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Title: Trump’s mind-control superpowers
Source: Axios
URL Source: https://www.axios.com/trump-persuas ... 35-4134-bde9-d8cd4ee7a92e.html
Published: Jun 5, 2018
Author: Jim VandeHei
Post Date: 2018-06-05 13:53:43 by Tooconservative
Keywords: None
Views: 320
Comments: 7

In our lifetime, no president has matched Donald Trump’s ability to summon the power of the pulpit, friendly media, and the tweet-by-tweet power of repetition and persuasion to move minds en masse.

The big picture: You see this in the silence of Republican critics; the instant shifts in GOP views of the FBI, Putin and deficits; and the quick, widespread adoption of his branding efforts around “deep state,” “Spygate” and “no collusion.” We hear so much, so often that we become numb to what Trump is doing. This allows big things (such as fundamental shifts in governing norms) to seem like small things or nothing at all. 

Why this matters ... Trump and allies are floating untested legal arguments: The president can't obstruct justice, or can unilaterally shut down probes of himself, or can even pardon himself. If you think he won't try something unprecedented — and maybe get away with it, at least with Republicans — you aren’t paying attention.

A few data points to marinate in:

  • For all the drama, "never befores” and controversy, at 501 days into his presidency, Trump has more party support than any president since World War II except George W. Bush after 9/11. The more Republicans see and hear, the more they agree with him. 
  • House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, the second ranking Republican in the House and possible next Speaker, on CNN yesterday became the latest GOP leader to claim “no collusion,” despite Robert Mueller's ongoing probe. The more they hear his terms, the more they repeat them.
  • Michael Hayden, a huge Trump critic who's a former CIA director and National Security Agency director, tells Kara Swisher in a Recode Decode podcast that Republican support is so unmovable that impeachment, regardless of evidence, would be unwise because it'd be seen as “soft coup.”

A case in point on being numb: Trump's retaliation against Amazon.

  • He threatened the company behind the scenes, then publicly, while privately pushing U.S. Postmaster General Megan Brennan to double Amazon's package rates.
  • This was quickly forgotten even though it’s highly abnormal for presidents to use their voice and power to pick on one specific public company using misleading data points. 

Tim Miller, a Republican and the former spokesman for Jeb Bush, nailed the nothing-is-abnormal-when-everything-is-abnormal phenomenon in a tweet about a piece he wrote for Crooked Media:

  • “Take  Romney’s 47% gaffe - or frankly any major political gaffe in history - and dump it into Trumps Nashville speech verbatim. The remark wouldn’t have even made it into the newspaper.” 

Then consider this small but telling example of persuasion: 

  • No one in the world was thinking about former Illinois Gov. Rob Blagojevich, who's serving a 14-year sentence for corruption and soliciting bribes. He was a Democrat brought down by Democrats in a Democratic state. 
  • Suddenly Trump floated the idea of curtailing his sentence, claiming he was guilty of typical politics, not some huge crime. Again, this was not the view of Democrats or the courts. 
  • Then, Fox News' Judge Jeanine Pirro, a Trump favorite, made her Saturday night show a shockingly safe and sympathetic forum for Blagojevich’s wife, Patti, to kiss up to Trump and paint the president and her husband as victims. 
  • The Trump and Fox formula probably means Blagojevich will be freed — and a lot of Republicans will applaud, if recent history holds. 

Remember this: Hayden might be right. It is possible that no matter what Mueller finds, no matter how extensive or incriminating, Trump survives.

  • The only indisputable way to remove a president from office is for him to be impeached, then convicted and ousted by a supermajority of the Senate.
  • That means a bunch of Republicans would need to turn on him — and there is scant evidence to date that many, if any, ever would. 
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#1. To: Tooconservative (#0) (Edited)

Remember this: Hayden might be right. It is possible that no matter what Mueller finds, no matter how extensive or incriminating, Trump survives.

Yes remember that.

You people on the Left - remember that. An election was fought over ideas. Trump won because the people wanted his ideas. You people hate his ideas, so you want to remove him by any means possible. It is not going to work, because you are trying to override the will of us, the people. You have no right to do it, but you're pressing ahead with whatever power you have to try anyway, because you reject the will of the majority. The majority will prevail, and you will not - and the majority IS capable of becoming a mob and punishing you with the same extreme viciousness that you are trying to use right now, and nobody will protect you. So remember it, because the people who supported Trump are more interested in WINNING and having their ideas dominate the country than they are in righteousness, honesty, truth or the rule of law.

YOU'RE not interested in any of those things - just winning - and your enemies, who outnumber you and have wills just as strong as yours - are more interested in winning than in justice ALSO. Which means that by pressing the fight against him, when you do not have the numbers or the force, means that you may find revenge politics delivered upon you by the mob - they're just as unreasonable as you are, and they hate YOU as much as you hate them.

You people on the Left are standing at the starting line of Pickett's Charge, and you're about to make it. Remember what happened to Pickett. "General Lee, I have no division." They charged, full of certitude, and they died - shot down by a superior force they could not defeat, could not kill, but who DID kill them for trying.

The Left is trying out all sorts of novel unconstitutional arguments. And Trump is responding with his own novel unconstitutional arguments. The Left doesn't care about the unconstitutionality of their own approach, and neither do the Trumpists. But the Trumpists are stronger and will win. The Left wants to eliminate Trump criminally. The stronger Trumpists may well eliminate the Left criminally instead. Pickett's Charge was a fantastic victory - for the other side.

Do not think that Trump and the Trumpists are incapable of unconstitutional revenge. They are, and the nastier the Left gets, the nastier the Trumpists get.

If that does not actually inspire FEAR in you, if you are in the minority opinion, it should.

The same applies to the Republicans who are still unreconciled to Trump and who are still fighting a rearguard action to try to unseat him, by playing legal games. They don't care about the rule of law or precedent either. Which means that Trump can turn the tables and unleash political prosecution on them. And the Trumpists will applaud it.

If we all pretend as though "national security" and "decency" permits us, as minoritarian losers of a political fight, to override the will of the people, then we are just another mob ourselves, but a WEAK mob, that is going to provoke a bigger and stronger mob, who then come kill us.

Remember that.

Trump and his supporters are the political majority, and they will resort to illegal and unconstitutional means to impose their will to the same or greater extent than their enemies are trying to do so now. The difference is that the Trumpists are stronger, and will win.

It's sort of like Jefferson Davis squaring off against Abraham Lincoln in 1861. Both sides claim that the other is acting unconstitutionally. Both sides claim rights. Both sides claim to be IN the right. And all of that matters precisely zero. God is on the side of the bigger battalions. Lincoln has the bigger battalions. So Lincoln wins. Right and wrong have nothing to do with it.

Vicomte13  posted on  2018-06-05   14:08:38 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#2. To: Vicomte13 (#1)

The Dems only managed to oust Nixon when the GOP leadership in Congress went to him to demand his resignation under threat of impeachment.

That won't happen with Trump, it seems.

And if you're going to try to kill Caesar, you'd better not miss.

Tooconservative  posted on  2018-06-05   14:39:32 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#3. To: Vicomte13 (#1)

Trumpists

"Trumpazees"?

Jameson  posted on  2018-06-05   14:55:56 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#4. To: Jameson (#3)

"Trumpazees"?

You need an "n" in there to make it zingier - "Trumpanzees".

Vicomte13  posted on  2018-06-05   14:57:32 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#5. To: Vicomte13 (#4)

"Trumpanzees".

Good catch!

I was distracted as I typed....pretty funny!

Jameson  posted on  2018-06-05   15:00:52 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#6. To: Vicomte13 (#1)

Trump and his supporters are the political majority, and they will resort to illegal and unconstitutional means to impose their will to the same or greater extent than their enemies are trying to do so now. The difference is that the Trumpists are stronger, and will win.

It's very arguable that we're the political majority, or that we will resort to illegal and unconstitutional means to impose our will to the same or greater extent than our enemies are trying to do so now. --- The progressives would have to do something really stupid, like assassination, to get us to that point..

I agree that we Trumpists are stronger, and will win.

tpaine  posted on  2018-06-05   17:07:57 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#7. To: tpaine (#6)

Let's certainly hope that nobody does anything crazy. People are so angry. I'm angry. But not THAT angry.

Vicomte13  posted on  2018-06-05   18:08:57 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


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