Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Random Thoughts for June, 2016. By Robert A. Hall

Random Thoughts for June, 2016. By Robert A. Hall
Feel free to post or forward.

Joey No Socks for Vice President!

In November, the American People will have to make the solemn decision as to which of two corrupt New York Liberals is the most proficient liar.

I do not believe there is anything that Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump could do or say that would make me vote for either of them. I believe they both have meretricious characters that make them unfit for public office of any sort.

Driving through Jackson, MS on our way north, we saw a two-story vacant office building off I-55. There was a huge Trump banner on the second floor. On the first floor was a large, "For sale" sign. Alas, no time to get a picture as we sped by.

People who say they aren't worth anything until they have had their morning coffee may not be worth much afterwards either.

With Trump as the nominee, no Republican senate or house seat is safe. I think President Clinton will have a Democrat Senate, maybe even a Democrat House to support her agenda.

When a business displays one of those super-huge American flags, I think it's 2% patriotism and 98% marketing. At least.

Georgia Senator George Hill, after the Civil War, described people like Trump who avoided service: "Men who are Invincible in Peace and Invisible in War."

Had a robo poll. I said I was Republican and strongly conservative, had a highly unfavorable opinion of both Trump and Clinton. Then it asked if I was going to vote for Trump or Clinton. No third choice. It hung up when I didn't answer. (They called back in person the next day. I told them what I thought of their poll.)

My brother Mark works at the local mall. Recently, going for coffee, he heard a noise behind him, saw three cops cuffing a black kid (one of the cops was also black, so maybe no protests). Kid was shouting, "Why you arresting me. I didn't do nothing." Mark turned around to go on his way, heard a thunk and turned back to see one of the cops kicking a gun away from the kid. He told his coworkers of the incident, and one said sarcastically, "Can't be--this is a gun-free zone." Maybe they need more signs, Mark replied. According to the press, it was a BB gun that looked like a real gun.

As mentioned before, Mark drives my car, complete with USMC and GOP bumper stickers, to work. The other night he came out to discover some tolerant Madison liberal had spit tobacco juice over the car. Unless it was a lost Donaldcrat who wondered in from the country and took exception to my Cruz sticker. Same bully mentality.

But one day he found a bumper sticker under the windshield wiper: Hillary for Prison in 2016. Looking for space for it.

The positive benefit of the Trump rise: we are learning which conservatives have principles and which are willing to sacrifice principle for a hope of winning something.

On our recent trip to Louisiana, the motels all had the TV channels listed in numerical order, so if you wanted, say, the weather Channel, you had to read through the full list to find it. Wouldn't alpha order seem to be a no-brainer?

Everyone can think back many years and recall times when they made an ass of themselves. They are the only ones who remember.

Most people are too busy listening to radio station WIIFM to worry about our country in ten or twenty years. (That's What's In It For Me.)

I expect that anytime now some Muslim soldiers will demand time off for Jihad. The Obama DoD will grant it, saying, "Muslims built the very fabric of the Army."

In a totalitarian system, decisions are made by an oligarchy, with their own benefit being their first principle. In a democratic system, decisions are made by a plurality of short-sighted, greedy, low-information voters who select the oligarchy that promises them the most. The elected oligarchy than seeks it's own benefit as their first principle.

If you want to understand the 2016 Trump-Clinton election, you should read a good history of the War of the Roses, when two rich and powerful families sought to be absolute rulers, with all the benefits that comes with such power. Intrigue, treachery, lying and side-switching were in vogue.

I suppose Target stores are where Obama's PJ boy gets his PJs and hot chocolate.

In the old phrase, the primary voters of both sides, "Have raised a devil they cannot so easily lay."

It is doubtless important to the survival of the race that grandparents should view any expression of mental acumen in a grandchild as the opening bud of future genius.

If we get President Hillary, the people to blame are those who voted for Trump in the primaries, not the conservatives who warned them we could never vote for him.

You might survive having your boss think that you think you are smarter than him or her...unless you really are.

If Black Lives Really Mattered, wouldn't black people give information to police about black thugs who murder black people?

If Trump gets elected president, and starts using executive orders to end run Congress as Obama has, Democrats will suddenly discover that doing so is unconstitutional.

Liberals want "safe spaces" for young women. Just not in the lady's room.

The GOP had an embarrassment of riches in presidential candidates. Now we have just one rich embarrassment.

If Trump ran an ad saying, "Big Brother for President," his supporters would say, "Yup, we need a strong hand in the White House."

Too many liberals love black folks, but don't actually know any except the lady who cleans their condo.

Liberals don't have to waste time reading books on history, economics or politics. They just recite the talking points they are handed by their betters.

Buying time may be necessary in a given situation, but it is usually pretty expensive.

Remember the old days when Hillary Clinton was against gay marriage and Donald Trump said the Dreamers had convinced him and that Romney lost because the GOP was too harsh on immigrants? Good times, huh?

Talk is cheap, but incompetence will out.

Most kids today wouldn't mind being sent to solitary confinement, as long as they had their earbuds, iPod and Smartphone. They lead solitary lives as it is. I'm glad I grew up before the constantly-wired generation.

Not that Obama is going to put women in ground combat, why not the NFL? Why not eliminate separate men's and women's teams in high school and college athletics? (Hat Tip Col. Andy Weddington)

The world is full of rock painters. In the military, that's an officer who takes over a unit that is functioning well, so to put his mark on it, he has the enlisted men paint the rocks lining the walk to HQs a different color. Rock Painters exist in government, business, politics and non-profits as well.

With Trump and Clinton the expected nominees of the two major parties, it may be time for the country to go on hospice care.

If Donald Trump is a Republican, then the Republican Party no longer stands for anything.

If a post on Facebook says "I bet I won't get one share," or "Please share to fight cancer, show your patriotism/save a puppy/show you love Jesus, etc.," I almost never share.

When a politician or a political group asks for your opinion, it's a lead in to asking for your money.

When I went to school, we had one graduation--from high school itself. Now kids graduate from middle school and kindergarten. Soon they will graduate, with a cap, gown and prom, from each semester.

Abortion is very acceptable in polite company, unlike using certain words, smoking, farting, or being conservative.

I've noticed that the elites think the F word, and often the C word are more acceptable in polite company than the N word.

The Republicans who have put their careers ahead of their country by getting in bed with Trump will discover they have damaged both, perhaps irreparably.

With home renovations, an estimate is the opening bid, not the final number.

Obama could do a lot to dispel fears that Muslim immigrants are dangerous by ordering some to be hired and trained to fly Air Force One and to protect his family as Secret Service Agents.

Feminists who are terribly upset about a supposed "rape culture" on campus and who scream victim blaming if you dare suggest that walking alone in bad parts of town at two am isn't wise, are all to ready to pile on the "She had it coming because she dressed like a slut" bandwagon when women are raped by Muslim immigrants.

One of the Donaldcrats on my blog mailing list told me that my concerns about Trump's many far left positions indicated that the medications for my lung transplant were affecting my judgment. I'm used to abuse and insults from the far left when I disagree with them, and the Trumpites are no different, preferring insults to reason. I don't have to put up with it. I make no money from anything I post. He's blocked.

I used to say, half jokingly, that I voted Republican because the Republicans were ruining the country--but at a slower rate. Having turned the party over to a life-long NY liberal with a bias for big government, a meretricious character, an aversion to transparency, and a contempt for the truth, I fear if Trump is elected the GOP will pull ahead in ruining the country..

My dear, if you are overweight and not all that pretty, a large, ugly tattoo is not going to make things better. Trust me.

Talent is often confused with intelligence. Being able to sing, dance, draw, paint or throw a ball doesn't make you wise, educated or smart.

W still see too much transfer of authority. Being a great surgeon doesn't mean you can fly a passenger jet, or vice versa. Being a successful businessman doesn't mean you can run a country, and vice versa. And being in great debt as a private individual doesn't mean you can manage the national debt.

Both the Hillary Clinton and the Donald Trump campaigns abound with the noisome stench of self-dealing, rent-seeking and special-pleading.

If you have to compare yourself to a famous person or a great hero, there is no comparison.

"One need not hope in order to act, nor succeed in order to persevere." William the Silent 1533-1584

Donald Trump makes the egotist Barack Obama look as humble as a beggar.

Clinton, Sanders and Trump are not for free markets. They are mercantilists, a system where tariffs are high so the people and merchants pay that way to support the costs of government.

When I see an infomercial on TV, or a magazine ad targeting vets or seniors, I assume it is a scam. If I'm interested in the product (rarely) they have to convince me. First I Google reviews, which knocks out 95% of them.

It doesn't matter what happened at the meeting if you get to do the minutes.

Say what you want about Islamophobia or The Religion of Peace, but if I find out the pilot's name is Mohammad, I'm not getting on the plane.

I notice that progressives of the secular humanist faith often mock the religious beliefs of Christians, but almost never those of Muslims. Could it be that they don't really believe Islam is a Religion of Peace?

Whether you view a person as a hero or a scoundrel usually depends on whether you are on the same or opposite sides.

"Thy necessity is yet greater than mine." Reported last words of the mortally wounded Sir Philip Sidney at the Battle of Zumphen, handing a cup of water to an equally wounded comrade.

Trump embraces the delusion of all authoritarians that threats, bullying and violence will eliminate resistance. In fact, it always increases it. Even in Nazi Germany there was a resistance, including The White Rose Society.

The first (Grand Union) flag of the United Colonies of North America, featuring 13 red and white stripes with a Union Jack in the top left corner where today we have stars, was produced in Philadelphia in 1775 by--as every school child knows--Milliner Margaret Manny. Peggy just didn't have the PR department of Betsy Ross, which, as we see today from Trump to the Kardashians, is what makes a person famous.

Faced with Obama, Republicans said, "Character Matters!" Faced with Trump, too many said, "Meh, not so much."

A recent addition to my political mailing list was a Donaldcrat who continually berated me that I was naive in not supporting Trump. I sent him the link to Trump's whole-owned mob subsidiary, Joey No Socks. https://www.yahoo.com/news/how-a-convicted-felon-nicknamed-joey-no-socks-153029052.html He told me I didn't understand how business was done in NY. So I sent him the article about Trumps ties to the mobsters, Anthony “Fat Tony” Salerno and Paul Castellano. http://www.dailywire.com/news/5944/report-trump-did-business-vicious-mobster-fat-tony-hank-berrien#.V0Nr_s9UqBk.facebook He wrote back: "As far as I know, “Fat Tony” and Paul Castellano are both history.  When construction funds get tight, as a developer you go where the money is, rather than not do the project at all.  I must admit, I personally went to the knee busters in Seattle in 1980, for a 125,000 sf. shopping center project I was developing.  Yes, it made me nervous until I was able to repay the loan.  But I did build the project, and the loan was repaid.   So don’t think for a minute, that Trump, just because he is famous and running for president, is the only person to use that source of funds, and it doesn’t just happen in NYC." I responded: "Ah. Explains your support for Trump. You are willing to do business with the mob, who got the money you needed from drugs, extortion, robbery, prostitution. Making you complicit in all these. Never talk to me about character or values voters--you have demonstrated you have none." He replied: "Just as I have said all along, YOU don’t have a clue about business, PERIOD.  You also might be surprised to know just how many, so called legit  loan operations, are and have been backed by “mob money”.  I do think you are a little naive , so just because I, at one time in my career, needed money that wasn’t available at the time, and I with my eyes open, borrowed, what was then known as “hard money”,  I have no character or values.  WOW !  I think I will go and eat worms." I suggested, " Get them from your mob friends--they will get them from the corpses who provided your "hard money." It's impossible to argue politics or values with people who think doing business with the Mob is normal, acceptable practice.

Earls and Cardinals, Generals and Kings, Senators and Admirals--all molder in graves about the same size as that provided to the troops who did their bidding, or the farmers, tradesmen and merchants who provided their wants.

It seems to me rank discrimination against old people, who can't eat as much, that seniors can't split the "all you can eat" special. Does Bernie Sanders know about this?

As people who read my blog know, I think that Donald Trump is a truly odious person. But if you really want to make him president, I can think of no better way than to riot at one of his rallies. It gives him even more free media coverage, and I have to believe that the vast majority of voters still think political questions should be decided by debate, not by riots, violence and shouting down opponents.

Marge, a colleague of mine, used to say that watching TV gave people the illusion that they had a social life. You can now say the same thing about Facebook.

I wouldn't be surprised is Obama ordered the military not to fight ISIS or al Qaeda on the grounds that they were non-PC and didn't include women or transgenders in their combat units. (Except for women and children suicide bombers, of course.) Why would we want to be involved with such unenlightened people?

Lord Acton described his age to be one of "abject idolatry of power, when laws both human and divine were made to yield to the intoxication of authority and the reign of will." He might have been writing about the age of Obama, Clinton and Trump.

Hillary Clinton is a proven liar. She let four Americans die in Benghazi rather than send help for fear an incident might involve Muslim civilian deaths and the Islamic world explode, hurting the administration in the election. Then she blamed it on a video, though her private emails showed she knew at the time it was a terror attack. She endangered national security by using a private email server to try to avoid having her emails scrutinized under the Freedom of Information Act, despite claiming to be the most transparent person in politics. She used her position as Secretary of State to reward countries that paid Bill Clinton handsomely for speeches, or that gave generously to the Clinton Foundation, which one charity monitor has called a slush fund, not a charity. This continued a career-long pattern of rent-seeking and self-dealing. If you vote for her for President, you are endorsing all this, and it is on your conscience.

Donald Trump has a life long history of commitment to only two values: self-aggrandizement and self-enrichment. He lies more frequently even than Clinton, often contradicting himself in the same speech, making it hard for fact-checkers to keep up. He has a history of saying whatever benefits him at the time; for and against immigrants, for and against abortion, for and against gun control, for and against Obamacare and extending it to single-payer, he will and he won't release his tax returns. He is an odious person with a meretricious character, bragging publicly about cheating on his first two wives, sleeping with numerous married women, saying sex was his Vietnam, cheating students at Trump University where he lied and said he would hand-pick the instructors, using a mob guy (Joey no Socks) to give him phony awards and other mob guys to fund his projects (they get the money to do so from drugs, prostitution, extortion, robbery and loan sharking) demeaning women and our POWs, and making fun of a disabled reporter, then lying about it. If you vote for him for President, you are endorsing all this, and it is on your conscience.

As I understand it, liberals say that gender is just a social construct, but that we should vote for Hillary because she's a woman. If that's the criteria, I prefer Caitlin Jenner.

People keep talking about Trump's hair. I could care less. It's his meretricious character, his odious behavior, his narcissistic personality, and his ignorance in every subject that a President should be knowledgeable in that makes it impossible for me to vote for him.

If you tend to expect the worst from people, you will often be unhappy. But the upside is you will be right a lot.

You have to admit the Democrats play fair. With the GOP set to nominate its weakest possible candidate, the Democrats look like following suit.

How come putting bacon at a Mosque or burning a Qur'an is hate speech, but burning an American flag is not?

Thinking of moving to California? Why not skip ten years into the future and move directly to Mexico? Or if you are really bold, you can move twenty years into California's future by taking advantage of low housing prices in Socialist Venezuela. Sure, there's a toilet paper shortage, but it's balanced out by the food shortage.

It's not hard to see why a guy would decide to identify as a woman. After all, women live an average of seven years longer than men and often can have multiple orgasms. Call it "female privilege." Example: Pulmonary Fibrosis kills at least as many people as breast cancer every year, but it is an equal opportunity killer, while breast cancer is primarily a women's disease. Thus breasts cancer gets about 80 times as much research funding. #NotAllLivesMatterEqually

Looking at a newsletter recently, two columns side by side started, "Summer is Here!" and "I can't believe how the two years have flown" If it weren't for clichés, some folks couldn't write a word.

People are saying that because she edited a piece on guns to cut out the responses of the pro-gun people, Katie Couric can never be trusted again. But I never trusted her in the past....

People can have psychopathic tendencies without being full-blown psychopaths. See the presidential campaigns...

We were at Brat Fest in Madison. They had a wall with photos of the 1600+ Wisconsin guys who died in Vietnam. I was looking at it when a woman saw my cap ad thanked me for my service. I said it was a privilege to wear the uniform, that I wished I was young and healthy enough to do so again. She said I bet you could tell a lot of stories. "Yes," I replied, "and some of them would even be true!"

If you fail to follow all the rules, you will not be promoted. If you do follow all the rules you will make an ass of yourself screwing things up...

I feel no pity for political operative Rick Wiley, who was hired by Trump then fired six weeks later. As the old saying goes, "You knew he was a snake when you picked him up--you can't complain if he bit you!"

By not reporting or under-reporting facts that don't fit their agenda, the media keeps the low-info voters low info.

Sometimes, from the questions people ask me, I get the feeling I'm the only one paying attention. And I'm often sorry I am.

Bad choices have bad consequences. Unfortunately, especially for the family, friends and employers of the bad choosers.

Does Obama's transgender policy apply to prisons? Can a male rapist claim he identifies as a woman and get a female cellmate in a woman's prison? Or a female prostitute decide she's a man inside and go to a male prison?

The most over-worked folks in America must be the opposition research people at the Clinton and Trump campaigns. So much material to choose from.

Bumper Sticker Suggestion: #UnbornBlackLivesMatter

The best hand that life can deal you can lead to a terrible life, if you play it badly and make bad choices. Conversely, a lot of people have been dealt bad hands, but have had great lives by playing them well, and making good choices. and if you know history or the world, anyone born in America since WWII who doesn't have mental or physical disabilities has been dealt a pretty good hand.

The case of the glasses:
The optimist sees the glass as half full.
The pessimist sees the glass as half empty.
The executive sees unused glass capacity.
The pragmatist sees a glass that can be refilled.
The Drama Queen sees that, "Some one has taken half my drink. Who did it? I'll find out. I'm calling the police. This is the worst thing that could happen! Why do these things always happen to me? Everyone else's glass is full. I'm calling my Congressman. I'm going to sue....

Get the collection! My “Random Thoughts” from 2008 through July, 2013 are collected in this book: The Old Jarhead's Journal: Random Thoughts on Life, Liberty, and Leadership by Robert A. Hall
The Old Jarhead’s Journal is a collection of Random Thoughts on politics and life and Conservative Political Essays, mostly published on the author’s blog, including the essay “I’m Tired” which went viral on the Internet in 2009, “The Hall Platform,” “This I Believe,” and “Why I’m a Republican.” While they will be of interest to conservative thinkers, they are collected here in book form as a service to readers who wish to give a copy to favorite liberals and watch their heads explode. All royalties are donated to the Injured Marine Semper Fi Fund.


Robert A. Hall is a Marine Vietnam Veteran who served five terms in the Massachusetts State Senate. He is the author of The Coming Collapse of the American Republic. http://www.amazon.com/Coming-Collapse-American-Republic-prevent/dp/1461122538/ref=sr_1_5?s=booksandie=UTF8andqid=1304815980andsr=1-5 For a free PDF of Collapse, e-mail him at tartanmarine(at)gmail.com. Hall’s eleven books are listed here: http://tartanmarine.blogspot.com/2010/07/new-book-published.html. His blog of political news and conservative comment is www.tartanmarine.blogspot.com.

Parody: See the Liberals here in Madison

See the Liberals here in Madison

See the Liberals here in Madison,
See the Progressives down on State Street,
See the Liberals here in Madison,
And they all look just the same.
There's a tall one and a short one,
And a white one and a black one,
And a gay one and a straight one,
And they all look just the same.

And the boys all wear pony tails,
And the girls all have tattoos,
And they all are nonconformists,
And they all look just the same.
And they all went to UW,
And majored in the liberal arts,
And they all are deep thinkers,
And they all think just the same.

And they all read the Cap Times,
And they all read the Isthmus,
And they all talk about it,
And they all sound just the same.
And they're Social Justice Warriors,
And they're all brave revolutionaries,
And they all want safe spaces,
For different views scare them all the same.

And they all are for diversity,
And they all are for tolerance,
And they all hate conservatives,
And those who disagree just the same.
And they're all ignorant of economics,
And they're all ignorant of history,
And they're ignorant of the Constitution,
But they all know what's right just the same.

And they all vote Progressive Dane
And they all vote Straight Democrat,
And they all love Bernie Sanders,
And they all vote just the same.
And they all are open-minded,
And they all love peace and people,
And they all love all cultures,
But hate Christian Rednecks just the same.

See the Liberals here in Madison,
See the Progressives down on State Street,
See the Liberals here in Madison,
And they all are just the same.
            Robert A. Hall
            Tune: "Little Boxes"

Monday, May 30, 2016

The Wall

                                    The Wall

He traces names, maneuvering the chair
against the slope. The panels stretch out black
and still. Each year he vows he’ll not be back,
but every bitter April finds him there.
The first few names of friends are low. But four
are cut up high, and he would need a leg
to stand and trace them. So he has to beg
for help from strangers innocent of war.

Some years ago he pushed his wheels to where
the leader lived. He’d stared across the lawn
beyond the bars—the tourists had all gone—
then cursed and spat upon the ground. A pair
of guards had turned away without a nod.
You’d think that it would break the heart of God.

                        —Robert A. Hall


Robert A. Hall is a Marine Vietnam veteran who later served five terms in the Massachusetts State Senate. He and his wife, Bonnie, live in Madison, WI.

Sunday, May 29, 2016


By Robert A. Hall

She’s fifty-five and growing plump,
Her hair is growing gray.
She lives alone in Baltimore,
She works most every day.
She owns a shop, sells mystery books,
Candles and funny hats.
She reads three hours every night,
And talks to both her cats.
But twice a year she takes the train,
The Union Station run,
She walks the streets and smiles at all
The pomp of Washington.
And when she has her courage up,
She walks up to the Mall.
She steps around the sleeping drunks—
She’s going to the Wall.
She touches names at random ’til
At last she comes to him.
She thinks of days when they were young,
Before the light grew dim.
Her fingers trace the letters out—
They will not see her weep!
She thinks of children never born,
And promises to keep.
She thinks of empty nights alone
Through all the empty years.
“I love you still,” she mummers low,
And fights to hold the tears.
She thinks about the folded flag,
She thinks about the cost,
She thinks about a love that lasts,
And all the years they lost.
She’s fifty-five and growing plump,
But she was young one day—
Before the politicians spoke
And threw his life away.

Saturday, May 28, 2016


By Chet Nagle 31 May 2010
"From now until the end of the world, we and it shall be remembered. 
We few, we Band of Brothers. For he who sheds his blood with me shall be my brother."
  --    William Shakespeare (King Henry V)

There is a chain made of blood and iron. The heavy links are anchored in Valley Forge and stretch through Gettysburg, Normandy, Iwo Jima, the Coral Sea, and a thousand battlegrounds. New links are being forged now in the streets of Baghdad and Kabul.

On this Memorial Day, in cemeteries from Flanders to Arlington, we place flags on graves to honor warriors who made and guard that great chain. On this Memorial Day we feel the chain near us, vibrating with its awesome power—pointing to a future that promises more blood and iron.
We know that men and women are in the hallowed ground because they swore an oath to defend our nation and to uphold the Constitution against all enemies, foreign and domestic. Many gave up their lives to that purpose.
Soldiers, sailors and airmen who have gone before, and who serve now, have always obeyed the commands of civilians elected to high office. Today, the highest of those officials have never worn a uniform. They have never gone in harm’s way, they have never known a soldier’s fear, and they will never engage in deadly defense of the republic. Even so, those officials have also sworn an oath to protect the nation and the Constitution. So the soldiers obey.

But those who fell in great battles and in places with forgotten names are still on guard. If America’s leaders betray their solemn oaths, our fallen guardians will stir in their resting places; from jungles and deserts and ocean deeps, from one end of the earth to the other, they will rise.

In the dawn of that future Memorial Day I will hear footfalls of my risen brothers in arms beneath my window. They will march on the city, and above them there will be whispers of more phantoms in parachutes. Then they will assemble in a great formation before the Capitol. Once again their bodies will be whole, their uniforms clean, and their worn rifles and sabers will be renewed.

That morning the living will muster with the dead. Around the ghosts wearing three-cornered hats and steel helmets, Americans from every town and city will come to give their voices to the silent legion. They will demand an accounting. They will demand a rebirth of the freedom and liberty for which their forefathers fought and died.

On that coming Memorial Day.

Friday, May 27, 2016

Memorial Day

Memorial Day

The troubled world can offer no award
To you who sleep beneath the chiseled stone.
You died because we handed you the sword,
And we are free because you sleep alone.

The tides of history well may change the cause,
And time may blunt the sharpness of the debt,
For sacrifice, a nation under laws
Is gathered here today, lest we forget.

                        --Robert A. Hall

I composed this poem while marching in the Fitchburg, MA Memorial Day Parade in 1975, then used it in my speech at the upper common.

From a Vietnam Vet to Dodging Donald

From a Vietnam Vet to Dodging Donald
By Robert A. Hall

Born with a silver spoon
Forged in grandpa's brothel rooms,
You leveraged that beyond all dreams
From fools who bought into your schemes.

You cheated on your wives before
With married women by the score,
Then bragged and didn't give a damn,
Said sex was just like Vietnam.

You never served a single day,
A Rear Rank Ranger on your way,
To CIC of all our troops,
There is no low where you won't stoop.

And now my comrades fade away,
They served when Donald ran away.
Our eyes tell you we've not forgot
That we were there--and you were not.

For sex or school is not like war,
Though politics rewards the whore.
And could we now, we'd serve again.
We know who were the better men.

Robert A. Hall volunteered for the Marines on his 18th birthday in 1964. In 1966 he was part of an artillery battery at Camp Lejeune scheduled for a six month cruise in the Caribbean. Instead he volunteered for Vietnam. He led a Radio Replay Team at Khe Sanh in 1967, including a month with the Combined Action Company in Khe Sanh Village, and was fortunate that the area was relatively quiet then. After the Corps, he graduated from U-Mass in 1972 with a BA in Government and was elected to the state senate. He served five terms, and reenlisted in the Marine Reserves, where he served from 1977 to 1983, when a career change meant he had to work weekends. Permission granted to forward, post or reprint.

Thursday, May 26, 2016

It doesn't matter who you vote for in November

It doesn't matter who you vote for in November
I wrote the below in response to an email about the national debt, and decided to post it on my blog. While there, I checked my stats. Just before I gave up aggregating the news a few week ago, I was getting about 4k page views a week. I was startled to see today that in the last week I had 7k page views, including over 1k from France. I assume that my post, below, "22 Reason Principled Conservative Can Never Vote for Donald Trump" is making the rounds. But if you look at the fiscal situation of the country, it probably makes no difference who you vote for. And this is the issue that will destroy the Republic, though the Jihadists, China and illegal immigration will heavily contribute to our fiscal woes. Who uses what bathroom, though emotional, will make no difference long run.

The acknowledged Federal Debt, now I think north of $19T, is the small part of the fiscal problem. The big part is the unfunded liability, money the government has promised to spend for things like Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, SS Disability, and now Obamacare, that it does not have in the bank. This is not considered debt because, though promised, it is not owed by contract and the government can legally default on these items, creating chaos and social upheaval. (The Social Security Trust Fund is not cash, but special government bonds, which cannot be sold on the open market. The government borrowed the cash.) Social Security, now as always, is paid out from the FICA taxes taken in. When the income doesn't cover the outgo, the money to redeem the bonds must come from the general fund. When SS started, and folks didn't live as long; 38 workers supported one retiree. Now, with increased longevity and the expansion of benefits, 2.5 workers support one retiree. The average retiree now gets back much more than he or she paid in. You can graph the day not far in the future when it will be one worker supporting one retiree. I have seen estimates of the unfunded liability that run from $87T to $240T, depending on who counts, what is counted and how far out you project. Add to that the debt and unfunded liability of the states and cities, and there are not enough trees to print that much money. It is difficult for me to see how a fiscal and economic collapse, followed by social and political collapse, can be avoided. When governments can't meet their obligations, they always turn to printing fiat money, destroying the value of savings and retirement funds through hyper-inflation. Which is why I recently bought a billion dollars in Zimbabwe currency for about $8 bucks on eBay. And why it doesn't matter at all which corrupt, big-government, NY liberal you vote for in November. And why electing a true fiscal conservative could have only slowed the drive towards the cliff, not reversed it. I suggest everyone read this article, "The West and the Tyranny of Public Debt"
I addressed this problem in my short book a few years back: The Coming Collapse of the American Republic: And what you can do to prevent it. http://www.amazon.com/Coming-Collapse-American-Republic-prevent/dp/1461122538/ref=sr_1_5?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1304815980&sr=1-5
All royalties go to a charity to help wounded veterans. For a free PDF of this 80-page book you can read on your computer, write me at: tartanmarine(at)gmail.com. Forget gold--invest in canned goods and ammo. ~Bob Hall

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Book Recommendations

Book Recommendation: Matterhorn: A Novel of the Vietnam War by Karl Marlantes
I have had this excellent novel on my shelf for some time, but put off reading it due to the length. Recently, I ran into a friend, a retired Army LtCol, who suggested I read it and tell him what I thought. He found it discouraging that so many screwed up officers were depicted. So I read it. Like the author, I am a Vietnam vet; however, I was doubly fortunate. First, the Corps decided---I wasn't asked in 64--that I was going to be a Radio Relay Tech and sent me to electronics school. That meant while I was with an infantry regiment, the 26th Marines at Khe Sanh, I was with Rgt. HQ for my time in Vietnam, except for a month when my team was assigned to the Combined Action Company in Khe Sanh Ville. Secondly, Khe Sanh was pretty quiet in 1967 when I was there; I rotated home on September 10th, about four months before Tet, when things got interesting. (They was scared to attack while I was there!) So my combat experience was mostly hugging the ground at Da Nang, or Phu Bai and praying one of the incoming rockets or mortars didn't drop on me. Lt. Marlantes, conversely, was a line company infantry officer. He holds the Navy Cross, three other medals for valor and two purple hearts. This more than attests that he was in more "shit sandwiches" than are depicted in his novel. So I have not the experience to judge the accuracy of his descriptions of ground combat in the bush, but they have the ring of absolute truth to me. There is a helpful glossary at the end for the non-vet, which I didn't need, though some terminology had changed between my time and his. The thing I found most surprising was the level of racial tension depicted. In my time, there was some on Okinawa before I went down to Nam. I was in an outfit where a black staff Sergeant Russell was, I felt, marginalized by the other senior NCOs due to his race (comments were made) and I thought he was the best NCO they had. And there was a place called Four Corners where white Marines did not dare to go on liberty. But I saw none of it at Khe Sanh in 67, and Marine buddies, black and white who were grunts told me that it was nonexistent in the line companies at the time. Everyone was too busy killing NVA and trying to stay alive. But I don't doubt Marlantes. By the time I got to Lejeune in 68, things were worse there and I heard they were much worse after I got out.
            The thing that struck me about this novel was that I kept wishing those PC elitists who feel all warm and fuzzy about lobbing for women in combat should read it and imaging their daughters--or themselves--in one of the assaults by Bravo Company depicted in this book. But they won't, and their kids will never serve. Other folk's kids will die so they can feel good about being for equality. I highly recommend this book. And yes, Colonel, the Marine Corps has some great officers and NCOs I'd follow anywhere, and some not worth what we paid them. Just like other walks of life.

Book Recommendation: Great Marines of Virginia: Great Marines Book Series, Volume 1 by Meriwether Ball 

Having read and enjoyed Meriwether Ball's interesting book "The Puller Chronicles," I was delighted to get a copy of her latest book. This is a selection of short, well-written biographies of Marine icons--and Marines who should be icons--who were raised or lived in Virginia. It will be of interest to all Marines and military historians, and should stimulate interest in digging further into the lives of these Marines, especially those with heroic experiences who are little known today. I look forward to her next book. (I'm sending her my bio in case she gets around to doing a book called "Average Marines who did Nothing Special.")

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Probably an Amish shooter


Clinton Donor Access

Hillary and Her Wheelbarrows. By Jim Geraghty

Trump and the Court

Excerpt: Donald Trump told Mark Halperin yesterday that his sister, a federal judge, would be a “phenomenal” Supreme Court justice. He also said that “we will have to rule that out now, at least.” If he ever becomes president, let’s hope he rules it out permanently. Maryanne Trump Barry came up in my book The Party of Death for writing one of those heated judicial decisions in favor of giving constitutional protection to partial-birth abortion.

The Supreme Court Is Not a Sufficient Reason to Vote for Trump. By Ian Tuttle

The Supreme Court Isn't a Sufficient Reason to Vote for Trump. By David Frum

Voting Trump because of the Supreme Court isn't enough. By Travis Hale

Filling Supreme Court vacancies isn't a good enough reason to vote for Trump. By John Yoo and Jeremy Rabkin

Excerpt: In fact, Republican presidents have filled 12 of 16 Supreme Court vacancies since 1968. Only four of the those confirmed were truly conservative jurists (William Rehnquist, Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas and Samuel A. Alito Jr.), with the rest either outright liberals (John Paul Stevens and David Souter) or moderates (Sandra Day O’Connor, Anthony M. Kennedy, John G. Roberts Jr.).  Trump’s outbursts won’t persuade the Senate to embrace more conservative nominees, where Reagan’s sunny optimism and George H.W. Bush’s patrician decency failed.

I Survived ‘Trump’ Magazine—Barely

I Survived ‘Trump’ Magazine—Barely
Bills went unpaid. They turned off the electricity. Our paychecks started bouncing. I got cancer and they canceled my health coverage. Here’s what it was like to work for Donald Trump’s failed magazine.
22 Reasons Principled Conservatives can Never Vote for Donald Trump. By Robert A. Hall
(And Hillary is just as bad, though it's a toss up which will be worse for the country.)
Feel free to forward or post.

I'm a lifelong Republican. I was a volunteer for Nixon at 14, and for Goldwater at 18 before joining the Marines in August, 1964 and headed to Vietnam. In 1968, I was a college student and supported Nixon. In 1972, I graduated from College in June and was elected to the Massachusetts Senate in November, defeating a Democrat incumbent by nine votes out of 60,000 in a 4-1 Democrat district, last won by a Republican in 1938. I was reelected four times, even being nominated by both parties in 1976. In 1982, I was the Republican whip when I decided to retire undefeated. I have campaigned for many Republicans since. I have never voted for a Democrat for President. I will not vote for a life-long liberal this year, not Hillary, not Bernie, and certainly not Trump.

The Donaldcrats say that by not voting for Trump, I am handing the election to Hillary Clinton (or, long shot Bernie Sanders). It is not #NeverTrump that is handing the White House to Hillary. When he dropped out, Rubio was leading Clinton by 5%, while Trump was trailing her by 11%. Before the Indiana Primary, Kasich was leading Clinton, Cruz was trailing her in the polls by 2.9% and Trump was trailing her by 11.2%. It is not principled conservatives who cannot ever vote for a know-nothing blowhard with a meretricious character and no firm principles except self-aggrandizement and self enrichment, whose every statement and promise, like Obama's, comes with an expiration date, who are "handing the election to Hillary." It is the Donaldcrats who voted to make this life-long liberal with a bias for big government, an aversion to transparency, a contempt for the truth and a past record of shady dealings the GOP nominee who have handed the election to Hillary. (Trump's promises, like the now-discarded promise to self-fund, have the self-life of unrefrigerated milk.)

I believe the numerous references in this essay prove that Donald Trump has only two core values, and anything else can and will be discarded in service to them. They are self-aggrandizement and self-enrichment.

Trump recently declared that, “This is called the Republican party, it’s not called the Conservative party.” That may be the single-most accurate statement he’s made in the course of the campaign. But if the Republican party isn’t conservative, what does it stand for? http://www.nationalreview.com/article/435273/donald-trump-liberal-conspiracy-theorist

Trump now says he doesn't need conservatives. Fine, I am a conservative, so he doesn't need me. Why are the Donaldcrats now demanding I vote for a man who doesn't need or want my support?

Trump: I Have Principles, Don't Need Conservatives to Support Me

I don't expect to change any minds. A retired Marine on my list stated truthfully. "Trump supporters do not care about any detractors. Not one." Exactly. They are exactly like the Obama supporters in 2008 and 2012. They don't care how many times his lies are exposed, how many times he changes his positions, how many promises he breaks. To the Obots, Obama is the godhead. To the Donaldcrats, Trump is. He could come out for disbanding the military, making abortion mandatory, and an 80% flat tax, and they would still be voting for him.

But I felt compelled for the record to lay out the reasons, based on his own actions and statements, as to why I have held Donald Trump in disdain and contempt as long as I have known anything about him, and why I would never vote for him for Town Board, never mind President. Though this is long, Trump supporters, especially Republicans reluctantly getting into bed with Trump for party unity, should read it in order to be prepared for the bombshells the media and the Democrats will throw at him. Every Trump supporter will be branded as supporting all of all he items below, forever. The Trump campaign, and even more so if there is a Trump Presidency, will be the graveyard of reputations.

1. Donald Trump is an apple that didn't fall far from the tree. The family fortune was started in a whorehouse.

Donald Trump's grandfather ran Canadian brothel during gold rush, author says
Friedrich Trump amassed 'substantial nest-egg' from Yukon hotel before heading to New York

2. Trump carried on the tradition of using, discarding and demeaning women.

Trump publically cheated on his first wife, Ivana, with Marla Maples, whom he called a "good piece of ass."
Excerpt: That April, Ivana began to tell her friends that she was worried about Donald’s state of mind. She had been completely humiliated by Donald through his public association with Marla Maples. “How can you say you love us? You don’t love us! You don’t even love yourself. You just love your money,” twelve-year-old Donald junior told his father, according to friends of Ivana’s. “What kind of son have I created?” Trump’s mother, Mary, is said to have asked Ivana. However unlikely it seemed, Ivana was now considered a tabloid heroine, and her popularity seemed in inverse proportion to the fickle city’s new dislike of her husband. “Ivana is now a media goddess on par with Princess Di, Madonna, and Elizabeth Taylor,” Liz Smith reported. Months earlier, Ivana had undergone cosmetic reconstruction with a California doctor. She emerged unrecognizable to her friends and perhaps her children, as fresh and innocent of face as Heidi of Edelweiss Farms. Although she had negotiated four separate marital-property agreements over the last fourteen years, she was suing her husband for half his assets. Trump was trying to be philosophical. “When a man leaves a woman, especially when it was perceived that he has left for a piece of ass—a good one!—there are 50 percent of the population who will love the woman who was left,” he told me.

And it was rumored that he cheated on Marla with his Third wife, Melania: Donald Trump's Early Life and Wives Ivana, Marla & Melania
Excerpt: Many believe that Trump's third wife, Melania, is nothing more than an extension of Donald's ego. Melania was born in Slovenia as Melanija Knavs, and is a former model known for having more than her fair share of plastic surgery. People have also speculated that Donald was probably still married to Marla when he began seeing Melania, as it is known that they met and began dating in the late 1990s. As soon as he divorced Marla, Donald began promoting Melania's modeling career and taking her on television shows with him, which resulted in many modeling offers for her. The couple married in 2005, and the wedding received extravagant press coverage as the event seemed to be attempting to recapture the glory and expense of Donald Trump's first marriage to Ivana. Melania has some formal education but does not seem very interested in applying her talents, unlike Ivana.

Here’s when Trump BRAGGED in his book about his MULTIPLE AFFAIRS with wealthy married women!
Excerpt: In The Art of the Deal, Trump boasted about bedding other men’s wives.
“If I told the real stories of my experiences with women, often seemingly very happily married and important women, this book would be a guaranteed best-seller,” he wrote.

Donald Trump Said A Lot Of Gross Things About Women On “Howard Stern”
Excerpt: Trump has a history of making crude remarks toward women. He reportedly said of his ex-wife Marla Maples, “Nice tits, no brains,” and more recently, he has called Fox News anchor Megyn Kelly a “bimbo” and a “lightweight” and said she had “blood coming out of her wherever” during the first GOP debate.

Draft dodger Trump says sex in the Eighties was 'his personal Vietnam' during Howard Stern interview in 1997
Excerpt; Donald Trump told shock jock he felt 'lucky' not to have picked up an STD. He said having sex in the 1980s was 'dangerous' and 'scary, like Vietnam.' 'It is my personal Vietnam. I feel like a great and very brave soldier,' he said. Stern said Trump compared a vagina to 'a potential landmine' in private. Trump avoided military draft age 22, because of bone spurs in both heels. Republican front-runner revealed he's 'not into anal' on Stern show in 2004. He also discussed Melania and Ivanka Trump's toilet habits in bizarre chat.

Donald Trump is the Mussolini of America with double the vulgarity. Republicans are right to fear demagoguery of the one candidate who makes Hillary Clinton look electable

Trump’s bogus claim that he never said ‘some of the things’ claimed by Megyn Kelly
The Pinocchio Test: Trump should think twice before challenging the research of a major news organization. There is ample evidence for each of the slurs against women uttered or tweeted by Trump. Perhaps he has a point that he attacks once he is provoked, but there is little doubt that the over-the-top language cited by Kelly was correct. Four Pinocchios.

3. Trump is not a good person.

Trump: 'Why Do I Have to Repent or Ask for Forgiveness If I Am Not Making Mistakes?' (Video)

Excerpt: Following Donald Trump's appearance last week at the Family Leadership Summit in Iowa, CNN's Anderson Cooper sought out clarification on Trump's assertion that he's unsure if he ever asks God's forgiveness. ... When further asked about repentance again by Cooper, Trump said "I think repenting is terrific." "Why do I have to repent or ask for forgiveness, if I am not making mistakes?" asked Trump. "I work hard, I'm an honorable person." In talking about his Iowa appearance, Trump said, "We were having fun when I said I drink the wine, I eat the cracker, the whole room was laughing."

Missing from Trump’s list of charitable giving: His own personal cash

For Donald Trump, it’s always about control

Excerpt: In June 2009, Richard and Shelly Hewson paid the Trump Entrepreneur Initiative, an educational venture owned by businessman and now–presidential candidate Donald Trump, $21,490 for classes that promised to teach them how to flip homes for profit. They ponied up the high price “because we had faith in Donald Trump,” Richard wrote in a January 2015 affidavit. “We thought that if this was his program, we would be learning to do real estate deals from his people who knew his techniques.”

A neuroscientist explains: Trump has a mental disorder that makes him a dangerous world leader

Here are 3 times Donald Trump behaved like a sociopath towards workers

Donald Trump on Protester: ‘I’d Like to Punch Him in the Face’
He's a bully too.

Donald Trump Says His Supporters Should ‘Hit Back’ At Protesters More Often

'In the old days, he'd be carried out on a stretcher': Trump says he'd like to punch protestor 'in the face'

How a convicted felon nicknamed ‘Joey No Socks’ covered Donald Trump in stars
Excerpt: Joseph Cinque, the academy’s president and CEO, personally presented the award to Trump in Scotland. It was one of many similar honors Cinque has bestowed upon him in the past decade. Cinque, who has been described by the academy as one of Trump’s “dear friends,” is also a convicted felon who reportedly survived a murder attempt, was associated with the infamous mob boss John Gotti and went on to earn the nicknames “Joey No Socks” and “the Preppy Don.” Trump recently held one of the top three slots on the organization’s board of trustees, with the ostentatious title of “Ambassador Extraordinaire.” Members of Trump’s family and multiple executives at his company, the Trump Organization, have also sat on the academy’s board of trustees, which selects award winners. Cinque runs the academy out of his apartment on Central Park South in Manhattan, just blocks from Trump Tower. In a conversation with Yahoo News on Thursday morning, Trump denied he had any involvement with the ratings group, which has bestowed numerous five- and six-star ratings on his properties.

Report: Trump Did Business With Vicious Mobster ‘Fat Tony.’ Yes, Really.

Excerpt:  As David Cay Johnston, the Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter who won the award for reporting on the American tax system, has detailed, Donald Trump has had strong ties to organized crime, building his famous Trump Towers and Trump Plaza apartment building with the help of mafia kingpins Anthony “Fat Tony” Salerno and Paul Castellano.  A federal investigation found a federal investigation showed the Trump Plaza apartment building’s construction was aided by racketeering.
We Investigated, Donald Trump is Named in at Least 169 Federal Lawsuits

Tale of Trump and Partner in Azerbaijan Real Estate Project
Excerpt: The Trump camp's screening skills are important as the presumptive Republican presidential nominee turns to selecting a running mate. They would only become more crucial if he won the White House. Then, Trump would have to name more than 3,600 political appointees to senior government positions, including critical jobs overseeing national security and the economy. In the Azerbaijani case, Garten said the Trump Organization had performed meticulous due diligence on the company's partners, but hadn't researched the allegations against the Baku partner's father because he wasn't a party to the deal. "I've never heard that before," Garten said, when first asked about allegations of Iranian money laundering by the partner's father, which appeared in U.S. diplomatic cables widely available since they were leaked in 2010. Garten subsequently said he was confident the minister alleged to be laundering Iranian funds, Ziya Mammadov, had no involvement in his son's holding company, even though some of the son's major businesses regularly partnered with the transportation ministry and were founded while the son was in college overseas. Ziya Mammadov did not respond to a telephone message the AP left with his ministry in Baku or to emails to the Azerbaijan Embassy in Washington.

Cowards, Pimps and Enemies: A Trump Presidency
Excerpt: But for those generals who oppose Trump–or anyone who opposes Trump–beware the enemies list. President Trump will cultivate an enemies list like Green Giant plants peas: Lovingly, efficiently, with care and precision. A huge field of peas, erm, enemies. Cross him, and you immediately find yourself planted in it. And for those who find themselves there, having been previously in the coward or pimp lane, it will suck. Trump will classify his enemies with endless taxonomies, constantly keeping track of who is dangerous, who is to be bribed, and who can be exploited. He’ll assign nicknames to the most notable among them. We’ll think “Lyin’ Ted” and “Crooked Hillary” are quaint pet names compared to what he’ll do with his true enemies as president. And if we think that President Obama’s use of lawfare, the power of the administrative state, and his pen and phone are terrifying, we ain’t seen nothing yet when Trump is president.

State attorneys general who dropped Trump University fraud inquiries subsequently got Trump donations

USA TODAY exclusive: Hundreds allege Donald Trump doesn’t pay his bills

141 Things Donald Trump Has Said and Done That Make Him Unfit to Be President

16 Years Ago, William F. Buckley Wrote This About Donald Trump And It’s Eerily Accurate
4. Trump demeans Veterans (especially our POWs) as well.

Donald Trump Likens His Schooling to Military Service in Book
Excerpt: Donald J. Trump, who received draft deferments through much of the Vietnam War, told the author of a coming biography that he nevertheless “always felt that I was in the military” because of his education at a military-themed boarding school.
Mr. Trump said his experience at the New York Military Academy, an expensive prep school where his parents had sent him to correct poor behavior, gave him “more training militarily than a lot of the guys that go into the military.” That claim may raise eyebrows given that Mr. Trump, now a Republican presidential candidate, never served in the military and mocked Senator John McCain of Arizona, a decorated naval aviator, for his captivity of several years during the Vietnam War. “He’s not a war hero,” Mr. Trump said in July. “He’s a war hero because he was captured. I like people that weren’t captured.”

Trump is, 'Invincible in Peace, Invisible in War," as Sen. George Hill of Georgia described shirkers after the Civil War. He talks fight, but used deferments to avoid military service.
Excerpt: The 2-S classifications are Trump’s student deferments. The first two covered his time at Fordham University in the Bronx, and the second two allowed him to stay in school when he transferred to study business at the University of Pennsylvania. At the time, as Tigar wrote in his 1969 article, any college student who asked could get a student deferment. When he graduated in 1968, Trump’s classification shifted to 1-A, or "available for service." Had that stood, Trump would have been drafted. But Trump had a physical exam in September 1968. He had taken one less than two years earlier that did not disqualify him for service as we can tell from his 1-A classification in July 1968. However, his second physical was followed in October with a new classification, 1-Y. That designation put him near the bottom of any call-up list. It meant he would only be drafted if there were a national emergency. (Trump and I are the same age. But I volunteered for the Marines and volunteered for Vietnam when my outfit was scheduled for a six-month cruise of the Caribbean.)

Donald Trump Wanted Vets Kicked Off Fifth Avenue
Excerpt: Instead of debating his presidential rivals Thursday, the GOP frontrunner is hosting an event ‘to raise money’ for veterans. That’s rich, say the disabled veterans he tried to eject from the street outside Trump Tower.

How Trump spent the war years

How the military is preparing for the possibility of a very different kind of Commander in Chief.
Excerpt: Many of the veterans who called the hotline—855-VETS-352—say they were sent to an automated voicemail message telling them to email the campaign. Those who reached a live human were similarly instructed to send an email, or to mail their medical records to campaign headquarters at Trump Tower. It soon became evident that Trump had no actual plan in place to help anyone who contacted him through the hotline. Calling it a “publicity stunt,” one veteran wrote on PopularMilitary.com, “We are not sure what the estimated wait time is, but it is probably safe to say you should hold on to your [Veterans Affairs] card for now.” This perfunctory effort was perhaps to be expected, since Trump has a long and colorful history of showing disrespect toward men and women in uniform. He did not serve himself, avoiding the Vietnam War via four education deferments, followed by a medical deferment for bone spurs in his feet. (His campaign notes that Trump received a high number in the draft lottery and was unlikely to ever be called up.) But on numerous occasions, he has dismissed the experiences of those who did. 

Four months after fundraiser, Trump says he gave $1 million to veterans group

Excerpt: As recently as last week, Trump’s campaign manager had insisted that the mogul had already given that money away. But that was false: Trump had not. In recent days, The Washington Post and other media outlets had pressed Trump and his campaign for details about how much the fundraiser had actually raised and whether Trump had given his portion. The candidate refused to provide details. 

5. In fact, running for President is the first time Trump has expressed any desire to serve his country.

A former staffer claims the Trump campaign was a protest. Others say it was to enhance the Trump brand: An Open Letter to Trump Voters from His Top Strategist-Turned-Defector
Excerpt: Even Trump's most trusted advisors didn't expect him to fare this well. Almost a year ago, recruited for my public relations and public policy expertise, I sat in Trump Tower being told that the goal was to get The Donald to poll in double digits and come in second in delegate count. That was it. The Trump camp would have been satisfied to see him polling at 12% and taking second place to a candidate who might hold 50%. His candidacy was a protest candidacy.

Why is Trump running for president?
Excerpt: Real estate mogul Donald Trump has informed the Federal Election Commission, as required of presidential candidates, that he is worth more than $10 billion. It appears what his campaign is largely about is embellishing his name and brand, not only for fame, but for profit as well. ... Exhibit A is a Post story about the Trump International Golf Club in Puerto Rico. Although the club has filed for bankruptcy, the story says, Mr. Trump "put no money down but took a cut in the annual revenue" without risking any of his own capital. One of his sons, Eric, an executive in the Trump Organization, is quoted: "We made many millions of dollars on it but never invested a dime."

6. Trump is a know-nothing, with no firm position on anything, except that Trump is great and should be President

The massive flip-floppery of Donald Trump, explained in 113 seconds

Trump vs. Trump Debate

Ad Shows Donald Trump Has The Best Words
Excerpt: “I went to an Ivy League school.  I’m very highly educated.  I know words.  I have the best words,” says Trump in the beginning of the ad.  It then cuts to a montage of Donald Trump using various profanities in his public speeches, and is censored appropriately, of course.

Trump: When I get to Washington, I’m Going to Become Part of the Establishment so I can Make Deals With Democrats (VIDEO)

20 times Donald Trump has changed his mind since June

Trump: Everything I Said – “Just a Suggestion”

A Full List of Donald Trump's Rapidly Changing Policy Positions
Excerpt: While most presidential candidates craft detailed platforms and spend years trying to sell them to voters, GOP front-runner Donald Trump sometimes takes up two or three contradictory policy positions in the same week — or even the same interview.

Donald Trump Doesn’t Know What the GI Bill Is (or Anything Else)

Trump’s word salads conceal his ignorance
I don't agree. it's not concealed for anyone who looks. I've thought for decades that Trump's ignorance rivaled his arrogance. Read these responses to questions.

The ignorance of Donald Trump

Donald Trump's Latest Ignorance Is Just Breathtaking

Trump Is the Ignorant Candidate Ignorant Americans Deserve
Excerpt: The GOP front-runner is wildly uninformed when it comes to foreign policy. ... Donald Trump's inconsistency on foreign policy has the Washington punditry in a tizzy. ... Sadly, a major reason for this is that the American public is as ignorant about foreign policy as Donald Trump.

Donald Trump’s shocking ignorance, laid bare

A transcript of Donald Trump’s meeting with The Washington Post editorial board
Unbelievable. ~Bob

Donald Trump once backed urgent climate action. Wait, what?

7. Trump lies more than any candidate I have ever seen, even more than Hillary

Lyin' Donald: 101 Of Trump's Greatest Lies

Politifact rates only 12% of Trumps statements as True or Mostly True

Trump’s hyping of National Enquirer ‘scoop’ on Ted Cruz’s father

What Could Go Wrong with a Trump Presidency? Let’s Count the Ways
Excerpt: What, they ask, could go so wrong in a Trump presidency? Here, then, is an attempt to realistically assess what a Trump presidency would look like. My biases are clear up front: I don’t trust Trump. I don’t trust his promises, because he has shown no willingness to hold to them. I don’t trust his ideology, because he proclaims that his guiding star is his own self-assurance. I trust Trump to be Trump: a man of convenience, a thinker of no great depth, a reactionary with no constitutional understanding and a willingness to maximize executive power.

A Study On How Often Donald Trump Lies–Complete With Proof

8. But Trump is a great businessman, right? Wrong.

Excerpt: A pattern emerges. Donald Trump is a habitual liar, and the thing about habitual liars is that they lie habitually. In a testy exchange with former Florida governor Jeb Bush, Trump insisted that he’d never gone bankrupt, and that claims to the contrary are a lie. That’s the Trump magic right there: Lying about your business history is one thing, lying that your critics are lying about it is another. Trump has a peculiar way of speaking about bankruptcy: He has a deep aversion to the word itself. He speaks of “putting a company into a chapter” without ever answering the implicit question: “Chapter of what? Moby-Dick?” The answer, of course, is the U.S. Bankruptcy Code, to which Trump has taken recourse at least four times over the course of his business career. 

How Trump Bungled the Deal of a Lifetime
Excerpt: Fueled by a slew of bank loans in the late 1980s, Trump absorbed an airline, a football team, a landmark hotel, a bunch of casinos, a yacht, and other nifty stuff -- almost all of which he eventually lost because he couldn’t juggle the debt payments. He overcame those setbacks, but the man who emerged from that mess wasn’t really a dealmaker anymore. Kept afloat by his wealthy father’s funds and his own gifts for self-promotion, Trump became a reality TV star, golf course developer and human shingle who licensed his name on everything from real estate and vodka to mattresses and underwear.

Trump Worth $10 Billion Less Than If He’d Simply Invested in Index Funds

Donald Trump didn’t write ‘The Art of the Deal’

How Donald Trump Made Millions Off His Biggest Business Failure
Excerpt: From mid-1995 to early 2009, Trump served as chairman of Trump Hotels and Casino Resorts (renamed Trump Entertainment Resorts in 2004), and held the CEO title for five years (mid-2000 to mid-2005). During Trump’s 13 years as chairman, the casino empire lost a total of $1.1 billion, twice declared bankruptcy, and wrote down or restructured $1.8 billion in debt. Over the same period, the company paid Trump—essentially Trump paying himself—roughly $82 million by Fortune’s estimates, collected from a dizzying variety of sources spelled out in the company’s proxy filings, as varied as payments for use of Trump’s private plane to fees paid directly Trump for access to his name and marketing expertise.

Donald Trump is probably not a billionaire
Excerpt: Over the last 48 hours, the latest attempts to derail Donald Trump’s candidacy have focused on the presumptive nominee’s tax returns — more specifically, what is or isn’t in them. On Tuesday night, Trump told the Associated Press he would not release the returns prior to November because he is currently under audit by the IRS, a 180 reversal from his position on the matter back in January, when he said he would be releasing his returns. However, 24 hours later, he characteristically changed course after being criticized on the matter by Mitt Romney. “I’ll release,” he told Fox News’ Greta Van Susteren. “Hopefully before the election I’ll release. And I’d like to release.”

Remember When Trump Said That Romney Should Release His Taxes?

What Trump didn’t say about his four big business bankruptcies
Excerpt: Yet missing from Trump’s retelling is that all four bankruptcies were high-profile embarrassments for his name-brand American empire. Amid some of the proceedings, the mogul poured in millions of dollars from his personal fortune to keep the restructurings alive. To secure better deals or more time to pay off debts, Trump forfeited lucrative ownership stakes and allowed bankers, lawyers and bondholders to feast on his empire. In one deal involving hundreds of millions of dollars in debts he had personally guaranteed, he agreed to sell his airline and mega-yacht, and he allowed bankers to stipulate how much he could spend every month.

Top 10 Donald Trump Failures
Excerpt: Trump Airlines. Trump Vodka. Trump Bankruptcies. Trump Mortgage. Trump: The Game. Trump Clothing Line made in China. Trump Casinos.

Donald Trump was a stock market disaster

I Survived ‘Trump’ Magazine—Barely
Bills went unpaid. They turned off the electricity. Our paychecks started bouncing. I got cancer and they canceled my health coverage. Here’s what it was like to work for Donald Trump’s failed magazine.
9. Trump has supported far left Democrats and leftist policies for decades

Trump on Hillary
Trump: Hillary Clinton is a terrific woman, works hard and I like her. I like both her and her husband very much. They are terrific people.

Flashback 2012: Trump Endorses Hillary
Excerpt: TRUMP:  Hillary Clinton, I think, is a terrific woman.  I mean, I'm a little biased because I've known her for years.  I live in New York. She lives in New York. And I've known her and her husband for years and I really like 'em both a lot and I think she really works hard and I think she, again, she's given an agenda that's not all of her, but I think she really works hard, and I think she does a good job.  And I like her. VAN SUSTEREN:  She says she's out at the end of this term. Do you think we're gonna see her again running for office? TRUMP:  I think so.  I think, you know, assuming she's healthy, which I hope she will be, I think she probably runs after the next four years, I would imagine. VAN SUSTEREN:  You support her? TRUMP:  I don't want to get into this because I'll get myself into trouble -- VAN SUSTEREN:  That's why I asked you, to see what kind of trouble. TRUMP:  I just like her.  I like her, and I like her husband.  Her husband made a speech on Monday at Mar-a-Lago, and it was very well received.  And he's a -- he's a really good guy, and she's a really good person and woman.

Now Trump says Hillary is crooked.

Trump gave at least $100K to Clinton Foundation

Trump Praised Hillary on Iran in 2007, Blasts Iran Deal Today
Excerpt: Back in 2007, Trump praised Hillary Clinton among the presidential candidates then as someone who could make a good deal with Iran. "Hillary's always surrounded herself with very good people," Trump told CNN's Wolf Blitzer in 2007. "I think Hillary would do a good job."

Bill Clinton called Trump ahead of his 2016 launch
I'm sure Bill had the best interests of the Republican Party at heart in pushing Trump to run.
Donald Trump Speaks On Obama &; 50 Cent Show 2008!
Excerpt: Trump: (Obama's) speech was great last night. I thought it was inspiring in every way. And, hopefully he’s going to do a great job. But the way I look at it, he cannot do worse than Bush.

Excerpt: Sharpton and Trump forged an unlikely friendship over Atlantic City boxing deals that has lasted for decades, through ups and downs. Even as the Tawana Brawley scandal unfolded and Sharpton faced a 67-count indictment involving how he used funding for his youth organization, Trump remained a prominent supporter of the agitator, numerous sources close to the two men tell National Review.

Trump: Obama 'absolutely right' on executive pay cap

Most of Donald Trump's Political Money Went To Democrats — Until 5 Years Ago

Donald Trump Praises Obama, Hillary and EPA Chief Lisa Jackson

Trump on Obama. By Jim Geraghty, Morning Jolt
Excerpt: April 15, 2009 is largely seen as the birth date of the Tea Party movement. Here’s what Trump was saying that day about President Obama: TRUMP: I think he’s sort of a guy that just has a wonderful personality, a good speaker, somebody that people trust. And I also think that the comparison with his predecessor is so different -- it’s so huge that it really has made a great impact on people. I think that he’s really doing a nice job in terms of representation of this country. And he represents such a large part of the country . . . I think he’s doing a really good job. Now, the sad part is that he can’t just do a good job. He’s got to do a great job. Because if he does a good job, that’s not good enough for this country. That’s how bad the country has become. KING: Do you assess him as a champion? TRUMP: Oh, yes, he’s a champion. I mean, he won against all odds. If you would have looked -- when he first announced, people were giving him virtually no chance. And he’s just done something that’s amazing.  He’s totally a champion. (In the founding days of the Tea Party, Donald Trump was exactly what they were fighting against . . . and now some of those adherents have embraced him fully. --Jim Geraghty)

Excerpt:  Real estate billionaire Donald Trump gave Chicago mayoral candidate Rahm Emanuel $50,000 in December 2010, just months before hinting to the media he is seriously contemplating a bid to be the Republican Party's 2012 presidential nominee.

Trump: I Gave Money to Pelosi, Reid Because I’m a Business
Excerpt: When host Jake Tapper asked Trump about Hillary Clinton attending his wedding and his political contributions to Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi to help recapture Congress in 2006, Trump said, “We have gridlock in Washington, for instance I’ve helped Nancy Pelosi. I’ve helped Reid. I’m a business.” (Contributing to candidates expecting some favor in return is considered a quid pro quo and is illegal. ~Bob)

15 Reasons Trump Is a Liberal — and a Lunatic Conspiracy Theorist
Excerpt:  must confess that I’m mystified as to why so many Republicans are utterly convinced that Donald Trump will be a better president than Hillary Clinton. Trump, of course, makes it easy for them to delude themselves, because each time he begins to sound like Noam Chomsky, he’ll immediately pivot to mimic Rush Limbaugh, and he never stops talking long enough to be pinned down. But which words matter? Which words can we trust? The answer, of course, is none of them. 

Trump has supported nearly all of Obama’s economic policy agenda

10. Trump has no firm position on Abortion

Trump defends Planned Parenthood on ‘Meet the Press’ better than any Democrat could…

Trump on Planned Parenthood: 'I am a truth teller'
Excerpt: "Look, Planned Parenthood has done very good work for many, many -- for millions of women," Trump said in a news conference Tuesday night. "And I’ll say it, and I know a lot of the so-called conservatives, they say that’s really ... cause I’m a conservative, but I’m a common-sense conservative." (The Great Businessman apparently doesn't know that money is fungible. if you give them money for A, they can then shift their other money to B. ~Bob)

Excerpt: Donald Trump told Mark Halperin yesterday that his sister, a federal judge, would be a “phenomenal” Supreme Court justice. He also said that “we will have to rule that out now, at least.” If he ever becomes president, let’s hope he rules it out permanently. Maryanne Trump Barry came up in my book The Party of Death for writing one of those heated judicial decisions in favor of giving constitutional protection to partial-birth abortion.

He said that he was 100% pro-choice, including partial birth abortions. But this year he ran as a pro-life candidate.

Donald Trump Reverses Interview Statement About “Some” Punishment For Women Who Have Abortions If They’re Banned

Donald Trump: Don’t Change Abortion Laws, “The Laws are Set, We Have to Leave it That Way”

11. Trump wants to weaken the First Amendment to protect politicians from the press

Donald Trump: We're going to 'open up' libel laws
And he was so dumb he told this to the editorial board of the Washington Post.

Trump Says Freedom of the Press Must Go Because He’s ‘Not Like Other People’

12. Trump is not a Conservative and not a Republican

After screaming for a real conservative for years, will Republicans nominate a liberal?
Excerpt: Outside of immigration, Donald Trump is a liberal. Outside of immigration, Donald Trump is to the left of Jeb Bush, John Kasich, and at times he’s even to the left of Hillary Clinton. Immigration is Donald Trump’s Republican stance. On just about everything else, he’s running as a democrat. His supporters don’t see it that way. They usually fall into one of two camps: those who believe he’s a conservative because of his immigration stance and those who are switching to his populist narrative and not worrying about conservatism anymore. The first group gets something of a pass since they’re simply being misled by Trump’s incredible sales pitch and his unwillingness to offer details about his policies.

Donald Trump is not a traditional Republican — including on some big issues

Excerpt: Saturday’s GOP debate finally clarified the Donald Trump phenomenon. After months of dominating the polls and millions of words of analysis, the grueling slog of the primary race is finally bringing the facts into sharp relief. Donald Trump isn’t a revolutionary. He’s not a conservative. He’s not even a populist. He’s a Democrat.

Donald Trump is a counterfeit Republican. By George F. Will

Andrew Breitbart on Trump in 2011
Excerpt: “Of course [Donald Trump’s] not a conservative. He was for Nancy Pelosi before he was against Nancy Pelosi . . . Celebrity is everything in this country. If these guys don’t learn how to play the media the way that Barack Obama played the media last election cycle, and the way Donald Trump is playing the media this cycle, we’re probably going to get a celebrity candidate.”

From Immigration To Guns To Abortion, Donald Trump Must Reckon With His Progressive History. By Eric Owens
Excerpt: With that failed presidential run and with public appearances galore, Trump has established a sustained record of habitually inconsistent political positions which clash dramatically with the current tide of American conservatism. An in-depth study of Trump’s declared views on issues ranging from immigration to abortion to taxes to socialized health care shows that, in many ways, he would find a cozy home in progressive Democratic circles. In the first of two installments, The Daily Caller focuses here on immigration, abortion and gun control. Related: http://dailycaller.com/2015/08/26/from-high-taxes-to-socialized-health-care-donald-trump-must-reckon-with-his-rich-progressive-history/

Trump Once Said Of Guns: “Nothing I Like Better Than Nobody Has Them.” And he slammed Republicans for walking “the NRA line.”

Trump Has Never Voted In A Republican Primary
Excerpt: A search of the New York state voter rolls shows that Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump has never cast a vote in a Republican presidential primary election in the state in which he has long been a resident. Trump’s official voting records, obtained by the Daily Mail, show that the 69-year-old billionaire failed to vote in any Republican presidential primary dating back to 1989. ... Trump has changed his party affiliation at least four times in the last 16 years — an average of once for each presidential election.

Trump Has Succeeded in Convincing Conservatives to Discard their Principles Overnight. By Charles C. Cooke
Excerpt: Since he jumped self-confidently into the political limelight, Donald Trump has been quite the upside-down man. Customarily, primary seasons permit each party’s voters to indulge in a rational process of elimination: First, they discover which candidate most closely agrees with them on policy, and then they ask themselves whether that person is capable of representing their ideas in public. This time around, however, this process has been disastrously inverted, a solid portion of the Republican party’s balloters having decided first who they want to speak on their behalf, and then, as if t’were a mere afterthought, wondered what he might end up saying. That their pick lacks any sort of conservative message at all does not seem to have mattered in the slightest. “We want that guy,” a host of voters have determined. “Whatever he believes, he says it so well.”

Michael Reagan: Trump is no Reagan Republican
Excerpt: Mr. Trump, I knew Ronald Reagan. And you’re no Ronald Reagan! Of course, I am stealing that line — with a twist. Donald Trump shouldn’t mind. He’s been stealing my dad for his own purposes. Trump frequently invokes Ronald Reagan’s name to defend his sudden, 180-degree switch from being a life-long, pro-Clinton Democrat to a Reagan Republican. 

Is Donald Trump Conservative? Here’s the Rundown

You Hate It From Barack Obama. But You Love It From Donald Trump.

Why Liberals Should Love Donald Trump. By Robert A. Hall

Donald Trump: Rock-Ribbed Conservative

13. Trump has no firm position on healthcare, but seems to favor having everybody paid for by the government, like Bernie Sanders. At least some days.

Donald Trump on healthcare: if you like your plan, you can keep it
Excerpt: There’s many different ways, by the way. Everybody’s got to be covered. This is an un-Republican thing for me to say because a lot of times they say, “No, no, the lower 25 percent that can’t afford private. But–” ... I am going to take care of everybody. I don’t care if it costs me votes or not. Everybody’s going to be taken care of much better than they’re taken care of now. ... They’re going to be taken care of. I would make a deal with existing hospitals to take care of people. And, you know what, if this is probably– ...the government’s gonna pay for it. But we’re going to save so much money on the other side. But for the most it’s going to be a private plan and people are going to be able to go out and negotiate great plans with lots of different competition with lots of competitors with great companies and they can have their doctors, they can have plans, they can have everything.

Trump gets down to business on 60 Minutes
Excerpt: Scott Pelley: Universal health care? Donald Trump: I am going to take care of everybody. I don’t care if it costs me votes or not. Everybody’s going to be taken care of much better than they’re taken care of now. Scott Pelley: Make a deal? Who pays for it? Donald Trump: The government’s gonna pay for it.

Trump on healthcare

Donald Trump Wants to Repeal Obamacare, Replace It With Obamacare

Donald Trump really said this: I like the Obamacare MANDATE

15. Trump is ignorant on foreign policy and the military, which is very scary.

Donald Trump Would Not Rip Up The Iran Deal
Excerpt: Unlike most of his fellow rivals for the Republican presidential nomination, real estate mogul Donald Trump would not rescind President Barack Obama’s nuclear deal with Iran. “I’ve heard a lot of people say, ‘We’re going to rip up the deal.’ It’s very tough to do when you say, ‘Rip up a deal,’” Trump said Sunday on NBC’s “Meet The Press.”

Donald Trump: I consult myself on foreign policy, ‘because I have a very good brain’
Excerpt: Likely GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump said Wednesday that he consults with himself on issues like foreign policy because he has “a very good brain.”

Asked on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” who he talks with “consistently” about foreign affairs, Mr. Trumpresponded, “I’m speaking with myself, number one, because I have a very good brain and I’ve said a lot of things,” Politico reported.

Trump's Updated ISIS Plan: "Bomb The Shit Out Of Them," Send In Exxon To Rebuild

Trump: We have to take out ISIL members' families
That's a war crime. The military will not deliberately murder children, though, alas, children are often victims in war.

How the military is preparing for the possibility of a very different kind of Commander in Chief.
Excerpt: Meanwhile, when Trump has weighed in on national security questions, his remarks often reveal either ignorance or disdain for military expertise and the codes of conduct that govern the armed forces. “I know more about ISIS than the generals do. Believe me,” he boasted in one speech, adding, "I’ve had a lot of wars of my own. I’m really good at war." ... “He completely misunderstands the military profession that he would head if he were the president,” said Robert Killebrew, a retired colonel who served in the Army for more than 30 years. Others were less polite. In a pair of ads produced by the American Future Fund, a retired Special Forces commander named Michael Waltz calls Trump a draft-dodger who “hasn’t served this country a day in his life,” and a Vietnam veteran, Tom Hanton, says that Trump’s quip about POWs was “the most infuriating comment I think I’ve heard from a politician in my entire life.” One former Marine infantry officer described Trump to me as a “fake-bake-ing chicken hawk” whose “knowledge of the Middle East could be trumped (sorry) by your average Georgetown sophomore.” Trump’s chosen foreign policy advisers—which include a 2009 college graduate who touted his experience in the Model U.N. on his online résumé and another who used Kanye West lyrics to make arguments on his foreign policy blog—have only stoked these anxieties. “Weirdo nobodies,” was how one military historian characterized them to me. “They’re probably the least qualified group of foreign policy and national security advisers I’ve ever seen or even heard of,” said Richard Kohn, an expert in civil-military relations and retired professor at the University of North Carolina.

Military Strategist Explains Why Donald Trump Leads—And How He Will Fail

16. Trump actually has no firm position on immigration, his signature issue

Here's A Full Timeline of Donald Trump's Immigration Positions

Trump supported path to citizenship, said Romney was “mean-spirited” on immigration

That Time Donald Trump Had A Meeting With DREAMers And Said “You Convinced Me” On Immigration

Donald Trump Empire Sought Visas For At Least 1,100 Foreign Workers
Won't matter at all. His supporters don't care what he has said or done in the past, they love what he said today. And if, as so often happens, he says something different tomorrow, they love that too. After all, "he tells it like it is" and that changed daily.

Trump Campaign Admits His Call for a Wall is Just a Suggestion
Excerpt: Here is one of Donald Trump’s spokesmen, Barry Bennett, going on CNN to debate Donald Trump’s policies. Instead, what he says is that Donald Trump is making suggestions. The spokesman says that Trump’s proposals to ban Muslims and to build a wall are just suggestions, not really proposals. In fact, the spokesman points out that Trump’s words don’t matter. He actually admits this. “This words matter stuff is ridiculous.”

Excerpt: I would get people out and then have an expedited way of getting them back into the country so they can be legal. . . . A lot of these people are helping us . . . and sometimes its jobs a citizen of the United States doesn’t want to do. I want to move ’em out, and we’re going to move ’em back in and let them be legal. (Also note that he buys the “jobs Americans won’t do” justification for large-scale, low-skill immigration:)

Trump Tower Got Its Start With Undocumented Foreign Workers

17. Like Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton, Trump is opposed to free trade

What Donald Trump Doesn’t Know about U.S. Trade

How Donald Trump is running to the left of Hillary Clinton
Excerpt: That’s not the only area where the presumptive Republican nominee sounds like Sanders, who is challenging Clinton for the Democratic nomination. On a series of issues, including free trade and foreign military intervention, Trump is effectively running to the left not only of his own party but also of Clinton. ... “NAFTA has been one of the great economic disasters. Who signed it? Clinton. Clinton,” Trump said Saturday at a rally in Lynden, Wash. He was referring to the North American Free Trade Agreement, which was actually signed by George H.W. Bush but was implemented through legislation signed by Bill Clinton.

No, Mr. Trump, NAFTA Was Not a ‘Bad Deal’
Excerpt: First, the U.S. has added 31 million payroll jobs since 1994, or 29 million workers (depending on which methodology one uses). Second, average hourly earnings, adjusting for inflation, are 43 percent higher than in 1994. Third, U.S. manufacturing output has reached record highs, and part of the reason is that so much global trade consists of intermediate goods in fantastically efficient supply chains. You may have read about Trump’s complaint that China is “killing us” because of bad trade deals, but he also complains about Japan, one of our closest allies. Trump seems unaware that the U.S. has no trade deals at all with China; nor does he seem to know that the Trans Pacific Partnership does not include China. Trump is even questioning trade with our friends in Canada, which is like complaining about jobs being “lost” to Oregon. Today, America imports about $10 billion worth of goods from Japan every month, while exporting $5 billion, yielding a 2-to-1 trade deficit in goods. So? As our patron saint, Adam Smith, wrote centuries ago, “Nothing can be more absurd than this whole doctrine of the balance of trade.” Has protectionism helped Tokyo? After decades of such trade imbalances, America has prospered while the Japanese economy has stagnated. Today, output per person is 20 percent higher in the U.S. than in Japan.

Tariff disaster offers a lesson on the folly of protectionism. By Thomas Sowell
Smooth-Hawley, signed by Hoover against the advice of 1,000 economists, collapsed world trade and locked in the depression.
18. Trump is economically ignorant

Top 1 percent gets biggest tax cut under Trump plan. By Catherine Rampell 
Excerpt: What was that about soaking the rich? Here’s the distributional impact of Donald Trump’s tax cuts, according to the Tax Foundation (a nonpartisan, business-backed research organization):

Trump's Tax Plan: So Terrific That It Would Add More Debt Than Obama's Seven Years In Office
Excerpt: For a man who is running to “make America great again,” Donald Trump’s tax plan is exceedingly expensive. According to an analysis by the Tax Foundation, Trump’s plan would add trillions to the national debt, more than the current sum added after seven years of President Obama’s policies (via Weekly Standard):

Trump’s Tax Cuts Would Add $24.5 Trillion to the Debt

It’s Time to Fear the Trump Dollar
Excerpt: Among Donald Trump’s more ridiculous statements lately is his claim that should he win in November, he may attempt to pay down the debt by printing more money. This may seem stunningly simplistic. But it’s actually not. In fact, printing money, otherwise called monetizing or debasing a currency, is an attempt to cure the ills of debt straight out of antiquity. Unfortunately, history proves it’s been a poor effort at that. This is ultimately an inflationary policy prescription: paying down the debt with cheaper currency.

Trump Surrenders On Minimum Wage; 'I Don't Know How You Live On $7.25 An Hour'
Excerpt: In an interview with left-wing CNN’s Wolf Blitzer last week, Trump expressed openness to federal mandates to raise the existing minimum wage. In earlier debates with his former Republican competitors for the GOP’s presidential nomination, Trump expressed resistance to such proposals.

Stephanopoulos Calls Trump Out for Backtracking on Tax Plan, Minimum Wage Position He Presented in the Primary

Kathleen Parker: Rules are for breaking
Excerpt: It should be obvious to all by now that Donald Trump knows nothing of what he speaks. His disastrous economic ideas are but the latest in a litany of nonsensical proposals. Yet, and still, his supporters — that Republican base so carefully nurtured by the very GOP operatives and politicians who now find its members so distasteful — proclaim his supremacy with such bracing observations as, “Well, at least he’s got [spheres],” or “At least he speaks his mind,” or “At least he doesn’t suck up to anybody.” These selections from the morning mail share a common element — “at least” — which seems apt enough, though “the least” seems more to the point. Trump was the least of so many other Republican candidates who offered governing experience, knowledge and even, in some cases, wisdom.

19. Trump lied about self-funding his campaign

Longtime Trump friend seeded pro-Trump super PAC with $1 million
Excerpt: Casino mogul Phil Ruffin, a longtime friend and business partner of Donald Trump, gave $1 million last year to a super PAC supporting the real estate tycoon's presidential run, just two weeks after the group was formed. The seven-figure contribution from Ruffin, who owns the Treasure Island Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, made up the bulk of the $1.74 million that the Make America Great Again PAC raised before shutting down, according to new documents filed Wednesday with the Federal Election Commission. The super PAC closed up shop in October after The Washington Post reported on multiple ties between the organization and Trump's official campaign. 

Self-Funded’ Trump Is Seeking to Raise Money From Political Donors
I grew very tired of the Donaldcrats telling me Trump couldn't be bought because he was self-funding. It was another lie. ~Bob

Paging Trump’s Wallet
Excerpt: “By self-funding my campaign, I am not controlled by my donors, special interests or lobbyists. I am only working for the people of the U.S.!” When asked by MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough whether he would “change possibly … and start taking money in the future,” Trump said, “No, no.” But we already knew that because of all those self-funding quotes. Nevertheless, he’s now hired a hedge fund manager as his national finance chairman and started scheduling fund-raisers. He’s working out an arrangement with the Republican Party that will allow him to accept megadonations. Presumably from people who have no special interests whatsoever but just happen to have $300,000 on hand.

Donald Trump is OWNED by Every Bank on Wall Street

20. Donald Trump lied when he promised to release his tax returns.

Excerpt: This most recent distraction — the revelation that Trump impersonated his own, imaginary publicists on the phone for several years in the 1980s and ’90s, confessed to it then, and denies it now — freshly illustrates his well-established flair for drama and deception. It also ratchets up a little the Fremdscham that he stirs in those who, as Rachel Lu put it the other day, “remain un-hypnotized” by his antics: They feel his embarrassment, and all the more so because he does not, or pretends he doesn’t. Instead of correcting course, he doubles down and rubs the public’s nose in it. ... Carswell suggests that we keep our eye on Trump’s failure to release his returns. Others, including Paul Krugman, suspect that the reason he’s stonewalling is that the returns show him to be poorer than he lets on. In his book TrumpNation (2005), Timothy L. O’Brien wrote that “three people with direct knowledge” of Trump’s finances estimated that his net worth was between $150 and $250 million. Trump sued O’Brien for defamation, insisting that he was a billionaire, and lost in court.

Donald Trump: My tax rate is "none of your business"
Excerpt: On the heels of recent calls for Donald Trump to release his tax returns, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee is standing firm in his position that he would not make the documents public before an IRS audit is complete. ... While every presidential nominee since 1976 has released their tax returns, Trump said that before 1976, it was a "secret thing." (Of course, no one knows except Trump and the IRS - which can't say - if he is really being audited. He has lied about this issue in the past. ~Bob)

Trump’s false claim that ‘there’s nothing to learn’ from his tax returns

Donald Trump’s Evasions on Taxes
Excerpt: Mitt Romney — the 2012 presidential nominee who released his returns after Mr. Trump and others demanded it — points out how little data exists with which to gauge Mr. Trump’s fitness for office. Mr. Trump has no record of military service. He has never held elected office. Born wealthy, he took over his father’s business and built a spotty track record. Disclosing his returns might enable Mr. Trump to support one of his main claims on the presidency: that he’s a negotiator so skilled it has made him a billionaire. ... Mr. Trump now says he won’t release his returns because he’s being audited. Such concern didn’t stop President Nixon from releasing several years of returns in 1973 — even though the Internal Revenue Service subsequently determined that the president owed nearly $500,000 in back taxes. (Mr. Nixon’s famous comment, “I’m not a crook,” didn’t refer to Watergate, but to rumors about tax avoidance, which turned out to be accurate.)

Donald Trump Promised to Release His Tax Returns in 2011

Is This Why Trump Won’t Release His Tax Returns?
Excerpt: Hours later, he told Fox News host Greta Van Susteren that he’d “like” to release his returns before the election, but can’t because of an ongoing IRS audit. For the record, that’s a bogus claim that no self-respecting reporter should allow Trump to get away with making, since the IRS itself debunked it in an on-the-record statement back in February.

21. No one knows where Trump stands on Transgender use of bathrooms. Including Trump.

Trump: States, Not White House Should Decide Transgender Bathroom Issue
Excerpt: His comments on Friday were slightly different than they were during an April town hall on the "Today" show, when he commented that when it comes to North Carolina's bathroom law, he would have left things as they were, rather than pass a law requiring that people use bathrooms based on the sex listed on their birth certificates, because "there have been very few complaints the way it is."

Excerpt: "It's a new issue and right now I just don't have an opinion. like to see the states make that decision," he said in a phone interview on Fox and Friends. Trump said last month that he did not agree with North Carolina passing a law stating that people must use the bathroom that corresponds to their gender at birth

22. Donald Trump is a big-government guy.

Excerpt: In Trump's beloved Kelo case, you may recall, the thing called "economic development" didn't actually lead to any, and the working-class homeowner really did love the house that was bulldozed by the government at the behest of a wealthy developer. Trump's endorsement of the Supreme Court's 5-4 expansion of the constitutional phrase "public use" to include private development is not surprising, given his line of work and prior reliance on the goliath-vs.-David practice. And his assertion that conservatives (let alone libertarians, or progressives like Bernie Sanders) just need the subject "explained" better to them is not just condescending, it's ignorant: Kelo  sparked a widespread public backlash, and its economic-development rationale has been massively unpopular for a decade. For good reason.

After 9/11, Trump Took Money Marked for Small Businesses
Excerpt: But it's worth remembering that amid Trump's flowery praise for his city, the real-estate mogul took advantage of taxpayer-funds designed to help struggling small-business owners in Lower Manhattan affected by the attack.

The Supreme Court Is Not a Sufficient Reason to Vote for Trump. By Ian Tuttle

The Supreme Court Isn't a Sufficient Reason to Vote for Trump. By David Frum

Voting Trump because of the Supreme Court isn't enough. By Travis Hale

Filling Supreme Court vacancies isn't a good enough reason to vote for Trump. By John Yoo and Jeremy Rabkin

Excerpt: In fact, Republican presidents have filled 12 of 16 Supreme Court vacancies since 1968. Only four of the those confirmed were truly conservative jurists (William Rehnquist, Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas and Samuel A. Alito Jr.), with the rest either outright liberals (John Paul Stevens and David Souter) or moderates (Sandra Day O’Connor, Anthony M. Kennedy, John G. Roberts Jr.).  Trump’s outbursts won’t persuade the Senate to embrace more conservative nominees, where Reagan’s sunny optimism and George H.W. Bush’s patrician decency failed.