The decline to moral bankruptcy of the GOP


Agreed. Jingoism and looting the treasury are one thing, actual Facism is another.

But as Nesrie’s says:

I think it’s certainly possible to hate both.


I choose to interpret the wife comment as “No one can drive you as insane as those you love”. Still, probably not the best analogy.



HW fought in Kuwait because Iraq was an aggressor, and aggression was wrong unless America was the aggressor, in which case it was justifiable. Remember the New World Order? Well, America was supposed to be the enforcer of the NWO, aka world police. And the police get to use aggression whereas civilians don’t.

So just to spell it out since you keep asking: HW thought Iraq’s aggression against Kuwait was bad, but America’s aggression against Panama was good, because America is exceptional and has sole authority to determine when aggression is good.

You may not like it, but that was a self-consistent worldview that stands in sharp contrast to Trump’s view, which is that America has no special international role and should not be expected to maintain any kind of world order.


I’d take it a step further and say he thinks we should take the side of those who disrupt the order.


I’d say it’s more likely that he doesn’t have a view other than “people who don’t cheat are chumps”. He admires dictators because they take what they want, and he’d like to do the same. To think he actually has any real opinion on international policy beyond that is giving him too much credit.


At first I thought it was a gender dynamic at play, but the more I think about it, the more I realize you’re a lot like my wife, Nesrie. Fierce and strong-willed and stubborn and fired-up for what’s right. Then on the other side of that coin, there’s a certain lack of filter, neglecting of tact, defensiveness, and reluctance to back down.

Then, over here, I’m mister sensitive. Hyper-aware of tact, too-easily offended, and worst of all, extreme self-righteousness. We clash brilliantly! Just celebrated our 20th anniversary this past September.

Yesterday on the subway a man did the whole “after you” thing and placed his hand on her back and it made her angry. We talked and kind of yelled for half an hour over the whole issue. I supported and agreed with her completely yet (just like this discussion) we found room to carve out different sides and go to the mat over the minor nuances. When we were done I had to make sure the girls upstairs knew we weren’t arguing arguing. (They did.)


This is accurate. Also the bad guys give you money. Not America. You. And say nice things about you. Big Pluses.


When you first asked me this, I felt like in order to answer it, I’d have to go through all the policies and rehash the issues and in doing so, I would’ve been engaging in an argument that I didn’t feel was necessary. (So I landed in a different one! Clever me.)

But to go back and answer it, I’d just say that the argument (and counter-argument) boils down to the folks who are considering Trump the man/leader of the free world vs. the folks who are comparing policies and outcomes of the various presidencies.

I was trying to point out this disconnect I thought I saw while also saying that I leaned more toward the ‘Trump is a brand new kind of loathsome’ side of the discussion. I thought Timex was making sense but I didn’t mean to quote unquote disagree with those on the other side of the conversation.


The problem about fiscal responsibility by the GOP is that they realize when they get into power that if they actually implemented their more drastic proposals regarding Social Security and Medicare that they would be out on their ear at the next election. So they content themselves with cutting spending for programs that primarily make life a little less intolerable for poor people, and of course with cutting income taxes, which disproportionately helps people with greater incomes, and with shoveling government spending to their big donors.

Of course the federal deficit grows. What makes it possible for this not to sink the country in short order is that the US government, as a fiat sovereign currency issuer, can revolve the debt essentially forever. But this is anti-intuitive to most people, so there’s a constant moral panic about it which is weaponized by the party out of power.


Is this seriously why you think GWB has damaged the country than Trump?
This is country where 7,200 die each an every day, more Americans are going to die during our silly internet discussion than were killed in the Iraq war. In bipartisan fashion, we have stood by while drug crises kills 72,000/year that’s an Iraq war every three goddamn weeks. The increase under Trump is more than were killed in the Iraq war.

But hell lets just compared stupid, unnecessary wars, which with good leadership we could have avoided. One could argue (and some seem to do) that’s every war the US ever fought in. Most people would give FDR, and Lincoln a pass for their war, but that still gives us 8-9 major and countless small wars to judge against.

Let’s take Vietnam, by every dimension, American killed 55,000 vs 4,000, civilians killed, the percentage of GDP, Vietnam not only caused more damage to America and the world, than the Iraq war but was an order magnitude worse. We lost, the Vietnam war, and the people of Vietnam and the surrounding countries suffered for a generation even after the 10,000-day war ended. In contrast. Iraq is now very flawed but functioning democracy, with a significantly improved GDP, better rights for minorities, and most importantly not being ruled by one of the worse despots of the 20th century.
Maybe you weren’t around for LBJ, or JFK presidency, but if damaging wars are your criteria for judging a Presidency, then LBJ, JFK, and Nixon are all behind Bush 43. No rational comparison between the Vietnam war and Iraq war would conclude that the Iraq war was worse.

I can give you 1/2 dozen way more stupid military actions that the US has done that killed many times more American, similar number of civilians, without even using Google.

Trump, has destroyed America credibility, given free reign to dictators to kill dissents and reporters, kept the people of North Korea under the rule of a despot and too many other things to list.

Frankly, I’m really surprised anybody who cares even a bit about the environment would dare to compare the damage that Bush 43, has vs Trump had done. Pulling out of the Paris agreement, rolling back hundreds of environmental regulations, hell the guy even is allowing hunters to shoot bear cubs. You can’t have it both ways either you all are serious that climate change is our most serious crisis that endangers tens of millions people or its just a talking point. Trump is already our worst environmental president ever, and nobody, since Nixon started the EPA, is a close second.


And this might be why some are picking Bush over Trump as something akin worse than, but I think myself, and maybe a couple of others are saying it’s like the worst of both of worlds in the same shit bucket; they’re not wholly separate. One led to the other, had been leading to the other for years. So it’s not a policy decision or a who is the worst man decision, at least not for me. It’s a systematic take down of our democracy and the demonizing of the other side and just other groups/others that has been the building in the GOP, rotting in that group, long before Trump decided politics would get him what he wants more than some new failed business venture.

And this is why I basically said, eventually, I think there might be only two points of views being focused on, but there are more than two actually be presented here, today.


Bush 43 was really bad for the environment, but yes I agree trump is in fact worse. However, I’m not convinced that we wouldn’t be seeing the same exact policies had someone like Rubio won - much of the bad policies after all are coming out of the House, and even during Obama’s term the House Republicans constantly tried to attach riders to further the destruction of the environment.

As far as death and wars (or gun violence for that matter), you have an odd way of looking at it, as if all deaths are equal regardless of how they are caused. Which fundamentally is true of course, I mean dead is dead. The difference I see though is how avoidable are those deaths? Unnecessary wars cause deaths that otherwise wouldn’t have happened. But as tragic as the opioid epidemic is, in some ways those deaths are the result of a choice someone made; dying as collateral damage in a war or as a victim in a mass shooting to me isn’t equatable.

As far as the larger discussion on Republicans, from my point of view they’ve always been bad. The problem they have had is there has never been a governing constituency for their main preferred policy agenda (make the rich richer), so they turned to evangelicals and yes racists in order to cobble together a voting bloc. For a long time, decades even, they were able to hold those core constituents at bay, and that worked until 2010 when another creature of their own creation (the Tea Party) rose to power. trump is the inevitable result.


I’ll agree with that. It’s why I left the party and haven’t voted for one of them in over a decade, despite being fairly conservative on a lot of things. Cause they stopped being conservatives for the most part and those that still were turned a blind eye to the racism and authoritarianism in their ranks. Now the conservatives have left the party and all that remains is the racists and authoritarians.



I don’t really understand what you’re griping about, but I’m sorry to have irritated you.


Strangely, GWB did all of those things too.

GWB’s much more positive climate change action:

Since taking office, the George W. Bush administration has consistently sought to undermine the view held by the vast majority of climate scientists that human-caused emissions of carbon dioxide and other heat-trapping gases are making a discernible contribution to global warming.


If might makes right and I’m the good guy are the the conservative principles HW held and stuck to with all the strength of his character, why would anyone express respect for that? Every schoolyard bully holds to those principles. And surely Trump holds them as well. Again, who thinks he wouldn’t invade a country to get what he wants? It just hasn’t happened yet.


This “discussion” of whether Trump or various prior Republican presidents were worse may be the dumbest thing I’ve seen on this forum, and that’s a really high bar. Of course you can make arguments for either side depending on what particular aspects of the particular presidency you care to emphasize. Trump is chaotic evil while Bush was lawful evil…still evil either way. You can more easily undo the chaos (if you survive it), while the other endures for longer with deeper effects. Are you all just repressing a real desire to argue whether Thanos or Darkseid would destroy the universe first, and transferring it into P&R?


If you don’t understand why other people are arguing about something, of course it must be because they’re stupid.

(Hint: This theory will cause trouble in practice.)