The Elephant Hunter of Trump Tower – by Tim Egan – NYT

“Donald Trump Jr. came in for some merciless mocking when he posed in this newspaper in a grunge-era flannel shirt, sitting awkwardly atop a tree stump at the family estate, looking glum and lonely. A rejected Cialis ad was one of the kinder suggestions.

But look deeper. Buried in that profile was something — a saffron-thin thread of hope — that could keep his father from hastening the early death of the planet. The elder Trump has repeatedly indicated his intent to withdraw American cooperation from the global agreement to negate climate change, yet another middle finger from this president to the rest of the world, and to his grandchildren. His budget would let poisons flow through American rivers and be belched into the sky overhead.

The other Donald Trump, the kid with the burden of going through life with that name, may be the only person who can stop him. In the profile, junior comes across as a little boy lost, emotionally abandoned after the divorce of parents whose every hour is spent in bold face. Sent away to boarding school. Finding some solace hunting and fishing with a grandfather in Czechoslovakia. As he tries to navigate around the toxic swagger of the old man, he relishes his time in nature. It’s not, mind you, listening to yellow-rump warblers on spring days. It’s killing things. Pheasant and deer. And bigger things, elephants and leopards, creatures so magnificent that most people cringe at the thought of ending their lives in a sporting pursuit.”


We’re Winning! by Tim Egan – The New York Times

“Looking for refuge from the gust of insanity blowing across the fruited plain, I went to the highest perch I could reach in North Cascades National Park. I needed a break from the politician who has roused the lowest impulses of the American character.

What better escape from the primordial muck of Donald Trump and company than an alpine aerie of America’s Best Idea? Still, the stench of his recent provocations followed me to the far northwest corner of the contiguous United States. Hints of assassination from those “Second Amendment people.” Claiming that President Obama founded the Islamic State. Sidling up to dictators who kill political opponents.

I could hear the bark of his soulless pessimism. “We are a country that doesn’t win anymore,” he said, time and again. “When was the last time we won?”Back at sea level, what joy it was to behold this: so much winning! O.K., the made-up robbery story by the male swimmers at the Olympics is a blemish. But look at the bigger picture: American women are dominating the games. Simone Biles, that sprite of exuberance, has four gold medals in gymnastics. The women’s basketball team is crushing it. And a Muslim fencer, the first United States athlete to compete while wearing a hijab, led the team to a medal.”

Source: We’re Winning! – The New York Times

I love this writer, Tim Egan, and it is a bonus that he looks a little like my father at the same age.

I predicted after the Republican debates, and over a month before the Republican Convention, that Hillary Clinton would beat Trump in an electoral landslide. Why? One reason is that Michael Dukakis had about the same popular vote, 45%, that Trump had at his height, and Dukakis won only 3 electoral votes against Ronald Regan.

Hillary Rodham cattle futures controversy – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Tim Egan, in Hillary’s Big Idea, NYT, 4/23/16 mentioned the 1970’s cattle future questions, as real grist for “That gritter edge.”
So here is an article, that I think gives Hillary Clinton a clean bill health.
I also tried futures, and put in a $100 dollars, and lost it all in the first long or short or whatever it was.

“In 1978 and 1979, lawyer and First Lady of Arkansas Hillary Rodham engaged in a series of trades of cattle futures contracts. Her initial $1,000 investment had generated nearly $100,000 when she stopped trading after ten months. In 1994, after Hillary Rodham Clinton had become First Lady of the United States, the trading became the subject of considerable controversy regarding the likelihood of such a spectacular rate of return, possible conflict of interest, and allegations of disguised bribery,[1] allegations that Clinton strongly denied. There were no official investigations of the trading and Clinton was never charged with any wrongdoing.Contents 1 Trades and first exposure 2 Likelihood of results 3 Merc and Melamed investigations 4 Clinton responses 5 Official findings 6 ReferencesTrades and first exposureHillary Rodham and Bill Clinton lived in this 980 square feet (91 m2) house in the Hillcrest neighborhood of Little Rock from 1977 to 1979 while he was Arkansas Attorney General.[2] The couple’s modest circumstances led Rodham to seek investment income.Rodham had no experience in such financial instruments.[3] Bill Clinton’s salary as Arkansas Attorney General and then Governor of Arkansas was modest and Rodham later said she had been interested in building a financial cushion for the future[4][5] (the ill-fated Whitewater Development Corporation would be another such effort from this time[4]). Starting in October 1978, when Bill Clinton was Attorney General and on the verge of being elected Governor,[1] she was guided by James Blair, a friend, lawyer, outside counsel to Tyson Foods, Arkansas’ largest employer, and, since 1977,[6] a futures trader who was doing so well he encouraged friends and family to enter the commodity markets as well.[4][5] Blair in turn traded through, and relied upon cattle markets expertise from, broker Robert L. “Red” Bone of Refco, a former Tyson executive and professional poker player who was a World Series of Poker semifinalist.[5][7]Rodham later wrote that she educated herself about the market and followed it closely, winning and losing money.[4] By January 1979, she was up $26,000;[5] but later, she would lose $16,000 in a single trade.[5] At one point she owed in excess of $100,000 to Refco as part of covering losses, but no margin calls were made by Refco against her.[5] Near the end of the trading, Blair correctly sold short and gave her a $40,000 gain in one afternoon.[5] In July 1979,[1] once she became pregnant with Chelsea Clinton, “I lost my nerve for gambling [and] walked away from the table $100,000 ahead.”[4] She briefly traded sugar futures contracts and other non-cattle commodities in October 1979, but more conservatively, through Stephens Inc.[5][8] During this period she made about $6,500 in gains (which she failed to pay taxes on at the time, consequently later paying some $14,600 in federal and state tax penalties in the 1990s).[8][9] Once her daughter was born in February 1980, she moved all her commodities gains into U.S. Treasury Bonds.[5]”

Source: Hillary Rodham cattle futures controversy – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Hillary’s Big Idea – The New York Times

“But compared with the monumental flaws of Trump, Clinton is in great shape. You don’t need the oratorical gifts of Barack Obama, the élan of John F. Kennedy or the kinetic spark of Teddy Roosevelt to be president.What you do need is a big idea, something much greater than the personality of the politician. As John Kasich admitted on Wednesday: “If you don’t have ideas, you got nothing, and frankly my Republican Party doesn’t like ideas.” ”

Source: Hillary’s Big Idea – The New York Times

I was disappointed that Tim Egan didn’t suggest which big ideas Hillary should make her big idea. The problem is complexity and interconnectedness.

I decided to take a stab at this request. Here is a candidate for Hillary Clinton’s big idea:

We can fight income inequality, and climate change, and restore the American middle class with investments in renewable energy, conservation and American infrastructure. If you want quick results, give me a Democratic majority in congress.


The Beast Is Us – by Tim Egan, The New York Times

.“You heard the word “scary” used a lot this week, that and much more. Not from the usual scolds. Or Democrats. The loudest alarms came from desperate, panicked Republicans, warning of the man who is destroying the Party of Lincoln before our eyes.From Our Advertisers“The man is evil,” said Stuart Stevens, a chief strategist for Mitt Romney in 2012. Romney himself called Donald Trump a fraud on Thursday.But as much as these “too little, too late” wake-up calls are appreciated, it’s time to place the blame for the elevation of a tyrant as the presumptive Republican presidential nominee where it belongs — with the people. Yes, you. Donald Trump’s supporters know exactly what he stands for: hatred of immigrants, racial superiority, a sneering disregard of the basic civility that binds a society. Educated and poorly educated alike, men and women — they know what they’re getting from him.”

Source: The Beast Is Us – The New York Times

Here is an interesting comment, to a good Guardian article.
Maro Massachusetts 4 hours ago

“I share your dislike for Mr. Trump. I find your contempt for his supporters to be facile and demeaning.

The American working and middle classes have been gutted over the last 30 years by trade policies that send jobs overseas, by tax policies that redistribute the bulk of the newly created wealth to the richest at the top of the pyramid, and by politicians of both parties who brazenly and unashamedly kiss the rings of their corporate sponsors.

Add to this toxic mix the incendiary fuel of immigrant Rupert Murdoch’s Faux News channel (with its signature mix of half truths, virulent ideology and shameless racism) and it is easier to understand why the folks whose lives are palpably worse blame minorities and immigrants rather than the corporate puppeteers who control our government. This off-shifting of blame is a fantastic con, but God knows it’s worked mighty well.

Mr. Egan, you could do a lot worse than spending some time in the trenches with these Trump supporters you claim to detest. You might even start with this article about closet Trump supporters in the Guardian:…

It is time for those us at the top of pyramid– on both the right AND the left– to recognize that we have benefited disproportionately and unjustly at the expense of the many. Until we are ready to come together and do that, Trump’s supporters will rage on.

As well they should.”
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