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Saturday, April 9, 2016

Identifying the 'mark'

Canadian Cincinnatus: Why I don’t support Donald Trump -- "And then I realized, like I was shot with a diamond bullet, that there is no there there. Trump has no ideas, he has no philosophy, he has no governing principles. He is little more than a salesman selling himself. He is a hollow man, a stuffed man, headpiece filled with straw.

Not only doesn’t he know, he doesn’t care to find out - which is much worse.


"... There is an old adage that if you look around the card table and don’t see who the mark is, you’re the mark."

EDIT 2016/04/11 --

Edgestrow asks: "What does a voter like me do? I loathe Hillary, but fear Trump. Whichever way I jump, it's going to be against someone, not for anything."

There are multiple threads to untangle here; I certainly won't insist that I see them all, but let's see that we can untangle.

== Regardless of what precisely Edgestrow is thinking, there is this shallow and tendentious idea being pushed in the culture -- pushed: because when people let it rule their lives, they tend to surrender to things they ought to oppose -- that it is in some way wrong simply to oppose things, that you must always be for something rather than against the other thing.

Like so much else that is driving the current implosion of our civilization and of our polity, this idea goes back to the Progressive Era of a century ago (that is, to the intellectual-and-political ancestors of today's "Social Justice Warriors" and leftists in general).

This idea is promoted because it is a means to control people en masse: it is belovéd of marketing people -- which is to say, by people in whose interest it is to separate you from your money -- and by leftists -- which is to say, by people in whose interest it is to separate you from your liberty, and incidentally, from your money.

[As a side note: The "Pro-Life Movement" calls itself that, rather than the "Anti-Abortion Movement" or the "Anti-(Legalized) Murder Movement", because its leaders have succumbed to marketing. Imagine the absurdity of the old Abolitionist Movement -- the Anti-Slavery Movement -- calling itself the "Pro-Freedom Movement" or the "Pro-Economic Growth Movement".

For what it's worth, I am not "pro-life"; I am anti-abortion and anti-euthanasia ... because I am anti-murder]

== Sometimes, "the lesser of two evils" is still *just* evil -- I'm not myself convinced that Trump falls into that category, but if you believe that he does, then it seems that you should vote for no one for that office in the general election. Or, you could "throw away your vote" (as people like to put it) by voting for, say, the Constitution Party candidate in the general election.

== No one else has the right or the authority to demand that you draw the above line where they choose for you to draw it -- it is your right to refuse to participate or cooperate if you believe the even the "lesser evil" is still just morally evil.

Certainly, others have the right to attempt to persuade you to their position; just as you do toward them. Others have the right to (attempt to) show *others* that your position is untenable or false or irrational or even hypocritical; just as you do toward them. Others even have the freedom to heap scorn on you due to your thinking, or lack thereof, on whatever the matter is; just as you do toward them.

But, in the end, what you do is between you and God: we will all answer to God, and none of the little self-deceptions that people so love to hide behind will be able to withstand his presence. We will all be naked before God; so, the task we all have is to live so that we need not be ashamed of our nakedness.

== Trump as "dangerous" -- While it seems pretty clear that at least some of the Trumpkins hope that Trump will be the Second Coming of Obama, I don't see that as even a possibility. Obama is able to get away with behaving as though he were Ceasar because a powerful block of the people in Congress want the results he decrees, and large block of the people in Congress are indisposed to oppose his rule-by-decree.

But, I just don't see Trump as having that sort of institutional/establishment backing.

Conceivably, a Trump administration might even be a good thing in the long-run, for it might (let me stress the "might") result in the Congress re-asserting its primacy, and putting an end to the "imperial presidency".


Nick said...

Unfortunately, Trump is the only choice in this election cycle. If not for Trump, no one would be talking about the number one issue for the survival of the USA as a free nation, immigration. Cruz? Not eligible. Ryan? A Cuckservative (so is Kasich). Would you prefer Hillary?

Ilíon said...

I know.

Edgestow said...

What does a voter like me do? I loathe Hillary, but fear Trump. Whichever way I jump, it's going to be against someone, not for anything.

Greg said...

Oh come on. Trump's ideology is a broad nationalistic populism. His positions on immigration and trade are counter to globalist concerns which run Washington. His policy positions are on his website if you'd bother to read them. He has endorsements from numerous conservative politicians who are immigration patriots--such as Jeff Sessions, Duncan Hunter, and Kris Kobach.

We don't need a choir boy, we need a leader. Man up.

Ilíon said...

"Oh come on."

Translation: nothing you can say is worth me (Greg) listening to.

"We don't need a choir boy, we need a leader."

Translation: We need another Obama, but one who will do the sorts of unConstitutional things "we" like, rather than the sorts “we” don’t like.

"Man up."

Translation: I'm self-opaque ... and, like Trump, I have no intention of changing that..

Ilíon said...

Greg ... never mind your shilling for Trump. Can you *explain* why it is that, as Nick said, "Cruz [is n]ot eligible"?