The horizon is not so far as we can see, but as far as we can imagine

Trump Says He Would Put a 35 Percent Tax on Goods from Mexico

That would be illegal under NAFTA, and long odds under the WTO. Certainly under TPP, if it’s in force then.

Someone should straight up ask Trump if he’s willing to leave those treaties.

If he is, and the Dem candidate is not, he will win the election.

(I am fundraising to determine how much I’ll write this year.  If you value my writing, and want more of it, please consider donating.)

Once more, Trump is a nativist populist. If he wasn’t so racist and for torture, I’d be pushing him hard. As it is, he’s beyond the pale, but a lot of working and middle class folks aren’t going to give a damn.


Supreme Court Justice Scalia Is Dead


Saudi Arabia & Turkey to Invade Syria?


  1. Jerome

    Did you see the debate clip between Bush and Trump on 9/11, Iraq, and still being in a war in the middle east 2-3 trillion later?

    He’s also going to the left of Clinton on the war.

    What a sea change that’s happening with the GOP. What happened tonight in SC, with Trump leading in the polls, taking on both the crowd of insiders over those issues, was mind altering.
    There are very few voters that give a flip about identity issues, the Democrats have blown the exhaust out on that for the past 8 years with nothing but losses to show for it.

  2. Onihikage

    ^ I heard about that, Jerome. Apparently the crowd booed Trump when he mentioned how Iraq had no WMDs. Bunch of idiots.

  3. Ian Welsh

    As I say, if he wasn’t pro torture and wildly racist, I’d be happy to get behind him. On domestic issues he’s arguably better than Sanders, though Sanders is more credible on certain of them, imo.

  4. BlizzardOfOz


    Apparently the crowd booed Trump when he mentioned how Iraq had no WMDs. Bunch of idiots.

    The RNC has been stacking the debates with party apparatchiks. You can tell by the cheers for Jeb who has no popular support, and the boos for the two popular front-runners. The GOP establishment hates Trump almost as much as Salon.

  5. El Guapo

    Trump will absolutely obliterate Clinton if she is the nominee. The hapless loser Jeb! wilted under the exact same attacks that will be used against her. If the Democrats want to have a chance of beating Trump they have to nominate Sanders. Are they smart enough to do that? Probably not.

  6. Ivory Bill Woodpecker

    Uh, Clinton is not “Jeb!”

    Clinton can crush any Reptilian in a debate.

    Trump might win a Trump-vs.-Clinton election anyway, but I doubt any other Reptilian can defeat her.

    Trump is rather flaky, though; he might still flame out.

  7. Ivory Bill Woodpecker

    Off-topic: Happy Valentine’s Day!

  8. Escher

    A vote for Clinton is a vote for the status quo, and no one is confused about that. She doesn’t stand a chance in the general.

  9. Ivory Bill Woodpecker

    OK, why is this year different?

    Why won’t the status quo win yet again?

    By manipulating the unaccountable vote-counting computers, if necessary?

    Even people whom I would expect to know better think this year is different.

    The System has not survived this long without learning how to deflect the winds of change, or else to catch them in its sails, to go where it wants to go.

    Why should I not believe you lot are yet another bunch of doomsaying cranks, whose dooms never materialize?

  10. S Brennan

    As I have said many times before; nothing would better for this nation than a Sanders vs Trump match-up.

    But don’t be naive, the DNC will stop at nothing to see Hillary as the Democratic nominee, whom I believe would be crushed by Trump.

    However, Trump is, like so many others, in the way of a Bush and like so many others has to face the prospect of Death by Airplane [DBA].

    The rulers of this country have been giving the finger to it’s citizens for so long, with COMPLETE MEDIA SUPPORT and with so little push back, I don’t see them stopping now.

  11. markfromireland

    Dear Commentariat,

    Bernie Trump will not save you.



  12. Ivory Bill Woodpecker

    Why should an Establishment which controls unaccountable computers, which count the votes, need to resort to something so crude as DBA?

  13. sglover

    @ El Guapo — Yep. “Serious” Dems don’t realize this — I think having a speck of imagination or historical knowledge gets you kicked out of that club — but Clinton is the Democratic Party’s one-way ticket to marching over a cliff.

    And who the hell do they have **after** Clinton? Obama’s done jack for his party, really. Sanders biggest liability is his age, but he is at least explicit about the need to build a strong and enduring coalition.

  14. sglover

    @ Ivory Bill Woodpecker

    “Uh, Clinton is not “Jeb!”

    Clinton can crush any Reptilian in a debate.”

    It looks like Trump is actually going to be the Republican nominee. For all practical purposes, against Trump, Clinton is the nearest thing to Jeb Bush there is.

  15. Sam Adams

    Hillary Clinton is Jeb! plus. She comes complete with red-baiting, unlimited drones and chaos diplomacy all backed by Wall Street fraud money. What could go wrong?

  16. Ivory Bill Woodpecker


    Heat of the moment.

    (oops, wrong Asia song title) 😳

    Only time will tell.

  17. Ivory Bill Woodpecker

    However, since the political system of the USA was set up from Day One to prevent dramatic, radical changes, I remain skeptical that they will happen this time.

  18. Daize

    I have been of the personal opinion for quite some time now that if Hillary gets the Dem nomination, the next prez will be Trump. Your article is confirming that opinion for me.

  19. Inverness

    Ian, I’m curious why you’d promote a non-racist/anti-torture Trump. He doesn’t really seem to stand for anything, other than making money and self-promotion. Just look at his “positions”: he was once pro-choice, now he isn’t. He opportunistically hung out with the Clintons, now he claims that they are a huge part of the problem. He certainly says some things that are quite obviously true — for example, why Iraq was a mistake. But so does Sanders.

    Sanders is far from perfect, as any career politician would be, but at least he has a track record as a politician. He isn’t merely some ex-reality television star who, from what I can tell, may be more interested in pushing merchandise than making committed political change. To me, Trump is the shrug your shoulders choice, but far from a serious one. However, I respect your views, so I’m curious why you’d go for this version of Trump over Sanders.

  20. cripes

    I don’t think Ian wrote, or meant, that he prefers Trump over Sanders. I think he might agree that in a Trump-Clinton contest, it Trump weren’t such a nativist, racist, torture cheerleader, he would push him over Clinton, based on economic populism.

    I think that in a Sanders-Cruz contest, or a Clinton-Trump contest, the outsider populist wins both times. A Trump-Sanders contest would be most interesting of all. But the insiders of both parties are dead set on preventing either candidate from securing the nomination.

    What would they actually do if forced to choose between supporting their own candidate, or surreptitiously supporting their opponent? It’s not like we haven’t seen this type of shenanigans before, Reagan Democrats and all.

    Which raises the issue of the will of the voters, once known as electoral democracy. How quaint. American democracy has been on life support for decades, with a ventilator and cardiac pump.

    With Scalia dead, Assad winning with Russian help, Ukraine imploding, the world economy teetering on the brink of collapse, this year promises to be a clusterf*ck of epic proportions.

  21. cripes

    Oh yeah, one more thing.
    What’re the chances of a stage-managed economic or military crisis timed right before the election.

    Any odds on that?

  22. e. a. foster

    couldn’t stop laughing when I heard trump make those fun statements. Ya, he’s gonna bring jobs back to amerika. First he’ll have to stop having his own products produced in India and China. He doesn’t seem to mention too much about that.

    Many who support Trump, as seen at the rallies, look like middle America without too much of an education. they feel disenfranchised. Trump isn’t their answer. He is their problem. The man actually looks like he has a mental health issue the way he carries on.

    Great documentary on CBC, Sunday night, done by the BBC. They don’t think much of Trump in Scotland either.

    if Trump decides to get out of all those trade agreements, it will be entertaining. If Trump is elected pres., which I doubt, its a good thing Canada had the experience of bringing 25k refugees into Canada in 3 months. We can expect several million from the U.S.A. if he is elected.

  23. Can Trump actually vacate those treaties through Executive action only?

  24. Mallam

    I am also curious, Iverness. Why would you back someone who hasn’t been accountable for any of his positions? He opposed Iraq? No he fucking didn’t. His tax plan is the most monstrous of any of the GOP’s; it gives the biggest tax break to the 1%. It’s like he doesn’t even look at what he’s proposed. He keeps saying he’s “to the left of Sanders” without any evidence to back it up.

  25. JBM

    Two points that seem underappreciated. (1) Trump is not the only Republican candidate who is explicitly pro-torture. He is the most vocally enthusiastic (at least as a campaign talking point), but I’m not sure that makes much difference at the end of the day. (2) Candidates boasting about who is the most aggressively pro-torture was the completely predictable (and predicted!) result of Obama’s decision not to treat as war crimes any of the war crimes of the Bush administration. In the minds of the America public, this is now all just a partisan talking point–pro-torture is akin to pro-military and is basically code for “tough.”

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