Saturday, May 14, 2016

Alexander Hamilton, Aaron Burr, and Donald Trump

Sandy Levinson

I have published in several Texas newspapers an op-ed about Hamilton's decision to support Thomas Jefferson over Aaron Burr as the House of Representatives was voting on how to break the tie vote between them.  Whatever one might think of some of Hamilton's particular policies, there can be no doubt that he was a genuine patriot, unsullied by personal corruption.  (This is why he chose to write his disastrous "Reynolds pamphlet" about his affair with Maria Reynolds, because private shame was ore easily bearable than accusations of public dishonor.  And he clearly believed that patriots committed to the national interest should rally around Jefferson, whatever their doubts, as agains the totally unprincipled and opportunistic and vainglorious Aaron Burr.  My essay quotes from several letters he wrote at the time, and I suggest that one could easily substitute Donald Trump for Aaron Burr, with the result being the same.  I.e., no serious patriot should be supporting Donald Trump for the presidency, period

As one might imagine, I've received a number of emails from readers, some of them complimentary, a few of them out-and-out condemnatory, and several that disagree in a very thoughtful way.  W hat is clear is that many Republicans believe that Hillary Clinton, too, could "fill in," as it were, for Aaron Burr.  That is, they don't trust her any more than Hamilton trusted Burr or any of us should trust Donald Trump.  I disagree, but that, in some ways, is beside the point.  It seems clearer than ever that this is going to be the dirtiest presidential campaign in American political history.  The only thing Donald Trump knows how to do is to cast aspersions at anyone who stands in his way, and Democrats will rightly condemn Trump as unfit for the presidency.  Hillary Clinton must find effective ways of defending herself against the coming onslaught, financed in part by the egregious Sheldon Adelson, who has, I suspect, far more money available than does the posturing Trump.  Even if she were pure as the driven snow, that wouldn't stop Trump for casting aspersions.  But even her genuine admirers, of whom I am one, don't view her as Snow White.  I confess that I think she should release the transcripts of her Goldman Sachs speech, the content of which about reasonable people can wonder. about.

As usual, I am allowing comments.  The main thing I'd like to hear, from Republicans, is whether (and why) they believe that Hamilton was mistaken in supporting Thomas Jefferson; if not, do they agree that honorable Republicans should, even if not vote for Hillary Clinton, perhaps vote Libertarian or write in the name of a non-fascist Republican who is, by training and character, equipped to hold the office of President of the United States.  I'm also not interested in hearing analyses of why Trump turned out to be appealing to his constituents.  The one and only question is whether Donald Trump is in fact fit to be President.


Hamilton was left with two choices once the electoral count took place, but to be specifically accurate in our immedidate comparison:

And it got worse. Both Jeffersonians and Hamiltonians savaged the incumbent president, John Adams, a moderate Federalist who never quite managed to make either side happy. Hamiltonians worked as hard to throw the election to the other Federalist candidate, Charles Cotesworth Pinckney, as Republicans did to elect their hero Jefferson.

The two "Republicans" who regularly comment here split. One is a Never Trump who "savages" both candidates. He does not think there is a third candidate that has a realistic shot w/o special circumstances. The second thinks Trump is a credible choice while HRC is a secular Satan. He thinks that Trump just might be fit.

Basically, we are left to wonder if the Hamilton from Colorado would support HRC if this was tossed to the House and the only other choice was Trump. This HBO Veep tie scenario is not likely, but it's a thought experiment. If it happens, the more likely result is Clinton with a large plurality, Trump with less votes but second and some third party candidate who could be a choice. An out for those who think both candidates are simply horrible.

The basic sentiment of SL is that Trump is simply not qualified on some bare bones level (putting aside someone he thinks is a lousy choice on the merits) and that HRC at the very least has some bare bones qualifications. Some don't think so; one thing latched on here is that she is a "felon" and that alone basically makes her disqualified. But, the usual Republican line is that they cannot bear for her to win as a matter of policy. They are willing to support Trump by default at least.

Only a few so far even are on the record not supporting either. A subset, and you can find some stray conservative saying this, say they rather HRC. Some will basically support HRC by default by not supporting Trump.

BTW, Burr was not Trump.

Jefferson was the rightful winner and voting to put Burr in office was unjust. But, as a matter of credible President, Burr trumps Trump easily. Revolutionary vet, state and federal office, private business experience, seems to have had an advanced view of women per his raising of his daughter and so on.

Certainly Hamilton was right to act as he did, given his opinion of Burr.

I think that Republicans, if they actually do view Trump as you do, should not support him. (Which is not to say that I think they SHOULD so view him.) I equally think that Democrats should not, unless they are in deep denial, support Hillary Clinton. That is to say, I reject the premise that, if one applies an objective standard, there is only one Burr in this race. That your proposed reasoning points only one way.

A few elections back I found Dole and McCain beyond the pale, being too well acquainted with their moral and character shortcomings. So the reasoning isn't alien to me. I just find the premises it's being applied to lacking.

"The only thing Donald Trump knows how to do is to cast aspersions at anyone who stands in his way"

This is laughably wrong, when said about somebody who has built, and is running, a multi-billion dollar business empire. I simply don't understand this trope, where if you don't like somebody, you have to deny that they have any virtues at all. I suppose Trump has smelly feet, too?

It's also laughably wrong as an analysis of how he got the nomination, which is NOT irrelevant to your question, as it goes to whether Trump is actually a Burr figure.

I don't believe he is. I haven't yet decided whether I'll vote for him or the Libertarian candidates. But I would have to say that he IS qualified to be President, and my concerns relate mainly to whether he is being honest about his proposed policies, not his capabilities. The man clearly, like him or not, is very capable.

I'm not a Republican, so I cannot respond as Sandy has requested. Rather, I wonder if Sandy's search for responses from Republicans as to whether Hamilton was wrong in supporting Jefferson over Burr in 1800 is to be determined based on hindsight over the 216 years since, including perhaps influences of the distant Hamilton-Burr dual and the more recent musical "Hamilton." Hindsight is not always, perhaps rarely, 20-20. Perhaps the Republicans solicited by Sandy to respond might focus on the time in 1800 when Hamilton pushed for Jefferson over Burr. What was Burr like back in 1800? An evaluation of Burr is available at:

with the title "why did bankers & slave owners hate Aaron Burr?"

Of course the article reflects hindsight, which as noted need not be 20-20. Did Hamilton, the banker, hate Burr? Did Jefferson, the slave owner, hate Burr? The Republicans Sandy solicits for responses have been exposed to much more about both Hamilton and Jefferson. (I recognize that many current day Republicans may not accept Jefferson's separation of church and state or his dalliances with you know whom, and may also not accept the musical "Hamilton" concept of a cast of colors.) So, can the Republicans Sandy solicits focus on the time in 1800 when Hamilton supported Jefferson in determining whether it was a mistake? I think not. But I would note that Sandy's search for responses from "honorable Republicans" may be in vail. So far we have not heard from such.

That link is a bit slanted.

But, following that, here is a positive take of Burr from the musical:

Anyway, opposing hyperbole of any sort, casting dispersion is not the "only" thing Trump knows how to do though from the article don't think SL is saying that is the "only" reason he got the nomination.

"I think that Republicans, if they actually do view Trump as you do, should not support him."

They might not think the only thing Trump is good for is insults, but don't think Hamilton thought Burr was only about deceit etc. either. But, many DO feel basically the same -- they think Trump is horrible but Clinton is worse, the usual statements I've seen of a policy nature.

I still haven't decided whether to vote for Trump or the Libertarian candidate. That really depends on whether Trump shows too many signs of backsliding on his current policy proposals.

I think a lot of the people who are denouncing Trump as some kind of clown/monster, are letting their dislike of his presumed policies bleed over into their assessment of his character.

Hillary benefits from the opposite phenomenon, of course. Objectively, she's a moral horror show, but people who assume she'll govern as a typical Democrat discount that.

Brett, for the most part, Trump has no presumed policies; he talks off the top of his head and contradicts himself continually. To the extent that he has presumed policies, they reflect bigotry against Mexicans, Muslims, women, and people with disabilities, and those presumed policies clearly reveal his character.

As for Hillary, "Objectively, she's a moral horror show" is a non sequitur because "moral horror show" is a subjective opinion, not something that one can measure objectively. In my subjective opinion, she is less of a moral horror show than most politicians (which I don't intend as high praise).

Trump is receiving a higher level of opposition -- from both sides (including those who support his expressed policies, all things being equal) -- for a reason.

There is a level of scale here, including the level of lying (beyond the norm of politicians), mistreatment of others, incitement of violence, lack of knowledge etc. There is always going to be some selective criticism, but Trump criticism goes beyond that. But, yes, as Henry notes, some of his policies themselves are distasteful though even there people think he is worse.


The number of Burrs populating our current political class are too many to count; but of the two, Hillary Clinton far more closely resembles Burr than does Donald Trump.

Burr was a corrupt liar who reveled in palace intrigue as part of our new political class of the time. The Clintons to a "t."

Burr sought out the duel with Hamilton because he called out Burr's various malfeasances. The Clintons routinely attempt to destroy their critics and victims. Vast right wing conspiracy, anyone?

The problem today is that there are no Hamiltons among the Democrats with the principles to call out the Clintons on their lies, corruption and crimes. Only defenders, enablers and toadies.

Sandy, do you have the principles call out Hillary Clinton? Anyone else?

Of course, SPAM I AM! is neither an "honorable Republican" - nor an "honorable libertarian" - responding to Sandy's question. The problem is that there are too many Burrs among the Republicans as exemplified by the 17 originally jammed into the GOP Clown Limo, with Trump the last Clown in the driver's seat. Trump continues to be called out but his base of older undereducated white men would remain loyal even if Trump shot himself on Fifth Avenue. But here we have the unprincipled SPAM I AM! challenging Sandy to have the principles to call out Hillary. SPAM I AM! was deficient of principle during the Bush/Cheney 8 years.

By the Bybee [expletives deleted], Hamilton as a Federalist strongly favored a strong central government as compared to the anti-Federalist Jefferson. The Republican Party of Lincoln favored a strong central government. Over the years Republicans had negative views on Jefferson. But when the Republican Party shifted over to former Democrats from the former slave states beginning after Brown v. Bd. of Educ. (1954) for what were obvious reasons that continue to this day, the Republican Party became more in the nature of the anti-Federalists, especially with the election in 2008 (for two terms) of America's first Aftrican-American President.

But SPAM I AM!'s history on the duel - and particularly Burr - is far from complete as well as far from accurate. Perhaps SPAM I AM! could cite the "malfeasances" of Burr that Hamilton "called out" triggering Burr's seeking out a duel. SPAM I AM! is taking the opportunity to continue his rants at this Blog against Hillary Clinton rather than than address the question(s) in Sandy's closing paragraph. Perhaps as SPAM I AM! goes through the stages of grief for the beaching of the Cruz Canadacy he is warming up to a President Trump.

As to Sandy's question (at least his first question) on whether Hamilton made a mistake in supporting Jefferson over Burr in 1800, do we have any idea that otherwise Burr would have become President? If Burr, a non-slave owner, had become President succeeding another non-slave owner President, that might have been alarming to the slave states under the then Constitution designed to protect slavery. Might the Civil War have been thwarted or come about sooner? What would America look like today? We have no way of knowing. Duels were illegal back then as they are now. So is there a hidden question in this post?

I don't know if Henry is a Republican, but if so, so far he is the only "honorable Republican" responding.

We will have to wait for our modern day Hamilton.

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I have called out Donald Tump for running a fascist campaign, which may analogize him with any number of foreign fascist politicians, but not at all well with Burr.

Multiple Republican presidential candidates called out Trump on multiple occasions. None of the Democrats running for president of any of their supporters here (like you) have called out Clinton's lies and crimes. The most Sanders has done is implied that Clinton is in the pocket of Wall Street.

Party always trumps principle for progressive Democrats.

BTW, apart from Lincoln, TR and Hoover, the GOP was generally the party of small government and laissez faire until the New Deal.


"Brett, for the most part, Trump has no presumed policies; he talks off the top of his head and contradicts himself continually. To the extent that he has presumed policies, they reflect bigotry against Mexicans, Muslims, women, and people with disabilities, and those presumed policies clearly reveal his character."

Trump's presumed policies.


Regarding Sandy's claim of Hamilton being a "genuine patriot" in supporting Jefferson over Burr, there may have been more personal issues for Hamilton. Wikipedia's "Hamilton-Reynolds sex scandal" post at:

reveals some details along these lines, including the roles of Burr, as an attorney, and Jefferson's obtaining certain Hamilton love letters and perhaps using them politically against Hamilton, his political nemesis, well before the 1800 presidential campaign, not to mention blackmail payments by Hamilton to Mr. Reynolds and to Maria. There's also mention of a duel challenge involving Hamilton and another (not Burr) that was set aside by the efforts of - drum roll - Burr.

Sandy refers to and quotes from several letters Hamilton wrote in 1800 and 1801 castigating Burr. Query: Were these letters made available publicly at the time? Was Burr at the time aware of these letters? What did Hamilton say, write publicly of his views on Burr as the House was considering who would be President?

Several Republicans have openly challenged Trump and continue to do so, even discussing a third party effort. Perhaps Sandy's research may suggest that Hamilton was as openly hostile to Bur? I am not attempting to defend Burr's hopes for the presidency or otherwise. Rather I am questioning whether Hamilton was indeed acting purely as a "genuine patriot." Maybe the comparison should be of Hamilton as Trump - and the need for a Repubican Burr.

Since I'm not familiar with the Hamilton/Burr/Jefferson situation, I will answer the last question on why a Republican is voting for Trump.

If you read Trump's Foreign Policy Speech, which is in line with the long time American conservative wing such as the John Birch Society thru Pat Buchanan, has some of the answers. Trump is an "American First". He explicity said, he is not going to "follow the failed globalist strategy" anymore. It is America First.

I became an immediate supporter when he said Wall, Deportation, and Stopping Muslim immigration. As a son of Greek immigrants from the 1910s, my grandfather knew Muslim oppression of Christians. They are beasts--understand the 400 years of Turkish rule over the Greeks--Brutal.

I know that Communists/Marxists throw the word "fascist" at anybody they don't like but being a nationalist---necessarily doesn't imply being fascist. As a student of Fascist history, Fascism was defined as "socialism + Nationalism". Trump is not a Socialist and so can not be a fascist. I know that pains you but the term "fascist" has become hyperbole and a useless term. Even Reagan was called a Fascist which he wasn't. Trump is just a populist, a pragmatist; he's just a patriot that wants to preserve America. It is as simple as that. The Republican Party has always been split between the Rockefeller Republicans who are globalists and the nationalist/populist wing. Trump has seized the populist wing of the party and won the nomination that way. The problem is not with Trump but with Leftists who don't understand why they are anti-nationalist. They have absolutely no understanding of where that comes from and why but is certainly a part of Marxism! Cultural Marxism. Trump is a rejection of Cultural Marxism that has been ruling this country. Romney is a Cultural Marxist since he is a globalist. All globalists (and they are anti-nationalist), are Cultural Marxists.

"As a student of Fascist history, Fascism was defined as "socialism + Nationalism"."

I think Franco demonstrates that socialism wasn't the essence of fascism.

"Cultural Marxism"

The idea of people being part of something larger and more important than (and therefore minimizing) nation states is not simply something from 'cultural marxism.' See Galatians 3:28 as an example.

"The Republican Party has always been split between the Rockefeller Republicans who are globalists and the nationalist/populist wing."

Uh-huh. And where does George W. Bush fall there?


"I think Franco demonstrates that socialism wasn't the essence of fascism."

Yeah, socialists have been at pains to deny that fascism wasn't a variety of socialism, ever since the Hitler-Stalin pact fell apart.


Fascist politics scapegoats some Other for the nation's economic problems and then offers a strong leader who will make the nation great again.

Fascist economics employs different elements of progressivism. socialism and/or corporatism, but all agree the government should be directing the economy and redistributing wealth.

Trump most definitely is running a fascist campaign and has a history of supporting socialist and progressive policy.

A passing comment on Twitter led me to check on Wikipedia and -- something not highlighted much from what I can tell (even by Trump apparently) -- Trump has long had higher presidency on his mind.

The Trump Wikipedia page even has an image of an ad he had in the 1980s regarding a strong foreign policy. He also ran -- winning two primaries -- for a short time as a Reform Party candidate in 2000. Trump even had basically a campaign book out at that time setting forth his positions on various issues.

Before dropping out, he challenged Buchanan for the Reform nomination. "Jews for Buchanan" apparent misvotes (at first even Buchanan figured as much) played a role in Florida's recount. Query if a Reform Party candidate Trump in 2000 would have received even more votes in Florida, perhaps even taking Nader (not that he wants it) off the hook.


I welcome the new person -- don't recall him (following his link, um interesting) -- and his choice to discuss his reasons. Buchanan is a Trump supporter. The word "fascist" is tossed around and like "liar" etc., it's just hard to really have conversations about it -- you are not going to convince people with strongly different point of views with such labels. But, his violent rhetoric, talk of the power of his own skills if we just give him free rein, disrespect of criticism, support of things like torture etc. is why people toss that label around. As to Muslims, there are over a billion of them. Other religions also are represented among those who mistreated populations of their country.


Hamilton mistrusted Burr for various reasons including his let's say "pragmatic" nature and saw him as not a principled, ethical person. Some of that very well might have been "don't throw stones" variety, but especially given the norms of the time, something there. But, Burr had an impressive public c.v. in private and public service and various positives. Someone probably can do a reasonable job arguing that Burr could have been a better President.

"But, his violent rhetoric"

And yet, the violence so far has been coming from the other end of the political spectrum. You haven't had Trump supporters crashing Bernie or Hillary rallies. It's been going the other way. Conspicuously so.

I don't see why the actual violence gets blown off in favor of attention to rhetoric. Rhetoric is mostly informative as a guide to subsequent behavior. When you've got actual behavior to go by, that's what you should pay attention to, even if the people perpetrating it have leaders who are quiet about it.


Brett, I don't know what to tell you. If people say characteristic X is essential or fundamental to movement Y, and then and example of movement Y occurs sans characteristic X, most people not blinded by some bias would say it disproves the first statement.

Those reading Brett's 9:45 AM comment should keep in mind that he is a self-proclaimed anaarcho-libertarian and a 2nd A absolutist when he says:

" Rhetoric is mostly informative as a guide to subsequent behavior."

That's how voters assess presidential candidates: How they might serve if elected, including what they say. But Brett seems to suggest that Trump's rhetoric is being overplayed and that the focus should be put on certain violence as he sees it coming from elsewhere. It was Trump who said something about punching someone in the mouth. I don't recall the Democrat candidates or the GOP sweet 16 that Trump trounced saying anything like that in debates or campaigning. There were other instances of Trump fomenting violence.

Perhaps Brett's empathy for Trump is attributable to their sharing a disability.

Joe's closing paragraph at 9:30 AM includes this:

" ... but especially given the norms of the time, ... "

that may not be well reflected in the snippets of history that Sandy provided in his OpEd or in his post, or provided by commenters (including myself). The real target of Sandy's post is Trump and whether he is fit to be President - or tied - by the norms of our times. Hamilton, Burr and Jefferson are just sideshows, perhaps in the manner of P. T. Barnum.

I thought I was clear: Rhetoric is useful as an indication as to the way somebody will act. Acts are far better indications.

So far much as been made of Trump's 'violent' rhetoric. Which is, if you look at it, generally in terms of suggesting that it is legitimate to respond to violence with violence. A viewpoint which is quite common.

Meanwhile, the comparative absence of (Or maybe just media inattention to.) violent rhetoric on the part of Hillary and Bernie contrasts with the actual violence of their supporters.

I think that more indicative of violent tendencies than Trump's failure to endorse pacifism in the face of attacks on his rallies.

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And yet, the violence so far has been coming from the other end of the political spectrum. You haven't had Trump supporters crashing Bernie or Hillary rallies. It's been going the other way. Conspicuously so.

There has been violent incidents (aside: there is so much to say sometimes, you miss some of it; the result is sometimes inviting this sort of spin job) at Trump rallies. This is "actual behavior." And, the rhetoric is not stand alone. It goes with other things, like his support of torture etc. Finally, "crashing" rallies is not the same as the violence he supports. Not that "crashing" rallies is something only one side does. Nor, is going to the other side's rallies -- not some sort of private affair -- akin to beating people up, torture etc. Words have meanings.

It's hard though. Brett apparently sees it a good thing that Trump is treating people like rubes -- we are not really supposed to take what he says too seriously. When some Democratic (less so some Republican) does this, Brett is all scornful. They are lying to the rubes. But, Trump? He's more open to the idea he in the long run will help things in the long run. He isn't really serious.

I do think we can judge what Trump believes and will do given his words and actions in the last few decades. As do people whose ideology is quite different from mine.

Further in response to Brett's 9:45 AM and 11:00 AM comments, the unfolding history of Trump's earlier adult years e.g. his ACTS, may be a guide to subsequent behavior by a President Trump.

Brett seems to be suggesting that Trump's rhetoric that some construe as violence is merely a form of Heller (5-4) self-defense.

So his response should be considered in the contest that Brett is a self-proclaimed anarcho-libertarian and a 2nd A absolutist.

Shag, I do think Prof. Levinson is using Hamilton/Burr as a symbol more than carefully examining the complexities of the situation.

"There has been violent incidents (aside: there is so much to say sometimes, you miss some of it; the result is sometimes inviting this sort of spin job) at Trump rallies."

Yes, and it's mostly been violent incidents by Democrats. That needs to be said. It isn't Trump supporters blocking highways leading to Bernie rallies. It isn't Trump supporters smashing police cars at Hillary rallies. (As an aside, does she actually hold any?)

There's quite a bit of political violence going on around Trump rallies. And it's Democrats perpetrating it. There's a political party in this nation that has a problem with fomenting violence, alright.

It's symbol is the Donkey.

Brett's claim of:

"It's symbol is the Donkey."

is really his mirrored Jackass reflection.

You're trying to say these are rioting Trump supporters?

Seriously, let's not sugar coat this. Democrats are rioting outside Republican campaign events. Unless you can show me Republicans rioting outside Democratic campaign events, I'd have to say the party with the violent tendencies is the Democratic party.

I noted how critics (not just liberals) feel Trump has "fascist" tendencies given his rhetoric, positions and acts as a whole, noting the word overall throws more dust than light at times esp. if the listeners are inclined to support him.

The reply is spin that just is hard to really reply to and Mr. W.'s comment is probably usefully short. First, the reply selectively quotes a little portion. Next, it focuses merely on the rhetoric as if no acts are involved. Rhetoric is not supposed to mean much though we are supposed to care about "position papers" that are just that -- words. Then, "crashing" rallies is used as if that amounts to violence, torture etc.

Now, "blocking highways," whatever that means in particular. Not only do all sides do that for a range of issues (such as outside of clinics), we are left with MLK actually quite "violent" since civil disobedience included that sort of thing. Words have meanings. Just need a code book to find out what they mean.

And, so on. There is usually nuance involved in most things -- though Brett is not the greatest prophet here given his standard comments -- but that isn't what is going on here. My comment was about Trump; it wasn't that his opponents are pure as snow* though Brett's gloss of the facts there requires more salt than is healthy. No -- don't want to give an inch. "Democrats" again are the prime problem here. The critics, not only Democrats, of Trump's comments/actions (and those of his staff and those at rallies), can't even be a little right.


* The idea that there is never violence used by left leaning protesters is simply fictional given various instances over history beyond low points like the LA riots. But, I'm hard-pressed to see evidence Bernie Sanders or Hillary Clinton is at rallies encouraging that sort of thing. BS in the '60s by his actions if anything (and he has noted MLK Jr. was a hero -- if citing comments he made decades ago is relevant) supported non-violent protest. This is the sort of WHOLE PICTURE sort of thing (e.g., Trump's support of torture), I'm talking about. Or, can pick & choose. It's basically very hard to seriously debate that way though.

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[My remark about the past referenced comments on the blog in the past that Sanders has said certain foreign leaders were admirable ... the complexities aside, what he himself did in this country given its specific situation seems most relevant, to the degree it is relevant at all.]

Anyway, like Diogenes with his lamp, SL will have to continue to look for his modern day Hamilton. Good luck. Moving on.

Aside: I watched "Logan's Run" yesterday -- at one point the two runners met an old man in an abandoned Senate building, now just overrun with cats. Sort of thought of Shag though Brett might have watched thinking "ah, if only ..."


I'm impressed, Joe. You're nuancing the actual, genuinely violent events, into some kind of vague mush people might wonder why anybody would fuss about.

"whatever that means in particular"? You don't follow the news much, do you?

" Not only do all sides do that for a range of issues "

Oh, BS. Trump is the one being accused of violence. Show me where he's having thugs attack Democratic rallies.

There's violence at both parties' rallies, and Democrats are behind it in both places.

Blocking isn't violence -- sit-ins that blocked people from going to lunch counters or clinics is not "violent" as that word is usually used. So, yes, I stick by my "whatever" caveat -- your usage of language is confusing repeatedly.

Also, didn't deny that specific violent acts by both sides can be found.

Finally, Trump uses violent rhetoric, at times specifically at certain protesters, enabling it other times (repeatedly, on direct questions, handwaving it; only the willing naive denies the enabling here) and has other "fascist" tendencies such as supporting torture, use of libel and other means to target critics and specifically encouraging people to trust him unilaterally by the force of his will to do things. This is a DRAW for him. Democrats are not all "behind" that -- let's give Trump some credit.

No, I don't think, since we are talking candidates, Sanders nor HRC meet that level though at least BP is more of a "both sides" type here. Not that reliance there is advisable too much. Anyway, since the original comment was about TRUMP, yes, I specifically discussed him. Sorry if this is so confusing or problematic.

Ok, so you can rationalize that obstructing a highway, even one leading to the local hospital, isn't "violent". Surely you can't say the same about people smashing cars and setting things on fire.

Like it or not, there's a fundamental asymmetry here. You don't have Republicans rushing the podium at Democratic party events, trying to shout down the speaker. You don't have Republicans blocking highways to keep people from reaching Democratic campaign events. You don't have Republicans rioting and smashing police cars outside Hillary's rallies.

This difference doesn't appear significant to you?

Sandy in making his case for Hamilton as a "genuine patriot" in this post and in his OpEd states:


"Writing to Federalist Sen. James Bayard of Delaware, who would ultimately cast the deciding vote in the House of Representatives that would elect Jefferson over Burr, Hamilton describes Burr as exhibiting “great Ambition unchecked by principle.”


Sandy doesn't disclose the date of that letter. Bayard did not cast that tie-breaking vote until the 36th ballot, which suggests that Bayard voted for fellow Federalist Burr 35 times. Might there have been a political deal involved in his vote change? Or did Hamilton's writing reach Bayard between the 35th and 36th ballots?C
I don't know if Sandy is aware of claude G. Bowers' "Jefferson and Hamilton" (1925). It contains a lot of snippets on Hamilton's political life, including his relationship with Burr. I recall from some of Sandy's writings on the undemocratic Constitution about too much veneration of the Founders and Framers. Perhaps Sandy venerates Hamilton as a strawman to make a point about Trump. Sandy, there's no need for a strawman from the days of the Foundeers and Framers. Back in 1800-1 it was partisan politics until that 36th ballot.

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I don't know if Sandy is aware of claude G. Bowers' "Jefferson and Hamilton" (1925). It contains a lot of snippets on Hamilton's political life, including his relationship with Burr. I recall from some of Sandy's writings on the undemocratic Constitution about too much veneration of the Founders and Framers. Perhaps Sandy htp://

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