Saturday, August 20, 2016

Lochte for President?

Timing is such an odd thing.  In the same week, Donald Trump and Ryan Lochte expressed public regrets without actually apologizing or specifying what they did wrong.  In Lochte's case, he's persisting with a story that someone who was not a police officer pointed a gun at him and demanded money.  He neglects to mention what came before: a drunken Lochte and his younger swim friends were urinating on a gas station wall, committed some level of vandalism (It's not clear how far it went), and then told police they'd been "robbed".  While Lochte's hair is more Guy Fieri than orange chaos and he actually does appear to be in better physical health than anyone who's ever served as President of the United States, the behavior is peculiarly Trumptastic.

TMZ had a mini-article that Ryan Locthe's home, somehow he made it home before a couple of his comrades, was being guarded by police who were keeping a 99 yard perimeter between America's second biggest medal winning swimmer and most famous public urinator and any angry mobs of outraged citizens.  TMZ    didn't specify whether the Charlotte taxpayers are subsidizing  his protection.  If so, I suspect they're doing it because Lochte had piloted a solution to North Carolina's transgender-bathroom dilemma.  Given the number of cross dressers and transgender said to wander through Rio, I suspect Lochte and friends were afraid to use a gender-designated bathroom.  In the meantime, I credit the police for protecting someone who basically is calling their Brazilian brother and sister officers 'liars', now that he's several thousand miles away.  I also probably shouldn't comment abou thte Black LIves Matter juxtaposition of the whole thing.

I doubt that I'll be around in 24 years when Ryan Lochte runs for President, but I'd love to see how they find a way to spin his adventure in Rio.                                                                         .                                                           

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Friday, August 19, 2016

Mr. Trump Regrets

After re-arranging deck chairs with his campaign staff and seemingly heading towards an even deeper "let Trump be Trump" direction by bringing Steve Bannon of Breitbart on board, Donald Trump did a mildly unexpected thing: he publicly said that he regretted some of the things he'd said. This-coming from a candidate who never apologizes-was quite a departure for someone who was expected to double down on the Attila the Trump persona.

Here's my stray thought.  There's a fingerprint here and it's not Bannon's.  Trump's softening reminds me of the "kinder-gentler nation candidate" from 16 years ago.  More significant, candidate Trump has started repeating a curious mantra about Hillary Clinton taking the black vote for granted. Some estimates have Trump's share of the black vote at 1%.  It's a bit of a leap, but it reminds me of the Swiftboating of John Kerry in 2004 when Roger Ailes, through Fox News, took a candidate's strength and turned it into a weakness by relentlessly attacking it with marginal information.

Is it possible that the recently disgraced Roger Ailes who some sources say has been advising the campaign is really the one calling the shots for the Trump Campaign now?  Kellyanne Conway's promotion to campaign manager may just be cover for Ailes's own enhanced role in the shadows where he can hide the incredibly bad optics of having a serial sexual harasser work for a candidate who suggested that women who get abortions face punishment.   Consider this.  Of the three, Bannon, Conway, and Ailes, only one has any experience running a campaign.  Like him or not, Ailes was very effective at it.   

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