitter feed, the Iranian execution of a nuclear scientist who defected to the United States and then changed his mind was not caused by Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server. The scientist outed himself; it wasn’t Clinton’s fault. 8/08/16 Josh Rogin


“It doesn’t really matter what Barack Obama says, it matters what ayatollahs think and what every dictator, terrorist and gangster around the world think. ... And they all clearly believe in their own words that this was a ransom payment, and that means they are going to take more hostages, which is exactly what Iran has done since January.” -- Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) 8/08/16


The payment to Iran was not, as critics claimed, secret and it wasn’t ransom. It was, in fact, an installment on a $1.7 billion settlement over a dispute dating back 37 years. And the Obama administration made this clear when the settlement was announced in January. This wasn’t a giveaway—it was a refund owed to Iran since 1979. -- The Daily Kos 8/03/16

4. From MEDIA MATTERS (They watch Fox News so you don't have to)

CNN’s Fareed Zakaria Explains That Trump’s “Mode Of Operation Is Really A B.S. Artist”

Bill Kristol: Paul Ryan “Doesn't Think Donald Trump Should Be President” - Kristol: "Why Is He Even Pretending To Support Donald Trump?"

Trump’s Allies Already Blaming Republican Establishment For His Defeat

Mike Huckabee Revives Obama Birtherism: "Why Don't We Talk About Obama's College Transcript?"

Sean Hannity Calls Wall Street Journal Editor A "Dumbass With His Head Up His Ass"

CNN Counterterrorism Analyst Dismantles Myths About The US' $400 Million Payment To Iran. CNN's Phil Mudd: "We Paid To Resolve A Diplomatic Dispute That Goes Back Right After The Iranian Revolution" In 1979

NBC's Chuck Todd: Trump's Campaign "Appears To Be One Gaffe Away From A Full Implosion"

Fact-Checkers Rebut Trump’s “Pathetic” Economic Lies In Real Time

Several news outlets reporting on a lawsuit brought by the parents of two Benghazi victims that blames their deaths on Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton did not mention that the lawsuit is being pushed by anti-Clinton lawyer Larry Klayman, a conspiracy theorist with a long history of suing the Clintons.

Economists And Experts Trash Trump’s “Nonsense” Supply-Side Economic Plan

5. From the Late Shows

The Late Show with Stephen Colbert: The Return of Timmy Jenkins, AKA Trump Bully Kid

Late Night with Seth Meyers: Trump's Disastrous Week: A Closer Look

The Late Show with Stephen Colbert: Please Welcome: The USA Freedom Grown-Ups

6. Political Ads/Statements

Priorities USA: Danger

Trump Has Tiny Hands PAC: Release The Measurements

Hillary Clinton on the trust issue: "I take this seriously"

What is Donald Trump's connection to Vladimir Putin? | The Briefing

7. U.S. Chamber sues over rules that discourage companies from moving overseas to avoid taxes

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce on Thursday sued to block the implementation of Obama administration rules that make it more difficult for U.S. companies to move their headquarters overseas to lower their tax bills.

The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas, is a last-ditch effort by the business community to squash proposed regulations that have already scuttled plans by Pfizer to merge with Botox-maker Allergen in an $160 billion deal and become an Irish company. The merger would have saved the pharmaceutical giant at least $35 billion in taxes, according to advocacy groups. 8/04/16 Read more at

8. Will Delegitimizing A Clinton Presidency Outlast Trump's Campaign?

Trump is borrowing a page from a Republican playbook, after all, that dates back to allegations against President Bill Clinton and, of course, claims that President Barack Obama was born in Kenya and actually is Muslim. But while his tactics set the stage for a repeat of the Obama era of knee-jerk obstruction, Trump goes far beyond even birtherism, which he played a large part in stoking during the 2012 election cycle, when he suggests that a hypothetical victory for Clinton in November could only be the result of a fraudulent election.

Trump's insistence on delegitimizing a Clinton presidency in a generic sense is in some respects a continuation of the GOP congressional strategy of the Obama era.

“There was an effort not just to vote against everything that Obama and Democrats were for, but to delegitimize the process and and then take advantage of the anger that would result. And it worked like a charm in the midterms of 2010 and 2014,” Norman Ornstein, a congressional scholar at the American Enterprise Institute, told TPM. “A lot of this anger that is being churned up against Clinton is going to be used in the same way.” 8/09/16 Read more at

9. AP FACT CHECK: Trump shapes facts to fit economic agenda in Detroit speech

TRUMP: "She said she wanted to raise taxes on the middle class."
THE FACTS: If Clinton said that — and it's debatable — it's clear she didn't mean to. Her economic agenda calls for middle-class tax cuts (which are not specified) and she has repeatedly said she would not raise taxes on middle incomes.

TRUMP: "You cannot ever start a small business under the tremendous regulatory burden that you have today in our country."
THE FACTS: Trump is exaggerating. There are clear signs that new business formation has slowed, but it hasn't ground to the halt that he suggests.

TRUMP: "Our roads and bridges fell into disrepair, yet we found the money to resettle millions of refugees at taxpayer expense."
THE FACT: You have to go a long way back to get to "millions" of refugees.

TRUMP: "According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, before NAFTA went into effect, there were 285,000 auto workers in Michigan. Today, that number is only 160,000."
THE FACTS: Trump is playing fast and loose with the stats. The numbers cited in his speech don't even line up with the footnotes provided by his campaign.

TRUMP on the unemployment rate: "This 5 percent figure is one of the biggest hoaxes in modern American politics."
THE FACTS: The unemployment rate has its shortcomings but it is not a hoax.

TRUMP: "The United States also has the highest business tax rate among the major industrialized nations of the world, at 35 percent. It's almost 40 percent when you add in taxes at the state level."
THE FACTS: The stated corporate tax rate looks high, but most U.S. businesses don't pay it. The tax code is full of deductions, credits and loopholes that limit the tax burden for many companies. The effective corporate income tax rate is around 27 percent, roughly in line with global averages, according to government estimates.

TRUMP, on what would happen if he became president: "The auto industry will come roaring back."
THE FACTS: The industry has already roared back from the financial crisis.

TRUMP: Repealing and replacing Obama's health care law would mean "saving another 2 million American jobs."
THE FACTS: Since Obama's health care law came into effect, the economy has added more than 14.6 million jobs and the jobless rate has fallen to 4.9 percent from 9.9. percent. So how can it be that repealing the law would mean 2 million more jobs?

10. Donald Trump needs a miracle to win

Journalistic neutrality allegedly forces us to say that the race isn’t over until November, and most media organizations prefer to hype the presidential contest to generate viewers and readers rather than explain why a photo finish is unlikely.”

But a dispassionate examination of the data, combined with a cold-blooded look at the candidates, the campaigns and presidential elections, produces only one possible conclusion: Hillary Clinton will defeat Donald Trump in November, and the margin isn’t likely to be as close as Barack Obama’s victory over Mitt Romney.” 8/08/16 Read more at



A record 73 guns were discovered by TSA agents at airports across the country, during the week of April 15-21, 2016.

Well, here we are again. Another week, another 17 people accidentally shooting themselves, another 11 kids accidentally shot, another eight accidental gun fatalities, four hunting accidents, four guns accidentally fired into neighbors’ homes or properties, two more gun cleaning accidents, two more guns accidentally fired while out and about in public, etc., etc., etc. The complete list of stories from the week of April 17, 2016, including the one about the Portland Oregon chief of police accidentally shooting a friend while out on a hunting trip, is at


12. Trump Casts Doubt on Electoral System

Trump has predicted at almost every rally this past week that the election could be "rigged" against him. He’s labeled the numerous polls showing him trailing Clinton as "phony" and warned that voter fraud could steal the election from him. 

The new tack comes days after a top Trump confidante warned Breitbart News there would be a “rhetorical bloodbath” if the powers that be denied the GOP presidential nominee a fair election and laid out a plan for Trump to begin to delegitimize the election results months before the first ballots are even cast. 

“First and foremost is the inoculation, which is what Trump is doing, to put people on notice that if there is substantial evidence, or minor evidence, of voter fraud, and it’s a close race, he will challenge the results,” Trump ally Roger Stone told The Hill, adding that Trump could do so by either filing a lawsuit or encouraging “mass protests.”

“Trump is a fighter. Trump is a brawler. Nobody is going to steal this election from Trump and have him go on his way.” 8/07/16 Read more at


13. G.O.P Candidates Flee Trump’s Shadow

After a disastrous week of feuds and plummeting poll numbers, Republican leaders have concluded that Donald J. Trump is a threat to the party’s fortunes and have begun discussing how soon their endangered candidates should explicitly distance themselves from the presidential nominee.

For Republicans in close races, top strategists say, the issue is no longer in doubt. One House Republican has already started airing an ad vowing to stand up to Mr. Trump if he is elected president, and others are expected to press similar themes in the weeks ahead.

In the world of Republican “super PACs,” strategists are going even farther: discussing advertisements that would treat Mr. Trump’s defeat as a given and urge voters to send Republicans to Congress as a check on a Hillary Clinton White House. The discussions were described by officials familiar with the deliberations, several of whom spoke on the condition of anonymity about confidential planning. 8/07/16 Read more at®ion=top-news&WT.nav=top-news&_r=0


14. The movie: “Trump: What’s The Deal?”


MSNBC review:

Rent the movie for $3.99 in iTunes:

15. Late Night Jokes for Dems

"In the last 24 hours, Donald Trump has refused to endorse Republican leaders up for re-election, accused John McCain of failing veterans, suggested Americans pull their 401(k)s out of the stock market, threw out a crying baby at a rally, fought with the father of a dead soldier, and suggested President Obama was responsible for the death of troops during George W Bush's time in office. Said voters, 'Yeah, but I'm not sure I trust Hillary Clinton.'" –Seth Meyers

"Top Republican fundraiser and Hewlett-Packard executive Meg Whitman released a statement saying that she will break with her party and support Hillary Clinton. She wanted to release the statement three days ago, but her printer kept jamming." –Seth Meyers

"This week Trump attacked a Gold Star family, seemed happy about getting a Purple Heart as a gift — 'cuz it was so much easier than EARNING one — and appeared to feud with a crying baby at a campaign rally. Things have gotten so bad that Trump's allies are plotting an intervention. An intervention! 'They love you Donald, and the first step to recovery is admitting that YOU'RE the problem.'" – Stephen Colbert


"President Obama piled on this morning, saying in a press conference he feels Trump is unfit to be president. America's first black president is begging you not to elect America's first orange one." –James Corden

"Trump himself seems to be aware of the shifts in public opinion which is why it seems like he's already building an excuse for a loss by saying the November election will probably be rigged. Former Democratic candidate Al Gore weighed in, saying, 'Yeah, we wouldn't want that to happen!'" –James Corden

"Trump tweeted a photograph last night showing him feasting on Kentucky Fried Chicken with a knife and fork. And a spoon, even. What's more relatable than a man in a suit eating fried chicken with utensils on board his private jumbo jet?" –Jimmy Kimmel

"Eric Trump appeared on CBS 'This Morning' today and defended his father's ongoing feud with the family of a veteran, saying, 'What I think this country needs is a fighter.' And to Donald Trump's credit, he did bravely fight off all five of the Army's attempts to draft him." –Seth Meyers

"Yesterday Donald Trump said of The New York Times, 'They don't know how to write good.' When told that it should be 'well,' Trump said, 'Oh, sorry — WELL, they don't know how to write good.'" –Seth Meyers

"After Army father Khizr Khan's convention speech in which he pulled out a pocket-sized copy of the Constitution, sales on Amazon have skyrocketed, making it the second most purchased book. The first is 'How to Move to Canada.'" –Seth Meyers

"A pocket Constitution is perfect for Trump, because it will look regular sized in his tiny hands." –Seth Meyers

"Trump was asked about his cozy relationship with Vladimir Putin and claimed unbelievably that he couldn't even remember if he'd met Putin or not. Yeah, no offense, but I think I want a president who would remember meeting Vladimir Putin. How many shark-eyed shirtless equestrians do you know?" –Seth Meyers


"Mike Pence is finding out that being Trump's VP is like being a fireman who has an arsonist as a roommate." – Seth Meyer


1. Fareed Zakaria: The unbearable stench of Trump’s B.S.

A few days ago, I was asked on CNN to make sense of one more case in which Donald Trump had said something demonstrably false and then explained it away with a caustic tweet and an indignant interview. I replied that there was a pattern here and a term for a person who did this kind of thing: a “bullshit artist.” I got cheers and boos for the comment from partisans on both sides, but I was not using that label casually. Trump is many things, some of them dark and dangerous, but at his core, he is a B.S. artist.

Harry Frankfurt, an eminent moral philosopher and former professor at Princeton, wrote a brilliant essay in 1986 called “On Bullshit.” (Frankfurt himselfwrote about Trump in this vein, as have Jeet Heer and Eldar Sarajlic.) In the essay, Frankfurt distinguishes crucially between lies and B.S.: “Telling a lie is an act with a sharp focus. It is designed to insert a particular falsehood at a specific point. . . . In order to invent a lie at all, [the teller of a lie] must think he knows what is true.”

But someone engaging in B.S., Frankfurt says, “is neither on the side of the true nor on the side of the false. His eye is not on the facts at all . . . except insofar as they may be pertinent to his interest in getting away with what he says.” Frankfurt writes that the B.S.-er’s “focus is panoramic rather than particular” and that he has “more spacious opportunities for improvisation, color, and imaginative play. This is less a matter of craft than of art. Hence the familiar notion of the ‘bullshit artist.’ ”

This has been Trump’s mode all his life. He boasts — and boasts and boasts — about his business, his buildings, his books, his wives. Much of it is a concoction of hyperbole and falsehoods. And when he’s found out, he’s like that guy we have all met at a bar who makes wild claims but when confronted with the truth, quickly responds, “I knew that!”

As the crazy talk continues, standard rules of fact, truth and reality have disappeared in this campaign. Donald Trump has piled such vast quantities of his trademark product into the political arena that the stench is now overwhelming and unbearable. 8/04/16 Read more at


2 George F. Will: Trump’s shallowness runs deep

Trump seems to understand that if you produce a steady stream of sufficiently stupefying statements, there will be no time to dwell on any one of them, and the net effect on the public will be numbness and ennui. So, for example, while the nation has been considering his interesting decision to try to expand his appeal byattacking Gold Star parents, little attention has been paid to this: Vladimir Putin’s occupation of Crimea has escaped Trump’s notice.

The nation is not immune to the lasting damage that is being done to it by Trump’s success in normalizing post-factual politics. It is being poisoned by the injection into its bloodstream of the cynicism required of those Republicans who persist in pretending that although Trump lies constantly and knows nothing, these blemishes do not disqualify him from being president.

As when, last week, Mike Pence reproved Obama for deploring, obviously with Trump in mind, “homegrown demagogues.” Pence, doing his well-practiced imitation of a country vicar saddened by the discovery of sin in his parish, said with sorrowful solemnity: “I don’t think name-calling has any place in public life.” As in “Lyin’ Ted” Cruz and “Little Marco” Rubio and “Crooked Hillary” Clinton?

Pence is just the most recent example of how the rubble of ruined reputations will become deeper before Nov. 8. It has been well said that “sooner or later, we all sit down to a banquet of consequences.” The Republican Party’s multicourse banquet has begun. 8/03/16 Read more at


3. E.J. Dionne Jr.: The Republican Party has lost its soul

Trump could falsely claim that Obama was born abroad, but that wasn’t enough to disqualify him. He could call Mexican immigrants “rapists,” but that wasn’t enough to disqualify him. He could lie repeatedly — about, for example, whether he had met Vladimir Putin and whether he had opposed the Iraq War — but that wasn’t enough to disqualify him. He could call for a ban on Muslim immigrationto the United States, but that wasn’t enough to disqualify him. He could makedegrading comments about women and mock people with disabilities, but that wasn’t enough to disqualify him.

No, it seems, all this and more were sufficiently within the bounds of acceptability for House Speaker Paul Ryan to tell delegates to the Republican National Convention that “only with Donald Trump and Mike Pence do we have a chance at a better way.”

Ryan — unlike Republicans such as Meg Whitman and Rep. Richard Hanna of New York, both of whom endorsed Clinton on Tuesday — will have to live with those words, whatever happens to Trump.

Most of the GOP’s leaders thought they could domesticate Trump and use him for their ideological purposes. They are now confronting the consequences of being so profoundly wrong. 8/03/16 Read more at


4. Ruth Marcus: Donald Trump makes his most dangerous comments yet

Trump warns general election could be ‘rigged'

“The election’s going to be rigged,” Trump warned at a rally in Ohio. “I’m telling you, November 8, we’d better be careful, because that election is going to be rigged,” he told Fox News’s Sean Hannity.

Those comments set the stage for an explosive outcome the likes of which this country has never seen. It is not far-fetched to imagine Trump inciting his partisans against accepting the verdict of voters, further inflaming an already toxic political climate in Washington.

As much as Republicans sought to ensure President Obama’s failure from the moment of his election, their animus toward a President Hillary Clinton would be that much greater — even without Trump piling on. Clinton would enter office as a more divisive figure; after all, the GOP argument that she is disqualified to hold the office, whether by virtue of Benghazi or emails, preceded Trump’s “Crooked Hillary” attack.

If Clinton is elected, Republicans will have been shut out of the White House for three elections in a row, for the first time since 1948. And if Democrats retake control of the Senate, Republicans eyeing the 2018 map — when 25 Democrats (and independents caucusing with Democrats) and only eight Republicans face reelection — would have every incentive to impede Clinton’s initiatives. They would try to make her not just a one-term president but a two-year one.

Add to this predictable ugliness a losing nominee who rouses supporters with assertions that the election was somehow stolen from him and you have a recipe for turmoil of a most un-American variety.

Trump is dangerous, and the threat he poses might not be extinguished by a loss at the polls. 8/03/16 Read more at



5. Anna North: What Hillary Clinton Faces on the Stump

One of the many difficult tasks facing Hillary Clinton as the first female major-party nominee is that of captivating American audiences with her words. Her husband and President Obama have been very good at this, but if Mrs. Clinton wants a female example, she’ll find that the list of women famous for their political speeches is not very long.

Of course, that’s partly because the list of prominent female politicians is so short. Only 32 women have been elected to the Senate, and 20 of those are currently serving.

Even when women do attain high office, audiences hear their words differently than those of men. When it comes to public speaking, “women walk a very narrow tightrope,” said Robin Lakoff, a professor emerita of linguistics at the University of California, Berkeley.

“Women have to sound ‘womanly’ — caring, maybe deferential, soft,” she said. But if they’re too soft, they’re seen as lacking authority. As Deborah Tannen, a professor of linguistics at Georgetown University, put it, “our expectations for what a good woman should be like and our expectations for what a good leader should be like are mutually exclusive.”

“We ought not to be instructing women to be better speakers,” Professor Lakoff said. “We should rather be teaching ourselves to be better listeners.” 8/03/16 Read more at

6. Gail Collins: Intervening Donald

Do you think it’s true that the Republicans are trying to get Rudy Giuliani and Newt Gingrich to do an intervention with an out-of-control Donald Trump?

And it does tell you something that Giuliani and Gingrich are supposed to be the voices of moderation and self-control in the campaign. The former mayor who told a press conference that he was going to end his marriage before he told his wife. And the former House speaker who once presided over a government shutdown, which he seemed to attribute to the bad seat he got on Air Force One.

“The campaign is doing really well. It’s never been so well united,” Trump himself fibbed at a rally in Florida on Wednesday.

You can’t deny that Trump has kept his promise to run a whole new kind of campaign. Just a week into the general election race and he’s already gotten into an ongoing fight with the parents of a slain war hero, arguing that he had “made a lot of sacrifices” himself. Plus refused to endorse the speaker of the House in a meaningless primary. Plus humiliated a woman with a crying .

Things are getting exhausting, aren’t they? I’m prepared to take a couple of questions. 8/04/16 Read more at


7. Goldie Taylor: Donald Trump Is Out of Time

Over and over again, Trump has proven himself an undisciplined, narcissistic bombast-blaster who is more interested in hurling bricks than laying them. If he is to recover at all from what has been the worst week of active campaigning since he entered the race last summer, Trump has just over three months to build a state-by-state campaign organization staffed by experienced true believers. That will take money and seasoned talent.

Republican leaders are rightly afraid of what will undoubtedly come next. Trump believes the same messages, the same erratic behavior that won a fractured primary will be enough to win the general election. He believes that he can get by without demonstrating that he understands substantive policy issues. He believes he can get by on apoplectic press conferences and keep fielding a cast of surrogates to defend the indefensible. He believes that demagoguery, playing to our worst fears, is a winning strategy.

Trump hasn’t simply run the Republican Party into the ditch. Trump is off-roading in mud pit and threatens to take the entire party down with him.

The fact of the matter is Trump cannot change and, rather than accept that he is losing, he has begun advancing the narrative that the election is being stolen. As his campaign continues to implode, he has launched an orgy of indecency unlike any other in the modern-era-stoking talk that he may drop out and the his party will be forced to take measures to replace him.

It’s too late for that now. It’s too late for Donald Trump. 8.03.16 Read more at

8. Heather Wilhelm: Sorry, GOP: There Is No Trump 'Reset' Button

Here we are. The GOP has its nominee, and it is Donald Trump. This has been documented for quite some time, and we are reminded of it daily—and yet, amazingly, a good number of otherwise intelligent people seem repeatedly shocked that Donald Trump is indeed Donald Trump, and not a Calvin Coolidge/Ronald Reagan/Ludwig von Mises hybrid hiding inside a fantastically clever and wildly expensive Donald Trump look-alike suit.

How else can one explain the GOP’s bizarre nervous breakdown this week, shortly after its own convention, inspired by the same brand of Trumpian behavior that has been on clear display for the past year? “The Republican Party was in turmoil again Wednesday,” the Washington Post reported breathlessly, “as party leaders, strategists, and donors voiced increasing alarm about the flailing state of Donald Trump’s candidacy and fears that the presidential nominee was damaging the party with an extraordinary week of self-inflicted mistakes, gratuitous attacks and missed opportunities.”

If you’ve been paying any attention to the presidential campaign over the past few months, you know this is nothing new. This is classic Trump. He is not slipping “off message,” as hopeful Republican insiders like to claim. This sort of thing is Trump’s message, and it has been since the day he announced his candidacy. But alas, dear GOP: These days, it seems, you can’t do anything right—and in this case, you can’t even properly time your freak-outs.

“Key Republicans close to Donald Trump’s orbit are plotting an intervention with the candidate after a disastrous 48 hours,” NBC News reported Wednesday, in news that could have come out of a contentious sorority chapter meeting. “Republican National Committee head Reince Priebus, former Republican New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich are among the Trump endorsers hoping to talk the real estate mogul into a dramatic reset of his campaign in the coming days.”

Ah, the fabled “reset,” paired with an intervention, paired with various other quixotic attempts to craft a candidate into something he’s not, and perhaps doesn’t even want to be! I’m sure it will lead to more “message discipline,” and perhaps learning “some new skills”—that helpful suggestion comes from Newt Gingrich, in the Post story—and a quick and easy personality transformation. Good luck with that, GOP. As the old chorus goes: I’m sure this time will be different .8/04/16 Read more at

9. Peggy Noonan: The Week They Decided Donald Trump Was Crazy

I think this week marked a certain coming to terms with where the election is going. Politics is about trends and tendencies. The trends for Donald Trump are not good, and he tends not to change.

All the damage done to him this week was self-inflicted. The arrows he’s taken are arrows he shot. We have in seven days witnessed his undignified and ungrateful reaction to a Gold Star family; the odd moment with the crying baby; the one-on-one interviews, which are starting to look like something he does in the grip of a compulsion, in which Mr. Trump expresses himself thoughtlessly, carelessly, on such issues as Russia, Ukraine and sexual harassment; the relitigating of his vulgar Megyn Kelly comments from a year ago; and, as his fortunes fell, his statement that he “would not be surprised” if the November election were “rigged.” Subject to an unprecedented assault by a sitting president who called him intellectually and characterologically unfit for the presidency, Mr Trump fired back—at Paul Ryan and John McCain.

The mad scatterbrained-ness of it was captured in a Washington Post interview with Philip Rucker in which five times by my count—again, the compulsion—Mr. Trump departed the meat of the interview to turn his head and stare at the television. On seeing himself on the screen: “Lot of energy. We got a lot of energy.” Minutes later: “Look at this. It’s all Trump all day long. That’s why their ratings are through the roof.” He’s all about screens, like a toddler hooked on iPad.

Mr. Trump spent all his time doing these things instead of doing hisjob: making the case for his policies, expanding on his stands, and taking the battle to Hillary Clinton.

By the middle of the week the Republican National Committee was reported to be frustrated, party leaders alarmed, donors enraged. There was talk of an “intervention.”

Here is a truth of life. When you act as if you’re insane, people are liable to think you’re insane. That’s what happened this week. People started to become convinced he was nuts, a total flake. Read more at or


10. Rebecca Traister: Donald Trump and the Long History of White Men Claiming Fraud

In the first week of August, just as Hillary Clinton began to pull ahead significantly in the polls, Donald Trump prophylactically claimed that the only way he will lose in November is if Clinton cheats her way to victory. “I’m telling you, November 8, we’d better be careful, because that election is going to be rigged,” Trump said. The next day he dug in further, suggesting that without stricter voter-ID laws, “people are going to walk in, they are going to vote ten times maybe.”

This idea of the system being rigged in Clinton’s favor echoes recent rhetoric from the left. Some Bernie Sanders supporters spent portions of the Democratic convention accusing Clinton of having rigged the primaries — a notion that was quickly picked up by the right: “Do you think the general election could be rigged?” Fox News’ Sean Hannity asked in a tweet. But it was Trump’s friend and sometime adviser Roger Stone who really bellied up to the bar, telling Milo Yiannopoulos that “this election will be illegitimate … We will have a constitutional crisis, widespread civil disobedience, and the government will no longer be the government … It will be a bloodbath.”

While the blaming of an anticipated loss on voter fraud is certainly not exclusive to this election cycle — Google “Diebold” and “2004” — the language used by Trump and his allies, the language of delegitimization, is especially telling, and potentially powerful, in a race against the first woman ever nominated for the presidency. It channels a conviction that has deep roots in our culture: A woman could never really win, not over a man. Her purported victory must, on some level, be inauthentic — whether because she cheated or because she shouldn’t have been allowed to compete in the first place. Read more at

11. Ed Kilgore: Hillary Clinton Should Go Nuclear on Donald Trump

It’s increasingly clear that one of the most disturbingly compelling ideas in this presidential contest is that of Donald Trump possessing the nuclear codes.

He has, after all, endorsed war crimes. He’s fine with deliberately killing the innocent family members of terrorism suspects. He considers international law a bunch of politically correct namby-pamby nonsense. He has a strong Jacksonian impatience with the muss-and-fuss of ground troops, limited war, long-term engagements, or multilateralism. And as you may have noticed, Trump is a bit on the impulsive side. There is a reason even fellow Republicans have often resorted to the language of abnormal psychology in talking about his temperament.

And so it makes good political sense for the Clinton campaign and its super-pac allies to make the argument that, even if you agree with Trump on immigration, crime, climate change, trade, or taxes, you might want to think twice about giving the wiggy dude nuclear weapons. 8/05/16 Read more at

12. Michael J. Morell: I Ran the C.I.A. Now I’m Endorsing Hillary Clinton.

During a 33-year career at the Central Intelligence Agency, I served presidents of both parties — three Republicans and three Democrats. I was at President George W. Bush’s side when we were attacked on Sept. 11; as deputy director of the agency, I was with President Obama when we killed Osama bin Laden in 2011.

I am neither a registered Democrat nor a registered Republican. In my 40 years of voting, I have pulled the lever for candidates of both parties. As a government official, I have always been silent about my preference for president.

No longer. On Nov. 8, I will vote for Hillary Clinton. Between now and then, I will do everything I can to ensure that she is elected as our 45th president.

Two strongly held beliefs have brought me to this decision. First, Mrs. Clinton is highly qualified to be commander in chief. I trust she will deliver on the most important duty of a president — keeping our nation safe. Second, Donald J. Trump is not only unqualified for the job, but he may well pose a threat to our national security.

My training as an intelligence officer taught me to call it as I see it. This is what I did for the C.I.A. This is what I am doing now. Our nation will be much safer with Hillary Clinton as president. 8/05/16 Read more at

13. Maureen Dowd: Crazy About the Presidency

IT is Inauguration Day, Jan. 20, 2017.

Donald Trump searches his drawer for a note from Barack Obama, something on heavy cream stationery with the White House insignia, maybe reiterating the Obama doctrine, “Don’t do stupid stuff.”

But there is nothing there.

That puts Trump in a huff. How dare Obama depart without leaving the customary handwritten good-luck missive?

He grabs his phone and tweets: “SAD!! No note from my predecessor. No Class Obama.”

The tweet doesn’t go through. Must be something about the White House secure communications, he thinks. He’ll figure it out later. Right now, he needs to savor the moment.

“I did it. My way. They said I was a dangerous, insane traitor, a threat to national security, a Siberian candidate in cahoots with Pooty-Poot. Thatspook for Hillary, Michael Morell, the ex-C.I.A. chief who dished up the flawed intelligence that helped get us into the Iraq war — which I opposed from the beginning, even if I said the opposite — called me ‘an unwitting agent of the Russian Federation.’

“That reminds me, I need to give Vlad a ring today from the hotline and find out what I’m supposed to do now. Just kidding.

“It was a long, hot summer. But I was finally able to make the case to the voters that they had the wrong fruitcake. I wasn’t bonkers. Hillary was. She cannot handle pressure. I handle pressure. That pathological liar could never get her stories straight on those emails. She just got more and more tangled up, parsing her parsing. She’s disgusting. And people finally started reading that book by the Secret Service agent that I was pushing and the press was suppressing. It proved that she is truly unhinged and unbalanced.

“She scares her staff and blows up over anything. She’s a very angry person. She’s such an angry white person, she should be one of my supporters. I don’t know why she’s always grinning when I turn on the TV. And she’s practically stalking me. Every time I see her lately, she’s pictured around the White House. I should tell the Secret Service to get her tossed.”

The door opens. Trump looks up, expecting Mike Pence.

But it’s two orderlies in white coats collecting the ex-presidential candidate, who lost in a landslide to Hillary after spending the fall being treated at Bellevue under the provisions of the Flake Act. After all the cries of “Lock her up!” it turned out he was the one who got locked up.

“Mr. Trump, it’s time for your impulse-control/delusion-reduction therapy,” one orderly says soothingly. “We need to go early. It would be crazy to miss the swearing-in today of Madam President.” 8/07/16 Read more at or


14. Jon Perr: Lessons from the rise of Donald Trump

This was the week that some Republicans finally responded to their wake up call about Donald Trump. Or perhaps more accurately, found themselves like the married man at 3 AM who to his horror discovers himself naked in a seedy hotel room bed, with his face covered in cocaine and a hooker asleep by his side, only to pick up the ringing phone and ask his wife, "Honey, is that you?"

Yes, in the several days after the Democratic convention in Philadelphia made a mockery of the GOP hatefest in Cleveland and Donald Trump slandered a Gold Star family, sucked up to Vladimir Putin, sabotaged the NATO alliance, and so much more, Republicans experienced an anxiety attack of epic proportions. While House Speaker and Trump endorser Paul Ryan continued to beclown himself, a growing stream of GOP strategists, Congressmen, and business leaders declared "enough is enough" and announced their support for Hillary Clinton. Longtime conservative national security adviser Max Boot lamented that "the 'stupid party' created Donald Trump." Meanwhile, a distraught Ross Douthat took to Twitter to plead with Democrats for understanding, asking them to imagine the "level of ideological horror" that "many conservatives feel about idea of a Hillary vote." It's no wonder Greg Sargent so aptly summed up the talk of a GOP "intervention" (or replacement) of Donald Trump with, "Republicans nominate dangerously insane person to lead America, then panic when he proves he's dangerously insane."

But for all the Republicans' panicked pre-mortems and the mild media muttering about the madness of The Donald, for the most part Americans are still missing the forest for the trees. For starters, Donald Trump isn't an aberration for the GOP, but the inevitable culmination of the Republican Party's decades-long descent into the political gutter. Second, the Republican embrace of "stupidity" as a virtue was a necessary—but not sufficient—condition for the rise of Trumpism. That required the 50-year choice to make white racial resentment the centerpiece of Republican electoral strategy. Last, it is simply inconceivable that today's Democratic Party would nominate a Trump-like candidate. To put it another way, Donald Trump is a living refutation of the tried and untrue sound bite that "both sides do it." 8/07/16 Read more at


15. Nicholas Kristof: Clinton’s Fibs vs. Trump’s Huge Lies

ONE persistent narrative in American politics is that Hillary Clinton is a slippery, compulsive liar while Donald Trump is a gutsy truth-teller.

Over all, the latest CBS News poll finds the public similarly repulsed by each candidate: 34 percent of registered voters say Clinton is honest and trustworthy compared with 36 percent for Trump.

Yet the idea that they are even in the same league is preposterous. If deception were a sport, Trump would be the Olympic gold medalist; Clinton would be an honorable mention at her local Y.

“The man lies all the time,” says Thomas M. Wells, his former lawyer. Wells recalls being curious that newspaper accounts varied as to the number of rooms in Trump’s apartment in Trump Tower — eight, 16, 20 or 30. So Wells asked him how many rooms were actually in the apartment. “However many they will print,” Trump responded.

Tony Schwartz, the co-writer of his book “The Art of the Deal,” told Jane Mayer of The New Yorker, “Lying is second nature to him.”

In short, Clinton is about average for a politician in dissembling, while Trump is a world champion who is pathological in his dishonesty. Honestly, there is no comparison. 8/07/16 Read more at

16. Thomas L. Friedman: Trump’s Wink Wink to ‘Second Amendment People’

And that, ladies and gentlemen, is how Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin got assassinated.

His right-wing opponents just kept delegitimizing him as a “traitor” and “a Nazi” for wanting to make peace with the Palestinians and give back part of the Land of Israel. Of course, all is fair in politics, right? And they had God on their side, right? They weren’t actually telling anyone to assassinate Rabin. That would be horrible.

But there are always people down the line who don’t hear the caveats. They just hear the big message: The man is illegitimate, the man is a threat to the nation, the man is the equivalent of a Nazi war criminal. Well, you know what we do with people like that, don’t you? We kill them.

And that’s what the Jewish extremist Yigal Amir did to Rabin. Why not? He thought he had permission from a whole segment of Israel’s political class.

During the Republican convention, with its repeated chants about Clinton of “lock her up,” a U.S.-based columnist for Israel’s Haaretz newspaper, Chemi Shalev, wrote: “Like the extreme right in Israel, many Republicans conveniently ignore the fact that words can kill. There are enough people with a tendency for violence that cannot distinguish between political stagecraft and practical exhortations to rescue the country by any available means. If anyone has doubts, they could use a short session with Yigal Amir, Yitzhak Rabin’s assassin, who was inspired by the rabid rhetoric hurled at the Israeli prime minister in the wake of the Oslo accords.”

People are playing with fire here, and there is no bigger flamethrower than Donald Trump. Forget politics; he is a disgusting human being. His children should be ashamed of him. I only pray that he is not simply defeated, but that he loses all 50 states so that the message goes out across the land — unambiguously, loud and clear: The likes of you should never come this way again. 8/09/16 Read more at