Why This Election is Rigged

October 17, 2016

It’s been interesting watching the Trump campaign in the last couple of weeks. The Access Hollywood tape has caused the candidates and his surrogates to flail wildly to find something to distract attention from what probably was a mortal wound.

But really, this campaign has been over for weeks, and I’m certain the Trump campaign folks know it, but I really can’t tell if the reality of the situation has permeated Donald Trump thicket of carbon-fiber hair and into his brain. One hint that he does understand what’s going on is the resurrection of one word: rigged.

Trump began talking about a “rigged” system in April, calling it a “a rigged, disgusting, dirty system,” after Ted Cruz won some GOP delegates with superior organizing and planning.

We didn’t hear much about a rigged system until August, when Trump was again languishing in the polls after a poorly staged convention (and a much better-presented Democratic convention): “And I’m afraid the election’s gonna be rigged, I have to be honest,” he said.  Another spike in his use of “rigged” came, unsurprisingly, after the first presidential debate, which pretty much everyone agrees did not go well for Mr. Trump. Publicly, Trump tried to put the best face on it, retweeting online polls showing an overwhelming victory, but that one word, “rigged,” once again showed he knew he had lost.

The pattern is pretty obvious: when Trump is doing well, it’s his own doing. No one should be surprised that in a disastrous couple of weeks of casting about for someone to blame–SNL? seriously?–Trump’s speeches have been peppered with that word again and with dark suggestions that there will be massive and widespread voter fraud, particularly in precincts with high African-American demographics.

Could there be some attempts at voter fraud? Sure, but it would require a massive conspiracy in both parties and across multiple states, making it highly unlikely. And even if there were such a massive conspiracy, it would matter only in a close election–and require millions of fake votes.

But this election isn’t close. Trump had one task only in this election: win the states that Romney won and pick up a number of swing states that had voted for Obama. The way to do this, of course, was to attempt to appeal to moderate and undecided voters. That shouldn’t have been a difficult task, as Hillary Clinton is perhaps the second-most disliked major-party candidate in memory–second only to Mr. Trump.

What he needed to do was try to attract college-educated whites, women, and persuadable minorities.And indeed, his campaign kept telling us that was what he was going to do. But what we got instead was classic Trump: an appeal to African-Americans that traded in racist stereotypes (they all live in poor, violent, inner cities, and they need help from the government (him, actually) because they can’t take care of themselves). His appeal to women consisted of trotting out women who accused Bill Clinton sexual assault and then denying he’d ever done what he had bragged about to Billy Bush. Of course, the denials just opened the floodgates, and women are rushing forward to tell the same story about Trump. At this point, no one gives a damn about Bill Clinton’s past because Trump’s behavior just makes him look hypocritical.

Is it any wonder that the operative word this week–in almost all of Trump’s tweets and speeches–is “rigged.” Others have written about how irresponsible and, frankly, unpatriotric and un-American it is for Trump to call into question the sanctity of our electoral process, and I won’t go into that other than to say that, if violence does result from unhappy Trumpistas after the election, we know whom to blame.

As for me, I’m content to know that, finally, inevitably, Trump knows he’s lost. Roland Barthes once wrote that expressing love to another is an “affirmation of extreme solitude.” We tell other people we love them because we understand we are alone, and we hope that they will love us in return and rid us of our loneliness. In the same way, Trump’s assertions that he would be winning, save for a “rigged” system, is a pathetic acknowledgement that he’s lost, and he knows it.

Expect to hear “rigged” even more often over the new few weeks, as the scope of Trump’s loss sinks in. I’ll smile every time I hear it.

 

 

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Top Ten Reasons I Support Trump

December 15, 2015

Many of my friends have expressed shock and dismay when I’ve told them I plan to vote for Donald Trump in the Republican primaries and (God willing) the general election. To clear up some confusion, I thought I would just give a list of the excellent reasons I support this great man.

10. He’s going to “make America great again.” Who could argue with such a simple yet detailed plan? Some people say it can’t be done, but the Donald knows better. America won’t be great until he says so.

9. When Trump is president, those hedge fund guys won’t be robbing us blind anymore. Instead of paying 23.8% in capital gains taxes, they’ll be paying 25% in income tax. That’ll show ’em.

8. This country used to be a peaceful place where people of all races were treated equally and prospered. But then 11 million murderers and rapists showed up. We need to get rid of them and put up a big wall to keep them from coming back. It may take 20 years and $600 billion to do the job, but dammit, it’s worth it.

7. Two words: weaponized hairpiece.

6. Trump is our adversaries’ worst nightmare. Putin, the ayatollahs, the Chinese–they’d all be quaking in their boots if they had to face him across the table instead of some idiot diplomats who know what they’re doing.

5. Our budget deficit is out of control, and the best way to deal with it is to cut taxes by $11 trillion over the next 10 years.

4. Just admit it: Muslims are scary. We’ll never have peace and security as long as there are people in our country who make us afraid.

3. Diplomacy is overrated. Let’s just bomb the shit out of everyone.

2. Someone has to close up the Internet. Only foolish people value freedom of speech.

1. He’s the perfect man for our times: ignorant, greedy, narcissistic, and afraid.


Trump Diaries, Sept. 2, 2015

September 2, 2015

[Authenticity cannot be verified. —Ed.]

September 2, 2015

Hit the ground running this morning. I’m trying to broaden my horizons and talk to as many real Americans as I can, so in that spirit, I asked our doorman, Manny, what he thought of my Immigration Reform proposal. He looked a little flustered and said, “Maybe you should rethink it. It plays into some negative stereotypes.” I didn’t have time to ask him what he meant, so I flipped through the proposal in the car on the way to the office. I have to say those fellas did a helluva job on the proposal. I didn’t know half that stuff. Somebody told me that illegal immigrants contribute $150 billion to our economy, and more than 70% pay state and federal taxes, including Social Security and Medicare, which they are not eligible to receive. If I hadn’t skimmed the proposal this morning, I wouldn’t have had any idea that these freeloaders receive more than $4 billion in free tax credits. I’m gonna have to remember to ask Corey and Mike what they mean by “free tax credits.” Also, someone should make sure Manny is here legally.

But maybe Manny is right, and the tone is wrong. I’ve asked my speechwriters to improve the tone by putting more emphasis on the rapes and murders, though that bit about the “trail of blood” was awesome. The whole thing needs to be punchier. Find me some more examples like those illegals who attacked a 64-year-old woman, “crushing her skull and eye sockets with a hammer, raping her, and murdering her.” That’ll hit home.

I was totally on a roll, crushing it.

As soon as I got to the office, however, things took a sour turn. I had on my schedule a meeting with the Hair Club for Men, and that kind of stuff always gets me excited. I was all set to talk about how I get my hair so naturally thick and perfectly coiffed, but when the door opened, in came those geeks from the Club for Growth–you know, those idiots who say they want to shrink the government down to the size at which they can drown it in the bathtub. They want me to sign a pledge that I’ll never raise taxes. I don’t know why they keep asking because I’ve already said I’m going to lower taxes and make sure the hedge-fund guys pay their fair share. How much more specific do I have to get?

So, this loser ex-Congressman (he totally failed trying to run for governor of California) comes in and starts pitching his no-new-taxes bullshit. Yeah, like I’m stupid enough to fall for that. Who do they think I am, Poppy Bush? I told these guys they were barking up the wrong tree. Trump signs pledges for no one! But I said I sympathize with their goals, so I told them if they picked their top candidates for the House and Senate, I’d donate a million bucks to further the cause. So, this no-talent hack Mcin-something accuses me of trying to buy them off. If I’m going to buy someone off, it’s not going to be for pocket change. Who the hell do they think they are? I told them to get the hell out of my office and come back when the guy in charge isn’t named after a muppet.

Had lunch with Glenn Beck. That is one scary fella. If he doesn’t have his chalkboard handy, all he does is cry.

Spent the afternoon getting my tweets just right. This one was for the ages:

The president of the pathetic Club For Growth came to my office in N.Y.C. and asked for a ridiculous $1,000,000 contribution. I said no way!

Pathetic and ridiculous. That’ll teach ’em.

Then I went in for the kill:

When I intelligently turned down The Club For Growth crazy request for $1,000,000, they got nasty. What a waste of money that would have been.

Still crushing it. For real.

Got an unexpected gift from Jeb Bush in the form of direct attacks, in English and Spanish, no less. Hey, numb-nuts, we speak English in this country! So, your wife is an immigrant, big freaking deal! So’s mine, only M. is from a real country, and I didn’t pick her up on some high school charity trip, neither. M. has a college degree, and I married her because she’s so smart, not because she’s a model. She could get a job anywhere she wants. All I’d have to do is pick up the phone, and bam! she’s hired. At least my wife spoke English when I married her. Are we even sure Señora Bush is actually a citizen? Remember to get someone to check.

I hear Jeb wants to focus on policy, not personality. I guess you go with what you have. Obviously not much personality there. But how can he say I’m not outlining policy? I’ve been talking about it nonstop for months: greatness, victory, wall. That moron acts like I’m some kind of idiot. Everyone knows I’m brilliant. People are shocked at how smart I am! Who the hell is he? Calling in the Twitter guys now.